We have done hours of research and testing on dozens of models, ultimately determined that the best 14 inch laptop is the Razer Blade (7th generation). This particular notebook leads the pack in features, design and craftsmanship offering some serious power while sporting a compact and robust form-factor. 

In case the Razer Blade doesn't fit your particular needs or budget (it is a bit pricey), we have covered the topic of 14 inch laptops more in-depth throughout the rest of this article. Beyond other model recommendations, we will cover more common questions that arise when buying a 14 inch notebook to help you better understand the market during your search for a new computer.


Editor's Choice

Razer Blade Laptop

The best overall 14-inch laptop suitable for creative, business, or educational use.

Packing a quad-core processor, powerful GTX 1060 GPU and 16GB of RAM into a sleek and durable form-factor, the Razer Blade is the closest you'll get to a MacBook Pro in a 14-inch PC form-factor.

*Pricing as of 11/26/17


Runner Up & Most Portable

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 5th Generation

A 14-inch model best for business or education use offering a small form-factor.

The best option for business or education use that doesn't require a dedicated graphics card or overly powerful specifications. Beyond its size advantage, it also has one of the best performance in terms of battery life.

*Pricing as of 11/26/17


Best For A Tight Budget

The Asus Zenbook UX430UA in a sideway view.

An affordable 14-inch notebook offering reasonable specs and performance without breaking the bank.

The lowest priced model on the list is also the least powerful, however it still has plenty of performance for business, personal or education use. Just don't buy it if you intend on gaming or editing multimedia.

*Pricing as of 11/26/17


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RELATED - Q&A: What Is The Best Left-Handed Gaming Mouse?

If you are in the market for a 14 inch laptop, you likely have many questions related to the topic. While we will do our best to answer the most common questions blow, you can use the comments section below to voice your concerns if you still have a question or concern. From there, we will do out best to answer promptly.


Why Should You Buy A 14 Inch Laptop?

If you aren't that familiar with the laptop market, you may not understand the benefits to buying a 14 inch laptop compared to a more standard 13" or 15" model. 

Below, we will cover the top three reasons why a 14 inch laptop might be the right choice for your business, school or personal use. Keep in mind, everyone has different needs, so the optimal choice likely isn't going to be the same for all readers.

Size & Portability

Compared to a 15 inch laptop, a 14 inch model offers a smaller footprint that is not only more compact but often noticeably lighter. With a more portable form-factor, your computer will fit in more travel bags, be more comfortable in tighter working environments and easier to carry in one hand. 

With the extra inch, you'll get more screen real estate as well as valuable keyboard space. If you settle for a screen size in the 11-13 inch range, you'll have to deal with less screen which at the same resolution means the content will be smaller and harder to see for some users. 

As you shrink the size of the display, the resulting base of the laptop also becomes smaller. This means the space for your keyboard will dwindle in size and this can be uncomfortable or a pain for ergonomic purposes.

Specifications

While many consumers want the smallest and thinnest laptops possible, there is a hefty trade-off in performance when it comes to downsizing the form-factor. The reason for this is because high-performance internals take up more space than your entry-level components, so a smaller or thinner design limits the the amount room that manufacturers have to store important internal hardware.

This is often the reason why many 13 inch models feel underwhelming in regards to their technical specifications. In most cases, the 13 inch models are designed to be very thin and ultra-portable thus limiting the potential for any components that pack some considerable computing power. 

With a 14 inch model, that extra inch brings a significant amount of room to the table allowing manufacturers the ability to pack in better specs in many cases this is a dedicated video card while still remaining relatively small and lightweight.

Price

While some of the higher-end 14 inch models sport a hefty price, you'll typically pay less than a 15 inch model. In some cases, you can get more bang for your buck from a loaded 14 inch model at the same or lower price as a base 15 inch model which has rather underwhelming specs. 


What To Consider When Buying A 14 Inch Laptop

Buying a new laptop can be confusing especially since every user is different concerning their budget and desired use.

Someone who is looking for a model to accomplish basic web browsing, email and word processing doesn't require expensive specs like an ultra-high resolution screen, lots of RAM or a powerful graphics card.

However, someone who is looking for a model to carry out resource-intensive tasks like multimedia editing, 3D modeling or video gaming then you'll need the best of the best for the optimal experience. 

