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Best MacBook Alternative 2023: Top picks to replace your Apple laptop

MacBooks are often stellar laptops, if a tad on the pricy side. Whether it’s the cost or just a desire to move on from MacOS, there are plenty of MacBook alternatives on the market in 2023. Here are the best Apple dupes we’ve tested.

If you’re wondering how we decide what to put on this list, it’s all based on testing from the seasoned experts that contribute to Trusted Reviews. We put laptops through their paces by using them for around two weeks, to get a true understanding of what it would be like to be a regular user of any given device. Then, to validate manufacturer claims, we conduct industry-standard benchmarking tests, sometimes with specialist equipment, to make sure everything is ship-shape before comparing them with rival machines. Key features like the typing experience, the quality of the screen and battery life are all expertly tested.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to laptops however, with some users needing an ultra-portable machine for productivity and others needing something that can handle video editing workloads – as well as plenty more criteria to fulfil in between. For this MacBook alternative guide, we’ve covered both sides of the Apple laptop coin, providing alternatives for the thin-and-light Air laptops as well as dupes for the powerful Pro machines.

Want to explore the best laptops around beyond devices that provide a direct counterpoint to MacBooks? Well, we’ve got those guides too. Be sure to take a look at our best laptopbest ultrabookbest student laptop and best budget laptop round-ups if nothing grabs your interest here. Though, if you are feeling unsure about your decision to look elsewhere than Apple, we do also have a fully-tested best MacBook guide.

Best MacBook alternatives at a glance

How we test

Learn more about how we test laptops

Every laptop we review goes through a series of uniform checks designed to gauge key things including build quality, performance, screen quality and battery life. 

These include formal synthetic benchmarks and scripted tests, plus a series of real world checks, such as how well it runs the most frequently used apps. 

We also make sure to use every laptop we review as our primary device for at least a week to ensure our review is as accurate as possible.

Lenovo Yoga Slim 9i (2022)

Best MacBook Air 13-inch alternative
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  • Good ultraportable performance
  • A stunning OLED display
  • All-day battery life in some situations
  • A crisp keyboard inside a good-looking, robust chassis


  • CPU doesn’t always run at full speed
  • Better battery life elsewhere
  • No full-size USB ports
  • Not always the cheapest option

The Lenovo Yoga Slim 9i (2022) is our pick for the best laptop you can pick up if you’re looking for an alternative to the 13-inch MacBook Air M2. It earns its place by offering strong performance despite its thin-and-light chassis, as well as offering something MacBooks don’t – an OLED display.

Being an alternative to a MacBook in 2023 means you’ve got the tough challenge of competing with the M2 series of chips. The Intel Core i7-1280P processor onboard the Yoga Slim 9i may not be able to match the efficiency of Apple’s M2 but it provides strong productivity performance in a similarly trim chassis. On top of that, Intel’s chip does enable some light creative work and impressive multi-core capabilities, topping the 13-inch Air in our benchmarking.

The full productivity package is rounded out with ideal all-day battery life, even if it can’t quite match the dominant MacBook scores, along with a comfortable and inviting typing experience, while the cherry on top is the aforementioned OLED display. The panel offers eye-catching and accurate colours while providing plenty of detail due to its 2800 x 1800 resolution. Loud and rich speakers round out the strong multimedia capabilities of this Lenovo laptop.

Reviewer: Mike Jennings
Full Review: Lenovo Yoga Slim 9i (2022) review

Asus Zenbook 15 OLED (2023)

Best MacBook Air 15-inch alternative
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  • Superb OLED screen
  • Fast Ryzen 7 CPU with integrated RDNA2 GPU
  • Comfortable keyboard and accurate touchpad
  • Excellent connectivity


  • Battery life is good, not great
  • Fan gets noisy at full tilt

The Asus Zenbook 15 OLED (2023) is the larger stablemate of the impressive Zenbook S 13 OLED but unlike the 2023 version of its smaller comrade, it retains an AMD chip this year and that’s a key part of what puts in on par with the MacBook Air 15-inch.

Like the 15-inch Air, the Zenbook 15 OLED hits all the right beats when it comes to productivity. Admittedly, the battery life can’t quite match its MacBook rival but there are very few laptops on the Windows side of things that can make such a claim. However, it makes up for this with a glorious 16:10 OLED panel that is perfect for productivity multitasking as well as taking in your favourite TV shows on the go.

Again, like its Apple equivalent, this is a thin-and-light machine that manages to pack a lot of punch and high-end tech despite its slim design. Such a feat can often come at the sacrifice of keyboard performance but this is not the case with the Zenbook. Asus typically offers excellent keyboards on its gaming laptops and some of that has rubbed off here, with a stellar typing experience.

