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Best laptops to edit videos

Looking for a good laptop to edit videos? Here are 10 best laptops to edit videos in 2019

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Finding a good laptop to edit videos can be quite confusing, because while video editing has become more accessible and popular than before; the truth is it still require a powerful system, and that’s especially true for laptops. In this Short guide, we will walk you through some of the most important things to consider if you’re shopping for a laptop for video editing, as well as check some of the system requirements of the most popular video editing software. And of course, we will share a list of some of the best laptops to edit videos and tell you about the pros and cons of each one.

What is video editing and what do you need to edit videos?

Simply put, Video editing is the manipulation and arrangement of video sequences. It is the process that is used to structure and present video content, such as films and TV shows, video advertisements, Youtube videos…etc. In recent years, video editing has been democratized by  software available on personal computers.

But you probably know all that, because I assume since you’re here looking for a laptop to edit videos.  However, a good laptop or video editing computer isn’t always everything you need, as there are a few other necessary tools, such as the video editing software, and probably a video capture tool (camera) and accessories.

In terms of video editing software, there are plenty of options available out there, both for Windows and Mac; however, not all of them serve the same purpose, and some of them are designed for professional users. In order to get a good laptop to edit videos, you should first consider which video editing program you will be using and check your laptop’s specs against the programs recommended requirements.  We will be discussing that later in the article.

Desktop or Laptop:

Video editing is a demanding task, and a desktop will usually perform better than a laptop in this area. However, whether a laptop or desktop is best for you really depends on your needs and the type of work you’ll be doing. If you don’t need a mobile machine, then a desktop can be the right choice, since it offers more power, and leaves room for upgrading the system, such as adding more RAM, Storage, graphics cards…et. However, if you want a lightweight machine that you can carry around, then only a laptop will offer that. Some laptops can be also relatively upgradable.

What types of videos are you going to edit?

To get the best system for your needs, you need to first consider the types of videos and projects you will be working on; which can be tricky as you may move to more advanced projects later.

The first thing to consider is how complex are your projects: will you be mainly with single shot footage, or are you planning to use footage from multiple cameras? The footage quality is also something you should consider; because working with a Full HD video file, is not the same as a 4K sequence.  And even when it comes to 4K video, the requirements are not the same. For example, if you’re going to edit 4K video from a GoPro Hero, the requirements will be lower than a RED 4K camera; because 4K footage from a GoPro is usually more compressed. In general, the higher the quality and bitrate of the footage, the more power you will need to work with it.

Besides the footage quality, another thing to look at is how advanced are your video editing skills. Cutting and joining video footage is not the same as applying special effects or doing animation work. For the latter, you will need more processing power.

The next thing to consider is the video editing software you will use. There are plenty of video editing programs out there, both free and paid, consumer oriented and professional solutions.  Regardless  of what type of footage you’ll work with, you should check the system requirements of the video editing program you’ll be working with. Every program has its own requirements and may perform differently from one system to another.  Following are some of the most popular video editing programs and there system requirements.

What are the system requirements of the main video editing programs:

As of 2019, some of the most used video editing programs include: Final Cut Pro X (MAC),  Adobe Premiere Pro CC, CyberLink PowerDirector 17 Ultra, Pinnacle Studio 22 Ultimate, VEGAS Pro 17 Suite, and Corel Video Studio Ultimate. Here are the system requirements for each of them:

