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Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse Review – An In-Depth Look

Razer Death Adder Mouse

Regardless of what sphere you're in, you need the best equipment. In most cases, it means the difference between winning or losing. So when it comes to mouse hardware, you need to get a product that's going to give you the best output.

Not a lot has changed in the Razer universe of gaming mice over the last couple of years, and one thing has remained pretty much the same.

The main software suite included the Razer DeathAdder Elite and its predecessor, the DeathAdder Chroma, is called Synapse, and it is responsible for handling lighting profiles and performance customization. 

The program is mostly cloud-based, which is great because your settings come with you no matter what machine you are on.

Comparison Table

But it is also a rather robust application with a healthy array of performance options, DPI settings, custom button controls, macros, surface calibration, heatmaps, automatic profile switching, and data sheets about mouse power usage and overall performance. Plus, the software handles all devices from a single menu, including backlight color.

However, the mouse hardware itself is more than capable of outperforming the competition without the Synapse software, and you can choose not to install it, which is a very thoughtful option, indeed. In fact, the new Razer DeathAdder Elite is equipped with the new “16,000-DPI optical sensor,” which allows for surface tracking at a rate of 450-In/Second, which is pretty darn fast.

DeathAdder: It’s All in the Name

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

The Death Adder (Acanthophis) is a member of Elapid snakes, which first proliferated on the very old continent of Australia around 12 million years ago. Though they may resemble vipers, they are actually more closely related to coral snakes, cobras, and mambas, which are known for their ability to strike so fast, it is sometimes difficult to see with the naked eye.

The Death Adder’s venom is entirely neurotoxic, without the mycotoxins and haemotoxins found in most snake venom. And, before the advent of antivenom, it was estimated that 50 percent of all people bitten by the Death Adder had died, hence the nickname.

The DeathAdder line was established in 2006, and the Razor DeathAdder Elite, though not as deadly, was introduced in 2016. The DeathAdder Elite’s fatalities happen mainly via 3D simulation, but nevertheless, it is quick, responsive, and ergonomically designed, with improved buttons and a new scroll wheel. Plus, the 16,000-DPI optical sensor results in a proclaimed resolution accuracy of 99.4%

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...
  • The #1 Best-Selling Gaming Peripherals Manufacturer in the US: Source - The NPD Group, Inc., U.S. Retail Tracking Service, Gaming Designed: Keyboards, Mice, PC Headsets, and PC Microphones, Based on dollar sales, Jan. 2017- June 2020 combined
  • High-Precision 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor: Offers on-the-fly sensitivity adjustment through dedicated DPI buttons (reprogrammable) for gaming and creative work
  • Immersive, Customizable Chroma RGB Lighting: Includes 16.8 million colors w/ included preset profiles; syncs with gameplay and Razer Chroma-enabled peripherals and Philips Hue products

Featuring the Razer Mechanical Mouse Switches (responsible for button clicking), this new technology was designed in partnership with Omron, which optimized the switches for fast response time and extended durability. The 2018 version is available at Amazon  and offers the following features at a glance:

  • 16,000-DPI optical sensor
  • 450 inches per second
  • 50g acceleration (control speed)
  • Razer Mechanical Mouse switches
  • Ergonomic design with textured rubber grips
  • Razer Chroma backlight with millions of customizable colors.

Razer DeathAdder Anatomy

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

Despite all of the “new” technology, though, not much has changed physically since the DeathAdder Chroma, including the design, which is still a relatively small 5.00 x 2.76 x 1.73 inches, and the ergonomically contoured sides with textured grips.

The only real change that we can see is that the new Razer DeathAdder Elite sports seven buttons instead of five. On the mouse, you’ll find a standard left button, right button, and clickable scroll wheel, as well as dual thumb buttons and two buttons on the bottom of the scroll wheel.

The buttons at the bottom of the scroll wheel are usually reserved for Razer’s high-end gaming mice, like the Mamba TE, but they are a welcome addition to the DeathAdder, as you can alter the peripheral’s sensitivity on the fly.

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

Though not changed significantly, the scroll wheel offers a few coarse ribs for a better grip and a more responsive feel, and, according to one review, it is one of the few "all-purpose" mice that is really an efficient multi-tasker, and handles Overwatch and The Witcher 3 as well as Marvel Heroes.

Much of this versatility is due to the Synapse 2.0 software, which runs a clean, intuitive interface that allows you to tweak the DeathAdder buttons, lighting, and sensitivity, among other things. The RGB lighting, though having nothing to do with play performance, is particularly cool, and handles yellows pinks, and purples with a brightness and warmth that you wouldn’t expect. The backlight is revealed through the scroll wheel and the Razer emblem on the back.

Is the 2018 DeathAdder New and Improved?

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

While the addition of two extra buttons may not seem like much of a refresh, keep in mind that there was very little about the DeathAdder that demanded improvement. Competitors like the more expensive Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum or the Roccat Kova, don’t have the tools the DeathAdder does, and, what’s more, they aren’t multi-tasker like the Razer.

The world of gaming mice is vast and competitive, which lead to a lot of specialization. Part of the beauty of the Razer DeathAdder is in its ability to adapt to many different gaming environments. Sure stats DPI, lift off distance, sensor accuracy, and acceleration are great and all, but it is becoming more and more difficult to find a well-rounded generalist in a gaming mouse.

So, fans of the DeathAdder Chroma will be excited to hear that Razer has changed very little in their new DeathAdder Elite. Even the classy black matte finish is retained, to the joy and titillation of anti-spaceship-style mice haters everywhere.

Plus, the DeathAdder still comes with a seven-foot braided cable and gold-plated USB connector. The construction is not new, but it is classy, as many mice now go with a rubberized plastic cable, which is not as nice.

Finally, thanks to the improved mechanical switches, the mouse boasts an ultra-fast action time, with a low debounce (the time it takes for a button to become clickable again after being pressed). The adjustable DPI sensitivity is nice and can be varied depending on what game you are playing - from 100 to 16,000 DPI.

The Razer DeathAdder Philosophy

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

The Razer DeathAdder has focused on incremental upgrades for more than a decade without augmenting what makes the mouse so popular in the first place. In fact, for its tenth anniversary, the introduction of the DeathAdder Elite maintained that classic ergonomic and comfortable design and the same black matte finish.

Though it is billed as a gaming mouse, it can be used for a variety of office or home computer tasks, and the scooped body, oversized thumb buttons, and textured rubber pads lend themselves nicely to either a palm grip or a claw grip. Plus, as part of the ergonomics, the right and left click buttons offer subtle grooves for your fingers to rest in, which is not only comfort but helps to facilitate fast lateral movements.

Also, the Razer DeathAdder hope to remedy issues surrounding longevity by partnering with Omron in the making of their new Mechanical Mouse Switches (responsible for button clicking) for the Razer DeathAdder Elite. The former iteration of the DeathAdder, the Chroma, according to one reviewer, reportedly had issues with failing hardware.

And while the scroll wheel didn’t get as much attention as the switches (aside from some raised ridged that help with control), the two buttons below the wheel are a direct result of Razer listening to its gamer fan base and allowing users the tools to adjust DPI settings on the fly. Moreover, the bottom of mouse sports two oversized Teflon feet, making the peripheral effective on practically any surface.

