The best laptop for programming won’t magically turn you into a tech guru like Larry Page or shower you with wealth and success like Bill Gates. No matter how advanced your machine is, your motivation still depends on human interaction and support, like getting help from another programmer on Stack Overflow.
But let’s face it, having a good laptop is still essential. Even the most skilled software developers can struggle with a sluggish machine that takes forever to compile code. Whether you’re coding software, developing mobile apps, creating games, or designing websites, the right laptop can help you get more work done in less time.
We’ve put together a list of laptops that will help you achieve maximum efficiency and productivity, whether you want to streamline your workflow or dive into a new coding hobby. Get ready to say “Hello, World!” to our top picks for the best laptops for programming, and experience the power of a high-performing machine.
What Are the Best Programming Laptops?
Do you need a laptop for programming, but feel overwhelmed by all the options out there? Let us help you narrow it down. The Apple MacBook Pro 14 is one of the most impressive programming laptops available, thanks to its cutting-edge M1 Pro and Pro Max chips. And in our testing, it even outperformed some of the highest-rated AMD and Intel-powered laptops.
But maybe you’re looking for something different. Enter the Dell XPS 15 OLED (2021), a versatile machine that can be customized to fit any programming project. Its 11th Gen Intel Core CPU provides top-notch performance, while the premium design keeps it looking sleek and stylish.
And if you’re on a tight budget, don’t worry! The Acer Quick 3 offers a great price-to-performance ratio, with its AMD Ryzen 7 4700U CPU delivering impressive computational power. In fact, it even outperformed several high-end laptops in our benchmark testing.
With so many options available, it can be tough to know which laptop to choose. But these three machines are sure to satisfy even the most demanding programming tasks. So whether you’re a seasoned developer or just starting out, invest in one of these top-performing laptops and take your programming skills to the next level!
List of Best Laptops for Programming
Best Laptop for Game Developers: MacBook Pro 14
Trying to find the perfect laptop for programming can feel like an impossible task in this digital age. But don’t despair, because the newly unveiled Apple MacBook Pro laptops are here to blow your mind! As Steve Jobs once said, “people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” And with the MacBook Pro 14, you’ll get everything you didn’t even know you needed.
Sure, the M1 Pro chip may not be the absolute top dog compared to the M1 Max, but it still packs a serious punch. Our benchmark testing showed that the MacBook Pro 14 outperformed some of the most highly-rated Intel and AMD-powered laptops with its 10-core processor. And with configurations offering up to a whopping 64GB of RAM, 8TB of speedy SSD storage, a 16-core Neural Engine, and a 32-core GPU, this laptop is ready to take on any programming task.
Of course, all of these impressive features come with a pretty hefty price tag. While the MacBook Pro 14 starts at $1,999, more powerful models can run up to an eye-watering $5,899. But for the serious programmer who needs the best of the best, this laptop is worth every penny.
And let’s not forget about the other amazing features, like the 14-hour battery life, gorgeous 14-inch display, top-notch keyboard, and expanded connectivity options that include a full HDMI port and an SDXC card reader. With so many mind-blowing features, the MacBook Pro 14 is the perfect choice for anyone who needs a powerful and versatile programming machine. Get ready to have your mind blown!
- The M1 Pro chip is impressive
- Excellent heat control
- Incredible battery life
- This may be a staggering spectacle.
Best Windows Laptop: MSI WS75
Whoa, the MSI WS75 is an absolute powerhouse that’s built to handle every stage of your workflow, no matter what kind of programming or software development you’re doing. This bad boy is packing some serious heat with an Intel Core i9-10980HK octa-core processor that can hit a max turbo frequency of 5.3GHz. Plus, with the NVIDIA Quadro RTX 3000 graphics card, which comes with 6GB of dedicated memory, you’ll be able to blaze through any task, even if you’re working with high-end graphic design software or other resource-intensive programs.
