The 5 Longest Lasting Laptops of 2021
Dec 20, 2020
When buying new electronics, it can often feel like what you’re getting isn’t built to last more than a couple of years, which can be really frustrating for a purchase as significant as a PC.
This is why today’s feature will take you through the best long-lasting laptops available on the market today.
This isn’t a list of the most expensive laptops, but ones that represent the best value of specs important for longevity in different price ranges for various types of users (the best future-proof laptops will technically be several thousand dollars, but there are huge diminishing returns over the choices below).
- Longest Lasting Laptop for Business/General Use: Lenovo ThinkPad T480s
- Longest Lasting Laptop for Gaming / High-End Production: CUK HP Omen 15t
- Longest Lasting Gaming Laptop (Mid-Range): MSI GL65 Leopard 10SFK-062
- Best Cheap Long Lasting Laptop: 2020 HP 15 15.6″ HD Touchscreen Premium Laptop
- Longest Lasting Touchscreen Laptop: LG Gram Laptop 2020 Touch Edition
Longest Lasting Laptop for Business/General Use: Lenovo ThinkPad E15 i7-10510U, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD
Lenovo is at the top of the list when anyone asks me “which laptop lasts the longest for business and personal use?” (Think e-mails, web browsing, Netflix, and basic software/Microsoft Office).
ThinkPads have a fantastic reputation as a rugged, high-durability laptop range that are not only made to last physically but also tend to have great battery longevity and performance that retains over years.
Of course, you still need the ThinkPad to have decent specs, and that’s where this E15 model comes in.
The specific capacity that we’re highlighting boasts a fantastic Intel Core i7-10510U processor & 32GB RAM. These specs will work together to handle pretty much any business/general use task you can throw at them (and will do so with incredible speed for a very long time).
We love the inclusion of a 1TB SSD too; not only will this mean the included Windows 10 Professional will run very smoothly, but you’ll have a huge amount of space (more than most laptops) for long-term file storage.
(Note: If you’re running on more of a budget, you can check out our longest lasting cheap laptop pick below, but also you can reduce the specs of this ThinkPad (via its Amazon page) to i5-10210U – 16GB – 250GB SSD, this wouldn’t be the same laptop as our original choice, but still offer great future-proofing over most other competitors).
The build quality, RAM, CPU, and SSD are the parts that really make this machine long-lasting, but the E15 has some other nice quality-of-life features we like to see in a premium laptop like a full HD IPS screen, 720p webcam + shutter for privacy and a USB 3.1 Type-C Gen 1 port.
Overall, if you’re not doing lots of gaming or work that requires a high-end GPU (video editing or rendering), then this is easily our top pick for the best long-lasting laptop available today.
Longest Lasting Laptop for Gaming / High-End Production: CUK HP Omen 15t
Now, for those after the best long-lasting gaming laptop or something suited for say, video editing/rendering, you’ll want something with a powerful GPU to go alongside the other high-end specs.
That’s where this CUK-upgraded HP gaming laptop excels. With a fantastic RTX 2080 Super GPU, this card’s 8GB of dedicated VRAM works alongside a powerful Intel i7-10750H & 32GB of RAM to achieve fantastic framerates on pretty much any title available today. You can expect Cyberpunk 2077, Red Dead Redemption 2, the latest Call of Duty, and all upcoming games for the next few years to run at an impressive spec.
If you happen to use your machine for general use too, know that between the main specs of the Omen15t, it will pretty much destroy any standard-operation task you can throw at it for a long time.
Another reason we love this machine is its wonderful screen. This is a 300hz laptop with an IPS panel. Not only are you getting the capability to play full HD games with lightning-fast smoothness, but with decent contrast/color accuracy too. Because the RTX 2080 Super has so much power, you can expect to achieve incredibly high framerates in competitive games like Overwatch, Fortnite, and more (one of the best laptops for esports).
The final mouth-watering spec of this HP laptop is its storage space. With a 1TB NVMe SSD for your OS, top software, and favorite games to load fast, and a 2TB HDD for your other media/games, it’s hard to find a laptop with a better solution than this. While it sounds like a lot of space, when some modern titles exceed 200GB in total size, we really do think you want this kind of storage for a long-lasting laptop for gaming.
You may be able to squeeze similar specs out of a machine that costs 5% or so less, but the Omen 15t also offers excellent build quality which is vital for gaming longevity. With a durable metal/aluminum-brushed exterior, high-quality hinge, and cooling solution that actually manages to retain some respectable temps (CUK’s limited warranty extends to 3 years, which also demonstrates the confidence that this computer is built to last).
There’s no such thing as a fully future-proof gaming laptop, as all specs are eventually outdated. But in terms of getting a machine today that will take you as far as possible? CUK has excelled here, and we can’t overstate how nice it is to play on a laptop with a high refresh rate. It completely changes how games feel.
