What specs do you need for your home office computer?
When setting up your office at home, one of the main decisions you have to make is the type of computer you need, and the specifications that will work best. This decision is often difficult because buying a computer is costly, and, thus, you can get into a pattern of questioning your decisions. Do you really need 500 GB of memory?
Determining the right computer specs for your home office is in most cases, down to the kind of work. What programs are going to use your CPU most? You need to do your research with this firmly in mind. CPU intensive activities can make it difficult to multitask without a powerful computer.
When buying a computer, you are normally faced with the choice of getting one with a Mac OS, or one with Windows. Today you can also throw a Chromebook netbook into the equation too. The debate on which is better among the first two has raged for a while and there is no end in sight for the comparisons. However, they both have their advantages and disadvantages - http://www.diffen.com/difference/Mac_vs_PC.
If your work entails using a particular platform, stick with that platform. Otherwise, let other factors like cost dictate your preference. Even when buying second hand computers (http://www.gumtree.com/computers-software) on Gumtree or Tier1online (http://www.tier1online.com/), Mac devices are costlier.
Laptop or Desktop or Chromebook
To decide, you need to consider the importance of flexibility in your work. If you intend to move down to the coffee shop and work from there every now and then, a laptop is obviously the best choice. If you intend to have several screens powered at once, you will be better served by a desktop. You also need to keep in mind the amount of space you have for a home office. Chromebooks are now a serious option, and seriously cheap. You will need good internet to benefit most from them, but then the internet is just about everywhere you could want to work these days. It is definitely worth familiarising yourself with Chromebooks (http://blog.laptopmag.com/chromebook-buying-advice).
Again the processor speed will be determined by the kind of work you intend to do. If your work entails web surfing and document edits, a computer with AMD processor will get the job done. On the other hand, you will have to shell out on computers with Intel processors if your work involves graphics and lots of video. Going back to the laptop/desktop discussion above, desktops have the fastest processing power around, but high end laptops can get the job done too.
Hard drive capacity is rarely a problem these days as there are external hard drives that can be easily plugged into your computer whenever you need them, and we also have the amazing capacity of the cloud. If you want in-built hard drives that can comfortably handle your storage needs, you may have to pay a premium. On average, computers come with around 500GB of storage space.
The average user won’t have any problems using the video cards that come packaged with most computers. If you do a lot of image and video work, however, or play games, this may be an important deciding factor.
Make sure you understand what video card specs you need. Some people buy computers and upgrade the video cards but this may lead to strain on internal components and a voided warranty.
The standard connectivity option for computers today are HDMI ports (important for projections), USB ports (3 is the standard) and wireless connectivity. An Ethernet port must also be available so you won’t get stuck when wireless connectivity is not available; some hotels, for example, offer plug in rather than wireless connectivity.
This is a big factor if you are looking to buy a laptop. You should be able to use your laptop for a good number of hours away from electric sockets. Some laptops can offer as much as 12 hours battery life (even more with extended battery options) but on average, a laptop should give you 6 hours of battery life.
These are some of the things you have to consider when deciding the specs for the computer in your home office.