Best Laptops in 2020 (April Reviews)

When you begin the process of shopping for a laptop, finding the best laptops in 2020 can often lead to more questions than answers. Do you want a Chromebook? An ultrabook? A two-in-one computer like a desktop? A Windows or Macintosh machine? A thin and lightweight laptop or one that provides a large display screen and large battery? Quite a few different categories are available in today’s laptop market, giving you many options to find the exact portable computer that will meet your needs.

Best Laptops
Discover which are the best laptops, why we picked them and what you should know before you buy.

But perhaps you’re just seeking a good, all-around computer that can provide versatility in a few different areas of computing. Making use of these top 2020 laptops will give you good results overall in performance and feature sets, although you may not have top-of-the-line performance in any particular area of computing. Check out the best gaming laptop list for more advanced setups.

#1 Pick Dell XPS 13

Dell XPS 13 best laptop 2015
The Dell XPS 13 is easily one of the best laptops for 2020, thanks to the manufacturer’s ability to provide high-end features in a thin model.

Price: $939 | Read Full Review: Dell XPS 13 reviewScreen Resolution: 3200×1800 | TouchscreenSome models

WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: A powerful machine with a beautifully uncompromising design.

Dell provides its infinityEdge technology with the Dell XPS 13, allowing the manufacturer to place a 13-inch display in a laptop size that normally would house an 11-inch display. The screen resolution offers 5.7 million pixels at 276 pixels per inch for an impressive view as we discovered in our Dell XPS 13 review. The display has a 170-degree viewing angle, and a touchscreen configuration is an option too.

As with most of the best Windows laptops, the XPS 13 has a fast boot of several seconds because of its solid state drive. The unit’s keyboard has a backlight to benefit typing in low-light conditions. Dell did not include an optical drive with the XPS 13, but it does have an SD memory card reader and two USB 3.0 ports. The thin and lightweight unit measures only 0.6 inches at its thickest point and weighs about 2.8 pounds.

View on Amazon – $939

#2 Pick  Microsoft Surface Book

Microsoft Surface Book best laptops 2015
The Microsoft Surface Book offers the best of both a tablet and a laptop while maintaining strong computing functions, making it one of 2019’s best laptops.

Price: $1,499 | Screen Resolution: 3000×2000 | TouchscreenYes

WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: Two for the price of three; power, versatility and a tablet.

The Microsoft Surface Book ranks both as one of 2020‘s best laptops and as a best laptop for college students, thanks in large part to its two-for-one capabilities. You can use the versatile Surface Book as a standard notebook with a backlit keyboard and as a standalone tablet. The 13.5-inch display screen is impressive, offering touch capabilities. The biggest drawback to this model is the high starting price, which can increase quickly if you choose top-end components.

View on Amazon – $1,499 

#3 Pick  Toshiba Chromebook 2

Toshiba Chromebook 2 best laptops 2015
The large and sharp display screen on the Toshiba Chromebook 2 helps make this a strong overall laptop model.

Price: $316.99 | Read Full Review: Toshiba Chromebook 2 reviewScreen Resolution: 1920×1080 | TouchscreenNo

WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: Bargain price and an excellent battery life.

One of the best values you’ll find in this list of the best laptops is the Toshiba Chromebook 2, which offers a very low price versus full-fledged laptops. While the best Chromebooks might not offer all of the features you want for high-end computing power, the Toshiba Chromebook 2 works well for basic computing work, offering an HD resolution 13.3-inch display screen as we determined in our Toshiba Chromebook 2 review, great battery life, and a backlit keyboard.

View on Amazon – $316.99

#4 Pick  Lenovo LaVie Z

Lenovo LaVie Z best laptops 2015
The incredibly lightweight Lenovo LaVie Z weighs less than 2 pounds while maintaining powerful computing functions.

Price: $1,199.99 | Read Full Review: Lenovo LaVie Z reviewScreen Resolution: 2560×1440 | TouchscreenSome models

WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: Lightweight yet built like a tank.

The Lenovo LaVie Z deserves consideration of one of the best laptops for 2019, thanks to its sturdy, but lightweight, design. The LaVie Z weighs only 1.87 pounds, yet it offers a high-resolution 13.3-inch display screen. It measures just 0.67 inches in thickness. Different configurations of the LaVie Z are available, including one where you can fold the laptop screen 360 degrees, turning it into a tablet. This unit also is one of the best ultrabook options available.

View on Amazon – $1,199.99

#5 Pick  Apple MacBook Air 13-inch

Apple Macbook Air 13 inch best laptops 2015
The Apple MacBook Air 13-inch laptop has a competitive starting price for a model with strong battery life.

Price: $1,331.30 | Screen Resolution: 1440×900 | TouchscreenNo

WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: Blissful design with great ergonomics.

