Data science is one of the most in-demand fields today, and it’s only going to continue to grow in the years to come. Regarding laptops for data science, there are many options to choose from. It can be challenging to decide which one is right for you. There are many factors to consider, such as price, performance, and features.
To help you decide, we’ve put together a list of the best laptops for data science. We’ve taken into account a variety of factors, such as price, performance, and features. We’ve also included a buyer’s guide to help you make an informed decision. So, if you’re looking for the best laptops for data science, read on!
The Best Laptops for Data Science in 2023
If you’re looking to get into data science, one of the first things you’ll need is a good laptop. After all, data science is a very computationally-intensive field, and you’ll need a powerful machine to be able to handle all the data crunching.
In this article, we’ll be taking a look at the best laptops for data science in 2023. We’ll be considering a variety of factors, including processing power, memory, storage, and portability. So whether you’re looking for a powerful workstation or a portable machine for on-the-go data crunch, this guide has it for you.
1. MacBook Pro – Best Data Science Laptop
The first laptop on our list is the MacBook Pro. This comes in two sizes— MacBook Pro 14” and MacBook Pro 16”. The performance on this laptop can easily beat the highest-end Intel Macs. This can easily handle all your data science work without any hiccups. Plus, this laptop has a fantastic display, keyboard, and battery life.
As for the performance, the MacBook Pro comes in two variants for both sizes— M1 Pro and M1 Max. The M1 Pro is the lower-end yet very capable chip. However, the M1 Max is the higher-end chip that delivers exceptionally good CPU and GPU performance. Apple calls these the first Apple Silicon to be designed for the pros. To give you a glimpse, Apple claims that the M1 Pro can simultaneously play back 20 streams of 4K ProRes videos. At the same time, the M1 Max can simultaneously play back seven streams of 8K ProRes video. The memory bandwidth of the M1 Pro and the M1 Max is 200 Gbit/s and 400 Gbit/s, respectively. Users can configure up to 64GB of unified memory and up to 8TB SSD storage on both models.
As for the display, the MacBook Pro comes in two different sizes— 14.2-inch and 16.2-inch. It is a 120Hz Liquid Retina XDR (mini LED) display with a peak brightness of 1600 nits. Plus, it has a newer, higher resolution 1080p HD webcam hiding in the notch of the display.
The MacBook Pro has a new full-size function row on its keyboard that replaces the Touch Bar, a six-speaker audio system, three studio-quality mics, and up to 17 and 21 hours of battery life on the 14-inch and 16-inch models, respectively. Coming to I/O, you get three Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports, an HDMI port, a full-size SD card reader, MagSafe 3 for charging, and a headphone jack.
The starting price for the MacBook Pro 14” is $1999. An 8-core CPU, 14-core GPU, 16GB of unified memory, and 512GB of SSD storage are included in the standard configuration. You can set up the M1 Pro to have a 10-core CPU, a 14-core GPU, up to 32GB of unified memory, and 8TB of SSD storage. Additionally, you can configure the M1 Max chip with up to 64GB of unified memory and 8TB of SSD storage, a 10-core CPU, and a 32-core GPU. This should be your choice if you have a heavy workload. Also, the MacBook Pro 16” starts at $2,499. You can select the size that is perfect for you.
- Liquid Retina XDR display with 120Hz ProMotion
- Up to 10-core CPU
- Up to 16-core GPU with the M1 Pro and up to 32-core GPU with the M1 Max
- Up to 32GB RAM with the M1 Pro and up to 64GB RAM with the M1 Max
- Up to 8TB SSD storage
- 17 hours / 21 hours of battery life
- macOS Monterey (upgradable to macOS Ventura)
- Premium Metal Build
- mini LED with 120Hz ProMotion
- Fantastic Performance
- Long-lasting battery life
- Studio quality mics and Spatial Audio support
- A large-sized trackpad
- Extensive display support
- Full-size function row on the keyboard with Touch ID
- 1080p FaceTime HD webcam
- Better I/O than the previous generation
- Bulkier and heavier than the 13” Pro model
- Performance may seem like an overkill
- Configurations are expensive
- Lack of upgradeability due to ARM-based Apple Silicon
- Lack of USB Type-A ports
2. MacBook Pro 13” – Compact Laptop for Data Science
Apple last refreshed the MacBook Pro 13”. The refresh upgraded it to the second generation of Apple Silicon— the Apple M2 chip. The Apple M2 chip brings a respectable improvement over the M1 chip. The rest of the design remains the same as the M1 MacBook Pro 13”. It can be an excellent choice for data science.
