Looking for a new laptop? Here’s our roundup of the very best
If you’re looking to grab yourself a new laptop, or just fancy doing a bit of virtual window shopping, you’ve come to the right place. To help you along the way, we’ve sifted through all of the laptops we feel are worthy of your hard-earned cash in 2021 and selected the very best.
Wondering why you should listen to us? Simple. Every year, dozens of the latest and greatest laptops pass through the Expert Reviews labs – along with plenty of not-so-great laptops, too. Each device is subjected to our rigorous in-house testing, so when we recommend a laptop you can be sure of one thing: it’s a laptop we’d be happy to buy ourselves.
Read on and you’ll discover everything from the best business-class laptops to super-sleek ultraportables, gaming laptops and 2-in-1 hybrids. In short, there’s something for everyone. And if you’re really not sure what to go for, our laptop buying guide will point you in the right direction.
Amazon has slashed the price of the Intel Core i5 version of the Samsung Galaxy Book Ion – one of our favourite ultraportable laptops – as part of its spring sale.AmazonWas £1,249Now £1,049Buy Now
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How to choose the best laptop for you
Buying a brand-new laptop is no easy task. There are so many brilliant devices to choose from each year, with prices ranging from £200 to £2,000 or more. Cost can also vary massively between different configurations of the same laptop, which only adds to the confusion. In this brief buying guide, we’ll help you make the right choice by outlining the most important factors to consider before you bust out the bank card.
What do you need your laptop for?
Your personal requirements should dictate what sort of laptop you go for. A typical university student will have different tech needs than a professional video editor. Some may need a laptop that can process large files at rapid speeds, while others may just want to use Google Docs or browse the web. Ultimately, it all comes down to what you want your laptop to do.
What about performance and battery life?
The most powerful laptops are those with the most powerful CPUs and the highest amount of RAM. A laptop’s CPU power is measured in GHz and each processor has a baseline frequency as well as a maximum frequency. Other factors can impact overall performance, including poor temperature control, which can lead to thermal throttling. Ideally, any laptop you buy should have at least 4GB of RAM as a minimum. Processors aren’t as easy to pin down – they might be dual-core, quad-core or hexa-core and can range greatly in power.
A MacBook Pro (or Windows equivalent like the Dell XPS 15) has a much more powerful CPU and more RAM than a cheap Chromebook because people expect them to run multiple demanding applications.
Battery size is measured in milliamp-hours (mAH) or Watt-hours (Wh) – the biggest battery will (in theory) last the longest, but it all depends on how much power the various components inside the device use (the display, CPU and GPU have the biggest impact). An ultra-budget laptop with a small battery size may last longer than a premium notebook with a huge battery because its internal hardware isn’t as demanding. We run a standardised video rundown test on every single laptop we review, with the longest-lasting performers tending to be a mix between efficient high-end ultraportable laptops and low-powered Chromebooks.
What operating system should you go for?
Whether it’s Windows, macOS or Chrome OS, each operating system has its own strengths and weaknesses. macOS is only found in Apple’s own laptops, while Windows powers all sorts of laptops from manufacturers such as Acer, Asus and Lenovo. Google’s low-powered Chrome OS is also rising in popularity and can be found on a wide range of devices.
What’s the best display resolution?
When it comes to laptop displays, the resolution isn’t everything. If the same laptop has the option of a Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) display and a 4K (3,840 x 2,160) display, the latter is usually more expensive but not necessarily sharper. How sharp a display look depends on two factors: the size of the screen and how far away you sit from it.
In our experience, you don’t really need more than 1,920 x 1,080 on a screen 14in or smaller. In fact, if you have 20/20 vision, you’d have to be sitting viewing the display at a distance closer than 56cm. Given that laptops with higher resolution panel typically suffer a bit in the battery life department, it’s often worth opting for the lower resolution, and cheaper, option if you can.
The quality of a laptop’s display has little to do with the resolution of the screen, however. There’s never a guarantee of a laptop’s maximum brightness, colour accuracy or contrast ratio no matter how sharp it is. We measure all of these when testing each laptop, because a dim, muddy or washed-out display can ruin a great product.
How many ports should a laptop have?
In addition to a power socket and headphone jack, most new laptops will come with at least a couple of USB A and one USB C port. When it comes to connections, the general rule of thumb is the more the merrier.
