The 8 Best 17-Inch and Larger Laptops of 2021

Want a large-screen laptop? We've got the scoop on what you need

The Ultimate Laptop Buying Guide
The Ultimate Laptop Buying Guide
Introduction

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Bigger isn’t always better when it comes to your computer, but you’ll certainly notice a difference on the roomy screens of the best 17-inch and larger laptops. A bigger display means a more immersive experience for enjoying your favorite games, movies, and shows. It offers more room to work, which is especially valuable if you’re working with graphics and media.

Another plus is bigger laptops tend to come with bigger specs. When you’re not trying to minimize your laptop’s size and weight, you can pack in beefier hardware, including everything from faster processors to more powerful graphics cards to more spacious storage. That makes these larger machines some of the best gaming laptops and among the best laptops for graphic design.

But even with their extra hardware and screen real estate, the laptops on this list manage to stay compact and portable enough to take on the go. They’re ideal options for anyone looking for both size and power while not being tied down to a desktop.

The Rundown
Best Overall:
Dell XPS 17 at Amazon
The 2020 iteration of Dell’s XPS 17 embodies everything you’d expect to find in a high-end large-screen laptop.
The Gigabyte Aero’s 17.3-inch display delivers top-notch detail and color accuracy
Best Lightweight:
LG Gram 17 at Amazon
The LG Gram 17 makes it uniquely easy to carry around a sharp and vivid display for watching movies and staying productive.
Best Balance:
HP Omen 17 at Amazon
The Omen 17 from HP boasts desktop-level power within a portable laptop, and it doesn’t disappoint.
In standard laptop mode, you benefit from its comfortable keyboard, complete with a full number pad.
Otherworldly power, out-of-this-world prices.
Under the hood you’ll find a 10th gen Intel core i5 and a Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650 Ti.
An excellent option for those who need to get work done but who don't necessarily need to do heavy duty creative tasks or gaming.

Best Overall: Dell XPS 17

What We Like
  • Large, stunning screen despite relatively compact size

  • High-end graphics and performance

  • Impressive sound quality

What We Don't Like
  • Pricey

  • No Ethernet or USB-A ports

The 2020 iteration of Dell’s XPS 17 embodies everything you’d expect to find in a high-end, large-screen laptop. You can get its gorgeous 17-inch display in up to 3840 x 2400 pixels (slightly larger than 4K resolution), excellent for multitasking and movies.

Surrounding the screen are barely-there bezels, just enough to fit in a camera at the top. The result is that the XPS 17 is essentially the size of a 15-inch laptop—perhaps even smaller. Its base configuration starts at 0.77 x 14.74 x 9.76 inches and 4.65 pounds, and it gets on the heavy side once you add extra features, but it’s definitely lightweight and sturdily built enough to tote around.

The XPS 17’s backlit keyboard feels satisfying and comfortable enough for a full workday, and the trackpad is huge and responsive. Speakers on either side of the keyboard pump out impressively strong sound from two 1.5-watt tweeters and two 2.5-watt woofers. The slim profile leaves enough room for four USB-C ports and an SD card slot on the sides, but no HDMI, Ethernet, or full-size USB-A ports like there are on other larger laptops. Conveniently, Dell includes an adapter for those inputs.

You can spec out the XPS 17 with up to an Intel Core i9-10885H processor, 64GB of RAM, and a 2TB Solid State Drive. This means smooth sailing with just about anything you throw at it, including multimedia and graphics work. It’s not designed to be a true gaming laptop, but the XPS 17 can still hit solid frame rates with up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q. If you’re fine with its premium price tag, you get a real powerhouse, inside and out.

Size: 0.77 x 14.74 x 9.76 inches | Screen resolution: 3840x2400 | Processor: Intel Core i9-10885H | RAM: 64GB | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q | Storage: 2TB SSD

Best Display: Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XD

Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XD
What we like
  • Great detail and color accuracy

  • Powerful graphical capability

  • Long battery life

What we don't like
  • A bit on the heavy side

When buying a laptop with a large screen, the quality of the screen is all the more important. If you want possibly the best screen out there on a laptop, the Gigabyte Aero’s 17.3-inch 4K HDR display is definitely one of the top dogs, as it features a wide color gamut and delivers enough brightness for use even outdoors in the sun. It meets the VESA DisplayHDR 400 standard, which makes it perfect for traveling photo editors, graphic designers, and other creators to which this awesome laptop is marketed.

