Trading Computers

The Buyer's Guide to Choosing the Best Laptop for Trading in 2022

trading laptops

How to Choose a Day Trading Laptop

Day trading is a high-pressure, fast-moving environment. When you're on the job, you need a laptop that can keep up with the demands of your day. That means it needs to be light enough for you to carry around all day and powerful enough for fast multitasking. Here's how to choose the best laptop for trading that meets all of your needs.

Choose the Best Operating System

There are three main laptop operating systems: Windows, macOS, and Linux. Most traders use Windows-based laptops because they are fast and reliable. Additionally, most stand-alone trading programs and broker platforms are designed for Windows PCs. You can still use a Mac or Linux laptop for stock trading, but you may be limited in the software you can use. Alternatively, you can try using a Windows emulator if your preferred software only works on Windows, but the software will be slowed by the resource drain of the emulator. Overall it might be best to stick with Windows.

Don't Skimp on Memory

When shopping for a laptop for stock trading, you must ensure it has plenty of memory and storage. RAM is how computers temporarily store data they need to access quickly while running. The more memory it has, the faster the computer can process everything you do, like run multiple applications at once. RAM is critical to enhancing performance while running charts and trading programs. As a good rule of thumb, 16GB of RAM should be enough for most people. However, if you plan on doing heavy work with large files or several apps open simultaneously, some of the best laptops for traders have 32GB or more.

Consider CPU (Central Processing Unit)

The processor is the part of your computer that executes instructions and processes data. It's essential to select one that can handle your workload. But there are so many different processors that it can be difficult to know which ones are good for day trading. A faster processor will let your computer process large amounts of data quickly, which is essential for trading efficiently. At a minimum, you'll want a laptop with a quad-core 2.8 GHz processor. However, you can enjoy even better performance and gain a competitive edge by using one of the best laptops for traders, like the Falcon F-30 Trading Laptop, which boasts a 10th Gen Intel Core i7 Desktop CPU with an 8-core 3.8 GHz/5.1 GHz Max Turbo processor.

Best Trading Laptop

Select the Right Kind of Hard Drive

When you're looking for the best laptop for trading, choose a model with a solid-state drive (SSD). SSDs are much faster than traditional hard disk drives (HDDs) and have lower latency, which means less lag in your computer's operating system. If you only plan to use the laptop for stock trading, you won't need to store much data on it. In general, an SSD 250GB or higher is plenty for most day traders.

Prioritize Portability

One of the most important features to consider when shopping for a day trading laptop is its portability. In most cases, you would choose a trading laptop over a desktop setup because you need to be able to work anywhere, even when you're away from home. A day trader needs to be able to take their laptop with them everywhere, so don't choose one that is too heavy or bulky for you to carry around. The best laptops for traders are small and light enough to fit in your briefcase or backpack without weighing you down but still substantial enough to do what you need them to.

A Quick Note on Battery Life

The best trading laptops have high-end mobile processors, or even desktop processors like the Falcon F-30 Trading Laptop. Because of this they use a lot of electricity, which means that even the most energy efficient laptop will drain its battery quickly. Another factor to consider is that laptops are set to reduce power to the processor when running on battery, which means their performance drops considerably.

With the need for high speed performance while trading, it’s best to have your trading laptop plugged in while trading. Most laptops come with their own power supply (AC Adapter), but for ease of travel a second adapter can be purcahsed for most laptops. While the Falcon F-30 Trading Laptop is a very powerful machine, it's dual power supply requirement and large size and weight aren't the best for travel.

Pick a High-Quality Display

For a day trading laptop, the display is one of the most important considerations. Since you'll mostly be looking at charts and platforms, top-of-the-line graphics aren't necessary. However, you should still pay attention to the graphics card. Some trading programs have recommendations for this, so be sure to find out if yours has any and choose accordingly. As far as screen size goes, look for a laptop that measures at least 15.6 inches, like the Falcon F-10 Trading Laptop.

Best Trading Laptop

How Many Monitors Do You Need?

While there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to the number of monitors, it's generally accepted that multiple monitors will give you a efficiency boost. If you're buying a new laptop for day trading, look for one with at least two slots for additional screens. Even if you're only going to use one extra monitor, having the second slot is crucial because it allows you to upgrade in the future without compromising your existing setup. Ultimately, the number of monitors you choose to use is a matter of personal preference, but know the limitations of what you buy. Laptops cannot be expanded like desktops; what you have to start with is what you will have available.

A Quick Note on Docking Stations

Docking stations due allow more monitors to be connected to a laptop. The problem comes when you try to trade on those monitors. Trading programs use memory from the video card to display information. Docking stations and adapters do not have any, so the program has to use more of the system memory. This will cause the responsiveness of the program to drop dramatically. If you need more than 4 monitors, we suggest going with a Falcon Trading Desktop instead.

Stay on Budget

As with any large purchase, it's vital to determine how much you're comfortable spending. Research the average price for day trading laptops to get a better idea of how much you'll need to set aside for your purchase. Laptops with enhanced performance features typically cost more upfront, but they're well worth it. These high-end laptops have enhanced performance and may even come with better tech support options to keep your computer in excellent working condition for longer.

Whether you're buying your first trading laptop or are looking to upgrade from your current one, there are many important factors to consider when making your decision. Every trader is different and will have their own needs— but all traders should keep these things in mind, as they may just make the difference between a good trading laptop and a great one. Ultimately, choosing the best laptop for trading boils down to budget and functionality. If you're able to spend more, you'll likely be able to find a system with better performance, faster processing, and a better display. Above all else, ensure that the laptop you select provides the functionality you need in a trading environment, such as robust storage capacity and an extended warranty.

As with any large purchase, it's vital to determine how much you're comfortable spending. Research the average price for day trading laptops to get a better idea of how much you'll need to set aside for your purchase. Laptops with enhanced performance features typically cost more upfront, but they're well worth it. These high-end laptops have enhanced performance and may even come with better tech support options to keep your computer in excellent working condition for longer.

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