It is worth paying attention to the type of USB C ports you’re getting, however; although they might look the same, they often have different capabilities from machine to machine. For the fastest transfer speeds, look for Thunderbolt 3 USB C ports; USB C isn’t as quick.
And don’t assume every USB C port on a laptop can carry video, power and data. Although the standard allows for this, manufacturers sometimes limit what each port can do.
It’s extremely useful to have a full-size HDMI connector for hooking up the laptop to additional monitors, too, although these aren’t particularly common on slimmer laptops. And an SD card reader doesn’t hurt either – an addition that’s sorely lacking on Apple’s laptops these days.
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Best laptops you can buy in 2021
1. M1 MacBook Air: The best laptop you can buy, period
Apple’s latest laptop breaks away from the Intel processors of old and the result is a spectacularly good laptop. With the Apple M1 chip on board, the new MacBook Air outperforms most Intel-based Windows rivals at a similar price, has better battery life and it’s fanless as well so doesn’t whine irritatingly when it’s working hard.
It isn’t radical in any other way – it looks exactly like previous MacBook Air laptops – but that great performance, coupled with a superb keyboard and touchpad, a brilliant display make this a laptop that’s impossible to beat, especially at the £999 price for the base model. It’s so good that we fully expect the M1 MacBook Air to remain our favourite laptop until the next model is released.
Read our M1 Apple MacBook Air review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Apple M1; Graphics: Apple M1; RAM: 8-16GB; Storage: 256GB-2TB; Dimensions: 304 x 212 x 16.1mm (WDH); Weight: 1.29kg
£902.00 Buy now
2. Dell XPS 13 (11th gen, late 2020): The best Windows laptop you can buy
Price: From £1,300 l Buy now from Amazon
Dell updates its XPS laptops twice a year these days in lockstep with Intel’s CPU upgrades and the latest has Intel’s 11-gen CPUs as an option. As with previous XPS 13 editions, the late 2020 model is a laptop that gets pretty much everything right, from the brilliant build quality and colour accurate display to the fabulous keyboard and a generous specification for the money.
As ever, there’s an XPS 13 for most budgets. You can choose from various combinations of specifications, including an Intel Core i5-1135G7, a Core i7-1165G7 or a Core i7-1185G7, 8GB, 16GB or 32GB of RAM and a 512GB or 1TB PCIe SSD.
With improved performance across the board, including better battery life and significantly faster graphics scores, the Dell XPS 13 remains the Windows 10 ultraportable to beat, although it’s fallen behind the M1 MacBook Pro and Air laptops for outright bang per buck.
Read our Dell XPS 13 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i5-1135G7 or Intel Core i7-1185G7; Graphics: Intel Iris Xe; RAM: 8-32GB; Storage: 512GB-1TB; Dimensions: 296 x 199 x 14.8mm (WDH); Weight: 1.2kg (non-touchscreen), 1.27kg (touchscreen)
Dell New XPS 13 9310 13.3 Inch Laptop, Intel Core i7-1185G7 Processor (4.8 GHz), 16:10 FHD+ (1920 x 1200) InfinityEdge 500 Nit Display, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB NVMe SSD, Fingerprint Reader, Windows 10 Home
£1,349.00 Buy now
3. Huawei MateBook 14 (2020): Astonishing power at a reasonable price
Price: From £749 | Buy now from Amazon
This laptop redefines what a sub-£1000 laptop is capable of when it comes to performance. Its AMD Ryzen 5 4600H processor scored remarkably well in our in-house 4K media benchmark test and the integrated Radeon graphics chip did a decent job running games at 1080p, too.
The MateBook 14 is lightweight and sports attractive looks in addition to its lightning-fast performance and houses a gorgeous 2,160 x 1,440px display. That display covers 89% of the sRGB colour gamut, which is a solid effort, while colour accuracy is highly impressive.
It didn’t score particularly well in our battery rundown test and its webcam is embedded into a physical key rather than located in the bezel above the screen, but even taking into account those issues, the MateBook 14 is magnificent value. And its raw power enables it to outshine many pricier laptops from more established manufacturers.
