The laptop is not just for watching movies or playing games but it can also be used for professional work like graphic designing. Graphic design is not just about applying effect but it is one of the toughest and challenging jobs. Powerful laptops are needed to make everything perfect and make it look realistic. To have a balanced laptop, from portability to performance, everything should match but at an affordable price.
This article has every user laptop from beginners to professional graphic designers. Assisting you in choosing what you need among the best laptop for graphic design is easy now. Every technical aspect of the laptop from its design to what’s under the hood and what can be connected is listed here.
Best Laptops for Graphic Design 2021
- Asus ZenBook Pro Duo UX581 – Best Dual Screen
- MSI P65 Creator – Best for Professional Creaters
- New Apple MacBook Pro – Best Overall 2021
- ROG Zephyrus S GX701 – Best Powerful
- Lenovo ThinkPad P1 – Best Internal Components
- Gigabyte AERO 15 OLED – Best 4k Display
- Asus ZenBook 15 – Best Design 2021
- Acer Predator Helios 500 – Best 144Hz Display
- ASUS ZenBook UX303UB – Best Portable
- Acer Aspire E 15 – Best Budget
- Microsoft Surface Book 2 – Best 2 in 1 Laptop
Our Top 3 Picks
1. Asus ZenBook Pro
Display: 15.6″ (3840×2160)
RAM: 32GB DDR4
2. MSI P65 Creator
Display: 15.6″ (3840×2160)
RAM: 32GB DDR4
3. MacBook Pro
Display: 16″ (2880×1800)
RAM: 16GB DDR4
What do you need for Graphic Design?
Graphics designing is an intensive job so you will need a good laptop for that. From resolution to how fast your laptop is, everything should be perfect for the best outcome. Let’s dig into what you need in a laptop which will be used for graphics designing.
Screen Size & Resolution
For content creation and graphic designing, the first thing that you should be looking at a laptop is screen size. The wider the screen, the clearer would be the picture. If the screen size is 17 inches or above then you won’t need any multimedia as your secondary screen. The only drawback that a wider screen has is portability because the big size makes them heavy and bulky.
On the other hand, a large screen is not effective if the screen resolution is not good. A high-end graphical resolution is required in graphic design. Looking at the tiny details on visual content like adding effects to images, 3D image designing, or corporate designing with widescreen, Full, Quad or Ultra HD resolutions makes it easier to develop with more precision.
A powerful GPU is not only required in games but other things like video editing and graphics designing as well. Speeding up the process and enhancing graphic resolution while designing, requires a good GPU. Using Adobe Creative Suite, Maya or 3DS Max for designing will need a GPU for a clearer illustration of visual effects.
A good GPU will always bring up the cost of the laptop. However, for the beginner or intermediate level, you can still work on mid-range GPUs or even the integrated one, provided it’s a good one.
Besides other technical components, one of the important factors that are preferred by graphic designers is a touch screen. Having everything under the touch of your finger is remarkable. Sliding the images around the desktop and adding the graphical effect with the stylus makes it easy.
A detachable or convertible laptop makes it easier to create content. Using the stylus to apply effects exactly where it’s needed becomes much easier than doing it with mouse or
Trackpad. The more customizable the designing process, the better it will be content creation.
Best Laptop for Graphic Design 2021
1. Asus ZenBook Pro Duo UX581
Asus has been known for the dual-screen laptops with their Asus Taichi 21 and Asus ZenBook Pro 15 models. But the company has outdone itself with their new name “Asus ZenBook Pro Duo”. This laptop has created a lot of buzz over the market with its 4k OLED touchscreen display and 4K secondary display. The secondary display is exactly the size of the chassis creating a multitasking beast. Honestly, Pro Due can do almost anything whether it productivity, content creating, or gaming.
