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9 Of The Best Laptops for After Effects in 2020


Looking for The Best Laptops for After Effects in 2020? 🤔 You’re in the right place.

In this guide, we collected 9 of the best laptops for you based on adobe after effects hardware requirements.

Let’s jump right in. 

Those of you working as a video editor or dealing with videos on a regular basis might have come across the term, after effects. You make use of this tool for editing and compositing your videos. 

You make use of this tool for designing graphics and then apply them to your media. The video is then edited through the software. Although it sounds pretty straightforward, it is a complicated task that needs a certain amount of skill and talent. 

More importantly, it needs a high-performance laptop that can help you generate the kind of videos that you are looking for. 

What do you use video editing for?

The Adobe After Effects is a tool that is used for designing motion graphics, animation, and also used for composting videos. In simple terms, you can develop and edit the 2D videos into 3D videos for animation purposes. 

You may be a hobbyist or a professional video editor. But, you need a good laptop that can help you perform these tasks with enthusiasm. Video editing is not meant for those with a weak heart. 

It is exceptionally complicated and needs the right flavor of your time, imagination, creativity, and skill. 

How do laptops help to edit videos?

Well, some of you may be wondering, why do you need a laptop for after-effects in the first place, when you can get it done on any traditional notebook? To be honest with you, the video editing tasks can be performed on any laptop. 

You can trim and edit small clips using a basic model laptop that does not come with a high-resolution display and fast processor.

But, when you want to create special effects and have your audience enthralled with your editing capabilities of a raw HD or 4K video, then you need a high-performance laptop. 

When you want to use gaming laptops to edit videos, then you can do so because they come with a dedicated media creation system. When you want to handle and work on graphics-intensive projects, then you are looking at using laptops priced beyond $2000 or more. 

That brings us to the 16-inch MacBook Pro and the Dell XPS 15. They come with high resolution, bright, and high-powered GPUs and CPUs. Apart from that, they are made from an elegant aluminium chassis that is lightweight for easy mobility. 

Best laptops For After Effects: Our Pick 👌

1. Dell XPS 15 laptop

The Dell XPS 15 (2019) is ranked first on our list and rightly so. This is one of the best video editing laptops; you can buy as it comes with all the essential features that you require. 

Dell has hit the jackpot with a fantastic laptop. Though this laptop was released last year, it is still making waves in the market. They are expected to release the 2020 version of a similar laptop, although they have already released the 13” XPS laptop. 

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Now, what makes this laptop ideal for video editing and Adobe After Effects is that, it comes with a 4K OLED screen, that provides you with intense color and clarity. Apart from that, you are offered with a 239% of the color gamut and excellent brightness.

Its chassis is elegant with an aluminium and carbon fibre built. Not to mention, the performance is the best part of the laptop at 9th Gen Core i9 CPU combined with the Nvidia GTX 1650 GPU. 

Earlier, the webcam was positioned at the bottom of the laptop, giving it issues for many users. However, they have rectified it by placing it at the top. The manufacturer has even preloaded a tool called PremierColor, which allows you to change and alter brightness and color gamut. 

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the Dell XPS 15 laptop that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • The laptop comes with a striking 4K OLED display
  • It also has excellent overall
  • The graphics performance is just beyond expectations. 
  • It webcam is placed in the right position to make calls and view.
  • The laptop comes with a very sleek and attractive design
  • It weighs only 4.4 pounds, which is not too heavy. 
  • Unfortunately, it comes with an average battery life that may frustrate some users. 

The Dell XPS 15 (2019) is the best video editing laptop you can purchase thanks to its remarkable battery life, and excellent performance, and vibrant 4K OLED display. 


2. Lenovo Legion Y7000: Best Lenevo laptop for Adobe After Effects

The Lenovo Legion Y7000 is a gaming laptop. Now, what is a gaming laptop doing in this list of after-effects? Well, first off, it is one of the best budget video editing laptops, you can find in the market as of now. 