If you’re into game creation or design, this machine will be your jam! It’s got a whopping 32GB of RAM and 1TB SSD, which means applications like Unity Pro and Unreal Engine will run like a dream. Plus, Windows 10 Pro is the perfect operating system for this bad boy, with its built-in security features that’ll keep your work safe and secure.
Oh, and did I mention that you can unlock your laptop with your fingerprint? Talk about feeling like a secret agent! Plus, with the large screen and powerful processor, you’ll be able to code, design, and work with ease.
The 17.3-inch FHD screen is insane, with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and a refresh rate of 144Hz. You won’t miss a single detail! The slim bezels give you even more screen space to play with, and the True Pixel display is perfect for keeping your designs as realistic as possible. And let’s not forget the full-sized backlit keyboard and dedicated numeric pad – they’re perfect for getting work done, even if you’re burning the midnight oil.
But even with all this power, the keyboard is still comfortable to use for long periods, with quiet and responsive keystrokes that won’t drive you crazy. The larger trackpad is a lifesaver too, with a fingerprint scanner and smooth surface that’s perfect for multi-touch gestures.
And when it comes to connectivity, the MSI WS75 has got you covered. With four USB ports (3 type-A, 1 type-C) and an HDMI port, you can connect to other devices or share your screen with colleagues. There’s also a Thunderbolt port, Ethernet port, headphone/microphone combo, and card reader. And don’t forget about Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 – you’ll have lightning-fast internet and seamless connectivity with all your favorite accessories.
So if you’re a programmer, audio/video editor, game developer, or designer, the MSI WS75 is the ultimate workhorse. With its sleek black chassis and weight of around 5.5lbs, it’s the perfect companion for anyone who needs a serious machine to handle their workload.
- Processor with octa-cores
- Reader for fingerprints
- 6th generation Wi-Fi
- Windows 10 Master may be a proficient adaptation of Windows 10
- A system that has been ISV certified
- Speakers are a disappointment
- Chassis that isn’t exceptionally solid
Best Double-Screen Laptop: ASUS ZenBook 15
Hey, you a programming whiz who spends all day tinkering around with IDEs like Obscure, Visual Studio, GNAT, JetBrains, and systems like Precise, Respond, or Laravel? If so, Asus has just dropped a serious game-changer in the form of the Asus ZenBook 15 – one of the hottest laptops for programming out there right now. It’s got everything you need to power through your coding work while staying super portable and entertained all at the same time.
When you’re ready to compile and run your code, or maybe even take a little break and play some mid-range visual games, this bad boy is ready to deliver with its i7-10510U and GeForce GTX 1650 Max-Q. And with the GPU’s 4GB of dedicated memory, you’ll be able to breeze through your planning, editing, and gaming tasks with ease.
But this laptop is more than just a raw powerhouse – it’s also got the chops to multitask like a boss, thanks to its 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSD read/write speeds.
And when you’re ready to jam out to some tunes while you work, this Zenbook comes fully equipped with Windows 10 pre-installed and Windows Hello’s face recognition feature, so you can log in without ever having to remember your password.
When it comes to visuals, this laptop is a true stunner. The primary 15.6-inch UHD screen has a 92% screen-to-body ratio and wide viewing angles, delivering breathtakingly realistic graphics at 3840 x 2160 resolution. Plus, ASUS’s LCD Screenpad 2 is absolutely brilliant with its 2160 x 1080 display.
And let’s not forget about the secondary touch panel, which comes pre-loaded with ASUS utility apps and is interatomic with the primary screen, making graphic artists’ jobs so much easier. And when it comes to typing, Asus has really gone above and beyond with a large, full-sized backlit keyboard and a separate Numpad. The touchpad handles all your multi-touch gestures with ease and can even turn into the secondary screen with a single touch. And with its sleek silver chassis that oozes sophistication and innovation, this laptop is super lightweight and portable at just 3.6 pounds.
