Best laptops for engineering students in 2021


Engineering student working at a laptop

(Image credit: Pixabay)
PRICE

VERDICT

REASONS TO BUY

REASONS TO AVOID

VERDICT

REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID

Most matriculating minds on their way back to school should look at laptops that are ideal for college to find that sweet spot between performance and price. Students looking for the best engineering laptops require a lot of processing power. Engineering students, on the other hand, require a lot of energy. They do, however, require a few additional items.


graphics cards
, as well as other capable innards, to fully utilize programs such as CAD and CAM, as well as handle computational tasks that require a lot of processing power.

All of that power needs to be contained in a package that is both affordable and lightweight, with a long battery life. While they may not be as inexpensive as cheap laptopsFurthermore, the best engineering laptops should be able to run for an entire day on a single charge and be portable enough to carry from class to class. , they must be affordable to a college student.

We’ve done the legwork for you and compiled a list of the best laptops for engineering students, some of which are under $1,000, just in time for the start of the semester. back to schoola season Because we’ve tested these notebooks, you can be confident that whatever you choose will be of high quality.

The best laptops for engineering

(Image credit: Dell)

1. Dell XPS 15

The ultimate laptop has arrived

Specifications

CPU:
10th Gen Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics:
Intel UHD Graphics – NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti
RAM:
8GB – 64GB
Screen:
15.6″ UHD+ (3840 x 2400) InfinityEdge Non-Touch Anti-Glare 500-Nit 500-nit InfinityEdge Touch Anti-Reflective Display FHD+ (1920 x 1200) 15.6″
Storage:
256GB – 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe

Reasons to buy

+Amazing speakers


+Beautiful display


+Comfy keyboard

Reasons to avoid

GTX 1650 Ti is a little weak

Without a doubt, the Dell XPS 15 is one of the best laptops for engineering students to hit the market this year.

This laptop doesn’t hold back when it comes to internals and features that improve your overall computing experience, combining staggering power in a stylish thin and light chassis.

We’re not claiming that this laptop is flawless, but it is currently the best laptop for engineering students. A gorgeous bright display with 500 nits of brightness, an extremely comfortable keyboard, impressive speakers, and a fantastic trackpad are just a few of the amazing features.

(Image credit: Google)

2. Google Pixelbook Go

The best Chromebook and laptop for engineering students

Specifications

CPU:
Intel Core m3 – Intel Core i7
Graphics:
Intel UHD Graphics 615
RAM:
8GB – 16GB
Screen:
Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) or 4K LCD touchscreen 13.3-inch
Storage:
128GB – 256GB eMMC

Reasons to buy

+11-hour battery life


+Amazing ‘Hush’ keyboard


+The best Chromebook

Reasons to avoid

No biometric login


Chrome OS only

The Google’s Pixelbook Go is the best Chromebook It’s the best laptop money can buy right now, and it’s also ideal for engineering students.

The new model has a lower price tag than its predecessor. Pixelbook, Google’s latest Chromebook retains many of the premium features of the original, including an excellent battery life and one of the best laptop keyboards we’ve ever used.

Sure, it doesn’t run Windows 10; instead, it runs Chrome OS, but you can also install Linux on it, making it an even more versatile laptop.

It has some impressive specifications for a Chromebook, ensuring that Chrome OS runs smoothly on it and putting it on par with many of the more expensive Windows laptops and MacBooks.

(Image credit: Apple)

3. Apple MacBook Air (M1, 2020)

A stunning laptop for all uses

Specifications
CPU:
Apple M1
Graphics:
Integrated 7-core /8-core GPU
RAM:
8GB – 16GB
Screen:
LED-backlit 13.3-inch (diagonal) 2,560 x 1,600 display with IPS technology
Storage:
256GB – 2TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+11-hour battery life


+Lightweight for carrying


+Silent to use

Reasons to avoid

Hardware refresh rather than new design

The Apple MacBook Air (M1, 2020) is not only Apple’s best laptop, but it’s also one of the best laptops for engineers.

This is a stunning achievement, thanks to the revolutionary ARM-based Apple M1 chip that powers the new MacBook Air (Apple has ditched Intel for these new laptops). It’s a thin and light laptop with great performance and incredible battery life.

This laptop can easily last over 11 hours on a single charge, making it ideal for use in the office or outdoors. Its screen is stunning, and the new and improved keyboard means you’ll be able to work on it for hours.

