Laptops are now capable of pretty much anything a desktop computer can do, which is a big reason as to why they are now more popular than a desktop. For most, the idea of being able to bring their main computer with them wherever they go is too good to pass up.
As with most significant electronic devices, there are always going to be plenty of accessories available that provide unique benefits for it. The same is true with laptops, as you’ve probably noticed. So, with all of the choices, what are some of the must have laptop accessories?
The answer isn’t quite so simple, mainly due to the fact that everyone’s different, and everyone has their own unique set of needs from their laptop. Still, there are a handful of accessories that we can recommend for anyone that wants more convenience, versatility, and better overall operation from their laptop.
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There are countless types of laptop accessories available, and seemingly endless choices, with many disagreeing as to what may or may not be essential.
However, there are three main needs we think every laptop owner has.
Laptops are made to be mobile, and you aren’t likely to simply go carrying it around by itself under your arm, especially if you are commuting or traveling. Because of this, it’s crucial to have some sort of bag or case to put it in whenever you bring it with you somewhere.
Cases are considered the bare minimum, as they are really just a way to pad and protect your laptop when storing it in a bigger bag, or if you really are just walking around with it under your arm. Either way, they at least provide an extra barrier between your laptop and whatever else is around.
Laptop bags are designed to hold your laptop securely and comfortably, while also providing enough space to store other items you may need to use with it, such as drives, headphones, stands, and anything else you routinely use with it.
The great thing about laptop bags is that they can usually store a few extra items as well, which makes them good for commuting, or when traveling on an airplane. You can often carry a few books, some documents, and really whatever else you can fit inside.
Laptop bags can come in many forms, including shoulder strap versions, or purse-like bags that have carry handles. Shoulder strap bags tend to be more comfortable, but they are often bigger as well, which some may not favor.
This is something many don’t think of at first in regards to a laptop. For those that don’t know, your computer runs better when it’s cooler. Processing and hard drive operation generates heat, which causes your system to work slower as a precaution.
You may have noticed this with your own computer before. If you’ve been on your laptop for a few hours and have a lot of programs running, you can usually feel how hot the laptop is getting, especially on the bottom. You’ll also notice that it’s running slower than it was earlier, and having trouble handling a lot of tasks at once. In some cases, it may even shut off.
While all computers have fans and other built-in features to help maintain a cool core temperature, sometimes it’s just not enough, especially if you are in a room that’s somewhat warm, or even outside. Laptops are more prone to heat issues than a desktop, so this is a common problem.
Fortunately, there are lots of different cooling accessories you can purchase that will go a long way in helping you keep your laptop cool. Some may be as simple as a mini tray with vents that you place under your laptop, giving it a little breathing room. Others have auxiliary fans that will help suck away heat from the bottom of your laptop.
This is likely the most obvious genre of accessories for a laptop. External hardware can include everything from printers, to flash drives, to subwoofers, and really just about anything else you can actually connect to your laptop.
A lot of these hardware options are really just a matter of convenience, and others may provide assistance in getting certain tasks done. That said, there are a few we’d like to suggest.
An external mouse is actually a great idea, even though it may seem a bit silly at first. Yes, your laptop has a trackpad, but sometimes a touchpad doesn’t offer the accuracy you need when doing things like photo editing, or playing a video game. A mouse is much more precise, and give you better control.
External mouses also give you greater flexibility in terms of positioning. With a touchpad, you have to hover directly over your laptop when moving the pointer around the screen. With an external mouse, you can sit back and relax, and place the mouse on any surface nearby.
The same is true with an external keyboard. If you are using you laptop at a computer desk or workstation, sometimes it’s not comfortable to sit with your arms raised up and over the table. With an external keyboard, you have more options for how you can position your hands when typing.
The five laptop accessories are among our favorites, and each one provides its own uses. As with any accessory, be sure to check the specifications and/or size of your laptop to make sure it’s compatible before buying.
CoolBell’s laptop bag is a multi-feature bag that can do much more than just carry your laptop around. With its multiple compartments, durable build, and water-resistant material, this bag is great for anyone who needs to carry a moderate amount of items with their computer.
The bag maintains a low profile, opting for a more sleek and contemporary design that is versatile enough for any style. Although black is the default color, it’s also available in grey, purple, and a lighter grey. This version of the bag fits a 15.6-inch laptop, but there is a bigger 17.3-inch version if you need that instead.
In addition to the main compartment for your computer, there are three others so you can store other essential items you need to bring along. A front pocket is intended for cellphones, ipods, and any other smaller devices, and can also hold the power cord.
