Best laptops you can buy in South Africa

While publications like The Verge, Engadget, and Cnet maintain rankings of what they consider to be the best laptops in the world, many of the devices they rate are not available in South Africa.

Microsoft’s new Surface Book has not launched locally, for instance, and its Surface Pro tablet PC has never been available in SA.

The Razer Blade is also not available in the country.

However, we looked at the rankings, including those listed above and on, to find the best laptops that are available in South Africa.

Apple MacBook range

Apple MacBook


MacBook Pro Price
MacBook Pro 13″ (2.5GHz) R12,999
MacBook Pro with Retina 13″ 128GB R21,999
MacBook Pro with Retina 13″ 256GB R25,999
MacBook Pro with Retina 13″ 512GB R30,999
MacBook Pro with Retina 15″ 256GB R33,499
MacBook Pro with Retina 15″ 512GB R41,999
MacBook Air Price
MacBook Air 11.6″ 128GB R14,999
MacBook Air 11.6″ 256GB R18,999
MacBook Air 13″ 128GB R16,999
MacBook Air 13″ 256GB R20,499
MacBook Price
MacBook 12″ 256GB R21,999
MacBook 12″ 512GB R27,499

One company whose full range of notebook PCs has consistently been available in South Africa is Apple.

The MacBook Pro and MacBook Air are frequently rated as the top laptops in their respective categories, including best ultrabook or sub-notebook, and best multimedia laptop.

Many publications also rate these as the best laptops overall.

Dell XPS 13

Dell XPS 13

Dell XPS 13 Price
Takealot (i5, 8GB, 256GB) – promo R22,499
Takealot (i7, 8GB, 256GB) – promo R27,999
Takealot (touch, i7, 8GB, 256GB) – promo R31,999

The new Dell laptop is rated as one of the top Windows alternatives to Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display.

The Dell XPS 13 features a high-resolution display – which is available in either a normal, or touch-enabled variant.

At the time of publication, Takealot was running a promotion on the Dell XPS 13 with better pricing than any of the retailers we checked.

Lenovo ThinkPad T450s

Lenovo ThinkPad T450s

Lenovo Thinkpad T450s Price
Comx (i5, 4GB, 500GB) R18,452
Comx (i7, 8GB, 256GB) R23,708
Comx (touch, i7, 8GB, 256GB) R27,200
Raru (i5, 4GB, 500GB) R17,802
Wootware (i7, 8GB, 256GB) R24,899

This ThinkPad model is rated as one of the best, if not the best, business laptops – and one of the top non-Mac alternatives to the Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch with Retina.

While the T450s variant which includes an Nvidia 940M graphics card is not readily available in SA, the one with standard Intel HD Graphics 5500 remains a highly-rated workhorse.

Acer Aspire S7

Acer Aspire S7

Price: R22,499 from Takealot (on promotion)

As with the Dell XPS 13, Takealot has a promotion running on the Aspire S7.

Be careful when buying this one, though. Takealot also has a version with 4GB RAM and a 128GB SSD for the same price as one with double the RAM and double the storage.

Asus Zenbook UX305

Asus Zenbook UX305UA

Asus Zenbook UX305UA Price
Comx (i7, 4GB, 128GB) R14,952
Comx (i7, 8GB, 256GB) R20,027
Comx (i7, 8GB, 512GB) R28,365

The Asus Zenbook looks similar to the MacBook Air, and the “UX305UA” models feature the latest Skylake architecture CPUs from Intel.

As with the MacBook Air, components such as RAM are not upgradeable, so you have to think twice before committing to a 4GB model.

Alienware 15

Alienware 15 with graphics amplifier

Alienware 15 Price
DionWired (i7, 16GB, 1TB) R29,500
Makro (i5, 8GB, 1TB) R22,499
Makro (i5, 16GB, 1TB) R29,999
Makro (i7, 16GB, 1TB) R32,999
Raru (i5, 8GB, 1TB) – promo R19,242
Raru (i5, 16GB, 1TB) – promo R26,988

The Alienware 15 is the most highly-rated machine in Dell’s Alienware gaming laptop line.

In addition to featuring an impressive hardware specification sheet, Alienware also offers a Graphics Amplifier for its laptop.

This lets you link the laptop to a discrete AMD or Nvidia graphics card housed in an external enclosure, beefing up the graphical power of the machine.

MSI GT72 Dominator

MSI GT72 Dominator

MSI GT72 Dominator Price
Computers Only (i7 6700, GTX 970 3GB) R33,899
Computers Only (i7 6700, SSD, GTX 970 3GB) R36,399
Computers Only (i7 6820, GTX 970 3GB) R38,999
Computers Only (i7 6820, GTX 980 4GB) R45,399

NotebookCheck rates the MSI GT72 higher than the Alienware 15.

Featuring everything but the kitchen sink, the laptop has a built-in SteelSeries keyboard, a full-HD 17.3″ display, and quick-launch keys and manual switches for a variety of functions.

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Best laptops you can buy in South Africa