As a programmer, it might be quite overwhelming to decide which laptop to buy? A programmer is working simultaneously coding every day in one or two languages and need a good work station to work on. Writing code is a very lengthy and tiring process, so you need a machine that is fast and efficient that loads and runs your programs as fast as possible. Having your code run fast gives you your results instantly and helps you have more time to polish your program. There is an extreme saturation of good and bad laptops in the market and THEY ARE NOT CHEAP! A programmer does not start making money before selling a program and to make that program he needs to have a trusty computer to write code, so he needs to invest his money in an efficient laptop.
For all the program developers, we have compiled a list of 8 tested and trusted laptops that will be a good spend for you. Languages like CSS, C, Java, and HTML run as smoothly as you can imagine. A good processor, fast reading hard drive, and sufficient RAM is the perfect recipe for a fast and productive programming computer. Fast working makes it easy for a programmer to think and instantly improve the program. The laptops we have picked can also handle system-intensive programming like graphical web development and gaming too making them the best laptop for web development and gaming too.
You have come to the right place to find the best laptop for computer programming, our choices are selected primarily due to their efficient performances and build quality that provides a comfortable experience making it easier for a programmer to develop a program.
- Dell Inspiron 17 2020 – Best laptop for college engineering students
- Apple MacBook Air Latest – Brilliance with Apple M1 Chip
- ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo Dual Screen – Best for Gaming and multitasking
- Dell XPS 15 Best Selling – Best laptop for students
- Lenovo ThinkPad P1 4K display – Best laptop for professionals
- Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 – Windows laptop for window’s programming
- Apple MacBook Pro – Best macbook pro for students
- HP ENVY 13 4K touchscreen – Best hp laptop for multitasking
- Huawei Matebook 13 Signature Edition – Best for portability and performance
Best Laptop for Programming 2021
Let’s dive in to check what we got for you this 2021.
Dell XPS 15
Display: 15.6-inch UHD+4K
Processor: Intel Core i7 (10th Gen)
RAM: 16GB DDR4
Storage: 1TB SSD
Latest Apple MacBook Air
Display: 13.3-inch Retina display
Processor: Apple-designed M1 chip
RAM: 8GB DDR4
Storage: 512GB SSD
ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo
Display: Dual Display
Processor: Intel Core i9 (10th Gen)
Storage: 1TB SSD
Best Laptop for Programming 2021
1. Dell Inspiron 17 (2020)
Dell is offering this huge 17.3-inch screen laptop, giving its users a display where they can view everything. Its resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels is perfect for day to day use. For programmers, it would be great to use too as the big screen will help them view their coding in the bigger text due to its big screen size. Other than the screen, the processing power of this laptop is great too. Its 10th gen i5 processor, 16 GBs of RAM, and a sufficient 512 GB of SSD storage makes it the perfect laptop for any programmer. You can code in Java, HTML, C++, and Python and it would not even struggle to process the written code.
The i5 processor is more than capable to perform the code compiling tasks due to its increased number of cores and threads that give it more processing power than its previous generations. It has Intel’s UHD Graphics card which is not as powerful as GPUs offered by NVIDIA and AMD so it might struggle to operate graphics-focused programs. Game development won’t be smooth on it either as this laptop lacks in handling graphics-intensive tasks efficiently. Overall, this laptop is a good investment if you are a programmer that does not write codes for game development.
- IPS display option
- Decent upgradability
- Optical drive
- Decent keyboard for typing
- Lacks Thunderbolt connector
- No sufficient cooling
- The hinges are too stiff
2. Latest Apple MacBook Air
The latest Apple’s MacBook Air is their laptop offering that accommodates the need of day to day laptop use. With its Apple M1 Chip, it gives you enough power to compile your written codes. For a programmer, Macbook has enough power to compile all the languages like Java, HTML, and C++, etc. Also, with its 8GB of RAM, your tasks will run smoothly. If you are a programmer then the latest Apple MacBook Air is one of the best options available in the market.
Apple’s MacBook runs on their latest M1 chip. MacBook Air’s redesigned keyboard with scissor mechanism makes it one of the most satisfying and comfortable keyboards to type on. Its battery life is claimed to give you more than 10+ hours of screen on time. You can go for graphic-intensive programming on a MacBook Air with 8 cores CPU that delivers up to 3.5x super-fast performance to help you done the projects faster than ever and up to 5x faster to run the graphics-intensive apps and games.