One of the best aspects of this bag is the protection it offers your laptop and other valuables. The laptop pocket is surrounded by anti-shock, waterproof foam, keeping your laptop dry and protected in the event of rain, or if you drop it.
The bag’s oxford material on the outside is not only durable, it provides a solid amount of water resistance, which can come in handy if you find yourself out in the rain during your commute, or when getting to your office or school building.
Overall, this is easily one of the best laptop bags on the market. It’s very affordable, stylish, and contains a number of convenient storage options, while also providing three separate layers of protection for your laptop. That’s about all you can ask for out of a laptop bag.
This ladies laptop briefcase from ECOSUSI is a very stylish and functional way to carry both your computer and several other items. It has a professional appearance, and has more versatility than it may first let on.
The first thing you notice with this briefcase is its distinctive retro look, complete with a faux leather bow and decorative styling tastefully displayed on the outside. The aesthetic is very feminine, while also providing a clean, polished look.
The briefcase itself can be adjusted in several ways, making it a messenger bag, a shoulder bag, and of course a briefcase, all dependent on how you adjust the included strap. It stands 10.2-inches tall, 14.2-inches long, and 3.9-inches wide.
The bag has a main compartment for your laptop (up to 14 inches) that is heavily padded for protection. There is a second zippered compartment to store other essential items, and two more smaller open compartments as well. The laptop compartment has a velcro strap to keep the computer secure.
Women who are looking for a versatile way to carry their laptop and other essentials will appreciate the many forms this briefcase can take. For under $50, it’s a great deal.
Kootek’s laptop cooling pad is the perfect way to keep your laptop as cool as possible, even during extended periods of heavy use. While it is a cooling pad at heart, the pad can be used in several other ways that provide the user with some added convenience whenever needed.
The pad is strong and very durable, while still being very lightweight. A metal mesh front helps to keep the weight down, and also adds an added measure of cooling ability. There are six different height adjustment tilt points, and the pad has an anti slip design that keeps your laptop set in place, even when at a higher angle.
5 total fans are included in the cooling pad, and each one can be turned on or off individually. This is actually a pretty unique feature, as most cooling pads have fans that always operate together. You can even control each individual LED light separately.
The cooling pad is powered by your computer's USB port, and actually has two of its own ports that can be used to power other devices as well. Even if your laptop is running cool, you can still use the pad as a desktop stand for your laptop whenever needed.
If you use your laptop for gaming, or if you’re just looking for an easy way to keep it cool, the Kootek laptop cooling pad is a crucial item to always have on hand.
The Logitech M510 Wireless Mouse is a highly customizable and easy to use mouse that is perfect for anyone that wants more control over their computer, and doesn’t want to be constrained to using a touchpad.
It features a comfortable, contoured shape that includes soft textured padding on the sides for better grip. The mouse uses a precision laser-grade optical sensor that can be used on nearly any flat surface.
The buttons are what truly sets it apart. The M510 has three programmable buttons, as well as a forward and backward button. You can even scroll vertically, or side-to-side, and zoom in with ease.
The USB receiver is incredibly small, and is intended to be plugged in and basically forgotten about, as it barely even sticks out from the port. The Logitech M510 Wireless Mouse is completely compatible with Windows, Mac, and Chrome OS, so you don’t have to worry about it not working with your particular laptop.
The abundance of helpful features and comfortable grip make this mouse something you should always have on hand for whenever you don’t want to mess with a trackpad, or would simply enjoy a more convenient browsing experience.
The ProCase 14 is an ideal laptop case for those that don’t want to haul around an actual laptop bag or briefcase. Small, simple, and stylish, this case has all the features you can ask for in a simple laptop bag, and even offers a few different colors to choose from.
This case can hold up to a 15.6-inch laptop, and has enough room to spare, making it easy to get your computer in and out. There is a nice, thick foam layer inside that protects the laptop from drops and falls, and water-resistant fabric on the outside helps keep it dry.
The handle is adjustable, and there is a front pocket that’s large enough to accommodate a charger, a cellphone, and other small items that you need to bring with you. The overall shape of the case is small and thin enough to easily put in a briefcase, backpack, or carrying bag.
If you’re looking for an economical laptop case that looks good and works well, the ProCase 14 is certainly worthy of your attention.
While there are tons of laptop accessories to choose from, we consider any of these must have items, no matter what kind of laptop you have. Do you have any accessories you’d like to recommend for us to look into? Have any specific products you think should be included? Let us know in the comment below, and we’ll check them out!