Read our Huawei MateBook 14 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 4600H; Graphics: Intel Iris Xe; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 256GB PCIe SSD; Dimensions: 308 x 224 x 15.9mm (WDH); Weight: 1.49kg
HUAWEI MateBook 14 2020 – 14 Inch Laptop with 2K FullView Display, AMD Ryzen 5 4600H Ultrabook, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB PCIe SSD, Windows 10 Home, Huawei Share, Fingerprint Unlock, Space Grey
£647.00 Buy now
4. Honor MagicBook 14: A luxury laptop for less
Price: £550 | Buy from HiHonor
Most premium ultraportables cost well north of £1,000 these days but not the Honor MagicBook 14. Building on the experience of Huawei and its popular Matebook X Pro and D laptops, this is a simply sumptuous laptop for a ludicrously small amount of cash.
The design and build quality is a match for more expensive machines, with an all-metal chassis and a slim, lightweight profile. And it’s as powerful as laptops costing many hundreds of pounds more thanks to its AMD Ryen 3500U processor, it comes with 8GB of RAM and a speedy 256GB SSD and battery life is decent, too.
The only area in which this laptop falls short is in the positioning of the 720p webcam in the keyboard, which results in a rather ugly camera angle. Given how good the rest of the laptop is, however, I’d be willing to put up with this small irritation or buy a separate webcam to improve video calling. This is truly one of the biggest laptop bargains of 2021.
Read our Honor MagicBook 14 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 3500U; Graphics: AMD Radeon Vega 8; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 256GB; Dimensions: 322 x 215 x 15.9mm; Weight: 1.4kg
5. Google Pixelbook Go: Not just a good Chromebook
Price: From £629 | Buy now from John Lewis
It might “only” be a Chromebook but the Pixelbook Go is one of our favourite laptops, full stop. Not only is it light and amazingly slim it’s also an absolute pleasure to work on, with one of the best keyboards we’ve come across on any laptop anywhere. Couple that with a solid 13.3in 1080p touchscreen and better battery life than on most Windows 10 or MacOS based machines and you have a simply superb machine. Chrome OS doesn’t prove an impediment to carrying out most office-based tasks these days; only video editors and designers might struggle.
The only worry – if you could call it that – is that the Pixelbook Go has an eighth-generation Core i5 (coupled with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage) instead of the very latest 11th-generation silicon. It’s still slick enough for any job you’re want to carry out on it and, if you want something more powerful and luxurious, you can always opt for the Core i7 model, which comes with an even sharper 4K display. You might have to sacrifice some battery life here, though.
Read our Google Pixelbook Go review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i5-8200Y (other options available) Graphics: Intel UHD 615; RAM: 8GB (other options available; Storage: 128GB SSD (other options available); Dimensions: 322 x 215 x 15.9mm; Weight: 1.09kg
6. Honor MagicBook Pro: A great value-for-money workstation
Price: From £850 | Buy now from HiHonor
Building on the success of the very reasonably priced Honor MagicBook 14, the MagicBook Pro ups the stakes, delivering what is one of the best value workstation laptops we’ve ever seen. Coming in at a ludicrously good price of £850, the MagicBook Pro outperforms laptops costing many hundreds of pounds more, thanks to its AMD Ryzen 5 4600H CPU, 16GB of RAM and fast 512GB SSD.
It won’t be for everyone. The 16.1in display means it’s at the larger end of the laptop spectrum and the screen’s resolution of 1080p might put off some people. However, despite its size, it is relatively light and slim at 1.7kg and 16.9mm, plus the quality of that (non-touch) screen is second to none.
Combined with a decent keyboard and touchpad, a healthy selection of ports and connectivity, reasonably good stereo speakers, great battery life and build quality that wouldn’t be out of place on a laptop costing thousands, the Honor MagicBook Pro has it all. It’s the best value laptop we’ve come across in this price bracket, bar none.
Read our Honor MagicBook Pro review for more details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 4600H or Intel Core i5-10210U; Graphics: Nvidia GeForce MX350; RAM: 16GB; Storage: 512GB SSD; Dimensions: 369 x 234 x 16.9mm; Weight: 1.7kg
7. Lenovo Yoga 9i: The best premium 2-in-1 laptop
Price: From £1,000 | Buy now from Lenovo
The Lenovo Yoga 9i is a media machine par excellence, delivering a stellar audio-visual experience in a 2-in-1 setup. Its 14in 3,840 x 2,160 IPS touchscreen is fantastic, with a maximum brightness of 489cd/m2 and a pin-sharp pixel density of 315dpi. The speakers pack a punch, which are built into an innovative “soundbar”, that rotates to face you whichever configuration you have the laptop in, pack a punch, too.
