Best Laptops 2016

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Top Laptop Overall

Dell XPS 13

Editor's Choice

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.

Dell XPS 13 Review

  • Best Cheap Laptop

    Lenovo Ideapad 100S

    Editor's Choice

    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.

    Lenovo Ideapad 100S Review

  • Best Sub-$500 Laptop

    Asus VivoBook E403SA

    Editor's Choice

    For just $399, the 14-inch Asus VivoBook E403SA provides a full 1080p screen, a brushed-aluminum lid, a USB-C port and over 9 hours of battery life. A Pentium processor and 4GB of RAM offer just enough performance for productive multi-tasking. And, at 3.2 pounds, the E403SA won't weigh down your bag or your lap.

    Asus VivoBook E403SA

  • Best Small Business Laptop

    Lenovo ThinkPad 13

    Editor's Choice

    The ThinkPad 13 offers Fortune 500 features at prices even a startup can afford. For a little more than $600, you get a durable, MIL-SPEC-tested chassis, a 1080p display, an SSD and over 9 hours of battery life. Even better, the ThinkPad 13's keyboard is one of the best we've tested on any laptop.

    Lenovo ThinkPad 13 Review

  • Best Battery Life

    Lenovo ThinkPad X260

    Editor's Choice

    With its optional extended battery on board, the ThinkPad X260 lasts over 17 hours on a charge. That's long enough to spend an entire trans-continental flight crunching spreadsheets or writing reports on this powerful 12.5-inch business laptop. And at just 12 x 8 inches and 3.2 pounds, the X260's durable chassis is small enough to fit on most airline tray tables. 

    Lenovo ThinkPad X260 Review

  • Best Small Laptop

    HP Spectre

    Editor's Choice

    The slimmest laptop on the market, HP's Spectre measures just 0.41 inches at its thickest point while weighing only 2.45 pounds. The sleek laptop also features a stunning charcoal and copper design, a vibrant, 13-inch HD display and plenty of performance thanks to its SSD and Core i5 / i7 CPU.

    HP Spectre Review

  • Best Apple Laptop

    Apple MacBook Air (13 inch)

    Editor's Choice

    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. 

    Apple 13-inch Macbook Air Review

  • Best Business Laptop

    Lenovo ThinkPad T460

    Editor's Choice

    With over 13 hours of battery life, a best-in-class keyboard and strong performance, the 14-inch ThinkPad T460 will make you more comfortable and productive. The laptop's tough-as-nails chassis can take a beating, having passed MIL-SPEC 810G durability tests for extreme temperatures, shocks and vibrations.

    Lenovo ThinkPad T460 Review

  • Best 2-in-1

    Lenovo Yoga 900

    Editor's Choice

    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?

    Lenovo Yoga 900 Review

  • Best Video/Photo Editing Laptop

    Asus ZenBook Pro UX501VW

    As powerful as a MacBook Pro that costs $1,000 more, the 15-inch ZenBook Pro comes packed with the high-end features a creative professional needs. Its 3840 x 2160 UHD touchscreen  is even sharper than the Mac's while a powerful Intel Core i7 CPU and Nvidia GTX 960M GPU provide enough oomph for editing 4K videos. Potent performance, good looks and a great price? What's there not to love?

    Asus ZenBook Pro UX501VW Review

  • Best Gaming Laptop

    Alienware 17 R3 (2016)

    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. 

    Alienware 17 R3 Review

  • Best Chromebook

    Toshiba Chromebook 2 CB35

    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.

    Toshiba Chromebook 2 (2015) Review

    Toshiba Chromebook 2 (2015) Review
    Toshiba Chromebook 2 (2015) Review

  • Best Laptop for Kids

    Asus Chromebook C202

    Kids will drop anything and everything, but the 11.6-inch Asus Chromebook C202 will stand up to little butterfingers. The $199 laptop can withstand drops up to 3.9 feet and has a spill-resistant keyboard. The Intel Celeron N3060 processor and up to 4GB of RAM provides more than enough performance for even the most challenging homework.

    Asus Chromebook C202 Review