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Laptops for Photo Editing

Here's a great selection of laptops for photo editing.

Most run of the mill blogs and articles opining about “the best laptop for photo editing” give a cursory introduction to photo editing requirements and usually break these down by laptop specification.

At Choosist, whilst we love our products, what we’re about is you. What follows is an explanation of what you’ll need from your investment of time as well as money.

(If this all still seems daunting, you can take the stress and time away and still find the most suitable device via our laptop AI laptop finder service. You’ll get a specific recommendation, an explanation as to why it's the best option for you, where you can find it at the best price and best of all its totally free!)

1. Visual accuracy and clarity

At the risk of stating the obvious, these are paramount as you’ll be making fine detail judgements, often down to a pixel. If the rendering and colours are off, so will your hours of hard work be!

Therefore, look out for the following key items in a laptop screen.

Firstly the screen technology. Commonly the options are TN (twisted nematic) VA (vertically aligned), IPS (in-plane switching) and OLED. The latter two are the best, the OLED proving greater contrasts too, but the VA and TN (often not stated) are getting better and better. IPS and OLED offer the best colour accuracy and viewing angles. If you can afford the premium then go for it.

Resolution. Generally speaking the higher the better as it provides more detail in the same space. But bear in mind that the smaller the screen, the less difference that extra resolution can make, as the eye can only perceive so much at the same scale.

Similarly, size, arguably, also works on the “more is better” principle. The greater the screen ‘real estate’ the more you can see at any one time. This also means space to accommodate the image alongside the tools and palettes without a cramped and cluttered screen. But size comes at several costs - price, portability by dimension and weight but also requirement. The bigger the screen, the higher the resolution screen you’ll need to view at the same level of detail.

2. The ability to run demanding software

Whether you’re a photoshop fanatic or a GIMP user, working with image files, especially in RAW format, a laptop for photo editing requires some grunt under the hood. The following areas will need your attention

The processor sometimes referred to as the CPU, has to perform some serious computations to convert your thoughts and ideas into visual reality.

Whether you buy AMD or Intel, you’ll want to get 4 cores (a core is a processing unit) and above, the latest generation of processor. For example, an Intel i7 - 8550 which is 8th gen will be better than intel i7 - 7500 which is 7th gen. Thereafter its the speed, usually written as GHz, that you’ll want to maximize.

Don't forget to look out for the suffix. Processors that end in Y should be avoided, whilst U will indicate a lower powered version, although top end varieties of U processors will manage. Those ending in H or K will be high performers but will usually be bigger and bulkier affairs.

RAM is equally critical to ensuring a smooth uninterrupted experience when editing your prize-winning portraits or awesome action shots.

Your processor computes batches of data (image details, commands to alter the image etc) and the size it can work on at any one time is determined in large part by the RAM which is the space in which the work can be done. To do this RAM is very fast memory but this makes it expensive hence there's less of it than in your hard drive.

8GB will handle it, but if you want to ensure avoiding lag 16GB or above will be better.

Hard drive choice is not just about storage space. With excellent cloud storage and cheap external devices, long-term storage is cheap.

Graphics cards have hitherto been the first go to spec when searching for the best laptop for photographers. Graphics cards ensure that whatever the processor makes happen to the image is delivered quickly and accurately to the screen.

As such discrete or separate graphics cards, usually by NVIDIA or AMD, have been insisted upon, but modern integrated cards are catching up fast and can save you some serious pennies.

If you want a laptop for photo editing, the laptop’s operating system will need to be compatible with the software package you’re after.

We’ve mentioned photoshop, GIMP and Sketch but there are other software that may be important. From Affinity Photo to the oddly named Alien Skin Exposure, from Lightroom to Luminar 3, most are available on both Windows and Mac.

However, Apple’s more than basic ‘Photos’ is exclusively macOS and Microsoft’s Photo Editor 10 is Windows only.

And let’s not forget ChromeOS. Whilst these tend to be lighter weight laptops, we’re starting to see beefier models hit the market. Whilst these will not compare with MacBook Pros or Lenovo Thinkpad workstations, they can be great for lightweight work on the move. But, they won’t be running full Adobe Photo without laggy and complicated streaming / remote desktop set-ups. Can a Chromebook ever be the best laptop for photographers? One day maybe, but for now, if you’re serious and you can afford it, probably not.

3. Compatibility with your other devices

Nowadays there are wireless options available for nearly every type of peripheral. Wacom style tablets, multifunction mice as well as 3D mice are all available as wire-free. So the best laptop for photo editing on the market no longer needs to be the laptop with the most ports on it!

