When you dedicate yourself to something, you need to have all the tools so that you can get ahead in that field. When it comes to Music Production, it’s essential to have a computer that can support Digital Audio Workstations, like Ableton Live or PreSonus Studio One, so you can unleash your musical creativity.
Just as a laptop has become the most important item for digital DJs, laptops also have come to be close friends for producers. To succeed Producing Music you need to have a powerful portable computer that allows you to comfortably handle all the files, sounds and effects that will be part of your musical compositions.
Features to consider when choosing a best Laptop for Music Production
To record, edit and produce music you need a powerful laptop that meets the required performance specifications. You can find good laptops from the best brands between $800 and $2,000. These are the features that you must take into account for DAW (digital audio workstations) to work without problems:
Producing Music implies a considerable strain for a CPU. Imagine mixing over 20 tracks with instruments and effects: lots of work. To choose a good processor, you must take into account the processing speed, which is given by the GHz frequency, and the number of cores, since each core processes information separately. You can use it from a dual Core i5 processor onwards.
Music production software requires some virtual memory to run without lag. Apps like Logic Pro, FI Studio or Steinberg Cubase require a minimum of 4 GB of RAM to work properly. You also need RAM for VST Plugins for mixing and mastering music.
Storage is important. Audio files can take up a lot of storage. A typical music file will be around 7 MB, so depending on your editions flow, a big storage capacity might be needed. A 512 GB hard drive is enough for Digital Audio Workstations.
A 13-inch screen is enough to check mixes and small enough to be taken anywhere. You must require a display that supports graphics-heavy plugins and provides adequate performance. Some prefer touchscreens to work comfortably, but it is not essential.
A small laptop is easily manageable and can be moved without complications. Obviously, it is necessary to work with a laptop instead of a desktop computer so that your workstation can accompany you when you need to make a demonstration.
When you don’t have a nearby plug, battery life is vital. With a laptop that provides up to 8 hours of wireless usage, you will not be alright by using any Music Production Software.
Top 10 Best Laptops for Music Production
Here are some of the 10 best laptops for students, they have been selected according to their price, performance, components and capabilities, so that you can choose the one that works best for you to study and fulfill your academic activities.
- Dell 9310 XPS
- Acer Swift 5
- Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9
- ASUS ExpertBook B9
- HP EliteBook 840 G8 Business Laptop
- LG Gram
- ASUS ZenBook Duo 14
- ASUS ZenBook 14 Ultra-Slim
- Dell Inspiron 13 5310
- MSI Summit B14 Professional Laptop
So, if you are a student, and you are looking for the best laptop for your online classes, keep reading.
I start this list with the most powerful computer you can find for Producing Music, one of the best laptops developed by Dell so far, with a premium feeling on its stylish silver design. The 9310 XPS stands out with its newer Tiger Lake-U 11th gen Intel Core. This 13.4-Inch Laptop works with Intel Iris Xe Graphics in a Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) touchscreen, 512 GB SSD and 32 GB RAM. The convertible 9310’ pro features make it our favorite choice for recording, editing and producing audio files and its price is around $1,450.
11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 Processor (12 MB Cache, up to 4.7 GHz) and Intel Iris Xe Graphics with shared graphics memory both to process many pieces of data simultaneously and to perform heavy-duty tasks without any lag; 32 GB 4267MHz LPDDR4x Onboard Memory to store data while the laptop is working on any Music Production Software and 512 GB PCIe NVMe x4 Solid State Drive Onboard to record lots of music indefinitely, to access to it anytime.
Thanks to its 360-degree hinge, the Dell 9310’ machined aluminum/glass-fiber/carbon Platinum Silver structure can work as a laptop or a tablet. Pen (Stylus Support) is sold separately, but it comes with Black or White Backlit English Keyboard with Fingerprint Reader and matching color Touchpad. You can use 2 Thunderbolt 4 ports with Power Delivery/DisplayPort, 1 USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port with Power Delivery/DisplayPort, 1 headphone and microphone combo port, 1 MicroSD-card slot and 1 Wedge-shaped lock slot. 9310 also comes with Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650 and Bluetooth 5.1 for ultra-fast connections.