This top-notch display is backed up by serious graphics horsepower, featuring a Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 (some models of the Aero 17 can be fitted with an even more powerful RTX 3080). For processing power you get the latest 11th Gen Intel Core i7-11800H, and 16GB of RAM, as well as a 1TB SSD.

Despite its powerful hardware, the Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XD is capable of lasting for about seven hours playing 4K video. You also get an impressive array of ports considering the Aero’s size, and the customizable RGB backlit keyboard is a nice extra to round off this particularly capable and remarkably portable workhorse of a laptop.

Size: 15.6 x 10.6 x 0.84 inches | Screen resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Processor: 11th Gen Intel Core i7-11800H | RAM: 16GB | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 | Storage: 1 TB SSD

Best Lightweight: LG Gram 17

What We Like
  • Amazingly light for the size

  • Large, bright screen

  • Impressive battery life

What We Don't Like
  • No discrete graphics card

  • On the pricey side

You don’t typically think of 17-inch laptops as small and lightweight, but that’s exactly what the LG Gram 17 manages to accomplish. Narrow bezels around its beautiful 2560 x 1600-pixel display give it the footprint of the 15-inch laptop, and its 2.98-pound weight puts it in a class usually reserved for 13- or 14-inch ultraportables. It features a lengthy battery life of as much as 17 hours, which will keep you going all day. The LG Gram 17 is uniquely easy to carry around so you always have a sharp and vivid display for work and media consumption. At the same time, it packs in a generous selection of inputs, including a USB-C port, three USB-A ports, an HDMI output, and a microSD card slot.

The LG Gram 17 does leave off a discrete graphics card to help keep the machine light, and our reviewer found it to be somewhat less equipped for gaming and heavy graphics work. In terms of productivity performance, though, you’re not likely to be slowed at all by the 1.3GHz 10th-generation Intel Core i7 CPU, 16GB RAM, and generous 1TB of storage in the 2020 model. This version also updates the LG Gram 17’s design with an improved touchpad and a backlit keyboard adjusted to be more comfortable to type on.

Size: 15 x 10.3 x 0.7 inches | Screen resolution: 2560 x 1600 | Processor: Intel Core i7-1065G7 | RAM: 16GB | GPU: None | Storage: 1TB SSD

"Weighing less than 3 pounds, it’s trivial to lift, hold, and carry with one hand." — Jonno Hill, Product Tester.

LG Gram 17

Lifewire / Jonno Hill

Best Balance: HP Omen 17

What We Like
  • Strong gaming hardware

  • Backlit keyboard with macro keys

What We Don't Like
  • Battery life on the short side

  • Somewhat bulky

The Omen 17 from HP boasts desktop-level power within a portable laptop, and it doesn’t disappoint. Along with a six-core Intel Core i7 chip, the base model uses an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti graphics card that’s very capable in its own right, but upgrading to the RTX 2070 configuration really helps take on AAA titles on the highest settings. Of course, the 17.3-inch display makes the experience all the more immersive, with a vivid IPS panel and a 144Hz refresh rate to keep fast action looking smooth.

The design of the Omen 17 is subtle but stylish, with both visual and practical touches to appeal to gamers. The comfortable, responsive keyboard features four-zone backlighting, outlined WASD keys, and programmable macro keys along the left side. The Omen 17’s overall build feels solid and sturdy, if not a little thick. Weighing in at over 7 pounds, it doesn’t try to be remarkably light and compact, but it’s not overly difficult to lug around. Its portability is limited by its battery life, though, lasting only a few hours while playing games or video.

Size: 15.94 x 11.22 x 1.18 inches | Screen resolution: 1600 x 900 | Processor: Intel Core i7-10750H | RAM: 8GB | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 | Storage: 512GB SSD

Best 2-in-1: Dell Inspiron 17 7000 2-in-1

Dell Inspiron 7000
What We Like
  • Nice, large display for both a laptop and tablet

  • Strong performance

  • Responsive keyboard with number pad

What We Don't Like
  • On the bulky side as a tablet

  • Doesn’t match gaming laptops of similar size

If the idea of a large touchscreen tablet is as appealing to you as a big-screen laptop, the Dell Inspiron 17 7000 2-in-1 convertible is well worth a look. In standard laptop mode, you benefit from its comfortable keyboard, complete with a full number pad. Then you can fold it over on its hinge to tablet mode and hold it in your hands around the home or office.

