Best lightweight laptops 2019: get the best ultraportable laptop

Whether you want the best small laptop, or the best portable laptop, or the best thin laptop, we're here to help

Huawei MateBook X Pro best ultraportable laptops best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

There are few things better in our mind than a beautifully designed and powerful laptop – ultraportable, if you will – and that's an opinion shared by many. In 2019, there has basically never been a better time to get into the market and we've compiled a guide of the best ultraportables around.

To help you make an informed decision when you buy your first – or next – ultraportable, we've curated the best deals from across the web for the best hardware around. There are so many options to choose from, it's often not easy to see just how they differ from one another, so we've broken down their benefits and features below.

From the brilliant newcomers from Huawei – including the MakeBook X Pro and the MateBook 13 – to the still superb HP Spectre 13 and the excellent and newly updated Dell XPS 13, the sheer choice at either end of the market is staggering. Whatever you requirements and budget, there's an ultraportable laptop that's poised to entice you. 

How to choose the best lightweight laptop for you

Going for a super-thin, feather-light ultrabook is perfect for anyone who doesn't want the heft of a traditional laptop, but at the same time can't stand the idea of tapping out emails on a tablet or a phone.

The appearance of Chromebooks at the £200 mark (or even lower) has forced other laptops down in price too, so you can pick up some of the world's best thin and ultraportable laptops at prices that are really something – especially if you keep your eyes on the sales that are regularly appearing.

Bear in mind that It's not just a laptop's weight that's important – these super-portable laptops need to look good too. 

As such, all the lightweight laptops listed here in our curated best ultraportable laptop guide for 2019 deliver on the specs front and score highly in the appearance department too. All-metal constructions, wafer-thin form factors and internals that can rapidly take care of demanding tasks are the order of the day.

As you may have noticed, we're not fans of slow, poorly made technology here at T3, so you can be confident that these really are the best lightweight laptops and best compact laptops for speed, style and quality you can get in 2019.

And so without any further ado, these are the best ultraportable and lightweight laptops on the market today. Happy shopping!

The best lightweight laptops and ultraportable laptops available in 2019

Best lightweight laptops 2019

With a variety of configurations on offer, the Huawei Matebook 13 is a really impressive ultrabook for the laptop connoisseur.

(Image credit: Huawei)

1. Huawei Matebook 13

A must-have ultrabook in 2019

CPU: 8th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620; Nvidia GeForce MX150 (optional)
Screen: 13.3-inch 2K (2,560 x 1,440; touch)
Storage: 256GB – 512GB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Powerful upgrade from Matebook X Pro+Surprisingly robust GPU+Affordable considering specs

Huawei continues to show the world it's playing for keeps in the ultrabook market, following on from the sublime success of the Matebook X Pro comes the even more impressive Matebook 13. With a meaty 8th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7 CPU and a powerful Nvidia GeForce MX150 (which is a surprisingly compete GPU for an ultrabook this thin), you can be sure you're getting a performance powerhouse.

With plenty of options to upgrade and customise your Huawei Matebook 13 (including the above GPU), you can make this already knock-out ultrabook even must-have. Prices do vary depending on your chose configuration, but even the base model represents one of the best thin laptops you can own right now.

Huawei MateBook X Pro best ultraportable laptops best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

The Huawei MateBook X Pro is the overall best lightweight laptop in the world today.

2. Huawei MateBook X Pro

The overall best lightweight laptop in the world

CPU: 8th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce MX150 (2GB), Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB – 16GB
Screen: 13.3-inch 3K (3,000 x 2,000; touch)
Storage: 256GB – 512GB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Super performance+Lush, modern design
Reasons to avoid
-No SD card slot

We loved the Huawei MateBook X Pro the moment we saw it, thanks to its absolutely luxe chassis, clever in-keyboard pop-up camera, and MacBook Pro-slaying internal hardware. 

The fact that the MateBook X Pro also comes with a quality 3K touchscreen and only weighs 1.33 kilograms makes it clearly one of the best ultraportable laptops and best small laptops on the market today.

It's not cheap, but as it retains the traditional laptop design (with no removable screens or on-trend 360-degree hinges), the MateBook X Pro still rings in far cheaper than, say, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 – and that means it hits the premium, high-end sweet spot that a lot of people are in the market for. Simply put, the best ultrabook of 2019.

Dell XPS 13

The Dell XPS 13 is great option for anyone looking for one of the best ultraportable laptops on the market.

