Unleash your musical creativity with the Apple MacBook Pro M2, our top pick for the best laptop for music production.
The Apple MacBook Pro M2 is the best laptop for music production, offering powerful performance and user-friendly design. With a 12-core CPU and 16GB RAM, it can handle demanding tasks without lag. Its 1TB SSD with lightning-fast speeds ensures quick access to large audio files. The 14.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR display and Dolby Atmos-supported speakers enhance the music production experience. While it lacks USB-A ports and may face software compatibility issues, its portability, and overall performance make it a dream for music producers.
- Ample 1TB SSD with high-speed read and write capabilities
- Dolby Atmos-supported speakers
- Lightweight and portable
- Limited USB ports with no USB-A ports
- Potential compatibility issues with some
If the only music your current laptop produces is of the fans crying under any minor workload, it’s time to get a laptop that is suitable for music production.
After countless hours of testing and comparing various laptops, we’ve compiled a list of the ten best laptops for music production. These laptops will not only support industry-standard software like Ableton Live, Logic Pro X, Pro Tools and other audio editing apps but also have you nodding your head to lightning-fast processing speeds and crystal-clear audio quality.
Ready to sing along? Let’s drop the bass & jump in!
List of the Best Laptops for Music Production in 2023
Calling all audio enthusiasts! Prepare to be captivated by our expertly curated list of the Best Laptops for Music Production in 2023.
- Apple MacBook Pro M2 – Best Overall (Editor’s Choice)
- ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo – Best for Professionals
- HP Spectre x360 – Best Value & Performance
- Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 – Best Battery Life
- ASUS ROG Strix G16 – Best With Intelligent Cooling System
- Dell XPS 17 – Best For Large Screen Lovers
- LG Gram 17 – Most Versatile
- Galaxy Book 3 – Best Budget Laptop for Music Production
- Lenovo ThinkPad E14 – Cheapest
- Elite Dragonfly – Best Style and Aesthetics
What is the best laptop for music production in 2023?
When editing music and running various audio software on it, we found the Apple MacBook Pro M2 to be the best laptop for music production in the current market, mainly for its speedy performance, multitasking abilities, ample storage space, and of course, the exceptional audio quality.
Top 3 Laptops For Music Production
Embark on a sonic adventure with our top 3 laptop recommendations for music production, carefully chosen to enhance your soundscapes and unlock new levels of musical expression.
Detailed Reviews of The Best Laptops For Music Production
1. Apple MacBook Pro M2 – (Best Overall) (Editor’s Choice)
Best Mac laptop for music production
CPU: 12-core CPU with 8 performance cores and 4 efficiency cores | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 14.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR display | GPU: 30-core GPU | Battery: Up to 18 hours
Let’s kick things off with a laptop that music producers can rely on to complete their day-to-day tasks with ease – the Apple MacBook Pro M2. With its powerful specs and user-friendly design, this laptop is the perfect tool for music producers who want to take their creativity to the next level. Here’s why—
First off, one of the standout features of the MacBook Pro M2 is its 12-core CPU, which is powerful enough to handle even the most demanding music production tasks.
Whether you’re running multiple instances of your favorite DAW or using CPU-hungry plugins, this laptop won’t skip a beat. And with its 16GB unified RAM, you can multitask like a pro, switching between different programs and projects without worrying about lag or performance issues.
Another major benefit we love about the MacBook Pro M2 is its ample storage space. With a generous 1TB SSD, you’ll have plenty of room to store your samples, projects, and VST libraries. And thanks to the SSD’s insane 1451 MB/S writing and 1294 MB/S reading speed, you’ll be able to access and transfer large audio file exports in seconds.
But the MacBook Pro M2 isn’t just powerful – it’s also designed to make music production easier and more intuitive. The laptop’s 14.2-inch high-resolution Liquid Retina XDR display is perfect for spotting even the tiniest details in your audio waveforms or identifying that pesky frequency causing your mix to sound muddy. And with its 120Hz refresh rate, you’ll enjoy a smooth and seamless user experience, even during long studio sessions.
