Desktop Computer or Laptop Computer

          People of today often find difficulty in deciding whether they will purchase a desktop computer or a laptop computer. It may seem that the two are similar but they are totally different. The purpose of this essay is to compare and contrast the differences of desktop computers and laptop computers in terms of convenience, maintenance, performance and cost.

          As we all know, a desktop computer is hard to move and it is cluttered due to many wires and cables that need to be connected to each other. Speakers, keyboard and mouse for a laptop computer is built-in so it does not contain wires. It is quite annoying to see so many wires and cables in a desktop computer. The laptop computer is also portable. You can move it with you while you travel and it just occupies a small space.

          Performance of a laptop computer and a desktop computer has great differences. The desktop computer is capable of having better components that can handle better graphics. It is suitable for hardcore gaming. All the components of a computer are much better for the desktop computer. On the other hand, a notebook has its limits. Even though it can handle some computer games, it cannot handle hardcore games which are new releases. Its battery is also limited and easily overheats in just a short time unlike the desktop computer which does not overheat easily unless you keep it turned on for a very long time – about three days without turning it off if placed in a well ventilated place or overclocking it (Marlene, 2009).

          Maintenance is a great factor in choosing what type of computer you will go for. A desktop computer is easy to customize. You can easily choose what brand or how powerful each component is. On the other hand, a notebook is always sold as a whole. It is also difficult to upgrade. You will need to use your USB port if you want to upgrade its hard drive and it is annoying to have it outside of your notebook. If a notebook is damaged, you will need to replace it as a whole and you are lucky if it is still under warranty. But if a desktop computer gets damaged, you can just replace the parts of it that have been damaged.

          Another factor in choosing between a laptop and a desktop is its cost. According to Null(2007), a desktop computer’s price is cheaper than a notebook because it can be 25% - 50% more powerful than a notebook given a price. The only downside in purchasing a desktop computer is that it consumes more energy than a notebook because it has many components. The problem in a laptop is that it can be stolen easily. If this happens, you will need to buy another one as a replacement.

          People have different preferences. Others may want a more powerful computer while others go for portability. If you want a more powerful computer then go for a desktop computer. But if you want portability because you need to work while traveling then go for a laptop. For me, I like desktop computers better because I stay at home. But I suggest you go for both if you have the budget.


Marlene, G. (2009). What’s best for your home or office. Laptop vs.           Desktop. Retrieved July 22, 2009 from http://www.brighthub.com           /office/home/articles/24545.aspx

Null, C. (2007). Laptop vs. Desktop. Which is Right For You. Retrieved           July 22, 2009 from


In writing this essay, I hope to help people decide on whether they will buy a desktop computer or a laptop computer. I do not really like comparing things because people have their preferences. This essay helped me improve my researching skills because in order to compare two things without bias, I needed to know more about these two things. If I am to choose between a laptop computer or a desktop computer, I would prefer desktop computer more because I always stay at home and I do not need to work at school. Both items have their good parts; it’s up to you if you will buy a desktop computer or a laptop computer or probably both.