Everyone has different needs, and budget is an important factor when buying a laptop. But if it wasn’t, what would be your best option?
For people who travel a lot, it sometimes is necessary, to have a thin and light laptop with great battery life. Performance may still be important but maybe not as much as doing work on the go. Even if you edit photos, you can travel to do a photoshoot and edit 30+ megapixel photos on a quad core intel processor on an ultrabook. You now even have the option to get a thin and light with a Ryzen CPU with Vega graphics that will last a full day and perform as well. An HP Spectre is a good example, the Dell XPS 13, the Surface laptop, or Surface pro, and even the Macbook and the Macbook Air.
If you care about performance, again you have options. The Dell XPS 15, HP X360 and Macbook Pro 15 are also good options. Other professional or gaming laptop may have incredible performance and features. Some have even Xeon CPUs and Quadro graphics cards, specifically designed for professionals. And some, like the Lenovo Thinkpad P72 have great battery life too. But not as good as thin and lights. And they are neither thin, nor light.
What if you want both? A great solution would be to get one of the products that fit right in the middle. XPS 14, X360 and Macbook Pro.
A better one for many people, including me, would be to get something completely different. Razer, has released a new external graphics card enclosure. By using USB-C with thunderbolt, they can use the power of a graphics card that is not inside the laptop itself. You just have a small box, with a graphics card, and a few extra ports, and you can keep it at home. Then you get a Razer Blade Stealth (or any other laptop with Thunderbolt through USB-C) and connect it to the box with a simple cable. You get the performance of a desktop graphics card, and when you want to travel, just take the laptop with you. It has 16GB RAM, a quad core i7 and great battery life. It is not perfect. And realistically you could get a much better laptop and combine it with this external box, but it is better to have products that are designed to work together, for compatibility reasons. Assuming you need your computer for work, you want it to be reliable. But you could get an HP Spectre with USB-C thunderbolt or an XPS 15.
This solution works great for people like me, who do most of my heavy work at home, and then at work i just need Word, Excel and Email. If i travel for more than a couple of days, it is always possible for me to carry the box as well, since it is not really heavy. But the Razer Blade Stealth has good enough performance for most tasks.
Soon, Macbooks will have more options like this, and they do now. With eGPUs like the one from Blackmagic, but they don’t work as well as the ones for Windows laptops. But i am sure Apple will make them work perfectly in no time, since they only need to develop and test for less than 10 devices.