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The 12 best laptops you can buy in 2015
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The 12 best laptops you can buy in 2015

Best laptops

Laptops are on the rise again thanks to Windows 10’s arrival, Nivida’s efficient Maxwell graphics cards, and fresh new Skylake processors from Intel. Notebooks once thought to be replaced by tablets are more plentiful and diverse than ever between gaming laptops that hook up to liquid coolers, thin and light Ultrabooks to incredibly affordable Chromebooksand now their Windows 10 Cloudbook counterparts.

With so many options to choose from, picking the best laptop for your needs is more important than ever. Those who crave fast boot up times and a lightweight machine to carry might drool over an Ultrabook. Serious gamers will gravitate towards gaming laptopstailored to their graphical and processing needs, while those after flexibility might fancy a convertible laptop-tablet hybrid.

It might seem overwhelming at first – what with all of the choices – but we’re here to help you find the best laptop for you. Believe us when we say that there is a perfect laptop out there for you. With this guide, you’ll find the absolutely best machines.

Best laptops

1. Dell XPS 13

Dell’s latest laptop is a masterpiece ahead of the curve

CPU: 2.2Ghz Intel Core i5-5200 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 5500 | RAM: 8GB | Screen: 13.3-inch 3,200 x 1,800 UltraSharp QHD+ touch display | Storage: 256GB SSD

See more Dell XPS 13 deals

Gorgeous display

Super lightweight

No Ethernet port

Off-center webcam

The Dell XPS 13 (2015) isn’t just an astonishingly thin and light laptop, it’s a revolution in design. Fitting a 13.3-inch screen into a 11-inch laptop frame is no small feat, but Dell has pulled off a miracle creating a nearly borderless infinity display. This is also one powerful and long lasting machine, all while coming in at a very affordable starting price. For these reasons, it easily takes the top slot as the best Ultrabook, the best Windows laptop and the best overall laptop.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 13

Best laptops

2. Asus ZenBook UX305

Better than the MacBook and at a fraction of the price

CPU: 800MHz Intel Core M 5Y10| Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 5300 | RAM: 8GB | Screen:13.3-inch FHD 1,920 x 1,080 (matte) | Storage: 256GB SSD

See more Asus ZenBook UX305 deals

Thin and light

Vibrant matte screen

Tinny speakers

Troublesome video driver

The Asus ZenBook UX305 might look like a MacBook Air from every angle, but it’s a better machine in almost every way. It’s thinner, lighter and even more attractive in some ways with its purple tinged aluminum body. Plus, this machine also has a Full HD display with good helping of storage space and a fanless design to keep things thin and silent. Most importantly, though, this whole great package comes at very affordable price.

Read the full review: Asus ZenBook UX305

Best laptops

3. Asus Chromebook Flip

A premium Chromebook that backflips on command

CPU: 1.8GHz Rockchip 3288-C | Graphics: ARM Mali T624 | RAM: 2GB LPDDR3 SDRAM |Screen: 10.1-inch, WXGA (1,280 x 800) IPS multi-touch display | Storage: 16GB eMMC

See more Asus Chromebook Flip deals

Fully metal construction

Excessive battery life

Large screen bezels

When most people think of Chromebooks they might expect some cheap, plastic device that’s only just good enough to get them by through a day of computing. Asus on the other hand offers the fully metal Chromebook Flip that doubles as a tablet just for the heck of it. The 10.1-inch, 2-in-1 Chromebook is an exceedingly light laptop that feels premium to the touch. Thanks to a little known Rockchip processor, it will also outrun most other Chrome OS machines both in performance and its eight hour battery life.