Having the Asus ZenBook Pro Due, you get access to endless possibilities that cannot be covered in a single review. This is an extraordinary laptop full of features and packed a lot of power inside. Featuring the latest Intel Core i9-9980HK processor paired with the most powerful NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060. So much power can allow you to take your productivity to the next level. For multitasking, a 32GB DDR4 memory is housed with the fast 1TB SSD storage. ZenBook Pro Due is something you have never experienced before.
Let’s talk about some of the features. Asus Zenbook Pro Duo can give you a lot of convenience for doing multitasking and creative work. ScreenPad Plus can be helpful in editing photos, writing programs, video editors, music artists, and 3D animators. Furthermore, it has a good keyboard, performance is amazing and the display quality is just superb. For security purposes, you get a face to unlock to keep your files and work secure and unbothered. Honestly, we believe that it’s worth every penny that you are going to spend on and totally worth topping the list of best laptop for graphic design.
2. MSI P65 Creator
MSI has been known for their tremendous quality and durability. They have made some of the finest laptops in the industry. Here they have comes with MSI P65 Creator which looks amazing and packs a lot of power inside. As the name suggest, P65 is specifically created for the creator family whether you are a video editor, graphic designer or photographer. This laptop can do wonders for you. Furthermore, the laptop is packed in aluminum body that ensures the durability for the laptop.
MSI P65 Creator packs a lot inside, the latest Intel Core i7-9750h that can take your performance to next level plus an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 graphics. Laptop with this kind of specs are faster than ever, it will really boost your performance and would help in increasing your productivity. To make it even faster a 32GB RAM and 1TB SSD are housed. So, you can expect a faster performance and easy handling of workloads from this laptop. MSI P65 Creator has the capability to run heavy games and heavy programs like never before. Every penny you are going to spend on this laptop is worth it.
The most interesting thing about the MSI P65 Creator is the 4k display quality. This will help in doing multitasking and also, give you a clear quality so that you won’t need to zoom in. Furthermore, all the connections needed for graphic designing are included like HDMI, USB 3.1, and more. The Keyboard works amazing with good key travel plus the touchpad does all the gestures finely. Honestly, gathering everything like powerful specs with stunning design plus a 4k display is just amazing. It’s very hard to find a laptop that is good at everything.
3. Apple MacBook Pro
Apple has been known for its wonderful laptops. They have different series for different kinds of users. MacBook Pro has been the most powerful laptops ever produced by apple. Their new Apple MacBook Pro is for the user who defy limits and looking for a laptop that incredibly powerful. MacBook Pro has everything that you will need for graphics design whether it’s a big Retina display, powerful internals, or more. It’s can be the best choice for using it for graphics design because its capable of running high end software used for the graphics, have a 16 inch display for multitasking, and features a stunning compact portable design.
Furthermore, Apple MacBook Pro has been featured with the most powerful internals possible. It features the latest Intel Core i7 processor coupled with the AMD Radeon Pro 5300M graphics. These both can do wonders and have enough power to use this laptop for any purpose. Apart from graphics, you can use it for gaming, music production or any other professional work. Also, it features a massive 16GB RAM with a 500GB SSD. These two are enough for handling the storage and multitasking needs. Apple MacBook Pro also has a battery that can last for a whole day. So, you won’t need to charge it all the time and can work in peace.
Moreover, the display of the MacBook Pro isn’t just big but also bright and have a stunning watching performance. You will instantly fall in love with the quality image that it provides. On top of that, you get a magic keyboard with 1mm key travel thus giving you the most comfortable and quiet typing experience. In the end, you also get all the latest connectivity ports needed for graphic designing, gaming, and other work. It also sports the latest thunderbolt port for your convenience. Overall, its a great laptop with a stunning display, outstanding performance, massive screen size, and ultimate portability. So, calling it the best laptop for graphic design won’t be wrong.
