One inch notebooks: The best 15-inch gaming and work laptop for 2021

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The best 15-inch gaming and work laptop for 2021

It used to be that American buyers gravitated toward 15 inches as a middle ground size between pricey 17-inch laptops and smaller, less powerful 13-inch models, while consumers outside the US favored 14-inch computers. But this has shifted over the last year, as manufacturers like HP, Acer, Lenovo and Asus have significantly broadened their laptop offerings — and marketing efforts — with more flagship 14-inch models. The best 14- and 15-inch laptops strike a balance between size, performance and price.

We selected what we consider to be the best of these laptops based on performance for a given set of specs (aka, their configuration), features and design for the price. We included both premium and budget laptop options, taking into consideration factors such as battery life, keyboard, SSD storage, graphics, processor speed, operating system and more. Features like the amount of storage (including whether it has SSD or a spinning hard drive), display type and resolution (4K, QHD or FHD), a fingerprint reader, a touch screen and more factor in as well. Laptop screen size and price shouldn’t be the only specs dictating your purchasing decisions!

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Read more: Best Chromebook for 2021: Acer, HP, Asus, Lenovo and more compared

If you’re looking for lower prices or a broader set of options, check out our picks for laptops under $500 and budget gaming laptops. And choosing just a handful out of a sea of hundreds pretty much ensures that you’ll miss some important devices, especially if you’re looking for a more powerful laptop that’s tailored to specific needs, like video editing, so you should also head over to see our best gaming laptops, two-in-ones, Chromebooks and the best MacBook Pro alternatives for the Windows set. There are a lot of premium laptop choices out there!

Specs and availability are often in flux, so we limited our choices to models that are current and that we’ve actually tested. We update this list periodically with new products and information.

Read more: Best gaming laptop to buy for 2021

Sarah Tew/CNET

It’s hard to find a budget laptop that’s also thin and light, much less one that has decent performance and battery life. The Aspire, which starts at $679, hits all those targets and more, including a solid assortment of ports (including a USB-C port) and easily upgradable hard drive storage and memory. It’s got a budget build, but you can’t expect everything for so little money.

Read our Acer Aspire 5 (2019) review.

 

Josh Goldman/CNET

The highlights of this thin and light 15-inch Windows two-in-one are its excellent battery life, high-contrast OLED screen and the plethora of cross-device features it serves up for owners of Samsung’s Galaxy phones and accessories. It’s specifically designed for people who want a laptop experience similar to that of their phones, with similar responsiveness. 

Read Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360 review.

 

Lori Grunin/CNET

Asus’ $1,650 all-AMD gaming laptop delivers excellent performance and battery life, with a top-of-the-line AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU and Radeon RX 6800M GPU — and that’s before you realize that the performance and components are way above its price class. It runs cool and quiet, even running close to full tilt.  

Read the Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition review.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Razer’s featureless-slab aesthetic fits seamlessly into almost any environment, making it the best 15-inch laptop for work and play. If you opt for one of the higher-end configurations and specs — like a great graphics card — the Razer Blade 15 Advanced is an excellent device for creative work and a stellar gaming laptop. If you’re willing to go with a black Razer Blade and an emptied wallet (this is among the most premium laptops), you can get an Adobe RGB calibrated 4K OLED display and a GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q for around $2,000. The less expensive Base Edition starts at $1,500 and isn’t too shabby either.

Read our Razer Blade 15 Advanced review.

 


Sarah Tew/CNET

Available in both 14- and 15-inch versions, this refreshed and rebranded Yoga C940 remains one of our favorite two-in-ones. It now incorporates up to a quad-core Intel Core i7-1185G7 processor and up to Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q discrete graphics. Plus, you gain the design flexibility of a convertible — kiosk mode (also called “stand mode”) and tent mode (my personal favorite), which are the best ways to use a laptop with a touchscreen that hangs around the house.

Read our Lenovo Yoga 9i review.

 

Best mainstream 15-inch Windows laptop for photo editing

Dell XPS 15 9500

Lori Grunin/CNET

If, like me, you’re not a big fan of OLED screens for photo editing — they’re not optimized for Adobe RGB and aren’t great at tonal range in the shadows — what you need is a laptop with a good IPS display. The Dell XPS 15 9500 with the 4K screen option delivers that, and it’s not as reflective as the OLED screens I’ve seen. It doesn’t qualify as an “RTX Studio” laptop because it tops out at a GTX 1650 Ti, but that graphics processor is sufficient for most photo editing and you don’t need the Nvidia Studio drivers for most photo editing. Dell’s PremierColor software isn’t perfect, but it gives you more control over screen settings than most I’ve seen, and it has two Thunderbolt 3 controllers to make your external drives happy.

If you’re willing to go a little bigger for a lot more graphics power, the 17-inch XPS 17 9700 doesn’t feel smaller than it looks.

Read our Dell XPS 15 9500 review.

 


Lori Grunin/CNET

Dell’s G series comprises some of the best mainstream gaming laptops you can find, with strong performance, a variety of component options and a more travel- and user-friendly design than most. Plus, battery life is a lot better than a typical gaming laptop’s, and a solid-performance base configuration starts at less than $1,000.

Read our Dell G5 15 (2020) review.

 


Josh Goldman/CNET

The Acer Chromebook 715 started life as a premium model targeted at a growing business market for Chrome OS devices. Along with its smaller sibling, the Chromebook 714, the 715 has a premium all-aluminum chassis built to survive drops from up to 48 inches (1. 2 meters) and downward force up to 132 pounds (60 kg). You could also get the Chromebook 715 with a fingerprint reader, a backlit keyboard, an Intel Core i5 processor and 16GB RAM for around $750. Or you can get a much more affordable version that dials back on the specs and extras but keeps the premium build quality, making it a fantastic choice for a home office or student Chromebook.

Read our Acer Chromebook 715 review.

 

Joshua Goldman/CNET

The Chromebook Flip C434 was one of our favorites last year, and we think it’s a great touchscreen Chromebook this year, too. It has a slim aluminum design with a 14-inch full-HD touchscreen. Inside you’ll find higher-end components than the previous iteration for greatly improved performance. It also comes with a higher price, though, starting at $700. Still, as Chrome OS matures, the extra processing performance is certainly nice to have, as is having that performance in an attractive design.

Read our Asus Chromebook Flip C436 review.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

It may now have a 16-inch screen, but the MacBook Pro remains a 15-inch laptop in size and spirit. I’m not a fan of the Touch Bar, but at least the keyboard’s improved, and the combination of the MacBook Pro’s hardware and MacOS extracts the maximum performance from the components while delivering class-leading battery life in a way Windows systems never seem to do, and the Retina Display screen remains terrific. You pay for it, though — base price for the 16-inch MacBook Pro model is $2,250.

Read our Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019) review.

 

Josh Goldman/CNET

The Duo’s tilt-up second screen can act as an ancillary display, an extension of the primary display (for viewing those long web pages) or a separate control center from which you can run Asus’ custom utilities or as control surfaces for select creative applications. Plus, Asus excels at squeezing every bit of performance out of its high-end laptops, and the 14-inch delivers great battery life, as well. 

It comes in two models, the 2019 Pro Duo 15 OLED we reviewed and the 2021 14-inch Duo 14. The Pro Duo 15 OLED will have up to a 10th-gen Intel Core i9 processor, with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 discrete graphics and up to 32GB of memory when it arrives in April. The Duo 14 has either 11th-gen Core i5 or i7 processors, optional Nvidia MX450 discrete graphics and up to 32GB of memory.

Read our Asus ZenBook Duo review.

 

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The best 13-inch laptops 2021: the best laptops with small screens

The best 13-inch laptops may be small, but thanks to the improvements manufacturers have made on internal components, they are just as powerful as some of the best 15-inch laptops. In fact, they’ll even see you through many of the more demanding workloads like video and photo editing. That’s while keeping things portable and travel-friendly.

With the MacBook Air (M1, 2020) leading the charge, the best 13-inch laptops have proven that they too can deliver breathtaking performance worthy of light video editing and some gaming. And, because they have the advantage of being light and small, they’re ideal for professionals and students who need power without the bulk.

There’s a reason many of the best 13-inch laptops are also on our best business laptops, best Ultrabooks, or best laptops lists. It doesn’t matter if you’re looking for a specific brand like the best Acer laptops, want a particular form factor like a 2-in-1 laptop, or trying to choose between the best Windows laptops or the best Macs. Whether you’re a professional who needs a little more power or a student looking for the most affordable portable like a Chromebook, you’ll find one here to match your needs.  

(Image credit: Apple)

1. MacBook Air (M1, 2020)

Best laptop for students with a flexible budget

Specifications

CPU: Apple M1 chip with 8‑core CPU

Graphics: Integrated 7-core – 8-core GPU

RAM: 8GB – 16GB unified memory

Screen: 13.3-inch 2560 x 1600 Retina display

Storage: 256GB – 2TB SSD

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+macOS Big Sur is fast and responsive+Battery life is great+Silent in use

Reasons to avoid

-Fanless design could impact performance

Apple finally out their much-talked about M1 silicon chip that’s so far been a real game-changer. And, the first laptop to receive it is the company’s thinnest and lightest, putting it on the list of the most exciting Apple laptops of recent years. With this new chip, the MacBook Air is better than ever, touting excellent performance alongside its brilliant battery life – without raising the price to keep it (fairly) affordable still. It’s not going to be the cheapest option for students, but for those who have a slightly bigger budget, this is the best student laptop to get.

Read the full review: MacBook Air (M1, 2020)

(Image credit: HP)

2. HP Elite Dragonfly G2

One of the best laptops we’ve tested

Specifications

CPU: 11th-generation Intel Core i3 – i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: 8GB – 32GB

Screen: 13.3-inch diagonal BrightView LED FHD, 400 nits – 13.3-inch diagonal BrightView LED 4K UHD HDR-400 550 nits

Storage: up to 2TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Great design+Comfortable keyboard+Excellent screen

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive-USB-C ports on only one side

The second-generation HP Elite Dragonfly ups the ante in the best 13-inch laptops game. HP’s impressive business laptop is back with its smart design, great battery life, and 2-in-1 prowess. Of course, it’s more powerful now than it’s ever been, touting 11th-gen Intel Core chips, Intel Iris Xe graphics, and now a 4K display, upgrading from its previous Full HD models. There’s a lot to love here, and it might just be as close to being the perfect business laptop as any manufacturer can get. If you can afford it. However, as it is meant for professionals, it’s definitely worth the investment.

Read the full review: HP Elite Dragonfly G2 

(Image credit: Microsoft )

3. Surface Laptop 4

An excellent 13-inch laptop from Microsoft

Specifications

CPU: 11th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7 / AMD Ryzen 5 – 7

Graphics: Intel Iris Xe / AMD Radeon

RAM: 8GB – 32GB

Screen: 13.5-inch PixelSense (2,256 x 1,504) touch

Storage: 256GB – 1TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Comfortable keyboard+Beautiful screen

Reasons to avoid

-Not enough ports-Alcantara fabric might get gross over time

While Apple blew us away with the new MacBook Air (above), arch rival Microsoft has also impressed us with its new Surface Laptop 4. As with previous Surface devices, build quality and design is absolutely top-notch here, and its gorgeous PixelSense touchscreen really sets it apart from the competition (a touchscreen is something we’ve yet to see on an Apple laptop, as Microsoft likes to remind us). It also comes with a brilliant keyboard that’s a joy to type on, and some pretty great specs as well, which ensures that Windows 10, and all your favorite apps, run extremely well. Battery life is also very impressive – lasting over 13 hours in our tests – and the price is impressively competitive as well. 

Read the full review: Microsoft Surface Laptop 4

(Image credit: HP)

4. HP Spectre x360 (2021)

A brilliant update

Specifications

CPU: 11th-gen Intel Core i5 – i7

Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 – Iris Xe

RAM: 8GB – 16GB

Screen: 13.3-inch diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080) OLED touch – 13.3-inch diagonal, 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) OLED touch

Storage: 256 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD – 2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD

Reasons to buy

+Gorgeous design+Excellent battery life+Great performance for day-to-day work

Reasons to avoid

-Fans can get noisy-Pricey

The flagship HP Spectre x360 (2021) is the newest in the flagship product line and continues the tradition of pairing elegance and premium design with the newest in specs for a 2-in-1 laptop that’s as much substance as it is style. This gorgeous Windows laptop comes with the new 11th-gen Intel CPU and enough battery life to get you through a long day at work. While it does come with a price tag to match and its 2-in-1 factor can be bulky for those making use of its tablet mode, not to mention that it can get loud, it’s a stunning laptop with excellent performance.

Read the full review: HP Spectre x360 (2021)

Google Pixelbook Go boasts many of its high-quality features, but without that steep price tag. (Image credit: Google)

5. Google Pixelbook Go

The best mainstream Chromebook

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core m3 – i7

Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 615

RAM: 8GB – 16GB

Screen: 13.3-inch Full HD – 13.3-inch 4K Ultra HD Molecular Display

Storage: 64GB – 256GB

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Amazing ‘Hush’ keyboard+Rare 1080p webcam

Reasons to avoid

-No biometric login

If you’ve long been admiring Google’s premium Chromebook but the price is holding you back, then you might want to consider the new Google Pixelbook Go instead. Freshly-baked by Google, this alternative to the manufacturer’s pricey Pixelbook boasts many of its high-quality features, but without that steep price tag – namely, an incredible battery life and that coveted keyboard. If your computing use is limited to sending and responding to emails, creating documents and excel sheets on Google Docs and Sheets, and streaming movies and videos after work, then this one’s a winner.

Read the full review: Google Pixelbook Go

(Image credit: Apple)

6. MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020)

Apple’s little MacBook Pro gets a big refresh

Specifications

CPU: Apple M1 chip with 8‑core CPU

Graphics: Integrated 8-core GPU

RAM: 8GB – 16GB unified memory

Screen: 13.3-inch 2560 x 1600 LED-backlit Retina display

Storage: 256GB – 2TB SSD

Dimensions (H x W x D): 30.41 x 21.24 x 1.56 cm

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Huge battery life+Great performance+Can run iOS apps

Reasons to avoid

-Still lacks ports

The MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020) may not have gotten a massive design overhaul, but what it lacks in that department, it makes up for big time in performance and battery life. Thanks to Apple’s groundbreaking M1 chip, the new MacBook Pro 13-inch delivers excellent performance and exceptional battery life. Its performance is so impressive, in fact, that it can easily handle 4K – and even 8K – videos. If you’re looking for a powerful laptop that keeps things small and lightweight, this is the best 13-inch laptop money can buy.

Read the full review: MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020)

(Image credit: Dell)

7. Dell XPS 13 (Late 2020)

Dell does it again

Specifications

CPU: Up to 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7

Graphics: Up to Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: Up to 32GB 4267MHz LPDDR4x

Screen: 13.4″ FHD+ (1920 x 1200) InfinityEdge Non-Touch Anti-Glare 500-Nit – 13.4″ UHD+ (3840 x 2400) InfinityEdge Touch Anti-Reflective 500-Nit Display

Storage: Up to 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe

Reasons to buy

+Stunning design+Gorgeous 16:10 display+Excellent battery life

Reasons to avoid

-Sound quality is just OK-Pricey

At this point, we doubt that the Dell XPS line can do anything wrong. Its yearly updates have consistently made it to our best laptops list, and they’re only getting better. The Dell XPS 13 (2020) is not only a gorgeous piece of kit. It also comes, as expected, with excellent performance, a stunning display and long battery life, alongside a few others. Much like its predecessor, it’s a pricey investment – but that is barely reason enough for us to discourage Ultrabook fans. This is among the best 13-inch laptops, and it’s worth every penny.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 13 (2020) 

Razer has spruced up its Blade Stealth 13 Ultrabook with the latest internal components without affecting its super-quiet operation. (Image credit: Razer)

8. Razer Blade Stealth 13 (2019)

Lightweight Razer style, now in white

Specifications

CPU: 10th-generation Intel Core i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics – GeForce GTX 1650 Max-Q

RAM: 16GB

Screen: 13.3″ FHD Matte w/ 4.9mm slim side bezel – 13. 3″ 4K Touch w/ 4.9mm slim side bezel

Storage: 512GB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Top-notch build quality+Runs quietly+Battery life is solid 

Reasons to avoid

-Decidedly expensive-Limited storage space-Lacks a discrete GPU

The “world’s first gaming ultrabook” doesn’t just talk the talk; it also walks the walk. Razer has spruced up its Blade Stealth 13 Ultrabook with the latest internal components without affecting its super-quiet operation. Packed with a 10th-generation Intel Core i7 processor and better graphic options, 13-inch laptop delivers and much better than its predecessor. In fact, it might just be the best gaming experience we’ve ever had on integrated graphics with the Iris Plus configuration. Round that out with extremely quiet fans, low thermal power, extended battery life and that delightful Mercury White color, and we are sold. You will be too, if you can afford the price.

Read the full review: Razer Blade Stealth 13 (2019) 

Lenovo Yoga C930 has a few aces up its sleeve. (Image credit: Lenovo)

9. Lenovo Yoga C940

The Lenovo Yoga is back and it means business

Specifications

CPU: up to 10th-generation Intel Core i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics

RAM: up to 16GB

Screen: 14” FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, touchscreen, glossy, 400 nits –14″ UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS, touchscreen, glossy, HDR 400, 500 nits

Storage: up to 2TB SSD PCIe

Reasons to buy

+Excellent design+Great performance+Comfy keyboard

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive-Battery life

With the Lenovo Yoga C940, the company continues with its tradition of making elegant and stunning Ultrabooks. And, don’t be thrown off by its looks, there’s plenty of power hiding inside. With a comfortable keyboard, stylus, TrueBlock Privacy Shutter and rotating soundbar, it’s quite a feature rich machine as well. It’s not perfect – that soundbar is a work in progress and the battery life could be better – but it’s a great portable that can stand up to the competition.

Read the full review: Lenovo Yoga C940

(Image credit: Asus)

10. ASUS ZenBook 13 UX325

Light, durable and affordable workhorse

Specifications

CPU: 10th-gen Intel Core i3 – i7

Graphics: Intel UHD – Iris Plus Graphics

RAM: up to 32GB

Screen: 13.3-inch, LCD, FHD (1920 x 1080) 16:9, IPS-level Panel, Anti-glare display, LED Backlit, 300nits – 13.3-inch, LCD, FHD (1920 x 1080) 16:9, IPS-level Panel, Anti-glare display, LED Backlit, 450nits

Storage: 256GB – 2TB SSD

Camera: HD camera with IR function to support Windows Hello

Reasons to buy

+MIL-STD-810G durability+Outstanding external speakers+Great battery

Reasons to avoid

-Underpowered-Wired headphone usage requires included dongle

If you want a workhorse of a laptop that won’t burn a hole in your pocket, look no further than the ASUS ZenBook 13 UX325. It’s thin and light form as well as exceptional battery life puts it in the same league as the best Ultrabooks out there. Its MIL-STD-810G takes it a step further, making it a robust candidate for your in-the-field needs. Its affordable price tag does come with a few surprises – the biggest one being it’s a bit underpowered. However, you’re not doing anything intensive, it should have enough to see you through your daily demands.

Read the full review: ASUS ZenBook 13 UX325

Bill Thomas has also contributed to this article

Round up of today’s best deals

Best laptops 2021: the best laptop for every user and every budget

Welcome to out pick of the best laptops of 2021, where we’ve collected some of the finest portable devices money can buy right now.

