To survive in today's world, a laptop is almost a necessity. Whether you're a contractor who uses a 2-in-1 to present their plans or a student who needs a Chromebook for classes, they make life a lot easier.
But with so many well-known brands offering every type of laptop imaginable, how could you identify the best brands to choose from? At first glance, this is not a question with an easy answer, because there are laptops capable of doing everything you could want. It is even more difficult when you try to separate them by brand and try to find out what advantages some companies offer over others.
Fortunately, we are here to help simplify this search. From reviews, specifications, design, brand alternatives and more, we realized which are the best brands of laptops in the store in 2021.
The Best Laptop Brands in 2021
Lenovo – The Best Reviews
Apple – The Best Customer Support
Razer – Best For Gaming
Asus – The Best Exterior Design
Acer – The Best Selection of Models
Dell – The Most Innovative
Microsoft – Apple's Best Alternative
Lenovo – Brand with the Best Reviews
A laptop might look great on paper, but without enough reviews, it can disappoint you. Positive reviews, especially when it comes to laptops, are still the best barometers to look for a new device. As for Lenovo, no brand has been rated as well in 2021.
At first glance, it may seem surprising that Lenovo is the highest rated laptop company, especially when among opponents are names like Apple or HP. While they are not poorly rated, Lenovo simply maintains a consistent level of quality between its products, which contributes to those positive reviews.
The ThinkPad line is Lenovo's laptop line for those looking for a great, well-rounded laptop like the L570. The biggest reasons for this are the robust design and quality of the materials, the very good performance and the excellent battery life. Another model, Carbon X1 has been rated extremely well by all major publications, from companies such as CNET, PCMag and LaptopMag. The common strengths mentioned were the X1's slim design and battery life, among other features.
These are just two examples of positive reviews that Lenovo laptops received in 2018. Overall, Lenovo has maintained a level consistency that has been reflected in those positive reviews and if it is important to find the perfect laptop in 2019, Lenovo is basic choice.
Apple – The Brand with the Best Customer Support
Modern technology has come a long way, but we have not yet reached a point where everything works 100% of the time (and we probably never will). That's why it's important to have good customer support to keep your user base happy. And no company is doing this better right now than Apple.
In a way, it is almost a necessity for Apple to invest in its customer support, given the quality of their products. That doesn't mean a laptop like the MacBook Pro is low quality, it's just the opposite. Because Apple products are of a high quality, it is also normal for the brand's customers to expect technical support at the same level.
Fortunately, Apple continues to meet user expectations. Agents respond quickly to questions about features or possible difficulties, whether on the Apple website or on social media. If you need to service your MacBook, you can take it to your nearest Apple store for a quick fix. And if you have AppleCare +, those accidental damages such as falls and cracks are also covered. There will be repair fees, but it's still better than paying the full price for a new MacBook.
Customer support can make all the difference in most people's experience with a company, although it's true that you tend to hear more about negative experiences than positive ones. Fortunately, Apple has managed to stay on the opposite side, so if you need support for your laptop, you'll be in good hands.
Razer – The Best Brand For Gaming
When it comes to computer games, the right name makes the difference. Sure, companies like Asus offer their own range of gaming laptops, but there is no better name in this space than Razer.
Started in 2005, Razer entered PC games with the Boomslang mouse and from there the rest is history. Today, Razer peripherals are among the best products you can get to complete a gaming set. Whether it's a mouse with high DPI, a mechanical keyboard for faster input or a headset with THX suround sound, Razer offers some of the best accessories on the market. In recent years, Razer has expanded into the area of gaming laptops with the Razer Blade line. Unlike other gaming laptops that are generally busier, Razer has managed to wrap a lot of power in extremely thin cases.
The model that surprises the most is the 4K version of Razer Blade Pro 17. Unfortunately, at the moment there is no big distributor to deliver the range of Razer laptops in Romania, because if you really want to buy one of their models, we suggest you try on Amazon UK or DE.
However, it is worth mentioning the fact that makes Razer really special: the company is still independent. The biggest brands in the gaming space serve as an arm of a parent company. For example, Alienware is owned by Dell. This means that any Alienware laptop you buy, although very good, is still based on a Dell inside. Because Razer is an independent company, any product you get is a distinctive Razer, which gives them the added bonus of exclusivity.
