Anyone who undertakes a journey with the goal of photographing on the go does not get around a laptop sooner or later. Of course, it can be liberating to travel without much technology. And with smartphones and tablets, certain things can be done pretty well today. However, if you (like me) work while traveling, writing texts or editing photos, you will appreciate the advantages of a laptop. This article gives an overview of the best (as of 2020) best laptops for travelers .

What makes a good travel laptop?

What exactly characterizes a good travel laptop? The following requirements should be met by a laptop when traveling as a minimum criteria:

  • Low weight (maximum 2 kg)
  • Screen diagonal between 11 and 15 inches (smaller are no longer useful for office activities and larger too heavy to transport)
  • Screen resolution at least Full HD (1920x1080px)
  • Current processor
  • At least 4 GB of RAM

In addition, it should be possible to charge the laptop via USB-C port . Why this is an invaluable advantage when traveling, I explain in this post.

Laptop recommendations for the trip

Of course, each has different uses and requirements in detail and weight the criteria differently, so it can not give the best travel laptop.


Cheap and lightweight laptops for office and internet

In most cases, it does not have to be an expensive high-end device. Who travels and on the way z. For example, if you want to keep your friends and relatives up-to-date with a personal blog and save a few photos from the camera, but still want to take more than one tablet, just about any current entry-level laptop is enough. Important in this case should be primarily a favorable purchase price, a low weight and the smallest possible pack size . A smooth operation for office software, data management and internet use is sufficient.

Mandatory requirementsTarget requirements
Screen size 11-13 “Weight less than 1.5 kgPrice under 300 euros / 700 eurosi5 processor4 GB RAMFlash memory or HDDDisplay with Full HDUSB C-store

Top 3 laptops for office and internet in the range up to 300 €

If you are looking for the cheapest and smallest laptop possible, you will find it best with the Asus VivoBook E12 *. For well under 300 euros you get here a device that can attract attention with less than a kilogram weight and sufficient performance for office activities. The integrated flash memory is also sufficient for many photo memories. The Vivobook E12 offers a wide variety of connections, but the card reader is only suitable for micro SD cards.

A very similar model is the Acer Spin 1 *, which can also be used as a convertible in tablet mode. With just under 300 euros, he is a little more expensive. Lenovo’s Lenovo IdeaPad S130 * also comes with a model that is essentially the same as the other two, priced between the Vivobook and the Spin.

Top 3 Convertibles (Focus Price)

For just 400 euros you get with the Asus VivoBook Flip * an excellent 14 “convertible. Depending on the size of the hard disk and the processor, it is already available from around 400 euros and has all the important connections, including even a full-fledged SD card reader. The USB charging is also supported. If more performance is required, the device can be equipped with more powerful components.

With a good 500 euros, the Acer Spin 1 2-in-1 * is slightly more expensive than the Asus model, but comparably equipped on the component side. The only pity is that Acer relies on a proprietary charging port and charging via USB is therefore not supported.

If you are looking for a device for Google’s Chrome operating system, you will find it on the Acer Chromebook R13 *. At 1.5 kg, the 13 “laptop is not a lightweight, but has all the important ports and can be charged via USB. Depending on the size of the hard disk and the processor, the model is already available for 400 euros but can be configured much more powerful if required.

Top 3 Convertibles (Focus Performance)

If the price is not the limiting factor and the focus is more on performance, then the Dell XPS13 2-in-1 is the clear recommendation for the convertibles. The device is not only ultra-compact and very light at 1.2 kg. It also has all the prerequisites to be equipped for multimedia tasks with the current Intel processors of the 8th generation. The grandiose 4K display in 13 “format and good color space coverage of the sRGB and AdobeRGB standards extend the application possibilities to professional image processing. Only the connectivity is to complain about because Dell relies exclusively on USB-C inputs. After all, the XPS13 can also be charged over it.

The slightly cheaper Lenovo Yoga 720 * falls into the same category. This can also be charged via USB-C, but also has a classic USB-A input. The device is slightly larger than the XPS13 and in terms of display, the Yoga 720 cannot keep up, but the performance is comparable thanks to the same processor.

A similar model is the HP Specter x360 *. The connection side is equipped like the Lenovo Yoga 720 and also moves with a weight of 1.3 kg in the same region. The price, the HP calls but is a bit higher with comparable equipment.


Portable laptops for (simple) image editing and video editing

If you need more power (eg for photo and video editing) but do not want to do without compact dimensions and low weight , you can look forward to performance-optimized ultrabooks. These are no bigger or heavier than the entry-level laptops and convertibles, but have more to offer under the hood. Of course, they are much more expensive for that.

If you want to edit photos or videos on the go on a compact device, you need a fast processor, at least 8 GB of RAM and a fast SSD hard disk . A screen with the best possible color space coverage of the RGB standard or the Adobe RGB standard is also one of the must-have requirements. A screen size of 13-14 inches on the one hand allows for compact dimensions, but on the other hand offers quite enough space for multimedia editing. If possible, especially when using the video editing a dedicated graphics card should support the internal GPU of the processor.