The M2 chip on the MacBook Pro 13” comes with a more robust and efficient CPU and two additional GPU cores. This counts for an 8-core CPU and 10-core GPU on the M2 chip. The new M2 chip has a 100 Gbit/s memory bandwidth. You can configure the laptop with up to 24GB of unified memory and 2TB SSD storage.
As for the display, the MacBook Pro 13” comes with a 13.3-inch LED‑backlit Retina display with a resolution of 2560×1600 and 500 nits brightness. It still has a 720p webcam for video calls. It also has three studio-quality mics, Spatial Audio support and can last up to 20 hours on battery. The keyboard is the same as last year, which includes the Touch Bar and Touch ID. As for the I/O, it has only two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports and a headphone jack with advanced support for high-impedance headphones.
The MacBook Pro 13” is priced at $1299 for the base model. The base model includes the M2 chip with an 8-core CPU and an 8-core CPU coupled with 8GB unified memory and 256GB SSD storage. It can be configured to up to 8-core CPU, 10-core GPU, 24GB unified memory, and 2TB SSD storage. If you have a lower budget and want a MacBook for data science, the M2 MacBook Pro is the best choice. You can also go for the M2 MacBook Air if you have no problem dealing with a machine without a fan.
- 13.3-inch Retina Display
- Apple M2 Chip with 8-core CPU and 10-core GPU
- Up to 24GB RAM
- Up to 2TB SSD Storage
- Up to 20 hours of battery life
- macOS Ventura
- Apple M2 Chip
- Efficient cooling system
- Long-lasting battery life
- Touch Bar
- Thin and light (3.0 pounds)
- Studio quality mics and Spatial Audio support
- Lacks proper I/O support
- 720p webcam
- Old design
- Base 256GB SSD storage has only one SSD chip
- Lack of upgradeability
3. Dell XPS 15 – Best Windows Laptop for Data Science
The Dell XPS 15 is our third choice when it comes to laptops for data science. It has a fantastic display combined with incredible performance that together delivers a stellar experience. This is almost the perfect laptop for data science.
The Dell XPS 15 features an Intel Core i7-12700H processor, which is a 14-core CPU with a clock speed of 4.7 GHz. As for the GPU, it features the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 (40W) with 4GB GDDR6 VRAM. Plus, this laptop has 16GB DDR5 RAM with a frequency of 4800 MHz and 512GB PCIe SSD. The power delivery is 130W.
As for the display, the Dell XPS 15 has a 15.6-inch FHD+ 1920×1200 60Hz display with an anti-glare coating and 500 nits of peak brightness. It has a 6-cell 86Wh battery that can last up to 12 hours. As for I/O, the laptop has one USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port (with DisplayPort and PowerDelivery), two Thunderbolt 4 (USB Type-C) with DisplayPort and PowerDelivery, and a 3.5mm headphone/microphone combo jack. Do note that there are no USB Type-A ports on this laptop.
As for the pricing, the Dell XPS 15 retails for $2,299 on Amazon. The Dell XPS 15 comes with a premium design, sturdy build quality, and stellar performance, which makes it the ideal laptop for data science.
- 15.6-inch IPS Display
- Intel Core i7-12700H 14-core CPU
- NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GPU
- 16GB DDR5 4800 MHz RAM
- 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD Storage
- 6 Cell 86Wh Battery
- Windows 11 Pro
- Super fast processing with the Intel Core i7-12700H
- All-day battery life
- Thunderbolt 4
- Windows 11 Pro
- Premium design
- GPU could’ve been better
- The 720p webcam is disappointing
- No SD Card Reader
- No USB Type-A ports
- A bit expensive
The LG Gram 14 is our fourth pick for the best laptops for data science. It delivers a fantastic performance while retaining a thin and light form factor. This laptop is for those looking for a Windows laptop that is thin and light and offers an extremely long battery life.
