Artists’ Companion: Best 2-in-1 Laptops for Sketching

A laptop tablet with a pen is one of the most versatile devices you can find. Not only is it flexible and portable, but there’s no limit to what you can do with a 2-in-1 laptop. 

You might be wondering whether you should buy a drawing tablet instead. But a 2-in-1 laptop with a pen provides everything a tablet can do and more. 

A 2-in-1 laptop packs power, performance, and portability into one convenient package. Plus, when you add a stylus, there’s, even more, you can achieve.

You can flip the laptop to tablet mode with a digital pen and draw right on the screen. That opens up graphic design, animation, editing, and art opportunities. 

If you’re looking for a 2-in-1 laptop with a pen for drawing, read on. Using my experience as an artist and graphic designer, I’ve searched for the best laptop tablets. 

Scroll down for my detailed reviews and buying guide to the best 2 in 1 laptop with a stylus. 

Buying Guide to the Best 2 in 1 Laptop with Stylus

If you want to buy a 2-in-1 laptop, there are a few things to remember. With so many different models on the market, it can be hard to narrow down the choices. But keep these things in mind, and you’ll find the best laptop with a stylus for your needs. 

Size & Portability

First of all, how will you use your laptop? Do you want the most compact tablet so you can take it anywhere? Or do you want a full-size laptop that will meet all your needs?

The smaller the screen, the easier it will be to take your 2-in-1 laptop with you. You’ll be able to pack it in any bag, making for smooth travel and commuting. But if you size down too much, you may struggle with some tasks. It’s all about getting the balance right. 

The laptop’s portability doesn’t just depend on the screen size, though. The weight and build also make a big difference. You can find 13 and 14-inch laptops that are super sleek and practical but with a large screen for all your needs.

I would recommend going for one of these lightweight, slim laptops that double up as a large tablet. But there are also some 10 and 12-inch laptop tablets on this list, so you can take your pick! 


Whether you’re using it as a laptop or tablet, the display is one of the most crucial factors. It should be bright, sharp, and fully saturated, ideally with a high resolution. 

Look for a laptop with at least 1920 x 1080 pixels, so videos and images look crisp on the screen. That way, you’ll avoid any pixelation. 

A wide color gamut is essential for graphic design and photo editing. It will also improve your experience when watching movies, as will a wide viewing angle.

Processor & RAM

Just like with a regular laptop, you should go for one with a robust processor. You want at least a quad-core CPU, so it can handle all your apps and multitask without lagging. 

That’s even more vital if you want to run demanding programs like the Adobe Creative Suite. There’s nothing more annoying than trying to work on a project, and the app keeps freezing.  

The more memory (or RAM) the laptop has, the smoother it should run. The laptop relies on the RAM to access all your short-term files and documents. For example, it also allows you to work with more layers in Photoshop. 

At the least, you should go for 4 GB, but I would recommend looking for a laptop with at least 8 GB. Some models even have up to 16 GB, ensuring smooth and effortless functioning. 


When you’re buying a 2-in-1 laptop, the first thing you should ask is whether it comes with a stylus. But not just any stylus is worth having. 

Find out how many pressure levels it has and whether it supports tilt recognition. If it does, you’ll get more control over your shading and thickness of lines. That means you can create very nuanced and intricate artwork.

It’s worth reading reviews to find out how well the pen and tablet work together. Is the pen designed for simple note-taking, or can you use it for more advanced creative tasks? If so, it should track smoothly without any lag for a better drawing experience. 

You should also look at the design of the pen. Does it have an ergonomic build that will fit comfortably in your hand? It should also have a nice balance and a rubberized finish, so you can get a good grip. Finally, does it have any extra features like a shortcut button on the pen itself?


As with any laptop, the storage tends to vary depending on the price you pay. Cheaper laptops may only have 128 or 256 GB of storage space. If you work with large photos or video files, that can fill up faster than you’d expect. So, you may want to invest in more storage upfront or look for a laptop with upgradeable storage. 

It’s not just the amount of storage you should look out for, though. It’s also the type of storage. If a laptop has flash or SSD storage, it will run a lot quicker than one with a hard disk drive. So, it’s preferable to go for a laptop with SSD storage. 

