If you’re after the best laptop for photo editing, then you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re a professional photographer or an enthusiastic creator, when it comes to photo editing, there are plenty of options for you from some of the biggest brands, including Apple, Acer, Dell, and Asus.
The beauty of having a good laptop or tablet for photo editing with exceptional performance is that it’s quite likely to outperform that old desktop in your office. However, there are also high-end desktop monitors on the market today — if you’re looking for the added bonus of a second screen.
A machine with plenty of RAM, a large drive, and a faster processor is ideal for digital artists, photographers, and editors looking for a seamless photo editing process. However, finding the right laptop at your desired price point can be tricky.
So, take a look at our list of the best laptops for photo editing in 2023 to make things easier.
Overall Best Photo Editing Laptop
Our clear favorite photo editing laptop is the Apple MacBook Pro 16-inch. Extremely high quality, this MacBook Pro is the best photo editing laptop available today.
Here are some other top-quality laptops for photo editing.
- LG Gram Laptop – 16″ OLED Display
- Razer Blade 18 18-inch
- Microsoft Surface Pro 8
- Dell XPS 17 4k Touchscreen display
Our Favorite Photo Editing Laptops on a Budget
Laptops can be pricey when it comes to finding the best laptop for photography and editing. Our top pick for the best laptop for photo editing on a budget has to be the Acer Aspire 5 Slim 15.6-inch. This is an excellent choice for beginners looking for an affordable laptop for photo editing.
Here is another more affordable option with excellent value at a slightly higher price point.
Most Versatile Laptops for Photo Editing
Can’t decide between a laptop and a tablet? All in all, if budget is no problem for you, then the ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo is the top-of-the-range 2-in-1 laptop for photo editing.
Here are some other top picks for 2-in-1 laptops for artists.
The Best Laptops for Editing Photos Compared
There are a number of factors to consider when choosing the best laptop for photography and editing. Here’s a table of all our top picks for you to compare.
|Tablet||Best For||Image||Budget||Overall||Check Price|
|New Apple MacBook Pro 16-inch||Work||$$$||9|
|LG Gram Laptop - 17 - inch||Work||$$$||8.8|
|Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop 15.6-Inch||Everyday||$||8.8|
|Razer Blade 18 Gaming Laptop||Work||$$$||8.4|
|Microsoft Surface Pro 8 12.3-inch||Work||$$||8.4|
|ASUS ZenBook S 13 Ultra-Slim||Everyday||$$||8|
|Asus ZenBook Pro Duo 15.6-inch||Work||$$$||8|
|Microsoft Surface Book 2 13.5-inch||Everyday||$||8|
|Acer Spin 3 14-inch||Everyday||$||9|
|Dell XPS 17||Work||$$$||8|
10 Best Laptops for Photo Editing Reviewed
Here are our top picks of the 10 best laptops for photography and photo editing currently on the market. You’ve got an idea of the clear winners in their different categories, but here’s an in-depth review.
In this list, you’ll notice a few key points about the products listed as well as an included price rating of $-$$$.
Take a look at our buyer’s guide section at the end of the article, which explains some confusing terms used and what to look out for when buying a laptop for photo editing.
Apple MacBook Pro New 16-inch Review
- Upgraded Apple M2 Pro chip Processor
- 2-inch Liquid Retina XDR Display with True Tone Technology
- Touch ID and Touch Bar
- UHD Graphics at 254 pixels per inch
The new 16-inch MacBook Pro 2023 is, hands-down, the best MacBook Pro to date. The new addition to the famous brand’s line, for starters, has Apple’s second generation M2 Pro processing chip to accommodate the new larger screen that offers a spectacular display of graphics.
This ultra-thin design of the 16-inch model does have its downsides, as the keyboard is relatively smaller while the trackpad takes up half of the laptop’s base. However, the MacBook Pro is still a powerful laptop for photographers looking for cutting-edge ProMotion technology and 4K graphics, along with its super-fast processor.
This makes a real difference in speed when editing the most complex visual edits and plug-ins using high-resolution imagery. The MacBook Pro 16-inch into a serious video editing powerhouse. If you have the budget for it, this is one of the best Mac laptops for photographers that you can buy.
Razer Blade 18 18-inch Review
- 13th-Generation i9 Core HX processor
- 32GB RAM
- 1TB SSD
- 18” QHD + 240Hz Display
- NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070
If you’re an avid gamer who also needs a photography laptop, the Razer Blade 18 is arguably one of the best laptops for gaming and photo editing. With a massive 18-inch display (2560×1600 resolution) featuring 100% DCI P3 color, the screen quality is far superior to previous generations.
These beefy computers have a super fast refresh rate thanks to their dedicated NVIDIA graphics cards. This version has the RTX 4070 installed, along with 32GB of RAM, a Windows 11 operating system, and a 1TB hard drive. It hardly seems necessary to go beyond this model, especially if you want a balanced laptop for photography.
