Whether you are looking to purchase your first laptop or replace an older model, you may be confused by the number of options available to you today.
With so many choices on the market, it can be difficult to decide which features are most important, and what price range you should consider when shopping around. To help narrow down your search, we’ve reviewed five of the best laptops that are perfect for programming needs.
Each laptop has its own set of pros and cons, but all come with top-of-the-line processing power and software to ensure you always have what you need in order to finish your next big project.
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2017)
One of our favorite laptops, and a top pick for those who are looking for a laptop that is good for programming. The X1 Carbon offers all of Lenovo’s usual durability with a thin and light design, but it’s also equipped with enough power to handle most tasks thrown at it.
Picking out a new laptop can be an arduous task. From figuring out what operating system you want to determining how much RAM you need, there are a lot of things to consider when buying your next computer.
However, if you’re in search of a laptop that will last as long as possible while also handling everyday programs like Photoshop or Microsoft Office without any issues, then take a look at the following.
The X1 Carbon has an aluminium exterior and a carbon fibre lid and bottom that helps it stay strong even when it’s bumped around on an aeroplane.
The keyboard uses a precision trackpad with haptic feedback, allowing you to navigate with just your fingertips.
The ZenBook Pro UX501VW is an incredibly thin and light powerhouse, but with a thickness of just 0.7 (18mm) and weighing only 4.4 pounds (2kg), it’s also surprisingly portable.
The beautiful 4K display measures 15.6 inches across and features a staggering resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels and that means viewing content will be ultra-crisp.
For example, I often find myself checking Slack while in bed and working on my laptop from there until I fall asleep; on other laptops I’ve used in the past, using Slack was such a hassle that I ended up not doing it at all.
The ZenBook Pro UX501VW’s large screen makes such activities effortless: It has more than enough real estate to view your open chat windows without having to resize them constantly or squint to read text in small fonts.
Dell XPS 15 9560
There’s a lot to like about Dell’s XPS 15 9560. For one, it has a gorgeous 4K touch display, which means that you can edit 4K video or just browse your media library in stunning detail. It also has a 256GB solid-state drive (SSD), which will help when it comes to booting up and launching apps quickly.
The only downside is that there’s no discrete graphics card; instead, it uses Intel HD Graphics 530. This isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, but if you want to play games on your laptop, then look elsewhere.
The Dell XPS 15 comes in two configurations: one with an Intel Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM, and another with an i7 processor and 16GB of RAM.
Either way, you get up to 1TB of SSD storage (if you go with a hard drive), which is plenty of space for your media library or other files.
Microsoft Surface Book 2
With a unique hinge design that lets you switch between tablet and laptop modes, Microsoft’s Surface Book 2 also has excellent processor power. The 13.5-inch model starts at $1,500, and can handle just about anything a software developer might need it to do.
The original Surface Book was an instant hit with professionals when it launched in 2015 and its successor is no different. With 8th generation Intel Core processors, 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD and Windows 10 Pro pre installed (which allows you to run two virtual machines), Microsoft’s flagship laptop is one of our favourites if you want to program on the go.
The main drawback is battery life; at around seven hours, it isn’t quite as long-lasting as some other laptops we recommend.
But that shouldn’t be too much of a problem if you plan to plug your laptop into power while working at home or in coffee shops. And, like all laptops on our list, it comes with USB-C ports that support Thunderbolt 3 connectivity speeds.
MacBook Pro 15 (2016 and later)
The 2016 and later versions of Apple’s MacBook Pro 15, which comes in a 13-inch and 15-inch display, offers an Intel Core i7 processor and comes with 16GB RAM (2666MHz) standard. It boasts a Retina display that supports up to six million pixels at full resolution. Other options include built-in speakers with surround sound, as well as Wi-Fi AC connectivity for faster internet speeds when connected to local hotspots.
Apple’s newest laptops come with Touch Bar displays, which replace function keys on previous models.
These displays are touch sensitive and can be used to access special tools depending on what application you’re using. For example, while using Safari or Mail you can use Touch Bar tools like QuickType suggestions or emoji pickers without having to switch from your document or email window.
The MacBook Pro 15 is available in 13-inch and 15-inch display sizes, both of which have a 2880 x 1800 resolution at 227 pixels per inch (ppi).
The 13-inch model has a 16:10 aspect ratio with a 1,600 x 900 resolution at 128 ppi; it’s also available in a 2,560 x 1,600 Retina display with 227 ppi. The 15-inch MacBook Pro has a widescreen 2880 x 1800 (16:10) LED backlit IPS Retina display with 227 ppi.
With their light weight, long battery life, and wide range of features, laptops are perfect for taking on-the-go. While they’re great for everything from writing papers to watching movies, there are five particular laptops that are perfect for programmers.
They range in price from $900 to $1500 but offer a variety of configurations and will help you work productively wherever you go. .
The five best laptops for programming include: Dell XPS 13, MacBook Pro, HP Spectre x360, Microsoft Surface Book 2, and ASUS ZenBook UX430UA.
Each laptop has its own strengths that make it particularly useful for developers; some prioritize portability while others prioritize power or screen size. Whether you’re looking to do video editing or just need something lightweight to get through your day at school or work, one of these top picks is sure to fit your needs.