Home / Product Round-ups / Laptops / Best Laptop 2016 – 13 best laptops right now

Best Laptop 2016 – 13 best laptops right now

by

With Windows 10 now very much established, there's never been a better time to buy a brand new laptop. Follow our guide to get the best kit you can buy.

Our list of best laptops starts with three proper bargains and then moves up into the higher reaches of the laptop market. We hope we'll be able to offer something for everybody.

Of course, it's not all about Windows: we've included three MacBooks and two Chromebooks, too, as they offer premium performance and budget value respectively.

Our latest update includes the addition of the exciting Samsung Galaxy TabPro S, which upsets the 2-in-1 crowd with its Microsoft Surface-beating price and amazing Super AMOLED screen. Turn to page 12 to find out more.

You might think the laptop market is a constant force, with unchanging, boring designs and nothing that leaps out. Quite the opposite is true, from the cheapest netbooks to top-end workstations, improvements in design and manufacturing processes means that each laptop manufacturer has a distinctive design style that adds some serious look-at-me power to the full range of devices.

There are lots of exciting developments taking place in the world of CPUs and GPUs. We're months away from both brand-new Nvidia graphics chips and 7th-gen Intel "Kaby Lake" processors. You can read more about them in our Nvidia Pascal and Intel Kaby Lake explainers.

The new Intel chips should have a decent amount more power than the current generation of "Skylake" chips, but it doesn't look like it's going to be a huge selling point, so don't expect huge discounts on Skylake-equipped laptops.

Nvidia's new Pascal architecture could be a much bigger deal, although it still remains to be seen how much more powerful this generation will be.

Read on for more information about the laptop market today.

Watch – Trusted Explains: Laptops vs Tablets, which is best for you?

Windows 10 – Should you upgrade?

Windows 10 has landed, and comes as a free upgrade for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users. That means that each and every one of the Microsoft-powered laptops and tablets listed below will be bumped up to the new operating system without you having to part with any extra pounds. It’s a huge improvement over its predecessor too, with the revamped Start Menu and the addition of Cortana particularly impressive.

However, they’re not the only major new features. Internet Explorer has (at last) taken a back seat, with Microsoft Edge the native Windows 10 browser. You should be pleased with Windows 10’s assortment of gaming features too, especially if you’re a cross-platform player. The new Xbox app plays a central role. You can now stream Xbox One games to your PC and even record your gaming sessions.

What kind of laptop should I buy?

A lot will depend on how much you have to spend and how you intend to use your laptop. Consider how often you'll actually take your laptop out of the home, and if you do for how long. These kinds of questions will dictate what size laptop you need, and how important battery life is to you. With that in mind, here's a quick guide to the different types and how much they could cost.

Laptop Tablet Hybrid – (£300 to £1,000 or more)

If you’ve ever been tempted by an iPad, but still need a Windows laptop, then a hybrid is a good choice. There’s a huge amount of choice in both size and price. The main things to consider are how much you want to spend and how you’re going to use it. Need a laptop more than a tablet? Go bigger and more expensive. The opposite is true if you really want a tablet that you can use as a tablet.

Convertible Laptop – (£500 to £1,000 or more)

This is a twist on the hybrid that differs in execution. Pure hybrids have detaching tablet segments that connect to a keyboard, while convertibles are normal laptops with clever hinges that rotate. They’re a good choice if you mainly need a laptop but would like a little flexibility.

Thin & Light Laptop – (£700 to £1,000 or more)

Sometimes referred to as ‘Ultrabooks’, a thin and light laptop will have an 11-inch or 13-inch screen and… well, be thin and light. The MacBook Air is a thin and light laptop, and there are many Windows alternatives.

Multimedia Laptop – (£600 to £2,000 or more)

These are for more serious users who want to regularly edit video and RAW photo files. These laptops are about all-out performance and have high-quality screens. If you’re not sure you need to spend this much, you probably don’t.

Google Chromebook – (£150 to £350)

If you’re a big Google user then its cheap laptops are worth considering. They use its Chrome OS operating system and rely heavily on web apps. They’re simple and cheap and lack the bloatware, such as anti-virus, that often plagues cheap Windows laptops.

danielfrisbee

January 27, 2015, 12:33 am

what is the model in the image on the first page of this article?

sonisoe

January 27, 2015, 1:49 pm

what about samsung ativ (pro?) 12-inch ? a killer ultrabook am waiting for...

Javed

January 27, 2015, 11:22 pm

I think it's the LG Tab-Book Z160

Paul

February 9, 2015, 5:07 pm

no macbook air lol

Falcomomo

February 9, 2015, 5:19 pm

"Best Laptop for Video Editing" -- was this category just an excuse to get an Apple laptop in the winners?

fast_call

February 10, 2015, 9:58 am

They did say they did not recommend the Macbook Air because it's due to be replaced soon. And I agree it's probably worth waiting for the new one.

fast_call

February 10, 2015, 10:07 am

I think the newly updated Dell Precision M3800 is also worth a spot here, either in the best 15-inch laptop or the best laptop for video editing category (or both). It can be configured with a 4K screen, an mSATA SSD + 2.5" magnetic drive (so you have a fast ssd + lots of space), comes with Nvidia Quadro graphics and some benchmarks show it to be even faster than the Macbook Pro in video editing tasks. The downside of course is that it's quite expensive. Still well worth a look if you're in the market for such a machine.

fast_call

February 10, 2015, 10:09 am

The retina Macbook Pro is widely used by video editing professionals (perhaps more than any other laptop). And video editing is a clear laptop category (though maybe a bit niche, not mainstream). So no, I don't think it's "just an excuse"

andyvan

February 10, 2015, 2:26 pm

Fair point as we liked the previous version. Will make a note to add it on the next update. :)

