So, you are interested to check out a laptop screen size comparison chart? No matter if we’re talking about a small 11-inch laptop or a large 17 incher, we’ve got all screen sizes covered here!
You will learn what are the main differences between the various laptop screen sizes. This will make it easier for you to decide which is the most suitable for your needs or which one you like the most.
One important thing to know is that different screen sizes have different resolutions and different angles. However, as you will see, smaller screens don’t necessarily and automatically have lower resolutions (although they usually do).
We’ll talk about this – with real life examples of solid laptops in each category in today’s article, so let’s get this started!
Laptop Screen Size Chart
It’s time to look at some real life examples of different screen sizes. We’ll try to see what resolutions are more common with the various sizes and which ones are the better choice if you’re planning to make a purchase.
It matters a lot the reason why you want to buy a laptop in the first place – if you want to have an ultra portable one to carry around easily, you will probably go for a small 11″ laptop.
On the other hand, if you plan to do a lot of gaming, you’ll definitely need a larger screen – an 17-inch or even 19-inch laptop being better suited for this purpose.
So here we’ll compare the different screen sizes of laptops for you. We’ll also talk about the various screen resolutions, what they mean for the product and help you decide which is the best laptop size for your needs.
Without further ado, let’s check out our Laptop Screen Size comparison article, starting with the chart below:
Note: We get commissions for purchases made through links in this article.
|Screen size||Laptop example||Screen resolution|
|11.6 inch||HP Stream||1366 x 768|
|12.5 inch||HP Elitebook||1366 x 768|
|13.3 inch||Asus Zenbook 13||1920 x 1080|
|14 inch||Lenovo IdeaPad 3||1920 x 1080|
|15.6 inch||Razer Blade 15||1920 x 1080|
|17.3 inch||MSI Creator 17||4K UHD|
As you can see from the chart that I shared above, the screen size of a laptop doesn’t automatically go hand in hand with its maximum resolution. Therefore, a laptop with a smaller screen but a higher resolution will have a better image quality.
However, it’s important to note that smaller screen laptops will still have a good image quality on lower resolutions simply because the screen is smaller and differences more difficult to notice.
For example, a resolution of 1366 x 768 will look better to an untrained eye on a 11-inch laptop than it would on a 17-inch one.
It is safe to say though that usually, screen sizes of under 13″ are considered small, anything between 13- to 15.6-inch is considered medium and anything above is considered large.
Traditionally, the most common resolution of a laptop is 15.6″. Various other sizes have recently started to be manufactured (more than those shared abovE), but some are becoming more popular based on needs (e.g. small 11.6″ laptops are becoming popular for students, while 17.3″ ones are favored by gamers, video editors and more).
But how to decide which screen size is the best for you and for your needs? We’ll try to help you out with that below.
Different Laptop screen sizes
Based on the example laptops used for each of the common screen sizes shown above, I will share a few more words. I will tell you what that type of laptop is best for to make it even easier for you to decide which one to buy next.
Before getting into all details, I would have to say that here too bigger is better. But only if you don’t plan to move around a lot with your laptop.
A larger laptop is usually more expensive, but also offers more, including a larger screen that is always welcome. On the other hand, if you travel a lot, you want to be as light as possible, so a smaller laptop would be better.
Fortunately, due to the quickly advancing world of tech, even smaller laptops are starting to offer a lot in terms of performance, in case you really need it.
So let’s expand our laptop screen size comparison chart into real life examples below! IMPORTANT: The “screen size best for” part refers to the general size of the display, not necessarily the recommended model.
HP Stream – 11.6″
These are extremely small laptops, meant to be highly portable and very cheap. Like the HP Steam that we’re recommending for this size, most of the laptops in this category are called Chromebooks (using Google’s Chrome operating system as opposed to Windows).
These laptops usually offer lower resolutions (1366 x 768) but the image still looks good on their small screens. They offer little storage and are mainly created for online use: browsing the internet, writing documents, but also watching movies.
Due to their small size, I don’t really recommend them: their keyboard is small and the screen size to small to be worth investing in. Looks and feels more like a toy laptop than anything else.
Screen size best for: Travel, school, kids.
Click here to find out more about the HP Stream.
HP Elitebook – 12.5″
This isn’t a common resolution for a laptop, but we’re starting to see some more performant ones in this category. So if you’re not on an extremely tight budget, I would recommend getting a laptop this size if you want something with a small screen.
This particular model has a screen resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels, but is powered by a good processor: an Intel Core i5, with 4GB of RAM and offering 500GB of storage.
It’s still very light and easy to carry around, but also easier to write at. So if you need the keyboard, it’s better than am 11.6-incher.
