Why pay more for a laptop than the Â£200 or less you can snag one for? Well, if you want the best build quality, the most effective processors, the highest resolution display or the nicest design, a cheap model just wonât cut it â even if itâs perfectly good for emails and light web browsing. Paying more usually means youâll have better battery life, too.
There are also other considerations to think about. You want a keyboard that responds perfectly under your fingers, with decent travel but a firmness and lack of wobble. Pricier laptops tend to have displays that stretch further to the edges of the laptop lid, with tiny bezels so itâs almost all-screen.
There are three operating systems to choose from: Windows, which is the most widespread and has the most programs, Google Chrome which used to be the budget option but is now found on more advanced laptops, too, and Appleâs macOS which is perhaps the most intuitive and elegant. Knowing which programs you need onboard may help you choose.
Weâve tested laptops with various programs, noting battery life, ease of use, resilience of build, lightness, slimness and smartness of design. All the models here apart from the Apple macbook pro and macbook air also have touch-sensitive screens.
You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing and expert advice. This revenue helps to fund journalism across The Independent.