- Durable and solid body
- Updated Keyboard
- M1 chip
- Long lasting battery
- M1 chip is new and you might feel apps compatiblity
3. ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo
Meet the latest ROG Zephyrus Duo by ASUS with a screenPad Plus that is a 14 inch and 15.6″ 4K UHD LED secondary touchscreen IPS display that has enough to offer for playing games, Stream online, and bring creativity to life. Having two screens on the same laptop feels you are working in a more professional and creative environment. Its intelligent cooling thermal system that works with active aerodynamic system Plus (AAS) and thermal grizzly liquid metal thermal compound keeps the laptop cool and always available for long-lasting activities.
For extreme performance, It is loaded with the latest Intel Core i9-10980HK (10th Gen) processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 GPU that skyrockets every activity like games, software, or any complex task efficiently. An 32GB of RAM is all set to help you with seamless multitasking. No need to worry about onboard space because it has got 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD. It runs the Windows 10 Professional version of the operating system that keeps the device and software integrated. For connectivity, it has Thunderbolt 3, Gig+ Wi-Fi 6 with RangeBoost, and Bluetooth 5 that keeps you connected all day long.
- 4K Touchscreen
- Dual screen
- Latest i9 processor for Productive performance
- Mouse Trackpad is little handy for left hander
4. Dell XPS 15
Dell has been a leading name among laptop manufacturers. Every year they come out with the best of the best laptops with flagship specifications that make them the best choice for anyone looking to get an efficient laptop. Dell XPS 15 9500 does not shy away from being a good laptop by any means, its premium build quality and sturdy chassis give it enough weight to feel like a solid machine. Its 10th generation i7 processor giving this laptop fast processing power. It officially runs on Windows OS. Dell has managed to put in a very impressive and responsive keyboard and trackpad that makes navigation and typing such a breeze on this laptop.
Dell officially claims this laptop to give battery time of more than 12+ hours which is more than enough to use in a single day on a single charge. Having an SSD hard drive and that too of 1TB gives you a huge amount of storage capabilities too. With this combination of i7 processor, SSD storage, and 16GBs of DDR4 RAM, boot-up times are quick and all your programs can open up in no time. The built-in NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti is capable to handle all your graphic-intensive tasks and process all coding that leans heavily on graphics and animations.
- Bright and colorful UHD+ display
- Large and comfortable touchpad
- Quality Speakers
- Decent battery life
- Modrate battery life
- Full featured is a bit expensive
5. Lenovo ThinkPad P1
Lenovo’s ThinkPad workstations are known for their lightweight and tough build quality. Also, one thing that they are most famous in the tech world for their super responsive keyboards. As a programmer, you are going to love the tactile feedback of this laptop. It will make you want to type as your fingers are the pistons of an F17 Racer car. Moreover, this laptop comes equipped with NVIDIA Quadro T1000, the perfect GPU to handle all your graphic-intensive code compilations. When you are developing a graphics focused website, this dedicated GPU will make the compiling easy and quick.
Equipped with an i7 (9th-gen) processor and a hefty 32GB of DDR4 RAM you are in for a smooth and flawless performance. A 1TB SSD hard drive will also make sure that the system boots up in no time and all the programming tools are loaded in a single tap. Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 is a powerful workstation for an experienced programmer who knows his way around writing codes for system intensive programs and needs to work on them as smoothly as possible. Anyone who invests in a Lenovo ThinkPad workstation would not regret their decision as with these flagship specifications one could only think of how much can they push their system’s potential. Without any doubt, it is the best Lenovo laptop for programming.
- Slim & Lightweight
- Decent performance
- Great build quality
- Gets heated
- 4K display reduces the battery life
6. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3
Who can do Windows better than its creator which is MICROSOFT! With its surface series, Microsoft has claimed that they cannot only excel in the field of software but also in the field of hardware. For programmers, Microsoft Surface 3 with a 13.5-inches screen is the best budget laptop for programming. Yes, it is not very inexpensive but when compared to all other competent options this still has a lower price tag. It comes with the latest generation i7 processor, making it a laptop with very powerful processing that is capable of handling and compiling complex programming languages.
Moreover, it also includes Intel’s Iris Plus Graphics for its GPU needs. This GPU is not strong as an NVIDIA Quadro T1000 but it can still carry out some graphics-intensive tasks and web-development codes with ease. Other languages like C++, Java, and HTML are very easy to compile on this i7 powered machine. Its 512GB solid-state drive also gives it that extra need for speed and helps load files quickly. Boot up times are significantly less and all coding tools are available in an instant. Anyone who is looking for a good vanilla experience of Microsoft to use for programming will be more than satisfied with the performance provided by the Microsoft Surface 3.