Top 3 Laptops with Built-in Stylus: A Quick Comparison

If you want quick answers, I think the HP Spectre x360 is the best laptop with a stylus. It’s powerful but super slim and stylish. With a robust processor and a gorgeous screen, there are no limits to what you can do with this versatile laptop. 

But the Asus ZenBook Flip is a closer runner-up due to its beautiful HD display and sturdy build. It has impressive specs and extensive storage and ticks all the right boxes! 

And if you’re after a budget laptop tablet with a pen, check out the HP Envy x2. This tablet is more budget-friendly but just as slim and compact. While it doesn’t pack as much power as some laptops, it’s a fantastic tool for students or budding creatives. 

hp spectre x360 asus zen book flip 14 hp-envy x2 12
ProductHP Spectre x360Asus ZenBook FlipHP Envy x2
Operating SystemWindows 10Windows 10 ProWindows 10
ProcessorIntel Core i7 8565U8th Gen Intel Core i7-8565UQualcomm Snapdragon 835
RAM16 GM 16 GB 4 GB 
Internal Storage512 GB SSD512 GB SSD128 GB SSD
Screen Size13.3 inches14 inches12 inches
Display Resolution1920 x 1080 pixels1920 x 1080 pixels1920 x 1080 pixels

The Best 2-in-1 Laptops with Pen

HP Spectre x360 13t Convertible

Best Touch Screen Laptop with Stylus Pen

HP Spectre x360

(Images credit: HP)

If you’re looking for a laptop, I would recommend starting by looking at the Spectre x360. This 2-in-1 laptop range is possibly the best thing HP has ever created. (I’m not exaggerating – read on to find out why!) 

The Spectre x360 is a gorgeous laptop with edge-to-edge glass and tiny bezels. It’s lightweight and very eye-catching, with a stylish and polished finish. 

But it’s also incredibly powerful and responsive, thanks to an i7 quad-core processor. That’s backed up by 16 GB of RAM, making multitasking easy. This laptop can handle demanding apps like Adobe Photoshop without worry. 

It also packs 512 GB of speedy SSD storage so that you can access your files in seconds. If that’s not enough, this model is fast charging, with super-long battery life. So, you can use it all day anywhere without needing to charge it up. 

However, it’s the 2-in-1 aspect that’s especially exciting. Not only is this laptop so powerful that it could rival many desktops, but it also can replace your tablet.

The strong hinges allow you to flip the screen into several setups. You can stand it up in tent mode or lay it flat to draw with the included stylus. Because this model also comes with the HP Pen, you don’t need to spend anything else. 

That means you can get creative on the screen. It’s also suitable for editing photos and videos, animation, and more. 

Other notable features include the FHD webcam, full-sized backlit keyboard, and microSD reader. Nothing has been missed, making for an excellent user experience.

When it comes to security, HP has you covered. The Spectre x30 isn’t a budget laptop by any means, so the premium warranty brings peace of mind. 

You also get a 3-year McAfee internet security coverage. It has handy features like the webcam kill button and fingerprint reader. 

If your budget stretches to the HP Spectre x360, it’s well worth investing in it. This laptop tablet with a pen can fulfill all your needs in one amazing and robust device. It’s perfect for business, creative, or personal use and will exceed your expectations. 

  • Operating System: Windows 10 
  • Processor: Intel Core i7 8565U
  • RAM: 16 GB 
  • Internal Storage: 512 GB SSD 
  • Screen Size: 13.3 inches
  • Display Resolution: 1920 x 1080 pixels


  • A lightweight yet powerful laptop that transforms into a tablet
  • It has a beautiful edge-to-edge display
  • You can use it for all your creative, business, and personal tasks
  • It’s fast, responsive, and has tons of storage


  • It doesn’t have a dedicated graphics card – so it’s not the best model for serious gaming
  • It’s very expensive 

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Asus ZenBook Flip Convertible Laptop

Best Windows Touch Screen Laptop with Pen

Asus ZenBook

(Images credit: Asus)

The Asus ZenBook Flip is another superb convertible laptop that deserves your attention. I think it’s one of the laptops out there due to its excellent specs and user experience.

