As a college student, your computer is important. You need it to do school work. Although most students would want to do coding and learning programming languages, it is also important for them to take some time off. That might be for occasional gaming.
It is hard to find a computer that has the right amount of power and speed. I am not happy about going to an air plane. You have a lot of options when it comes to buying a computer. You can buy from a store, or you can get one online. The perfect fishing pole is hard to find. There are many things to think about and prices can be different. One might think that finding the best laptop for computer science is easy. But it's not!
This guide will help you to decide which laptop is best for your needs.
As an IT student, you do not need a powerful laptop for interacting with machine learning or data analysis. To choose the best laptop for yourself, you should first make a list of what it is that you want.
If you are a specialist in an area, the software will be different. But for people who are not specialists, here is some information about what kind of system they might need: A Computer Science student needs to learn coding and debugging. They need to know Python, Java, C++, Pycharm , Visual Studio Code , MATLAB, Octave or R Studio.
What to Consider When Selecting a Laptop for a Computer Science Student?
10 Best Laptops for Computer Science Students in 2021
Below are 3 of the best laptops for you to consider. If you are a student in computer science, you should pick one of the first three choices. If you don't game, edit photos, or edit videos on your computer, then our budget laptops are likely enough for you. Computer Science students might find these laptops useful.
1. Best 2-in-1 Laptop: HP Spectre x360 15T
We tested the HP Spectre x360 15T which is equipped with a touch screen. It has a high-resolution screen, an Intel Core i7-10750H processor, 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD and 4GB NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti Graphics.
Envy is a company that makes computers. There are many different kinds, and some are more elegant than others. The latest edition of the Envy computer looks very nice. Americans who like to travel with little luggage thank us for the portable products. A laptop weighs .0004 pounds more. It is an inch thicker than most other laptops. The Envy is thin and can do a lot of things. It is better than most laptops.
The color was very sharp. We liked that. The 4K high-resolution screen is very bright. The 4K touchscreen is very responsive. You can draw in it, and it will be good. This experience can help if you're using wireframing tools to plan the user interface for your application. It is easier than using a pen tablet before you proceed with coding.
CPU, RAM and Storage
This computer is good for someone who wants to be in Computer Science. When you are debugging code and compiling software, it is easy to go to the internet, watch a movie and see videos. This laptop comes with a fast processor, lots of memory and a big hard drive. It is perfect for someone who wants to use their laptop lots.
2. Best 4K Screen: ASUS ZenBook 15
This notebook has many good features. It is also strong because it can do a lot of things and is fast. One laptop that is good for computer science students is the Asus ZenBook 15.
This low power CPU stays cool in use. You don't have to worry about it getting too hot and slowing down. This computer has a speed of 3.8GHz and can go up to 4.9Ghz. It is really fast and can do lots of things at the same time, so it is good for productivity.
This laptop is good for lots of games and programs.
RAM and Storage
You have 16GB of system memory available. The Windows 10 Operating System loads quickly on the machine. That is because the hard drive is very fast. The Asus computer has a 512 GB SSD that can store most files and academic resources.
The screen is very big and has many pixels. It is slim. It is wider than other screens. The laptop comes with features that you might find helpful. For example, a backlit keyboard and a 5.65-inch ScreenPad 2.0 that doubles as both a touchpad and an accurate screen for your work.
This notebook has been improved since it is better at dissipating heat and typing. The Asus ZenBook is a laptop that is lightweight and has ErgoLift technology, which will make it easier to type on the keyboard.
The military-grade chassis is also powerful enough to run a laptop for a long time. It can power it for almost 5 hours when it is fully charged. The Asus ZenBook 15 has a lot of ports. There are the regular ones on the back like USB-C, USB-A, HDMI and Wi-Fi 6. It also has Bluetooth 5.0!
The Asus ZenBook 15 is a good choice for people who want a laptop with high performance. It is not heavy and it is fast.
3. Best 17-inch Display: Dell Inspiron 17
Dell is a company with many computers. Their Inspiron 17 is very powerful. It's for computer science students and professionals.
This laptop is very advanced. It can do the most difficult things. The Intel Core i7-1065G7 processor can run quickly. It can go as fast as 3.9GHz.
