With so many different types of laptops available to buy it can be difficult to make the right choice. Should you go for one that's thin and light and designed for life on the move, or is it better to choose a desktop replacement laptop with a big screen?
To help you narrow down your search we've gathered together the very best models on the market right now across a range of different sizes and styles.
Apple MacBook Air 13-inch
The new version of the MacBook Air looks very similar to the previous model, but that's no bad thing as it's still super slim and stylish. Its rigid aluminium construction also makes it feel remarkably sturdy for such a slender laptop. Under the bonnet things have changed significantly with a move to Intel's fourth generation Core-i5 processor. This has brought not just a boost in terms of performance, but also a very welcome and very substantial jump in battery life. Add in a good screen and excellent keyboard and trackpad and you've got a seriously useful piece of kit.
Sony Vaio Fit 14
It doesn’t offer the longest battery life and isn’t as blisteringly fast as more expensive models, but the Sony Vaio Fit 14's more modest asking price reflects this. What it does do is offer an excellent combination of an attractive thin-and-light design, strong features and good performance at an affordable price point. We especially liked its bright and very responsive touch screen, as it offers a higher resolution than some competing models. Overall, this is an excellent laptop for those after a model that has the muscle for basic tasks such as Web browsing, e-mail and word processing.
Dell XPS 12
Dell's rotating-screen laptop/tablet hybrid keeps getting a bit better with each generation and now with a CPU from Intel's recent fourth-generation Core i-series, the XPS 12 finally has battery life worthy of its smart design. The screen mechanism is well-designed, and it snaps into position without slipping, while typing on the backlit keyboard is comfortable and accurate. The buttonless clickpad is also a good size for such a small machine. The XPS 12 may have a premium price tag, but its performance justifies this as it's more than powerful enough for mainstream tasks and feels fast and responsive to use.
Acer Aspire E1-572
The Aspire E1-572 is a solid mid-range laptop from Acer. It's got enough power to comfortably handle everyday tasks and we like the fact the hard drive and Ram slots are easily accessible if you want to upgrade in the future. The all black body, with just a simple silver Acer logo on the lid, means it'll blend right in at the coffee shop or in the lecture hall. It's a decent weight for its size too, and the keyboard is a strong point. We do wish the screen was a little bit brighter, but its 1,366x768-pixel resolution is typical for its class. As budget-friendly laptops go, the Acer Aspire E1-572 is good value with sufficient power for basic tasks, and it doesn't look bad either.
Lenovo Ideapad Yoga 11S
Can't decide whether you want a laptop or a tablet? You can get the best of both worlds with the Yoga 11S. It runs on Windows 8, but has a good quality keyboard that can be folded all the way back to switch from laptop to tablet mode. It's a shame it's stuck with a last-gen Intel CPU -- rather than using one of Intel's new, and more power-efficient Haswell processors -- but the Yoga 11S is still impressive because it shows that Lenovo understands that many buyers of hybrids want a quality laptop first and foremost.