Data collection and its processing is now a way more significant and crucial market than it used to be during the origin of the Internet. Almost the whole planet is interconnected via the Internet, and every single person who uses it leaves its footprints behind. These footprints are collected by many companies and even governments in the form of raw data and processes to extract useful information from them. This extraction of valuable data from the raw collected data is done by the data science experts or so-called data scientists.
If you are going to be a data scientist and pursue data science as your career, then it is evident that you will need a capable PC at every stage of the Data Science learning process. Having a laptop is always a better choice in such a profession than a desktop PC because of apparent mobility and comfort reasons. So here I have compiled a list of well-researched laptops for data science that you can buy right away to start your data scientist journey.
As I said, earlier data science is a way bigger thing now, and data scientists now work with the millions or even trillions of rows of data, process it, convert it, and extract useful info from it. And to handle this much amount of data is no joke and can’t be done by any ordinary laptop. Some specialized applications and tools are being used in these different stages of data science. Hence I am not surprised if you’re getting confused about your next laptop for data science.
In this buying guide, I have shared a list of the 10 best laptops for data science, each mentioned after a good amount of research. Also, we have provided a detailed buying guide on the data science laptops discussing the crucial things that are must-haves for fluent performance in the data science field.
Recommended: Best Laptops for Computer Science Students
Best Laptop for Data Science in 2021
Here is our list of the top 10 best laptops for Data Science that you can consider buying in 2021:
1Razer Blade 14 (Overall Best Laptop for Data Science)
The first laptop that I have for the recommendations is the Razer Blade 14. This laptop is the overall best fit for data science work. It has an ample amount of RAM, storage, powerful CPU, high-end GPU, solid build quality, and a lot more to deliver the best performance for data analysis.
- Display: 14-inch 2560 x 1440p (165Hz)
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX
- GPU: RTX 3080 8GB GDDR6 VRAM
- RAM: 16GB DDR4 3200MHz
- Storage: 1TB NVMe SSD
The laptop comes with a 14-inch display with thin bezels, making the laptop overall compact and lightweight. This is a QHD display with a resolution of 2560×1440 pixels and delivers an exceptionally crisp output. It is an IPS panel and offers a 165Hz high refresh rate and 100% sRGB color coverage for color accuracy and smooth projection of whatever you do. There is 16GB of DDR4 RAM with an additional empty slot coupled with 1TB of SSD storage.
Being an AMD-powered laptop, its CPU performance is awe-inspiring. It comes loaded with the AMD Ryzen 9 5900X processor. This processor provides 8 cores and 16 threads for high-end parallel computation with a base clock speed of 3.7GHz. The top speed of the processor is 4.8GHz that will benefit you under a heavy workload. As for the GPU, the laptop comes with the RTX 3080 from Nvidia, offering 8,704 CUDA cores.
The Razer Blade 14 comes out to be a nice puck for data science work. Its specifications consist of some of the heaviest hardware like the beast Ryzen 9 from the latest generation, the RTX 30 series GPU, tons of fast RAM/storage, and a crisp and high-resolution display. If you want a laptop that performs perfectly without any restrictions, then the Razer Blade 14 is a nice choice.
2Acer Swift X (Best Mid-Range Laptop for Data Science)
If you are looking for an overall package with nice performance, battery backup, build, and display, then you can have a look at the Acer’s Swift X laptop. This laptop comes with a premium look and impressive performance at a mid-range price. This laptop can be purchased for under $1000 price bracket, and at this price point, it has got everything you need for data analysis and all.
- Display: 14-inch 1920 x 1080p FHD
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
- GPU: NVIDIA RTX 3050Ti 4GB GDDR6
- RAM: 16GB DDR4 3200MHz
- Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD
There is a 14-inch display with thin bezels and a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels. This display comes with 100% coverage of sRGB color space, making it an impressively color-accurate display. Overall, the laptop’s display is more than what you get at this price point, and it is a strong selling point. On top of that, the laptop packs 16GB of LPDDR4x RAM and 512GB of fast SSD-based storage for multitasking and lag-free performance.