As for connectivity, the Zenbook has got you covered with one HDMI port, three USB ports (2 Type-A, one Type-C), a sound jack, and an SD card reader. However, it’s worth noting that there’s no Ethernet port – but fear not, because Asus has included the latest Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 technology for wireless connectivity that’s faster and more stable than ever before. And with its 71Whr battery, you’ll have up to 7 hours of uninterrupted coding time according to Asus.
Overall, the Zenbook 15 is the perfect choice for software engineers and designers who need a portable alternative to their workstations. And with its CPU/GPU combo that’s designed to handle even the most resource-intensive programming IDEs and games, it’s sure to be a game-changer for anyone looking to level up their coding game.
- Wi-Fi; 4K Show; Wi-Fi
- Facial Acknowledgment could be a sort of facial acknowledgment software
- Compatible with Alexa.
- There is no Ethernet available
- It’s conceivable that Screen pad 2.0 is needless excess
Best Laptop with 4K Panel: HP Spectre x360
Yo, programming peeps – HP just dropped their latest and greatest laptop for all you coding wizards out there, the HP Ghost x360 Touch. This bad boy is seriously next-level, with a premium aluminum design in a sleek Poseidon Blue color that’s sure to turn heads. And with a killer spec sheet, this laptop is built to handle even the toughest programming tasks with ease.
Under the hood, you’ve got a 1.8GHz Intel Core i7-10510U processor that’s an absolute powerhouse, making everything you do on the Phantom x360 super smooth and lightning fast. And with 16GB of DDR4 RAM and 512GB of SSD internal storage, as well as 32GB of Optane storage, you’ll never have to worry about running out of space or power. Plus, the 4GB NVIDIA GeForce MX330 graphics card is perfect for some entry-level gaming action or superior virtual reality performance.
The 15.6-inch 4K WLED display is no slouch either, with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 that delivers some seriously vibrant colors and impressive picture quality. Sure, it can be a little glare-prone and dim, but that’s a small price to pay for such a stunning display. And when it comes to typing, the keyboard is perfectly designed for software engineers, with well-spaced keys and a convenient number pad that’s just the right size.
But the real star of the show here is the battery life – with a range of between 11 and 13.5 hours, this laptop is perfect for all you on-the-go programmers who need to stay connected and productive no matter where you are. And with some decent sound quality thanks to the Bang & Olufsen speakers, the HP Ghost x360 Touch is the complete package for any programming pro.
- For a smooth execution, you’ll require a solid processor
- Excellent console and writing skills
- There could be a touchscreen available
- The stylus has been added
- Huge battery life
- The show quality may be better
- Speakers do not put up a pleasant appearance
Best Linux OS: Lenovo Think Book 14s
Hey there coders, Lenovo just dropped a killer laptop for all you Linux lovers out there – the Lenovo ThinkBook 14s. This laptop has everything you need to power through your coding tasks and keep your data safe and secure. And with a price tag below $1000, it’s an absolute steal.
Under the hood, you’ve got a quad-core Intel Core i5-8265U processor that’s seriously fast, running at a maximum speed of 3.9GHz. And with an AMD Radeon 540X graphics card with 2GB of VRAM, you’ll be able to work with all your favorite BI interfaces and play games like FIFA and SIMS with ease.
But the real kicker here is the security features. Lenovo has really gone all out to keep your data safe with Linux Mint and a TPM chip, so you can work with confidence knowing that your sensitive information is always protected. And with a 256GB SSD and 16GB of RAM, this laptop is lightning fast and multitasking is a breeze.
The 14-inch FHD screen is also seriously impressive, with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and wide viewing angles that keep you engaged and focused. And with a sleek aluminum shell and a flexible 180-degree hinge, the ThinkBook 14s is the perfect travel companion.
The keyboard is also great for extended working hours, with well-spaced and backlit keys that are perfect for typing away on those long coding sessions. And the touchpad is smooth and responsive, so you can navigate through all your operations with ease.
And with an HDMI port, two Type-A USB ports, one Type-C USB port, and a 3.5mm audio jack, this laptop is perfect for all your connectivity needs. The only downside is the lack of an Ethernet port, but with Wi-Fi 5 and Bluetooth 5, you’ll still be able to stay connected and productive.
