Best Gaming Laptop - Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
Gaming laptops are not cheap, with all the power needed to play the latest games that is understandable. These kinds of machines have great components with high powered specs. The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is such a machine that features on a number of different lists due to its performance and quality. It is built around the AMD Ryzen 9 4900HS processor and has the Nvidia RTX 2060 graphics card. RAM for the CPU is at 8GB, this too the high performance DDR4 standard. The GPU has its own 6GB GDDR6 so it takes on the visual load separately. For storage, Asus has made use of a 1TB drive that is an M.2 NVMe PCIe 3.0 SSD; again a fast performing component. The display is FHD with a refresh rate of 120Hz, making for clear and smooth visuals. The ROG Zephyrus G14 also has G-Sync which keep the GPU instep with the refresh rate so there is no miscommunication that can cause glitches or lags. As gamers often sit in low light conditions, the keyboard is backlit making it clearly visible in the dark. There are ample porting options as well as wireless connectivity. The form factor is made with simple lines and the overall look is sleek and modern. This laptop is not just a great gaming machine, the performance is among some of the best possible in this price range and can be used for other power-hungry tasks as well.
Best Overall - HP 15 DY1091wm
Finding a device that has good value for money can be tricky. There are a lot of options to choose from, but the HP DY1091wm is a great choice that has a good performance balanced out with the price. Housing the 10th Generation Core i3-1005G1 DualCore Processor and a base level of 8GB DDR4 RAM with 256GB SSD of storage, makes the performance streamlined. Especially since the storage is along with the PCIe NVMe M.2 standard; making for super-fast access. The processor also features Turbo Boost, so in case you need some more power it overclocks, putting out more speed. Graphics are handled by the Intel UHD Graphics integrated chip, which is not a high-performance device but can handle everyday tasks with ease. For the display, HP has opted to give this laptop a 15.6-inch screen at 1366x768 resolution, so it is HD and is powered using LED technology; meaning it is super clear. One can make use of the various USB ports, a range that includes one USB 3.1 Type-C and two USB 3.1 Type-A ports. There is also an HDMI port to support connectivity with media devices. There is even an SD card reader, making it easy to access one directly. A webcam is featured too and makes use of HP TrueVision; an HD camera that is on top of the screen along with dual array digital microphones. Wireless connectivity options include WiFi and Bluetooth, the latter of which also has support for Miracast and MU-MIMO. HP has installed Windows 10 Home in S mode as the OS and this laptop has McAfee LiveSafe as well. All this is packed into a very neat body in silver colour. There is a large trackpad so one can work more efficiently and the keyboard is well-spaced for comfortable usage. For a device that is in the mid ranges, this laptop packs ample features and power for a customer searching for a good balance of value for money.
Best Affordable - Lenovo Ideapad 330 15.6"
A budget buyer can look into the Lenovo Ideapad 330, a laptop with a 15.6 display that has a resolution of 1366x768p. This is an HD display that is powered by LEDs and also features AntiGlare so it does not unnecessarily strain the eyes. Computation is powered by the Intel Celeron DualCore N4000 processor which is a relatively basic chipset. It can execute everyday tasks easily but would get choked if you were to take on a heavier load such as graphics design. It does feature TurboBost so for some tasks it can overclock and put out some more power. The Intel HD handles graphics and shares RAM with the main CPU. The tasking is handled by 4GB of DDR4 RAM, which again is ample for daily work but not for tasks requiring more power. The storage on this machine is quite a bit, with a 1TB HDD that can house a lot of data. One of the features generally being phased out is an optical drive, the Lenovo Ideapad 330 has a DVD burner which can be very handy in some cases. One can make use of WiFi and Bluetooth if they need to connect wirelessly. Otherwise, there is LAN, one USB 3.1 TYpe-C, two USB 3.0 Type-A ports as well as an HDMI for media devices. There is also a webcam for your video calls. The keyboard is made in a manner that makes it comfortable to use, with thin buttons so the overall form factor is also lean. On the outside this machine is simple looking, it only has a Lenovo logo on the corner and the rest is plain with a minimal feel that is common with most consumer machines today. An ideal choice for someone looking to spend lesser money on a functional machine for everyday usage.
Best 2-in1 - Lenovo Yoga 6 13"
2-in-1 machines are a big hit in the modern market as they are able to do all the work a laptop can and also be used as a tablet by being folded over. This gives users multiple usage modes within one device, adding convenience, especially for regular travellers. Lenovo introduced the Yoga line in 2012 and has consistently put out new models to keep up with the time. The Yoga 6 at 13 inches is a great machine for someone who wants a 2-in-1 that isn't too exuberantly priced compared to the other top options. It is powered by the AMD Ryzen 5 PRO 4650U and has integrated AMD Radeon Graphics; this lets one know that this device is not built for gaming or other visual-heavy tasks but could work for casual gaming. It has 8GB of DDR4 RAM soldered in, meaning it cannot be replaced and would have to be used for the life of the device. Between this amount of RAM and the processor from AMD, this device can give quite a good performance for most of one's work; keeping the transition to the tablet format smooth as well. Storage on this machine is at 256GB and is the M.2 SSD variant so it is quick in performance. The resolution for the display is 1920x1080p making it FullHD so your media and other visuals are crisp. For connectivity one can make use of WiFi or the two USB-A ports and two USB-C ports. One of these USB-C ports works as the charing-in and the other can send out a DisplayPort signal. There is also a 3.5mm audio out so one can connect their headphones or speakers to their Yoga 6. The overall design is simple, with function leading the form, with a denim-like grey cover on the top lid akin to the covers of a tablet. It is a slim machine that is easy to port, keeping in line with the fact that it may often be used as a tablet which by their nature need to be portable. Despite how slim it is, the battery gives one about 11 hours of video playback, which is impressive. The price of this device is in the mid ranges as far as 2-in-1 options go.
Best High End - Apple MacBook Pro 16
Apple has ruled this segment for quite a while. Their MacBook Pro range is one of the best options across the board, the only holdback is that it is not such a gaming-friendly laptop; but for any other heavy task such as video editing or music production, it is the choice. The base-level MacBook Pro 16 from 2019 comes with 16GB of DDR4 RAM and the 9th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, the more powerful variants have higher RAM, Core i9 processors and better GPUs. Graphics are handled by the AMD Radeon Pro 5300M, which even has 4GB of its own RAM so it takes on the visual processing without loading the main processor. There is 512GB of SSD storage so one's overall performance is streamlined. The macOS is also so well done that it is able to extract great performance even from the base model. As usual, the Apple display is amazing; it is based on their Retina technology and also features True Tone which optimises colours for each surrounding. The keyboard is very well put together and has the right amount of key travel, as well as lights so one can see their keys in the dark. Laptops rarely have good sound as speakers are small in size but this machine does have good sound; it has three speakers on each side including two subwoofers. These create a balanced sonic space with bass you can actually hear. This model also features the Touch Bar which can add an array of buttons that one can customise and move around. From volume to quick access to your music you can choose how to use it. Porting options include four Thunderbolt 3 ports and a headphone jack; wireless connectivity options are WiFi and Bluetooth. The built-in camera for video calls and taking photos is 720p and there are three mics that have beamforming with great signal to noise ratios so your calls are clear. All this is powered by a battery that can last up to 11 hours, which is ample time for most of one's usage. This is the machine to choose if you have large scale rendering to handle, meaning it is the leader when it comes to heavy tasks. Also, MacBooks are known for their stability which is why a lot of professional creatives prefer them over most other machines. If a high-end price is not an issue, this is the laptop for you.