10 Best 15 Inch Laptops 2019
Experience fifteen inches of brilliance
One glance at the modern laptop marketplace is enough to overwhelm anyone who isn’t quite, let’s just say, tech-savvy. The markets are flooded with laptops in various form factors, claiming to suit needs as diverse as attending corporate huddles to cheering you on during gaming marathons. One form factor that has become increasingly popular among contemporary audiences is the 15-inch laptop.
If you migrated to a full-purpose laptop from a desktop, you might have got home a 17-inch laptop. These devices have large, satisfying screens; what they frequently lack is the ability to travel with you to school or work.
To cater to this gaping hole, manufacturers invested in 13-inch and 14-inch laptops. But while these smart little devices definitely love to see the world, they lack the real estate to offer much by way of multimedia or effortless typing. Seated comfortably—almost smugly—between these two form factors is the 15-inch laptop that seems to strike just the right balance.
It seems logical that 15-inch laptops have taken off as expected; they can cater to different audiences across student groups, professionals, travelers, and gamers. Not only that, but they are also available in a variety of prices, starting at around $349 (yes, indeed!) and going up to $2000 and more for premium 15-inch devices. This makes them suitable for a wide spectrum of budgets.
- For Whom are 15-inch Laptops Made?
- How to Choose 13, 15 and 17-inch Laptops
- 15-Inch Laptop with or Without Numeric Keypad – How To Choose?
- Why 15-inch Laptops Have Become a Rage
- Our Picks: Best 15 Inch Laptop in 2019
- 1. Dell XPS 15 7590 – Best Overall 15 Inch Laptop
- 2. Apple MacBook Pro 2019 – Best 15 inch Laptop for Editing
- 3. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 – Best 15 Inch Ryzen Laptop
- 4. Acer Aspire 5 A515-43-R19L – Best 15 Inch Laptop Under $300 – $400
- 5. Acer Aspire 5 A515-54-51DJ – Best 15 inch Laptop Under $500
- 6. Acer Aspire 5 A515-54G-53H6 – Best 15 Inch Laptop Under $700
- 7. ASUS VivoBook S15 S532FL-DB77 – Best 15 inch Laptop Under $1000
- 8. Acer Predator Helios 300 PH315-52-78VL – Best Budget 15 inch Gaming Laptop
- 9. Lenovo Yoga 730 – Best 15 inch 2 in 1 Laptop
- 10. ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX502GW-XB76 – Best 15 Inch Gaming Laptop
- Bonus: ASUS ZenBook 15 UX533FD – Best 15 inch Ultra-Slim Compact Laptop
- Final Words
For Whom are 15-inch Laptops Made?
Ever since their launch, 15-inch laptops have occupied considerable mind-space as well as market share. These computers hit the perfect balance of form and function. Their USP is delivering high performance while also offering a certain degree of portability—something that is missing in a 17-inch laptop. Most products in this line-up are sturdily built with dazzling displays and powerful specifications designed to do justice to CPU-draining tasks.
If you have been toying with the idea of purchasing a 15-inch laptop, this checklist will get things going:
- Gamers: Gamers will find a 15-inch laptop useful for its large screen, competent processor, and dedicated GPU. It is possible to carry this computer to gaming marathons and competitive events as well as use it as a stationary entertainment platform.
- Creative professionals and students: People engaged in creative pursuits such as film-making, graphics designing, architectural design, animation, and 3D modeling will also find a 15-inch laptop suited to their needs. You can comfortably run heavy-duty applications and software without compromising on performance. Since the display is also immersive and vast, there is more space to delve into detail as you work.
- Seekers of portability: While the power delivered by a 17-inch laptop is phenomenal, it is bulky and difficult to lug along with you. If your standard day is fairly power-hungry, but you also need to move around for school or work, a 15-inch laptop can be the golden mean. Many models in this range weigh about 5–6lbs which, while not feather-light, is a manageable load.
- Anyone who needs a separate numeric keypad: Do you need a dedicated numeric keypad on the keyboard? This is a feature that many people in professions such as data entry, programming, and operations research require. You can find a separate num-pad in 15-inch laptops; it is a rarity in smaller form factors.