So if you’re looking for a powerful and secure laptop that won’t break the bank, the Lenovo ThinkBook 14s is definitely worth checking out. And with up to 11 hours of battery life, you can work all day without ever having to worry about running out of juice.
- It’s light and slim
- The shutter on the camera
- Hinge with a 180-degree angle
- TPM stands for Trusted Stage Module Security
- There’s no LAN association
Best Dell Programming Laptop: Dell Latitude 3520
Dell has just dropped a new laptop that’s perfect for software engineers and designers who want to get their work done and have some fun on the side. The Dell Scope 3520 is a great option for those who want a laptop that’s affordable, yet powerful enough to handle all their needs.
The Intel Core i7-1165G7 quad-core processor is seriously fast, with a base clock speed of 2.8GHz and a top speed of 4.7GHz. And with a dedicated graphics processor, you’ll be able to play low-end games and edit photos and videos with ease.
But what really sets this laptop apart is its 16GB of RAM and speedy 512GB SSD, which make it perfect for dealing with massive data sets or creating visually stunning graphics and presentations. And with Windows 10 Home and Dell Mobile Connect, you’ll have a user-friendly environment that’s easy to navigate.
Connect to external displays using the HDMI port or plug in your peripherals with any of the four USB ports (three Type-A and one Type-C). And with a 3.5mm audio jack and a card reader, you’ll have everything you need to stay productive.
Stay connected with the latest Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 protocols, which provide fast and stable wireless networking. And while the 54Whr battery may not last as long as you’d like, it’s still a great laptop for getting work done and having some fun on the side.
Overall, the Dell Scope 3520 is a powerful and affordable laptop that’s perfect for software engineers and designers who want a laptop that’s fast, reliable, and versatile. So if you’re in the market for a new laptop, be sure to check out the Dell Scope 3520!
- 11th Generation Processor
- The console encompasses a backlight
- Charged Immediately
- 6th generation Wi-Fi
- Connect with your phone
- GPU execution might be moved forward
Best with 12GB RAM: Lenovo Yoga C740
Looking for a laptop that won’t break the bank, but will still have everything you need to rock your computer science classes? Look no further than the Lenovo Yoga C740!
This updated 2-in-1 laptop has got it all – sleek and stylish design with a dark metal finish and a slim bezel that screams luxury, and at just 4.19 pounds, it’s an easy choice for those who want a convertible laptop that can keep up with their busy lifestyle.
With 360-degree flexibility, you can use the Lenovo Yoga C740 as a laptop, tablet, tent, or stand – making it perfect for everything from taking notes in class to working on a project at the library. Plus, the Intel Core i7-10510U processor and 12GB of DDR4 RAM and 512GB of SSD storage mean you’ll have no problem multitasking, streaming, and browsing with ease.
And when you need a break from all that work, the built-in speakers are perfect for a little music listening, and the battery life is long enough to last through even the longest study sessions.
The only downside? The webcam may not be the best quality, but that’s not a dealbreaker for most people. Overall, the Lenovo Yoga C740 is a fantastic choice for anyone who wants a laptop that’s both affordable and high-performing. So why wait? Grab one today!
- Great performance and battery life
- An able mid-range processor
- Touch-enabled display Reader for fingerprints
- Form calculates is thin and light
- There is no backlighting on the keyboard.
- Webcam is normal
Best Microsoft Surface Laptop: Microsoft Surface 3
Looking for a laptop that caters to your creative and programming needs? The Microsoft Surface 3 might just be the answer! With its AMD Ryzen 7 processor and 10-point multi-touch screen, this laptop has a sleek and versatile design with a simple yet elegant appeal.
