Choosing a new laptop, whether it's for work, home or going back to school, isn't an easy decision, but CNET's list of the best laptops for 2022 is a great place to start with our top picks across brands, operating systems, budgets and categories. Many of the models from 2021 have been updated for 2022 with the latest chips from Intel, AMD and Apple's new M2 chips.
What is the best laptop?
The Apple MacBook Air M2 is currently our top laptop choice for most people. It offers a great combination of everything we look for when we're testing: reliable everyday performance, long battery life and a design that works for a broad range of users. The latest MacBook Air starts at $1,199, which is why we still recommend the 2020 MacBook Air M1 as a lower-cost alternative to the newest Air model, as it's still an all-around excellent laptop. For those looking for a more value-oriented option, Acer's Swift 3 is our current recommendation. Well-configured older versions are available for under $550, while new models start under $800, and fully loaded with an OLED display it's right around $1,200.
At CNET, our laptop experts have collective decades of experience testing and reviewing laptops, covering everything from performance to price to battery life. This hand-curated list covers the best laptops across various sizes, styles and costs, including laptop computers running on Windows, MacOS and Chrome.
If you want more laptop brands and options for a particular category, we also have specialized lists you can look at, including the best gaming laptops, best 15-inch laptops, best two-in-ones and best Chromebooks, as well as the best laptops for college students, designers and the best MacBook Pro alternatives. If you need to stay as low as possible on the price of a new laptop computer, check out our best budget laptop and best budget gaming laptop picks.
This best laptop list is updated periodically with new models we've tested and reviewed. If you need advice on whether a particular type of laptop or two-in-one is right for you, jump to our laptop FAQ at the bottom of the list and if you're looking to save some money on your purchase, be sure to check out our best laptop deals page.