For processing, the primary processing unit, i.e., the CPU that has been used here, is the AMD Ryzen 7 5800U. This is one of the latest (successor of Ryzen 4000 series CPUs) and high-end AMD processors that are well-known for their performance and efficiency. This processor comes with 8 cores and 16 processing threads. There is a base clock speed of 1.9GHz that can grow up to 4.4GHz in boosted mode. For GPU needs, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti provides 2560 CUDA cores and 4GB of video memory.
For connectivity, there is Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, USB-A port, USB-C port, 3.5mm jack, HDMI, etc. It also provides a fingerprint sensor for those who want to keep their data safe and secure. If you think of having a mid-range laptop for under $1000 but don’t want to compromise on the specification and performance, then definitely consider the Acer Swift X laptop.
3Lenovo Legion 5 15 (Best Value Pick)
Gaming laptops can prove to be an excellent option for your data science work because of the tag of a gaming laptop. Many of the users think that it is just for gaming. Think about this; a gaming laptop comes with a very impressive dedicated GPU, a powerful processor, a good amount of storage, and plenty of RAM capacity. What else do you need on your laptop for using it for data science and analysis?
- Display: 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080p (165Hz)
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 5800H
- GPU: NVIDIA RTX 3050Ti 4GB GDDR6
- RAM: 16GB DDR4 3200MHz
- Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD
We have a value for money recommendation for you. It is the Lenovo Legion 5 gaming laptop whose specification and pricing have amazed us. This laptop comes with a big 15.6-inches display with a Full HD resolution, i.e., 1920×1080 pixels. It is an IPS display panel that offers a 3ms of response time and 165Hz of high refresh rate. Its color accuracy is also nice as it covers 100% of the sRGB, delivering a colorful and crisp output.
16GB of DDR4 RAM and 512GB of NVMe SSD storage will help you a lot in data storage and multitasking. This laptop comes embedded with an AMD Ryzen 7 5800H mobile processor, an octa-core processor, and offers 16 threads that will benefit parallel computing. This CPU can go up to 4.4GHz of maximum clock speed, which is quite impressive. Since it’s an affordable gaming laptop, that doesn’t mean there will be no discrete GPU. In fact, it comes with a very impressive RTX 3050Ti that offers 2,560 CUDA Cores.
This laptop comes under a $1000 budget, and for that pricing, this laptop offers a lot of things. It has Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5,0, USB-C port, USB-A ports, etc., for good connectivity and also comes with the company’s Legio Coldfront 3.0 cooling system for better thermal management. This laptop is a really nice option if you look for a ton of hardware performance for decent pricing.
4Apple Macbook Air M1 (Affordable Macbook for Data Science)
The next laptop on the list is Apple’s new 2020 MacBook Air with the M1 chip inside. This laptop has a fan-less design, lightweight and solid aluminum build, and superb battery life. Many data scientists work on a Linux-based laptop or consider having a Linux-based OS like the macOS. And for those data scientists, here we have the MacBook Air as our following recommendation.
- Display: 13.3-inch 2560 x 1600p QHD+
- Processor: Apple M1
- Graphics: Integrated GPU
- RAM: 8GB DDR4
- Storage: 256GB NVMe SSD
The laptop comes with a 13.3-inch retina display with a high resolution of 2560×1600. It is an IPS LED Backlit display with a 16 by 9 aspect ratio and a 227ppi pixel density for crisp and sharp display quality. The MacBook air’s display’s color calibration is also really nice as it comes with a wider P3 color gamut of around 25% more than standard sRGB. There is 8GB of RAM, and 256GB do SSD storage inside the laptop that works nice with the macOS and provides very good performance. There is a backlit keyboard with comfortable key traveling and a good typing experience, greatly improved compared to Apple’s butterfly keyboard found in previous generations.