(Image credit: Asus)

4. Asus Zephyrus G14

Leading AMD’s charge to mobile dominance

Specifications
CPU:
AMD Ryzen 7 4800HS
Graphics:
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti — RTX 2060
RAM:
Up to 32GB
Screen:
Full HD (1920 x 1080) non-glare 14-inch display 14-inch Non-glare WQHD (2560 x 1440) IPS-level panel, up to 120Hz 60Hz, IPS-level panel
Storage:
512GB / 1TB M.2 NVMe PCIe 3.0

Reasons to buy

+Best battery life in a gaming laptop


+Excellent performance


+Thin and light

Reasons to avoid

No webcam


Fans can get loud

Although the Asus Zephyrus G14 is designed as a gaming laptop, it has proven to be a capable all-around laptop.

This Asus laptop delivers incredible performance as well as an amazing battery life, a fast screen, and a thin and light chassis that makes it super portable, whether you’re serious about gaming or need a powerful laptop for productivity or content creation.

It is not the cheapest option available, but quality comes at a price. If you’re an AMD fan, the processor under the hood will be a welcome addition.

(Image credit: HP)

5. HP Spectre x360 (2021)

Powerful performance in a head-turning design

Specifications
CPU:
11th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics:
Intel Iris Xe Graphics
RAM:
8GB – 16GB
Screen:
UWVA BrightView micro-edge AMOLED multitouch UWVA BrightView micro-edge AMOLED multitouch FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS 13.3″ 13.3″ diagonal 4K (3840 x 2160) BrightView micro-edge WLED-backlit multitouch
Storage:
512 GB – 2TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Powerful Intel Whiskey Lake processors


+12-hour battery life


+Thin, light, and portable

Reasons to avoid

More powerful than some users will need

The HP Spectre x360 (2021) 2-in-1 laptop received a major update for 2021, and the improved specs, which include 11th-generation Intel Core processors and Intel Iris Xe graphics, as well as the flawless 2-in-1 design and pristine gem-cut chassis, put this version at the top of our list of best laptops for programmers.

With its gem cut design and sleek profile, this laptop is not only one of the most beautiful laptops on the market right now, but it’s also tough on the inside. As a result, when we say that the Spectre x360 takes things to the next level, we mean it. The HP Spectre line has always been known for its beautiful devices.

As a result, it’s currently one of the best laptops for engineering students. HP equipped this with an impressively long battery life, ensuring that you are getting one of the best laptops available.

(Image credit: Dell)

6. Dell G5 15

Gaming laptop that delivers a killer combo

Specifications
CPU:
9th Generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics:
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 – RTX 2060
RAM:
8GB – 16GB
Screen:
144Hz 15.6-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS 300-nits – 15.6-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) 300-nits IPS Anti-Glare LED Backlit Display
Storage:
512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 1TB SATA Hard Drive 128GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 1TB SATA Hard Drive

Reasons to buy

+Perfectly balanced feature set


+Strong gaming performance


+Great battery life

Reasons to avoid

IPS panel is merely OK


Confusing configuration options

The Dell G5 15, a gaming laptop that combines affordability with solid gaming performance, long battery life, and the option of a 144Hz refresh rate display, is a winning combination.

This laptop is a winner if you’re looking for a good deal, and it’s not just for gamers. This is also an excellent choice for professionals and students who frequently use graphics-intensive applications and 3D design software.

The fact that it can last up to 10 hours on a single charge (based on our tests), has a plethora of ports, and a chassis with a more subtle gaming aesthetic are all welcome additions.

(Image credit: Microsoft)

7. Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-inch)

One of the best 2-in-1 laptops on the market today.

Specifications
CPU:
8th Gen Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics:
Intel HD Graphics 620 – Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060
RAM:
16GB
Screen:
15-inch 3240 x 2160 PixelSense Display
Storage:
Up to 1TB storage (SSD)

Reasons to buy

+Crazy long battery life


+Massively powerful


+Excellent cooling

Reasons to avoid

No up-firing base speakers


Small trackpad


Very pricey

The Surface Book line was created with graphical design and creative tasks in mind. What could be better for engineering students than a laptop that is specifically designed for them?

Of course, this laptop has some impressive specs, including a long battery life of up to 17 hours on a single charge and enough power to support casual gaming. It’s even designed to work with the Surface Dial and Surface Pen, making your creative experience even easier and more immersive.