On this page you’ll find top gaming laptops, brilliant Chromebooks, high-end Ultrabooks from the best laptop brands, including Dell, HP and Apple.

So, no matter what your budget is, we have the perfect choice for you. Every laptop in this list has been reviewed by us, and only the best laptops that offer the best value for money, as well as market-leading performance and battery lives, are included here.

Buying a new laptop can be confusing, so we’ve also included advice on buying the best laptop for your needs and budget.

How to pick the best laptop for you

There are certain things you should look for (and do) when buying a new laptop.

To begin with, set out a budget. This will help narrow your search and ensure that you don’t feel forced to buy something you’ll struggle to afford. The good news is that there are brilliant budget laptops below the $400/£400 price point.

On the other hand, if your budget can stretch further, it’s worth investing in a more expensive laptop that is more future proof.

Once you have your budget in mind, think about what you want to use the laptop for. If you just need it for casual browsing and a bit of Netflix streaming, then a budget laptop or Chromebook is a great shout.

If you want something to work on, a laptop with a modern processor, at least 8GB of RAM and a large screen (and comfortable keyboard) are worth considering.

For gaming, you’ll want a gaming laptop with a dedicated graphics card and fast and responsive screen.

Battery lives are also very important these days, and we’re pleased to say that new laptops have hugely improved batteries compared to devices from only a few years ago. While gaming laptops still offer around five hours or less, due to their powerful components, most modern laptops should last around nine hours or even longer on a single charge.

Check out our guide on what you should look for when buying a new laptop at the end of this page for more in-depth advice on buying a laptop.

Best laptops 2021

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(Image credit: Apple)

1. Apple MacBook Air (M1 2020)

The best laptop of 2021

Specifications

CPU: Apple M1

Graphics: Integrated 7-core /8-core GPU

RAM: 8GB – 16GB

Screen: 13.3-inch (diagonal) 2,560 x 1,600 LED-backlit display with IPS technology

Storage: 256GB – 2TB SSD

Dimensions: 11. 97 x 8.36 x 0.63 inches (30.41 x 21.24 x 1.61cm; W x D x H)

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Silent to use+Amazing battery life

Reasons to avoid

-No new design-Fanless design could impact performance

The new Apple MacBook Air (M1, 2020) isn’t just the best laptop Apple has ever made, it’s the best laptop money can buy right now. This is the first time a MacBook has topped our best laptops 2021 list, but the MacBook Air (M1, 2020) is worthy of this spot. Thanks to the revolutionary ARM-based Apple M1 chip that powers the new MacBook Air (Apple has ditched Intel for these new laptops), this is a stunning achievement: a thin and light laptop that offers great performance, even with 4K video editing, while also offering incredible battery life. Easily managing over 11 hours on a single charge, this is a laptop you can easily carry around with you at work or school, and its price is incredibly competitive compared to Windows 10 rivals like the Dell XPS 15 (below). Running both new and old Mac apps, the new MacBook Air can now also run iOS apps for iPhone and iPads, giving it access to hundreds of brilliant mobile applications and games as well.

Even if you’ve only ever used Windows laptops before, the MacBook Air (M1, 2020) is well worth getting and making the jump to macOS. Yes, it really is that good. Make sure you check out all the best MacBook Air deals and sales available now before you buy.

Read the full review: MacBook Air (M1, 2020)

Today’s best deals on all MacBook Air models

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2. Microsoft Surface Laptop 4

The best Windows laptop

Specifications

CPU: 11th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7 /AMD Ryzen 5 – 7

Graphics: Intel Iris Xe / AMD Radeon

RAM: 8GB – 32GB

Screen: 13.5-inch PixelSense (2,256 x 1,504) touch

Storage: 256GB – 1TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Comfortable keyboard+Beautiful screen

Reasons to avoid

-Not enough ports-Alcantara fabric might get gross over time

While Apple blew us away with the new MacBook Air (above), arch rival Microsoft has also impressed us with its new Surface Laptop 4, landing straight in at number 2 of our best laptops 2021 list. As with previous Surface devices, build quality and design is absolutely top-notch here, and its gorgeous PixelSense touchscreen really sets it apart from the competition (a touchscreen is something we’ve yet to see on an Apple laptop, as Microsoft likes to remind us).

It also comes with a brilliant keyboard that’s a joy to type on, and some pretty great specs as well, which ensures that Windows 10, and all your favorite apps, run extremely well. Battery life is also very impressive – lasting over 13 hours in our tests – and the price is impressively competitive as well. If you’re looking for the best laptop of 2021 that runs Windows 10, this is it.

Read the full review: Microsoft Surface Laptop 4

Today’s best deals on all Microsoft Surface Laptop models

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3. Dell XPS 15 (2020)

The best laptop in 2021 for productivity

Specifications

CPU: 10th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics – Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti

RAM: 8GB – 64GB

Screen: 15. 6″ FHD+ (1920 x 1200) IPS – UHD+ (3840 x 2400)

Storage: 256GB – 1TB SSD

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Fast performance+Eye-catching design

Reasons to avoid

-GTX 1650 Ti is a little weak-15-inch screen might be too large for some

The Dell XPS 15 ticks pretty much every box when it comes to what we want from a laptop. The end result is that the Dell XPS 15 (2020) is about as close to perfect as a laptop can get and one of the best Dell laptops to date; there’s really not a lot we can fault it for. It’s got some of the latest, and best, mobile tech from Intel, and can even be configured with a discrete GPU, making it adept at images and as for video editing software, and even a spot of light gaming.

It also features one of the finest designs we’ve seen in a laptop, and is arguably the most stylish Windows 10 laptop in 2021. Battery life is also phenomenal, and the price, while high, isn’t that bad considering what you get. If the 15-inch screen is a little too big, then the Dell XPS 13 (also on this list) is worth considering, as is the MacBook Air at the top of this page.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 15 (2020)

Today’s best deals on all Dell XPS 15 models

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4. HP Spectre x360 (2021)

This year’s model is a brilliant 13-inch laptop

Specifications

CPU: 11th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: 8GB – 16GB

Screen: 13.3″ FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS BrightView micro-edge WLED-backlit multitouch – 13.3″ diagonal 4K (3840 x 2160) UWVA BrightView micro-edge AMOLED multitouch

Storage: 256GB – 2TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Gorgeous design+Excellent battery life

Reasons to avoid

-Fans can get noisy-Pricey

The HP Spectre x360 has been one of the best laptops for years now, and the 2021 model is no different. Now coming with 11th-generation Intel Core processors, which offer a decent performance boost, and feature better integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics, the HP Spectre x360 (2021) is better than ever.

It still features the impeccable 2-in-1 design and pristine gem-cut chassis that these laptops are known for, meaning that the HP Spectre x360 (2021) is one of the best looking 2-in-1 laptops ever made, and when it comes to build quality, it’s rivalled only by the excellent MacBook Air (M1, 2020), which is at the top of this best laptop guide.

While it’s certainly pricey, you’re getting some excellent extras, such as formidable security features and Bang & Olufsen speakers. If you care about aesthetics as much as you do performance and overall quality, this is the laptop for you.

Read the full review: HP Spectre x360 (2021)

Today’s best deals on all HP Spectre x360 models

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5. Dell XPS 13 (Late 2020)

Dell does it again

Specifications

CPU: Up to 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7

Graphics: Up to Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: Up to 32GB 4267MHz LPDDR4x

Screen: 13. 4″ FHD+ (1920 x 1200) InfinityEdge Non-Touch Anti-Glare 500-Nit – 13.4″ UHD+ (3840 x 2400) InfinityEdge Touch Anti-Reflective 500-Nit Display

Storage: Up to 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Stunning design+Gorgeous 16:10 display+Excellent battery life

Reasons to avoid

-Sound quality is just OK-Pricey

At this point, we doubt that the Dell XPS line can do anything wrong. Its yearly updates have consistently made it to our best laptops list, and they’re only getting better. The Dell XPS 13 (2020) is not only a gorgeous piece of kit. It also comes, as expected, with excellent performance, a stunning display and long battery life, alongside a few others.

Much like its predecessor, it’s a pricey investment – but that is barely reason enough for us to discourage Ultrabook fans. This is among the best laptops of 2021, and it’s worth every penny.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 13 (2020) 

Today’s best deals on all Dell XPS 13 models

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6.

Razer Blade 14

The new best laptop for gaming in 2021

Specifications

CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX

Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 – RTX 3080

RAM: 16GB

Screen: 14-inch 144Hz Full HD – 14-inch 165Hz QHD

Storage: 1TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Beautiful chassis+Thin and light

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive-Not the most powerful

This luxurious thin and light gaming laptop from Razer just oozes class, and is an ideal laptop for people who want a gaming device they can take around with them. It’s solidly built, so you won’t worry about it getting damaged during your travels, and it’s one of the nicest looking modern gaming laptops we’ve seen.

It’s not all about looks, however, as the Razer Blade 14 comes with cutting edge components as well, including the awesome AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX processor and up to an RTX 3080 graphics card. This means you’ll be able to play any AAA game you want in all its glory. It’s by far the best gaming laptop you can buy in in 2021, but it does cost a lot of money.

Read the full review: Razer Blade 14

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7. LG Gram 17 (2021)

A great new super-light laptop for 2021

Specifications

CPU: 11th-generation Intel Core i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: 16GB LPDDR4X

Screen: 17-inch WQXGA (2560 x 1600) IPS LCD

Storage: up to 2TB NVMe SSD

Reasons to buy

+Excellent battery life+Large, high-quality display+Very light

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive-Subject to screen glare

The LG Gram 17 is one of the best laptops of 2021, and the new version once again features an incredibly light design, and comes with some of the best mobile tech in the world.

That includes Intel’s new 11th generation processors and Iris Xe graphics as well as two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports, and coupled with up to 16GB of RAM and speedy SSDs, means this is a laptop that is brilliant for day-to-day tasks. Battery life is also phenomenal, easily lasting around 12 hours on a single charge.

It’s one of the best laptops for carrying around for school and work, then. However, it is expensive, and the design is a little plain.

The long battery life and stunner of a screen are back, though so too is its steep price tag. It’s worth it though if you want the power and portability of Ultrabooks yet also need a bigger screen.

Read the full review: LG Gram 17 (2021) 

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8. Acer Swift 3

The best budget laptop in the world

Specifications

CPU: up to Intel Core i7-8565U

Graphics: Nvidia GeForce MX150, Intel HD Graphics 620 or AMD Radeon Vega 8

RAM: 4GB – 8GB

Screen: 14-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) ComfyView IPS – 15.6″ Full HD (1920 x 1080)

Storage: 128GB – 1 TB HDD, 16 GB Intel Optane Memory

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Superb keyboard and trackpad+Excellent performance+Very reasonably priced

Reasons to avoid

-Looks a little plain

Beyond the Acer Swift 3’s modest exterior, you’ll find an excellent laptop that boasts plenty of power for work and study. The Swift 3 (not to be confused with the Switch 3 another laptop from Acer) is an inexpensive laptop; however, that plain chassis is all-aluminum and packed with beefy components. 

In terms of performance, it gets surprisingly close to the far more expensive Microsoft Surface Laptop. Its display is a little lower-res, but the two are otherwise strikingly similar – other than the price. 

This laptop is incredible to use as well, with its roomy trackpad as well as its backlit keyboard that offers a comfortable typing experience with decent travel. If you’re going to be writing a lot – whether you’re traveling or at the office, this is one of the best budget laptops 2021 has on offer.

Read the full review: Acer Swift 3

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9. MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019)

Still one of the best laptops by Apple

Specifications

CPU: 9th-generation Intel Core i7 – i9

Graphics: AMD Radeon Pro 5300M – Radeon Pro 5500M

RAM: 16GB – 64GB

Screen: 16-inch Retina display with True Tone

Storage: 512GB – 8TB SSD

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Stunning 16-inch screen+New and improved keyboard

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive-Limited to four Thunderbolt 3 ports

While we are sad that the 15-inch MacBook Pro is no more, we’ve welcomed the MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019) with open arms. As thin, light and sleek as ever, you wouldn’t think this was a 16-inch behemoth. 

Yet, you’re getting that extra real estate on that stunning display, as well as the latest and greatest components behind it. This is, without a doubt, the best MacBook for content creators, designers and other creative professionals. With amazing (and loud) speakers and a much, much better keyboard to boot. While Apple has a newer, MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020) model, we still prefer the older 16-inch model for a few reasons. For a start, it’s more powerful, with a discrete GPU that’s handy for graphically-intensive tasks, and the larger 16-inch screen is much more comfortable to work on.

There’s also the fact the the MacBook Air (M1, 2020), which sits at the top of our best laptops 2021 list, is just so good, with pretty much the same hardware and screen as the M1 MacBook Pro 13-inch, which makes the more expensive 13-inch MacBook Pro kind of redundant. Not so with the beastly 16-inch MacBook Pro, however.

Read the full review: MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019)

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10. Asus TUF Dash F15

The best affordable gaming laptop

Specifications

CPU: Up to Intel Core i7-11375H

Graphics: Up to NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070

RAM: Up to 16GB DDR4-3200

Screen: Up to 15.6-inch WQHD anti-glare 165Hz IPS-level display with Adaptive Sync

Storage: Up to 1TB SSD

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Long battery life+Strong gaming performance

Reasons to avoid

-No webcam-Keyboard lighting color can’t be changed

The Asus TUF Dash F15 will be the best laptop for you’re looking for a machine that can play the latest games, but doesn’t blow a hole in your bank balance.

Asus’ TUF lineup of laptops have been earning plaudits for their excellent value for money, and the new Asus TUF Dash F15 continues that fine tradition. With excellent build quality, a brilliant battery for a gaming laptop, and an impressively thin and light design, this is easily one of the best gaming laptops money can buy right now.

It also features Intel Tiger Lake processors, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3000 mobile GPUs, and up to a 240Hz 1080p display.

Read the full review: Asus TUF Dash F15

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11. HP Elite Dragonfly G2

The best 2-in-1 laptop 2021

Specifications

CPU: 11th-generation Intel Core i3 – i7

Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: 8GB – 32GB

Screen: 13.3-inch diagonal BrightView LED FHD, 400 nits – 13.3-inch diagonal BrightView LED 4K UHD HDR-400 550 nits

Storage: up to 2TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Comfortable keyboard+Excellent screen

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive-USB-C ports on only one side

The HP Elite Dragonfly G2 takes everything that we loved about the original HP Elite Dragonfly, and adds cutting-edge Intel technology and a gorgeous 4K screen. This means HP has once again made the best 2-in-1 laptop money can buy in 2021, and it’s a worthy inclusion in our best laptops 2021 list.

You get that gorgeous 2-in-1 design, which allows you to turn this thin and light laptop into a tablet-like device, plus one of the best battery lives we’ve experienced on a Windows 10 laptop. It also comes with more powerful 11th-gen Intel Core chips, Intel Iris Xe graphics, and now a 4K display, upgrading from its previous Full HD models. There’s a lot to love here, and it might just be as close to being the perfect business laptop as any manufacturer can get. If you can afford it. 

Read the full review: HP Elite Dragonfly G2 

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12. HP Envy x360 13 (2020)

The best affordable 2-in-1

Specifications

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 4500U

Graphics: Integrated Radeon Graphics

RAM: 8GB

Screen: 13. 3″ diagonal FHD IPS (1,920 x 1,080)

Storage: 256 GB – 1TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Excellent battery life+Quick charging

Reasons to avoid

-USB port cover hinges feel weak and awkward-No 4K display option

The excellent HP Envy x360 13 (2020) proves that you can have a premium-feeling and looking 2-in-1 laptop without having to pay an outrageous amount for it. As with all of HP’s modern laptops, the HP Envy x360 13 (2020) is beautifully designed, and comes with a stunning screen and some of the best speakers we’ve heard in a laptop.

If you’re after one of the best laptops in the world that can also double as a tablet-like device, then the HP Envy x360 13 (2020) is a great choice, packing modern components from AMD, and an excellent battery.

Read the full review: HP Envy x360 (2020)

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13.

Google Pixelbook Go

The best Chromebook

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core m3 – Intel Core i7

Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 615

RAM: 8GB – 16GB

Screen: 13.3-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) or 4K LCD touchscreen

Storage: 128GB – 256GB eMMC

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Incredible battery life+Amazing ‘Hush’ keyboard

Reasons to avoid

-Iffy pricing at mid- to- high-end-No biometric login

Google’s Pixelbook Go is the best Chromebook money can buy right now, with the company showing everyone else how it’s done. Its previous Chromebook, the Pixelbook, was a brilliant Chromebook in its own way, but it cost a small fortune. 

The Pixelbook Go, on the other hand, is a more affordable Chromebook that retains a lot of its predecessor’s premium features, while bringing some brilliant upgrades as well, including an astounding battery life and fantastic keyboard. 

It features some impressive specs for a Chromebook, which ensures that Chrome OS positively flies on this device, and puts its performance on par with many of the more expensive Windows laptops and MacBooks that grace the rest of this best laptops list. If you’re looking for the ultimate Chromebook, then the Pixelbook Go is the one to get.

Read the full review: Google Pixelbook Go

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14. Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook

The best affordable Chromebook

Specifications

CPU: MediaTek Helio P60T Processor

Graphics: ARM G72 MP3 800GHz

RAM: 4 GB LPDDR4X

Screen: 10.1″ FHD (1920 x 1200) IPS, glossy, touchscreen, 400 nits

Storage: 64 GB eMMC

Reasons to buy

+Lightweight and portable+Long battery life+Very affordable

Reasons to avoid

-Tiny keyboard and finicky trackpad-Charger and headphones share a single port

Lenovo doesn’t just make some of the best laptops in the world, it also makes some of the best Chromebooks as well, and the brilliant Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook proves how good these Chrome OS-powered laptops really are. It can be used as a laptop or a tablet, and it’s backed up by some very impressive specs.

Is it a Chromebook or is it a tablet? Well, luckily, you won’t have to decide with the brilliant Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook. True to its name, this Chromebook delivers two form factors in one, while utilizing the versatility of the Chrome OS and setting you back much less than many of the top Windows tablets out there. 

Like all the best Chromebooks, its battery packs an incredibly long life of almost 22 hours – so you could pull an all-nighter, work through the day and mid-afternoon, and you’ll still pass out before it runs out of juice. 

For this price, sacrifices have to be made, naturally – the keyboard is tiny, the trackpad isn’t as reliable, and the charger and headphones share one port. However, if budget is your top priority, those are definitely not deal-breakers.

Read the full review: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook 

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The Asus VivoBook S15 is the best mid-range laptop

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15.

Asus VivoBook S15

The best budget 15-inch laptop

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i5 – i7

Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics

RAM: 8GB DDR4

Screen: 15.6-inch full HD (1920 x 1080)

Storage: 512GB SSD

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Bright, colorful 15.6-inch screen+Weighs just 1.8kg

Reasons to avoid

-Average battery life-ScreenPad is a bit weird…

The new Asus VivoBook S15 hasn’t been out for long, and it’s made its way straight into our best laptops list. This is because it combines a thin and light design with great performance and an excellent price. 

If you’re looking for a mid-range laptop that doesn’t cost too much, but still performs brilliantly, then this is the best laptop for you. 

Thanks to its powerful Intel processor, 8GB of RAM and fast SSD storage, this is a laptop that can handle almost any task with ease – though gaming is out of the question. Its 15.6-inch screen is bright and vibrant, and it has loads of ports that makes it easy to hook up your favorite peripherals.  

