Our General Use Laptop Guide List

Name of Laptop Display CPU GPU RAM Storage Battery Life Weight
Budget Range: $300 and Under
Gateway 11.6″ 1080p 11.6″ Touch Celeron N4020 Intel HD Graphics 600 4 GB 64 GB eMMC 8.5 hours 2.6 lbs
Gateway 14.1″ 1080p 14.1″ Celeron N4020 Intel HD Graphics 600 4 GB 64 GB eMMC 8 hours 3.35 lbs
Renewed Lenovo ThinkPad T440 Varies Varies Varies 8 GB Varies Varies 4.00 lbs
Chromebook Alternatives
Samsung Chromebook 4 11.6″ 768p 11.6″ Intel Celeron N4020 Intel UHD Graphics 600 4 GB 64 GB eMMC 10 hours 2.60 lbs
Acer Chromebook Spin 311 768p 11.6″ Touch Intel Celeron N4020 Intel UHD Graphics 600 4 GB 32 GB eMMC 10 hours 2.65 lbs
Lenovo Chromebook Duet 1920 x 1200 10.1″ Touch MediaTek Helio P60T ARM G72 MP3 4 GB 64 GB eMMC 8 hours 2.98 lbs
Budget Range: $300 – $499
Gateway 15.6″ Notebook 1080p 15.6″ Ryzen 5 3450U Vega 8 8 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 4.10 lbs
HP 15″ 1080p 15.6″ Ryzen 5 5500U Vega 7 8 GB 256 GB SSD 6 hours 3.75 lbs
Gateway 14.1″ Notebook 1080p 14.1″ i5-1135G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 4.00 lbs
Lenovo IdeaPad 3 15″ 1080p 15.6″ Ryzen 5 5500U Vega 7 8 GB 256 GB SSD 6 hours 3.74 lbs
Budget Range: $500 – $599
Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14″ 1080p 14″ Ryzen 5 5500U Vega 7 8 GB 256 GB SSD 6 hours 3.11 lbs
HP 14″ 1080p 14″ Ryzen 5 5500U Vega 7 8 GB 256 GB SSD 5.5 hours 3.77 lbs
HP Envy 13″ 1080p 13.3″ i5-1135G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 8 GB 256 GB SSD 7 hours 2.88 lbs
Gateway 15.6″ Notebook 1080p 15.6″ i5-1135G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 4.10 lbs
Acer Aspire 5 1080p 15.6″ i5-1135G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 8 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 3.64 lbs
Budget Range: $600 – $699
ASUS Zenbook 14 1080p 14″ Ryzen 5 5500U MX450 8 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 2.91 lbs
Acer Aspire 5 1080p 15.6″ Ryzen 5 5500U Vega 7 8 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 3.64 lbs
Acer Swift 3 1080p 14″ Ryzen 7 4700U Vega 7 8 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 2.65 lbs
MSI Modern 15 1080p 15.6″ i7-1195G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 6.5 hours 3.52 lbs
Budget Range: $700 – $799
Acer Swift 3 1080p 14″ Ryzen 7 5700U Vega 7 8 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 2.65 lbs
Lenovo Flex 5 1080p 14″ Touch Ryzen 5 5500U Vega 6 16 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 3.63 lbs
ASUS Vivobook Pro 14 2.8K 14″ OLED i5-11300H Intel Iris Xe Graphics 8 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 3.24 lbs
LG Ultra 13″ 1080p 13.3″ Ryzen 7 4700U Vega 7 16 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 2.16 lbs
ASUS Vivobook 15 1080p 15.6″ OLED i5-1135G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 12 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 3.97 lbs
Budget Range: $800 – $999
Lenovo Yoga 6 13″ 1080p 13.3″ Touch Ryzen 7 5700U Vega 8 16 GB 1 TB SSD 10 hours 2.99 lbs
Acer Aspire 5 1080p 15.6″ i7-1165G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 3.64 lbs
ASUS Zenbook 13 1080p 13.3″ OLED Ryzen 7 5700U Vega 8 8 GB 512 GB SSD 9 hours 2.45 lbs
Apple MacBook Air QHD+ 13.3″ Retina, True Tone Apple M1 7-Core GPU 8 GB 256 GB SSD 15 hours 2.80 lbs
Gigabyte U4 1080p 14″ i7-1195G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 4.5 hours 2.18 lbs
HP Envy x360 15″ 1080p 15.6″ 400 Nit Touch Ryzen 7 5700U Vega 7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 9 hours 4.42 lbs
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Pro 2.8K 14″ 90Hz Touch i7-11370H Intel Iris Xe Graphics 16 GB 256 GB SSD 8 hours 2.87 lbs
Budget Range: $1,000 – $1,299
Acer Swift X 1080p 14″ Ryzen 7 5800U RTX 3050 Ti 16 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 3.06 lbs
ASUS Zenbook 14 1080p 14″ Ryzen 7 5800H Vega 8 16 GB 1 TB SSD 9 hours 2.90 lbs
Microsoft Surface Pro 8 13″ 2.9K 13″ 120Hz Touch i5-1135G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 8 GB 128 GB SSD 8 hours 1.96 lbs
ASUS Zenbook 14 1080p 14″ Ryzen 9 5900HX Vega 8 16 GB 1 TB SSD 9 hours 2.90 lbs
ASUS Zenbook 13 1080p 13.3″ OLED i7-1165G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 9 hours 2.45 lbs
Apple MacBook Pro 13 QHD+ 13.3″ Retina, True Tone Apple M1 8-Core GPU 8 GB 256 GB SSD 20 hours 3.10 lbs
ASUS Zenbook 14 Duo 1080p 14″ Touch + 12.6″ Touch i7-1195G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 8 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 3.53 lbs
Budget Range: $1,300+
Razer Blade 13 UHD+ 13.4″ Touch i7-1165G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 10 hours 3.24 lbs
Dell XPS 13 9310 2-in-1 FHD+ 13.4″ Touch i7-1185G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 32 GB 512 GB SSD 11 hours 2.90 lbs
LG Gram 16 QHD+ 16″ i7-1165G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 1 TB SSD 10 hours 2.62 lbs
LG Gram 17 QHD+ 17″ i7-1165G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 1 TB SSD 10 hours 2.98 lbs
Dell XPS 13 9310 FHD+ 13.4″ Touch i7-1185G7 Intel Iris Xe G7 16 GB 512 GB SSD 11 hours 2.80 lbs
Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio 2.4K 14.4″ 120Hz Touch i7-11370H RTX 3050 Ti 16 GB 512 GB SSD 8 hours 3.83 lbs

