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The best 2-in-1 laptop 2021: find the best convertible laptop for your needs

best 2-in-1 laptops
Whatever you’re looking for in a hybrid laptop, you’ll find something in our collection of the best 2-in-1 laptops. (Image credit: Future)
PRICE
VERDICT
REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID
VERDICT
REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID

The best 2-in-1 laptops are no longer saved only for those who can afford luxury. In fact, not only are hybrid laptops fast becoming the norm, but there are quite a few out there, specifically Chromebooks, that offer that versatile 2-in-1 form and touchscreen capabilities while keeping their price tags accessible.

So, if you’re still using the same traditional format because you think you can’t afford the alternative, it might be time for you to jump on the bandwagon. Not only are the best 2-in-1 laptops more affordable than ever, they will also change and improve the way you use your device. More importantly, they have the best processors, the best graphics cards, and enough RAM under the hood, so they are going to be up to the task, whatever it is you throw at them.

Gone are the days when you have to switch from your laptop to your tablet. Offering several modes in a single device, these laptops let you smoothly transition from getting through your daily workload to pulling up the recipe for dinner after work then winding down with a good book or a fun movie in the evening. Their touchscreen capabilities are smooth and reliable enough for sketching and designing, making them excellent tools for your creative projects.

The best 2-in-1 laptops are among the best laptops on the market. Whether you’re a creative or you do productivity work, they might just be exactly what you need to see you through your everyday tasks. Here are our top picks in 2021 from the best Chromebooks to the best Windows 10-powered devices. 

HP Elite Dragonfly

The HP Elite Dragonfly tops our list with its combination of portability and power. (Image credit: HP)

1. HP Elite Dragonfly

For the traveling professional

Specifications
CPU: 8th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB - 16GB
Screen: 13.3" diagonal Full HD touch display – Full HD touch Sure View display
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Impeccable design+Excellent battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Pretty expensive

As far as 2-in-1 laptops go, the HP Elite Dragonfly tops our list with its combination of portability and power. It’s also one of the most beautiful business laptops we've tested in a long time, touting a thin and light design – complete with incredible speakers, a sublime keyboard and the optional 550 nit 4K display – that’s absolutely hard to contend with. This hybrid gets our coveted five-star rating, which already says a lot as we don’t give that out lightly. And, did we mention it also boasts an excellent battery life, which gets you a long way when working on-the-go?

Read the full review: HP Elite Dragonfly

HP Spectre x360 (2021)

HP’s beloved and highly praised 2-in-1 is back with a vengeance. (Image credit: Future)

2. HP Spectre x360 (2021)

A brilliant update

Specifications
CPU: 11th-gen Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 – Iris Xe
RAM: 8GB – 16GB
Screen: 13.3" diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080) OLED touch – 13.3" diagonal, 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) OLED touch
Storage: 256 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD – 2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
Reasons to buy
+Gorgeous design+Excellent battery life+Great performance for day-to-day work
Reasons to avoid
-Fans can get noisy-Pricey

The flagship HP Spectre x360 (2021) is the newest in the flagship product line and continues the tradition of pairing elegance and premium design with the newest in specs for a 2-in-1 laptop that’s as much substance as it is style. This gorgeous Windows laptop comes with the new 11th-gen Intel CPU and enough battery life to get you through a long day at work. While it does come with a price tag to match and its 2-in-1 factor can be bulky for those making use of its tablet mode, not to mention that it can get loud, it’s a stunning laptop with excellent performance.

Read the full review: HP Spectre x360 (2021)

Lenovo Yoga 9i

(Image credit: Lenovo)

3. Lenovo Yoga 9i

Powerful, stylish 2-in-1 that can go the distance

Specifications
CPU : 11th Generation Intel Core i3 – i7
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
RAM: up to 16 GB LPDDR4X
Screen: 14.0" FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, glossy with Dolby Vision – 14.0" UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS, glossy, touchscreen, HDR 400
Storage: up to 1 TB PCIe SSD
Reasons to buy
+Outstanding battery life+Garaged stylus
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive

If you want a high-performance 2-in-1 laptop that will keep going long after its rivals have given up, the Intel Evo-certified Lenovo Yoga 9i is the best 2-in-1 laptop for you. The price of entry here isn’t what you would categorize as cheap, but given the power, battery life, and premium features like the rechargeable Lenovo Active Pen and its reasonably-quick pen charging dock built-in on the laptop, it’s actually quite reasonably priced. This means that you’re getting a lot of value for paying just a bit more.