Coming to the laptop’s processing speed, the MacBook Air comes with the company’s in-house manufactured System on Chip (SoC). This is a kind of chip usually used on smartphones but is way more powerful and efficient. It has been fabricated over the 5nm lithography and comes with an 8 core CPU, 8-Core GPU, and a 16-core Neural Engine, all embedded on one single chip. The CPU of the chip can go up to 3.2GHz. Coming to the GPU, it is an integrated 8-core GPU. Still, there is also a 16-core neural engine for improved AI and machine learning tasks, and this thing is just perfect for carrying out parallel computation on a compact and budget-friendly Apple laptop.
It offers more than 10 hours of battery life, the latest Wi-Fi 6, and two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports. It is a well-constructed aluminum laptop with an innovative set of powerful specifications at a pocket-friendly price. If you were looking for great battery life, compact form factor, and a budget-friendly apple laptop, then the 2020’s Apple MacBook Air is a definite go-to, in our opinion. Apart from that, this is the best option for other professionals, including teachers, writers, artists, web browsing, business, podcasting, coding, etc.
5Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (Best for Machine Learning/AI/Neuroscience Projects)
There are many data analyses and processing works in data science that have now become AI-driven. And if you are one of those who handle these AI and machine learning tasks, then your laptop should be powerful enough to handle those trillions of operations per second. So, for this, we have the Asus Zephyrus G14 laptop on our list that can be a great option under the $1500 range.
- Display: 14-inch IPS 1920 x 1080p (144Hz)
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HS
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 6GB
- RAM: 16GB DDR4
- Storage: 1TB NVMe SSD
This laptop comes with a friendly 14-inch display housing skinny bezels and imparts a very modern and eye-pleasing look. It is an IPS-type display with PENTONE validation and anti-glare property so that the display does not affect the eyes even stared for long hours. The display resolution is 1920×1080 pixels and comes with a smooth 144Hz high refresh rate. This display covers 100% of the sRGB color space, and hence the color accuracy is also very nice. There is 16GB of DDR4 RAM that can go up to 3200MHz in frequency and has been coupled with 512GB of NVMe SSD.
AMD’s Ryzen 9 5900H mobile processor has been used to fuel the processing capabilities of this laptop. This processor comes with 8 high-end cores and 16 threads for superb multi-threaded performance. This processor carries a base clock speed of 3.0GHz and can go up to a maximum 4.6GHz of speed in boosted mode. As I have said, this laptop is suitable for AI and machine learning tasks because it comes with an RTX 3060 GPU that provides 3584 CUDA cores and 6GB of video memory.
It has a 90Whr battery that can deliver hours of juice to run the system. It offers Wi-Fo 6, Bluetooth 5,1, HDMI, 3.5mm jack, USB-C, USB-A, and much more for connectivity. There is also a bundled White-Tikbot Mouse Pad if you buy it from Amazon. All in all, the laptop is a no-compromise deal for the price, and you want AI and machine learning capabilities on your laptop, then definitely consider this laptop.
6Dell XPS 13 9310 (Premium Touchscreen Laptop)
If you are looking for a premium laptop that can match the form factor and premium-ness of the Apple MacBook Air, you can have the Dell XPS 13 9310 laptops. This laptop is from the Dell’s XPS series, as you can get it by its name, and this series is targeted towards the users who want a premium look & feel. This laptop provides excellent performance and build quality for under $1700. It offers the latest & powerful hardware, impressive battery life, and a compact and handy form factor.
- Display: 13.4-Inch 1920 × 1200p FHD+ Touch
- Processor: Intel Core i7-1165G7
- Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics G7
- RAM: 16GB LPDDR4X @4267MHz
- Storage: 512GBGB NVMe SSD
This laptop packs a 13.4-inch infinity-edge display with a Full HD+ resolution of 1920×1200 pixels. This is a touchscreen; hence this laptop is going to help you a lot in productivity. This display can go up to 500 nits in peak brightness which is very bright and can be used outdoors. It covers 100% of DCI-P3 color space that means there are 25% more colors than a 100% sRGB laptop. It has been packed with 16GB of RAM and 512GB of ultra-fast SSD.