  • Final Cut Pro X: macOS 10.13.6 or later, 4GB of RAM (8GB recommended), Intel HD Graphics 3000 or later, 256MB of VRAM (1GB recommended), Discrete graphics card, AMD Radeon RX 580 recommended, 3.8GB of disk space
  • Adobe Premiere Pro CC: Intel® 7thGen or newer CPU, 16 GB of RAM for HD media and 32GB for 4K, Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit) or macOS v10.13, 4 GB of GPU VRAM, Fast internal SSD for app installation and cache, 1920 x 1080 or greater display.
  • CyberLink PowerDirector 17 Ultra: Intel Corei5 or AMD Phenom II X4 for Full HD and Intel Corei7 or AMD FX for 4K or 360) are  recommended, 128 MB VGA VRAM or higher (1GB Recommended), 2GB RAM required (8GB or above recommended), 1024 x 768, 16-bit color Display, 7GB required minimum disk space.
  • Pinnacle Studio 22 Ultimate: Intel Core i3 or AMD A4 3.0 GHz or higher, Intel Core i7 4th generation or later or AMD Athlon A10 or higher for UHD, Multi-Camera or 360 video,  4 GB of RAM or higher, 8+GB highly recommended, DirectX graphics device recommended with m inimum 256MB VGA VRAM, 512MB or higher recommended, D isplay resolution: 1024 x 768 or higher, 8 GB HDD space for full installation.
  • VEGAS Pro 17 Suite: 6th Generation Intel Core i5 (or AMD equivalent) or better. 2.5 Ghz and 4 Core minimum. For 4k, 7th Generation Intel Core i7 (or AMD equivalent) or better; 8 GB RAM minimum (16 GB recommended; 32 GB recommended for 4K); 5 GB hard-disk space for program installation; Solid-state disk (SSD) or high-speed multi-disk RAID for 4K media; for hardware rendering, NVIDIA  GeForce 9XX series or higher with 4 GB.
  • Corel Video Studio Ultimate: Intel Core Duo 1.8 GHz, Core i3 or AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ 2.0 GHz, or higher, Intel Core i7 or AMD Athlon X4 or higher for UHD or Multi-Camera editing; 2 GB of RAM or higher, minimum 4 GB for Windows 64-bit, 8+GB Recommended;  Graphics Card with a minimum of 512 MB VRAM for hardware decoding acceleration; Minimum display resolution: 1024 x 768; Minimum 6 GB HDD space for full installation.

As you can see, system requirements can vary from one program to another; in addition to that, they only reflect the minimum or recommended hardware, and in most cases, you’ll find that you need more than that if you’re looking for optimal performance.

What to consider when looking for the best laptop to edit videos?

In order to find the best laptop for your needs, here are the main things that will matter the most when editing videos:

Processor: Laptop processors have become more capable than ever, and they rival some desktops when it comes to video editing.  However, the entry level processors included on budget laptops might not be enough for video editing. If you don’t want your system to crawl, we recommend at least an 8th generation Intel i5 processor or AMD equivalent, and to edit 4K or 360° video, it is recommended to get an i7 processor. Intel’s latest generation processors now offer more cores and threads.  For more power, you can go for laptop that has an “H” processor, like the i7-8750H, which has 6 cores and 12 threads and operates at a higher voltage in comparison to the “U” variant, i7-8550U, which has 4 cores only, and runs a lower voltage to reduce power consumption.

RAM:  RAM is hands down the second most important part of a good video editing laptop. We usually recommend a minimum of 8GB for any new laptop, and to edit videos, you’ll quickly find out that you need more than that. Ideally, you can consider a laptop that has 16GB RAM installed in a dual-channel configuration, which helps maximize performance when editing videos.  If you can’t afford a laptop with 16GB RAM now, check if the laptop has a free RAM slot, and if it’s possible to add more RAM later.

Storage: For video editing, there are two things that matter when it comes to storage: transfer rate, and storage capacity. In order to edit videos, a sustained transfer rate is essential; and usually a hard drive that can sustain transfer rates above 150MB per second is more than enough for video editing.  In addition to that, video files can easily become huge depending on the length and quality of the footage, so it makes sense to have a drive where you can store both your programs and your files. But here is the tricky part, when it comes to laptops, you’ll either find a cheaper 2,5” mechanical hard drive or a smaller capacity Solid State drive.  For video editing, it is highly recommended to choose a laptop with an SSD, since most 2,5” laptop drives do not offer enough transfer rate .  Although an SSD is significantly more expensive per GB, its high speeds will allow you to open programs and load big video files quickly; and also allows your system to boot faster than any traditional hard drive. If money is no problem, a PCIe based SSD will even offer a better performance.

Graphics Card:  Although the main component is the CPU when it comes to editing videos, you shouldn’t skimp on the graphics card. It’s true that you can edit videos even with integrated graphics; but that’s only if you’re doing something very basic; because in 2019, most video editing software takes advantage of the graphics card through hardware acceleration for encoding and rendering.  We recommended at least a GTX 1050 as an entry level video card for video editing. Also, if you’re planning to use Adobe software, such as Premiere Pro, you should know that it’s actually optimized for Nvidia Cards.

