The Best Laptops for College Students in 2022
By Yvonne
2022-09-06

Looking for a computer for taking remote classes, or just for carrying around campus? These top-rated laptops are value-oriented and highly recommended.

These are the Best Laptops For College Students In 2022

Looking for a computer for taking remote classes, or just for carrying around campus? These top-rated laptops are great for any purpose.

For students, a laptop is as essential as textbooks and a school ID—and not just for taking notes and writing papers. You will also need it to manage your extracurricular activities. This includes streaming music, keeping track of your social media, uploading photos and video chat with your'rents back at home. A laptop that you can take with you wherever you go is vital as more universities and colleges are combining on-campus learning and remote learning.

The laptop should be affordable and last four years undergrad, maybe one or two more years at grad school. Lucky for you, we've collected our favorites from recent reviews—notebooks that not only fit the above criteria but (for the most part) are priced under $1,000, so they won't replace tuition as the biggest threat to your bank account. These are our top picks, so check them out and then read on to find the specific details about what you should look for when shopping.

First and foremost, check with your school to find out if they have any special system requirements or negotiated discounts. You may be able to get hard-and fast hardware recommendations at discounted prices from suppliers. (Or not.)

Many universities and colleges require that students have Windows-based laptops in order to reduce software compatibility issues, or keep support focused on one platform. Other institutions don't care what operating system you choose, macOS or Windows, if it is Windows. There are some institutions that have computer repair shops on-site. These centers can only service laptops bought from them or affiliated stores. The turnaround time for laptops purchased from these centers will be faster than if they were sent overnight to their original manufacturers.

Many schools offer discounts for certain vendors. They also often include software bundles that can help you save a lot on your purchase of a laptop. You might consider the campus store before going to your favorite online retailer or superstore.

Some students may disagree with this statement, however, depending on the distance you will be carrying it each day, big-screen notebooks might not work for everyone.

While it's great to have your own mini-home theater or to play new games on big-screen resolution, a laptop weighing more than 5 pounds with either a 15 or 17 inch screen is too heavy to carry around campus as you run from one class to another. It's better to have something lightweight: A super-thin ultraportable is a good choice if screen size doesn't matter as much to you as convenience.

A 13- to 14-inch panel will be sufficient for most users. It allows you to store other things in your bag and reduces the burden on your back. You can use a smaller screen depending on how much scrolling you are comfortable with. Fonts may appear smaller on smaller screens than on bigger ones, as long as the resolution is equal and the zoom level is identical.

Your computing time will be consumed by essays, research papers and communicating with classmates online. A full-size keyboard is essential, as well as a large touchpad. You run the risk that you won't get the same typing experience if you use a laptop smaller than 13 inches. To ensure you get the most out of your keyboard, it is best to visit a brick and mortar store to spend time typing in different sizes.

It's worth buying a small, more affordable laptop. An optional desktop monitor that you can attach via HDMI is also possible.

Laptops offer a wide selection of processors across both budgets and usage cases—you can choose one that maximizes performance, or one that favors battery life. You can choose one that serves both of your strengths. The Core CPUs from Intel offer both battery efficiency and power. AMD Ryzen mobile chips, which are less popular but still viable options for ultraportable laptops, have been a good choice.

You might consider buying a gaming laptop if you enjoy playing video games during your free time. While most general purpose machines are affordable at less than $800, they won't come with the discrete graphics chips (GPUs) required to play the latest AAA games. If you do a bit of research, gaming laptops can be found starting at $700 to $800.

They come with an Nvidia GeForce GTX (or less often) AMD Radeon RX graphics card. These are great for games that require 1080p resolution and higher settings. For more information on budget gaming laptops and how to purchase the right gaming machine, see our guide to best gaming laptops. While a powerful GPU is useful for certain scientific and high-end applications, it can also be used to accelerate other high-powered processes. However, GPUs also consume a lot of battery power.

Unless you are an architect major who relies heavily on CAD software, integrated graphics solutions will be sufficient for most of your day to-to-day tasks. These are the integrated graphics chips that is found in most laptops, both budget- and mid-range. Today that overwhelmingly refers to some type of Intel integrated graphics. We will compare their performance, although none of them are as good as a dedicated GPU. Learn more about the limits of gaming with integrated graphics processors on mainstream laptops.

Cloud storage is becoming more popular, so having plenty of local storage space may be less important than ever. However, you still need to make sure your computer meets all your requirements. You will need at least 500GB space if you intend to run a large number of programs, or to keep large files on your computer. You can live with smaller storage if you don't plan on using it all or you are happy to leave a lot more of your work online.

Regardless of which way you choose, storage can affect speed. You will notice a slower speed if you choose a budget laptop that has a hard drive. This is because it offers more storage at a lower price. Some students will be willing to accept the tradeoff between a slower SSD's lower cost and greater capacity. SSDs are recommended for students who carry their laptops around campus often, as they are resistant to drops damage. SSDs are also faster than hard drives and give laptops a more responsive feel.

You can easily add additional space to your computer by connecting an external hard drive, SSD or other storage device via one of the USB ports. This is a great option, even though you won't need it unless your a serious video enthusiast or aspiring filmmaker.

Gamers might want to see things from a different perspective. A small SSD is easily eaten by AAA games that can exceed 40GB and 50GB. This is something you should think about before buying a machine with just 256GB SSD. Or at the very least, be ready to switch games between drives as you finish them. A gaming laptop should have at least 500GB of SSD.

Consider where the battery life is in relation to other things. Removable batteries may be an option, but they most of the times aren't. If so, it is a smart idea to purchase a second or larger extended battery at the point of sale. A battery's capacity is determined by how many "cells" it has within its model.

Although a large battery may be heavy, it is worth the extra weight if the laptop can remain unplugged between dawn and dusk. Our reviews are especially useful because we have tested all laptops that pass through our testing labs. We also test for nonstop video playback and battery life to give you an idea of the relative endurance.

We have witnessed a significant push from Chromebook makers into the education sector over the last few years. Chromebooks have evolved from glorified netbooks with ChromeOS to fully-featured laptops. A Chromebook is a great option for schools that place their coursework online. It can also offer a lot of functionality and a longer battery life.

You will likely pay less for it than the other kinds of notebooks. The basic Chromebook model costs between $200-$400, while higher-end models may cost up to $1,000. You need to ensure you are able to access Wi-Fi at all times. There is not much storage available on the systems. Also, you must plan in advance to make them work offline.

These laptops are not designed for PC gaming. They only support Chrome OS and Android apps downloaded from Google Play. A Chromebook is a great, affordable second laptop that you can use to make notes on campus, and your gaming or desktop PC stays at home. Are you looking for the best ChromeOS laptops? Here's a list of the top Chromebooks today.

A new type of laptop emerged in recent years. The hybrids (also known as 2-in-1s) can function as traditional laptops but they also have the ability to transform into tablet-sized devices when needed. Convertibles, also known as hybrids, have a foldable design. This allows the keyboard to be flipped out of the way. The hinge is usually rotated all the way. Other "detachables" allow for docking a tablet/screen on the computer with an accessory keyboard to provide laptop-like functionality.

You might find the budget 2-in-1 just right for you to fulfill a variety of tasks. Be aware that a 2-in-1 detachable keyboard is not included in the purchase price. It may be included in some cases. In others it might not. Sometimes, the extra-cost accessory will increase the cost of your purchase, which can sometimes cause more problems than you would expect. Check out our laptop testing.

Nearly every laptop that you buy is covered by a minimum of a 1-year warranty for parts and labor. There are extended warranties available. However, it all depends on the user.

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