2 in 1 Laptops

Best 2 in 1 Laptops For College 2020

Best 2 in 1 laptop for college
Written by Zubi

College students usually prefer devices that offer versatility and convenience at an affordable price. No wonder the hybrid laptops became so popular among them.

Hybrid laptops offer versatility: they can be used as a stand-alone tablet; be put into tent-mode to watch movies and, of course, can be used as a regular laptop.

They offer convenience. You won’t have to carry extra weight on the keyboard. Also, they are highly portable owing to their ultra-thin design.

As far as the price is concerned, they will cost extra than a regular laptop for the same specs. But then, it saves a ton of money to buy two things at the price of one. 

So if you are just getting into college or recently took online courses, or else, a student who is looking for the perfect replacement for the bulky laptop, a 2-in-1 laptop should be your top preference.  

Here we have enlisted 5 best 2-in-1 laptops for college. After scouring the internet for hours, we have been able to provide you the most accurate and relevant insights about them. Also, there is a buying guide, in the end, to help you find the best 2-in-1 laptop to fit your needs.

Buying Guide

For college students, there are a few aspects about a laptop that cannot be ignored.

With a 2-in-1 laptop, portability and flexibility will be the last of your concerns. However, the following aspects must be carefully considered before buying a convertible laptop.   

Budget:

Low price is usually synonymous with low quality, but it is not always the case. You can get an optimal performance 2-in-1 laptop on a tight budget, given you look hard enough.  So, you don’t have to pay an exorbitant price.

A great majority of college students have a shoestring budget due to their high tuition fees and day-to-day expenditure, and for them, buying a 2-in-1 laptop seems extravagant. However, one must consider the bright side of not spending separately on a laptop and a tablet.

Bottom line: While looking for a 2-in-1 laptop, prefer a product that offers maximum value in the most affordable budget.

CPU, RAM, and storage:

For entry-level programming and note-taking, a mid-range hybrid laptop will do just fine. The bare minimum includes Intel U or H series, core i3/i5 processors of the latest generation with 8GB RAM, and 256 GB storage.

For more demanding applications, you can level up the specs by doubling the storage capacity and RAM and opting for more cores in the laptop. However, it will make you pay through the nose.

For students who are into gaming, choosing a hybrid laptop is simply poor judgment as it costs a ton of money to get the same specs as a gaming laptop. However, if you can fork out a little extra, 2-in-1 laptops do come with high-end GPUs.

Screen size and resolution:

The higher screen size in a hybrid laptop allows you to have more and powerful specs simply because there is more space to fit the components. However, there is a catch: the portability of the laptop will be compromised.

The most appropriate choice is a 13-in hybrid laptop.

The minimum requirement for screen resolution is an HD display. For engineering students, higher resolutions (FHD and UHD) and screen size (15-inch) are more appropriate as they usually have to run a high-octane simulation and computation applications.

Stylus and Keyboard:

As extensive note-taking is a part of a college student routine, the choice of stylus and keyboard is critical.

Stylus should have as high sensitivity as possible to get fast and accurate writing on the device. Most preferably, it must come with the product itself as opposed to separately buying it.

The keyboard must have a deep key-travel and textured keys to minimize the typos and to maximize grip respectively. A backlit keyboard should certainly be a preference for the advantage they offer at night.

Ports:

A convertible laptop is not best known for housing multiple ports. And if you fix the budget for an affordable hybrid, you should not expect premium ports in it. For instance, we were unable to find thunderbolt ports on convertibles that were not too heavy on the user’s pockets.

Battery life:

For college students, it is extremely critical that the laptop battery shall make it through the whole day without recharging. Ideally, the 2-in-1 laptops must have battery life in double digits. However, you should not set the standard too high. The 6-8 hours battery-life is acceptable; 9-12 hours battery life is extraordinary

Reviews of Best 2in1 Laptop for College

We don’t want to waste your time by beating around the bush, therefore, you will find each review distinctive and well-researched. However, while enlisting our top picks, there are a few generalities we came across by limiting one factor, budget. We kept it under 900$ to keep it affordable for students.

The laptops we picked have a convertible form factor, as compared to detachable. The screen size ranges from 14-15in, which is understandable for a 2-in-1 laptop. The average battery timing is 6-8 hours. Also, they all come with Windows 10 preinstalled.

To find their distinctive advantage, let’s get to the reviews now.

***Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from Qualifying Purchases, at no additional cost.

Best 2in1 Laptop for College To Buy in 2020

Top 5 2 in 1 laptops for Colleges

Best 2in1 Laptop for College

1. Lenovo Flex 14—Bestseller 2-in-1 laptop for college (Key strength: portability)

Lenovo Flex 14 2-in-1 Convertible Laptop, 14 Inch FHD, Touchscreen, AMD Ryzen 5 3500U Processor, Radeon Vega 8 Graphics, 8GB DDR4 RAM, 256GB NVMe SSD, Win 10, Black, Pen Included

$749.11  in stock
4 new from $749.11
5 used from $599.66
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of August 11, 2020 3:02 am

CPU & GPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U and AMD Radeon Vega 8 (integrated) | RAM: 12 GB DDR4| Storage: 256 GB SSD | Screen & Display: 14-inch FHD | Weight: 3.52 lbs. |  Expected Battery Life: 10 hours | Touchscreen: 10-point Multi-touch | Ports: HDMI, USB-C, USB 3.1 inputs | Stylus: included. Connectivity: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi | Product dimension: 12.91 x 9.02 x 0.70 inches

Lenovo Flex 14 is a breed apart from all other laptops we are going to discuss later. From the specs given above, you might have come to the conclusion now that it is light-weight and thin as far as the convertible laptops are concerned. But, that is not what surprised us.

For us, the packing of powerful 12 GB RAM, AMD Ryzen 3200U mobile processor, and 256 SSD in such a sleek form factor was the real surprise. These specs, in addition to integrated AMD Radeon Vega 8 GPU, make this hybrid perfect for light gaming and occasional photo/media editing.

However, even a strong processor and GPU are not its key strengths. What makes it exceptional is the highly sensitive touchscreen and the stylus—included in the deal. You will particularly enjoy it for taking notes and sketching—provided you have an interest in it. 

Also considered as its key features are its backlit keyboard and smooth touchpad. The slightly concave keys have a fairly long key-travel. Apart from this, its chassis also has a fingerprint sensor for an extra layer of security.

Now come to the most critical feature: battery life. Although the description boasts a battery life of 10 hours, the maximum you are going to get from it is 6 hours.

Lastly, the feature that cannot be ignored is the multiple numbers of ports. The inclusion of an HDMI port, multiple USB ports add to the convenience of usage. However, the absence of thunderbolt is a major missing.

The things that are probably going to make you hate it includes its low screen brightness and the awkward position of the stylus holster. The former really suffers in the outdoor environment, while the latter makes it difficult to access ports. 

Pros
  • Highly sensitive touch screen
  • Lightweight
  • Comes with stylus
Cons
  • Low brightness
  • Awkwardly positioned pen holster.

Bottom-line: Lenovo Flex is the ultimate choice for students who want to take notes on their laptops, and occasionally use it for photo and video editing.

Last updated on August 11, 2020 3:02 am
2. Acer Spin 3: Best Value 2-in-1 laptop for college (Key strength: multitasking)

Acer Spin 3 Convertible Laptop, 14 inches Full HD IPS Touch, 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8565U, 16GB DDR4, 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Backlit KB, Fingerprint Reader, Rechargeable Active Stylus, SP314-53N-77AJ

$1,348.97  in stock
2 new from $1,348.97
2 used from $699.99
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of August 11, 2020 3:02 am

CPU & GPU: Intel core i7-8565U (4cores, 8th gen) &   Intel UHD Graphics 620(integrated)| RAM: 16 GB DDR4 | Screen and Display: 14-inch FHD | Storage: 512 GB SSD | Weight: 3.75 lbs. | Touchscreen: 10 point-Multi-touch | Expected Battery Life: 12 hours| Ports:  HDMI, USB 3.0 | Stylus: included| Connectivity: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi | Dimension: 12.9 x 9.4 x 0.8 inches

Acer Spin 3 is a powerful convertible laptop and certainly a beast if compared to other laptops in our list. The 8th generation i7 processor from Intel Core ‘Whisky Lake’ family gives it an edge in handling multitasking. The sheer power of this processor is complemented with 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD Storage.

It is suitable for students who have to run powerful applications on their laptops. With the computing power of the i7 processor, this laptop can also help you with your research work by supporting multiple windows at one time.

Computing power is its key strength. But the powerful processor with the help of integrated UHD Graphics 620 can also be utilized for smoothly running light games and occasional video editing.

