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The Top 9 Best Laptops in 2021
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The Top 9 Best Laptops in 2021 

These are the best laptops for business, gaming, graphic design, and other purposes.

These best laptops are powerful, but they are also portable. They can do whatever a desktop PC can, but you can throw it in a suitcase and go anywhere you want. Laptops have everything you look for in a PC, such as a built-in screen, keyboard, trackpad, storage, and other features. Because of additional design and cooling concerns, they are frequently more costly than their desktop counterparts. Figuring out how to fit everything contained in a computer tower into the body of a laptop takes a lot of engineering.

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Naturally, this makes upgrading laptops more difficult. That is why it is critical to get a laptop that will grow with you. You’ll want to obtain as many specs as possible out of your initial buy. You can add external computer displays, keyboards, and external hard drives to laptops, but this reduces the portability that brought you to a laptop in the first place.

Our specialists reviewed many laptops and selected our favourites if you’re looking for the best laptop for your money. Please continue reading to learn about our choices.

Overall winner: Dell XPS 13 7390 (2020)

The Dell XPS laptop series has always been one of the best on the market, and the 7390 2-in-1 model is no exception. This model contains a 10th generation Core-i7 processor, 32GB of DDR4 RAM, and 512GB of internal storage. Despite the lack of a dedicated GPU, all of this adds up to a sleek and powerful laptop. It only requires a strong GPU for high-end jobs like video editing and certain AAA games, but it will do it for most everyday tasks.

The 7390’s minimalist design, constructed of aviation aluminium and carbon fibre, appealed to our reviewer Bilal. He also praised the display’s 1920 x 1200 resolution, calling it “crisp and colour accurate, with good viewing angles.” In terms of performance tests, the laptop performs admirably in PCMark 10 Work 2.0 (4,139) and GFX Bench (8,878). The battery will last around 10 hours, which is sufficient for a day’s worth of work.

You can charge the laptop through one of two USB-C ports, which, combined with a 3.5mm headphone jack and an SD card reader, make up the device’s complete I/O. We recommend getting a USB Hub to go with it if you want to plug anything else in. Our reviewer praised the “expansive and responsive” keyboard and trackpad for the remainder of the laptop. On the other hand, he had some issues with the fingerprint reader. Overall, the Dell XPS 13 7390 isn’t the newest laptop on the market, but it’s the one that we believe delivers the best balance of power and affordability, earning it our top pick.

SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 13.4 Inches
RESOLUTION 1900x1200px
CPU Intel Core i7-1065G7
GPU GPU: Intel Iris Plus Graphics (i7)
RAM 32 GB
STORAGE 512 GB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN Yes

Pros

  • Thin and light
  • Great display
  • Outstanding keyboard and trackpad
  • Awesome battery life

Cons

  • No discrete GPU
  • Bad fingerprint sensor
  • Minimal ports

Apple MacBook Air 13-inch (M1, 2020): The best ultraportable

With its M1 chip, Apple has gone all-in. Apple has used the M1 chip in desktops, laptops, All-in-One PCs, and the iPad since its introduction with the Macbook Air. That demonstrates the M1 chip’s capability. Running native applications or x86 apps through its Rosetta 2 compatibility layer can compete with any CPU on the market.
Both the Magic Keyboard and the Trackpad are fantastic. The visuals are bright, crisp, and dense. “A stunning 13.3-inch Retina display with a native 2560×1600 resolution, 400 nits of brightness, and Apple’s proprietary True Tone feature,” says our reviewer Bilal. We’d like to see a touchscreen on the Macbook Air, but because no Macbook has ever had one, we can’t be too critical of its absence. Apple says that the Air has an all-day battery life, but our reviewer found it a modest estimate. According to his tests, the battery can last up to 12 hours of uninterrupted movie playback.
The lack of evolution between the previous and current generations of laptops was one area of dissatisfaction. The lack of ports, comically bad camera and general design are the same as the prior iteration. While the M1 Macbook Air is a step forward, the innovation is entirely inside, with the same drab appearance. In essence, you can buy the Macbook Air M1, but the M1 processor is the sole incentive to do so over the Intel-powered device before it. That may be sufficient, but we’d want to see more external changes to take advantage of the new silicon.
SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 13.3 Inches
RESOLUTION 2560×1600 px
CPU Apple M1
GPU Apple 8-core GPU
RAM 8GB
STORAGE 256GB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN No