56 Comments
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  1. Just so you know, many of the hyperlinks go to a different laptop listing than the one listed.

  2. Microsoft Surface laptops claim to have the features you’ve listed to look for in a new laptop. But you haven’t recommended anything by Microsoft. Is there a reason?

    • Currently, most laptops with Ryzen 4000 series laptops are better values than the Microsoft Surface devices. If Microsoft chooses to update them with Ryzen 4000 series processors, I would be more inclined to recommend it!

  3. Hi, What about Asus Vivo S13 S333JA ?

  4. I was eyeing the Lenovo Thinkpad E15 that you’ve listed, but unfortunately it’s out of stock! Do you know of any similarly spec’d and priced Thinkpad E15 deals or for anything else in that same range?

    • Hi Rohan! Unfortunately, the new Lenovo ThinkPad E15 is very popular. I would consider waiting for it to restock. You can also take a look at Lenovo’s site, as they may restock sooner or later too.

  5. What is your opinion on ASUS Zenbook 14 vs Samsung Book ION ? Thanks

    • Hi, it depends on the configurations and the price! The ASUS Zenbook 14 on my list with the MX350 graphics is certainly a good choice if you plan on running some lighter games. The Samsung Book Ion is generally a bit expensive for what it has to offer, but the QLED display is wonderful if you value that.