- Those who want a large screen size: Among many laptop users, a large display is a necessity. For instance, do you have eyesight problems or experience excessive eye strain? Using the larger screen of a 15-inch machine can ease these troubles for you. A 14-inch or 13-inch laptop can be too cramped for comfort.
- Higher screen resolution: Typically, 15-inch computers tend to offer an optimal screen resolution of 1920 x 1080. This is suitable for varied forms of content and manages to render your imagery with minimal loss of detail. A smaller resolution such as 1366 x 768 that you find in many 14-inch laptops can feel rather low and unsatisfactory. This is especially true if a vivid display is high up on your priority list. The difference will be palpable if you engage in streaming multimedia content, browsing through photos and videos, etc.
Note: Few 15-inch laptops offer a long battery life. The most you will see is in the range of 5–6 hours. So, if greater unplugged usage is on your shopping list, you might want to reconsider getting a 15-inch computer. It is a trade-off that requires careful thought.
How to Choose 13, 15 and 17-inch Laptops
With so many form factors in laptops now abounding in the marketplace, it can be quite a task choosing the right one for you. Offhand, a 13-inch laptop sounds perfect if your priority is mobility. However, plenty of students and working professionals get by just fine with a 15-inch or 17-inch laptop. Consider these pointers for assistance with making this choice:
- How is your usage going to be? Choose a 17-inch laptop if your work requires extensive use of processing power and screen real estate. For instance, if you are an animator, graphics designer, filmmaker, etc.
- Do you want a laptop to replace your desktop? A 17-inch laptop is your best bet as a desktop replacement machine. Many models support several external displays, offer ample memory and storage space, and have a wide array of ports for your devices.
- Do you want a gaming laptop? For gamers, a 15-inch or 17-inch computer is recommended. A 13-inch laptop is likely to be too small to host a powerful enough GPU or the associated cooling mechanism that it requires. Also, it will offer limited space in which to render your content, thereby making the gaming experience sub-optimal.
- How serious are your display needs? If you require a 4K display, you should look for a 15-inch or a 17-inch laptop. Although some 13-inch systems also offer vivid displays, a greater number of pixels will typically mean a larger panel size. This also makes more sense overall as you’re likely to want an immersive display when you pay the premium for anything higher than FHD. Tip: While selecting display specs, also consider the thickness of the bezel around the screen. Some bigger laptops can feel more compact when they use a narrow bezel design.
- What degree of mobility do you need? If portability is paramount to you, a 13-inch laptop can do the job well. These machines are usually lightweight enough to be carried around easily. They can also fit easily into backpacks and can travel well as you go on work trips, fly long distance, etc. Remember though, if you also need an assortment of ports to plug into peripherals such as mice and external displays, you should consider a 15-inch laptop. Many 13-inch computers are super sleek, but it comes at the cost of disappearing dockets on the sides.
Ultimately, your choice will depend upon your priorities and usage patterns. If you desire a well-rounded laptop for everyday use, we recommend a 15-inch laptop. It hits the sweet spot between mobility and performance. This makes it a good choice for standard to intensive computing needs while also offering some degree of flexibility of use.
Your decision will also, obviously, depend on your budget. A heavy-duty 17-inch machine, for instance, can cost a premium and make you question whether you wouldn’t have been better off with a desktop instead.
15-Inch Laptop with or Without Numeric Keypad – How To Choose?
The numeric keypad is a feature that many laptop designers have done away with, in favor of sleeker and more compact keyboards. However, it is making a comeback, especially in computers with a larger form factor. You can now find several 15-inch laptops that offer a numeric keypad. Top manufacturers like Dell, ASUS and HP have multiple models in their product line-ups that come fitted with a separate number pad. While you may not require it on a day-to-day basis, there are several situations when it might be a savior.
Let us review some of the prime advantages of getting a laptop that has a distinct numeric keypad:
- It comes in handy if you work in data entry, mathematics, accounting or related professions. It is a good deal easier to perform number crunching operations using a separate num-pad as opposed to an integrated one.
- If you frequently undertake spreadsheet-based work for business or school, you will find this feature useful. Excel works excellently with a keyboard specially designed for numbers.
