9 Best MacBook Pro Alternatives To Consider in 2024

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For years, MacBook Pro has famously been the choice for creatives and professionals from all sorts of industries and backgrounds. Now that Apple has come out with their silicon M1 and M2 chips, these laptops are more powerful than ever.

Despite their popularity, there could be a few reasons why MacBooks might not be right for you. The cost can be prohibitive – and not everyone wants to switch to macOS from Windows.

Thankfully, there are plenty of MacBook Pro alternatives that offer a similar experience. From the Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 to the Dell XPS, our list takes a look at the best MacBook Pro alternatives of 2024. Check out our recommendations below!

Which Laptops Are Comparable to the MacBook Pro?

As you know, we regularly provide tech tips. We also evaluate new products for specific situations. For example, our team compiled the best laptops for remote work. This article focuses specifically on those most similar to the MacBook Pro. Here’s the full list (with details).

Dell XPS 9520 – Best MacBook Pro Alternative Overall

Our Rating: 4.8/5

Dell XPS 9520 screenshot

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home, Windows11 Pro Storage: 512GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, 8TB SSD
Processor:

  • Intel Core i5-12500H
  • Intel Core i7-12700H
  • Intel Core i9-12900HK
Display:

  • 15.6” 1920 x 1200 (FHD+), 60Hz, Non-touch
  • 15.6” 3456 x 2160 (3K), 60Hz, OLED, Touchscreen
Graphics:

  • Intel UHD Graphics or Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 or 3050Ti
Size and Weight: 13.56 x 9.06 x 0.73 in; 4.22 – 4.62lbs
RAM: 8GB, 16GB, 32GB, 64GB Battery Life: Reported up to 15 hours, but gets around ~10 hours in use

Overall, the Dell XPS 9520 is our choice for the best MacBook Pro alternative. It offers the perfect balance between screen size, configurability, power, and battery life, making it one of the most impressive MacBook Pro competitors out there today.

You can get the 9520 in a variety of configurations, meaning that you can make it as powerful as you need. Choose between the 12th generation Intel Core i5, i7, and i9, then decide whether you want a discrete GPU for gaming (or resource-intensive work like video editing). You can also add more RAM or storage if you need it.

One of the most exciting things about the Dell XPS 9520 is the option of a 3K resolution OLED touchscreen. If you’re looking for OLED screens, consider this machine!

What We Liked

  • Beautiful display, especially the 3K OLED version
  • Configurable and can be incredibly powerful
  • Add a discrete GPU if you wish
  • Larger screen size means more screen real estate

What We Didn’t Like

  • Battery life isn’t as good as some equivalent MacBook models
  • Expensive, especially when configured more powerfully
  • Few ports
  • Not user-upgradeable

Related: Top 5 Best MacBook Air Alternatives for 2024

Razer Blade 14 – Best Gaming Laptop MacBook Alternative

Our Rating: 4.6/5

razer blade 14 gaming laptop

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home Storage: 1TB, user upgradeable to 2TB
Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX Display: 14” FHD 1080p IPS, 144Hz, up to 100% sRGB
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060, 3070Ti, or 3080Ti Size and Weight: 12.59 x 8.66 x 0.66 inches; 3.92lbs
RAM: 16GB DDR5 Battery Life: ~6h video playback; less for other activities

Razer is a brand that’s synonymous with gaming. Unsurprisingly, the Razer Blade 14 is a gaming laptop that also doubles as a great work or study machine. Thanks to its powerful AMD Ryzen 9 processor, this sleek laptop makes a great contender in the “PC vs MacBook Pro” battle. You also get to pick your graphics card, with options including the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060, 3070Ti, and 3080Ti.

Although this machine is incredibly powerful, you do compromise battery longevity. If you intend to game – or work while on the go – always bring your charger!

