Choosing a laptop is never something you should play around with because it’s important to make sure you pick the best one. If you’re a computer science student, then it’s even more crucial to ensure you end up with a laptop worth every penny. Over the years, laptops have been under a continuous change, with new features being added and more performant laptops being born as a result. So, it may be quite confusing looking in the laptop aisle and having no idea what those devices can do.
Even though picking a laptop seems like a walk in the park, it’s difficult and quite confusing when you see so many options on the market. Luckily, we’re here to make your life easier. We listed some factors that you need to take into account when looking for a new laptop. We’ve also prepared some laptop reviews to potentially help you choose your new gadget. Let’s get started!
Things to Take into Account
First things first, when you’re about to look for a new laptop as a computer science student, you may be tempted to go for the most powerful item you can find. And while there are indeed some very overpowered laptops on the market nowadays, you don’t need one of them to help you with your computer science studies. You need a decent machine indeed, but you don’t have to go for the priciest and most powerful laptop you can find.
You only have to keep in mind that as a computer science student, there is special software that you will need to use for computing and coding. In order to make sure everything works accordingly, you will need to look into the parts of the laptop and ensure they are good enough to help the programs work smoothly. Here’s what you should take into consideration when browsing for laptops:
When it comes to computer science students, the display is probably the most important part. Especially as you’re advancing towards your degree, you will spend a lot of time in front of your laptop. Coding takes time, after all, especially when you make a mistake and need to find out what’s wrong. Therefore, it’s important to find a laptop with a good display, one that doesn’t strain your eyes.
So, you should look for a display in full HD resolution or higher. Moreover, matte displays are recommended too because they don’t strain the eyes too much.
As a student at computer science studies, you will need a good processor, one with enough processing power considering you will have to deal with big projects. Not to mention that compiling codes will require good processing power. If possible, try to find the fastest processor you have a budget for, and everything should work properly.
Storage is yet another important part of a laptop if you’re a computer science student. You have to choose between HDD and SSD. If you have the budget, you should consider an SSD. It will be beneficial for your workflow because it will make the laptop run faster.
When you choose your new laptop, you should make sure that it has at least an 8GB RAM. Considering you will be running a lot of code without pauses, you should have enough RAM so it can deal with the work volume. You can go for something more powerful if you want, but it should all go smoothly with 8GB if you cannot afford more.
Do you want to get into machine learning? If that’s the case, you will need a dedicated graphics card. The same goes if you spend your free time gaming aside from the work you have to do as a student. Other than that, an integrated graphics card should be enough to run your laptop properly.
It’s important to pick a laptop that has enough battery if you aren’t able to rely on an outlet at all times. For example, if you’re going to use your laptop in class, then it’s best to have a battery that lasts for as long as possible.
The minimum number of hours for a laptop to last on a battery would be six hours.
Best Laptops for Computer Science Reviews
1. ASUS VivoBook 15
- 10th Gen Intel Core i3-1005G1 CPU
- 15.6-inch Full HD
- Ergonomic backlit keyboard
- 4GB DDR4 RAM
If you’ll have to carry your laptop pretty often, then ASUS has the solution for you: the VivoBook 15. This laptop is lightweight, which makes it a great solution for people who don’t want the weight to be a burden. The dimension makes it travel-friendly too, so all you have to do is slip it into your bag and carry it to the destination.
ASUS ensured they made this laptop suitable for people into computing, which is why the performance is outstanding. The Intel Core i3 processor gives it a wonderful performance. The display is a four-sided NanoEdge one which offers amazing visuals.
Also, what’s great is that you can easily protect your laptop and your work thanks to the built-in fingerprint sensor. You will only have to touch the laptop to log in, so you can say goodbye to typing your password all the time.
The laptop has an HDMI output, USB type C, USB 3.1 and 2.0 ports, as well as a microSD card reader. As such, it pretty much has what you’d need from a laptop.
- The display is great and offers amazing visuals
- It has pretty much everything you need
- It can be easily secured with only your fingerprint
- The audio is powerful
- Great performance
- It comes with a one-year free ASUS Accidental Damage Protection
- The storage may fill up quickly
- The cooling fan may be pretty loud
- The screen is not IPS
2. Lenovo IdeaPad 3 15″ HD Laptop PC
- Intel Core i3-1005G1 Dual Core Processor
- 15.6” HD LED backlit anti-glare display
- 8GB DDR4 2666 MHz RAM
- 2 x 1.5w speakers
You already know the importance of a good enough battery life, and Lenovo can offer you this advantage. If you think you’re going to use your laptop for computer science while you’re not at home and you’re not having access to an outlet, then charging this laptop will give it up to 7.5 hours of battery life, enough until you return home.