Where wireless options do not exist hubs and adapters abound aplenty which may be fine if your laptop will be parked permanently on your desk. However, if you might be using it more than one location or if you do not want to use an external hub, the number and speed of ports may be an issue. This is even more important as the number of ports on laptops seem to be reducing, with one of them often doubling as the power input.

So, to put it simply, when you’re looking for the best laptop for photo editing for ‘you’, you’ll need to establish your connectivity needs in advance.

Results 1 - 20 of 108
Just Right
for your needs

Are you looking for top-of-the-line power housed in a design that you can proudly show off? The search ends with the Acer Aspire V Nitro. The first thing you'll notice is the impeccable black design, blend of premium materials and dramatic red glow of the keyboard. Hidden under the sleek exterior is a 2.6GHz Intel Core i7 quad-core processor with 8GB of RAM that enables you breeze through all your demanding programs and juggle multiple tasks. Whether it's casual gaming, 3D rendering or front-end development, you can rest assured that your Acer Aspire V Nitro is equipped to handle it all. Elsewhere, the graphics are driven by a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M chipset that makes for supersmooth visuals upon the 15.6-inch display with full HD resolution and IPS technology. Four built-in speakers equipped with Dolby Digital Plus Home Theater surround sound ensures an immersive multimedia experience. When it comes to your extensive collection of digital files, the generous 1TB hard drive provides tons of room for storage.

Just Right
for your needs
Just Right
for your needs

Every hardcore gamer needs a brilliant gaming laptop to ensure that they get an unmatched experience every time they play. With a discrete NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics card, you can have an intense and immersive experience whatever you choose to play, with smooth and streamlined graphics to suit even the most demanding games. With a Full HD IPS anti-glare, micro-edge WLED-backlit screen, you will be able to play your games in vibrant and sparkling color, ensuring your software looks the way that it was always meant to. If it couldn't get any better, the Intel Core i5 and 8 GB of RAM combined make for a practical and quick experience that ensures that you can run a number of powerful and demanding games software at once. Add to this the streaming and sharing options of Bluetooth connectivity and you have a connected and modern laptop which can help to drive your gameplay to the next level.

HP Pavilion 15 Black

$879.99
$687.98
Just Right
for your needs

Imagine a gaming laptop that can fully immerse you into your fantasy worlds, with astounding graphics and power that are simply unbeatable. Head into battle with the exciting NVIDIA graphics providing your gameplay with a new dimension that you will fall in love with. With 1920 x 1080 pixels, it is impossible not to be impressed with the incredible clarity of this display, seeing your games in a whole new technicolor. With 1000 GB of storage, you will never run out of room to store your favorite games and enjoy the benefits of having all your favorite games accessible in the same place, ready to play when you want to. No gaming laptop would be victorious without a powerful processor, and the HP Pavilion has a thrilling 8th generation core which will never disappoint, supporting you in all your gaming feats throughout the day and night. Game in ultimate style.

Just Right
for your needs

If you long for your workdays to go faster, the HP Pavilion is installed with a Quad-core Intel Core i5 processor to ensure that you are free before you know it. This enables you to run multiple software applications at the same time so that you can juggle the tasks that are important to you. In addition to this, the combined HDD and SSD also mean that the HP Pavilion balances both speed and extra storage, ensuring all your professional needs are met. If you want to stay in touch with your colleagues at all times, even from the most remote locations, then this laptop is equipped with the latest Bluetooth and Ethernet connections, meaning that you can share documents quickly and easily between different devices. However, nothing says professional more than a crystal-clear display, and the AMD Radeon RX-560X discrete graphics give you a smooth and consistent visual performance. The Full HD and backlit screen not only has excellent clarity however, but its decent size and includes IPS also makes visual tasks easier on the eye.

Just Right
for your needs

Although the HP Omen's streamlined chassis is sleek, its design is robust, alongside this laptop's powerful features such as the 7th Gen Intel Core i7. This processor has the extensive power needed to drive some of the most demanding game specs, while the 12GB of RAM ensures you've got the memory to create the high performance needed by hardcore gamers. The display is high quality too, with a WLED backlight complimenting the Full HD and anti-glare panelling for vivid and thrilling visuals. In addition to this, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX graphics meet the Bang & Olufsen Audio speakers with HP Audio Boost and dual mics for an intense and immerse experience that can appeal to the senses through smooth graphics performance and rich sound quality. What's more, with up to ten and a half hours of battery life, you can game from any location without worrying about finding a suitable charging point.

