Best Laptops for Hacking

15 BEST Laptops for Hackers in 2024 (Ethical Hacking)

Published on: February 23, 2024
Last Updated: February 23, 2024

15 BEST Laptops for Hackers in 2024 (Ethical Hacking)

Published on: February 23, 2024
Last Updated: February 23, 2024

The quest for the best hacking laptop is more relevant than ever.

Hackers, both white-hat and black-hat, require machines that are not just powerful but also versatile, secure, and capable of running complex simulations and cracking algorithms without breaking a sweat.

The best laptops for hacking and coding are a blend of speed, performance, and endurance, capable of keeping pace with the rapid advancements in technology and cybersecurity threats.

15 Best Laptops for Hacking & Coding Ethically in 2024

1. Apple MacBook Air M2: The All-Rounder Performer

Apple MacBook Air M2
  • CPU: Apple M2 8-core
  • RAM: 8GB, 16GB, 24GB
  • GPU: Apple M2 8-core, 10-core
  • Screen: 13.3-inch Retina
  • Storage: 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 11.97 x 8.46 x 0.44 inches

The MacBook Air M2 emerges as a formidable contender in the hacking arena, thanks to its M2 chip that delivers a balance of efficiency and power.

Its lightweight and thin design make it an excellent portable option for ethical hackers and security professionals who are always on the move.

The high-resolution Retina display is not just a treat for the eyes but also provides ample real estate for multiple terminal windows, which is essential for monitoring network traffic or coding.

The long battery life ensures that you can work on security projects without being tethered to a power outlet, and the upgraded webcam and speakers are a boon for those late-night collaboration sessions with fellow techies.

Despite its svelte form factor, the MacBook Air M2 doesn’t compromise on performance.

The 8-core CPU can handle demanding tasks such as virtual machine operations and encryption cracking, while the up to 24GB RAM ensures smooth multitasking.

The Force Touch trackpad and the responsive keyboard enhance the user experience, making it easier to write scripts or navigate complex tools.

However, it’s worth noting that the MacBook Air M2 supports only one external monitor, which could be a limitation for those who prefer a multi-display setup for their hacking endeavors.

2. Dell XPS 13 (9315): The Compact Powerhouse

Dell XPS 13 9315
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-1230U, Core i7-1250U
  • RAM: 8GB, 16GB, 32GB
  • GPU: Intel Xe Graphics
  • Screen: 13.4-inch 1920 x 1200 IPS
  • Storage: 256GB, 1TB, 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 11.63 x 7.85 x 0.55 inches

The Dell XPS 13 stands out as a top choice for tech enthusiasts and hackers looking for a balance between portability and performance.

Its compact design and aggressive pricing make it an attractive option for those who need a reliable machine without breaking the bank.

The bright and high-quality display is perfect for analyzing code or examining detailed logs, and the comfortable keyboard allows for extended coding sessions without fatigue.

The absence of a headphone jack is a minor inconvenience, but the overall value proposition is strong, especially considering the long battery life and premium build quality.

Under the hood, the Dell XPS 13 packs enough punch to run multiple virtual environments, a must-have for any hacker’s toolkit.

The Intel Xe Graphics provide sufficient power for basic graphical tasks, and the range of SSD options ensures that you can store all your tools and data without worry.

The laptop’s performance may not be the most robust compared to some other models, but it’s more than adequate for web-based research, penetration testing, and security analysis.

The XPS 13’s design and features, such as the killer IPS screen and great touchpad, make it a joy to use for both work and play.

3. Razer Blade 14: The Gaming Workstation

Razer Blade 14
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX
  • RAM: 16GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080
  • Screen: 14-inch QHD
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 12.59 x 8.66 x 0.66 inches

The Razer Blade 14 is not just a gaming laptop; it’s a powerhouse suitable for the most demanding hacking tasks.

With its AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 graphics, it can handle complex simulations and brute-force attacks with ease.

The QHD screen offers a perfect balance between resolution and size, providing clarity for detailed work while remaining portable.

The solid build quality and premium materials make it a durable choice for hackers who need a laptop that can withstand the rigors of travel and constant use.

For hackers and tech enthusiasts who also enjoy gaming, the Razer Blade 14 offers the best of both worlds.

