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Gone are the days when Intel was the only juggernaut in the world of CPUs. AMD used to be the try-hard company that was just shadowing the success of Intel no matter what they did.Things have changed now and AMD has taken the lead. Their processing power, their cores, their threads, their speeds; everything is slowly becoming superior to Intel in every way.
And, it isn’t just us that’s saying this. As of the 2019 release of Ryzen 3rd Generation processors, AMD is now selling twice as many processors as its competitor.
And if you’ve been solely focused on buying Intel CPU laptops for the past few decades, it may be time to jump ship and move on to a Ryzen-equipped piece from now on. If you’re already convinced that AMD is the better option, here are six of the best AMD Ryzen CPU laptops that you need to get in 2020.
The Best AMD Ryzen CPU Laptops Compared
|Asus Zenbook UM33D||Processor: Ryzen 7 3700U|
GPU: RX Vega 10
RAM: 8 GB
Hard Drive: 512 GB SSD
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|Acer Predator Helios 500||Processor: Ryzen 2700|
GPU: RX Vega 56
RAM: 16 GB
Hard Drive: 256 GB SSD
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|Microsoft Surface Laptop 3||Processor: Ryzen 7 3780U / Ryzen 5 3580U|
GPU: Radeon Vega 9 / Radeon RX Vega 11
RAM: 8 GB / 16 GB
Hard Drive: 128 GB / 256 GB / 512 GB / 1 TB SSD
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|Lenovo Flex 14||Processor: Ryzen 5 3500U|
GPU: AMD Radeon Vega 8 GPU
RAM: 8 GB
Hard Drive: 256 GB SSD
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|HP Pavilion||Processor: Ryzen 5 3550H|
GPU: Nvidia GTX 1050
RAM: 8 GB
Hard Drive: 256 GB SSD
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|Lenovo ThinkPad X395||Processor: Ryzen 7 3700U|
GPU: Radeon Vega 10
RAM: 8 GB
Hard Drive: 512GB SSD
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The very first item on our list is the Asus Zenbook and if we were to use one word to describe this laptop, we’d use the word “elegant”.It’s an extremely chic looking machine that takes the cake for the looks and leaves nothing in the specs either.
Starting with the processor, the Asus Zenbook uses a quad-core AMD Ryzen 7 3700U processor with a 2.3GHz base frequency that can be booted up to 4GHz. The processor makes this laptop a powerhouse for users requiring high processing speeds for tasks like video editing.
So, the memory situation is a bit weird in the Zenbook. It’s not necessarily bad; it’s just weird. There’s no regular SATA HDD in the Zenbook, you’re getting a 512 GB NVME SSD and that’s pretty much it. There’s no slot for additional HDD or even SSD. You could potentially use the MicroSD slot for some extra space, or even swap out the SSD for a bigger one.
In terms of RAM, we have an 8GB DDR4 memory with a bandwidth of 2400MHz which is pretty good for all your games and processing needs. The processor could use an upgraded RAM of at least 16 GB to really squeeze out that last bit of speed from the hardware.
The Asus Zenbook uses an AMD Radeon RX Vega 10 GPU. It pairs up the AMD CPU with the AMD GPU quite nicely. The GPU isn’t that powerful in terms of gaming, but this laptop isn’t really meant for gaming. It’s a GPU designed for a notebook and its performance sits somewhere close to the Nvidia GTX 930. You could do some light gaming on the side, but don’t expect to run any AAA games with this GPU.
The elegant design of the laptop really is a cherry on top for users that are looking for that extra look on their laptop. The Zenbook uses a four-sided NanoEdge Display with a 14-inch screen. The laptop itself is 13% smaller than its previous versions in the Zenbook series which really adds to the portability of the laptop and makes it the perfect device for you to carry on the go.
The Zenbook comes with a 1-year USA warranty with some extra goodies on the side. You’re getting a free 1-year subscription to McAfee Antivirus, a CircuitCity mouse, mouse pad and Microfiber.Our Take
The Zenbook is definitely a great option for a person looking to take a laptop to the office. However, you can’t really do much more than that on this thing. It can’t be used for video editing because of its underperforming RAM. It isn’t too great for gaming because of its GPU. What it does, it does flawlessly. But, the narrow line of usability of the Zenbook is definitely a letdown.
