Skip to main content
These are the best laptops money can buy. Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

The Best Laptops of 2022

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

These are the best laptops money can buy. Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

Why trust Reviewed?

Reviewed's mission is to help you buy the best stuff and get the most out of what you already own. Our team of product experts thoroughly vet every product we recommend to help you cut through the clutter and find what you need.

Learn more about our product testing
1
Editor's Choice Product image of Apple MacBook Air (2020)
Best Overall

Apple MacBook Air (2020)

The new MacBook Air looks like business as usual, but its unbelievable battery life and powerful new M1 processor blew us away. Read More

Pros

  • Jaw-dropping battery life
  • Incredible performance
  • Iconic build quality

Cons

  • Poor port selection
2
Editor's Choice Product image of Dell XPS 15 9510 (2021)
Best Windows Pick

Dell XPS 15 9510 (2021)

The Dell XPS 15 9510 is a luxurious laptop that feels fantastic to use, though its performance is just okay for the price. Read More

Pros

  • Luxurious design
  • Excellent OLED display
  • Great battery life

Cons

  • Performance is just okay
  • Runs hot
3
Editor's Choice Product image of Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro (2021)

Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro (2021)

There’s a lot to love about Apple’s new 14-inch MacBook Pros with the M1 Pro chip, but the $2,000 price tag might make you reconsider. Read More

Pros

  • Incredible GPU performance
  • Lower power consumption
  • Variety of ports

Cons

  • Minimal gains over M1 chip
  • Rough trackpad
  • So-so speakers
4
Editor's Choice Product image of Acer Swift X (2021)

Acer Swift X (2021)

Acer’s Swift X 14 doesn’t look exciting, but it delivers what many value-minded shoppers want most: performance. Read More

Pros

  • Great multi-core performance
  • Strong GPU performance
  • USB-C with DisplayPort and Power Delivery

Cons

  • Lackluster design and display
  • Nearly constant fan noise
5
Editor's Choice Product image of Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED (2022)

Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED (2022)

Read More

Pros

  • Excellent OLED display
  • Strong performance
  • Enjoyable keyboard and touchpad

Cons

  • Mediocre battery life
  • Unimpressive design
  • Limited wired connectivity

PCs are the center of business and play for most of us. Our PC experts at Reviewed are always on the lookout for the best laptops for everyone, from gamers to students to frequent flyers. We work hard to make sure you find a laptop you love on this list.

Most people need to look no further than the Apple M1 MacBook Air (available at Amazon for $949.99). It’s thin and light, packs 13 hours of battery life, crushes many Windows laptops in benchmarks and real-world performance, and comes in a beautiful rose gold chassis. Our upgrade pick, the Dell XPS 15 (available at XYZ) has enough performance to run tough creativity and modeling programs like AutoCAD and Adobe Premiere, and its nine-hour battery life, incredible display, and snappy keyboard should keep it easy to stay on the go.

Here are the best laptops we’ve tested, ranked in order:

  1. Apple M1 MacBook Air (2020)
  2. Dell XPS 15 9510
  3. MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro
  4. Acer Swift X 14
  5. Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
  6. Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 AMD Edition
  7. Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch M2
  8. Dell XPS 13 9310
  9. Lenovo Yoga 9i
  10. Asus ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage Edition
  11. Razer Blade 14 (2022)
  12. MSI Summit E16 Flip
  13. Microsoft Surface Laptop 4
MacBook lies on white table surrounded by plants
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The new M1 MacBook Air redefined what we expect from a laptop.

Best Overall
Apple MacBook Air (2020)
  • Processor: Apple M1
  • Graphics: Integrated
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 256GB
  • Display: 13-inch 2560 x 1440p Liquid Retina display
  • Battery Life: 11 hours, 42 minutes

With almost 12 hours of battery life, a crazy-powerful M1 processor, and an incredibly smooth trackpad and keyboard, it should be no surprise that the MacBook Air M1 shoved our previous top laptop out of its spot.

