As a professional graphic design, you want a laptop that lets you create and organize your work effectively, efficiently, with mobility, and this for a reasonable price. The importance of a reliable laptop is undeniable because it allows you to work as easily during your trips as in the comfort of your home.
So today, I have reviews Best Budget Laptop For Photoshop, our Buyer’s Guide Section will also assist you to pick the best one according to your need.
Best Budget Laptop For Photoshop
Today’s modern laptops are faster, more flexible, can hold more information, have more accurate visual displays, and work much faster than anything we’ve seen before.
However, not all laptops are equal. Given the price of such an investment, it’s imperative to make sure you make the right choice.
With so many variables, it may be hard for you to decide which laptop to choose to best meet your personal graphic design needs.
This is the goal of this guide: to help you make the best choice based on your expectations.
Also Read: Best Laptops For Graphic Designer
That is why it will be structured in two parts: a first part in which I will present you the various criteria to know to choose his laptop dedicated to the graphic design, the drawing or the illustration and a second part where I present to you Laptop models that lend themselves to this use.
Top Quality | 5-Star Rating | Affordable Price
|Laptop Name||Screen Size (in)||CPU||RAM||Price $$|
|ASUS VivoBook (Editor's Choice)||14||Intel Core i7-8550U||8 GB DDR4|
|Acer Aspire E 15 Best Budget||15.6||Intel Core i5-8250U||8 GB DDR4|
|Lenovo ThinkPad X1||14||i7-8650U 1.90 GHz Quad Core||16 GB of DDR4|
|Dell Inspiron i5577||15.6||6th Generation Intel Core i7-6700HQ||16 GB of DDR4|
|ASUS ZenBook Flip Screen||14||8th Generation Intel Core i7-8550U||16 GB of DDR4|
|Apple MacBook Pro||13||2.3GHz dual-core 7th-generation Intel Core i5||8 GB|
|Acer Predator Helios||15.6||7th Generation Intel Core i7 2.8GHz||16GB DDR4|
|LG Gram Recommended||13.3||Intel 8th Generation i5-8250U||8 GB DDR4|
|MSI GL62M||15.6||Quad Core i7-7700HQ||8 GB DDR4|
Best Budget Laptop For Photoshop 2020 | Reviews
1. ASUS VivoBook S14 Budget Laptop For Photoshop (Editor’s Choice)
- Screen Size: 14-inch
- Resolution: 1920 x 1080 FHD Touch
- CPU: 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8550U
- Graphics: GeForce MX150
- RAM: 8 GB DDR 4
- Storage: 256 GB SSD
- Weight: 3.2 lbs
- Battery: 42Whr Li-Ion | 7 to 8 hour
It is mainly designed for graphic designing students and can also be suitable for mobile users, as long as they are not too demanding on performance.
What Asus puts forward is the lightness and the neat look of its machine, but also its autonomy: the VivoBook is supposed to hold for a full day of work-or travel!
- The ultrabook is so thick of 19.9 mm and weighs 1.5 kg.
- The machine is mainly designed with plastic, except on the top of the hood which is aluminum. If the ultraportable seems well assembled, however, it may quickly deteriorate in case of a fall.
- The screen part folds quite easily, so avoid moving the laptop by grabbing only this one.
- A good point for the longevity of this ultra-portable!
- we find with pleasure the NanoEdge screen. The very thin edges allow the slab to cover about 87% of the facade, which is no small feat considering the VivoBook S14 price placement.
- The VivoBook S14 has a 14 “matte IPS panel with no reflections . Not surprisingly, the definition is in Full HD, 1920 x 1080 px. This is more than enough to perform editing tasks or watch videos.
- The PC hardly ever heats up, allowing it to be used on the lap in comfort.
- Viewing content is very nice on this ultraportable.
- You will not have to worry about light office automation, watch videos or surf the web fluently. The 16: 9 aspect of the screen is also good for videos.
- The Asus Ultrabook is able to hold about 8 hours, a good day’s work. It can even do better than other more expensive devices. Once again, a student will find his happiness.
- What is nice in the mid-range is that many manufacturers are missing the touch panels. We are thus with screens without reflections, which is much more pleasant for nomadic use.
- The touchpad takes over the NumPad technology. With a simple press of the dedicated button, a backlit keypad appears. It works even more intelligently, knowing when you use it to move the mouse or to enter numeric values.
