8 Best Laptops For Data Science (Feb 2018)
Are you a Data scientist who is looking forward to getting a good laptop for your job?
If your answer is Yes, then I ensure you that you have landed in the right place and I can help you to make the right decision.
I’m going to show you 8 Best laptops for data science professionals/students which could make this job a lot easier than ever before.a
A Data Scientist’s job needs a laptop with high-end specifications so that they can focus on the main task rather than fixing an issue on their older laptop.
The laptops which I’m going to show you below are best and perfectly suitable for a data scientist and you can choose your preferred option as per your budget.
|1||Apple MacBook Pro||15.4'||Check Current Price|
|2||Asus ROG Strix GL702VM-DB71||15.6'||Under $1400|
|3||Dell Inspiron I5577-7342BLK-PUS||15.6'||Under $950|
|4||New Microsoft Surface Pro||12.3'||Check Current Price|
|5||Lenovo Y700||17.3'||Under $1400|
|6||Asus ROG GL552VW||15.6'||Check Current Price|
|7||MacBook Air||13.3'||Under $1000|
|8||Dell XPS 15||15.6'||Under $1600|
- Top 8 Laptops for Data Science and Data Analysis
- 1. Apple 15″ MacBook Pro- A Perfect Laptop for Data Science
- 2. Asus ROG Strix GL702VM-DB71- A gaming Laptop for Data Analysis
- 3. Dell Inspiron i5577-7342BLK-PUS- An Affordable Data Scientist Laptop
- 4. New Microsoft Surface Pro- A Best 2-in-1 Laptop for Data Science
- 5. Lenovo Y700 17′
- 6. ASUS ROG GL552VW
- 7. Apple MMGG2LL/A MacBook Air- Best Lightweight Laptop for Data Analysis
- 8. Dell XPS9560-A Complete Laptop for a Data Science
- Laptop Buying Guide For a Data scientist:
Top 8 Laptops for Data Science and Data Analysis
Note: This is the most expensive laptop on this entire list which costs over $2500. So If you don’t have a higher budget like this, I would advise you to skip this laptop and check out some other laptops on this list.
In the title, I have mentioned this new 15″ MacBook Pro as the perfect laptop for data analysts or data scientists because it has the high-quality specifications and everyone knows how reliable and reputed brand Apple is when it comes to PC or laptop. Now let’s talk about why it deserves to be the #1 laptop for a data scientist too.
The #1 reason why I preferred this MacBook Pro over others is it has A beautiful and gorgeous retina display. It has the same 15.4 Inch LED display as 2016 model with the resolution of 2880×1800. No can’t deny the fact that this is one of the best looking laptops anyone can get right now.
A data scientist should have a laptop with a good color accuracy and better viewing angles so that they don’t make any mistake while processing any data. The MacBook Pro has both of them, so no need to worry about that.
The MacBook Pro has 512GB SSD storage which is good enough for a statistical analysis. Remember that this isn’t a typical HDD storage, SSD is a lot faster than an SSD storage. (Read more on Hexus).
Coming back to the performance, it has 16GB LPDDR3 RAM which isn’t upgradeable to 32GB due to some obvious reasons. The 16GB is enough for a data scientist in my opinion which is already a lot faster than some other laptops out there.
The Intel Core i7-7920HQ processor clocked at 2.9GHz can handle any hardcore task smoothly and I must say this is the type of laptop a Data scientist need definitely if you are serious about your work. The Turbo boost can increase its speed up to 3.9GHz whenever its required to do so. It easily handles the 4k video editing at 60fps in software like Premiere Pro.
The Geekbench scores of this laptop are 16% faster in the single core than the 2016 model and 19% faster in the multi-score which is a decent improvement in my opinion.
Another useful stuff which is useful in the MacBook Pro is Portability. It weighs slightly more than 2kg and thickness of the laptop is just 1.55cm. Most people use their data scientist laptop as a desktop to concentrate on their work but if you aren’t one of them, then the Portability is this laptop will surely help you on-the-go.
