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Pros and Cons of Laptop and Desktop Computers

When netbooks arrived in early 2008, hardly anybody imagined that they could be such a viable alternative to laptops and desktops. While it is not serious to say that netbooks with all their numerous advantages will make laptops and desktops history, it is a fact that the sales of netbooks are skyrocketing. Still, desktops, not to mention laptops, are far from becoming history.

Both laptops and desktops have their advantages and disadvantages, as it will be discussed in this article. If the reader is interested in the advantages and disadvantages of netbooks, or is eager to learn about the final decision what computer to buy, he or she should check the respective articles in this series.
The Advantages of Laptops

Laptops have many advantages over netbooks and desktops and here are some of them:

* Easier to carry. Laptops are not as heavy as a desktop computer and they are easier to carry. Still, there is no doubt that compared to a netbook, they are as heavy as a rock.
* Compact, yet large enough. In comparison to a 7” netbook, the screen of a laptop is much more convenient for work and fun.
* More powerful than netbooks. As it was mentioned in the previous article about the advantages and disadvantages of netbooks, netbooks were not designed to be powerful gaming stations or design studios. Still, depending on the tasks a user wants to use the computer for, a netbook might be too weak and in such cases a laptop is definitely better.

The Disadvantages of Laptops

Laptops have disadvantages as well and here are some of them:

* The most expensive choice. All equal, a laptop is more expensive than a desktop/netbook with similar parameters. However, the most expensive netbooks are more expensive than a laptop with similar parameters.
* Less ergonomic than a desktop. Laptops were designed to be portable computers, not marvels of ergonomic design. Neck pain and problems with the wrists/fingers are not unheard of when a laptop is used for 10 or more hours a day. There are special stands and other appliances, which help deal with the ergonomic issues, if they become a big problem, so it is not fair to say that a laptop/netbook leads to serious long-term skeletal injuries.
* Easier to steal. In comparison to desktops, a laptop is easier to steal. This applies to netbooks as well.

The Advantages of Desktops

Since good old desktops are still on the market, they must have some really cool advantages. Yes, this is so and here are some of them:
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* The cheapest alternative (for the same technical characteristics). All equal, when a netbook, a laptop, and a desktop computer are compared, desktops are the cheapest buy. The difference (for similar technical parameters) could be up to 50% or even more. Even barebone Mini PCs, which are generally more expensive, are still cheaper than laptops.
* Large screen. There is hardly a person who plans to use a netbook and even a laptop for desktop publishing, CAD design or any similar activity where monitor size matters. But even if a user doesn't plan to turn his or her computer into a design studio, the larger the monitor, the higher the productivity.
* The monitor, the case, and the keyboard are separate. This advantage is really important because if one piece breaks, this (usually) doesn't affect the others. With netbooks and laptops when the monitor or the keyboard breaks, this usually means that either the whole computer is trashed, or that external devices must be connected (even if this is possible at all, it is a bit clumsy).

The Disadvantages of Desktops

The main disadvantages of desktops are related to their large size and sometimes lack of advanced features:

* Heavy and bulky. The size and weight of a desktop configuration are its major disadvantage. A desktop configuration takes a lot of space and is difficult to transport. Yes, there are mini PCs, which are half or quarter the size of a typical desktop but in terms of price they cost much more than a typical desktop and that is why they are not taken into account.
* Requires a separate monitor. When a user is upgrading his or her old PC, it is quite probable that there is an old monitor, which can be used with the new configuration as well. However, when a user buys his or her first PC, if the decision is to buy a desktop, it is necessary to buy not only the case and the machinery inside it, but also a separate monitor. Though there are great monitors for $300 or less, generally a separate monitor is not cheap and an average monitor could cost as much as a whole netbook.
* Could be without wireless. Even recent desktop motherboards don't always have wireless connectivity. Well, this is hardly a problem because there are many other types of connectivity but if your provider offers nothing but wireless, this could be a (minor) problem. Needless to mention, there are tons of workarounds of the lack of wireless issue.

Similarly to netbooks, laptops and desktops also have their advantages and disadvantages a buyer must consider when choosing what computer to buy.

Read more at Suite101: Pros and Cons of Laptop and Desktop Computers: Laptops and Desktops Are Still Good Choices for a Computer to Buy http://computeraccessories.suite101.com/article.cfm/pros_and_cons_of_laptop_and_desktop_computers#ixzz0b9viP5Q4

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