Best Laptops for College and School

Best laptops for college and school students provide an easy way to complete assignments, projects, and class presentations. With the coming of COVID-19 restrictions, students have no option but to do some of their lessons online. Besides, some students use laptops as part of their coursework. Therefore, buying a college and school laptop is necessary for everyone who hopes to succeed in an increasingly digitized world. But many students find it hard to pick the right laptop for college. So we have reviewed ten of the best laptops for college students and provides a comprehensive buying guide to help them decide easily. Read on for more.

A student using a laptop in a library

1. Apple MacBook Pro 15-Inch

Here is one of the best laptops for college and school students since it is versatile, robust, and high-capacity. That and more is the perfect description for the Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch that comes ready for these tasks. Even though released in 2019, its features mimic that of a modern machine. For example, it has the 8th-gen Intel Core-i7, Intel Core-i8, and Intel Core-i9 processors. Thus, it can accommodate virtually any program you choose.

Additionally, its powerful AMD Radeon Pro 555X GPU graphics card is excellent for graphic design and video production students. Consequently, you will come up with the best projects for your graphic design course. It has a 4GB video memory for unwinding with your favorite video games after lectures.

It has ultrafast 2TB SSD storage that enables you to open files and programs in a flash. Besides, it features an improved keyboard for extremely quiet keystrokes whenever you are working. If you take the laptop to the library, you won’t worry about making noise. Therefore, this laptop is the best for students in schools and colleges where absolute silence is necessary.

Pros

  • Powerful processor
  • Has powerful AMD graphics
  • 2TB SSD storage

Cons

  • Costlier than most other laptops
  • Reports of the keyboard being noisy
  • It doesn’t come with HDMI and USB-A ports

2. Apple MacBook Air 13-Inch Retina Display

The 2019 Apple MacBook Air has a fresh design with a 13-inch screen with the latest Retinal Display technology. It, therefore, provides the best possible graphics for successful school projects and gaming when unwinding. Furthermore, the laptop lets you open it using the secure Touch ID for extra machine and information security.

One of this laptop’s best features is the proprietary keyboard with quiet keystrokes, making it ideal for use in a library. It also has a highly responsive force-touch trackpad, rendering it easy to use, even for inexperienced users.

Moreover, this laptop boasts of the 8th-gen Intel Core i5 that supports lighter and heavier programs. It also features an Intel 616UHD Graphics  Card for high-resolution graphics, pictures, and videos. Other specifications include the fast, concise, and effortless 256GB SSD storage and 8GB memory for loading videos and games in a breeze. Besides, the 12-hour battery life makes the laptop ideal for off-grid operations.

Pros

  • Elegant design
  • Features a great display
  • 12-hour battery life

Cons

  • A troublesome webcam
  • Lacks most ports

3. Lenovo IdeaPad L 340 Gaming Laptop, 15.6-Inch FHD

Don’t be deceived. Being a student is not all work. You, like everyone else, need some playtime to unwind and get ready for the next day’s classes. So having a functional laptop isn’t enough. Instead, it should deliver standout gaming power for leisure time. With its gaming laptop features, the Lenovo IdeaPad L340 is an affordable option for gaming enthusiasts.

But what are its most remarkable features? Since it is one of the best laptops for college and school use, it features a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card for once for running your video games with zero latency. Besides, the laptop has 4GB of video RAM to load your videos much faster and play all kinds of video games.

Another thing that makes this a great work and gaming laptop is the large display for vivid images. It is, therefore, great for streaming videos and watching TV programs on the go. Besides, the computer has a robust build quality making it last for all your school or college years. How else would you want your computer to be?

Pros

  • A gaming laptop for relaxation after studies
  • It comes with solid graphics capabilities
  • It has a large screen

Cons

  • It doesn’t have a perfect battery life
  • A limited number of ports

4. Huawei MateBook X-Pro Signature Edition Thin & Light Laptop

Fresher high school and college students need a robust, long-lasting laptop like the Huawei MateBook X Pro. The powerful machine can last through your four years of college life without breaking down. Besides, the student laptop is compact, lightweight, and ideal for daily backpacking. Yet, unlike similar laptops, it wouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg.