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For students and working professionals learning the art of video editing or professional gaming, this is bang on the buck. It is just priced slightly above $1000 but comes with features that can match with the top-end models like Dell XPS and the MacBook. 

This is a GTX 1060 GPU and comes with an powerful 8th Gen Core i7 processor. The monitor is 15.6”, and it comes with a 1080p display covered at 153% sRGB color spectrum, giving you 277 nits of brightness. The immense clarity and picture-perfect videos will bedazzle you.

The battery life is decent, coming at more than 4 hours on charge. 

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the Lenovo Legion Y7000 that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • Foremost of all, the graphics are excellent and bright.
  • The gaming laptop comes with a sports car design. 
  • The display is colorful and vibrant, offering you ample options. 
  • The keyboard is comfortable to work or gaming for long hours. 
  • It comes with a robust overall performance.
  • The audio on the gaming laptop is not up to the mark, which is a surprise for a gaming laptop. 
  • It is slightly on the heavy side at more than 5 pounds.

The Lenovo Legion Y7000 is a budget laptop for video editing. It comes with decent features like the Intel Core i7 and Nvidia GTX 1060 providing you with adequate functionalities.


3. New Apple MacBook Pro  (16-inch, 2019)

The MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019) is one of the best products released from the stable of Apple to date. If you are looking for a beast in performance from a laptop, then it is got to be this one.  

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This is a 16” laptop, coming with a massive AMD Radeon Pro 5500M GPU and Intel Core i9 CPU. The display is colorful and bright, coming with ample inner touches that you can view. That is due to the retina display having accurate tone technology.

One can easily make the difference between the display of the MacBook and others. This just stands out on a different level altogether. It weighs light at a little more than 4 pounds and comes at 0.6” thickness. 

The audio levels are audible thanks to the 6-speaker sound system, having force-cancelling woofers. 

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the New Apple MacBook Pro that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • This is a 16” display laptop offering you clear visuals. 
  • The keyboard is a breeze to work with, comfortable and gentle. 
  • The bezels are slim and colorful for you to view your favorite movies or video editions. 
  • It comes with a retina display having true tone technology.
  • The performance is one of the best coming with AMD Radeon Pro 5500M GPU and Intel Core i9 CPU.
  • Sadly, the display is not 4K
  • You will be surprised to know that it comes with no full-size USB port or SD card slot.

The MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019) comes with a performance that is beyond comparison for now and has a fast CPU. However, this is one of the most expensive laptops around in the market. 


4. Alienware 51M

The Alienware Area-51m is a 17.3” is a video editing laptop, that is one of the most powerful laptops we have come across on the list. It comes with a 9th Gen Core i9 desktop processor and the RTX 2080 GPU. 

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The SSD is one of the fastest at a transfer rate of 1,272 MBps. The display screen is at 1920 x 1080, ideal for gamers. This is one of its thinnest notebooks. You will be amazed by its looks, which is elegant and premium designed with materials like copper, steel, and magnesium alloy.

It also comes with advanced thermal technology, that allows it to cool, but does not hinder with the performance. The battery delivers exceptional duration so that you can video edit and continue your gaming.

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the Alienware 51M that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • The laptop comes with a space station aesthetic offering you a unique design to work or game with.
  • The overall performance is excellent.
  • The graphics are on par with the MacBook and Dell XPS.
  • The SSDs are quick and fast. 
  • The components are upgradeable, and you can replace them whenever you want to. 
  • Though the features are excellent, the laptop is slightly expensively priced. 
  • It is immensely heavy at more than 8 pounds. 

The Alienware Area-51m is an ideal buy when you are most inclined to the power, due to its desktop-level processor and beefy GPU.


At the time of our research on Best laptops for Adobe After Effects, we found a video about “Top 20 Best Effects in After Effects” which is worth watching. 🤴🏆


5. Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-inch)

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-inch) is a versatile video editing laptop. This laptop can also be used as a tablet, thanks to the fact that you can detach the screen. It works with the help of the discrete Nvidia GTX 1060 GPU and 8th Gen Core i7 CPU.