For performance, the laptop has been powered by the latest 11th gen Intel Core i7-11857G processor. This is among the latest 4 core CPUs from Intel and offers multi-threading of up to 8 threads. The CPU comes with the company’s turbo boost technology and hence can touch up to 4.8GHz of clock speed in the boosted mode. This is a fast processor and can handle a good amount of data science workload. As for GPU performance, the laptop sadly doesn’t come with any dedicated GPU. The laptop relies on the integrated Intel Iris Xe Plus graphics. This is not going to match the performance of a discrete GPU, but in the integrated graphics segment, this is one of the best.
It offers a fingerprint scanner for improved security along with a decent set of connectivity options. There are USB-C Thunderbolt 3 ports, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth for wireless and physical connectivity. If your data science work doesn’t ask for a lot of GPU-based processing like AI and machine learning performance and looking for a premium offering from a reputed brand, then the Dell XPS 13 9310 is one of the best options in the market.
7Surface Laptop 4 (Best for Casual Data Science Projects)
The next laptop on the list is from the house of Microsoft. This is the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4, and if your data science work revolves around casual application and data analysis, then this laptop can be an excellent deal. This laptop provides a decent set of specifications under the $1200 price bracket. This is a portable and solidly built laptop, or in short, you can call it a premium offering from Microsoft.
- Display: 13.5-inch 2256 x 1504p QHD+
- Processor: Intel Core i5-1145G7
- Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics G7
- RAM: 8GB LPDDR4X
- Storage: 256GB NVMe SSD
The laptop provides a nice 13.5-inch display with an awkward but very high resolution of 2256×1504 pixels. This resolution makes the laptop display adopt a 3:2 aspect ratio, providing a slightly more vertical room to work with. This is a touch display that can be used by hands or a stylus for a better experience. This display has a peak brightness of 400 nits which is quite nice and is also usable outdoors. As for RAM and storage, Microsoft has provided 8GB of LPDDR4x RAM and 512GB of SSD drive.
The laptop’s performance can be imagined by the fact that it comes with the latest 11th gen Intel Core i5-1145G7 processor. Being an Intel Tiger Lake processor, it offers 4 processing cores and 8 threads for performance. The top speed of this processor is 4.2GHz which is quite pleasant as it uses Intel’s Turbo Boost technology. This is yet another laptop that lacks an integrated GPU, but there is no use for casual data science work. Hence it relies on the integrated Intel Iris Xe G7 GPU.
The laptop provides Thunderbolt 4-based USB-C port, USB-A ports, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth 5.0 to enhance connectivity. Looking at the specifications of the laptop, there is nothing extraordinary to be excited about. It provides a nice set of the latest performance and connectivity hardware along with a charming and compact build and a beautiful and crisp display. Overall, this laptop is suitable for casual data science work.
8Asus Zenbook Pro Duo 15 (Best Dual Screen Laptop for Data Science)
This laptop comes with a dual-screen design. This thing makes it one of the unique laptops on the planet and also helps a lot in multitasking and improved productivity. Along with the display, the specifications and the ergonomics are also really commendable. Soon after its launch, it became very popular among professionals like artists, game developers, coders, etc. And for data science work, this laptop provides beefy performance and allows flexibility to utilize a dual-screen system to do the work with more efficiency.
- Main Display: 15.6-inch 3840 x 2160p OLED Touch
- 2nd Display: 14-Inch 4K UHD Touch
- Processor: Intel Core i7-10870H
- Graphics: Nvidia RTX 3070 8GB VRAM
- RAM: 16GB DDR4
- Storage: 1TB NVMe SSD
As there is two display in the laptop, let’s talks about the primary one first. The laptop’s preliminary display measures 15.6-inch, adopting an OLED touchscreen panel with a high resolution of 4k UHD resolution at 3840x2160p. OLED display planes are some of the best display panels, offering rich contrast, deep blacks, bright backlit, and impressive color accuracy. As for the Zenbook Pro Duo 15, its primary display covers a 100% DCI-PC color space along with an 89% of screen-to-body ratio.