- It is possible to add RAM through a port left free on the motherboard.
- It including two USB-A ports, a USB-C, a micro-SD port and a full-size HDMI .
- Even the headphone jack is present.
- Only missing the Ethernet network plug, whose absence is partially offset by wireless Wifi ac and Bluetooth network modules
2. Acer Aspire E 15 Best Budget Laptop For Photoshop (Recommended)
- Screen Size: 15.6-inch
- Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080)
- CPU: 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8250U 3.4 GHz
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce MX150 with 2 GB of dedicated GDDR5 VRAM
- RAM: 8 GB DDR 4
- Storage: 256 GB SSD
- Weight: 5.27 lbs
- Battery: 6-cell Li-ion (2800 mAh) 15 hours
- Dressed entirely in black satin plastic, the Aspire E15 Touch is discreet.
- The manufacturing quality is there, the assembly is correct, without play, the plastic used is pleasant to the touch, even if he likes fingerprints.
- We are far from the materials used on high-end products, but the whole is honest and flawless.
- The dimensions remain contained for this diagonal (381 mm long, 254 mm wide and 25.4 mm thick for 2.3 kg), which makes it quite easily transportable.
- The chiclet type keyboard offers a correct typing, but perfectible. The keys have a correct size and spacing, but their short stroke and low resistance to typing will not be suitable for long strokes.
- The Acer Aspire ES 15 notebook is based on an Intel Core i-5 processor of the seventh generation of 2.50 GHz, able to guarantee excellent performance.
- The RAM is, is more than sufficient because it stops at only 8 GB, although it can be expanded to 16 GB.
- The space for data storage, unfortunately, a bit of a pain, with its 256 GB SSD, practically a standard.
- This laptop is certainly not a PC on which heavy programs can easily run. If you have to work with graphics software, like the ones in the Adobe suite, then you better bet on other models.
- The 1920 x 1080 resolution is just sufficient, the color quality is certainly perfect
- The brightness level is great, you can easily use it outdoor.
- The viewing angles are a little wider, the colors a little more vivid, the backlight a little brighter. Not a lot, mind you, but it’s enough to be worthy of mention.
- The keyboard is the touchpad is very well made. In particular, there is a separate numeric keypad and the keys offer excellent feedback.
- Acer Aspire ES 15 has a good level of autonomy: even with normal use, so with constant navigation and software running, the battery should last about 12-15 hours. Of course, it changes a lot depending on the number of open browser tabs or the power and quantity of the software in use.
- The operating system that you will find already installed at the time of purchase is Windows Home 10, powerful and easy to use even for inexperienced users.
- USB type C ports (one of type 2.0 and two of type 3.0), HDMI connection, SD slot, audio jack for headphones and microphone and of course the integrated wi-fi (compatible with wireless AC networks).
- Bluetooth connection is also available.
- Screen Size: 13-inch
- Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080) Touch
- CPU: 8th Gen, i7-8650U 1.90 GHz Quad Core
- Graphics: UHD Graphics 620
- RAM: 16 GB DDR 4
- Storage:512 GB SSD
- Weight: 2.49 lbs
- Battery: 8-cell Li-ion Battery | 15 Hours
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon laptop is ideal for professionals who want a machine that is lightweight, powerful, and stylish. Extremely mobile, it will be ideal for those who travel daily.
Its ultra-rugged design and ultra-long battery life make the ThinkPad X1 an ideal purchase for nomads!
- Combining carbon fiber and magnesium gives the Lenovo X1 surprising properties, including extreme light weight (1.4KG) , great finesse, while retaining the rigidity and strength of even larger portable.
- With a four-layer carbon-fiber-reinforced housing and a magnesium-alloy protective chassis for added strength, Lenovo has designed the X1 Carbon to stand up to any situation. Spilled Drinks, Drops, and Accidental Shocks.
- Lenovo has tested this notebook for compliance with 12 military-grade strength standards (MIL-SPEC) and over 200 durability tests. Whether it’s a day in the office or traveling, the X1 Carbon has it all!
- The ultraportable Lenovo has an 8th generation intel core i7 quad-core processor that peaks at 3.20GHz in turbo mode.
- It comes with 16 GB of RAM (soldered) and a 512 GB SSD.
- The configuration as a whole is almost perfect for an ultrabook of this type. It is perfectly adapted to a nomadic use, specific to ultrabooks, where responsiveness and versatility are kings.