This Omen 15t model is our comfortable pick for the top long-lasting gaming laptop available today.
Longest Lasting Gaming Laptop (Mid-Range): MSI GL65 Leopard 10SFK-062
Featured multiple times on What in Tech for its fantastic balance between value and performance, the MSI GL65 Leopard is perfect for someone after a long-lasting gaming PC without the budget for our top HP pick.
Boasting an RTX 2070 GPU alongside an Intel Core i7-10750H, this MSI gaming laptop has incredible specs for its price. You’ll be able to play close to every title in excellent sittings at FHD with high FPS (which will last into the future for many games too).
You’re also getting 16GB DDR4 RAM and a 512GB NVMe SSD (with space inside for an additional drive that you can add later should you need more space).
You might be thinking “at this price, where does the GL65 Leopard cut corners?” – well, we can’t really find an answer to that as it excels in its other specs too!
Take its screen for instance, with an IPS panel running at 144hz and 3ms latency, not to mention a 100% sRGB color accuracy, you’ll be getting beautiful, sharp, and smooth gameplay on a laptop that can actually produce high FPS.
Beyond that are a beautiful and sturdy design, comfortable RGB keyboard with enough tactlessness for gaming, and inbuilt thermals that have had a good track record from most other users.
If you can’t stretch to our top RTX 2080 Super laptop pick, don’t fret. This isn’t just the top laptop to last a long time in the mid-range, but the best gaming laptop we can find versus anything else close to its price!
Best Cheap Long Lasting Laptop: 2020 HP 15 15.6″ HD Touchscreen Premium Laptop
Now, for general users, we would definitely steer you towards the ThinkPad if possible (even reducing its specs) because those machines are built like tanks, and have long-lasting battery life.
That said, if you’re looking for the cheapest laptop that still offers specs we see as being suitable for the medium-long term (for business and personal use, not gaming/high-end production), then this HP offering packs a decent punch!
Boasting some specs not often seen from a reputable laptop manufacturer in this price range, you’re getting 16GB RAM, a 512GB SSD (plenty for non-gamers) & a Core i5-1035G1 processor. We expect these to all provide you with everything you need for general use like basic software, Office, internet browsing, and Netflix/Amazon Prime/Disney Plus for a long time.
So with all that said, why is this our budget long-lasting laptop choice? Well, there are two areas that may bother some users:
- The laptop is thin/lightweight – > While this sounds great on paper, these ultralight laptops that many manufacturers make often suffer from limited thermal performance & slightly less battery life (if your device is just going to be stationary in the home, and for the most part you’re just using it for light software/internet browsing, this won’t be a problem. But for heavier users, go for our top ThinkPad pick.
- The screen is a touchscreen, which is great for a budget pick, but it’s also not full HD (1366 x 768), you’ll still get a decent picture for most purposes, but it depends if your idea of a long-lasting laptop includes having 1080p content or not.
With that said, if you’re comfortable with these downfalls, and you’re on more of a budget, then this laptop will serve your personal use for a long time.
Longest Lasting Touchscreen Laptop: LG Gram Laptop 2020 Touch Edition
If you’re looking for a high-performance touchscreen laptop that is as future-proof as a mid-range device can get, the LG Gram 2020 edition is a fantastic option.
The latest version of this classic flagship line from LG’s laptop division has a lot going for it, alongside its 15.6-inch touchscreen (with a gorgeous IPS panel) is a powerful Intel 10th Gen Core i7 1065G7 CPU with 16GB RAM and 2 x 512GB M.2 NVMe SSDs (effectively 1TB of very fast storage, which will make your OS/file use feel like a smooth dream).
With these specs, you can expect this to last a long time for personal use and general work; but the LG Gram excels in another type of longevity: battery life.
With an awesome 80W lithium battery, powered alongside an efficient set of specs, we consider this one of the longest-lasting battery life laptops on the market today too.
If touch and/or battery are important to you, the LG Gram is a great pick up.
Laptop Brands that Last the Longest?
To end this feature, we just wanted to address this common query. Prospective buyers often ask “how long do Lenovo/HP laptops last?”, etc.
The truth is there isn’t a one-size-fits-all long-lasting brand, it depends on the model (namely build/cooling quality, CPU, GPU, RAM).
If we had to name the longest-lasting laptop brand, it would typically be Lenovo, specifically their ThinkPad range.
However, this is a huge generalization, and a $1,000 HP laptop will (usually) last longer than an $800 ThinkPad.
So we’d highly recommend looking at the picks above which have been tailored to this question, but if you want to look further, focus on user reception and laptop reviews of certain models that seem to fare in the medium/long term and making sure you have decent enough specs (including a beefy GPU if you’re gaming).
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