Its gaming pedigree means it’s built to handle heat and performance stress, translating well into hacking scenarios where similar demands are placed on the machine.

The 16GB of RAM and 1TB SSD provide ample space for all your hacking tools, virtual machines, and data sets.

While the battery life may not be as long as some ultrabooks, it’s a trade-off for the sheer performance on offer.

The Razer Blade 14 is a versatile laptop that excels in both hacking and gaming, making it a favorite among techies who value power and portability.

4. Asus ZenBook 14 OLED: The Affordable Marvel

Asus ZenBook 14 OLED
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800H
  • RAM: 16GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce MX450
  • Screen: 14-inch OLED FHD
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 12.56 x 8.27 x 0.63 inches

The Asus ZenBook 14 OLED is a testament to the fact that you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a high-quality hacking laptop.

The AMD Ryzen 7 5800H processor provides excellent performance for security testing and data analysis, while the OLED display ensures that every detail is crisp and clear.

The 16GB of RAM is sufficient for running multiple applications simultaneously, and the 1TB SSD means you’ll never be short on storage for your various hacking tools and projects.

What makes the ZenBook 14 OLED particularly appealing to hackers is its combination of affordability and high-end features.

The OLED screen is not just for entertainment; its true-to-life colors and deep blacks make it easier to work for long hours without eye strain.

The NVIDIA GeForce MX450 graphics card is a nice addition that can support light graphical tasks, which can be beneficial for those who work with visual data or need to run GPU-accelerated applications.

The laptop’s slim profile and light weight make it highly portable, while the robust build quality ensures it can handle the occasional bump or drop.

For hackers on a budget, the ZenBook 14 OLED is a smart choice that doesn’t skimp on performance or features.

5. Lenovo ThinkPad Z13: The Modern Workhorse

Lenovo ThinkPad Z13
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen PRO 6850U
  • RAM: 16GB, 32GB
  • GPU: Integrated AMD Radeon Graphics
  • Screen: 13.3-inch FHD
  • Storage: 512GB, 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 11.6 x 8.17 x 0.55 inches

The Lenovo ThinkPad Z13 is a modern gem that combines performance, design, and durability, making it an ideal laptop for hacking and tech-related tasks.

The AMD Ryzen PRO 6850U processor is designed for business and security applications, offering robust performance for running virtual machines, compiling code, and processing large datasets.

The integrated AMD Radeon Graphics are more than capable of handling everyday tasks, and the FHD screen provides a clear and bright workspace for all types of hacking activities.

ThinkPads are renowned for their keyboard quality, and the Z13 is no exception, offering a comfortable and responsive typing experience that’s essential for coding and scripting.

The 16GB or 32GB RAM options allow for excellent multitasking capabilities, and the SSD storage options ensure quick access to all your tools and files.

The ThinkPad Z13 also boasts an impressive array of security features, including a fingerprint reader and a webcam with privacy shutter, which are important for hackers concerned with physical security and privacy.

The laptop’s sleek design and sturdy build quality are in line with the ThinkPad legacy, making it a reliable and stylish tool for any hacker or techie.

6. HP Spectre x360 14: The Versatile Innovator

HP Spectre x360 14
  • CPU: 13th Gen Intel Core i5/i7
  • RAM: Up to 16GB
  • GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • Screen: 13.5-inch (3000 x 2000) OLED touch
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 11.75 x 8.67 x 0.67 inches

The HP Spectre x360 14 is a marvel of versatility, boasting a 2-in-1 design that’s ideal for hackers who appreciate flexibility in their workflow.

The 13th Gen Intel Core processors provide the necessary muscle for intensive tasks, while the Iris Xe Graphics ensure smooth visuals.

The OLED touch display is not only stunning for media consumption but also offers the precision needed for detailed work such as code review and data analysis.

The Spectre x360’s long battery life is a significant advantage for those marathon hacking sessions away from an outlet.

With up to 16GB RAM, multitasking is a breeze, allowing for seamless switching between various hacking tools and virtual machines.

The generous storage options mean that all necessary data and software can be kept on hand.

The HP Spectre x360 14 is a hacker’s delight, combining form, function, and security in a sleek package.

