Product Reviews

Welcome to Consumer Reports.

We’re so glad to have you as a member. You now have access to benefits that can help you choose right, be safe and stay informed.

Best 2-in-1 Laptops

These versatile computers could make you forget all about needing a dedicated tablet

One of the best 2-in-1 laptops
When you shop through retailer links on our site, we may earn affiliate commissions. 100% of the fees we collect are used to support our nonprofit mission. Learn more.

Why shop for two devices when one will do the job?

That's the allure of a 2-in-1 laptop, a clever innovation that's one part traditional notebook and one part touchscreen tablet. With a 2-in-1, you can put the finishing touches on an Excel spreadsheet at your kitchen table and, moments later, be lying in bed watching Netflix.

“The primary appeal of a 2-in-1 is the flexibility,” says Antonette Asedillo, who oversees computer testing for Consumer Reports. “If you don't need the keyboard, you can tuck it away, change the configuration so it functions as a stand, or possibly detach it altogether.”

As Asedillo points out, there are two approaches to 2-in-1 design.

In the case of detachables, such as the Microsoft Surface Go and HP Envy X2, the keyboard can be completely disconnected from the display. With convertibles—which include certain variants of the Dell XPS and Lenovo Yoga lines—the keyboard swings 360 degrees on hinges and folds flat against the back of the display.

The ideal option depends to a large degree on your specific needs.

“Detachables are good when you want to be more mobile, maybe to play a game or browse the web using just the screen,” says Asedillo. “Convertibles are good for presentations, times when you need to quickly show videos and slideshows. It gets the keyboard out of the way and holds the display upright.”

The touchscreen, Asedillo notes, comes in really handy here, allowing you to pause a movie or scroll through slides with simple hand gestures.

Of the 106 laptops currently in our ratings, roughly one-third are of the 2-in-1 variety, which shows how much consumers have warmed to the idea of these hybrids. For a list of recommended models, organized by screen size, continue reading below.

1

Microsoft Surface Pro 6 (Core i7)
Microsoft Surface Pro 6 (Core i7)

    Microsoft Surface Pro 6 (Core i7)

    This 12.3-inch detachable performed well in our tests. Available in stores for around $1,000, it has an Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of memory, and 256GB of solid state storage, and you can expect a little more than 11 hours of battery life, according to our testers.

    Those are high-end specs that will enable you to complete just about any task with ease, whether you're putting together large spreadsheets, watching HD video, or editing photos.

    Keep in mind that the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 will be released later this month. That means you’ll likely find the Surface Pro 6 in stores at discounted prices over the next several months as stores clear out old inventory. (As for the Surface Pro 7, we expect to have our review shortly after its release.)

    If you want something a little smaller, you might consider the Microsoft Surface Go. Like the Surface Pro 6, it’s a 2-in-1 detachable, but at 10 inches and 1.7 pounds (the Pro 6 weighs 2.4), it’s easier to slip into a bag and head out the door. It’s not as powerful as the Pro, but if most of your computing tasks revolve around a web browser, Word, or PowerPoint, it will get the job done.

    2

    Samsung Notebook 9 Pro (2019)
    Samsung Notebook 9 Pro (2019)

      Samsung Notebook 9 Pro (2019)

      This 13.3-inch detachable—available for around $1,100—turned in a strong performance in our tests. It also includes a stylus, which comes in handy if you like to take digital “handwritten” notes on the touchscreen.

       

      The specs here are quite good, with an Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of memory, and a 256GB solid state drive. That basically means it can handle just about any task, with the exception of graphics-intense gaming and perhaps high-res video editing. Expect the battery to last nearly 9 hours for web browsing and a little more than 7 hours under the heavier load of 4K video streaming.

       

      Samsung also makes a very similar Notebook 9 Pen that’s a little larger (at 15.6 inches) and a little more expensive (around $1,800) if this model is too cramped for comfort.

      3

      HP Spectre Folio
      HP Spectre Folio

        HP Spectre Folio

        The first thing you'll notice about this 13.3-inch convertible is that it's clad in leather. The unique design doesn’t serve any practical purpose but does lend a “sturdy, premium feel,” according to our testers.

         

        In other words, you’ll stand out at your local Starbucks.

         

        And given that the Folio’s battery can last 18.5 hours (which is among the best for the 12- to 13-inch laptops in our ratings), that's a trip you can make without scrambling to find the power cord.

         

        With an Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of memory, and 256GB of solid state storage, the Folio packs enough power to help you tackle tasks from clearing out your inbox to managing a large photo library. And while our testers have seen faster laptops, the combination of battery life, light weight, and interesting design makes this one a compelling option.

         

        And while not clad in leather, HP's new Spectre convertible two-in-one laptop should be available within the next few weeks. We haven’t tested the model yet, but it's likely to push the prices on older Spectre laptops, including this model, lower as we approach the holidays.

        4

        Asus ZenBook Flip UX461UA-DS51T
        Asus ZenBook Flip UX461UA-DS51T

          Asus ZenBook Flip UX461UA-DS51T

          This 14-inch convertible has an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory, 256GB of solid state storage, and a battery that, according to our testers, provides around 11 hours of web browsing.

           

          The display is slightly larger than those on the models above—without hindering the laptop's portability. (If you want even more screen real estate, consider these models.) It also has a wide viewing angle, which helps when you need to deliver a PowerPoint presentation to a few people at once.

          5

          Dell XPS 15 8th gen
          Dell XPS 15 8th gen

            Dell XPS 15 8th gen

            This 15-inch convertible is a good option if you’re looking for a laptop with a bigger screen for watching movies or eyeballing spreadsheets.

             

            The device features an Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB of memory, and 256GB of solid state storage—the sorts of specs you'd expect to see on a higher-end laptop in mid-2019.

             

            The XPS 15 also has a graphics card from AMD, which comes in handy if you enjoy playing games.

             

            In short, it’s a powerful laptop with a respectable battery life of 9 hours.


            Note that Dell also offers a 13-inch 2-in-1 XPS if you’re more comfortable with a laptop of that size.

            106
            Laptops Rated
            Access Ratings