Acer spin 3 truly lives up to expectation as far as the battery life is concerned. When fully charged, it will get through the whole day, provided that you are not using it at its peak performance level.

We were particularly excited about its touchscreen and active pen. For those who don’t know the difference between an active and standard stylus, suffice is it to know that the former (active stylus) is pressure-sensitive, and therefore, has versatile usages. The students whose courses involve extensive sketching and drawing shall ditch the Lenovo flex 14 for this laptop.

The areas where acer really disappoint us is the chassis where it is featuring a shallow keyboard and plastic built-up. The keyboard cannot be categorized as highly comfortable, but is quite acceptable. Whereas plastic design makes this laptop highly vulnerable to damage, given the fact that college students put their laptops through extreme abuse.

Pros
  • Portable
  • Highly sensitive touch screen
  • Active Pen included
Cons
  • Plastic built is highly unsuitable for college students
  • Subpar keyboard

Bottom-line: In affordable 2-in-1 laptops, Acer Spin 3 is the king in multitasking and running games that mainly depends on processing power.

Last updated on August 11, 2020 3:02 am
3. HP Pavilion—best lightweight 2-in-1 laptop for college (Key strengths: Portability and entertainment value)

New HP Pavilion 2-in-1 15.6" HD Touchscreen Laptop Intel i5-8265U 8GB RAM 512GB SSD Bluetooth Windows 10

$769.99  in stock
16 new from $769.99
8 used from $539.00
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of August 11, 2020 3:02 am

CPU & GPU: Intel core i5-8265U (4cores, 8th gen) &   Intel UHD Graphics 620(integrated)| RAM: 8 GB DDR4 | Screen and Display: 15.6-inch FHD | Storage: 512 GB SSD | Weight: 3.5 lbs. | Touchscreen: Multi-touch | Expected Battery Life: 10 hours| Ports: Multi-format media card reader, HDMI, USB-C and 2 USB port 3.1 ports| Stylus: no| Connectivity: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi | Dimension: 14.1 x 8.4 x 0.8 inches

It is the lightest laptop in our list despite being a little thicker than the Lenovo Flex 14. From the performance perspective, it is close to the level of Acer spin 3 with its own strengths and shortcomings.

It is housing Intel core i5-8265U processor, a little short in power when compared to i7-8565U processor of the same Intel ‘Whisky lake’ family. And yet, with the same number of cores, it can smoothly run all the essential applications that a college student usually needs in the entire period of their course work. 

You might ignore the integrated Intel UHD graphic 620 in this convertible, but the fact that hp has managed to add it in such a tight budget is admirable. Meanwhile, where on one end, 512 GB SSD is appreciable, the 8GB RAM is a major disappointment.

One of its key strengths is the 15.6-inch FHD display with edge-to-edge screen and thin bezel. You might buy it for coursework in college, but the reason you will fall in love with this hybrid is the enormous entertainment value it provides.

And if that doesn’t impress you, take its reliable battery which will last for hours with average usage. Better still, this laptop supports fast charging—0 to 50 percent in just 45 minutes.

While all the other features are great, the one that makes it truly compelling for college students is its solid construction. It can take serious abuse, thanks to its metal finish design.

One particular aspect that is particularly disappointing about this laptop is the lack of backlit technology on the keyboard. Apart from that, this Hp has everything covered in the full-sized-keyboard of this laptop: the keys have a fair key-travel, they bounce back effortlessly and are textured to give a better grip.

Pros
  • Large screen size
  • Lightweight
  • Great performance
Cons
  • Backlit keyboard is missing.
  • No stylus

Bottom-line: 15.6-inch screen, a powerful processor, and sturdy construction in an affordable convertible is a great deal in all respects.

Last updated on August 11, 2020 3:02 am
4. HP Envy X360—Best all-rounder 2-in-1 laptop for college (Entertainment value & performance)

2018 HP ENVY x360 15.6" FHD Touchscreen 2-in-1 Laptop Computer, AMD Ryzen 5 2500U up to 3.6GHz (Beat i7-7500U), 8GB DDR4 RAM, 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD, USB 3.1, HDMI, 2x2 802.11ac, Bluetooth, Windows 10

$1,299.00  in stock
1 new from $1,299.00
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of August 11, 2020 3:02 am