7. Lenovo Legion 5 Pro: The Gamer’s Workstation

Lenovo Legion 5 Pro
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800H
  • RAM: Up to 32GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070
  • Screen: 16-inch QHD (2560 x 1600)
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 14.02 x 10.41 x 1.07 inches

Lenovo’s Legion 5 Pro is a powerhouse, tailored for the hacker who also has a passion for gaming.

The AMD Ryzen 7 CPU and NVIDIA RTX GPU make it a formidable tool for running resource-intensive hacking simulations and cracking algorithms.

The 16-inch QHD display is a vast canvas for multitasking, allowing hackers to keep an eye on multiple processes at once.

The Legion 5 Pro’s robust build can withstand the rigors of both hacking and gaming, making it a reliable choice for tech enthusiasts.

With up to 32GB RAM, this laptop can smoothly run multiple virtual environments, a staple in any hacker’s arsenal.

The ample storage options are perfect for maintaining a vast library of hacking tools and resources.

The Lenovo Legion 5 Pro stands at the intersection of gaming performance and hacking prowess.

8. ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14: The Portable Powerhouse

ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HS
  • RAM: Up to 32GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
  • Screen: 14-inch Full HD/1440p
  • Storage: Up to 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 12.76 x 8.74 x 0.70 inches

The ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 is a testament to the fact that true power can come in portable packages.

This laptop is a favorite among hackers for its incredible performance-to-size ratio, with the Ryzen 9 and RTX 3060 combo providing ample power for even the most demanding tasks.

The 14-inch display, available in Full HD or 1440p, offers clarity and detail necessary for intricate hacking activities, while the compact size means you can set up your hacking station anywhere.

The G14’s battery life is impressive for a gaming laptop, which translates well for long, uninterrupted hacking sessions.

With up to 32GB RAM, the Zephyrus G14 can handle several virtual machines and complex applications simultaneously.

The 1TB SSD ensures that storage will never be a bottleneck in your operations.

For hackers who need to balance mobility with performance, the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 is an unmatched ally.

9. Microsoft Surface Laptop 4: The Sleek Performer

Microsoft Surface Laptop 4
  • CPU: 11th Gen Intel Core i7
  • RAM: Up to 32GB
  • GPU: AMD Radeon or Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • Screen: 13.5-inch or 15-inch PixelSense
  • Storage: Up to 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 12.1 x 8.8 x 0.57 inches (13.5-inch model)

The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 is a sleek performer that caters to hackers who value a combination of elegance and capability.

The choice between Intel processors offers flexibility depending on your preferred tech ecosystem.

The PixelSense display is a joy to work with, whether you’re writing code or conducting forensic analysis, with touch capabilities adding an extra layer of interactivity.

The Surface Laptop 4’s battery life is commendable, allowing for extended periods of work without the need for a power source.

The RAM options are plentiful, facilitating efficient multitasking across various hacking applications and tools.

The storage is fast and spacious, with the 1TB SSD option ensuring quick access to all your hacking essentials.

The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 is a refined tool for the sophisticated hacker.

10. Dell XPS 15: The Windows Flagship

Dell XPS 15
  • CPU: Up to 12th Gen Intel Core i7
  • RAM: Up to 64GB
  • GPU: Up to NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti
  • Screen: 15.6-inch 4K UHD
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 13.57 x 9.06 x 0.71 inches

Dell’s XPS 15 is the quintessential Windows laptop for hackers who demand top-tier performance and display quality.

The potential for an Intel Core i7 processor and 64GB of RAM means this laptop can tackle any hacking task with ease.

The 4K UHD screen is not only stunning for media but also provides the sharpness needed for detailed work, such as analyzing high-resolution network maps.

The XPS 15’s build quality is robust, designed to endure the daily grind of a hacker’s lifestyle.

With a vast array of RAM and storage configurations, the XPS 15 can be tailored to fit any hacker’s needs, from running complex simulations to storing large databases.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti ensures that even the most graphically intensive tasks run smoothly.

For the hacker who requires a reliable and powerful Windows machine, the Dell XPS 15 is the go-to choice.