The new Air ditches Intel’s processors for Apple’s own M1 processors. Apple claimed this new M1 chip would be so amazing that we’d want to ditch our old Intel Macs. It delivered, with the M1 processor packing over 60% more power than its predecessor. While it’s been outclassed since its launch in 2020, it still packs enough power for most productivity tasks, creative tasks, and even some light gaming.

But it’s not just about speed. The most astonishing feature of the MacBook Air is its battery life. Our battery test is designed for real-world performance rather than optimal circumstances, so we expected the claimed 15-hour battery life to turn into 9 hours—instead, we got almost 12 hours.

It shattered the record for longest battery life we’ve seen from a laptop running Chrome (by comparison, the Acer Swift X 14 ran for about nine and a half hours). The only laptops able to beat the M1 Air are Apple’s M2 Air and the MacBook Pro laptops, which have up to 22 hours of battery life but cost significantly more (the M2 Air starts at $1,199).

The MacBook Air M1 comes with the same aluminum chassis and Retina screen we loved in the earlier 2020 Intel MacBook Air, although we’d love to see the M2 MacBook Air’s redesign trickle down to its predecessor. This is one of the most surprising releases we’ve seen in years, and we can’t imagine anyone not falling in love with the M1 MacBook Air.

Pros

  • Jaw-dropping battery life

  • Incredible performance

  • Iconic build quality

Cons

  • Poor port selection

The laptop sits on a bamboo table.
Credit: Reviewed / Matthew Smith

The Dell XPS 15 9510 is not only one of the most powerful Windows laptops. It's also one of the sleekest, most portable 15-inch laptops we've seen.

Best Windows Pick
Dell XPS 15 9510 (2021)
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-11800H
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 512GB
  • Display: 15.6-inch 3456 x 2160 OLED display
  • Battery Life: Nine hours, seven minutes

The Dell XPS 15 9510 hits all the marks: it’s powerful, it’s durable, it’s beautiful, and it has a nine-hour battery life. Whether you need to edit some video footage or just want to play some games, the Dell XPS 15’s Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia RTX 3050Ti graphics card can handle a lot.

It’s not the most affordable Windows laptop, but its premium build quality and gorgeous 3.5K LED display make up for the cost compared to something like the Razer Blade 14 or MacBook Pro 16. The silver-tinted aluminum chassis is classy enough to blend into just about any environment, and with one of the best laptop keyboards out there, it’s perfect for coffee shop writing sessions or taking notes in the boardroom. The UHD OLED display is so brilliant it’s fit for professionals, touting X nits of brightness and great coverage of the P3 color gamut. HDR content looks as vibrant as it should on this screen.

With the option for a discrete processor, the Dell XPS 15 also makes a good creativity and modeling laptop for quick edits. Its entry-level Nvidia RTX 3050Ti graphics card can’t keep up with high-end gaming laptops, but it’s enough power to outclass any integrated graphics by far. It’s even more impressive Dell managed to cram this much power into a laptop without sacrificing battery life or laptop thickness. The Dell XPS 15 is the jack of all trades that can do a bit of everything.

Pros

  • Luxurious design

  • Excellent OLED display

  • Great battery life

Cons

  • Performance is just okay

  • Runs hot


Other Laptops We Tested

Product image of Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro (2021)
Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro (2021)
  • Processor: Apple M1 Pro
  • Graphics: Integrated
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 512GB
  • Display: 14.1-inch 3024 x 1964p Liquid Retina XDR display
  • Battery Life: 10 hours, 25 minutes

While Apple’s newest addition to its MacBook Pro family is geared toward a niche crowd, it has the most powerful integrated graphics card we’ve ever seen in a laptop (aside from Apple’s M1 Max chip, of course.) It’s powerful enough to handle fairly demanding videogames like Shadow of the Tomb Raider.

As we saw in our usual game benchmark tests, the base M1 Pro chip is equivalent to an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 laptop GPU, which cranks out around an average of 42-44 frames per second with the graphics preset set to the highest setting at 1080p. Turning the graphics preset to a lower setting will bump up the frame rate to a solid 60 fps.