Read the full review: Asus Chromebook Flip

Best laptops

4. 13-inch MacBook Air (early 2015)

Light and faster than ever

CPU: 1.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 6000 | RAM: 8GB | Screen:13.3-inch, LED-backlit glossy display (1440 x 900) | Storage: 256GB SSD

See more 13-inch MacBook Air (early 2015) deals

Excellent battery life

Nippy storage

Dated design

Low-res display

While the latest MacBook Air sticks to its guns with a dated design and low-resolution screen, it’s not showing any signs of slowing down on the performance end. Thanks to a capable processor, this thin and light machine can handle everything from serious number crunching to even some light gaming. Sure the New MacBook is lighter and thinner, but it does not come with the Air’s large spread of ports nor the 13 hours of battery life to last you though an entire day.

Read the full review: 13-inch MacBook Air (early 2015)

Best laptops

5. Toshiba Chromebook 2

One of the best full HD Chromebooks

CPU: 2.16GHz Intel Celeron N2840 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics | RAM: 4 GB DDR3L |Screen: 13.3-inch, 1920 x 1090 TruBrite TFT display | Storage: 16GB SSD

See more Toshiba Chromebook 2 deals

Gorgeous 1080p screen

Thin and light

Blinding screen glare

Mismatched casing parts

Of course, if a long lasting machine is what you seek, you should invest in a Chromebook. The Toshiba Chromebook 2 lasts for a fairly long six and a half hours and packs a wonderfully colorful full HD screen to boot. It’s a better package compared to most Windows laptops you can pick up at this low, low price. Although the Toshiba Chromebook 2 is looking a bit old now with its last generation processor, it can still hold its own, and even today it remains to be one of the more attractive Chrome OS machines.

Read the full review: Toshiba Chromebook 2

Best laptops

6. New MacBook 2015

Gorgeous, thin and light

CPU: 1.1GHz dual-core Intel Core M | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 5300 | RAM: 8GB | Screen:12-inch, 2,304 x 1,440 LED-backlit IPS display | Storage: 256GB SSD

See more New MacBook deals

Terrific design

Surprisingly good speakers

Runs sluggish at times

Expensive

If you want a real bombshell of a laptop, look no further than the extremely slender MacBook. It’s come a long way the days of being the MacBook Pro’s rounded, plastic understudy. Apple reintroduced the MacBook as one of the World’s thinnest and lightest laptops featuring a razor sharp aluminum unibody and high-resolution Retina display that still hasn’t made its way into the MacBook Air. The nigh travel-less keyboard takes a little getting used and forget about using ports without an adapter, but if you can get over these humps, the MacBook is a machine that will turn heads and make your friends jealous.

Read the full review: New MacBook

Best laptops

7. Dell Inspiron 13 7000

A great all-around laptop-tablet hybrid for discerning students

CPU: 2.4GHz Intel Core i7-5500 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 5500 | RAM: 8GB | Screen: 13.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 FHD IPS touchscreen | Storage: 256GB SSD

See more Dell Inspiron 13 7000 deals

Attractive and sturdy design

Speedy powerful performance

Lackluster battery life

A little hefty

Then again for those who don’t need the latest laptop on the block and rather stick to their guns with something functional, the Dell Inspiron 13 7000 is a lovely fit. With a metal chassis coated in soft touch rubber this Special Edition 13-inch laptop hardly feels like a budget machine. Aside from the more than serviceable computing experience you’ll get out of this notebook, the screen also flips back giving you a 1,080p tablet experience.

Read the full review: Dell Inspiron 13 7000

Best laptops

8. Acer Chromebook 15 C910

This 15-inch Chromebook has it all

CPU: 2.2GHz dual-core Intel Core i5-5200 | Graphics: Intel HD 5500 | RAM: 4GB | Screen:15.6-inch full HD (1,920 x 1,080) | Storage: 32GB SSD

See more Acer Chromebook 15 C910 deals

Speedy performance

Sleek diamond texture

Too heavy

Awkward keyboard

Who says Chromebooks can be big too. While the mass majority of Chrome OS machines come in the shape of low-powered 13- to 10-inch laptops, the Acer Chromebook C910 is the 15-inch big daddy. Not only does it come rocking a vibrant 15-inch, 1080p display, it also has a substantially more powerful Intel Core processor for some more heavy duty Cloud computing. You might think all this added power would take a chunk out of the battery life, but this Chromebook colossus can last for nearly nine hours.

