5 Reasons To Buy A 4K Laptop
Having a 4K-resolution laptop display is still being hyped, but there is value in those additional pixels. Here’s why.
Ever since 4K-resolution screens started showing up on laptops in 2014, their value has been debatable. At the time, there wasn’t much benefit outside of photo editing, with little 4K content available and software that couldn’t scale properly for the increased resolution. And then there are the increased hardware demands to play games or video at 4K, so you weren’t just paying for a nice screen, but pricier components were needed to enjoy it.
This has all changed. Prices have come down significantly over past 3 years. There is content now readily available on YouTube, Netflix and elsewhere and upscaling support has improved. Still, there are plenty of skeptics out there who aren’t buying into the push for more pixels on a laptop. If you’re one of them, here’s our list of reasons to consider going 4K on your next notebook along with one major drawback. One negative aspect of a 4k computer/laptop might not surprise you. It has been an ongoing issue with most all devices. You could probably guess what we are talking about?
MORE DETAILED GAMING
There are a lot more games that fully support 4K play now than there were in 2014. Although, you will still need a powerful laptop to play them smoothly at that resolution with detail settings on high, you’ll be rewarded with incredible graphics and a great immersive viewing experience. Will you miss much by playing at full HD? Possibly not, but there is a major difference in overall picture image with a 4K laptop. A ‘good’ difference, too. This means that the sharper fine details on 4K make gaming an even better experience.
I have yet to come across a current 4K laptop that didn’t make everyday tasks look fantastic. I mean the display and what it shows is simply beautiful and crystal clear! All those extra pixels make for some sharper, smoother text and graphics. Plus, because most major applications’ interfaces can scale these days without looking like garbage, you’re actually able to enjoy having the increased resolution. On larger laptop screens, the higher resolution also means more room for software user interfaces.
PHOTO AND VIDEO EDITING
Accurate color and color gamut support are more crucial for retouching, but having a 4K display for photo editing is important for examining the fine details of high-resolution images. A 4K computer is a massive advantage when it comes to photo editing. However, while 4K resolution is a starting point, you’ll want to look for the display’s pixel density: The higher it is, the more detail you’ll be able to see.
Back in 2014, most consumers didn’t have access to a camera that recorded in 4K. Now, most premium smartphones can do it along with dSLR and interchangeable lens cameras and even smaller video cameras like GoPros. Heck, my smart phone which is a Samsung Galaxy S has 4K capability and I didn’t even know it until recently. In the camera settings, I can choose the 4K resolution. Then, take 4K stills and videos! It makes for an amazing picture and people notice. I get “wows” and “awes” all the time when showing off my pictures in 4K.
So, if you’re going to shoot in 4K, you might want to actually view the content at that resolution. This is what a 4K compute allows instead of being limited only to the device you used to record the 4K content. Makes sense, Huh!?
It’s also worth mentioning that if you’re doing CAD or other engineering-type stuff or illustration, the extra pixels are important for those, too.
IT’S PART OF THE PREMIUM PACKAGE
Maybe it’s because you want a touchscreen, the most powerful graphics, a processor or other features that will give you some future-proofing or maybe it’s just the design you’re after. Whatever the reason, sometimes the only way to get what you want is to get a premium build, and “premium” these days typically means a 4K display. Something like Razer’s Blade Pro, for instance, has a great design and top-notch graphics, but you can only get it with a 3,840×2,160-pixel touchscreen. If requesting a premium ‘build’ for a new laptop, having them install a 4K display with all of its components and accessories is a no-brainer.
Yep, time to brag. This plays into the marketing of high-res laptop screens some, but an amazing high-resolution display can be something that’s simply nice to have. I’m not saying you should stop everyone and make them bask in the glory of all your pixels. But, do it anyway. Show it off! But, if someone notices the clarity of your picture or appreciates the sharpness of your spreadsheets, there’s no reason to shy away from pointing out it’s 4K.
NONE OF THIS MATTERS IF YOUR BATTERY IS DEAD
The biggest reason to skip a 4K display is battery life. However, we do not actually mean that you should avoid buying a 4K computer because the battery life sucks. This is NOT a good enough reason to not buy. Plug it in! It’s unlikely you’ll be doing any gaming or photo editing for long on battery alone with any laptop. But the higher-resolution panels put a hurt on battery life. And I’m not talking minutes, but hours in reduced run time.
For example, Dell’s XPS 13 outfitted with its QHD touchscreen lasts for just about 8 hours in our tests. Get the full HD display instead, though, and you’re able to get more than 10.5 hours of battery life. It’s the same for the HP Spectre x360, which is rated at 8 hours for the 4K version, but 16 hours with a full HD screen.
There is also cost to consider. There are many more 4K panels available now than there were in 2014. While that’s driven the price down some, 4K laptops still come at a premium. For most people, a full HD laptop screen offers the best balance between clarity, power and price.
Check out some of the latest 4K computer below on Amazon. We highly recommend Amazon as your online merchant for many good reasons.