3. Dell XPS 13

A superb all-round system and one of the best lightweight laptops going

CPU: 1.8GHz Intel Core i7-8550U (quad-core, 8MB cache, up to 4.0GHz)
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620
RAM: 16GB DDR3 (2,133MHz)
Screen: 13.3-inch, Ultra HD (3,840 x 2,160) UltraSharp InfinityEdge touch display
Storage: 1TB PCIe SSD
Reasons to buy
+Gorgeous 4K display+Lightweight, compact design+Quality internal spec
Reasons to avoid
-White version costs more

We've been huge fans of the Dell XPS 13 laptop series down the years and, unsurprisingly, this year's iteration is the best one yet. There weren't many changes, but the webcam placement was finally fixed.

You also get a super-thin, super-powerful machine with the option of a 4K screen, and hardly any bezels to speak of. It manages to look cool and breeze effortlessly through the most demanding of tasks.

This is a superb all-round ultraportable laptop that's easy to recommend – it's the lightweight laptop that just keeps getting better.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 13

best ultraportable laptop HP Spectre 13 best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

If you're looking for one of the best small laptops available today that features premium build quality, then the HP Spectre 13 will not disappoint.

4. HP Spectre 13

The best lightweight, ultraportable laptop for those content with 1080p

CPU: 2.5GHz Intel Core i7-6500U (dual-core, 4MB cache, up to 3.1GHz with Turbo Boost
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520
Screen: 13.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 FHD IPS UWVA BrightView Corning Gorilla Glass WLED-backlit display
Storage: 256GB SSD (PCIe; NVMe; M.2)
Reasons to buy
+Sleek and lightweight+Tactile keyboard+Premium HP build quality
Reasons to avoid
-Only 1080p display

HP's most luxurious laptop borrows the Lenovo Yoga 900S's style and the MacBook's bag-friendly dimensions. The Spectre 13 is so thin that tapping away on its tactile keyboard almost feels like your fingers are tap-dancing on the table.

Its biggest advantage over the MacBook is its Intel Core-series processor inside, which lends it the winning combination of dazzling looks and computing muscle.

Packing three USB-C ports for hooking up peripherals (note that you'll need a converter to use your old USB-A ones), the Spectre 13 doesn't just look like a laptop from the future – it has one eye trained on it too. Undoubtedly one of the best lightweight laptops you can buy in 2019.

Read the full review: HP Spectre 13

Apple MacBook Air

Mac fans should look no further than the Apple MacBook Air for an ultraportable laptop in 2019.

5. Apple MacBook Air

The best light laptop for Apple lovers

CPU: 1.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 617
RAM: 8GB to 16GB
Screen: 13.3-inch 2,560 x 1,600 pixel-resolution Retina display
Storage: 128GB to 1.5TB SSD
Connectivity: 2 x Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C
Camera: 720p FaceTime camera
Weight: 0.92 kg
Dimensions: 30.41cm x 21.24cm x 1.56cm (W x D x H)
Reasons to buy
+Thin and light+Sharp Retina display+Apple build quality
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive storage upgrades-Shallow keyboard

After years of neglect, the MacBook Air line got relaunched in late 2018, and this model is just about as fine an ultraportable as you could hope to find. The bright 2560x1600 display isn't class-leading for resolution, but it's more than sharp and clear enough to work on, edit photos or watch videos. The stereo speaker system is impressively wide and full, too.

It uses Apple's shallow keyboard, which some people don't like the feel of, though we don't mind it at all. More concerning are the reliability problems some people have had with this kind of keyboard – we haven't encountered issues, and this third-gen version is supposed to be improved, but it's important to note.

There's a reasonable amount of power for working thanks to the dual-core 8th-generation Intel chip, helped hugely by Apple's fastest-in-class storage, which makes everything open instantly. It only comes with 128GB of storage, though, and an upgrade to 256GB costs an extra £200, which is pretty steep.

You get Apple's Touch ID fingerprint system for security, including a T2 chip that keeps your files extra secure. The two USB-C ports on outside double up as Thunderbolt 3 ports, which makes this impressively expandable – you could even add an external GPU for gaming.

It's a great all-round package, and sure to appeal to the ultralight laptop lovers out there – especially if macOS is your operating system of choice.

Find out how the MacBook Air matches up against the iPad Pro

best ultraportable laptop Asus Zenbook UX310 best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

The budget friendly Asus ZenBook UX310 is the best small laptop for those shopping with around £600 to spend.