- The laptop starts in just over 15 seconds directly on the Windows desktop, ready to use. We took it for some movements in the train including, strictly office use (mails, several tabs chrome video conference, excel) without ever experiencing slowdowns. He does not mind a few retouching on Photoshop but shows its limits on larger files in.RAW open simultaneously.
- The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon has many assets, but its main thing is still its incredible screen. This IPS slab with WQHD resolution (2560 x 1440) corresponds to “quad-HD”, in other words 4x higher than HD resolution.
- The screen of a diagonal of 14 inches thus delivers an image of an unequaled precision of almost 210 ppi!
- The calibration of the screen is also very good and gives a qualitative rendering, just colors, ideal especially for graphic work.
- If necessary, switch to a tactile use of this screen, control your workstation with the fingertips intuitively. The latter responds extremely well and is reactive, the only negative point, inherent in this technology, beware of fingerprints!
- The touch is accompanied by a glossy panel somewhat disabling external use because of the effect “mirror” in a bright environment. Lenovo has thought of this inconvenience for its business customers (but not only) and team X1 Carbon film anti-reflective treatment to benefit from the touch, while drastically reducing the glare of this technology.
- It has 4G LTE module (subscription required) with integrated Lenovo Connect SIM card
- The SSD can be changed to higher capacities including 1TB SSD drives, the approach is very simple, some screws and voila!
- The X1 Carbon is offered with Microsoft Windows 10 Professional Signature Edition. No more trial software and unwanted applications. No more distractions, easy provisioning for IT professionals.
- NFC compatible
- Built-in speakers with Dolby Audio Premium technology
- 720p HD Webcam
- From a connector point of view, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon is far from the last class, it benefits in fact from a normal size HDMI port and therefore compatible with most video devices, a mini-Display Port, two USB 3.0, fingerprint reader
- Only two USB ports are present on the machine and no RJ45, very useful in certain circumstances where the WI-Fi is not always at the rendezvous. So we had to use a USB adapter to RJ45 converter, but you only have one USB port available. This small inconvenience can be solved easily with the addition of a USB HUB and should obviously expect to make sacrifices on the connection on laptops of this size.
- Even when there is no WiFi in range, the new X1 Carbon incorporates 4G connectivity to provide permanent access to all your data and applications in the cloud.
- Screen Size: 15.6-inch
- Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080)
- CPU: 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad Core (6MB Cache)
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050
- RAM: 16 GB DDR 4
- Storage: 512 GB SSD
- Weight: 5.66 lbs
- Battery: 5 hours
This could be the best option than any other dell laptop to run design software, because it can handle any large design software. With the 7th generation 1050 TI GTX will make all the difference.
Also Read: Best Laptop For Android Studio
- It is just 23.3mm thin and light weight, smooth black plastic finish with a stunning touch of red over the logo surface and vents.
- The surfaced lid is cool to the touch and amazingly fingerprint resistant.
- It has Intel Quad-Core i5-7300HQ 2.50 GHz (4 cores 4 threads, turbo 3.50 GHz, 6MB cache) which smoothly run you program.
- The Dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 with 4GB GDDR5 VRAM, Integrated Intel HD Graphics 630 support to run your program fast.
- The 512 GB SSD is enough to store alot of data.
- The 15.6 inches FHD anti-glare LED-back lighting (1920 x 1080) screen is just enough for you photo editing work.
- The speaker are just loud enough to fill the room with high-pitched audio.
- It has a USB 3.0 port, HDMI, Gigabit Ethernet, 2-in-1 card reader.
- A Kensington lock slot on the right.
- You’ll find another pair of USB 3.0 ports on the left with jacks for a headset and the power cord.
5. ASUS ZenBook Flip Screen Laptop For Photoshop
As for the Asus Zenbook Pro notebook described above in this ranking, this laptop also offers the advantage of portability and lightness , great for traveling to carry on the bag without adding too much weight in the equipment.
Among the low-end laptops, this notebook is aimed at amateurs and beginners, or those who have less demanding needs when it comes to photo editing and video editing.
Of course, you will have the possibility to install software like Photoshop, Premiere Pro and other graphics programs, but don't expect very high performance when you start working with filters, tools and effects.
For this, we recommend the purchase to professionals who need a battle laptop for quick fixes to use for on-the-go work, and then maybe use a more powerful desktop computer or all-in-one when back in the studio. The ZenBook is indeed a great backup laptop.