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

With seven buttons in all, you can program each to execute an additional command via the Synapse software interface in addition to its regular duties. However, Razer also made its accompanying cloud control software entirely optional, and the DeathAdder will perform just fine without it, leaving the power of choice firmly in the hands of the user.

Should the user decided to install Synapse, the UI is clean and intuitive, with a tab for macros and another one for clickable actions mapping, profiles management, mouse sensitivity, acceleration rate and polling rate. Plus, the user can configure the Chroma LED RGB lighting and actually calibrate the DeathAdder for use on a wide range of surfaces.

DeathAdder Online

Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse: 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor -...

Another neat thing about the mouse is that, in a very Google-like move, Razer Synapse actually stores all of your settings in the cloud, so all you need to do is travel with your mouse and borrow a computer with an internet connection to access all of you gaming information.

A not-so-neat thing is that the DeathAdder forces the user to sign up for a Razer account regardless of whether he/she plans on using Synapse or not, and you can’t turn off software updates to your mouse, or you will risk losing functionality. That said, these annoyances don’t detract too much from everything the Razer DeathAdder does right, and, if we are completely honest, the sign in and updates probably go part and parcel with the online, internet age.

However, it is not the versatility of a cloud-connection that makes the Razor DeathAdder great in so many different uses. In fact, its contoured ergonomic design feels nice in the hand and offers gamers, home, and business users solid hardware and functionality under the hood.

While the DeathAdder Elite has chosen to build upon the past instead of revising and replacing for the sake of a massive upgrade, it’s quietly added modest and thoughtful changes. Users will find upgraded sensors, new switches, two new buttons, and, in total, these additions actually make the mouse better than it was, and there are few tech companies, in our opinion, that chose incremental updates over the glitz and glamor of a full-on revision.

Razer DeathAdder Wrap-Up


Optical Sensor

16,000 DPI


Up to 450 IPS / 50 g


Razer Mechanical Mouse


Ergonomic right-handed design with textured rubber side grips

Scroll Wheel

Gaming-grade tactile


7 independently programmable Hyperesponse buttons


Razer Chroma™ lighting with 16.8 million customizable color options

Razer Synapse



1000 Hz

Sensitivity Adjustment



Gold-plated USB connector

Seven-foot, lightweight, braided fiber cable

Approx. Size

5" x 2.76” x 1.73"


Approx. Weight

105 g / 0.23 lbs

Much like Woody on Cheers, the Razor DeathAdder Elite is that same easy to grasp, heavy-set multitasker that has been around since the line was first introduced in 2006. However, unlike Woody, the DeathAdder has incrementally changed over the year, and, with each iteration, it got a little bit better.

Synapse, too, gets a little more refined with each update, making an already powerful mouse even more robust with increased functionality. The upshot is that the Razer DeathAdder Elite is an affordable mid-range gaming mouse that is more than capable of filling in for high-end mice or carrying out day-to-day tasks like surfing the web or graphics editing.

With competitors like the Mionix Castor (similar ergonomics and price) and the Logitech G502 (featuring adjustable weights), the Razer DeathAdder faces a market packed tight with competitors. And, at 105 grams, you will also find it compared to the beefier (around 120 grams) and more expensive Corsair Scimitar, a gaming mouse that features more programmable buttons (12) but the same DPI as the DeathAdder.

The Castor, too, claims it has won over 400 awards for its ergonomic design and weighs less than the DeathAdder at only 99 grams, although it offers only a one year warranty, while the rest offer the standard two-year coverage.

But, when it comes down to it, the Razer DeathAdder is extremely well-built with special-made switches, an ergonomic design, and solid mechanics that will last for many years. It is weighted but not overly so, and it comes with a robust and powerful software which can transform it into a supreme multi-tasker.

All of this makes it one of the most dependable, high-performing, and versatile mid-range gaming mice on the planet. The bottom line is that Razer has been making this quality device since 2006, and this year it has managed to make some modest but important improvements without raising the price point.

We've gone into a lot of detail about this product so that you can get all the necessary information to make up your mind about it. We've highlighted how the product will benefit you and all the features that it boasts. We've also included ratings for the product. It's up to you to decide if this product suits your needs. It definitely has for many people. So, should you try it.

Let us know what you thought about the product after you used it. If you'd like to know anything that we haven't addressed, don't hesitate to get in touch. We'd love to hear your questions or concerns.

Lenovo Ideapad 720s Review: Sparking Inspiration With Great Features and a Chic Design

office person using lenovo ideapad 720s

Are you looking for a powerful computer that you can use almost anywhere? Well, this Lenovo Ideapad 720s review might be just what you need.

The first computer took up the size of an entire room, and now we can take our computers on the go. As long as they're charged, we don't have to plug in our technological lifelines to use them.

Computers today are also more powerful than the massive computers of the past. Some laptops have tons of features and fast processors.

In this Lenovo Ideapad 720s review, we hope to determine how the computer stacks up against itself, its competitors, and a whole lot more.

What is the Lenovo Ideapad 720s?

:Lenovo Ideapad 720s 14" Laptop Computer (Intel 7th Gen Core i7-7500U...
  • WORK AND PLAY HARD: The 720S offers 7th Gen Intel Core i7 processing and a high-performance PCIe 512GB SSD storage. Download movies, store photos and videos, and more. And with 16GB of memory, you’ll be able to multi-task with ease and speed.
  • ADVANCED GRAPHICS: Equipped with an NVIDIA GeForce 940MX graphics card that relies on its own processor, so you’ll experience lightning-fast graphics and accelerated photo and video-editing performance.
  • TRULY IMMERSIVE AUDIO: Featuring JBL Premium Audio speakers, the IdeaPad 720S offers the revolutionary technology of Dolby Atmos, which creates a breathtaking 360-degree immersive audio experience in which sound flows from every direction.

The Lenovo Ideapad 720s is a sleek laptop that you can take with you anywhere. It has an aluminum finish and angled edges to make it look even thinner than it is.

The laptop has excellent battery life, and you can even use it to charge other devices.

If you want a fantastic laptop that works for you instead of against you, consider the details of our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review.

Computer specs

Like with any computer, there's more to the Lenovo Ideapad than meets the eye. So, we have to start this Lenovo Ideapad 720s review with a rundown of the computer specs.

Processor and operating system

The Lenovo Ideapad 720s has an 8th generation Intel Core i7-8550U processor (the brains of your laptop). This means that it runs all of your applications at 1.8GHz up to 4.0GHz. Like other Lenovo computers, the Lenovo Ideapad 720s runs on Windows 10.

The visuals

This laptop has Integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620 and a 1.0MP HD web camera and single array microphone. A computer's graphics card controls everything you see on screen, and the integrated graphics are built right into the center of your computer.

The web camera and microphone keep you connected with others through various video chat programs.

Memory and storage

This Lenovo laptop has 8GB of Random Access Memory (or RAM) to let the processor do its job at maximum efficiency. Think of RAM as the highway all of your programs drive on. The more RAM you have, the wider the road and the fewer traffic jams you'll have.

For saving information, the Lenovo Ideapad 720s has 1 Terabyte (or TB) of storage. If RAM is the highway, this is the parking garage, and 1TB is a pretty big parking garage.

On the go

You can get some incredible sound from such a thin laptop thanks to the JBL Speakers with Dolby Audio. And with up to nine hours of battery life, you don't have to worry about your computer dying in the middle of a day of work.