Display: Your laptop’s display is very important when it comes to video editing, it’s where you will actually see and preview your work, and preview all the changes that you make.  For video editing, it is recommended to get a laptop with a 15 inch display, because unless connected to an external screen, editing on a small display is just not going a good experience. Screen resolution is also another factor you should take in consideration, and it’s recommended to have a laptop with A Full HD screen at least.  Newer laptops also come with IPS technology – In-Plane Switching – which provides a better experience because of its wider viewing angles and superior color quality.

Other features:  While the processor, RAM, storage, and graphics card are the main components to check; you should also consider other factors in order to get the best laptop for your needs. If you’re going to connect the laptop to an external display for example, make sure that the laptop comes with the necessary ports (HDMI, USB C, or Thunder bolt 3). Thunderbolt 3 is the fastest connectivity available today, and we have listed some of the best laptops with Thunderbolt 3 here.

Also, if you’re going to carry the laptop to work and need something that’s quite mobile, check the reviews regarding the battery life, because most gaming and video editing laptops tend to have poor battery life.

So, now that you have an idea what to consider in order to choose a good laptop for editing videos, here are some of the best laptops to consider for video editing. This list will be updated regularly, so if you have a question or a suggestion, feel free to ask us in the comments!

Best laptops to edit videos:

Dell Inspiron G5587

First on our list, the Dell Inspiron G5587 is one of the most affordable laptops you can find with a GTX 1050Ti. The specs also include an 8th gen Intel i5 8300H processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. The Inspiron G5587 has all it takes if you’re looking for a good laptop to edit videos, without breaking the bank.

The G5587 is also a great fit if you’re into gaming, thanks to the dedicated Nvidia Geforce GTX 1050Ti with 4GB VRAM, it’s still a great value in 2019.

This laptop is equipped with 15,6 inch full hd display, which is also IPS. This laptop also comes with a Thunderbolt 3 port for connecting advanced monitors, external drives, or a docking station. Thunderbolt 3 interface supports both high-speed data and high-def video, plus power over cable for bus-powered devices, which ideal for video editing and digital content creation. You can also check our article here, if you’re interested in laptops with thunderbolt 3. There are also plenty of other ports, including USB 3.0 and HDMI.

Processor Intel Core i5-8300H Processor
RAM 8GB
Storage 256GB SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti with 4GB of GDDR5
Screen 15,6 inch, 1920 x 1080 IPS
Connectivity and Ports 1- USB 3.1 Type C // Thunderbolt

3- USB 3.0 ports

1 – HDMI Port , Ethernet

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery Up to 8 hours battery life

MSI GV62 8RD-275

The MSI GV62 8RD-275 is another affordable gaming laptop that offers great value for the money. Just like the Dell, this laptop comes with an Intel Core i5-8300H processor , 8GB of RAM, and a  256GB NVMe SSD. There is also a dedicated an NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti Graphics card. If you’re looking for a relatively affordable laptop to edit videos and also play some games, then don’t look past this one.

The MSI GV62 also comes with a 15,6 inch Full HD IPS display, capable of 45% NTSC , which is good for watching movies or gaming, but not ideal if you’re doing color critical work. However, you have plenty of options to connect to an external monitor: including USB, HDMI and a mini Display port.

Processor Intel Core i5-8300H Processor
RAM 8GB
Storage 256GB SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti with 4GB of GDDR5
Screen 15,6 inch, 1920 x 1080 IPS
Connectivity and Ports 1- USB 3.1 Type C

2- USB 3.0 ports

1- USB 2.0 ports

1 – HDMI Port , Mini Display Port, Ethernet

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery Up to 8 hours battery life

 

Acer Aspire 5 A515-51G-84SN

When it comes to budget laptops, Acer’s Aspire 5 and E15 series are unbeatable. And the Acer Aspire 5 A515-51G-84SN is definitely one of the best budget laptops for video editing you can get. The version featured here has an 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8550U Processor, 12GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD and a 1TB standard hard drive, and a dedicated Nvidia MX150 graphics card. This laptop has enough power to handle video editing, and it can be also used for any other tasks.

