A laptop that is indispensable for work and private life. Many people may be able to do research and online shopping with a smartphone or tablet, but when creating long documents or organizing and editing photos and videos, a laptop computer with a large screen and a keyboard and mouse can be used. The work is much faster. Therefore, Kakaku.com magazine explains how to choose the latest laptop computer in an easy-to-understand manner. While emphasizing that it can be used comfortably for a long time, I picked up recommended models by type.
How to choose the latest computer
○ Let’s understand the difference in basic software (OS)
Differences in basic software (OS) are important when choosing a laptop computer. There are several types of OS, but the two most popular are Microsoft’s “Windows” and Apple’s “macOS”. In addition to that, recently, the number of models adopting Google’s “Chrome OS” is increasing. The features of each OS are as follows.
“Windows” with a wide range of defense from work to games
Windows is an operating system developed by Microsoft. It is adopted by many PC makers in Japan and overseas, and it can be said that it is a feature that various models can be selected. There are also a wealth of applications and peripherals. Windows is also used in gaming PCs, and it is used for a wide range of purposes from work to games. The latest version is “Windows 11”.
“MacOS” with attractive UI and linking function with iPhone / iPad
macOS is an OS developed by Apple and is exclusively for the company’s Mac. It is not used by manufacturers other than Apple. The feature of macOS is that it has a sophisticated user interface (UI) and can be smoothly linked with the company’s popular smartphone “iPhone” and tablet terminal “iPad”. The latest version is “macOS Monterey”. In addition, macOS is updated once a year, and “macOS Ventura” is scheduled to be released this fall.
“Chrome OS” that gradually spreads
Chrome OS is an OS developed by Google, a major search company, and the installed device is called Chromebook. As with Windows, adopted models are available from various manufacturers. Basically, it is different from other OSs in that it handles various tasks with a browser. Therefore, it can be said that there are many low-priced models that do not require machine power. It is not suitable for heavy-duty and complicated work, but it can be used for watching online videos, creating texts, and browsing web pages.
○ Let’s understand the difference in size
Laptops come in a variety of sizes, large and small. The size of the main body is proportional to the size of the screen, and the model with a large screen also has a large main body. On the contrary, the model with a small screen has a small body and is easy to carry.
It is easy to understand if you divide the laptop computer by size into two, “standard notebook” and “mobile notebook”.
The “Standard Notebook” is equipped with a 15-inch display and is characterized by its relatively high performance. Basically, it is used stationary at home or in the office, so you do not have to be so particular about size and weight, but if you want to store it on a shelf when not in use, you should choose a lighter model. Recently, the number of lightweight models that weigh less than 2 kg is increasing even for “standard notebooks”.
On the other hand, the “Mobile Notebook” is equipped with a 10-inch to 14-inch display and is characterized by being compact and lightweight. People who frequently carry it from home to work or school should choose “Mobile Notebook”. Recently, the number of 14-inch models that balance the visibility of the screen and portability is increasing.
○ Check the resolution, image quality, aspect ratio, etc. of the display
There are many items to check on the display. First is the resolution. While the screen size is the physical size, the resolution is the number of dots that can be displayed on the screen. It is shown as 1280 x 720, 1920 x 1080, 3840 x 2160 (4K), etc. The larger this number is, the more information can be displayed on the screen. If the resolution is low, there are disadvantages such as the outline of photos and characters being displayed roughly and the amount of information that can be displayed by spreadsheet software is limited. If you buy it now, you want full HD (1920 x 1080) or higher regardless of the screen size.
In terms of image quality, the higher the coverage of sRGB or Adobe RGB, the wider the color gamut can be displayed. Some manufacturers do not disclose color gamut information, and some manufacturers display it in digital cinema standards such as DCI-P3. The brightness that indicates the brightness varies depending on the model, but in the case of a laptop computer, it is around 250 candelas for the middle class and 400 candelas for the high-end model. Recently, the number of models that use organic EL instead of liquid crystal is increasing. There are still few options, but if you want to be particular about display quality, please check out the OLED model.
The aspect ratio is the ratio of the width to the height of the screen. 16: 9 was the mainstream at all, but recently, models that are wide in the vertical direction such as 16:10 and 3: 2 have increased. The feature is that it is easy to use vertically long Web pages and Office applications that display ribbons and menus. In addition, if you want to use touch operation like a smartphone, check whether it supports touch operation.