The 13.3-inch display is gorgeous, and at 2.2 pounds, you can take the laptop on the go.

Stay connected

When it comes to connectivity, you're covered. The Lenovo Ideapad uses Bluetooth 4.1, and it has multiple ports. You get 2 USB 3.0 ports, 1 Type-C Thunderbolt port, and 1 Type-C (always-on charging) port, and a microphone/headphone jack.

The USB 3.0 ports allow for connections through older cables, and the Type-C ports transfer data and information more quickly than older versions of USB.

Customer reviews

One customer loved the design of the laptop, and their only complaint was the lack of a touch screen. Another customer praised the quick startup and decent battery life.

A third customer loved the laptop's size and performance, but the battery life is too short. One customer stated in their Lenovo Ideapad 720s review that the laptop arrived broken, so she had to return it.

One customer said they loved the size of the Lenovo's precision trackpad, and the aluminum makes the laptop feel compact. A second customer complimented the value that you get with the Lenovo.

A third customer noted that you can't replace the battery yourself. Their battery died after a couple of months, so they had to send it back to Lenovo for a new battery. The customer also mentioned that the repair took longer than expected and that customer service wasn't very helpful.

Things to consider

A laptop can be an expensive purchase, so you should make sure to choose the best laptop for you. As you read our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review, consider these tips.


Cheap laptops are very appealing. Who wouldn't want a computer for a low price? But computers are one area where you get what you pay for.

On the other hand, it is possible to spend too much money on a computer. If you don't need a computer for anything more than email and browsing the web, then you don't need a high-tech laptop.

Think ahead

You might be tempted to buy the least expensive, base model because that's all you need right now. As we said, laptops aren't cheap. You should be able to use your next laptop for at least a few years.

Don't be afraid to get more storage than you think you need. Also, try to buy the newest model so that it won't be obsolete soon after you start to use it.

Ports and more ports

You should also consider what ports you need. While the Lenovo Ideapad 720s has quite a few ports, it doesn't have an SD card reader.

Therefore, if you work with SD cards a lot, you might want a computer that can accommodate them. Or you can look into an adapter.

Some laptops have even fewer ports than the Lenovo. Before you buy your next laptop, make sure that it has all of the ports that you need.

Give it a try

While computer companies make it very easy for you to buy a computer online, that doesn't mean you shouldn't test out the laptop. Look for a local store where you can test out the laptop in person.

All the specs in the world won't matter if you don't like using the computer. We hope to give you the best idea of the laptop, but our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review can't compete with your own opinion and experience.

If you can't test the laptop in person, buy online from a store that allows returns.

Big screen, better screen?

Size is another important thing to consider. The Lenovo Ideapad 720s has a 13.3-inch display, and it's pretty thin, too. That makes it great for taking on the go.

But laptops come in a variety of sizes. Some are smaller, and others are larger. Think about whether you prefer a larger screen or a portable laptop.

Think big picture

With all of the tech specs, avoid getting sucked into just one spec. A computer might have excellent RAM, but what if the battery life is awful?

Above all, make sure you look at each of the tech specs so you can choose the model that fits your needs and budget.

Laptops and tablets aren't the same

Tablets have come a long way in recent years. They're more powerful than ever, but that doesn't mean they're the same as laptops.

You might be able to get away with just a tablet, but laptops are still the better choice for work-intensive tasks.

How It Compares

laptop on meeting

Image via Pixabay

Our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review wouldn't be complete without comparing it to similar computers. More and more companies are releasing thin yet powerful laptops, so it can be hard to know which one is best.

And if you don't know what all of the specs mean, the comparison gets even more difficult.

How We Reviewed

We looked for laptops with similar specs and a similar price to the Lenovo. In our search, we stuck to laptops with similar average ratings to keep things fair and balanced. Also, we made sure to leave our personal opinions out of the comparison.

This Lenovo Ideapad 720s review is about helping you decide if the laptop is right for you

HP Spectre x360

HP Spectre x360 Laptop-2-in-1 (Intel i7-9750H 6-Core, 16GB RAM, 512GB...
  • Intel Core i7-9750H 2.60GHz Processor (9th Gen, upto 4.50 GHz, 12 MB SmartCache, 6-Cores) ; 16GB DDR4 SODIMM RAM
  • NVIDIA GTX 1650 [Max-Q] 4GB GDDR5 Graphics
  • 15.6" 4K UHD (3840x2160) Touch Display; Bluetooth 5.0, 1080p Full HD Webcam, Fingerprint, Backlit Keyboard, Active Pen, Dark Ash Silver Color

The HP Spectre x360 is a convertible 2-in-1 laptop. It has a dark ash silver color with gold detailing on the sides. This laptop has an 8th generation Intel Core i7-8550U processor and an NVIDIA GeForce MX150 Graphics card.

The 4K display is 15.6 inches, and it features a backlit touchscreen. You can use the included stylus with the touchscreen.

The HP Spectre x360 comes with 16GB of RAM, and it has 512GB of storage. You can video chat with the HP Wide Vision camera and Dual-array digital microphone.

The HP Spectre also comes with plenty of ports including 1 Thunderbolt 3, 1 Type-C, and 1 USB 3.1 as well as an HDMI port and a headphone/microphone jack. You can also stay connected with WiFi and Bluetooth 4.2.

This laptop comes with Windows 10 as its operating system.

Many customers love the look of the computer, but a common complaint is frequent lagging and freezing.

Microsoft Surface Laptop 2

Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 (Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD) -...
  • Clean, elegant design — thin and light, starting at just 2.76 pounds, Surface Laptop 2 fits easily in your bag.
  • Choose from rich tone-on-tone color combinations: Platinum, Burgundy, and Cobalt Blue.
  • Improved speed and performance to do what you want, with the latest 8th Generation Intel Core processor.

Microsoft's Surface Laptop 2 has many similar specs to the Lenovo and the HP. It has an Intel Core i7 processor, and it comes with Windows 10.

The laptop has 16GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. At 2.76 pounds, the 13.5-inch computer fits into your bag for work on the go. This laptop has up to 14.5 hours of battery life, and you can choose from burgundy, cobalt, and platinum for the color.

The touchscreen display is vibrant, and the invisible speakers give you excellent sound from all angles. This laptop uses Signature Alcantara material on the keyboard so you can type comfortably.

You can purchase extra accessories including a mouse and a stylus to up your game with the laptop.

One customer said the laptop is powerful enough for graphic design, coding, and more. Another customer said the laptop wouldn't boot up at all.

Samsung Notebook 9

Samsung Notebook 9 Pen 15"-Intel Core i7-16GB Memory-512GB SSD
  • S Pen - unleash your creativity with the included, ultra-precise s Pen which never needs charging. With three interchangeable tips, you can replicate the feeling of writing, sketching, or painting with different textures. You can also use the handwriting recognition function to convert notes to text, transform sketches into diagrams, and even take screen clips.
  • Convertible design - supporting a scratch-resistant metal design, An Ocean Blue color and a striking yellow Pen, The notebook 9 pen is as sleek, stylish, and versatile. Use it as a laptop or simply rotate it to tablet mode for convenient presentation Display, entertainment viewing, or browsing apps with the touchscreen.
  • Fast-charging Battery - with the power to last up to 15 hours, there's no stopping your productivity. When it's time to recharge you can power up quickly, so you're right back to what you were doing.