- A separate numeric keypad provides a greater degree of ease of use since you don’t need to engage both your hands while entering any numeric data. (Many regular keyboards require you to press down the function key to input digits.)
- Gamers frequently need to access numbers and can derive good use from a separate number pad. You will be getting for yourself edge in speed on the gaming arena as quick-pressing numbers will not be cumbersome. Most such keyboards on gaming laptops allow you to map the number keys according to your requirement.
When you consider the merits of a dedicated num-pad, it becomes easy to see if you need to get one for your usage. Fortunately, a numeric keypad has now become a part of the package in several 15” laptops, which means you won’t necessarily have to pay a premium to avail of this feature. Indeed, if your standard day rarely involves numbers and you would rather have a compact keyboard, you don’t need to opt for a model with a separate numeric keypad.
While choosing a computer with a num-pad, look out for the following:
- Ensure that the keyboard has been designed well. You should be able to type comfortably, despite the additional keys fitted into the package. Usually, the keys on a numeric keypad are smaller than standard keyboard keys (sometimes, three-quarters the size). This requires the makers to adjust the design accordingly so that your fingers don’t feel cramped while typing.
- Double check the layout of the numeric keypad. Typically, it will have four columns when viewed next to a traditional desktop keyboard.
- The num-pad should have a comfortable key-travel distance that facilitates speedy work and minimizes the scope of error.
- Don’t let the promise of a separate number keypad equate a bulky, hard-to-carry laptop. The right ergonomic design can produce a computer that offers a separate number keypad but is also portable.
Why 15-inch Laptops Have Become a Rage
While there is no denying that 15-inch machines manage to hit the sweet spot between screen space and portability, it is hardly the only merit fuelling their time under the sun. When you get home a 15-inch device, you also:
- Get access to longer battery life: Many 15-inch laptops have longer battery backup than their 13-inch siblings. That extra space in the chassis allows them to hold larger batteries with more juice.
- Unleash greater computing power: We are talking about the processing strength not only to tackle humdrum tasks like document processing but also support (a certain extent of) gaming endeavors. This is why many gamers are opting for 15-inch machines, aspiring to fulfill their gaming ambitions without paying the bomb that 17-inch laptops cost.
- Experience typing comfort: While there will perpetually be arguments to the contrary, many users agree that 13-inch or 14-inch laptops do not offer satisfying typing experiences. The space either feels too cramped, or you end up craving a tiny bit of extra real estate to rest your fingers painlessly. Here, 15-inch machines win the day.
- Get a reassuring cooling system: We have to face it: small machines will find it increasingly difficult to keep their innards cool in light of all the performance they are keen to pack in the little space. As many 14-inch laptops drop their bezels to offer immersive displays, heat dissipation becomes an even greater problem. A 15-inch notebook, on the other hand, manages to distance itself from this quandary
Our Picks: Best 15 Inch Laptop in 2019
In this article, we have prepared an extensive list of the very best 15-inch laptops in the marketplace in 2019. We have also reviewed the offerings of these competent laptops and their fitment to your needs vis-à-vis their price point, to make your shopping experience well-informed and hassle-free.
1. Dell XPS 15 7590 – Best Overall 15 Inch Laptop
It is safe to say that the 15.6” Dell XPS 15 7590 laptop is your best pick for an all-rounder option. It is fuelled by an Intel Core i5-9300H processor, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD and battery life over 20 hours. All this fits in snugly inside a chassis that weighs only 4.0lbs and is about 0.45”–0.66” thick.
Although this Dell laptop is compact and highly portable, it also offers a stellar display. The FHD screen is fitted with an anti-glare panel and supports In-Plane Switching. (You can opt for the 4K Ultra HD display with a resolution of 3840 x 2160.) Its narrow bezel design (6.04mm or 0.23”) ensures minimal external interference.
Plus, it has a color gamut of 100% sRGB and brightness of 500 nits. This ensures that your content renders accurately with all its details intact.
Dell deserves accolades for its focus on build and user-friendliness. The palm rest, for instance, is built of composite carbon fiber for extra durability as well as comfort.
You can avail of the security offered by the integrated fingerprint reader and the new-and-improved webcam with a four-element lens and noise reduction. Both of these are very handy in collaborative working environments.
