Robbie Janney made a great article about the best laptops for video editing!
"If you’re in the market for an editing computer but need something that’s portable, your best bet is a solid video editing laptop," she wrote.
Long gone are the days of using only a desktop to edit. Now items like SSD's and GPU's help take some hassle off of the laptop making editing easier and more sustainable.
This list is based upon Robbie Janney's article, and is of great help to those working in the editing business.
Know what to look for
Most people aren't aware what is important for an editing computer. Here's what to look for:
- CPU: This is the heart of the computer focusing on processing everything which goes on. HZ is what dictates the performance of the computer. The more HZ a computer has, the more power is available.
- GPU: This helps with rendering and processing graphics. This ranges from 4gb-12gb. The higher the number the better.
- SSD's (Solid State Drives) & HDD's (Hard Disk Drives): These are external drives where you can store your data. This will vastly help you laptop out when editing.
- RAM: Often misunderstood, this doesn't always speed up a computer. Progroms often use a certain amount of RAM to run. The more RAM in a laptop, the more programs that can be open at the same time.
"A helpful tip you should remember is when you’re looking at laptops, if it’s marketed as a “gaming” laptop, odds are the specs will prioritize CPU/GPU power over peripherals — like a touchscreen or “tablet” functionality." - Robbie Janney (Writer for The Beat)
On a Tight Budget
Money is important to all of us. What kind of laptop can you get without breaking the bank. Well the truth is, editing laptops will stretch the budget. In fact expect to spend somewhere between $1K - $3K. That might sound like a lot... but it really isn't. Over estimating what you think you need to edit is a good thing for laptops. A desktop can be customized and improved with age. Laptops are trickier.
Here is a good laptop to use.
This is the Legion Y7000P laptop!
- GPU: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1650 4GB
- Processor: 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-9750HF (2.60GHz, up to 4.50GHz with Turbo Boost, 6-Cores, 12MB Cache)
- Display Type: 15.6” FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, anti-glare, 60Hz, 250 nits
- Memory: 8GB DDR4 2666MHz
- Hard Drive: 1TB HDD 7200 RPM + 256GB SSD PCIe
The Middle of the Road
Alienware m15 Gaming Laptop is a great addition to your editing workflow, especially when on the road. It only has a 4-core processor of 8GB of RAM, but it's the GPU the counts.
- 9th Generation Intel® Core™ i5-9300H (4-Core, 8MB Cache, up to 4.1GHz w/ Turbo Boost)
- Windows 10 Home 64-bit English
- NVIDIA® GeForce GTX® 1660 Ti 6GB GDDR6
- 8GB DDR4 2666MHz
- 256GB PCIe M.2 SSD
You Budget is the Sky
There is no beating the MacBook Pro. It's the go-to laptop in the industry for editing.
"We’re buying used here since there’s a significant price decrease from a new one. If you want the performance of an i7 and 16GB of memory, all under 2K, your best bet is buying your Mac used from a reputable dealer." Robbie Janney
- 2.6GHz 6-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHz
- Memory: 16GB of 2400MHz DDR4 onboard memory
- Storage: 256GB SSD
- Radeon Pro 555X with 4GB of GDDR5 memory and automatic graphics switching
Microsoft Surface Book Pro 2 for $2,599
This laptop can work both as a tablet and powerful laptop. It functions in two modes: One is basic laptop mode, the other is a tablet which is great for designers. Animators would love this laptop.
- 16GB of RAM
- Intel i7 8th Gen
- 512 GB of SSD Storage
Lenovo ThinkPad P73
"I’ve always been a big fan of Lenovo’s ThinkPad series for one reason: they last forever. These laptops are built like tanks, and they have incredible battery life for editors on the move." - Robbie Janney
Customization is the game with these laptops! Adding 16GB or 32GB is possible. It's even possible to upgrade to the Intel i9 8 core processor for it's CPU.
- 9th Gen Intel® Core™ or Intel® Xeon® multi-core processors
- Most powerful NVIDIA® Quadro® RTX graphics
- 4K UHD and Dolby Vision™ display option