How Do You Choose A Mac Laptop For Video Editing
To choose a Mac laptop for video editing, you have to look for the best specs on your budget. Ideally, your editing Mac should have a Retina display, M1 or Intel Core i9 processor, at least 32GB of RAM and 8GB of VRAM. However, if you plan to work with 4K or 8K material, make sure to configure the Mac to the highest specs.
Best Budget Video Editing Laptop: What You Get For Under $1200
The best laptops for video editing are pricey. Were not going to dance around it. Video editing requires a huge amount of power, and power doesnt come cheap. You can very easily spend upwards of $3,000 on a video-editing laptop. But not everybody has that kind of cash, and, luckily, that doesnt mean that those with smaller budgets are left out in the cold.
Youve got essentially two options for more budget-minded video editing laptops. One route would be to find a less expensive gaming PC, like Dells G15, and carefully max out the elements that are most important to video editing, namely the RAM and GPU. Youll likely be making sacrifices elsewhere, though, like in the build quality, screen quality, or storage.
Instead, we like the new Apple MacBooks, especially the MacBook Air. Youll get the remarkably fast custom-made Apple M1 processor, which has proven very, very fast at video editing, as well as other intensive tasks like gaming. And going for the Air is a great way to save a few bucks after all, youre getting the exact same processor and GPU in the Air as you would in the new iMac and MacBook Pro. One suggestion: get 16 GB of memory. It costs a bit more, but its worth it.
Best budget laptop for video editing: Apple MacBook Air
Macbook Air Best For Video Editing On The Move
If display size is the most important factor to you, then the Intel-based 16-inch MacBook is still a great option for mobile video editing. But if you want a light but powerful machine you can take on the road, the new M1-based MacBook Air is the way to go.
Starting from $999, its a 13-inch laptop, with a choice of different M1 chip versions one with a seven-core GPU and one with an eight-core GPU. In either case, itll handle most video editing tasks easily, and videos will look great on the 2560×1600 display.
As with other M1 Macs, you can choose either 8GB or 16GB of unified RAM. And you can choose SSD storage from 256GB up to 2TB, but the price quickly increases as you opt for more space.
Weighing in at 2.8lbs and with a thickness of less than an inch, the MacBook Air is perfect for video editing on the go as is the long battery life. The only real drawback is the lack of connectivity. You get just two USB-C Thunderbolt ports.
|13-inch MacBook Air specs|
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Top 10 Best Laptop For Video Editing 2021
If you are a professional video editor, a film-school student, or just someone passionate about A/V, you can derive immense pleasure from owning a best laptop for video editing.
A laptop that understands the needs of a video editor goes a long way in keeping you from harrowing post-production sessions.
It is all very well to tell yourself that any video editing you require can be done on a regular laptop it is just about tying in small clips together, right?
But it is when you stare at distorted imagery, fiddle with an uncooperative touchpad, and tear your hair apart over an unresponsive processor that you begin to lose faith. The footage you shot in the first place seems to be without any potential whatsoever.
For satisfying and productive video editing, THE most important thing does not come as a surprise: a mighty processor. But along with a persevering CPU, you also need a display that does justice to your content.
A user-friendly operating system is essential too. It is true that video editing has conventionally been associated with a Mac laptop that lets you use software like Final Cut Pro.
But, unless you are a hardcore loyalist, you can also opt for Windows 10 or Linux. Some other important considerations include a specially designed keyboard. Video editing involves precise, repetitive movements, and a keyboard that gets this is going to be vital.
You can also explore convertibles, devices with 17 screens , and desktop-replacement laptops.
Best Budget Laptops For Video Editing Under $800
At this price point, you will find laptops that have slightly less generous specifications for the processor, GPU, memory, and display, but for the most part are still able to handle editing and rendering high quality video projects and more.
Smaller to medium sized video projects will run the most easily on laptops within this range, with some exceptions in models that have better specifications as far as CPU and GPU go.
The table below will give you a quick look at our selections for the 3 best laptops for video editing currently available on the market for under $800. To read a full review, simply click on review> > in respective row.
- Disappointing display quality
Our Rating: 9.8/10
The number once choice when it comes to powerful laptops under $800 is easily the Dell G3 15 3500a laptop that packs more punch than any other laptop in this price range. It ticks almost all the boxes, making it a superb choice for you if youre looking for a laptop for video editing and gaming that will last for years to come.
The processor in the Dell G3 is a 10th Generation Intel Core i5-10300H, which beats the AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor in performance and speed. This processor is very fast, allowing you to perform editing tasks like adding transitions, importing new clips, and rendering video files at lightning speeds without interruptions.