You need to put your computer in a case so it doesn't get broken. The efficient, powerful graphics-optimized chip is perfect for an entry-level graphics card.
The laptop can run programs like Octave, Netbeans, and MATLAB without any problems. You can use 32GB of RAM to open and run multiple programs at once without lag.
We were impressed by Dell's offers of a 2TB hard drive to store your static files. They also offer a 512GB SSD unit for storing Windows 10 folders that you need all the time.
The 1080p screen is anti-glare, which means it isn't hard to see outside. This laptop's screen is big enough for most students. You can have a powerful laptop that fits in your bag.
Productivity is good on the Dell Inspiron 17. This computer has a backlit keyboard, speakers that sound great and it also has a HD webcam.
This speaker comes with a battery pack that will allow you to play music for 7 hours. This laptop is heavy at six pounds. But it still works well. It has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth standards.
For people who need a laptop for school and work, the Dell Inspiron 17 is a good choice.
4. Best Battery Life: Lenovo ThinkPad T495
The ThinkPad T495 from Lenovo is an efficient computer with an AMD processor. If you see it as a computer engineer, then it is the best. The laptop has features that are good for school. It can also be used in the workplace if you know how to use it.
The CPU is the brain of a computer or smartphone. In order to make a single chip, you need to have the CPU, GPU and modem. SoC is a type of semiconductor. I don't know what kind though. AMD's latest computer chip is the Ryzen 7 3700U. It can have up to 10 cores and up to 4 processors. If you are interested in programming languages like Java, Python and C++ or other CPU intensive languages, this mobile SoC can help with the maximum clock speed of up to 4GHz.
GPU and RAM
The Vega 10 graphics co-processor is integrated with the existing processor. The 16 gigabytes of RAM are very important. It is used for multitasking and programming.
A computer comes with a standard 512GB SSD to help back up your files. It's fast to start up Windows 10 and it can also start up old Windows.
You can see more of the screen because there is not as much space on the side and top. Touch screens are important for computer or software engineering students. Touch screens can make it seem like you're touching something even though you're not touching it.
Besides that, the laptop has a nice keyboard and a webcam so you can do online classes without any trouble. If the above wasn't enough, we've also made a decent port arrangement. You have access to Type-C, Type-A and two more slots that are relevant.
This laptop can last for a long time without charging. This notebook is 3.4 pounds, and it is ok for portability. You should use this if you are going to college and want a heavy book.
The laptop is a good choice for people in computer science. It is affordable and durable, so it lasts a long time and does not break easily.
5. Best For College Students: Acer Aspire 7
This machine is a good balance between price and power. This laptop is really good for home. You can do most jobs on it. This Acer Aspire 7 is one of the best laptops on the list. It is good for students, professionals, and even people who like to play video games.
Acer's computer has an Intel Core i5-9300H processor. The mobile chip has four cores. It is easy to use the single or multi-core processes on it. Plus, this mobile chipset can also reach up to 4.1GHz of speed. This is fast for the face of tasks.
Acer includes a graphics card in addition to the 9 gen processor. This game is too hard for the old computer. It doesn't work.
RAM and Storage
The computer can do two things at once and has a really fast hard drive. The SSD loads files quickly. It is best for Windows 10 Home.
The Acer Aspire 7 has a screen that is 15.6 inches and has 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution. This laptop has a keyboard that can be seen in dark rooms. It also has a wireless network. Other features include an ethernet port and a webcam.
The Aspire 7 is light enough to do remote work. It weighs only 4.7 pounds The battery lasts 8 hours when the power is out and there are many different ways to connect to the internet.
The Acer Aspire 7 is a great computer if you like school and fun. It includes everything. You can use it for school, or for games that are relaxing.
6. Best Value for Money: HP Pavilion 15
HP's Pavilion 15 series is well known. The company always makes machines with a powerful output. One of the best computers for a student in computer programming is the HP Pavilion. The 2020 HP Pavilion computer is powerful and it costs less than $1000.
CPU and GPU
This laptop is strong and good for different tasks. It can run computer programs, like computer science and games. This is a very powerful device. The Intel Core i7-1165G7 processor and Integrated Intel Iris graphics make it so.
This laptop is made of plastic. It is not metal. When you use MATLAB or Visual Studio, it may get very hot.
