From ultraportables to high-powered editing machines, here are the best laptops to buy right now. Welcome to the list of the latest best laptops to buy of 2020 with great technology systems. We live in a world where gadgets; smartphones are present, tablets are commonplace, and even smartwatches are a thing that people talk about on the regular. But throughout all of these advances, the humble laptop has persevered, and for good reason. When it comes to time to work, whether that’s editing photos, writing a lot of emails, composing documents, or staying in touch with colleagues and family, you need to find the best laptops to buy for the job.
It’s getting harder to find the best laptops to buy, but what separates the best laptops from good laptops is how they balance power, efficiency, portability, and comfort. The best laptops to buy should have a fantastic keyboard and trackpad – after all, those are the two biggest reasons you would choose a laptop over a smartphone or tablet. The display should be easy on the eyes, bright, and sharp enough that you aren’t distracted by uneven edges and visible pixels. They should be be powerful enough for almost anything short of intensive video editing and advanced gaming. They should be easy to carry around from place to place, and should be able to last all day without needing to be plugged into power.
That’s why Hot Tech Gadget’s pick for the best laptops to buy of 2020 is the Dell XPS 13. It’s a device that does just about everything right. While it’s certainly not a perfect device, there are no major flaws. It’s a great pick for productivity, browsing, and even light gaming.
In my view, the best laptop for Mac users is the MacBook Air (2020). Apple fixed the Air’s biggest problem – the keyboard – and upgraded to more modern processors.
other picks for the best laptops to buy of 2020 include, the MacBook Pro 16, and the HP Elite Dragonfly. Check out the full list of the best laptops to buy below.
|MacBook Air (best laptops to buy)||Lower price of entry
New 10th generation processors
|Screen colors a little muted
Battery life only OK
Webcam still just 720p
|HP Elite Dragonfly (best laptops to buy)||Gorgeous, lightweight design
Extremely long battery life
Bright, vivid display
A host of security features
|Audio needs some tuning
|The Spectre x360 (best laptops to buy)||Compact footprint.
Potent Intel “Ice Lake” CPU and Iris Plus graphics.
Optional AMOLED screen.
Well-positioned power button.
Digital pen included.
Long battery life.
|Chassis is thicker than its predecessor’s.
Cumbersome USB port.
|MacBook Pro 13 (2020) – (best laptops to buy)||Same launch price as last year’s model
Improved specs (on some models)
Larger capacity SSD for starting model
New keyboard is great
|Entry-level model has 8th gen Intel CPU
Only Thunderbolt 3 ports
|Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (best laptops to buy)||Killer AMD and Nvidia performance
Longest-lasting gaming laptop ever
Lightning fast SSD
Bright 120Hz display
Elegant Moonlight White design
Poor keyboard lighting
MacBook Air (2020)
The 2020 MacBook Air is the best option for most people who prefer the Apple ecosystem. The Air comes with 10th Gen Intel processors (though in a lower power variation than the XPS 13), a sharp Retina display, and a new scissor-switch keyboard. The base configuration (including a Core i3, 8GB RAM, and 256GB storage) comes in under $1,000, but we recommend that you go for, at minimum, the upgraded model with a Core i5 processor. Its cheaper here
MacBook – (Best Laptops to Buy) keyboards have been almost universally unkind for the past few years. But the 2020 MacBook Air inherited the new-and-improved keyboard from the latest 16-inch MacBook Pro, which brings back the “inverted T” arrow layout and keys with 1mm of travel. There’s no Touch Bar, but that’s a controversial feature already, and most users should be fine with the standard top row and function keys. It does retain the Touch ID fingerprint scanner for easy logins and payment authentication.
The MacBook Air – (best laptops to buy) is the default Apple laptop for most people. You can configure the Air with three different Y-series chips, maxing out at a 1.2GHz quad-core Core i7. We had no problem with the 1.1GHz Core i5, though; it handled Chrome, Slack, Zoom, and Lightroom just fine.
Where you might run into trouble is with heavy workloads that need to run for long periods, such as rendering graphics or exporting video. You might witness some thermal throttling in these cases. That means if you are doing heavy creative work or other tasks that really push the CPU, you are likely to experience a slowdown and a very loud fan.
The MacBook Air (best laptops to buy) does have a few other significant weaknesses. The primary one is battery life. You will get above 5 hours using a work-flow of Chrome, Slack, Zoom, and Lightroom with the screen on maximum brightness. You will probably get more juice if you dim the screen and stick with Apple’s apps, but I expect most people will want to keep the brightness high, and third-party programs are necessities for many.