2. Apple MacBook Pro 2019 – Best 15 inch Laptop for Editing
The 15-inch Apple MacBook Pro 2019 is one of your best picks if you need a design-oriented powerhouse that fuels your creative endeavors.
This MacBook Pro is mighty, fueled by a ninth-gen Intel Core i9 CPU (and 32GB RAM) and equipped with up to a 4TB SSD.
That said, the true brilliance of this laptop shines through in the visual department. It boasts of a retina display (with True Tone technology) and Radeon Pro 560x graphics. This is excellent if you need to run software like Final Cut Pro X. The screen has a brightness of 500 nits; its large color gamut (25% more colors than you would find in sRGB) make it vivid.
A special—and highly enjoyable—feature of this laptop is its Touch Bar. This dynamic bar provides you with the tools you need most frequently, and lets you use intuitive gestures likes taps and flicks to access them. The integration of the Touch Bar adds to the overall flexibility of use. It also speeds up your daily tasks, even when you are on the go.
Bonus: You get almost ten hours of battery life with this laptop. It is also super light at only 4.02lbs. Very rare for a 15-inch laptop with such powerful specifications!
3. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 – Best 15 Inch Ryzen Laptop
The 15” Microsoft Surface laptop is a brilliant choice if you are looking for an AMD Ryzen device that is functional as well as stylish.
Powered by AMD Ryzen processor, 8GB RAM, and a 256GB SSD, this notebook caters to regular computing pursuits and multitasking endeavors.
It boasts of 11.5 hours of battery life and a lightweight 3.4lbs chassis, both of which make it astonishingly portable. A complete array of USB ports, especially Type-C ones, makes it incredibly well-connected too, permitting you to plug into external displays, docking stations, the works.
Microsoft is committed to delivering a satisfying multimedia experience. To this end, this laptop offers a bright PixelSense display for visual clarity and enhanced Omnisonic speakers for distortion-free sound.
Since the speakers are hidden below the keyboard, they do not add bulk to the overall look and feel of this device.
4. Acer Aspire 5 A515-43-R19L – Best 15 Inch Laptop Under $300 – $400
If you have been on the lookout for a budget 15” laptop, the Acer Aspire 5 A515-43-R19L could be the perfect answer.
Powered by an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U CPU, 4GB RAM, a 128GB SSD and Vega 3 Graphics, this laptop is suitable for everyday tasks such as taking notes, checking e-mail, or playing multimedia content. The operating system—Windows 10 in S mode—is incredibly responsive and swift. Another plus is the battery that lasts for 7.5 hours. This lends you immense portability through the day.
Thanks to the Vega graphics, the imagery manages to be pleasant even though this is a budget purchase. The FHD monitor supports a wide-screen view and has an IPS panel for minimal distortion across different viewing positions. Also notable is the use of the Acer “BlueLightShield” to reduce eye strain during long working hours.
This 3.97lbs-laptop is very well connected, offering a plethora of USB ports as well as an HDMI to connect to external displays. Bonus: This system comes with a backlit keyboard—a rare feature for computers in this pricing bucket. You can conveniently use it to work in poorly lit settings.
5. Acer Aspire 5 A515-54-51DJ – Best 15 inch Laptop Under $500
We have got another fantastic pick in the affordable range: the Acer Aspire 5 A515-54-51DJ.
This 15” laptop is fitted with an Intel Core i5-8265U CPU, 8GB RAM, and a 256GB SSD. So, if your usage is standard to moderately heavy, these specs should serve you well.
The FHD screen offers an optimal resolution of 1920 x 1080, which renders various content formats smoothly. Courtesy of the Acer Color Intelligence technology, what you see on the screen is compelling. (This laptop also offers a blue light filter.)
If you are a sound connoisseur, you will be happy with Acer’s use of the True Harmony and Acer Purified Voice technologies for improved audio. The difference is notable when you playback multimedia or take voice calls.
On the portability front, this one is a winner and how. The battery can run unplugged for 9.5 hours. A full array of USB- and display ports is at your disposal. The backlit keyboard and integrated fingerprint reader lend both security and ease of use while on the run.