The 17-inch screen may feel a bit bulky compared to smaller dedicated tablets, but you get a luxurious amount of screen real estate to work with. Like most of the best 2-in-1 laptop tablets, you can also flip it to stand mode to watch videos with the keyboard out of the way, or prop it up in tent mode when surface space is limited, like when you’re looking at a recipe in the kitchen.

One of the best features of the 7000 is how customizable it is. The latest model can be equipped with an 11th-generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 processor and 16GB RAM, providing a snappy balance of performance and battery life. You can also opt for a dedicated graphics card to allow for respectable gaming performance, or trim back some features if you want a productivity machine but don't want to spend a lot.

Size: 10.49 x 14.95 x 0.76 inches | Screen resolution: 2560 x 1600 | Processor: Intel Core i7-1165G7 | RAM: 16GB | GPU: Nvidia GeForce MX350 | Storage: 512GB SSD

Best Splurge: Dell Alienware X17 Gaming Laptop

Dell Alienware X17 Gaming Laptop
What We Like
  • Excessively powerful

  • Remarkably thin and light considering how powerful it is.

  • High resolution display with 120Hz refresh rate

  • Mechanical keyboard

What we don't like
  • Extremely expensive

Why buy a souped-up desktop PC when you could buy a fully loaded Alienware X17? While most so-called “desktop replacement” laptops don’t quite live up to that moniker, it’s hard to argue against the accuracy of the phrase when applied to the Alienware X17.

At its maximum configuration, you’re getting not only a Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080, you’re also getting all the hardware that will allow you take full advantage of the RTX 3080. The Intel Core i9-11980HK will make mincemeat out of any game or high powered software you care to throw at it. The 4TB of high speed solid state storage means you can download all the games you want, and 64GB of RAM ensures you’ll never need to slow down. 

A high tech cooling system enables this high end hardware to run at reasonable temps inside of the remarkably thin chassis. You also get a 4k 120hz display that makes no compromises between accuracy and performance, and even a mechanical keyboard for the ideal gaming and productivity experience. If you can afford the sky high price tag, the Alienware X17 is a beastly, no compromises behemoth of a laptop.

Size: 0.84 x 15.7 x 11.8 inches | Screen resolution: 3840x2160 | Processor: Intel Core i9 11980HK | RAM: 64GB | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 | Storage: 4TB SSD

Best Value: Asus TUF Gaming f17

Asus TUF Gaming F17
What we like
  • Powerful for the price

  • Remarkably durable

  • Capable of moderate gaming and graphics intensive productivity

What we don't like
  • Only includes 8GB of RAM

You don’t have to spend over a thousand dollars to get a powerful laptop capable of moderately intensive gaming or video editing. The ASUS TUF Gaming F17 gaming laptop comes in well under a grand and offers a ton of bang for your buck.

Under the hood you’ll find a 10th gen Intel core i5 and a Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650 Ti. That’s enough to run most modern games at moderate or even high settings, and get some graphically demanding work done. It even features 512GB of solid state storage to reduce loading times. The screen is only 1920 x 1080 pixels, but that’s preferable for purposes of smooth performance, given the hardware powering it. The one big downside is that you only get 8GB of RAM, which is only just barely adequate.

Still, despite this downside, the TUF F17 is an impressive machine, given its relatively low price point. To sweeten the deal, ASUS has built the laptop to be extra durable and even meet MIL-STD-810H military standards. It’s hard to beat the TUF F17 for value for money.

Size: 15.7 x 10.6 x 0.9 inches | Screen resolution: 1920 x 1080 | Processor: Intel Core i5-10300H | RAM: 8GB | GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti | Storage: 512GB SSD

Best Budget: Acer Chromebook 317

Acer Chromebook 317
What we like
  • 10 hour battery life

  • Great for basic productivity

  • Full HD touchscreen

What we don't like
  • Limitations of ChromeOS

If you're on a tight budget but need a big screen laptop, a device running ChromeOS can save you a few bucks. Keep in mind, though, such laptops are suitable only for basic productivity and media consumption, not more demanding tasks. The Acer Chromebook 317 is an excellent option for those who need to get work done but who don't necessarily need to do heavy duty creative tasks or gaming.

ChromeOS allows the Chromebook 317 to deliver snappy performance for things like web browsing and document editing on a low power Intel Pentium Silver N6000 processor and 8GB of RAM. The 17-inch 1920 x 1080 display strikes a good balance between resolution and performance. It only has 64GB of storage, but that's plenty for a ChromeOS machine. The Acer Chromebook 317 is no racehorse, but it will get your work done.