This is an ok tradeoff for the other good things that it has. You should bring the HP Pavilion with you when you travel. It is heavy and too big for a laptop, but it is still helpful.
RAM and Storage
This laptop can do good things. It has a lot of storage and memory. This machine has an amazing battery life. HP says it can last for 8 hours even if you use it a lot.
This is the best laptop for CS majors. It is inexpensive and powerful.
7. Budget Dell Option: Dell Inspiron 15
If you want a good laptop for computer science and it needs the latest processor, we recommend the Dell Inspiron 15.
Laptop engineers will find this computer powerful. It can do most of their work. Dell's computer uses an Intel Core i5-1135G7. This makes the process quick and efficient. Every day, more and more people are looking for homes. In this market, there are many homes for sale and many buyers. Sellers need to price their houses competitively in order to attract these buyers. Houses priced from $300K-$750K will have the most competition because these houses typically sell quickly in today's market.
GPU and RAM
Dell continued to use an expensive RAM module in this laptop. This means that you can use it for more than one thing at a time. RAM is a computer's memory. It stores data. The 8GB RAM processes data at 3200MHz. The Iris Xe graphics co-processor is built-in so you can easily use apps and games that require a lot of graphics. You don't need to worry about lags with these.
There is one solid state drive. It can hold up to 512GB of data. The Dell Inspiron 15 5502 comes with Windows 10 already. The operating system is for things that are for education. It works with most applications and software that is designed for academia.
The display is 15.6 inches wide. The WVA display will help you see all the details. Dell's screen has a type of surface that can prevent glare. It is good for people who use screens for a long time.
Keyboard and Ports
This laptop has three ports for devices. Moreover, you can get internet with wi-fi 6. This is the fastest internet. You can improve your laptop with a stylish Dell Inspiron 15 5547. This includes
The 6-hour battery backup makes the system more credible. The Echo Dot is much lighter than most notebooks. It's 3.78 pounds and will fit in a small purse or bag. The Dell Inspiron 15 5502 gives you more than enough. It lasts for an hour.
The Dell Inspiron 15 5502 is a computer. It has good design.
8. Budget School & Gaming Laptop: Asus TUF FX505DT
The Asus TUF FX505DT is a good computer for people who want to study computer science. It is affordable and can do many things.
Processing power is not an issue for the Asus laptop that has the Ryzen 5 3550H. This mobile CPU is a great choice. It has some occasional heating issues, but that is not an issue if you only use one process at a time. That is good for Android Studio and other programs that are resource-intensive.
However, there is still a GTX 1650 GPU with 4 GB VRAM. A current Intel processor can program up to 3.7 GHz. It is enough for coding and software development. The featured app is a new way to take care of your apps and games. It's really easy to use, too.
RAM and Storage
The SSD saves time. It takes less time to start up Windows 10. RAM is the type of memory that a computer can use. It's the same for everyone, but Asus has introduced 8GB of RAM that you can customize for your system to make it faster and better. The model has a basic 256GB SSD. This is not good for people who want to use their laptop in graduate school and/or as an employee.
The display provides a good experience for programmers and code. This laptop has a display screen that is 15.6 inches wide and it shows 1080p resolution.
Keyboard and Peripherals
This laptop is a little lighter than other ones. It's durable and weighs 5 pounds. A laptop's peripheral system can include a backlit keyboard, wide angle webcam, and rugged chassis.
The Chromebook spin 13 has a lot of connections. There are type-A ports, Wi-Fi AC, and BT 5.0.
The battery of this laptop is not very good. It only lasts for 5 hours.
9. Best Battery Life: Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Older devices have a difficult time staying charged. One of the most sought-after devices when looking for a detachable 2-in-1 laptop is Microsoft's Surface Pro lineup.
However, the new Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is challenging that logic because it has a screen that is bigger. It is hard to pack batteries in a thin and sleek design. Most computer science majors probably understand the difficulty.
The Surface Pen for your device is very good. It has great precision and it controls the device well. That means it's a very good experience to use it as a stylus. The 10.5 hours of battery life is a good feature, especially with the larger 30Wh battery that lasts 20% longer than previous models (compared to 13.3 Wh for SD1397).
