How to Measure a Laptop for a Laptop Carrier

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The laptop carrier you select may be a simple case with a strap or a special backpack with pockets for extra cords and accessories and a pouch in the back designed for your laptop. Don't rely on guesswork to determine the size you need. Simply learn how to measure a laptop to ensure that you don't pick up the wrong size case.

Measure Laptop Height

The first step in measuring a laptop for a laptop carrier bag is to look at the height of the computer. This is important. If you don't measure it correctly, your laptop will stick out of the top of the bag. Common laptop heights are 10.1 inch, 11.6 inch, 13.3 inch, 15.6 inch and 17.3 inch. You can measure your laptop height by closing the laptop lid and measuring from the top of the lid to the bottom of the lid. Add 1 to 2 inches to this number to make sure your bag can fully protect your computer from top to bottom.

Measure Laptop Width

Another important aspect of the laptop carrier is its width. If you don't measure your laptop correctly, you may have a bag that's too wide or too slim. A carrier that's too big will leave your laptop moving around inside and potentially getting damaged as a result, while a carrier that's too small won't fit your laptop at all. You can measure your laptop width by closing the laptop lid and measuring from the left side to the right side of the laptop. Add an inch to this number to make sure that your laptop is protectively enclosed in the carrier.

Measure Laptop Depth

The laptop depth is an often overlooked measurement that's also important when considering what laptop carrier to purchase. As with the width, a carrier that's too small in depth won't accommodate the laptop at all. Note that the depth of your laptop can be drastically different if you have a hard-shell case on the laptop, so make sure to measure with this on if you plan to carry your laptop around with the case on. Close your laptop and measure from the top of the back left corner to the bottom of this corner. Add one-half inch to this number to get a carrier that is the perfect size for your laptop.

Consider Other Options

After you've learned how to measure a laptop, you should still take other factors into consideration when purchasing your carrier. For instance, you should consider the outside material of the case. It's recommended that you get a hard material if you plan to travel frequently because this will better protect the laptop from drops. You might also look at the inner and outer compartments to ensure that there's enough room for accessories that you plan to carry with you. Also consider whether you want a messenger bag, backpack or briefcase-style laptop carrier. Each has its own unique set of advantages and disadvantages, depending on how frequently you plan to travel with your laptop.

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