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Ultrabook reviews, guides and comparisons

A detailed list of fanless laptops and ultrabooks available in 2018

By Andrei Girbea , updated on January 30, 2018

Laptops are getting thinner and lighter with each generation these days. The hardware is getting faster and smaller, to the point where the actual processor, memory and all the other chips only occupy a small fraction of a modern computer, leaving more room for battery cells.

All these advances lead to a new trend in the world of mobile computing: fanless laptops and ultrabooks, or in other words laptops with a passive cooling solution that does not include a spinning fan. You’ll find quite a few models available in stores already and this post lists all of them based on screen size, weight, the hardware inside, and of course, price.

There’s one important reason why you’ll want a fanless laptop: it’s going to be perfectly quiet, especially if the passive cooled hardware is paired with an SSD. There are exceptions, though. Fanless machines, especially among the more affordable options, may come with spinning HDDs‒ but even those can be upgraded in order to deliver what the fanless consumer desires: a quiet everyday experience on a laptop, similar to what has been offered for years by tablets or phones.

You have to understand that a fanless computer is going to be built on a low-power hardware platform and will handle most everyday tasks to a point, but won’t be able to cope with the more demanding ones you might want to perform on a modern laptop (editing videos and photos, running programming software or modern PC games, among others). At least for the time being. We’ll talk a bit more about the platforms available at this very moment towards the end of the post, so you’ll understand exactly what to expect from each one of them.

No fans and no spinning HDDs equals no noise

No fans and no spinning HDDs equals no noise

For now though, these are the available fanless laptops and ultra-portables. Click the links on each product’s name for more details and reviews, as well as the links in the Prices column for the latest offers and discounts on the products you’re interested in.

Full size fanless laptops

This section is reserved for the full-size everyday machines with anything above a 14 inch screen (15 inchers are thus included in here as well). There aren’t many options in this chapter, simply because most fanless laptops are also compact and highly portable, which aren’t exactly words you can put next to these large-footprint devices. I do have a selection of the best 14 and 15 inch ultrabooks you can find right now, in case you’re interested.

Acer Spin 7convertible14.0″ IPS FHD touchKaby Lake Core Y1.2 kg / 2.64 lbs$1199
Acer Chromebook 14clamshell14.0″ IPS FHDCeleron Braswell3.42 lbs / 1.55 kg$299
Acer Chromebook 15clamshell15.6″ IPS FHDCeleron Braswell4.85 lbs / 2.19 kg$299
HP Envy X2 15detachable15.6″ touch IPS FHDSkylake Core M2.45 kg / 5.42 lbs (w/ dock)$749

Fanless Ultrabooks and ultra-portables

This section is reserved for the portables computers with screen sizes between 12 and 13.9 inches diagonal. That includes the popular 12.5 and 13.3 inch categories that offer the ideal match between a decent sized display and keyboard, a fair selection of ports, and the power to handle most usual activities well.

