Hello, guys today I’m going to go through my best tips and tricks for how to choose a Game Development laptop and my goal in this article is that at the end of the article you should have all the tools that you need to be able to evaluate Game Development laptops on your own.
And I’ll leave links below before I start I want to preemptively give you a quick conclusion or three quick tips for what to look for in a computer so you can get even quicker information about what to look for.
And my three general guidelines for buying a Game Development laptop are firstly getting as much ram as a possible eight-gigabyte minimum and also 32 gigabytes is plenty of, and the second tip is to get the biggest screen that you can justify carrying around a third is getting the best CPU you can afford.
So, those are my three general rules of thumb for what you should look for in a Game Development laptop, and now I’m gonna go through kind of why I recommend those things and also go more into depth into what you should look for in a Game Development laptop.
The first one is ram and here I want to try to answer three main questions that I think most people would have, and the first one is what is the ram and why should I care? The second one is why it’s important for Game Development? and the third one is how much ram do I need?
And the first question What is ram basically? ram is the reason that you’re able to run several applications at once on your computer without having to reload each application.
When you switch between them so essentially you could run one program and you can open up a second program and then hang out in that program for a while go back to the first one and without that having to actually reload.
So, essentially here the more ram that you have the more programs you can run at once without having to reload them and that’s something that’s really important for developers because developers will usually run several different applications at once.
You’ll probably be running a web browser a text editor a terminal, and you’ll be using the web browser to look up answers to questions that you run into and the text editor to actually write out the code and the terminal might be used to like run something around a server or run the code that you’re actually building.
So, you usually are wanting quite a lot of ram just to be able to switch between different applications, and then thirdly or fourthly if you’re developing like mobile apps you’ll probably be running an emulator of some kind as well.
And all of these different things will take up some ram so that’s why I suggest usually aiming for at least eight gigabytes of ram that would be like the minimum.
And I would also say that like 32 gigabytes of ram is plenty usually that’s what I have in my laptop and that’s been working fine for me so what I would suggest is going for something like 16 to 32 gigabytes of ram.
And if you can afford more I would also go for even more than that because more ram is always a good thing and it will work well in the future but I would also say that if you can afford 32 gigabytes of ram and you can afford to upgrade that.
I would maybe look into the CPU and processing power just to see if you can maybe bump that up as well so that’s kind of at an equal level and yeah that’s my advice for ram.
The second thing is the size of your laptop and here I would say that it’s a lot up to like personal preference.
Basically, some people really like the small form factor of a laptop so they would go for something like a 13 inch but for me personally, I feel like any time I’ve worked on a 13-inch monitor I kind of feel a little bit claustrophobic so to me screen real estate is really everything when it comes to programming.
Because as I said before usually you’ll be running several different programs at once and if you want to have several different windows open at once I would say that 15 inches are something that I really enjoy using myself.
Because that way you can have some sort of browser window open at one corner and then you can have like a text editor and maybe even a terminal in the bottom right corner and that’s kind of my suggestion.
I would say that 15 inches are about the biggest I would get if you get more than 15 inches then it kind of gets to the point where it’s so big that it doesn’t really make sense because you want it to be somewhat portable as well.
But it is a real struggle with the pros versus cons of a big versus small screen like I really do enjoy the form factor of like a 14 inch or 13-inch laptop because you know you can just take that anywhere.
It’s usually pretty lightweight as well so it’s really like it’s super portable but I like the 15 inches because it helps me a lot when I do Game Development.
I feel more comfortable actually using that sort of screen for a long time so I would suggest going for 15 inches but again this is kind of a personal preference thing so go with the biggest thing that you can actually carry around.
The third thing is CPU and I would say that this is on par with the ram as well like they’re kind of on the same level but I would say that most computers if you buy a new one today then most of them will have pretty decent processing power.
But the ram is usually something that’s going to help you a lot with Game Developming since you’ll be running several different applications at once but I would say that you should go for something like 2 gigahertz to whatever you can afford.
So basically two gigahertz is like the minimum and then you basically just buy the best processor that you can afford.
So I suggest setting a budget before you decide on a computer like set a budget beforehand and then based on the budget that you have and you can try to figure out where you can get the most CPU and the most ram in the same machine.
So that’s kind of a general recommendation it’s not super specific but the reason for that is that I have a MacBook Air which has as I think.
It goes up to like 1.8 gigahertz or something it’s not a fast machine at all but that is what I started out with and doing like ios development and that worked fine for me.
It didn’t really it wasn’t super fast or anything but it wasn’t so slow that it actually bothered me too much so that’s why I feel like this is something that is kind of less important but it’s also something you should get as much as you can afford.
The fourth one here is what operating system you should choose and here I think there are mainly two ones that most people know about, and that’s mac os and windows there’s also a third one that a lot of people know about which is Linux but it’s not as widely used as mac os and windows.
And I would say that if we’re doing like a hierarchy of the best verses so the worst for developers I would say that Linux is like the best one that you can get and mac os is the second best one and then windows are the worst one.
However, with that said you can program on either of them and it’s not that big difference between them, it’s just kind of my experience I’ve had some really bad experiences with windows just like things that I want to try to do where I have to do a lot of workarounds to actually get it to work.
Whereas when I did it on mac os or my Linux system it just works straight away you don’t have to do any workarounds you just get the thing that you want to do and it works.
But between like mac os and windows the thing is with mac os is that you get a lot less for a lot more so basically you have to pay a lot more for a worse machine as compared to a windows machine where you basically pay less for a lot more power so, that’s why I think that for a lot of people.
I would suggest looking into doing a dual boot between Linux and windows basically getting the most powerful windows laptop that you can afford and then installing Linux on it as a dual boot so, then you can basically do all your Game Development on Linux and then run all of your regular applications on your windows system.
And there’s only one caveat to this and that is if you want to do some ios development if you know that that’s something that you’re definitely going to do then I would suggest going with a laptop with mac os.
Because basically, it’s a real hassle to publish or develop apps for ios unless you have a mac so therefore if you know that’s something that you’re going to do then basically go with mac of some kind.
Otherwise, I would suggest every day of the week going with a windows laptop and then installing Linux on it in some fashion so that’s my suggestion for what OS to choose but again you can work with either of them it doesn’t really matter too much.
All right so, in conclusion, I just want to go through my list of future proof specs for a Game Development laptop this is what I would go for and this is also what I’ve gone for in my current laptop and that would be 32 gigabytes of ram a CPU that supports something like three to four gigahertz an SSD of one terabyte.
You could also go for something like 500 gigabytes but if you can afford it go for one terabyte and a screen of 1080p and the reason for this is that I don’t really personally notice any difference between 1080p and 4k on a 15-inch laptop.
There is a slight difference I would say a difference I would say but it doesn’t really make a huge difference so that’s why I would go with that.
I also just want to end this article by saying that you can pretty much code on anything so you probably don’t actually need to update your laptop.
So if you have a laptop that you feel like is getting really slow and like old then try installing Linux on it and just see how that works because there’s kind of a high chance that that might actually revive it and give it a second wind.
The good thing about code is the fact that it is really lightweight I mean everything that you write is in text format so basically, most computers are pretty good with text files so you can pretty much code on anything and especially if you run it.
If you do like terminal applications or something like that then it really doesn’t take that much power at all from your computer.
And if you’re going into a university or something a lot of what you’ll be doing at first will be just terminal applications so you really don’t need much to actually be able to do those sorts of things.
So, I hope this advice article gave you some ideas for what to buy and what to look for, and I hope that I was successful in giving you the tools that you need to actually evaluate laptops on your own.
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