Pros

  • Great performance
  • Rosetta 2
  • Excellent keyboard
  • Beautiful display
  • Perfect battery life

Cons

  • I/O options are limited
  • Webcam is bad
  • Same design as the previous generation
  • No touchscreen

Microsoft Surface Laptop 4: The best laptop for college students

The Surface lineup has exemplified clean and superior design since Microsoft joined the hardware space. The Surface Laptop 4 isn’t any different. The soft Alcantara coating on both colour options provides the keyboard and trackpad with a luxurious appearance and feel, even though it is challenging to keep clean. Although our reviewer found the trackpad to be big and snappy, the keyboard bent quite slightly, giving it a less expensive feel than the build indicates.
The Laptop 3 through the Laptop 4 is similar to that of the Macbook Air above. Both laptops feature a subpar display that lacks brightness and colour saturation, and none has LTE built-in.

With this latest generation of laptops, you do get high-quality audio. According to one of our reviewers, “The speakers on the Surface Laptop 4 are loud and punchy. The lows, mids, and highs are well separated, avoiding the muddy sound that many laptops produce when the speaker level approaches maximum. Because there is no subwoofer, the bass can sound flat, but the Laptop 4 adds some depth without overpowering the rest of the tune.”

You also get excellent battery life, thanks to modern AMD and Intel CPUs. The base storage is likewise 256 Gb, which is double that of the Laptop 3. Overall, this is an outstanding laptop to purchase new, but it isn’t enough improvement if you already own a Surface Laptop 3.

SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 13.5 Inches
RESOLUTION 2256×1504 px
CPU AMD Ryzen 4680U or Intel Core i5/i7
GPU AMD Radeon Graphics or Intel Iris Plus Graphics
RAM 8GB, 16GB, 32GB RAM
STORAGE 256GB, 512GB, 1TB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN Yes

Pros

  • Beautiful design
  • Useful 3:2 aspect ratio
  • Good performance
  • Responsive trackpad
  • Surprisingly good audio

Cons

  • Same design
  • Flex in the keyboard
  • No LTE
  • Lacklustre display

Acer Predator Triton 300 SE: The best laptop for power

The Acer Predator Triton 300 SE is a laptop designed for gamers yet with a professional look. While many gaming laptops attempt to look the part with beautiful design and RGB all over the place, the Triton appears to be a laptop used in the office. An 11th-generation Core i7 CPU, up to 32GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD drive are all included. The laptop also comes with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card, which makes it scream.
According to our reviewer, the Triton 300 SE is a gaming laptop with a 14-inch FHD display and speakers that “carry a sonic punch,” which isn’t something you typically hear about laptop speakers. The laptop has excellent Wi-Fi speeds, especially when it’s not connected to the router. From his separate office, our tester experienced outstanding download and streaming speeds. The battery life isn’t great, clocking in at only 3.5 hours. In a laptop with a discrete GPU, we’d want to see a larger battery.

The majority of our quibbles regarding the laptop are minor. Because all of the ports are towards the front of the machine, cable management becomes an issue. Our reviewer also noticed a lot of pre-installed software on the laptop, commonly referred to as “bloatware.” But if you can get beyond it, you’ll find a great-looking laptop with incredible power and specs that are perfect for gaming or video editing.

SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 14 Inches
RESOLUTION 1920×1080 px
CPU Intel Core i7-11375H
GPU Nvidia RTX 3060
RAM 8GB, 16GB, 32GB RAM
STORAGE 512GB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN No

Pros

  • Small and light
  • Impressive display
  • Great performance
  • Excellent wireless connectivity

Cons

  • Port locations are annoying
  • Bad battery life
  • Bloatware

Razer Blade 15: The best gaming laptop (2021)

Razer is a well-known name in the gaming computer hardware industry, and the Razer Blade is the company’s flagship laptop. Our choice has a 10th-generation Core-i CPU, 16GB of RAM, a 144Hz display, and a discrete NVidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU. That’s a lot of processing power packed into a gaming laptop.
The RGB colours that flow through the keyboard’s backlight always give a laptop a stylish appearance. Top-firing speakers are located on either side of the keyboard; according to our reviewer, “Game and media sounds, as well as music, are delivered professionally. They’re clear and, luckily, maintain that way even at high volume levels, which the Razer Blade can do.”