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The display is excellent at 3240 x 2160 and bright. You can watch videos, edit videos, and view as many as 5 videos at a time. Its battery life is good, lasting well over 12 hours. 

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the Microsoft Surface Book 2 that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • It comes with a screen that you can detach as and when you want. 
  • The pen experience is good too. 
  • It comes with one of the most extended battery life of 12 hours. 
  • The display is magnificent at 3240 x 2160.
  • The performance is good with the 8th Gen Core i7 CPU.
  • The laptop weighs at 4 pounds that is lightweight, ideal for moving around with. 
  • This laptop is quite expensive and may not be suitable for all. 
  • There is no Thunderbolt 3 port, which is surprising. 

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-inch) is a versatile video editing laptop as it works as a tablet, comes with a dominant performance at 8th Gen Core i7 CPU and discrete Nvidia GTX 1060 GPU, and has a durable battery. 


6. HP Spectre x360: Best HP laptop for Adobe After Effects

The HP Spectre x360 (15-inch, 2019) is one of the best 2-in-1 video editing laptops in the market. It weighs only 4.6 pounds, making it lightweight for you to move around with it quickly. Rightfully named as the Spectre, it comes with a 4K glossy display that is clear and good. 

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The keyboard is operational and functional. The build quality is sturdy with aluminium and Poseidon Blue. It is suitable for video editing because of its powerful GPU and a 2-in-1 design. It comes with the latest Hexacore 9th gen Intel i7- 9750H and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 (4GB). 

You can bet the performance of the laptop is powerful. The audio comes with HP Quad speakers and 12 HP audio boost. The battery life is worth mentioning here because it is one of the best at 15 hours with a 6-cell 84 Wh Li-ion battery. 

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the HP Spectre x360 that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • The design of the laptop is one of the best in the industry. 
  • The performance is good at Hexacore 9th gen Intel i7- 9750H and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 (4GB).
  • The panel is colorful. 
  • The keyboard provides you with excellent comfort. 
  • Its battery life is fantastic going for 15 hours. 
  • The display of the laptop can be slightly on the brighter side. 
  • The speakers are slightly sluggish in performance. 

The HP Spectre x360 (15-inch, 2019) comes with a robust Hexacore 9th gen Intel i7- 9750H and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 (4GB). This laptop has 4K, making it the ideal purchase for your video editing laptops.


7. HP ZBook x2

The HP ZBook x2 is a detachable video editing laptop that comes with all the necessary features to make your laptop noteworthy.

Another pricey laptop from the makers of HP, but this one is known for its powerful specifications that can match easily with the likes of MacBook and the Dell XPS.

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This is a 14-inch display laptop that comes with the most crucial feature of all, 4K allowing you to edit videos at any resolution. You can also use a stylus, through the shortcut keys that have been provided just for the cause. 

Few users feel that the GPU could have been slightly on the stronger side. The laptop has the Intel Core i7 8th Gen processor at a speed of 1. 80 GHz. The display too has been improved but is good enough for your video editing. 

The touch screen is gentle and almost feels like you are writing smoothly when you blend it along with the stylus. This ZBook laptop from HP comes with the DreamColor display, that provides you with 1 billion different colors. 

The laptop weighs just less than 5 pounds, making it lightweight. Hence, you can carry it around with you for work or personal purposes. 

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the HP ZBook x2 that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • It comes with a great stylus.
  • There is a shortcut management that is useful from a work point of view. 
  • The keyboard is very comfortable and ideal for typing continuously. 
  • The laptop weighs less than 5 pounds, making it lightweight. 
  • The ZBook comes with 4k. 
  • The graphics performance could have been better. 
  • It is very expensive. 

The HP ZBook x2 is the best video editing laptop for artists and video graphics designers. It should be considered thanks to the great stylus and excellent shortcut management.


8. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme is one of the best products released by Lenovo according to our research. It comes with an Intel Core i5/Core i7 and powerful GPU of Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti. The display is good enough at 15” with 1080p and 4K.

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This is Lenovo’s first 15” laptop to come with a dedicated graphics card. Since the laptop comes with a good speed of 64GB RAM, you can perform several video editing tasks as well as play high-performance games on it quickly. 

The laptop is rightly known as the extreme because it can withstand heat and exposure to dust and dust. It also comes with an optional Smart Card reader and a fingerprint reader. Users would love to use the IR camera that is optional.

Below is the summary of the main Pros and Cons of the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme that earned it a spot in our list of the Best laptops for After Effects to get in 2020.

  • The display is phenomenal at 4K, that is a good option for video editing. 
  • The HDR display offers you crystal-clear images. 
  • The performance is lightning quick. 
  • The design of the video editing laptop is elegant and sleek. 
  • The battery life could have been improved. 
  • The laptop can heat up fast. 

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 is one of the best laptops manufactured from Lenovo. If you are a Lenovo fan, then you will want to make use of the ThinkPad X1 Extreme for video editing projects.


Best laptops for After Effects: What To Consider

When you are looking for a laptop that excels in Adobe After Effects, you must take a look at the RAM and the processor. A high-performance notebook that comes with high RAM and a powerful processor can get the task done within the stipulated time frame. 

Processor and RAM:-

The processor and the RAM are the most essential elements of a good laptop for video editing. We would suggest you for a minimum of the 8th generation Intel Core i5 processor. As far as the RAM is concerned, you may want to make use of 32GB or 64GB. 

Though video editing makes use of the GPU rather than the processor, you may want to choose a higher base frequency single core. You can perform video editing tasks even on 16GB laptops, but the visibility and quality of work will be affected. 


The storage space is another crucial factor for video editing. Hence, we would suggest you go in for a laptop that comes with a solid-state drive (SSD). Typically, you would choose the usual HDD. 

However, we feel that the SSD enables you to boot quickly and recover data at the same pace. When you are dealing with videos and editing projects, then this aspect is critical.

Yes, the SSD comes slightly more expensive than the HDD but gets the job completed at the end of the day. 

Graphics card:-

The graphics card is another aspect to cover so that your video editing work is top-notch. Some users feel that Adobe After Effects only use the GPU for performing 3D tasks. It is true, which is why you must consider finding another alternative. 

But, you may want to get yourself a dedicated GPU on the laptop for better performance. If you are looking for a budget laptop, then we would recommend the Nvidia GeForce MX150 GPU. When your work demands more output, then you can consider the GTX 1060 Nvidia card.

The other features you can consider for your laptop

We have covered the 3 main components of the best laptop for after effects. However, when you are keen on getting the ultimate performance, then you may want to get yourself a high-end laptop that is priced above $1000. 

Apart from that, you can choose laptops, offering you sound, visual effects and choosing one that comes with a high refresh rate, as 144Hz is a good idea.

The expensive ones like the MacBook, Surface Pro, and Dell XPS 15 (2019) comes with wide-angle displays with excellent brightness.

📗FAQ’s on Best laptops For After Effects

Below are a couple of queries on Best laptops for After Effects that everyone is expecting to answer and I did include the same for my readers.

(Q) What laptops can you get the best Adobe After Effects?

Based on our research, we found that the Dell XPS 15 (2019), the MacBook Pro and Surface Book come with excellent Adobe After Effects. If you are somebody who prefers working on the MacBook, then this should not be an issue at all. 

Likewise, the Surface Pro comes with the Nvidia that is good enough for your video editing needs. The MacBook, however, takes the top spot with its elegant 15” frame, the AMD Radeon R9 M370X, and a dedicated GPU.

That does not mean the other laptops discussed in the above review are not good enough. They are good enough for your video editing requirements. 

(Q) Can we use the i5 to edit videos?