CPU, RAM, Storage
You can buy an additional adapter for $80. This laptop is not very portable. It only has one USB 3.0 port and a microSD card reader. The latest edition has an Intel Core i5-1035G processor with 1GHz and 16GB RAM, 256GB storage.
The computer offers a good resolution. It is nice to have if you use it for long periods of time.
The device in this review has lots of features. It can run stuff like IntelliJ or NetBeans, etc.
10. Best Budget Laptop For CS Major: Lenovo IdeaPad 3
This computer is not good at showing pictures. But it is good for programming. Lenovo IdeaPad 3 is a laptop for people who want to do computer science on a budget.
The single-core clock speed is easy on your budget. It can go up to 3.9GHz! This processor has four cores and can run multiple programs. It has virtualization, which means that programmers will be able to use it.
The Acer Swift 3 has a graphics card that can be used to see things in UHD. As MATLAB, a few compilation tools, coding platforms, Octave, Netbeans and other applications are only good at single-threaded performance. The Intel Atom Z8300 SoC seems like a good pick.
The more RAM a laptop has, the better. The same is true for your average computer desktop. Many people will buy laptops with 16GB of DDR3 RAM and 128GB SSD storage.
We were very surprised to find 12GB of system memory on this notebook. It is not expensive like the other notebooks. This computer has 12 GB of RAM, which is enough for data to be processed at up to 2600 MHZ.
Once you make the adjustments, there is no going back to Standard mode. However, the IdeaPad does not have a lot of storage because it only has a basic 256GB SSD unit. Windows 10's S Mode OS can load several applications very quickly. It is restricted in how much it can do, but it is still useful. Windows 10 S Mode is not as good as Windows 10 Home. But you can switch to Windows 10 Home without paying anything.
The 15.6 inch display is not the brightest, but it makes colors brighter. The LCD screen is not very good. But, Lenovo has a touchscreen to make up for it. The IdeaPad 3 has a special way of showing pictures. It is not like other laptops. They use LED lighting, which helps with the battery.
Design and Peripherals
You can use the laptop by turning it around 180 degrees and using it like a tablet. This computer has a keyboard that is full size, a trackpad that responds to the touch, and it also has a webcam with good resolution and dual speakers.
There is internet on the phone. You can connect to a wireless network or Bluetooth devices. The computer is heavy. It also has a lot of different ports.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 is a good laptop for college students, but if you want a laptop that looks nice and has a good display, then you should look at other options. The battery life of this computer is up to 7 hours. Its keypad has numbers on it, so you can write code everywhere easily.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I get a gaming laptop if I’m not much of a gamer?
You might want to buy a gaming laptop even if you are not a gamer. Gaming laptops have good specs. There are many different types of laptops. If you are looking for something that is not too heavy, then an outright laptop might not be the best choice.
What kind of laptop do I need as a Computer Science student?
Different people have different needs for their laptop. Some people need a computer that is very small and some need one that is very big to do difficult tasks. Learn about the machine by following these instructions. Decide what you want your laptop to do and then find a laptop that can do that.
Should I go for an SSD or HDD?
Still struggling? This document is about the difference between SSDs and HDDs. If you are going to put a lot of code on your laptop and plan on using it for machine learning applications like MATLAB in the future, then get one that has an SSD.
I like a laptop which is performance and feature-rich but it’s bulky, is it a worthy tradeoff?
Many of the laptops in this list are heavy. If you can't afford to buy a heavy laptop, then buy the cheapest one with no bells and whistles. Computer science is hard to understand. You need to know how to code and where that will take you in life.
Do I need to get an external laptop cooling pad if I run heavy programs for extended hours?
If you know that you will be running heavy programs or playing games for a long time, then you should save your battery. Many laptops have a feature that keeps them from getting too hot. If you want to find these, look at this list.
What’s a SoC, aka System On a Chip?
This is the most important part of your phone or computer. Encapsulated is a word meaning that someone is trapped. It is usually found on mobile devices. The SoC is a chip that includes components like the CPU (Central Processing Unit), GPU (Graphics Processing Unit), NPU (Neural Processing Unit), and modem. A SoC is a computer processor that is on one chip.
These are some suggestions. We tried many laptops and chose the best ones. For someone who is going to take computer science, what are they looking for in a laptop?