Its 13.4” 16:10 FHD+ WLED Touch Display (1920 x 1200) with a Full HD IPS panel, 16:3 screen ratio, enables 1.07 billion colors and great brightness. XPS 13 is also compact, measures 8.15 x 11.69 x 0.56 inches and weighs 2.9 pounds. Its Lithium-ion battery lasts for more than 14 hours of music editing. 0.92 megapixel 1280 x 720 (HD) camera, Lid Sensor and Windows 10 Home are also on this 2-in-1.
2. Acer Swift 5
14″ Full HD Screen, 11th-gen Intel Quad-Core processor, Intel’s Iris Xe graphics, 16 GB RAM Memory and 1 TB SSD are the ultimate combination for this classic notebook which is between our Digital Audio Workstations selections. The Acer Swift 5 is one of the latest Acer laptops which are often cheaper and lighter than other brands, and this one is not the exception, costing $999.99 (considerably less than our number one).
Intel EVO 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 Processor 2.8GHz with Turbo Boost Technology up to 4.7GHz (12 MB Smart Cache) with onboard Intel Iris Xe Graphics and 16 GB LPDDR4X Onboard Memory to deliver smooth full-rendition for most music edition apps. Its 1 TB NVMe SSD works with Windows 10 Home and is ideal to store the content you download by using its Intel Wireless Wi-Fi 6 connectivity, and the files you copy from the devices you can connect via USB Type-C Port USB 3.2 Gen 2 with Thunderbolt 4 support, USB 3.2 Gen 1 Ports, HDMI 2.0 port or Bluetooth 5.1.
It comes with Two built-in front facing stereo speakers with DTS Audio for bass response and micro-speaker distortion prevention and Acer Purified Voice technology with two built-in microphones, so you can work with Logic Pro or PreSonus Studio One without risk of losing any sound. On its Mist Green magnesium-lithium-aluminum body you can find a Back-lit Keyboard, Corning Gorilla Glass Antimicrobial Touchpad and of course its 14.0″ screen.
The touch-screen in the Acer Swift 5 SF514-55TA is a 14.0″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED-backlit IPS Acer CineCrystalLED-backlit TFT LCD with Antimicrobial Corning Gorilla Glass, integrated touch, 340nit Brightness, and 100% sRGB of color coverage. It comes with HD Webcam (1280 x 720) supporting Super High Dynamic Range (SHDR). The whole laptop weighs 2.31 pounds and its dimensions are 12.56 x 8.15 x 0.59 inches. This notebook has up to 15 Hours Battery Life.
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon laptops have always been among the most versatile, making them ideal for students and demanding work environments. If you’re searching for DAW (digital audio workstations) the Gen 9 of Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon meets all the requirements. This Ultrabook improves technology with its Intel Core i7 (11th Gen), Intel Iris Xe Graphics, ThinkShield security solutions, outstanding visuals and Dolby Atmos® Speaker System for immersive sound. $1,900.00 could be a bit expensive, but its 14″ anti-glare touchscreen, 16 GB RAM and 1 TB PCIe SSD are some reasons why it is worth it.
As some other current laptops it is designed on Intel® Evo™ vPro® platform, which means 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 Processors (2.80 GHz, up to 4.70 GHz with Turbo Boost, 4 Cores, 8 Threads, 12 MB Cache) with Integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics. The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon offers 16 GB LPDDR4x 4266MHz and 1 TB SSD M.2 2280 PCIe 3.0×4 NVMe for advanced storage, comes with Windows 10 Pro 64 operating system and Fingerprint Reader for easy signup.
LEB Backlit Keyboard and TrackPoint pointing device and glass surface multi-touch touchpad are also part of its sober black design. It comes with a wide range of ports, including USB 3.2 Gen 1, USB 3.2 Gen 1, Thunderbolt 4 / USB4™ 40Gbps, HDMI 2.0 ports and headphone/microphone combo jack (3.5 mm). Intel Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2 are also included, along with 1 Lenovo USB-C to Ethernet Adapter. Stereo speakers, 2W x2 and 0.8W x2 with Dolby® Atmos® and four array microphones, 360° far-field complement the sound station.
