Top Windows 10-powered alternatives to the MacBook Pro (Winter 2016)
Dell XPS 13
Probably the laptop that most closely resembles the MacBook Pro is Dell's XPS 13. OK, you don't get a Touch Bar, but you do get a couple of things that Apple doesn't offer:
- - 7th generation "Kaby Lake" Intel Core processors (a generation ahead of what Apple has to offer)
- - A whole range of ports, from an SD Card slot to USB 3.0 and USB-C ports
I think that it's also fair to say that Dell's XPS 13 is affordable -- a 13.3-inch system running an Intel Core i3 with 4GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD costs $800.
HP Spectre X360
Here's another Windows 10 laptop that is built around Apple's "thin and light" mantra, yet manages to offer up to 15 hours of battery life (in the real world this translates to something closer to 12 hours, but that's still pretty good) and a system that can easily convert from a laptop to a tablet thanks to its ingenious hinge.
A 13.3-inch system kitted out with a 6th generation Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD starts at $900.
Microsoft Surface Book
If you've got deep pockets, then Microsoft's recently refreshed Surface Book is a system well worth taking a look at.
You get everything that you'd expect from a high-end system -- plenty of ports, a claimed 16 hours of battery life, an SD card slot, and Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M graphics chip powering the graphics.
There's as a stylus and touchscreen display for those who are artistic or just like jabbing at things with their fingers.
But as I've already said it's not cheap -- a 13.5-inch system equipped with a 6th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSD will set you back a cool $2,400.
Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Yoga
This is one of those laptops I keep coming back to. Not the best or the cheapest, but a solid laptop that has plenty of power to get the job done, and there's an optional touch-sensitive OLED display that's very easy on the eyes.
A 14-inch non-OLED system powered by a 6th-generation Intel Core i5 chip, 8GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD costs $1,549.
Microsoft Surface Pro 4
OK, technically this is a hybrid, and it's a bit tricky to use on a lap, but for for portable power, the Surface Pro 4 is hard to beat. Unfortunately, while the Surface Pro 4 comes with a stylus, the Type Cover keyboard is an optional extra, adding an extra $130 to the price.
An Intel Core m3 system with 4GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD costs $900 (excluding Type Cover keyboard), but I'd recommend spending an additional $100 and getting the 6th generation Intel Core i5 model.
Origin PC Eon17-SLX
If power is what you want, then power is what you'll get -- along with an eye-watering price tag!
The Origin PC Eon17-SLX is less a laptop and more a high-end, VR-ready desktop gaming PC that happens to fold closed.
What you get is incredible. At the cheap end of the spectrum, $2,351 gets you a 17.3-inch 1,920 x 1,080 display, an Intel Core i5 6500, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, a single Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 GPU with 8GB of RAM, and a 120GB SSD.
A fully kitted-out system, with a 17.3-inch 3840 x 2160 display, Intel Core i7 6700K CPU, 64GB of RAM, Dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 with 8GB of RAM, a pair of 512GB Samsung 950 Pro PCIe NVMe m.2 drives along with another pair of 2TB Samsung 850 Pro Series SSDs, breaks the $7,500 barrier.