However, it doesn’t have the longest battery life for a laptop, and the ScreenPad, which replaces the traditional touchpad below the keyboard with a touchscreen, takes a bit of getting used to.

Read the full review: Asus VivoBook S15

What should you look for when buying a new laptop?

There are certain things you can look out for when buying a new laptop in 2021 that can ensure you get the best laptop for your money.

Make sure you take a look at the specifications of a laptop before buying. This is a good way of quickly seeing how powerful a laptop is, and what it is capable of – as long as you know what you’re looking for.

First of all is the processor. This is essentially the brain of the laptop, and a laptop will usually have a processor (also known as a CPU) made by either Intel or AMD. Intel is by far the most popular CPU maker for laptops, though we’re seeing an increasing number of AMD-powered laptops as well.

As a general rule of thumb, Intel processors offer better performance, but AMD processors are better value.

To make things more simple, both Intel and AMD have numbered their processors to give you a rough idea of what sort of tasks a laptop with that processor can perform.

If you’re after a budget laptop for simple tasks like browsing the web or watching Netflix, then a laptop with an Intel Pentium, Intel Core i3 or AMD Ryzen 3, processor will do that job without making the laptop too expensive.

If you’re after something with a bit more oomph – perhaps to do more complex task like editing your home videos or playing games – then go for a laptop with an Intel Core i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 processor as a minimum.

The best laptops for media creation, and more complex tasks, come with an Intel Core i7 or Core i9 processor, or an AMD Ryzen 7 processor. Laptops with these processors in them are top-of-the-range laptops that will provide brilliant performance no matter what you want to do – but be warned that they are often found in the most expensive laptops.

Finally, keep an eye on how new the processor is. Intel handily gives its processors generations, so the higher the generation, the newer it is. The latest generation is the 10th generation, though 9th generation Intel Core processors are also pretty recent.

A newer processor performs better and is more power efficient – so battery life will last longer. They are more expensive, though.

RAM (Random Access Memory) is another important specification to look for in a laptop. You’ll want 4GB at the very least for a Windows laptop – though we’d actually recommend for many people to go for 8GB. That will ensure that the laptop runs well for years to come.

When it comes to graphics, you don’t need to worry too much, as laptop processors come with built-in (integrated) graphics. However, if you want to play PC games on your laptop, then you’ll want a gaming laptop with a discrete GPU – either from Nvidia or AMD.

Battery life considerations

Finally there’s battery life. This is likely to be one of the most important considerations you have when choosing what laptop to buy. The best laptops need to be able to let you work – and play – for hours on end without you having to scramble for a power adapter. Modern laptops are getting ever more power-efficient, which has led to longer battery lives. For a laptop to be included in our best laptops list, it needs to offer a battery life of five hours or more.

Bear in mind that the battery life that the laptop makers claim their device has could be quite different to what you actually experience. This is because many laptop makers test their batteries in very controlled environments, with the laptop used in ways that you might not necessarily use. So, while a laptop might have a claimed battery life of 10 hours, you may find that when using it for certain tasks – like streaming high definition content – your battery life could run out faster.

That’s where our in-depth reviews come in, as we run a series of tests on each laptop in this best laptops guide to see how long the battery life lasts under certain conditions. If a laptop’s battery is ridiculously short (or impressively long) we’ll tell you.

Which type of laptop is best for you?

General laptops: Where the best cheap laptops are found, devices that focus more on practicality than style, portability or power. That’s not to say they can’t be fast, but you’ll typically find a non-Ultrabook clamshell laptop with an HD screen and spinning drive-based storage for less than $600 or £400.

Ultrabooks: Where you’ll find thin-and-light notebooks sporting SSD storage and display resolutions that exceed 1080p. Paired with powerful, albeit mobile-centric components and especially long battery life, the best Ultrabooks will cost a pretty penny – $700 or £500 to $2,000 or £1,800.

2-in-1 laptops: Where notebooks that double as tablets are located. The Surface Book 2 might be a ways off, but many of the best 2-in-1 laptops are available right now. Outfitted with both detachable and 360-degree rotating hinges, these hybrids are the most versatile way to experience Windows 10 (or Chrome OS) on a touchscreen.

Chromebooks: Where you’ll find the best Chromebooks running Chrome OS. These do much of what Windows and macOS can in the browser, focused on cloud storage over local, while recently getting Android app support for touchscreen models. They generally cost less than $300 or £200 and some can even withstand a slight tussle.

Gaming laptops: Need a laptop to play games (almost) just like a shiny desktop PC can? Then you’ll want one of the best gaming laptops. These machines generally cost from $800 or £600 to upwards of $3,000 or £2,800 and they’ll likely be the ones to take advantage of AMD’s laptop-grade Ryzen processors first. If you’re really on a budget, then you can check out the best cheap gaming laptop deals.

Laptop-tablet hybrids: Designed from the tablet-first approach to laptop-tablet hybrids, the best Windows tablets pack beyond-HD touchscreens, sometimes with kickstands in their frames or provided via keyboard covers. These generally shine with a stylus, and range from the budget to the premium price ranges.

Best small laptops (11.6 and 10-inch screens) in 2021, with reviews

These days the offer for thin, light, and fast ultraportable laptops is vast, but for those of you for whom the size and portability matter more than other aspects, a mini laptop with an 11-inch, 10-inch, or smaller display size might be the ideal choice.

So if you’re like me and don’t enjoy lugging around large and heavy computers during your travels or commute, and if you don’t ask much from your portable companion in terms of performance, you’ll be happy with one of the small and compact mini laptops that we’ll cover in this article, recommendations based on our years of experience in reviewing and testing this sort of portable light-weight laptops.

In order to make it a little easier for you to single out the best small laptops that best suit your needs and your budget, I’ve split this article into several sections:

I’ll tell you the important details in each class, with the strong points and the quirks that you need to be aware of for each of the recommended options, and I’ve also added links to our detailed reviews and to our today’s best deals pages, where you can usually find these devices for sale at discounted prices. Last but not least, you can also get in touch with me in the comments section at the end of the article if you have any questions or any feedback on this post, I’m around and will help out if I can.

As a side note before we jump into the core of the article, this primarily touches on ultra-compact small-screen laptops, so I left out those laptops with a 12-inch, 13.3-inch display size, or larger. If you’re looking for that sort of a notebook that offers perhaps a better balance between features, performance, and design in still a fairly small format, then you should check out our Best Ultrabook buying guide instead, which covers popular titles such as the Apple MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, Dell XPS 13, Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon, Microsoft Surface Laptop, HP Envy x360 13 and a multitude of other options built on Intel Core or AMD Ryzen hardware, and with the latest features and traits that money can buy today.

With that out of the way, let’s get back to our selection of the best small laptops with sub-11-inch displays.

Affordable small laptops and 2-in-1 hybrids

The offer for budget 11-inch small laptops is diverse, especially in the $200 to $400 spectrum of side notebooks, compact travel companions, or perhaps inexpensive laptops for your kids.

Don’t expect premium features or materials in this class, but you will find in here simple and compact computers that can smoothly handle basic everyday tasks (browsing, email, video streaming, text editing), as well as run for quite a few hours on a charge.

Chromebooks – snappy and with excellent battery life

Chromebooks are by far your best bet in this segment at this point. As long as they meet your requirements, you’re just not going to find better value for your money elsewhere.

You must however understand, and I can’t stress this enough, what a Chromebook is and what it can and especially what it cannot do for you. For that reason, I’ve put up a whole article on this topic over here, that you should go through.

In very few words, if you’re connected to the Internet most of the time and your activities mostly involve browsing, watching movies and clips on Youtube or Netflix, listening to music on Spotify, eMail, text-editing, and other everyday web-related activities, a Chromebook is going to be a perfect match for you. Instead, if you’ll mostly use your laptop offline, or if you want to run specialized software for your work or school, a Windows notebook might still be the better choice in your case.

For those basic chores, though, Chromebooks are quicker than the Windows computers you’ll find for the same kind of money, especially in the sub $400 price segment, as well as safer and simpler to use.

They’re designed so you don’t have to deal with updates, they’re safer against viruses and harmful exploits, and at the same time much simpler to customize and set up to your needs. Much like with your phone, you install apps from a dedicated web store (ChromeOS Store) with pre-vetted applications, and most of the Chromebooks available today also support Android apps from the PlayStore, as well as Linux and even Windows apps to some extent. Nonetheless, if you need to run specific Windows software, games, or plan to use your computer offline for long periods of time, you’ll better go for one of the Windows alternatives we’ll discuss in the next sections.

Now, most of the available Chromebooks you can find for less than $400 are built on Intel or Mediatek dual-core or quad-core processors, with 4-8 GB of RAM memory, 16-64 GB of storage expandable through the included card reader, IPS screens with HD or Full HD resolution, an HDMI port for watching movies on an external display, as well as long battery life and fast charging abilities, in some cases. As a recommendation, stay away from older devices with Intel Atom processors and only 2 GB of RAM, those get sluggish with today’s requirements.

Over here I’ve gathered a detailed selection of the best available small-format Chromebooks at the time of this update, and you’ll also find a more ample updated selection via this link.

That aside, our condensed list of recommendations for affordable ultra-compact mini Chromebooks is down below:

Acer Chromebook Spin 11 2-in-1 small laptop

Starting at around $260 at the time of this update, the Chromebook Spin 311 is our favorite inexpensive compact 2-in-1 Chromebook. It offers an 11.6-inch touchscreen display with HD IPS panel, it’s built on an Intel Celeron hardware platform with 4 GB of RAM and 32/64 GB of storage space, and gets a 38 Wh battery that delivers 6-10 hours of battery life on a charge.

You’ll have to settle for an all-plastic construction though, with fair, but not excellent build-quality, thick bezels around the display, and a total weight of around 2.6 lbs, so overall this is not as portable as some of the other options we’ll discuss further down.

Lenovo Chromebook C340 2-in-1 mini laptop

This is Lenovo’s alternative to the Spin 311 above, with nearly the same features, traits, and a similar price-point of around $250 for the base configuration.

This gets the same kind of 11.6-inch touchscreen display, the same convertible format, the same Intel Gemini Lake hardware platform inside, and a slightly larger 42 Wh battery, which allows it to last a little longer on each charge.

The downsides are normal for this price-point, with unappealing bezels, a total weight of around 2.6 lbs, and rather tiny audio.

Lenovo Chromebook Duet mini-tablet

While the Duet is a smaller 10-inch laptop computer and I shouldn’t include it in this exact section, I just have to mention it as the much better alternative for you to get in the sub $300 segment, as long as you’re OK with its smaller display.

And that’s because the Chromebook Duet offers a much nicer display than any of the other alternatives, with a brighter and richer FHD IPS panel and 16:10 aspect ratio. Furthermore, the build quality of the Duet is also second-to-none in its class, with a matte aluminum back and glass on the front. This might not matter that much, though, as the basic is hidden by the included fabric sleeve with kickstand.

The form-factor is that of a tablet, but Lenovo bundles a keyboard-folio for laptop use and the two make up for around 2 lbs combined. Spec-wise, everything is motorized by a Mediatek platform, paired with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage space, which feels alright with daily use and prooves to be highly efficient, squeezing 10+ hours of battery life out of the 28 Wh battery inside.

All these add up to the Chromebook Duet being by far the best-value option in the sub $400 class of mini laptops, against, as long as you’re fine with a 10-inch device and its slightly cramped keyboard, expected at this size.

Just some of the available Chromebooks

The best Windows-based small notebooks

This section includes 11-inch laptops that run Windows, with either clamshell or 2-in-1 designs, selling for between $150 to $400.

In this segment, my advice would be to aim for a configuration with at least 4 GB of RAM, at least 64 GB of storage, and one of the faster CPU options (newer generation Gemini quad-core or later), otherwise the computer is going to struggle even with daily browsing and light multitasking, or you won’t have enough storage space for Windows and programs (especially on the 16 GB versions, but you’re at a limit with 32 GB as well).

Here are some of the sub-$300 clamshell units that I’d have on my radar:

  • Asus VivoBook Laptop L210 – the updated version of the popular Asus E203, the Asus Laptop L210 is a compact and lightweight laptop (2.2 lbs) with plastic construction and clamshell form-factor. It’s lighter and smaller than many of the alternatives in the sub-$250 price range, and bundles an Intel Gemini Lake-R Celeron 4Core processor, 4 GB RAM, and 64 GB eMMC storage on the base model, as well as a 38 Wh battery.

The screen isn’t great though, with an HD TN panel and no option for IPS. That’s the norm in this class with Windows laptops though, as the software license takes its toll, and the OEMs have to cut some corners in order to meet the low price points.

  • HP Stream 11 – plastic construction, clamshell, available in a few different colors, 11-inch HD TN matte display, Gemini Lake Celeron 4Core processor, 4 GB RAM and 32 GB eMMC storage on base model, 38 Wh battery, weighs only 1. 1 kg/ 2.4 lbs, around $270 for mid-level Gemini configurations, older Apollo Lake versions also available.
  • Lenovo IdeaPad 1 – plastic construction, clamshell, 11-inch HD TN matte display, Gemini 4Core or AMD 2Core processor, 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC storage on base model, 35 Wh battery, weighs only 1.2 kg/ 2.6 lbs, around $240 for mid-level configurations;

Most of these options are similar in specs, with 11-inch HD TN screens and Gemini Lake hardware. I lean towards the Asus L210 for the slightly nicer build and its reduced weight, but the HP Steam and IdeaPad are but that much different. You do get that AMD hardware in the IdeaPad 1, and that alone might justify a better look at it. We haven’t tested it yet, so can’t give you any insights for now.

The HP Stream 11 and Asus Vivobook E series are some of the better Windows laptops you can have for around $300

And here are some of the sub-$400 best convertible laptops that I’d consider:

  • Acer Spin 1 – mostly metal construction, convertible, 11-inch HD IPS touchscreen, Gemini Celeron 4Core processor, 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC storage on base model, 36 Wh battery, weighs 1. 2 kg/ 2.6 lbs, around $400 for mid-level configurations.
  • Asus VivoBook Flip 11 – plastic construction, convertible, 11-inch HD TN touchscreen, Apollo Celeron 4Core processor, 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC storage on base model, 42 Wh battery, weighs 1.25 kg/ 2.8 lbs, around $300 for mid-level configurations.
  • Lenovo Flex 6 11 – plastic construction, convertible, 11-inch HD TN touchscreen, Gemini Celeron/Pentium 4Core processor, 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC storage on base model, 38 Wh battery, weighs 1.22 kg/ 2.7 lbs, around $400 for mid-level configurations.
  • Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e – rugged plastic construction, convertible, 11-inch HD IPS touchscreen, Braswell Celeron 4Core processor, 4 GB RAM and 128 GB eMMC storage on base model, 35 Wh battery, weighs 1.4 kg/ 3.1 lbs, around $280 for mid-level configurations.

These options are more expensive than the clamshell offers listed in the previous section, for pretty much the same hardware specs, but they do get nicer IPS panels, touchscreens, and the convertible form-factor. The VivoBook Flip 11 is the fairly inexpensive exception here, but that’s because it’s a plastic-built laptop with slower Apollo hardware, and not the more recent Gemini CPU available with the other options. Finally, the ThinkPad Yoga offers the ruggedized Thinkpad build and an IPS display, but even older hardware and a heavier chassis.

Premium 11.6-inch ultraportable laptops

While many manufacturers migrated their premium ultraportables towards the 12 and 13-inch segments in recent years, as these can easier accommodate the required components and a larger battery, you might still find good value with the few premium 11-inchers listed below. Most of them are old though, and you should make sure to understand and accept their quirks before getting one of these.

If you’re looking for 2021 specs with up to Intel 10th gen and 11th gen Core i5 and i7 processors and Intel Iris Xe or UHD graphics, or the excellent AMD Ryzen hardware with Vega graphics, those are not available in sub-11-inch formats at the time of this update, but mostly in the 13+ inch models mentioned above. For what is worth, many of those models are actually compact and lightweight, as the OEMs were able to improve their designs in recent years, shrink up the bezels and optimize the designs for modern expectations. Not to mention those also get nicer displays and features not available with these smaller-screen models.

Nonetheless, if you still prefer an 11-inch computer instead, here are some options to consider.

HP ProBook X360 11 Education

This is one of the very few options in this class with still modern hardware, a sturdily built 11-inch convertible laptop that meets MIL-STD-810G standards, thus is ideal for traveling and for kids, thanks to its ability to survive the daily hassle and occasional bumps.

The specs list includes a wide range of processor such as Gemini Lake Celeron, Jasper Lake Pentium Silver/Gold, or 10th generation Intel Core Y i3/i5, up to 8 GB of RAM, and 256 GB of fast NVMe SSD storage, alongside a 48 Wh battery and a spill-proof keyboard, all tucked inside a 3.2 lbs plastic shell. Unfortunately, HP still decided to skimp on the screen with this product, only offering a low-gamut and dim TN panel option, and I would have expected an IPS panel in this kind of product.

The ProBook x360 11 starts at a little over $400 at the time of this update, but the higher-end configurations sell for around $700 to $800. Follow this link for more details and updated configurations/prices.

The ProBook X360 is rugged and modern, but can get expensive

HP EliteBook Revolve 810

The Elitebook Revolve 810 is an older model and might be difficult to source out, but remains even to this day one of the most complete 11-inch laptops out there. It gets a sturdy and compact metallic chassis, an excellent backlit and spill-proof keyboard, a bright IPS convertible multi-touch touchscreen, Intel Core i5 U hardware, and a 44 Wh battery.

Potential buyers might complain about the screen’s HD-only resolution and the dated hardware inside, but both are still good enough for basic everyday use.

If you can look past these quirks, the Revolve 810 might be worth getting at the greatly discounted prices it goes for these days, as a Core i5 configuration with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of SSD storage sells for a little over $500. Follow this link for more details.

The EliteBook Revolve 810 is still one of the most complete 11-inchers you can find in stores

Lenovo Yoga 710 11

This is another older model, but a slimmer and lighter convertible laptop that only weighs 2.3 lbs, so much easier to carry around. It’s made out of plastic, but is still nicely built and good-looking. It also gets an FHD IPS touchscreen display, and a fairly good non-backlit keyboard.

The Yoga is powered by Intel Pentium or 5th gen Intel Core M hardware, with up to 8 GB of RAM, SSD storage and a 40 Wh battery, so is not as fast as the EliteBook, but will handle everyday chores well and it’s much quieter, as it’s built on fanless hardware.

The 11-inch Yoga 710 was pricey at launch and has still retained a fair chunk of its value. These days you can find the Pentium versions for under $500, but the Core models still sell for over $600, if you can track them somewhere. Follow this link for more details and updated configurations and prices.

The Yoga 710 is a thin-and-light 11-inch convertible with fanless hardware

Apple Macbook Air

I’ll still mention the 11-inch Apple MacBook Air in here, although it’s no longer something I’d recommend, due to its dated hardware and poor-quality TN glossy screen.

The build quality, typing experience, the long battery life, and even the performance to handle everyday tasks are still here though, so this might still be a decent option for some of you looking to get a very cheap MacBook, even with these significant quirks, but only if you can find it greatly discounted, for $400 or less. Follow this link for updated prices. Otherwise, a used MacBook Pro from a couple of generations ago is a smarter choice.

A discounted or a Certified Refurbished 12-inch MacBook would also be a better alternative, and if your budget allows, the new 13-inch MacBook Air M1 from 2021 smokes all the competition out of the water, with excellent performance, 15+ hours of battery life, a vivid high-quality display and the standard Mac build-quality and design. Too bad the serviceability has gone down the drain, though. Nonetheless, the M1 MacBooks are among the best laptops out there, and for many good reasons.