4. ROG Zephyrus S GX701
Asus has proved many times that slim and portable laptops can also be as powerful as bulky and heavier laptops. With their new ROG Zephyrus S GX701, they have made a performance beast that is full of useful features and packs a lot of power inside. Asus Zephyrus S maybe a little overpriced but it’s totally worth it considering the Max Q design and all the features. if you got a budget and looking for the best laptop for graphic design, this can be the one.
This ultra-slim laptop features the latest Intel Core i7-9750h processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060. With the GeForce RTX™ graphics, you can dominate anywhere whether it’s graphic designing, programming, music production or gaming. ROG Zephyrus S GX701 is capable of handling almost anything and give you the ultimate boosted performance. Furthermore, it packs 32GB DDR4 memory and 1TB SSD inside. We believe that these specs are enough to make you satisfied and let you work with peace.
The design may look a little awkward but you will get used to it eventually. Over the keyboard, you will see a lot of empty space but that plays a lot of role in cooling the laptop and also you get a powerful speaker on the side. Furthermore, ROG Zephyrus S GX701 has all the important ports needed for connectivity and has a tremendous display to let immersive into the graphic designing world.
5. Lenovo ThinkPad P1
Thinkpad series have long been known for their wonderful professional laptops. Thinkpads are specifically made for professional works like programming, graphics designing and others. Their workstation model Lenovo ThinkPad P1 comes with super durable chassis that can last for years doing the service. The design of laptop is super cool packing every thing in a compact chassis to make sure that you don’t have problem carrying your laptop around. This black beauty features a 15.6 inches display with FHD resolution and extremely thin bezels adding to the beauty of the laptop. The screen is neither too big nor too small so that you can easily carry it around plus do the multitasking.
More, the laptop isn’t only about the external design. Internal it features some of the latest components to make sure that it’s competitive enough to run all the graphic designing software. There are tons of graphic designing software and to run that Lenovo ThinkPad P1 sports the latest 9th Generation Intel Core i7 i7-9750H processor coupled with the NVIDIA Quadro T1000. These both combined have enough power to give you outstanding performance. Multitasking is handled with the massive 16GB RAM to make sure that you never run out of memory no matter how many tasks you run on P1.
Moreover, for storing your files and design, you need storage. Lenovo ThinkPad P1 comes with a speedy 256GB SSD. SSD not only gives you storage but also give so much to have better performance. The keyboard of the ThinkPad P1 is so comfortable to type and has good key travel plus actuation force. Also, you will find all the ports including 2 Thunderbolt 3, 2 x USB 3.1, HDMI 2.0, Mini Gigabit Ethernet, 3.5mm Mic/headphone combo jack, Kensington lock slot, and Smart Card reader. Overall, it’s one of the best laptops for graphic design because of its great design, good performance, a comfortable keyboard, and powerful internals.
6. Gigabyte AERO 15 OLED
There are very few laptops that are made for the same reason you need them to be. If you are a graphic designer and want a laptop that’s specifically made for graphics designing. Nothing can beat the Compatibility of the AERO 15. This laptop is made specifically while having content creation and video editing, photography, and graphic design in mind. This laptop is focused on more possibilities, a thin and light yet powerful laptop. AERO 15 has no limitation, focusing on finer detail such best cooling system, great design, and next-level display quality.
They promise unlimited possibilities and they mean it. AERO 15 has many variations, the base model starts from around 1200$ and you can have the ultimate model at around 4000$. You can choose any of them based on your needs and budget. We have reviewed the base model having the latest Intel Core i7-9750h processor paired with the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti graphics. Also, 8GB DDR4 RAM with 256GB SSD for storing your files. You can add more storage, RAM and also select a more powerful graphics plus processor if you need it.
The AERO 15 is CNC crafted from compressed aluminum which creates a very strong body.
so, you can say that this laptop is light but very durable. Furthermore, for your work to be secure and unbothered, they have included a fingerprint sensor for Windows Hello. Moreover, AERO 15 features a killer module for faster ethernet and WIFI. Also, you will find a supra cool 2 to keep your laptop cool and let the performance flourish. Last but not least, or connectivity, you will find all the important and necessary ports. What would you ask for more? Right!