Having a fast laptop is a must when it comes to computer science tasks, so this device is just what you need. It works fast enough and can offer a pleasant performance with no lagging. Aside from this, it is a lightweight product that makes it easy to carry in the bag.
You can gently press the keys and they will work. There’s no need to push them too hard. This helps you when coding. It’s also a pretty good laptop if you want to play games in your free time.
- It can operate pretty fast
- The keys are not hard to press
- It has a pretty long battery life when you need to work away from home
- It’s lightweight
- The keyboard is not backlit
3. 2020 HP 17.3″ Laptop Computer
- 8GB DDR4 RAM
- 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8265U Quad-Core
- 256GB PCle SSD
- 17.3” diagonal HD+ SVA BrightView WLED-backlit
HP features this laptop that is pretty good if you need it mainly for your studies and not for gaming. It has a pretty large and clear screen that will make it easier for you to see the codes. The keyboard is also big enough so that it’s less likely to make mistakes while you’re coding.
It has a lot of storage space, which makes it even better for a computer science student. You can easily backup your files without worrying that the free space is going to run out quickly. Besides, the laptop operates pretty fast and there will be little to no lag when you’re working on something.
- You can get a full refund within 30 days of returning a laptop that arrives dead or damaged
- It features a large and clear screen
- Large keyboard
- It has a fast performance
- It comes with lots of storage space
- The screen is not matte or anti-glare
4. Lenovo IdeaPad 3 14″ Laptop
- 3 USB ports + HDMI
- 8GB DDR4 RAM
- Windows 10
- ADM Radeon Vega 8 graphics
- 14.0” FHD Display
- AMD Ryzen 5 3500U Mobile Processors
Lenovo knows how to make top-notch laptops, and this particular model can prove it. First of all, this laptop has a long-lasting performance. Thanks to the processors and graphics, this device can work quickly and offer you amazing performance for your computer science student work. This way, you will be able to get things done much faster than usual.
The screen is a 14-inch full HD one, which can bring you the outstanding image clarity that you need. It will be easy to see your codes and just everything clearly. It’s also possible to switch between two modes, respectively “Max mode” and “battery saving mode”. The former is great when you want faster performance, whereas the latter is amazing for people looking for a quieter experience.
- Amazing resolution for people who want to see everything more clearly
- A physical shutter for your webcam will let you maintain the privacy
- Fast performance
- It can swap between battery saving mode and a fast and powerful performance
- It features crystal-clear sound thanks to the Dolby audio
- After a while, the screen may wash out and get a blue ting
5. Acer Nitro 5 Gaming Laptop
- 8GB DDR4 2666MHz Memory
- 9th Generation Intel Core i5-9300H processor
- Backlit keyboard
- 15” Full HD Widescreen IPS LED-backlit Display
Acer has what you need if you want a powerful laptop, one that can deal not only with your work in computing but also with gaming. First of all, the keys are easy to press, which is great not only when you’re coding, but also when you’re gaming. What’s more, the keyboard is red backlit. If you want to have your lights off while using the laptop, it will be possible to see the keys clearly considering they’re backlit.
The Intel Core processor inside it makes the laptop very powerful, which is just perfect for both your work and the gaming time. You’ll have the chance to experience some amazing performance due to the processor and not only.
Also, if you’re worried about overheating, you don’t have to – the laptop comes with twin fans that add a cooling effect, keeping your laptop safe and maintaining its great performance.
- Fast performance
- It features twin fans for cooling
- Powerful processor
- It has amazing audio
- The keys are backlit and can be pressed with ease
- It may be a little too heavy
6. HP 14″ Touchscreen Home and Business Laptop
- 14” touchscreen with 1366 x 768 HD resolution
- AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Processor
- 8 GB DDR4 2400 MHz RAM memory
- 128GB M.2 SSD
HP outdid themselves with this laptop – they created an amazing device, yet still pretty affordable for many people when compared to other similar laptops. The RAM memory is enough to help you with your tasks, and it’s also amazing when you are multitasking. As such, you will not deal with any lag.
Since you need a high-quality display with a good resolution, you should know that this laptop doesn’t disappoint. The screen is large enough to let you see clearly what you’re working on. Also, it is an energy-efficient LED backlight one.
Despite all its features, it’s still compact and lightweight enough and it will be easy to carry it to classes if needed.