If instead, we talk to a beginner who is looking for a low-priced notebook to work with Photoshop to perform basic operations, this laptop can meet the needs and be an excellent entry-level and then move to a more powerful machine in the future.
- Aluminum design is only 0.5 \ “thin for comfortable transport. The cap has our iconic Zen inspiration spinning metal finish that brings a unique touch of luxury.
- It is Sleek and lightweight 3.09 lb.
- It is built to give you the power you need for effortless performance on the go.
- It has 14-inch wide-view Full HD nano-bezel touch screen 13.3 “chassis with stylus and Windows 10 pre-installed.
- The Intel Core i5-8250U Quad-core processor (6M Cache, Turbo up to 3.40GHz) help you to run the programs smoothly
- The Fast storage and memory with 512 GB SSD SATA 16 GB DDR4 are enough to store a lot of data with turbo speed.
- Built-in fingerprint reader with one-touch enter via the Windows function Hi
- The NanoEdge 14-inch screen in UX461 has an ultra-thin bezel that means it gives UX461 an impressive 80% screen and body area, so you can see more, in less space!
- ASUS ZenBook is impressively thin and incredibly lightweight, with the greatest versatility of a 360 ° tilting touch screen and the support of the ASUS pen to take it beyond the confines of a traditional laptop.
- It has built-in fingerprint reader with one-touch enter via the Windows function Hi.
- A 57Wh lithium polymer battery gives the UX461 an amazing up to 13 hours 1 of autonomy. Even in that long intercontinental flight, UX461 also includes fast charging technology that allows you to recharge the battery up to 60% of its capacity in just 49 minutes.
- Extensive connectivity options with HDMI / USB type C, 802.11ac Wi-Fi and SD card reader.
Video editing experts and the best photographers have been relying for years on the solutions offered by Apple with the Macbook Pro series, especially after the advent of TouchBar, which allows for a very powerful tool at your fingertips, especially for the video-making environment.
Those looking for a portable PC for video editing that can offer excellent performance, great reliability and above all low weight, choosing the latest version of the Macbook Pro 15 is the way that will not disappoint.
- All in a gray sidereal case with dimensions of 34.93 × 24.07 cm, 1.55 cm of thickness for about 1.83 kg of weight.
- The model we tested is the top of the range: 13 ″ LED backlit display with IPS and True Tone technology
- In less than 2 Kg, Apple was able to condense the best of the technology currently in circulation
- Both for overall performance and for some details, such as the speed of the SSD unit, higher than all those on the market today, or the balance between size and power
- Even the amount of RAM is identical for all solutions and counts 8 GB at 2400 MHz. As for the graphics sector, the base model (SSD 256 GB) has a Radeon Pro 555X card with 4 GB of GDDR5 memory, while the older brother (SSD 516 GB) has a Radeon Pro 560X card with 4 GB of GDDR5 memory.
- The Retina display of 2560 x 1600 pixels on the 13-inch MacBook Pro is 67 percent brighter than before. We did not see much difference, but this is still one of the brightest panels; recorded 495 nits in our tests, which is significantly higher than the 385 nits in the last model.
- you’ll love the improved stereo speakers of the 13-inch MacBook Pro.
- High-level monitor for both Pro 15 solutions with a 15.4-inch diagonal and a resolution of 2880 x 1800 Pixels. In addition to the WiFi DualBand card and the fingerprint reader integrated into the touchbar, the Macbook Pro 15 offers an HD webcam, a 3.5mm audio jack and 4 multi-function Thunderbolt ports.
7. Acer Predator Helios: Best Cheap Laptop for Photoshop
- Screen Size: 15.6-inch
- Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080)
- CPU: 7th Generation Intel Core i7 2.8GHz
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 with 6 GB of dedicated GDDR5 VRAM
- RAM: 16 GB DDR 4
- Storage: 256GB SSD
- Weight: 5.95 lbs
- Battery: 7-hours
Acer is one of the classic manufacturers of laptops, but did not enter as soon as he would have liked in the gaming sector as he would like. Even so, it has evolved rapidly and since the presentation of the Helios 300 has a laptop that is a very serious rival for the rest of companies, although it has that " gaming " design that may not like some looking for a more discreet laptop but powerful.
In short, we are facing a laptop with very powerful features. Although it lacks 1080, it compensates with another series of elements that make it the best option on the market today. It should be noted its cooling system and its powerful software. They make it the perfect weapon for any gamer.
