Adobe InDesign is the most popular desktop publishing software out there for creating flyers, brochures, magazines, newspapers, and books, both in print and digital formats. Most of the time, when looking for a laptop for InDesign, you should consider if you’re going to run other graphic design software too, such as Photoshop or Illustrator.
A lot of graphic designers simply go for a MacBook, as it run most of the programs from Adobe’s creative suite. Hardware specifications? Check. Amazing display? Check. Great design and build quality? Also, check. However, for most people, Macbooks can be out of budget. And you can’t actually customize it as much as you would with a Windows machine.
In this short article, we will try to cover some of the things to check in order to get the best laptop for your needs. If you just want to get the recommendations, skip to the end of the article to get to know some of the best laptops for InDesign available right now. Or, you could stay through are little buyer’s guide for a good graphic designer’s tech companion. Let’s first have a look at InDesign’s official System requirement:
As you can see, you don’t necessarily need a high end laptop to run InDesign. Actually, many budget laptops out there meet the minimum requirements for InDesign and should perform more than fine. There are however a few things to consider, especially if you’re going to use other programs too, such as Photoshop or Illustrator.
What to look for in a laptop for Adobe InDesign, and desktop publishing in general?
All the laptops that we’re going to recommend you have the right specifications for running InDesign, as well as other programs from the Adobe suite. Here are our recommendations:
Processor and RAM: Don’t go any lower than an 8th generation Intel Core i5 processor, coupled with 8 GB of RAM. That’s a decent standard for a laptop nowadays. It’ll get you through most of the software running, handling a few windows at the same time. Of course, the higher you go, the smoothest the experience will be. However, if you’re an advanced InDesign user, and your projects require running InDesign in High Resolution mode, you’d better invest in a powerful i7 processor, or even an i9, and plenty of RAM.
Storage: Consider investing a little more for a solid state drive (SSD) rather than having a traditional HDD. It’ll load your laptop faster, so you’ll get plenty of time to unleash your creativity.
Graphics Card: For using InDesign, we’d recommend picking a laptop featuring at least the entry level Nvidia GPU, the MX150.
Display: As with any graphic design software, the display is very important. There are three main things to consider about the display: the size, the resolution, and the type. The display size is up to you, I personally like to have a bigger display, but some people are fine with smaller 13,3 laptops for graphic design. As for the resolution, it is recommended to get a full HD display, which isn’t a problem nowadays. However, one of the most important things is the quality of the display: this means how accurate the colors on the display are. IPS displays provide better color accuracy and viewing angles: this is very important if you’re doing color critical work.
Portability: Although a minor thing if you’re going to use your laptop at home, you’ll need a laptop that suits your aesthetic needs when it comes to the exterior build, on top of the portability. That is the first thing that’ll catch your eye when you’ll be looking for the perfect candidate. Especially if you’re a student, or you just need to carry your laptop around in the daily commute to work. If that’s your major concern, look out for the best compromise between screen size and weight. Or, you could just stick with what looks the best – and the wider – to you.
Now that you have an idea what type of laptops we’ll be looking at, let’s have a look at some of the best laptops for InDesign available right now.
Best Laptops For InDesign:
Acer Aspire E 15 E5-576G-5762
The Acer Aspire E 15 E5-576G-5762 is an affordable option if you’re looking for a budget laptop to run InDesign and other software from the Adobe suite. The Aspire E15 is equipped with an 8th generation I5 processor, 8 GB of RAM and a 256 GB SSD. It also features a dedicated Nvidia MX150 graphics card, which comes in handy if you’re doing any work taht might require a GPU.
The Aspire E 15 offers a consistent performance and stays very responsive thanks to the included SSD and the fast RAM. In case you need more power, the RAM is expandable up to 32GB. You can add a second hard drive, too.
The Aspire E15 also offers great battery life: while Acer claims it can last 15 hours, you can expect an average of 10 hours in real world use, which is impressive for a budget laptop!
|Processor||Intel Core i5-8250U Processor|
|Graphics||Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce MX 150|
|Screen||15,6 inch, 1920X1080, IPS|
|Connectivity and Ports||1 – USB Type C port
2- USB 3.0 port
1- USB 2.0 port
1 – HDMI port,
Card reader, Bluetooth 4.1, DVD/RW
|Battery||up to 15 hours battery life|
Asus VivoBook Pro 17 N705FD-ES76
Next, we have the Asus VivoBook Pro N705FD-ES76, a thin and portable 17.3” Full HD laptop that fits very well as a desktop replacement. It’s a nice option for you to consider if you wish for a wide view display during your creative work. The VivoBook Pro 17 features an 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor, coupled with 16 GB of RAM. It offers a hybrid solution comprised of a 256 GB SSD and 1 TB of HDD for the additional storage space. The VivoBook Pro 17 is equipped with a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card, with 4 GB of RAM.
