Thanks to a razor-thin bezel, the Dell XPS 13 crams a vibrant and sharp 13-inch display into an 11-inch chassis, making it one of the most compact ultraportables ever. This 2.7-pound laptop also delivers fast performance, thanks to its Intel 6th Generation Core processor and SSD. The non-touch-screen version of this machine lasted nearly 12 hours on a charge, giving you plenty of endurance. Dell also sells a version with a sharper, quad-HD touch display. Overall, the new XPS 13 is the best lightweight laptop for the money.
Despite its sub-$200 price, the Ideapad 100S looks and feels anything but cheap. This 11.6-inch Windows 10 laptop offers good build quality, a bright screen, solid multitasking performance and over 9 hours of battery life. It even comes with a free year of Office 365 Personal.
Although the new 12-inch MacBook is sleeker, the MacBook Air 13-inch is a better deal overall. This 3-pound aluminum ultraportable lasted 14 hours on the Laptop Mag Battery Test, which is well above the category average. Although the screen resolution could be sharper (it's just 1,440 x 900p) the Air's comfortable keyboard, superfast flash storage and sub-$1,000 price tag make it one of the best laptops on the market.
Lenovo's ThinkPad T series line of business laptops have long been known for their powerful performance, long battery life and superior usability. The 14-inch ThinkPad T450s builds on that rich tradition, offering a gorgeous, 1920 x 1080-pixel touch screen; a durable, MIL-SPEC-tested design; and the most responsive keyboard on the market. With more than 15 hours of endurance with the extended battery, this lightweight powerhouse lets you get your work done in style, anywhere at any time.
Why buy a traditional laptop when a 2-in-1 can do so much more? Lenovo's Yoga 900 features a powerful 6th-gen Intel Core i7 CPU; a pixel-rich, 13.3-inch 3200 x 1800 display; and a striking watchband-style hinge that lets it transform from a laptop to a tablet and anything in between at a moment's notice. And unlike the hybrids of yesteryear, the Yoga 900 is stylish and compact in a way that puts most traditional laptops to shame. Lenovo can even match the paint on the hinge with whatever color you choose for the outside. How's that for attention to detail?
The best gaming laptop has gotten even better -- and faster. The Alienware 17 R3 keeps the sleek sci-fi design and colorful keyboard of its predecessor while adding an Intel 6th Generation Core i7 CPU and an optional 4K display that's one of the best we've seen. If the laptop's top-of-the-line Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M mobile GPU isn't quick enough for you, add Alienware's $300 Graphics Amplifier and insert any desktop graphics card for true future-proof power.
If you're looking for a lightweight laptop with long battery life that won't strain your budget, you need to consider the Toshiba Chromebook 2 CB35. From its bright, accurate 13.3-inch full-HD display to its 10-plus hours of endurance, the CB35 is practically a steal at $330. Its elegant silver deck looks like it belongs on a much more expensive laptop, and its keyboard will make crunching away on Google Docs and email a breeze.
The Inspiron 15 5000 stands out from the budget laptop crowd with a premium design that features a colorful, textured lid and a comfy, soft-touch deck. With a Core i3 CPU and a 500GB hard drive, this 15-inch system has more than enough oomph for everyday tasks.
The 12.5-inch ThinkPad X250 crams the power and versatility of a high-end productivity system into a 2.8-pound laptop with 15+ hours of battery life. Features like a high-res 1,920 x 1,080 display, comfortable keyboard and speedy Intel 5th Generation Core Series CPU help you get work done. A full array of ports, including Ethernet and an SD card reader, means that you don't have to compromise on functionality to gain portability.
Whether it's gaming mice or laptops, Razer has never been shy about going against the grain. The company continues the trend with the Blade Stealth, its first Ultrabook. Starting at an aggressive $999, the 2.75-pound laptop offers an Intel Core i7 CPU, a quad HD display and a keyboard that can glow in millions of colors. If that isn't enough, the ultraportable can transform into a gaming beast with the help of its optional graphics amplifier, the Razer Blade Core. It's a definitive mic drop for ultraportable and gaming laptop makers.