2024 best laptops for programming and coding

Top Laptops for Coding in 2024: Your Easy Guide to Powerful Picks!

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the best laptops for programming, where high-performance, typing comfort, and portability take center stage. As experts in the field, we understand the critical role a laptop plays in a programmer’s workflow, requiring a fast processor, high-capacity SSD, and ample RAM. In this guide, we’ll explore the top choices across various categories, ensuring you find the perfect match for your coding needs.

Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch
Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch


  • CPU: Apple M2 Pro 10-core – M2 Max 12-core
  • Graphics: Integrated 16-core – 30-core GPU
  • RAM: Up to 96GB
  • Screen: 14.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR display
  • Storage: Up to 8TB

Reasons to Buy

  • New M2 Pro and M2 Max chips
  • Almost 20-hour battery life
  • The best screen on a laptop

Reasons to Avoid

  • Screen may be a bit small for some
  • Expensive

The Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch (2023) stands as a powerhouse for both creative workflows and programming tasks. Fueled by the M2 chip, it boasts breathtaking power, an impressive battery life, and a cutting-edge XDR display with 1600 nits of peak brightness. Despite its smaller screen, it excels in delivering optimal performance for complex workloads.

If the MacBook Pro 14-inch proves to be overkill, the MacBook Air (M1 or M2) remains a stellar choice, especially for those not pushing the laptop to its limits.

Best for Windows: Dell XPS 15 (2022)

Dell-XPS-15 - Best Laptop for Coding and Programming


  • CPU: Intel Core i7-12700H
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti Mobile
  • RAM: 16GB DDR5
  • Screen: 15.6-inch 3.5K OLED, 400 nits
  • Storage: 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD

Reasons to Buy

  • Gorgeous design
  • Powerful performance
  • Outstanding battery life

Reasons to Avoid

  • Limited connectivity options
  • Price soars with better specs

Described as “laptop perfection,” the Dell XPS 15 (2022) impresses with its sleek design, robust performance, and exceptional battery life. Powered by 12th-gen Intel chips and RTX 3050 Ti graphics, this Windows laptop is a joy to use. However, its limited connectivity may necessitate a separate docking station for multiple devices.

For an alternative, consider the 2023 model, although it falls slightly short compared to its predecessor.

Best Surface: Microsoft Surface Pro 9 5G

Microsoft Surface Pro 9 5G
Microsoft Surface Pro 9 5G



  • CPU: 12th Gen Intel Core i5 – Microsoft SQ 3
  • Graphics: Intel Xe Graphics – Microsoft SQ 3 Adreno 8CX Gen 3
  • RAM: 8GB – 32GB
  • Screen: 13-inch 2880 x 1920 PixelSense Flow Display
  • Storage: 128GB – 1TB removable SSD

Reasons to Buy

  • Big responsive screen
  • Built-in 5G option
  • Faster processors

Reasons to Avoid

  • ARM introduces compatibility issues
  • Extra cost for essential peripherals

Microsoft’s Surface Pro 9 5G caters to the mobile programmer, offering a slimline design, built-in 5G connectivity, and the power of the new Windows 11 operating system. While the custom ARM chip may limit some app compatibility, the CPU and RAM ensure smooth performance for programming tasks. Consider this a top choice for on-the-go professionals.

Best Portable: Apple MacBook Air (M2, 2022)

Apple MacBook Air (M2, 2022)
Apple MacBook Air (M2, 2022)


  • CPU: Apple M2 (8-core)
  • Graphics: Integrated 10-core GPU
  • RAM: 16GB Unified LPDDR5
  • Screen: 13.6-inch, 2560 x 1664 Liquid Retina display
  • Storage: 1TB SSD

Reasons to Buy

  • Great new design
  • Very good performance
  • Long battery life
  • Larger screen

Reasons to Avoid

  • Higher price than previous model
  • New colors are a bit tame

For those valuing portability, the Apple MacBook Air (M2, 2022) is an excellent choice. Its slimline design, powered by the impressive M2 chip, delivers optimal performance and a prolonged battery life. The larger, brighter screen and sleek design make it an upgrade from its predecessor, the MacBook Pro 13in. While not the most budget-friendly option, the premium performance and aesthetics justify the price.

Best Large Screen: Alienware m17 R5 AMD Advantage

Front and Back look of Alienware M15 R7 which is the best gaming laptop for most players
Alienware M15 R7: Best Gaming Laptop for Most Players



  • CPU: Octa-core AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX 3.3GHz
  • Graphics: 12GB AMD Radeon RX 6850M XT (discrete), AMD Radeon 680M (integrated)
  • RAM: 32GB DDR5 @ 4800MHz
  • Screen: 17.3” 3840 x 2160, 120Hz, 3ms refresh
  • Storage: 1TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD

Reasons to Buy

  • Pin-sharp design with clever cooling
  • Fantastic performance
  • Excellent, generous screen

Reasons to Avoid

  • AMD Advantage spec is quite pricey
  • Slightly limited battery when gaming
  • Heavy, bulky chassis

When a large screen is a priority, the Alienware m17 R5 AMD Advantage excels. Tailored for gamers, it boasts top-end specs perfect for programming tasks. With a well-constructed chassis, clever cooling, and stunning design, it delivers a superior performance. While its weight may be a trade-off for the expansive display, the focus on performance makes it a top choice for coding without compromises.

Best Workstation: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen4
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen4


  • CPU: Up to 8th-generation Intel Core i7
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti with Max-Q design
  • RAM: Up to 64GB
  • Screen: 15.6” FHD – 15.6” 4K UHD HDR multi-touch
  • Storage: Up to 1TB SSD

Reasons to Buy

  • Extreme mobile workstation
  • Multiple configuration options
  • Robust carbon-fiber and aluminum package

Reasons to Avoid

  • More power than some users need
  • Heavy
  • Battery life could be better

For those seeking an unstoppable workhorse, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme stands out as the best laptop for programming. With various configuration options and a robust build, it caters to professionals demanding power and reliability. While it comes with a price tag, the performance justifies the investment, making it a top choice for serious programmers.

Best Chromebook: HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook

HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook
HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook


  • CPU: Intel Core i5-1245U with vPro
  • Graphics: Intel Iris Xe
  • RAM: 8GB LPDDR4x-4266
  • Screen: 13.5-inch QHD+ display
  • Storage: 128–512GB

Reasons to Buy

  • Outstanding performance
  • Optional security features
  • Beautiful display

Reasons to Avoid

  • Very expensive for a Chromebook
  • Enterprise security is a premium feature

For an enterprise-level Chromebook tailored for programming, the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook takes the lead. Boasting impressive performance, a sleek design, and enterprise-grade security features, it stands out as a phenomenal choice for programmers. While the price may be on the higher side, the raw power and additional security make it an invaluable asset for business-oriented coding tasks.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a programming laptop?
A programming laptop is designed for rapid, consistent code testing, featuring impressive processors, ample RAM, a quality keyboard, and high-speed storage. These components ensure optimal performance for coding tasks, making them essential for programmers.

Do you need a powerful laptop for programming?
While programming is possible on medium to slower devices, a powerful laptop can significantly enhance a programmer’s experience. High-powered machines with robust processors, ample RAM, and efficient storage speed contribute to smoother and faster coding workflows.

In conclusion, choosing the right laptop for programming is a crucial decision that depends on individual preferences and requirements. The diverse options presented in this guide cater to various needs, ensuring that you find the perfect companion for your coding journey. Happy coding!