Better alternatives

You might have reached this conclusion by now, but if a premium ultracompact laptop is what you’re after, there’s hardly any compelling option in this 11-inch segment anymore.

That’s why my advice is to jump up to the 12-inch and 13-inch classes for a wider pool of modern options. With 12-inchers, you’re mostly getting Windows tablets with 3:2 and 16:10 touchscreens, premium designs, and different kinds of hardware specs, based on your budget. The Microsoft Surface Pros and HP Envy X12 lineups come to mind as recommendations, and all of these are covered in this detailed separate article.

With 13-inch and larger ultrabooks, your options vary greatly, but as already mentioned, that’s where you’ll find the best-balanced small and lightweight laptops available these days, from popular models such as the Dell XPS 13, HP Spectre x360, Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon, Razer Book 13 or the Microsoft Surface Laptop, but also with the newer ultra-compact launches of recent years, such as the M1 MacBooks built on Apple silicon, highly-portable productivity and business laptops with 3:2 displays such as the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano or Asus ZenBook S13, as well the powerful-ultrabooks with dedicated graphics, such as the Razer Blade Stealth or the Asus ROG Flow X13, both 13-inchers with dedicated Nvidia graphics. In fact, we’ve discussed in depth this latter class of products in our Gaming Ultrabooks buying guide., as well as in many of our reviews (use the search from in the top-right corner of the site)

With all these options you’ll be getting slightly larger products, but most of the time in lighter models, with better quality displays, modern specs, and a lot of features that are no longer available in 11-inchers.

And if you absolutely have to go the ultra-compact route, I’d rather suggest one of the few 10-inch and sub-10-inch options in the next part of this article. These are still meant for daily use and not much in terms of performance, but they’re highly portable, inexpensive, and at least offer updated specs and good-quality displays.

How about the best 10-inch mini laptops?

With netbooks no longer a reality, you can hardly find a 10-inch laptop in stores anymore these days, with some exceptions only available Asia. There are however quite a few good 10-inch tablets to consider, and these are usually paired with keyboard docks or folios, so can be used as notebooks as well. Plus a couple of handheld projects such as the GPD Win or AYA Neo, that we’ll get to in a bit.

Microsoft Surface Go 2

Back to the 10-inch tablet laptops, the Microsoft Surface Go 2 is my go-to recommendation in this class as one of the few 10-inch Windows devices with modern specs and features.

This is Microsoft’s smaller and less powerful alternative for their Surface Pro lineup, as well as their more inexpensive model. It’s not necessarily cheap, though, starting at $399 for the tablet alone, and the keyboard folio and the Surface pen come as extras.

That’s for the base model with an Intel Pentium processor, 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage, and higher-tier options go up to $700 for faster specs and LTE connectivity. Microsoft offer discounts for students/parents/teachers/ military personnel all year long, as well as various bundles and periodical discounts for everyone else, so you should keep an eye on their site for updates.

Now, despite its price, the Surface Go is still a worthy portable and affordable travel companion or computer for kids. Don’t expect to run demanding tasks or games on this thing, but it will handle everyday browsing, content streaming, text-editing, and the likes just fine.

It’s also built from a durable and lightweight magnesium alloy with Gorilla Glass on top of the screen, it’s extremely light at only 1.15 lbs (for the tablet, and 1.7 with the keyboard folio), gets an excellent-quality 10-inch IPS touchscreen with a 3:2 aspect ratio and pen support, as well as two cameras, one of the front and another on the back.

All these are powered by Intel fanless hardware, paired with 4-8 GB of memory, 64-128 GB of storage space, and a 28 Wh battery that offers around 5-8 hours of tested daily-use battery life and 10+ hours of video on a charge. The battery charges via USB-C and supports quick charging.

The Surface Go is usable as a stand-alone device, with the cleverly integrated stand on the back, but much more versatile when hooked up to its backlit keyboard cover. Given this is a 10-inch device, expect the keys to feel rather cramped for those of you with larger hands, but it’s perfectly fine for kids and smaller hands.

You’ll find more about the Surface Go from this review (of the previous generation), and you can check out the latest configurations and prices via this link.

Lenovo Chromebook Duet

What if you don’t necessarily have to run Windows on your compact computer? What if you’re activities are mostly Internet-based and there’s no need to run any Windows-specific software?

In this case, an iPad or perhaps an Android tablet might be options to consider, especially since these are backed up by solid ecosystems and a wide range of compatible accessories such as stands, keyboards, or pens. At the same time, these could end up fairly expensive, but there’s one more option that sells for even less: the Lenovo Chromebook Duet.

Yep, we started this article by suggesting a couple of Chromebooks and finish it with another one of these. I’m not going to go over what a ChromeBook can and cannot do all over again, I’ve covered the topic in this and this article, so let’s look at the Duet.

Much like the Surface Go, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet is made out of metal and feels premium and sturdy. It comes with a canvas back piece that includes a built-in kickstand, and a keyboard folio, both bundled with the tablet by default, and all these starting at sub $300.

The screen is 16:10 aspect-ratio, FHD IPS, and touch, so not the 3:2 available on the Go. It’s bright and punchy and colorful though, which is awesome for a budget device that normally compromises at this level. Not this one, though. As for the keyboard, it’s cramped, as you’d expect from a 10-inch implementation, it’s not backlit and can’t be angled like on the Surface Go, but it’s otherwise fine, and the same can be said about the integrated clickpad. An USB-C port handles the connectivity, and there’s a camera on the front, above the screen, but no 3.5 mm jack, so you’ll have to use wireless headphones with this one.

Specs-wise, the Chromebook Duet runs on a ARM-based MediaTek 8Core platform with 4 GB of RAM and 64/128 GB of storage. That’s fine for a lightweight and optimized environment such as ChromeOS, and the everyday user experience is snappy and smooth in both tablet and laptop modes. Not as smooth as on an iPad or some of the higher-tier Chromebooks out there, but fine for daily use, and this can also run Android apps/games well since it’s an ARM platform. Finally, battery life is where this nails it, with 10+ hours of real-life daily use and 12+ hours of video on a charge.

Bottom point, the Chromebook Duet is a game-changer and an excellent buy for under $300. Lenovo nailed it with this product, so if a ChromeOS device would work for you, this would be my budget go-to in this niche even over the Surface Go. As long as you can actually find it in stock, since this is in very high demand.

Follow this link for more details and updated prices and configurations.

The Lenovo Tablet 10 could be an alternative to consider if you’re after a 10-incher that can last for longer on each charge, offers more ports and is overall a more ergonomic laptop, as this one gets a keyboard dock, not a keyboard folio (see the pictures for details).

It starts at around $400 as well, or $500 with the keyboard, but Lenovo offers occasional discounts for as low as $350. As the name suggests, this Tablet 10 gets a 16:10 10.1-inch IPS touchscreen with pen support, and Intel Gemini Lake hardware with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB fo storage, so it’s not as speedy as the Surface Go. It will outlast it on a charge, though, thanks to the 39 Wh battery inside. You should also consider that the keyboard is not backlit.

All in all the Surface Go is still my favorite, but the Tablet 10 from Lenovo can be a good alternative if you’re on a tighter budget and can find it for cheap. Follow this link for a more detailed comparison between the two, and this one for updated prices and configurations at the time you’re reading this post.

Other affordable Windows tablets include the rather unique Lenovo Yoga Book or some of the older Asus Transformer Pad Minis and Acer Aspire Switch tablets, if you can still find them in stock.

Finally, you’ll also find some lesser-known products that sell for under $200, like the CHUWI Hi10 Air or the Fusion5 Tablet PC (more details via this link), but our first-hand experience with these is limited, and I’d only recommend them if none of the other models are within your budget, and if you can get these from stores that allow easy returns and replacements. Oh, and adjust your expectations according to their price, you’re getting what you’re paying for with these cheap small tablets.

Ultra-compact hand-held pico computers

We must also touch on this class of tiny personal computers represented by the GPD Win or the AYA Neo projects, both designed and marketed primarily as hand-held gaming devices.

The GPD Win (in its most recent 3rd generation) offers a 5.5-inch 720p display, which slides up to unveil a touch QWERTY keyboard tucked underneath. The screen is flanked by controllers and the whole thing weighs around .55 kg (1.2 lbs).

Inside, the Win 3 is powered by Intel Tiger Lake Core U hardware, with options for either an i5-1135G7 (with 80 EUs Iris XE graphics) or i7-1165G7 (with 96 EUs Iris XE graphics), 16 GB of LPDDR4x memory, 1 TB of SSD storage, and a 45 Wh battery, the kind of hardware you’d normally get in some of the most powerful 13+ inch ultraportables. With the 720p screen and Iris Xe graphics, the Win 3 is designed to handle a multitude of games, including modern AAA titles.

The Aya Neo is different in a couple of crucial ways: it gets a 7-inch 800p multitouch screen, a slightly larger chassis (weighs .65 kg – 1.44 lbs), and AMD hardware. This also lacks a physical keyboard, so is more of a gaming handheld with a large screen and integrated gaming controllers, and less of a potential all-purpose mini laptop than the GPD model.

At the same time, with only a Ryzen 5 4500U platform and Vega graphics inside, this is not going to match the gaming performance of the Win 3 either, further impacted by the slightly increased resolution. The Neo does get 16 GB of memory and up to 1 TB of storage as well, plus a 47 Wh battery.

Both the Win 3 and the Neo are scheduled to ship around the summer of 2021, and start at around $799. Look into further reviews and updates for more details on how they perform, how they feel in everyday use, and the kind of battery life you should expect from these things. We’ll further cover these in future articles.

Wrap up

These are the 11.6 and 10 inch small laptops and mini tablets I’d look at right now if I’d be in the market for an ultra-compact computer, either Chromebooks, MacBooks, or Windows running options.

Most of them cater to those of you on limited budgets, those looking for devices for primarily tablet use, or those looking for secondary travel notebooks or inexpensive notebooks for your kids. The options for high-end 11 and 10-inchers are limited nowadays when most OEMs have migrated their higher-tier options towards the 12-inch and 13-inch classes, which offer an increased screen area and more space inside for components and battery cells, as well as a multitude of modern features that you won’t get on the smaller computers.

Thus, if you do need more power in a small form-factor, you should also check out our list of recommended 13-inch ultrabooks and thin-and-light laptops, where you’ll find marginally larger, but significantly more competent options.

With that in mind, we’ll wrap this up here. I’m constantly updating this list of the best mini laptops out there as new qualifying devices are launched, so do save the link and come back in the future. Furthermore, if you have any questions, spot any mistake, care to suggest a device that’s missing from the list or just want to add anything to the article, leave a comment below, I’m around to reply and help out.

Disclaimer: Our content is reader-supported. If you buy through some of the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Best 13-inch laptops in 2021

The best 13-inch laptops give you enough power to handle all your daily tasks in a slim, lightweight package that’s small enough to slip into a small backpack or large purse. They also have enough staying power to carry all day without worrying about charging up, and ideally they have a great screen or great speakers to help you enjoy yourself once the work is done.

Finding the right one for you can be tricky, because there’s a ton of options to choose from. The market for 13-inch laptops has swelled in recent years thanks to declining component sizes and costs (thanks, smartphones and tablets), making ultraportable laptops the norm rather than a luxury. This is great news for you when you’re shopping, but it does make it hard to separate the really quality stuff from the junk. 

That’s why we’ve assembled this list of the best 13-inch laptops you can buy. very single one is rated 4 stars or above, with excellent battery life and quality components. Most are under $2,000, and some can be had for around $500 or less. So whether you prefer Windows, macOS, or Chrome OS, read on for guidance on the best 13-inch laptops you can buy.

What are the best 13-inch laptops right now?

Right now our recommendation for the best 13-inch laptop you can buy is the Dell XPS 13 (also our pick for the best laptop overall) because it’s a well-rounded and affordable machine that packs speedy performance and a gorgeous bezel-less display into a remarkably slim, lightweight design. Plus, it’s got great battery life. If you can afford to pay a few hundred bucks more for the Dell XPS 13 OLED, it’s well worth the expense — the OLED screen is gorgeous, plus it’s also a touchscreen. In fact, it’s so good that it won the awards for best laptop display and best laptop overall in the Tom’s Guide Awards 2021. If you love the idea of an OLED laptop but want something a bit more affordable, Asus’ Zenbook 13 OLED packs great power and amazing battery life, and it’s usually a few hundred bucks cheaper than the XPS 13.

If you prefer Apple hardware, the new MacBook Air with M1 is our recommendation for the best 13-inch MacBook. It offer fantastic performance and long battery life, plus it’s incredibly svelte and light. Again, if you’re willing to pay a few hundred bucks more, the 13-inch MacBook Pro with M1 is a great investment that gives you a bit more battery life and processing power than the Air. The M1 chip also gives both laptops the power to run iOS apps natively, which can be fun if you’re already invested in that ecosystem. 

If you’re on a budget, some of the best Chromebooks are on this list, and they’re more affordable than the rest without sacrificing much in terms of power — at least, as long as you’re able to keep them connected to the Internet. The Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 is our recommendation for the best 13-inch Chromebook overall, because it has a beautiful display and enough power to handle all your daily tasks. If you’d like to spend a few hundred bucks less, look around for a deal on the Acer Chromebook Spin 713 — it’s not quite as good but it’s still more than capable of getting you through a day at the office or in the classroom, and you can often find entry-level models on sale for $450 or less.

(Image credit: Future)

1. Dell XPS 13

Best all-around 13-inch laptop

Specifications

Display: 13.4 inches; 1920×1080, 3840×2160, or 3.5K OLED

CPU: 11th-Generation Intel Core i3-i7

GPU: Intel UHD to Intel Iris Xe

RAM: 8GB-16GB

Storage: 256GB-2TBGB SSD

Weight: 2.64 pounds

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Gorgeous, immersive display — especially if you spring for the 3.5K OLED option+Comfortable keyboard+Great overall performance+Slim, attractive chassis

Reasons to avoid

-Battery life could be better-Slim port selection-Grainy 720p webcam

If you’re looking for a great all-around 13-inch Windows laptop, the Dell XPS 13 is probably your best choice. It’s one of our favorite laptops on the market right now thanks to its excellent performance, beautiful display, and svelte design. While the battery life isn’t as good as some other laptops of similar price, it’s usually more than enough to get you through a day of work without scrambling for a charger.

Plus, in 2021 Dell began offering the XPS 13 with a 3.5K OLED touchscreen option. If you can afford it (it’s usually a couple hundred bucks extra, around the same price as the non-OLED 4K screen configuration) it’s well worth the investment, as the OLED’s deep, inky blacks, vibrant colors, and high contrast ratios really shine when mounted in the XPS 13’s thin-bezelled InfinityEdge design. It’s so good that it won the awards for best laptop display and best laptop overall in our Tom’s Guide Awards 2021.

Read our full Dell XPS 13 OLED review.

Not interested in OLED? Don’t miss our Dell XPS 13 (2020, 11th Gen) review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

2. Apple MacBook Air with M1

Best 13-inch MacBook

Specifications

Display: 13.3 inches; 2560×1600

CPU: Apple M1

GPU: Integrated 8-core GPU

RAM: 8GB-16GB

Storage: 256GB-2TB SSD

Weight: 2.8 pounds

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Remarkably fast performance+Strong legacy app support+Amazingly long battery life

Reasons to avoid

-Still has thick bezels-Light on ports

Apple has revolutionized its laptops by swapping out the Intel CPUs they’ve long relied on for its new M1 chip. The M1 is the inaugural product of Apple’s new initiative to develop its own silicon, and its debut in the 2020 MacBook Air made that Air the fastest we’ve ever seen, with incredible battery life. It lasted 14 hours and 41 minutes on the Tom’s Guide battery test, making the 2020 MacBook Air a great choice if you need a svelte, long-lived MacBook. 

Plus, the M1 chip gives it the ability to run iOS and iPadOS apps on your Mac. The webcam is clearer and more color-accurate than ever, thanks to signal processing, On top of that, you get stronger sound than you’d expect from a laptop this small, and Dolby Atmos support helps you enjoy better-sounding movies and TV. Not only is this the best laptop for many if not most Apple users, it’s a laptop that should have the PC world looking over its shoulders. It’s so good it won recommendations for best laptop and longest-lasting laptop in our Tom’s Guide Awards 2021, and at a starting price of $999, it’s remarkably affordable.

Read our full Apple MacBook Air M1 (late 2020) review

(Image credit: Future)

3. Microsoft Surface Laptop 4

Best 13-inch laptop for Windows fans

Specifications

Display: 13.5-inch 2256 x 1504 touchscreen

CPU: 11-Gen Intel Core i5/i7 | Ryzen 5/7 4000-series

GPU: Integrated Intel Iris Xe or Radeon graphics

RAM: 8GB to 32GB

Storage: 256GB to 1TB SSD

Weight: 2.79 pounds

Reasons to buy

+Light, slim design+Very comfy keyboard+Great speakers+Good battery life

Reasons to avoid

-Needs more ports-Thick bezels are an eyesore-Needs a better webcam

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

4. Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2

Best 13-inch Chromebook

Specifications

CPU: Intel Celeron | Core i3 processors

RAM: 4GB, 8GB

Storage: 64GB, 128GB

Display: 13.3-inch QLED (1080p)

Dimensions: 12 x 8 x 0.6 inches

Weight: 2.7 pounds

Reasons to buy

+Beautiful design+Gorgeous QLED display+Improved battery life

Reasons to avoid

-Key travel could be better-Touchscreen input can be inconsistent

If you’re willing to spend upwards of $500 for a great 13-inch Chromebook, Samsung’s Galaxy Chromebook 2 is our top recommendation. Ditching the 4K display that graced the original Samsung Galaxy Chromebook was probably the best thing Samsung could have done while designing the Galaxy Chromebook 2. Now it’s way more affordable, but still sports a great QLED display and longer battery life — 7:50 vs the previous gen’s 5:55. It’s also going to sound great, plus its Core i3 configuration provides a ton of speed for Chrome OS.

We weren’t as happy with the vertical travel in its keyboard, which is a bit shallow. This creates a slight learning curve you’ll adapt to over time. But to get a Chromebook that looks this good — wow that Fiesta Red color option stands out in a sea of silver Chromebooks and PCs. Plus, at $549 (Celeron) or $699 (Core i3), the Galaxy Chromebook 2 is a pretty good value. We like it so much that we awarded it best Chromebook in our Tom’s Guide Awards 2021.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

5. 13-inch MacBook Pro with M1

Best 13-inch laptop for photo editing

Specifications

Display: 13 inches; 2560×1600

CPU: Apple M1 (8-core)

GPU: 8-core integrated

RAM: 8GB to 16GB

Storage: 256GB to 2TB SSD

Weight: 3 pounds

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Superb performance+Crazy long battery life+Bright and colorful display

Reasons to avoid

-Dated design-Just two Thunderbolt ports

It’s a few hundred bucks more than the above-mentioned MacBook Air with M1, but the 13-inch MacBook Pro with M1 Apple silicon is a fantastic upgrade for anyone who wants more speed and endurance. Not only does it beat the Air on battery life by almost 2 hours, but it’s got a fan inside so its octo-core M1 chip can be pushed even further without heat issues. Oh, and you still get the fantastic Magic Keyboard, which enables comfortable and responsive typing.

