Best Laptops for A New College Students in 2020

There was a time when having a laptop was exclusively regarded as a luxury. But now, having a laptop is not a luxury anymore — it is a necessity now. College students will agree, a laptop is not just a gadget to keep up with email or browsing social media as academic reliance on computer technology is increasing day by day.

It is the Laptop where tons of research happens—the bulk of coursework created. A laptop is essential to feed the trend of online courses or to interact with professors and classmates. A laptop is a gadget that will be the companion of Netflix Nights, browsing the web, or just keeping up with social media.

There are endless options to choose from—lightweight, ultra-thin, ultra-durable, high-performance, 2-in-1, affordable one — abounds of options. 

Often plenty of options left the consumer confused about what to purchase and what not. And, finding the best option within the budget is even more confusing.

In this article, I have discussed 5 best laptops for new college students that will make your decision a bit easier. Let’s find out which one is suitable for your new academic life.

What should I look for before buying a Laptop?

As a college student, you might not be using any specialized program, still, you should look for the technical specifications that suit your budget. There are some factors you should keep in mind:

Laptop Processor Speed

Laptop Processor Speed is usually measured in GHz. The higher the speed, the faster the computer runs. Most of the average laptop contains dual-core processors that work well, but if you are thinking of a multitasking or intensive graphics program, you should keep looking for quad-core or higher (8th-10th Gen Intel core processor). 

Laptop RAM

Laptop RAM determines how fast the computer feels. It is as essential as CPU while considering laptop speed. It signifies how many tasks your laptop can handle at a time. The higher the RAM—the higher you can multitask—the more tabs you can keep open for browsing.

8GB RAM would be good for everyday users who mainly browse or stream. But if you are gaming and using multiple applications (such as video editing), 16GB will be best for you.

Laptop Screen Size and Resolution

Preference for screen size and resolution will depend on your purpose of using the laptop. 13″-15 “inch is the suitable size for the students if you consider viewing and portability. HD screens can offer you good picture quality for all-day use. But if you intend for movie buffs and graphics editing, ultra-high-resolution or 4K will be the best.

Laptop Storage

Storage is another crucial factor in making your laptop run fast. SSD (Solid-state Drive) is way better than Hard Drive. 512GB works well for regular users working on assignments, programs, or simply saving image files. But if you are involved in creating large files, you might go for 1TB.

Laptop Connections

HDMI or microSD lets you plug in a video display or transfer image files. You don’t need to buy an extra adaptor. But most of the new laptops come with the latest USB-C port (Thunderbolt 3) that allows you faster charging.

5 best laptops for new college students

1. Apple MacBook Air (2020)

The best all-rounder laptop for college students

Feature

  • CPU: Intel Core i3/i5/i7 (Y-series)
  • GPU: Intel Iris Plus
  • Ram: 8GB/16GB
  • Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB/2TB
  • Display: 13.3 inch, 2560*1600-pixel
  • Size: 11.9*8.4*0.6 inches
  • Weight: 2.8 pounds

If you are a MacBook lover and prefer macOS over Windows 10, Apple MacBook Air is the best choice. Its durability, reliable performance reviews, and dynamic features make it an all-rounder laptop in the market.

Its RAM options and storage options meet all the unique demands of college life. The vivid LED display and 12hours battery life work amazing whether you are attending online class, creating documents, gaming, or socializing. 

The laptop also includes the Thunderbolt 2 port and two USB 3 ports, a 3.2 GHz Turbo Boost and Bluetooth 4.0 wireless capabilities. And the price is much affordable compared to other MacBook lines. Besides, this 13.3-inch laptop, weighing just 2.8 pounds, can easily be carried in a backpack or tote bag.

Overall the laptop is one of the best laptops for new college students. 

Pros

  • Great battery life
  • New 10th generation processor
  • Thunderbolt 2 port, Two USB 3 ports.
  • Powerful sound
  • New, improved backlit keyboard

Cons

  • Webcam 720p
  • Limited aesthetic customization.

 

2. HP Spectre x360 (2019)

The best high-performance laptop for new college students

Feature

  • CPU: Core i5/core i7
  • GPU: Intel Iris Plus
  • RAM: 8GB/16GB
  • Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB
  • Display: 13.3-inch, 4K display
  • Size: 12.1*7.7*0.7 inches
  • Weight: 2.7 pounds

The HP Spectre x360 comes with the latest technologies and innovative features that new college students need in their laptops. The laptop includes an HP pen and several creative, collaborative options operated through Windows Ink System. Besides, the laptop is a 2-in-1, works both as a laptop and tablet. You can read, write, type, draw, watch, or present. The laptop can do everything. 

16GB RAM, a powerful processor with integrated graphics, and 16hours of battery life work seamlessly with a super-active lifestyle. Besides, the security features include a fingerprint reader that allows only your access. And the HP Sure View integrated privacy screen turns dark for anyone except you. 

