Free money for a new computer? Don’t mind if I do…

When told to imagine I could buy a new laptop, I got excited, though not as excited as I could have been. My current computer is a Lenovo Y50, which was purchased less than six months ago, and is therefore a pretty current computer. The specifications for my current laptop are listed below:

Current Computer

MANUFACTURER AND MODEL: Lenovo Y50 (59425944)

CPU NAME AND SPEED: Intel® Core™ i7-4700HQ @ 2.40GHz

HARD DRIVE TYPE AND STORAGE CAPACITY: SSD – 8 GB, HDD – 1TB

RAM: 8 GB

VIDEO CARD DETAILS: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 860M

MAXIMUM DISPLAY RESOLUTION: 1920 x 1080px

LAPTOP DISPLAY SIZE (inches): 15.6”

BATTERY LIFE: Up to 4 hours

WEIGHT: 5.29 lbs

DATA PORTS: 2 x USB 3.0; 1 x USB 2.0

VIDEO CONNECTIONS: 1 x HDMI

CPU BENCHMARK SCORE:  Rank 121

When asked to look into different computers, I decided on the following two options as the ideal ones for myself. They are as follows, with the Apple option specifications first:

Apple Option – $1,749

MANUFACTURER AND MODEL: Apple A1534 (EMC 2746) MacBook8,1

CPU NAME AND SPEED: Intel Core M (M-5Y71) 1.3GHz

Hard Drive Type and Storage Capacity: SSD – 512GB

RAM: 8GB

VIDEO CARD DETAILS: HD Graphics 5300

MAXIMUM DISPLAY RESOLUTION: 3840 x 2160px

LAPTOP DISPLAY SIZE (inches): 12”

BATTERY LIFE: 9-10 hours

WEIGHT: 2.03 lbs

DATA PORTS: 1 x USB C port (Supports USB 3.1 Gen 1)

VIDEO CONNECTIONS: HDMI if you get a USB-C AV Multiport Adapter (additionally $79)

CPU BENCHMARK SCORE: Not found

Windows Option – $1,299

MANUFACTURER AND MODEL: Digital Storm Eclipse

CPU NAME AND SPEED: Intel Core i5 4690K 3.50GHz

HARD DRIVE TYPE AND STORAGE CAPACITY: SSD – 120GB and HDD – 1TB

RAM: 8GB

VIDEO CARD DETAILS: NVIDIA GTX 970 4GB

MAXIMUM DISPLAY RESOLUTION: 1920 x 1080 px

LAPTOP DISPLAY SIZE (inches): N/A

BATTERY LIFE: N/A

WEIGHT: N/A

DATA PORTS: 2 x USB 3.0, 6 x USB 2.0

VIDEO CONNECTIONS: 1 x DVI, 1 x HDMI, 1 x VDI

CPU BENCHMARK SCORE: Rank 164

Upon finding my computers, I still feel I have more questions. I do not understand what makes one video card better than another, and I would like to know that for future reference. I’ve also discovered that my computer is fairly well up-to-date, with its processor fairing higher than the ones of the other two I looked into and could afford.

As I looked into the computers I wanted for this project, I had no idea where to start for the Apple products. I eventually found a website that could compare various Apple computers, and I ended up with the Apple A1534 (EMC 2746) MacBook from early 2015. It has a large solid-state hard drive, excellent maximum display resolution, and fantastic battery life. The port provided, if one had a converter, allows for use of HDMI, USB 3.0, and other useful items. It also was made by a company that holds sway in the world of USB’s, known as the USB Implementers Forum. Of the Apple computers I found, this one spoke to me the most.

For the Windows, I wanted to look into desktops as that is something I have not looked into since I was younger. I found PC magazine’s list of top 10 desktops, and the Digital Storm Eclipse jumped out at me. The fact it had 120GB of solid-state drive, in addition to 1TB in hard disk drive appealed in the sense of having a lot of storage space. The resolution and amount of data ports and visual connections appealed to my movie watching and video game playing sides. The CPU did not fair poorly either. Additionally, the extra money could be used on video games or upgrades in the future, as this model prides itself on the fact you can upgrade it.

Of the two models, I would likely go with the Windows computer. This is partially due to my dislike on Macs, but also on the specifications of each computer. The Windows has more data ports, so that I can do multiple things at once without needing to pay an extra $79 for the converter, the Windows CPU was ranked, which is better than the Mac, and it has more space in the hard drive. Personally, if someone gave me $1750, I would certainly spend it on the Digital Storm Eclipse, and save the extra money for a rainy day.

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