That GPU performance holds up when it comes to rendering 3D graphics, too. In our GPU 3D rendering tests, the MacBook Pro was minutes faster than high-end AMD and Intel mobile chips.

The MacBook Pro 14 M1 Pro has a long battery life to boot, nearly ten and a half hours. It’s a few hours shy of the MacBook Air M1 and MacBook Pro 13 M1, but still has more than enough battery life to get you through your entire work or school day with some juice to spare.

If you like your laptop to have a lot of connectivity ports, the MacBook Pro 14 has you covered there, too, with three USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, an HDMI port, an SD card reader, a headphone jack, and even a MagSafe charging port.

One thing to note about the base MacBook Pro 14 M1 Pro is that the CPU performance is the same as the MacBook Pro 13 M2 and MacBook Air M1 models. Anyone who just needs to check emails or is writing their novel can save hundreds of dollars by buying a more “budget” MacBook. You probably don’t need all that integrated GPU performance. This laptop is best suited for anyone who does light to moderate photo or video editing work on a regular basis.

Pros

  • Incredible GPU performance

  • Lower power consumption

  • Variety of ports

Cons

  • Minimal gains over M1 chip

  • Rough trackpad

  • So-so speakers

Product image of Acer Swift X (2021)
Acer Swift X (2021)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage: 512GB
  • Display: 14-inch 1920 x 1080p IPS display
  • Battery life: Nine hours, 25 minutes

Acer’s Swift X is an outstanding option for those who prioritize speed and price over extra features and looks. That doesn’t mean it’s not a nice-looking laptop, just that it comes with a standard 1080p IPS display, 720p webcam, and an okay amount of storage if you plan on gaming occasionally with the Swift X.

One of the features of this laptop we liked the most is the battery life, which topped out at nine hours and 25 minutes in our battery test. This is, in part, due to the laptop automatically switching to its integrated graphics when you perform light tasks like browsing Twitter or sending an email. The discrete graphics card kicks in when you perform intensive tasks, like gaming or encoding a long 4K video.

Speaking of gaming, the Swift X falls in the same price-range as budget-minded gaming laptops, but the graphics card power draw is capped, so it won’t perform as fast as an actual gaming laptop. But you can hit 60 fps in most high-fidelity games if you tweak the in-game graphics settings just right.

Our biggest complaints about the Swift X have to do with its aesthetics and fan noise. It looks like a budget laptop thanks to the mismatched color tones on the chassis and keyboard, and the fan is too loud even when the laptop is idling. However, for a $1,000 laptop there’s going to be some lackluster features, and at least Acer decided to make those cuts to areas that don't matter as much as performance. It’s still a value-filled, multipurpose laptop for everything else it offers.

Pros

  • Great multi-core performance

  • Strong GPU performance

  • USB-C with DisplayPort and Power Delivery

Cons

  • Lackluster design and display

  • Nearly constant fan noise

Product image of Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED (2022)
Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED (2022)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 6800U
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon 680M
  • Memory: 16GB LPDDR5
  • Storage: 1TB
  • Display: 13.3-inch 2880 x 1800p OLED display
  • Battery life: Six hours, 50 minutes

If you’re looking for a sleek and thin Windows laptop that can rival Apple’s MacBook, the Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED is an excellent choice. Its OLED display is not quite up to MacBook levels, but it’s not far behind. Contrast and color saturation levels are deep and vibrant due to its wide color gamut, so anything on the display is going to look gorgeous.

The AMD processor inside has new and improved integrated graphics, which is another of the Zenbook S 13 OLED’s features. It’s based on the same graphics architecture AMD uses in the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S and is much faster than the previous generation of chips. It even slightly outpaced Intel’s integrated Iris Xe graphics in its Core i7-1260P during our tests.

CPU performance does fall behind Apple’s M1 and Intel’s Core i7-1260P, but not enough to make a major difference when you’re using the laptop.

We do wish the battery life was better, we weren’t too thrilled with the Zenbook S 13 OLED’s overall looks, and you might want to invest in a laptop cooler if you’re worried about the processor running too hot (because it can!). But if you’re not pushing it with intense workloads the laptop will stay comfortably cool.