- It has a touchscreen
- It can work very fast and smooth due to the RAM memory and processor
- It is lightweight and compact
- Amazing performance for the price
- The keyboard is not backlit
7. Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop
- 8GB DDR4
- Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201802.11ax
- Backlit keyboard
- Fingerprint reader
- 15.6” Full HD IPS Display
- 10th Gen Intel Core i5-10210U
Do you want to see the keyboard clearly? Then this Acer laptop may be just what you need. The keyboard is backlit so you can use it even in the dark, especially if you have a roommate that goes to sleep earlier. There’s a fingerprint reader that secures your laptop against potential intruders, so you don’t have to memorize any password anymore.
The visuals are maximized due to the 15.6 full HD IPS display. It’s large enough to let you see everything properly, and the colors are also coming to life once you turn it on. On top of that, it will not strain your eyes.
Due to the processor, the laptop can be very responsive and fast, making it a delight for computer science students.
- It has a powerful sound
- The visuals are top-notch
- It comes with a fingerprint reader
- The keyboard is backlit
- The performance is amazing and fast
- It may get very hot due to the cooling fan being misplaced
8. Dell Inspiron i3583 15.6″ HD Touch-Screen Laptop
- 8GB DDR4
- 15.6” HD Touchscreen
- 128GB SSD
- Intel i3-8145U, dual-core, four-way
For the price, this laptop is pretty good, especially if you need it for your computer science tasks. The device runs pretty amazingly, and it can have a powerful performance for what you need. It may work fast enough too.
It comes with a touch screen for easier control. The keyboard is pretty sturdy, which is great if you’re going to use it a lot for coding. Not to mention that the screen is very large. A large screen is a must because you have to see everything in detail when dealing with codes, and this laptop can give you just what you need in this regard.
If you’re going to use your laptop away from home, you should know that this Dell model has a pretty good battery life so it’s going to last until you get home.
- Good battery life
- The laptop can work pretty fast
- It has amazing specs for the price
- The screen is large and clear
- It has a great audio system
- It’s not too heavy
- It will come with Windows 10 S
9. Lenovo Ideapad L340 Gaming Laptop
- Intel Core i5-9300H processor
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650
- 15.6” FHD IPS Display
- 8GB DDR4 RAM
Whether you’re gaming or dealing with your responsibilities as a computer science student, this laptop can easily cater to your needs. Thanks to the graphics, you can take things to the next level, as the laptop can work faster and smoother than your typical device.
The laptop allows you to switch from quick mode to quiet mode, depending on the type of performance you are looking for. If you need better performance, the quick mode may be better, and if you need to save battery, you may have to go for the quiet mode.
As for the screen, it is very large and has the power to give you a stunning image with great colors. You’ll see everything in detail. It also has amazing audio capabilities thanks to the Dolby audio, so whether you want to listen to music while computing or want to hear the game clearly, you will have no issues.
- It comes with powerful and amazing graphics for a great performance
- It features amazing audio
- Large screen with great visuals
- It can deal with multitasking
- Easy to switch between two modes
- It doesn’t have the best build quality
10. New HP 15.6″ HD Touchscreen Laptop
- 10th Generation Intel Core i3-1005G1 1.2GHz
- 8GB DDR4 RAM
- 15.6” HD WLED touchscreen
- 128GB SSD
This laptop doesn’t only look good, but it also feels good using it. Thanks to the 10th Gen Intel processor, you will never have to worry about the performance. The laptop will work smoothly, whether you’ll be dealing with university tasks or playing some games. The performance will be fast and you will not deal with any lag. It also starts up very fast.
What’s truly amazing regarding this laptop is that it can last for several hours. So, if you’ll have to carry the laptop to class, it can last long enough when there’s no outlet available.
The display is outstanding, as it’s not only large but it also delivers some dreamy image quality. When you want to play games and see everything properly, or when you want to see the codes much clearly, the screen is going to help you a lot.
- Fast startups
- It can last for many hours
- The screen has a large size and delivers amazing image quality
- It is lightweight and compact
- It has a nicely-working touchscreen
- It is easy to set up and use
- It will not be able to handle highly-detailed games
It all depends on what you need from the laptop. For instance, SSD may be a better choice if you are going to use your laptop for machine learning applications.
Not necessarily. While some laptops come for a very high price – especially the gaming laptops – you don’t need an overpriced laptop to get the experience that you are looking for. You can find good laptops for under $500, and they will be more than enough for computer science related tasks.
Not necessarily. You can go with one if you want a clean performance, but you can find good laptops that are not intended for gaming. However, if you care about design and want a sleek and lightweight device, a gaming laptop might not be the right choice.
Picking the proper laptop for computer science might not be that easy, but with some help, you can find the one that suits your needs. Make sure to apply our tips and you’ll find your dream model. If you want to get a laptop much quicker, try one of the products we reviewed.