Despite those downsides, though, the MacBook Air (best laptops to buy) will serve as a competent and reliable device for most users. It has excellent design, display, performance, and (finally) keyboard that is expected from Apple. Power users who need the Pro probably know who they are; everyone else should be just fine with the Air.
Screen-wise, nothing has changed since last year’s model. It comes with a 13.3-inch display with LED backlighting, IPS technology, and a native resolution of 2,560 x 1,600. That results in a pixel density of 227 pixels per inch for sharp image quality.
As with last year’s model, the MacBook Air (best laptops to buy) 2020’s screen also features True Tone technology, which automatically adjusts the color temperature shown on the screen based on the ambient light.
Meanwhile, the CPU frequency hovers around 2.31GHz, higher than the 1.1GHz base clock, but a far cry from the 3.2GHz boost the CPU is supposedly capable of.
HP Elite Dragon-Fly
If you are a business professional and money is no object for you or your company, you can’t do better than the HP Elite Dragonfly (best laptops to buy). The 2020 model is the first Dragonfly that features HP’s super-secure Sure View Reflect technology, which tints the screen so that snoops can’t see what you’re doing what you are working on in public. When it’s not tinted, the display gets quite bright (over 700 nits) and has great viewing angles.
The new Dragonfly (best laptops to buy) is also the first laptop to include a built-in Tile tracker. That means if you lose the device, you can use the Tile smartphone app to set off an alarm (if it’s in Bluetooth range) or locate it anywhere in the world using Tile’s crowd-finding network. The tracker can work for a limited time even when the laptop is off.
Almost everything else about the Dragonfly is good hence worthy the best laptops to buy. It has some of the best battery life of any laptop on the market (use it for over 11 hours), a sleek and stunning 2-in-1 design, and an exceptional keyboard. Plus, it incorporates sustainable material, including ocean-bound plastics and recycled DVDs.
The Dragonfly (best laptops to buy) is pricey, and there are cheaper business laptops that will suit the needs of most professionals just fine. But if you are looking for the best of the best, it’s the evasive winner.
The Dragonfly features a USB-C 3.1 and Thunderbolt 3 port for your modern accessories and connections as well, but then gives you options for those legacy ports that still come in handy. They are key for those moments when you show up at a meeting, frazzled by a day of travel, and need to plug into a TV or monitor through HDMI. It also means you can leave most of your dongles at home. Get it cheaper here at Amazon.
HP decided to play it safe with the Dragonfly (best laptops to buy). You likely won’t notice a drop in performance compared to the XPS 13 2-in-1 or Spectre x360, especially not with the Dragonfly’s 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD, and 32GB Intel Optane Memory H10. It hurts the longevity of the laptop, though, and will make you question the high price-tag.
HP is proud of the security features it’s packed heavily into the Dragonfly. It has a fingerprint scanner, Windows Hello facial recognition, a physical camera cover, suppressed noise cancellation for Skype calls, extended Wi-Fi range, and three microphones (two front-facing, one “world”-facing). These are all touches that business users will appreciate.
The Dragonfly (best laptops to buy) comes with an excellent three-year warranty, which will be attractive to businesses. Barring any accidents, the laptop should last you that long given its hardware and excellent build quality. You can even add HP CarePack for extended repair and replacement services.
HP Spectre X360 13 (Late 2019)
The Spectre x360 (best laptops to buy) is a premium-level 2-in-1 Windows laptop with the latest processor options from Intel, a vibrant touchscreen, and more port options than are found on other laptops in this segment.
The HP Spectre x360 (best laptops to buy) weighs less than three pounds and is about two-thirds of an inch thick when closed, which makes it very easy to travel with. The latest model has a smaller footprint than before, thanks to shrunken bezels above and below the screen, but it still maintains a full-size keyboard and spacious trackpad. Besides, it provides both facial and fingerprint biometric authentication, so you can choose which way you prefer to log in.
HP updated the trackpad drivers it uses in the latest model to Microsoft’s Precision set and the experience is improved over the older versions to the point where it’s no longer an issue. The Spectre x360’s (b est laptops to buy) track-pad is now right up there with the best Windows trackpad options (which are still a tick behind what you get on a MacBook) in terms of scrolling, multi-finger gestures, and palm rejection.
The biggest argument against the HP Spectre x360 (best laptops to buy) is that it has a 16:9 display, as opposed to the 16:10 or 3:2 screens you will find on Dell or Microsoft’s computers. Those taller aspect ratios are much better for productivity work, whether that is working in two documents side by side or researching on the web without having to scroll as much. But unless you are very particular about your screen’s aspect ratio, most people won’t find this to be a deal-breaker.