The biggest drawback to the 13-inch MacBook Air laptop is its below average display screen, which doesn’t offer even full HD resolution. However, Apple’s MacBook Air stacks up well against the other units on the best laptops 2019 list, offering strong battery life, a powerful processor, and a thin design. As with most Apple laptops, the price is a little high if you choose to configure this model with high-end components, but the starting price is reasonable.

View on Amazon – $1,331.30

What to Look for in the Best Laptops 2020

Meeting Your Needs: When shopping for one of the best 2020 laptops, it pays to do your homework. You need to understand exactly what you want from a laptop before you attempt to purchase one, or you run the risk of over-spending, purchasing a machine that has more power than you need, or under-spending, and ending up with a unit that can’t perform the tasks you need to complete.

Display: The top laptops 2020 list contains computers with both a traditional display screen and a touchscreen, more like a tablet. You’ll pay more for touch capabilities, so figure out whether you need a touchscreen before you spend more than you need to.

Price: Among the best portable computers, the price varies quite a bit. You may want to set a budget before you begin shopping, which will prevent you from over-spending. Perhaps a laptop budget of $500 is appropriate for you, or maybe you’re looking at spending $1,000 or more.

Read: Best Gaming Laptops

Mistakes to Avoid

Watch the Upgrades: When you see a price advertised for a laptop, remember that the price quote is often for the minimum configuration of features and components. While you often can upgrade components before ordering, you will see the price climb quickly. Make sure that the components quoted in the price match your needs.

Poor Quality Computers: If a price for a laptop seems to be surprisingly low, take a close look at the brand of the laptop and make sure the components are of a high quality. Off-brand laptops may contain components that are of a poor quality, which may cause the unit to fail.

Most Important Laptop Features

RAM

  • The memory, or RAM, is the area of the portable computer where the currently loaded software resides, providing quick access for the CPU. The more RAM your computer has available, the faster and more effectively it will work.

CPU

  • The CPU is the notebook computer’s processor. As you type a document, watch a movie, or play a game, the CPU will perform the processing on the digital file, allowing the computer to do the work you want it to do. Newer processors that run at higher clock speeds (measured in GHz) can perform the work faster.

Storage

  • Storage refers to the internal storage unit of the laptop, where you’ll save documents and photographs. A storage unit for a newer computer will be a solid state drive (SSD), which works fast and has no moving parts, but it is more expensive than a traditional HDD (hard disk drive) with spinning platters.

Screen Size

  • A large screen makes it easier to multitask and have multiple windows open on the screen. And if you plan to watch TV shows or movies on your portable computer, a large screen will make the process more enjoyable.
  • Some screens also have a wide viewing angle, which allows multiple people to simultaneously see the screen clearly.

Screen Resolution

  • Most laptop screens have a high resolution that’s better than full HD resolution. 4K resolution screens aren’t very popular yet however.

Touchscreen

  • A laptop that is a two-in-one device will offer a touchscreen display, allowing you to use the unit as a traditional laptop or as a tablet. However, a touch-enabled laptop usually will cost more.

Battery Life

  • Good battery performance is a must in a laptop. After all, part of the reason you want a laptop is for its portability, which means working from battery power.

Weight

  • Weight is a key component for a portable device like a laptop, as you’re going to be carrying it from place to place.

Size

  • Most laptops are very thin devices, especially the best laptop brands. If you choose a smaller than average laptop, just make sure that the keyboard fits your hands.

Which Best Laptops in 2020 Are Right For You

The most important factor to consider when looking at the entries in the best laptop 2020 list is ensuring that you find a unit that will perform the tasks that you need. Some people will want a two-in-one that they can use as a tablet or a laptop. Others may want more of a gaming laptop, which will require top-end processing power and plenty of RAM. Or you could be someone who needs a laptop that’s extremely versatile, offering the ability to perform numerous different tasks without being heavily weighted toward one type of task. Before shopping, make a list of the things you need to have in a laptop and set a maximum budget, and you’re sure to be able to find a great laptop that can work for you!

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What Else You Should Know About Laptop Computers

Gadget Review brings you expert laptop computer reviews on your favorite brands of laptops, such as Toshiba, Asus, Dell, Acer, and Samsung. Our laptop reviews written by in-house experts will help you when shopping for the best laptops, whether you are looking for the best ultrabook or latest chromebook.

When shopping for a new laptop, the sheer number of models, makes, and styles of devices out there can be a little overwhelming. Luckily, our dozens of laptop reviews and features cut through the noise and tell you everything you need to know for your next laptop purchase!

What Is A Laptop?