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Comparing Video Editing: Laptops Vs Desktops
Not too long back, it was unthinkable that a task as complicated and resource-intensive as video editing could be performed on a laptop. But the technological world changes every so often, and this scenario is now a reality. However, while laptops are capable of this task, how competent are they? Can they match up to the power of a desktop when it comes to a job well done? Let us examine this.
Ultimately, both laptops and desktops have their highs and lows when it comes to multimedia editing. While the former score brownie points for mobility, the latter offer a premium in power and longevity.
When choosing between them, you would be well advised to weigh your day-to-day needs, requirements for travel, and budget.
Depending on the specifications that your budget allows, many contemporary laptops can be as commendable as desktops at providing a smooth editing experience.
Best Laptop For Video Editing
Display: 15.6-inch UHD OLED CPU: Intel Core i7-10800H GPU: Nvidia RTX 3060 RAM: 16GB DDR4 Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD Weight: 4.4 pounds Size: 14 x 9.8 x 0.78
Whats better than powerful internals for video editing on the go? How about a brilliant display thats expertly tuned to let you see your finished product? The Gigabyte Aero 15 provides a 15.6-inch UHD display for sharp visuals, so you wont miss details in your video project. Better still, the display is using a Samsung OLED panel for vibrant colors and rich black levels. You dont have to worry about your edits on this machine looking off elsewhere, as the display comes X-Rite Certified and Pantone Validated for color accuracy with a 100% DCI-P3 color gamut.
Now, we look at the power under the hood that makes the video editing a breeze on that display. Inside, theres an Intel Core i7-11800H with 16GB of RAM for speedy processing and multitasking. You can push rendering work onto the graphics processor, which is an RTX 3060 in this case. And its all coming in a delightfully portable form factor that weighs just 4.4 pounds.
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The Duo Difference: All About The Second Screen
Asus dual-screen design, whether in the form of the ZenBook Pro Duo, the ROG Zephyrus Duo 15, or here in the 14-inch ZenBook Duo, is inarguably a head turner. Other manufacturers have dabbled with two-screen designs, but Asus takes an all-in approach that, if nothing else, is very visually compelling.
The ZenBook Duo 14 simply takes the concept and shrinks it down. Both of the other Duo laptops use 15.6-inch main screens, but as the name implies, this version bears a smaller 14-inch screen. The second display, dubbed the ScreenPad Plus, is also smaller at 12.6 inches. The main screen is full HD , while the ScreenPad Plus has an unusual 1,920-by-515-pixel resolution, due to its unique shape.
Things To Consider In A Laptop For Editing Videos
The essence of a portable system lies in the wealth of storage it has available. At home, you might have access to external hard drives and the like, which become too bulky an option for travel vloggers who need to keep things light, especially since youll forget them anyway. Offline video editing software requires a large storage space. Due to this, it becomes imperative that you have plenty of storage on your laptop, and having an expansive hard drive is a good place to start. Also if you are on the move a lot I would recommend a solid-state drive over a traditional hard drive. Although the speed and enhanced performance of an SSD is traded off by the fact they will generally have less space than a traditional hard drive for the money.
The purpose of a portable device is lost when it goes off, then it becomes just a burden. That is the simple reason why the lifespan of a device between charge is a central factor to its choice. Its as simple as that.
For those that feel more productive when they multitask, a reliable processor is an indispensable asset. Many experts consider a processor to be even more valuable than a dedicated graphics card for video editing, since the tasks tend to demand a lot from processors and memory. On one hand, shopping for a system with a good processor can be quite tricky, but a good rule of thumb is to go for a processor with loads of threads.
Graphics Transition Card
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The Best Video Editing Laptops For High Demands
If finding the lowest price isnt your main priority and you are looking to invest in a high performance laptop that can handle the most demanding video editing tasks for professional use, then the following three options will serve you the best.
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold PC. The worlds 1st foldable laptop with dual screens, it is one of the best on the market equipped with an Intel Core i5 processor and a 13.3 2K OLED touchscreen and resolution of 1536 x 2048 which allows it work well for high resolution editing. Its 8GB of memory and 1TB of hard drive space is perfect for larger video files, making this a worthwhile investment for video editing.
Another great laptop to consider for your editing projects, is the ThinkPad T14s Gen 2 with an 11th generation Intel Core i7 processor Its 14 FHD display produces up to 300 nits for improved brightness that enhances the details of the screen with 16GB and 4266MHz of memory along with 512GB of hard drive space.
Its Integrated intel® Iris® Xe graphics card gives it the best capabilities when it comes to high resolution video editing, and with the inbuilt Intel Evo platform, the ThinkPad T14s allows users to find the perfect balance between performance, battery life, responsiveness, and visual details.