Moreover, it features a sleek, attractive chassis measuring 0.57 inches thick. The laptop is also lightweight, weighing only 2.93 pounds. It has a 13.9-inch touchscreen 3K display with  3,000 x 2,000 screen resolution, 1500 to 1 contrast ratio, and 260 PPI.  Besides displaying your videos and video games vividly, the computer is perfect for students taking graphic design and video editing courses.

The Windows 10 Home Signature Edition laptop has Windows Hello authentication on startup. Its Core-i7 8550U 8th-gen makes the computer 40 percent more potent than its predecessor. Finally, the laptop features the 2nd-gen Dolby ATMOS capabilities provides the best possible audio always.

Pros

  • An affordable school/college laptop
  • More powerful performance than the predecessor
  • High-resolution display

Cons

  • The battery life isn’t awe-inspiring
  • The touchscreen is prone to breaking
  • It has a cheap-looking trackpad
Students with their laptops in school

5. 2018 Flagship Dell-Inspiron 11.6-Inch HD Chromebook

Students hardly have the money to splash on a top-range computer, yet their schoolwork and entertainment needs can’t wait. In that case, you need an entry-level laptop like the 2018 Flagship Dell Inspiron that promises excellent performance for a modest price. The student laptop has a 16GB SSD drive and 4GB RAM, making it ideal for typing notes, assignments, and academic papers.

Furthermore, it has an energy-efficient 11.6-inch display with decent graphics thanks to the built-in Intel HD 400 Graphics card. That might not be good enough for playing graphics-heavy video games, but it can still stream vivid videos.

The laptop has dedicated USB ports and a micro-SD card reader, compensating for the less-than-average storage capacity. Thus, you can attach an external SSD or HDD to store bigger files. The 2GB Intel Dual-Core Celeron processor is robust enough to support basic typing and video streaming with the light Chrome OS.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Ability to access Google products
  • Features standard ports

Cons

  • Smaller display
  • Low-capacity storage

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6. HP 2-In-1 12.3-Inch Touchscreen Chromebook

If you are looking for a small, compact laptop to carry between classes, we recommend the HP 2-in-1 Chromebook. It features an energy-saving 12.3-inch screen for displaying class notes and assignments. With the 4GB LPDDR3 SD RAM, you can easily carry research relevant materials over the internet.

Besides, the Chromebook has a 32GB eMMC storage that’s big enough to store documents of all types, albeit temporarily. It also has a 5MP front and 13MP rear camera respective. For additional storage capacity, attach an external SSD or HDD using any of the included USB Type-C ports.

Thanks to the Chrome OS, users can access numerous Google Storer apps, including a word processor. It is the perfect laptop for students on a tight budget and cannot do without a good laptop. However, if you can afford a more powerful machine, look elsewhere.

Pros

  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled
  • Front and back cameras
  • Expandable memory

Cons

  • The display has an irritating bright spot
  • Slow performance
  • Internal storage limited to 32GB

7. Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 Core-i5, 8GB RAM, 128GB

As a student, the best laptop is one you can use on the go, folding easily, putting it in a backpack, and heading off to class. Besides, the Microsoft Surface is a lightweight laptop, weighing only 2.76 pounds for ultra-portability. With the 14.5-hour battery life, you can carry it to a class and never worry about charging it until you return home.

Furthermore, this is one of the best laptops for college and school since it comes in various colors, helping you choose one that works for you. So, you can choose anything ranging from cobalt blue to burgundy to platinum. The computer comes with Windows 10 Home edition, which is great for school and college work.

It has a 13.5-inch Pixel Sense Display touchscreen for more input options besides the touchpad and keyboard. Moreover, its 8th-gen Intel Core-i5 processors make it speedier than the laptop’s previous version.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • 14.5-hour battery life
  • It has a touchscreen

Cons

  • Reports of the machine never powering on
  • Lacks Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C ports
A laptop in a student’s room

8. Dell XPS-15 9570 15.6-Inch Laptop

This particular computer is the bigger version of the Dell XPS 13. However, the two machines have similar features like the bezel-free InfinityEdge display, barring the screen size. Thanks to its larger display,  the Dell XPS 15 is excellent for those who want to play games and watch 4K movies. Besides, the touchscreen function gives you more input options besides the usual touchpad and keyboard.