One of the controversial features Apple has offered on this laptop is the Touch Bar. For a data analyst, I think it isn’t a very useful feature because it doesn’t provide as value as it should be. But what I liked about the Touch Bar is, it has Touch ID which the latest iPhone X doesn’t have now.
The Touch ID can be used to unlock the laptop just like Windows Hello in Windows laptop or it can be used to make online payments.
Another important to talk about the MacBook Pro, the large touchpad.
As you can see, the large trackpad in the MacBook Pro helps to move around any subject quickly but in my opinion, it is very large. If you think, it’s too big for you then I would suggest getting an external mouse but it could cost you more money.
It has 4 thunderbolt USB and one of the best speakers on the market right now.
Finally, the battery life.
For a data scientist who will be doing heavy tasks in software like R, Python and more, you can expect the battery to last 2-3 hours. When you aren’t working and using it for general purposes like streaming videos, using MS word and other basic tasks, then you can expect 8-10 hours of battery life.
Le’ts wrap it by now talking about the Pros and Cons of this machine.
2. Asus ROG Strix GL702VM-DB71- A gaming Laptop for Data Analysis
This is truly a beast from Asus which can live up to the expectations and I must this is one of the best laptops for a data science right now.
The Asus ROG Strix GL702VM-DB71 comes with a 15.6 Inch full HD display which is slightly larger display when compared to the above MacBook Pro. The screen isn’t great as the MacBook Pro but it isn’t the worst either. It has good color accuracy and great viewing angles.
For both gamers and data scientists, it has a G-Sync Technology which can eliminate any visual imperfections and screen tearing. Practically, it’ll more useful for a gamer but a data analysts can take good advantage of this amazing technology.
Watch the below video learn more about G-Sync.
Video by: NCIX Tech Tips
Some people have confusion regarding the storage type of this laptop, Maria Arango had cleared the confusion that this laptop has M.2 256GB Samsung NVMe SSD and not M.2 SATA 3 drive. The NVMe SSD can easily outperform any SATA 3 drive out there.
When it comes to the performance of this beast, I can assure you that you won’t be disappointed at all. As I said before, it can truly live up to your expectations be it your Data processing, Personal usage or Gaming.
The Intel Skylake Core i7 6700HQ with 16GB DDR4 RAM makes this machine one of the most powerful laptop out there. It can literally open any programs within few seconds and you can enjoy your work with faster performance. Even after the performance, if you think it is slow, you can add 1 more RAM module to make it faster.
When it comes to the Gaming performance, this laptop has NVIDIA GTX 1060 with 6GB dedicated RAM. This isn’t the latest GPU but it’s not that older too. It performs reasonably well and you won’t face any issues. According to TechPowerUp, Doom can hit up to 85.2FPS on full screen, F1 2016 can hit up to 65.3 FPS which is decent enough for this laptop.
If you are a hardcore gamer and a data scientist, then this post especially for you.
Talking about the portability, Can you see how thin and lightweight? Yes, there are lots of laptops out there with lesser weight than this, but for a gaming and hardcore performing laptop, it is very lightweight and fairly portable.
Unlike Apple, Asus has done a good job by providing a handful of ports on this laptop.
On the left side of this laptop, there are 1 Mini display port, HDMI, 1 USB 3.0 and 1 USB Type-C. On the right side, you are getting, Kensington lock, 2 USB 3.0 and a 3.5 headphone jack.
One of the noticeable thing in this laptop is its RED backlit keyboard which looks stunning.
You can increase/decrease the brightness of the keyboard based on your situation. This is one of the useful features for everyone especially for those who work late in the night. Just to let you know, this is a VR Ready laptop.
For the battery, expect it to last in 3 hours with 50% brightness for general usage. For a data science job, you can expect it around 1.5-2 hours battery life.
3. Dell Inspiron i5577-7342BLK-PUS- An Affordable Data Scientist Laptop
This is another member of the Dell’s Inspiron family which is quite different and cheap from the above two laptops but with some flaws.
