When you’re looking for cheap laptops for personal or business use you have a choice between new, used and refurbished. These days the words “cheap” and “new” don’t often have a lot in common. In fact, any new laptop that’s worth buying is going to set you back $1,000 or more. You could opt instead for a used laptop. But they typically come with a ton of baggage, most of it hidden. At Affordable Computers our cheap laptops are fully refurbished high-end machines that are often lightning fast and come with the latest OS and other software. Still, people ask us all the time: “Are refurbished laptops really worth it?”
Refurbished Laptops from Affordable Computers
Whether you’re a business owner in need of new laptops for your sales team, a school looking to outfit one of your graphic arts classrooms or an individual who just doesn’t want to pay thousands of dollars to enjoy the speed and versatility of today’s best laptops refurbished machines are your best bet.
But while refurbished cheap laptops aren’t going to set you back nearly as much you still need to know whether they’re worth whatever the reseller is asking for them. The answer is an unequivocal “yes”.
Often Virtually New
A used laptop may be 5 or 6 years old and laden with all kinds of spyware that’s going to quickly steal your personal information and send if off to a cyber thief somewhere. For all you know the person selling the used laptop may have installed a spyware program themselves. So, while you may get this 5 year old security nightmare for a couple of hundred bucks can you really say you got a “deal”? Of course not.
By contrast some refurbished laptops have never been used. They remained unsold on store shelves and then had to be moved to make way for new models. Other refurbished cheap laptops were only used periodically by executives to create Powerpoint presentations or do some research. These machines are typically only a year or two old and lightning fast.
In fact the speed and capabilities of many refurbished machines today make them virtually indistinguishable from brand new machines. So while you may pay a bit more than you would for some antique clunker you’re actually getting a laptop you can use for anything.
Do Your Homework
Before you decide to purchase a refurbished computer from Affordable Computers in Wheat Ridge, Colorado or anywhere else check about the following things:
- Age - As laptops tend to have a lifespan of about 4 or 5 years anything older than a couple of years may not be worth it. While refurbishment will typically extend the life of the laptop beyond the original 4 or 5 years you still want something that’s as new as possible with as little mileage as possible on the hard drive and processor.
- Battery - Ideally you want a laptop with a removable battery. Why? Because the battery is often times the first thing to go. After innumerable charge cycles it simply doesn’t hold a charge the way it used to. If you have a laptop with a removable battery that you can easily replace this is not such a big deal. If however, the battery is built into the machine replacing it will be more trouble and expense than it’s worth.
- Processor speed - Processor speed is what separates the men from the boys when it comes to laptops. It’s the processor that more often than not determines the capabilities of the laptop. A 2 year old refurbished laptop with a 7th Generation Intel core i3-7100U 2.7 GHz processor will be virtually indistinguishable performance-wise from a brand new laptop with an Intel 8th Generation i7-8550U 4 GHz processor.
- Memory - The other factor in determining performance of cheap laptops is the amount of memory. A 5 or 6 year old used laptop may have 1 GB of RAM and maybe a 40 or 50 GB hard drive. A 1 year old refurbished laptop by contrast will likely have 8 GB of RAM and perhaps a 500 GB or larger hard drive. This type of memory is needed to run today’s graphics heavy applications or to do video or photo editing.
- Type of hard drive - When someone is trying to sell you a used laptop they may talk up the fact that at some point they installed an SSD, or Solid State Drive, in it. While SSDs are known for their speed they come with a major downside in that there are only so many times you can write to them before they become useless. So since you have no way of knowing exactly how much the person used the computer you have no way of knowing how much life remains in that SSD.
- Was it used for gaming? - A used laptop that the owner used for gaming purposes is regret waiting to happen. High end gaming can be incredibly hard on laptops which means there’s a good chance the used gaming machine you buy is going to break down shortly after you get it home. Refurbished laptops on the other hand typically come from corporate clients and have not undergone anywhere near the stress put on a machine by a gamer.
At the end of the day the most important thing is to buy from a dealer you can trust. In Colorado that’s Affordable Computers in Wheat Ridge. Stop by and talk to our highly trained experts about whether a refurbished laptop is right for you.