Thanks to Intel’s 11th-gen Intel silicon, there’s plenty of power to also make the Lenovo Yoga 9i a convincing work device, and it comes with a stylus built in so you can jot notes and make sketches with ease. Models range from a Core i5 variant with 8GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD and a Full HD display, up to a Core i7 option with a 512GB SSD, 16GB of RAM and a UHD display. Above this is the top of the range “Shadow Black” model, which ups the SSD to 1TB.
As a 2-in-1 laptop, the Yoga 9i is a wonderfully adaptive laptop and a strong rival for the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 and HP Spectre x360.
Read our Lenovo Yoga 9i review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i5-1135G7 or Intel Core i7-1185G7; Graphics: Intel Iris Xe; RAM: 8-16GB; Storage: 512GB SSD; Dimensions: 318 x 211 x 15mm; Weight: 1.3kg
8. Razer Book 13: A superb ultraportable for work
Price: From £1,300 | Buy now from Amazon
Razer produces some of the best gaming laptops around but the Book 13 is its first attempt at a device designed for work rather than play. It’s a very successful attempt, too, with impressive build quality complemented by up-to-date internal specifications. The base model houses an 11th-gen Intel Core i5 processor backed by 16GB RAM, while there are also Core i7 variants available, one of which features a 4K screen.
We tested a Core i7 model with an FHD display and it performed well across our range of in-house tests, although it couldn’t quite match the scores posted by the M1 MacBook Air and Lenovo Yoga Slim 7. It does house two USB-C ports, however, and also manages to squeeze a USB-A 3.1 port, HDMI 2.0 port and MicroSD slot into its compact form. Razer hasn’t completely abandoned its gaming roots as evidenced by the Book 13’s highly customisable RGB-backlit keyboard, which is mechanically excellent and a joy to type on.
It may be new to the world of ultraportable productivity laptops, but Razer has hit the ground running with a work device capable of competing with the very best on the market.
Read our Razer Book 13 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i5-1135G7 or Intel Core i7-1165G7; Graphics: Intel Iris Xe; RAM: 16GB; Storage: 256GB SSD; Dimensions: 296 x 199 x 15mm; Weight: 1.4kg
Razer Book 13 – Ultra Light Laptop for on the Go with 13.4 Inch Full HD 60 Hz Touchscreen (Intel Core i7 11th Gen, Iris Xe Graphics, 10 Hours Battery Life) Mercury / White | Qwerty UK Layout
£1,299.99 Buy now
9. Dell Inspiron 15 7000: The best mid-range 2-in-1 laptop
Price: From £849 | Buy now from Dell
Offering big-screen thrills for a sub-£1,000 price, this convertible laptop from Dell is an excellent mid-range machine. It sits neatly between Dell’s workaday Inspiron 5000 series and its more expensive XPS range, managing a compelling combination of value for money, power, convenience and style.
Its 2-in-1 design lets you fold the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 through 360˚, into a “tent” mode that functions much like a touchscreen tablet. It looks smart, stylish and feels well-made, although the keyboard is middling-to-fair rather than outstanding. This can be forgiven, though, when you consider the other strengths of Dell’s machine.
Performance, for example, punches well above its weight, more than up to the job of doing anything 99% of laptop users will require – and doing it quickly. It’s also chock full of ports, including a much desired USB-C connector that supports Thunderbolt 4, Power Delivery and DisplayPort. Taken altogether, along with a modest price tag, and you get great value for money.
Read our Dell Inspiron 15 7000 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: 11th-gen Core i5-1135G7 or Core i7-1165G7; Graphics: Intel Iris Xe; RAM: 12-16GB; Storage: 512GB-1TB PCIe NVMe SSE; Dimensions: 359 x 224 x 20mm; Weight: 2kg
10. Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 (AMD): Fast, well-made and sensibly priced
Price: £800 | Buy now from Amazon
Lenovo has forgotten more about making laptops than some other manufacturers will ever know and this ultra-compact notebook is a great demonstration of that expertise. For a comparatively low price, you’re getting a seriously powerful processor, excellent speakers, a very good keyboard and a solidly designed, aluminium body.