The Dell Inspiron i5577-7342BLK-PUS has 15.6 Inch TN display which may not have the best viewing angles but still, it is very bright and produces good color reproduction. Most people would ignore this laptop because of a TN Panel but Ryan Clark has confirmed that it is one of best TN Panel laptop out there.
The body of the laptop is very rigid and overall design of the laptop is nice. It measures 1 inch in the thickness and it weighs 5.7 lbs (2.5 kg). Dell should have cut the thickness of the laptop slightly to make it slimmer but even though it is a fairly portable laptop.
There are 6 variants of the laptop available on Amazon right now but for a data scientist, I would you to get the 16GB and 512GB SSD storage variant. This is the best and expensive variant of this laptop which costs less than $1000.
This is a PCIe based SSD storage which performs way better than SATA SSD’s. The boot time of the laptop is less than 10 seconds. Programs open extremely fast and you don’t have to worry about that. One thing I personally liked about this laptop is, it has low fan noise and you won’t irritated with that.
Most of the people have complained about the bloatware in the laptop so I have one important suggestion for you. Install a new fresh OS after getting the laptop, install GeForce experience and update all the drivers from Dell and enjoy.
One of the crucial thing about this Inspiron is Gaming.
As you may already know this laptop comes with dedicated GeForce GTX 1050 which can handle most of the moderate games even at high settings. According to Linus, here are benchmarks scores of 3 games at higher settings i.e 1080p.
Rise of the tomb raider= 52.5 FPS
GTA v= 71 FPS
Deus ex= 38FPS
A data scientist would require having a laptop which can handle any type of performance be it a basic task or a hardcore task and this laptop falls into this category.
Dell has offered a good keyboard with full numbers pad and it is red backlit. The only thing to be concerned about the keyboard is, its backlit effect doesn’t get brightness enough like to other laptops.
And finally, Battery life of this laptop is a lot better than the above two laptops. For moderate usage, you can expect between 4-5 hours. Using the laptop in the lower settings can give a battery life up to 8 hours which is great.
4. New Microsoft Surface Pro- A Best 2-in-1 Laptop for Data Science
If portability is your top priority as a data scientist, then I must say its almost impossible to find a better laptop than this Surface Pro for you. You can use the Surface Pro as both tablet or a laptop and it is very easy to carry on the go.
It weighs 1.73 lbs which are less than 1Kg. Just to let you know, this is the most lightweight laptop on this entire list.
The new Microsoft Surface Pro features 12.3 Inch display with 267 PPI which looks stunning from any angle. The Surface Pro comes with its stylus pen which has pressure sensitivity level of 4096 and it is said to be the fastest pen in the world right now.
The sad news about the new Surface Pro is, it doesn’t come with Surface Pro Pen along with the keyboard. This is a very bad decision by Microsoft. Even after charging an expensive amount, they have decided to exclude both Pen and Keyboard. Both accessories will cost you around $250 which is a shame.
Just like the above Dell Inspiron, the Surface Pro also comes in 6 different variants. The basic variant comes with 4GB RAM and 128GB which I won’t be recommending you because it may not be suitable for a data scientist.
I will suggest you get at least 8GB variant which comes with 256GB storage and Core i7 Processor. This is already an expensive model which will cost over $1300, if you have a higher budget than this, you can choose the highest variant which will cost extra $700.
If you are spending over a $1000+ on a laptop, you would be expecting a great performance and Surface Pro won’t let you down for sure. It performs extremely fast and it can live up to your expectations. Don’t expect it to play hardcore games because this laptop isn’t for gaming, it has created especially for students and teachers to use it on the go.
Recommended: Best Laptops for Teachers
A test has confirmed that it can play overwatch in lower setting at 30-40 FPS which isn’t bad for this laptop. The read speed of the laptop is 1500MB+ and the write speed is 900MB+ which is great in my opinion.