Acer Swift 7clamshell13.3″ IPS FHDKaby Lake Core Y1.1 kg / 2.4 lbs$999
Acer Switch 7 Black Editiondetachable13.5″ IPS touchKaby Lake-R Core U (?)1.13 kg / 2.5 lbs$1699
Acer Aspire Switch 12Sdetachable12.5″ IPS touch FHDSkylake Core M1.5 kg / 3.3 lbs (w/ dock)$1199
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12detachable12.5″ IPS touchSkylake Core U1.3 kg / 2.85 lbs (w/ folio)$599
Apple MacBook 12clamshell12.0″ IPS retinaSkylake Core M0.90 kg / 2.0 lbs$1199
Asus Chromebook 13clamshell13.3″ TN HDCeleron BayTrail1.40 kg / 3.1 lbs$229
Asus Vivobook Flip 14 TP401convertible14.0″ IPS touch FHDKaby Lake Core U1.5 kg / 3.30 lbs$399
Asus Transformer Book Chi T300
detachable12.5″ IPS touch QHDBroadwell Core M1.40 kg / 3.1 lbs (w/dock)$699
Asus Transformer 3 T305CAdetachable12.5″ IPS touchKaby Lake Core M1.14 kg / 2.5 lbs (w/dock)$699
Asus Zenbook UX305clamshell13.3″ IPS FHD and QHD+Skylake Core M1.27 kg / 2.8 lbs$699
Asus Zenbook UX330CAclamshell13.3″ IPS FHD and QHD+Kaby Lake Core M1.2 kg / 2.65 lbs$799
Asus Zenbook Flip UX360CAconvertible13.3″ IPS touch FHD and QHD+Skylake Core M1.3 kg / 2.86 lbs$699
Dell Latitude 12 7000 (7285)detachable12.5″ IPS touch FHD or UHDKaby Lake Core Y1.66 kg / 3.7 lbs (w/ dock)$1199
Dell XPS 12 9250detachable12.5″ IPS touch FHD or UHDSkylake Core M1.27 kg / 2.8 lbs (w/ dock)$999
Dell XPS 13 2-in-1convertible13.3″ IPS FHDKaby Lake Core Y1.24 kg / 2.7 lbs$999
HP EliteBook Folio G1clamshell12.5″ IPS FHD or touch QHDSkylake Core M0.97 kg / 2.13 lbs$1099
HP Spectre X2 12detachable12″ IPS touch FHDKaby Lake Core Y1.22 kg / 2.68 lbs (w/ dock)$899
HP Stream 13clamshell13.3″ TN HDCeleron BayTrail1.54 kg / 3.4 lbs (w/ dock)$249
Lenovo Miix 710tablet12″ IPS FHD+Kaby Lake Core M0.77 kg / 1.7 lbs$749
Lenovo Yoga 900Sconvertible12.5″ IPS FHD+Skylake Core M0.99 kg / 2.2 lbs$1099
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablettablet12.0″ IPS touchKaby Lake Core Y0.77 kg / 1.7 lbs$949
Huawei Matebook Etablet12.0″ IPS FHD+Kaby Lake Core Y0.64 kg / 1.41 lbs$899
Huawei Matebook Xclamshell13.3″ IPS retinaKabyLake Core U1.05 kg / 2.31 lbs$899
Microsoft Surface Pro 4tablet12.3″ IPS FHD+Kaby Lake Core Y0.77 kg / 1.7 lbs$799
Microsoft Surface Pro 5tablet12.3″ IPS FHD+Kaby Lake Core U0.77 kg / 1.7 lbs$1299
Samsung ATIV Book 9 NP930X2clamshell12.2″ IPS touch WQXGABroadwell Core M0.95 kg / 2.1 lbs$1199
Samsung Chromebook 2 13clamshell13.3″ IPS FHDSamsung Exynos 5 Octa1.38 kg / 3.06 lbs$399
Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro Stablet12.1″ IPS FHD+Skylake Core M0.69 kg / 1.53 lbs$999
Toshiba Chromebook 13 CB35clamshell13.3″ TN HDCeleron BayTrail1.33 kg / 2.95 lbs$249
Toshiba Portégé Z20tconvertible12.5″ IPS touch FHDBroadwell Core M1.59 kg / 3.5 lbs (w/ dock)$1299

Fanless Mini laptops

Finally, we list here the smallest options, usually built on very low power hardware and thus only meant for basic daily tasks.

They are especially designed with either budget or long battery life in mind (most of them check both these boxes), but if you’re a demanding user or type for a living you might find them either too small or too slow for your needs.

Acer Aspire ES11clamshell11.6″ TN HDCeleron Braswell1.27 kg / 2.8 lbs$229
Acer Aspire R 11convertible11.6″ TN touch HDCeleron / Pentium Braswell1.58 kg / 3.50 lbs$249
Acer Aspire Switch 10 2015detachable10.1″ IPS FHDAtom BayTrail1.2 kg / 2.64 lbs (w/dock)$399
Acer Aspire Switch 10 Edetachable10.1″ TN HDAtom BayTrail1.28 kg / 2.82 lbs (w/ dock)$279
Acer Aspire Switch 11 Vdetachable11.6″ IPS touch FHDSkylake Core M1.55 kg / 3.5 lbs$499
Acer Spin 1clamshell11.6″ IPS FHDPentium Apollo Lake1.50 kg / 3.31 lbs$249
Asus EeeBook X205clamshell11.6″ TN HDAtom BayTrail0.95 kg / 2.10 lbs (w/ dock)$199
Asus Transformer Book Chi T100detachable10.1″ IPS WUXGAAtom BayTrail1.08 kg / 2.38 lbs (w/ dock)$399
Asus Transformer Book T100HAdetachable10.1″ IPS HDAtom CherryTrail1.14 kg / 2.52 lbs (w/ dock)$299
Asus Transformer Book T101HAdetachable10.1″ IPS HDAtom CherryTrail1.08 kg / 2.38 lbs (w/ dock)$299
Asus Transformer Book T102HAdetachable10.1″ IPS HDAtom CherryTrail0.79 kg / 1.74 lbs (w/ dock)$349
Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200SAconvertible11.6″ TN touch HDCeleron / Pentium Braswell1.20 kg / 2.65 lbs$349
HP Elite x2 1011 G1detachable11.6″ IPS touch HD/FHDSkylake Core M1.62 kg / 3.57 lbs (w/ dock)$899
HP Pavilion 360 11convertible11.6″ touch HDSkylake Core M1.4 kg / 3.1 lbs$399
Dell Venue 11 Pro 5000
detachable10.8″ IPS touch HD or FHDAtom BayTrail0.71 kg / 1.57 lbs (without dock)$699
Dell Venue 11 Pro 7140
detachable10.8″ IPS touch FHDBroadwell Core M0.72 kg / 1.59 lbs (without dock)$699
Dell Inspiron 11 3000 2-in-1convertbile11.6″ IPS touch FHDKaby Lake Core Y1.39 kg / 3.1 lbs$499
HP Stream 11clamshell11.6″ TN HDCeleron BayTrail1.27 kg / 2.8 lbs (w/ dock)$199
Lenovo Yoga 710 11convertible11.6″ IPS touch FHDKaby Lake Core M1.03 kg / 2.3 lbs$599
Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 10
tablet10.1″ IPS touch FHDAtom BayTrail0.63 kg / 1.38lbs$699
Lenovo Miix 3 10tablet10.1″ IPS touch WUXGAAtom BayTrail0.55 kg / 1.21 lbs$399
Lenovo ThinkPad Helix 2
detachable11.6″ IPS touch FHDSkylake Core M1.36 kg / 3 lbs (w/ dock)$999
Microsoft Surface 3tablet10.8″ IPS FHDAtom CherryTrail0.62 kg / 1.37 lbs (without keyboard)$499
Panasonic Let’s Note RZ4convertible10.1″ IPS touch FHDSkylake Core M1.83 kg / 4.05 lbs (w/ dock)$1499
Panasonic Let’s Note Z6clamshell10.1″ IPS FHDKaby Lake Core Y0.72 kg / 1.6 lbs (w/ dock)$1199