The LG Gram 14 is an Intel Evo Certified laptop. This means you can be assured about the performance and efficiency of the laptop. The LG Gram 14 comes with the Intel Core i7-1260P (12-core) and Iris Xe Graphics. The powerful CPU delivers excellent performance paired with the 32GB LPDDR5 5200 MHz RAM. You also get 1TB PCIe4 M.2 NVMe SSD storage.
As for the display, the LG Gram 14 has a 14” WUXGA 1920×1200 IPS display with an anti-glare coating. The laptop also has narrow bezels around the display, making it very premium. Plus, it weighs just 2.2 pounds, making it super portable. It also has an IR scanner for Windows Hello.
Talking about the battery, you get up to 20 hours of battery life with the 72Wh battery inside the laptop. As for the I/O, it has two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4 support, two USB-A 3.2 ports, a full-size HDMI port, a microSD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack.
The LG Gram 14 comes in several variants. But the one we recommend retails for $1600⁸⁴. This variant includes the i7-1260P CPU; Intel Iris Xe integrated GPU, 32GB LPDDR5 RAM, and 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD storage. The powerful CPU and 32GB RAM make this laptop an excellent choice for data science. However, if your workload demands graphics performance, you can check out other variants of this laptop.
- 14” WUXGA IPS Display
- Intel Core i7-1260P (12-core)
- Intel Iris Xe Graphics (Integrated)
- 32GB LPDDR5 RAM
- 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD storage
- 72Wh battery
- Windows 11 Home
- Powerful CPU
- Thin & light design
- Long battery life
- 32GB RAM
- Windows Hello support
- Great speakers
- microSD card slot
- Integrated GPU
- RAM isn’t upgradable
- Webcam could’ve been better
The Asus VivoBook Pro 15 is the last laptop on this list. We picked this laptop because it provides excellent performance at around $1000. It even has a dedicated graphics card, unlike the LG Gram 14. The laptop also looks quite premium and has a beautiful design.
The Asus VivoBook Pro 15 is powered by the AMD Ryzen 7 5800H, the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GPU, and a dual-fan cooling system. It has 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD storage.
The laptop features a stunning 15.6-inch NanoEdge FHD OLED display and awe-inspiring Harman Kardon-certified audio. The laptop also has a privacy shutter for your webcam. Whether you’re working or playing, the Vivobook Pro 15 OLED immerses you in what you’re doing. As for I/O, it has one USB-C 3.2 Gen 1 port, two USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports, a full-size HDMI port, a USB-A 2.0 port, a microSD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack.
The Asus VivoBook Pro 15 is available for $1,099 on Amazon. This variant of the powerful laptop includes an AMD Ryzen 5800H CPU, the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GPU with 4GB GDDR6 VRAM, 16GB DDR4 RAM, and 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD storage. All in all, the Asus VivoBook Pro 15 OLED is an excellent choice of laptop for data science.
