You are here

Long Live the Desktop PC

Warning:  Technology changes very quickly so it is always recommended that you look at the date when the article was last updated. If you have any questions feel free to contact us

Date: Wed, 01/21/2015 - 23:05

Technology changes very quickly, so it is always recommend that you look at the date when this article was last updated. This article was last updated 4-4-16.

For more than a decade, we have been hearing rumors that the PC is Dead. More specifically, the rumor says, the Desktop PC is Dead. So the reasoning goes…you might as well not try to a build a solid desktop PC…notebooks, netbooks, e-readers, Microsoft Surface, Apple iPad, even smart phones, are all going to take the place of the Desktop PC.

Why even use a desktop? After all, you can go buy a laptop for the same price as a desktop PC. The laptop will be portable and lightweight, and nowadays you can do anything you can do with a desktop, with a laptop.

Rumors Of Old

It reminds me of a rumor I heard almost 15 years ago. "Within five years, no one will any longer use a hard drive." We will all access our data remotely. Now, we all call that the “cloud”. And while most of us use the cloud (Dropbox, Carbonite, Flickr, Google Drive, Photoshop, Amazon Cloud, even Facebook), I personally don’t know anyone who wants to rely completely on the cloud. Internet connections go down. Services add cost. Access speeds over an internet connection are never as fast as directly from your PC or over your network.

Won't we all just be using Phones and Tablets anyway?

While many people can get some work done on mobile devices, have you ever tried writing a long letter on a phone? Phones and tablets are not suitable for more than casual work. It is worth pointing out that all the apps for phones and tablets require a PC to create. The development tools for all the phones, tablets and gaming consoles require a powerful PC. A powerful PC can save hours of compiling/rendering times

Desktop PCs or Mobile PCs

Similarly, the fact is that laptop computers (not to mention phones and tablets), don’t do everything that PCs can do. Laptop PCs are not as powerful as Desktop PCs and they have lots of long-term drawbacks.

  • Laptop CPUs are not as powerful as Desktop PC CPUs (despite the marketing that would like to convince you otherwise)
  • Laptops don’t have as much memory capacity
  • Laptops aren’t expandable (forget about adding that cool video card or sound card down the road)
  • Laptop hard drive space is either limited and/or expensive
  • Laptops are prone to overheating
  • Laptops are prone to breaking
  • Laptops include the added expense of replacement batteries
  • Screens and keyboards are smaller and cannot be positioned in an ergonomic fashion

Laptops and netbooks are not as powerful and are not upgradable

When you want to upgrade to the newest motherboard and CPU technology, you have no choice but to buy an entirely new laptop. When you purchase a custom desktop PC, an easy swap out of motherboard, CPU, and memory - and you are up and running with what essentially is a brand new PC.

i7 Laptop versus Desktop CPU Comparison
Laptop CPU Desktop CPU
i7-4910MQ 2.9Ghz i7-4790K @ 4Ghz
PassMark CPU Mark: 9560 PassMark CPU Mark: 11213
Cost As Of This Writing: $784 Cost As Of This Writing: $340
Maximum Number Of PCI Express Lanes: 16 Maximum Number Of PCI Express Lanes: 16

Laptops and netbooks prone to failure

Let’s face it, today's laptops and netbooks are essentially disposable items. Because laptops and netbooks are being carried around so much, because they use smaller parts, and because they tend to get overheated, they are more prone to failure.

Laptops and netbooks are more expensive to repair

Laptops and netbooks usually contain proprietary parts. They are more expensive to repair when compared to Desktop PCs. If your keyboard goes out on your laptop, instead of a simple swap out of a keyboard, you are looking at replacing that proprietary part and paying someone to replace it. If your screen goes out on your laptop, a common scenario, you are looking at replacing that proprietary part and paying someone to replace it (this alone might run you $200-$300). If your hard drive or memory or optical drive need to be replaced or upgraded, the process of getting into the laptop is often more difficult and the parts are often hard to source.

If you need portability, we understand. We own laptops, netbooks, and smart phones too. But, today, with services like Dropbox, going back and forth between your Desktop PC and your mobile devices is easier than ever. And, if anything, that only guarantees a long future for the Desktop PC.

Long Live the Desktop PC!

If you dare, check out this latest, largest, and sharpest image ever taken by the Andromeda galaxy if you want. You better have a Desktop PC (and 4.3Gb of space on your hard drive) if you want to be able to download this image.