The kickstand which comes along with the laptop can be lowered down up to 165 degrees which will be very useful sometimes. The trackpad of the laptop is fully made of glass which is a nice thing
The port selection by Microsoft is pretty ordinary I would say. They are offering 1 USB 3.0, a display port and 1 micro-SD card slot that’s it. There is no USB Type-C at all which is a major disappointment for most consumers. You can read why there is no Type-C in Surface Pro on WindowsCentral.
Microsoft claims the battery can last up to 13.5 hours of video playback but in real life that’s not completely true. For moderate usage, you can expect around 6-7 hours and while play videos or streaming, you can expect the maximum battery life up to 10 hours which isn’t that bad.
You can also watch this short video review by Matthew Moniz.
5. Lenovo Y700 17′
I’ve talked about the Lenovo Y700 15 inch laptop in my earlier post and mentioned that it is one of best laptop for a programmer. The 17-inch laptop of the same model is one of the good laptops for a data science/ analysis.
This Lenovo Y700 has 17.3 inches full HD display which has a pretty decent viewing angles and color reproduction. A data scientist would really enjoy working on a big screen laptop like this while researching, analyzing any data. If you aren’t a fan of big-screen laptops, you can get 14 inch or 15-inch model of this laptop.
It has a metal finish on it and like the Surface Pro laptop, the hinge can be laid down up to 130 degrees.
Just like the 15-inch model, this laptop also comes with 16GB DDR4 RAM, Intel Core i7-6700HQ Processor, and GeForce GTX 960M but the difference between these laptops is in the storage.
This 17-inch model comes with 512GB SSD whereas the 15-inch model comes with the combination of 1TB HDD+ 256GB SSD.
There is nothing to question about the performance of this laptop. This machine is built to perform especially high-end tasks such photo/ video editing, gaming and more. According to this test, the read speed of the laptop is 553MB and the writing speed is 156MB. The Geekbench 3 score for a single core is 3618 and multi-core it scores 13339.
Based on the specs and the performance of this laptop, I would say this is one of the best laptops for data scientist out there.
If you are both gamer and a data analyzer, this laptop would be more than suitable for you. The same test which I mentioned above confirms that Just cause 3 and Call of duty black ops can run at 48-60 FPS in medium-high settings.
One of the best thing about the Lenovo Y700 is, its JBL speakers.
It produces crystal clear high-quality audio which is one of the best in the business right now. The audio quality is better than the above Surface Pro.
One thing to keep in mind before getting this laptop is, it is very heavy i.e 7.7 pounds (3.5 kg) and it may not be suitable for the people who travel a lot from one place to the other.
The keyboard is red-backlit and unfortunately, you can’t change to any other color than Red. But you can change brightness level according to your needs.
The battery life on this laptop is average I would say. Without playing any games, it can last up to 4-5 hours and while playing games, it can last up to 1-1.5 hours.
6. ASUS ROG GL552VW
This is one of the entry-level gaming laptops which Asus has provided with some powerful specifications. The above Asus ROG laptop which I have mentioned in the #2 is pretty expensive but this laptop costs at least $600 cheaper than that one.
It has 15.6 Inch full HD display just like many other laptops on this list. The brightness and color accuracy of this laptop is Okay but not too great though. You should keep this mind. The top surface of the laptop is a metal finish which is solid and bottom of the laptop is made of plastic.
Even in the smaller model, there are 2 versions of this laptop is available on Amazon.
1. 1TB HDD, 128GB SSD, 16GB RAM and GTX 960M with 4GB RAM.
2. 1TB HDD, no SSD, 16GB RAM and GTX 960M with 2GB RAM.
The pricing difference between these two versions is only $130. You should choose as per your requirements. One of the best things about this laptop is, you can upgrade or replace all the 3 things by just opening couple of screws of the back. It’s really simple.
I would suggest the 1st variant for a data scientist and upgrade the SSD storage to 256GB or 512GB and that’s it. You’ll have a powerful machine which can perform any tasks without any issues.
If you are a gamer who plays games occasionally after completing your works, this laptop could be really a good choice for you. But you need to choose the right variant between GTX 960M 4GB RAM and GTX 960M 2GB RAM.