- 14” WUXGA IPS Display
- AMD Ryzen 7 5800H (6-core)
- NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GPU with 4GB GDDR6 VRAM
- 16GB RAM
- 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD storage
- 63Wh battery
- Windows 11 Home
- Beautiful Immersive OLED screen
- Powerful CPU and GPU
- Excellent battery life (15 hours)
- Strong and sturdy design
- Full-size keyboard with Numpad
- Privacy shutter for webcam
- Affordable price for the performance
- 720p webcam could’ve been better
- Bulky at 3.64 pounds
- No Thunderbolt 4 ports
- Poor selection of I/O
Data Science Laptop Comparison Chart
|MacBook Pro 14” and 16”||14.2” and 16.2”||8/10-core M1 Pro||14/16-core GPU||16GB||512GB||macOS||$1,999 and $2,499|
|MacBook Pro 13”||13.3”||8-core M2||10-core GPU||8GB||256GB||macOS||$1,299|
|Dell XPS 15||15.6”||Intel Core i7-12700H||Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050||16GB||512GB||Windows 11 Pro||$2,299|
|Acer Swift X||16”||Intel Core i7-1260P||Intel Arc A370M||16GB||512GB||Windows 11 Home||$1,149|
|Asus VivoBook Pro 15 OLED||15.6”||AMD Ryzen 7 5800H||NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050||16GB||512GB||Windows 11 Home||$1,099|
Best Laptop for Data Science: Buying Guide
Data science is a relatively new field that combines statistics, computer science, and domain expertise to extract meaning from data. It has become increasingly popular in recent years as businesses have come to realize the power of data-driven decision-making.
If you’re in the market for a laptop to support your data science work, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind. This buying guide will give you an overview of the best laptops for data science, covering everything from processing power to memory to storage. We’ll also offer some tips on what to look for when shopping for a data science laptop. By the end, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge you need to choose the best laptop for your needs.
1. OS (Operating System)
The first thing to decide is the operating system you are comfortable with. There are many operating systems to choose from, including macOS, Windows, and Linux.
The CPU is one of the most crucial specifications to consider when it comes to data science. Since the CPU is in charge of executing all instructions, it must be powerful enough to prevent slowing down your data analysis process. As of today’s standards, data science works best on laptops with six-core or eight-core CPUs.
Having a good GPU is crucial for data science because it improves your ability to view data. Large data sets can be handled swiftly and efficiently by a laptop with a strong GPU, allowing you to gain the necessary insights more quickly. While some of the integrated GPUs are strong enough to handle your workload, we recommend you get a laptop with a dedicated GPU.
RAM and Storage
The amount of RAM on your laptop is crucial because it lets you work with large data sets without lags. We recommend getting at least 8GB RAM for data science. Besides the amount of RAM, the RAM frequency also matters a lot. Ensure you do not get a laptop with a RAM frequency below 3200 MHz.
In addition, you’ll need a lot of space to store your data sets and any software you need. We recommend getting a laptop with at least 512GB SSD storage. If you can’t, make sure the laptop is upgradeable, or you will have to buy an external SSD.
Data science requires extensive use of the display to view and edit information constantly. This makes it vital to get a laptop that has a good display. We recommend getting an IPS display with a resolution of 1080p for the minimum.
4. Keyboard and Trackpad
A good keyboard and trackpad also help make a better overall laptop. Make sure you get a laptop with a good keyboard, preferably full-sized. As for the trackpad, make sure that it is accurate and large enough.
One of the most important things to consider when buying a laptop for data science is the port selection. A good port selection should include Type-C, Thunderbolt, HDMI, and an audio jack.
A portable computer is what you should go for. Your management, peers, and clients will require frequent presentations of your analysis and data science initiatives. That’s why we recommend you get a laptop that is easy to carry around.
7. Battery Life
And finally, you’ll need a good laptop battery to keep your laptop running when you’re not plugged in. We recommend getting a laptop with at least 8 hours of battery life on a single charge.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which is the best laptop for data science?
Our top picks for the best laptops for data science are:
- MacBook Pro 14” and 16”
- MacBook Pro 13”
- Dell XPS 15
- LG Gram 14
- Asus VivoBook Pro 15 OLED
Is the MacBook Pro 13” a good choice for data science?
Yes, the MacBook Pro 13” is a great choice for data science. The only caveat that comes to my mind is the 256GB base storage. However, this is an excellent choice if you can upgrade to 512GB or use an external SSD.
What are some good Windows laptops for data science?
Some of the best Windows laptops for data scientists are the Dell XPS 15, LG Gram 14, and the Asus VivoBook Pro 15.
Data science is a field that is constantly evolving, and so are the laptops that data scientists use. In this article, we listed five of the best laptops for data science based on a variety of factors. We hope the included guide also helped you choose the right laptop for your needs. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments section below.
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