Laptop for college

Sep 30, 2018
Hello. I am currently looking for a new laptop to upgrade from my previous one. Right now I have a Acer aspire E15(i3 6006u, 8gb ram, 1tb hard drive) and I just don't like it. It has terrible build quality, bad battery life and it is extremely heavy. I am doing a computer science course in college and while working I usually have a lot of applications open (multiple tabs on Firefox, visual studio, Microsoft word ect). The Acer I have at the moment is very slugish even handling applications like these and I have to take a charger with me which takes up loads of space in my bag. So my question is, what would be the best laptop(for under £800) that is light and has a great build quality and a long lasting battery life. A friend has a hp omen and he says the battery life is great but online it says on average 5-6 hours and it also looks like it would be heavy. I know I could probably go cheaper than £800 for what I do, but I want something that can keep up for a couple of years.


1. "the best laptop(for under £800) that is light and has a great build quality and a long lasting battery life". That is a tall order indeed. You're going to increase your budget significantly, or lower your requirements drastically. I was going to suggest a refurbished laptop, but even that is going to be difficult to find at under £800.

2. Your friend's HP Omen is a gaming laptop, and the battery life may be "great" for a gaming rig, but for a college student 5 hours is not very impressive, and yes, it's also quite heavy. Most gaming laptops are essentially designed as desktop replacements and therefore make no concessions to battery life or weight.

£800 will buy you a host of attractive laptops running on 8th-gen i7 CPUs, e.g. this £700 HP from Amazon UK:

Battery life is listed at 11 hours, which probably means something like 8 in real life. Weight is 1.9kg. Between the 8th-gen CPU, the 8 GBs of DDR4 RAM, and the 256 GB SSD drive this is going to be a significant improvement on your current Acer. Build quality is not market-leading, but this 15.6" HP should be able to see you through college, but be gentle.

If you're able to increase your budget by £200, this Lenovo ThinkPad T580 is worth looking at:

Starting price is £920 and add £75 to get a 256 GB SSD drive (click 'Customise'). Battery life is listed at "up to 27 hours" although that requires the extended battery pack. In its current version you're looking at 12 to 15 hours. Weight is on par with the HP above, at 1.97 kg. It also comes with a 2K IPS panel, which is going to be particularly useful for a college student. Build quality is very good indeed in the T-series, and this T580 will easily last you 7 to 10 years no matter how much you punish it. Both RAM and storage can be expanded down the road.

Best of luck,
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