Cool things you can do with a laptop

From bestreviews.com
By
Anthony Marcusa
BestReviews

Most features of a laptop can be enhanced by extras and accessories.

Creative laptop uses

As technological innovation advances, laptops continue to become both more specialized and versatile than ever. More than just convenient portable devices, they can operate as a hub for an efficient home office, take the place of a powerful gaming console, or keep you connected to friends, family and endless information.

 

We’ll run down some of the more useful features offered with some of the most popular laptops available. Here are some cool, unique and surprisingly efficient tasks you can do with a new laptop.

Play video games

Gaming laptops offer power, speed, and agility for playing the most involved games. Particularly for those who play online and competitively, a gaming laptop that can handle your needs is vital. Look for laptops with high refresh rates, fast response times and a lot of power.

Best of the best 

Razer Blade Pro 17 Gaming Laptop: available at Amazon and Best Buy

Our take: Designed solely for gaming, this model from the leading name in computer gaming features the performance, detail and even style gamers crave.

What we like: Immersive, detailed 4K visuals on a large 17-inch screen. Sizeable 16GB RAM with 512GB of storage. Powerful Intel i7 core processor. Reliable WiFi 6. Individually backlit keyboard.

What we dislike: Highly expensive. Best reserved for serious gamers.

Best bang for your buck 

Acer Nitro 5 Gaming Laptop: available at Acer, Amazon and Best Buy

Our take: From a trusted brand, this laptop offers plenty of power, memory and storage for both serious and casual gamers on a budget.

What we like: Mid-range 15-inch screen, 144Hz refresh rate and 8 GB RAM exceed standard gaming specs. Fast and reliable WiFi connection. Backlit keyboard and multiple ports. Solid value.

What we dislike: Users may want to expand memory to hook up a larger monitor.

 

Stream 4K content

Detailed, immersive 4K content isn’t just reserved for televisions and desktop computers. For those who want to enjoy Ultra High Definition (3,840 by 2,160) resolution, a laptop with a powerful core and sizable screen will provide you with endless entertainment.

Best of the best 

ASUS Zenbook 15 Laptop: available at Amazon

Our take: With thin bezels and a 15.6-inch display, this 4K laptop is terrific for intimate and immersive content consumption.

What we like: Powerful laptop with 16GB RAM and fast memory allow for multitasking, as well as streaming high-end video. Stunning 4K resolution. Features HDMI and USB ports. Strong WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. Wide-viewing angle. Suitable for gaming.

What we dislike: It’s already a pricy laptop, and you may want to upgrade the speakers.

Best bang for your buck 

HP Envy 13 Laptop: available at HP

Our take: Impressive, versatile 4K touchscreen laptop suitable for work, gaming and especially watching movies and TV shows in high quality.

What we like: Stunning anti-glare display boasts bright colors, deep blacks and stark contrast. Powerful core and 8GB RAM allow for multitasking and efficiency. Backlit keyboard. Includes four speakers. Lightweight.

What we dislike: Screen size is on the small size, which limits your viewing experience.

Operate as a tablet

Laptops that can function as a tablet — by utilizing a 360° hinge — offer versatility, especially when it comes to collaborating or sharing content. Laptops with tablet functionality usually have a touchscreen for increased efficiency and convenience. 

Best of the best 

Dell Inspiron 14: available at Amazon and Dell

Our take: Powerful, business-oriented laptop that affords convenience, versatility, and style.

What we like: Slim and sleek, this light and portable laptop is ideal for those on the go. 14-inch, HD screen. Webcam includes a privacy shutter; quality microphone for conferences and calls. Lengthy battery life.

What we dislike: Tablet features cater most to working professionals; they’re really not great for gaming or entertainment.

Best bang for your buck

Lenovo Chromebook Flex: available at Amazon and Best Buy

Our take: Budget-friendly, easily-portable laptop that offers efficient and seamless integration with Google platforms and programs.

