How to Create a Checklist When Buying a Computer

How to Create a Checklist When Buying a Computer

When buying a computer, there are many things to consider in order to end up with a device that you actually want. Reading about models of computers can be super confusing, and not understanding the specifications listed on vendor websites can lead to buyer’s remorse. That’s why we created this list to help you understand how to purchase a computer that you will continue to enjoy day after day for years to come. Use our list to make a checklist of your own that you can utilize to make the right computer purchase for you and your needs.

Screen Size

One of the first things to consider when purchasing a computer is the screen size. Remember to consider where the computer will be most of the time when determining which screen size to put on your checklist. If you are purchasing a desktop, measure the desk or table where the computer will sit. If you are purchasing a laptop, think about how the device will fit into your everyday life in terms of portability and usability.

Screen Resolution

After deciding what screen size you prefer, the next step is to consider screen resolution. The higher the resolution, the higher the quality of the image. For the most part, the larger the screen size, the higher the resolution you will need.


The more RAM a computer has, the more you will be able to do at one time and the quicker your system will be. RAM is especially important if you are planning on running multiple applications at once and switching between tasks quickly.

Hard Drive

Typically, the larger the hard drive, the more you can store on your computer. If you are not planning to use many applications on your computer, you may be able to select a smaller hard drive. But if you are planning to use many applications on your computer, with the need to store many files directly on your device, a larger hard drive would be better.

Battery Life

When considering battery life, you have to think about where you will be using your laptop. Will you be keeping it at home close to a power source or will you be bringing it to the library, coffee shop, and everywhere in between? If you plan to use your laptop out of the house, then the longer battery life, the better. But if you don’t plan to ever leave your house with your laptop, then battery life may not be a priority for you.


If you plan to carry around your laptop often, then portability will be important. Desktops are not portable, so choosing a laptop will be key. If the laptop you purchase is too big or too heavy, then its portability will be low. A small screen size may be more lightweight and portable, but the screen will be smaller. Try to find a balance between the weight and screen size that you are happy with and put that size on your checklist.


Typically, the larger the screen size, the heavier the laptop. If your laptop is too heavy, it can be incredibly difficult to carry it around. The weight of the laptop is something to consider even if you decide to not bring it out of your house often. If you want to sit on your couch with your laptop on your lap, a heavy laptop will be uncomfortable after a while. It’s important to balance weight with screen size for a good fit with your laptop.

Internet Browsing Vs Gaming

Gaming computers tend to have better audio, better graphics cards, and better processors. While these features are certainly pretty cool, if you only plan to use your computer for internet browsing the selection of a gaming computer may not fit your needs. Check out more here.


How many USB ports do you want? Do you need a CD/DVD drive? What about an HDMI output or Bluetooth capabilities? These are seemingly small features, but are, in fact, important aspects to consider when deciding which computer is the right one for you.

Now add all of the features you have decided on onto your checklist and you are ready to purchase a computer. If you are still unsure about some features, you can always try a recertified device first. Not sure what that means? Check out more information about recertified devices here and here.

Jun 19th 2017 Faith DiTrolio

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