7. Asus ZenBook 15
Asus surely knows how to attract customers and make a stunning laptop. Others should learn from Asus, the trick of changing gimmicks into useful features. They have done the same Asus Zenbook 15, packed carefully in royal blue aluminum. The laptops simply look stunning and you will instantly fall in love with them. They have introduced a ScreenPad 2.0 into the Touchpad. The ScreenPad lets you add apps for instant access and work well with other video editing and graphic designing programs. Asus Zenbook is beauty plus power. You can expect a high-level performance from this beautiful piece of art.
It’s not just about beauty when you look inside. You will be surprised to see that this ultra-slim laptop features a powerful Intel Core i7-10510u processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX1650 Max-Q graphics. Also, to handle the multitasking and heavy programs a 16GB RAM is there. For storage purposes, a super-fast 1TB SSD is housed inside. So, by looking at these wonderful features, you can say that Asus Zenbook is up for any challenge and is one of the best laptops for graphic design. It can handle anything whether you are a gamer, graphic designer, photographer or video editor. Feel free to try it out and we believe that it won’t disappoint you.
Now let’s talk about the extra features offered by the Asus Zenbook 15. You can do almost anything with the ScreenPad 2.0 like mode switching, app navigator, quick keys, handwriting, slide Xpert and also turn it into Numpad. It’s quite useful if you get used to it. Furthermore, Asus ZenBook 15 has got all the connections you need like HDMI, USB 3.1 and more. Also, the keyboard and touchpad work fine. So, it has got everything and a really impressive laptop to buy.
8. Acer Predator Helios 500
Beastly design with a lot to offer in one laptop, Acer Predator Helios has made good efforts to hear “Awesome”. The edges are carved, Hot surface warning over the AC adapter, light black, and grey color, and the Predator power button with backlight makes it stylish, cool and attractive as next-level tech. 17.3″ display and high technical specifications increase the weight to 8.3 pounds but who is counting if it gives you everything. If you need a motivation to do graphic designing creatively then get an Acer Predator under your fingers to make a difference.
The classy design is made in such a way that it provides maximum performance with its specification. The cooling system is integrated at every step to enhance the performance of the GPU. The 17.3″ wide IPS Display having G-SYNC technology gives HD graphics with 1920×1080 native resolution-making Acer Predator Helios 500 one best laptop for designers. The system has a powerful processor of 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8750 with 6 cores that can be boosted up to 4.1 GHz. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 GPU with 8GB DDR5 virtual memory helps you to do graphic designing in a unique way. 16GB RAM and 256GB PCIe SSD with 1TB HDD drive allow you to do more work in a faster way. The laptop is full of all kinds of ports around the chassis to support. Ports include Ethernet, display port along with HDMI support, 3 USB 3.0 ports, 2 Thunderbolt 3 ports, and separate headphone and microphone jacks.
The sound system is incredible with 2.1 Waves MaxxAudio speakers and a subwoofer to empower you with every bit of frequency. RGB keyboard with customizable keys has an anti-ghosting feature that never misses the stroke. The touchpad is precise, accurate with a little style of blue-lit over the edges. Everything that you need for content creation and graphic designing is in this laptop and therefore is ranked among the best graphic design laptops.
9. ASUS ZenBook UX303UB
Sophisticated new smoky, Icey and Rose color to the all-aluminum body of ASUS ZenBook makes it stunning. Elevated edgy design over the metal finish adds value to a slimmer body and makes it perfect to be the best laptop for designers. Affordable price to pay for the features any designers would want, hence ASUS ZenBook is the best budget graphic design laptop 2021.