Read the full review: Lenovo Yoga 9i

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook packs an incredibly long life of almost 22 hours. (Image credit: Lenovo)

4. Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook

Everything that netbooks should have been

Specifications
CPU: MediaTek Helio P60T Processor
Graphics: ARM G72 MP3 800GHz
RAM: 4 GB LPDDR4X
Screen: 10.1" FHD (1920 x 1200) IPS, glossy, touchscreen, 400 nits
Storage: Storage: 64 GB eMMC
Reasons to buy
+Lightweight and portable+Long battery life+Very affordable
Reasons to avoid
-Tiny keyboard and finicky trackpad-Charger and headphones share a single port

Is it a Chromebook or is it a tablet? Well, luckily, you won’t have to decide. True to its name, this Chromebook delivers two form factors in one, while utilizing the versatility of the Chrome OS and setting you back much less than many of the top Windows tablets out there. Of course, true to its Chromebook nature, its battery packs an incredibly long life of almost 22 hours – you could pull an all-nighter, work through the day and mid-afternoon, and you’ll still pass out before it runs out of juice. For this price, sacrifices have to be made, naturally – the keyboard is tiny, the trackpad isn’t as reliable, and the charger and headphones share one port. However, if budget is your top priority, this is definitely among the best 2-in-1 laptops in 2021.

Read the full review: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook 

Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 (2020)

You’ll be hard-pressed to find fault in the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 (2019). (Image credit: Dell)

5. Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 (2020)

One of the best Windows laptops around

Specifications
CPU: 10th Generation Intel Core i3 – i7
Graphics: Intel Iris Plus
RAM: up to 16GB 4267MHz LPDDR4x
Screen: 13.4-in. touch display
Storage: up to 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD
Reasons to buy
+Great display+Fantastic battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive

The Dell XPS line has been upping the ante in the world of portables since launching, and that hasn’t changed. It may now have penetrated the premium game, forcing its budget-conscious fans to look for cheaper alternatives, but that higher price tag hasn’t changed the fact that these are some of the best laptops in the world, with the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 (2020) touting more versatility thanks to its hybrid design. We love this laptop so much, we’d get it just for the pleasure of using it. But, if that price is holding you back, let us assure you: this is worth paying extra for.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 (2020) 

Acer Spin 5 (2020)

(Image credit: Acer)

6. Acer Spin 5 (2020)

A fantastic 2-in-1 laptop

Specifications
CPU: 10th-generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics
RAM: 8GB – 16GB
Screen: 13.5" (2256 x 1504) 3:2 touchscreen display
Storage: 256GB – 512GB SSD
Reasons to buy
+Fantastic battery life+3:2 display perfect for note-taking+Feature rich stylus included
Reasons to avoid
-3:2 display not ideal for 16:9 video-Bloatware includes desktop pop-up ads

A great feature set definitely adds a lot of value, and if you’re looking for the best 2-in-1 laptops, that’s one thing to keep an eye out for. It’s that combined with its affordability that makes the Acer Spin 5 (2020) a terrific candidate. This 2-in-1 laptop isn’t just versatile due to its form factors and fantastic battery life. It also comes with a 3:2 display and a feature-rich stylus that together give it that extra advantage for students and professional over its rivals: an easy and seamless note-taking experience. If you’re one of those folks who have a contempt for typing up notes in class, this old-school approach might just seal the deal.