The secondary display measures 14-inch diagonally, and this one also has a 4K touchscreen panel, but it also comes with a matte finish. This display is located right above the keyboard with a slight left. And hence it becomes essential to have a matte finish; otherwise, it will reflect the content of the primary display. Enough of the displays; let’s talk about the performance. It comes with the 10th gen Intel Core i7-10870H processor that provides 8 cores and 16 threads and a peak clock speed of 5.0GHz.
The laptop relies on the RTX 3070 GPU for graphical performance, which is one of the latest and heaviest GPUs from Nvidia and offers 5888 CUDA cores. There is 16GB of DDR4 RAM and 1TB of SSD storage. There are Harman Kardon speakers for incredible audio quality and also come with a stylus pen. If you want an ergonomically superior laptop with an actual real-use dual monitor setup on a laptop, this is the best choice.
9Asus Vivobook 15 M515 (Inexpensive Laptop for Data Science)
This next laptop on the list is for even more budget-conscious data science workers. This laptop comes under $800, and considering the price, the laptop serves a very high value. It is an inexpensive laptop and can be used by most data scientists who deal with casual data analysis work. If you are getting started in this field and are an amateur, starting with this laptop is a good option.
- Display: 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080p
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 5700U
- Graphics: AMD Radeon RX Vega 7
- RAM: 8GB DDR4
- Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD
This laptop comes with a typical 15.6-inch display along with no compromise in the resolution. It comes with a Full HD resolution, housing 1920×1080 pixels. The display is nice, large, decently bright, and color accurate, and I think this is all that a data science laptop should have in terms of display quality. Asus has provided 16GB of DDR4 RAM, which is impressive for the price. As for storage, there is 512GB of SSD-based storage to deliver fast read and write speeds of the data.
For performance, the laptop comes with a popular Ryzen 5000 series CPU. There is the AMD Ryzen 5 5500U processor that has been provided by Asus. This CPU houses 6 cores and 12 threads and can deliver a decent level of performance. Talking about its speed, the laptop comes with a base clock speed of 2.1GHz and can go up to 4.0GHz in max boosted form. As for GPU performance, the laptop relies on the integrated graphics solution. There is the integrated AMD Radeon graphics with 8-cores and 1800MHz of speed.
This also has plenty of physical and wireless connectivity options like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 3.5mm jack, HDMI, USB-C port, USB-A port, microSD card slot, etc. If you are looking for an inexpensive laptop with the best possible performance, we strongly recommend the Asus VivoBook M515 laptop.
10Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 (Best Chromebook for Data Science)
This is the last laptop on our list and is also the least expensive one. This is a Chromebook and costs less than $400, which is a very pocket-friendly pick. Since it is a Chromebook, it runs on Google’s ChromeOS and not on Windows. Hence you will not be able to do any of the professional-level data science work. This laptop is just of elementary use, like maintaining and editing online excel sheets.
- Display: 13.3-inch 1920 x 1080p Touchscreen
- Processor: Intel Core i3-10110U
- GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 620
- RAM: 4GB DDR4
- Storage: 64GB eMMC
The laptop provides a nice 13.3-inch display with a crisp Full HD resolution. This is an IPS Led backlit display that also supports touch input. That means you can use it as a tablet and also via a stylus pen. It is a 2-in-1 convertible, and hence its hinges allow it to rotate its screen completely, transforming it into a tablet. The laptop packs a nice 10th gen intel Core i3-10110U CPU. It is a dual-core processor that further provides 4 threads and can easily handle regular data management tasks.
The max clock speed of the processor is 4.1GHz which is quiet and impressive. As for GPU, the laptop uses the integrated GPU bundled with the i3-10110U. There is the Intel Integrated UHD Graphics 620 that comes with the CPU for handling everyday tasks. As for RAM and storage, there is nothing very extraordinary. It comes with 4GB of DDR4 RAM and 64GB of eMMC storage, acceptable for regular use. The ChromeOS is a lightweight OS, and its specs are also not so heavy. Hence it can deliver up to 10 hours of battery backup.
For connectivity, there are USB-A ports, USB-C port, 3.5mm audio jack, etc., along with Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0. If you are not into heavy and technical data analysis and processing and usually work with typical excel sheets for data management, this laptop is fine. But handling heavy or even a decent level of data science work for big corporates is not in the portfolio of this laptop.