6. Asus ZenBook UX310

The best lightweight laptop for those looking for a top ultrabook on a budget

CPU: Intel Core i3 – Core i7
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620
RAM: 4GB – 16GB
Screen: 13.3-inch, FHD (1,920 x 1,080) – QHD+ (3,200 x 1,800)
Storage: 500GB – 1TB HDD; 500GB – 1TB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Brilliant anti-glare display+Another thin design from Asus
Reasons to avoid
-GPU isn't knockout, even for an ultrabook

Asus' entry-level offering, the ZenBook UX310, is a mixed bag of a device, but one that's still going to hold up to most tasks. That 13.3-inch FHD display (with anti-glare properties, naturally) makes this great for use outdoors, as does the impressively svelte design ethos you've come to expect from Asus.

That Intel HD Graphics 620 doesn't provide the beefiest of graphical performance, but then again this is an ultrabook you can largely pick up below £500. At that price it's a cutback we can accept, considering the strengths of its 13.3-inch display and the lovely thin and lightweight build that goes along with it.

Microsoft Surface Book 2 best ultraportable laptop best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

If you've got a large budget to play and want one of the best ultraportable laptops on the market today with 2-in-1 functionality, then the Surface Book 2 is the best-in-class option.

7. Microsoft Surface Book 2

The best lightweight laptop if you need premium hybrid functionality

CPU: 1.9GHz Intel Core i7-8650U (quad-core, 8MB cache, up to 4.2GHz with Turbo Boost)
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620; Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB GDDR5 VRAM)
RAM: 16GB LPDDR3 (1866Mhz)
Screen: 15-inch, 3,240 x 2,160 (260 ppi) PixelSense display (3:2 aspect ratio; 1600:1 contrast ratio)
Storage: 512 GB PCIe 3.0 SSD
Reasons to buy
+All-round powerhouse+Top rate battery life+Excellent screen
Reasons to avoid
-Grey finish is uninspiring-Costs a lot of cash

If you want absolutely massive ultraportable power then you should definitely consider the Microsoft Surface Book 2. It remains one of the best lightweight laptops money can buy in 2019.

The second edition of this ultra-premium (and ultra-expensive) 2-in-1 laptop-tablet is a marked improvement in every respect, with a suite of powerful internal hardware components including an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 GPU, a stunning 15-inch 3,240 x 2,160 resolution display, and excellent battery life combining to deliver a superb all-round computing package.

You don't get a stylus included to full make the most of the device in tablet mode, but if you can stretch to the Surface Book 2's very high price point, then you can probably spend a little extra to complete the dream setup.

Read the full review: Microsoft Surface Book 2

Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 best lightweight laptops 2019

Microsoft Surface Laptop 2

8. Microsoft Surface Laptop 2

The best lightweight laptop if portability is more important than power

CPU: 8th-gen Intel Core i5 or i7
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB or 16GB
Screen: 13.5-inch, 2256 x 1504 (261 ppi) PixelSense display (3:2 aspect ratio)
Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB or 1TB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Plenty of power available+A range of appealing colours+Long-lasting battery
Reasons to avoid
-Not as versatile as the Surface Book 2

For our second Microsoft entry in this list of the best lightweight laptops of 2019 we've gone for the Surface Laptop 2. It's a little more compact and svelte than the Surface Book 2, but doesn't carry quite the same performance oomph – so it really depends what you're prioritising.

You don't get that clever detachable screen either, and there's no discrete GPU as there is on the Surface Book 2, but not everyone needs one. For everyday laptop tasks in a small and light form, the Surface Laptop 2 is ideal – aside from the graphics, the internal specs are very similar.

Razer Blade Stealth best lightweight laptop

The Razer Blade Stealth packs a gaming punch while keeping light and svelte.

9. Razer Blade Stealth

The best lightweight laptop for gamers

CPU: 8th-gen 1.9GHz Intel Core i7-8565U (quad-core, 8MB cache, up to 4.6GHz with Turbo Boost)
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620; Nvidia GeForce MX 150 (4GB GDDR5 VRAM)
RAM: 8GB-16GB LPDDR3 (2,133Mhz)
Screen: 13.3-inch up to 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution
Storage: up to 512GB PCIe M2
Reasons to buy
+Packed with some high-end components+A wealth of customisation options
Reasons to avoid
-This one's going to cost you

If you're happy to sacrifice a little bit of thinness and lightness for some extra gaming power, then the Razer Blade Stealth might well be the best lightweight laptop for you in 2019. With an 8th-gen Intel Core i7 processor, up to 16GB of RAM, the option of a 4K screen and an Nvidia GeForce MX150 under the hood, it's going to offer decent performance on even the most demanding games.

