Playing around with code and programming software is a necessity for many professions, and even for many hobbies. Of course, if it’s something that you’ve ever tried before, you will know that having a high quality computer is important for getting tasks done to the highest standards. If you’re still relatively new to programming or you haven’t bought a new laptop in a while, you may not know what sorts of specifications you should be looking out for.
At PC Guide, we’re here to make life easier for you. Here, we’ve covered our picks for the best laptops for programming, saving you from scrolling through the internet for hours trying to guess what the best choice will be for you. Without further ado, here are our picks!
How We Picked
Choosing the right laptop for your programming needs can be pretty difficult. We’ve taken the time to carefully consider laptops that have the ideal specifications for your programming needs. In writing this article, we’ve thought about the overall performance of the laptop.
For instance, the laptop speed, the CPU and RAM. We’ve also considered the amount of storage space that the laptop has. In addition to these key characteristics, we’ve thought about how good the laptop is in terms of things such as battery life and graphics quality.
As an added bonus, the last thing we thought about was the added extras such as backlit keyboards and other features that make the laptop easier to use in general.
Best Laptop For Programming in 2021
Great battery life
2 in 1 design
The very first choice on our list is the incredible HP Spectre x360 laptop. What makes this laptop especially unique is the fact that it’s actually a 2 in 1 laptop, so it can work like a tablet and a laptop. It’s very portable, making it ideal for people that like to program on the go.
The very first thing that most people notice about this laptop is the fantastic design. It looks sleek and stunning – you are going to love showing this laptop off in the office! The specifications are great too. It features a new 1.3 GHz intel Core i7 quad core processor that makes the laptop work at a fantastic speed. This, combined with things such as the beefy 16 GB of LPDDR4 RAM, means that you will have no problem whatsoever with completing tasks on this device.
This laptop really is quite versatile, too. It’s ideal not only for programming, but also for things like browsing the web and screaming videos. It will give you 10 hours and 55 minutes of battery life too when you’re watching a movie – certainly not something to be sniffed at! Of course, there’s one caveat. This laptop costs a considerable amount of money. There is no doubt that this laptop is worth the expense, but it may be a little troublesome for people that are on a budget.
Plenty of connectivity
The design is fanless
Are you a fan of Mac iOS when you’re programming? If so, then you should certainly consider investing in the Apple MacBook Air. This laptop is innovative and contains a number of fantastic features that you definitely don’t want to miss out on.
As a whole, the laptop is ideal if you want a fast and responsive laptop that won’t let you down. The MacBook is well known for its lightweight and portable design – the Macbook Air is certainly no different. The laptop features an Apple M1 chip rather than an Intel processor, but it still works like a dream. Naturally, it’s pretty pricey since it is a new Apple product, but this should not put you off if you have the budget for it.
This laptop is also exceptional in terms of graphics quality too. It features a relatively small 13.3 inch screen, but this should still be enough for doing your programming work. You’ll also get 2 x Thunderbolt 3 USB C slots, and a 3.5 mm headphone jack for when you want to crank up the tunes while you’re working on your coding. It doesn’t feature a fan though, which is somewhat disappointing.
Screen Size: 15.6 Inches
Computer Memory Size: 64 GB
Hard Disk Size: 1 TB
Screen Resolution: 3840 x 2160 MP
RAM: 64 GB
Memory Speed: 2933 MHz
Graphics Coprocessor: GeForce GTX
Battery life isn’t the best
If you’re in the market for a high quality laptop for programming, look no further than the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme. This laptop is fast and efficient, making it incredibly enjoyable to use.
The laptop features an OLED screen and has a fantastic GPU that means that you will see everything on the screen with the best possible clarity. Furthermore, if you need to type you can do so with ease. The keyboard on this laptop is pretty impeccable, with the keys well spaced apart. This means that it’s a good choice for writers as well as for programming! The laptop also comes with a range of ports that you can use too.
As a whole, this laptop is pretty exceptional. You’re getting great value for money and it works admirably well for programming. The battery life isn’t ideal, however, so you may want to make sure that you only use it when it’s plugged into the mains.
Great battery life
Not a great deal of connectivity
For portability, you really can’t get much better than the Apple Macbook Pro. With an attractive design and plenty of functionality, you’re going to want to buy this laptop as soon as possible!
There are a lot of things to love about this laptop. First of all, the battery life is exceptional. When you combine the stellar battery life with the small size, you could easily carry this laptop in your bag and work in a coffee shop for hours. There shouldn’t be a need to panic about connecting your laptop to its power supply, or feeling like the bag is weighing you down as you carry it.
In addition to this, the laptop also features an incredibly vivid display with perfect clarity. For those moments when you need to type, there’s also a magic keyboard that’s super easy to type on. Perhaps the only issue is the fact that the laptop comes with only two Thunderbolt ports. Otherwise, the laptop is a real steal for programmers.
Comfortable to use
One of the most noticeable things about the LG Gram is the stunning visual quality that you will get. The display is truly spectacular. Of course, that’s not the only selling point!