Finally, since the chassis weighs only 3.97lbs and is 0.7” thick, you can conveniently carry this computer along with you. It slides in and out of backpacks like a breeze.
6. Acer Aspire 5 A515-54G-53H6 – Best 15 Inch Laptop Under $700
Run by an Intel Core i5-10210U processor, 8GB RAM, and a 512GB SSD, this computer is competent at day-to-day tasks.
It also offers a bright FHD display with NVIDIA GeForce MX250 graphics and IPS support. Acer Color Intelligence technology brings accurate color to the fore. A thoughtful addition is the blue light filter to protect your eyes from strain.
Portability-wise, Acer does pretty well. Not only does this 5.95lbs laptop offer significant unplugged usage (9.5 hours), but it also has a slim profile at 0.7”.
A backlit keyboard lets you work in lowly lit environs. Connecting to the internet is a breeze with Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 802.11ax. Interestingly, this laptop also does well in the audio department, although it is a budget-buy at under $700.
Thanks to Acer TrueHarmony, you can enjoy deep bass and loud, clear volume to uplift any multimedia content.
7. ASUS VivoBook S15 S532FL-DB77 – Best 15 inch Laptop Under $1000
A fantastically compact but competent laptop, this VivoBook is run by an Intel Core i7-8565U CPU, a 512GB SSD, and NVIDIA GeForce MX250 graphics.
The chassis weighs only 3.97lbs which makes it one of the lightest on the list. The profile is incredibly thin too—at only 0.7”. You can carry it with you in rucksacks and quite literally not feel a thing. On the flip side, this computer has a rather low RAM configuration of 12GB. This limits its utility as a device for intensive computing tasks.
How about the display? The FHD monitor employs a narrow-bezel design that manages to increase the screen-to-body ratio to 88%. The result is beautifully vivid images and hardly any external interference for the viewer.
If you find a touchscreen easier to use, especially when traveling, this VivoBook has a handy provision: the ScreenPad 2.0. Packed in here are useful tools like handwriting and number keys. A smart provision for anyone who needs to get stuff done pronto, even when they are outdoors!
In other accessibility features, we love the ergonomic backlit keyboard. The IR camera that supports facial login (via Windows Hello) also adds a comforting layer of security.
8. Acer Predator Helios 300 PH315-52-78VL – Best Budget 15 inch Gaming Laptop
A budget gaming laptop with a 15-inch screen might sound far-fetched. But thanks to laptops like the Acer Predator Helios 300 PH315-52-78VL, this proposition is entirely plausible.
Boasting of a refresh rate of 144Hz, a response time of 3ms and an Intel i7-9750H processor, this gaming laptop is both speedy and smooth. The processor is complemented by 16GB RAM, a 256GB SSD, and NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti graphics with 6GB of dedicated memory.
Since this is essentially a gaming laptop, you will find that the display is top-notch. An FHD screen with an IPS panel and a brightness of 300 nits does justice to various kinds of content. Note that the available color gamut is a tad low at 72% NTSC.
In terms of internet connectivity, this 5.07lbs laptop has it pretty sorted. You can avail of Killer Ethernet E2500 or Killer DoubleShot Pro Wireless (802.11ac). If competitive gaming gets your pulse racing, you are likely to be pleased with the speed and consistency this provides.
Acer deserves accolades for building this budget gaming machine into a package that belies its price. For instance, you will be able to enjoy stellar audio, thanks to the Waves MAXXAudio technology. You also get a backlit keyboard that enables you to dive into the virtual world even when your real world is dimly lit.
9. Lenovo Yoga 730 – Best 15 inch 2 in 1 Laptop
The Lenovo Yoga 730 is a computer to be reckoned with, what with its Intel Core i7 processor, 11.5-hour battery life, lightweight chassis of 4.2lbs, and flexible modes of use.
You can conveniently flip it from laptop mode to tablet mode, depending on your needs. If you purchase the Lenovo Active Pen 2, you can also use this laptop to take notes, doodle, or just create when inspiration comes to visit. The Bluetooth-enabled stylus is exceptionally built with as many as 4,096 levels of pen sensitivity for additional smoothness during use.