Did you think Samsung only made smartphones? Well, think again. The Samsung Notebook 9 is a surprisingly powerful laptop. It has an 8th generation Intel Core i7-8550U processor with a TurboBoost.

This computer has 8GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. The Samsung computer also NVIDIA graphics and a 15-inch HD display. You can open the (non-touch) display up to 180 degrees.

The laptop has a webcam and a backlit keyboard along with multiple ports. You get 1 USB Type-C, 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, a 3-in-1 SD card reader, and a fingerprint reader. The Samsung Notebook 9 also has an HDMI port along with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.

Unfortunately, there are no Amazon customer reviews. One customer said it's almost too easy to turn the computer off, but it's fantastic otherwise.

LG Gram Thin and Light Laptop

LG gram Thin and Light Laptop - 17" (2560 x 1600) IPS Display, Intel...
  • 17 Inch WQXGA (2560 x 1600) resolution 16: 10 IPS display
  • Intel 8th Generation Intel Core i7 8565u Processor
  • Windows home 10

The LG Gram Thin and Light Laptop is yet another computer worth comparing to the Lenovo Ideapad 720s. This computer has a larger display than some others at 17 inches. It has an 8th generation Intel Core i7-8565U processor, and the operating system is Windows 10.

The laptop may be large, but it has an outstanding 19.5-hour battery life. Its IPS display is gorgeous, and the laptop is thin enough to take on the go. The LG clocks in at just under three pounds.

You can log into your computer with the fingerprint sensor, and the backlit keyboard lets you work in darker environments. The touchpad lets you use a variety of multi-touch gestures, and you can use the webcam for video chats. Also, the laptop has great speakers.

The LG laptop has a Type-C port, 3 USB 3.0 ports, a microSD card reader, an HDMI port, and a headphone jack.

Customers say it's very portable despite the large screen size.

​Pros and Cons

No Lenovo Ideapad 720s review is complete without listing the pros and cons. The Lenovo has multiple competing products, but we can't ignore the Lenovo itself. Like most products, there are both pros and cons to this laptop.

We also have to mention that your pros and cons might differ from someone else's.


The Lenovo has many excellent features. We had to include these pros in our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review.


It's a great size. The Lenovo Ideapad 720s has a 13.3-inch display, and it's extremely thin. That makes it perfect for around the house and on the go. You don't have to feel weighed down by the laptop.

The Lenovo Ideapad 720s has an aluminum finish. Lenovo uses a similar finishing process as for diamonds, giving it a sleek design. The sharp edges make the laptop look even thinner than it really is.

It has a full screen. Watching videos on the Lenovo is terrific because the screen has thin borders. The screen almost feels like a home theater.


It has excellent battery life. The Lenovo Ideapad 720s has up to 10 hours of battery life. You can also use the laptop to charge other devices, like your smartphone. The laptop doesn't even need to be on.

It has great performance. The 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor helps the Lenovo run very fast. You can run multiple programs, and the computer won't lag on you.

It has tons of storage. If you want to use your computer for years, you need enough storage. Luckily, the Lenovo has 1TB of SSD (solid state drive) storage.

It has amazing audio. If you like to listen to music, you don't have to use external speakers to get a good sound. The JBL Dolby Audio gives you a range of clear sounds at every volume.


It has Cortana. Cortana is the Windows digital assistant. It can answer questions, open apps, and set reminders. If you have multiple Windows 10 devices, you can use Cortana on all of them.

It uses a fingerprint reader. If you can't remember your password, don't worry. You can log onto the Lenovo with just a swipe of your finger. The fingerprint reader also works with certain apps like Dropbox.

It has multiple ports. The world is slowly moving to Type-C ports, and the Lenovo is no exception. This laptop has a Thunderbolt 3 (Type-C) port so you can stay up to date on connectivity.


Just like with the pros, we had to include cons in our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review.

Food for thought

It has some competition. Just look at the computers we compared. All of them are amazing in their own ways. Of course, the Lenovo has some fantastic features. But don't they all?

It's pricey. While the Lenovo Ideapad isn't the most expensive computer on the market, it's definitely not the cheapest. If you want a more affordable computer, it might not be the one for you.

It has a few bad reviews. One or two bad reviews shouldn't turn you away from a product, but they're worth looking into. Some of the negative reviews focus on a defective model. That's not what you want in a computer.

Tech specs

It lacks a few ports. If you use SD cards or HDMI output, you won't find those ports on the Lenovo. Photographers and presenters need those ports to do their jobs.

It uses Windows 10 Home. This might be a pro if you just need a simple computer. However, if you want a powerhouse, you might prefer a computer with Windows 10 Pro.

It doesn't have a touchscreen. So many laptops have this option these days. If you want a touchscreen laptop, you probably want to look at other computers.

Consider this

It isn't customizable. If you decide you want more RAM, you can't upgrade it. The baseline 8GB should be enough for most people, but gamers and professionals might want more.

It lacks an optical drive. According to PCWorld, an optical drive is what lets you play and burn DVDs. The Lenovo Ideapad doesn't have that capacity. So if that's important to you, you'll probably be disappointed.

It has an internal battery. One complaint from customers is the location of the battery. If your battery dies, you have to send it to Lenovo for a replacement.

It only has one color option. This may be a bit vain, but who doesn't want some choice in their computer's color? The aluminum does look great, but it might be nice to have at least one other color.

​Lenovo Ideapad 720s Review

The Lenovo Ideapad 720s is a fantastic computer with tons of features. It has a fast processor, and the graphics are excellent. You get tons of storage, and it's thin enough to stick in any bag.

But there are other computers with similar features. What makes Lenovo different?

In our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review, we found that while there are many similar computers, the Lenovo still stands out.

One impressive feature you won't find on other laptops is a full 1TB worth of storage. If you want to store a lot of files on your computer, the Lenovo won't let you down.

However, there are some drawbacks to it. For one, the Lenovo Ideapad doesn't have a touchscreen. While that's probably not a dealbreaker, it is worth noting.

The Lenovo looks and feels small, but it's still very powerful. You get an 8th generation Intel processor, and furthermore, the 8GB RAM means you can work quickly and efficiently.

If you're handy with tools, you might not like that you can't replace the battery on your own. Wait, isn't that an Apple thing? Not anymore. You will have to take the computer to Lenovo if you need a new battery.

At the end of the day, you can't let one or two features (or lack of features) keep you from deciding on a new computer.

As you can see from our Lenovo Ideapad 720s review, it's not a perfect laptop. However, very few people need all of the top-of-the-line features.

If you need a computer with a fast processor that's also a great value, the Lenovo Ideapad is an excellent choice. But you should also consider the Lenovo if you plan to use the laptop as your primary computer.

On the other hand, if you only need a laptop for browsing the web and checking email, you probably don't need all of the power. You can get away with a lower priced computer with fewer features.

Whatever you decide, make sure you don't rush into a decision. Like it or not, computers are part of our daily lives. You want to choose a computer that you enjoy using day in and day out.

Featured Image via Pixabay

Channel Your Inner IT Talent To Build A Laptop For Business Or Pleasure

black laptop

If you would like to build a laptop for business or pleasure, then there are a lot of excellent options out there to make it happen.