  6. Is the extra $150 for the Intel® Iris® Xe Graphics with shared graphics memory for the xp13 worth it?

    • Hi, if you think that you can make use of the extra GPU power, it may be worthwhile! But if you’re mainly running programs that aren’t demanding, the 10th gen Intel CPUs should be fine.

  7. I am a teacher and I am looking for recommendations on laptops under $900. I am really using it for google drive and other online resources. Surfing the internet is also a priority but not for gaming! I am looking at the ASUS Vivobooks but any recommendations are welcomed!

    • Hi, I think that there are a handful of laptops on my list that are suitable! I’d take a look at the Lenovo Flex 5 14″ (with a 1080p 14″ Touch display, Ryzen 5 4500U, processor, 16 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD), or the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 since the latter is a business grade laptop with very good build quality.

  8. Hello, i am a court reporting student and am needing something to run my software without slowing my computer, also surfing the internet is important as i need to look up a lot of things while my software is running in the background. So i’m needing a laptop that can multitask well and not have any problems. any recommendations?

  9. Hello.

    I am a law student as well as a general contractor. I need a laptop that handle a lot of web activity – not gaming, but sites like Westlaw tend to drag – for researching while also having a decent amount of storage for documents and can handle a lot of zooming. With all of that, I also need it to be fairly durable since I will be taking it around to job sites, using the web to access my work-related systems, and hold contracts and a bunch of pictures. My budget is around $750.

    My wife had a Lenovo and we are less than impressed. It died within 2 years.

    Also, I need a 15″ screen because my eyeballs suck and I will have to read a lot.

    • Hi Matt!

      I’d consider the Acer Aspire 5 with the Ryzen 7 4700U processor on my list. It should be plenty powerful for your uses, plus you can upgrade the RAM and storage as needed in the future. Otherwise, you could consider spending a bit more for a business grade laptop like the Lenovo ThinkPad E15, or the HP Probook 455 G7 if you do not want another Lenovo laptop.

  10. Hello,

    I could really use some help. I know very little about computers despite being a college student. I am looking for laptop that can handle lots of tabs, and basic tasks that a typical student would need. I dont need a good graphics card, so I guess the processor would take priority based on my needs. What would you recommend?
    I would prefer to have the total under $350-400.

  11. Hi, first thank you so much for the work you put into this list–it has been most helpful for me as shopping for laptops can quickly feel overwhelming! I wanted to get ask your opinion on the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14″. I believe it has basically the same specs as the 15″ one you mentioned in the comment above mine.

    Mostly, I am looking for a laptop I can use to commit to my work as a graduate student. So, lots of word-processing, reading PDFs, and using citational database apps (primarily Mendeley). I have a desktop that doubles for both gaming and as my workhorse but I’m looking for a reliable laptop I can use to take my work out of my office. As such, my price range would be $400-$600 (ideally on the lower end).

    The 14″ IdeaPad 3 I mentioned at the start is currently on sale for $424 but I was wondering if you had other recommendations that would be more efficient for the cost as it relates to general use/school/research?

    • Hi, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14″ (if you’re referring to the one on Amazon) is a solid choice for the price. The only major downfall is the TN display, but otherwise, it is fine for general use tasks.

  12. Hi, I’m currently switching over from a late model 2016 MacBook Pro with a touch bar.

    I’m looking to switch over to a cheaper windows laptop and have narrowed my search down to the Lenovos with Ryzen 4500u. I’m in Canada and most of the prices here are a lot higher when compared to the US market. The laptops are not the equivalent of only the currency difference.

    For example, the Lenovo Flex 5 in Canada is $900.

    I am looking for a simple laptop to study/search the internet.