That excellent cooling system, on the other hand, should nicely round out this package. Still not convinced?

(Image credit: Dell)

8. Dell XPS 17 (2020)

A brilliant 17-inch Ultrabook

Specifications
CPU:
Up to 10th Generation Intel Core i9-10885H
Graphics:
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6GB GDDR6 with Max-Q Up to NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6GB GDDR6 with Max-Q
RAM:
Up to 64GB DDR4-2933MHz
Screen:
500-Nit InfinityEdge Touch Anti-Reflective 17.0″ UHD+ (3840 x 2400) InfinityEdge Non-Touch Anti-Glare 500-Nit FHD+ (1920 x 1200) 17.0″
Storage:
Up to 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe

Reasons to buy

+Great screen


+Long battery life


+Powerful

Reasons to avoid

Not the most portable


Lack of ports

The Dell XPS 17 (2020) is impressively thin and light for a 17-inch laptop, especially when you consider that it has powerful specs for that top-notch performance that content creators demand.

This is one of the best 17-inch laptops on the market, boasting a large, beautiful screen, excellent battery life that will last you the entire day, and a stunning design on top of it all.

That’s not even taking into account its entry-level price, which puts the MacBook Pro 16-inch to shame.

(Image credit: Lenovo)

9. ThinkPad X1 Extreme Mobile Workstation

Great power, massive price tag

Specifications
CPU:
up to 8th-generation Intel Core i7
Graphics:
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti with Max-Q design
RAM:
up to 64GB
Screen:
Multi-touch 15.6” FHD (1920 x 1080) – 15.6” 4K UHD HDR (3840 x 2160)
Storage:
up to 1TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+So much power


+Glorious 4K screen


+Great user experience

Reasons to avoid

Heavy


Expensive

Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Extreme mobile workstation is the ultimate machine to spend a lot of money on if you’re looking for a workhorse and have the funds for it. It comes in a variety of configurations to suit various needs and budgets.

However, even at its most basic level, it’s already quite capable, packing a powerful graphics card into a rugged carbon-fiber and aluminum package that will withstand any field work.

This mobile workstation has no doubt earned a spot on our list of the best laptops for engineering students.

(Image credit: Razer)

10. Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition (2020)

The best laptop for engineering students on a budget who don’t mind spending a lot of money

Specifications
CPU:
Intel Core i7-10875H
Graphics:
Nvidia Quadro RTX 5000
RAM:
32GB DDR4-2933MHz
Screen:
100% DCI-P3, factory calibrated 15.6″ OLED 4K Touch 60Hz
Storage:
1TB SSD

Reasons to buy

+Extremely powerful


+Premium design


+Stunning display

Reasons to avoid

Very expensive


Overkill for many people

If money is no object and you want the most powerful laptop ever made, the Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition (2020) might be the best laptop for engineering students like you.

This beautiful, well-designed mobile workstation will give some of the most powerful desktop PCs a run for their money, demonstrating prowess in complex tasks such as 3D animation and video rendering.

If you’ve got the cash, however, this has all the serious firepower you’ll ever need. Of course, it will cost you a lot of money. That’s all while providing a delicious 4K touchscreen display with 100% DCI-P3 color gamut, which is more than enough for creative pros and multi-taskers.

How do engineering students choose the best laptops?

Because you’ll most likely be running complex programs like AutoCAD, you’ll need a laptop with sufficient processing power. So, what factors go into selecting the best laptops for engineering students?

A laptop with the latest Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processors and at least 8GB of RAM is recommended, though 16GB is even better.

Many of the programs used by engineering students are graphically intensive, especially 3D modeling and video rendering programs like CAD, MATLAB, and Solid Works. This means that a laptop with a dedicated graphics card, rather than an integrated graphics card powered by the processor, is essential.

This is why the best gaming laptops are also good choices for engineering students because they have that much graphic power, and the fact that they can play games after classes is the icing on the cake.

Finally, if you’re going to be working on site a lot, it’s a good idea to look into some of the rugged or well-built laptops that are designed to withstand accidents on the job site.

Senior Computing editor

Matt (TwitterSend him a message on Twitter if you’re having trouble with your PC or Mac and need some help. Matt is passionate about all aspects of technology, especially computing and PC gaming, having written for a number of magazines and websites. ) is the Senior Computing Editor at TechRadar.