What we like: Laptop easily converts into touchscreen tablet with durable hinge. Lightweight at under 3 pounds; less than 1-inch thick. Multiple ports. Great value.

What we dislike: Small screen and low storage capacity.

Listen to, edit and record audio

Laptops aren't necessarily known for their impressive audio; most focus on power and size. But for those often on the move, or anyone one a budget, investing in audio accessories like a microphone, headset and speakers isn’t always possible. Luckily, some laptops focus on recording and playing back audio in crisp and clear detail.

Best of the best

Apple MacBook Pro: available at Amazon and Best Buy

Our take: An expensive yet feature-packed laptop for creatives that provide detailed visual, stunning audio and fast performance.

What we like: Features high-quality microphones and six-speaker sound system for enjoying and recording crystal clear, immersive audio. Large, 16-inch display provides bright whites and deep blacks. Large storage and RAM. Doesn’t heat your laptop up, and it’s also quiet.

What we dislike: Expensive, and you may want to upgrade storage.

Best bang for your buck 

Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop: available at Amazon and Acer

Our take: This versatile laptop provides impressive video and audio for creatives and convenient features geared towards students and those on a budget.

What we like: Immersive, colorful display with thin bezels. Innovative speakers include deep bass and crisp audio. Two built-in microphones. Quiet, backlit keyboard. Lengthy battery life.

What we dislike: A bit cumbersome for frequent traveling, and sometimes it feels slow.

Home office

You don’t need a bulky PC and a ton of accessories to create a functioning home office. For those working from home, there are laptops that prioritize not just efficiency but also comfort and convenience.

Best of the best 

Dell XPS 15: available at Amazon, Best Buy and Dell

Our take: Stellar performance and a stunning display make this ideal for the home office, especially for creative types and designers.

What we like: Powerful Intel i7 core allows for multitasking and streamlined work. Edge-to-edge view with stunning color and contrast using Dolby Vision. Eyesafe technology reduces strain and bluelight. Starts quickly, in seconds. Reliable WiFi 6. Avoids heating up.

What we dislike: Battery life is adequate, and you may want to upgrade storage.

Best bang for your buck

HP Elitebook 850 G7: available at HP

Our take: A business-focused laptop that blends power with efficiency for professionals in need of a reliable machine.

What we like: Strong WiFi and Bluetooth connections. Multiple ports include HDMI and two USB-C with Thunderbolt support. Quiet and comfortable keyboard. Sizeable, anti-glare screen. Dual speakers and quality mic. Enhanced security features.

What we dislike: Plenty of value, but still costly. 

Take anywhere

When it comes to portability, it’s important to have a laptop that’s more than just lightweight. It should feature a reliable and long-lasting battery, rugged design, and enough ports so that you can stay connected in every way you need, but enough versatility that you don’t need to bring a lot of accessories with you.

Best of the best

Lenovo ThinkPad X1: available at Amazon, Best Buy and Lenovo

Our take: Light and durable, this powerful laptop provides a fast charge, long battery, quick start, and all the multitasking power modern users need.

What we like: With WiFi 6, connections are strong and reliable. Rapid charge fills most of the battery in an hour; full charge lasts up to 13 hours. Weighs under 3 pounds. Immersive speakers and sensitive microphone. Privacy shutter

What we dislike: Expensive. Ideal for those without a consistent workplace or schedule.

 

Best bang for your buck

Microsoft Surface Laptop 3: available at Amazon and Best Buy

Our take: Compact, high-performance laptop that offers impressive responsiveness and reliability for wherever life takes you.

What we like: Slim and light. Lengthy battery life and rapid charge. Sizable storage and 8GB RAM. Quality microphone. Quick to respond and turn on. Multiple fast ports.

What we dislike: Loaded with Microsoft programs; Apple and Google fans may not enjoy as much compatibility.

Anthony Marcusa is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

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