Did we mention it also includes three USB A ports, an HDMI port, and an ethernet port? This can be a big draw for those who want added functionality that Apple laptops can’t provide. However, keep in mind this is a big laptop (6.80lbs) and may suit you if you enjoy a desktop PC kind of setup.
Microsoft Surface Pro 8 Review
- 12th-Generation Intel Core i5-1235U processor
- 13-inch display with 2880 x 1920 px screen resolution
- 8GB RAM
- 128GB SSD
The Microsoft Surface Pro 8 is the best 2-in-1 laptop for photo editing of the Microsoft Surface Pro range in 2023. Enjoy the flexibility of a tablet and laptop in one, with an incredibly lightweight make of only 1.98 lbs. Making it ideal for photographers and creators on the go.
The 13-inch PixelSense Flow display is an excellent addition to the newest model, offering Dolby Vision support. This Windows laptop comes with an Intel Core i5 processor, a 256GB SSD, and 8GB of RAM, which is decent for such a small device.
Moreover, the device comes with its own MTC stylus, and you can buy a detachable keyboard, which gives you another advantage over most competing tablets.
What you’ll like about the Surface Pro 8 is that it’s the most portable laptop out there at an affordable price. This graphics tablet is made with premium-grade material and is commendable in handling photo editing tasks, multimedia, and heavy applications.
Acer Aspire 5 Slim 15.6-inch 2023 Review
- Full HD anti-glare display with Radeon Vega 6 graphics
- AMD Ryzen 3 3350U Quad Core
- 20GB RAM
- 1TB SSD
- HDMI and Ethernet port included
The new Acer Aspire 5 Slim has seen a lot of changes from the previous model. With an AMD Ryzen 4-core processor and a massive increase in both RAM and SSD storage, the processing power of this budget laptop outdoes most comparably priced laptop PCs.
As for the display, the new model offers decent color accuracy and can handle video editing and photo editing software. When it comes to creativity, this laptop glides through tasks with ease with sharp, crisp visuals showcased on the 15.6” thin Full HD IPS screen.
The Acer Aspire 5 can handle intense creative tasks. It’s designed for speed and mobility in a lightweight package, making it easy to carry around.
Dell XPS 17 4K Touchscreen Display Review
- 12th-Generation Intel Core i9-12900HK Processor
- 4K Touchscreen display
- Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Graphics
- 32 GB of RAM and 1TB SSD
Compared to the Dell XPS 15 we reviewed previously, the new Dell XPS 17 offers next-level screen resolution thanks to its 4K display (3840 x 2400). It gives you tons of screen real estate and covers 100% Adobe sRGB color spectrum with its OLED screen.
With tons of RAM, a great battery life, and a gorgeous screen display, it has the power to run even the most demanding editing software for photo editing.
You can edit with ease thanks to its powerful processor and exceptional screen quality, and it’s versatile enough that video editing and gaming can be executed without any lag.
ASUS ZenBook S 13 Ultra-Thin 13” OLED Review
- 13th-Generation i7 Processor
- Windows 11 Pro
- Full HD display
- 32GB RAM 1TB SSD
- Intel Iris XE graphics
The Asus ZenBook S 13 is a powerful and ultra-slim laptop that can still be considered affordable, ranging under $1.500. Digital artists will benefit from the 2.8K OLED display, 100% DCI P3 color gamut, and its Intel Iris XE Graphics card.
Its recycled aluminum body is built with sustainability in mind and is strong despite its thinness. The ZenBook 13 also manages to include USB-A ports, an HDMI port, and a headphone jack. If you’re comparing it to the new MacBook Air, not only is it comparably cheaper, but it offers greater useability and a typical Windows laptop operating system.
LG Gram Laptop – 16″ IPS Display Review
- 13th-Generation Intel Core i7 Evo
- Quad Core 1.3 GHz Processor (Turbo up to 3.9 GHz)
- 32GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB SSD
- 16-inch Non-reflective OLED DCI P3 display (3200 x2000)
- Windows 11 OS
If it’s a large screen you want, take a look at the LG Gram Laptop 10th Generation, Intel Core i7 processor powered with 4K content production. It’s perfect for video filters and a high resolution for photo editing and for gaming.
The LG Gram comes with a 16-inch IPS display with 100% DCI P3 color gamut and powerful hardware, putting it at the top of the list when it comes to photo editing laptops. Enjoy the perfect colorful display and powerful configuration, making it ideal for Photoshop.
ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo Review
- 9th-Generation Core i7-9750H Processor
- 4K UHD NanoEdge Bezel Touch
- GeForce RTX 2060
- Innovative Screen Pad Plus
- 16GB RAM
If you’re looking to treat yourself, then get the dual-screen laptop ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo 15.6-inch with 4K graphics. Featuring the ScreenPad Plus 14-inch 4K matte touchscreen.
This laptop offers versatility with its impressive setup for creative professionals both interested in art and photography. Enjoy endless ways to optimize your multitasking experience — split windows and apps using dual screens. Not to mention, the ASUS Active stylus pen and detachable palm rest are included.
