What kind of computer to buy?

Hi, I’m new to coding and want to start this program. Any advice on what computer I should get?

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Whatever fits well within your budget. It’s very unlikely that you are going to do any programming that needs above average processing power, so I would focus on overall quality (google whether the computer you’re considering is known to break often) and comfort. A larger screen and good keyboard are going to make a bigger difference than cramming as much RAM as possible into the machine.

I will say generally that you’ll probably get more longevity out of a lower-cost new (or newish) computer than a top-of-the-line from five years ago.

hey, the best options are: Dell XPS, Macbook M1 Pro, Razer Blade…
or hp spectre.

yes, but for programming you need minimum 16 gb ram because you use very much tabs.

Not if it’s the 13". It doesn’t support dual display.

I wouldn’t say that either the RAM requirements or the number of tabs you have open will be different than typical everyday use of a computer. RAM is good, but I avoid telling aspiring developers that they “need” certain specs, a certain brand, or a certain OS. You can absolutely learn on any standard machine that runs well and is on the most recent version of whatever OS you prefer. Students should not feel pushed to exceed their budget to get a “real programmer computer”.

There is no need to insist upon a particular brand. You can make any laptop work just fine. Telling someone that they need to go get an expensive laptop from an expensive company is just bad advice.

@sam35brooke, don’t worry about a specific brand or operating system. You don’t need to use an Apple device or a Windows device or a Linux device. Use whatever operating system you personally prefer.

You should pick the best laptop you can find inside of your budget. @ArielLeslie’s advice about finding something with a larger screen and good keyboard is great.

I’ve owned many Mac computers, only one of which I bought for myself. In 2014 it cost about $3,100. and I had to replace the cord Three times at my own cost, which was about $300. And, the keyboard shorted, at the three year mark. Never to work again.

Buying a Mac is similar to buying a Luxury Vehicle. It’s fine when It’s running. And it’s not cost effective to make repairs on.

Last year, someone accidentally knocked my mac to the floor, and the screen split. RIP. I decided at that point that Macs are essentially a Vanity Item., and would encourage others to think about the cost effectiveness of the Purchase.

People like what they like and which things they consider to be a good value will depend on their experience and their financial situation. My basic answer to this question is always

  • Get a computer that feels like a good value to you
  • Ignore pressure to get specific hardware
  • Remember that you will spend many, many hours using it and try to find something that feels physically comfortable to use. I recommend trying out the keyboard and trackpad, favoring a larger screen (rather than the highest quality small screen) and if it’s going to be on your lap, get something with good fans (not an ultra-thin one)!
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Almost all of FreeCodeCamp can be done through the browser and you can leverage online tools to branch out. So as long as you can run a browser, means you can get through most of freeCodeCamp.

This means you technically could use just a mobile phone to do most of the curriculum. Obviously that wouldn’t be optimal or optimized, but it is possible computation wise.

Because of this even cheaper budget machines like cheaper Chromebooks would be fine to get started. The cheaper the machine you pick/start with means the quicker you will hit an “upper wall” later in terms of computing depending on your long term goals.

If you just want to do web dev, then basically any machine will work fine.


This is true, and the acquisition cost of a Chromebook is comparatively minimal. And the regular wear and tear that occurs, will be occurring to a device that costs less that 200-300 dollars.

If you learn on it for a year or two, and then move to upgrade to a more powerful Computer, you will have saved a year or two’s wear and tear on the more expensive device, and will be in a better place to understand what you may need from a Computer, in terms of Programming, because you will have a year or two’s education to back up your purchasing decisions…

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