In today’s world a good laptop is an absolute necessity. Having a pc that you can carry around to untether yourself from the shackles of a desk.
Being able to set up your workstation in a coffee shop or even the dining table can be the difference between a productive day and a day full of procrastination.
If it is procrastination you want to do then a laptop is great for that too, streaming, gaming and just general web browsing have never been more accessible to the average Joe.
We all know the pains of a slow and sluggish laptop that takes years to start up and then years more to even open the apps you want to use, so we’re here to help with that.
We’ve put together a list of the best laptops you can currently get that have an Intel i7 processor built into them.
The i7 is a great processor from Intel that was previously their flagship consumer processor. The i7 line of CPUs has always been classed as a powerhouse of a processor.
In recent years the i9 line of processors has taken the throne as the best consumer processors from intel.
The i7 processors still have a huge following because of their premium performance for a not completely premium price.
I7 processors also come with enough computing power to get you through any task. The newer iterations come with as many as 8 cores and 16 threads and can boost all the way up to a blistering 5.0GHz.
As you may expect the newer generations of i7 processors are usually more powerful than the previous generations. This isn’t completely true for the 10th generation i7 processor.
For their 10th generation intel produced processors with a lower base clock and a higher boost clock to put the desktop and laptop CPUs on a more level playing field. This worked very well because the 10th generation processors essentially have a higher ceiling of performance that can be unlocked with ample power and cooling.
The new processors also work very well at their lower clock speeds due to Intel’s Ice Lake architecture unlocking the potential for all cores to work at lower clocks and not compromise on performance.
The desktop based CPUs were usually very power consuming and so can drain the battery of a laptop fairly quickly. Luckily Intel produces a mobile version of almost all of their processors and even an ultra low power version as well.
The lowered TDP does mean that clock speeds are slightly reduced but performance is still adequate. The ultra low power models have lowered clock speeds and core counts but still perform admirably.
In a rush?
Have you got that project deadline coming up and need to get the presentation done ASAP?
Not to worry we’ve got our top pick for you right here with just a few reasons why we love it.
This laptop covers you for all your possible laptop needs and more. With its minuscule form factor and great keyboard the XPS 13 will last you years.
- 10th Generation Intel i7-10710U.
- 13.3” UHD InfinityEdge touchscreen display.
- 16GB DDR4 RAM with 1TB NVMe SSD.
- Included fingerprint sensor.
- Stylish, unibody design.
OUR TOP PICK
The XPS 13 laptop is a great device for almost all uses. It is Dell’s answer to MacBook and as a convert we aren’t missing the Macs. This laptop offers great all around performance in a tiny package.
The XPS 13 comes equipped with the newest 10th generation i7 processor; the i7-10710U clocked at 4.7 GHz.
With 6 Cores and 12 threads this is a powerhouse of a CPU and can easily handle any CPU based tasks you could throw at it.
As we mentioned above the 10th generation processors have low TDPs and therefore low base clock speeds, this one is no exception with a base clock of 1.1GHz.
What this means is that if the laptop is starved of air from being on a soft surface like a bed then it would ramp its processor speed all the way down to 1.1GHz.
This does however mean that it only has a TDP of 25W and therefore a great battery life of up to 11 hours of streaming Netflix at 4k.
The graphics processor included in this laptop is the integrated UHD Graphics for 10th Gen Intel processors that is clocked at 300MHz and can easily drive 4k at 60Hz without issue.
You wouldn’t be able to run any substantial games off of this processor but if you wanted to jump into Minecraft at 1080p then you shouldn’t have much of an issue.
On the note of the graphics processor being able to run a 4k panel, that’s exactly what this laptop comes with. You get a 4K 60Hz IPS touchscreen that is the main focus of this unit.
The display is absolutely gorgeous and may actually be slightly too high a resolution at its 13.3” size but boy does it look good.
The screen is fairly bright and can output 400 nits easily. Dell boasts 100 sRGB color gamut and with the quality of this display we don’t doubt it.
This version of the XPS 13 comes with 16GB of high speed DDR4 memory which is ample for anything you could do on this laptop.
It’s also backed by a 1TB NVMe SSD that is blisteringly fast. You won’t easily run out of space with this machine and all your operations should run almost instantaneously.