Of course, sound quality is also a top priority for music producers. And the MacBook Pro M2 doesn’t disappoint in this regard. Its stereo speakers offer a wide dynamic range and support for Dolby Atmos playback, allowing you to hear every detail of your music and make precise adjustments while mixing and mastering.
The best part about the Macbook Pro M2 is that besides being packed with such amazing specs and a decent-sized display, it only weighs 3.5 pounds, making it highly portable and a great choice if you like to work while on the move.
However, we did find some minor downsides too. First off, it comes with three Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C) ports and no USB-A ports, so you might have a problem connecting your older gear to it. But hey, grab a trusty adapter, and you’re good to go!
Another downside could be the compatibility issues you may face with some software you use for music production, as most applications are suited better for Windows computers.
Overall, the Apple MacBook Pro M2 is a music producer’s dream come true. Its powerful specs, ample storage, and user-friendly design make it the perfect tool for completing your day-to-day tasks with ease. It might make you reach deep into your pockets, but for the performance and reliability it offers, it’s worth every penny.
|➕ Unparalleled performance for demanding music production tasks||➖ Premium price tag (but worth the investment)|
|➕ Crystal-clear 14.2-inch display for precision editing and mixing||➖ No USB-A ports (easily solved with an adapter)|
|➕ Spacious 1TB SSD storage for all your music files|
|➕ Long-lasting battery life for mobile producers|
Apple MacBook Pro M2 Review
Check out this Apple MacBook Pro M2 review video to learn more:
Video Credit: Dave2D / YouTube
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2. ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo – (Best For Professionals)
Best laptop for professional music producers
CPU: Intel i9-12900H 14-Core | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 15.6-inch 3840 x 2160 pixels | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 | Battery: Up to 5 hours
“Touchscreen laptops are not powerful.” If you believe in this old saying too, then you might wanna take a second opinion because the Asus ZenBook Pro Duo‘s power and performance are here to break this misconception.
It comes with a 14-inch 4K matte secondary screen that provides endless ways to optimize your multitasking experience by extending the screen or splitting windows on both displays. This means you can have your DAW on the main display while having your mixer, virtual instruments, or effects on the secondary screen, so you can create music without constantly needing to switch between windows. How amazing is that?
But don’t let the secondary screen amaze you just yet, as the main display is equally impressive as well. The 15.6 inches OLED 4K (3840 x 2160) NanoEdge touch display is Pantone Validated. It’s a VESA CERTIFIED Display with HDR True Black 500 rating that provides you with stunning visuals and accurate color representation.
This is especially important when you need to fine-tune the details of your music tracks using visual software like XYZ, ensuring that they sound the way you intend them to.
Now let’s talk about performance. Under the hood, the ASUS Zenbook Pro is powered by a 12th generation Intel Core i7-12700H Processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 GPU with 8GB VRAM, so you can run multiple plugins and virtual instruments efficiently, without experiencing any lag.
The laptop also comes with Windows 11 Home, fast storage, and memory featuring 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD with 16GB LPDDR5 RAM, giving you ample storage and speed to store your projects and multitask.
But on the flip side, while this ASUS laptop is packed with Harman Kardon-branded speakers that are impressively loud, they may not offer much bass for music. But you can work around it by investing in quality speakers of your choice.
Moreover, the battery life is only 5 hours, so you might need to keep it connected during long recording sessions. A laptop power bank will also come handy here.
Overall, the ASUS Zenbook Pro is a highly versatile and powerful laptop that can enhance the productivity of any professional music producer. But this performance and flexibility come at a cost too. However, if you have money to spend, we bet there’s no better Windows laptop you can buy for your needs.
|➕ Powerful processor and graphics card for the smooth running of music production software||➖ Short battery life can be limiting for longer recording or editing sessions|
|➕ Large, high-quality display for detailed editing and mixing||➖ Fan noise may be audible in quiet recording environments|
|➕ Lightweight and portable for easy transportation to and from recording sessions|
|➕ Thunderbolt 3 port for high-speed data transfer and connecting external hardware|
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3. HP Spectre x360 – (Speedy Performance)
Best HP laptop for music production
CPU: 2.3 GH Intel 12th Gen i7-12700H | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 16-inch 3072 x 1920 Pixels | GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics | Battery: Up to 15 hours
Portability, power, and performance; the HP Spectre x360 is one of few laptops that are capable of handling the demands of music production while also striking the perfect balance between each one of the mentioned traits.