For starters, this is yet another option that you will want to invest in if you’re looking for portability. It’s incredibly lightweight, meaning it’s ideal if you want to do some work away from the office. It also has great battery life too and a keyboard that’s comfortable to use. The machine is very powerful as a whole, allowing you to work efficiently.
The laptop is not without its faults, of course – the biggest issue is that it’s a little expensive. It is worth the price, but there are certainly options out there that will give you better value for money.
Things To Consider
There are a lot of things that you should think about when you’re buying a laptop for programming. It may be a bit tricky to know what you’re looking for if you’ve never bought a laptop for programming before. With that in mind, here are a few of the key things that you should be looking out for when buying a laptop for programming.
RAM and Memory
The amount of memory or RAM that your laptop has is incredibly important. It supports the hard drive on your computer, and stores some of the key information that your laptop needs in order for it to function correctly. The memory on your laptop will also store the main operating instructions for your various applications, which means that it’s essential for programming.
There are also other reasons why you should consider the amount of RAM and memory available. For instance, if you have a decent amount of memory you will be able to run a number of different programs at once, and this in turn means that the laptop runs much more smoothly when you are trying to multitask.
Ideally you should be looking for a laptop with around 8 GB of memory, but it’s much better to get around 16 GB if you are programming.
There are also a number of different kinds of RAM, such as DDR4 ram, or DDR1 RAM. DDR4 RAM will run faster than DDR1 RAM, as indicated by the higher number. You should take this into account when making your decision.
Another key thing that you need to think about when buying a laptop for programming is the CPU. Think about it – you can’t function without your brain. In the same way, a laptop cannot function without a CPU. It is important for allowing you to execute pretty much every function in your computer. It deals with a lot of information too, and for this reason you need to make sure that your laptop has a good CPU. Without a good CPU, your laptop is going to be terrible at its basic functions.
You should be looking for a high quality processor when you are on the hunt for the perfect laptop. You should get a laptop with an i5 or i7 processor at the minimum if you want the best possible functionality.
In addition, you will also get a faster laptop if you look at getting a CPU with more cores. You aren’t limited to using intel either, since there are other equivalents on the market such as AMD that often work just as well.
Programming can take quite a while to do, so it’s only natural that you want to be comfortable while doing it. This means having a high quality keyboard to work with. Ideally, it’s worth looking for a keyboard that has a number pad if you’re planning on using it for programming. The space between the keys should be adequate so that it’s simple to type, and you need to ensure that the keys are sturdy and a high quality. You will also want to check that the layout is to your liking.
When you’re programming, you’re going to be spending a lot of time looking at a screen and taking in all of the data that you see. For this reason, getting a high quality screen is essential for ensuring that you don’t end up straining your eyes.
There are a few things that go into a good screen. The first thing is the size. If you’re programming, you will want to get a 15 inch screen at the minimum, since this will allow you to see all of the data clearly. You can get a smaller option than this if you need something more portable, but it may be harder for data management. If you have the extra budget, it may be worth investing in another monitor to connect to your laptop too, so you can see more information at once.
Another thing that you should think about is the screen resolution. It’s always best to get a full HD screen if possible so that everything on the screen is totally clear.
Finally, it’s better to get a laptop that has a matte screen since it isn’t going to reflect a lot, which means that you can even use it outdoors in the sun when you don’t want to work inside!
When choosing your laptop for programming, you are going to want to take some time to think about the type of hard drive that you have. In general, a HDD will be a lot slower and as such, they’re a good option if you’re on a budget since they tend to be cheaper. On the other hand, you will get a faster performance with an SSD but they are incredibly expensive.
So, what’s the better choice for programming? If you have the budget, you should always go for the SSD. This option will be a lot better, since it’s much faster and so your laptop speed is improved. This makes coding a lot easier for you. Your laptop will also boot up more quickly. They do tend to cost a little more money, but it’s worth the extra expense.
Surely you want your laptop to last for a long time when you’re programming, right? For many, it’s fine just to keep a laptop plugged into the mains all day, but for some there may be a need for the laptop to work on its own without it being plugged in. In this case, you will need to consider the battery life of the laptop. At an absolute minimum, you should be looking for around 6 hours of battery life.
Now, it’s often best not to take the advertised battery life at face value. Instead, it’s best to look at other customer reviews since these will give you a relatively accurate indication of the battery life of the laptop.
Graphics are by no means the most important thing to consider when you’re getting a laptop for programming. They are, however, a good thing to consider, especially if you’re doing programming for games or you’re a gamer yourself. If you deal with a lot of things that require a lot of graphics power, you will need to think about getting a laptop that has a decent GPU. This will help you to load graphics much more easily. It’s worth looking for an NVIDIA or AMD GPU, and they should have a minimum of graphic RAM.
Finally, there are some extra features that you may want to think about when you are buying your laptop for programming. For instance, it’s worth looking for a cooling system. Programming can be a lot of work for your laptop, and as such, it can mean that your laptop goes into overdrive. A cooling system helps to ensure that your laptop doesn’t overheat while it’s operating, which can often make it last a lot longer. Other things to consider is the amount of connectivity that the laptop has, and how portable it is.