It handles gaming smoothly and doesn’t heat a lot. You can play Shadow of Mordor on high settings at 29FPS and Tomb Raider at 65FPS which is amazing. You can learn more about the benchmark scores of the laptop in UltraBookReview.
It weighs 5.6 lbs (2.5 kg) which is fairly portable I would say. One thing to be noted on this laptop is, it doesn’t have the subwoofer like its bigger model and it has average speakers.
Port selection has been very good on this laptop. On the left side, you’ll see 1 USB 3.1 Type-C, HDMI, Ethernet jack and a pair of USB 3.0. On the right side, you’ll find a headphone jack, a USB 2.0 and DVD reader. The full-size SD card slot is available on the front side which will be very useful.
The battery can last up 2 hours of heavy usage, 4 hours of video playback and 5 hours of lightweight tasks.
7. Apple MMGG2LL/A MacBook Air- Best Lightweight Laptop for Data Analysis
The Apple MMGG2LL/A MacBook Air is not the latest and best laptop for a data scientist out there. This laptop is just for the beginners who are just getting started in the data science field or for those people who do some basic tasks in this field.
If you can’t afford the above MacBook Pro which is quite expensive, then this MacBook Air could be a perfect alternative for you. I’ve included MacBook Air in my best writers laptops post because it is perfectly capable of doing any lightweight tasks and not many heavy duty tasks like gaming.
The design of the MacBook Air hasn’t changed from a couple of years and the display hasn’t changed from last 7 years. Yes, you read it right. It has same 13.3 Inch LED-backlit display with the resolution of 1440×900.
If you are looking for a laptop with a great display and perfect viewing angles, just scroll down the page because this laptop isn’t for you. The outdated display is just okay and viewing angles are pretty bad on this laptop.
If display quality and viewing angles don’t bother you much, then you are good to go because there are few good things about this old MacBook Air.
One of the best things about MacBook Air is its Portability. It weighs 3 pounds (1.36 kg) and it is the best lightweight laptop on this list after Microsoft’s Surface Pro. If your job requires you to travel very often, then you should definitely consider MacBook Air at least once.
It comes with 256GB SSD storage along with 8GB DDR3 RAM and 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5. It may not be as powerful as other laptops on this list but it is capable of doing some basic tasks without any issues. The 128GB SSD model is also available on Amazon but I would advise you to stay away from it because it won’t be enough for a data analyzer.
One of the main difference between MacBook Air and other laptops (Except MacBook Pro) is the operating system. MacBook Air runs on MacOS and to be exact, it runs on OS X El Capitan It’ll give a different and smooth experience than many of the Windows laptops out there.
And here comes with most interesting part of the laptop i.e Battery life. Apple claims it can give the battery life up to 12 hours at maximum but here is the surprise result.
LaptopMag had confirmed that the battery had lasted 14 hours which is more than which Apple claims. If you looking to get a laptop for data science job with a long-lasting battery life, you should keep MacBook Air in mind.
The Dell XPS 15 9560 is the latest addition to Dell XPS 15 series which have few improvements from 2016’s model. In my opinion, this is a complete laptop for a data scientist.
This is a perfect alternative for Apple’s MacBook Pro If you are a Windows guy. In fact, the Dell XPS 15 is better in some ways and it is $1000 cheaper than the MacBook Pro.
The first thing you’ll notice in the XPS 15 is its amazing 4K infinity display.
Most laptops these days have big bezels and takes the whole lot of space on the screen. But in the XPS 15, there are fewer bezels which makes it attractive and sexy. Except for bottom of the screen, the top and side bezels are fewer.
Though the XPS 15 is available in 2 variants i.e 1080p and 4k display I’ll suggest you get the 4k variant because it is better and it costs cheaper than the 1080p model. The viewing angles and brightness quality in the laptop are great and you are going to fall in the with its display.
It comes with 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD and 16GB DDR4 RAM with Intel Core i7-7700HQ. You can easily upgrade the RAM or storage by opening the back panel of the laptop. The RAM size hasn’t increased from 2016’s model but what has changed in the RAM speed. It has increased from 2133 MHz to 2400 MHz.