Starting off, this beast is powered by a 2.3 GH Intel 12th Gen i7 CPU, which offers a maximum turbo boost of up to 4.7 GHz so you can say big goodbyes to the bottlenecking you face while compiling multiple audio formats.
And if that wasn’t enough, note that the laptop is supported by 16GB DDR4 RAM running at a whopping 3200MHz and a 1TB NVMe PCIe M.2 SSD combo. With these impressive specs, you can FEEL swift performance when running intensive music production software like Ableton Live, FL Studio, or Logic Pro.
But these specs are just the beginning of the story. Because the standout feature of the HP Spectre x360 is its gorgeous 16-inch 3072 x 1920-pixel display, this high-resolution display also offers 100% sRGB coverage and low blue light emission, which reduces eye strain during long production sessions.
Additionally, the display is multitouch-enabled and comes with an MPP2.0 stylus, making it a great pen-friendly platform for music producers and digital content creators.
But this display does come at a tradeoff with the GPU as it comes with an integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics card instead of a dedicated one. But it’s still powerful enough to support up to three external monitors via HDMI, Thunderbolt 4, and USB4 Type-C.
However, let’s be honest, the touchscreen display may not be essential for everyone, so you can be better off with a laptop like the MacBook Pro or the ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo, as they have a dedicated GPU.
While the HP Spectre x360 offers many amazing features, it also has some potential drawbacks that may affect your workflow as a music producer. Firstly, its speakers lack the warmth and fullness of external speakers. However, the audio quality is much better than most ultralights, which often have speakers that sound tinny or muffled.
But since as a professional music procedure, you’re probably gonna keep your headphones with you at all times. So, it may not be a major challenge. Another problem that you might face with the HP Spectre x360 is the limited selection of ports, so you’ll have to connect additional adapters to it.
All in all, the HP Spectre x360 is a decent option for music producers who prioritize portability and appreciate its solid performance but do not need a dedicated GPU to drive through their daily tasks.
|➕ High-performance processor for running demanding music software||➖ May not have built-in ports for connecting external MIDI or audio equipment, requiring the use of additional adapters or interfaces|
|➕ Large and fast storage for storing and accessing large audio files|
|➕ High-quality audio output for accurate monitoring and mixing|
|➕ Portable and lightweight design for easy transportation between recording sessions|
|➕ Plenty of RAM for smooth multitasking while working on music projects|
HP Spectre x360 Review
Check out this HP Spectre x360 review video to learn more:
Video Credit: Matthew Moniz / YouTube
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4. Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 – (Best Battery Life)
Best Windows laptop for music production and long recording sessions
CPU: 1.8 GHz apple_ci7 | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 13.5-inch 2256 x 1504 pixels | GPU: Iris™ Plus graphics 950 | Battery: Up to 17 hours
As a music producer, you need a laptop that can keep up with your creative demands and help you produce music that stands out. With the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4, you can do just that.
If we were to list the best part about the Surface Laptop 4, it is always going to be its unmatched power. With 16 GB LPDDR4 RAM, 512GB of M. 2 2230 NVMe PCIe SSD, and an 11th Gen Intel Core processor, it provides up to 70% more speed than its predecessor and can handle even the most demanding music production tasks without breaking a sweat. So whether you’re composing a complex track or mixing live performance, this laptop can easily handle it.
The only downside in terms of performance is that the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 features an Intel Iris Xe graphics card instead of a dedicated one. Even though it provides decent performance and gets you through most tasks, you can still feel a slight crunch when you process larger audio datasets in Ableton Live. But if you’re working on mid-level projects, you’ll be good to go.
Apart from performance, the Surface Laptop 4 is also incredibly portable and stylish, with a 13.5-inch PixelSense touchscreen display that provides a resolution of 2256 x 1504 pixels, so you can spot even the slightest difference in color-sensitive music software like Ableton Live, FL Studio, and Logic Pro.
