Owning a PC used to be a luxury, but can anyone envision their daily lives without a computer nowadays? It’s unfathomable for anyone, even children, to get through the day without relying on a PC in some way or another. For a tech student, this is even more true. Because you have to be on top of your tech to be on top of your studies, a high-performing computer is essential. However, due to COVID, the price of top-performing PCs has skyrocketed. To help you get the best deal and meet all the requirements for your classes, here’s what you need to know about buying the right college computer as a tech major.
Learn the Lingo First
Make sure you learn all the parts of a personal computer before you buy. This can help you communicate better with vendors, compare models and make the right call for your college career. If you are still unsure exactly what type you need, try reaching out to the school you’re considering. Talk to someone in the computer science or IT department, and they can make personalized suggestions on the best type of computer specs for your major.
You may have heard that building a computer is less expensive than buying one outright. If you’re looking to put together a powerful setup that can withstand demanding programs, then you should consider this option. If you know where to look, buying all the parts can cost you as little as $500 compared to a $3,000 outright purchase. Tech students should expect to run software that needs speed and RAM to operate well. Aim for a processing speed of at least 2.7 GHZ and no less than 16 GB of RAM. While not all programs are capable of utilizing that much memory at once, it can drastically impact how well your computer loads and performs overall.
Building your own computer may not be something you’re interested in, and that’s okay. But you will need to have the right budget for a decent setup. Paying $1,500 for a MacBook that only has 2 GB of RAM definitely isn’t the answer. Instead, you may look to gaming PCS, which have hefty price tags but equally substantial hardware. For students who have yet to decide on a major, you might wonder if getting a technology degree is right for you. The added cost of hardware, equipment and software subscriptions can be unsettling, especially if you can’t afford them on your own. In this case, borrowing private loans from a student lender can give you the greatest amount of money to spend after tuition is covered.
A student loan isn’t just for paying off your degree. Your school deposits leftover funds into your bank account, which you can spend however you want. For a tech major, especially computer science or IT, this is the easiest way to afford the best technology. Private lenders are usually your best bet for greater payouts. With or without a cosigner, they are easier to pay off because they have more flexible refinancing options. You also tend to get lower interest rates across the board, and they can even be fixed to help you calculate your future budget.
The Components You Need
If you can’t find the best laptop for college and your studies you can build one. Anyone can build their computer as they see fit, but you’re going to need the right components. A computer consists of a CPU, hard drive, RAM, memory, the casing, the motherboard, cooling fans and the power supply unit. Each of these components are not the same throughout, so you’ll need to do a bit of research. In fact, there’s a reason why some of these components are more expensive than others.
Cheaper alternatives may not last very long. If you find all of these out of your wheelhouse, don’t worry. There are plenty of assembled models, including both desktops and laptops, you can choose from. At the end of the day, you don’t have to worry about the brand name or aesthetic. Focus on the price and what you get for your money.