Laptops are very convenient and powerful pieces of portable hardware, but not any laptop will fit all needs, and there are several categories of laptop that need be categorized.
Before we begin, let's look at the rating fields. Every laptop is categorized on durability, battery life, portability, performance, and I/O. Each usage category for a laptop puts one or more of these requirements above the others. Keep this in mind when selecting laptops.
Cheap, light, and under-performing, this category of laptop often ranges in price between $200 and $550. Used most often as a schoolwork laptop for little kids, these laptops are often durable because of the cheap and light structure. Do not buy.
These laptops are your average Joes. The laptop you buy when your child needs an upgrade from their netbook. With an average and well-rounded mix of all factors, you really can't go wrong with selecting a consumer laptop for any purpose. A very popular option is the Dell Inspiron 15 5000 lineup, with customizable options and average performance. Prices range from $500 to $1100 for this category.
Dad's laptop that you can't touch! Even though it's the only one that your favorite game will run on without lagging. These laptops are valued for their durability, portability, battery life, and I/O. Because of this emphasis 4 categories out of 5, this laptop tends to be the best option for school kids and college teens, as well as professors, toddlers, and essentially everyone. Because this category of laptop is also meant for businessmen, who want the best, performance on these machines is also excellent. Lenovo Thinkpads are the best options in this category, while Dell Latitudes and HP Probooks lag far behind. Prices range from $950 to $2300.
These laptops often come with graphics cards for light gaming, and are also often substituted for business laptops because of their quality nature. With an emphasis on durability, portability and performance, they can be used as adequate substitutes for business laptops. Well-known lines of this category include the Dell XPS and essentially the whole Macbook lineup. Many "Light gaming laptops" also fall in this catagory. Prices range from $1300 to $2000.
Not a fan favorite, these laptops sacrifice everything in the name of performance. Thick, heavy, power-guzzling monsters, these beasts almost always have i7s and GTX 1060s or above. These laptops are essentially mobile desktops, and are priced as such. The cheapest models start at $700, but the prices quickly skyrocket to $4000 or more.