The ZenBook Flip has a sturdy and durable build with strong hinges. So, you can rotate it 360 degrees and transform it into a dedicated drawing tablet. 

But it’s also very lightweight at just 3.3 lbs. As a result, the ZenBook is a practical laptop you can take anywhere. It won’t weigh you down and should fit in most backpacks or laptop bags. 

With a beautiful HD display, this laptop looks amazing however you use it. This model boasts tiny bezels that you’ll hardly notice against the vivid OLED screen. 

And when you flip it to tablet mode, you can get closer to the display. Pair it with the ASUS pen for flawless drawing, and your lines will appear instantly on the screen. 

But you will need to shell out for the ASUS pen separately. And with only 1024 pressure levels, it’s not as powerful or sensitive as some other digital pens. While it has a long battery life of up to 10 months, that’s not as convenient as being battery-free altogether. 

The ZenBook Flip also offers excellent connectivity options. Despite the compact build, it has three USB ports, an HDMI port, and an SD card reader. 

The versatility and portability of this 2-in-1 laptop make it an attractive option. Factor in the stellar screen, and the ZenBook Flip is one of the best laptop tablets. 

  • Operating System: Windows 10 Pro
  • Processor: 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8565U
  • RAM: 16 GB
  • Internal Storage: 512 GB SSD
  • Screen Size: 14 inches
  • Display Resolution: 1920 x 1080 pixels


  • It’s a super-slim, but durable laptop with an aluminum build and quality components
  • The HD OLED screen looks amazing
  • It has great connectivity options


  • The battery life isn’t very long
  • It doesn’t come with a stylus (you’ll need to buy it separately)

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Samsung Galaxy Book 12’’ Windows 2-In-1 PC

Best Samsung 2-in-1 Laptop with Pen

Samsung Galaxy book 12

(Images credit: Samsung)

Samsung is well known for its excellent products, and the Galaxy Book is no different. This smart laptop tablet has the same Super-AMOLED display as Samsung’s smartphones. As a result, you get outstanding visuals. This is what Samsung does best, in my opinion.

It also provides reliable performance, with long battery life. This tablet can last up to 10 hours on a full charge, so you can work on the go with peace of mind. You can get more done and won’t have to worry about stopping to charge it. 

The Galaxy Book is slim, weighing just 1.69 lbs without the keyboard cover. This detachability is a selling point in itself. It is even more compact, portable, and versatile than a regular 2-in-1 laptop like the Spectre x360. And you can re-attach the keyboard whenever you need it. 

It’s built with military-grade aluminum for a sleek and smooth finish. But due to the slim build, you will need to take care in handling it. 

The specs aren’t the most impressive, but they’re fine for this price. With this tablet, you get 4 GB of RAM and 128 GB of speedy SSD storage. It also has excellent audio quality, a nice bonus for watching movies. 

Even better, the Galaxy Book comes with a keyboard cover and S-Pen. That makes it a great deal, as you don’t need to spend any extra cash. The stylus is sensitive and tilt-responsive while also feeling nice to hold. 

There are some downsides to the Galaxy Book, though. At 12 inches, the screen is a little small compared to other models. And as for the kickstand and case, they’re a little disappointing as they’re not very sturdy. If you don’t place this tablet on a completely flat surface, you risk it toppling over. Plus, if you type a lot, the keyboard may be underwhelming. 

Finally, the Galaxy Book doesn’t have fans, so it can overheat when working hard. 

But the affordable price and amazing screen make it an attractive option. The Galaxy Book is ideal for anyone who wants a great laptop tablet without breaking the bank.  