Another catch with Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 is that even though the audio is improved compared to its predecessor, the speaker hardware is still the same. However, as a music producer, you would always be using dedicated headphones anyway.
Additionally, the laptop comes with only two USB 3.0 ports, which may limit your ability to connect to external devices. But that’s something you can easily solve with external USB hubs.
Overall, these limitations are minor compared to the overall benefits of this laptop. The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 is an excellent choice for music developers who need a laptop to multitask and work on id level projects. And while there are a few potential limitations to be aware of, they are outweighed by the many benefits of this laptop.
|➕ Powerful processor and GPU for smooth performance||➖ Limited upgrade options, particularly for RAM and storage|
|➕ High-quality touchscreen display with high resolution and color accuracy for precise visuals|
|➕ Great portability|
|➕ Long battery life to keep you going throughout the day|
|➕ Solid construction and durable materials for longevity and reliability|
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5. ASUS ROG Strix G16 – (Best With Intelligent Cooling System)
Best music prodution laptop for long sessions
CPU: Intel Core i9-13980HX | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 16-inch 1920 x 1200 pixels | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070 | Battery: Up to 4-5 hours
The ASUS ROG Strix G16 is a powerhouse of a laptop that boasts an Intel Core i9-13980HX processor and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070 Laptop GPU at 140W Max TGP, making it a top contender for the most demanding audio tasks.
But that’s not all! With 16GB of DDR5-4800MHz memory and 1TB of PCIe 4×4 storage, this laptop has the speed and space to handle all your multitasking needs. And let’s not forget about the lightning-fast loading times that will have you spending more time creating and less time waiting.
Well, if those shiny specs were not enough for you to understand the hype, its intelligent cooling system will really blow your mind. Instead of an average set of fans, the ROG Strix G16 comes with Thermal Grizzly’s Conductonaut Extreme liquid metal cooling system for the CPU and three intake fans. That basically means you can overload it with the most intensive workload while still being able to keep it on your lap!
This also allows you a much better-sustained performance over long sessions, ensuring that your audio software runs smoothly even during extended production periods.
In terms of visuals, the Strix G16 features a fast FHD 165Hz panel that covers 100% of the sRGB color space and features Dolby Vision, Adaptive-Sync support, and a 90% screen-to-body ratio. This combination makes for a stunning viewing experience that’s ideal for reviewing video and audio content. Moving forward, the dual Dolby Atmos-powered speakers and Hi-Res audio ensure you hear music in the same quality it was recorded.
While the Strix G16 is a powerful machine, it does come with a few potential drawbacks. For example, its 10.16-pound weight may be a bit cumbersome for some users. Plus, you would also need to consider its size if you are looking for a portable laptop. But with the right laptop bag, you can easily work around it.
In summary, the ASUS ROG Strix G16 is a powerful laptop with a robust cooling system, fast visuals, and advanced noise-cancellation technology that makes it a standout choice for audio production.
|➕ High-performance processor and GPU for handling demanding audio software and plugins||➖ Heavy and bulky design may not be ideal for on-the-go production or travel|
|➕ Ample storage for large audio files and sample libraries||➖ Short battery life may limit the use of the laptop for extended periods of time without access to a power source|
|➕ Fast loading times for efficient workflow|
|➕ High-quality display for accurate visual representation of audio software and production projects|
|➕ Good connectivity options for external audio interfaces and other peripherals|
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6. Dell XPS 17 – (Best For Large Screen Lovers)
Best large screen laptop for music production
CPU: Intel Core i9-12900HK | RAM: 32 GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 17-inch 3840 x 2400 pixels | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060| Battery: Up to 10 hours
If you’re tired of laptops that can’t keep up with your demanding tasks, hold onto your hats because the Dell XPS 17 is here. This laptop is set to exceed your expectations and make your music development experience smoother than ever.
Let’s dive into the juicy details – with a 12th Gen Intel Core i9-12900HK processor and 32GB of DDR5 memory, this machine can handle everything you throw at it without showing any signs of slowing down. So, whether you’re producing music, editing videos, or running multiple programs at once, the XPS 17 has got you covered.
