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PC vs Laptop For Work: Which Is Better?

PC vs Laptop For Work: Which Is Better?

Many of us are starting to work from home, whether temporarily or permanently.

Since almost every job which can be done from home requires some kind of computer, we’ve been forced to make a choice. Should we get a laptop for the portability and convenience, or a desktop for its power and customizability?

It’s more important than ever to know the pros and cons of each type of computer. So, should you get a laptop or a PC for work?

PC Vs Laptop For Work: Which Is Better?

PCs are better for work because they are stronger than laptops and provide more options in terms of peripherals and performance. Desktops also have a longer lifespan than laptops, are less likely to get damaged, and are easier to repair if something happens to them.

I have tried to work on both a laptop and a desktop, and I prefer my desktop by far. I got a lap desk to use while I sit in my recliner with my laptop to work, and I’ve only used it once. The reason is that I just work so much better sitting at a computer desk with a mouse and keyboard.

Desktops are also much faster most of the time, and if they’re not, they can easily be upgraded to be as fast as you need. This is especially important if you need to run multiple programs at once (slack, discord, Teams, Adobe, etc).

The only exception is if your work requires you to work away from home or travel often. In this case, you’ll definitely want a laptop because it just won’t be viable to drag your bulky desktop PC everywhere you go.

Laptops Are More Portable Than Desktops

The number one pro of using a laptop for work is the portability. This is actually a huge pro, and it can be the sole determining factor of what kind of computer you get. If you need portability, go with a laptop every time.

I used to drag my PC back and forth between a friend’s house to game together, and it wasn’t fun. It was also extremely stressful hoping nothing got bumped around too bad in the backseat. If you travel a lot for work, or enjoy working from a cafe on occasion, then a laptop is your best bet and really the only option.

Cons Of A Laptop

Not Very Powerful

Generally speaking, laptops aren’t going to be very strong unless you’re willing to shell out a pretty penny for them. If you need to run CAD, Photoshop, or any animation or modeling software, a typical laptop won’t cut it.

Now, if your work just requires running Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc or just needs to allow you to connect remotely to your work system, then your average laptop will be good enough. If you want to multi-task, though, this can start eating up your laptop’s processing power and make things run pretty slow.

The real unfortunate things about laptops is that if you want to upgrade, you’re probably going to need to buy a whole new computer. Laptops are not know for their modularity. Most parts are put in there for good, and you won’t be able to replace them without a lot of technical knowledge.

Susceptible To Damage

Accidents happen, and laptops are extremely delicate. One drop could easily put your laptop out of commission for good. Of course, insurance and warranties exist, but it’s not always about the money. If you’re working on something important, having to wait until your laptop is fixed or the new one comes in will be extremely inconvenient.

On top of this, if your laptop gets damaged, odds are your hard drive got damaged as well, which means important data could be lost for good.

Pros Of A PC

Modular

PCs can easily be upgraded and their parts can be swapped around as you deem necessary. If one part doesn’t work, you can simply replace it. If you need your PC to be faster, you can get a new GPU, CPU, RAM, SSD, or whatever you need without having to spend money on a brand new system.

PCs also give you much more control over your peripherals than laptops do. You can choose any mouse and keyboard you want, with any monitor (or monitors) that you like. It can even save you money if you don’t mind going the refurbished / used route. They also give you the option to replace / upgrade parts if they break.

More Powerful

Even if you’re not going to be running extremely complicated software, just having a PC that can handle a few different tasks at the same time is important for work. When I write or code, for example, I need my PC to run whatever program I’m working in, along with a few Google Chrome tabs with the research and references I’m using.

A lot of jobs nowadays use things like Slack, Teams, Zoom, etc which you will need to run along side whatever program you’re working in. It would be extremely frustrating to lag because you’re running these programs, which is why PCs are so great for work.

Cons Of A PC

Not Portable

PCs are pretty bulky and require an external mouse, keyboard, and monitor. This means you really won’t be able to take your PC with you wherever you need to go. If you travel for work often, or just work from home for whatever reason, a PC is not going to cut it.

Take it from me, hauling around your PC, mousepad, and everything else in the back of your car is annoying. Even more annoying is having to unplug it then plug it all back in at the new location.

Requires Some Tech Skills

Pre-built PCs are pretty easy to just start up and run, but if something breaks and you want to replace it, that can be a bit complicated. Building your own PC is even more complicated. I’m a nerd, so I personally love replacing parts in my PC and felt very fulfilled learning where every part goes and what every part does.

Not everyone is interested in learning that though, in which case, PCs can be annoying when something breaks.

Which Is Better For Working At Home: PC Or Laptop?

PCs are better for working at home because they are more powerful and are much more customizable when it comes to how they’re setup. Laptops are also more susceptible to being damaged, which would risk all of the data stored on them. Single PC parts can be replaced, making them much safer for work.

I work from home, and I’ve tried working on my laptop. I thought it’d be comfy and convenient to work with my laptop in my lap while I sit in a recliner. This was pretty much a pipe dream, though.

My laptop was too slow to switch back and forth between the tabs I needed, I still needed to use my mouse to be efficient, and overall I just worked faster from my desktop where I have two monitors, a nice keyboard, and can focus a lot better.

Which Is More Reliable: PC Or Laptop?

PCs are more reliable than laptops because PC parts can be upgraded or replaced when they break down. If a laptop component breaks, most of the time it is impossible to fix, at least without sophisticated technical knowledge and high repair costs. PCs also last many more years than laptops do before failure.

Laptops are extremely prone to overheating because they sacrifice a lot of fan power in order to be so tiny. This is fine if you need a computer on the go, but if you need to use a computer at home for many hours a day, a PC can’t be beat.

PCs have pretty much an infinite lifespan because if something breaks you can simply replace it. If something in a laptop breaks, you’re not going to be able to replace it. Many laptop components are soldered in or put in spots that are impossible to reach.

This makes laptops much more prone to failure. On top of this, if a laptop is dropped, the hard drive could be damaged, which may mean the loss of important data. This issue just isn’t a factor with PCs.

What Processor Is Good For Work?

The Intel Core i5-10400F is one of the best processors for a work PC. This is just a great processor in general and has one of the best bangs for your buck. It will be able to handle any kind of work you throw at it.

The Intel Core i5-10400F is a really great value. This is an Intel processor though, so make sure that your motherboard is Intel compatible. If your motherboard has pins in its processor socket, then it is Intel compatible. If it has holes, you need an AMD processor.

Best PC For Work

For work, I really like the HP 600 G1 SFF Desktop PC. It can handle anything you throw at it, and it has an i7 processor, which has amazing performance.

HP usually makes pretty good home PCs for work, and this one is pretty much top of the line for anything you’ll need. What I look for in a work computer is an SSD, plenty of RAM, and strong processor, so that the computer boots up and works fast.

This PC has all of that, along with a huge HDD hard drive, which will be able to store all of your work files for years to come.

Best Laptop For Work

For work, I highly recommend the MSI Modern 14 Professional Laptop.

I love this laptop. It’s probably the best laptop on the market at the moment for work, school, or anything else you need. This laptop will work no matter what line of work you’re in, be it animation, software development, data analytics, writing, you name it.

It’s thin and light enough to be convenient, while being powerful enough to do whatever you want, making it the perfect laptop.

👋 Hey There, I'm Eric!

Since 2018, I've been making streams come true.

I like gaming, streaming and watching other people stream. I created this website to help streamers and viewers of streams answer some of the questions they may have regarding live streaming. I am a Twitch affiliate and currently stream on Twitch 3 days a week. I hope you find my content helpful. Feel free to stop by one of my streams to say hi.