Screen size best for: Travel, School, Watching videos
Click here to find out more about the HP Elitebook.
Asus Zenbook 13 – 13.3″
Now we’re starting to talk about more decent sizes! At 13.3-inch, you get the perfect mix of maximum portability and dimensions of the display itself.
Also, with a lot more laptops of this size available, you have various options in terms of performance, including some really solid options like the Asus Zenbook 13.
This laptop is powered by a great Intel Core i5-1035G1 processor, has 8GB of RAM and offers 256GB of SSD storage. The maximum resolution is full HD (1920 x 1080 px).
Screen size best for: Travel, School, Minimal work, Watching videos, Writing
Click here to find out more about the Asus Zenbook 13.
Lenovo IdeaPad 3 – 14″
This is a screen size that is becoming more and more popular due to the size of the screen that still makes most laptops very portable, but also starts to offer some more advanced features.
For example, this model comes with an integrated GPU which also allows for some gaming to be done here. The maximum resolution is 1920 x 1080 px (Full HD) and great battery life.
Screen size best for: School, travel, work, internet browsing and steraming, some gaming
Click here to find our more about the Lenovo IdeaPad 3.
Razer Blade 15 – 15.6″
This is what I would call the traditional screen size for a laptop. This is where you will find most models, from extremely cheap ones to super performant computers that can handle anything.
While I still consider their screen a bit too small for some of the more visual activities (gaming, video or photo editing for example), it is a decent screen size.
For example, the model that I am recommending is a gaming laptop that offers a hexa-core Intel Core i7-10750H processor, 16GB of RAM and 256 GB of blazing fast storage. It is a powerful laptop that can handle anything from regular browsing to more resource-demanding activities.
Screen size best for: Work, Gaming, Internet browsing and movies, Some Travel, Some School
Click here to find our more about the Razer Blade 15.
MSI Creator 17 – 17.3″
At this size, you’re starting to touch the sky. Some of the most performant laptops of the current generation can be found starting at this screen size, which I consider to be ideal for gaming, visual work and even watching movies.
Of course, for the latter you won’t have to get something as good as the MSI Creator 17, which is powered by the amazing i7-10875H processor, it has 64GB of RAM and a whooping 4TB of SSD storage.
Everything rounded up by an amazing GeForce RTX 2070 GPU which offers 4K UHD resolution. VR Ready, this little beast can handle the most intensive tasks you can throw at him – and do it without breaking a sweat!
Screen size best for: Gaming, video/photo editing, work, internet browsing and watching videos.
Click here to find out more about the MSI Creator 17.
How to measure a Laptop’s Screen Size?
If you are unsure about your laptop’s screen size and you don’t know its model to perform a quick search on Google, you can measure the screen size yourself.
Here are the step by step instructions on how to measure your laptop’s screen size yourself:
Step 1 – Get the appropriate materials
You will need two things before starting your quest to find out the display size of your laptop: a ruler and a smooth measuring tape.
The measuring tape must be smooth to avoid damaging your laptop’s display. They both need to be properly marked to quickly identify the size of your screen.
Step 2 – Measure your screen’s width
Measure the width of your laptop’s screen using the measuring tape. Place it horizontally on the screen, from the bottom left to the bottom right.
Make sure that you only measure the screen itself (the glass part) and not the entire thing: the margins or the bezels should not be measured!
Step 3 – Measuring screen height
Measure the accurate screen height to get the real dimensions. Take the measuring tape and drag it from bottom to the top of your laptop.
Again, make sure that you are only measuring the screen and you don’t include the bezels as well.
Step 4 – Measuring the diagonal
If you love math, using the data above, you can measure the diagonal size of your screen.
Alternately, simply measure it with the tape, from the bottom left corner to the top right. It will tell you exactly if you have a 12″ screen, a 12.5-inch one or a 12.9″ display.
Tips for measuring Laptop Screen Size
- Make sure that while doing all the measurements, the laptop is turned off.
- Never use any wet or dirty measuring tape on the laptop screen.
- During measuring, never put the pressure on the screen. This can damage it.
- Do not consider the trim or screen sides as a part of the screen measurement to get the accurate values.
Hopefully, you now have a clearer picture of the different screen sizes when it comes to laptop and you know now which is best for you.
Remember: smaller screens are usually preferred for their high portability and low price, while larger screen are better if you spend more time in front of the screen, working or gaming.
There are even more actual sizes than those shown in the laptop screen size comparison chart from the beginning, but the ones that I listed are the most common.
If you still have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to let us know by sharing your thoughts below.