Size: 15.8 x 10.52 x 0.89 inches | Screen resolution: 1920 x 1080 | Processor: Intel Pentium Silver N6000 | RAM: 8GB | GPU: Integrated | Storage: 64GB SSD

Final Verdict

The Dell XPS 17 (view at Amazon) easily wins the top spot here, and is certainly the best overall 17-inch laptop currently available. Dell's XPS line is unparalleled among laptops for its combination of top-tier build quality, powerful components, and relatively reasonable price tag. However, if you're on a tight budget, the ASUS TUF Gaming F17 (view at Amazon) is fairly powerful and won't break the bank.

About Our Trusted Experts

Andy Zahn has written about computers and other tech for Lifewire, The Balance, and Investopedia, among other publications. He has reviewed numerous laptops and PCs, and has been building gaming PCs of his own since 2013.

Jonno Hill has a background in design and video production, but his love of tech dates back to middle school when he built his first computer. He has tested a wide array of laptops, desktops, tablets, and other products for Lifewire.

FAQ
  • Why are laptop webcams almost always terrible?

    Even in the most expensive laptops, the one thing that always disappoints is the webcam. Even though our smartphones are equipped with great cameras, most laptop cameras are barely even useable. The truth is that this probably boils down to cost cutting by manufacturers because this is one component people don't tend to think about much when buying a laptop.

  • Do you need a dedicated graphics card?

    If you're doing any kind of gaming or graphically intensive productivity tasks, a dedicated GPU from AMD or Nvidia is essential. However, if you're just doing basic word processing, web browsing, media consumption, and other things that don't use much graphical power, you may be able to do without one.

  • How much RAM do you need?

    8GB of RAM is the absolute minimum you should look for in a 17-inch laptop, or indeed most computers. Anything less and you you may struggle even with web browsing if you open too many chrome tabs at once. 16GB is ideal for gaming and productivity, and if you're doing a lot of video editing, excessive multi-tasking, or cutting edge gaming, 32GB will be helpful. 64GB is generally overkill, though some really high end graphic design tasks will benefit from it.

HP Envy 17t

Lifewire / Jonno Hill

What to Look For in a 17-Inch Laptop

Operating System

The choice between Apple, PC, and even Linux is not as cut and dried as it once was. All three operating systems are perfect valid choices, with each having its own areas of specialization. Apple offers a more slick and catered user experience, with some really handy exclusive apps. Windows is more versatile, and particularly well suited for gaming. Linux is more niche, and not found pre-installed in many laptops, but can be installed later if you want a more customizable experience not tied to a major corporation.

Processor

If you need a PC that can handle heavy-duty work, pay close attention to its processor, or CPU. The battle between the manufacturers AMD and Intel gets fiercer every day, but AMD’s CPUs tend to be a bit cheaper and in some cases a bit faster. A good indicator of processor performance is where it fits into the manufacturers lineup. For example, Intel processers start with Core i3 at the low end, and Core i9 at the high end. Similar, AMD has the Ryzen 3 at the low end, and the Ryzen 9 at the high end.

"Don’t skimp on the CPU (processor) and ensure that your new laptop comes with an SSD for improved performance. Typically, the better the CPU you can buy, the longer your laptop will last." — Charlie Griffiths, Head of IT at AAG IT Services

The generation of the processor is also important, with intel's latest chips being their 11th generation, and the latest AMD processors being labeled as the 5000 series. Both manufacturers have processors outside of their primary consumer lineup for both extremely low power laptops and professional workstations.

LG Gram 17

Lifewire / Jonno Hill

Display

On a 17-inch laptop or bigger, displays can be truly dazzling, with wide-viewing angles and brilliant backlit colors. Depending on your preference, there are touch and non-touch options. Resolution can vary, with the most impressive screens measuring around 3840 x 2160 pixels. Most screens offer refresh rates of at least 60Hz, but for smoother navigation and gaming performance there are laptops offering as much as 360hz refresh rates.

"Laptops with 17-inch screens are great if you're editing a lot of videos or performing intricate illustrations as a graphic designer. That being said, a 17-inch laptop is really only good for specific uses, and can be overkill in most cases. Also, they're more of a pain to haul around." — Jeremy Bongiorno, Founder of Studio Frequencies

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