Its 14″ FHD+* (1920 x 1200) IPS, anti-glare, touchscreen display, with low-power consumption, 400 nits, 86%; screen to body ratio and 16:10 aspect ratio, is embedded in its black body that measures 0.59 x 12.38 x 8.72 inches. IR and 720p camera, with privacy shutter, fixed focus can keep you connected to public platforms. You can carry this 2.49 pounds Lenovo Laptop with you wherever you are, and it can be used over 16.7 hours.
Asus Laptops stand out for their features, in this case 16 GB RAM for multitasking performance, 512 GB SSD and 11th Gen Intel® Core i7-1165G7 Processor with Intel Iris Xe Graphics, for a remarkable combination of power and precision. So if you are in search of the laptop to create music with software like FL Studio, this Asus is available on Amazon platform for $1,882.93.
With Intel Evo Platform powered by 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 Processor (12M Cache, up to 4.7 GHz, 4 cores) and Intel Iris Xe Graphics G7 96EUs, the ExpertBook B9 delivers a great performance. This ultra-compact business laptop offers 1 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD and 16 GB LPDDR4X RAM to complete any tasks effortlessly. Windows 10 Pro is the preinstalled operative system. Its Black Magnesium-Lithium alloy body is equipped with 14” Full HD Display, Backlit Chiclet Keyboard (Spill-resistant), ASUS NumberPad Touchpad, built-in speakers (DTS Audio) and built-in array microphone.
USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A, Thunderbolt™ 4 supports display/power delivery, 1USB3.1-Type C(Gen 2), HDMI 2.0b, micro HDMI ports (RJ45 lan) and 3.5 mm Combo Audio Jack, Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) and Bluetooth 5.2 allow devices connections. ExpertBook B9 complies with US MIL-STD 810H military-grade standard and is protected by HDD User Password Protection and Security, BIOS Booting User Password Protection, Fingerprint sensor and some others.
Its Magnesium-lithium alloy body weighs only 2.2 pounds, and its dimensions are 12.6 x 8 x 0.6 inches. 14.0-inch, LCD, FHD (1920 x 1080) 16:9, Wide view, Anti-glare display, LED Backlit, 400 nits, sRGB: 100% immersed in a narrow bezel design, and IR webcam with Windows Hello support and proximity sensor. Its battery lasts up to 10 hours of continuous usage.
Business laptops should have everything for optimal performance, especially when it comes from Hewlett-Packard. As part of the eight-generation EliteBook 800 series, the 840 G8 is a solid laptop with significant capabilities, and can easily run apps like FI Studio or PreSonus Studio One thanks to its 32 GB RAM, 11th Gen Intel Core i5-1135G7 and Intel Iris Xe Graphics. Its price is $1,549.00 on Amazon.
This HP laptop comes with dual stereo speakers, 3 multi array microphone and Audio by Bang & Olufsen, delivering bold and accurate sound, and you definitely need this for DAW (digital audio workstations). EliteBook 840 G8 has 11th Gen Intel Core i5-1135G7 (up to 4.2 GHz with Intel Turbo Boost Technology, 8 MB L3 cache, 4 cores); Integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics and 32GB RAM, so it can smoothly run Music Production Software. 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 Solid State Drive is the available capacity to store countless audio files and the data of operating system Windows 10 Pro.
Thunderbolt 4 with USB4 Type-C, SuperSpeed USB Type-A, HDMI 2.0b ports and Stereo headphone/microphone combo jack are among the available ports, as well as Intel AX201 Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for connectivity. It comes with Fingerprint Security System, Backlit Keyboard and Keypad with dedicated mouse buttons.
Its aluminum chassis comes in silver. The EliteBook 840 G8 has a 14″ Diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080), IPS, Anti-glare, 400 Nits, 100% sRGB and comes with HD 720p DualAryMic Webcam/HD 720p Infrared 720p HD Privacy Camera. Its dimensions are 8.44 x 12.73 x 0.7 inches and its weight is 3.21 pounds. HP Long Life 3-cell battery delivers up to 12 hours of intensive usage.
6. LG Gram
LG Gram 14Z90P Laptop 14″ is equipped with Intel Evo 11th gen CORE i7, 32GB RAM and 1TB SSD. On storage and performance terms, this ultra-lightweight laptop can handle DAW (digital audio workstations) and effortlessly edit different audio formats, like mp3, WMA, OGG, MIDI, among others.