Plus, its Retina display is both bright and colorful, so any photos or video you edit on the MacBook Pro will look excellent (as will the next Netflix show you binge). We just wish Apple would update its design or give you more Thunderbolt ports (the 4 USB-C port config is currently limited to Intel-based MacBook Pros). Still, it’s amazing to see how Apple’s own processors have obliterated the performance seen in its old Intel-based MacBooks. It all adds up to why the 13-inch MacBook Pro is one of the best 13-inch laptops you can buy, especially if you hate carrying a charger around. In fact, it won the award for longest-lasting laptop in our Tom’s Guide Awards 2021.

Read our full MacBook Pro with M1 review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

6. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano

Best 13-inch laptop when portability is key

Specifications

Display: 13 inches; 2K

CPU: Intel Core i5-1130G7 | Intel Core i7-1160G7

GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics

RAM: 8GB – 16GB

Storage: 256 – 1TB SSD

Weight: 2 pounds

Reasons to buy

+Great battery life+Lightweight+2K, anti-glare display

Reasons to avoid

-Limited ports-Dull sound

One of the key reasons to shop for a 13-inch laptop is portability, but when we hear a laptop is incredibly thin and light, we tend to worry about how long it will last on a single charge. That’s not the case here, as the 2-pound Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano lasted 12 hours on our battery test, which puts it up there against some of the very best laptops on the market today. 

That’s quite impressive when you remember that the 2.9-pound XPS 13 that tops this list is almost a whole pound heavier. Lenovo didn’t sacrifice on performance or usability either. The Nano’s Intel 11th Gen Tiger Lake processors deliver the speed you need for tons of productivity — and its keyboard provides a snappy and comfortable typing experience that lives up to the ThinkPad brand. You just might need to pack a USB-C hub, though, as it’s a little light on ports.

Read our full Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

7. HP Elite Dragonfly

Best 13-inch business laptop

Specifications

Display: 13.3 inches; 1920×1200 or 3840×2160

CPU: 8th-Gen Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7

GPU: Intel HD Graphics 620

RAM: 8GB / 16GB / 32GB

Storage: 128GB / 256GB / 512GB / 1TB / 2TB SSD

Weight: 2.5 pounds

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Beautiful, eye-catching design+Great battery life (with optional upgrade)+Bright and colorful screen+Comfortable keyboard

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive

The HP Elite Dragonfly is an excellent 13-inch laptop for business-minded users because it’s light, long-lasting, and looks great on a desk. This 2-in-1’s design is one of the most stunning we’ve ever seen on a laptop, with remarkably thin edges that measure just 0.6 inches in thickness and a deep blue coat of paint that looks refreshing, mesmerizing and classy all at once. And while the Dragonfly is wonderfully light at 2.5 pounds, it also feels impressively sturdy, has an oleophobic coating to prevent fingerprints and uses recycled ocean-bound plastics to help the environment.

Performance and features-wise, this beauty is a beast. Its stunning 13.3-inch display looks gorgeous for movies and TV shows and crushed our color and brightness tests. Its 8th-gen Intel CPU is a bit behind the times these days, but it can still handle everyday workloads without issues, and its keyboard is one of the most pleasant we’ve ever typed on. Plus, the battery should last you at least 12 hours on a single charge. The Dragonfly is a bit on the expensive side with a starting price of $1,629, but those who are willing to pay the premium will be rewarded with one of the best 13-inch laptops around.

Read our full HP Elite Dragonfly review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

8. Asus ZenBook Duo 14

Best 13-inch laptop for standing out in a crowd

Specifications

Display: 13.4‑inch, 1920 x 1080 pixels

CPU: 11th Gen Intel Core i5, i7

Memory: 8GB to 32GB

Storage: 512GB to 1TB

Dimensions: 12.8 x 8.7 x 0.7 inches

Weight: 3.5 pounds

Reasons to buy

+Useful ScreenPad Plus display+Snappy overall performance +Solid battery life+Accurate main display

Reasons to avoid

-Ergonomically difficult-Display could be brighter

Don’t let the name fool you: the Asus ZenBook Duo 14 is technically a 13-inch laptop (based on screen size) and it’s an intriguing choice for anyone who wants a second screen but doesn’t want an external display. It’s also a great choice if you want to turn heads at the coffee shop, because it sports a 12-inch touch screen above the keyboard. This screen is great for your secondary windows, such as Spotify, Slack, Discord and more. It can also be used by creative apps from the likes of Adobe, who put touch controls there. It’s so cool it won a recommendation for best laptop breakthrough in our Tom’s Guide Awards 2021.

On top of that, its performance is speedy and competitive with the XPS 13, which it trades rounds with in head-to-head comparison. Plus, its battery life is long — especially when you realize it’s got two screens to light up. The big downside, though, is that it has no wrist rest since the keyboard is bumped down to make room for the second screen, making the ZenBook Duo 14 a bit ergonomically unfriendly. But if you’ve got an external wrist rest, you should be good.

Read our full Asus ZenBook Duo 14 review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

9. Google Pixelbook Go

Best 13-inch laptop for Google fans

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i5-8200Y

RAM: 8GB

Storage: 128GB

Display: 13.3-inch, 3840 x 2160-pixel

Dimensions: 12.2 x 8.1 x 0.5 inches

Weight: 2.3 pounds

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Light chassis+Sleek, minimalist design+Bright, colorful panel

Reasons to avoid

-No USB-A ports-Limiting clamshell design

After Google hit a home run with the super premium Pixelbook, the company returned with one of the best Chromebooks ever, the Pixelbook Go. More affordably priced (but still on the high-end of this list) this Chromebook is a case-study in why it can be worth it to spend more and invest in your next laptop. 

Not only is this Chromebook elegant, with a slim chassis and grippy ribbed underside, but it’s got a great screen that’s brighter (368 nits) and more colorful (108% sRGB rating) than most screens. Plus, the Pixelbook Go has a great, clicky keyboard that enables comfortable typing. On top of that, it lasted nearly 11.5 hours on a single charge. The only real knocks against the Pixelbook Go are its lack of a USB-A port and how it’s not a convertible. That being said, those who can afford the Pixelbook Go will love it. 

Read our full Google Pixelbook Go review.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

5. Acer Chromebook Spin 713

Best 13-inch laptop for those on a budget

Specifications

Display: 13.5-inch, 2256×1504

CPU: Intel Core i5-10210U

GPU: Intel UHD

RAM: 8GB

Storage: 128GB SSD

Size: 11.8 x 9.3 x 0.7 inches

Weight: 3.0 pounds

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

Reasons to buy

+Affordable+Great battery life+Bright and colorful display+Amazing performance

Reasons to avoid

-Mediocre speakers-Small-sized keyboard

If you’re looking for a great 13-inch laptop for under $500, the Acer Chromebook Spin 713 is a great choice. That’s due in part to its Intel Core i5-10210U CPU, which provides a ton of speed for Chrome OS (anything more would be overkill), and 8GB of RAM for managing all the Chrome tabs you can throw at it. 

Plus, its sharp 2256 x 1504-pixel screen provides bright and vibrant picture output. On top of that, it lasted 11 hours and 54 minutes on our web-browsing based battery test. While it’s possible to spend over $500 on this laptop if you trick it out, it’s pretty easy to find entry-level models for $450 or less. If you can find it on sale, so much the better! We like it so much we gave it a recommendation for best Chromebook in our Tom’s Guide Awards 2021.

Read our full Acer Chromebook Spin 713 review.

(Image credit: Future)

6. Asus Zenbook 13 OLED

The best cheap OLED laptop

Specifications

Display: 13.3-inch 1080p OLED

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5700U

GPU: Integrated Radeon graphics

RAM: 8 GB

Storage: 512 GB

Weight: 2.5 pounds

Reasons to buy

+Stellar battery life+Beautiful 1080p OLED display+Great performance

Reasons to avoid

-Middling sound quality-Inconsistent webcam-No headphone jack

The AMD-equipped Asus Zenbook 13 OLED is an excellent value, offering an eye-catching 1080p OLED display and exceptional battery life in a slim, lightweight package for less than a thousand bucks.

Sure, the speakers aren’t amazing, the webcam leaves something to be desired, and there’s no headphone jack, but these are stumbling blocks you can work around. If you need a zippy little ultraportable with a great screen that will last you all day long, you can’t do better than the OLED-equipped Asus Zenbook 13 at this price.

Read our full Asus Zenbook 13 OLED review.

How we test to determine the best 13-inch laptops

Our path to finding the best 13-inch laptops for you is littered with test results. To help us better compare and recommend the best machines for you, we run every laptop we review through a rigorous suite of benchmarks and real-world tests to gauge how it will perform during everyday use. 

We measure the average brightness and color quality of each laptop’s display using our in-house light meter and colorimeter. For general performance, we run our machines through tests that include Geekbench 5 (CPU performance), as well as various 3DMark tests to measure graphics capabilities. We also run a file transfer test to measure how fast a machine’s hard drive is, plus a video editing test to see how good it is at crunching video and a custom battery test that has the machine browse the internet over Wi-Fi until it runs out of juice.

We know many people also love to play games on their laptops, so we test the gaming horsepower of every laptop we review by putting it through the Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Gathering Storm graphical benchmark. This is an ideal test for us to use on 13-inch laptops because almost none of them have discrete graphics cards, which means they have a hard time running more modern or graphically-demanding games. Civilization VI is also one of the few relatively modern games with a graphical benchmark that runs on both Windows and MacOS, meaning we can easily compare the performance of MacBooks against that of Windows machines.

Round up of today’s best deals

Best Windows laptop 2021: Top Windows 10 laptops available

Choosing the best Windows laptop for most people involves many different factors. A reasonable price, ample performance, suitable display, and comfortable keyboard are just some of the features considered. Manufacturers continuously update their product lineups with new hardware and design, but HP’s Spectre x360 14 is currently our pick for the best Windows laptop. It has a gorgeous gem-cut design, a touch display with a slim bezel and 3:2 aspect ratio, and powerful performance from 11th Gen Intel Core processors (CPU). It’s also priced very competitively, pushing it above many other close seconds that might take the top spot. Not quite what you need? There are many other great picks for the best Windows laptop, which we’ve rounded up here.

Best Windows laptop in 2021

  1. HP Spectre x360 14 — Best overall: Premium convertible design, 3:2 display, modern hardware
  2. Razer Book 13 — Runner-up: Top-tier performance, design, display, and features
  3. Dell XPS 13 (9310) — Runner-up: Non-convertible Ultrabook perfect in almost every way
  4. Surface Laptop 4 — Runner-up: Premium quality Ultrabook with knockout touch display
  5. Surface Pro 7 — Best 2-in-1: Detachable keyboard, deployable stand, beautiful design, and display
  6. Razer Blade 15 — Best gaming: Loads of gaming power, sleek design

There are many great devices out there that we’ve been trying out and testing, and this is just a glance at the 19 total best Windows laptop options we’ve rounded up here.

What is the best Windows laptop for most people?

It’s a great time to be a fan of Windows laptops, and when shopping around, you might be overwhelmed by all the best Windows laptop choices coming from myriad manufacturers. For most people, the HP Spectre x360 14 brings a mix of performance, build quality, features, and price that is hard to resist. It’s a great laptop for just about anything less than gaming or specialized design and development work. If you’d rather invest in one of our picks for the best Windows laptop that isn’t also of the best 2-in-1 laptops — meaning the lid doesn’t rotate around 360 degrees for tent, stand, and tablet modes — you’ll no doubt want to check out the Razer Book 13, the Dell XPS 13 9310, or the 13-inch Surface Laptop 3.

These top four options are just the appetizer before we get into the real meat of the best Windows laptop picks, ranging from high-end gaming and design laptops down to budget devices that go a long way for less money.

Best Windows laptops 2021

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

1. HP Spectre x360 14

Best Windows laptop for most people

Bottom line: The HP Spectre x360 14 takes the premium quality laptop we love in the 13-inch version and gives it a 3:2 aspect ratio display and cutting-edge hardware. If you need a convertible with high-end specs and display, this is it. Just don’t expect performance for gaming or development work.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1165G7 | RAM: Up to 16GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD | Graphics: Intel Iris Xe integrated | Display size: 13.5 inches | Display resolution: Up to 3000×2000 | Ports: Two Thunderbolt 4, USB-A, microSD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Performance Hardware Vendor
Varies Many configurations From $1,270 at HP
High-end Core i7, 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD, 3K2K $2,499 at Amazon
High-end Core i7, 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD From $1,720 at Best Buy
High-end Core i7, 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD $2,100 at Newegg

Pros

  • 11th Gen Intel Core CPUs
  • Wi-Fi 6 connectivity
  • 3K2K display with 3:2 aspect ratio
  • Big 66Wh battery
  • Quad-speakers for great audio

Cons

  • No LTE connectivity
  • Slight touchpad looseness

The new 13.5-inch HP Spectre x360 (what HP is calling the Spectre x360 14) is not replacing the standard 13.3-inch option, but it will undoubtedly drag a lot of the attention away from the other model. Unless you need LTE connectivity in your 13-inch laptop, which is only available in the Spectre x360 13, the x360 14 is our new top Windows laptop for most people.

Powered by Intel 11th Gen processors, all-day battery life, and an option for a stellar OLED display, this laptop is nearly flawless.

The biggest attraction here is no doubt the 13.5-inch touch OLED display with boxy 3:2 aspect ratio, 3000×2000 (3K2K) resolution, anti-reflection coating, 400 nits brightness, and 100% DCI-P3 color reproduction. This display is stacked, and thanks to the slim bezel, it has a truly modern look. Because the screen is so much taller, there’s also a lot more room below the keyboard deck. HP took advantage, blowing up the touchpad by 16.6% for easier productivity. There’s also room for top-firing speakers that pump out quality audio.

It makes the cut for Intel’s EVO platform certification thanks to the 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 CPU. Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics, instant-on, and “intelligence” that smartly manages power, battery, and more. The sizable 66Wh is rated at about 17 hours of life from a charge, though that differs in real-life testing. We saw about 7 hours with the OLED model, which translates to about 10 hours with the FHD+ model.

The display has tilt pen support for natural inking, Wi-Fi 6 connectivity gives you fast, reliable wireless internet, and Bluetooth 5 for your accessories. The front-facing camera has a privacy shutter, and there’s an IR camera for Windows Hello. The keyboard also includes a fingerprint reader for further security, and you can even add HP’s Sure View technology to the display to block unwanted eyes.

Have a look at our HP Spectre x360 14 review for a far deeper dive into what makes this convertible laptop great.

HP Spectre x360 14

The HP Spectre x360 14 is an evolution of the 13.3-inch model, bringing a 3:2 aspect ratio touch display and the latest 11th Gen hardware from Intel.

Buying the best Windows laptop for your needs should involve some careful shopping. You want to be sure that it’s perfect for your needs, and you want to be sure that you aren’t paying too much. You also want something worth your money that will last for years to come. Setting a price and sticking to it is a good idea when shopping for a laptop. If you can get a device that meets your needs, and you pay what you wanted to pay, you’ll be much happier in the long run.

Many premium devices in this list will run into the multiple thousands of dollars range, but you can also get many of them starting around the $1,000 mark. These laptops are suitable for plenty of tasks, and the more you pay for upgrades, the better performance you’ll see. Mid-range devices usually come in somewhere between $600 and $1,000, and while you can find something built well, the hardware inside may not be able to keep up with intensive tasks, and they likely won’t have as many features. Sometimes, though, you get something like the HP ENVY x360 13 that blows us away with its price and features.

There are a few general uses for which most people buy a laptop: gaming, multitasking, and productivity, multimedia editing, or business. Ask yourself what you’ll mostly be using the laptop for, and you’ll have a much easier time deciding on what type of device you need.

  • Heavy usage: Gaming, design, and editing require powerful hardware. You should aim for a high-end CPU and a dedicated GPU. Our best graphics card roundup has some top options you can compare. Pair with a high-resolution display if you have the budget.
  • Standard usage: Heavy web browsing, occasional gaming, and productivity require average hardware. A high-end CPU will undoubtedly come in handy, though a dedicated GPU is optional. If working with media, extra RAM is never a bad thing.
  • Light usage: Light web browsing, email, and occasional video streaming don’t require much power. A low- or mid-range CPU will handle this type of work, allowing you to save a lot of money.

There are more considerations to make, including display type, form factor (notebook, convertible, 2-in-1), storage and RAM, battery life, keyboard and touchpad, and ports, which certainly can make it tough to choose one single best Windows laptop. That’s why we’ve laid everything out here to help you make an informed decision.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

2. Razer Book 13

Runner-up

Bottom line: Razer’s first crack at a productivity laptop, the Book 13, is a smash hit. Its design, display, keyboard, touchpad, speakers, and performance hardware all come together to form one of the best 13-inch Ultrabooks on the market.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1165G7 | RAM: 16GB | Storage: Up to 512GB SSD | Graphics: Up to Intel Iris Xe | Display size: 13.4 inches | Display resolution: Up to UHD+ | Ports: Two Thunderbolt 4, USB-A 3.1, HDMI 2.0, microSD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Performance Hardware Vendor
Varies Many configurations From $1,200 at Razer
Varies Many configurations From $1,600 at Amazon
Mid-range Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, FHD+ $1,600 at Best Buy
Mid-range Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256G SSD, FHD+ $1,600 at Walmart

Pros

  • Gorgeous, pristine design
  • 11th Gen Intel and EVO certified
  • Brilliant IGZO display
  • Excellent keyboard, touchpad, RGB lighting
  • Fantastic THX Spatial Audio

In our Razer Book 13 review, Executive Editor Daniel Rubino weighs in on whether or not Razer’s laptop trumps the mighty XPS 13 9310. It’s ultimately a toss-up with both laptops excelling in different areas, but know the Book 13 brings better port selection (with HDMI 2.0, two Thunderbolt 4, USB-A 3.2, microSD card reader, and 3.5mm audio), better sound with top-firing THX speakers, and a better keyboard with RGB backlighting for extra fun.

The overall aluminum design of the Book 13 is impeccable. It’s well-balanced, it’s relatively thin and light, and it has that premium feel you only get from laptops in this price range. The keyboard is comfortable for long days of typing, the Precision touchpad makes good use of available space, and battery life goes all day with about 10 hours before needing a charge.

Razer went to Sharp to source its IGZO displays, which paid off greatly. The 13.4-inch displays with a 16:10 aspect ratio are available with FHD+ or UHD+ resolutions, and there are touch and non-touch options. All have an anti-reflective coating to cut down on glare, and all have excellent color reproduction in the sRGB gamut. Brightness gets up to about 550 nits.

Get up to an 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 CPU, Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics, 16GB of LPDDR4x-4267MHz RAM, and a 512GB M.2 PCIe SSD for performance hardware, and stay safe with an IR camera for Windows Hello. This laptop is expensive and doesn’t offer LTE, but it is pretty much perfect in every other way.

Razer Book 13

Featuring a 16:10 display, fantastic speakers, a great keyboard and trackpad, and a premium all-aluminum chassis, this laptop does everything right, especially when it comes to performance.