The 15,6 display has a full HD resolution, and it’s also an IPS display, which is good for video editing. The only thing that I personally don’t like are those huge and unnecessary bezels around the screen, so if you’re looking for a laptop with thin bezels, the Aspire 5 is not it. However, that’s no deal breaker considering the price.

Processor Intel Core i7-8550U Processor
RAM 12GB
Storage 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce MX 150
Screen 15,6 inch, 1920X1080
Connectivity and Ports 1 – USB 3.1 (Type C) port

1 – USB 3.0 ports

2 – USB 2.0 port

1 – HDMI port, Ethernet

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1,

Battery Up to 8 hours battery life

 

Acer Predator Helios 300 PH315-51-78NP

The Acer Predator Helios 300 PH315-51-78NP is an aggressive-looking gaming laptop which has what it takes to handle your video editing projects. It features an 8th generation Intel Core i7 8750H processor, 16 GB of RAM and a 256 GB SSD. It’s also equipped with a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 graphics card, with 6 GB of RAM. This is one of the best laptops to edit videos, since it’s equipped with an “H” i7 processor, and has a good amount of RAM.

The Predator Helios 300 also features a 15,6 Full HD display. The screen is IPS and has a 144Hz Refresh Rate. A higher refresh rate is not only good for gaming, but you will also notice it when editing videos (provided that the original footage has a high FPS rate too).

On top of that, the Predator Helios 300 is equipped with a USB Type-C port and a consistent cooling system, to avoid overheating. It offers up to 7 hours of use.

Processor Intel Core i7-8750H Processor
RAM 16GB
Storage 256GB, SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce GTX  1060
Screen 15,6 inch, 1920X1080, IPS
Connectivity and Ports 1 – USB Type C  port

1- USB 3.1 port

2- USB 2.0 port

1 – HDMI port, RJ 45

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery up to 7 hours battery life

 

ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701GV-PB74

Moving up to more premium laptops, we have the ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701GV-PB74. the ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701GV-PB74 is a 17,3” Full HD ultra slim gaming laptop, packed with a new 9th generation hexa Core i7-9750H processor, 16 GB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD. The dedicated graphics card is the NVIDIA RTX 2060 , with 6 GB of VRAM. The Zephyrus S should definitely be on your short list, if you’re looking for thin 17 inch laptop, that’s capable of gaming, and editing 4K video.

There’s plenty for the eye to be amused by this machine. We can start from the 6.5mm narrow bezel design of the display, to the all metal chassis, up to the futuristic looking backlit keyboard, with four customizable color zones. The trackpad also acts as a touch numeric keyboard, which is a nice addition for tackling occasional data entry tasks.

Last but not the least, The Zephyrus S also comes with a Full HD IPS display, which has a 144Hz refresh rate, and is also capable of 100% sRGB when it comes to color reproduction.

Processor Intel Core i7-9750H Processor
RAM 16GB
Storage 512GB, SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NNVIDIA RTX 2060
Screen 17,3 inch, 1920X1080, IPS
Connectivity and Ports 2 – USB Type C  ports ( 1 with display port)

2- USB 3.1 port

1 – HDMI port,

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery up to 7 hours battery life

 

MSI GS65 Stealth-002

If you find the Zephyrus too big, but still want something that’s as powerful, we have the MSI GS65 Stealth-002, one of the best thin laptops for gaming out there. The MSI GS65 Stealth-002 features an 8th generation Intel Core i7-8750H Processor, 32 GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD. It’s packed with a dedicated NVIDIA RTX 2070 with 8 GB of video RAM. This laptop is great if you’re looking for machine that can handle editing 4K video with a resource intensive program such as Adobe Premiere Pro.

The MSI GS65 Stealth is a good looking laptop too, unlike many gaming laptops, you can bring this one to the office without everyone staring at you.

