The best Apple MacBook laptops

  • Apple’s MacBook line of laptops includes some of the best mobile computing options available today.
  • Of all the different MacBook Air and MacBook Pro options, our pick for the best MacBook for most people is the 2020 13-inch MacBook Air.

Our picks for best laptops include a range of mobile computing devices, including those that run on Windows 10. However, Apple’s line of MacBooks excel in terms of support as well as software and hardware quality. So, across the varied models available today, which is the best MacBook for you?

The best MacBook will be slightly different for everyone, which is why we have four picks here, but by default the 2020 MacBook Air should be everyone’s starting point. This is Apple’s least expensive laptop model, but includes some powerful hardware and helpful features to cover the vast majority of computing needs. For other, more specific laptop uses, there’s a Pro line that includes even more of the good stuff, but a bit less of the portability.

The MacBook Pro features quad-core Intel processor options — up from the dual-core chips inside the MacBook Air — as well as a brighter display with a wider color gamut. We consider this model the minimum viable product for intensive tasks like photo editing.

Finally, for the utmost speed and largest screen size the 16-inch MacBook Pro released in late 2019 is a great choice. This model gets a larger 16-inch screen with the same 15-inch body size. Plus, the display has a sharper resolution, six-to- eight-core Intel processors and dedicated AMD Radeon Pro graphics.

The MacBook line of laptops are all generally recent and provide great value in their longevity. These are the best MacBooks you can buy currently. That said, Apple has been getting better at updating its portable power houses more regularly than it has in the past.

Why should you listen to me? I’ve worked in technology media for nearly a decade now and been a Mac user for much longer than that. Both professionally and personally, I’ve tested and used laptops and tablets running macOS, Windows, and Chrome OS. Friends and family aren’t shy about asking which MacBook they should purchase, and these picks below are the same things I’d tell them. The picks change frequently, as Apple updates the line, but see which category you fall into below, and that’s the MacBook you should currently buy.

Here are the best MacBooks you can buy:

Updated 10/28/2020: Added the 2020 13-inch MacBook Pro with 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports and 10th-generation Intel Core processors as our pick for the best college MacBook. Trimmed previous picks for older products.

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