Pros

  • Excellent OLED display

  • Strong performance

  • Enjoyable keyboard and touchpad

Cons

  • Mediocre battery life

  • Unimpressive design

  • Limited wired connectivity

Product image of Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022)
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 6800S
  • Memory: 32GB DDR5
  • Storage Size: 1TB
  • Display: 14-inch 2560 x 1440p @ 120Hz display
  • Battery Life: Eight hours, 46 minutes

The all-AMD 2022 refresh to the ROG Zephyrus G14 is a marvel. Not only does it have the strong performance needed to play recent big-name game releases, but it also has the essentials demanded of a great ultrabook: a comfortable keyboard, a huge smooth trackpad, a brilliant WQHD display, a small body, and nearly nine hours of battery life.

The premium metal chassis brings a lot of style to the machine, and the multitude of ports make the Zephyrus G14 suitable for conferences and impromptu presentations: HDMI 2.0b, a microSD card reader, two USB-C ports, and two USB-A ports. When it’s time to relax, the powerful Ryzen 9 processor and Radeon RX 6800S graphics card can kick into high gear and pump up to 120 frames per second games like Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Far Cry 5.

Compared to similar laptops, like the Razer Blade 14 and the MSI Delta 15, the Zephyrus G14 fares well performance- and value-wise. It’s not cheap, but it’s well worth it for those who need a laptop that can do it all.

Pros

  • Excellent battery life

  • Fantastic performance

  • Sleek form factor

Cons

  • Limited configuration options

  • 720p webcam

Product image of Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (M2, 2022)
Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (M2, 2022)
  • Processor: Apple M2
  • Graphics: Integrated
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 256GB
  • Display: 13.3-inch 2560 x 1440p display
  • Battery Life: 19 hours, two minutes

While the M1 MacBook Air offers the best performance and value for most folks, the M2 MacBook Pro 13 packs a little extra juice. While it can’t outclass the MacBook Pro 14 M1 Pro, it gets most of the performance for a fraction of the cost. Its best-in-class Apple M1 processor broke our records in both benchmarks and real-world testing. Its power is on par with that of the flagship Intel Core i9 and AMD Ryzen 9 processors, but the base MacBook Pro 13 is actually quite affordable.

What's really impressive, however, is its battery power. The MacBook Pro 13 lasted 19 hours in our Chrome-based battery test, which routinely chews through battery power faster than a video-based test. The longest-lasting Windows competitors, like the Acer Swift X and the MSI Delta 15, lasted about nine and a half hours before giving up.

The M2 MacBook Pro 13 ships with the same amount of ports as the base M1 MacBook Air: two Thunderbolt 4 ports. However, unlike the past Intel last generations, the M2 MacBook Pro 13 rarely needs its single fan as its ultra-efficient processor stays cool even during exceptionally taxing tasks, like video editing.

If you’re interested in getting a new MacBook, there are a few reasons to turn away from the M2 MacBook Pro 13. The M2 MacBook Air offers the same processor performance, a better display and webcam, and a more modern body design all for $100 less (but you will have to give up a few hours of battery life). Meanwhile, the MacBook Pro 14 M1 Pro is notably more powerful (especially for video encoding), and it has a better display than the Pro and the Air. However, it’s much more expensive than the MacBook Pro 13, as it starts at $1,799.

If you’re debating between an M2 MacBook and a premium Windows laptop, the MacBooks win for most people. They’re more powerful, have a significantly better battery life, and have a wonderful aesthetic and user experience. Unless you need better graphics performance for gaming or a touchscreen, switching to MacOS is worth it. Unless you’re using Windows-only apps and features, we recommend the MacBook Pro 13 and MacBook Air.

Pros

  • All-day battery life

  • Fast performance

  • Good build quality

Cons

  • 720p webcam

  • Thick display bezels

  • No function keys

Product image of Dell XPS 13 OLED (9310)
Dell XPS 13 OLED (9310)
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-1185G7
  • Graphics: Integrated
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 512GB
  • Display: 13.3-inch 3456 x 2160 OLED touchscreen display
  • Battery Life: Eight hours, 50 minutes

Best-in-class keyboard? Check. 4K OLED touch screen? Check. High-end performance? Check. The Dell XPS 13 9310 is once again a standout laptop for those on the go.