The body of this laptop has been made for the professional worker. It looks amazing and is built to last, the unibody aluminum design makes it highly impact resistant and adds to the stylish, sleek appearance.
The wrist rests are made from a black carbon fiber for high durability but also comfort.
The laptop has a single fan cooling system that works adequately for the low powered processor but it is prone to being suffocated by soft materials, so we’d recommend using it on tables and desks where possible.
- Low powered high speed 10th generation i7-10710U.
- Beautiful 13.3” 4K touchscreen panel.
- Up to 11 hour battery life.
- 16GB of RAM and 1TB of NVMe storage.
- Solid aluminum build is gorgeous and durable.
- Single fan can be blocked too easily.
Eluktronics is a relatively new laptop manufacturer and have forced themselves into the gaming scene extremely well. The MAX-15 is a sleek laptop with desktop performance.
With a 10th generation full powered i7-10875H powering the laptop you’ll have no issues with it at all.
The i7-0875H is the full powered version of the previous processor we looked at. It has a base clock of 2.3GHz and can boost up to 5.1GHz across all 8 cores and 16 threads.
You might think that this would drastically reduce battery life but at full power running games you’re likely to get up to 6 hours out of this beast. When we said that the laptop has desktop power, we meant it.
The MAX-15 is powered by an Nvidia Geforce RTX 2070 meaning that you’ll very easily be able to run all games on max settings and experience the marvel of real time ray tracing!
With all that power you might be wondering what kind of display the laptop is rocking.
As we’ve stated for gaming in general (especially competitive gaming) higher refresh rates are much more important than resolution and Eluktronics agrees.
They’ve decided to go for a 15.6” 1080p 144Hz IPS panel and it looks amazing with its color accuracy and smoothness. There aren’t a lot of games that won’t run at 144 fps 1080p at high to ultra settings with a 2070 power it.
The unit is fairly configurable so we decided on the 32GB of high speed RAM and 1TB NVMe storage to guarantee that you won’t run out of either.
The body of this unit really doesn’t stand out as a gaming machine. The top isn’t even embellished with a logo of any sort, Eluktronics has partnered with D-Brand to create a few skins that you can apply if you feel the need to.
This laptop doesn’t stand out or look like a gaming laptop until you open the lid and discover the RGB strip and keyboard.
The MAX-15 uses a liquid metal cooling system to keep its internals as cool as possible. Overall you get a sleek and inspired design with adequate cooling.
- High powered i7-10875H CPU.
- Full RTX 2070 GPU.
- 144Hz 1080p IPS display.
- 32GB RAM and 1TB SSD.
- Clean and unmarked look with RGB under the lid.
- Can run quite hot due to high powered components.
The Pavilion 15 laptop is the first one on the list that uses Intel newest power-efficient i7 processors.
With a base clock of 2.8GHz and a boost of 4.7GHz this CPU isn’t underpowered like the previous generations.
It is only a quad-core processor with 8 threads which helps with the power consumption but overall this CPU is more than powerful enough to run a workstation or entertainment system like this.
With the audio being tuned by B&O it definitely fits the streaming/entertainment category.
With the new generation of CPUs we are also introduced to Intel’s Iris Xe graphics processor which while not able to run games on any decent settings can power dual 4K externals monitors if you ever need to.
The display is made up of a 15.6” 1080p IPS panel that runs at 60Hz. This is a very dependable screen and will look good regardless of what you’re doing.
With a lower refresh rate this laptop can still deliver 8 hours of usage from its battery despite its thin and light form factor.
This model comes with 16GB of RAM and a 512GB NVMe SSD that should be ample for most uses.
As we said above this is another thin and lightweight laptop, at only 0.7” at its thickest point you should be able to carry it around with you everywhere.
It also has a very understated and clean silver finish that doesn’t standout. The angled sides also offer great cooling through the exhaust vents. This laptop doesn’t run too hot so it doesn't need a sophisticated system to keep it cool.
- Newest 11th Gen i7-1165G7 CPU.
- Intel Iris Xe graphics.
- FHD IPS Display with audio tuned by B&O.
- Long Battery life.
- The fan can be loud under load.
The Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 is the 3rd Generation Surface Laptop and brings with it some significant upgrades that make this one of the best laptops on the market for productivity and utility.
It is powered by the 10th Gen ultra power-efficient i7-1065G7 CPU that has a base clock of 1.3GHz and a boost of 3.9GHz.
