It can be quite confusing when you want to purchase a computer because there are just so many brands and models to choose from. How will you know which one is the best for you? How much should you spend? Do you need a desktop, laptop, or hybrid? What about a touch-screen computer or an all-in-one? How do company owners decide which to get? Well, there is no formula to follow when getting the perfect computer, but there are many things to keep in mind which will help you make a right decision. Here are ten guidelines for obtaining a small-business computer.
1. Decide if you need portability
If your work required you to work outside of the office, it would be best to get a laptop since this will enhance your worker productivity. Get a desktop if you’re likely never to leave the office. Desktop computers for business are more robust, more accessible to upgrade, and easier to repair. They are also generally cheaper for similar hardware. However, if you frequently travel, go to client meetings often, or need to work at home, then a laptop would be more ideal. When you sit on your desk, all you have to do is plug in a regular-sized keyboard and a good monitor. Save some money by not getting a docking station; most laptops have all the ports you will ever need.
2. Don’t be cheap
Purchasing a low-end computer will only lead to frustration. Remember you get what you pay for. Buying a cheap machine will mean that its specs are mediocre. If you find a bargain computer, it really won’t be a great buy. The computer’s lack of speed will cost you. Spend at least $500 on a decent computer, nothing lower than that. Business coaches say that a computer is the core hardware for your business, where all your data, ideas and documents are stored.
3. Stick with the operating system you’ve chosen
Overall, there is little difference between Apple Mac OS and Microsoft Windows OS. Use the same operating system the company is using, unless you have precise needs dictating one operating system over the other.
4. Find the best processor
The heart of your computer is your processor. Your machine will be slow if the processor is slow. It is also the most complicated piece to upgrade. You can either get a larger hard driver later on or always add more RAM.
5. Need for speed
A high-quality processor will have multiple cores, and you will need at least two, although most users will go as high as four. Users who create animations, photo-realistic images, modelling, render 3D models, or analysis may need eight or more cores. Figure out the ideal number of cores with your software vendor.
6. The more RAM, the better
RAM slots in your computer’s motherboard are in multiples of two. No matter how many there are, you should fill them all. Put in four RAM chips if there are four slots; this will give four access points to your RAM. Things will work faster the more access you have. Think of it this way – you will get more water from four pipes instead of two if the tubes are all the same size. That’s the way RAM works.
7. Video cards come in different types
Video cards are not designed for CAD work, preferably, for games to work great and have high resolution. If a video card works great for a game, it may not work well for you. It is meant to render the screen frequently and quickly for games. If an error appears, it won’t be a big deal because, in a fraction of a millisecond, the screen will change. However, if you are creating a 3D model or rendering a video, the screen will stay the same for a while. Find the perfect video card for your needs.
8. Buy equipment that is ISV-certified
Many other software vendors like Autodesk execute their tests on hardware and certify them. This is called an Independent Software Vendor or ISV certification. Companies creating software also test the device to ensure it works well with their product. Once the equipment is certified, it’s good to use.
9. Avoid purchasing last year’s model
As general business owner advice always buy the latest CPU, motherboard, and other fundamental parts of the computer. Buying the previous year’s model may seem like you’re saving money, but it can eventually lead to disappointment. The laptop is intended to last for about three years. If you buy an older model, you’re already behind.
10. Remember this tool will be used every day
Make sure the computer does what you need it to do. A delay caused by the network can cost you money which will be higher than the computer’s price. Your entire business relies on the technology available so why not invest in the best technological solutions for your business?
Purchasing a computer can be expensive and quite daunting. You can quickly get caught up with the line-item expense. Bear in mind that any problems caused by the network will also cost you money. It can be challenging to measure the cost but spending more upfront can save you money in the long run.
Have your users evaluate their downtime or any holdups caused by the computer before you decide to upgrade. When getting a new computer, do the same. Don’t expect new machines to be perfect. They still get downtime and delays, but they will positively be fewer, hence saving your money. In addition to that, obtaining a new computer will boost a person’s efficiency.