Hunter Biden's laptop: Which one did he own?

Hunter Biden laptop
Hunter Biden laptop (Image credit: Apple)

"Hunter Biden's laptop" are three words that have been trending on Google, social media platforms, and dinner tables across America (especially if your family is prone to breaking etiquette rules regarding political discussions). Don't worry! We're not here to dive into the contentious discourse surrounding the US President's son — there are plenty of news platforms that have that covered.

However, we are, by and large, laptop reviewers, so we couldn't help but feel wildly curious about which laptop Biden had in his possession. Was it an Asus notebook? Or is he more into HP's portfolio of laptops? As it turns out, according to CBS News, Biden is an Apple fan.

What type of laptop did Hunter Biden own?

A 13-inch MacBook Pro is at the center of the Hunter Biden laptop controversy. According to The Washington Post, Biden dropped it off at a Wilmington, Del. computer repair shop in April 2019 — and never retrieved it.

John Paul Mac Isaac, the owner of the repair shop, said that the laptop suffered water damage and Biden asked him to recover its data. According to Isaac's attorney Brian Della Rocca, it was a challenging task.

"He would boot the computer and transfer as much as he could before the computer shut down. Then, he would boot up the computer again, verify what was copied, and then transfer more data until the computer shut down again. This process repeated several times," Della Rocca said in a statement.

Twitter user Michael Weiss looked up the serial number allegedly associated with Biden's once-lost laptop. Check out its specs below.

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Hunter Biden's alleged laptop specs
Laptop nameApple MacBook ProRow 0 - Cell 2
Launch yearmid-2017Row 1 - Cell 2
Display13.3-inch, 2560 x1600-pixelRow 2 - Cell 2
Processor An 2.3GHz Intel Core i5 CPURow 3 - Cell 2
GraphicsIntel Iris Plus Graphics 650Row 4 - Cell 2
I/O 2 x Thunderbolt 3 (USB Type-C) PortsRow 5 - Cell 2
RAM8GBRow 6 - Cell 2
Storage256GB or 512GBRow 7 - Cell 2
ColorSilverRow 8 - Cell 2

When Biden dropped off his MacBook Pro at the Delaware-based repair shop three years ago, it was two years old. In fact, in July 2019, Apple discontinued the model, three months after Isaac received the laptop. 

We reviewed a similar model in June 2017. Based on the photo CBS News alleges is Biden's once-lost laptop, it featured the highly contentious TouchBar, and of course, the butterfly keyboard that the Laptop Mag staff voted against universally in 2019. The image looks like it was taken with a phone that perhaps also suffered irreparable water damage in 2019, though. so it's not entirely clear.

Our reviewer raved about the 2017 13-inch MacBook Pro's competition-beating performance and stunning display, but wasn't thrilled about its less-than-impressive 8-hour battery life. Fortunately, since Apple ditched Intel for its custom-made ARM processors, the latest MacBooks' runtimes have been flying off the charts. The M2-based 13-inch MacBook Pro, for example, lasted a whopping 18 hours and 20 minutes! It's the longest-lasting laptop we've reviewed to date.

Although the Cupertino-based tech giant is no longer selling the 2017 13-inch MacBook Pro, you can find used variants of the "Hunter Biden laptop" on various online marketplaces. For example, eBay is selling one for less than $600.

Kimberly Gedeon

Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!