11. Microsoft Surface Pro 9: The Versatile Touchscreen

Microsoft Surface Pro 9
  • CPU: Intel Core i5/i7 12th Gen
  • RAM: Up to 32GB
  • GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • Screen: 13-inch PixelSense Flow
  • Storage: Up to 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: Not specified

The Microsoft Surface Pro 9 stands out with its versatile form factor, doubling as a tablet and a laptop.

This flexibility is a boon for hackers who value portability and the ability to set up a workspace anywhere.

The 12th Gen Intel processors provide ample power for running multiple virtual environments, a common requirement in ethical hacking.

The PixelSense Flow display with touch capability adds an interactive dimension to hacking tasks, allowing for quick navigation through tools and applications.

The Surface Pro 9, with its detachable keyboard and stylus support, is ideal for those who sketch out their ideas before diving into the digital deep.

12. Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3: The Versatile ChromeOS Contender

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3 1
  • CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2
  • RAM: Up to 8GB
  • GPU: Integrated Qualcomm Adreno
  • Screen: 11-inch 2K IPS touch
  • Storage: Up to 128GB eMMC
  • Dimensions: 10.16 x 6.48 x 0.31 inches

The Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3 is a standout ChromeOS device that offers a unique blend of versatility and portability, making it a suitable option for hacking-related tasks, especially when considering cloud-based tools and remote access scenarios.

Its Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 processor provides enough power for a smooth ChromeOS experience, and the integrated Qualcomm Adreno graphics handle the OS’s graphical demands with ease.

The 11-inch 2K IPS touch display is sharp and responsive, which is beneficial for tasks that require precision, such as navigating through complex network diagrams or editing code.

The touch functionality adds an extra layer of convenience, allowing for quick interactions without the need for a mouse.

With up to 8GB of RAM, the Chromebook Duet 3 can handle multiple tabs and applications without significant slowdown, which is crucial when researching vulnerabilities or running web-based hacking tools.

The storage is limited to 128GB eMMC, which is less than what you’d find on more traditional laptops, but it’s sufficient for a ChromeOS device where cloud storage is often utilized.

The ultra-portable design, with its detachable keyboard, allows the Duet 3 to be used as both a laptop and a tablet, providing flexibility in how and where you work.

This can be particularly useful for hackers who need to quickly switch between typing out commands and presenting findings to a team or client.

13. HP Pavilion Aero 13: The Lightweight Powerhouse

HP Pavilion Aero 13
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
  • RAM: Up to 16GB
  • GPU: Integrated AMD Radeon Graphics
  • Screen: 13.3-inch WQXGA (2560 x 1600)
  • Storage: Up to 1TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 11.72 x 8.23 x 0.67 inches

The HP Pavilion Aero 13 stands out as a lightweight yet powerful option for hacking professionals.

Its AMD Ryzen 7 5800U processor provides excellent performance for running multiple virtual machines, a common practice in penetration testing and cybersecurity tasks.

The integrated AMD Radeon Graphics, while not designed for heavy graphical tasks, are more than adequate for the majority of hacking tools and applications.

The Pavilion Aero 13’s WQXGA display offers a crisp and clear view, which is essential when analyzing data or writing code.

The laptop’s light weight and compact dimensions make it an ideal companion for security professionals who need to be mobile without sacrificing performance.

In terms of connectivity, the Aero 13 includes Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2, ensuring fast and reliable wireless connections, which are crucial when performing network security assessments.

The laptop also features a full-size HDMI port, USB-C, and USB-A ports, providing ample connectivity options for various hacking peripherals.

The keyboard is comfortable and responsive, which is beneficial for long coding sessions.

The up to 16GB of RAM and 1TB SSD storage allow for efficient multitasking and quick access to tools and files, which is vital in time-sensitive hacking scenarios.

14. LG Gram 17 (2023): The Ultra-Lightweight Innovator

LG Gram 17
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-1260P
  • RAM: Up to 32GB
  • GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • Screen: 17-inch WQXGA (2560 x 1600)
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 15.0 x 10.3 x 0.7 inches

The LG Gram 17 (2023) is an impressive feat of engineering, boasting a large 17-inch screen while maintaining an ultra-lightweight profile.

This makes it an excellent choice for hackers who need a spacious display for complex tasks but also value portability.

The Intel Core i7-1260P processor ensures that the laptop can handle demanding applications used in cybersecurity and ethical hacking.

