How to Choose the Best Graphic Design Laptops for College Students

This video is for anyone graphic designer getting ready to go to college, in college, or taking a self-taught journey as a graphic designer and they are looking for the best laptop. ►⏩►⏩ Check specs and pricing in the links below…

Whether you are looking for the top tier machine or you are on a budget I have curated this list for you to make a qualified buying decision. I have only included laptops I would personally buy myself. Perhaps you have some other laptops in mind that you want me to take a look at or review the specs for you. Please feel free to comment below and let me know what laptop you are considering for going to college or starting school as a graphic designer

► Acer Aspire 5 ( )

► ASUS VivoBook S 15 ( )

► Macbook Pro 15 – 2015 ( )

► Dell XPS 15 ( )

► Macbook Pro 15 ( )

► Gigabyte Aero 15 ( )

► Razer Blade 15 ( )

► Vivobook Pro ( )

► Lenovo Flex 14 2 in 1 – ( )

► HP Pavilion X360 ( )

► Microsoft Surface Book 2 – ( )

► Microsoft Surface Pro 6 – ( )

The laptops listed above are all well suited for graphic design. Some will run faster than others, but they will all handle the basic tasks of a graphic designer very well. I want to give you a quick overview of my thoughts on the specs needed for a powerful laptop for graphic design.

When purchasing a laptop for college as a graphic designer is the RAM is important! I am confident in a laptop with 16GB of RAM and definitely NO less than 8GB of RAM. The reason it is good to have at least 16GB of RAM is due to the laptops need to use RAM each time a program is opened. For instance, when you open Photoshop, Indesign, and Chrome to browse the web you are pulling away from the RAM memory. Graphic design programs take up a substantial amount of RAM memory (Photoshop can use 6+ GB of RAM) so it is good to have a lot of RAM to ensure your laptop continues to run at optimal speeds.

Make sure you have a quick Brain! You want a quick processor. The newer i5s are pretty quick, but I have alway found faster load times and smoother program interaction when using an i7. If you have to choose between an i7 and 16GB of RAM I would lean towards getting more RAM.

Don’t even think about getting a Hard Disk Drive these days. Solid State Drives are far more reliable and have substantially come down in price over the past few years. They are always A LOT faster than HDD. Fast and reliable is my recommendation. Make sure it has an SSD.

You need a graphics card right?! I mean, c’mon this is GRAPHIC design we are talking about. Yes, this is graphic design, and you will be designing graphics, but you will not be pulling computing power from your GPU to do so. I will not get into ALL of the technical reasons why, but do note that it is not an important component of your laptop.

Disclaimer: If you are AT ALL considering getting into video editing or motion design than you MUST get a laptop with a high performing dedicated GPU. I have made a video about what computers I recommend. You can check out that video here –

Alright, you are now equipped to make your choice. I wish you luck, happy picking!


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45 thoughts on “How to Choose the Best Graphic Design Laptops for College Students

  1. Hey ! So I have a question. I’m getting into graphic design career for college and I wanted to ask if a MacBook Air with 1.1GHz quad-core 10th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 3.5GH and 16gb of RAM be able to handle indesign, illustrator, photoshop well

  2. Hi I have a question I’m graphic designer but I’m confused which Macbook is good for graphic designers is it the 2015 or 2019 MacBook pro

  3. Hi, I would like to know what do you think about the Asus Zen Book Flip 14, Ryzen 5 3500u, Vega 8, 8gb RAM, 512GB NVME SSD, 1080p, 100% SRGB, touch screen? I found it brand new around 850 – 900$

  4. I would not recommend MacBook Pro for graphic design. I have a brand new pro and unfortunately have to buy a windows laptop because there are software programs I need for my graphic design class that is not compatible with MacBook Pro

  5. One of the best laptop for graphic design under $1000 please reply i am so confuse.
    Please reply only one laptop name with overall performance

  6. Do you think the Helios 300 is suitable to run Adobe After Effects? Any other suggestions is helpful

  7. Hello, I wanted your opinon on the Dell XPS 15 7590 i7 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD. I think this is the same daily driver you said you use. I just bought one and about to start a long overdue graphics field. Please any information will be appreciated. Will this suffice for a while?

  8. Now I’m taking a look on Asus Zenbook UX333FN. Would you recommend it? Also there’s Dell Inspiron 15 7559. What would be the best between the two?

  9. Hey just want to know your thoughts. I'm thinking of upgrading my laptop to a macbook pro, I'm a graphic designer and I'm currently learning more ux/ui design. Do you think buyung the 2015 macbook pro is still worth it now?

  10. Hi, Ben! I’m your new subcriber from Indonesia! Next year I’ll be enrolling as a graphic design student in university and I’ve been wondering what would be the best laptop for design. I know you do recommend using macbook pro, but it’s too expensive and I don’t think I can afford it. So the only choice left for me is Macbook Air MQD32. Would you recommend it? Thankyou before!😁

  11. Am looking at two options the Acer Swift 5 with i7 8th gen 16 ram 256 SSD which you have talked about and the Acer Aspire 7 with i7 8th gen 32 ram 512 SSD & 1TB HHD and GTX 1050 which i haven't heard anything about. Which one would you recomend?

  12. I'm into digital art including comics and illustration. Wich one would it be. Above i5core I want a MBP but is very expressive and I want to know if there is a Windows equivalent.

  13. Hey, Ben! Love your videos so far. So I got a question, I have this laptop, it's the HP Envy X360 with an AMD Ryzen 7 3700 and 16 GB of SSD. Do you think it's good enough for graphic design such as Adobe apps?

  14. Hi! I’m a graphic design student.
    I use Programs like illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign.
    In your opinion the surface book is fine?