Asus – The Brand with the Best Exterior Design
Compared to years ago, most laptops today are extremely well designed. Whether it's a slim MacBook, or a reliable Acer Chromebook, we're in a completely different era, away from the heavy plastic constructions of old IBM laptops from the early 2000s. By 2021, Asus is above all then when it comes to design.
As you move to mid-tier and high-end models, they truly exemplify ASUS 'design mastery. In general, Asus laptops have an elegant, almost circular, metallic design on most generally available laptops. Probably the most visible and uniquely designed laptops are ROG Zephyrus. Although their design is a bit more normal / angular, the Zephyrus has a surprisingly thin profile for its technical specifications. In addition, the bottom of the laptop opens, allowing the laptop to run cooler and quieter than other powerful laptops.
These are the types of little ideas that highlight the superb design of the Asus laptop compared to other companies. This does not mean that other brands have weak models, but given how distinctly Asus manages to make its laptops feel, the design team deserves all the praise in the world.
Acer – Brand with the Best Selection of Models
Variety, as they say, is the spice of life, and a greater variety of models leads to more options and by default gives you the chance to find exactly what you are looking for. Well, that's exactly what Acer did with their laptop models, thus remaining one of the best laptop brands of 2021.
For someone who needs a laptop for work or school, Acer has plenty of Chromebooks to choose from. For example, there is the Chromebook 11 N7, which seems to be intended for students, given the overall design of the laptop, which is much more durable than most other Chromebooks. The housing is impact resistant, so if you drop the N7, it should not crack or break under pressure. Another bonus is the built-in drain design, so if you spill a little water on the keyboard, it won't get to the components. And this is just one example of the multitude of Chromebooks available from Acer.
If you're still looking for something more powerful, there are plenty of options that offer power and versatility. The best example is the Nitro 5 Spin, a 2 in 1 laptop. The beauty of this laptop is the way it fits two types of people – amateur gamers and corporate professionals. It includes an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card, making it perfect for anyone who needs a reliable laptop without going bankrupt. And since it's a 2-in-1, it can be a great companion for office work and presentations.
These are just two examples of laptops available from Acer. There are plenty of other options throughout the price range, from low-budget laptops to the Predator gaming line, which offers massive power in a portable package. Whatever you are looking for, there is an Acer that meets your requirements.
Dell – The Most Innovative Brand
Innovation is the engine of success in the technological world. We are constantly looking for the next thing that will make our lives easier. When it comes to laptops, no company has done a better job of innovating than Dell.
Given the number of business objects in the company, from the supply of Intel Core processors to apparently every other computer company on the market, to the variety of computers that Dell produces, it makes sense for Dell to be one of the companies that stand out by setting the standard in processing and computing.
Dell laptops have been one of the biggest sources of this innovation, as evidenced by the newest XPS 13 laptop. The newest model is the thinnest and lightest Dell ever released and manages to solve a common problem with temperature laptops. In fact, Dell has even adapted the materials used in the construction of Mars Rover to create this laptop, so that the laptop can easily withstand the heat emitted by internal components. In addition, the new software allows you to send text messages and make calls directly from your laptop, which is a great feature for office work.
Moreover, Dell is making a beautiful figure for gaming enthusiasts through their Alienware brand with the addition of a new control center. It is available on newer models, such as the 15 or 17 inch and offers a simple way to set game by game parameters such as processor overclocking. These settings are saved that game profiles in the control center so that when you switch between games, your laptop will not overload in vain if it is not needed. After all, not all games have Battlefield V level requirements.
These are just two of the ways Dell has continued its tradition of subjecting its products to a philosophy of continuous improvement.
Microsoft – Apple's Best Alternative
Football has Real Madrid and Barcelona, DC has Batman and The Joker, and computers have Microsoft and Apple. While the two giants fought on all fronts, from desktops to processors, Apple was the only one of the two manufacturers to produce laptops, something that has changed in recent years.
Microsoft is now on par with its competitor or, in some cases, even ahead of Apple, with a variety of 2-in-1 devices and laptops on the market. Microsoft appeared in this space with the first Surface tablet in 2012 and has not returned since. The tablet was originally launched to serve as direct competition for the iPad, which has long been the best line of premium tablets on the market. Surface proved to be a success, offering a real alternative to Apple iPads and MacBooks.
