New computer recommendations

Updated 5/30/22:

Since you’ll likely be spending the next 5-10 years or more with your next computer, please take a few minutes now to make an informed decision about what to look for in a new computer and accessories – and get the best deal. 

We don’t recommend trying to save money on a refurbished computer. Typically they won’t last as long as a new computer, and are likely less secure due to unpatched processor flaws and are limited in the ability to upgrade to the most recent secure operating system.

Our recommended minimum new computer specifications are:

  • Intel Core i3/AMD Ryzen 5 processor or better. For an Apple Mac computer consider getting an Apple M1 or M1 Pro/Max rather than Intel processor
  • 8 GB RAM or more
  • 256GB Solid State Drive (SSD) or larger
  • Please read New Computer Buying Guide for more detailed information.

If you come across a good deal elsewhere, remember to look for specifications that are a minimum of what’s listed above. We’ve had the best reliability with HP and Dell brands. Keep in mind that cheaper laptops and all-in-ones typically only have a vertical screen resolution of 768 pixels, whereas higher quality and clearer screens are 1080 or higher.

Click on the links below to view recommended computers meeting the minimum recommended specifications noted above at the respective retailer’s website. Some models may be available in-store. Apple Mac computers also available.

Desktop PCs:

Best Buy – Dell, HP – SSD PC Desktops

Costco – Dell, HP Desktops – make sure hard drive is SSD or HDD+SSD

HP Store – Desktop computer towers with SSD

Dell – Desktop computers & All-in-One PCs with SSD

Laptop/Notebook PCs – regular price differences are due to variances in screen size, processor (speed), screen resolution and 2-in-1 convertibility:

Best Buy – Dell, HP SSD PC Laptops

Costco – Dell, HP – SSD PC Laptops

Apple Mac:

Best Buy – iMac desktop

Best Buy – MacBook laptop

Costco – iMac desktop

Costco – MacBook laptop

Apple – iMac desktop – select Apple M1 or M1 Pro/Max chip

Apple – MacBook laptop – select Apple M1 or M1 Pro/Max chip

Computer / Internet News

How and Why to Use Browser Tabs

The internet is a huge part of our daily lives. Whether you’re communicating with family over Zoom, checking what your friends are up to on Facebook or buying your weekly groceries, you no doubt use an Internet browser most days of the week – either on your computer, tablet or smartphone

Internet browsers have a host of cool tricks and functions that make the browsing experience more pleasurable and straightforward. To make the most of these features, you need to understand what they are and how they work.

One such feature is the use of multiple browsing tabs. Tabs enable you to open multiple websites in one browser, without cluttering your desktop with too many browser pages. Being able to use tabs can enhance your browsing experience and make using the internet much easier. 

Every leading browser has options for tabbed browsing – even smartphones and tablets. 

Tabs are hugely popular – and have a great range of benefits. It’s estimated that the average person has between 2 -3 tabs open at any one point.

Of course, to take advantage of tabs, you need to know how to use them. So, below, we’ll dive into what browser tabs are, why you should use them and how to get started. 

What’s a Browser Tab?

With multiple browser tabs open, you can have multiple websites open at the same time within one browser. Each open website will appear as a “tab” at the top of your browser window. You can use your mouse, keyboard-shortcut or finger to switch between your open tabs/websites.

Why is Using Multiple Tabs Beneficial?

Have you ever signed into a website and then been asked to check your email for a verification code, which you’ll need to enter on that page.

In this instance, you may have wondered if there’s a way to check your email without losing the page you’re on. This is where browser tabs come in.

With multiple tabs, you can keep your current page while opening a new tab to check your email. 

Other use cases for browser tabs include: 

  • When you are writing an email and want to look up a synonym of a word
  • When you have two email accounts and want to switch between the two 
  • When you’re reviewing your stock portfolio and want to research information about a company without exiting your account 
  • When you’re researching airline flights and are comparing providers for the best deals 
  • When you’re multi-tasking – reading the news, ordering groceries etc. 
  • When you want to click a link on a page without losing the webpage you’re on
[Read more…]