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Top ten: Best Work From Home Laptops for 2021

The best laptops don’t have to be the most expensive ones on the market. Similarly, whilst budget laptops keep costs low – some can even be a nightmare after a while. When selecting our top ten we’ve taken into consideration battery life, performance and the best productivity features so you don’t have to do any additional research.

1. Dell XPS 13 – TechXpert Score 91.16%

  • With its much-improved webcam and longer battery life, the Dell XPS 13 is still among the very best the world over, even if it may not have our sought-after ‘Best in Class’ label anymore. – Tech Radar review – 95%
  • The Dell XPS 13 serves up a new color, a powerful Intel Whiskey Lake processor, a 4K display (and ditches the ridiculous “nosecam”) – all in a slim, lightweight chassis. – Laptop Mag review – 90%
  • The Dell XPS 13 2020 also sees RAM options up to 32GB and SSD options with up to 2TB storage. You’re getting high-end specs wherever you look with this ultrabook. – Trusted Reviews review – 95%
  • Nevertheless, it’s an impressive result and it manages to remain remarkably cool and quiet even when pushing it to its limits. – Expert Reviews review – 90%
  • Dell has fixed this laptop’s only remaining serious flaw, designing a super-slim 2mm webcam to fit into the thin screen bezel. Optional colors look great, as does the 4K touchscreen. Excellent keyboard, and decent battery life for a 4K laptop. – CNET review – 87%
  • The Dell XPS 13 2020 refines the best laptop you can buy with an even more immersive display and speedy 10th Gen Intel power. – Tom’s Guide review – 90%

2. MacBook Pro 16″ – TechXpert Score 90.66%

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  • good keyboard compromise, escape key, t-shape arrow keys, 100Wh battery, gorgeous screen, brilliant trackpad, powerful and customisable (at point of purchase), USB-C/Thunderbolt 3, Touch ID – The Guardian review – 100%
  • The screen includes “true tone” technology that automatically adjusts the white balance of the screen to match the light of your environment, making it easier to see. The battery lasts up to 11 hours when watching video, but this depends on the screen’s brightness – Good Housekeeping review – 89%
  • Apple has overcome this issue, fitting in a 58.2Wh lithium‑polymer battery larger than the 46Wh cell found within the Surface Laptop 3. This results in an admirable battery performance, as we saw the MacBook Pro last roughly 9 hours and 30 minutes when looping a 4K video continuously with the brightness pared back to 150 nits. – Trusted Reviews review – 90%
  • When it comes to processing power, the MacBook Pro 16-inch handles itself very nicely, thanks to the six-core Intel Core i7 processor in the base model we tested, and the option of an eight-core processor in the higher-end model. – T3 review – 80%
  • GPU performance is one of the biggest advantages that the MacBook Pro 16 has over its predecessors. The machine comes with either a Radeon Pro 5300M or a Radeon Pro 5500M, although Apple offers the latter in 4 and 8 GB variants. – Notebook Check review – 90%
  • The 16-inch MacBook Pro is Apple’s greatest laptop achievement. It is a powerhouse that will more than meet the needs and expectations of creative professionals with an all-round performance that would be hard to match. – Tech Guide review – 95%

3. Dell XPS 15 – TechXpert Score 88%

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  • To put it to the test I threw some synthetic benchmarks at the laptop, and suffice to say, I was blown away. In the Expert Reviews 4K media benchmark, the laptop manages a remarkable score of 178. By comparison, the XPS 15 2-in-1 with an Intel Core i5-8305G manages 123 – Expert Reviews review – 100%
  • The 15-inch still suffers from the XPS line’s biggest flaw — an ill-placed webcam — but, overall, this is one of the best laptops you can buy and a formidable foe to Apple’s much pricier 15-inch MacBook Pro. It’s also one of the laptops with best battery life. – Laptop Mag review – 90%
  • Above its other specs, the 9570 delivers a fair amount more GPU muscle with the GTX 1050Ti Max-Q, but its the striking amount of CPU performance in this package that seals the deal – Ultrabook review – 80%
  • This XPS 15 SKU is still a very good multimedia laptop, but the base model was a more balanced package and got a higher overall score as a result. The best configuration is probably the FHD screen in combination with the Core i7 and the GTX 1050 Ti. – Notebook Check review – 90%
  • Take one of the most beloved 15-inch laptops, drop in a wickedly fast 8th gen CPU Core i7 and better graphics, and you have the XPS 15 9570. – PC World review – 80%
  • The new 9570 model provides such a great combination of performance, portability and price. For $1,700 or so, you get a six-core Intel Core i7-8750H CPU, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, a 15.6-inch 1080p display with super slim bezels, and a GeForce GTX 1050 Ti discrete GPU, plus a huge 97 Wh battery and Thunderbolt 3 connectivity. – Tech Spot review – 88%

4. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (6th Gen) – TechXpert Score 87.83%

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  • The ThinkPad X1 Carbon 6h Gen is the ultimate business notebook. You get a slim, light design with soft touch finish and all the power you need in a business notebook with long battery life and rapid charging. – Tech Spot review – 87%
  • The ThinkPad X1 Carbon offers the best combination of productivity, portability and performance of any business laptop. – Laptop Mag review – 100%
  • A mix of practical features makes this purchase a no-brainer for those who want a powerful, light ultrabook with decent battery life. Battery life is also very good, though that’s assisted by the somewhat basic 1080p display that accompanied our review unit. Under the hood, there’s an 8th-gen quad-core Intel Kaby Lake-R processor that accomplishes quite enough for most business tasks. – PC World review – 90%
  • With a 2GHz dual-core Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB RAM and a 180GB SSD backing up a 14-inch 1,600 x 900 touchscreen display, it’s a seriously powerful machine with surprisingly sleek looks to match. – Trusted Reviews review – 80%
  • The ThinkPad Carbon X1 does everything it should for your business and pleasure needs. It’s slim, tough, lightweight, more powerful than before and offers features no other laptop can, including a keyboard that’s the pinnacle of typing. – Pocket-Lint review – 80%
  • As with its predecessors, the X1 Carbon’s tough chassis and excellent keyboard are standout features, while all-day battery life should be possible for all but the most demanding power users. – ZDNET review – 90%

5. Apple MacBook Pro with Touch Bar 13-inch 2018 – TechXpert Score 83.50%

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  • Real world battery life on this laptop is outstanding. We could work through a full eight hour work day starting with a full charge – TechAdvisor review 80%
  • Apple’s 2018 13-inch MacBook Pro is a hugely powerful. – ExpertReviews review – 80%
  • There’s no arguing the MacBook Pro delivers on the performance side with turbo boosted speeds of up to 4.8GHz (15-inch) and 4.5GHz (13-inch) and SSD of read speeds up to 3.2GB per second. – TechGuide review – 90%
  • The 13-inch MacBook Pro does deliver stronger performance and good battery life. – Zdnet review – 80%
  • What Apple has done is deliver a very good laptop, one I think you can trust. – The Verge review – 80%
  • Thanks to the higher battery capacity, the runtime is one hour longer at more than 9.5 hours compared to the 2017 MBP 13 Touch Bar. – Notebook Check review – 91%

6. 13-inch Macbook Air (2018) – TechXpert Score 82.16%

  • This year’s model lasted a solid 9 hours and 32 minutes on the Laptop Mag Battery Test (web surfing at 150 nits) — beating the 8:09 premium notebook average. – Laptop Mag review – 70%
  • The MacBook is now smaller and lighter, with a better display, faster processors and a bigger touchpad. – CNET review – 81%
  • We were a bit disappointed by the mediocre battery life, by which we mean 10 hours with a 4K screen. – Engadget review – 84%
  • For general work performance, the MacBook Air 2018 is a solid performer. The disk read and write speeds of the MacBook Air I recorded were excellent – Trusted Reviews review – 80%
  • The 2018 MacBook Air was the perfect laptop for anyone who values portability but doesn’t want to sacrifice performance. – Mac World review – 90%
  • Our runtime tests show very good results and the MacBook Air beats all of the comparison devices. We determine a little more than 12 hours in our WLAN test – Notebook Check review – 88%