- Extremely portable device
- Features a 3rd Generation AMD Ryzen 7 3700U Quad-Core Processor
- 8GB DDR4 RAM with a bandwidth of 2400MHz
- 512GB NVMe SSD
- Non-Expandable RAM
- No space for a SATA HDD
2. Acer Predator Helios 500 – Our Pick for Gaming
If you’re interested in the Ryzen powerhouse for the gaming aspect of it, you’re in for a treat with this one.The Predator Helios is another laptop in the long list of gaming masterpieces released by Acer and it’s a must-grab for gaming fanatics looking for a reliable machine.
Here’s all you need to know about the Helios 500.
Starting off with the processor, the Helios 500 is equipped with an AMD Ryzen 2700 Octa-Core processor with an incredible speed of 4.1GHz which can be boosted up to 4.3 GHz. The processor also has a 4MB L2 Cache for that extra peak in performance.
In terms of hard drive, you’re getting a 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD. It’s not nearly enough, but you have the option to expand your storage space if needed. There are two M2 slots available for expansion along with a bracket to allow the user to install a 2.5’’ HDD if necessary.
This is where the Helios 500 starts to shine. It comes with an 8GB GDDR5 AMD Radeon RX Vega 56 GPU which has AMD’s FreeSync Technology and is also VR Ready. The laptop has a 17.3” Full HD 1080p screen with a 144 Hz refresh rate. The GPU also has the capability of running a trio of monitors with the HDMI, Display Port and USB Type C connections.
That’s enough of some of the more generic features. Let’s talk about the places where the Helios 500 really outmatches its competition.
The first thing is the cooling system on this thing. It has five copper heat pipes to get rid of excess heat. It has four exhausts and two intakes that bring in the cool air from the outside. If that isn’t enough, you can activate CoolBoost during maximum usage to crank up the fans and push them to their limits.
In terms of aesthetics, there’s not really much that can beat the Predator. It’s modded with RGB colors on everything; from the Predator logo to the RGB backlit keyboard.
Helios revolutionizes what you could have as a sound system on a laptop. It has loaded two speakers and a subwoofer with Waves MAXXAudio system to deliver the most immersive sound experience you could possibly get with a laptop.Our Take
This laptop is an absolutely amazing piece of tech for gaming. It’s a great option for people looking for a reliable gaming laptop. But, just like the Zenbook, don’t expect to do much of anything else on this thing. The portability factor is just not there. The laptop weighs 10 pounds making it extremely difficult to carry on the go. It doesn’t have the battery life to use outside of your house. If you’re looking for something that can serve as both a gaming and work machine, you’re going to have to go with something else.
- Ryzen 7 2700 CPU
- VR-Ready RX Vega 56 GPU
- 144 Hz Refresh Rate
- 16 GB DDR4 RAM
- Expandable storage options
- State-of-the-art cooling system
- Battery timing is a huge disappointment
3. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 – Our Pick for Portability
You wouldn’t really expect a laptop from Microsoft to be the top three on our list. But, regardless, it is. The Microsoft Surface is a laptop made for portability.
It’s a laptop you take to work, to your college, to your friend’s house, to your bed to watch movies and pretty much everything in between. Here’s all you need to know about it.
The processor on the Surface is a 3rd generation AMD Ryzen 7 3780U processor. You also have the option to downgrade to a Ryzen 5 3580U if you’re not in the need of the insane processing speeds of the Ryzen 7. The laptop comes in quite a few different variants, with a few of them even using Intel processors.
Once again, the laptop gives you the freedom of choosing your own components and gives you quite a few options. All RAMs are DDR4 with all drives being SSDs. We’ll list the several options below.
- 8GB RAM – 256GB SSD
- 8GB RAM – 128GB SSD
- 16GB RAM – 256GB SSD
- 16GB RAM – 512GB SSD
- 16GB RAM – 1TB SSD
Once again, Microsoft Surface gives you the option to choose your own GPU. If you go for the 13.5” variant of the laptop, you get an Intel Iris Plus GPU. But, if you go towards the 15” version, you have two options; AMD Radeon Vega 9 Graphics or an AMD Radeon RX Vega 11.