Powered by an octa-core AMD Ryzen 7 4700U processor the Yoga Slim 7 performed exceptionally in our benchmark tests. For a ULV (ultra-low voltage) processor, the AMD Ryzen 7 4700U is a beast. The laptop’s integrated Radeon RX Vega 8 GPU is no slouch either, running through the opening levels of Doom at an average of 28fps at 1,920 x 1,080 and 59fps at 1280 x 720.
The laptop is also available with an Intel Core i7 CPU but, since it costs extra and the Ryzen 7 laptop is so good anyway, we recommend sticking with the AMD model.
With a keyboard flanked by two Dolby Atmos-branded speakers, the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 is also one of the best-sounding compact laptops we’ve encountered. Taken along with its 14in 1,920 x 1,080 IPS display, Lenovo’s offering makes for a convincing do-it-all laptop that won’t break the bank.
Read our Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 (AMD) review for more details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 4700U; Graphics: Radeon RX Vega 8; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 128GB-1TB SSD; Dimensions: 321 x 208 x 14.9mm; Weight: 1.4kg
£799.00 Buy now
11. Samsung Galaxy Book Ion: The ultimate lightweight ultraportable
Price: From £1,249 | Buy now from Amazon
Samsung spent a long time out of the laptop market in the UK but in 2020 it’s back with a vengeance.
The Samsung Galaxy Book Ion is an absolute gem. We reviewed the 13.3in model but it’s also available with a larger 15.6in display. Whichever model you go for, though, you’re getting a laptop that’s incredibly slim, amazingly light and brilliantly usable.
Indeed, at 0.97kg for the 13.3in laptop and a mere 12.9mm thick, this is a laptop you’ll barely notice in your bag when you go out on the road. Despite this – and where other slim laptops sacrifice connectivity and practicality for low weight – the Galaxy Book Ion gives you plenty of ports. It has two USB A ports and a microSD card slot on the right edge plus full-size HDMI and Thunderbolt 3 on the left, alongside a 3.5mm headset jack. It’s stupendously well-equipped for such a slight machine.
This laptop has other strengths, too. Its 1,920 x 1,080 QLED display is sumptuous; there’s space inside to add an extra SSD (yes, really); and it has a spacious keyboard, decent touchpad, fingerprint reader and Windows Hello-compatible webcam. Performance isn’t bad either – it comes equipped with a 10th-gen Intel Core i5-10510U, 8GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD – and battery life is fantastic. Since you can only buy it in the Core i5 variant it isn’t quite the machine the Dell XPS 13 is but mighty close and costs less, too.
Read our Samsung Galaxy Book Ion review for details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i5-10210U; Graphics: Intel UHD; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD; Dimensions: 356 x 228 x 14.9mm; Weight: 0.97kg
Samsung Galaxy Book Ion 15.6 Inch 8 GB Intel Core i5-10210U Processor Laptop – Aura Silver (UK Version)
£1,099.00 Buy now
12. Huawei MateBook D 15: Another unbeatable budget machine
Price: From £600 | Buy now from Amazon
Like the Honor MagicBook 14, the MateBook D 15 is built around the AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor; and again, like the MagicBook, it’s a bit of a steal. Costing a mere £550, it delivers excellent performance in a very nicely engineered metal chassis.
The IPS display is pretty good given the price, with decent viewing angles, although it’s only 1080p and isn’t particularly colour accurate. But with a comfortable keyboard and touchpad, this makes an excellent purchase for those looking for a big-screened portable laptop for not much money.
Read our Huawei MateBook D 15 review for details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U, AMD Ryzen 7 3700U or Intel Core i5-10210U; Graphics: Intel UHD or Radeon Vega 8; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 256-512GB SSD; Dimensions: 358 x 230 x 16.9mm; Weight: 1.53kg
HUAWEI MateBook D 15 – 15.6 Inch Laptop with FullView 1080P FHD Ultrabook PC (AMD Ryzen 5 3500U, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Windows 10 Home, Multi-screen Collaboration, Fingerprint Reader), Space Grey
£498.62 Buy now
13. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3: The best Surface laptop to date
Price: From £999 | Buy from Amazon
We loved the previous two Surface Laptops but Microsoft’s third-generation is the best of the lot. With prices that start at a reasonable £999 and absolutely gorgeous design, it really is one of the best laptops you can buy at the price.