The body’s left side has a drop-down USB-A port and headphone jack, while on the right side, along with a microSD card slot and a second Thunderbolt 3 port, you will find a kill switch for the webcam – no more Post-it notes to keep your camera private. That’s joined by a mic mute button on the keyboard, so you no longer need to dig into Windows 10’s microphone privacy settings to shut those down. For additional privacy and security, there’s a fingerprint reader and, according to HP, the world’s smallest IR webcam for facial recognition sign-in with Windows Hello. This one-ups Dell’s world’s smallest regular webcam on its XPS 13 2-in-1.
As for the display, expect a 1,920×1,080-resolution panel, but there’s also a 4K UHD (3,840×2,160) OLED display option that is factory color-calibrated. For productivity use, the full-HD display delivers good color and contrast, and brightness is improved for better outdoor use.
The keyboard is essentially unchanged from the last model, which is great news. It’s spacious and has big, easy-to-read markings. The keys have a fair amount of travel considering how shallow the laptop deck is and noticeably more than the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1. The keyboard is backlit, too, with two brightness levels, and automatically shuts off after about 30 seconds of inactivity and needs a keypress to wake it up. The Windows Precision touchpad is a comfortable size considering the space HP had to work with and performance is smooth and responsive.
Premium ultraportables are the way to go if you want a long battery life. They regularly hit more than 10 hours while streaming video and some do better – like the last-gen Spectre x360, which blows right past that, landing at 13 hours, 18 minutes. The new version doesn’t last quite as long on its slightly smaller battery but is still impressive at 10 hours, 39 minutes. That’s in line with the battery life HP reports for its streaming video tests. For local video playback over headphones, HP says this Spectre can run for a touch over 20 hours. Buy it cheaper here at Amazon
MacBook Pro 13 (2020)
If you are looking for a MacBook that’s more powerful than the Air but is not as pricey as the 16-inch Pro, the MacBook Pro 13 (best laptops to buy) hits the sweet spot in the middle. It has a bright 500-nit screen, excellent speakers, and a reliable keyboard.
There are two models you can consider depending on your needs: the “base” model has 8th-Gen Intel processors and 2 Thunderbolt 3 processors, while the pricier version has 10th-Gen processors and 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports (as well as 16GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD). If you can afford it, I recommend stepping up to the pricier version, as the performance difference between the two generations is noticeable.
This unit has Intel’s Core i5-1038NG7, a 25-watt processor with four cores and eight threads. It’s similar to the Intel Core i5-1035G7, a 15-watt processor that shows up in many 13-inch laptops including the Dell XPS 13, HP Spectre x360, and the Microsoft Surface Laptop 3.
The base model now comes with a 256GB SSD rather than 128GB, and the $1,799 model has 512GB. That’s already the standard for many laptops. The MacBook Pro (best laptops to buy) isn’t the thinnest or smallest 13-inch laptop in the world, but it still feels slim. Get it cheaper here from Amazon
The MacBook Pro 13’s (best laptops to buy) Thunderbolt 3 ports were a trendsetter when first released, but today they are fairly standard. The pricier model comes with four Thunderbolt 3 ports, while the $1,299 model has just two. On the cheaper model, Apple places both ports on the left side, which is a bit inconvenient for charging purposes.
The current MacBook Pro has never boasted stellar battery life. You can expect around 6 to 7 hours on a single charge, depending on how hard you push it. Averagely, it will take you around 6.5 hours on any typical workflow online.
The MacBook Pro 13-inch is a mixed update. It fixes the troubled keyboard, but Apple’s decision to stick with older hardware for entry-level configurations is a big problem. The design is aging in some respects, but remains sleek and compares well to most alternates.
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
The elegant milky-white color that Asus dubs “Moonlight White” is slathered over the Zephyrus G14’s (best laptops to buy) magnesium-alloy lid. Half of the lid is covered in mesmerizing microdots for the mini LED lights called the AniMe Matrix display. It’ll display your own images or GIFs, like a little Pikachu running across the lid. The interior regrettably forgoes the Moonlight White design for a gray-silver color (aka Eclipse Gray). It doesn’t look bad, just tame. There are race car grill cutouts on the left and right side of the deck for the top-firing speakers
The Zephyrus G14 (best laptops to buy) has a decent number of port. On the left, there’s the power jack, an HDMI 2.0b port, one USB Type-C port (DisplayPort 1.4) and a headphone jack. Meanwhile, the right side features a Kensington lock slot, two USB 3.2 ports and a USB Type-C port. The Zephyrus’ 14-inch, 1920 x 1080 panel boasts a 120Hz refresh rate with AMD FreeSync, which eliminates screen tearing. Yes, AMD. Even though the Zephyrus G14 packs an Nvidia GPU, its display works with AMD’s FreeSync technology, thanks to a driver Nvidia released last year.