Read the full review: Acer Spin 5 (2020)

Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 is possibly among the most coveted 2-in-1 laptops. (Image credit: Dell)

7. Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

A convertible that doesn’t compromise

Specifications
CPU: Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Radeon RX Vega M GL (4GB HMB2)
RAM: 8GB – 16GB
Storage: 128GB – 512GB PCIe SSD
Reasons to buy
+ Impressive power + Ultra-thin design 
Reasons to avoid
- Kind of expensive 

Are you in the market for one of the best 2 in 1 laptops which can provide solid performance and serious horsepower? Well, you’ll find it in the Dell XPS 15, which incidentally also gets our vote as one of the best Ultrabooks you can buy today. This 2-in-1 is possibly among the most coveted 2-in-1 laptops – with discrete class Radeon RX Vega graphics to boot. With it, you get a spectacular convertible that doesn’t sacrifice sheer power. So, while it comes with a price tag that’s a bit on the high end, it’s also completely worth breaking open the piggy bank.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 

Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1

(Image credit: Dell)

8. Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1

A step up for Inspiron

Specifications
CPU: 10th Generation Intel Core i5 – i7
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics
RAM: 8GB – 16GB
Screen: 13.3-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) – 15.6-inch UHD (3840 x 2160) Truelife Touch Narrow Border WVA Display with Active Pen support
Storage: Intel Optane Memory H10 32 GB with 512 GB Solid-State Storage – 1TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD
Reasons to buy
+Highly versatile+Premium design
Reasons to avoid
-Quirky display

The Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 is a versatile 2-in-1 with a lot going for it under the hood.  This premium laptop is more than just about its premium design; it also has high-end internals to compete with the likes of the more powerful Dell XPS 13.  Rounding that out is a 4K display, and a clever stylus slot that makes us wonder whether they actually beat Microsoft to the idea. Granted, the display is a bit of a battery drain, and the speakers impressive, but this is still among the best 2-in-1 laptops out there.

Read the full review: Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1

Lenovo Yoga C940

(Image credit: Lenovo)

9. Lenovo Yoga C940

The Lenovo Yoga is back and it means business

Specifications
CPU: up to 10th-generation Intel Core i7
Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics
RAM: up to 16GB
Screen: 14” FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, touchscreen, glossy, 400 nits –14" UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS, touchscreen, glossy, HDR 400, 500 nits
Storage: up to 2TB SSD PCIe
Reasons to buy
+Excellent design+Great performance+Comfy keyboard
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive-Battery life

The Lenovo Yoga C940 is a stunning laptop. It’s clear Lenovo spared no expense in its design, making a gorgeous looking portable. But, it also comes with plenty of power under the hood. Rounding the experience is a comfortable keyboard, a rotating soundbar with 2 additional speakers, touch pen as well as a TrueBlock Privacy Shutter. While it’s not a perfect computer – the battery life is not quite up to par – it more than holds its own against the competition, with Lenovo offering a stylish and powerful Ultrabook that’s perfect for any digital nomad.

Read the full review: Lenovo Yoga C940

Microsoft Surface Book 3

(Image credit: Microsoft)

10. Microsoft Surface Book 3

An extremely premium piece of kit

Specifications
CPU: 10th Gen Intel Core i5-1035G7 – i7-1065G7
Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics – NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti with Max-Q Design
RAM: 8GB – 32GB 3733Mhz LPDDR4x
Screen: 13.5-inch 3000 x 2000 (267 PPI) – 15-inch 3240 x 2160 (260 PPI) PixelSense Display
Storage: 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, or 2TB PCIe SSD
Reasons to buy
+Beautiful design+Comfortable keyboard+Gorgeous screen
Reasons to avoid
-Weak U-series processor-Tiny trackpad-Lackluster speakers

In many ways, the Surface Book 3 is an example of just how far the best laptops have come in just a few short years. It has an extremely premium piece of kit – with one of the best displays we’ve used in a laptop, a keyboard that will put the MacBook Pro’s new Magic Keyboards to shame, and a hybrid design with a removable screen. This follow-up to the outstanding Surface Book 2 is truly one of the best 2-in-1 laptops 2021 has to offer. Unfortunately, it’s held back by a weaker processor (next to its rivals), lacklust speakers and a high price tag. Still, it’s an excellent portable, if you’ve got the money for it and don’t.

Read the full review: Microsoft Surface Book 3

Gabe Carey and Bill Thomas have also contributed to this article

Images Credit: TechRadar