The LG Gram has Intel Evo Platform Powered by 11th generation Intel core i7-1165G7 Processor with Intel Iris Xe Graphics, 32 GB LPDDR4X 4266mhz RAM for outstanding multitasking and 1 TB PCIe M.2 NVMe SSD to save tons of data. You can connect peripherals by its USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4 support, USB-A 3.2 ports, HDMI port, a microSD card reader, and a 3.5 mm audio jack. Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 and Bluetooth 5.1 for fast connectivity.
This LG Ultrabook comes with DTS Immersive Sound Technology, for a great audio experience through its smart amp and stereo speakers. It works under Windows 11 Home OS. Its metal magnesium alloy chassis passes the demanding MIL-STD-810G military standard of durability. Backlit keyboard with big flat keys and wide touchpad allow us to carry out any task on this laptop.
Its lightweight black body only weighs 2.2 pounds and its dimensions are 12.34 x 8.47 x 0.66 inches. Its 14″ WUXGA (1920 x 1200) IPS LCD screen, with DCI-P3 99% color expression and wide color gamut enables brilliant colors and is settled with 4-way slim bezel and hidden hinge. LG Gram’s 4 cell lithium-ion Battery delivers up to 17 hours of Battery Life. It comes with Windows 11 Home (64 bit) installed.
The ASUS ZenBook Duo family are among the best laptops with NVIDIA GeForce MX250 and are also great notebooks for Photo Editing. With its versatility proven, the Duo 14 can function perfectly for Music Production Software. With its Intel Core i7-1195G7 CPU, 16 GB RAM and 1 TB PCIe SSD, Steinberg Cubase or Ableton Live can be used to edit and create your very own audio files. Its price is around $2,000.
This Asus Laptop is built with Intel Evo Platform and works with an 11th generation Intel Core i7-1195G7 Processor 3.0GHz (Up to 4.8GHz, 4 cores, 12M Cache) and with Discrete NVIDIA GeForce MX450 graphics. Since it’s quite powerful, It’s featuring 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD with 16 GB LPDDR4X RAM only makes it more attractive for those looking for a device that performs music editing. It comes with enhanced audio performance based on ASUS Sonic Master audio technology, for a stunning audio quality.
It works with Active Aerodynamic System Plus, which increases cooling airflow with the ErgoLift hinge mechanism. It comes with some high-performance I/O options, like Thunderbolt 4 USB-C, USB 3.2 Gen 1, MicroSD card reader, HDMI 1.4 and Audio jack. Wi-Fi 6E(802.11ax) and Bluetooth 5 for better connection quality. This potent laptop also meets the ultra-demanding MIL-STD 810H military standard for reliability and durability.
This Zenbook comes in Celestial Blue and has a Built-in IR camera for facial recognition; it also includes Sleeve, Stand and Stylus pen. Its 14-inch Full HD 300 nits NanoEdge touch screen glossy main display, four-sided frameless, 300 nits, ultra slim bezels for an expansive 93% screen-to-body ratio, and it comes with a second, tilting ScreenPad Plus 12.6-inch touch screen with Control Panel for precision over creative apps, like Digital Audio Workstations. The dimensions of this laptop are 12.76 x 8.74 x 0.67 inches. Its Battery life reaches 17 hours. This is heavy when compared to earlier laptops on this list (7.04 pounds).
When it comes to ultra-slim laptops, Asus is no slouch, and number 8 in my selection is the best demonstration. If you are in the search of a great laptop for Producing Music that weighs little then this 14” ASUS ZenBook with 11th Gen Intel Core processor, NVIDIA GeForce MX450 graphics, 512 GB SSD and 16 GB working memory can be your perfect ally. Its cost is $900 and includes a 5.65-inch Full HD+ interactive touchscreen trackpad.
This Asus ZenBook has 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 Processor 2.8 GHz (12M Cache, up to 4.7 GHz, 4 cores) and NVIDIA GeForce MX450 graphics for nice performance, 16 GB LPDDR4X for multitask rendition without lag and 512 GB Flash Memory Solid State for fast storage. It comes with an edge-to-edge ergonomic keyboard design, precision-engineered ErgoLift hinge for a better typing angle and Dual-speaker Harman Kardon-certified audio system. Its touchpad is a secondary display with a touchscreen.