This laptop is highly portable, making it great for on-the-go use. Additionally, it has an Nvidia GTX 1050Ti mobile graphics card that can handle just about any 1080P video game. That feature is also great for streaming videos and movies.

The 8th-gen Intel Core-i7 8570H processor, 16GB RAM with 4GHz, makes the laptop blazingly fast. It is, therefore, a good student laptop for those taking graphics-related courses. At the end of the day, when you are through with all your assignments, you can relax by watching a movie or playing your favorite video game.

Pros

  • It comes with a good webcam
  • A powerful, great-performing machine
  • Features a bezel-less screen

Cons

  • A paltry battery-life
  • Costly

9. Acer Aspire E-15, 15.6-Inch Full HD

Students often need laptops with the capacity to store small files, games, videos, and music files. Because of that, they need high-capacity machines like the Acer Aspire E-15 laptop with a 1TB HDD. None of the devices featured in this review can attain that.

Besides, it has an Intel Core-i3 8130U processor for 2.2GHz to 3.2GHz speed, making program, video, and game loading extremely easy. The laptop features preinstalled Windows Home Edition and Microsoft 365 Home, making it easier for you to start on your assignments sooner without upgrading anything.

Furthermore, the 15.6-inch full-HD display provides crystal-clear images, videos, and in-game graphics. Since it is widescreen, you can work efficiently without straining. Besides, its remarkable 13.5-hour battery life makes it great for off-grip operations.

Pros

  • 1TB storage
  • 15.6-inch crystal clear display
  • 13.5-hour battery life

Cons

  • A dim screen
  • System may crash

10. ASUS ZenBook UX333FA-DH51 Laptop

If you are looking for a small enough laptop for on-the-go video editing and graphic design, the ASUS ZenBook UX333FA-DH51 is all you need. Even though compact, the laptop packs a lot of power with the 8th-gen Intel Core-i5 8265U processor. It loads programs, games, and videos quickly. Besides, it has zero lag time when playing video games, making it a must-have for modern college students.

The 13.3-inch full-HD display provides crystal-clear videos and vivid in-game graphics. That ensures not only detailed images but also believable illustrations. Besides, one of the best laptops for college and school comes with an onboard 8GB LPDDR3 RAM for fast file and program loading.

The laptop has 256GB SSD storage, making it easier for you to load your programs and open your files. Compared to notebooks with smaller SSD disks, this high-capacity machine can carry loads of files. It also features several USB ports to connect useful peripheral devices like external hard disks and flash disks. On the other hand, the HDMI ports make displaying contents on a bigger screen or a projector extremely easy.

Pros

  • It comes with a long-lasting battery
  • It has several USB and HDMI ports
  • An affordable laptop

Cons

  • It doesn’t have an optical drive
  • Lacks a micro-SD adapter
  • Reports about issues with the trackpad
A college student grinding hard on a laptop

Best Laptops for College and School Buying Guide

Are you a student in a school or college? If so, you need a laptop to research, link with teachers, write papers, and create presentations. The best time to buy a computer is usually at the beginning of the school year. But how do you know the correct laptop model to pick? It can be challenging for you to understand what you need as a student. That’s because the budget is an issue, and you may buy the laptop with a student loan or your parent’s money.

After reading this comprehensive buying guide, you will be able to pick the right laptop. In it, we discuss factors that will concern the most as a student. Let’s get going.

The Course or Curriculum

The computing needs of students differ based on the course they are taking. Therefore, your degree or diploma program is the most significant consideration when buying a laptop. Consequently, some students may want primary Chromebooks for sending emails, browsing the web, and word processing. Chromebooks are cheaper, going for $200 or less, making them great for students on a tight budget.

However, for video editing, 3D modeling, or CAD drawing courses, a robust college laptop is a must-have. in that case, a high-capacity processor, ideally 8th-gen Intel Core-i7, is desirable. Also, it should have at least 8GB RAM, 500GB SSD, and an 8GB graphics card. With these impressive specs, you should be ready to afford the at least $800 price tag for Windows laptops. MacBook computers may cost more than $1,000, which could be beyond reach for most students.