It is one of the more expensive ultraportable laptops, but its attention to detail justifies it. The brilliant screen and Intel Core i7 Tiger Lake processor make the Dell XPS 13 a great pick for serious workloads, while its sleek aluminum body is easy to slip into your backpack and use in a meeting. Its 16:10 body ratio gives a surprising amount of room for the keyboard and trackpad so your fingers can keep going.

Sadly, its small body limits its port selection. There are just two Thunderbolt 4 ports, a microSD card reader, and a headphone jack. You’ll need to carry some dongles if you need a USB-A or Ethernet port.

The eight-hour battery life might get you through the day, but you may want to use it on a desk as the Dell XPS 13 tends to run hot. It’s expensive compared to its rivals, like the Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED and the Apple MacBook Air M2, but its overall performance and function make the Dell XPS 13 worth the extra cash.

Pros

  • Spectacular OLED display

  • Luxurious, robust design

  • Great keyboard and touchpad

Cons

  • No USB-A or Ethernet ports

  • Can run a bit hot

  • Battery life is just ok

Product image of Lenovo Yoga 9i (Gen 7, 2022)
Lenovo Yoga 9i (Gen 7, 2022)
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-1260P
  • Graphics: Integrated
  • Memory: 16GB DDR5
  • Storage Size: 1TB
  • Display: 13.3-inch 3456 x 2160 OLED touchscreen display
  • Battery Life: Six hours, 51 minutes

The Lenovo Yoga 9i is Lenovo’s best 2-in-1 yet. With a 12th-gen Intel Core i7 processor, a brilliant OLED display, and a handy stylus, the Yoga 9i is one of the fastest, most versatile laptops available for serious productivity tasks. Photo editing is particularly a treat, as its 16:10 ratio 4K monitor covers over 90% of the DCI-P3 color gamut and can get to about 375 nits of brightness. Best of all, compared to the competition, the Yoga 9i usually sells for hundreds of dollars less than similar laptops and makes almost no compromises to do so.

For professional film editing or 3D modeling and rendering work, the Yoga 9i can get the job done, but it won’t get it done quickly. While its integrated graphics are excellent compared to those on other processors, the Yoga 9i lacks a discrete graphics processor that would elevate its utility for professional creatives. However, few 2-in-1s offer discrete graphics as an option, leaving you to choose between expensive options like the MSI Summit E16 Flip or settle for a traditional laptop like the Dell XPS 15 or MacBook Pro 14. For those who travel frequently, they may additionally find themselves frustrated with the Yoga 9i’s seven-hour battery life.

If it’s a convenient, delightful 2-in-1 that you’re after, the Yoga 9i is an ideal laptop for most people’s productivity needs. Its stylish and ergonomic form factor, gorgeous touchscreen display, and efficient processor earn it a high spot among our favorite 2-in-1 laptops.

Pros

  • Breathtaking 4K display

  • Excellent stylus and tablet experience

  • Snappy performance

Cons

  • Mediocre battery life

  • Touchpad is too sensitive

Product image of Asus ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage Edition (2021)
Asus ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage Edition (2021)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 6800M
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 512GB
  • Display: 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080p @ 300Hz IPS display
  • Battery Life: Nine hours

The Asus ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage Edition is a unicorn among gaming laptops. With an amazing combination of hardware components, design, features, and battery life for its price point, it’d be hard to find another laptop that has this much value. It’s also one of the best laptops Asus has put out with an AMD processor and an AMD graphics card. Those two components in this form factor are truly a sight to behold.

The Ryzen 9 5900HX keeps programs running at tip-top speeds so every task feels snappy. Running 50 Chrome tabs at once, rendering 3D images, transcoding 4K video, working in Excel—it all flows seamlessly.