The VivoBook Pro 17 includes a USB Type-C port, a fingerprint reader for fast login and secure online payments and a backlit keyboard with a separate numeric keypad. Despite the wide display, it’s designed to be thin and lightweight: a nice balance between portability and performance. It also offers a good amount of battery life on top of that.
There is another reason why the ASUS VivoBook Pro N705FD-ES76 made it to our list: its beautiful screen. This laptop sports an impressive 17,3 inch screen, at Full HD resolution. There are many versions of the VivoBook Pro with lower displays, but the version we recommend here comes with an IPS panel that offers excellent viewing angles and covers 72% NTSC (100% os the sRGB gamut).
|Processor||Intel Core i7-8565U Processor|
|Storage||256GB SSD, 1TB HDD|
|Graphics||Dedicated, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 with 4GB of VRAM|
|Screen||17,3 inch, 1920X1080, IPS|
|Connectivity and Ports||1 – USB 3.1 (Type C) port
1 – USB 3.1 ports
1 – USB 2.0 port
1 – HDMI port, RJ45
Card reader, Bluetooth 4.0
|Battery||Up to 6 hours battery life|
HP Envy 17t-bw000
The Hp Envy 17-t-bw000 is another wide-view, 17.3” Full HD laptop. The display is touchscreen, as well. The Envy 17 features an 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor, 16 GB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD. It’s packed with the entry-level Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics card, with 4 GB of RAM. Also, the Envy 17 comes with the Windows 10 professional operating system, which will provide you with more pro features compared to the home edition.
If you’re looking for the extra ease of use, the touchscreen display of the Envy 17 will do for you. This laptop includes a USB Type-C port and a DVR drive, if you need it. The Envy 17 will also impress you by its design and build quality, although the bezels around the screen could be thinner to reduce the overall footprint.
With the Envy 17, you’ll experience a powerful performance, thanks to the processor and RAM, coupled with discrete graphics. It’s definitely one of the best laptops for desktop publishing out there.
|Processor||Intel Core i7-8550U Processor|
|Graphics||Dedicated, Nvidia MX150|
|Screen||17,3 inch, 1920 x 1080 IPS|
|Connectivity and Ports||1- USB 3.1 Type C
3- USB 3.1 ports
1 – HDMI Port , Ethernet/DVD/RW
Card reader, Bluetooth 4.2
|Battery||Up to 8 hours battery life|
Lenovo ThinkPad X1
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 is a high end, 14” Full HD touch-screen laptop. It features an 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor, 16 GB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD. It also comes with the Windows 10 Professional operating system. The GPU is the integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620. This is going to be your best bet if you’re looking for a laptop with a lesser screen size.
Weighting less than 2.5lbs, the ThinkPad X1 makes for a rather powerful, highly durable and portable laptop for creative work and productivity. As additional features, it includes a fingerprint reader and a USB Type-C port. And the cherry on the top is a built-in sliding cover for your webcam that ensures your privacy.
The ThinkPad X1 lasts up to 15 hours on average usage. Thanks to the rapid charge technology, you can recharge all your battery life in just about an hour. No wonder this laptop was reviewed as one of the best for business in 2018!
|Processor||Core i7-8650U Processor|
|Graphics||Integrated, Intel UHD 620|
|Screen||14 inch, 1920X1080|
|Connectivity and Ports||2- USB 3.1 Type C // Thunderbolt
2- USB 3.1
1 – HDMI port,
Card reader, Bluetooth,
|Battery||up to 15 hours battery life|
LG Gram 13Z990-R.AAS7U1
Last, the LG Gram 13Z990-R.AAS7U1 is a thin and light, 13.3” Full HD touch-screen laptop with a narrow bezel design. It features an 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor, coupled with 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of SSD. It features the integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620.
Thanks to its processing power and decent amount of RAM, the Gram makes for a rather powerful, professional machine for the creative workers. It’s equipped with a backlit keyboard, as well.
Weighting less than 2.4 pounds, the Gram also features one of the latest USB Type-C ports and a fingerprint reader. The most surprising spec, though, is the battery life. The manufacturer claims it lasts up to 20,5 hours! That’s remarkable!
|Processor||Intel Core i7-8565U Processor|
|Graphics||Integrated, Intel UHD Graphics 620|
|Screen||13,3 inch, 1920 x 1080 IPS|
|Connectivity and Ports||1- USB 3.1 port Type C// Thunderbolt
2- USB 3.1 port
1 – HDMI Port ,
Card reader, Bluetooth 5
|Battery||Up to 20,5 hours battery life|