Read the full review: Acer Chromebook 15 C910.

Best laptops

9. HP Spectre x360

Striking the perfect balance between a laptop and tablet

CPU: 2.2GHz Intel Core i5-5200 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 5500 | RAM: 8GB | Screen: 13.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 FHD Radiance LED-backlit touchscreen | Storage: 256GB SSD

See more HP Spectre x360 deals

Superbly thin Excellent performance and battery life

Too heavy for tablet usage

Weirdly wide trackpad

The HP Spectre x360 comes easily as one of our most recommended 2-in-1 hybrid laptops. It’s one of the best looking and most powerful hybrid notebooks out today, and the vibrantly bright display doesn’t hurt either. Although it weighs nearly as much as a 13-inch MacBook Pro Retina, it’s dimensions put it more in line with a MacBook Air and the fully metal body is a nice touch too, even if it ends up making this tablet-laptop a tad bit too heavy for prolonged tablet use.

Read the full review: HP Spectre x360

Best laptops

10. MacBook Pro 13-inch with Retina display (early 2015)

Robust and stunning, the MacBook Pro is as good as old reliable

CPU: 2.7GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 | Graphics: Intel Iris Graphics 6100 | RAM: 8GB | Screen:13.3-inch IPS, 2,560 x 1,600 pixels| Storage: 128GB SSD

See more MacBook Pro 13-inch with Retina display (early 2015) deals

Faster Processor

Superb battery life

Underdeveloped Force Touch

Unchanged design

The MacBook Pro is a tried and true road warrior. Whether you’re a student, graphic designer, desk jockey, photographer, DJ or a simple everyday user, this is one of the most versatile and best laptops ever made. Along with delivering great performance and amazing battery life, this latest MacBook Pro inherits the newly introduced MacBook’s Force Touch trackpad giving you access to more gesture commands. It’s an even more enticing option when you add up all the freebies it comes with including office programs and software upgrades.

Read the full review: MacBook Pro 13-inch with Retina display (early 2015)

Best laptops

11. Microsoft Surface Pro 3

The best laptop-killing tablet with a design that screams style

CPU: 1.9GHz Intel Core i5-4300U | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4400 | RAM: 8GB | Screen: 12-inch, 2160 x 1440 multi-touch display| Storage: 256GB SSD

See more Microsoft Surface Pro 3 deals

Sharp display Perfect as a laptop and tablet

Mediocre battery life

Runs hot at times

Microsoft might not be the first company to break into 2-in-1 laptop, but it’s one of the few to get it right. The first Surface was a suave new device that worked both as a laptop and tablet. Thanks to an ergonomic kickstand and excellent magnetic keyboard, it easy to use whether you’re at a desk or even laying down. Years of refinement later, the Surface Pro 3 has seen some significant upgrades including a bigger and higher-res display, plus a sharper exterior to go with it. It might soon be on the way out with rising rumors of Surface Pro 4, but this is still by far the best hybrid device to buy today.

Read the full review: Microsoft Surface Pro 3

Best laptops

12. Lenovo LaVie Z

This skinny kid can fight

CPU: 2.40GHz Intel Core i7-5500U | Graphics: Intel HD Graphic 5500 | RAM: 8GB | Screen:13.3-inch WQHD (2560 x 1440) LED anti-glare | Storage: 256GB

See more Lenovo LaVie Z deals

Core i7 processor

Excellent high-res display

Mediocre battery life

Astronomical battery life

A laptop as light as a tablet? It’s not as crazy as you think with the Lenovo LaVie Z weighing less than two pounds. Aside from its lightweight chassis, the Lavie Z offers better performance and a higher resolution screen than most of its 13-inch Ultrabook competitors. Still, this machine has a few unfavorable characteristics including a soft build quality, inferior battery life and inflated price tag; major turn offs for what is an otherwise splendid device.

EFF Times (Editor)

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