This high-performance laptop is another best option for new college students.

Pros

  • Stunning design
  • ultraportable body
  • Super battery life
  • Bright 4K display with thinner bezels
  • Fast overall performance.
  • Security features

Cons

  • Too many bloatware.

 

3.Dell XPS 15 (2020)

Best multi-functional laptop for new college students

Feature

  • CPU: 10th Gen Intel Core i5-i7
  • GPU: Intel UHD Graphics- NVIDIA GeForce GTX1650 Ti
  • RAM: 16GB/32GB
  • Storage: 256GB/2TB M.2 PCie NVme
  • Display: 15.6 inch FHD+ (1920*1200) InfinityEdge Non-Touch Anti-Glare 500-Nit /15.6 inch UHD+ (3840*2400) InfinityEdge Touch Anti-Reflective 500-Nit

Dell XPS 15 is a mega-power option from Dell. If you are looking for a slim and lightweight laptop that you can easily carry to college, this laptop is a worthy candidate. 

XPS 15 is equipped with Windows 10 Home 64-bit English and limited McAfee LiveSafe and Microsoft Office Packages that will be a great help for research projects. Besides, the laptop comes with a separate graphics card— 16GB or 32GB RAM— and up to 2TB SSD storage that’s ideal for editing video and 3D modeling.

XPS 15 features 1535 Wireless –AC adaptor that ensures smooth delivery of online content. Its backlit keyboard will help you to take notes in a dark classroom. Its 4K screen with OLED tech offers high clarity and color reproduction for image editing. You can also use the Thunderbolt 3 to connect up to two 4k monitors for big-screen viewing.

Overall, the laptop is a whole package in slim, compact aluminum design. Its unique features match a college student’s unpredictable lifestyle.

Pros

  • Bright, vivid, super-high-resolution display
  • Great graphics performance
  • Good battery life
  • Slim design
  • Amazing speaker

Cons

  •  Awkward webcam location.

4. Lenovo Yoga C940

Best 2-in-1 laptop for new college students

Features

  • CPU: Intel Core i7- 1065G7
  • GPU: Intel Iris Plus
  • RAM: Up to 16GB
  • Storage: Up to 2TB
  • Display: 14-inch 4K
  • Size: 12.6*8.5*0.6
  • Weight: 3.1 pounds

Lenovo Yoga C940 comes with tablet-like touch screens with keyboards on 360-degree folding hinges—a flexible feature great for streaming. The display can be balanced on a desk or held like a tablet, with the keyboard folded back.

The unique designed hinge comes with front-facing speakers and a full HD screen that can be upgraded to 4K—nearly 4x the resolution of full HD. Yoga C940 is not only great for streaming but also fantastic for design and creative work. It features a stylus for annotation or sketching on the touch display. It also includes a Privacy shutter that covers the webcam when unused.

With all the design improvements, longer battery life (12hours approximately), and 10th Gen Intel Core Processor, Yoga C940 is one of the best laptops for new college students.

Pros

  • Slim body
  • Ultraportable chassis
  • Amazing 4k display
  • Fast performance
  • Dynamic speakers

Cons

  • The UHD display drains the battery fast.
  • DVD/CD drive does not include

5. Asus ZenBook 13 UX334FLC

Best budget laptop for new college students

Features

  • CPU: Intel Core i7- 10510U
  • GPU: Intel UHD 620/GeForce MX250
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 512GB
  • Display: 13.3-inch 1080p
  • Size: 11.9 * 7.4*0.8
  • Weight: 2.8 pounds

Asus ZenBook 13 UX334FLC is the premium laptop that offers fast performance at an affordable price. It also features Intel Core i7- 10510U CPU, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, and GeForce MX250 graphics in a gorgeous, ultra-durable body. This is the best budget laptop for new college students with features like HP Envy 13.

The best reason to buy ZenBook 13 UX334FLC would be its battery life — over 9+ hours. The 13-inch display collaborates with full HD resolution (but subtle dim). Plus, the HDMI port allows video streaming on a bigger monitor.

Overall, the laptop with its zippy performance, gorgeous look, ultra-durable body, and reasonable price is the best budget laptop for new college students.

Pros

  • Gorgeous chassis
  • Military-grade durability
  • The touchpad works like a mini display as well
  • Variety of ports
  • Decent audio

Cons

  • Dim display
  • No Thunderbolt 3

Conclusion 

It’s wise to choose a laptop that best suits your daily academic needs and lifestyle.

  • If your budget is more flexible and you need an all-rounder laptop you can choose Apple MacBook Air.
  • If you want a laptop with zippy performance within your tight budget, Asus Zenbook 13 UX334FLC will be the best option.
  • If you are an art and design student, need an option for sketching on a touch display, you can go for Lenovo Yoga C940— a 2-in-1 laptop.
  • But if your preference is a high performance, HP Spectre x360 and Dell XPS 15 will be the best laptops for you.

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