Buying a small business computer or word processing system can be confusing. It's difficult to get impartial advice and to get information in a format that lets you compare A to B.

A suggestion: Ask your salesman if you can borrow the Auerbach (Auerbach Information Corp. Reports, Pennsauken, N.J.; (609)662-2070) or Datapro (Datapro Research Corp., Delran, N.J.; (609) 764-0100) reports on small business computers or word processors.

They include specifications, user ratings, and details on the manufacturers' service capabilities and policies, together with applications information to help you decide which system would be best for the job you have to do.