Since IBM launched the first commercial laptop in 1988, consumers have called for more powerful, sleeker, but less power-consuming designs.

In fact, every year laptops seem to get so much thinner that pretty soon they’ll include paper cut warnings (just kidding).

However, there’s been a persistent question asked year after year by curious PC builders.

Many builders would like to know if it’s possible to build a laptop the same way they self-build PCs.

As it turns out:

The answer is “sort of.”

How To Build A Laptop: DIY Versus Custom Built

When it comes to options as to how you can build a laptop, there are two choices.

You can buy a barebones laptop kit and install some components yourself, or you can order a custom-made laptop.

Both approaches can have their own unique appeal, depending on what you’re looking to gain.

​​The challenges associated with building a laptop from scratch

Laptop on a wooden table

​Image Source: flickr.com

When you build a laptop from scratch, it’s important to keep in mind that the definition of “building from scratch” is different with laptops as compared to PCs.

For example:

When you build a PC from scratch, you are literally buying everything that goes into it separately and assembling the machine piece by piece.

Components such as the mouse, keyboard, monitor, motherboard, case, and power supply are all separate parts that you must buy.

However, with a laptop, that’s not going to be the case. There are specific components that you just can’t buy separately.

Lack of standardized components

black laptop

​Image Source: pixabay.com

Perhaps the biggest hurdle when you build a laptop from scratch is the fact that unlike desktop PCs, there’s no standardization of parts for laptop components.

You see:

Laptop components such as the motherboard are typically designed only to fit and work with a brand’s specific model.

In other words:

Almost every commercially sold laptop is like an iPhone. There are parts in each machine that will not work in others.

With desktops, you can take the motherboard out of one case, and fit it in another case so long as it’s the right size.

In the beginning, when laptops weighed as much as a kindergartner, they also had more of a uniform design that may have made it possible for greater customization.

However, with today’s laptops, the motherboards are physically designed to only fit and work in a specially designed laptop case, which you can not buy separately.

There are many reasons for this, such as:

black housing processor fan

​Image Source: pixabay.com

Laptops all have very uniquely tailored cooling designs that require components that are cut for that specific model’s case and motherboard.

If you open up a laptop, you’ll likely find a thin cooling plate of some sort that touches most of the major components.

Think about it:

On a desktop, you have a heatsink, which usually includes a fan, that covers the CPU. You can also go the water cooling route and add components such as a pump to your system.

Many cases also let you add a certain number of extra fans to increase airflow throughout the case.

On the other hand:

With laptops, you are limited to the design of the motherboard and the location of vital components on it that require cooling.

You’ll also have a limited number of fans that you can install, many of which are also customized to accommodate the laptop case and motherboard.

While airflow is important in a PC, it’s critical in laptops, which until very recently could not be liquid cooled.

Once again, each laptop will likely feature cooling systems that are slightly to significantly different from each other.

apple macbook

​Image Source: pixabay.com

Since laptops are getting thinner and thinner, when you build one from scratch, you’ll likely have to live with a much bulkier and heavier design.

Today’s laptop manufacturers use specialized components that you can’t buy.

To make a point:

If you took a shell from an Apple MacBook Air and tried to fit a different motherboard in it, you’ll fail.

In many cases, even components from last years MacBook might not fit or work in this year’s laptop shell.

Since space is limited, the design variations, which can be small, make a huge difference.

​Determining and sourcing laptop parts

​Upgrading components

Upgrading GPUs and CPUs
motherboard gpu

​Image Source: pixabay.com

PC gamers know that newer games usually require more powerful hardware to run them on settings that bring out their full potential.

With a desktop, for example, you can usually upgrade your GPU to accommodate this need.

However, very few laptops offer the same option, as most GPUs are built into the motherboard, as is the case with most CPUs.

In other words:

If you want to upgrade your system, you’ll have to rebuild the whole thing from scratch.

That is assuming that the components you want for your system even exist outside of a commercially made laptop.

Consider this:

Imagine finding a new mobile GPU made by Nvidia that you’ve decided that you must have in your new laptop.

It’s likely that Nvidia specially designed that GPU to only work on specific boards for a limited number of laptop models.

This fact also holds true for most CPUs which are also likely to be soldered onto the motherboard.

You see:

Unlike desktop GPUs and CPUs, there’s no incentive for manufacturers such as Intel and Nvidia to make their laptop components stand-alone.

For one thing, a mounted GPU or CPU would require more space.




Advantages of building a laptop from scratch

At this point, you’re probably wondering if there are any benefits to creating a laptop from scratch.

Actually, yes there are.

For those people who enjoy a great DIY challenge, building a laptop is right up there with the best of them. If you want to enjoy the bragging rights of building a functional laptop, then by all means, go for it. There’s nothing wrong with a little vanity project.

Another good reason to build a laptop from scratch will be if you’re looking to start making your own brand of laptops and selling them. Making one from scratch would be a great way to get design ideas, and make improvements on pre-existing models. Before you know it, your company could become the next Razer or Alienware.

Step By Step DIY Instructions For Building A Laptop

This is a very generalized step-by-step “how to” guide on how to build a laptop.

We should note that many of the components referred to in this guide may not have up-to-date models that are available for sale.

For example:

The barebones kit and components that would allow you to make a copy version of the MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 15.6-inch gaming laptop probably doesn’t exist.

When making a self-built laptop, it’s best not to set your expectations too high in terms of performance.

Once again, you’ll likely need to source older parts that will work together.

Part 1: Locating the parts

computer parts

​Image Source: pixabay.com

First, you should determine what kind of machine you want to build. Is it going to be a gaming laptop or used for business?

This distinction can make a big difference. That’s because a laptop designed for business may have components that are much easier to find than one designed for gaming.

You’ll also need to consider factors such as battery life and screen size.

​Step 1: Choose your CPU

​Step 2: Choose a laptop shell

​Step 3: Find your RAM

​Step 4: Find a hard drive

​Step 5: Decide on a graphics card (optional)

​Step 6: Find an optical drive (optional)

​Step 7: Choose your battery

Part 2: Putting it all together

different kinds of tools

​Image Source: pixabay.com

Okay, now it’s time to get to work. You’ve got all your components, and now it’s just a matter of putting everything together.

​Step 1: Gather your tools

​Step 2: Stay grounded

​Step 3: Turn the shell over

​Step 4: Remove your first panel

​Step 5: Mount the drive

​Step 6: Slip the bracketed hard drive into the bay

​Step 7: Install the optical drive

​Step 8: Remove motherboard panel

​Step 9: Install your RAM

​Step 10: Install your CPU

​Step 11: Install the cooling fan

​Step 12: Closing up

Part 3: Starting up your laptop

​Now comes the moment of truth: Starting up your laptop for the first time.

​Step 1: The battery

​Step 2: Check your RAM

​Step 3: Installing the OS

​Step 4: Install your drivers

Letting Someone Else Build A Laptop For You

If you decide to allow a company to build a laptop for you, there are a few things you’ll need to consider.

laptop on a wooden table

​Image Source: pixabay.com

First, you’ll need to know how you plan to use the laptop, the same way you would if you build a laptop yourself.

If you’re building a gaming laptop, your priorities are going to be different (and more expensive) than a laptop made for business use.