Mandatory requirementsTarget requirements
i7 processor8-16 GB of RAMSSDGood IPS display with Full HDScreen size 13 “-14”Dedicated graphics card with 2 GBWeight less than 1.5 kgUSB C-store

Top 3 portable laptops for multimedia

Probably the best combination of performance and portability is the Huawei Matebook X Pro*, which is therefore by a long way in first place in this category. Just 1.3 kilos weighs the device, which has an excellent display with 3K resolution and very thin screen edges. That’s why Huawei also manages to accommodate a 14 “display in a 13” case. In addition, the display covers large areas of the sRGB and AdobeRGB color space. Also in terms of performance, the device is ahead of the competition thanks to a dedicated graphics card with 2 GB. Only the connections are a bit short, so you can not get around a (included) adapter. The laptop can be charged with any popular charger that supports USB Power Delivery. For photographers and videographers who rely on the lightweight,

Once again a good deal smaller is the Dell XPS13 *. This also has an excellent display with narrow edges of the screen and is thus even more compact than the Matebook X Pro. The device weighs just 1.2 kg and has the best battery life in this category across all models. Even if the processor and memory match the configuration of the Matebook X Pro, the performance of graphics-intensive applications drops. This is due to the fact that Dell, unfortunately, did not donate a dedicated graphics card to the XPS13, which is why it relies on the internal solution of the processor. For those who do not want to do 4K video editing, the performance of the XPS13 should be enough.

Apple also offers the Apple Macbook Pro 13 * an equal device in this segment. The model corresponds in many parts to the Dell XPS13 but is not quite so compact. On the connection side, Apple relies exclusively on USB-C ports. As a result, the device can be charged via USB, just like the XPS13, but appropriate adapters are required to connect almost all peripheral devices.

Other portable laptops for multimedia

The Asus ZenBook 14 * lands just short of the podium. The model is slightly larger than those mentioned, but like the Huawei Matebook X Pro offers a dedicated graphics card and is thus also interesting for multimedia buyers. The lack of charging via USB-C makes it less suitable for travelers.


High end laptops for digital nomads and professional users

Anyone earning their money traveling or traveling will be willing to sacrifice the price and size of the laptop. Of course, small laptops are advantageous when traveling, but if you want to work on it seriously and for a long time, you will not want to miss a 15 “display in the long run. Digital nomads, the z. For example, traveling as a designer, programmer or photographer requires a good, large display and a lot of processing power under the hood. Nevertheless, the device should still be reasonably portable and not a rock in the backpack.

Especially for professional image and video editing is recommended a device with a fast i7 processor, at least 16 GB of memory (for 4K video editing the minimum), large SSD hard drive and dedicated graphics card with at least 4 GB. Nevertheless, the laptop should weigh a maximum of about 2 kg to meet its purpose in travel.

Mandatory requirementsTarget requirements
i7 processor16 GB of RAMSSDGood IPS display with Full HD or 4KScreen size 15 “Dedicated graphics card with 4 GBWeight less than 2 kgUSB C-store

Top 3 laptops for digital nomads

In first place it manages the Lenovo X1 Extreme with some distance from the competition*. The device features an eighth H-series i7 processor, and the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti has a dedicated 4GB graphics card and a fast 512GB SSD. The memory can be extended up to 32 GB. Thus, the X1 Extreme has an excellent performance, even for intensive applications such as 4K video editing. The outstanding 4K display with nearly 100% sRGB color space coverage also pays off. At only 1.8 kg, the X1 Extreme also weighs noticeably less than its direct competitors. On the connection side, all important ports are available for photographers, including a fully-fledged SD card reader. A Thunderbolt 3 is also on board, over which the laptop can also charge. Only the high price is a bit daunting.

The Dell XPS15 * can advertise almost the same internal values. Dell offers the model in different configurations, the overall price is slightly cheaper than the Lenovo X1 Extreme. Only the weight of 2 kg is slightly higher than the direct competitor. But the housing is visibly smaller, which is made possible by the very narrow display edges. Overall, both devices are comparable. Because of the higher weight, the XPS15 manages only second place. Incidentally, the model is also available as a convertible. However, this version has only USB-C ports and therefore makes a lot of adapters necessary.

Of course, the classic among multimedia laptops is still a Macbook from Apple. Many creatives rely on the products of the American manufacturer and so is the Apple Macbook Pro 15* an integral part of the list of the best laptops for digital nomads. Choosing a particular operating system is always a landmark decision that is no better or worse. The fact that the Macbook lands here only in third place, is due to the poorer connection variety (excluding USB-C) and the significantly higher price. Depending on the configuration, the Macbook Pro 15 is equal to the other featured models. However, one must already decide when buying a hard disk and memory size, since Apple soldered all components firmly. A subsequent upgrade or exchange are therefore unfortunately not readily possible.