The 6 Best Laptops for Students 2016

You don't need to break the bank to get yourself a great deal on a laptop. Shopomo rounds up all the best laptops for students off to University

Heading to university soon? We’ve rounded-up all the best laptops for students that are fit for any purpose.

The life of a student typically involves getting up late, being eternally broke, surviving on nothing but instant noodles, excessive drinking, parties and missing the odd lecture due to a raging hangover.

However, it’s not all fun and games. Annoyingly, your tutors do expect you to do some work from time to time.

Shopomo have put together this handy list of all the best laptops that’ll help you with your studies while at university. When compiling this list, we’ve taken into account a range of factors:

  • Screen Size – Before you look at specs or pricing, you need to figure out what screen size best suits your needs. We feel that 13 to 14 inches provides the best balance of portability and usability as they usually weigh just over 1kg. 15-inch laptops tend to be the most popular size and is ideal if you want a larger screen for gaming and not planning to carry your notebook around often.
  • Design and Build Quality – You don’t want a laptop that’s going to weigh you down. You’ll be carrying your laptop around from lecture to lecture, on public transport, or even using it in bed to watch movies. We’ve looked at models that are thin, light and fit easily into any bag.
  • Specs and Price – Our list takes into account a variety of budgets. If you want a laptop with a powerful CPU that can handle games, video editing and other demanding processes, then prepare to shell out a fair bit of money. We’ve also got cheaper laptops that offer decent performance for word processing, web browsing and streaming.
  • Battery Life – If you plan to use the laptop on the go, you’ll want at least 6 hours of endurance, with 8+ hours being ideal. Some of the laptops we’ve selected can run for up to 10 hours off a single charge.

Read on for our round-up of the best laptops for students:

  • 13-Inch MacBook Air
    13-Inch MacBook Air

    Price: £849.00

    Manufacturer:Apple

    Key Features:

    • 1.6GHz Dual-Core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 2.7GHz
    • Intel HD Graphics 6000
    • 8GB 1600MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM
    • 128GB PCIe-based Flash Storage
    • Up to 12 hours of battery life

    In a nutshell:

    The 13-Inch MacBook Air comes with excellent battery life, decent performance and good selection of ports.

    Though it doesn’t quite pack the power of a Retina MacBook Pro, Intel’s latest processor and faster storage make it a genuinely nippy machine that handles day-to-day tasks with ease.

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  • Asus Zenbook UX305 13.3
    Asus Zenbook UX305 13.3" Laptop

    Price: £599.95

    Manufacturer:Asus

    Key Features:

    • Windows 10 (pre-installed)
    • Intel® Core™ m3-6Y30 Processor
    • Memory: 8 GB
    • Storage: 128 GB SSD
    • Up to 7 hours battery life

    In a nutshell:

    The Asus Zenbook UX305 represents fantastic value for money. For around £600, the level of quality of the build, display and battery life are unparalleled.

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  • HP Stream 11
    HP Stream 11

    Price: £149.00

    Manufacturer:Hewlett Packard

    Key Features:

    • 11.6-inch, 1,366 x 768 display
    • 1.28kg
    • 2GB RAM
    • 32GB built-in storage
    • SD card slot

    In a nutshell:

    The bargain laptop that’s light on price but heavy in features. The HP Stream 11 comes with a lovely design, a free year of Office 365 and 1TB OneDrive online storage.

    It also packs a 2.16GHz Intel Celeron N2840 processor, 2GB of RAM, 3 USB ports and an SD card reader. At £149, this laptop is a steal.

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  • Lenovo IdeaPad Y700
    Lenovo IdeaPad Y700

    Price: £699.99

    Manufacturer:Lenovo

    Key Features:

    • Intel Core i7-6700HQ Quad Core Processor
    • Dedicated GeForce GTX 960M 4GB Graphics
    • 15.6 Full HD Screen
    • Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64-bit
    • 16GB DDR4 RAM
    • 128GB SSD + 1000GB HDD
    • DVD Rewriter

    In a nutshell:

    The 15-inch Lenovo Y700 is ideal not just for essays or web browsing, it’s a solid gaming laptop with its GeForce GTX 960M graphics card (though don’t expect it to run games on ‘Ultra’ settings).

    It’s a little on the heavy side, but the Lenovo Y700 looks great and has ample battery life.

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  • Microsoft Surface Pro 4
    Microsoft Surface Pro 4

    Price: £749.00

    Manufacturer:Microsoft

    Key Features:

    • Intel integrated HD Graphics 400
    • 720p forward-facing camera
    • 3.4 pounds (1.6kg) and 0.67 inch (17mm) thick
    • 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2
    • HDMI-out, headphone/mic jack and two USB 3.1 ports

    In a nutshell:

    The Surface Pro 4 is the best Windows 10 tablet available. It offers a bright, crisp display, great performance and solid build quality.

    When paired with its Surface Pen and optional Type Cover (which costs an extra £110), the Surface Pro 4 becomes a fully functioning laptop that will meet most people’s personal and work needs.

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  • Acer Chromebook 14
    Acer Chromebook 14

    Price: £199.99

    Manufacturer:Acer

    Key Features:

    • Chrome OS
    • Intel® Celeron Processor N3060
    • RAM: 2 GB / Storage: 16 GB eMMC
    • 12.3 inch screen
    • Up to 12 hours battery life

    In a nutshell:

    The Acer Chromebook 14 looks fantastic and has rock solid build quality, with the chassis made from 100% aluminium alloy. It also comes with a good screen, keyboard, and touchpad.

    The Acer Chromebook 14 should be at the top of your list if you’re a fan of the Chrome OS.

     

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The Shopomo editorial team writes our buying guides and reviews based on first-hand knowledge of the products featured and the marketplace they operate in. Shopomo makes a small commission on links to a retailer if a purchase is made but the final decision to feature a product, and how highly it is rated, is purely an editorial one.