Best Computer Choices for Student in 2020

Hi guys,

Looking to buy a new computer set up since my laptop is currently breaking down in terms of hardware. Need a laptop to last me through the entire school day. but can also be capable of gaming if possible.

I was thinking of either purchasing a powerful laptop like XPS 15 or X1 Extreme, which has a dedicated graphics card, or purchasing a lighter laptop like the X1 Carbon or XPS 13 and purchasing an additional desktop much like the Dell ones selling for $250-300 and throwing in a graphics card.

Would the XPS 13 or X1 Carbon be capable of some light gaming or video editing? Considering doing some at school, but most of it would be done at home.

The choices were narrowed down to Dell or Lenovo for reliability and keyboard quality, but any other suggestions would be helpful.


Poll Options

  • 7
    Dell XPS 13 (w/ desktop)
  • 2
    Dell XPS 15
  • 1
    Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Extreme (2nd Gen)
  • 2
    Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon (w/desktop)


  • +1 vote

    - cooling in a 15" laptop is far better than in a 13".
    - typically laptops with dedicated GPU get significantly worse battery.
    - A desktop with GPU will be leagues ahead in gaming performance.
    - You'll be able to get much better value per $ at the mid-range laptop market rather than having to pay top spec for a GPU (or even thunderbolt for eGPU) equipped model.

    I vote 13 + desktop.


    "Additional desktop much like the Dell ones selling for $250-300 and throwing in a graphics card"

    Most of them are SFF (Small Form Factor) so not every graphics card will fit and you'll have limited options.


    Personally I'd get a macbook and and Xbox Series X when it comes out. It'll have way more power than any laptop graphics card, and be a much better gaming machine.

  • +1 vote

    My current setup is a Dell XPS 13 Laptop + Dell Optiplex 9020 (with a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti installed).


      impressive laptop, but unfortunately i don't want to deal with the mass of cables. i'd prefer to switch from laptop at school to desktop at home. works out better in terms of convenience. also, unsure about how good the keyboard is on the laptop so not sure if that's a viable option

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