What worked in Microsoft's favor was a more fluid design philosophy compared to Apple. While Apple has maintained a firm separation between the iPad and the MacBook, Microsoft has tried to blur that line between tablets and laptops with 2-in-1 options and flexible laptops. The best example is Surface Book 2, a 2-in-1 offer from Microsoft. At first glance, you will get a laptop that fits the MacBook Pro line, but if you need a power tablet, detach the screen and now you have, in a sense, an iPad Pro. If there is one disadvantage for Microsoft, it is the limited number of products, but their excessive flexibility compensates for this disadvantage.
If there is one disadvantage for Microsoft, it is the limited number of products, but their excessive flexibility compensates for this disadvantage.
Questions and answers
A fast laptop is determined by several key components: RAM, processor, hard disk. Of course, this is only on the hardware side. For optimal performance, you need to make sure that you are using a strong antivirus and firewall and that you do not have insecure or unnecessary software installed.
RAM, or random access memory, is measured by the time required for the memory module to provide the data requested by the laptop user. The lower the speed in nanoseconds, the faster the RAM or memory, the faster the laptop. A fast laptop should have about 3-4 GB of newer generation RAM. In 2020, most high-quality laptops will come with at least DDR4, although more and more models have started to switch to DDR 5.
The speed of the laptop is also affected by the processor, also known as the CPU. The laptop processor will change its speed and power consumption depending on the number of open applications. The processor speed will change if the laptop is idle or when the user is running an application that does not require much power. For a fast laptop, a multi-core processor (dual core / quad core / octa core) can improve the parallel running speed of applications, but will affect the laptop's battery life.
A fast laptop is also determined by the speed of the hard drive, as it affects how fast programs will load. There are four categories for hard drives: 4300 rpm, 5400 rpm, 7200 rpm and SSD – or solid state drive. When the hard disk speed is fast, the programs will load and run faster. SSDs are three to four times more expensive, but they are also three to four times faster than other hard drives.
There is a wide variety of sizes, functions and prices, which makes choosing the best laptop a challenge. That's why you need to figure out what your needs are. Below are a few steps to make sure you choose the best laptop for your needs!
Choose a platform: Mac, Windows or Chrome OS?
Most laptops come with one of three operating systems: Windows, Chrome OS or MacOS (MacBooks only). Choosing the right one is a personal preference, but here is a quick summary of what each one offers.
- The most flexible operating system, Windows, runs on more laptop models than Chrome OS or Mac OS X. Windows notebooks range in price from under RON 600 to tens of thousands of lei and offer a wide range of functions. , from touch screens to fingerprint readers to dual graphics chips. Windows 10, the latest version of Microsoft's flagship operating system, offers a number of enhancements to Windows 7 and 8, including the ability to switch between tablet and desktop modes, a renewed Start menu with live cards, and the powerful digital assistant Cortana.
- All MacBooks come with the latest desktop operating system, MacOS Catalina. In general, the operating system offers functionality similar to Windows 10, but with a different interface assumption that replaces an application dock at the bottom of the screen for the Start menu and the Microsoft taskbar. Instead of the Cortana digital assistant, Mac users receive Siri. They can also make transactions with Apple Pay, receive calls or texts from their phones, and unlock laptops with an Apple Watch.
- Found on cheap Chromebooks, such as the Samsung Chromebook 3. Google's operating system is simple and secure, but more limited than Windows or macOS. The user interface is very similar to Windows with an application menu, a desktop and the ability to move windows on the screen, but the main application you use is the Chrome browser. The downside is that many of the "web applications" you use don't work particularly well offline. However, this is changing, as almost all Chromebooks, including the latest Google PixelBook, can now run Android apps.
Decide if you want a 2-in-1 laptop
Many PC laptops fall into the category of 2-in-1 laptops, hybrid devices that can switch between traditional shell mode, tablet mode and other intermediate positions. 2-in-1 laptops generally have two different styles: removable with screens that detach from the entire keyboard and flexible laptops with hinges that bend 360 degrees to change usage.
Most of these systems are much better at accomplishing one purpose than the other. The hinged ones are primarily laptops, and the detachable ones offering an experience closer to that of tablets. However, if you don't see the need to use your notebook as a tablet, you will usually get more performance for your money with a traditional clamshel laptop.