What We Liked

  • Sleek, robust build quality
  • 144Hz display
  • Powerful internals
  • Discrete GPU allows for creative work and gaming

What We Didn’t Like

  • 20ms response rate on the display (not great for a gaming laptop)
  • Screen isn’t guaranteed 100% sRGB
  • Slightly heavy
  • Middling battery life

LG Gram 17 – Best Ultraportable with a Large Display

Our Rating: 4.7/5

LG Gram 17 laptop screenshot

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home Storage: 1TB SSD
Processor: 12th Generation Intel Core i7 1260p Display: 17” 2560 x 1600 WQXGA, IPS, DCI-P3 99%
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics Size and Weight: 14.91 x 10.9 x 0.7 inches; 2.98lbs
RAM: 16GB DDR5 Battery Life: Up to 17 hours

The LG Gram 17 is a big laptop – but don’t let that deter you. This machine is surprisingly lightweight and portable for its size, coming in at a mere 3lbs. You won’t have any trouble getting power out of this machine either, thanks to its 12th-gen Intel Core i7 and 16GB of RAM. This laptop also features a large and beautiful 17” display powered by Intel Iris Xe graphics.

What We Liked

  • Thin, light construction makes it extremely portable
  • Stellar battery life
  • Includes a number pad on the keyboard
  • Gorgeous display
  • Affordable considering its screen size and specifications

What We Didn’t Like

  • No discrete graphics card
  • LG support may be somewhat lacking
  • Not 100% DCI-P3

HP Spectre x360 16 – Best 2-in-1 Convertible MacBook Pro Alternative

Our Rating: 4.7/5

HP Spectre X360

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home Storage: 512GB SSD; upgradeable to 2TB
Processor: 12th Gen Intel Core i7-12700H Evo Display: 16” IPS touchscreen, 3K+ 3072 x 1920 pixels
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics Size and Weight: 14.09 x 9.66 x 0.78 inches; 4.45lbs
RAM: 16GB Battery Life: Up to 17 hours

If you’re looking for a machine that can switch from laptop to tablet seamlessly, the HP Spectre x360 16 is one to consider, This laptop comes with its own stylus so you can write notes, annotate, and more.

One of the best features is this machine’s battery longevity, with reports stating it can last well over 15 hours (depending on use). So if you need for a versatile laptop that can last through the day, the HP Spectre x360 is tough to beat.

What We Liked

  • 2-in-1 convertible style allows use as a laptop or a tablet
  • Powerful
  • Comes with a stylus
  • Has many ports
  • Gorgeous display

What We Didn’t Like

  • No discrete GPU
  • The hinge may wear out from extremely heavy use

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano – Best Business Laptop MacBook Pro Alternative

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Lenovo thinkpad x1 nano screenshot

Specifications
Operating System:

  • Windows 10 Pro (preinstalled, but you must downgrade from 11 Pro)
  • Windows 11 Home
  • Windows 11 Pro
Storage: 1TB SSD
Processor: 12th Generation –

  • Intel Core i5 1240p
  • Intel Core i5 1250p with vPro
  • Intel Core i7 1260p
  • Intel Core i7 1270p with vPro
  • Intel Core i7 1280p with vPro
Display:

  • 13” 2160 x 1350 IPS, 100% sRGB non-touch
  • 13” 2160 x 1350 IPS, 100% sRGB, anti-reflective and anti-smudge touchscreen
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe graphics Size and Weight:

  • Non-touch 8.19 x 11.5 x 0.57 inches; 2.14lbs
  • Touchscreen 8.19 x 11.5 x 0.58 inches; 2.18lbs
RAM: Up to 32GB (DDR5) Battery Life: Up to 14 hours; rapid charging

The Lenovo ThinkPad line of laptops has always been well-known in the world of business, and for a good reason. These machines are reliable, powerful, and durable, and the X1 Nano is no different.

The X1 Nano, now on its second generation, is a small yet powerful laptop offering a smooth and reliable computing experience. Its light weight and long battery life lasts you through a full day of work, making it a great choice for personal, work, and business needs.

What We Liked

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Plenty of power
  • Highly configurable
  • Spill-resistant, backlit keyboard
  • Rapid charging
  • Touch and non-touch options available

What We Didn’t Like

  • Few ports
  • Looks like a business laptop; aesthetics not for everyone

Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 – Best Windows MacBook Pro Alternative

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Surface Laptop 5

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home Storage: User-removable SSDs

  • 13.5” – 256GB, 512GB
  • 15” – 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
Processor:

  • 13.5” – 12th Gen Intel Core i5-1235U Evo or Intel Core i7-1255U Evo
  • 15” – 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U Evo
Display: 201PPI PixelSense Color-Calibrated sRGB touchscreen