Whether you are typing 2,000-word articles or showing hell who’s boss in Doom Eternal, these keys are ready for anything. The Zephyrus G14 (best laptops to buy) even features Asus’ Ergolift technology, so you can type at an angle. The Zephyrus G14 is a touting AMD’s prized beast. The Ryzen 9 4900HS processor can run smoothly over 40 Google Chrome tabs and five 1080p YouTube videos and nevertheless operating Doom Eternal ran in the background without any lags.
Along with the Zephyrus G14’s killer performance, what stands out about the laptop is its wild battery life. With over 11 hours and 32 minutes of non stop work makes it the longest-lasting gaming laptop you can buy right now yet cheaper here. It’s nearly three times as long as the 4:26 mainstream gaming laptop average.
MACBOOK AIR (2020) – best laptops to buy
MACBOOK AIR (2020) – best laptops to buy is the best laptop gadget for Mac users.
This year’s MacBook Air fixes a lot of our complaints with previous models. It comes with new, more powerful, innards, a drastically improved keyboard and more storage space. However, the screen is a little muted and battery life is average. Still, if you are an Apple fan looking for an affordable MacBook, just go with the new MacBook Air and its cheaper here.
HP Elite Dragon-Fly – (best laptops to buy)
HP Elite Dragon-Fly – (best laptops to buy) is a business person laptop with solid security technology. The HP Elite Dragonfly offers tons of security, nearly 13 hours of battery life and solid performance in one of the prettiest chassis ever. This laptop is almost perfect. It’s gorgeous and durable with a bright display and comfortable keyboard. Sure, the audio needs work, but like I said: almost perfect. If you want one of the best looking, longest lasting business laptops available, the HP Elite Dragonfly is the way to go.
HP Spectre X360 13 – (best laptops to buy)
HP Spectre X360 13 – (best laptops to buy) is such a great 2-in-1 Laptop. Nifty design flourishes, strong performance and battery life, and a reasonable price make the latest HP Spectre x360 13 a first-class convertible laptop.
HP’s Spectre x360 13 gets very close to laptop perfection. The latest model enhances a beautiful design with slimmer bezels and a more compact chassis and does so without making many compromises. Under the hood, the Spectre x360’s 10th Gen Ice Lake processors offer faster performance than before and enable epic battery life (more than 13 hours).
Despite these few shortcomings, the only other 2-in-1 laptops that give the Spectre x360 a run for its money is Dell’s XPS 13 2-in-1 and the Lenovo Yoga C940. While it doesn’t last as long on a charge, the XPS 2-in-1’s display gets extremely bright. That being said, you want a convertible laptop and battery life matters most to you, the Spectre x360 is in a league of its own.
MacBook Pro 13 (2020) – (best laptops to buy)
MacBook Pro 13 (2020) – (best laptops to buy) is the best MacBook Pro for everyday users.
The MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2020) brings new Intel processors and improved RAM speeds for better performance, but only if you’re willing to pay the price. The entry-level model misses out on some of those new toys, which is a shame. The MacBook Pro 13-inch really benefits from the improved internals, and it means this version is a great choice if you’re looking for a MacBook that can handle multitasking well.
You can’t understate how much of an improvement the new keyboard in the MacBook Pro 13-inch is. If you were put off with the older keyboards, the new one will definitely win you over. Normally powerful laptops have to make do with short battery lives, but the MacBook Pro 13-inch 2020 manages to balance performance with a battery life that can last the whole work day. Impressive.
The Asus Zephyrus G14′ – (best laptops to buy)
If you want 11-plus hours of battery life and killer performance, on a bright display topped with a comfortable keyboard and strong speakers, you can’t go wrong with the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (best laptops to buy). Sure, it doesn’t have a webcam, and its keyboard lighting is pretty bad, but those cons are negligible.
Ultimately, between its killer AMD performance and epic battery life, the Zephyrus G14 (best laptops to buy) is the gaming laptop to beat. The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 will amaze you with its 11-plus hours of battery life, awesome AMD CPU performance and lightning-fast SSD.
Needs for laptops can vary widely. Some people need to do intense video editing and should pony up for a pro machine. Others just need a reliable keyboard and a few windows, so something less powerful will do. Some might want a super light laptop that can sometimes double as a tablet. Some will want a portable gaming machine capable of running all of the latest titles. Others want a tall aspect-ratio screen, which is much more comfortable to use than a cramped 16:9 display if you primarily do your work in Office documents or a web browser.
Depending on what you want, there are plenty of great options in the Windows PC world, complete with the latest processors and designs, and Apple’s MacBook lineup has been recently refreshed entirely with new keyboards and upgraded performance.