The ZenBook Pro Duo is powered by the Intel Core i7-9750H 6-core processor and a Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 GPU paired with 16GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD. From our experience, this gives the laptop a smooth transition between editing images and running fairly big programs.
Microsoft Surface Book 2 13.5-Inch Review
- 8th-Generation Intel Core i7-8650U Processor (Turbo up to 4.20GHz)
- 16GB LPDDR3 RAM 512SSD
- Intel HD Integrated Graphics and NVIDIA GTX 1050
- 5-inch PixelSense Touchscreen 267 PPI Display with 3000 x 2000 Resolution
If you’re looking for a dual-purpose laptop for editing and creativity, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 is ideal for photo editors on a budget.
For such a small package, this model is still fast and has a battery life of up to 13.5 hours. With both a quad-core Intel processor and NVIDIA GeForce GPUs, the display is good, albeit somewhat lacking in performance compared to the beefier laptops on our list.
Still, you can enjoy the vibrant PixelSense Display with a 13.5-inch touchscreen. You can switch between Surface Book Studio mode, Laptop mode, and Tablet mode thanks to the detachable keyboard. You can also opt to buy the Surface Pen Stylus for added functionality.
This model can be upgraded and comes with either Intel Core i5 or i7 processors with up to 16GB of RAM and up to 1TB of SSD storage.
Acer Spin 3 Convertible Laptop 14-inches Review
- 9th-Generation Intel Core i7 Processor 8565U Processor (Up to 4.5GHz)
- 14-inches Full HD (1920 x 1200) touchscreen WUXGA IPS display
- 8GB DDR4 Memory and 128GB PCIe NVMe SSD
The Acer Spin 3 14-inch convertible laptop offers decent photo editing performance and a range of functions at a cheap price point. This lightweight device has 360-degree hinges, offering versatility with its tablet mode.
It also comes with WACOM AES Pen Support and Windows 11 S, making it perfect for artists and editors alike. Enjoy the FHD IPS touch display boasting a 0.38-inch thin bezel, giving you a 78.9% screen-to-body ratio.
This convertible laptop also offers up to 12 hours of battery life and is ideal for any creative mind at an affordable price.
What to Look for in a Photo Editing Laptop | Buyer’s Guide
The best photo editing laptops require the right components for the best performance, especially if you are shooting in RAW. It’s important to know which components are crucial regarding improving photo editing speed and to have an understanding of computer technology.
Take a look at some key specifications you need to look out for when shopping for a photo editing laptop.
The laptop’s CPU plays a vital role when deciding the overall performance of your computer, especially when it comes to running high-performance software like Photoshop.
It’s recommended to get a laptop with the latest generation AMD Ryzen series or Intel i7 or i9 processors for maximum photo editing power. Laptops powered by the Intel Core i5 processor also work well if you are a student or beginner in the editing field — the higher the number, the faster the processor.
As a professional photographer or artist, you’ll be multitasking with various files and programs. Ensuring your laptop runs smoothly without lag is crucial while image editing. It’s recommended you have at least 8GB of RAM for editing photos smoothly.
Also, take a look to see if there are any extra RAM slots so that if you need extra space, you can still increase the RAM.
Screen Display and Resolution
The screen display of your laptop should be bright and should display accurate colors to ensure image quality (also check the sRGB rating). Find a laptop with a full HD resolution display for standard editing work, such as 1920 x 1080.
If you need to edit very high-resolution images, you’ll need a laptop with a 4K display, such as 3840 x 2160.
Whichever laptop you choose will come with a dedicated graphics card responsible for what appears on your laptop’s screen. There are two main options, namely integrated and discrete graphics cards. An integrated graphics card means your CPU will handle all your graphics tasks.
The discrete graphics card, favored by gamers and most modern photo editing applications, takes advantage of discrete graphics. Getting a laptop with a discrete graphics card is recommended if possible. These are either made by Nvidia or ATI/AMD.
Hard Drive and Storage
As a photo editor, you need to keep many photos on your laptop. You can buy a laptop with a 1TB hard drive or a laptop with a high amount of storage space, like 512GB SSD.
It’s recommended to look at SSD storage because they’re faster than hard drives and improve the laptop’s overall performance.
Final Thoughts on the Best Laptops for Photo Editing
That was our round-up of the best photo editing laptops of 2023. Editing photos is one of the essential parts of any photographer or artist’s workflow.
In the current market, the clear winner is the latest MacBook Pro. It’s the ultimate laptop all-round for photo editors with Apple’s astounding true-tone light monitoring retina display.
The LG Gram 16-inch is ideal if you’re looking for a big screen. Not to mention, the Asus Zenbook Pro gives you versatility like no other. So there you have it, our recommended best laptops for photographers. Remember, choosing the right laptop for picture editing is down to personal preference.
Read Next: Check out the best gaming laptops under 2000 dollars for more inspiration.
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Matt is about 80% nerd, 10% writer, 10% animal lover. His love for PC's started at the tender age of 4 and his love for animation and motion graphics fairly soon after. You can normally find him behind a computer screen or playing with his dog Rusty.