Two-in-ones — also often called convertible laptops — were once more expensive than their clamshell laptop counterparts, but they've come down in price. Premium models tend to start around $1,000 and typically come with features that a traditional laptop doesn't have, such as active pen support and a touch screen. But the feature gap between these and mainstream models from Dell, Lenovo, HP and others is now much smaller, with some starting at less than $500.
While most of the best two-in-ones are also convertible laptops — those with 360-degree hinges where the keyboard rotates around to the back of the display — there are some with a detachable keyboard and tablet mode on this list. A touch screen hybrid laptop with a keyboard dock is more tablet PC than laptop, though. That said, they're still good in laptop mode, and with that we offer three of CNET's top picks in the convertible laptop space.
WHAT HP Envy x360 13
THE COST $599.99
AVAILABLE FROM hp.com
The HP Envy x360 13 is a great pick for an older high school or college student or anyone looking for the best two-in-one laptops that are small, stylish and portable for travel. It's light at just less than 3 pounds and its battery life is long despite the size. It's also available with a choice of AMD Ryzen 5-4500U or Intel 11th-generation Core processors.
Essentially, you're getting a speedy little two-in-one that's ready for working from home or remote learning, but is also ready for your backpack.
WHAT Acer Spin 5
THE COST $799.99
AVAILABLE FROM acer.com
Co-engineered with Intel as part of its Project Athena program, the Acer Spin 5 features an Intel Core i7 processor and backlit keyboard fingerprint reader. The Spin 5's updated design improves its mobility, but also adds a bright 2,256 x 1,504-pixel resolution, 13.5-inch touch screen. The 3:2 screen ratio gives you much more vertical space and, since it's roughly the size of a sheet of paper, it's more comfortable to use for note-taking and sketching with the included active pen.
WHAT Lenovo Yoga 9i
THE COST (14 inch) $899 and up, (15.6 inch) $1,699.99 and up
AVAILABLE FROM lenovo.com
Whether you go with the 14- or 15.6-inch touch screen Yoga 9i model, you're getting the best features Lenovo offers in a consumer two-in-one. That includes things like a 4K UHD HDR display; speakers that you'll actually want to use; Thunderbolt 4 for power (on the 14-inch), speedy data transfers and external display support; faster integrated graphics and the option for discrete graphics on the 15.6-inch; and an included active pen stored in the laptop.
And this convertible PC is still wrapped up in a sturdy but lightweight metal body that can be used in laptop or tablet mode.
The following CNET staff contributed to this story: senior editor Joshua Goldman and copy editor Jim Hoffman. For more reviews of personal technology products, visit cnet.com.