The Radeon RX 6800M GPU keeps your games running at high frame rates. At 1080p resolution, graphically demanding games like Control run at 96 fps on the highest graphical settings. Esports games like Overwatch reach up to 159 fps at the same settings, although to take advantage of the Strix G15’s 300Hz display, the graphics will need to be turned down.

Perhaps the most impressive (and surprising) aspect of this stellar gaming laptop is the battery life. It lasts for nine hours! In a world where gaming laptops generally last around four to five hours, the ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage Edition is a powerhouse.

Gaming on battery power will drain it fast. However, for your everyday computing needs, this laptop will last longer than an entire workday. It might get some inquisitive looks from those around you due to its size and color scheme, but if this is your only laptop it’ll serve all your needs.

Pros

  • Stellar battery life

  • 300Hz refresh rate

  • Great non-ray tracing performance

Cons

  • Mushy keys

  • CPU runs hot

  • Disappointing ray tracing

Product image of Razer Blade 14 (2022)
Razer Blade 14 (2022)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX
  • Graphics: Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 1TB
  • Display: 14-inch 2560 x 1440p @ 165Hz IPS display
  • Battery Life: Seven hours, 59 minutes

The attention to detail Razer gives its Blade laptops is impressive. You could even say Razer’s latest Blade 14 rivals Apple’s MacBook Pro 14 M1 Pro, but with more powerful hardware and access to an ecosystem with tens of thousands of games. Gamers and content creators who want style and performance should seriously consider the Blade 14, especially if you’re willing to throw down the cash.

The 2022 Blade 14 is outfitted with AMD’s Ryzen 9 6900HX, and Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3070 Ti graphics card. Those two components (along with 32GB of RAM) make a powerful combination, with in-game frame rates for esports exceeding 200 frames per second at 1080p and the highest graphics preset. In high-fidelity single-player games the Blade 14 outputs close to or over 100 fps. But games with ray tracing turned on yielded lower than average frame rates for a laptop of its caliber.

One of the downsides to the Blade 14 is that Razer limits the amount of power the graphics card can draw. Other laptop manufacturers sometimes do this as well to help keep internal temperatures down (and fit a bunch of powerful components into a small chassis), but the problem is less power equals lower in-game frame rates.

That said, the Blade 14 is still a top performer overall. Additionally, it has up to eight hours of battery life, which is long for a gaming laptop. Its membrane keyboard feels more like a mechanical one, and the 1440p ISP display can make nearly anything look great. Its speakers are nothing to fuss about, so you’ll need to bring your own headset. But considering everything else the Blade 14 provides, it's worthy of consideration for those who demand a premium experience—and don't mind paying for it.

Pros

  • Superb battery life

  • Mechanical-like keyboard

  • Vibrant display

Cons

  • Poor quality speakers

  • Trackpad quirks

  • It can run hot

Product image of MSI Summit E16 Flip (2022)
MSI Summit E16 Flip (2022)
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-1260P
  • Graphics: Nvidia RTX 3050 Ti
  • Memory: 32GB DDR5
  • Storage Size: 1TB
  • Display: 16-inch 2560 x 1440p @ 165Hz OLED touchscreen display
  • Battery Life: Three hours, 50 minutes

The Summit E16 Flip is one of the best 2-in-1s available on the market for artists. Its breathtaking, ultra-bright 4K screen can accurately display HDR content with a full DCI-P3 and Adobe RGB color gamut. If you do 3D modeling, its graphics processor is powerful enough to let you open and work on sculpts on the go. If you’re more of a 2D person, the MSI Pen stylus has 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity for crisp, varied line art. Even though the laptop has a massive 16-inch screen, it’s about the size of a standard 15.6-inch laptop thanks to its 16:10 aspect ratio and ultra-thin bezels.

For the times you do prefer to use it as a traditional laptop, you’ll find its large smooth trackpad and crip keyboard are a delightful experience. The only major downside to the Summit E16 Flip is its four-hour battery life. This puts it well behind other 2-in-1s, which can get eight hours of battery life or more (MSI’s previous model, the Summit E13 Flip, gets eight hours, for instance). However, these 2-in-1s often don’t have a 16-inch 4K display like the Summit E16—13 and 14-inch displays are much more common. While the Summit E16 Flip is one of the pricier 2-in-1s out there, its excellent pressure-sensitive display and powerful graphics hardware are some of the best on the market.