Targeted towards software engineers who value the Microsoft environment and want to explore their creative ideas on a stylus-enabled touch-screen, this laptop is also perfect for drawing enthusiasts. The AMD Ryzen 7 3780U is a powerful quad-core CPU that runs at a base frequency of 2.3GHz and a maximum frequency of 4GHz. Thanks to this solid processor, R-Studio, Python, and Java-based environments run smoothly.
The integrated AMD Radeon RX Vega 11 graphics processor is also powerful enough to handle graphics-intensive tasks. With 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSD, this laptop provides quick access to data-intensive computations and designs. Windows Hello facial recognition is included in the Windows 10 Home version, making logging in a breeze.
One of the Surface 3’s standout features is its 15-inch PixelSense Touch Screen. With a 3:2 aspect ratio and a higher resolution of 2496 x 1664, this laptop delivers crisp and clear visuals for text-based programming IDEs and creative pursuits like design and art.
Microsoft also provides a chiclet-style keyboard with ample key travel and ideal spacing for long programming sessions. The absence of a separate Numpad favors fast and error-free typing. The touchpad is also wider than its predecessor, allowing for seamless multi-finger gestures in Windows.
Despite its high price tag, this sub-$2000 laptop has limited ports and external connectivity options. It comes with one USB Type-C, one USB Type-A, an audio jack, and a Surface Connect port. It also has WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 5 for wireless networking. The matte-black aluminum finish adds more refinement to the slim and lightweight design, weighing only 3.4 pounds.
But don’t worry, the Surface 3 has an impressive 11.5-hour battery life. If you’re looking for a lightweight touch-screen laptop within the Windows/Microsoft environment to pursue your creative dreams and programming career, the Microsoft Surface 3 is definitely worth considering – even if it means compromising on ports.
- Stylus Friendly
- Lightweight design
- The length of the battery
- A little number of ports is available
How much RAM your programming laptop should have?
Generally, 8GB of RAM is sufficient for most programming tasks for software engineers and developers. However, game developers who rely heavily on high-quality visuals may require around 12GB of RAM. Graphic designers and video editors need at least 16GB of RAM for their demanding tasks.
What CPU is best suited for programming laptops?
Look for laptops with Intel i5 or i7 processors, which provide excellent results. The more cores a processor has, the faster the laptop will run. If you prefer AMD processors, newer laptops with AMD processors are also available.
Is it possible to program on a 13-inch laptop?
While screen size may be a concern, display quality is more important when it comes to programming laptops. As a result, a 13-inch laptop with a Full HD display and high resolution will be sufficient for programming needs.
Why is a Solid State Drive (SSD) important for internal storage on a programming laptop?
When choosing a laptop, it’s important to consider whether or not it has an SSD. If you’re on a tight budget, you can opt for a smaller SSD laptop and combine it with a larger HDD. You can also choose an SSHD hybrid drive for internal storage. These options will ensure that your operating system performs well and you can quickly access programs, documents, and other files on your internal storage.
Do you need a high-end laptop for programming?
Absolutely not. High-end laptops with specific configurations are necessary for high-end graphic designers and video editors, which can be expensive. However, mid-range laptops can provide the programming specifications required by most coders and designers, making them affordable to anyone.
Looking for a laptop that fits all your programming needs? Well, there are a lot of things to consider, like CPU, GPU, RAM, storage, battery life, display, keyboard, and more. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with these top picks of programming laptops that fit various budgets!
If you’re always on the move and need a lightweight laptop, go for the ASUS VivoBook S15. It’s perfect for those who value portability without sacrificing performance.
On the other hand, if you work from home and need a workstation with serious computing power, the ASUS ZenBook 15 is your best bet. This bad boy can handle anything you throw at it.
And for those who prefer the Apple ecosystem, the Apple MacBook Pro is the way to go. It’s a favorite among many programmers and designers alike.
If you’re on a budget, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with the Lenovo Yoga C740. It’s a great option for programmers who don’t want to break the bank.
All of these laptops offer exceptional overall performance and have set new standards for programmers, designers, gamers, and editors alike. So, take your pick and get ready to rock your programming tasks with ease!