Graphics designers also require laptop specs that are very similar to those used to build a laptop for gaming.

How to custom-build a laptop for business

laptop smartphone and apple in a table

​Image Source: pixabay.com

If you want to custom build a laptop for business, the cost may be more of a factor than it would be for gamers.

Business users are more likely to want to get something preassembled and not bother too much with details such as graphics cards and RAM speed.

With that in mind:

Here are some suggestions on what to expect from systems that fall under a certain price range.

Laptops $  and under

Laptops $ to $$

Laptops $$ to $$$

Laptops $$$ and beyond

​Choosing your OS

​Technically when you have someone custom build a laptop, you should have four choices for your OS which currently include:

  • ​Windows 10
  • ​Linux
  • ​Apple OS X
  • ​Chrome OS

However, very few retailers and builders sell machines with Linux Operating Systems. So realistically you’re looking at three choices.

Apple OS X
macbook pro

​Image Source: pixabay.com

Not so long ago, this wouldn’t have been a serious question for most laptop users. But with the rise of Apple products, users now have another option other than Windows.

Of course:

Apple laptops do tend to carry a much stiffer pricetag than Windows laptops.

Historically, Apple laptops are favored more among creative professionals because of their function keys, high screen quality, and ability to run high-powered programs such as AVid, Dreamweaver, and Maya.

In fact, many creative professionals still swear by Apple laptops.

In recent years, Apple has enjoyed enormous success with the launch of their much more affordable MacBook models such as the MacBook Pro.

These laptops feature less RAM than previous models and target more of a mass audience than traditional Apple laptops.

The biggest issue with using Apple products for business is that you may run into some problems with compatibility if your company uses software that only works on Windows machines

​Windows 10
white computer keyboard

​Image Source: pixabay.com

​While you can technically still buy a few systems with Windows 7, most machines available are going to offer Windows 10.

Windows is by far the most expensive OS, but also the most comprehensive. Plus, the latest version comes with a host of new features aimed at increasing productivity.

Features such as Cortana, Microsoft’s virtual assistant app, can perform all kinds of tasks, from checking the weather to scheduling appointments.

Then there’s Task View, which allows you to set up multiple virtual desktops for easier multitasking.

​Chrome OS

​The Chrome OS, made exclusively for Chromebooks, is designed to take advantage of the growing number of cloud-based services.

Chromebooks are perfect for users using cloud-based storage services instead of relying on a lot of physical storage space.

The OS also features support for such cloud-based programs as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Adobe Creative Cloud, and more.

​Best hardware for business users

How to custom-build a laptop for gaming

For gamers who wish to custom-build a laptop, price considerations may be less of a factor than for business users.

While you could go nuts and spend thousands of dollars for a gaming laptop, you can honestly get one that plays the latest games for between $700 and $1,500.

Here are a few hardware recommendations for the best gaming experience at bare-minimum cost.

  • ​CPU: Intel Core i5 2.3 GHz or higher
  • ​GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 or higher
  • ​Ram: 8GB to 16GB of DDR4 with at least 2133 MHz clock speed
  • ​SDD: you’ll probably need at least 1TB of space on your SDD drive or if you go lower, you’ll need to have a secondary internal or external storage solution
  • ​Network Adapter: the fastest 802.11 A/C adapter you can get
  • ​Screen: size is a matter of personal taste, but you’ll want a resolution of at least 1080p or higher
  • ​Sound: consider buying an external sound card for the best sound
  • ​Battery: this should honestly be a non-factor for most gamers since gaming eats lots of juice. Just plug in

 Our Best Recommendation For Building A Laptop

laptop and smartphone in a wooden table

​Image Source: pixabay.com

There are a few good reasons that you may want to build a laptop from scratch.

  • ​Learning: you want to learn or teach someone how to build a laptop or how they work
  • ​Challenge: you want to challenge yourself with a new DIY project just to say that you’ve done it
  • ​Research: maybe you want to start your own laptop business someday

However, if you’re looking for the most cost-effective and technologically advanced laptop, building one from scratch isn’t the way to go.

In that case:

You want to have someone custom build a laptop using components you pick out to ensure the best performance.

Custom laptops can be pricier than mass produced retail laptops but may offer better build quality in return.

We hope you’ve found this information on building a laptop helpful, and wish you the best of luck in your search.

Have you built a laptop? If so, share your experience in the comments!

Best Laptop Docking Station: It’s Time to Cut the Cord for Good

Best Laptop Docking Station - Plugable USB 3.0 Universal Laptop Docking Station for Windows

Laptops are a convenient way to work. To boost your productivity even further, you might consider investing in the best laptop docking station that you can find.

Let’s face it: While laptops are a great option to work and communicate on the go, sometimes you need a workstation. Having a dedicated workstation is a boon to productivity because you always know where everything is, with the perfect set up to do whatever you need to do.

But workstations are not exactly mobile. While you can potentially switch between a desktop workstation and your laptop, it is not always convenient to switch between computers.

A docking station could help you solve this problem by essentially turning your laptop into a stationary workstation, whenever you need it.

Picking the Best Laptop Docking Station

laptop on white table

Image from Amazon

If you want to supercharge your laptop productivity, a laptop docking station may be a worthy investment.

So what is it anyway?

You may be wondering what a laptop docking station is. A docking station is a device that you can attach your laptop to that extends its capabilities, allowing you to connect extra devices to it easily.

Port replicators vs. docking station

Port replicators are peripheral devices that add additional ports for your laptop to use. For example, a port replicator may include extra USB ports, Ethernet ports, etc.

Docking stations are similar to port replicators in that they add additional ports for your laptop. However, desk docking stations have more options, including charging capabilities, and may support more features, like multiple monitors.

Port replicators are typically cheaper than more full-featured docking stations.

What’s the advantage?

Laptops are great when you are on the go. They are super portable, easy to work with, and you can connect anywhere.

But let’s face it, even a sizeable 17-inch laptop can seem small when you’re working on it all the time. Laptops are not always the greatest choice for ergonomics, either.

Docking stations can help you set up a more versatile workstation environment when you need it, without sacrificing your laptop’s portability. The best laptop docking station will allow you to set up a more permanent workstation, with a good keyboard and monitor, at a desk.

When you do need to leave, all you need to do is unplug a cable, and you’re free! Plus, when you are back at your workstation, you can plug right back in and work in comfort once again.

So how does it work?

In the past, laptop docking stations tended to be proprietary, made specifically for each laptop model by the manufacturer. Though made for their compatible laptops, there was little variety, if any, in features for these docking stations.

While you can still find proprietary docks like the Surface Dock for Surface laptops, universal docks are now very popular. Universal docks are often compatible with both Mac and Windows operating systems. Some universal docks also support Chrome OS and Linux operating systems.

Consider this

Current universal docks have far more variety than their proprietary predecessors. However, this means that there is more to think about when you are buying a docking station.

When you’re looking for the best laptop docking station for your computer, you need to take your needs into consideration.

First, think about what you use your laptop for. If you mostly surf the web and use productivity applications, you are probably fine with a more basic docking station.

However, if you are a power user who uses their laptop to edit media, a more powerful docking station may be in order.

Similarly, consider how often you plan on using your laptop as a stationary workstation.