  • Operating System: Windows 10 Home
  • Processor: 7th Gen Intel® Core™ i5 Processor
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Internal Storage: 256 GB SSD
  • Screen Size: 12 inches
  • Display Resolution: 2160 x 1440 pixels


  • It’s slim, lightweight, and detachable, making it even more compact and versatile.
  • It comes with an S-Pen and keyboard included – making it great value for money
  • The S-Pen is very responsive and sensitive. 
  • The Super AMOLED display looks gorgeous and bright, with vivid colors


  • It does get quite hot when running heavy programs 
  • The kickstand isn’t very secure

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HP ENVY X2 12 Inch Detachable Laptop With Stylus Pen

Best Detachable Laptop Tablet with Pen

HP Envy x2 12

(Images credit: HP)

The Envy x2 is another innovative HP product, and it’s worth taking a closer look at this model. First of all, it’s not a full laptop. But it is a very powerful tablet, and when you add the keyboard, it can fulfill many of the same tasks as a laptop. 

This tablet provides versatility and portability. It’s super slim and compact, measuring just 6.9 mm thick. But you still get a generous 12-inch display to work on. 

The screen is built from strong Gorilla Glass to make it hardwearing and robust. So, despite the tiny build and lightweight, the Envy x2 is durable and can withstand regular use. 

The HP Envy x2 doesn’t pack the same power as the Spectre x360. But it can compare favorably with the iPad Pro and other premium tablets.

There are a few features it’s missing compared to many modern laptops. For example, it doesn’t have an HDMI port, fingerprint reader, or upgradeable memory.

But with a built-in 4G, you’ll never be caught without an internet connection. That’s one of the most attractive features of the HP Envy x2. With this model, you really can work from anywhere. You don’t have to depend on finding a cafe with a WiFi connection. 

For example, if you’re a photographer, you can edit photos on location – even if you’re in a rural spot. If you want more flexibility and reliability to work on the go, the HP Envy is perfect for you! 

When it comes to battery life, this tablet beats its competitors with a staggering 22 hours on a full charge. Plus, it charges very quickly, getting to 90% in just 90 minutes. So, you can get back out there and get more done! 

All these factors make the HP Envy x2 the best laptop-tablet for working on the go. This unique tablet provides versatility, portability, and flexibility. If that’s what you’re looking for, you’ll love the Envy x2. 

  • Operating System: Windows 10 
  • Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
  • RAM: 4 GB 
  • Internal Storage: 128 GB SSD
  • Screen Size: 12 inches
  • Display Resolution: 1920 x 1080 pixels


  • This tablet has a super-long battery life of up to 22 hours
  • It has a nice 12.3-inch screen with a high resolution
  • In-built 4G allows you to connect and work from anywhere – no WiFi connection is necessary


  • The processor and RAM are fine – but not the most impressive specs out there
  • You’ll have to buy the stylus and keyboard separately 

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Microsoft Surface Laptop 2

Best Microsoft Laptop with Pen

Microsoft Surface 2

(Images credit: Microsoft)

The Surface Laptop 2 from Microsoft is a sleek, portable model with a stunning display. While it doesn’t have the strongest performance, there’s a lot to say for this laptop. 

It’s very slim and compact, making it easily portable. So, it’s a great choice for frequent travelers or commuters. The minimalist, streamlined design looks classy and maximizes the screen size. 

And the display itself is amazing, with a very high resolution of 2256 x 1504 pixels. It outdoes most laptops that have 1920 x 1080 pixels, resulting in super-sharp visuals. That makes it an ideal machine for photo editing, graphic design, or illustration. Your designs will look crisp, clear, and richly saturated, with vivid colors. 

Perhaps the biggest drawback to this model is that you can’t transform it into a tablet. Unlike Microsoft Surface Books, it doesn’t have a flippable screen.

You can draw directly on the display, and it works seamlessly with the Surface Pen. It allows for accurate and precise drawing and note-taking, with  4096 pressure levels. But it’s not as user-friendly or ergonomic as on a 2-in-1 laptop-tablet. If that’s a deal-breaker, check out the other options on this list. 

As for ports, you don’t get many options on the Surface Book 2. For example, there’s only one USB 3.0 port and no HDMI support at all, which is a little frustrating. 

But to sum up, the Surface Laptop 2 is a great touchscreen laptop with a stylus. It’s very affordably priced, making it ideal for everyday use. And that super-long battery life will allow you to work for longer wherever you are. 

