Please Recommend a Thin Client Laptop

I'm looking for a light 12"-14" Windows laptop with:

  • decent FHD touchscreen
  • responsive touchpad
  • backlit keyboard
  • 802.11ac WiFi
  • at least 4GB RAM/128GB SDD
  • USB Type-C PD charging
  • long battery life
  • preferably fan-less
  • preferably with fingerprint scanner
  • preferably have a standard USB 3.0 Type-A port
  • no need for discrete graphics or a powerful CPU, but it shouldn't be painfully laggy
  • not a MacBook

The main purpose is connecting to a cloud PC via Windows Remote Desktop Connection. Budget: ~ $1.5K.

It's been a while since I looked for something like that. Could somebody please recommend a machine that would meet these requirements in 2019, based on own experience? Can be a gray import without AU warranty.

I currently have a 13" Lenovo Yoga 720 and it ticks all the boxes besides the battery life and being fan-less, which is a no surprise for a i7-8550U laptop.



    Add budget range.


    I’m after a laptop too. $1700-2200

    Looking for the highest spec possible. No GPU. 14 or 15” screen. What’s my best bet?

  • +2 votes

    LG Gram?

  • +1 vote

    These come into my mind.
    Dell XPS 13, Inspiron 13 7000
    HP Spectre, Envy, Pavilion
    Surface laptop
    Asus zenbook 14
    Huawei MateBook

  • +1 vote

    I currently have a 13" Lenovo Yoga 720 and it ticks all the boxes besides the battery life and being fan-less,

    I would say the yoga 730 13" but the same issue.

    The harsh fact is, fanless units are gutless units.

    You can't have all of these at once in a ultrabook, being speed/battery life/fanless


      Don't really have to be speedy for RDC. I think something with Intel Core m3-8100Y should be a reasonable compromise, but I struggle to find an m3 laptop that would meet other reqs. Perhaps, Chuwi Aerobook?

  • +2 votes

    I can't provide one based on experience however you should check this thread which contains 'budget' laptops under $1200.

    Did some searching around, this seemed to be the 'best' one I could find, however, I am not sure if the keyboard is backlit and I am not sure how responsive the touchpad is.


    I don't care much about brands, so I've decided to give this Chuwi LapBook Pro a try, at $610 AUD shipped from AliExpress. The reviews aren't bad. The battery capacity isn't impressive at 37Wh, but the 6W Celeron N4100 SoC CPU is not power hungry either. As I'm gonna use it for remote desktop mostly, I hope it should last for about 8hrs as they advertise.

  • +1 vote

    What about the ThinkPad E595? Has most of the features your looking for but on the larger size.


      That's a great machine but non-backlit keyboard is a deal-breaker for me.

      • +1 vote

        I didn't notice that it didn't have a backlit keyboard. I've used ThinkPad's for years and every one came with a backlit or light for the keyboard so kind of just assumed it was there but I've always used X or T series. I've got 8 ThinkPad's in the house and all have backlit keyboards.


          It appears the E (Edge) series doesn't have a backlit keyboard as Lenovo position it as budget. I used to own one of them and it was a great machine otherwise.


    The Chuwi LapBook Pro had arrived and it's a very well built machine. Been using it for over a week by now.

    What I don't like:

    • no touch screen (but that's OK for remote desktop connections);
    • no fingerprint scanner;
    • the webcam video feed is sluggish and washed-out;
    • the USB type-c charging port doesn't support PD. It requires a dumb 12V USB type-C charger (included). I overlooked that one while reading reviews, and that's my biggest disappointment.

    What I do like:

    • it's fanless and stays cool while running the basic tasks like browsing, youtube and remote desktop connections.
    • the battery gets me through the day. So far, I've been only charging it overnight.
    • the eMMC SSD was easily upgradeable. It performed much better than I expected, but I still swapped it for a 500GB Crucial SSD (MX500 M.2 2280 SATA) for extra $90.

    Overall, it's a good fit for its purpose and its price tag.

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