The display of the ThinkPad X13 Yoga Gen 2 features a 16:10 display all the way up to the WQXGA resolution, equivalent to 2560×1600 for some of the best visuals.
Do You Need A 4k Laptop To Edit 4k Video
You dont have to have a 4K display to edit 4K video. You can do the editing and rendering without one. Where 4K becomes important is in your ability to view your video in 4K to ensure that it meets your standards and that all effects and changes are applied appropriately. Again, adding an external 4K display can overcome any limitations in your laptops display like our MacBook picks on this list that arent quite 4K resolution.
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Acer Nitro 5 Video Editing Laptops
Another laptop from the gaming lineups of manufacturers, the Acer Nitro 5 is up there as one of the best video editing laptops on a budget. The specs do speak for themselves with an i5-9300H processor and top clock speed of 4.1GHz, 15.6 inch Full HD display, and a 144Hz refresh rate. Powered by a 10th Generation Intel Core i5-10300H processor, it has four cores and eight threads.
For the visuals, the Nvidia GTX 1650 with 4GB RAM makes it a super-efficient laptop for video editors. You have little to worry about using video editing suites and software as the 8GB DDR4 RAM, and a 256GB SSD guarantees seamless editing workflow and hassle-free video editing. With a dual storage setup, you can decide to add another SSD when you need to.
One of the many outstanding features of this powerful laptop is its attention to detail in the design. In addition, it is thoughtfully fitted with a supercooling system and vents to keep the laptop cool while working. If you like lightweight laptops, this solid gaming laptop may not be your choice as it weighs 5.07 pounds and is 0.98 inches thick. However, it has a strong build and battery life of over 8 hours despite its weight and performance levels. There are only a few laptops under $1000 that can be compared with this laptop. Though it lacks in some areas, including its absence of microSD slots and Type-C connectivity, you cannot go wrong with this one as far as good video editing laptops go.
Dell Xps 15 9510 Video Editing Laptop
For 4K video editing needs, the 15.6 Dell XPS 15 9510 is among the best choices in the market today.
It comes equipped with a FHD+ touchscreen that offers 100% Adobe RGB, and 94% DCI-P3 color gamut.
The display is VESA certified and incorporates Dolby Vision, ensuring vivid imagery and meticulous rendition of details.
The performance is excellent, thanks to the speedy Intel Core i9-11900H CPU, 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD, and NVIDIA RTX 3050 Ti graphics.
Accessibility-wise, Dell rises to the occasion with a 62% larger touchpad and a 5% larger screen.
With Corning Gorilla Glass 6 to guard the display, you can work on the laptop comfortably from any location. Auditory distortion is also minimized since this device uses a quad-speaker design with Waves Nx audio.
Another thoughtful addition is Eyesafe display technology that reduces blue light and protects your eyes during extended video editing sessions at night.
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The Best Laptops For Video Editing Under 1000
While some of the Lenovo laptops already mentioned cost under 1,000, there are more options that you can choose from when keeping a lower budget in mind.
One of these options is the Lenovo ThinkPad T490 with an 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor that can reach up to 4.80GHz with its Turbo Boost feature. This laptop features a 14 FHD display with 400 nits for great resolution and brightness, an Integrated Intel UHD graphics card, and an 8GB DDR4 memory with up to 16 hours of battery life.
Another affordable choice perfect for video editing and multimedia work is the ThinkPad E14 Gen 2. This laptop has the latest 11th generation Intel Core i3 processor that can reach up to 4.10GHz with a 14 FHD screen. The hard drive comes with 1TB of space with an Integrated Intel UHD graphics card.
These budget-conscious gems are video editing workhorses.
The Building Blocks Of A Great Video Editing Laptop
The right laptop for video editing is less about brand name or storage space and more about the right components for your workflow.
For video editing, the number one thing you have to look at is your processor and your graphics card. Then your RAM, or your memory, says videographer Chris Printz. When I buy a new laptop, I dont care as much about the storage. Thats because I dont edit from my desktop. All my footage that Im editing is going to be on an external SSD.
Storage isnt that important because youre probably editing all on external hard drives, seconds videographer Joshua Flom. I would say get a minimum of 1TB SSD, just so you can have proxy files or render files on your actual device.
SSD stands for solid-state drive, a newer and faster version of a hard disk drive . If budget is a concern, a 512GB SSD might even be enough in terms of internal storage since external SSD storage is an affordable and easy way to enhance your laptops performance.
If you dig a little deeper on SSDs, youll likely run into the acronyms PCIe and NVMe: good news if youll be handling more intense projects. These terms represent the latest interface and protocol for managing the data on your SSD quickly, and most high-end workstations, such as the Apple MacBook Pro, already use them.
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