Best Ultrabooks to buy in 2015

Need to upgrade your laptop? We take a look at the best Ultrabooks on the market

Ultrabooks are thin, lightweight machines aiming to offer high-end performance, but they come at a premium.

We take a look at the 5 best Ultrabooks you can buy in 2015.

Apple MacBook Retina 12in

Apple MacBook Retina 12in review

Apple's latest MacBook slims down and ditches more than a few ports, relying on a sole USB-C port for everything barring a headphone jack. 

With ports out of the way the ultra-portable has become a lot lighter and thinner. While the 12-ince screen may not be big enough for some, the resolution is a stunning 2304x1440. The extra pixels render text very sharply.

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Its sturdiness, battery life, screen quality and touchpad are rivalled only by Apple's other laptops.

Price: 874 ex VAT

Dell XPS 13

Thelatest XPS 13 has managed to beat Apple in a few areas to make this one of the most impressive high-end laptops we've seen in months.

It's powerful, too, meaning you'll never be short on processing performance when you need it.

If you're looking for a fast, light and powerful laptop for business and pleasure, there are very few laptops more suitable than the Dell XPS 13.

Price: From 1099

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2014)

ThinkPads have long been a favourite among business users because they have the best keyboards and pointing sticks of any laptop.

The 2014 X1 Carbon retains all the features you'd expect from a top business machine, including excellent build quality, an anti-reflective screen and plenty of security options.

Lenovo has made adjustments to the keyboard. The Home, End and Delete buttons have been moved from the main keyboard space to make way for a context-sensitive OLED strip. The Caps Lock button has been usurped by the Home/End combo, and the delete button now shares its spot with backspace. Users making the step-up from older ThinkPads will need time to adjust.

Price: From 1,133 inc VAT (1,906 top spec)

Dell Latitude E7440

The Latitude may not be the thinnest or lightest Ultrabook, but it offers excellent all-round performance.

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Highlights include the bright, high-contrast screen, power processor and superb build quality.

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The battery life is decent for a Windows machine with a Core i7 processor. We measured 6 hours and 43 minutes of video playback with the screen set to 75 per cent. 

Price: From 865 inc VAT (1,350 top spec)

Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro

The oldest device here, but the Yoga 2 Pro is a rare breed in that it's just as good if not better than its successor. 

The Pro 2 packs a superb 13.1in display (3,200 x 1,800) and has a flexible design allowing it to twist into different positions.

Battery life is decent, with the device clocking over 7 hours in our video tests. The only issue is the limited number of connections, which is a common problem across Ultrabooks. 

Price: From 600 inc VAT (1,300 top-spec)

Microsoft Surface 3

Technically a tablet hybrid, but for most people, the keyboard will almost certainly be used constantly wiht this device.

This makes the Surface 3 a lightweight ultraportable machine that's good enough for day-to-day usage. Differing from the Surface and Surface 2, Surface 3 has ditched ARM in favour of Intel so it can run any Windows application. 

With a starting price of 419, this can be looked upon as a budget ultraportable that gives good value for money. Although you you will need to buy the option-yet-essential keyboard base to get the maximum out of the machine.

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Price: From 419.00

Google Chromebook Pixel

While not technically an Ultrabook, the Google Chromebook Pixel offers similar performance in terms of slimness and battery life.

This power-sipping processor helped the Pixel achieve a lengthy battery life of 11 hours and 26 minutes when connected to an 802.11n WiFi network.

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The Core i5 5200U processor and 8GB of memory are more than quick enough for running webapps - the Core i7 5500U and 16GB of RAM in the more expensive version is just overkill. 

Price: 666

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