13-inch and 14-inch laptops are very similar and among the most popular sizes on the market. Most 13-inch models are actually 13.3- to 13.6-inch, so they're only slightly smaller than 14-inch models. Plus, as bezels continue to shrink, manufacturers are able to produce 14-inch laptops that are more compact than 13-inch models just a few years ago. These laptops are usually thin and lightweight, making them easy to carry around, but they aren't so small that they feel overly cramped. The biggest difference between the two sizes is that the 13-inch category consists mainly of ultraportables, i.e., thin and light laptops designed for general productivity, while the 14-inch category expands to more powerful devices like mobile workstations and gaming laptops. This is because more powerful processors need better cooling, and consequently, a larger chassis. As the 13-14 inch laptop market is large, choosing the right laptop for your needs and budget can be daunting, so we've compiled a list of our top picks to help narrow your options.
We've tested over 85 laptops, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best 13-14 inch laptops you can buy. You can also check out our picks for the best laptops, the best Chromebooks, and the best business laptops.
The best 14-inch laptop we've tested is the Apple MacBook Pro 14 (2023), a premium mobile workstation designed for demanding workloads like video editing, 3D animation, coding or game development, and everyday general productivity tasks. It has a sturdy all-aluminum build, plenty of processing horsepower, and all-day battery life. It also provides an excellent user experience with its sharp Mini LED display, spacious keyboard, and gigantic, easy-to-use haptic touchpad. You get plenty of ports, including three USB-C/Thunderbolt 4 ports, an HDMI, and a full-size SD card reader. It has a fingerprint sensor built into the power button so you can log in quickly and get to work. The keyboard gets toasty under load, but the fans remain relatively quiet.
The Lenovo Slim Pro 7 14 (2023) is a cheaper alternative. Equipped with an AMD Ryzen 7 CPU and an NVIDIA RTX 3050 GPU, this compact laptop packs a surprising amount of processing power. It isn't as fast as the MacBook Pro 14, but it'll get the job done. Other tradeoffs include the lack of Thunderbolt 4—it has USB4 instead—and a standard IPS panel instead of Mini LED. To be fair, the 3k, full DCI P3 panel looks just as sharp; you just won't get the deep blacks the MacBook Pro's Mini LED can produce. Battery life is shorter but still respectable at almost 10 hours of light use. Though a matter of personal preference, it's worth noting that the Lenovo laptop's keyboard has a lot more travel, making it arguably more comfortable to type on for extended periods.
If you have a lighter workload and don't need all the processing power of the Apple MacBook Pro 14 (2021), we recommend the Apple MacBook Air 13 (2022), the best 13-inch laptop we've tested. This premium ultraportable feels incredibly well-built and compact, making it easy to carry around. It provides an amazing user experience with a sharp display, a tactile keyboard, and a gigantic touchpad, and its battery lasts easily through a typical workday. Apple's M2 chip is fast and easily handles tasks like web browsing, text processing, spreadsheets, and even light photo and video editing. Port selection is limited; it only has two USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 with support for a single external display.
For Windows users, get the LG gram 14 (2023). It has a slightly larger 14-inch screen and is a little bulkier, but it's incredibly light at 2.1 lbs, so it's still very portable. You get great performance from its Intel 13th Gen CPU, and the user experience is excellent. Its battery life is roughly the same as the MacBook Air at nearly eleven hours of light use. Its USB-C ports support Thunderbolt 4, allowing you to quickly transfer files and connect up to two 4k displays at 60Hz with a single cable. Its overall build is very good, but its magnesium alloy chassis just doesn't feel as rigid or premium as the MacBook Air's. Also, it doesn't get as bright to combat glare.
Our best mid-range pick is the Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (2022), a Chrome OS 2-in-1 convertible laptop. Its 360-degree hinge lets you set the laptop in tent mode for media consumption or use it as a tablet. It has a 16:10 IPS display that supports pen input, and it comes with a stylus that you can dock into the side of the laptop. Battery life is outstanding at over 13 hours of light use. The keyboard feels spacious but can be slightly tiring over time, and the touchpad is small but satisfactory.
The system feels snappy and responsive, as the Intel 12th Gen CPU has more than enough processing power to run Chrome OS. Remember, though, that Chrome OS is limited in the type of applications you can install, so you must ensure you can do everything through a Chrome browser or Android app. Other features we don't usually see on Chromebooks include an outstanding 1080p webcam, Thunderbolt 4 support, Wi-Fi 6E, and a fingerprint sensor.