  15. I’m not going to college, but I do have a small graphic design business. I do want to make it more serious eg making cover art for well known people meaning I want good high quality work. This means I’ll be working in both photoshop and illustrator mainly. I would want to be able to have illustrator, photoshop and google open at the same time. If you could recommend me a laptop that you are able to like bend all the way over and use it as a touch screen with a pen I’d appreciate it, i dont know if it’s possible but preferably under €600 🤷🏼‍♀️ Thanks

  16. is 2 in 1 laptop really worth for graphic design student or better spend the same amount of money on normal laptop but with better specs?. How do you think? as a person who knows something in it.

  17. Thanks so much for this video! It's extremely helpful. I'm just starting out in graphic design and definitely not doing anything like video editing, just simpler stuff using Adobe Illustrator. Unfortunately my current laptop isn't cutting it. I'd really like to buy a two-in-one that should last a few years and can run heavier programs smoothly. Do you think the new two-in-one Dell XPS 13 with 16GB RAM, intel i7, 256GB SSD & Intel Iris Plus Graphics would suffice? Thanks again for this video, and for your time. 🙂 New subscriber here!

  18. Dell Inspiron 7000 2 in 1 i7 10th gen black edition or yoga c940 i7 10th gen. Both are 4k, which are better. Like for dell, comment yoga

  19. I got the Asus Vivobook S15 (S512FL BQ279T) for €850.
    With Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, GeForce MX 250 and 512GB SSD

  20. should I buy this one?

    I have a leveno 330 17ich 15 8300H available for a bit less than 700€ what is about 750 usd at my local store it was used for presentation purposes.

    It has:
    -8gb ram hdd4
    -geforce gtx 1050
    -1 tb hdd
    -256 GB ssd (don't konw weather the system is included ore excluded)
    -Intel core i5-8500H (up to 4,00 ghz)

    700€ is really a bit expensive for me I want to buy a grafik tablet to so that is a bit tricky…

  21. hey, thanks for the video! i am a student thinking of going into illustration/graphic design and was wondering what laptop you would recommend? a laptop that can easily run adobe software and that is light is essential. thank you!!! ideally within the £500-900 price range 🙂

  22. Hey Ben! Just found your channel and it's been really helpful with choosing what 2-in-1 I'm going to get for my B.A. in Digital Media Design(while working on my AA I will also be getting an Audio/Video Tech Certificate). I really like the Surface Book 2, but it's a little over my budget. So I'm contemplating between the Surface Pro 6 and the Dell XPS 15 2-in-1. I mostly need it for working on projects, assignments, and other such things while I'm on campus. Along with taking notes in class, either by typing or using the pen. I do have a gaming PC at home with an NVIDIA Graphics Card 1050 for heavy loads of work (i.e. rendering a video or exporting, uploading). I would like to hold the 2-in-1 in my hands whenever need be to take quick notes with the pen, without it being uncomfortable or bulky to hold. One thing is that I like that the keyboard is detachable from the Surface Pro 6. What do you suggest? Thanks for the help!

  23. Hi,
    I know this video is about Laptops, but I could really use your recommendation on a Desktop. My wife is a self taught graphic designer and we run a business with small graphics right now. She is on a Dell all in one and is always having issues. I keep telling her that she needs a Better computer, but she is reluctant to change. It like she likes her 8 track and doesnt want to switch to BLUE RAY Disk 🙂 I have be Looking at Dell XPS .. She says she wants something with OPTANE? She like a Touch Screen monitor. I would appreciate any help. Best, Robert

  24. I’m a design student. I use rhinoceros, flamingo, photoshop, Adobe illustrator, solidworks, keyshot. I need a laptop that you can use with the pen but I don’t know if the Surface is a good option. What you would recommend? Thank you, I’m a new subscriber.

  25. Hey Ben! I'm thinking about buying the Dell XPS15 but I keep on reading it has many problems with heat/throttling and stuff like that. How are your experiences with it? I don't wanna spend a lot of money on a Laptop which runs hot all the time. Would be really happy if you could answer! And thanks for helping us find the right Laptops ;-; really saves the day

  26. is macbook pro’s 13 inch screen enough visual space for doing graphic design and video editing? i’m a design and film student and i need something that’s not heavy as i need to work on the go.. i’m currently using my mom’s old 2012 dell xps L502x 15inch and it’s still a great machine, but it has 4kg.. or i should just ditch the idea of a mac and get a new dell xps instead?🤣

  27. Hey Dan would either the hp envy 15' x360 or the Asus Zenbook 14' be any good for graphic design?

  28. Thanks for your helpful videos! My son is going to college for engineering. Out of these two computers which is best? HP Envy x360-15 Quad Core(8th Gen. Intel i7-8550U, 16GB DDR4, 1TB+128GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Intel UHD 620, IPS micro-edge, Bluetooth, Windows 10)Bang & Olufsen MS Ink 15.6" Convertible 2-in-1 laptop
    Dell – Inspiron 17.3" Laptop – Intel Core i7 – 16GB RAM – 2TB HD + 256GB SSD – Platinum Silver
    Thanks in advance for your time.

  29. I just happened upon your channel through the recommended list on my page. I was wondering what you thought about the Wacom products. I haven't been formally trained in digital media. I was trained classically in traditional media. I am having to segue into digital for a plethora of reasons too numerous to recount. I have an Intuos 5 that I bought from a friend second hand on which to learn. I love it. I get by using my friend's set up. I really need to go independent of that situation. Should I just get a laptop with graphic capabilities or get one with which to use my Intuos or should I forget the laptop thing altogether and just upgrade to the newer Wacom products.

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