The 5 Best Windows Ultrabooks of 2023 (Local News and Reviews)

Our pick

HP Spectre x360 13.5″

The Spectre x360 offers exceptional battery life, a tall touchscreen, and a reliable keyboard and trackpad. It’s also thin and light enough to slip in a bag and take anywhere.

Buying Options

*At the time of publishing, the price was $900.

Recommended configuration

Processor: Intel Core i5-1235U Screen: 13.5-inch 1920×1280 touch
Memory: 16 GB Weight: 3.01 pounds
Storage: 512 GB SSD Tested battery life: 14 hours

The HP Spectre x360 13.5″ has exceptional battery life combined with fast performance, a spacious screen, a quality keyboard and trackpad, and the best webcam we tested this year. It also has a 360-degree hinge that allows you to flip the touch display all the way around to use the device as a tablet (or in any intermediate position), and it comes with an active stylus. We recommend upgrading to the configuration with 16 GB of memory, and if the white backlight on silver keys bothers you, swap to the blue or black model instead. The Spectre x360 isn’t as light or as compact as some of our other picks, but at 3 pounds, it’s still portable enough. It does ship with an excessive amount of bloatware, but that’s easy enough to uninstall when the laptop first arrives.

Runner-up

Samsung Galaxy Book2 360

The Galaxy Book2 360 is a good alternative if you can’t find our top pick, the HP Spectre x360 13.5″, in stock. It’s light and compact, but its screen is smaller, its battery life is shorter, and its webcam is worse.

Buying Options

*At the time of publishing, the price was $1,024.

Recommended configuration

Processor: Intel Core i7-1255U Screen: 13.3-inch 1920×1080 touch
Memory: 16 GB Weight: 2.56 pounds
Storage: 512 GB SSD Tested battery life: 11.5 hours

If our top pick is unavailable, the next best option is the Samsung Galaxy Book2 360. Like the Spectre x360, the Galaxy Book2 360 offers fast performance, a reliable keyboard and trackpad, and a 360-degree hinge that allows you to use the laptop in various positions. It’s also notably lighter and more compact than our top pick. But its smaller, shorter display isn’t as suited for productivity as the Spectre x360’s 3:2 aspect ratio screen, its battery doesn’t last as long, and its webcam isn’t great.

We recommend the Galaxy Book2 360 with a Core i7-1255U and 16 GB of memory, but if you’re working with a limited budget and you see the Core i5 model with 8 GB of RAM on sale for cheaper than our budget pick, go for it. The only reason the lower-specced model isn’t our budget pick is that it regularly costs more.

Budget pick

Asus Zenbook 14 OLED

The Zenbook 14 is the best laptop you can get for the price. But it won’t perform as well in a few years as our top picks, and it cannot be upgraded.

Recommended configuration

Processor: Intel Core i5-1240P Screen: 14-inch 2880×1800 OLED non-touch
Memory: 8 GB Weight: 3.06 pounds
Storage: 256 GB SSD Tested battery life: 10.5 hours

If you want a great ultrabook but don’t have a thousand dollars to spend, we recommend the Asus Zenbook 14 OLED. The Zenbook 14 won’t perform as well for as many years as the Spectre x360, and it’s not upgradable. Compared with our top pick, its webcam is lower quality, its battery life is about four hours shorter, and it lacks a touchscreen. But the Zenbook 14 is still portable and powerful enough to use for a full day of work or classes. Unlike many cheap ultrabooks, the Zenbook 14 is sturdy, equipped with a fingerprint reader, and bundled with a USB-C charger. Its touchpad can also double as a number pad, which is a fun bonus.

Also great

Framework Laptop

The Framework Laptop is the best—and so far only—option if you want a laptop you can easily upgrade and repair. And it’s a great ultrabook, too.

Buying Options

*At the time of publishing, the price was $1,013.

Recommended configuration

Processor: Intel Core i5-1240P Screen: 13.5-inch 2256×1504 non-touch
Memory: 8 GB or 16 GB Weight: 2.9 pounds
Storage: 256 GB SSD Tested battery life: 9 hours

Most ultrabooks are not designed to be repairable or upgradable, but if you want a more sustainable option, we recommend the Framework Laptop. It’s really easy to repair and upgrade, which means you can make the laptop last longer without replacing the whole thing, theoretically saving you money and creating less e-waste over the years. But this promise depends on Framework continuing to exist and supply parts. If the company goes under, then the Framework Laptop is just like any other laptop when it wears out—you’ll have to replace the whole thing. So far the company is off to a great start, having launched with 11th-gen Intel processors in 2021 and followed through with mainboard upgrades for 12th-gen processors in 2022.

The Framework is an excellent laptop—it’s sturdy, surprisingly thin and light for how modular its design is, and it has a reliable keyboard and trackpad and a bright and spacious display. Compared with our top pick, the Framework Laptop has hours-less battery life—though you can replace the battery in a few years when it wears out, unlike our other picks—and its webcam isn’t quite as flattering. We recommend adding another 8 GB of memory to the base model of the Framework Laptop. If you want the full experience of putting your laptop together, you can choose from a wider variety of parts with the DIY Edition.

Upgrade pick

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon has a bigger screen, and it offers our favorite laptop keyboard and a variety of ports. But it costs more than you need to pay to get something great.

Buying Options

*At the time of publishing, the price was $1,165.

Recommended configuration

Processor: Intel Core i5-1235U Screen: 14-inch 1920×1200 non-touch
Memory: 16 GB Weight: 2.5 pounds
Storage: 512 GB SSD Tested battery life: 13 hours

The 14-inch Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 10 is the best laptop we’ve tested in the past few years—and it costs several hundred dollars more than most people should pay for an ultrabook. But spending more gets you a lighter laptop with a stellar keyboard, larger screen, and more useful array of ports, including two Thunderbolt 4 ports, two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, and an HDMI port. It comes with a fingerprint reader and a handy webcam cover, too, and its battery lasts nearly as long as the HP Spectre x360’s.

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