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The 5 best ultraportable notebooks to buy now

By Kenny Yeo - 12 Aug 2022

The 5 best ultraportable notebooks to buy now

The best ultraportable notebooks to buy now

The pandemic has forced us to change our lifestyles and work habits. And a central device to all of that is the ultraportable notebook. Advances in processor technologies and materials mean ultraportable notebooks have never been more powerful and portable. Furthermore, technologies like Thunderbolt 4 mean these notebooks can be docked when users reach home, which improves performance and functionality. With its blend of portability, performance, and versatility, is it any wonder then that ultraportable notebooks are now the system of choice for many users? 

Fortunately, there is no shortage of ultraportable notebooks to choose from these days. There’s bound to be something for everyone. The flip side to all this is that the number of options can be daunting and even complicated for some readers. Well, fret not, because we are here to help. 

Here are five of the best ultraportable notebooks you can buy right now.

 

Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 Carbon

The Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 Carbon.

The Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 Carbon is one of the most well-rounded ultraportable notebooks to hit the market in the past year. After all, it was the winner of the Best Ultraportable Notebook category in our Tech Awards 2022. That should tell you just how good this notebook is.

Thanks to a magnesium alloy and carbon fibre chassis, the Yoga Slim 7 Carbon weighs just a smidge over a kilogram. The display, unlike most other notebooks, uses an OLED panel which delivers brilliant colours and outstanding sharpness. Inside, it’s powered by AMD’s Ryzen 5000 series processors which offer class-leading multi-core performance that far exceeds what Intel’s Core processors are capable of and yet maintain high efficiency. And the icing on the cake is how attractively priced it is. The only shortcoming of this notebook is that none of its three USB-C ports support Thunderbolt.

You can find it on the Lenovo Online Store and prices begin at S$1,699.05.

Read our review of the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 Carbon here.

 

Apple MacBook Air 2022

The 2022 MacBook Air.

It has taken a long time but Apple has finally given us a completely redesigned MacBook Air. At a mere 11.3mm thick and 1.24kg heavy, it’s thinner and lighter than ever. And although it might not have an OLED display, its 13.6-inch Liquid Retina display still looks pretty fantastic.

The highlight of the new MacBook Air, however, has to be its new M2 chip. This is Apple’s second-generation M-series chip and it’s more powerful than ever. In our tests, we found it to be mostly quicker than Intel’s Core i7 Alder Lake chip – the chip that is used in many equivalent Windows ultraportable notebooks. What’s equally impressive is how power efficient it is. In normal use, we found that it can easily last an entire day at work and with juice to spare. The new MacBook Air is unquestionably the best MacBook for most people.

You can find the new MacBook Air on the Apple Online Store, the Apple Flagship Store on Lazada, or the Apple Flagship Store on Shopee. Prices start at S$1,699.

Read our review of the new MacBook Air here.

 

ASUS ZenBook 14 OLED UX3402

The ZenBook 14 OLED UX3402.

The ZenBook 14 OLED is part of ASUS’ big push toward OLED displays for all its notebook. The 14-inch OLED display has a fairly high resolution of 2880 x 1800 pixels and an above-average refresh rate of 90Hz. Furthermore, it supports 100% of the DCI-P3 colour space, is Pantone-validated, and meets VESA’s DisplayHDR Black 500 requirements. It’s one of the most technically impressive displays you can get on a notebook and it looks gorgeous in real life too.

Underneath, it’s powered by Intel’s new Core i7-1260P 12th generation Alder Lake processor, which is paired with 16GB of memory and a speedy 512GB PCIe 4.0 SSD. Connectivity is excellent too. Besides two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, it also has a USB-A port and a full-size HDMI 2.0b port. And if that’s not enough, it’s incredibly well-priced too, making it one of the best value-for-money notebooks you can buy now.
  
You can find the ASUS ZenBook 14 OLED on the ASUS Online Store. It is priced at S$1,899.

You can read our review of the ASUS ZenBook 14 OLED here.

 

Microsoft Surface Pro 8

The Microsoft Surface Pro 8.

Detachable notebooks were designed to give users who don’t want to compromise and want the best tablet and notebook experiences. If this sounds like you, there’s no better high-performance detachable notebook out there than Microsoft’s Surface Pro 8.

To start, the latest Surface Pro has an all-new design with slimmer bezels that gives it a more contemporary look. The display is slightly larger and now has a refresh rate that goes up to 120Hz for smoother visuals. It also has a 5-megapixel web camera for video calls. Connectivity in this latest version has been improved too with not one but two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports.

There are, however, a couple of things to take note. One possible downer is that it is powered by Intel’s older 11th generation Tiger Lake processors. The other is price. Accessories are sold separately and add to the overall cost very quickly. But if you aren’t put off by the high price tag, the Surface Pro 8 offers a lot of portability, versatility, decent performance, and battery life.

You can find it on the Microsoft Online Store, the Microsoft Flagship Store on Lazada, or the Microsoft Authorized Store on Shopee. Prices start at S$1,649.

 

HP Spectre x360 14

The HP Spectre x360 14.

A convertible notebook is another type of notebook designed to give users the option of using their devices like a traditional notebook or a tablet. And some users prefer them to detachable notebooks because their fixed keyboards often offer a better typing experience. If their versatility interests you, one of the best convertible notebooks you can buy is the HP Spectre x360 14.

You cannot talk about the Spectre x360 14 without mentioning its design. Its chiselled chassis coupled with its bold black and copper accent means it looks stylish and maybe even a little flamboyant – unlike any other notebook in its class. The 13.5-inch display is available with an LCD panel or an OLED panel. Similarly, it is available with either a Core i5 or Core i7 11th generation Tiger Lake processor. Connectivity is worth highlighting because it’s one of the few notebooks to still feature a USB-A port. It also has two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports.

One thing to note about this notebook is that because it’s part of HP’s flagship Spectre line, it is quite pricey.

You can find the HP Spectre x360 14 on the HP Online Store, the HP Flagship Store on Lazada, and the HP Official Shop on Shopee. Prices start at S$2,299.

Read our review of the HP Spectre x360 here.

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