The best thing about the XPS 17 is its NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 6GB GDDR6 graphics card that delivers unparalleled performance. It can provide fast and reliable performance when running popular digital audio workstations (DAWs) like Ableton Live or Logic Pro X.
This laptop is a dream come true for music producers as it comes equipped with an extraordinary audio system that enhances the listening experience. The Waves Nx 3D Audio feature creates a three-dimensional soundscape that immerses the user in a world of rich and vibrant audio.
Moreover, this feature is tuned by Jack Joseph Puig, a multi-Grammy Award-winning producer, making it a standout choice for music producers who demand the very best in sound quality.
But what about storage? The XPS 17 comes with a whopping 1TB solid-state drive that gives you plenty of space to store your projects and files. And with its lightning-fast read and write speeds, you can access your files quickly and efficiently.
While the Dell XPS 17 has a lot of positives, it’s not without its downsides. One of the most notable drawbacks is the laptop’s price tag, as it’s one of the more expensive laptops in its class. Additionally, it is not the most portable laptop with its over five pounds weight, making it less than ideal for those who frequently travel.
All in all, with this laptop, music producers can create, mix and produce music with unparalleled precision and clarity, all thanks to the amazing audio system that it boasts. And with its long battery life and sleek design, you can take it with you wherever you go as long as you’re not bothered by its weight.
|➕ Powerful 12th Gen Intel Core i9 processor and 32GB of DDR5 RAM for smooth and efficient multitasking.||➖ The price point of the Dell XPS 17 may be higher than other laptops with similar specifications.|
|➕ Waves Nx 3D Audio feature creates a three-dimensional soundscape of rich and vibrant audio.||➖ While the large screen size is an advantage, it can make the laptop difficult to use in smaller workspaces or on crowded tables.|
|➕ NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 6GB GDDR6 graphics card delivers unparalleled performance when running popular digital audio workstations (DAWs).|
|➕ Long battery life of up to 10 hours, allowing for extended use without the need for a power outlet.|
Dell XPS 17 Review
Check out this Dell XPS 17 review video to learn more:
Video Credit: The Tech Chap / YouTube
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7. LG Gram 17 – (Most Versatile)
Best versatile laptop for music production
CPU: Intel Quad-Core i7-1195G7 | RAM: 16 GB | Storage: 1TB SSD | Display: 17-inch 2560 x 1600 pixels | GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics | Battery: Up to 13 hours
LG is making a comeback in the laptop market with a bang! And their LG Gram 17 is a clear example of that. This laptop offers a very subtle combo of performance, decent portability, and a very professional appeal.
Starting with performance, the LG Gram 17 can make complex music production tasks a breeze with its impressive 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1195G7 processor. The “1195G7” here is important because, unlike most other i7 processors that are capped at 4.2 GHz or 4.8 GHz, this beast has a maximum clock speed of up to 5.00 GHz! That means you can kiss goodbyes to those bottlenecks you face when playing around with your DAW plugins. Pretty outstanding, right?
When it comes to storage and RAM capacity, the LG Gram 17 boasts a 16GB LPDDR4X 4266MHz SDRAM Memory and a 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD which is more than enough to take care of all your music production projects. Plus, the fast read and write speeds let you load and save large audio files in seconds.
The LG Gram17 also features a 17.0″ IPS LCD display with a resolution of 2560 x 1600 and DCI-P3 99% color gamut, which offers you a high-resolution picture quality with top-of-the-line color accuracy. These features allow you to have a better visual representation of the sound waves and audio tracks while working with software like Ableton Live or FL Studio.
As far as ports are concerned, the LG Gram 17 has two USB Type-C ports, two USB Type-A ports, one HDMI port, and a headphone/microphone combo jack. The laptop also comes with a bundled BROAG with a USB Extension Cable too, which can be helpful for connecting external hardware such as audio interfaces or MIDI controllers.
