SSD (short for solid state drive) has been seen as the new kid on the block for a while, but it's definitely earned its place in modern computers. Faster, more secure, and more compact than its HDD predecessor, it's an innovation that's here to stay.
While many desktop computers offer the ability to change out the HDD for a modern SSD, this often isn't the case with laptops, where you'll need to pick one with built-in solid state drive instead. In this article, we'll show a few of the best laptops with SSD. Read on for more!
For Mac Lovers: MacBook Pro 13" With Touch Bar
One of the best Macs on the market, this particular laptop blends high tech hardware with a sleek and modern design for absolutely stellar performance. Contains 16GB RAM, i7 processor, and 512GB SSD.
For Windows Users: HP Spectre x360 Convertible Laptop
Bringing the laptop and tablet worlds together, the HP Spectre features a stylus, convertible design, touchscreen, and beautiful metal body. Inside you'll find an 8th gen i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, and 512GB of SSD.
For Light Users: Acer 14" Premium Business Chromebook
If you don't need a powerhouse, a Chromebook offers the portability of a laptop and the speed of SSD without the extra bells and whistles. You can complete most basic office tasks involving documents or the internet and easily travel with the device as needed.
Do You Need an SSD Laptop?
SSD is the future of computing power, but it isn't necessarily for everyone right now. It's ideal if you run heavy programs, need better data security, or value speed above all else. You'll have incredible bootup times, and a powerful drive supporting you. It also makes your laptop more "future proof" - with newer tech, it will likely have a longer lifespan and be more likely to support tech innovations of the future.
On the other hand, an SSD is not the best choice if you need a lot of storage space on your laptop. While 500GB may be a standard amount of storage on a traditional HDD, that's considered a huge amount of SSD space since it can be as much as 4 times as expensive. Instead, most SSD laptops start at around 128GB of space.
Additionally, external consumer drives can be hard to find in sizes larger than 1TB, which isn't ideal if you know you tend to use space quickly. If this sounds like you, an SSD and HDD hybrid laptop might be a good choice.
Best Laptop With SSD: What to Consider?
As we mentioned, SSD laptops tend to have less space than their HDD counterparts. However, you still need to consider how much space you require. 128GB is about the same as some high-end smartphones, while 500GB is usually recommended. However, with an HDD and some cloud storage services, you may be perfectly fine with closer to 256GB.
Processor and Specs
A great hard drive is nice to have, but it won't be much help without great hardware to match. Look for newer chips from Intel and AMD, such as the 6th gen or later i5 and i7 processors. You should also make sure to have enough RAM. Unless you're using a Chromebook, it's recommended that you have at least 8GB (source: AndroidCentral), and depending on your line of work you may want to get a dedicated graphics card.
Secondary features may not be make-or-break options, but they can add a lot to a potential laptop. Things such as a built-in webcam, optical drive, modern USB-C ports, a high screen resolution, or touchscreen capability aren't necessary for everyone, but they can take your computer up a notch. The best thing is to make a list of "wants" versus "needs" to figure out which features to focus on.
Best SSD Laptops in 2018: Our Top Picks
Apple tends to be on the cutting edge of new tech, and this computer has it all. It comes with 512GB of SSD storage, 16GB of RAM, and an Intel i7 processor to tie it all together. The innovative touch bar adorns the top edge of the keyboard and it uses fancy USB-C ports.
- This is a sleek Apple design with plenty of power to match. It should be more than capable of running almost any application.
- Integrates seamlessly with other Apple products, and excels against comparable models from other manufacturers in benchmark tests for speed and functionality.
- Lacks standard port types, so you'll need USB-C dongles for any old connection types you intend to use.
- Also lacks a dedicated graphics card that would allow it to run the most intensive software.
More of a Windows fan? Want to enjoy your computer as both a laptop and a tablet? The HP Spectre is a top of the line computer and can do it all. Shipping with 512GB of SSD, an eighth generation i7 processors and 16GB of RAM, it has all the stats to match its Apple competitors and a convertible design on top of that.
- Runs Windows 10 Pro out of the box, comes with a stylus for use with the touchscreen and can convert into a tablet whenever you please.
- The body is a sleek metal, not plastic, and the machine is extraordinarily thin.
- Runs integrated rather than dedicated graphics, which could be a drawback for some power users.
If you don't need the power of a standard laptop, but you do need the portability and functionality, a Chromebook such as this model from Acer is a great option. It runs Chrome OS, which is primarily web-based, rather than macOS or Windows. Inside, the computer has 4GB of RAM and 32GB of SSD. It's meant for simple work online or editing documents, and is great for on the go productivity.
- It's very slim and light, with a high-quality 1080p screen.
- While the technical specifications won't allow it to run heavy programs, it is more than capable of day to day business use such as checking email, creating documents/spreadsheets/presentations, and using the internet.
- Has an outstanding battery life.
- Chrome operating system has program limitations, so you won't be able to run many popular software or apps.
- Additionally, storage space is very low since the computer is meant for light work only.
Useful Tips and Tricks
Still using an old laptop with a hard disk drive? It's a better idea for you to replace the HDD with a new SSD to save a few hundred bucks, and the process isn't that complicated unless you really don't have the time to do so. We have shown you a step-by-step guide on how to install an SSD for 2012 MacBook Pro.
If the laptop you prefer doesn't have enough space, there are plenty of ways to fix this. You can use a cloud service such as DropBox or Google Drive to store files, or you can invest in an external drive. We've recommended quite a few (see below), and they come in all sizes to accommodate the amount of space you need.
- Best External Drives for Backup and Storage
- Best Portable SSD Drives to Get in 2018
- Best External Hard Drives for Photographers
You should also make sure to get a protective case. While the more common MacBooks have a lot of hardshell type cases available, if you're using a Windows computer you're more likely to find a sleeve or general carrying case with the correct dimensions.
Whatever your preference, a case is ideal if you plan to take your laptop outside of your home and especially if you commute frequently.
Your laptop works for you - not the other way around. It makes sense to invest in what will get you to the finish line, whether that means a completely maxed out model or something more modest that meets your individual needs.
Meanwhile, any SSD inside will make sure you can complete your tasks quickly and efficiently, without spending ages staring at loading screens. They're definitely machines built for the future.
Do you have a favorite laptop model with SSD that we missed? Feel free to drop us a comment below and let us know - we'd love to hear about it.
Chris is a computer geek for a decade. He loved talking to computers via codes, and now he finds it more interesting communicating with the real people. He now writes everything related to computer issues and loves helping people solve problems.