Very Good
for your needs

Built around an uncompromising need for performance, the MSI GL63 is the perfect gaming laptop for life on-the-go. Whether it's intense battlefield action or demanding workflows, the MSI GL63 will exceed all your power requirements thanks to an efficient 2.2GHz Intel Core i7 six-core processor and 8GB of DDR4 RAM. Led by a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 graphics chipset, you can enjoy fast, supersmooth visuals and dazzling visual quality upon the 15.6-inch FHD display. Elsewhere, you're sure to appreciate the giant speakers and exclusive audio module design for a sensational sound experience. Whether it's additional monitors, headphones or mice, the GL63 allows you to customize your entertainment and multimedia space with an HDMI port, Mini DisplayPort and 3 USB 3.1 ports. Designed specifically with gamers in mind, the outstanding Cooler Boost temperature control solution allows you to maintain peak performance for extended periods of time. When it comes to storage, the 1TB hard drive and 128GB SSD provide plenty of space for all your videos, programs and extensions.

Just Right
for your needs

Work through the day and watch cat videos through the night, this will do whatever you need. Not only is this HP laptop deceptively powerful, it will look good while it's working hard too. The sleek chassis is hiding a lot of power, and the display might be reason enough to look a little closer. View your favourite characters in Full HD, and experience other worlds in vivid and eye-catching colors. You'll only experience crystal-clear images with this laptop's display, meaning you'll always have a great view of whatever content you are glancing over. What's more, this laptop is a multitasking powerhouse. Enjoy peak performance and top-tier speeds that's needed for those who need to work on multiple tabs or applications all at once. Whether you're playing games, watching Netflix or writing your next bestseller, this laptop offers one incredible power boost to your workday - all while looking fabulous, too.

Just Right
for your needs

Engineered to appeal to the gaming crowd, this has all of the specs and features you can dream of. It's some impressive stuff, and there's plenty to look at beyond the sleek chassis. On the inside, you'll find that the NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX graphics are perfect to match the latest Intel processor, so gaming is quick and mercifully lag-free. The screen is a beautiful thing too, with IPS tech as standard and the choice of FHD or the even more impressive UHD. Both come with full anti-glare paneling, so you can get your game on wherever you are without worrying about reflections. The sound is amazing, thanks to the two internal speakers that are powered by a little Waves MaxxAudio Pro. As well as all of the tech specs you need, it also comes with smart airflow and an SSD so that overheating or storage are never going to be an issue that affects your game-playing. Brute power in an elegant chassis, this is a real head-turner.

Just Right
for your needs

Sturdy and with the power to match, this is a gaming laptop that will back you up in a fight. As well as its sleek black design, it also has a stunning backlit keyboard which can ensure that you have the precision needed to key bash into the night and win your battles. With a 15.6-inch Full HD display with a matte finish, you can have high-quality visuals which can fully immerse you in your game. Add to this the 8MB of RAM, and you have a smooth performance when playing all of the biggest titles. Not only this, but Intel® HD Graphics 630 result in smooth and high performing graphics consistent with your gameplay and B&O PLAY speakers and dual microphones will let you threaten your enemies in stunning clarity too. Additionally, there are both HDMI and Ethernet ports, ensuring that you can connect with others and share and download files easily.

Just Right
for your needs

After a powerful and flexible convertible? Look no further. This nifty laptop is powerful and full of features while also looking amazing, too. Its ultra-thin design, together with 15.6 in screen and thin bezel edges, makes this ideal for those who want to get the maximum performance and style in one package. The 15.6 in touch screen is powered by an Intel Core i7 processor and Intel HD graphics card. This allows you to take advantage of features such as Windows ink where you can turn your thoughts into pictures and actions. Flexibility is also at the heart of the Lenovo Yoga 720 with its 360-degree hinge. It's light enough at just 4.4 pounds to allow you to turn it into a large tablet device to use on your lap or on the train. If you like music while you work, then you'll also love the built-in JBL speakers with Dolby audio premium. These can deliver enhanced bass and volume without any distortion. Take your productivity to the next level with the Lenovo Yoga 720 laptop.

Just Right
for your needs

In need of a gaming laptop that will smash your expectations? Take control of your destiny with the Acer Nitro 5. The powerful 2.8GHz Intel Core i7 processor is capable of handling the most intense of sessions, whereas the 1TB hard drive provides ample storage space. The high-performance NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1050Ti1 graphics card ensures smooth sailing for the best experience, while the full HD resolution makes for top-notch picture quality. From all angles, even the smallest details are clear on the 15.6-inch display for a dramatic and exhilarating visual experience. The Dolby Audio™ Premium adds a rich layer of texture to the stellar sound experience with perfectly tuned speakers. Elsewhere, the strategically placed 802.11ac wireless antenna means the Acer Nitro 5 maintains a strong, consistent signal at all times. Whether it's headphones or controllers, there are more than enough ports available so that you can enjoy gaming the way you want to. The advanced dual-cooling arms are meant to last those long gaming sessions without heat buildup, while the manual feature means you can take control when you feel the need to.