All of this comes at a cost since the laptop itself weighs over five pounds. The laptop’s design hasn’t changed much over the years, which might be good or bad depending on your preferences. The discrete GPU also eats up a lot of battery life, so keep near to a power outlet if you’re on the road. The most disappointing missing component on this pc is the utter lack of biometric login. There is no fingerprint reader and no camera that is compatible with Windows Hello.

In general, this is a solid gaming laptop. The CPU is the only component that is a generation behind. The RTX 3060 pushes things along, so there isn’t much difference between 10th and 11th generation CPUs. It’s a fantastic choice if you’re searching for a powerful gaming laptop.

Specs:

Screen Size: 15.6 Inches | 

Resolution: 1920×1080 

CPU: Intel Core i7-10750H 

GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 

RAM: 16GB 

Storage: 512GB SSD 

Touchscreen: No

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Discrete GPU
  • 144 Hz screen
  • Front-facing speakers

Cons

  • Dated design
  • Very heavy
  • Battery life is bad
  • No fingerprint or face login
SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 15.6 Inches
RESOLUTION 1920×1080 px
CPU Intel Core i7-10750H
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
RAM 16 GB
STORAGE 512GB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN No

Pros

  • Discrete GPU
  • 144 Hz screen
  • Front-facing speakers

Cons

  • Dated design
  • Very heavy
  • Battery life is bad
  • No fingerprint or face login

Microsoft Surface Laptop Go The best Microsoft’s ultraportable offering.

Microsoft’s ultraportable offering is the Surface Laptop Go. The Surface Laptop Go follows in the footsteps of the Surface line of laptops in terms of design. Compared to 16:9 or 16:10 aspect ratios, the 3:2 aspect ratio provides you with more screen real estate. Along with the screen, you get a keyboard and trackpad from our reviewer, which he says is “silent and tactile with soft, almost sumptuous keycaps,” and the trackpad is one of the best he has seen on a laptop this small.

Naturally, a small and light laptop comes with trade-offs. There’s also only one USB-A and USB-C connector, as well as a headphone jack. Due to a lack of ventilation and overall thermal management, the laptop also tends to get hot. In GFXBench, the laptop gets a respectable 5,378 points, which is impressive given the Core-i5 CPU and 8GB of RAM. This ultraportable’s touchscreen is a pleasant surprise. According to our reviewer, the resolution is “very crisp,” and the colours are “bright and realistic with superb contrast,” according to our reviewer.

In other words, don’t expect this laptop to perform any heavy work, and don’t expect to run any AAA games on it. It is, nevertheless, a productivity machine that can easily tackle medium-light tasks. However, portability is where it truly excels. It’s a good size and weight, which are two crucial characteristics of a portable laptop. Another consideration is battery life, which is easily 13 hours. It’s an excellent option if you’re a regular traveller or frequently work at coffee shops.

Specs:

Screen Size: 12.4 Inches | 

Resolution: 1536×1024 

CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G1 

GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 

RAM: 8GB 

Storage: 128GB SSD 

Touchscreen: Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Thin and light
  • Great design
  • Useful 3:2 aspect ratio
  • Touchscreen
  • Great keyboard and trackpad

Cons

  • Underpowered
  • Gets hot
  • Not a lot of ports
  • Bad camera
SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 12.4 Inches
RESOLUTION 1536×1024 px
CPU Intel Core i5-1035G1
GPU Intel UHD Graphics
RAM 8 GB
STORAGE 128GB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN Yes

Pros

  • Thin and light
  • Great design
  • Useful 3:2 aspect ratio
  • Touchscreen
  • Great keyboard and trackpad

Cons

  • Underpowered
  • Gets hot
  • Not a lot of ports
  • Bad camera

Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020): The best laptop for professionals

When Apple unveiled the M1 processor in late 2020, it also revealed the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro. The MacBook Pro, on the other hand, is meant to push the M1 processor even harder. It features a fan for cooling and an additional core in the CPU, which makes a significant impact. It’s a tad thicker, a bit heavier, and a lot more powerful than its younger sibling.

One of the computer’s best features is the display. Alice, one of our reviewers, wrote: “Apple’s 13-inch 2560×1600 Retina display continues to wow, but this time with True Tone technology, which debuted on the 9.7-inch iPad Pro and it’s been featured on every subsequent iteration. This intriguing piece of technology employs four separate sensors to automatically alter the white balance of your display based on the lighting conditions. This technology isn’t about packing in more pixels per inch or boosting resolution; it’s about refining colour clarity and accuracy to a razor’s edge to deliver the most accurate image imaginable.”

