The Microsoft Surface Book, with an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB solid-state drive, is the best laptop you can buy between $1500 and $2000.

Best overall

Microsoft Surface Book

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When you spend this much on a laptop, you expect it to do many things. The Microsoft Surface Book has performance hardware that matches many desktop machines, and the 13.5-inch touch display is a pleasure to use with the Surface Pen. Use the Surface Book as a tablet for drawing or watching movies, and attach it to the keyboard and touchpad when you need to get down to business. Intel Core i5 configurations come in under $2000.

Bottom line: If you want the best laptop between $1500 and $2000, go with the 2-in-1 Microsoft Surface Book.

One more thing: Need a bit more power? Check out the Surface Book with Performance Base.

Why the Microsoft Surface Book is the best laptop you can buy between $1500 and $2000

Desktop performance from a 2-in-1 laptop that weighs only 3.34 pounds.

The 6th-generation Intel Core i5 processor configurations of the Surface Book are available for under $2000, and offer amazing performance and quality. Backing up the processor is 8GB of RAM — you'll have no problem getting through a heavy daily workload. The battery life, up to about 10 hours on a single charge, gives you peace of mind when working in a remote area.

The first thing you'll notice about the Surface Book is the display. It has a unique 3:2 ratio which makes the display taller than other screens; perfect for multitasking. The 3000x2000 resolution pops out at you thanks to high contrast and deep colors, making it an ideal tool for multimedia editing and drawing with the Surface Pen.

Remove the tablet from the keyboard and touchpad for true tablet usage, or stick it back onto the keyboard backwards to lay nearly flat. Using the keyboard is comfortable, and the touchpad is one of the best around.

Laptops take a beating during their lifetime. Microsoft designed the Surface Book's magnesium alloy chassis to withstand a beating without showing a scratch, which is what you expect from a premium device like this.

Best gaming

Razer Blade

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The Razer Blade comes in well under an inch thick, but has a full NVIDIA GTX 1060 graphics card with 6GB of GDDR5 VRAM — this laptop is a beast. Along with the GPU, you get a 6th-generation Intel Core i7 processor with a clock speed up to 3.5GHz and 16GB of DDR4 RAM. You'll have no problems playing all current games — the 512GB solid-state drive will hold plenty — and they'll look great on the 14-inch, 1080p display. Grab a Razer Blade for about $2000.

Bottom line: Go with the Razer Blade with its NVIDIA GTX 1060 graphics card for the best gaming laptop between $1500 and $2000.

One more thing: This laptop boasts enough power for virtual reality headsets like the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift.

Best business

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga

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The configuration of the ThinkPad X1 Yoga coming in between $1500 and $2000 is a powerhouse. Inside the durable chassis is an Intel Core i7-6600U processor with a clock speed up to 3.40GHz, 16GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 512GB SATA solid-state drive. The convertible design allows you to use stand, tablet, tent, and notebook modes depending on the task at hand, and the 14-inch, 1440p touch display is great in any mode. The battery will realistically last up to about nine hours for when you're on the move, and LTE-A connectivity ensures you don't lose touch with what's going on. Expect to pay about $1750 for this configuration.

Bottom line: The most versatile business laptop you can get between $1500 and $2000 is the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga.

One more thing: If you prefer a laptop without a convertible design, check out the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon.

Best photography

Dell XPS 15

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The 15.6-inch touch display on the XPS 15 has a 4K resolution, which is exactly what photographers today want. Powering the display is an NVIDIA GTX 960M graphics card with 2GB of GDDR5 VRAM that can be used for some light gaming when the day's work is done. A 6th-generation Intel Core i7 processor and 16GB of DDR4 RAM keep things running smoothly even under a decent workload, and up to a 1TB PCIe solid-state drive boots Windows 10 in seconds and offers plenty of storage for media files. This configuration comes in at about $1850.

Bottom line: For a great laptop with a 4K touch display, check out the Dell XPS 15.

One more thing: An SD card reader, two USB 3.0 ports, one HDMI port, and one USB Type-C port give you plenty of options for connecting your external devices.

Conclusion

Looking for a gaming laptop between $1500 and $2000? The Razer Blade with a GTX 1060 GPU is your best bet. If you're in search of a great business partner, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga should be your first choice, and the best laptop with a 4K display is the Dell XPS 15. For the overall best laptop between $1500 and $2000, you can't go with anything other than the Microsoft Surface Book.

Best overall

Microsoft Surface Book

See at Microsoft

When you spend this much on a laptop, you expect it to do many things. The Microsoft Surface Book has performance hardware that matches many desktop machines, and the 13.5-inch touch display is a pleasure to use with the Surface Pen. Use the Surface Book as a tablet for drawing or watching movies, and attach it to the keyboard and touchpad when you need to get down to business. Intel Core i5 configurations come in under $2000.

Bottom line: If you want the best laptop between $1500 and $2000, go with the 2-in-1 Microsoft Surface Book.

One more thing: Need a bit more power? Check out the Surface Book with Performance Base.