Very Good
for your needs

Are you eager to become a gaming champion? If so, the Acer Predator Helios 300 has the power and style to crown you king or queen in whatever game you are playing. With its trademark Predator logo and style, this laptop is effortlessly cool with an intimidating aura, making it known that you are not to be messed with. The backlit keyboard makes it simple to play at night for that fully immersive experience, while the NVIDIA Pascal™ architecture makes even the most demanding game look flawless. With 15.6-inches of glorious screen in Full HD and a subtle backlight, the Helios is a mighty fine machine that will play most gaming titles seamlessly while making you look cool, too. What's more, the Intel® Turbo Boost Technology means that multitasking is no problem either, and you'll be able to livestream your gaming even as you wipe out an enemy base. There are plenty of ports to use and connectivity will never be an issue with Wi-Fi, Ethernet, or Bluetooth options. Devastatingly powerful and awesome, this is a mighty gaming machine for hardcore gamers.

Just Right
for your needs

If you want to be fully-equipped when entering your virtual battles, you should consider the HP Omen 17. Its 17.3-inch screen gives you a fully immersive experience and allows you to share your games with others from a wide range of viewing angles. This laptop's best features are in the detail, however, and the Full HD display optimizes your laptop usage by giving you astounding and intense graphics. The HP Omen balances graphics with power, and the 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor is strong enough to power all your gaming repertoire and keep up with your gaming talent, ensuring that software runs smoothly and quickly. Not only this, but the HDD will ensure that you have plenty of storage to keep up with all the latest releases, and 12 GB of RAM will allow games to run smoothly. However, this is a laptop which has been adapted for any gaming experience, whether you are a casual or hardcore gamer, and so the IPS and LED backlight ensures that you can have the best display at any time of the day or night.

Just Right
for your needs

If you need to add a dose of the professional to your workplace, the HP Omen 15-dc0010nr is the perfect option. With an 8th generation Intel Core i5 processor, you have the practicality and strength to support all your most important applications and ensure that your software runs smoothly for long periods of time. Not only this, but the HDD and SSD combination ensures that your laptop has the best of both speed and storage whenever you need it. Additionally, we know the importance of smooth visuals in the workplace, and that is why we recommend the HP Omen, which has a discrete NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050. This allows the intense graphics to run flawlessly. If you need to burn the candle at both ends, the full-sized backlit keyboard ensures that your usage is consistently high-quality even in dim lighting conditions, ensuring that night owls can work anywhere and at any time. If it couldn't get any better, this laptop is fully adapted for professional life, and the Ethernet port and HP webcam ensures that you can communicate with colleagues and share files at any time.

Very Good
for your needs

If you're ready to get your game on, you should consider this DELL Inspiron. The NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 graphics make gameplay look smooth while keeping up the pace, and is helped by the quad-core Intel processor, which provides you with a powerful and consistent performance. Not only this, but the screen gives you high-quality and crystal-clear visuals that can tantalize the senses thanks to the IPS FHD setup that comes with anti-glare panelling, meaning that you can game from any location. If audio quality is also on your list of priorities, the dual speakers get their power from Waves MaxxAudio Pro so those finishing kills will sound as brutal as they look, and the SSD ensures that your laptop runs quickly too. In addition, there are two Wi-Fi antennas to make your connectivity both assured and fast, and the cooling system keeps the whole laptop cool even during the frenzy of the battlefield.

Very Good
for your needs

Passionate gamers need a strong, reliable, and powerful laptop that can match their need for high-end graphics and fast processing power. Luckily, the Acer Predator is renowned for their sleek and futuristic design and power that makes the most demanding of game titles play well. This Acer Predator laptop has all those requirements and can help the avid gamer achieve their high scores both online and offline. With an Intel Core i7 processor and 16 GB of memory, you are already looking at a laptop that has more than enough power for most games. Enjoy gameplay that won't experience lag, is in picture perfect and crisp clarity, and, of course, play with controls that are designed work with you, not against you. If you want to keep up with the best PC games around, you need to look no further than the Acer Predator. When it comes to gaming, there really isn't another contender.