A laptop is pretty much exactly what the name implies: any computer or device that can fit on and/or operate from the comfort of your lap. Laptops fall into several different categories, including 2-in-1 convertibles, ultrabooks, gaming laptops, and Chromebooks. Each of these types of laptop have their own unique applications in the real world, i.e.some are better laptops for college students, so ultimately which is right for you will come down to what you plan on using your device for the most.

Generally, a laptop is any device or computer that can you can fit or operate from your lap. They fall into several categories such as Ultrabooks, gaming laptops, Chromebooks and 2-in-1 convertibles. A glimpse into some of the best laptop computer reviews online reveals the different applications of varying types of laptops. Some laptops are better suited for gaming, for example, while others are ideal for office work. So, it all boils down to what you plan on using the laptop for the most.

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What Price Should You Expect To Pay For A Laptop?

Laptop prices are all over the place due to the same factor we discussed in the previous section: variety. As many high-end ultra-sleek ultrabooks that are out there and cost $3,000, there are just as many cheap laptops that only cost a little over $100.

Which Are The Leading Laptop Brands?

The list of leading manufacturers of laptops will change depending on who you ask, but here at Gadget Review we think some of the best devices on the market in 2016 have come from companies like Lenovo, Toshiba, Dell, Samsung, and Acer.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

The next time you're in the electronics store scanning the shelves for a new laptop, it's important to never spend more than you have to on features you won't need. If you don't think you'll need a lot of hard drive space or won't get a ton of utility out of a touch-enabled screen, don't spend the extra cash to include those on your potential pick.

Features to Look For When Buying a New Laptop

Processor/RAM: 

Just like with desktops, the first thing you should look at on a new laptop is how much power and memory it's got underneath the hood. Both Intel and AMD have a solid lineup of mobile-centric processors that get the job done, whatever it may be.

Graphics Cards: Graphical power on laptops can vary pretty wildly, depending on the model you go with. Intel's "HD" line of graphics chips generally perform quite a bit better that AMD's competing chips, but if you don't plan on doing a lot of gaming or 3D modelling work, you don't have to focus too hard on this one particular part.

Storage: Onboard storage is less important than it used to be thanks to free cloud services like Google Drive and Dropbox, but that doesn't mean you should write it off completely. In general, it's smart to have at least 500GB of available space (HDD or SSD), just in case you have large files or games that need to be kept local for immediate access without a connection to Wi-Fi.

Wi-Fi: 

Speaking of wireless internet, make sure the internal Wi-Fi adapter inside your laptop has the ability to decode the latest wireless protocol, 802.11ac. It's not a hardline requirement, but if you want a laptop that's future proof, this is the way to make sure it lasts as long as possible between upgrades.

Design and Weight:

Although we'd never recommend that a laptop has to look good to get the job done, it certainly doesn't hurt either. Oftentimes the design of a laptop will signify how heavy (or light) it is on your arm, so be sure when you buy that it's not so heavy you'll be straining to bring it with you wherever you go.

Ports:

 A lot of people use external devices with their laptop, whether it's for a better wireless adapter, an external hard drive, or a connection to an additional monitor. Be sure your prospective laptop has all the outputs/inputs you want before you buy, otherwise you might get stuck trying to plug into a VGA projector only to find you've only got an HDMI-out instead.

Warranty: 

Even though you may think it will "never happen to you", trust us: everybody drops their laptop, spills a drink on it, or leaves it out in the sun too long at least once in their lives. As such, it's important to be sure you get a good warranty on your device that covers parts and labor for a minimum of one year, and optimally three or more.

Gadget reviews provides the best reviews on laptop computers in the market. Get the best laptop computer reviews for some of the most popular brands in the market including Asus, HP, Dell, Samsung and Acer. Our laptop computer reviews are written by our in-house experts who will help you get the right laptop for your needs.

 

Shopping for a new laptop can be a tough gig, especially due to the different makes and models available in the market. Well, thanks to our laptop computer reviews online, you can have all the information you need to make an informed purchase.

Final Thoughts

Laptops have evolved considerably since they first arrived on the scene in the early 70s. Today, laptops include subclasses such as laplets, netbooks, and rugged laptops for college. Of the big players, Apple laptops that include the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro are powered by the latest Intel processors and feature an all-day battery.

HP laptops are known for quality audio and the range in looks and configurations that you can choose from. Asus laptops offer some of the best value-for-money notebooks in the market, and you can find them listed in our best laptops under $500 list.

Which features in a laptop do you value the most – processing power, screen clarity, portability, customization, game-worthy graphics, or operating system? Read our unbiased notebook reviews and comparisons; you can treat them as buying guides that will inform you on the best laptop model for your need and the online stores that stock them.

Laptop Computer Reviews on Gadget Review track the newest models, covering the range of budget notebooks to powerful gaming laptops.

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