Other FeaturesThe laptop’s design is what really makes us like this piece from Microsoft. It’s a clean and sleek design that looks a lot like the elegant design that MacBooks are known for.
The design isn’t just sleek, it’s extremely thin too. It’s one of the thinnest names in the list of 15” laptops making it favorable for people aiming for portability. Moreover, the 11-hour battery is just the icing on the cake.Our Take
The major problem with the two laptops mentioned above was that they weren’t multipurpose. You could either do one thing or the other; there was no third option. However, with the Microsoft Surface, you have the free will to do both gaming and office work on the side. It’s portable too and with a long-lasting battery and with a decent GPU; making it the perfect multipurpose device to cater to all your needs.
- AMD Ryzen 7 and 5 Processor
- Multiple options available in terms of RAM and storage space
- Amazing GPUs for mid-level gaming
- Aesthetically pleasing light-weight design
- Long-lasting battery life
- Non-upgradeable memory
- The Wi-Fi module isn’t reliable
Lenovo is sort of the underdog when it comes to laptops. Their products are categorized as unreliable by the majority of the world, but with the Lenovo Flex, the company might be switching things up a bit.
The Lenovo Flex comes with the second-generation AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor. The processor is pretty powerful as compared to some of the other processors that are used these days in the world of 2-in-1 laptops.
The Lenovo Flex offers an 8GB DDR4 RAM, which is good enough for a laptop in this price range. An upgrade to 16GB would have made the laptop that much more powerful in terms of processing power. However, it is possible to upgrade the RAM. By default, the laptop comes with two RAM sticks of 4GB each. One of the RAMs is soldered into the chipset but the other one is upgradable. You could push it up to 20 GBs even by swapping the 4GB for a 16GB.
There’s also an NVMe SSD loaded onto this laptop with 256GB of space. There aren’t any extra slots. But you do have the option to swap out the SSD for a bigger one.
The Lenovo Flex 14 boasts an AMD Radeon Vega 8 GPU which is a 2 GB DDR4 graphic card.It’s not really suitable for running AAA games on decent settings. But the graphic card could still support some light gaming and play stuff like Minecraft, DotA 2 and CS:GO as well. The GPU does support 4K resolution, however, the screen does not. So, hook it up to a 4K screen or TV to immerse yourself in that experience.
The screen might not be 4K, but it is a touchscreen so it definitely evens up the odds a bit.
So, two inches above, we mentioned it’s a touchscreen and, it’s not just a touchscreen. It’s one that supports an active stylus. The product, in fact, comes with an ActivePen which is Lenovo’s stylus used as an input method to control the screen.
There’s a battery life of 8 hours on this device which is a pretty decent number as compared to what Lenovo has been putting out in their flex series.
In terms of portability, this laptop takes the cake. It only weighs 3.5 pounds and with the sleek design, you could easily use this laptop on the go.
A huge drawback of this laptop would be the way the power supply works. On paper, this laptop is an absolutely amazing piece of tech for the price that’s pretty decent for gaming too. However, the problem isn’t something that said ‘paper’ covers. So, the big deal with gaming on this laptop is that the CPU, for some unknown reason, starts to draw more and more power from the power supply. Under normal circumstances, that’s not an issue. But, during gaming, this becomes a problem because the CPU is now stealing power from the GPU. As a result, the GPU starts throttling and there is a significant decrease in frame rates in games.Our Take
If you’re not going to be using this laptop for gaming, go for it. It’s a great machine that will last you a long, long time before in need of an upgrade. Its also available at a great price. But, if you’re looking for a machine that could do a fair bit of gaming too, consider some other machine. The issue with the power distribution is a huge one. It’s a shame that Lenovo didn’t fix it. Otherwise, this laptop would be number one on this list.
- AMD Ryzen 5 3500U.
- Extreme Portability.
- Touchscreen with stylus enabled.
- Extended battery life.
- Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
- Screen brightness is low even at a 100%
- The CPU starts drawing more power during gaming, ergo, stealing a lot of the power from the GPU.