The Display Size

The display size affects a laptop’s ease of use and overall weight. If you want a backpacking laptop, purchase one with a 15.6-inch display or less. Apart from fitting into any bag, the student laptop is light enough for on-the-go use. Besides, laptops with 13.3 or 12.3-inch display sizes are even more lightweight. However, smaller displays make the laptop too uncomfortable to use, mainly because of the small-size fonts. Therefore, you should consider that while choosing the ideal screen size for a school laptop. However, the weight shouldn’t be more than 4.5 pounds for you to carry it easily.

Two-In-One Laptop

Sometimes, you may need a machine that’s much more than just a laptop with two-in-one functionality. The market has laptops with detachable keyboards, serving as a tablet after detaching the keyboards. As soon as you reattach the keyboard, the machine becomes a laptop all over again.

However, a two-in-one laptop requires the recharging of the keyboard every time you want to use it. Also, you might have to pay for the detachable keyboard separately. Additionally, the machine has a smaller display of at least 9.7 inches, making it difficult to use. Also, you cannot use it while on your hips since the rear-hinge design renders it overly uncomfortable.

Storage Capacity

A college laptop’s storage capacity determines the volume of files you can save on it. Consequently, those who intend to store videos and video games on their laptops would quickly choose a computer with a 1TB HDD. But not everyone wants a high-capacity laptop, preferring one with a low-capacity SSD. Regardless of their size, solid-state drive (SSD) storage is faster when booting and loading files. Furthermore, an SSD drive boosts the machine’s battery life since it doesn’t have any moving parts.

SSD storage may start from 32GB to 2GB, depending on the machine. At 32GB SSD, you will get an affordable Chromebook for simple tasks like word processing, browsing, and emailing. Therefore, most of your files will go straight on the cloud with Google Drive or One Drive. However, that sacrifice in storage capacity means you can stream movies and video games instead of storing them on the machine.

Need For Microsoft Office

A good student laptop should have a word processor, spreadsheet manager, and presentation builder at the very basic. As long as you can prepare assignments and make class presentations, you are good to go. Besides, you can use Microsoft Office 365 for Education, available to teachers and students free of charge. Use a lawful school email address to sign in and access basic programs without paying a cent.

Alternatively, the M-Word, MS-PowerPoint, and MS-Excel free versions are downloadable for all Android and iOS. Thus, you can use these free programs to write your assignments and term papers quickly. Besides, Google Docs, a free cloud application, can make your work more accessible if you have a Chromebook. Or you may use WPS Office or LibreOffice without paying a cent. Unless you have the money, it isn’t necessary to pay for the fully-fledged Microsoft Office Pro Suite.

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Additional Features Of the Best Laptops for College and School Students

When buying the best laptops for college and school students, the following are some of the additional features to consider following:

  • Processor: Regardless of the intended purpose, a student laptop’s processor speed is a crucial consideration. However, computers for graphic design or video editing need 3.5GHz to 4 GHz processor speed.
  • RAM: A good college and school laptop should have at least 4GB of RAM. If you want a gaming laptop, you will go for an 8GB or 16GB RAM.
  • Webcam: Nowadays, almost all student laptops have a built-in webcam. However, the quality of the webcam matters, especially if you need to participate in high-quality Zoom calls. Failure to pay attention to that may mean buying a separate detachable webcam.
  • Connectivity: A school laptop should have several connectivity options, including Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet port. Additionally, vital ports like HDMI, USB, and Display make it possible to connect to various devices and display options.
  • Battery Life: Student laptops usually demand usage away from a reliable power source. That’s why you should buy one with long battery life. While some laptop batteries last for at least 13 hours, others last for a short time.
  • Carrier Bag: Some college laptop sellers offer a carrier bag with every machine you purchase. Still, others may require you to buy a carrier bag separately? If you need to start carrying your laptop immediately, you may opt for a machine with a laptop carrier offer.

The Price

A college laptop’s price varies based on the model, size, technical specifications, and functionality. Consequently, the cheapest school laptops may cost at least $140 while the most expensive attract up to $2,000. When choosing a college laptop, be sure to consider the machine’s technical specifications. If it meets all your technical requirements and is affordable, go ahead and buy it? Also, it could be necessary to look out for laptop sales for cheaper machines.

Best Laptops for College and School – The Bottom Line

From the ten best laptops for college and school featured above, it is possible for you to find one that serves all of your needs. If you don’t find any of the laptops appealing, then you can use the criteria spelled out in the buying guide to buy a more suitable machine. Good luck!

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