Source: Daniel Rubino/Windows Central

3. Dell XPS 13 (9310)

Runner-up

Bottom line: If you’d rather stick with a traditional form factor that doesn’t convert to a tablet, the XPS 13 9310 is nearly a perfect Ultrabook with relatively high-end specs for productivity and photo editing.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1165G7 | RAM: Up to 32GB | Storage: Up to 2TB | Graphics: Up to Intel Iris Xe | Display size: 13.4 inches | Display resolution: Up to UHD+ | Ports: Two Thunderbolt 3, microSD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Pros

  • 16:10 aspect ratio and thin bezel
  • Stunning look and design
  • Excellent keyboard and touchpad
  • Strong performance from 11th Gen Intel CPUs
  • Beautiful display options

Cons

  • Webcam could be better
  • Costs more than our top pick for similar specs

The latest refresh of the XPS 13 — check out our Dell XPS 13 (9310) review for full details — is a nice hardware refresh over the mighty 9300. It’s easily the best Dell laptop available today. We also think it’s the single best laptop between $1,000 and $1,500. Its display now has a 16:10 aspect ratio, which removes the chin that most laptops have below the screen. There is a screen everywhere you look, thanks to a 91.5% screen-to-body ratio.

A non-touch 1920×1200 (FHD+) screen is the cheapest way to go, bringing an anti-glare finish and up to 500 nits brightness. A middle FHD+ option adds touch, edge-to-edge glass, and an anti-reflective layer to help reduce glare. It also manages 500 nits of brightness. Finally, the most expensive option is a 3840×2400 (UHD+) touch option with edge-to-edge glass, 500 nits brightness, and an anti-reflective layer.

Intel’s 11th Gen CPUs are included in the refresh, bringing Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics. It’s all accompanied by up to 32GB of LPDDR4x RAM and 2TB of M.2 PCIe SSD storage. RAM is soldered, but the SSD can be upgraded after purchase if you’d like to save some money at checkout. The XPS 13 9310 offers the performance to easily cut through a standard day’s work — word processing, heavy web browsing, photo editing — yet it keeps its cool and weighs just 2.65 pounds (1.2kg). It’s also unbelievably thin and feels very sturdy, thanks to the aluminum chassis.

Ports include two Thunderbolt 4, a microSD card reader, a 3.5mm audio jack, and Wi-Fi 6 connectivity. As for productivity, the backlit keyboard and Precision touchpad should not stand in your way at all. Both are comfortable and easy to use.

Dell XPS 13 (9310) Touch Laptop

The XPS 13 9310 has everything we love about an Ultrabook. It looks great, it performs well, and it’s a joy to use.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

4. Surface Laptop 4

Runner-up

Bottom line: The Surface Laptop 4, available in 13.5- and 15-inch configurations, is all about premium design, a high-res touch display with a 3:2 aspect ratio, and modern performance hardware inside.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1185G7 or Ryzen 7 4980U | RAM: Up to 32GB LPDDR4x | Storage: Up to 1TB SSD | Graphics: Intel Iris Xe or AMD Radeon Surface Edition | Display size: 13.5 or 15 inches | Display resolution: 2256×1504 (13.5) or 2496×1664 (15) | Ports: USB-C, USB-A, 3.5mm audio, Surface Connect

Pros

  • Gorgeous design and craftsmanship
  • Superb keyboard and touchpad
  • Intel Core or AMD Ryzen hardware
  • Some parts can be upgraded
  • 13.5- or 15-inch sizes available

Cons

  • No Thunderbolt 3
  • No Dolby Vision or anti-glare display

The Surface Laptop 4, available in 13.5- and 15-inch sizes, takes a solid design that we’re already familiar with and adds modern hardware. This means that you’re still looking at a glossy display with no HDR, there’s no Thunderbolt 4, and no option for 4G or 5G connectivity. Flaws aside, this is still one hell of a laptop with Microsoft’s signature Surface design.

The smaller version comes in four different colors depending on whether you want Alcantara or all-metal, while the larger model is available in two different colors with metal finish only. No matter which size you choose, you’re getting a comfortable keyboard and sizeable Precision touchpad.

Both sizes are configurable with up to either an 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1186G7 or AMD Ryzen 7 4980U CPU, along with Intel Iris Xe or AMD Radeon integrated graphics. These chips are both able to deliver stellar performance, especially when paired with up to 32GB of LPDDR4x RAM and a 1TB SSD. The displays are high-res, they have a 3:2 aspect ratio, and they’re touch-enabled with Surface Pen support.

You can see how the Surface Laptop 4 compares in our best Microsoft Surface PCs roundup, and be sure to have a look at our Surface Laptop 4 (15-inch) review for more information.

Surface Laptop 4

Available in 13.5- and 15-inch sizes and with Intel or AMD hardware, the Surface Laptop 4 is more of the same stellar design and beautiful touch displays.

Source: Daniel Rubino/Windows Central

5. Surface Pro 7

Best 2-in-1

Bottom line: For those who need a device that can detach from the keyboard and touchpad to become a tablet — and have the power to rival standard laptops — there is the Surface Pro 7.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1065G7 | RAM: Up to 16GB | Storage: Up to 1TB SSD | Graphics: Up to Intel Iris Plus | Display size: 12.3 inches | Display resolution: 2736×1824 | Ports: USB-C, USB-A, 3.5mm audio, Surface Connect, microSD card reader

Pros

  • Excellent performance from 10th Gen Intel hardware
  • Now, with a USB-C port
  • Eight hours of battery life
  • Instant On and resume
  • Premium build quality

Cons

  • No Thunderbolt 3 or 4
  • LTE only on Pro 7+ models
  • Bezels are a bit thick

Microsoft’s Surface Pro 7 is back and better than ever. Instead of a Mini DisplayPort, it now has a USB-C 3.1 port capable of handling dual 4K displays, rounded out by USB-A, a microSD card reader, Surface Connect, and a 3.5mm audio jack. Wi-Fi 6 connectivity is available for blazing wireless speeds, and Bluetooth 5.0 is also included. The Pro 7 now has Instant On, meaning it’s ready to go as soon as you need it.

10th Gen Intel Core CPU options boost performance and add Intel Iris Plus integrated graphics, and models can be configured with up to 16GB of LPDDR4x RAM and a 1TB SSD. The display hasn’t changed, but that doesn’t mean it’s not gorgeous. The 12.3-inch touch screen still has a 3:2 aspect ratio and 2736×1824 resolution, complete with Surface Pen compatibility for a quality inking experience.

The Pro 7 keeps cool under load, and you can expect about eight hours of battery life from a model with a Core i5 CPU. For some extra security, an IR camera is included for Windows Hello. Check out our Surface Pro 7 review for more information.

There’s also a Surface Pro 7 Plus for Business that can be purchased from the Microsoft Store. It costs a bit more than the standard Pro 7, but it brings several improvements, including LTE connectivity, up to 32GB of RAM, 11th Gen Intel Core CPUs, and a removable SSD. If you need to stay connected at all times and don’t mind shopping at Microsoft, it might just be the better choice.

For a deeper look, check out our Surface Pro 7 Plus vs. Surface Pro 7 comparison.

Surface Pro 7

Microsoft has finally added a loaded-out USB Type-C port to the Surface Pro 7, as well as 10th Gen Intel hardware.

Source: Razer

6. Razer Blade 15

Best gaming

Bottom line: With a dedicated GPU, powerful Intel CPU options, and myriad high-end display options, the Razer Blade 15 is the best gaming laptop out there as long as you have the budget.

Processor: Up to Core i9-11900H | RAM: Up to 32GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 1TB SSD | Graphics: Up to NVIDIA RTX 3080 Laptop | Display size: 15.6 inches | Display resolution: Up to 4K | Ports: Three USB-A 3.2, two Thunderbolt 4, HDMI 2.1, Ethernet or SD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Performance Hardware Vendor
Mid-range Core i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, RTX 2060 $1,400 at Microsoft
Varies Many configurations From $1,700 at Amazon
High-end Core i7, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, RTX 3080 $3,000 at Best Buy
High-end Core i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, RTX 3080 From $1,700 at Razer

Pros:

  • 4K OLED display is stunning
  • Outstanding audio
  • Excellent gaming performance
  • Plenty of ports
  • Premium build quality

Cons:

  • Keyboard has short travel
  • Very expensive

If you need a powerful gaming laptop, the Razer Blade 15 should be your first choice should you have the budget. It’s also our top pick in a roundup of the overall best gaming laptops available today. Razer also upgraded the Blade 15 at CES 2021, now offering a QHD display with 240Hz refresh rate or FHD display with 360Hz refresh rate in Advanced models. Furthermore, 11th Gen Intel Core CPUs are now available in Blade 15 models.

Based on the hardware you want — up to an NVIDIA RTX 3080 Laptop GPU, 11th Gen Intel Core i9-11900H eight-core CPU, and 32GB of dual-channel DDR4 RAM — you’ll get access to different display options, including the new options mentioned above. Color reproduction is as good as ever, landing you 100% sRGB coverage with FHD and UHD options.

This is all wrapped up in a squared, symmetrical metal chassis that measures just 0.70 inches (17.78mm) thin. Keyboard travel is a bit short, but it has customizable RGB, and the Precision touchpad is huge for times when you’re not using an external gaming mouse plugged into one of three USB-A 3.2 ports. Other connectivity includes Thunderbolt 4, HDMI 2.0, and Ethernet, depending on whether you get the Base or Advanced model.

Razer Blade 15 gaming laptop

The Blade 15 offers stellar performance hardware (up to an NVIDIA RTX 3080 Laptop GPU) and tons of gorgeous display options. Older models are still available, generally at a reduced price.

Source: Lenovo

7. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano

Best business

Bottom line: ThinkPad laptops come in many shapes and sizes, but the X1 Nano sits near the top if you want something thin and light with many business features.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1180G7 vPro | RAM: Up to 16GB LPDDR4x | Storage: Up to 1TB PCIe SSD | Graphics: Intel Iris Xe | Display size: 13 inches | Display resolution: 2160×1350 | Ports: Two Thunderbolt 4, 3.5mm audio

Pros

  • 11th Gen Intel Core CPU options
  • 2K display with 16:10 aspect ratio
  • Optional 5G LTE connectivity
  • Comfortable keyboard and touchpad
  • Durable ThinkPad build

Cons

  • Relatively pricey
  • Limited port selection

The first-generation ThinkPad X1 Nano is a 13-inch Ultrabook that takes what we love about the ThinkPad line and shrinks it down. Its display has a 2160×1350 resolution with a 16:10 aspect ratio, as well as Dolby Vision and 100% sRGB color reproduction. Get it with touch and an anti-reflective finish, or non-touch with anti-glare and 450 nits brightness.

With 11th Gen Intel Core hardware inside, performance and battery life are both excellent. The laptop makes the list of Intel Evo platform certification, assures snappy response even on battery power. Thunderbolt 4 ports make it easy to connect your most modern accessories, and there’s Wi-Fi 6 and 5G LTE available for staying connected everywhere.

The laptop weighs in at about 2.12 pounds (962g) and measures just 0.55 inches (13.87mm) thin, but it packs in an IR camera, fingerprint reader, webcam shutter, and physical detection presence. If you need a slim, powerful business partner, this should be near the top of your list. Check out our list of the best Lenovo laptops to see where the ThinkPad X1 Nano sits.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano

With an optional 5G LTE modem, powerful performance, and a brilliant display, get a premium business laptop ideal for staying connected.

Source: Daniel Rubino/Windows Central

8. Surface Pro X

Best mobility

Bottom line: The Surface Pro X takes Microsoft’s unreal design and packs it with ARM hardware and 4G LTE connectivity. If you need to stay connected everywhere, this is a great option.

Processor: Microsoft SQ1 or SQ2 | RAM: Up to 16GB LPDDR4x | Storage: Up to 512GB SSD | Graphics: Adreno 685 or 690 | Display size: 13 inches | Display resolution: 2880×1920 | Ports: Two USB-C, Surface Connect, nano SIM

Pros:

  • Beautiful display with inking
  • Thin and light design
  • LTE comes standard
  • IR camera for Windows Hello
  • Adreno 685 GPU with two teraflops

Cons:

  • No Wi-Fi 6
  • ARM has some limitations
  • No 3.5mm audio jack

Microsoft’s Surface Pro X has branched out from the standard Pro lineup we’ve become accustomed to seeing over the last few generations. Instead of using Intel hardware, it has inside a custom Microsoft SQ1 CPU that’s essentially a beefed-up Snapdragon 8cx. And that’s been further improved with the SQ2 processor, which is now available thanks to a mid-gen refresh. Add in an Adreno 685 or Adreno 690 (with the SQ2 chip) GPU, up to 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD, and you have a 2-in-1 ideal for creative people on the move. A Snapdragon X24 modem offers LTE connectivity in all models.

Moving away from the Pro 7, the Pro X has a chassis with a thinner bezel to accommodate a larger 13-inch display with 2880×1920 resolution and a 3:2 aspect ratio. Combined with the new Surface Slim Pen, you’re getting an extremely versatile setup.

An IR camera for facial recognition adds to security, and two USB-C, Nano-SIM, and Surface Connect are available for connecting accessories. Like the Pro 7 and Laptop 3, the Pro X can power dual 4K displays at a 60Hz refresh rate using one USB-C port. Have a look at our Surface Pro X review for more information.

Surface Pro X

This ARM-powered Pro brings LTE connectivity, a beautiful display, and excellent battery life, all in a thin and light chassis.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

9. Dell XPS 15 (9500)

Best 15-Inch Ultrabook

Bottom line: Dell’s XPS line continues with the larger XPS 15, the laptop that other 15-inch devices try to live up to. It’s packing performance hardware (including discrete GPU) and a slim design.

Processor: Up to Core i9-10885H | RAM: Up to 64GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 2TB SSD | Graphics: Up to NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti | Display size: 15.6 inches | Display resolution: Up to 4K UHD | Ports: Two Thunderbolt 3, USB-C 3.1, SD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Performance Hardware Vendor
Varies Many configurations From $1,176 at Dell
Upper mid-range Core i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, GTX 1650 Ti From $1,790 at Amazon $1980 at Walmart
Upper mid-range Core i7, 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD, GTX 1650 Ti $2,100 at Walmart
Varies Many configurations From $1,700 at Best Buy

Pros

  • 16:10 aspect ratio display
  • Gorgeous FHD+ and UHD+ screen options
  • Powerful performance
  • Top-firing speakers
  • Good keyboard and touchpad

Along with the XPS 13 9300, the XPS 15 9500 received a fairly serious overhaul. It has a larger 16:10 aspect ratio for the display, which eliminates the chin. The Precision touchpad is way more prominent, and the keycaps are also larger for a better typing experience. Speakers on either side of the keyboard and speakers on the laptop’s underside make for quality audio.

You can get the display in either FHD+ or UHD+ resolutions, with the latter being touch and the former being non-touch. These Sharp IGZO panels deliver unreal color and contrast, and you should be satisfied with either option. There’s hardly any bezel, yet there’s still an IR camera above the display for Windows Hello.

Get up to a 10th Gen Intel Core i7-10875H CPU, 64GB of RAM, and a 2TB M.2 PCIe SSD. The real cherry on top is the dedicated NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti GPU with 4GB of VRAM. It’s all powered by a beefy 86Wh battery that can deliver a full day of battery life. Wi-Fi 6 is also included for fast wireless connectivity. This PC also sits atop our list of the very best 15-inch laptops.

Have a look at our Dell XPS 15 9500 review for a closer look at this awesome 15-inch laptop. And check out how it compares to the older model in our Dell XPS 15 9500 vs. Dell XPS 15 9570 analysis.

Dell XPS 15 (9500)

Larger display, touchpad, and keycaps, as well as beefier internal hardware, make the XPS 15 the 15-inch Ultrabook to beat.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

10. Surface Book 3 15

Best versatility

Bottom line: There’s nothing else like the Surface Book 3, thanks to the modular design. Remove the display from the performance base to use it as a tablet, or keep it all together to get desktop-grade performance.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1065G7 | RAM: Up to 32GB LPDDR4x | Storage: Up to 2TB SSD | Graphics: Up to NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q | Display size: 15 inches | Display resolution: 3240×2160 | Ports: Two USB-A 3.1, USB-C 3.1, 3.5mm audio, Two Surface Connect, SD card reader

Pros

  • Excellent build quality and design
  • Excellent graphics performance
  • All-day battery life
  • Very versatile

Cons

  • Design is a bit dated
  • No Dolby Vision HDR

The refreshed Surface Book 3 hasn’t changed physically since the Surface Book 2. Instead, the primary focus was on internal hardware. The 15-inch Book 3 still has a touch display with 3240×2160 resolution and a 3:2 aspect ratio, and it’s still modular. That means you can remove the display portion to be used as a tablet, albeit without the dedicated GPU and lesser battery life. When connected to the base, you get a comfortable keyboard, Precision touchpad, and the full gamut of performance hardware.

The Book 3 now features 10th Gen Intel Core CPUs, Wi-Fi 6 wireless connectivity, and 16GB of RAM as the base option, with up to 32GB total. The dedicated GPU has also been upgraded to an NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q, with the opportunity for NVIDIA Quadro RTX 3000 graphics for those working with specialized software. If you need a unique laptop that can do everything, this should make for a great choice.

Check out our Surface Book 3 15 review) if you want to know more about this modular Ultrabook.

Surface Book 3 15

The refreshed Surface Book 3 for 2020 gets new Intel 10th Gen processors, more powerful GTX graphics, and much better Wi-Fi, SSD, and RAM options.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

11. HP ENVY x360 13

Best budget convertible

Bottom line: The ENVY x360 13 is packing AMD Ryzen 4000 mobile CPUs, bringing unreal performance at a great price. It’s not quite as premium as the Spectre x360, but it’s close.

Processor: Up to Ryzen 7 | RAM: Up to 16GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 1TB SSD | Graphics: Radeon Vega | Display size: 13.3 inches | Display resolution: 1920×1080 | Ports: USB-C, two USB-A, 3.5mm audio, microSD card reader

Pros

  • Excellent performance from AMD Ryzen
  • Good touchpad and keyboard
  • Outstanding value
  • Pen is included for inking
  • Above-average touch display

Cons

  • No Thunderbolt 3
  • Still using 16:9 aspect ratio

The latest refresh to the HP ENVY x360 13 has turned it into the hands-down best budget convertible on the market today, as well as our top pick of the best AMD Ryzen laptops. That’s partly thanks to AMD Ryzen 4000 mobile CPUs, which deliver strong performance at a great price. Choose from Ryzen 3, Ryzen 5, or Ryzen 7 CPUs, add up to 1TB of M.2 PCIe SSD storage, and go with up to 16GB of RAM with the Ryzen 7 model. This is an excellent PC if you’re looking for something to handle everyday office, school, or homework. Battery life should last upwards of eight hours from a charge.

The display, which is still using a 16:9 aspect ratio, comes in three different flavors depending on your budget and taste. The most affordable is a standard touch FHD screen with 300 nits brightness. For a few dollars more, you can upgrade to 400 nits brightness, and for quite a bit more, you can add an FHD version with an integrated privacy screen and up to 1,000 nits brightness.

The metal chassis is built well and houses a comfortable keyboard and touchpad. Ports include USB-C, two USB-A, 3.5mm audio, and a microSD card reader. The laptop is stuck on Wi-Fi 5 and doesn’t include Thunderbolt 3, which are arguments for the pricier Spectre x360. Otherwise, this is a beautiful laptop that’s available at a great price.

HP ENVY x360 13

HP’s 2020 Envy x360 13 combines with AMD’s Ryzen 4000 series processors to make a pretty compelling and affordable little laptop. Models are currently sold out almost everywhere, so expect to pay more.

From $750 at HP

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

12. Microsoft Surface Laptop Go

Most fun

Bottom line: Want a smaller, more affordable version of the Surface Laptop? The Surface Laptop Go is no doubt for you.