In 2019, Apple updated its keyboards, and the MacBook Pro continues to employ the same scissor switches, which provide excellent travel and tactility. This Macbook’s battery life is insane. Our reviewer tested the battery for 18 hours of 4K streaming at maximum brightness. That’s completely insane. Professionals, artists, and gamers will appreciate Apple’s ever-growing collection of ARM-compatible applications.

SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 13.3 Inches
RESOLUTION 2560×1600 px
CPU Apple M1
GPU Apple 8-core
RAM 8 GB
STORAGE 256GB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN No

Pros

  • Great battery life
  • Top-notch performance
  • Retina display
  • Top-notch trackpad and keyboard

Cons

  • No touchscreen
  • Not a lot of ports
  • Base storage should start higher

ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14: The best design

The ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 offers the trifecta of power, mobility, and performance to our REVIEWER. He put the laptop to the test and declared it “an excellent computer by any definition.” Let’s take a closer look at those claims and discover what this laptop has to offer.

The AMD Ryzen 9 CPU and GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q graphics card provide the power needed. Our expert claims that you get lightning response times when combining that with the 16GB of RAM and 1TB M.2 NWMe PCIe SSD.

This laptop features a 14-inch display, which results in a compact footprint when it comes to portability. Although 14 inches is a touch smaller than we want in a gaming computer (which the ROG brand is renowned for), it’s a solid compromise. The battery will last you 10 hours, even with the discrete GPU, which is excellent for a gaming laptop.

When it comes to value, you get an excellent keyboard and trackpad, as well as a 120Hz display and all of the above power and portability for a reasonable price. It’s a great bargain; you’ll hard push to find a better deal at this price.

SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 14 Inches
RESOLUTION 1920x1080 px
CPU AMD Ryzen 9 4900HS
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
RAM 16 GB
STORAGE 1TB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN No

Pros

  • The keyboard and trackpad are awesome
  • Very nice design
  • 120Hz display
  • Good value

Cons

  • No Webcam

HP Spectre x360 15t: The best laptop for photo editing.

Photographers spend a lot of time gazing through their camera lens, but they spend even more time looking at the computer screen. One of the most delicate screens available is on the HP Spectre x360. It’s a full 4K display that our reviewer praises for being “remarkably sharp, and the colours to be rich and strong,” even though it doesn’t get as bright as he like.

Aside from that, it’s a 2-in-1 computer, meaning the laptop can be converted into a tablet, although a hefty one at little over four pounds. However, tablet and tent modes might be helpful for picture editing. According to our expert, the keyboard is “very comfy for extended typing sessions,” and the USB ports on the corners of the laptop are beautiful.

This laptop gets heated when performing challenging tasks, and the fans kick up, making it loud. The laptop’s GPU is also a touch outdated, but 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a 10th generation core-i7 processor will keep you going for all of your lengthy picture editing sessions.

SPECS
SCREEN SIZE 15.6 Inches
RESOLUTION 3840×2160 px
CPU Intel Core i7-10750H
GPU Nvidia GTX 1650Ti
RAM 16 GB
STORAGE 1TB SSD
TOUCH SCREEN Yes

Pros

  • Striking design
  • Convertible to a tablet
  • 4k display
  • Awesome keyboard

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Noisy and hot
Conclusion
When purchasing a laptop, consider how you’ll use it and look for features and specs that match your requirements. What distinguishes a model as the most OK laptop? Because everyone has diverse preferences, there isn’t a list of universal requirements that define a decent laptop. Some individuals want the biggest laptop they can buy for a specific budget, while others like the most powerful laptop they can obtain (regardless of the price).

As a general rule, search for a system with at least 8 GB of RAM, a current-generation processor (Intel’s 11th generation), and SSD storage. A full-size keyboard, at least two USB 3.0 ports (which are speedier than USB 2.0), at least one HDMI connector, audio connections for headphones and speakers, and long battery life are all characteristics to look for.

Verdict
The Dell XPS 13 is the best overall laptop on this list, in our opinion. The perfect blend of power, design, and price results in a fantastic device with a fantastic keyboard. We’re suckers for a good keyboard around here, but that’s just the frosting on the cake.
If you want something more portable, the Apple MacBook Air is the way to go. Despite its ultra-portability, this gadget packs a surprising amount of power. The MacBook Air is only going to grow better as more developers create native ARM apps for Mac.
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