The 4 core, 8 thread processor only has a TDP of 15W and therefore produces barely any heat or uses any power. Because of this you’re likely to get 12 hours of battery life with moderate usage.
The display uses a proprietary 13.5” Microsoft panel that has a resolution of 2256x1504 and runs at 60Hz. This touchscreen display has amazing color accuracy and viewing angles.
There are multiple memory and storage configurations you can choose but with the Surface 3 we recommend 16GB of RAM and a 512GB NVMe SSD.
The body of this laptop is where everything comes together. It is extremely thin and elegant at only 0.57” at its thickest point and tops out at 2.8lbs.
It has very few markings on it and feels amazing to type on. The trackpad was also updated from the previous model and is 25% larger and more responsive.
- Power-efficient i7-1065G7 CPU.
- Proprietary Microsoft hardware and software make this laptop run smoother.
- 13.5” Microsoft panel.
- Sleek, ultra portable and modern design
- CPU not powerful enough for rendering.
The MacBook Pro is regarded as the best that Apple has to offer in the laptop space. Powered by a 9th generation i7-9750H and AMD’s Radeon Pro 5300M graphics processor there isn’t a lot this laptop can’t do.
The MacBook Pro uses a 16” IPS panel with a resolution of 3072x1920 meaning that image clarity is at the forefront of this laptop.
This model comes with 16GB of RAM and a 512GB Apple SSD.
Apple’s unibody sleek design has inspired hundreds if not thousands of imitators to try and achieve this look but is still just as iconic as the first MacBook.
The shape and material of the body also helps to keep the laptop cool and lightweight at only 4.3lbs.
Apple has also integrated a Touch Bar above the keyboard for extra functionality.
- Higher power 9th Gen i7-9750H.
- MAC OS and proprietary hardware.
- Apple Retina display.
- Strong metal unibody design.
- Software is not compatible with Windows.
Best i7 Laptops Buying Guide
When you’re looking to get a new laptop one of the most important components to figure out is the processor so if you’ve already decided on that then you’re one step ahead.
Now in terms of deciding which laptop to purchase that has your chosen processor in it is another story.
Laptops are manufactured to fit multiple different purposes and uses. A single laptop isn’t going to be perfect for all use types.
It is possible to find one that suits all of your needs but it is virtually impossible to find a single laptop that suits all users’ possible needs.
With that in mind, if you already know what you’re looking to get from a laptop or if you’re simply looking for an upgrade of your current laptop then it makes things a bit easier.
You may be thinking that there surely can’t be that many things to consider with a laptop purchase but there are. Could you imagine trying to lay in bed on a lazy Sunday morning trying to binge your favorite Netflix series with a 10lbs gaming laptop resting on your chest?
That would be extremely uncomfortable. You wouldn’t want an HD ready 11” notebook if you’re trying to edit a 4k video or finish that ‘big break’ screenplay.
This is why with all of the laptops in our list we’ve included the best use scenario, if the manufacturer doesn’t explicitly state it then we’ll recommend what it should be used for and what it shouldn’t.
To do so we’ll be looking at a few key components of each laptop to see where it excels. The components we’ll be looking at are the generation and type of i7 processor and graphics processor, The monitor/screen, The memory and storage, and the body and cooling system.
There is a perfect mixture of each component when combined makes for your perfect laptop.
Processor and Graphics processor
So you’ve already decided that you want an i7 processor in your new laptop but there are a few more things to consider about the processor.
The main thing would be which generation of i7 would you be looking at, a 9th generation i7 has a higher base clock and just as many cores and threads as the 10th generation i7 but it will eat into your battery life faster.
The 10th generation i7 is great for you if you’re on the go a lot but still need some power for productivity or some light gaming.
The mobile units are great for battery life and work great for someone who does a lot of streaming or browsing.
The older generation processors can still be extremely powerful but the newer the better, the plus side to getting a slightly older processor is the cost is also slightly lower. So for the laptop that you want make sure that it is the correct type and generation of i7.
The graphics processor essentially determines how well your computer can run its monitor. Most of the later generation i7s can even encode 4k video, the issues arise when you try to do any form of rendering, including gaming.
A dedicated graphics processor is always going to be better than a standalone CPU for rendering images and videos and even gaming.
