Video conferencing rocketed in popularity in the early days of the pandemic – and even now that the world is opening up it looks like it’s here to stay.
It’s now more important than ever to have a video conferencing ready laptop to take part in the modern workforce. So what kind of laptop do you need?
Generally, you need to ask three questions. How powerful is the machine? How good is the camera? What’s the screen quality like? We recommend opting for an Intel i5 processor and 4GB of RAM – or higher! Likewise you want to make sure the camera is clear and the display is HD ready.
Need some help making up your mind? Here are our picks for the top 10 laptops for video conferencing and Zoom.
Best overall: Dell XPS 13
The Dell XPS 13 is a fantastic all rounder laptop. It comes with an Intel i7 processor – giving you fast performance and great video speeds. It powers up immediately when you open the laptop meaning you can get cracking straight away. It also comes fitted with the latest WiFi technology ensuring you won’t have to wait on videos to buffer.
So, are there any issues? It is a little bit on the pricey side – though still well priced for a computer with these specifications. The GPU is a little low performing – it’s perfect for video conferencing, but you’ll need something more powerful for gaming and any special effects work.
It comes with fantastic reviews – and is one of the highest ranking laptops on Amazon. Reviewers love the long battery life (around 19 hours) and fast performance. It can be a little fragile so we recommend getting a good case – but it has a stylish frame to make up for it.
- Fast performance and startup speeds.
- Stylish appearance and thin frame.
- Long battery life – will last you the entire day.
- Low performing GPU – not the best for gaming or heavy editing.
- A little bit fragile, so worth getting a protective cover.
Best on a budget: CHUWI Corebook Xpro
Want to stick to a budget? CHUWI are a relatively new brand, but they are great for those wanting to save on laptops. Their Corebook Xpro comes with the perfect specifications for video conferencing. The ultra light body also makes it the perfect laptop for traveling with – making it a great choice for digital nomads.
The specs are a little bit more basic than others on this list. It has an i5 processor – which will work great with video conferencing and basic editing, but you’ll need a better option for heavier tasks and gaming. It’s also a new brand, so it doesn’t have the same customer trust as the more established brands.
Despite this, it comes with fantastic reviews. Reviewers believe it is great value for money and works perfectly for most tasks. One issue is that it doesn’t come with a charger – so you’ll need to order a USB-C charger at the same time and add this to the overall cost.
- Great budget option for teleconferencing.
- Lightweight and slim design – perfect for traveling with.
- Decent specs for most basic tasks and editing.
- New brand – doesn’t have the same customer trust.
- Doesn’t come with a charger or any accessories so this will need to be added to the cost.
Great splurge option: Microsoft Surface Laptop 4
Ready to splash some cash? The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 has some of the best specifications on the market.
Fitted with the Intel i7 processor it comes with a whopping 16GB of RAM and incredible speeds. This is a fantastic all-round laptop if you plan to use it for gaming, personal and business use – and will make light work of any editing task.
This one is on the pricier end of the scale so you’ll need a good budget – but it’s totally worth it if you want high specs. It also only comes with one USB port so you’ll need to invest in an extension if you need access to multiple ports at the same time. It’s a pretty sturdy model – and you also have a one year warranty for extra peace of mind.
Reviewers love how fast and efficient this machine is – as well as its sturdy casing and fantastic battery life. You’ll need to double check the software when you open it as there have been some issues noted – but these should be resolved in no time by the customer care team.
- High spec equipment that can be used for multiple purposes.
- One year warranty for added peace of mind.
- Sturdy model that can be carried around securely.
- Only one USB port so you’ll likely need an extension.
- Some issues with software upon first use – though this can be solved by customer care.
Great for creatives: Lenovo IdeaPad Flexi 5i
Thinking about getting a new tablet as well? With the Lenovo IdeaPad Flexi 5i you get a laptop and a tablet in one! The screen folds over to the other side and can be used as a touchscreen. This makes it a fantastic option for creatives that use software that requires a little more precision.
The great thing about this laptop is it is also customisable. You can opt for any of the Intel i-series processors (though we recommend no lower than i5 for teleconferencing) as well as different sizes of SSD. It’s also pretty affordable for the specs – although you’ll definitely need some savings for the higher spec models.
The reviews are among the best of all the laptops on this list – with 80% of reviewers giving the laptop a full five stars. In particular the speed is praised as well as the dual functionality. Some users have had issues with software upon first use – but this can easily be remedied with a call to customer care. It also has a one year warranty for some extra peace of mind.
- Functions as both a laptop and a tablet.
- Customisable so you can choose the best specs for your needs.
- One year warranty for extra peace of mind.
- Some software issues reported in the reviews.
- A little fragile so you’ll need a decent case.
Lightweight and travel friendly: Acer Swift 5
Looking for something lightweight and easy to travel with? The Acer Swift 5 is built for the road! It only weighs 1kg – making it one of the lightest laptops on the market. The slim body also means that it won’t take up too much space in your carry on. Alongside the lightweight frame you’ll also enjoy up to 15 hours of battery life and fantastic video conferencing specs.
With it being such a light laptop it is a little more fragile than other models on the market. You’ll need to get a decent case and protective cover to make sure it doesn’t sustain too much damage when you’re out and about. It also comes with a touchscreen so you’ll need to take extra care when using the laptop.
That being said, many of the reviews suggest it is more durable than you would expect. It’s particularly popular with digital nomads and those that need to work on the go. With a 100% five star review rate there really isn’t much to warn you about in advance – and Acer is a trusted brand so totally worth the investment.
- Lightweight and slim – perfect for your carry on.