- Comfortable touchpad and keyboard
- Rich display quality
- Nice camera quality
- Long lasting battery
- High priced
- No fingerprint scanner
7. Apple MacBook Pro
Apple’s MacBook Pro is made for professionals. It features Apple’s proprietary Magic Keyboards which comes with scissor mechanism technology that makes the keyboard very responsive. The more responsive the keyboard will be the more efficient it will be for a programmer. As Apple’s MacBook runs on OSX you can get access to almost any programming language you need to code into. If you find any problems with OSX you can dual-boot into Windows OS anytime on a MacBook Pro without any problem.
Apple Retina Display also makes the screen very pleasant to view, the bright colors and sharp image production makes the code text appear more properly helping the programmer to understand it easily. Also, its processing power consists of a 10th gen i5 processor and an 8GB RAM which is a standard for a programmer who needs to code any software. The GPU used in this laptop is Intel Iris Plus Graphics which can handle minor graphics-intensive tasks but will suffer in performance if graphic-intensive coding is processed through it.
- Colorful display
- Decent config options
- Powerful processor
- Decent battery size
- High priced
- Lack of ports
- Still comes with Butterfly keyboard
8. HP ENVY 13
HP has never been shy of showcasing some seriously good tech and HP ENVY 13 is no exception. With its 8th gen, Intel i7 processor backed with 16GBs of RAM this package makes it one of the best laptops for programming and coding. You can run any programming language ranging from C++ to Python. This sleek machine will withstand the test of time and keep on processing those programming codes with ease.
Thanks to the 13.99-inch 4K display to make everything rich in colors with crystal clear output. It also has an NVIDIA GeForce MX250 with 2GB of Graphics RAM that is good enough for handling graphic focused programming. Its good quality build also makes the user experience good for a professional programmer.
- 4K Touchscreen
- Fingerprint Reader
- Productive performance
- Small Trackpad
- No full size SDcard slot
9. Huawei Matebook 13 Signature Edition
Huawei has been stepping up the game. With Matebook 13 signature edition Huawei is providing a laptop that has a beautiful design that is lightweight and easy to move with. With its 13-inch 2K screen, all your coding will visibly clear and there will be no stress on your eyes. Its screen is also touch-sensitive making it easier to use. It comes equipped with the 8th-gen 15 processors which are accompanied by 8GBs of RAM. This combination gives the laptop enough processing power to compiles and runs your program coding. Intel’s processors are very efficient and can handle tasks like computer coding with ease. You will not face any problem with the coding on this sleek machine.
It also comes packed with Intel’s HD Graphics 620. This GPU is not so strong to handle graphics-intensive web-development and gaming but still can carry out some basic graphics involving tasks and codes. It uses a 256 GB SSD hard drive which also enhances the speed and performance of programs loading on this laptop. The keyboard and touchpad in this laptop are pretty responsive too making it perfect for any new programmers. It runs on Windows OS.
- Solid quality and design
- Excellent value
- Rich color display
- Decent Battery life
- Lacking in ports and Thunderbolt 3
- No 4K display
The Final Verdict – Why and which is the best laptop you should buy for Programming?
Choosing and buying a laptop is a stressful decision on its own. Anyone who has ever delved into the market knows how saturated it has become. There are new offerings every year with more and more enhanced specifications. If you have read this review we hope that we have helped you understand that what laptops are good for programmers and if you do not like any laptops shown here you must have developed the knowledge about what specification should you be looking for a future laptop, just make sure to decide what are your needs and what are your preferences when buying a laptop and you will be good to go.
GOOD LUCK FOR LAPTOP HUNTING!
1. What laptop do programmers use?
Most programmers who are starting do not usually have the top of the line flagship laptops to work on. As students, one usually does not have an excellent budget to afford an excellent budget so they usually go for a mid-ranged laptop or a refurbished one with some outdated specs, unless you have rich parents who can get you your dream laptop work station.
Programming can be done on a laptop with an Intel Core duo 2 processor, 4 GBs of RAM, and a 64 or 128 GB HDD hard drive but the processing speed will be slow and the code might take some hours to process and run. The screen might be smaller than 13-inches showing the code in small letters and the keyboard might not give satisfying tactile feedback making it uncomfortable for the programmer to use the laptop, but when you are on a budget you have to work with what you have.
When a programmer gets going and starts earning a good amount, they should manage to build a budget that can get them access to a good quality laptop. An investment in a good laptop might feel uncomfortable at first but in the long run, the fast processing speeds, a good screen to look at, and a good battery will enhance the programmer’s work skill and make one productive than they ever were.
