A good computer is any developer’s secret weapon; a laptop is even better. With a capable laptop, you have the freedom to work on projects from anywhere, even a cozy coffee shop down the road. As laptops become more and more capable, finding a laptop for programming work becomes easier.
There are some interesting choices on the market. In this article, we are going to focus more on performance and portability. Here are the top laptops to consider if you are a developer looking for a good one to use.
The 2021 13-inch MacBook Pro
The MacBook Pro is surprisingly popular among developers, especially those working on iOS-related projects. This is because you can only run Xcode, Apple’s development environment, on MacOS. The 13-inch 2021 models are appealing for their compact size and decent performance.
You get an incredible screen regardless of the model you pick. You also get a dual-core Intel Core i5 processor if you go with the base configuration. This, of course, can be customized to a Core i7 if you like. The same can be said for RAM. You get 8GB of RAM as standard, but 16GB option is available pre-sales.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro, particularly the one without a touch bar, is priced reasonably well. While it may not be as powerful as Windows laptops within the same price range, you get the smoothness of MacOS and a terminal that actually works for coding and programming.
Lenovo ThinkPad T480
The Lenovo ThinkPad line is another series of laptops that is immensely popular among developers. ThinkPad laptops are known for their durability and their understated look, making them perfect for developers who want a machine without extra bells and whistles acting as distractions.
The ThinkPad T480 comes with the latest Intel Core i7-8550U. It is a low-voltage processor, but you can handle advanced coding and reading Liberian Geek tutorials at the same time without worrying about processing power.
The keyboard of the ThinkPad T480 is also very comfortable for typing. You get the classic ThinkPad nipple – which some really like – but you also get a fully-functional trackpad with gestures and a very smooth surface.
The only thing different with this ThinkPad is its price. With GeForce MX150 discrete graphics, ThinkPad T480 is a bit expensive at just under $1,700. It is also priced too close to the more refined ThinkPad T480s with its cleaner design, double the RAM, and improved screen.
Asus Zenbook UX430
The last laptop on our list is the Asus Zenbook UX430. This laptop falls into the thin-and-light category, so it is very compact and light. It uses the same 8th gen Intel Core i7-8550U and GeForce MX150, but in a smaller, more streamlined body design.
The laptop is not only thin and light, but durable as well. It is very well-built, and it offers a nice balance between a good keyboard, capable trackpad, and essential ports. The only downside to this laptop is its hinge, which only folds to 140 degrees. In some situations, the limited hinge movement can make working on this laptop, especially over an extended period of time, rather uncomfortable.
Which of these laptops do you find most attractive? Do you have your own recommended laptops for coding? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the Comments section below.