Selecting a new laptop can be a daunting challenge, and it doesn’t take much to get lost in a sea of specifications, benchmarks, and user reviews. To help you make the right purchase decision, we’ve selected five best laptops available in 2020 for five different categories of users.
Best Laptop Overall: Dell XPS 15 (2020)
The latest iteration of the Dell XPS 15 has made the task of selecting the best laptop available in 2020 much easier than it would have been otherwise. This 15-inch flagship laptop is a perfect all-rounder capable of satisfying the needs of everyone, from regular home users to demanding professionals to passionate gamers.
Its 16:10 InfinityEdge display covers 100% of the Adobe RGB color space, making the laptop suitable for color-sensitive work, such as video and photo editing. Inside the carbon-fiber covered metal chassis is a powerful 10th generation CPU from Intel, and you can spec the laptop with a dedicated graphics cards, up to 32 GB of memory, and up to 1 TB of SSD storage.
While the Dell XPS 15 is definitely more expensive than many other 15-inch laptops with similar specifications, it more than makes up for it with its fantastic build quality and impeccable fit and finish.
Best Laptop for College Students: Apple MacBook Air (2020)
Many students who will soon be going back to school are frantically searching online for the best laptop, one that would be easy to carry, relatively affordable, and, above all else, reliable. The latest MacBook Air ticks all these boxes and more.
The base model comes with a surprisingly capable Core i3 processor from Intel, 8 GB RAM, and 256 GB of fast storage, which should be more than enough for most high school and college students. Best of all, the base model costs under $1,000, so it’s not much more expensive than comparably well-built Windows laptops.
All students will appreciate the fact that the MacBook Air now shares the same keyboard with the latest 16-inch MacBook Pro, making writing long essays much more enjoyable.
Best Laptop for Working from Home: Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 14
If you’ve recently been thrown into a work from home situation and are looking for a suitable laptop, then look no further because the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 14 gives you the flexibility you need to work from anywhere.
What makes this laptop so great for people who are working from home is the 360-degree hinge, which enables multiple modes of operation. You can use the laptop the way you’re used to, fold it flat to effectively transform it into a tablet, rest it on the keyboard and use the 14-inch display as canvas, or prop the laptop up like a tent.
Because the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 14 is powered by an AMD Ryzen processor, it’s both affordable and fast. The only downside is the limited display brightness (only 250 nits), but that shouldn’t be a problem unless you’re used to working under direct sunlight.
Best Laptop for Gaming: Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
There’s no shortage of powerful gaming laptops, but many suffer from the same issues: overheating, poor battery life, subpar build quality. The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is a welcome exception that delivers the longest battery life ever in a laptop meant for gaming.
That’s because the laptop pairs AMD’s new powerful yet efficient Ryzen 9-4900HS CPU with an Nvidia RTX 2060 Max-Q GPU. This combination makes it possible to max out even the most demanding games out there, and the 14-inch display with a 120 Hz refresh rate delivers a truly immersive gaming experience.
Unlike most other gaming laptops, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 doesn’t have a backlit keyboard, but an omission like this is easy to overlook. What may not be so easy to overlook is the fact that the laptop doesn’t have a webcam, so you’ll need to supply your own.
Best Laptop Chromebook: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook
It wasn’t easy to pick between the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook and the HP Chromebook 14, but we ultimately decided to go with the former because it delivers two form factors in one: a compact laptop for work and handy tablet for entertainment.
Because the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook features the MediaTek Helio P60T processor, its performance can’t really be compared with other laptops in this article, but we can say that it handles all common tasks, such as document editing, web browsing, and multimedia playback with ease.
Where it beasts every other laptop is battery life. On a single charge, this compact Chromebook can last around 13 hours, and that’s with regular use and display brightness.