If you are a road warrior that only needs to sit down at a desk every so often, a port replicator or a more portable, slim docking station may be best for your needs.

Mind your ports

When you are looking for the best laptop docking station, you may be overwhelmed at the different port choices.

Here’s a small primer to help you better understand what you are looking at.

Thunderbolt 3 vs. USB-C

Many universal docking stations connect to laptops using either USB-C or Thunderbolt 3. Somewhat confusingly, USB C and Thunderbolt 3 both use the same USB-C connector.

However, USB-C has a data transfer rate of 10 Gigabytes per second (Gb/s) while Thunderbolt 3 is much faster at 40 Gb/s.

Video ports

Universal docking stations may have different video ports for you to choose from, including DisplayPort, HDMI, DVI, or VGA.

Before choosing the best laptop docking station for you, be sure that you choose one that supports your monitor of choice.

More connections

Most universal docking stations will come with USB ports, as well as audio out (headphones) and audio in (microphone).


Before choosing a universal docking station, you need to ensure that the docking station has enough power to run your laptop as well as any powered peripherals you may have.

Finding the Best Laptop Docking Station: Our Method

To find our choices for the best laptop docking station we took a look at various universal USB-C docking stations.

From there, we looked at the different features each laptop dock had, including ports, wattage, and display support. Finally, we looked at what customer reviews had to say about each product. Prices are variable for laptop docking stations.

The CalDigit TS3 is a 15-port docking station. Among these connections, there are two Thunderbolt 3 ports, a DisplayPort, five USB ports (including USB-A and USB-C), and optical audio.

It provides up to 85 watts of power. This docking station can support either one 5K monitor or up to two 4K monitors via the DisplayPort and USB-C connections.

While the CalDigit TS3 is ideal for Mac-based laptops like the 2016+ MacBook pro, it is also compatible with Windows laptops running Windows 8 or Windows 10.

This docking station is available on Amazon and “Amazon’s Choice” pick.

Positive reviews like this dock for both Mac and Windows computers. The top positive review calls it the “best investment” they could have made.

However, there are critical reviews that assert that the dock did not work on their computers. One review says that it did not work well with their 2018 MacBook Pro. After numerous attempts with CalDigit’s help, they were able to get their issue resolved but still gave it a low rating due to the non-intuitive fix.

The J5create is a USB 3.0 mini-docking station. This aluminum-bodied dock includes two USB 3.0 ports, an Ethernet port, a micro-USB type-B port for charging, and HDMI/VGA ports.

It is a universal docking station that is compatible with Windows and Mac operating systems.You can find it online at Best Buy and Amazon.

Calling it a “no frills, bargain winner.” While the reviewer admitted that the dock lacked some higher functionality, they noted that it makes for an “excellent temporary workstation” for their Windows-based laptop.

Another review mentioned that they used their dock to extend their laptop onto two 25-inch monitors. This reviewer reported that the solution, “works great” and is more economical than other solutions that they had tried.

Critical reviews varied on their reasons for disliking the product. One reviewer said that the overall product was good but still did not work for their unique computer situation. Another user reported that it did not work with Mac 10.13.5 and did not receive a resolution from J5 when they contacted support.

Plugable universal docking stations

The computer company Plugable makes several highly rated docking stations, available on Amazon.

The Plugable UD-CA1A is a universal docking station, compatible with Windows, Mac, and Chromebook. This docking station includes an HDMI/VGA port that supports many types of video. It connects to the laptop via a USB-C connector.

It is also the PC Magazine Editor’s Choice for USB-C laptop docks.

Positive reviews like this dock for its versatility as well as its support. Citing that it was able to work with both Mac and Windows computers.

Critical reviews that were less than pleased with the dock cited it did not work with their operating system.

For example, one customer using Ubuntu 18.04 noted that there was a significant delay when typing and mousing. Another customer found that the dock did not work with newer versions of Chrome OS.

The Plugable UD-ULTCDL is another top-rated docking station. It's a USB-C system and makes use of Thunderbolt 3 technology for faster data transfer rates.

It supports up to three displays with two HDMI outputs and a DVI output. Additionally, this docking station has an Ethernet port and supports three USB 3.0 peripherals, as well as a microphone and speakers.

Overall, the Plugable UD-ULTCDL gets good reviews online. Positive reviews say that the dock “worked like a charm” for their needs. Those that liked the dock gave it glowing reviews, saying that it helped to boost their productivity with the extra display space.

The UD-ULTCDL does have some drawbacks. This dock is made more for web browsing and productivity applications. It is not recommended for hardware intensive applications like gaming or HD video.

While this dock is compatible with older versions of Mac OS, it is not compatible with Mac OS 10.13.4 and above. Additionally, not all versions of Chromebook support this dock.

One customer had a particularly bad experience with this dock, ending with the dock destroying his laptop. However, the customer did appreciate that the company reached out to compensate them for the defective product and the damage it caused.

The WAVLINK WL-UG69PD2 is a docking station that works with USB-C connectors and provides up to 60 watts of charging power. It includes two DisplayPort connections, two HDMI ports, four USB 3.0 ports, two USB-C ports, an Ethernet port, and audio in and out ports.

It supports resolutions up to 5K on a single monitor via DisplayPort and resolutions up to 4K on dual monitors on both HDMI and DisplayPort.

The WAVLINK WL-UG69PD2 is compatible with Windows, Mac OS 10.6 to 10.13.3, and Chrome OS 2015 and onward.

Customer reviews are overwhelmingly positive for the dock, with 71 percent of customers. Positive reviews note that the dock works well and is easy to use. One reviewer stated that they were able to use the dock easily between different laptops.

It began having trouble recognizing monitors. This review also indicated that it was not a good dock for playing games.

So Which One Is Really the Best?

Whether you are a student that wants a more comfortable solution to write long term papers or a video editor that wants to use multiple monitors to edit their next masterpiece on their laptop, the best laptop docking station is out there, ready to help.

A universal docking station can help boost your productivity by letting you customize a workstation that exactly meets your needs.

Laptop docking stations come with different ports and capabilities, so you are sure to find the best laptop docking station for your particular needs!

In your opinion, what is the best laptop docking station on the market today? Tell us all about it below!

Featured Image from Amazon

How To Clean A Laptop Keyboard And Keep It Clean

person typing on laptop

As you go through the day, do you think ever think about how to clean a laptop keyboard? That may seem like an odd question. But humans are a tactile species. We touch to interact with our world. As we go through our daily lives, our hands touch a lot of things that aren't so clean.

Laptop computers are an essential part of our daily lives. We work on them, and we play on them. There’s a good chance that you’re reading this on a laptop right now. But our laptops are not the only things we touch. We touch door handles, countertops, and refrigerators. We sneeze into our hands, wipe our noses, and pick up our food.

While doing all this, we inevitably transfer bacteria and other microorganisms from one surface to another. That can make our laptops one of the single dirtiest items in our possession. The chances are good that you probably don’t think about how to clean a laptop keyboard too often.

But the truth is: you should.

The Dirty Truth

According to scientists, toilet seats have around 50 bacteria per square inch. Your average computer keyboard can harbor up to 400 times that amount. Yes. Your keyboard is nastier than your toilet seat.

As if the number of bacteria wasn’t bad enough, sometimes that bacteria can be pretty deadly. Strains of drug-resistant bacteria including vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VRE) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) can live on your keyboard.