  • 13.5” – 2256 x 1504 pixels
  • 15” – 2496 x 1664 pixels
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics Size and Weight:

  • 13.5” – 12.1 x 8.8 x .57 inches; starts at 2.80lbs
  • 15” – 13.4 x 9.6 x .58 inches; 3.44lbs
RAM: 8GB or 16GB in the 13.5” model and 8GB, 16GB, or 32GB in the 15” model Battery Life: Up to 18 hours depending on use†

Since its release in October 2022, the Surface Laptop 5 has proven itself to be a fantastic machine – and a formidable challenger to the MacBook Pros. You can choose between the more portable 13.5” model and the larger 15” size, though both have touchscreen displays.

The Surface Laptop 5 won’t be able to go toe-to-toe with some of Apple’s more powerful machines, but it has a battery to last you a full day of work (and then some).

What We Liked

  • Fantastic battery life
  • Choose between two sizes
  • Powerful yet portable
  • Lightweight
  • Touchscreen

What We Didn’t Like

  • Few ports
  • Webcam is only 720p
  • No discrete GPU

Dell XPS 9320 – Best Ultraportable Alternative

Our Rating: 4.6/5

Dell XPS 9320 laptop

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home, Windows 11 Pro; also available in Ubuntu Linux Storage: 512GB, 1TB, 2TB SSD
Processor:

  • 12th Gen Intel Core i5 1230U
  • 12th Gen Intel Core i7 1250U
Display: 13.4”

  • Non-Touch FHD+ 1920 x 1200 60Hz
  • Touchscreen FHD+ 1920 x 1200 60Hz
  • 4K 3456 x 2160 Touchscreen
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe Graphics Size and Weight: 11.63 x 7.86 x 0.55 inches; 2.59lbs
RAM: 8GB, 16GB, 32GB Battery Life: About 7 hours

The Dell XPS 9320 offers an ultraportable computing experience. Choose your configuration, select your display, and even upgrade to a 4K touchscreen if you so wish. This machine is small, thin, and lightweight but doesn’t skimp on the power needed for productivity tasks and multi-tasking.

Perhaps the only downside to this laptop is its middling battery life (which may not even last you a full workday, depending on use).

What We Liked

  • Lightweight and ultraportable
  • Choose between touch or non-touch
  • Configurable
  • 4K display available

What We Didn’t Like

  • Middling battery life
  • Very few ports
  • No discrete GPU
  • Webcam is 720p only

HP Envy Laptop PC (16-H0010NR) – Another Fantastic MacBook Pro Alternative

Our Rating: 4.6/5

HP Envy laptop pc

Specifications
Operating System: Windows 11 Home Storage: 512GB SSD
Processor: 12th Gen Intel Core i7-12700H Display: 16” 2560 x 1600 IPS touchscreen, 120Hz
Graphics: Intel Arc A370M Size and Weight: 14.07 x 9.94 x 0.75 inches;  5.17lbs
RAM: 16GB DDR5 Battery Life: About 12 hours; fast charging

The HP Envy Laptop PC (16-H0010NR model) is a great choice for those who want a sleek machine with a large, beautiful touchscreen display. This machine offers up to 12 hours of use and features fast charging if you need some quick juice.

One of the best features of this laptop is its discrete GPU: the Intel Arc A370M. This GPU is hopefully one of Intel’s first of many. Although some compromises were made regarding this laptop’s configurability, its discrete GPU allows for gaming and heavier graphics-intensive work.

What We Liked

  • Decent battery life
  • Beautiful display with a fast refresh rate
  • Powerful
  • Sleek design
  • Discrete GPU

What We Didn’t Like

  • Not configurable

What to Look for in MacBook Pro Alternatives

When you’re shopping for MacBook Pro alternatives, the best choice depends on your intended use for the machine. Consider the factors below:

1. Design and Build Quality

Apple’s MacBooks are known for their sleek design and durable and premium build quality. The company’s thought-out design decisions are also mostly well-received, save for a few mistakes here and there (we’re looking at you, Apple butterfly keyboards). Just like its defined design language, the tech giant’s laptop lines tend to be quite consistent across the board.

As you consider your options, you may want to look for laptops that offer similar quality. It doesn’t have to look or feel premium, but it should feel robust and durable. Avoid any laptops that get bad reviews for elements like uncomfortable keyboards, loose hinges, and sub-par touchpads.