Choose the right size
Before comparing specifications or prices, you need to figure out how portable you need your laptop to be. Laptops are usually classified by display size:
- 11 – 12 inches: The thinnest and lightest systems have 11 to 12 inch screens and usually weigh between 1 and 2 kilograms.
- 13-14 inches: offers the best balance of portability and usability, especially if you buy a laptop that weighs less than 4 kilograms.
- 15 to 16 inches: The most popular 15-inch laptops usually weigh between 2 and 2.5 KG. Consider this size if you want a larger screen and don't plan on carrying your notebook often. Laptops with 16-inch displays are rare, but Apple could start the trend with the 16-inch MacBook Pro.
- 17 to 18 inches: If your laptop stays on your desk all day every day, a 17 or 18 inch system could give you the kind of processing power you need to play high quality games or similar productivity. with a desktop.
Check the Keyboard and Touchpad
The most impressive specifications in the world mean nothing if the laptop you buy does not have good ergonomics. If you plan to do a lot of work on your computer, make sure that the keyboard provides solid tactile feedback, plenty of key movements (the distance the key decreases when pressed, usually 1 to 2 mm), and enough space between taste. If you are buying a Windows laptop and intend to use the laptop mouse pad (and not an external mouse) make sure it has Precision touchpad drivers.
Choose your specifications
Notebook components such as the processor, hard drive, RAM and video card can confuse even laptop specialists, so don't feel embarrassed or discouraged if the technical details are unclear. Give yourself enough time to delve into and document yourself to make sure you know what you're looking for.
Do not ignore battery life
If you buy a large, bulky notebook or gaming laptop that you will only use on a desk near an outlet, you don't have to worry about battery life. However, if you intend to use your laptop in various positions and circumstances, even if it is at home and or at work, you will want at least 7 hours of endurance, 8+ hours being ideal. To determine the expected battery life of a notebook, do not take the word of the manufacturer for this. Instead, read the results of third parties from objective sources, such as our reviews.
HP stands out as the most reliable laptop brand, followed by Asus and Dell, according to Laptop Mag . Samsung, on the other hand, is less reliable than most other brands.
The list also includes secondary or smaller brands, such as Razer, Alienware. These brands tend to have a higher reliability than the product of their parent companies. Thus, gaming laptops are worth the price for reliability, but in terms of performance, they are exaggerated for everyday tasks, such as web browsing, word processing and photo-video editing.
You should expect to replace a laptop every four years. This estimate is based on a cost analysis, plus the average time required to wear the inside of the laptop. Five years for desktops and three or four for laptops. If you think they are short-lived, they really are – but unfortunately they are real. Computers simply aren't built to last long, and even if they were, software updates are very common and aggressive, and older laptops often can't keep up for more than four or five years.
Sales figures for the past five years consistently show laptop buyers spending about $ 2,400 on a new laptop. This means that some spend more, but it means that a considerable number spend less. The amount is not a ton of money for a laptop, although it may seem so when you are at the store.
For that money, you're limited to Chromebooks, multimedia laptops, and a handful of low-end ultrabooks. Many of the laptops available at this price are adequate, but that's all. They are computers and they will do ordinary things for a computer. But saving forces you to give up many advantages, which means that cheap laptops often have a low value for money. You cannot benefit from what you do not pay.
We (both at home and at the office) have always tried to pay between 3,000 and 4,000 RON for a new laptop. Something we've been doing for years. This is a sweet spot from our point of view for a few simple reasons.
First of all, two similar laptops from the same manufacturer, one of 2,000 RON and one of 3,000 benefit from the same case, chassis, motherboard, connectors, charger, keyboard, mouse pad and so on. The differences are in the processor, RAM, video card, SSD vs. HDD, etc. Basically for another 50% of the cost you get a laptop several times better that could last you 5 years instead of 2. In the long run this not only gives you a better laptop, but also helps you save money.
Secondly, from our point of view, it is not worth spending more than 4,000 RON on a laptop. The obvious exception are cases where you are a professional gamer, have a job that requires a high-performance laptop or simply want the best possible setup. In the amount of 4,000 RON you will always find a laptop that can handle the latest games. It is important to remember that technology is advancing faster and faster from year to year, which leads to a dizzying reduction in the various components.