The Staphylococcus bacteria can cause minor irritations like boils but can also cause life-threatening diseases like septicemia or toxic shock syndrome.

How To Clean A Laptop Keyboard: Before You Start

To give your laptop keyboard a thorough cleaning, first, you need to check what type of laptop keyboard you have.

Once you know what kind of keyboard you have, you then need to assemble your cleaning supplies.

What kind of keyboard?

laptop on white table

image source: Pexels

As laptops come in various sizes and profiles, laptop keyboards vary between models. However, there are several main types of keyboards that you can expect to find on your average laptop.


Chiclet, or island style, keyboards are the most common type of keyboard for laptops. This type of keyboard has flat keys, that pop up from the laptop’s surface, separate from each other.

This style is called chiclet style because the keys resemble a type of gum known as a chiclet.

Good news: chiclet keyboards are the easiest type of keyboard to clean!


Older laptops have traditional keyboards. These keyboards use larger keys with sloping sides that are placed closer together.

These types of keyboards can be more challenging to clean because of how close the keys are. There is also space beneath the keys that can trap debris.


While chiclet keyboards dominate contemporary laptop computers, followed by traditional keyboards, there are a few other types out there.

These types are much harder to find. We include them here for reference, but you will probably be fine sticking with the instructions on how to clean a laptop keyboard for either chiclet or traditional.

Mechanical switch keyboards have a switch that audibly clicks beneath the key. They are louder but more durable. Mechanical keyboards are more common on desktops, but some specialized gaming laptops use them.

Touch and haptic keyboards are keyboards that do not require a physical press. Think of these keyboards almost like touch screens, just with keys. Some have haptic feedback which vibrates to let you know you have pressed a key.

Cleaning solution

laptop keyboard

image source: Pexels

Always use a cleaning solution that is safe for use on electronics. You can purchase a ready-made electronics cleaning solution.

You can make a DIY electronics cleaning solution using equal parts distilled water and rubbing alcohol. Alternatively, you can use only rubbing alcohol but do so sparingly.

Cleaning cloth

Use a soft cloth to clean larger areas on your laptop keyboard. Microfiber is ideal for this job as it will not scratch your laptop finish and it will not leave lint.

If you do not have microfiber, you can use a lint-free cotton cloth. Try to avoid paper towels or other alternative cleaning cloths as these may leave behind lint.

Cotton swabs

Cotton swabs are good for cleaning smaller surfaces of your laptop keyboard like in between the keys as well as the keys themselves.

Can of air

To clean your laptop keyboard, you will need to remove any loose dust that may have accumulated.

A can of air is an affordable solution that you can use on just about any laptop or computer.


If you have a traditional or mechanical keyboard, you will have space under your laptop keyboard that is more difficult to clean.

To avoid taking apart your laptop to clean it, consider investing in an electronics vacuum cleaner. These allow you to get into the crevices that may be more difficult for a can of air to clear.

How To Clean A Laptop 
Keyboard: Here’s What You Need To Do


image source: Pexels

Now that we have the tools that we need, here is each step for you to thoroughly clean your laptop keyboard. Be sure to budget at least 15 minutes to do a thorough job of this.

Protect yourself!

Whenever you do any work on your computer, even if it’s just a quick clean, it’s always a good idea to back up your computer. It may seem like overkill, but it’s better to be safe than sorry!

Once you have your data all backed up, turn off your laptop and unplug it. To be extra safe, make sure your computer is off for at least 10 seconds before continuing onto the next steps.

Dust bunnies must die!

You first need to deal with the general dust before you can get to the business of cleaning your keys.

Attach the long, thin straw that comes with the can of air to get in between the crevices of the keys. For best results, use short bursts of air to move out dust and debris away from your keys effectively.

Suck it up!

If you have a traditional or mechanical keyboard, first use an electronics vacuum with a crevice attachment to help you get into the crevices between and underneath your keys.

You can then blow out any remaining debris with your can of air.

Cleaning up the alphabet

Depending on the style of keyboard you have, cleaning and disinfecting the keys can take the longest amount of time.

Once you have blown off or vacuumed off all of the dust from your keyboard, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty: cleaning your keys.

So how do we do that?

To start, moisten the tip of a cotton swab in some electronics cleaning solution or rubbing alcohol.

Remember: you do not want this swab to be dripping wet, just moistened.

Pick a point on your keyboard to start at and then begin cleaning. Starting at the “Escape” key and then working your way left to right is a pattern that will allow you to keep track of what you have cleaned easily.

Don't forget the rest of it...

After you have cleaned your keys, it is time to clean and disinfect the surface of your laptop, i.e., everything else.

If you have a chiclet keyboard, use a cotton swab dampened with either electronics cleaner or rubbing alcohol to get in between the keys.

To clean the larger surfaces, spray a microfiber cloth with your electronics cleaner or rubbing alcohol. Wipe down the surface of your keyboard in a back and forth motion.

Whatever you do, do NOT spray cleaner directly onto the surface of your laptop. That can cause excess moisture to get into your laptop which may ruin it.

Your laptop keyboard should now be clean and ready to use again!

How To Clean A Laptop Keyboard: After You Clean

laptop on the office desk

image source: Pexels

Once you have cleaned your laptop keyboard, it is essential to keep it clean.

Cover it up

An easy way to keep your keyboard clean is to use a keyboard cover. Sometimes called a keyboard skin, these are silicone covers that cover the entirety of your keyboard to keep out dust and other debris.

You won't even have to learn how to clean a laptop keyboard!

So what’s the catch?

Keyboard covers are not available for all laptops. Plus, they are best for chiclet laptop keyboards.

But there is a bright side! If you have a popular laptop with a chiclet type keyboard, like an Apple MacBook, chances are you can find a bunch of different keyboard covers that will suit your needs and personality.

Go scrub. A lot

Washing your hands regularly is the best way to prevent the spread of disease. According to the CDC, we often touch things without realizing it and end up transferring pathogens from one surface to another.

By washing your hands regularly with soap and running water, you get rid of germs or anything else that can transfer onto your computer.

Watch what you’re doing

We’ve all been there.

You’re busy working (or watching something) on your laptop. Suddenly, you realize you are hungry.

It’s easy to grab something to eat and drink while you continue to work on your laptop.

Unfortunately, I have bad news: This is the one habit you want to stop if you're going to learn how to clean a laptop keyboard and keep it clean.

Eating while you’re using your laptop can make crumbs that fall onto your computer.

Crumbs can be easy to brush away on a chiclet keyboard. But on a traditional keyboard, they can get in between the keys and cause a real mess.

Watch out if you’re eating something sticky. There is a good chance that you can gum up your keys too.

Drinking while using your laptop is also pretty risky as well. Spilling water can do some severe damage to your laptop keyboard and the components inside.

Liquids like soda or coffee can make a sticky, hard to clean mess if you spill them on your laptop.

Keeping It Clean

Your laptop is an essential part of your daily life. As part of your daily life, it is necessary to keep it clean.

Now that you have learned how to clean a laptop keyboard, be sure to clean it at regular intervals. By cleaning it regularly, you ensure that your laptop keyboard stays as germ-free as possible.

Do you have any tips or tricks for cleaning your keyboard? Share them with us in the comments!