Processor: Intel Core i5-1035G1 | RAM: Up to 8GB LPDDR4x | Storage: Up to 256GB SSD | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics | Display size: 12.4 inches | Display resolution: 1536×1024 | Ports: USB-C, USB-A, 3.5mm audio, Surface Connect

Pros

  • Excellent hardware and design
  • Core i5 relatively powerful
  • Colorful, bright display
  • Good battery life
  • Less expensive than Surface Laptop 3

Cons

  • Low-resolution display
  • No backlit keyboard

The standard Surface Laptop is an outstanding device, but not everyone wants to shell out that kind of money for a device sized at 13 or 15 inches. Enter the Surface Laptop Go, a 12.5-inch device that’s designed up to Surface standards. The display might not be as high a resolution as other Surface products and might not support inking, but it’s still colorful and bright.

The keyboard is comfortable (though no backlight), and battery life will last you through a day. Performance hardware is right for anyone with standard productivity tasks in mind, and the price reflects that. This is an excellent option for anyone who needs an extra laptop around the house or something portable for school.

If you’re interested in this little laptop, be sure to have a look at our Surface Laptop Go review for further details.

Microsoft Surface Laptop Go Touch Screen Tablet

Looking for something with the same design as the Surface Laptop but easier on the wallet? Look no further.

Source: Windows Central

13. Lenovo Yoga 9i 14

Best 14-Inch convertible

Bottom line: Soundbar hinge, beautiful display options, comfy keyboard, and convertible design. This is a top choice for anyone who likes watching TV and movies on their laptop.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1185G7 | RAM: Up to 16GB LPDDR4x | Storage: Up to 1TB M.2 PCIe SSD | Graphics: Intel Iris Xe | Display size: 14 inches | Display resolution: Up to 4K UHD | Ports: Two Thunderbolt 4, USB-A 3.2, 3.5mm audio

Pros:

  • Built-in active pen
  • 11th Gen Intel CPU and Evo certifications
  • Beautiful aluminum design
  • Excellent audio setup
  • 10+ hours battery life

Cons:

  • Still using a 16:9 aspect ratio
  • No IR camera
  • Anti-glare display finish

As the successor to the formidable Yoga C940 14, the Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 has made most of its changes inside. It’s now sporting 11th Gen Intel Core CPUs (up to a Core i7-1185G7), faster LPDDR4x-4267MHz RAM, and Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics for excellent performance. It also adds Thunderbolt 4 ports, an improved TrueStrike keyboard, and a configuration with leather cover and edge-to-edge glass palmrest with touchpad and fingerprint reader.

The soundbar hinge with Dolby Atmos tuning is still here, which along with the 4K touch display with HDR 400, makes the Yoga 9i 14 a great option for watching movies and TV. There’s also an FHD version with Dolby Vision and about 400 nits brightness. It would be nice to see a boxier display aspect ratio and anti-reflective finish, but what you get is still quite fetching. Add in a garaged active pen, and you have a versatile PC that can help you take notes and sketch drawings.

The aluminum construction is undoubtedly premium, and battery life for the FHD model hits more than 10 hours of regular usage from a charge. This would make a great laptop for productivity work, but its convertible form, display, and soundbar really make it ideal for media consumption.

There is also a 15-inch version of the Yoga i9 14 if you’re looking for something a bit larger. We showcase the differences and similarities in our Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 vs. Yoga 9i 15 article.

Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Laptop

The combination of convertible design, 4K display, and soundbar convertible hinge make the Yoga 9i 14 a winner.

Source: Windows Central

14. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme (Gen 3)

Best business performance

Bottom line: Need the durability and security features of a ThinkPad and the performance of a desktop PC? The third-gen ThinkPad X1 Extreme is what you’re looking for.

Processor: Up to Core i9-10885H | RAM: Up to 64GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 4TB SSD | Graphics: Up to NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q | Display size: 15.6 inches | Display resolution: Up to 4K UHD | Ports: Two USB-A 3.2, Two Thunderbolt 3, HDMI 2.0, 3.5mm audio, SD card reader

Pros:

  • Ridiculous performance
  • Awesome 4K OLED display
  • High build quality
  • Excellent port selection
  • Wi-Fi 6 connectivity

Refreshed for a third generation, the ThinkPad X1 Extreme (Gen 3) has up to a 10th Gen Intel Core i9-10885H vPro CPU, 64GB of DDR4 RAM, 4TB of M.2 PCIe SSD storage, and dedicated NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q GPU. This is a laptop made for power users who also want the added security features and durability that the ThinkPad line offers.

The 15.6-inch display comes in FHD, FHD with Dolby Vision HDR, 4K with Dolby Vision HDR, or 4K OLED with HDR500 and anti-reflective layer to cut down on glare. A webcam lives above the display and comes with a privacy shutter, plus you can add an IR camera for extra security through facial recognition. A fingerprint reader, FIDO authentication, and a Kensington lock slot round out the options.

This laptop is powerful and durable, but it measures just 0.72 inches (18.4mm) thin and weighs around 3.75 pounds (1.7kg). Wi-Fi 6 is included for fast wireless speeds, and an 80Wh battery does its best to deliver solid battery life (especially for the FHD models). Check out our roundup of the best Lenovo laptops for more options.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme (Gen 3) Laptop

The ThinkPad X1 Extreme is an ideal choice for anyone who wants the extra security of a business laptop and above-average performance.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

15. LG gram 17

Best lightweight 17-inch

Bottom line: The gram lineup from LG aims to make laptops as thin and light as possible without subtracting essential features, performance, and durability. In that sense, it’s a winner.

Processor: Up to 11th Gen Intel Core i7 | RAM: Up to 16GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 2TB SSD | Graphics: Up to Intel Iris Xe | Display size: 17 inches | Display resolution: 2560×1600 | Ports: Three USB-A 3.2, Thunderbolt 4, HDMI, microSD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Pros

  • 2K display with 16:10 ratio
  • Light build despite size
  • All-day battery life
  • 11th Gen Intel hardware and Wi-Fi 6
  • Fingerprint reader

Cons

  • Keyboard and touchpad relatively small
  • No discrete GPU

A 17-inch laptop is excellent for multitasking thanks to the enormous display, but you often trade portability. However, the LG gram 17 (2021) weighs in at just 2.98 pounds (1.35kg), making it as light as a lot of 13-inch Ultrabooks. The vast display has a 2560×1600 resolution with a 16:10 aspect ratio, and it has a battery that will last for a full day before needing a charge. This is easily one of the best LG laptops.

Thanks to a refresh announced at CES 2021, performance hardware includes up to an 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, and two 1TB M.2 PCIe SSDs. There’s no dedicated GPU, but you can take advantage of Intel Iris Xe Graphics from 11th Gen hardware. Ports include Thunderbolt 4, HDMI, USB-A 3.2, a microSD card reader, and 3.5mm audio for generous connectivity.

The Precision touchpad seems small compared to all the available space, but it tracks well. Typing for extended periods shouldn’t be an issue on the keyboard, and a fingerprint reader built into the power button adds security through Windows Hello. Included is Wi-Fi 6 for speedy connectivity. This worthy PC also made our lists of best rugged laptops for students and best Windows laptops with full number pads, and it’s our pick for the very best 17-inch laptop.

LG gram 17

The LG gram 17 is an extraordinarily light and capable 17-inch Ultrabook that’s perfect for students, photographers, and other pros.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

16. Dell XPS 17

Best performance 17-inch

Bottom line: The XPS 17 is a monster of a laptop with parts that outshine every other mobile PC on the market. The biggest (and best) display, superb audio, excellent typing, and enough graphics power to keep anyone happy. It may be heavy, but it’s no wimp.

Processor: Up to Core i9-10885H | RAM: Up to 64GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 2TB SSD | Graphics: Up to NVIDIA RTX 2060 Max-Q | Display size: 17 inches | Display resolution: Up to UHD+ | Ports: Four Thunderbolt 3, SD card reader, 3.5mm audio

Performance Hardware Vendor
Varies Many configurations From $1,372 at Dell
High-end Core i7, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, RTX 2060, UHD+ $2,750 at Amazon
High-end Core i7, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, RTX 2060, UHD+ $2,800 at Best Buy

Pros

  • Unreal 17-inch display with 16:10 aspect ratio
  • Excellent keyboard and touchpad
  • Quad audio
  • RTX graphics, octa-core CPU
  • High build quality

Cons

  • Heavy and dense
  • Webcam is just OK
  • No inking

If you love the idea of a 17-inch laptop but don’t particularly care if it’s light or not, the XPS 17 9700 is undoubtedly the laptop you should consider. This is a recent addition to the XPS lineup, and it’s an absolute powerhouse to boot. You can configure a model with up to a 10th Gen Intel Core i9-10885H CPU, 2TB of speedy M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD storage, up to 64GB of DDR4-2933MHz RAM, and an NVIDIA RTX 2060 Max-Q GPU with 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM.

Combined with the massive 17-inch display that goes up to a UHD+ resolution (the + accounts for the extra space thanks to the boxy 16:10 aspect ratio), this is an ideal laptop for content creators. It hits 94% DCI-P3 color reproduction, and it manages up to 500 nits brightness with HDR400 and Dolby Vision.

It’s built extremely well like the rest of the XPS lineup, but it is rather heavy. The thin chassis packs in four Thunderbolt 3 ports, an SD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack. Top-firing audio puts out an excellent sound, and you can get up to a 97Wh battery for long-lasting life. Altogether this is a gorgeous 17-inch laptop that’s about the same size as a 15-inch laptop, thanks to a complete lack of bezel and careful engineering. It’s expensive, but this is the right laptop for content creators. Who doesn’t love a big screen?

Our Dell XPS 17 review goes much deeper, covering what makes this laptop great. Be sure to have a look if you’re interested in buying the laptop.

Dell XPS 17 9700

The XPS 17 (9700) features a massive 17-inch display, but thanks to its thin bezels, its body is the size of many 15-inch laptops. It pairs that large display with powerful internal options for creators.

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

17. HP ENVY 14

Best 14-inch creator laptop

Bottom line: The ENVY 14 brings a rare combo of a 16:10 display, GTX 1650 Ti graphics, microSD slot in a well-built 14-inch chassis with excellent audio and keyboard. While it cuts back on some frills, the price makes up for it.

Processor: Up to Core i7-1165G7 | RAM: Up to 16GB DDR4 | Storage: Up to 2TB SSD | Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 1650 Max-Q | Display size: 14 inches | Display resolution: 1920×1200 | Ports: Thunderbolt 4, two USB-A, 3.5mm audio, microSD card reader, HDMI 2.0

Pros

  • Strong performance
  • Color-accurate 16:10 display
  • Outstanding design
  • Long battery life
  • Excellent keyboard and audio

Cons

  • No 4K display option
  • Aggressive coil whine

In a market saturated with quality thin and light 13-inch Ultrabooks, the HP ENVY 14 does things differently. It packs in a NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q discrete GPU alongside the 11th Gen Core i5-1135G7 or Core i7-1165G7 CPU, allowing creators to get more done while still traveling with a compact PC. It weighs just 3.53 pounds (1.6kg), measures 0.71 inches (18mm) thin, and has an undeniably attractive design that you’d usually find in a more expensive laptop.

The 14-inch display has made the intelligent move to a 16:10 aspect ratio, allowing you to see more. And though it tops out at an FHD resolution, it’s colorful and a total joy to use. It would be nice to see an anti-reflective coating here, but its 403 nits of brightness is generous.

The keyboard is comfortable for those who type all day, the Precision touchpad is large for easy productivity, and ports include Thunderbolt 4, two USB-A, 3.5mm audio, microSD card reader, and HDMI 2.0. Can’t forget about battery life, which can hit up to 13 hours if you’re taking it easy. Best part? The HP ENVY 14 starts at about $1,000.

HP ENVY 14 touchscreen laptop

With a thin and light body, exceptional design, discrete GPU, and modest price, the HP ENVY 14 is ideal for creators on the move.

Source: Windows Central

18. Surface Go 2

Ultra portable

Bottom line: The Go 2 is an excellent follow-up to the original, and it’s still the top choice for anyone who’s looking for a 10.5-inch tablet that can also function as a notebook.

Processor: Up to Intel Core m3 | RAM: Up to 8GB | Storage: Up to 128GB SSD | Graphics: Intel UHD 615 | Display size: 10.5 inches | Display resolution: 1920×1280 | Ports: USB-C, 3.5mm audio, Surface Connect, microSD card reader

Pros

  • Beautiful 10.5-inch touch display
  • More powerful Core m3 CPU
  • Wi-Fi 6 and optional LTE
  • Good battery life
  • Premium design

Cons

  • Might not have enough performance for some people

Sometimes all you need is a Windows device without potent hardware that can travel with you everywhere. That’s where the Surface Go 2 fits into this collection. Compared to the first Surface Go, the refreshed model has a larger display (thinner bezels offer more space without making the size of the device any larger), a more powerful Intel Core m3 CPU option, and Wi-Fi 6. Optional LTE is also available if you need to stay connected everywhere.

The premium design remains mostly unchanged, and you’re still getting a high-quality aluminum build but kickstand on the back and optional attachable Type Cover and Surface Pen for inking. The 10.5-inch touch display has a 3:2 aspect ratio and 1920×1280 resolution for a great look.

While the Intel Core m3 CPU option does add a much-needed boost to performance over the first generation, it’s still not going to handle intensive work. This is a 2-in-1 that’s best reserved for light work on the move. Keep it there, and it will truly shine.

Surface Go 2

Surface Go 2 gets a much-improved processor that finally delivers on speed without making battery life worse.

Source: Windows Central

19. Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360

Thin and light convertible

Bottom line: The Galaxy Book Pro 360 is one of the only thin-and-light 15-inch convertible PCs on the market that also has an excellent AMOLED display and inking experience. It’s sharp-looking, fun to use, and has performance when needed.

Processor: Intel Core i7-1165G7 | RAM: Up to 16GB | Storage: Up to 1TB SSD | Graphics: Intel Iris Xe | Display size: 15.6 inches | Display resolution: 1920×1280 | Ports: Thunderbolt 4, two USB-C, 3.5mm audio, microSD card reader

Pros

  • Outstanding AMOLED display
  • Excellent inking and convertible experience
  • Thin and light with strong performance
  • Decent battery life
  • Useful Samsung software

Cons

  • Bad camera, mediocre speakers
  • Dim display
  • Only FHD resolution available
  • No 16:10 aspect ratio

The 15-inch convertible PC market isn’t particularly crowded, but the Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360 nevertheless stands out. It also fills a bit of a gap in the laptop market, coming at you with an incredibly thin and light build, strong battery life, and snappy performance. It’s just 0.47 inches (11.9mm) thin, and it weighs in at 3.06 pounds (1.39kg). Considering it has a touch display, convertible function, and 68Wh battery, that says a lot. One tradeoff is port selection, which is limited to Thunderbolt 4, two USB-C, 3.5mm audio, and a microSD card reader.

The 15.6-inch display isn’t particularly bright, but its AMOLED tech provides stellar color reproduction and contrast. VESA DisplayHDR 500 is supported, perfect for watching movies. An included S Pen (not garaged, but attachable with magnets) provides quality inking, especially with all the extra software Samsung includes. And while the touch function and pen are great, you also get a comfortable keyboard with number pad and a sizable Precision touchpad.

Performance is strong from the Intel Core i7-1165G7, 16GB of LPDDR4x RAM, and 1TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD; the only thing missing is a dedicated GPU, but at least integrated Iris Xe put up a strong fight. Expect about 10 hours from the battery. The Galaxy Book Pro 360 recently saw a huge price drop at Samsung’s website, meaning you can now find models that start at about $750. There’s really no better time to buy.

Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360

Love the idea of a 15-inch convertible and want a laptop that’s about as thin and light as possible? Toss in an outstanding AMOLED touch display and you get the Galaxy Book Pro 360.

  • From $750 at Samsung
  • $1,300 at Best Buy

What about all the other Windows laptops?

There’s basically the best Windows laptop for every kind of user, including the one that wants to save money, spend a lot, or look forward to experimental form factors. Want to have a laptop to use just for work? There’s a model for you. Does your work involve intensive tasks like photo or video editing? There’s one for you, too. With all this in mind, the HP Spectre x360 14 edges out the Razer Book 13, Dell XPS 13 9310, and Surface Laptop 3 13.5 due to the design, display, and performance.

You get a strong performance from 11th Gen Intel hardware, and the 66Wh battery easily lasts through a full workday, so you don’t have to worry about plugging in. It has a larger Precision touchpad, comfortable keyboard, and top-firing speakers for excellent audio. The 13.5-inch touch display has a 3:2 aspect ratio and 3000×2000 resolution, making it one of the best on the market in terms of sizing, color, and resolution.

And if you’re in search of even more amazing laptops, we have a bunch of other roundups. Have a look at our picks for the best gaming laptops, best Ultrabooks, best laptops for college students, best laptops for high school students, and best upgradeable laptops.

How to choose the right laptop form factor

Modern laptops are available primarily in three different designs.

Notebook: This is your standard clamshell laptop with a lid that opens to a maximum of about 180 degrees. Notebooks sometimes come with touch displays, but you’ll mostly see them with non-touch options.

Convertible: If you’re looking at a laptop with a screen that rotates all the way around to lie flat again, you’re looking at a convertible laptop. The design also allows for tent and stand modes, offering you some variety. Convertible laptops use touch displays.

2-in-1: Laptops with a removable keyboard and touchpad are called 2-in-1. You can use them as a tablet without anything attached, but you can also connect the keyboard for a full laptop experience. 2-in-1 devices use touch displays and often have a compatible active pen.

Convertible and 2-in-1 laptops work fine as standard laptops, but they also have the added benefit of working as a tablet. If you hate the idea of a tablet and think you’ll be sticking with a standard laptop design, choosing a notebook can often save money.

How to choose the right laptop display

Laptop displays, besides size, have a few options to choose from. One of the most significant decisions you’ll have to make is whether or not you want a touchscreen. Having touch ability often means you can use an active pen as well as your fingers for navigation, and it makes it possible to use your device as a tablet. Touch displays will usually burn the battery faster and cost more, so decide carefully.

For resolution, a lot of budget laptops come in HD (1366×768). HD is usable, but most people prefer at least FHD (1920×1080) for a crisper picture and more on-screen real estate. QHD (2560×1440) displays are available on many premium laptops, and 4K UHD (3840×2160) is where most modern laptops max out. High display resolution affects battery life and raises the cost, so choose something that suits your needs.

Finally, laptop displays usually come with either IPS or TN panels. IPS panels offer wide viewing angles and excellent color reproduction but often don’t offer the same refresh rates as TN panels. TN panels, while not offering the same color quality, are usually cheaper.

There’s also the matter of aspect ratio. While 16:9 was long the standard, boxier 16:10 and 3:2 aspect ratios are becoming more common. They deliver more screen real estate and often remove the bottom bezel, making the laptop appear a lot more modern on top of giving you more space to operate.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Cale Hunt is a staff writer at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on PC, laptop, accessory coverage, and the emerging world of VR. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.

Daniel Rubino is the executive editor of Windows Central. He has been covering Microsoft since 2009, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Surface, HoloLens, Xbox, and future computing visions. Follow him on Twitter: @daniel_rubino.

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.

How to find out the diagonal of a laptop

To find out the diagonal of a laptop screen, look at its technical specifications on the Internet, measure the display with a tape measure and convert centimeters to inches, or use the capabilities of the AIDA64 program.