Also Read: Best Laptop For Revit & Auto-Cad
- Acer Predator Helios 300 is not a team that stands out for its design, in fact, it is manufactured with a black plastic body that does not look very different from the brand’s cheaper gaming equipment
- The panel is made of aluminum, giving it extra resistance against pressure,
- With a size of 390 mm × 266 mm × 26.75 mm and a weight of 2.7 kg, it is finally a laptop with a pretty good look and size for the range to which it is oriented.
- At the heart of the Helios 300 Predator, we find an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 GPU with Overclock capability. To this powerful graphics is added the Intel Core i7 (7700 HQ) 7th generation with which we will have exceptional performance. We will have a base frequency of 2.8 GHz that rises to 3.8 GHz in turbo mode.
- Its processing capacity is 32 GB DDR4 and a PCIe SSD disk of 512 GB. That will improve our boot time and access times to the data. As for storage, it has a 1 TB HDD Hard Disk. With which we can have all our games, programs, movies and music.
- It also allows us to add an HDD to improve this storage capacity. Thanks to the access compartment doors on the bottom of the laptop.
- The 15.6-inch screen is IPS type, and has a brightness of about 300 nits, with a resolution of 1920 × 1080 pixels.
- The response times of the screen are good and no delays are noticed at a glance, as can happen in other higher resolution screens such as 4K.
- The HELIOS 300 Predator features two TrueHarmony speakers and the Dolby Audio Premium audio system. This system offers immersive audio with a clear acoustic and full of nuances. Such is the clarity that we can find out where our rivals approach or intensively appreciate the soundtracks of video games.
- The whole unit is powered by a lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 48 WHr and promises a range of up to 7 hours, a figure that would be excellent if confirmed in our tests.
- writing and playing in the Helios 300 is more comfortable than we might think.
- The backlit gaming keyboard in red color has the WASD keys highlighted in red, which shows that it is a full-fledged gaming keyboard. Although it is true that its configuration is basic, it shows us very nice lighting that will immerse us in the games.
- Acer Sense allows us to customize and monitor the cooling system at all times. Quite useful for when we want to do high-performance tasks, select the MAX option that revolutionizes the fans up to 6000 RPM.
- It has a USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0, a USB 3.0 C, an RJ-45, an SD card reader and a Kensington lock.
- On the right side, it has the power socket for the charger, two USB 2.0, a 3.5-mm four-pole audio input, and the power and activity indicators.
- It also has 802.11ac 2 × 2 MIMO WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0 and a 10/100/1000 Ethernet network port.
8. LG Gram
- Screen Size: 13.3-inch
- Resolution: FHD 1920 x 1080
- CPU: Intel 8th Generation i5-8250U
- Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
- RAM: 8 GB DDR 4
- Storage: 256 GB SSD
- Weight: 8.16 lbs
- Battery: 72Wh Lithium 22.5 hours
After a test of use we have formed the LG Gram opinions about it, it is a laptop with much to offer, as its benefits are not only in the subject of its appearance and design, the power also plays a big role.
The advantages of having a screen with reduced borders and a variety of ports, make the LG Gram a great alternative for the productivity in motion that so much requires the new way of working.
At least in our opinion, the LG Gram keeps much of the spirit of the current Macbook Pro, but with all the differences of rigor starting with the operating system and also has a touch screen that is definitely the most in terms of appearance.
- Although other manufacturers such as Apple or HP seem to have started a frantic war to offer the thinnest laptop on the market, LG has preferred not to sacrifice everything in that facet and try to offer more balanced equipment.
- The equipment is made of magnesium and lithium alloys and also in carbon and magnesium, and the result is curious: we have satin upper and lower covers that provide a pleasant touch and above all a good grip, something useful if we consider that its lightness can mislead and make us forget that we have something in our hands.
- we have the LG Gram-positive opinions on its performance because a processor is quite powerful, it is the Intel 8th Generation i5-8250U 1.6 GHz, which is accompanied by the Intel UHD Graphics 620 graphic system, while its RAM memory is 8GB of RAM and storage is 256 GB SSD, at least in the model we tested.
- The LG Gram battery is 4 cells and 72Wh of Polymer-Lithium, which at least in the words of the manufacturer gives you 22.5 hours of autonomy, but later we will talk about what happened after our tests of use.