This being a Razer laptop, it comes packed with extra touches for gamers (like customised keyboard lighting and immersive audio), and offers a build quality that puts a lot of laptop makers to shame. You'll have to pay a premium for this, but it's worth it.

best ultraportable laptop Lenovo Yoga 920

The Lenovo Yoga 920 has a lot going for it as one of the best lightweight ultraportable laptops around.

10. Lenovo Yoga 920

The best ultraportable laptop if you need a 2-in-1 but can't stretch to the Surface Book 2

CPU: 8th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB – 16GB
Screen: 13.9-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) – UHD (3,840 x 2,160)
Storage: 256GB – 1TB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Gorgeous display+Quality internal hardware+Top sound quality
Reasons to avoid
-Lacks graphical power-Fans can be loud

If you're all about style and want very competitive power to back it up, things don't get much better than Lenovo's hot Yoga 920 hybrid as far as the best lightweight laptops of 2019 are concerned.

The specs are top rate – with 8th-gen Intel Core processors partnered with up to a 4K UHD touchscreen display and spacious 1TB SSD – while the design is thin, attractive and light (1.37kg), and the price is affordable.

Okay, the Yoga 920 isn't a graphical powerhouse, but providing you aren't banking on the system to play demanding PC games or do heavy video editing then it's pretty much the ideal 2-in-1 hybrid.

Acer Swift 7 best ultraportable laptop best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

Need maximum compactness in your laptop? Then the Acer Swift 7 is the best light laptop for you thanks to its remarkable thinness.

11. Acer Swift 7

In terms of thinness, the best compact laptop on the market today

CPU: Intel Core i5-7Y54
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615
Screen: 13.3-inch FHD 1,920 x 1,080
Storage: 256GB SATA SSD
Reasons to buy
+Impressively thin build+Strong battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Very expensive for an ultrabook

Acer has laid claim to the 'thinnest ultabook' mantle for a while now with its ever-svelte Swift range, and the latest addition is the slightest one it's released yet. The computer is a gorgeous-looking piece of kit, and you'll barely notice you're even carrying it.

With an LTE modem and fingerprint scanner on board as well, this is a laptop that's got plenty going for it – and one that's absolutely worth a spot on our best lightweight laptop list.

There are some concessions to talk about though. To get a device this thin, Acer has had to stick with much older components, and the result is a CPU and GPU that are going to struggle to hold a torch to ultrabooks with far more agreeable price points.

Asus ZenBook 3 best lightweight laptops best thin laptop best small laptop best portable laptop best compact laptops

If you want MacBook-style aesthetics but the Windows 10 OS then the Asus ZenBook 3 is the best ultraportable laptop going right now.

12. Asus ZenBook 3

MacBook aesthetics, but better than MacBook internals

CPU: Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620
Screen: 12.5-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080)
Storage: 512GB SATA SSD
Reasons to buy
+Impressive nano edge display+True thin and lightweight build
Reasons to avoid
-Port selection is underwhelming

Asus really isn't messing around with the ZenBook 3. With one of the best looking designs on this list, the model nails the ultrabook aesthetic with elegance, and adds a lightweight construction that is normally the preserve of Apple.

It's one of the most powerful ultrabooks Asus has entered into the market, and it's only held back by a wishy-washy keyboard and a surprisingly spartan approach to ports. 

Still, for the price, you're getting a thin laptop that rise to any challenge you throw at it. If you love the Apple MacBook look but really prefer Windows as your OS, this really is the best lightweight laptop and best ultraportable laptop you can pick up right now.

Best ultrabooks 2019

Google's elite laptop might just be the one for you.

(Image credit: Google)

13. Google Pixelbook

The most expensive Chromebook out there is also the best.

CPU: 7th-gen Intel Core i5 and i7
RAM: 8GB or 16GB
Screen: 12.3-inch 2,400x1,600 LCD
Storage: 128GB, 256GB or 512GB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Lovely hardware+Long-lasting battery life+Simple operating system

Google has been working hard on its hardware design for some time now and the pinnacle of those efforts is the Pixelbook, the most elite Chromebook around that serves as an example of how it should be done. The 12.3-inch device can be used in three different configurations – laptop, tablet, and somewhere in between – meaning it's very versatile. Weighing in at 1.1kg, it's also not heavy and will easily fit into your bag.

Besides the beautiful hardware, as the name suggests, the Pixelbook runs Chrome OS, the desktop version of the Chrome operating system, and that entails certain limitations compared to macOS and Windows. For most users, however, this is unlikely to be a problem, especially those who are wedded to their browsers. 

The price of the machine – starting at £999 and working up to £1,699 – is not for the faint of heart, too, but it is a really beautiful thing.