CPU & GPU: AMD Ryzen 5 2500U and AMD Radeon Vega 8 (integrated) | RAM: 8 GB DDR4| Storage: 256 GB SSD | Screen & Display: 15.6-inch FHD | Weight: 4.49 lbs. | | Expected Battery Life: 10 hours | Touchscreen: Multi-touch | Ports: HDMI, USB-C, USB 3.1 inputs Headphone/microphone Combo, 1 x MicroSD Media Card Reader | Stylus: no | Connectivity: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi | Product dimension: 9.68 x 14.13 x 0.74

We have added this laptop to give you a better alternative of Hp pavilion. Hp Envy x360 has the same screen size, but its FHD WLED display covers more color gamut and has a high contrast ratio. Also, it is superior in terms of viewing angles. No other laptop in our list can beat this one in Display.

In Envy x360, Hp has decided to ditch Intel core i5 processor to a more powerful AMD Ryzen 2500U unit which has AMD Radeon Vega 8 integrated with it. Though not powerful that Intel i7 series, AMD Ryzen can sufficiently handle multitasking and light gaming.

The major shortcoming in this laptop is 256 GB SSD and 8 GB RAM. On top of that, this laptop is the heaviest among our list despite having a slim design.

You might be thinking why is this laptop is so highly-priced when it lacks in many aspects. One answer is that Hp has heavily invested in the display which I have already discussed. The other area which has been specially taken care of is the design.

Hp Envy is simply the most elegant laptop in all the affordable hybrids. It has a solid aluminum design which makes it clear why it is a little heavy. In terms of durability and aesthetics, it is far superior to Pavilion series. If you are one of those students who prefer durability and design over performance, Hp Envy is the right laptop for you.  

One of the major shortcomings of the Hp pavilion is the absence of backlit technology in the keyboard. With Envy 360, Hp has catered to those users who cannot live without it.

Pros
  • Premium design
  • Powerful processor
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Premium Display
Cons
  • A little expensive
  • Heavy (>4 pounds)

Bottom-line: It is more powerful than Hp pavilion and has the same screen size. Plus, it has a backlit keyboard. So for an extra 100$, you can get a lot of improvements over Hp pavilion.

Last updated on August 11, 2020 3:02 am
5. Dell Inspiron 14 5000 Series—best cheap 2-in-1 for college laptop (performance and price)

Dell Inspiron 14 5000 Series 14-Inch FHD Touchscreen (AMD Ryzen 5 3500U 2.1GHz, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD, Radeon RX Vega8, Windows 10 Home 64-Bit) 2-in-1 Laptop Computer

$689.00  in stock
2 new from $689.00
1 used from $599.66
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of August 11, 2020 3:02 am

CPU & GPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U and AMD Radeon Vega 8 (integrated) | RAM: 8 GB DDR4| Storage: 128 GB SSD | Screen & Display: 14 inch FHD | Weight: 3.81 lbs. | | Expected Battery Life: 8 hours | Touchscreen: Multi-touch | Ports: Multiple USB ports with MicroSD Media Card Reader | Stylus: no | Connectivity: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi | Product dimension: 12.91 x 0.79 x 9.17

When it comes to CPU, this laptop has the same performance as that of Lenovo Flex as both of them are featuring AMD Ryzen 5 3500U with integrated AMD Radeon Vega 8. However, Dell Inspiron cannot match the overall performance of Lenovo Flex as it is short of RAM—roughly 4GB.

The price cut by dell is understandable given the low RAM and Low storage capacity of the model.  128 GB SSD is simply not enough for a college student, so there are two options for you. Either fork out extra dollars and buy Acer Spin 3 or buy extra storage that you can connect with this laptop via fast USB-C port.

The battery life is average–6-7 hours with normal usage. There is nothing extraordinary about it.

Although the weight of this laptop is low, the overall profile, especially its thickness, makes it a little uncomfortable to fit inside a standard bag.

The backlit keyboard in this laptop is an appreciable feature, especially in a very tight budget.  Moreover, dell has gone the extra mile to ensure that typing is effortless in this convertible so you might not end up with cramped fingers.

The display is not one of its strengths nor its weakness. a 14-inch FHD display could have done better with more brightness and higher contrast ratio.

We have purposefully ignored the Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capacity in another review,

Pros
  • Dirt Cheap
  • Powerful CPU
  • Backlit, smooth keyboard
Cons
  • Low storage capacity

Bottom line: Except for the low price and powerful CPU, it has little to offer more than the other laptops discussed above

Last updated on August 11, 2020 3:02 am

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