If you are a student, you will want one of the best college laptops so you can ace your exams then stream TV or play games when it’s time to relax. But with so many choices at so many different prices, it can be homework in itself to find the very best laptops for students. When you are buying a laptop for school, make sure it has long battery life and fast CPU performance. You can find a lot of these units on our best laptop page, which gives you a wide selection of the top notebooks to choose from. Whichever laptop you get, you will also want to pick up a few extras, such as a comfortable mouse, a well-appointed backpack, and perhaps a printer. Without further ado, here are the best college laptops, including some budget picks for those dreading tuition payments.
What is the best college laptop?
We feel strongly about the Envy 13 and the Envy x360 13 as the best laptops for college students. Not everyone is on a budget, but most folks will want to save as much money as possible so they can pay off student loans. the Envy 13 and Envy x360 13 deliver premium specs and features at a reasonable price. The Envy 13 might be a mid-range notebook but it looks and feels like a more premium machine. The Envy also delivers fast performance from 11th Gen Intel CPUs, it has a great screen, and it’s portable enough to carry around campus. Then there’s the Envy 13 x360, which has all of those traits in a convertible chassis and is assisted by AMD’s powerful new Ryzen 4000 CPUs.
Apple fans who prefer macOS should opt for the new MacBook Air or MacBook Pro. The fanless MacBook Air with M1 is a good choice for those on a budget but the 13-inch MacBook Pro delivers longer battery life and sustained performance. If you don’t have a budget, consider the 16-inch MacBook Pro or the Dell XPS 15. You could also go big on the Dell XPS 17, the best 17-inch laptop around.
We put each laptop through extensive benchmark testing — both synthetic and real-world — before they end up in the hands of our reviewers. We evaluate each aspect of the laptop, including its performance, battery life, display, speakers and heat management. To determine real-world performance, we task the laptop to convert a 4K video to 1080p resolution and to duplicate a 4.97GB multimedia file. Our real-world graphics test is the Dirt 3 benchmark with medium settings at 1080p resolution. also run heat tests by playing a 15-minute full-screen video and measuring temperatures in different areas of the laptop. Last but not least, For MacBooks and premium Windows 10 laptops, a runtime of over 9 hours is considered a good result whereas gaming laptops and workstations that can stay powered for longer than 5 hours deserve praise.
1. HP Envy 13
The best laptop for students is now better than ever. Refreshed with a new design and a Thunderbolt 4 port, the new HP Envy 13 is the best laptop for students or anyone who needs a portable machine with loads of power and long battery life With even slimmer bezels and faster performance, the 2021 model shows that it can hang with much pricier flagship models. Combine those features with a sleek chassis, bright and vivid 1080p display and plenty of performance from an 11th Gen Core i5 CPU, and it’s easy to see why the Envy 13 is the best college laptop for students.
2. MacBook Air
If you prefer macOS to Windows 10, then go with the Apple MacBook Air. The biggest improvement to this year’s model is the new M1 chip, which delivers outstanding performance and excellent battery life, making the new MacBook Air the fastest ultrathin laptop ever. you can unrivaled performance along with 14 hours and 41 minutes of battery life. This is a combination you’ll only find from the very best Windows 10 laptops, and even they can’t compete in head-to-head performance. But now the MacBook Air is slower to parity with the MacBook Pro than ever before. It has similar speed and battery life, the same 720p webcam, a comfortable Magic keyboard and two USB-C ports.
3. Acer Swift 3
If you want blistering performance at a budget price, look no further than the Acer Swift 3 with AMD Ryzen CPUs. We also like the Swift 3’s clicky keyboard, which was comfortable to type on thanks to the springy feedback. You also get a fingerprint reader on the deck for quick login and the chassis is made of aluminum and magnesium, not plastic. Swift 3 is the dim and dull display. the Swift 3 is an excellent choice at a reasonable price.
4. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon
Lenovo made several welcome changes to the 9th Gen edition of its flagship business laptop. Along with fast performance from 11th Gen Intel CPUs, you get longer battery life (15 hours), powerful quad speakers, a new 14-inch display with a 16:10 aspect ratio, and plenty of ports, all in an impossibly lightweight chassis. But it’s still those classic ThinkPad features — a durable design (with MIL-STD-810G strength), best-in-class keyboard and stealthy black/red aesthetics — that carry the X1 Carbon to greatness.
5. Acer Chromebook Spin 713
If you’re a Chrome OS users who want more flexibility than what the Google Pixelbook Go offers, then don’t hesitate to buy the Acer Chromebook Spin 713. it delivers a gorgeous 13.5-inch display and fast performance thanks to its Intel Core i5-10210U CPU. Better yet, with a battery life of nearly 12 hours, the Chromebook Spin 713 will last you an entire school day as you bounce from one class to the next. The laptop’s flexible design means you can use it to draw, take hand-written notes, or quickly share a project with a classmate by folding the display back. Given its flexible design, fast performance, gorgeous display and outstanding battery life, the Chromebook Spin 713 is a top laptop for all students from K-12 and into college.
6. Apple MacBook Pro
This is the huge leap forward we’ve been waiting on. It is all thanks to the new M1 chip, Apple’s first-ever custom SoC for laptops. With the best power-per-watt performance of any processor, the M1 brings the MacBook Pro’s performance and battery life to the next level. More specifically, the MacBook Pro is more powerful than nearly every PC on the market, including some workstations. And despite cramming so much power into such a slim and sleek chassis, the Pro lasted for an outstanding 16 hours and 32 minutes on our battery test, which simulates real-world testing. With an image processing unit, the webcam (sadly, still 720p) is better than before and since it runs on Apple’s ARM-based architecture, iPad and iPhone apps are now available on Mac. Yep, you can run all your favorite iOS games and apps on your laptop now.