- The LG Gram screen is the best you can find: The panel is touch, as we had indicated at the beginning, it has 14 inches and its resolution is FullHD 1920 x 1080, reproduces 96 percent of sRGB color and also It has 300 nit brightness.
- The management of the temperature is better served in this laptop with respect to its predecessor, the passive heat dissipation is quite good and its fan reduces 13 percent more heat than the previous version because it was redesigned.
- The operating system chosen to place on the LG Gram is the Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, it also includes the Microsoft Office suite and has the LG Control Center platform, a management unit that allows you to control all the aspects linked to the screen, the keyboard, the power and the security of Windows, as well as the automatic ignition when lifting the lid.
- The HD webcam of the latest LG Gram is not the best on the market. In static images, it is quite poor, but when using it to make video calls in relatively lit environments, the experience was good as we tried Skype with a colleague.
- As for the sound, it has the DTS audio application that optimizes the equalizer settings and reinforces the bass, levels the volume and generates 3D effects.
- On the right side, we have the Kensington connector, the 3.5 mm headphone jack, a microSD card reader and two USB 3.1 Type-A ports.
- On the left side, a USB Type-C Thunderbolt 3, the owner port of charge, an HDMI and another USB 3.1
9. MSI GL62M: Best Affordable Laptop for Photoshop
The MSI GL62M besides being an excellent laptop for grahic designer + gamers, its an excellent portable workstation worthy of the name.
Those looking for a portable PC for photoshop and other similar applications can find in this MSI solution a level partner, thanks to the new Intel hexa-core CPUs.
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- This powerful laptop has been designed to give the user the best performance power, a very smooth running capability and the latest gaming technologies from NVIDIA GameWorks.
- The display is a good 15.6 inches , boasts a Full HD resolution (1920 × 1080), 120 Hz, 3 ms, 100% sRGB, a wide viewing angle and vivid and bright colors, the maximum for use applied to photography.
- Coupled to the processor we find 2 banks of DDR4 RAM 2666 MHz of 8 GB each (expandable up to 32 GB) which allow a high performance with vector graphics programs and with photo management and retouching software.
- In addition, it was not spared even the GPU side, in fact, we find the new NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6 GB GDDR6.
- The cinematic gameplay, the highest resolution, the multiple monitors and the most extreme fluidity are the characteristics that best define the image quality of this laptop, with the addition of the NVIDIA Ansel mode, through which you can capture in 360 degrees everything type of images and see them in VR.
- The performance level presented by this device is up to three times higher than in previous models of GPUs, something that is reinforced with the ultra-fast FinFET for the best speed in bandwidth, which improves the fluidity of gaming on your laptop.
- This computer has an IPS level of a range of 72% NTSC color range, one of the highest current and that transports the clarity of the image to a higher level.
- It is a machine equipped with a very innovative cooling system Cooler Boost, so you can enjoy your gaming sessions for many hours and without fear of overheating. And always to sustained and continuous performance.
- If we compare it with the standard TN panels, we noticed that the images that are obtained in this laptop are 40% sharper and more vivid in what has to do with the contrast and 20% clearer in terms of brightness.
Well, you have read all the reviews about budgeted photoshop' laptop, now let move to the laptop buying guide section; in this section you will learn the important elements to consider before picking the laptop.
The fundamental function that any laptop suitable for graphics must be able to satisfy is to launch any software or program that you use to create your works.
This is, for example, the Adobe Creative Suite which consists of flagship software such as Photoshop, Illustrator or Design but also software like Sketch, Corel Paint or Autodesk software suites such as 3ds Max or Sketchbook.
The idea is to have a laptop capable of running most software used in graphic design. The main criteria for determining the power of a pc are the computing power of the processor, the graphics card, the amount of RAM.
For the recommended specifications for each software, refer to the software recommendation sheet. For convenience, we will take Photoshop as a reference for the rest of the article.
Adobe Photoshop System Requirements
I divided the Photoshop laptop requirement according to OS;
- 1.6GHz or faster processor with SSE2 support
- Microsoft Windows 7 8.1 or 10 (recommended); 64-bit versions only (32-bit not supported)
- 4GB of RAM (8GB recommended)
- 5.2 GB of available hard-disk space to install applications; extra 2.4GB to download all optional plugins
- 1280 x 800 display resolution (at 100% scale factor)
- Microsoft DirectX 9 or 10 compatible display driver
- DVD-ROM drive (for installation from DVD) or you can download from internal and install it easily.