    The main thing I am looking for is build quality. I need something durable and will last a long time without parts breaking due to day to day handling. I tend to break electronics quite easily (drops, harsh handling, etc) I honestly do not care much about touch screen or 360-degree screens or anything else, they just seem like more features that can fail. I just need a simple machine that is strong enough to handle my tasks and will not break down.

    I’d also prefer something that has a sleek look or a decent look.

    I was looking at the Ideapad 3 that you suggest to another user but in Canada, it’s priced at $700, which is a bit steep for a simpler machine.

    My budget is around the $1000 mark, give or take depending on the quality of the machine.

    I also look at the Ideapad 5, it’s $829 in Canada.

    Based on the Canadian market and its difference in pricing, which laptop would you suggest that is efficient, has a durable build quality, and is powerful enough for daily tasks? Id want to get at least 5-6+ years from the machine before upgrading

    • Hi, I would wait to see if you can catch the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 or E15 AMD on sale. You should be able to get a 6-core Ryzen 5, 8 GB RAM, and 256 GB SSD configuration for under $1,000 CAD. They are solidly built business grade laptops.

  13. Hello. Looking for general use recommendation. Dabble in music production but not looking for performance beast in that area. Other uses are heavy web browsing and some investing tools like thinkorswim. Prefer to have sd card slot. I would kinda like to have cd/dvd capability as well but not a dealbreaker if missing. 2nd monitor capability hdmi or vga another nice but not required feature. Replacing a 9 yr old Acer Aspire so a lil out of touch with current market. Budget 500 to 900 prefer to stick to lower end of range if possible. Timing is such that black friday/cyber monday is a week away so willing to scope out some options that are likely to be on sale around then. Thanks!

    • Hi, if you’re looking to catch a good deal, I’d keep your eyes on our subreddit, /r/laptopdeals. All Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals will be posted. But on my list, the Lenovo ThinkPad E15 would be a good choice but that listing is out of stock. There are other configurations available on Lenovo’s site and on Amazon.

  14. I am looking for a 2 in 1 laptop. Which ones do you recommend?

    • Hi, it depends on your budget and uses, but the Lenovo Flex 5 14″ with the Ryzen 5 4500U processor is always a great value.

      • Hi!
        I’m an engineering student and would like to buy a new laptop around $1300. If you would be so kind to recommend one that can handle tasks like Fusion 360 and Autodesk well. It is also preferable if it can multitask and can handle some light gaming. I really don’t have any prior knowledge about laptop specs so your help would be greatly appreciated.

        • Hi, I would go with the new Acer Swift X, as it offers a great balance between performance, battery life, and weight. It comes in at $1,070, which is easily within your budget after tax.

      • I am trying to spend less than $1000.

  15. Hi, I haven’t had a laptop in over 10 years. I’ve been watching countless YouTube videos on laptops and 2 in 1’s and am a little overwhelmed. I am considering a 2 in 1 so I can use it to watch movies when I travel.

    I need it for general daily use and would like something with a good battery, lightweight, stays cool and quiet, has decent speakers, and runs Windows. I like the 16:10 aspect ratio or better and I think I prefer a matte screen.

    I haven’t found anything that checks all the boxes.

    So far I’m considering:

    -HP Envy X360. I’ve read the fan can be loud and the speakers are pretty bad despite the brand name.

    -Dell XPS 13 2 in 1. I read the battery life is not good and many reports of the screen not working properly.

    -LG GRAM 14. Great battery life, quiet, ultra light, not a 2 in 1, speakers aren’t great, and reviewers say it is a very glossy screen.

    Budget is up to $2500 USD.

    If you have any input or suggestions that would be appreciated.

    • Hi, I have the HP Envy x360 myself. The speakers are honestly not bad (compared to the many laptops that I’ve reviewed), but still not great. The fan can kick in sometimes, but it isn’t annoying. I haven’t tried the other two devices myself.

      The most premium device of the three is definitely the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1. Looking at NotebookCheck’s review on it, battery life is decent, ~9 hours for light use. Considering that your budget is large, I would get an extended warranty, so if you run into any screen issues, you can get it repaired or replaced.