Microsoft has added USB-C at last and refined the design but the big change for this third iteration is there’s now a 15in model available for those who want a little more screen real estate. The 15in models house AMD Ryzen 5 or Ryzen 7 processors, while the more compact variants offer a choice between Intel Core i5 or i7 processors.
The 13.5in remains our favourite, however, balancing portability and power with perfect poise. This is one fabulous machine.
Read our Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 (13.5in) review
Read our Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 (15in) review
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G7/i7-1065G7, AMD Ryzen 5 3580U or AMD Ryzen 7 3780U; Graphics: Intel Iris Plus, Radeon Vega 9 or Radeon RX Vega 11; RAM: 8-16GB; Storage: 128GB-1TB SSD; Dimensions: 13.5in – 308 x 223 x 14.5mm, 15in – 340 x 244 x 14.7mm; Weight: 13.5in – 1.28kg, 15in – 1.54kg
Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 Ultra-Thin 13” Touchscreen Laptop (Platinum) – Intel 10th Gen Quad Core i5, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD, Windows 10 Home, 2019 Edition
£785.60 Buy now
14. Asus ROG Strix Scar 15: The ultimate gaming laptop
Price: £2,700 | Buy now from Scan
This gaming monster from Asus houses AMD’s most powerful CPU – the Ryzen 9 5900HX – along with the most potent graphics chip on the market right now, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 with 16GB dedicated RAM. Unsurprisingly given those specs, the Strix Scar tore through our various benchmarking tests. It’s the fastest laptop we’ve ever tested and its SSD set new records for both read and write speeds.
The 15.6″ display is an absolute beauty, too. With a 165Hz refresh rate, 2,560 x 1,440px resolution and superb colour performance, this is a laptop capable of putting many creative professional laptops to shame.
If your budget doesn’t extend to the top-end spec, there are cheaper models available, including one with an AMD Ryzen 7 CPU and GeForce RTX 3060 GPU, which will set you back around £2,000. Alternatively, you may want to check out the Asus ROG Strix G15 further down this list, which also offers supreme performance but has a slightly less impressive display.
Read our Asus ROG Strix Scar 15 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX; Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080; RAM: 32GB; Storage: 2TB NVMe SSD; Dimensions: 354 x 259 x 22.6mm; Weight: 2.30kg
15. LG Gram 16: Extraordinarily lightweight with a big, practical screen
Price: From £1,249 | Buy now from Amazon
Portability is the name of the game when it comes to the LG Gram 16; a lightweight marvel that packs a superb 16in display into an ergonomic frame.
As we wrote in our review: “This is a laptop that has the same screen size (a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 pixels) as the Apple MacBook Pro 16in and, yet, thanks to its lightweight magnesium alloy chassis, weighs a mere 1.16kg. That’s more than three-quarters of a kilo lighter than the MacBook, and it’s also lighter than the 13.3in Samsung Galaxy Book Flex2 5G and the 13.3in M1 MacBook Air.”
For its internals, you’ll be getting either a quad-core 11th gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 or a Core i5-1135G7 CPU, with integrated Iris Xe graphics. There’s also a choice between 8GB or 16GB of RAM and either a 512GB or 1TB NVMe SSD for storage.
The display is absolutely cracking, and looks superb when streaming video via the likes of Netflix or Prime Video. The laptop is also well designed for day-to-day work – the keyboard keys have a punchy click of feedback to them and the touchpad is roomy and reactive. Battery life is also excellent, with the laptop lasting 11hrs 51mins in our video rundown tests with the display set to a brightness level of 170cd/m2 and flight mode enabled.