- Internet connection required for product activation and content download
- 64-bit multicore Intel processor
- macOS v10.12 through v10.14
- 4 GB of RAM (8GB recommended)
- 6.5 GB of available hard-disk space to install applications; extra 2.5 GB to download all optional content
- 1280×800 display resolution (at 100% scale factor)
- DVD-ROM drive (for installation from DVD)
- Internet connection required for product activation and content download
If the processor is the brain of your computer, RAM is short-term memory. RAM (or Random Access Memory) is the storage space in which files are loaded when you work on them.
As you can probably imagine, Photoshop uses it a lot when you edit your images. Modern laptops usually start at 4 GB. But that's not enough.
Ideally, it is better to have a little more.
Even though Adobe claims that 2GB is the minimum, they recognize that 8GB is the recommended amount.
The more there is, however, keep in mind that going beyond 16 GB is superfluous for most users.
The processor, or CPU, is the brain of your computer.
It's the small chip at the heart of everything that is authoritative for almost every application you use, and Photoshop is no exception. It is also one of the most expensive components of a machine.
For example, Adobe recommends using a 2 GHz processor or faster, but if you can afford to do better, it's worth it.
Photoshop uses the processor for the majority of its tasks, so aim for 2.5 GHz or higher for better results.
For those interested in 3D modeling, this is one of the most important components for this task.
Display (Screen Size)
I do not teach you anything if I tell you that the quality of the screen is essential in terms of graphics.
One of the biggest concerns during the graphic design process is to make sure your end result is well-read, which could be a little tricky if your laptop's display rivals a 2000s-style flip phone. 😀
If you compare two screens of the same size but different resolutions, the screen with the highest resolution (that is, the one with more pixels) will be able to show you more details.
Because this screen has more pixels, the picture will be sharper. However, a higher resolution also means that the elements on the screen - such as icons and text - will be smaller.
Many laptops today embark a touch screen - either optional or standard. Opinions are divided as to whether they are good or bad.
Some creatives love them, others hate them because they drain the battery much faster than a traditional screen.
Other important physical aspects include size, portability, and general usability. Is the keyboard practical? How is the battery life? Does it take a lot of time to load? These are all small things that we sometimes neglect, but it is best to consider before buying equipment that we will probably use for a long time.
Another important aspect of a high-end screen is its ability to display colors. The more colors are faithfully represented on your screen, the better you can judge your results.
It is quite obvious that a large screen will allow you to have a larger workspace. In reality, the resolution plays a more important role in this. Having a high-resolution monitor allows your computer to handle smaller icons, toolbars, and fonts, resulting in an even wider workspace.
Combined with the right dimensions you will be able to have all the tools, interfaces, panels directly on your face, instead of accessing the menu bars back and forth, and still have plenty of room to see most of the image.
This is what bit expensive laptops have, and the least you should aim for, no matter what type of Photoshop user you are.
They are beasts but optional. They are a great choice if you are aiming for your image on devices with very high resolutions: iPhone XS, monitor, TV, etc.
Matte vs. Glossy Finish
The choice between these two really comes to where you usually work.
Matte: If you work outdoors or if you have large open windows or work in the library or other places with a large light source right above your head, this is the best choice. Initially, this will reduce the number of reflections and the amount of light reflected in the field view, so you can see more clearly what is on the screen.
Glossy: These have no protective surface to spread light from your eyes. The advice is that the light coming from the screen to your eyes will not be scattered or reduced in intensity to get a more accurate representation of what is on the screen. In short, these are more accurate than color.
IPS vs. TN panels
This choice is also reduced to personal preferences.
IPS: It makes no sense to get too technical, but these will give you better color rendering, what you see on the screen, is what you will be more likely to get on your target device or on your printed work.
These panels also have better viewing angles, you can tilt the screen in any way and see clearly what is going on.
TN: They are the cheapest and standard choices and do not have the above mentioned benefits.
Any type of display comes from the iPhone, portable or desktop display, depending on the design, and the manufacturing process will have a set of color space, which is a percentage of the colors it can render. This percentage can be measured against the amount of colors specified by the different standards: sRGB and aRGB.
Manufacturers usually do not specify the amount of color range that displays can cover, so you need to rely on ratings and benchmark studies.
sRGB against aRGB
Even then, these will list two percentages. Ex: 86% of sRGB and 92% of aRGB. Which one to choose? Just listen to a world expert on this issue and look for sRGB.