Despite its large screen, the LG Gram 17 does not compromise on battery life, offering long hours of use on a single charge, which is a significant advantage for professionals who need to work uninterrupted for extended periods.

The Intel Iris Xe Graphics provide sufficient power for most hacking tasks, although they may not be suitable for GPU-intensive operations like brute-force attacks.

The laptop’s keyboard is spacious and comfortable, with a numeric keypad that can be useful for quick data entry or when using shortcut keys in various hacking tools.

The touchpad is also generously sized, offering precise control, which is particularly useful when navigating through complex software interfaces.

With up to 32GB of RAM and 2TB of SSD storage, the LG Gram 17 can effortlessly run multiple virtual environments, which are often required for simulating network attacks and defenses.

Additionally, the array of ports, including Thunderbolt 4, HDMI, and USB-A, allows for the connection of a wide range of devices, from network analyzers to external storage.

15. Acer Swift X 14: The Compact Performer

Acer Swift X 14
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
  • RAM: Up to 16GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 Ti
  • Screen: 14-inch FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD
  • Dimensions: 12.71 x 8.35 x 0.7 inches

The Acer Swift X 14 is a compact laptop that packs a punch with its AMD Ryzen 7 5800U processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU.

This combination of CPU and GPU makes it a powerful tool for hacking, capable of handling complex tasks such as running advanced penetration testing software and performing cryptographic calculations.

The 14-inch FHD display provides a clear and sharp image, which is essential for detailed work such as code analysis and network mapping.

The Swift X 14’s design is sleek and modern, with a metal chassis that gives it a premium feel while also being sturdy enough to handle the rigors of travel.

One of the standout features of the Acer Swift X 14 is its GPU.

The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 Ti is a mid-range graphics card that offers excellent performance for tasks that require graphical processing power, such as password cracking and running simulations.

This makes the Swift X 14 a versatile laptop that can cater to the needs of both, gamers, as well as ethical hackers.

FAQs

What Makes a Laptop Suitable for Hacking?

Powerful CPU and GPU: For running demanding applications and tasks.
Ample RAM and Storage: To handle multiple operations and large datasets.
Robust Build Quality: To withstand the rigors of travel and constant use.
Long Battery Life: To maintain productivity during extended hacking sessions.
Good Connectivity Options: For attaching necessary peripherals and devices.

How Important Is Portability in A Hacking Laptop?

Portability is crucial for ethical hackers and security professionals who often need to work in different environments or travel.

A lightweight and compact laptop ensures that you can carry your essential tools with you without being weighed down.

Can ChromeOS Laptops Be Used for Hacking?

ChromeOS laptops, like the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3, can be used for hacking, especially when utilizing cloud-based tools, remote access, and when the hacking tasks are more about analysis and less about raw computing power.

Is a High-Resolution Screen Necessary for Hacking?

While not essential, a high-resolution screen can improve the experience by providing clearer text and more screen real estate, which is useful for analyzing data and multitasking.

What Should I Look for In Terms of Connectivity in A Hacking Laptop?

Look for a laptop with a variety of ports, including USB-A, USB-C, HDMI, and Ethernet, to ensure compatibility with a wide range of devices and tools used in hacking.

Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth are also important for wireless connectivity.

Conclusion

In the world of hacking, having the right laptop can make all the difference.

Whether you’re conducting penetration tests, analyzing networks, or cracking passwords, the performance, portability, and battery life of your machine are critical.

From the powerhouse performance of the Dell XPS 15 and the Apple MacBook Air to the ultra-portable Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3, each of these laptops brings something unique to the table.

The key is to choose one that aligns with your specific needs and the nature of your hacking activities.

With the best laptop for hacking, hackers and tech enthusiasts can push the boundaries of what’s possible, ensuring they’re always one step ahead in the ever-evolving world of cybersecurity.

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Written by Thomas McGovern

Thomas McGovern is a highly experienced blockchain and cryptography expert with over a decade of experience in the field. He has worked on numerous projects involving blockchain technology, including the development of decentralized applications and the implementation of secure cryptographic protocols. McGovern’s expertise in this area is complemented by his academic background; he holds a master’s degree in Mathematics, with a focus on cryptography and number theory.