If you plan on working with film media then you’ll want a 10th generation i7 or a dedicated GPU. These will significantly improve your overall performance.
If the laptop only has integrated graphics then we’ll look at how many cores are dedicated to graphical processing and if the laptop has a standalone graphics card then we’ll go into its clock speeds, VRAM and included technologies like Nvidia Shadowplay.
Everything you do on your laptop is going to be shown through the monitor and 99% of your time using it will be spent looking at the monitor.
The last thing you want is to get an all powerful gaming laptop that is only HD ready or uses a TN panel.
Regardless of what your intended use of the laptop is, a good screen is completely necessary. For production and editing color accuracy and viewing angles are extremely important so an IPS panel would be the best for you.
IPS in general is the best panel type for extended use but it can suffer in the refresh rate category. You can find high refresh rate IPS panels but you’re more likely to find a VA panel with refresh rates above 100Hz, these are imperative for competitive gaming.
The things you’ll need to check to determine the quality and suitability of your monitor are the resolution which is how sharp the image quality is and we’ll also look at how densely packed the pixels are, the refresh rate which is how many times every second that your monitor updates its image, and the panel type.
The size of your monitor is fairly important but the monitor size is actually what determines the overall size of the laptop so make sure it’s the size you want and you’ll be fine.
The brightness can also matter if you’re planning on using the laptop outdoors or in bright light situations so we’ve simply made sure that all laptops on this list met the 300cd/m2 lower standard (most are way above this limit).
Memory and Storage
The memory of your laptop essentially determines how many apps you can have open at the same time.
The amount of cores and threads your processor has, determines how smoothly they run but the amount of RAM dictates how many you can keep open.
It’s not just apps, RAM is your laptop’s short term memory. This means that anything displayed on the screen is being run through the RAM and not your storage so things like too many Chrome tabs can slow down your computer because Google’s Chrome browser is badly optimized for memory usage.
Because of all these things it’s normally safe to assume that the more RAM you have the faster your laptop will be but with current apps being well optimized 8GB is normally adequate.
If you’re looking to game or run some taxing programs then we’d recommend bumping your capacity up to 16GB, anything more than this is egregious for most users that aren’t hardcore overclockers or server handlers.
Your Storage is where your laptop stores all of its information permanently, including your operating system.
Storage is one of the fastest developing components in computing at the moment and not only performance but also capacity and accessibility have both drastically increased in the last decade.
With current technologies being so easily available we can only recommend opting for an SSD over a mechanical Hard Drive.
Your boot speeds, transfer speeds and overall reliability will be much higher with an SSD. There are few different forms/types of SSDs but most laptops come with NVMe SSDs now which are much faster.
The capacity is also vital because it is a hard limit. Once you run out of storage that’s it, you can’t pay a buck a month for an extra 100GB of storage.
So, depending on what you’re planning on using the laptop for we’d always recommend 512GB of storage as a minimum for longevity purposes.
Body and Cooling
The last thing you need to consider before purchasing a laptop is its chassis and cooling ability.
We mentioned above that if the i7 CPU(and GPU) is adequately cooled, it can actually speed up to its designated boost clock.
Thermal throttling is a phenomenon that occurs when a processing unit gets too hot and therefore ramps down its performance to ensure that it doesn’t overheat.
Most laptop users would think that this is only a gamer’s issue, whilst normally true it can be extremely uncomfortable to type for hours on a keyboard that heats up too much because of a badly implemented cooling system.
You don’t want to give up free performance so a proper cooling system can often be a good reason to forgo a smaller and sleeker laptop if you’re intending to do anything demanding on your laptop.
The body or chassis of your laptop is completely based on your opinion. If you want to look like you’re a part of Cloud9 or NiP and you want to flaunt your gaming prowess then a sharp edged, RGB packed, gunmetal body would be what you want.
If however you want to fit in in a professional setting whilst still being able to hop on some games during your breaks then a sleeker, more simplistic approach would suit you.
If you don’t want your laptop to stand out and are only intending to do some streaming, browsing, and spreadsheeting then a thin and lightweight laptop would be perfect for you especially if you actually use your laptop on your lap.
Basically as long as it looks good to you and has adequate cooling then the body of your laptop is doing its job.
Once you’ve got your perfect mixture of all of these features you can rest assured that you’ve bagged yourself a good i7 laptop.