Read our LG Gram 16 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i7-1165G7; Graphics: Integrated Iris Xe graphics; RAM: 16GB; Storage: 1TB SSD; Dimensions: 243.40 x 355.90 x 16.80mm; Weight: 1.16kg
LG gram 16Z90P – 16 inch Ultra-Lightweight Laptop, 16:10 Large screen, WQXGA (2560×1600), DCI-P3 99%, Intel evo POWERED BY CORE i5 processor, 8GB/512GB, Alexa built-in, 80Wh Battery, Thunderbolt 4
£949.00 Buy now
16. Microsoft Surface Pro 7: Still the best hybrid
Price: From £799 | Buy now from Amazon
Microsoft launched two Surface Pro models in its 2019/20 round of updates: the Surface Pro 7 and Surface Pro X. Of the two devices, the Surface Pro X is the most interesting but it isn’t particularly practical due to the fact that it uses an ARM chip. The Surface Pro 7 isn’t much of an update but it remains the best 2-in-1 tablet/laptop hybrid you can buy.
Essentially, the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is the same as the Surface Pro 6. You still have to purchase the keyboard as an optional extra and the same goes for the Surface Pen Stylus. It has upgraded internal, however, with Microsoft moving from 8th-gen Intel processors to the 10th-gen silicon and that means faster performance overall and better battery life.
If you can find the Surface Pro 6 at a reduced price, it’s probably best just to opt for that. However going forward, that’s going to be more and more difficult to do.
Read our Microsoft Surface Pro 7 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: Intel Core i3-1005G1, Core i5-1035G4 or i7-1065G7; Graphics: Intel UHD or Iris Plus; RAM: 16GB; Storage: 128GB-1TB SSD; Dimensions: 292 x 201 x 8.5mm; Weight: 1.35kg
Microsoft Surface Pro 7 12.3” Tablet (Platinum) – Intel 10th Gen Dual Core i3, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, Windows 10 Home, 2019 Edition
£699.00 Buy now
17. Apple MacBook Pro 16in: The most powerful MacBook
Price: From £2,148 | Buy now from Amazon
Apple’s MacBook Pro laptops continue to improve year after year and this refresh is no different. A new, slightly larger 16in model has replaced the 15in Apple MacBook Pro and the 13in MacBook Pro also gets improved internals.
It’s the 16in MacBook Pro that steals all the headlines, however, with a new more comfortable keyboard, wide gamut IPS display, amazing studio-quality microphones and improved speakers. It’s the most impressive MacBook Pro we’ve ever reviewed.
Both the 13in and 16in models of MacBook Pro are powerful machines. The 13in is available with a base specification of a 1.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD; you can also choose up to an 8-core 2.8GHz Core i7 with 16GB of RAM and 2TB of storage.
The 16in model starts with a 2.6GHz 6-core 2.6GHz Intel Core i7 with16GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD. It can be specified all the way up to an eight-core 2.3GHz Core i9 processor with up to 64GB of RAM and a whopping 8TB of SSD storage.
Both machines are on the expensive side but just as beautifully built as ever. The 16in model, however, is our favourite.
Read our Apple MacBook Pro 16in review for more details
Key specs – CPU: 2.6GHz 6-core Intel Core i7, 2.3GHz 8‑core Intel Core i9 or 2.4GHz 8‑core Intel Core i9; Graphics: AMD Radeon Pro 5300M or AMD Radeon Pro 5500M; RAM: 16-64GB; Storage: 512GB-8TB SSD; Dimensions: 358 x 246 x 16mm; Weight: 2kg
£2,099.00 Buy now
18. Asus ROG Strix G15: The best mid-range gaming laptop
Price: £1,700 | Buy now from Laptops Direct
This mid-range gaming laptop might not look like anything special but the Asus ROG Strix G15 has a couple of superpowers. The first is Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 30-series GPU, the mobile versions of the firm’s celebrated desktop graphics cards. The second is an eight-core AMD Ryzen 7 5000-series CPU.
Together, they make the Asus ROG Strix G15 a formidably powerful machine. In our benchmarks, we found it more than powerful enough to keep the Full HD 1080p display fed with high-frame-rate action, outperforming even the most expensive gaming laptops from 2020.
The trade-off is that you’re not getting Ultrabook weight and slimness, and although it’s not as garish as some, the Asus ROG Strix G15 is plastered with the trappings of gaming laptops, with RGB lighting behind the keyboard and running around the entire front edge of the laptop as well. If power is your primary concern, though, then this is a machine that’s certainly worth considering.
Read our Asus ROG Strix G15 review for more details
Key specs – CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800H; Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070; RAM: 16GB; Storage: 1TB PCIe SSD; Dimensions: 354 x 259 x 27mm (WDH); Weight: 2.3kg