ASUS ZenBook doesn’t just have a good design but the performance offered is also enormous. From its 3.2 lbs. weight to its backlit keyboard, everything in ZenBook is balanced for creative work. The processor is Intel Core i7 6500U processor and at Turbo boost can work good like 3.1 GHz. Native IPS 13.3-inch touch display gives you a maximum feel of almost 2K (3200 x 1800) resolution and makes ASUS the best graphic design laptop. Colors optimization and fine-tuning in ASUS with splendid technology is overwhelming. The Nvidia GeForce 940M GPU with 2 GB DDR3 virtual memory backs up the display nicely. Speeding up the back-end process with 12GB RAM and 512GB SSD drive, now everything is just one click away for instant application launches. You can work for 7 consecutive hours while designing and depending upon your usage condition, the battery may work longer.
Among the ports, you get 3 USB 3.0 ports, 1 HDMI, 1 Mini Display Port, 1 SD card reader along with an AC adapter, and COMBO audio jack. ASUS SonicMaster Technology speakers give you a good sound when editing your tracks. Smart Touchpad of ASUS ZenBook follow all Window 10 gestures accurately. The built-in keyboard has the backlit ability that adjusts itself with ambient light sensor technology. Putting together all of its performance, design, speaker and a nice keypad makes it the best laptop for graphic designing and video editing.
10. Acer Aspire E 15 15-inch
Designed with black plastic, brushed nicely like metal, gives you everything that is needed for graphic designing. Despite its bulky design, Acer Aspire E 15 has a lot of tech specifications that came at a low price which makes it the best budget graphic design laptop. The wide 15.6-inch display with FHD resolution is adorable but the 5.27 lbs weight makes it hard to carry around. The best part of Acer Aspire is the battery life which works more than 8 hours under extensive use.
Listing the rest of the tech specifications of the Acer Aspire E 15, the processor is 1.6 GHz with Intel Core i5 supported by the NVIDIA MX150 graphic processor that gives you a good 1920 x 1080 FHD display preview. Using many applications at one time with 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD is not a problem. Creating content with a 1080p display and widescreen makes Acer Aspire the best laptop for animation and graphic design. The laptop is full of all supporting ports like HDMI, Ethernet port, USB 2.0, 3 USB 3.0 ports, combo audio, and display port. The Acer Aspire E 15 supports a DVD read/write drive that helps you to save progress when creating graphical content.
The sound system is loud and clear but the quality is not that overwhelming. Overall at such price and the tech capability that is provided is extraordinary hence it’s the best graphic design laptop. An extended keyboard with separate numeric and function keys that are embedded over the membrane is classy. The touchpad has white lining over the edges and supports each gesture nicely. Getting a laptop with good configuration techs at a low price is remarkable for beginner graphic designers.
11. Microsoft Surface Book 2
Microsoft Surface Book 2 is unique to the previous 13-inch model. Though the difference is not prominent the newly added features are way better. The design is tough, sleek, aluminum lid and the aesthetic silver color touch makes it more appealing. Weight is 4.2 lbs which is lighter for a laptop having so much to offer. Creating graphics content with a 15-inch display and a 3:2 aspect ratio is much easier and more fun for designers.
Lifting the lid with fulcrum hinges, you will see PixelSense display with 3240 x 2160 resolution giving you almost 4K display effects. The display is backed up by 10 points multi-touch G5 touchscreen and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 GPU with 6GB dedicated memory. Surface pen with 4096 pressure sensitivity and no lag, makes the surface book easier to use in tablet mode. For creating content like video or photo editing with touchscreen and high-end graphics resolution, Surface Book 2 is the best laptop for animation and graphic design. Giving you the Max Turbo 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8650U quad processor, along with 16GB of RAM and 512GB PCIe SSD drive, it does all your creative tasks in moments.
Talk about the supporting features, Microsoft Surface Book 2 has 2 Type-A and Type-C USB ports, an SD card slot, and Windows Hello face authentication camera with 1080p video support. You won’t miss any sound while having front-facing stereo Dolby speakers. There is no Ethernet port but you can enjoy the same function with Thunderbolt in 3.1 Gen USB ports. Battery life is pretty good with 17 hours while video playback. The keyboard is shallow and requires less actuation force and the touchpad is so perfect that it won’t miss any gesture.