2. Screen Size and Display

MacBook Pros now come in three screen sizes: 13 inches, 14 inches, and 16 inches. The 13-inch laptops come with a Retina display, while the 14- and 16-inch models get a Liquid Retina XDR display.

Here are a few things you should know about choosing screen sizes and displays:

  • Consider a display’s native resolution. Not everyone cares about 2K or 4K — if you’re happy with 1080P Full HD models, there’s no reason to pay for more.
  • If you know that you’ll be using your laptop outdoors fairly often, choose a laptop with a bright display. 350~ nits is when it starts to be comfortable outdoors, but you probably want something brighter if you’ll be working in direct sunlight.
  • Check viewing angles to ensure you can see your screen without having to be directly in front of it.
  • If what you do requires great color accuracy, opt for laptops that offer such features. 100% sRGB or P3 wide color displays are good choices.

3. Processor

MacBook Pros today run on Apple’s M1 and M2 chips which are well-known for being incredibly powerful and energy efficient. So much so that many believe that Apple’s chips are heralding in a new age in computers.

If you want a MacBook Pro alternative that offers similar levels of power, consider the Intel Core i7 or i9 chips. If you prefer AMD, those would be Ryzen 7 or 9 chips.

However, if you don’t think you’ll need as much power, an Intel Core i5 might be more than enough for general productivity, multitasking, and even some light gaming.

For a quick point of reference, here’s how the 12th generation Intel Core i7 (Alder Lake) stacks up against the Apple M1 Max in terms of benchmark performance.

12th gen intel core i7 vs Apple M1

4. GPU/Video Card

Since Apple switched to its own chips, all of its MBPs have been powered by integrated graphics processing cores. You won’t see any discrete (separate) GPUs in any of the newer MacBook Pros, and you likely won’t see any in the future. Despite the lack of discrete GPUs, Apple’s pro line of laptops is still highly capable of performing graphically intensive work.

On the other hand, you’ll likely struggle to do the same tasks on Intel UHD or Iris Xe graphics. For Windows alternatives, you’ll want discrete GPUs to perform graphically intensive work like gaming and video editing. That means you’ll want at least an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30-series. 40-series cards are also now available (though they aren’t as widely available on laptops just yet).

Related: Check out LiveWebinar to nail your next presentation.

5. Memory

When it comes to RAM, more is always better. Some MacBook Pro models only have 8GB of RAM, but the combination of Apple silicon and macOS is so efficient that 8GB is enough for most users.

Power users can configure their laptops to add more memory, with 16GB being a common “sweet spot”. However, if you feel you need more, some MacBooks allow up to 96GB of RAM (though if you ask us, this is overkill for most).

On Intel or AMD-powered laptops, you’ll probably want a minimum of 16GB. If you multitask heavily, 8GB likely won’t be enough for you.

6. Storage

These days, the vast majority of laptops use SSDs (solid state drives) rather than HDDs (hard disk drives). SSDs are much faster, silent in operation, and less delicate in comparison to HDDs. We recommend SSD storage when given the option.

Many laptops start at 256GB, which is hardly enough if you work with large files. 512GB is often comfortable for most productivity work, but if you do creative work or a bit of gaming, you’ll want 1TB or more.

There’s always the option of external storage if you really need more. You can also save your files on the cloud and just sync (or download) the ones you need when you need them!

7. Connectivity/Ports

The MacBook Pro 14 and 16 models have plenty of ports to suit your needs. You get an SD card slot, three Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports, a headphone jack, and an HDMI port, as well as the MagSafe 3 charging port.

macbook pro 14 ports side view

13-inch models only have a headphone jack and two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports that handle everything from charging to DisplayPort. You’ll most likely need dongles to connect anything to your MBP 13.

Many of the MacBook Pro alternatives on this list have more ports than the MBP 13, as well as a similar number of ports as the 14/16-inch models. Consider the ports you use daily and look for laptops that have them. Otherwise, prepare to use dongles, USB hubs, and adapters!

8. Touchscreen/2-in-1 Convertible

MacBook Pros (or any MacBook, for that matter) don’t come with touchscreens and likely never will. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t consider a touchscreen in your MBP alternative! If you feel like you’d enjoy usingyour machine in different ways – or if you’d love to use a stylus – consider a laptop that offers these options.