- Long lasting battery life – will easily last you the entire day.
- Trusted brand with fantastic reviews.
- A little fragile so it’s worth investing in decent protective accessories.
- Smaller display than other laptops in this category.
Fast performer: Lenovo Yoga 7i
Speed is important when you’re video conferencing – and the Lenovo Yoga 7i is one of the fastest models on the market. With an Intel i7 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD you’ll certainly not have to worry about long buffering times. It also comes with four USB ports and a thunderbolt charger – meaning it will charge super quick.
Just like the IdeaPad Flexi, the Lenovo Yoga 7i folds back on itself so it can also be used as a tablet. This makes it a great option for creatives – but it can have its downsides as well. The hinge is a bit more fragile than regular laptops, and you’ll need to take extra care to clean in between the joints.
Reviewers love how flexible and fast this laptop is. It works great for basically every need you could have – although it might struggle on higher resolution games. The screen is super sensitive so take extra care when using it. It’s also pretty heavy which is worth keeping in mind if you plan to use the laptop on the move.
- Fast processor and lots of RAM so great for most activities.
- Plenty of USB ports and a large harddrive to store your files.
- Can be used as both a tablet and a laptop – great for creatives.
- A little heavier than other models so not as easy to transport.
- Sensitive hinges, so take extra care when folding the screen over.
Powerful gaming laptop: Acer Nitro 5
Gaming laptops offer some of the highest specs on the market – so they’ll work perfect for video conferencing as well. Of course, they’re also pretty pricey so they’re a better option if you plan on gaming as well – and are a must have if you’re involved with video streaming. The Nitro 5 is Acer’s own gaming laptop and comes with fantastic specifications.
You can customize it with your own choice of processor (though we recommend one of the Ryzen options if you’re using it for gaming). This model comes with a headset and mouse included – so you’ll be able to game right out of the box. It also comes with the latest WiFi tech so you won’t lose connection in the middle of your game.
So how are the reviews? It has some great comments from previous customers – however it is recommended mostly as a beginners gaming laptop. You might struggle with some heavier gaming, and the display quality is not as good as other models. Nevertheless, when it comes to gaming laptops it’s in a decent price range.
- Cheaper than most other gaming laptops.
- Customizable with your own choice of processor and screen size.
- Headset and mouse included so you can play games right out of the box.
- Pricier than non-gaming laptops – so only worth it if you plan to game often.
- Display quality isn’t as good as other gaming laptops.
Stylish and sturdy: Macbook Air M1
Older versions of the MacBook Air weren’t recommended for heavier activities – with some issues related to video conferencing reported. That’s all changed, however, with the introduction of Apple’s M1 processor. Many users of their newest machines report it is even better quality than older MacBook Pro models!
They’ve also upgraded the RAM and SSD capacity to ensure high performance and speedy processing. Apple products are notoriously expensive – and the MacBook Pro is still among the priciest on the market – but the new MacBook Air sits comfortably within the same price range as other similar models.
The reviews confirm how improved this model is. With 90% of reviewers giving the model 5 stars – and plenty of established tech mags singing the laptop’s praises – you can be certain of a good experience. The only tip offered is that you should double check all of the software is up to date to get the most out of the machine.
- Fantastic processing power and high RAM for great speeds.
- High levels of customer satisfaction associated with Apple products.
- Comes with great reviews and tech expert recommendations.
- If you’re used to using a Windows PC it’ll be a bit of a learning curve.
- You’ll need to make sure all the software is up to date.
Long lasting battery: Lenovo Legion 5
Lenovo really is one of the best manufacturers out there! The Legion 5 is their own gaming laptop and comes with fantastic specs. You can choose your own processor, but even with the highest performing Ryzen chip you’ll find it’s more affordable than other gaming laptops. What really makes this stand out from the competition though is the excellent battery life – perfect for those long journeys without a plug socket.
Reviewers love the great display and long lasting battery life. It also doesn’t look like a gaming laptop – so you can use it for day to day activities when you’re out and about. The only downsides mentioned are the small keyboard and small storage – though this is only a problem if you need to have a lot of games saved. Either way, it can be upgraded.
- Pretty cheap compared to other gaming laptops.
- Sleek design that doesn’t look as clunky as other gaming laptops.
- Long lasting battery life – perfect for long journeys.
- Small keyboard that might take some getting used to.
- Small storage space but you can get this upgraded.
Great multimedia laptop: HUAWEI MateBook
HUAWEI is known for high quality tech at reasonable prices and the MateBook is no different. The Intel i5 Processor and 8GB RAM means it makes light work of most tasks. It comes with an excellent display so you can view media online in stunning quality. It also comes with multi-screen collaboration – perfect for hooking up to your desk at work.
Reviewers love the stylish and compact design of the laptop – as well as the great performance when it comes to multimedia. One thing to be aware of is that the fan can get a little bit loud so it might be worth sticking to light tasks when you’re out and about. All that said, it comes in at a great price point and would make a fantastic laptop for digital nomads.
- High performance with video and sound.
- High quality display that can handle 4K.
- Stylish design and easy to carry around.
- Can be a bit noisy if you’re running a lot of processes at once.
- HUAWEI tech is restricted in some software stores so check if the software you need is compatible.
There are some great laptops out there for video conferencing – and they’re only getting more and more affordable. The best laptop for you depends on your own needs – but you’ll be sure to find something that can handle all of your tasks.
In general we recommend opting for at least an Intel i5 processor and 4GB of RAM. Anything more will only improve your experience. We hope this guide has helped you figure out the best laptop for you.
Got some tips of your own? Let us know in the comments!