5. HP Pavilion 15.6” Gaming Laptop – Our Budget Pick for Gaming
We went over a popular laptop for gaming fanatics a bit earlier. It was an Acer Predator which is an absolute beast of a machine. However, it’s only fair we mention something a bit less expensive with the same focus in mind, gaming. The HP Pavilion series is a perfect blend of a gaming and workstation laptop. And, with the aesthetics of the green theme, it’s definitely a must-have.
The Pavilion features an AMD Ryzen 2nd Generation Quad-Core processor. It’s a Ryzen 5 3550H processor with a 4MB cache. The processor starts from 2.1 GHz and goes up to 3.7 GHz which is absolutely spectacular for a laptop in this price range.
In terms of memory, there’s not really much special with this laptop. It boasts an 8GB DDR4 RAM which, against, isn’t anything extraordinary. But it being a budget gaming laptop, is just what it needs. However, the RAM is indeed upgradeable. So, in a couple of years, if you ever feel like you need to kick it up to an even 16 gigs, that’s a possibility too.
When it comes to storage space, once again, nothing too special. It’s a 256GB NVMe SSD. However, there’s another slot for 2.5” SATA, so expanding to get more memory is a piece of cake. Apart from that, you could also swap out the 256GB SSD for a 1TB one if you so desire.
The HP Pavilion comes with the king of budget gaming GPU’s, the Nvidia GTX 1050. It’s actually a pretty decent pairing of a 2nd Gen Ryzen CPU and 1050. It’s a 3GB GDDR5 graphics card that can run most AAA games at medium settings at 30 fps.
As we mentioned, the aesthetics of this laptop are pretty amazing. HP has always put a green theme to its Pavilion series and with the unique joint between the screen with the rest of the laptop. There’s also a green backlit keyboard. So, all things considered, it’s a really nice laptop to look at.
This is probably one of the best from the HP Pavilion lineup. It an amazing laptop for someone that doesn’t want to spend a whole lot for gaming but still wants a powerful laptop at their disposal. And, weighing 5 pounds, it may not be the most portable laptop, but still lightweight enough to be carriable.
- AMD Ryzen 3550H Processor
- 3GB GTX 1050 GPU
- Backlit keyboard
- Amazing battery life
- Expandable memory options
- The Wi-Fi Module is buggy.
The Lenovo ThinkPad has never been a popular option when it comes to aesthetics. It’s a laptop with an extremely retro design that Lenovo has never really updated. It’s a design that has lasted the course of time through the past 25 years. Yep, you read that right, 25 years. But when it comes to ThinkPads, you don’t really care much about the look.Because this laptop is an absolute powerhouse of a laptop.
Starting with the processor, the X395 uses an AMD Ryzen 7 Pro 3700U processor. It’s a 4 core CPU with a speed ranging from 2.3 GHz to 4.0 GHz at max boost along with a 4 MB cache.
The laptop uses an 8GB DDR4 RAM. It’s pretty ‘meh’, but it’s still expandable. In terms of hard drive storage, you’re getting a 512GB SSD out of the box. This is a huge plus side of the ThinkPad X395 since the majority of the laptops on our list use a 256GB SSD.
The Lenovo ThinkPad comes with AMD Radeon Vega 10 graphics. Similar to the Asus Zenbook we talked about earlier, the X395 isn’t a machine meant for gaming; hence not requiring that much of a powerful GPU. It’s more like a workstation. However, you could still do a fair bit of gaming with the Vega 10. You’re not going to be playing Battlefield V at 1080P ultra; but still.
The Lenovo ThinkPad series is infamous for its bright screen and amazing visuals. It comes with a 13” 1920×1080 pixel screen with a brightness of 300 nits. The laptop can be opened a 180 degree so it can lay flat on any table. You’re also getting a touchscreen instead of a regular IPS, so that’s a plus point too.
The Lenovo ThinkPad 395 is only further down on our list due to the RAM and the underperforming GPU. Apart from that, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with this laptop. It’s an incredible option for people that are going to be taking their laptops with them around town. It’s so lightweight, you’d forget that it’s even there. So, if you’re not going to be doing highly 4K video rendering or gaming on your laptop, this is the perfect device for you to get.
- Extremely lightweight and portable
- AMD 3700 Processor
- 512GB SSD
- Vega 10 Graphics
- Touchscreen and fingerprint enabled
- None that we know of.