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AdminSecret's Laptop Buying Guide

AdminSecret's Laptop Buying Guide

Eric Dahl / InsideTech for AdminSecret

October 03, 2008

6. Wider isn’t Always Better

I know everything under the sun is going widescreen, but on compact laptops that may not be a good thing. Sure, it looks great when you’re watching a DVD, but if you’re working on Word docs or browsing the Web, vertical screen space is king.

You won’t get that from a widescreen display, which, on many small laptops will top out at a vertical resolution of 800 pixels. Compare that to the 1024 pixels you’d get from a similar full-frame monitor. Widescreen’s great on the desktop, where you can fit two documents side-by-side, but you won’t do that on a laptop screen unless you’ve got one of those 17-inch giants.

It’s not always easy to find a laptop with a standard-aspect display, but give it a try next time you’re out shopping. Those black bars you see when watching DVDs are a small price to pay for a machine that’s nicer to work with in everything else you do.

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