Pros

  • Phenomenal HDR display

  • Excellent stylus included

  • Sleek form factor

Cons

  • Poor battery life

  • Fingerprint magnet

Product image of Microsoft Surface Laptop 4
Microsoft Surface Laptop 4
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-1185G7
  • Graphics: Integrated
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Storage Size: 512GB
  • Display: 13.5-inch 2256 x 1504p Pixelsense display
  • Battery Life: Eight hours, five minutes

If you spend all day typing away, you will adore the Surface Laptop 4’s gentle but tactile keyboard. It’s just about perfect for typing quickly and accurately without all that finger fatigue. Meanwhile, its 3:2 screen ratio is crisp and vibrant, with plenty of vertical space to get work done.

We tested the Intel Core i7 model, which was one of the fastest laptops we’ve reviewed so far, but there is also an AMD Ryzen model available with even better performance and battery life. We only managed to squeeze eight hours of battery life from our unit, but many users claim they can get north of ten hours or more. This inconsistency holds it back from being the best Windows laptop we’ve tested, but it’s still a darn good laptop.

Pros

  • Beautiful stylus-enabled touchscreen

  • Incredible keyboard and trackpad

  • Strong performance

Cons

  • Configuration options are limited

  • Battery life shorter than advertised

How We Tested Laptops

These are the best gaming laptops available today.
Credit: Reviewed / Jackson Ruckar

We test everything from processing capability to screen brightness.

The Testers

I'm Joanna Nelius, Senior Editor of Electronics at Reviewed. I've been reviewing gaming products and laptops for the last several years, having written for PC Gamer, Maximum PC, and Gizmodo in the past. In addition to gaming desktops and laptops, I also specialize in CPU and GPU reviews.

Hey there, I’m Adrien Ramirez, tech staff writer and laptop reviewer here at Reviewed. I’ve been working professionally with tech and PCs for six years, from game development to reviewing and everything in between. Before I came to Reviewed, I had worked with Lifewire and the MIT Game Lab. I’m passionate about all things tech, although I especially enjoy PCs.

It takes a lot to make a great PC, and it takes a lot to know what a great PC looks like. It’s not just power: it’s build quality, touchpad sensitivity, keyboard ergonomics, display accuracy, aesthetics, and more. We all want our laptops and desktops to last as long as possible while giving us all the performance and comfort we need.

The Tests

Here at Reviewed, we test laptops for their processing capability, graphics, battery life, and screen brightness. We use popular benchmarks like Geekbench and 3DMark to gauge how well the laptop multitasks, runs games, and more. We also test multiple platforms, from Windows laptops to Macs and Chromebooks alike.

To test battery life, we set up our laptops to continuously cycle through various websites at a brightness of 200 nits—which is around 60% for many of the mid-range models—until they run out of power, estimating how much work you can get done on a single charge. We also use each laptop for an extended period of time, rating each on factors like build quality, price, portability, and design.

What You Should Know About Laptops

When it comes to laptops, there’s a lot to consider. From display size to build quality, you definitely want a laptop that’ll last a couple of years. Here’s what you need to keep in mind:

Performance

The CPU, graphics chip, RAM, and storage inside your PC determine how well your computer can multitask, handle intensive tasks like gaming, and store all your files. The better the specs, the snappier the laptop will feel as you work.

Most people will be more than happy with a current-generation Intel Core i5, Apple M1, or AMD Ryzen 5, which are mid-range processors. 8GB of RAM will give you enough room to lightly multitask, but we recommend 16GB or more of RAM for future-proofing.

Graphics chip and storage size needs will vary the most depending on what you plan to run on the laptop. While Chromebooks can get away with 64GB of storage with additional cloud storage, Windows laptops need 256GB or more of storage to run optimally. 512GB hits the sweet spot for many users.

