The Best Laptop for School

The Best Laptop for School

My old school provided laptops for us, so when I moved schools and I had to choose my own laptop, I had no idea where to start. It’s already hard to choose between Apple and Windows; even once you have decided on an operating system, there are still so many to choose from. After doing all my research and eventually deciding on a laptop myself, I put together this list of the best laptops for school and what you should consider before purchasing.

Have your school’s specs

Before you scroll down and look at the list, it is important to have your schools specs. These are the minimum requirements that the laptop must have. If you had your eye on a specific laptop but it doesn’t meet the requirements, check to see if you can upgrade it. 

Battery Life

You’ll want your device to get through an entire day of school plus your travel time. Lugging around a charger will add unnecessary weight to your backpack and is simply inconvenient. Look for a laptop with at least 10 hours of battery life. 

Weight

The weight of your laptop will affect you every day. In high school, you have to carry your laptop around to every class AND take it home each day. A laptop any more than 1.5kg will feel really heavy by the end of the day. If you have the choice between a 13 and 15-inch device, keep in mind the extra weight the 15 comes with.

Screen Ratios

You’ll often hear the term ‘aspect ratio’ when looking at laptops. But what does this mean? The aspect ratio is the screen’s shape. Devices will either come in 3:2, 16:9 or 16:10. 

16:9 – Choose this ratio if your priority will be watching movies and videos or media editing

16:10 and 3:2 – These ratios are very similar. They provide more vertical space which is great for web browsing and document editing

RAM

RAM, also known as memory, is the amount of space that can be taken up by tabs, apps and documents open. 8GB will be perfect for most people but if you like to have lots of tabs open or find yourself multitasking regularly, 16GB will be better for you. The more RAM you have, the less likely it is for your laptop to overheat or for the fan to make a loud noise (which is the worst in class!)

SSD

SSD, also known as storage, is the number of files that can be saved to your computer hard drive. Your hard drive can be exchanged for a larger one on most Windows computers, but this cannot be done on Apple. If your school gets you to save your work to cloud-based applications such as OneDrive, you won’t need as much storage (128-256GB will be more than enough). However, if you are required to save all of your work to your drive, getting a 512GB SSD will prevent you from having to constantly delete things.

Touch Screen

Unless if you will be doing multi-media work, this isn’t necessary. I personally like to have a touch screen, but it depends on how much you would use it and if that is worth an extra price

2 in 1 Convertable

A 2 in 1 laptop is one that can turn into a tablet by either rotting the screen or detaching it. The only reason you would need this is if you would be doing a lot of drawing and design on it. This feature comes at a large cost that isn’t worth it for most people.

Webcam

Laptops are known for having terrible webcams, but, with the possibility of going into lockdown again, we need to make sure the laptop we choose has a decent webcam and microphone. the best way to test this out is at a store such as JB Hi-Fi. 

Top 5 All-Round Laptops for School

By no means should you feel restricted to this list! There are so many more laptops out there. You can find a basic laptop for only $700 and an extremely high performing one for more than $5000. This list is just what I thought were good mid-range products.

MacBook Air

This is the laptop for you if you have your heart set on a macOS laptop. It has a great, accurate display that doesn’t sacrifice battery life. Make sure to get one with the i5 operating system or later.

Price? Starts at $1999

Battery Life? 11 hour

Weight? 1.3 kg

Size? 13.3″

2 in 1? No

Dell XPS 13

This Dell laptop is perfect for travel. While it is a smaller laptop, it has thin borders making the screen a perfect size.

Price? Starts at $1999

Battery Life? 15 hour

Weight? 1.2kg

Size? 13.3″

2 in 1? No

HP Spectre x360

This HP 2 in 1 has the same great features as the other laptops but includes the tablet option at no extra cost.

Price? Starts at $1999

Battery Life? 11+ hours

Weight? 1.5kg

Size? 13.3″

2 in 1? Yes

Microsoft Surface Laptop 3

Unlike the previous surface books, this laptop has a sturdy build and a great keyboard. It looks just as premium as a more expensive laptop.

Price? Starts at $1999

Battery Life? 11.5 hours

Weight? 1.5kg

Size? 13.5″

2 in 1? No

Acer Swift 3 (2020)

Can’t decide between a 13 and 15-inch laptop? Acer has the solution! This 14-inch laptop has an amazing mix of transportability and performance.

Price? Starts at $1499

Battery Life? 12 hours

Weight? 1.2kg

Size? 14″

2 in 1? No

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