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Running a business on outdated equipment is often a false economy. Slow and unreliable machines keep capital costs down but staff costs go sky high. Just ask anyone who has killed time making coffee in the 10 minutes it takes their computer to boot in the morning.
A new year is a fresh chance to look at productivity and performance.
Desktops do not get so much of the press these days, but they still do at least 40 percent of the work.
If staff do not need to be mobile, desktops are more cost effective than laptops. You can either save money or buy a desktop that easily outperforms a laptop of equivalent price.
When considering power, you might want to consider a workstation, if you really want to go for it. Workstations deliver the greatest possible performance using high-end processors and multi-GPU configurations. They also come with plenty of memory and storage.
If you do any sort of rendering or processor-intensive work, it is worth checking the specs of the latest equipment. You could be making quantum leaps in terms of time saved.
One argument for laptops in the past was space saving. Desktops today range in size enormously. The ones that expect you to be working from servers are exceptionally compact because the power is in the server, not the desktop.
With a laptop you are paying for the portability. Laptops have increased exponentially in performance, so you can easily get a laptop to match a desktop. You will just have to pay more for it. And you might not get the battery life you need if you are going to thrash the processor.
For general business use, keep an eye out for thin and light notebooks. There is no point in paying for portability if no one will take the laptop anywhere because it is still too heavy. And heavier laptops tend to get dropped more.
You can get more than enough computing power in a slim package when the primary needs are checking email, Internet access and running Microsoft Office.
Until you have found the right monitor, you might never appreciate the productivity improvements monitors can bring. That is definitely monitors plural, as well. The only thing that beats two monitors is three monitors.
Size and resolution are the key decisions here. You can get 4K or UHD options, but 1080p full HD displays are more affordable. If you’re doing a lot of multitasking, aim for 27-inches or more.
Another consideration is ergonomics. Adjustable height and angle can make all the difference to strain.
Speaking of strain, aim for something the offers even brightness, accurate color and flicker-free screen technology. There is no point trying to raise productivity with a monitor that increases fatigue.
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