Few tasks require more horsepower than video editing. While you can trim small clips with even an inexpensive laptop, to work with raw HD or 4K video or to create special effects, you need a fast processor, strong discrete graphics and a high-resolution display. Here are five laptops that are powerful enough to handle even your most demanding video-editing projects.
A relative bargain, the ZenBook Pro UX501VW has a sharp and vibrant 4K display, a speedy quad-core Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD and powerful Nvidia 960M graphics, all for under $1,400. Despite these energy-gulping components, the ZenBook Pro UX501VW also lasts a strong 8 hours on a charge when surfing the web. A Thunderbolt 3 port allows you to connect to the fastest external drives on the market.
|Best Video Editing Laptops of 2016|
|Asus ZenBook Pro UX501VW||Best Overall||4.5 out of 5|
|Microsoft Surface Book||Most Portable||3.5 out of 5|
|New 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar||Best Mac||4.5 out of 5|
|Lenovo ThinkPad P70||Best Performance||4 out of 5|
|Dell XPS 15||Best Design||4 out of 5|
A 2-in-1 that's powerful enough for professional video-editing and portable enough to take anywhere, the Surface Book combines an optional Core i7 CPU and discrete Nvidia graphics with a colorful, 3000 x 2000 display. With over 12 hours of battery life, you'll be able to work while away from an outlet for a long time. Better still, the 13.5-inch screen detaches from its keyboard dock so you can use it as a tablet, editing videos while you stand up or sketching with its stylus.
If you prefer editing on an Apple machine, the new 15-inch Macbook Pro with Touch Bar is hard to top. It comes with a faster Intel Core i7 CPU, a more powerful Radeon Pro 460 GPU and a brighter and more colorful display. The Touch Bar can even adapt depending on what app you're using, so you can apply filters or scrub through a clip without ever leaving fullscreen mode. Weighing just 4 pounds and 14.9mm thick, the new MacBook is even thinner and lighter than last year's model.
If you need the most powerful video-editing laptop around and don't care about portability, the ThinkPad P70 could be your best choice. Lenovo's 17-inch laptop has the high-end components you need, not only for working on video files but for creating original animations and computer-assisted designs. You can configure the P70 with a quad-core, Core i7 CPU, Nvidia Quadro M4000M graphics, a 4K display and a color calibrator.
With a gorgeous, lightweight carbon-fiber chassis and an eye-popping 4K screen that displays 191 percent of the sRGB color gamut, the XPS 15 lets you edit video in style. The 4.4-pound, 15-inch laptop also offers strong specs, such as a quad-core, Core i7 CPU, Nvidia 960M graphics and an NVMe-PCIe SSD.