For most people, there is no need for a dedicated graphics card. Modern integrated graphics are more than capable of running things like esports games or small 3D modeling files. However, if you plan to play the latest AAA games or otherwise need to run a lot of vector calculations, you should consider a discrete graphics card.

Build Quality

Not only do you want a laptop that can take a beating (since you’ll probably be lugging it around with you), but you want one with a well-built keyboard and trackpad since they’re your primary form of interaction with the machine. A poor trackpad or finicky keyboard can really kill the experience.

Generally, durable laptops are stiff and hard to deform, so metal is usually more rugged than plastic. A good keyboard should be quick to type on, and your fingers should easily reach all the keys without any missed hits. Check that the Shift, Control, and Fn keys aren’t awkward to reach with your thumb and pinky fingers.

Whether you prefer stiff or soft keys is up to you: stiff keys are harder to accidentally press but will tire you out faster, while soft keys are easier to type on for long periods of time but can be prone to poor feedback and typos. See what’s most comfortable for you.

Trackpads are a little easier to judge. A good trackpad reads all your finger movements accurately, so the mouse won’t feel jumpy or unresponsive. A larger trackpad gives you better control of your cursor, and the trackpad should have little friction so you don’t “skip” with your cursor.

Touch Screens, Portability, and Features

2-in-1s have gained in popularity, but that touch screen and pen cost money to include. Similarly, cramming all those powerful components into a small, easy-to-carry package can often cost more than a larger laptop with fewer design constraints. They’re not as comfortable to use as dedicated tablets like iPads, but 2-in-1s can provide extra options for those who need something versatile. Display pens are great for those who take a lot of notes or draw, such as students or artists.

Operating Systems

Consider which operating system you need. Windows is still the dominant OS these days, and if you’re going to play games, edit photos and videos, or need certain software for work, you’ll probably stick with Microsoft’s offering in a business laptop. MacOS has its own exclusive software and great integration with the Apple ecosystem, so it’s the preferred option for those with iPhones, iPads, or other Apple products.

If you spend all your time on the web and want to save some money, though, a Chromebook may serve you well. Between Netflix, Gmail, and Google Docs, you can do almost anything in a browser. Many of those web apps even work offline for those rare occasions you don’t have Wi-Fi. Chromebooks have the advantage of being cheaper (since they don’t need as much processing power) and virtually bloatware-free (since they run Linux under the hood).

Display Size

You’ll usually find laptops in one of three main sizes, measured by the diagonal length of the display:

  • 14 inches and under: These smaller laptops are great for carrying around, and more than suitable for light work like writing papers and browsing the web.
  • 15.6 inches: Mid-sized laptops are a bit less portable, and won’t necessarily work in space-constrained spaces like airplane seats. But the larger display is useful for photo editing and watching videos, and their larger chassis can house more powerful hardware.
  • 17 inches: This is very large, and only recommended if you are doing video editing or other intensive work that requires a lot of laptop screen real estate—and you don’t mind lugging it around. However, there are many small form factor desktops (like the Mac Mini) that can be much simpler to transport if you’re headed somewhere with extra keyboards, mice, and monitors—or you can bring your favorite wireless keyboard and mouse for a cable-free adventure.

There can still be varying sizes within those categories—for example, the XPS 13’s smaller bezels make it much smaller than most 13-inch laptops—and sizes in between, like the 16-inch MSI Summit E16 Flip. But in general, picking a size range you’re comfortable with can help narrow down the field.

You’ll also want to consider how many USB ports the laptop has, whether you need HDMI and Ethernet, and how comfortable the keyboard and trackpad are to use—this can vary quite a bit from model to model, and it’s important to get something responsive and durable.

Meet the tester

Reviewed Staff

Reviewed Staff

Contributors, Writers, Editors

@revieweddotcom

The Reviewed staff is based in the heart of Cambridge, MA. Backed by our knowledgeable writers and rigorous test labs, we're working hard to make sure you can make the right decisions about what to buy.

See all of Reviewed Staff's reviews

Checking our work.

Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you're confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we'll compare notes.

Shoot us an email