Here are some things to keep in mind while looking for a new laptop:

  • Brand - choose a reputable brand known for reliability with a solid warranty to cover you if there are any issues.
  • Price -  a higher budget opens up greater options as the most powerful and sleekest models are the most expensive.
  • Screen Resolution - a higher resolution panel results in more pixels which provide sharper images and better contrast.
  • Touchscreen - not a necessity, but some users prefer a touchscreen for added convenience.
  • Processor - the "brains" of the computer of which the majority of the calculations occur.
  • RAM - aka "random access memory" which stores temporary data for faster performance, so more RAM is better. 
  • Video Card - a physical component with a graphical processing unit, cooling mechanism and display ports that allows the machine to process 3D graphics at high resolutions without stuttering or frame drops.
  • Storage Drive- a hard disk or solid state drive which is where all your data is stored including your operating system, programs and personal files. The faster the drive, the better the overall responsiveness and load times will be. 
  • Webcam - this may or may not be something you'll use, but if you plan to use Skype or another video chatting software then a good webcam is necessary.
  • Operating System - most new PCs will be running Windows 10, but you may see Windows 7 or 8 depending on the model.
  • DVD/Blu-ray Drive - is there any reason you still need a CD/DVD/Blu-ray drive? If so, make sure the model you choose has one. Most models won't offer one as they take up too much space and are becoming obsolete now that more data is transferred online or via flash drives.
  • Battery Life - long battery life is ideal if you will be using your laptop on the go while traveling or remotely (library, coffee shop, etc.) however if you are primarily using it from a home or office with dedicated power then this shouldn't be a big concern.

How Do The Top 14 Inch Laptops Stack Up?


Razer Blade Laptop
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 5th Generation
Gigabyte Aero 14 Gaming Laptop
MSI GS63VR Stealth Pro
A front view of the LG Gram 14 ultrabook.
The Asus Zenbook UX430UA in a sideway view.

Company

Razer

Lenovo

Gigabyte

MSI

LG

ASUS

Model

Blade (7th Gen)

ThinkPad X1 (5th Gen)

Aero 14

GS43VR Phantom Pro

Gram 14

ZenBook 3 UX430UA

Price

Screen Resolution

1080P FHD (Matte IPS)

1080P FHD (IPS)

2560 x 1440 WQHD (IPS)

1080P FHD (IPS)

1080P FHD (IPS)

1080P FHD (Matte)

Touchscreen

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Processor

Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad-Core 2.8GHz

Intel Core i7-7500U Dual-Core 2.7GHz

Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad-Core 2.8GHz

Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad-Core 2.8GHz

Intel Core i7-7500U Dual-Core 2.7GHz

Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-Core 1.8GHz

RAM

16GB DDR4 (2400MHz)

8GB DDR3 (1866MHz)

16GB DDR4 (2400MHz)

16GB DDR4 (2400MHz)

8GB DDR4 (2133MHz)

16GB DDR3

Video Card

NVIDIA GTX 1060

Intel HD Graphics 620 (integrated)

NVIDIA GTX 1060

NVIDIA GTX 1060

Intel HD Graphics 620 (integrated)

Intel HD Graphics 620 (integrated)

Storage Drive

256GB SSD (512GB & 1TB options)

256GB SSD (512GB option)

512GB M.2 SATA SSD 

128GB M.2 SATA SSD + 1TB HDD (7200RPM) 

512GB SSD

512GB SSD

Webcam

2.0 Megapixel

720P HD

720P HD

1080P FHD

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720P HD

Operating System

Windows 10 Home

Windows 10 Pro

Windows 10 Home 

Windows 10 Home 

Windows 10 Home 

Windows 10 Home 

DVD/Blu-Ray Drive

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Battery Life

Over 7 hours

Over 12 hours

Over 8 hours

Over 5 hours

Over 7 hours

Over 8 hours

Designed For

Gaming/Media Editing

Portability

Gaming/Media Editing

Gaming/Media Editing

Portability

Portability


Best 14 Inch Laptops (2017)

Razer Blade Laptop

Razer is a powerhouse in the PC gaming market offering some of the best peripherals and audio products for the esports community. While their line of Razer Blade Stealth, Blade and Blade Pro models are created with gaming in mind, they function for everyday use just as well.

In fact, the Razer Blade is the most powerful 14-inch laptop currently on the market with internal solid state storage ranging from 256GB all the way up to 1TB coupled with 16GB of DDR4 RAM and a Core i7 processor. Better yet, the NVIDIA GTX 1060 offers stellar graphics rendering with support for multimedia editing and gaming (even with virtual reality).

From a Mac user's perspective, the Razer Blade is the closest you'll get to the design and construction of Apple's MacBook Pro with a thin profile and excellent craftsmanship that extends all the way to the keyboard and trackpad. 


Lenovo ThinkPad X1 5th Generation

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon is an ultrabook meaning that its primary purpose is for a small, portable form-factor while supplying enough power for business or educational use. This is the fifth generation model from Lenovo, so they have had plenty of time to dial in the design and specifications to achieve optimal conditions. Pricing starts at $1,699 and can run you up to $2,349 with increases in RAM, SSD storage, processor clock speed and screen resolution.

