For the longest time, one computer has been enough to do it all. But it’s never been easier to get a cheap computer, and a second machine can do everything from help you code across multiple platforms to run lots of taxing programs at once, or just give you a nice change of digital scenery throughout your day. If you’re in a position where you need and can afford more than just the one computer, your buying options increase quite a bit! But should you buy the same laptop twice, for maximum compatibility? Which OS is the best for taking on the go? Do you need one giant monitor ruling over all your devices? Here we’ll outline the choices available to you, and how they stack up against each other.
With so many permutations and different usage scenarios to talk about, we can’t cover every eventuality, but this should at least give you some points to consider. The best option isn’t necessarily the most obvious one.
We’re assuming for most people a two-computer setup means one device staying at home and one device traveling around with you (even if that’s from the desk to the couch). For the former, we very much like the idea of desktops—they’re great, as long as you don’t have to take them anywhere. They’re usually the better value for the money and can give you more configuration options and ports. As an added bonus you’ll be able to sit in a more natural position while using one too.