Buying Guide: How to choose the best laptop for Data Science?
In data science, the laptop deals with a ton of data regularly. The data’s management, processing, and passing it through a set of different applications and languages like R, Python, SAS, SRSS, Rstudio, etc., is something that you do daily. Even though data science applications and languages are not particularly very demanding, the considerable amount of data and a lot of software used to process it can collectively put a lot of load on a laptop. So, here are the important things to look for while buying a laptop for your data science work.
CPU works as the central processing unit on a PC and is used in literally every bit of work done on a laptop. CPU is the primary processing unit in a POC, and hence it must be fast and efficient to deliver powerful long-term performance.
In data science, you deal with big data, which means regular processing of a lot of that data for hours. Hence in order to make the data processing a hassle-free experience, the CPU should have a multi-core design. Look for a CPU from the latest generation of Intel or AMD that offers at least 4 to 6 cores. If you have more budget, then we will recommend you to go with an 8-core processor.
The data science stream is nowhere hidden from today’s new and emerging AI and machine learning technology. In data science, where there is regularly dealing with the processing of millions or even trillions of rows of data, even specialized software for data processing is not enough to deliver efficient output.
A CPU comes with 6 to 8 cores at maximum, and in comparison to this, an average GPU comes with up to 700 cores, and this count can be up to 2000+ cores in some high-end GPUs. Why am I talking about cores? Well, these cores are extremely helpful in executing the AI and machine learning algorithms needed in parallel computing power.
Long story short, a GPU provides a large number of extra processing cores that are needed to execute AI and machine learning-based processing. Hence, look for as many cores on a GPU as possible. The more the CUDA cores or shaders, the better it will be. You can go with Nvidia or AMD.
RAM is one of the crucial things on a PC when it comes to data science work. RAM can be a significant limiting factor in your work while dealing with massive datasets. Hence an ample amount of high-speed RAM is always going to help you in fluent processing along with lag-free multitasking.
A 16GB of DDR4 RAM is a delightful spot if you are buying a data science laptop. So, one should always try to have 16GB of RAM on the laptop. But in mid-range laptops of around $600, it becomes slightly challenging to have 16GB of RAM. In such a situation, you can have 8GB of RAM and can upgrade it in the future if you feel that you are going short on RAM. In that case, you should make sure that the laptop you are going with comes with upgradability options.
In most cases, most of the data-related work is done on a remote server, while your laptop is used as an intermediary. But this doesn’t mean that you don’t need to be serious about your laptop’s storage capacity and speed. The storage capacity can be a variable factor and can change from user to user. But its speed is not what you should be specific about.
Look for a fast and reliable storage option on your laptop. And for that, there should be SSD storage to comply with the fast processing hardware. SSD offers a much faster data read and write speed and as compared to an SSD. Hence keeping the data, applications, and the complete operating system on brief SSD-based storage will make a massive difference in performance.
So, here comes the end of our buying guide for those looking for the best laptop for data science. Data science is one of the most responsible works, and a slight error in its calculation can lead to a tremendous loss. None of the corporate will take it lightly that your data extraction and data analysis have errors. Hence for an error-free and fast output, the laptop should also perform an error-free and fast. Therefore we have compiled a list of the 10 best laptops for data science that you can buy to have optimum performance.
The list consists of laptops from a vast price range so that everyone can find the perfect laptop that fits their needs and budget. There are premium laptops like Surface Laptop 4, Asus Zenbook Pro Duo 15, and Razer Blade 14, along with value for money and mid-range laptops like Acer Swift X, Lenovo Legion 5 15, and Apple Macbook Air M1. There are also performance beasts for those who want absolute performance in the form of laptops like Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 and Razer Blade 14.
I hope this buying guide was helpful for you and you are leaving from here after a satisfactory laptop decision. If this is so, then please spread this informative piece to the needy ones in your circle. Also, leave your thoughts in the comments below if you have any questions or suggestions.