Our current review for reference: http://www.trustedreviews.com/...

foxesse

February 13, 2015, 9:32 am

Thank you, fast_call, I shall investigate the Precision (but I bet it's a far from ideal LAP-top, it's probably a tank ;-) ). The omission of "Best Windows Laptop" from the Video Editing category makes me distrust TR - unless they can show me how to integrate a Mac into a Windows network so's to edit recordings made on Windows hard drives?

fast_call

February 13, 2015, 10:01 am

You're welcome :)

It's not the tank you might think it to be. Here's a recent overview:

http://www.pcworld.com/article...

and here's the official dell announcement:

http://www.dell.com/learn/us/e...

from the press release: "the world’s thinnest and lightest true 15-inch mobile workstation"... not sure about thinnest and lightest, but it's definitely not a tank. :)

Personally, I'm waiting for one with the yet-unreleased quad-core Intel Broadwell 5th gen Core i7, and I'll buy one

Joakim Larsen

March 13, 2015, 8:57 pm

I loved my MBP 15" 2013 Retina laptop for 10 months. I loved the performance, the software, the looks.

THEN... to my horror the screen started loosing its anti glare coating. And it continued. Today it has a big blank patch, around 20% of the screen size without coating right in the middle of the screen. It looks terrible and it is not covered by Apples one year warranty.

Many other users are having the same problem. Apple refuses to acknowledge the problem and calls it "cosmetic", explains that it is caused by finger grease and oils being transferred from the keyboard to the screen due to wrong handling and caused by wrong cleaning (even for people using Apples own microfiber cloth) and finally caused by carrying it in a bag - Apples top notch portable $3000 laptop.

Today members of the Apple Support Forums discussion thread and the Facebook group are gathering to prepare a lawsuit against Apple. Should you have the same problem, do not hesitate to join the discussions. You can contribute to the discussion thread on: https://discussions.apple.com/... and join the Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/group...

Kullman_

April 1, 2015, 5:46 pm

You are wrong, the M3800 is 2 Kg.

Kullman_

April 1, 2015, 5:47 pm

There are a lot of better options for video editing than the MBP...

sonisoe

May 12, 2015, 11:52 am

any thought of the new hp spectra x360...is that out already ? stunning design, prime quality build, 360-degree foldable and touch screen, and great battery life too...forget apple laptops be it pro, macbook or air... this year is a battle between dell xps13 and spectra x360

AMCD

September 22, 2015, 10:25 pm

I would stay away from hp. Bought an expensive top of the range hp laptop some years back. The screen kept going black in middle of using it. Spoke with customer service re this during the warranty period and, unlike my experience with previous computer company Dell, hp did not help me with the issue. I was just told to try this and that. When I contacted them with same and unresolved problem after the warranty period, I was told they would no longer help me unless I paid for service. I subsequently found out that hp were having issues with graphics chip - hp never once mentioned possible issue. I will never buy hp again!

TCS

September 25, 2015, 9:07 pm

I'd stay away from any of the Dell XPS's - way overpriced, and lack polish. I purchased the 2014 version. Camera is the worst - high def, but too bright and very washed out. Not way to fix it other to run special software in background. A real pain. Also disk drive is really slow, and though it has a 32GB SSD cache, it's only configured to use 16GB. The hardrive and SSD combination is super slow, seriously slow. (do a search to the issues surrounding this)

And Dell support - IS THE WORST!. I was on the phone for 45 minutes - just to get a windows disk (that, for this price, should be included). Another time, I was one over 45 minutes - and then simply hung up. Both times, the support rep. said "they were dealing with issues with their system". (and when I say 45 minutes, I'm talking a true - and timed - 45+ minutes)

Dom Reidman

October 12, 2015, 7:11 am

If I am reading the comments correctly...stay away from Apple, stay away from Dell and stay away from HP. Basically give up on using computers.

Dom Reidman

October 12, 2015, 7:15 am

that is a frightening story although it appears Apple is now replacing some of these screens under warranty. I was just starting to do my research on buying new MBP '15" but this is definitely giving me pause.

Update: Joakim it appears you need to email tcook@apple.com and send pictures of your screen. Most are getting their screens replaced now.

Kseniak

December 28, 2015, 12:37 pm

I love my thin and lightweight ultrabook Dell xps 13. It has a great classical design that will love every person, good battery (15 hours of autonomous operation) and 13.3-inch WLED-backlit display. Now my sister wants to buy it. Recently, I saw also good reviews about this model at the amazon and http://www.topreviews.best/mai... I agree with their opinion that it's one of the best.

Dead Words

January 14, 2016, 12:44 pm

There's a mistake on page 6. The Surface Pro 4 runs a Core M3 not a Core i3.

WHO AM I

February 5, 2016, 6:17 pm

Why did you say for the MacBook Pro with Retina display 15-inch:

"Powerful 15-inch laptop that's great for video editing".
It only has a R9 M370X, which is similar to 950m. 950m is not video editing.
950m is just for mainstream and basic gaming on low resolutions.

Pradip J. Patil

February 17, 2016, 3:56 am

I found the laptop with the latest specification here, thank you

Pradip J. Patil

February 17, 2016, 3:57 am

I agree with you, I found the laptop with the latest specification here, thank you

Travis Matthews

February 28, 2016, 9:23 pm

Now grab an amazing discount on laptops only on BestTopRatedLaptops .com

comments powered by Disqus