The i5 Intel processor is good enough for video editing. The main issue with video editing or editors for that matter is they can never be satisfied enough.

According to experts, the Intel Core i5 series processors offer you more than enough functions for video editing. 

Of course, only the processor does not matter in this case, the video cards and the RAM also come into play. If you have better RAM and powerful video cards, then you can expect a surge in the performance of video editing. 

(Q) How good is the MacBook air for video editing?

Like we read above, the MacBook, according to us, has what it takes for video editing. The main advantage with the MacBook is that the high-resolution display along with 8th generation Intel dual-core processor provides you with the best combination for editing videos. 

Hence, it comes as no surprise that video editors prefer using this laptop. Having said that, other laptops of different makes and models mentioned in the review are good enough too. It is just that the MacBook’s ultra-high-resolution is flawless.

(Q) What is the ideal amount of RAM to edit video?

The RAM is a critical component for enabling high-performance video editing. Therefore, a laptop needs adequate RAM to work faster and complete tasks quicker. The minimum RAM required would be 16GB, and the ideal speed could be 32GB. 

However, when you want high performance, then you can think of using 64GB and in some cases, for heavy users, 128GB. Apart from that, the high-end graphics card is another component to consider, which can be expensive but useful for your tasks. 

(Q) What is the proper amount of storage for a laptop?

As we said, the storage space is crucial for enabling you to complete your task. These days, most of the laptops come with 32GB that is suitable for video editing.

Nevertheless, if you are a professional video editing consultant or a professional gamer, who requires high performance, and then you can opt for 64GB. 

In some cases, when you expect very high performance, then you can choose 128GB. However, you rarely come across users with 128GB RAM on their laptop. Apart from that, the CPU must be able to match the speed of the storage space, or it will affect the duration of work. 

Choosing the best video editing laptops

We have already discussed some of the things to look at when choosing the best laptops for After Effects. However, you need to know a few pointers that can help you to narrow your options for the right decision quickly. 

The given list does not contain budget laptops. When you want optimum performance from your device, then you should be willing to spend likewise. However, there are choices you can make, depending on your financial capability. 

If you can afford laptops that are priced more than $1000, then it is fine. At the same time, when you are looking for ones priced around the $500 to $800 range, then be prepared for a slight dip in the performance. 

The next vital factor to know is the kind of work that you do. Are you into heavy video editing or those massive tasks that involve 4k? While simple video editing small clips at the 720p requires low storage space and a decent CPU, the 4k need high-performance devices. 

For those of you planning to do video editing as a hobby, you can start off with gaming laptops that come with decent and workable features. This way, you can learn and get a feel of what video editing is. 

However, for those of you who are professional and consultants, whose livelihood depends on video editing, may want to concentrate on a high-end video editing laptop. They give you a clear and sharp display to help you to complete your tasks on time, with accuracy. 

How can you test video editing laptops?

Echoing the thoughts above, you need to find out whether the video editing laptop is definitely worth your money and time. You can do that with the help of a couple of tools and software to measure its overall performance. 

There are video editing test tools like Geekbench and HandBrake that can provide you with the answer to how good the laptop is at offering you quality video editing capabilities. These tools help to measure the speed of the CPU along with the transcoding abilities of a video from 4K to 1080p. 

Though there are some high-performance laptops, you need to understand that when purchasing a video editing device, the display is the main criteria. The clarity of the resolution, the average number of nits, and the coverage of the sRGB color.


This was the list of the best laptops for after effects. Hope you liked what you read based on our research. We found that the Surface Pro and the MacBook are the best options for video editing. 

Apart from that, you can also perform a wide range of tasks using them. Yes, these laptops are not ideally budget laptops, but most of them are top-end models.

Like you read, tasks like video editing require high-quality features for you to be able to do quality work. 

Apart from that, professional gamers might prefer viewing high quality, crystal-clear videos on their monitors. This is possible only when you work using high-performance laptops like the ones we have discussed above. 

Since you now know what to choose from, you are ready to go.