There’s a range of configurations available, allowing you to find the right one to fit your budget. And it’s much more affordable than the Surface books or the Surface Laptop 3. So, if you’re looking for a portable touchscreen laptop with a stylus pen, take a look at the Surface Laptop 2. 

  • Operating System: Windows
  • Processor: Intel Core 8th Gen i7(quad processor) 
  • RAM: 8 GB 
  • Internal Storage: 256 GB SSD 
  • Screen Size: 13.5 inches
  • Display Resolution: 2256 x 1504 pixels


  • It has a sharp, crisp display with vibrant colors
  • You can draw on the touchscreen with the pressure-sensitive Surface Pen
  • It’s affordable and offers great value for money


  • You can’t flip it to tablet mode
  • It’s not the most powerful laptop on the market

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Acer Aspire Switch Laptop

Budget Laptop-Tablet with Pen

Acer Aspire Switch

(Images credit: Acer)

If money is tight, then check out the Acer Aspire Switch. It’s a very decent tablet and a great budget option for anyone watching their spending. 

At 8.9 mm thick, the Aspire Switch is lightweight and compact. It’s a little smaller, with just a 10-inch screen. But you can easily pack this tablet in any bag, allowing you to work or study wherever you are. 

It’s durable and scratch-resistant, thanks to the Gorilla Glass used for the display. And as there’s no air gap between the screen and the glass, the stylus and tablet work smoothly. You get very little lag, increasing your precision. 

This tablet even comes with a keyboard included. So, you can whack out a quick email or use it for some basic admin tasks. But as the keyboard isn’t the best, I wouldn’t recommend using it as your main computer. You’ll probably want to save more time-consuming tasks for your laptop, instead. 

The Aspire Switch doesn’t have the most polished finish. For example, if you push the screen back too far, the whole thing will fall over. It’s also a little slow when running more demanding apps. And you don’t get a warning when the battery is running low. It just cuts out, which is pretty annoying! 

The biggest sticking point for me is the tiny storage space you get. It comes with only 32 GB of SSD. While you can upgrade that to 128 GB with an SD card, that’s still pretty limited. 

The Acer Aspire Switch is a little underpowered. So, don’t expect it to replace your laptop fully. However, it’s a great little tablet that’s very compact and portable. That makes it a convenient option for getting some work done on the go.

  • Operating System: Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel Atom Z3735F 269
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Internal Storage: 32 GB SSD
  • Screen Size: 10.1 inches
  • Display Resolution: 1280 x 800 pixels


  • It’s very compact, and you can detach the tablet from the keyboard
  • A great low-cost tablet for students or anyone on a budget
  • You can use the stylus for note-taking or drawing


  • The specs are quite underwhelming
  • It has hardly any storage space

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Best 2 in 1 convertible laptops with stylus pen

The Wrap Up

A 2-in-1 laptop with a pen is a practical and powerful device. You can use it for a whole range of tasks, from regular admin to advanced creative work. 

With laptops at every price point, this list has something to offer for everyone. I selected each one for its versatility, features, and performance. 

So, you can browse through and find the right laptop tablet for your needs. Once you’ve chosen, let me know which one you go for in the comments! (You can drop any questions below, too). 

And make sure to follow me on Pinterest before you go. I’ll keep you updated on all the latest trends, tips, products, and more! 

This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, Proactive Creative may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.


Outmane is the founder of Proactive Creative. He is an artist/designer.

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1 thought on “Artists’ Companion: Best 2-in-1 Laptops for Sketching”

  1. I have been trying to find larger 2 and 1’s on eBay, maybe fixer uppers, Lenovo Yoga had one that was 15.6 if you can find the (foreign mostly) models with pen support, and there are some Inspirons in that size category as well, I am not sure what different hardware is involved to allow pen support, a digitizer on the screen and a different motherboard with cable port for it? It ticks me off that they are all so small and a the manufacturers have started to use RAM that’s soldered in and not upgradable, I really don’t care if the case isn’t slim or that it’s a little heavy, I want something functional, that will run actual graphics applications the only reason I would want it as a tablet is to set it portrait mode and make better use of screen space. How many artists work in 9:16?


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