There are a couple of other small-factor fanless tablets and mini-laptops out there, but it would be a huge chore to include them all in here. I do talk about them in my list of 10.1 inch hybrids, this selection of 11.6 inch Mini-laptops or ultrabooks, as well as this list of all the best Chromebooks available these days.

As a side note, you should know that the Price column contains the starting MSRPs for each of the products above. That means that the higher configurations are going to be more expensive, but at the same time there’s a very good chance you can find pretty much all these products discounted by the time you’re reading this post. Click on the links on each price for details and up-to-date numbers.

Also, here’s a short glossary of the terms mentioned above:

  • Types:
    • tablet: a standard Windows running slate;
    • clamshell: classic shaped computer whose screen closes on top of the keyboard and does not flip into any sort of tablet mode;
    • convertible: 2-in-1 laptop whose screen rotates and converts to a tablet mode (or similar), but cannot be detached from the base;
    • detachable: 2-in-1 laptop whose screen detaches from the base. These are mostly stand-alone tablets bundled with matching docking stations that most often include docking keyboards, ports, batteries and other features;
    • slider: 2-in-1 laptop whose screen slides up and down on top of the body and usually reveals a keyboard hidden underneath.
  • Resolutions: HD ( 1366 x 768 px), HD+ ( 1600 x 900 px), FHD (1920 x 1080 px), WUXGA (1920 x 1200 px) retina (2304 x 1440 px), QHD (2560 x 1440 px), WQXGA (2560 x 1600 px), QHD+  (3200 x 1800 px), UHD (3840 x 2160 px) – also see this post;
  • Hardware:
    • Intel Atom BayTrail – 22 nm platform (Silvermont) launched in 2013. There are different lines available for tablets (BayTrail-T),  laptops (BayTrail-M) and desktops (BayTrail-D).
    • Intel Atom CherryTrail – 14 nm platform (Airmont) launched in 2015. Replaces the BayTrail-T lines.
    • Intel Celeron/Pentium Haswell – 22 nm platform based on Haswell hardware
    • Intel Celeron/Pentium Braswell – 14 nm platform (Airmont) launched in 2015. Can be found in low-power/affordable laptops and replaces the Haswell Pentium/Celeron lines.
    • Intel Core M – a mid-level platform launched in 2014 as the low-power version in Intel’s Broadwell family. Meant to offer a good balance between performance and battery life, is present on the more premium fanless machines available at the time of this post.

OK. That’s about it for this post. I do hope you find it useful and if you’re looking for an ultrabook or any other ultraportable laptop, you should also check out the other lists on the site and my reviews.

I’m constantly working at keeping these selections and lists up-to-date, but if you spot anything that should be in here and it’s not, please leave a reply and tell me about it. In fact, feel free to get in touch in the comments sections if you have anything to add, anything to ask or need help choosing your next fanless mini-laptop, I’m around to reply and help.

Douglas Black contributed to this report.

Andrei Girbea, Editor-in-Chief at Ultrabookreview.com. I never liked carrying big laptops around and that fueled my passion for mobile computers back in the 2000s. Things have changed much since then, but I'm still interested in the topic and in the meantime I've owned and tested hundreds of thin and lights, so I know a thing or two about them. You'll find mostly reviews and guides written by me here on the site.


  1. Ron999

    March 17, 2018 at 10:20 am

    Acer Switch 7 Black Edition is coffee lake, not kaby lake.

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