2. Do you need a good laptop for coding?
Coding will be efficiently done on a computer that has fast processing speed, a tactile and comfortable keyboard, and a good quality screen to look at. Your laptop is your primary machine on which you can develop your programs if you do not own a PC. A good laptop means that your coding will be done more efficiently. An efficient work system helps you to work faster, make changes to your program easily, and complete developing more and more programs rapidly.
A programmer wants to write code and process it as fast as possible because it takes time to think and write the correct code. It can also be a long process and a programmer might have to look at the screen for longer periods, so if they have a big enough screen to look at comfortably this will enhance their work experience.
However, it is possible to do coding on a less powerful processor but large storage is required to store large numbers of corresponding data to the program that is being written. So, a good laptop is needed for efficient coding, but if you are on a budget you might have to keep on coding on a low-spec computer.
3. What specs do I need for programming?
If you have asked this question to yourself and want an answer, you have come to the right place. Most programming can be done by having a powerful processor, a good amount of RAM and a fast reading hard drive like an SSD. But if you focus on graphic intensive programming like web development and gaming then you also have to look for a dedicated graphic processor too. Let’s discuss some important specs in detail below:
I. Processing Speed:
Processing speed depends on the efficiency of your CPU. A modern generation CPU with the most cores will execute and run your written code in no time. The best CPUs to look for are Intel’s i5 and i7 processors.
RAM is responsible for loading all your tasks and keep them working smoothly with no problem. Large amounts of RAM help programmers to write long codes with no crashes and inferences, making the process easy for them. (Recommended: 16 GBs of DDR4 RAM).
III. Hard Drive:
A hard drive stores all the data and files that are being used by the programmer to write the programs. An SSD (Solid State Drive) reads through the stored files much faster than an HDD which loads your programming tools faster, increases the coding speed, and makes the process more efficient. (Recommend: 512 GBs of SDD hard drive).
IV. Keyboard and Screen:
As weird as it sounds, a keyboard and screen enhance the whole experience of programming. A programmer needs a responsive and tactile keyboard so they can type in commands fast. One should also buy a laptop that has a dedicated Numpad. A laptop’s screen also needs to be big enough so all the typed in code is easy to read and doesn’t put a strain on your eyes. (Recommend: 13-inches+ screen with a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels or higher).
You do not need to be finding an electrical socket every hour or two to juice up your laptop. Programming is a system intensive work, so the laptop must have a reliable and long-lasting battery so you can work easily. (Recommend: Battery should give 10+ hours of screen on time).
VI. Graphic Processing:
If you aspire to do program coding that involves graphic intensive web development and game development then you should make sure to have a laptop with a good GPU (Graphics Processing Unit), this will make sure all those graphics load easily and do not put extra pressure on the CPU alone. (NVIDIA or AMD GPUs with at least 4GBs of graphic RAM).
4. Which processor is best for programming?
Either you are finding the best laptop for programming or the best laptop for gaming, you should know that the CPU is the most important part to run a computer smoothly. To have an efficient work system that runs your programming tools with no hassle you should always opt for the latest generation processor because they have the most cores and thread that can handle the task with much ease.
Processors built by Intel and AMD are widely trusted due to their excellent build quality and their universal compatibility with major operating systems like Windows and Apple’s OSX.
If you are interested in buying a laptop with Intel’s processor you should go for i5 or i7 processors which are of 8th and above generations. Previous generation processors will work fine too but their performance might be not as good as the newer generations.
Looking for an AMD processor? Go for Ryzen 5 5600X or Ryzen 9 5950X. There are also some other variants available in these series and they are good too for programming and also for gaming. At the end of the day, you have to choose which package fits right with your need and framework.
5. Which laptop is best for Python programming?
Python is a general-purpose programming language that can understand the English language which makes it easier for programmers to give commands and write code much faster. Python is used for web development, developing video games, mobile programming, operating software, and much more. Python can be used to write programs ranging from the very simplest of levels to the most complex codes ever written, making it extremely versatile. Hence, if you want to buy a laptop that can handle Python extremely well, we will advise you to get a laptop that has excellent processing performance, a good amount of SSD hard drive, a sufficient Ram, and impressive build quality.
For Python programming, we would recommend you to buy Dell XPS 15 9500. It is the best laptop for web development, computer programming, and has the power to run any powerful game that you love to play. It is most certainly not the best budget laptop for programming but considering that it houses an impressive 10th-gen i7 processor, a UHD+ 4K 15.6-inch screen, and an in-built NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti with 4GBs of graphic RAM, the money spent on it will give you complete satisfaction.