If you're serious about using PhotoShop and want to get the most accurate representation of how your work is being printed or published on electronic devices, you should definitely get an external monitor.
There is not a single laptop out there that matches the specifications that no desktop display can provide.
A fast hard drive: Having a fast hard drive is a significant asset because it will allow you to launch your software faster. Two types of hard drives are provided today with laptops, traditional HDDs and the latest SSDs (SSDs are not really hard drives).
SSDs are ultra-fast disks with which you will be able to launch your software in a few seconds, so they are highly recommended for a laptop dedicated to architecture.
The speed of copying an SSD is generally above 200 Mb / s while that of HDD varies between 50 and 120 Mb / s. Moreover, the software is launched 30% faster on an SSD than on a disk. classic hard.
If you still opt for an HDD, opt for a disc with a speed of 7200 rpm.
Here, no question to ask, for my part, having an SSD is not an option but a prerequisite.
Type: HDD vs SSD
You have no trouble finding 1TB storage devices, the problem is that most of them are hard drives (hard drives) and to be honest, they have served us well in recent decades. They are too slow for this day and age. Windows 10 and most of the software out there work best with solid-state drives (SSDs). They can also give you 1TB-2TB capacity, the problem is they are expensive, but they are worth every penny:
- SSD will literally start the machine in less than 10 seconds
- SSDs will start the software, no matter how heavy, immediately.
- SSDs give you faster previews
- SSDs will reduce the time it takes to load/store files.
Basically, any laptop operation that depends on read/write data will be done 7 times faster with the SSD instead of the HDD.
This is not just computer jargon, it is a very important phenomenon that you, as an image/image editor, need to know.
It is basically a temporary memory that PhotoShop will use when RAM runs out, or when too much data is opened at the same time (applications, large files, multiple high-resolution images).
Where does the extra memory come from? Right. Your storage device. A storage device is faster than RAM, which means lower performance and delays. You can avoid it by being diligent when using your computer or just increasing your RAM even more.
However, it is sometimes that no matter how much RAM you have onboard, your computer will still fall back to using the Storage Drive as an additional "RAM". It is also in this case when it is important to select an SSD on the hard drive.
GPU (Graphic Card)
The graphics card also called GPU is a luxury compared to the processor and the RAM. You do not necessarily need it because most input and mid-range processors come with a built-in graphics processor that can power your monitor.
If you want to use a 4k display, you will need a dedicated graphics card. In addition, Photoshop takes advantage of the extra power the GPU brings to make certain tools work.
Unfortunately, it is not solicited for many tools in Photoshop, so if you do not have a dedicated GPU, it's not a problem in itself. It's good to have one, so if you decide to choose one, go for at least 2 GB of VRAM (preferably 4 GB).
Even if you do not need it for Photoshop, having a GPU is useful for video editing.
OS (Operating System)
Mac or Windows?
Windows and Mac systems are equally reliable; choosing one or the other depends on your budget, the software you use every day, and how you can adapt your computer or make it "scalable".
Remember that Windows is still the safest operating system of the two, being compatible with all major software of graphics designing, which is not the case of Mac OS ( photoshop, Core-Draw, and Illustrator to name just these three).
It is still possible to install this software as a virtual machine to compensate for this defect but it remains a complex manipulation for the average user.
In general, prefer PCs, especially since they are easier to upgrade to meet new requirements (possibility to add RAM, SSD, etc).
Both component manufacturers such as Intel and Nvidia, and suppliers of laptops themselves, made an honorable effort to improve the battery life of their products.
It is now possible to find computers that hold up to 11 hours without recharging. For graphic designers, designers and other designers, it can be interesting to have computers that last.
Longer battery life is naturally equivalent to a longer working time when traveling, which is a plus anyway non-negligible.
FAQs | Budget Laptop For Photoshop
Do you need a dedicated graphics card for Photoshop?
Many users wonder if they can run Photoshop on a cheap laptop and if Photoshop requires a dedicated graphics card, here's the answer to this question. While Photoshop uses the graphics card to improve performance and improvements in 3D, it should be noted that most of the times the integrated card is more than sufficient and can handle Photoshop without problems. Therefore, unless you are editing videos or doing advanced photo editing with Photoshop, don't prioritize a laptop with dedicated graphics.
This was all about the Best Budget Laptop for Photoshop.