Notebook information

All notebooks have technical decals. Look carefully, perhaps the screen diagonal is also indicated there. What are the options? 10.1, 11.6, 12, 14 inches, etc. For example, 17.3 inches is almost 50 centimeters, because 1 inch = 2.54 cm.In order not to suffer from converting inches to centimeters and back, use the table:

If there is no information about the screen size on the laptop case, try to find out its diagonal from the documents that were in the box when you bought the laptop. By the way, the physical size of the display is almost always written on the box itself, so if you haven’t thrown it away, you can easily find the information you need.

If you know the exact model of a laptop, you can see its technical characteristics on the manufacturer’s website or in any online store.It is better to use information from the manufacturer’s website; no matter what online stores are known, sometimes errors are encountered on them.

Manual measurement

If you do not know the model of the laptop, and there are no identification inscriptions or stickers on the case, then try to measure the diagonal manually. You will need a long ruler, tape measure or meter. If you are using a tape measure, do not press it against the display to avoid accidentally damaging the screen.

Only the area where the picture is displayed needs to be measured.The bezels around the screen do not count towards the diagonal, so there is no need to increase the size by adding them. If there is no inch scale on the tape measure, it’s okay: divide the resulting value in centimeters by 2.54 to find the diagonal in inches, or use the table above. What are the options, look at any online store.

Using the AIDA64 program

If the ruler was not found at home, you can use the software. Install the AIDA64 program on the laptop.This program scans the computer and displays all technical specifications, including the diagonal of the display. AIDA64 is a paid utility, but demo access is available for 30 days. A month is definitely enough to perform the following actions:

  1. Start AIDA64. Go to the “Display” tab and select “Monitor”.
  2. In the “Monitor Type” line, look at the size in inches.

The window will contain some more useful information: aspect ratio, maximum resolution, frame rate, even the release date.Therefore, in terms of information content, there is nothing better than AIDA64.

An updated line of RedmiBook laptops on 10th generation Intel Core processors is presented (4 photos) »24Gadget.Ru :: Gadgets and technologies

The engineers of Redmi, one of the most popular Xiaomi brands, have announced the launch of an updated lineup of compact yet high-performance Redmibook 16 and RedmiBook 14 II laptops, powered by the latest 10nm Ice Lake 10nm Intel Core processors from the 10nm family.Users will also be able to choose laptops with discrete graphics cards and SSD drives.

Laptops of the RedmiBook 16 line receive an IPS screen with a diagonal of 16.1 inches (1920 × 1080). The usable area occupied by the screen is 90%. The computer hardware runs on Intel Core i5-1035G1 or Intel Core i7-1065G7 processors, and either the integrated Intel Iris Plus or the discrete NVIDIA GeForce MX350 graphics card (2 GB of GDDR5 video memory) is responsible for graphics processing.

The amount of RAM (DDR4-3200) and built-in SSD-memory for all modifications of the RedmiBook 16 line is the same and is 16 GB and 512 GB, respectively.Wireless communication is supported using Wi-Fi 802.11ax 2 × 2 MIMO (2.4GHz and 5GHz) and Bluetooth 5.1. Laptops have the following connectors: one USB 3.1 Gen1, one USB 2.0, two USB-C, one HDMI 1.4, and a 3.5 headphone / microphone jack.

Autonomous operation of RedmiBook 16 series laptops is provided by a 46 Wh battery, which allows you to work without recharging for 12 hours when watching offline videos, 9 hours when watching online videos or about 8.5 hours when working on the Internet.The laptops are equipped with 65W chargers that provide fast charging from 0 to 50% in just half an hour. The weight of the device with overall dimensions of 367.20 × 232.86 × 17.55 mm is 1.8 kg.

Laptops RedmiBook 14 II are a logical development of the devices presented in 2019 and receive 14-inch (1920 × 1080) Full HD screens with 100% sRGB with brightness ranging from 250 to 300 nits.

The hardware of the RedmiBook 14 II laptops is powered by the latest Intel Core i5-1035G1 or i7-1065G7 processors and NVIDIA GeForce MX350 discrete graphics (2GB DDR5 memory).The built-in SSD memory for all modifications comes in 512 GB, and the RAM (DDR4 3200 MHz) can be either 8 GB or 16 GB.

Wireless communication is carried out with support for Wi-Fi 6 technologies (Wi-Fi 802.11ax 2 × 2 MIMO (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz)) and Bluetooth 5.1. Also, laptops provide the following connectors: one USB 3.1 Gen1, one USB 2.0, two USB-C and one HDMI 1.4. As in the older model, a combined 3.5 mm headphone or microphone port is provided.The weight of the RedmiBook 14 II is 1.3 kg, and the overall dimensions are 320.51 × 203.1 × 16.85 mm.

Autonomous operation is provided by a 40 Wh battery, and the included 65 W fast charger will provide recharging via USB Type-C from 0 to 50% in just 28 minutes. When watching videos offline, a full battery charge will last for 10.5 hours, when watching streaming video, the battery life will be 8.5 hours, and when working on the Internet – about 7.5 hours.

Laptop models RedmiBook 14 II in silver and RedmiBook 16 in gray will go on sale on 15 July. The cost of notebooks of the RedmiBook 16 line with an Intel Core i5 processor and 16 GB of RAM and 512 GB of ROM will be $ 712. The RedmiBook 16 model (Core i7 and 16/512 GB) is priced at $ 812. For the RedmiBook 14 II lineup, the following prices are provided: a model with a Core i5 processor and 8/512 GB of memory – $ 669, a laptop with a Core i5 and 16/512 GB will go on sale at a price of $ 712.The RedmiBook 14 II with a Core i7 processor is priced at $ 769 for the 8/512 GB model and $ 812 for the 16/512 GB memory configuration.

Source: fonearena

RTCOMM connects rural libraries of the Rostov region to high-speed satellite Internet

Technodrive: RTCOMM connects rural libraries of the Rostov region to high-speed satellite Internet

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RTCOMM connects rural libraries of the Rostov region to high-speed satellite Internet

September 8, 2020According to the information of TECHNODRIVE , as a result of the won tenders and contracts concluded on this basis, RTCOMM connected access to high-speed satellite Internet to municipal budgetary cultural institutions – the libraries of the Milyutinsky and Volgodonsky districts of the Rostov region.

According to experts TECHNODRIVE, in the future it will help the teams of educational institutions located in remote and hard-to-reach areas of the subject to organize a modern leisure space integrated into the electronic educational ecosystem of the country, offering visitors digital services designed to search and read books in electronic format and the ability to access digital content using broadband Internet.

General Director of RTCOMM Sergey Ratiev commented:

– Over time and under the influence of external objective factors, the role of the rural library in the modern world has seriously changed. In addition to the function of preserving the best examples of world and domestic literature in paper format for new generations of readers, now the library is also a cultural and educational space, a place for organizing and conducting leisure activities, for the preparation of which you need access to a variety of media content, which is impossible without high-speed Internet.Where this problem cannot be solved using classical wire communication networks, RTCOMM will provide satellite data transmission channels and organize the required number of connection points with full service support of the project.

Contracts with rural libraries were concluded in order to implement activities of the subprogram “Development of culture” of the state program of the Rostov region “Development of culture and tourism”.

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Denis Nivnikov

Just a few years ago, it was not easy to find a laptop with a case that was not black. Now most modern laptops have silver cases, so the radically black Virtus NS302 of the Russian company Aquarius tested in our laboratory looks unusual and outlandish against their background.

Nevertheless, in support of the thesis that everything new is well forgotten old, the design of Virtus NS302 looks quite modern and stylish.With an irregularly shaped LCD screen mount, a silver-colored touchpad and programmable buttons, and miniature colored LEDs on the front edge of the case, this laptop is sure to appeal to those looking for the look of a laptop.

Its “filling” also meets the most modern requirements. The machine is based on the second modification of the Centrino platform (Sonoma), and its motherboard is equipped with an Intel 915GM chipset. The developers of the Virtus NS302 were guided by the principle of reasonable sufficiency: this laptop is equipped with a 1.6 GHz Pentium M processor with a 400 MHz bus and 333 MHz DDR memory of the first generation (total RAM is 512 MB).

The Virtus NS302 disk subsystem consists of a 60GB hard drive and a DVD-ROM / CD-RW combo drive. In addition, the laptop is equipped with an adapter for flash memory cards – it allows you to use SD / MMC cards and Memory Stick. The communication means of this laptop are quite traditional for Centrino laptops: it is equipped with a software 56-kbps modem, 10/100-Mbps Ethernet adapter Realtek 8139 and Intel PRO / Wireless 2200BG wireless module, allowing Virtus NS302 to work in radio networks of the format 802.11b or 802.11g.

The Intel GMA 900 graphics controller integrated into the motherboard chipset allows you to display the image on the laptop LCD screen or via the VGA connector to an external monitor (maximum resolution 2048×1536). The possibility of simultaneous use of two displays is provided. The laptop is equipped with a 12.1-inch widescreen LCD with a resolution of 1280×800 (16:10 aspect ratio). It is perfect for both working with office documents and watching DVDs – in the latter case, the ability to output audio through the digital S / PDIF connector may be useful.

Due to the use of dual-channel memory controller mode (Virtus NS302 has two 256-MB modules), this laptop is practically equal in performance to models equipped with DDR2 and Pentium M CPU with 533-MHz bus. PC Magazine Multimedia Content Creation Winstone 2004 and Business Winstone 2004 scored 20 and 17.7 points for its performance. This strategy of choosing components allowed for a low cost and impressive battery life – in the Business Winstone 2004 Battery Mark test, the laptop worked on battery power for almost 5 hours (4 hours 51 minutes).

Virtus NS302 is very compact (its dimensions are only 303x240x38 mm) and light – 2.2 kg (the power supply will add another 0.4 kg). Nevertheless, the ergonomics of the laptop are very good, the developers even managed to equip it with a keyboard with 19-mm key spacing. A button is provided to disable the wireless network adapter, all connectors and ports are thoughtfully placed and easily accessible. The laptop is equipped with three USB 2.0 ports (two of them on the right panel), one FireWire port (on the front panel, like the audio connectors), a PC Card slot (on the left panel next to the optical drive tray).

The Aquarius Virtus NS302 laptop has good performance, excellent multimedia capabilities and striking design. It is perfect for those users who need a relatively inexpensive laptop that is lightweight and compact enough not to become a burden when traveling.

Complete list of all models in 2021

By Egor Borisov Reading 16 min. Views 4.7k. Posted on

The Redmi sub-brand has been actively producing laptops over the past years.The devices are equipped with high-quality screens and powerful processors. Most models are powered by Intel Core processors, but there are Ryzen options as well. In this article, we will take a closer look at each laptop.

List of all laptops Redmi (Xiaomi)

Below there will be a detailed overview of all laptop models from the Xiaomi sub-brand – Redmi. In a separate article, we talked about Xiaomi branded laptops.

RedmiBook Pro 15

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Fresh novelty from the Redmi sub-brand, presented in early 2021. The device is offered in three modifications: two basic versions on the i5-11300H and one top-end version on the i7-11370H. The RAM is soldered on the board and is 16 gigabytes (expansion is not possible), SSD – 512 GB.

15.6-inch screen has 3.5K high resolution, refresh rate at 90 hertz. The case is made of aluminum, the dimensions are 35.1×24.23×1.79 cm. There is a Wi-Fi 6 Thunderbolt 4 multi-connector.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 15.6 ″, 3200×2000.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-11300H / i7-11370H.
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX450 or Intel Iris Xe.
  • RAM 16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.1.
  • Ports: Thunderbolt 4, YUSB 3.2, YUSB 2.0, YUSB Type-C, HDMI, 3.5 jack.
  • Dimensions: 35.1×24.23×1.79 cm, 1.79 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Super Retina display

Aluminum housing

Single graphics card

Quick charge

Stereo sound and webcam

No floppy drive

RedmiBook Pro 14

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This is a light version of RedmiBook Pro 15. The main difference is the smaller 14-inch screen. Despite its compact size, the laptop has a full-size keyboard.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 14 ″, 2560×1600.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-1135G7 / i7-1165G7.
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX450 or Iris Xe Graphics G7 80EUs.
  • RAM 16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.1.
  • Ports: Thunderbolt 4, YUSB 3.2, YUSB 2.0, YUSB Type-C, HDMI, 3.5 jack.
  • Dimensions: 31.5x22x1.7 cm, 1.46 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Intel Core 11th

Full-size keyboard

All-metal case

Fingerprint scanner

Refresh rate 60 Hz

No drive

RedmiBook Air 13

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Modern ultrabook from the Redmi sub-brand. With a weight of 1 kg and a diagonal of 13 inches, this laptop can be taken on the road. There are three versions from Intel to choose from:

  1. Core i5-10210Y with 8GB RAM.
  2. Core i5-10210Y with 16GB RAM.
  3. Core i7-105100Y with 16GB RAM.

In all cases, the integrated graphics card Graphics 615 is used. This model is suitable for everyday purposes.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 13.3 ″, 2560 × 1600.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-10210Y / i7-105100Y.
  • Graphics: UHD Graphics 615.
  • RAM 8/16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0.
  • Ports: two USB Type-C, 3.5 jack.
  • Dimensions: 29.8 x 21.2 x 1.3 cm, 1.05 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Compactness

Aluminum case

WiFi 6

Pre-installed Windows 10 Home

No keyboard backlight

Integrated graphics

Low CPU frequency

Redmi G Gaming Laptop

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Gaming laptop made in an interesting brutal design. Separately, I would like to note the very thin frames. The diagonal of the screen is 16.1 inches with a resolution of 1920 × 1080. The screen refresh rate is 144 hertz.

There is a top-end modification with a six-core Intel Cor i7-10750H and GeForce GTX 1650 Ti. The middle version is equipped with a quad-core Intel Cor i5-10300H. Simplified modification is offered with Intel Core i5-10200H and GeForce GTX 1650.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 16.1 ″, 1920 × 1080.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-10200H / i5-10300H / i7-10750H.
  • Graphics: GeForce GTX 1650 Ti or GeForce GTX 1650.
  • RAM 16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.1.
  • Ports: two YUSB2, Type-C, YUSB 2.0, 3.5 jack, Ethernet, HDMI 2.0, Mini DP 1.4.
  • Dimensions: 37.3 x 26.4 x 2.4 cm, weight 2.5 kg.
  • Material: Plastic.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Possible memory upgrade

Diagonal 16.1 inch

Fast 180-watt charging

Refresh rate 144 Hz

Up to 5 monitors can be connected

Stereo sound

Weak video card

Discharge 3 in 5 hours

Discharge3 in 5 hours

Plastic housing

RedmiBook 16 (Intel & Ryzen Edition)

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This is a mid-range model. The characteristics of the laptop are pretty good. There are two versions: Intel Cor and Reisen Edishn. In the first case, Intel Cor i5-1035G1 or Intel Cor i7-1065G7 with a discrete video card GeForce MX350 is used. In the second – Reisen 5 4500U or Reisen 7 4700U with integrated graphics Vega 6 or Vega 7. All modifications come with 16 GB of RAM and 512 GB SSD.

The diagonal of the screen is 16.1 inches with a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels. The body is made of aluminum.There is only gray.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 16.1 ″, 1920×1080.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G1 / i7-1065G7, Ryzen 5 4500U / Ryzen 7 4700U.
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX350, AMD Radeon Vega 6 or Vega 7.
  • RAM 16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0.
  • Ports: two USB-C, YUSB-A 2.0, YUSB-A 3.0, 3.5 jack, HDMI0.
  • Dimensions: 36.72 x 23.29 x 1.75 cm, weight – 1.8 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Aluminum housing

Quick charge

Multiple performance modes

Discrete graphics

Low display brightness

Non-backlit keyboard

RedmiBook 13 (Intel & Ryzen Edition)

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A small laptop from Xiaomi Redmi with a diagonal of 13 inches.There is a version with an Intel Cor i5-10210U / i7-10510U and Ryzen 5 4500U / 7 4700U processor. You can purchase a modification with 8 or 16 GB of RAM. The SSD capacity is 512GB or 1TB.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 13.3 ″, 1920 × 1080.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-10210U / i7-10510U, Ryzen 5 4500U / Ryzen 7 4700U.
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX250, AMD Radeon Vega 6 or Vega 7.
  • RAM 8/16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0.
  • Ports: two YUSB1 Gen1, 3.5 jack, mini HDMI.
  • Dimensions: 30.7 x 19 x 1.7 cm, weight – 1.2 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Intel Core 10th / AMD Ryzen 4000

Compactness

Discrete video card

Aluminum case

Fast charge

Stereo speakers

Office Student edition

Average screen quality

No webcam 9000 Hz

RedmiBook 14 II (Intel & Ryzen Edition)

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Another series of Xiaomi Redmi laptops based on AMD and Intel. These are also 14-inch ultrabooks, presented in two versions. You can choose from a modification with Intel Core i5-1035G1 and i7-1065G7 with discrete graphics NVIDIA GeForce MX250, or Reisen 5 4500U and Reisen 7 4700U with integrated video cards Vega 7, Vega 6 and Vega 8.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 14 ″, 1920 × 1080.
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G1 / i7-1065G7, Ryzen 5 4500U / Ryzen 7 4700U.
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX350, AMD Radeon Vega 6, Vega 7 and Vega 8.
  • RAM 8/16 GB, SSD 512 GB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0.
  • Ports: two Type-C, USB 2.0 Type A, YUSB1 Type A, HDMI.
  • Dimensions: 32×20.3×1.6 cm, weight – 1.3 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Compactness

Discrete graphics

Battery life for 12 hours

Metal cover

No keyboard backlight

Not suitable for games

Refresh rate 60 Hz

RedmiBook 14 (Ryzen & Enhanced Edition)

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This is a 14-inch ultrabook, presented in a large number of modifications. There is a Basic Edition on an 8th Gen Intel Core, an Enhanced Edition on a 10th Gen Intel Core, and a Ryzen Edition on an AMD Ryzen 3000 series.

Main characteristics :

  • Display: 14 ″, 1920 × 1080.
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-8565U / i5-8265U / i5-10210U / i7-10510U, Ryzen 5 3500U / Ryzen 7 3700U.
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX250, Intel UHD Graphics 620, AMD Radeon Vega 8 and Vega 10.
  • RAM 4/8/16 GB, SSD 256/512 GB / 1 TB.
  • Communications: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0.
  • Ports: two YUSB 3.2 gen1, YUSB 2.0, HDMI.
  • Dimensions: 32.2×22.8×1.8 cm, weight – 1.5 kg.
  • Material: Aluminum.
  • OS: Windows 10 Home.

Many modifications

Discrete video card

1 TB SSD

Compact size

Metal case

Average color rendering

No USB-C

No webcam

FAQ

Where to get drivers for Xiaomi and Redmi laptops?

If the laptop is sold with Windows 10 preinstalled, the required drivers are already available, or they will be loaded automatically when the device is first started.If a driver is missing, you can download it yourself from the official Mi.com website.

Which model should you buy for everyday use?

From the novelties, take a look at the RedmiBook Pro 15 and 14. If you need a compact model, the RedmiBook Air 13 will do.

Why isn’t the Redmi laptop charging?

Most likely the reason is the outlet. Check if it is de-energized. Also make sure you are using a working original power supply.If the problem still persists, contact the service center.

Who Needs Gaming Laptops?

Gaming laptops should be purchased only for gamers, since these devices are designed specifically for modern games and have some specific characteristics. If you just need a powerful laptop for work, design, video editing, etc. – pay attention to the Pro line.

We have reviewed all Redmi notebooks in detail. The assortment is quite large, so the user can choose the option that suits him.Which model interested you?

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