Related: The Best Mouse for MacBook Pro and MacBook Air in 2024

How Much Should You Expect to Spend on a MacBook Pro Alternative?

First, let’s talk about pro-grade laptops. Professional-grade equipment tends to come at a premium. That’s typically because products marketed to professionals land on the higher end of things, with more features and inclusions. The same is true of laptops: A professional-grade machine (such as a mobile workstation) meant to be a desktop replacement can and will be expensive.

To help illustrate this point, let’s look at the prices for the most recent MacBook Pros. At the time of publication:

  • The M2 MacBook Pro 13 with a touch bar starts at $1,299 for the base model and $1,499 for the higher model.
  • The M2 Pro/Max MacBook Pro 14 starts at $1,999 for the base model. The following models go for $2,499 and $3,099.
  • The M2 Pro/Max MacBook Pro 16 starts at $2,499 for the base version and has two higher versions costing $2,699 and $3,499.
  • Any upgrades and configurations for your machine will add to these prices.

Let’s see how much you might expect to spend on a laptop similar to the MacBook Pro.

Many great MBP alternatives hover around those price ranges. But there’s some more good news: Windows laptops tend to offer configurability or upgradeability, allowing you to scale a machine’s specifications to precisely what you want. That means you’ll only pay for what you need!

If you want the portability of a 13” MacBook Pro with decent computing power, you can pay as little as $800. However, if you want your MBP alternative to be able to compete with the M1 and M2 chips, you’ll need to pay more, likely within the $1,500-$2,000 price range.

If you want to match the performance of the M1 Max chip found in MacBook Pro 14 and 16 models, you might need to shell out around $2,000 – $3,000 (or more).

Both Apple and Windows laptops are easy to load with powerful specs. Fully loaded, you can probably easily spend $4,000 or more per machine.

Related: Top 8 Best Magic Keyboard Alternatives in 2024

Why Trust Productivity Spot?

Our primary aim at Productivity Spot is to provide our readers with the tools they need to improve their focus and boost their productivity. In line with this aim, we do our best to provide the best advice and recommendations we can.

To create our list of recommendations, we consulted with other professionals and did hours of research. We also used our experience with some of the products and brands listed above.

Rest assured that at Productivity Spot, we strive to provide only accurate information that provides the most value to you.


Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the Equivalent of a Macbook Pro?

If you’re looking for a MacBook Pro PC equivalent that runs Windows, the laptops listed above are some of the best contenders today. Consider the Dell XPS 9520, which is our pick for the best MacBook Pro alternative overall. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a gaming alternative to the MacBook, the Razer Blade 14 might do the job.

What Can I Use Instead of a Mac?

If you’re not big on Apple’s products – or you just want an alternative to the MacBook – you can use one of the laptops from our recommendations above. Your choice of replacement would depend on your intended use. Be sure to choose a laptop with enough power and battery life for your needs.

What Is the Lifespan of a Macbook Pro?

Apple releases a new version of macOS yearly, and each version receives three years of support before being retired. With enough care, your MacBook can handle up to seven years of OS upgrades before its specifications can no longer handle it. If you take good care of your laptop, it can last at least five to ten years.

Does Apple Make the Best Laptops?

This question is quite subjective. Some may say yes, but it always depends on personal preferences and needs. There are many MacBook alternatives, with each offering a benefit that Apple laptops may not.

Are MacBook Pro Alternatives Powerful Enough?

Choosing a more powerful processor and adding a discrete GPU can make a huge difference to a laptop’s computing power. With the right specifications, a Windows machine might be able to go toe-to-toe with an Apple M1 or M2-powered MacBook Pro. However, be aware that bumping up specs can (and will) add more to the original price of the machine.

Conclusion

When it comes to choosing the right MacBook Pro alternative for you, it’s all a matter of figuring out your needs.

Do you need something powerful? Something thin and light? Or do you need a machine with enough battery to last you through the day? Either way, one of the MacBook Pro alternatives on this list might be right for you.

We hope that our list of recommendations has helped you find the perfect laptop for your needs. If you think we missed a machine that should be on this list, let us know in the comments below!

Are you looking for more ways to improve your productivity? Some productivity courses on Coursera might be able to help!

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