Buyer’s Guide for Graphic Design Laptops
A good graphic designer needs a good laptop that fits his line of profession. If you are looking for a high-end performance laptop that will enhance your ability in graphic design then you need high spec components in your laptop. Having a perfect laptop that has speed, a novelty design, fabulous visual effects or resolution, and portability, guarantees a good professional carrier.
Graphic design doesn’t need every technical component in a laptop but those which provide performance, customizability, and high resolution are preferred by designers. If you want to buy a laptop for graphic design then you should be looking at these aspects.
The performance of a graphic design laptop depends upon several technical factors like Processor, RAM, Storage device and good graphics processing unit. Every laptop has its own specification, however, the higher the specs, the higher the price will be. Looking for those specs which assist you in the right way under the price you need is important.
Opening many applications at a time and running them smoothly requires a good processor chip. Graphic designing requires a laptop that can run as many applications as it can at once and for that you should consider the processor first. Ranging from Core i5 to Core i7 processors are available but having a higher generation processor is important. Some laptops have a low processor but they are backed up by other tech components like RAM, GPU to enhance the performance.
RAM and storage memory play a secondary role in performance. The higher the RAM the more will be the cache memory to launch many applications at once. Preferred RAM should be above 8GB. Graphic design needs a lot of space to store your data so that you don’t need an external drive. Having an NVMe or PCIe SSD drive to open every store file with just a click is extraordinary.
Besides a wider screen like 15″ or 17,” the most important factor to consider in a graphic designing laptop is resolution. Display with good technology like Anti-Glare or IPS display that has Full, Quad or Ultra HD resolution ranging from 1920 x 1080 to 3840 x 2160 pixels assist you in adding visual effect while designing the graphics. The clearer the picture of the display, the easier it will be designing because making the graphics look more realistic is a tough job. A laptop that has a good native display resolution and backed up by a good GPU is a next-level thing. Enhanced graphics help you design even 3D images with fewer efforts and more accuracy.
You need to be a lot of handy in graphic designing and that can be done when your laptop is customizable. If the laptop is convertible to tablet mode, or there are extra feature like a NoteBook with touchscreen ability makes it easier to work with confidence. A laptop that works as 2-in-1 makes graphic designing easier, with accuracy and precision.
A laptop like Microsoft surface book 2, Toshiba Satellite Helios, and HP ZBook are a convertible and detachable laptop with touch screen ability. Making changes in the design or adding visual effects to the content with a pen or touch gives maximum control to your work. Some laptops have customizable keys over the lid like HP ZBook or T2 touch bar in Apple MacBook Pro provide a lot of function with just a tap or touch.
Connecting possible equipment at once to the laptop while designing is necessary. Laptops that provides many connecting ports that have new technology like Thunderbolt 3 enhances the speed and allows you to connect with different devices.
Having both kinds of USB connecting port like 2.0 and Thunderbolt 3 in a single laptop makes it easier to connect and share your data. Thunderbolt 3 has the ability to charge your laptop, connect to smartphones, USB, Ethernet connection and even connecting with external monitors. Speedy, no connecting issues and read/write are just a few clicks away with Thunderbolt 3. Other ports that are important for any graphic design laptop are Ethernet port, HDMI port, Combo audio jack, and an SD card reader will give you maximum ability at every step while designing.
Graphic designing needs a powerful laptop that has a good graphical processor and gives you maximum performance when it comes to speed. This article has different laptops from the touch screen to high definition NoteBooks that are perfect for beginner graphic designers to professionals. The list contains some expensive laptops with high technical components, for designing 3D graphics like Apple MacBook Pro and also contain some average laptop like Acer Aspire that do well in graphic designing.