Though the LG Gram 17 offers plenty of power and versatility, it’s important to keep in mind its few potential drawbacks. Firstly, the integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics may not be able to handle more demanding music video editing tasks. Additionally, the laptop’s slim design may result in some thermal throttling under heavy loads.
Overall, the LG Gram 17 is a great choice for music producers who value portability and power. Its powerful processor, high-resolution display, and ample storage make it well-suited for music production tasks. But it may not be the best choice for professionals who work on large audio datasets or also dip into video editing.
|➕ High resolution display provides accurate color representation for precise editing of music videos.||➖ Integrated graphics may not be powerful enough for demanding graphical tasks.|
|➕ Ample storage space to store large music projects and associated files.||➖ Slim design may result in thermal throttling under heavy workloads.|
|➕ Lightweight design makes it easy to transport to gigs or recording studios.|
|➕ The long battery life lasts for hours.|
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8. Galaxy Book 3 – (Best Budget Laptop for Music Production)
Best affordable laptop for music production
CPU: 13th Gen Intel Core i7-1360P Processor | RAM: 16 GB | Storage: 512 GB SSD | Display: 15.6-inch 1920×1080 Pixels | GPU: ARM Mali-T604 | Battery: Up to 8 hours
The Samsung Galaxy Book 3 is one of the budget-friendly yet powerful laptops on our list. It has a powerful CPU, a sizable chunk of RAM, great SSD storage, and a powerful integrated GPU, and all of it for a price tag sitting just at the fence of $1000.
When it comes to speed and performance, this bad boy can easily handle multiple tracks and effects in your music production software. You won’t experience any lag or stuttering thanks to its combo of a 13th Gen Intel Core i7-1360P processor and Intel Iris Xe Graphics.
It also comes with 16GB LPDDR4X RAM and 512GB SSD. This powerful mix of components allows the laptop to handle multiple tracks and effects in music production software, making for a smooth creative experience.
Visuals are essential for music producers, and the Galaxy Book 3 delivers on that front, too, with its large 15.6-inch display. Its full HD screen is crisp and bright, providing you with all the detail and clarity you need to work on your music videos.
In terms of connectivity, the Galaxy Book 3 offers multiple ports for easy connections, including USB Type-C, USB 3.0, HDMI, and a headphone jack. Multiple ports are an absolute necessity for music producers, and this laptop allows you to connect all your peripherals and devices without any clunky adapters or dongles.
Despite all the amazing features of the Galaxy Book 3, it has some minor setbacks. Its weight of 6 pounds may pose a challenge if you value portability.
Secondly, it only has integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics. While sufficient for most tasks, it could limit its ability to handle intensive graphics processing in some music production software such as FL Studio and Abelton. In that case, you might want to invest in a dedicated graphics card.
Overall, the Samsung Galaxy Book 3 is a solid choice for music producers on a budget. While it may be slightly heavy compared to other laptops, it’s super-fast performance and high-end features make up for it.
|➕ Long battery life, ensuring that you can work on your music for extended periods without needing to charge||➖ No dedicated graphics card, which may limit the laptop’s ability to handle intensive graphics processing in some music production software.|
|➕ High-quality display with vibrant colors and sharp images, allowing you to see every detail in your music production software||➖ While the Galaxy Book3’s battery life is decent, it’s not exceptional. You can expect to get around 8-9 hours of use on a single charge, which may not be enough for some users.|
|➕ Built-in fingerprint scanner for easy and secure login|
|➕ Good value for the price compared to other laptops with similar specifications|
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9. Lenovo ThinkPad E14 – (Cheapest)
Best cheap laptop for music production
CPU: Intel Quad Core i5-1135G7 | RAM: 32 GB | Storage: 1 TB SSD | Display: 14-inch 1920×1080 | GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics functions as UHD Graphics | Battery: Up to 9.4 hours
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly laptop that runs popular music production software without lag, the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 is a great choice. With its Intel Quad Core i5-1135G7 processor, this laptop can handle the most demanding music production tasks.
With its 32GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB NVMe SSD, you will be able to use multiple tracks, plugins, and virtual instruments without slowing down. If you’re thinking this budget-friendly laptop won’t have an amazing display compared to the other options in this article, you couldn’t be further from the truth. Its 14″ FHD screen offers a clear visual display, making the process of editing and arranging music tracks easier.
