13-inch laptops have soared in popularity and for good reason. These devices offer the best balance between portability and productivity. Students can effortlessly carry 13-inch laptops around campus and business professionals can slip these machines into briefcases when traveling.
We've compiled the best 13-inch laptops, however, if you're not sold on this screen size, check out our best overall laptops page or the best 15-inch laptops and best 17-inch laptops pages. Students should see our best college laptops page, where they'll find the best notebook for their respective majors.
Here are the best 13-inch laptops for every budget.
What you need to know about Black Friday 2019
If you're in the market for a 13-inch laptop, consider waiting for Black Friday, which starts on Nov. 29. We'll be posting all the latest laptop, tablet and accessories deals as they become available on our Black Friday deals and Cyber Monday deals hubs. Expect to see steep savings on the XPS 13, Spectre x360 and perhaps even the new Surface Laptop 3.
The best 13-inch laptops
The best overall laptop
CPU: Intel Core i3/Core i5/ Core i7 | GPU: Intel UHD 620 | RAM: 4GB/8GB/16GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB/2TB | Display: 13.3-inch, 1080p or 4K | Size: 11.9 x 7.8 x 0.5 inches | Weight: 2.7 pounds
The best Ultrabook overall, the late 2019 XPS 13 is identical to the previous model but now packs 10th Gen processors. Those chips, especially the six-core Core i7 CPU, offers a significant boost in performance over 8th Gen processors.
The 4K model we tested has a gorgeous 13.3-inch InfinityEdge display -- with practically no bezels -- and now the 'nosecam' webcam is no longer, as Dell's engineers managed to fit it in the notebook's top bezel, which is still super-thin. If you want long battery life, opt for the 1080p model as the 4K version lasted just under 8 hours on a charge, a decent if below-average result.
See our full Dell XPS 13 (Late 2019) Review
The best laptop under $1,000
CPU: Intel Core i5/Core i7 | GPU: Intel UHD 620/Nvidia GeForce MX250 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB SSD | Display: 13.3-inch, 1080p or 4K | Size: 12.1 x 8.3 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 2.8 pounds
Starting at just $799, the HP Envy 13 is one of, if not, the best value in laptops right now. In many ways, the Envy 13 is a Windows 10 alternative to the MacBook Air, expect even better thanks to its longer battery life, stronger performance and lower price. Redesigned for this year, the Envy 13 also has a slim attractive aluminum chassis. Some handy security features --- a fingerprint sensor and webcam kill switch --- are just the icing on the cake.
See our full HP Envy 13 review.
The best Apple laptop
CPU: Intel Core i5 (Y-series) | GPU: Intel UHD 617 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: 128GB/256GB/512GB/1TB | Display: 13.3-inch, 2560 x 1600-pixel | Size: 12 x 8.4 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 2.8 pounds
The new MacBook Air is very similar to its predecessor. The slim laptop still features a colorful 13.3-inch, 2560 x 1600 Retina display with relatively thin bezels. And while its Y-series CPU doesn't blow us away, the nearly 9 hours of battery life makes up for it.
New to the 2019 version is True Tone, a technology that shifts display color temperature based on ambient lighting. But the best change from the previous model is easily the price, which is now $100 cheaper.
See our full Apple MacBook Air review.
The best ultraportable laptop
CPU: Intel Core i5/ Core i7 | GPU: IntelUHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: 128GB/256GB/512/1TB SSD | Display: 13.5-inch, 2256 x 1504-pixel | Size: 12.1 x 8.8 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 2.7 pounds
The sophomore release of Microsoft's traditional clamshell laptop is a hit. The $999 Surface Laptop 2 has a lot going for it, including a gorgeous 13.5-inch display, a slim and sexy design, and 9 hours of battery life. The machine also comes armed with the latest 8th Gen Intel Core CPUs, which provide a significant performance improvement when compared to last year's model. The comfortable soft-touch Alcantara deck returns this year, except now there is a swanky matte black color scheme to choose from, along with the Burgundy, Cobalt Blue and Platinum.
See our full Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 review.
The best gaming laptop
CPU: Intel Corei7-8565U | GPU: Nvidia GeForce MX150 GPU/Intel UHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB | Display: 13.3-inch 1080p or 4K | Size: 12 x 8.3 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 2.9 pounds
The Razer Blade Stealth is the best laptop for gamers who want to play on the go. The Stealth has a sleek, unibody aluminum chassis that can be easily slipped into a backpack. Somehow, Razer found a way to pack a dedicated GPU into this 13-inch machine. While the optional GeForce MX150 GPU can't play the most demanding games, you shouldn't have any problems running most AAA titles on low graphics settings. Oh yeah, and this year's model has surprisingly long battery life, at more than 8 hours.