7. Huawei MateBook X Pro – TechXpert Score 82.00%

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  • This notebook seems aimed at those Windows users who want the highest-quality hardware on the market, but wouldn’t be caught dead using a piece of Apple hardware. – Tech Spot review – 87%
  • this is among the very best Windows 10-toting systems on the market. It boasts a fantastic touchscreen and build quality, comes with a powerful suite of internal hardware, and offers good battery performance, too. – T3 review – 80%
  • Huawei’s MateBook Pro X did best in our web browsing loop, where it lasted about nine and a half hours. That’s better than the Lenovo Yoga 920 or Asus Zenbook 3 Deluxe, though behind the Microsoft Surface Book 2 13-inch. – Digital Trends review – 70%
  • Huawei’s Matebook X Pro is a very good ultraportable at an attractive price, cutting a few corners here and there but concentrating its efforts where consumers care most. – PC World review – 80%
  • The Huawei MateBook X Pro is a speedy, long-lasting premium notebook. – Laptop Mag review – 90%
  • Offering a blend of good looks and power, it’s expensive, but offers enough grunt for professionals who need an ultraportable. The annual upgrades are a little lackluster, however. – Engadget review – 85%

8. Microsoft Surface Book 2 (13.5-inch) – TechXpert Score 81.66%

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  • Supreme power for a supreme price. Brilliant, but only worth considering if you will use the screen as a tablet sometimes. – T3 review – 80%
  • The Surface Book 2 13 manages to go really fast and yet last forever on a charge. – Digital Trends review – 85%
  • Microsoft’s Surface Book 2 puts the power of discrete graphics into the best detachable 2-in-1 design you can buy, but it doesn’t come cheap. – Laptop Mag review – 80%
  • Microsoft continues to show off what it can do in the hardware game with the impressive Surface Book 2 which has 8th-gen Intel processors and Nvidia graphics. It’s now available from a lower price of £1,149. – Tech Advisor review – 80%
  • Where the Surface Book 2 wins is battery life. While you’ll struggle to get a full day’s use out of the ROG, the Surface Book 2 will go for hours longer than that laptop without having to top up from the mains – Expert Reviews review – 80%
  • We were still impressed by the quick boot times of the Surface Book 2, because you can start to work after a few seconds. – Notebook Check review – 85%

9. Asus Chromebook Flip – TechXpert Score 81.00%

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  • Asus has a habit of getting things right with Chromebooks, and in the C302CA it has another success. – TechAdvisor review – 80%
  • An excellent premium 2-in-1 Chromebook. – UltrabookReview review – 80%
  • The C302 is also relatively futureproof, not only because it supports Android apps but because it can also be flipped around into a tablet mode. – The Verge review – 81%
  • I’ve come to think it might be the best Chromebook on the market right now. – Engadget review – 85%
  • High-res display. Long-life battery. Even the keyboard is impressive. – PCWorld review – 80%
  • The Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA has a 360-degree hinge, a backlit keyboard, two USB-C ports, a sharp display and a posh all-aluminum build. – Cnet review – 80%

10. Lenovo Yoga – TechXpert Score 77.5%

See it on Argos
  • The Yoga C630 has insane battery life, but is still too slow to replace your PC. – Digital Trends review – 60%
  • Lenovo is promising up to a 30% increase in performance, improved battery life of up to 25 hours, and faster 4G LTE speeds. – Techradar review – 80%
  • Excellent 4K display that’s a joy to use in laptop and tablet mode. Durable all-aluminum chassis. Very solid performance and battery life. – CNET review – 85%
  • Great performance from a big-screen powerhouse, yet Lenovo manages to keep it slim and relatively light. – Expert Reveiws review – 100%
  • The Lenovo Yoga C630 13 is one of the most affordable laptops available with 4G support and a 2-in-1 form factor. Factor in the super-long battery life and ultra-portable design, and this becomes a great option for students. – Trusted Reviews review – 70%
  • The Yoga C630’s gorgeous design and outstanding battery life make up for below-average ARM laptop performance. – Laptop Mag review – 70%

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