This Lenovo laptop can easily double up as a gaming companion. It is fitted with a discrete GPU—NVIDIA GTX 1050 with 4GB of dedicated memory. This graphics co-processor is capable of running most AAA games with finesse.
The display uses a thin-bezel design; the borders are only 0.25” (6.5mm) thick at the sides. If you really want to push the envelope, you can also opt for the 4K display. True splendor!
Lenovo has ensured that this 15-inch laptop does not cut any corners in connectivity or accessibility. So, you will find compatibility with Cortana and several USB ports including a Type-C one. There is even a fingerprint reader for secure and quick login while on the run.
10. ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX502GW-XB76 – Best 15 Inch Gaming Laptop
Fueled by an Intel i7-9750H processor, 16GB RAM, a 1TB SSD, and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 graphics, this laptop brings your game alive.
The RTX GPU is especially praiseworthy for its innovative features like real-time ray tracing. It also offers images enhanced by artificial intelligence. The result is a fluid gaming experience, not hampered by loss of detail.
ASUS has put together an excellent display for this laptop. You get a screen-to-body ratio of 81%, thanks to the thin bezel design (6.2mm or 0.24”).
The refresh rate offered is 240Hz, which is greater than the industry standard of 144Hz and provides fantastic detailing.
Also, since the display supports G-SYNC technology, you are guaranteed fewer lags and jitters. We also adore the Pantone validation—it adds so much to the beauty and accuracy of the coloring.
Let us talk about the heat dissipation system—a must for powerful gaming laptops that don’t want to fizzle out when things get rough. Here, you will find anti-dust tunnels and multiple operating modes such as silent, balanced and turbo.
This customizes operations as per your needs. The fans are also more efficient than in older models.
Note: All this comes to you in a package that weighs only 4.39lbs and measures 0.7”. Take that for portability!
Bonus: ASUS ZenBook 15 UX533FD – Best 15 inch Ultra-Slim Compact Laptop
Lightest 15-inch laptop with ergonomic hinge-based design
How can a ZenBook stay out of the league when the conversation concerns portable, powerful laptops for contemporary audiences?
The ASUS ZenBook 15 UX533FD is compact in the truest sense of the word, with a narrow bezel (4-way) that makes the screen-to-body ratio as high as 92%. This enhances the razzmatazz of the FHD screen with its IPS panel for wide-angle viewing. This 15.6” laptop is driven by an Intel i7 CPU, 16GB RAM, 512GB of memory, NVIDIA GTX 1050 graphics, and 15-hours battery life. The super-long unplugged usage is a huge feather in its cap as it liberates your workday of the need to stay hooked to power stations.
A unique feature of this laptop that is highly beneficial when you are working outdoors is the ErgoLift hinge.
This ergonomic design element helps you adjust the keyboard to a typing position that feels the most comfortable to you, while also boosting the cooling and audio output. The keyboard, in particular, is tailor-made for mobility, what with its fully functional numeric keypad and convenient key-travel distance (1.4mm).
The dedicated num-pad makes it easy to perform number crunching or enter data; it is quite an exclusive feature to find in a 15-inch form factor where every inch of additional space matters a great deal.
ASUS has ensured superior construction for this machine, bestowing upon it military-grade durability (MIL-STD 810G) and lightweight design of 3.7lbs. That makes it the lightest laptop on this list of highly mobile devices—that is saying something! The profile is thin at 0.7”, making it straightforward to pack the computer in backpacks for regular use. Did we mention how gorgeous its royal blue color is? You have to see it to believe it.
This ASUS ZenBook also comes with a fancy combo camera—an HD-IR/RGB webcam (High-Definition/Infra-Red)—to enable you to stay connected to your world.
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There isn’t a doubt about it—15-inch laptops have a lot going for them. They have adapted themselves to the priorities of modern audiences, especially those who need computing devices that look good, travel well, offer captivating displays and yet, do not skimp on performance. If that reads like a tall order, it sure is!
You can also opt for a Macbook or a Surface laptop in this form factor if you are alright with going the extra mile for panache. That said, the offerings by Lenovo, Dell and Razer are also top-notch, managing to achieve quite a commendable balance between price and performance.