The Zenbook 15 OLED absolutely destroys the 15-inch Air in the ports department. The paltry selection on the Apple device pales in comparison to the two USB-C, one USB-A, one HDMI 2.1 and a headphone jack combination available on the Asus.

Reviewer: Stuart Andrews
Full Review: Asus Zenbook 15 OLED (2023) review

Asus Zenbook Pro 14 OLED (2023)

Best MacBook Pro 14-inch alternative
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  • Powerful, and ready to play games
  • Pixel-rich OLED screen
  • Quality keyboard and touchpad
  • Unusual DialPad virtual rotary controller


  • High-pitch fan noise
  • Portable design does involve performance concessions

Choosing a MacBook Pro 14-inch alternative is no mean feat, with it being up there as one of the very best laptops around, but the Asus Zenbook Pro 14 OLED (2023) is one of the few machines worthy of a comparison.

A requirement for a 14-inch Pro is impressive power that flies in the face of portability, and the Zenbook Pro 14 OLED does just that. Its combination of an Intel Core i9-13900H CPU and RTX 4070 CPU makes for a potent team-up that can tackle challenging professional and creative workloads, like demanding editing and 3D modelling. Then, unlike a MacBook, these specs allow this non-gaming laptop to cosplay as just that whenever you’d like, with strong video game prowess.

Of course, it can’t match the power that a MacBook Pro is able to offer when not plugged in and the battery life falls short of its rival but on top of gaming capabilities, you’re also getting a luxurious OLED panel to soften the blow. The 2880 x 1800 OLED display, with impressive accurate colours, makes this ideal for photo and video editors.

Like Asus’ impressive gaming laptops, the Zenbook Pro 14 OLED has features a keyboard with plenty of travel and feedback. The MacBook Pro 14-inch keys are strong performers but Asus has Apple beat with bags of travel and a hugely satisfying click.

Reviewer: Andrew Williams
Full Review: Asus Zenbook Pro 14 OLED (2023) review

Lenovo Yoga Pro 9i 16

Best MacBook Pro 16-inch alternative
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  • Bright Mini LED touch-enabled 165Hz IPS display
  • Powerful sound system
  • Easy to add more storage
  • Strong creative and gaming performance


  • Poor battery life
  • Only one USB-C port

A lot of laptops claim to be a viable alternative to Apple’s most powerful MacBooks but few are up to the job. The Lenovo Yoga Pro 9i 16 hits all the right notes, with a dose of gaming power for good measure too.

Just like the larger MacBook Pro, the Yoga Pro 9i can be configured with a Mini LED 16-inch display. This display can get impressively bright and offers up a solid up to 165Hz to satiate gamers too. The colours are lush and accurate. Whether you’re multi-tasking, gaming or doing some editing work, this is a luxury all-rounder of a screen.

The capable display is backed up by a potent combination of an Intel Core i9-13905H CPU and RTX 4070 graphics chip. For productivity, this device won’t even come close to flinching, so you’re well served there. To truly take advantage of this powerhouse, you’ll be delving into AAA games, which this laptop can perform up there with the best of them. The Yoga Pro 9i managed to keep up with the much more gaming-focused Alienware M16 in much of our testing, despite its wider priorities. You can do some seriously intense editing on this device too.

Admittedly, the Yoga Pro 9i doesn’t have cutting-edge looks, sticking with a design in keeping with the “Yoga” lineup. Nevertheless, you get a dose of luxury from the all-aluminium chassis, a thin 18.2mm and 2.23kg weight. It is far from the lightest laptop around but you’re getting a lot of power, and the rounded corners make this comfortably to carry around too.

Reviewer: Adam Speight
Full Review: Lenovo Yoga Pro 9i review

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What is the best MacBook alternative for students?

The best MacBook alternative for students will depend on the requirements of your classes. Creative study will likely require a laptop with a dedicated graphics card while those focused on essay writing can hone on productivity and portability. For the latter, the Lenovo Yoga Slim 9i (2022) is your best option.

Is it better to get an iPad or MacBook for college?

iPad tablets are now hugely capable devices and will be great for college if the apps you need are available on iPadOS. For some apps, you’ll need MacOS and consequently, a MacBook.

What are the disadvantages of having a MacBook?

A key disadvantage of MacBook laptops, when compared with alternatives, is a lack of support for gaming. Windows machines offer far wider access to games and greater gaming capabilities overall.

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