See our full Razer Blade Stealth review.
The best 2-in-1 laptop
CPU: Intel Core i3/Core i5/Core i7 | GPU: IntelIris Plus | RAM: 8GB/16GB/32GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB | Display: 13.4-inch,1920 x 1200-pixel or 4K | Size: 11.7 x 8.2 x 0.5 inches | Weight: 2.9 pounds
Dell's new XPS 13 2-in-1 takes everything we love about the clamshell XPS 13 --- fast performance (thanks to 10th Gen CPUs), a sleek, lightweight design and very long battery life --- and put it in a flexible convertible chassis. You also get a unique 13.4-inch, 1920 x 1200-resolution display. No, that's no typo; The XPS 13 2-in-1's touch screen has a 16:10 aspect ratio, making it taller than almost every other 13-inch display. Better yet, that panel is both bright and vivid.
See our full Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 review.
CPU: Intel Core i3/Core i5 | GPU: Intel UHD 620 | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 32GB/64GB | Display: 13.3-inch, 2256 x 1504-pixels | Size: 12.2 x 9.7 x 0.7 inches | Weight: 3.6 pounds
A favorite in a flood of recently released premium Chromebooks, the $799 Acer Chromebook 13 is one of the fastest laptops running Google's Chrome OS. The aluminum notebook packs up to an Intel U-series Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM. While the laptop's 13.5-inch display isn't particularly bright, it is sharp and vivid.
See our full Acer Chromebook 13 review.
8. Apple MacBook Pro with Touch Bar (2019)
The laptop with the best performance
CPU: Intel Core i5/ Core i7 | GPU: Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB/2TB | Display: 13.3-inch, 2560 x 1600-pixel | Size: 12 x 8.4 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 3 pounds
If you prefer macOS to Windows 10, then there's only one 13-inch laptop you should consider: the Apple MacBook Pro (starting at $1,799). The biggest improvement to this year's model is the new keyboard, which should fix the various issues of the previous version.
Other improvements include faster quad-core processors and the quickest SSD you'll find in a laptop. Of course, you still get everything that makes Apple's laptops so popular: a gorgeous unibody aluminum design, a sharp and fairly vibrant display, good speakers and solid battery life.
See our full Apple MacBook Pro review.
The best business laptop
CPU: IntelCore i5/ Core i7 | GPU: Intel UHD 620 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: Up to 2TB | Display: 13.3-inch, 1080p or 4K | Size: 12 x 8.1 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 2.8 pounds
Business professionals who want a powerful 13-inch laptop should consider the HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3. This sleek 2-in-1 combines a beautiful slim aluminum chassis with military strength durability. Add nearly 10 hours of battery life into the mix, and you've got yourself one heck of a travel machine.
A standout feature of the EliteBook x360 1030 G3 is the 1080p Sure View display, which reaches a remarkable 518 nits of brightness. Other things we like about the laptop include its comfortable keyboard and powerful speakers.
See our full EliteBook x360 1030 G3 review.
The laptop with the best design
CPU: Intel Core i5/Core i7 | GPU: Intel UHD 620 | RAM: 8GB/16GB | Storage: 128GB/256GB | Display Size: 13.3-inch, 1080p | Size: 12.1 x 8.3 x 0.5 inches | Weight: 2.4 pounds
At 0.5 inches thick and 2.4 pounds, the extremely sleek IdeaPad 730S is one of the thinnest and lightest 13-inch laptops we've reviewed. Along with a portable chassis, it has a vivid and detailed 13.3-inch, 1080p display, and strong performance thanks to its Core i5 CPU and fast 256GB SSD.
Impressive audio quality and a surprisingly capable webcam make the IdeaPad 730S a steal at less than $1,000,despite sub-par battery life.
See our full Lenovo IdeaPad 730S review.
The best laptop for designers and artists
CPU: Intel Core i7 | GPU: Intel UHD 620 | RAM: 16GB/32GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB | Display Size: 13.3-inch, 4K | Size: 12.1 x 8.5 x 0.6 inches | Weight: 3.1 pounds
What sets the Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 Black Edition apart from the competition is a nifty pen garage built into the stylus. Using a strong magnet, the slot holds the included stylus in place so you don't have to worry about losing it.Other things we love about the Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 are its sleek, stylish design, fast performance and competitive price.
See our full Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 Black Edition review.
Credit: Laptop Mag