The performance will be the main aspect of getting this laptop. Just like the above Dell Inspiron, the XPS 15 has the ability to perform any type of task such video editing, photo editing on Adobe, gaming, daily tasks, streaming online and more.
The Geekbench 4 score for a single core on XPS 15 is 4503 and multi-core score is 13587. The read and write speed of the laptop is also amazing i.e 2207MB and 1628MB respectively. (Source)
Dell has also changed the GPU from GTX 960M to GTX 1050 which is surely a great improvement, especially for hardcore gamers. The Gears of War 4 can be played in medium settings at 60FPS whereas Doom can be played in high settings at 60FPS which is very good. The Geekbench 4 CUDA score for GTX 1050 is 75636.
Another useful thing Dell has added on this laptop is a fingerprint scanner which is quite small in size but enough to unlock it with the Windows Hello.
There are 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB Type-C thunderbolt and an SD reader available on this laptop. These ports are good enough for a data scientist in my opinion.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention the portability of this laptop which is one of the best things about this laptop. It weighs only 3 pounds (1.36 kg) and it is very easy to carry on-the-go such as schools, colleges, office or anywhere else. If you want both powerful and lightweight laptop, then here is the perfect choice for you.
And lastly the Battery life. It is way better than the Dell Inspiron on this list. You can expect to last 8-9 hours of moderate to heavy usage which is crazy. You can work for long hours without worry about the battery drainage.
Laptop Buying Guide For a Data scientist:
1. Screen Size: The first and foremost thing you need to figure out before getting a laptop for yourself is, its Screen size. A 15-inch laptop would be appropriate for a data analyst. A bigger screen laptop will be really helpful while researching any content or data.
Storage: This is a very important factor for anyone who is about to get a new laptop. First, you need to select the storage you are going to get, an SSD storage or an HDD storage. If you don’t know the difference between these, here’s a quick summary for you.
HDD: It has mechanical parts which take some time to perform any action.
SSD: It is a solid state drive which doesn’t have moving parts like HDD and performs way faster than an HDD.
Here is a short by TechQuicke to learn more about HDD vs SSD.
For a data scientist, I would highly recommend going for a laptop which has SSD storage and not HDD. If a laptop has both storage types on it, then there won’t be a lot of problems but you shouldn’t go for a laptop with only HDD storage. You’ll definitely face a lot of performance by going for an HDD storage laptop.
CPU: As you may already there are Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 laptops are on the market right now and for a data scientist, I would suggest you go for i7 laptops. All the laptops on this list have Core i7 processor except MacBook Air.
The Core i5 is also good but the i7 is more powerful than that and that’s what a data scientist would need while performing heavy multi-tasking such as 3D editing, designing and more.
GPU: A data scientist would really need a good graphics card on their laptops and that’s the reason I’ve added most of the laptops on this list with a dedicated graphics card. A laptop with GTX 960 GPU would be enough for a profession like this.
Just like I said before, If you are both passionate gamer and a data scientist, you can opt for more advanced GPU to enjoy your both gaming and professional life.
OS: This should be your personal preference. If you’ve got used to Windows OS, then you can choose it or else you can choose MacOS i.e MacBook Air or MacBook Pro if you want more stable OS and smooth performance.
Both OS are good from their own perspective. Choose it wisely as per your needs.
Portability: There are both portable and non-portable laptops on this list. If you are working from an office or even home which doesn’t require you to move from place to place, then you shouldn’t care much about the weight of the laptop.
If your job requires you to travel a lot, then you should definitely consider getting a lightweight laptop for yourself.
Data science is one of the tough jobs which requires not only a mediocre laptop but a great laptop which can easily make their job easier. Of course, you can buy mediocre laptops but you may have to face performance once in a while and I’m sure you don’t want to face any of those issues while doing your tasks.
These are the 8 Best Laptops for data science who is looking to get one for them. I hope you guys liked it and If you have any suggestion, please drop the comment below. Thank You.