Purchasing a PC or laptop - FAQs

Purchasing a new laptop or PC for the office? Get the most from your investment by understanding what you're paying for

Buying your next company laptop or office PC from a retailer can be tempting as the up-front price tag is often a few hundred dollars less than what is offered by your local IT Services company. But it is important to understand the differences in what you are being offered.

What version of Windows should I purchase?
  • When using a laptop or PC for business you need to be running Windows 10 Pro. Machines purchased from retailers are often pitched to the home market and come standard with Windows 10 Home. In this scenario, you will have to pay to upgrade to business-grade software or be in breach of Microsoft licensing agreements.
  • Laptops and PCs provided by IT Basecamp always come with Windows 10 Pro licenced for business use.
What warranty do you recommend?
  • Aim for a three-year warranty that offers next-business-day (NBD) onsite support. For busy people focused on running a company, this is the fastest, least stressful method of dealing with problems - report the issue and the support comes to you.
  • When purchasing from a retail supplier the warranty is usually 1-year and requires you to bring the machine back to the shop, where it is assessed and then sent away for repair - a cycle often taking 2-3 weeks, as well as taking up your valuable time.
  • IT Basecamp laptops and PCs come with 3-year, NBD business-grade warranties as default - any issues and we book you in for next-business-day onsite support. If repairs are needed we collect and deliver to your door.
How should I backup my data?
How do I set up and configure my new laptop or PC?

IT Basecamp laptops and PCs are always sold with one hour of set-up time included in the price. So when you power up the machine for the first time you can rest assured that:

  • all the latest Windows updates will have been applied
  • standard applications will be loaded
  • the machine will be appropriately named and joined to your domain
Should I get SSD or HDD?
  • We recommend a minimum 256GB storage and a Solid State Drive (SSD) rather than a Hard Disk Drive (HDD).
  • SSD is quicker, more reliable and quieter because it has no moving parts. With apps demanding more and more resources these days, even when cloud-based, it makes sense not to hamper your investment with older technology.
What's the best screen size?
  • Be sure to check the screen size of the laptop or computer you plan to purchase, particularly if doing your research online. Apparent cost savings can be achieved by offering smaller screen sizes - but this is rarely a benefit for business use.
Do I need i3 or i5 processing power?
  • We recommend i5 (quad-core) processors for business machines because i3 (dual-core) processing is the most basic CPU used mostly for home-based machines. IT applications are becoming increasingly resource-hungry and a slow machine in a business environment reduces productivity. Additionally, business hardware that becomes outdated too quickly struggles to deliver a return on investment.
How much memory do I need?
  • 8GB of RAM as a minimum is adequate, but 16GB is ideal especially if you heavily use Microsoft Office applications. With IT apps becoming increasingly resource-hungry it's best not to underestimate needs. IT hardware that becomes outdated too quickly is never a good investment.
How many ports do I need on my new laptop/PC?
  • consider how many devices will you need to plug into the machine - will you need an HDMI or VGA port for connecting a remote monitor? Is an Ethernet port required?
  • laptops these days often only come with USB-C ports, so a hub or dock that connects other devices is beneficial - this way you have one cord travelling to your laptop that plugs in all of your other devices including external screen/keyboard/mouse and external hard drives.
What laptop screen size is best for use as an extended desktop?
  • 15-inch screens are the ideal size if you are using your laptop with an extra monitor - this preserves portability but optimises comfort during use.
  • If you are using your laptop as a dual-screen set-up we recommend the purchase of a laptop stand that sits the laptop keyboard open at a 45-degree angle. Also connecting an external mouse and keyboard means the dual screens can both be positioned comfortably side-by-side in front of you.

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