The GS65 Stealth also includes a good amount of ports, in case you want to connect to a docking station or an external display, including USB Type C, Thunderbolt, and Minidisplay port

Processor Intel Core i7-8750H Processor
RAM 32GB
Storage 512GB Nvme SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070
Screen 15,6 inch, 1920X1080, IPS
Connectivity and Ports 1 – USB 3.1 Type C  port // thunderbolt 3

3- USB 3.0 ports

1 – HDMI port,Mini Display Port

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery up to 8 hours battery life

 

GIGABYTE AERO 15-X9-9RT4K5MP

If you’re an advanced video editor and want a laptop that won’t let you down, the GIGABYTE AERO 15-X9-9RT4K5MP is one of the best laptops to edit videos on as of 2019. The Aero 15 is packed with features, including a i9-8950HK processor, 32GB of RAM, 1TB SSD, and a Dedicated Nvidia RTX 2070 graphics card. This is a prefect combination if you’re working with high quality 4K files.

But it doesn’t stop there, because the GIGABYTE AERO 15-X9-9RT4K5MP also features a 15,6 4K display. The display is IPS, and is also one of the few Pantone Certified laptops displays; which makes this laptop a perfect choice if you’re a professional and if color accuracy is important to you.

Processor Intel Core i9-8950HK Processor
RAM 32GB
Storage 1TB Nvme SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070
Screen 15,6 inch, 3840×2160, IPS
Connectivity and Ports 1 – USB 3.1 Type C  port // Thunderbolt 3

3- USB 3.1 ports

1 – HDMI port,Mini Display Port Type C, Ethernet

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery up to 8 hours battery life

 

MSI P75 Creator-469

If budget is no concern, and if you’re looking for a 17 inch laptop to replace your desktop, then consider the MSI P75 Creator-469. This beats of laptop is fitted with a 9th Gen Octa Core i9-9880H Processor, 32 GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a dedictaed RTX 2070 graphics card. Needless to say that the MSI P75 Creator-469 is designed with content creators in mind, it’s great if you’re doing animation,  running 3D modelling software, and of course editing videos. The MSI P75 Creator-469 is capable of handeling 4K video with no issues, and you can also work with 8K thanks to the NVIDIA RTX 2070.

Processor Intel Core i9-9880H Processor
RAM 32GB
Storage 1TB Nvme SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070
Screen 17,3 inch, 1920×1080 , IPS
Connectivity and Ports 1 – USB 3.1 Type C  port // Thunderbolt 3

3- USB 3.1 ports

1 – HDMI port,Mini Display Port Type C, Ethernet

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery up to 8 hours battery life

 

Macbook Pro 15

Although they are overpriced for what they offer, Macbooks are some of the best laptops to edit videos and create content, especially if you’re already into the Apple Ecosystem, or if you need to use a mac only software such as Final Cut Pro. featured here is the Macbook Pro 15, which has a 9th-generation 8-Core Intel Core i9-9880H Processor, 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD, and a dedicated Radeon Pro 560x graphics card with 4GB of video memory.

As all Macbooks, this laptop features a stunning Retina display, with 2880-by-1800 resolution. The display is also IPS and offers great color accuracy and a sufficient brightness level even for outdoor use.

Processor Intel Core i9-9880H Processor
RAM 16GB
Storage 512GB SSD
Graphics Dedicated, Radeon Pro 560x
Screen 15,6 inch, 2880X1800 , IPS
Connectivity and Ports 3- Thunderbolt 3

4- USB 3.1 ports

Battery up to 10 hours battery life

 

Dell XPS 15 7590

Finally, we have the newest Dell XPS 7590,  which is still a great value for creators. This laptop features an 9th gen Octa Core i9-9980HK Processor, 32GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a dedicated Nvidia GTX 1650 with 4GB of video memory. Although this laptop is capable of running games, it was designed as a powerful workstation for creators, and thus will  be ideal for editing and creating videos.

In addition to that, the XPS 7590 comes in a stylish looking chassis, and is also one of the few laptops that have an OLED 4K display. For video playback, the image quality is simply outstanding. And although the 4K display does drain the battery faster in comparison to the Full HD variant, it’s still worth it if you’re looking for a laptop with high quality IPS display that covers 100% Adobe RGB colors.

Processor Intel Core i9-9980HK Processor
RAM 32GB
Storage 1TB, SSD
Graphics Dedicated, NVIDIA Geforce GTX 1650
Screen 15,6 inch, 3840 x 2160, OLED
Connectivity and Ports 1 – USB Type C  port // Thunderbolt

2- USB 3.1 port

1 – HDMI port

Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1

Battery up to 10 hours battery life

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