Regarding availability, this laptop is getting hard to find because there's a newer model. The Core i5 model with 8GB of memory and 128GB of storage is the most widely available, but even that model is often out of stock. Although we haven't tested it, the 2023 model seems to be nearly identical in design, with the only changes being the faster Intel 13th Gen CPU and 1440p webcam. You can get the 2023 model on Amazon or at Best Buy.
The best budget 14-inch laptop we've tested is the Acer Swift 3 14 (2020), a Windows ultraportable. Acer's Swift laptops are usually mid to high-end models that cost much more. However, because this model was released in 2020, the price has decreased considerably, making it a great value. It has a sturdy all-aluminum build, a compact and lightweight design, and over 13 hours of battery life. The display looks sharp and gets bright enough for use in most indoor settings. Ports include two USB-As, one USB-C/Thunderbolt 4, a full-size HDMI, and a headphone jack.
This laptop is available with Intel 11th Gen CPUs, which are two generations behind Intel's current offerings but still adequate for general productivity tasks like text processing, web browsing, and video playback. There's a fingerprint sensor to log in quickly. Our only complaints about this laptop are the keyboard, touchpad, and webcam. The keyboard feels tactile, albeit cramped, and the touchpad is on the smaller side. As for the webcam, the image looks underexposed, and the microphone sounds staticky.
Our top pick in the 13-inch 2-in-1 category is the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 (2021), a 2-in-1 Windows tablet with a detachable keyboard. This model is a huge upgrade over its predecessor, the Microsoft Surface Pro 7. It has a sleeker design with thinner bezels, a slightly larger 120Hz display, and a new type of cover keyboard that allows you to store and charge the Surface Pen. Its Intel 11th Gen. processor performs well and can handle most general productivity tasks. The keyboard feels surprisingly comfortable to type on, especially for a type cover keyboard, and it even has backlighting. You need to buy the keyboard and the stylus separately, though.
Microsoft has already released a new Surface Pro 9. It's a minor internal upgrade to Intel 12th Gen CPU, as the design is largely the same as the Surface Pro 8, with the only exception being the removal of the headphone jack. The Surface Pro 9 is likely easier to find since it's a newer device, but if you don't need the extra processing power, it might be worth looking around, as you might find the Surface Pro 8 at a deeply discounted price.
If you only need a device for media consumption, check out the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5 (2021). It's also a 2-in-1 tablet with a removable keyboard, but it runs Chrome OS. This operating system is more limiting because it doesn't support x86 Windows applications; however, it's generally easier to use than Windows and more touch-friendly. It sports a gorgeous OLED display that produces vibrant colors and inky blacks, and since it has a more traditional 16:9 aspect ratio, you don't get any black bars at the top and bottom when viewing videos online. The downside is that the keyboard feels cramped; it's fine for a few emails but not long essays.
The best 14-inch gaming laptop we've tested is the Razer Blade 14 (2022). It's a high-end model with a premium build and tons of processing power to deliver a smooth gaming experience. It's available in three preset configurations; all three have the same AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX CPU, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of storage, so you only have to choose the display and GPU combo you want. You get a comfortable keyboard with per-key RGB backlighting—of course—and plenty of ports for peripherals. As for portability, it's very thin and light for a gaming laptop, but you'll have to bring the charger if you want to game on the go, as the battery lasts about an hour when gaming.
A cheaper alternative would be the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022). It has an AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS CPU, and you can choose between an AMD Radeon 6700S or 6800S GPU, both powerful enough to push high frame rates in AAA titles. Its QHD display has a slightly lower refresh rate of 120Hz but gets much brighter to combat glare. It gets hotter and louder under load, though, and its overall build doesn't feel as premium as the Razer's.
Sep 01, 2023: Replaced the Apple MacBook Pro 14 (2021) with the Apple MacBook Pro 14 (2023) because the 2021 model is no longer available. Replaced the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 14 (2020) with the Acer Swift 3 14 (2020) because the Acer has better performance overall and longer battery life.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best 13-inch laptops and best 14 inch laptops you can get. We factor in the price (a cheaper laptop wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no laptops that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you prefer to make your own decision, here’s a list of all of our 13- and 14-inch laptop reviews, sorted by price from low to high. Keep in mind that most laptops are available in various configurations, and the table only shows the results of the model we tested, so it’s best to see the full review for information about other variants.