At the base model, you are running an Intel Core i7-7500U at 2.7GHz, the processor packs plenty of power although you are settling for a dual-core instead of the quad-core in the Razer Blade. Given this is an Ultrabook, this the difference in specs is expected. Beyond the processor different, you are seeing only 8GB of RAM which is enough for most but will get bogged down in extensive multitasking or loads of web browsing tabs. 

There is no dedicated graphics card which makes multimedia editing or gaming poor on this model, but the use of integrated Intel HD Graphics 620 will give you enough graphical power to run media tasks of lower intensity such as video streaming or powering an external monitor.


Gigabyte Aero 14 Gaming Laptop

The Aero 14 is Gigabyte's premium gaming laptop that is priced well and remains relatively thin and portable for the specs. The display packs a 2560 by 1440 WQHD resolution unlike most of the 1080P panels offered at the 14-inch sizing. 

Coupling the resolution with the NVIDIA GTX 1060 dedicated graphics card, you'll have plenty of power to run multimedia editing as well as gaming although you may struggle to run native WQHD gaming on some titles. However, you can always bump down to 1080P and this is very common for laptop gaming. 

You are getting a lot of the same power as the Razer Blade mirroring the same RAM, processor and even bumping up to a 512GB SSD for a lower price. However, the build quality and craftsmanship from Gigabyte just don't live up to Razer's standards. For someone who is bringing it primarily on the go, I'm not sure how the Aero's build will hold up over extended use. 

If you are planning to use this laptop for more of a stationary setting and don't consider the build quality a major hindrance then the Aero 14 is a better bang for your buck than a Razer Blade.


MSI GS63VR Stealth Pro

MSI has been a leader in the PC gaming world for quite some time, and their GS43VR Phantom Pro offers some stellar performance in a relatively small form-factor. With a 14.3" 1080P FHD display and dedicated NVIDIA GTX 1060 video card, this model can run multimedia and gaming with virtually anything you throw at it (including virtual reality). 

From a technical perspective, the GS43VR offerings the same core specs as the Razer Blade or Gigabyte Aero 14 although the profile is notable thicker likely due to a more robust design for internal cooling. Something unique about the GS43VR is that it offers a small SSD drive for running your OS and core applications as well as a standard 7200RPM hard disk for storing your or personal or media files. 

At its price, this model offers a great deal of bang for your buck. However, it does suffer from craftsmanship problems with a flexible chassis, shows extensive fingerprints/smudges, a loud cooling system and poor speakers. If these potential flaws don't bother you, then the GS43VR Phantom Pro might be the right choice for you.


A front view of the LG Gram 14 ultrabook.

Another ultrabook on the list is the LG Gram 14 which has a primary focus of a sleek, highly portable design coming in under .7 inches in thickness. The 14 inch screen is surrounded by a thin bezel around three out of the four sides of the 1080P HD IPS panel. 

Despite the thin size, you still get access to USB 3.0, HDMI and USB C ports as well as a MicroSD card reader for media files. Much of the specs mirror the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 with the same processor and integrated graphics. However, while the RAM amount remains the same, the clock speed is higher, and you get double the SSD storage capacity.

Again, the last of power here will keep this model from being suitable for multi-media editing or gaming yet it has more than enough for word processing, email, web browsing and video streaming. One thing the ThinkPad does do better is battery life so you'll want to determine whether the savings is worth the difference power consumption.


The Asus Zenbook UX430UA in a sideway view.

The ZenBook line has been a popular series for ASUS with many different screen sizes and configurations available. However, their 14" ZenBook 3 is an affordable option for the budget-conscious crowd offering an excellent design mixed with solid specs for the average user's needs. 

While the ZenBook 3 sports a quad-core processor, keep in mind that it is rated for only 1.8GHz. This is on the lower end for a processor's clock-speed, yet the four cores help with multi-tasking when juggling several programs or lots of browser tabs simultaneously. 

Beyond this, you get 16GB of DDR3 RAM, a 512GB SSD and integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620 which should be plenty for the average user. The lack of a dedicated graphics card will not be sufficient for intensive media editing or gaming so keep that in mind if your purchase intentions are to use it for either of those tasks. 


Final Thoughts

If you've made it this far then you've learned a great deal about 14 inch laptops and what to consider when purchasing a new model. We know there is a lot of knowledge to take in, so we recommend you bookmark or save this guide to revisit for future reference.

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Should you still have questions concerning a 14 inch laptop then you can utilize the comments section below to ask a specific question or express your own concerns that arise during your product research. We will do our best to respond with helpful insight or answers as soon as we can.

The Tech Reviewer team hope that this article was of value to you in your search for the best 14 inch laptop and feel our recommendations will be beneficial towards your future purchase decision!

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