Its pre-installed operating system is Windows 10 Home 64 bit. The ZenBook 14 includes Thunderbolt 4 USB-C, USB Type-A ports, MicroSD card reader and HDMI port for device connections and Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) and Bluetooth 5.0 (Dual band). Carry sleeve, USB-A to gigabit ethernet adapter and USB-C to audio jack adapter are included. Its metal design is available in Pine Grey and includes HD IR webcam with Windows Halo support and integrated microphone.
ZenBook 14 includes 14 inch 400 nits Full HD (1920×1080), Anti-Glare IPS level, bright and clear four-sided NanoEdge bezel display and ASUS ScreenPad2 for enhanced productivity. Its dimensions are 12.7 x 8.3 x 0.6 inches, and it weighs 2.36 pounds and with its 3-cell lithium-polymer battery delivers a battery life of 10 hours, being a great choice for long music recording and editing sessions.
The power of the 9th laptop on my list comes from its Intel Core i7 and its Intel Iris Xe Graphics. The Dell Inspiron 13 works with 16 GB RAM memory and has 512 GB SSD to save everything that you create through Music Production Software. You can find it on Amazon for $1,233.99 and start to work on your favorite DAW (digital audio workstations).
11th Generation Intel Core i7-11390H Processor (12 MB Cache, 5.0GHz), Intel Iris Xe Graphics with shared graphics memory, 512 GB M.2 PCIe NVMe Solid State Drive and 16 GB, onboard, LPDDR4x, 4267MHz memory, these are 4 remarkable features that could please anyone who needs a powerful laptop, fast enough to render files in the blink of an eye and with enough working memory to run multiple apps simultaneously.
Its aluminum body comes in Platinum Silver, with Titan Gray Backlit Keyboard, 720p at 30 fps, HD RGB camera, dual-array microphones and there are USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, USB Type-C Thunderbolt 4 ports and HDMI port. It has stereo speakers with Waves MaxxAudio® Pro, 2, 2.1 digital-audio out using HDMI-out connection and 3.50 mm headset (headphone and microphone combo) port. Wi-Fi 6 AX201 and Bluetooth 5.2 are included.
The Dell Inspiron 13 has a great 13.3-inch 16:10 QHD+ (2560 x 1600) Anti-Glare Non-Touch Narrow Border 300nits WVA Display, which covers 100% of the sRGB color space. Its body measures are 8.27 x 11.68 x 0.63 inches. The whole laptop weighs 2.75 pounds and up to 10 hours of battery life.
The last one is an MSI professional laptop with Intel Core i7 processor, 16 GB Memory, 1 TB NVMe SSD and Intel Iris Xe Graphics. May these features seem like déjà vu all over again, but Logic Pro, FI Studio and other software require it. Its price is $999.00.
The Summit B14 comes with 1.2 GHz Intel Core i7-1165G7 quad-core CPU with integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics and 16 GB of DDR4 RAM. 1 TB M.2 NVMe SSD for fast and extensive storage, Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 and Bluetooth 5.1 wireless communication are also part of the pack. Microsoft Windows 10 Professional comes as the default OS. It includes USB Type-A, USB Type-C, Thunderbolt 4, HDMI ports, microSD slot and headphone/microphone combo jack (3.5 mm) to connect devices and accessories.
Its aluminum chassis comes in Ink Black color and with Military-Grade Durability. This laptop has Silky Glass Multi-Touch with Fingerprint Reader and White Backlight Keyboard and Nahimic Sound for an optimized audio performance on both speakers.
14″ Thin Bezel IPS-Level Full HD 72% NTSC Display 1920 x 1080 (16:9), True Color Technology to visualize your musical work clearly. It comes with an IR HD (720p) webcam with Facial Recognition technology. Its dimensions are 21.9 x 13.2 x 3.2 inches and weighs 2.87 pounds. The Summit B14 reaches up to 10 hours of battery life.
If you are looking for the best Laptop for Music Production, I hope that the selection that I made especially for this purpose will serve as a guide when choosing the laptop that you will use for your digital audio Workstations.