  16. Any thoughts on the Lenovo yoga 9i vs HP Spectre x360?

  17. Hello! Going back to school to learn coding and programming. Looking for a new computer that has 4+GB Ram, 2.6+GHz, and an integrated graphics card or a better GPU. New to this so trying to figure out something that’s easy for general use and can also accommodate Anaconda/school. Hoping to stay under $1000. Any recs would be greatly appreciated, thanks!

    • Hi, I’d go for the Acer Swift 3 on my list with the Ryzen 7 4700U CPU on my list. Solid performance, low weight, and good battery life within budget.

  18. Hi, I’m a college student in the market for a new laptop. I’m a physics major and will need some decent power in a laptop. I’ll be using it mainly for school work (no gaming) which involves some CAD software, programming software, light physics simulators, regular student use (internet browsing, zoom calls, streaming, multitasking, etc.), and some photo editing (a hobby of mine, so not priority). I’d like to be able to do all of this with minimal slow downs/wait times that I’ve experienced with the older laptop I’m currently using (a 7th gen intel lenovo laptop). I was looking at the Asus Zenbook 14 you have listed as well as the Acer Swift X. Would one of these be sufficient for I’m looking for or would it be worth the extra money for say the LG Gram 14/16? Thank you in advance for the advice and for this great resource for comparing laptops.

    • Hi, it depends on your budget, but I’d say that the Acer Swift X is probably your best choice, considering that some of the programs you plan on running will benefit from having dedicated graphics. It offers excellent value overall.

      • Thank you for the advice, the Acer Swift X was the laptop I was leaning towards (as it’s towards the top of my budget and seemed to have everything I was looking for), so I will go ahead and purchase that for my upcoming semester. Thanks again for the advice and this great resource. It really helped me as I have pretty minimal knowledge of laptops. Whenever I need to get my next one I will definitely be visiting this site again!

  19. Hello! I am looking for a laptop I won’t need to fix/get fixed. I currently have a MacBook Pro 13in (2016) that keeps having display issues. I love everything else about it, but simply can’t afford $600 fixes once a year.

    Going to graduate school + teaching. Hoping to find something similar (even another mac that’s less issue prone). Thanks in advance!

    • Hi, I’d say that if you want something reliable, go for the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 on my list. It is a business grade laptop, which has good reliability and build quality.

  20. Hello! How do I see the Guide List from 2020? Every Guide List from Reddit, no matter the month, links to the latest list. I’d love it if I can choose from your previous recommendations.

  21. Hi, I’m looking for a laptop to satisfy my small business needs. I’m currently building a gaming PC so i’m really just looking for something with speed, reliability and storage.

    Things i’ll need
    – Photoshop
    – Storage for jpegs, pngs, etc.
    – Multiple browsers with software in the background (silhoutte, photoshop, etc)
    – Longevity
    – Good battery life

  22. If you’re just going by performance per dollar is there any reason to go with one of these general use laptops over one of the gaming ones? Seems like for the same price the gaming laptops have the same processor/ram, but with a better GPU. My wife needs a laptop for work so just looking for the fastest I can get for around $1000.

  23. Hi! I’m looking to purchase a laptop for my parents. They would really only use it for things like checking their email, browsing websites, and creating documents/PDFs. I was hoping to spend less than $600 so was eyeing the Acer Aspire 5 (Ryzen 5 5500u) since it was on your list, but was wondering if you have a different/cheaper suggestion. I’d like this laptop to last quite some time, so willing to spend on the higher end of my budget if necessary. Thank you so much!

    • Hi, the Acer Aspire 5 is a solid choice since it comes from a reputable brand, but you could also consider the Gateway 14.1″ on my list with the i5-1135G7 processor for $399. Gateway is not very well known these days, however, they offer strong specs for the price.

  24. her budget is 750- 900 usd

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