What makes the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 stand out for music production is its ability to support memory and hard drive upgrades. It means you can easily upgrade your laptop’s memory and storage capacity to meet your needs as your music production projects grow in complexity.
One potential drawback of the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 is its lack of a dedicated graphics card. While the integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics works fine, as UHD Graphics are powerful enough for most music production tasks, some producers may require a dedicated graphics card for more demanding graphics and video editing tasks.
To sum up, the Lenovo ThinkPad E14 is an excellent budget-friendly laptop for music production, equipped with a powerful Intel Quad Core i5-1135G7 processor, 32GB RAM, and 1TB NVMe storage. However, it lacks a dedicated graphics card, which may limit more demanding tasks.
|➕ Offers a lot of power for its price, making it an attractive option for music producers on a budget.||➖ May not be suitable for more demanding graphics and video editing tasks.|
|➕ Powerful processor is capable of handling moderately demanding music production tasks.||➖ May run hot under heavy load, which could impact performance.|
|➕ Upgradeable RAM and storage allow flexibility and future-proofing.|
|➕ FHD Screen offers a clear visual display that is important for editing and arranging music tracks.|
|➕ Multiple ports for connecting external devices like audio interfaces, MIDI controllers, and external hard drives.|
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10. Elite Dragonfly – (Best Style and Aesthetics)
Best notebook for music production
CPU: FHD 11th Gen Intel EVO i7-1165G7 | RAM: 16 GB | Storage: 2 TB SSD | Display: 13.3-inch 1920 x 1080 Pixels | GPU: Integrated Iris Xe Graphics | Battery: Up to 15 hours
It’s hard to find performance, style, and versatility altogether in a single laptop, but the Elite Dragonfly has it all. This spectacular machine is powered by an 11th Gen Intel Evo Core i7-1185G7 processor and 16 GB LPDDR4X-4266 SDRAM memory. These powerful features combine to give you a machine that can handle even the most demanding music production software.
With a 2TB PCIe SSD, which supports PCIe Gen4 technology, this laptop provides sufficient storage, so you can store your large sample audio libraries. PCIe Gen4 technology provides faster data transfer speeds than previous generations. This can be especially useful for music producers who work with large audio files, as it can reduce project loading and save time.
Another key feature of the Elite Dragonfly is its 13.3-inch diagonal Anti-Glare FHD touchscreen display, which comes with Corning Gorilla Glass 5. The anti-glare feature helps reduce reflections and glare, improving visibility and reducing eye strain. You also get 1000 nits of brightness to work in different lighting conditions and environments.
The Elite Dragonfly also maintains its promise of providing versatility by offering a good selection of ports. On the left side of the laptop, there are two Thunderbolt 4 ports that support Power Delivery, DisplayPort 1.4, and data transfer rates up to 40 Gb/s.
On the right side, you get a USB 3.1 Gen 1 port, an HDMI 2.0 port, and a headphone/microphone combo jack, so you can connect to a variety of devices and peripherals required for music production.
The Elite Dragonfly is a musical maestro’s dream come true; however, it has a few potential drawbacks. Its 13.3-inch display may be too small for some users, and the price point may be higher than some other laptops on the market. However, the benefits of the Elite Dragonfly still outweigh these drawbacks.
Overall, the Elite Dragonfly is a powerful and reliable laptop with vast connectivity options. Despite its powerful machinery, it retains its aesthetic appearance and doesn’t appear bulky. So, if performance, versatility, and aesthetics are your foremost priority, the Elite Dragonfly is an excellent choice.
|➕ Powerful processor and ample memory for running demanding music production software.||➖ 13.3-inch display may be too small for some music producers who prefer a larger display for better visibility.|
|➕ 2TB PCIe SSD with fast storage technology for quick access to music files and projects.||➖ The price point may be higher than other similar laptops on the market, which could be a concern for those on a tighter budget.|
|➕ Anti-glare FHD touchscreen display with high brightness levels for working in different lighting environments.|
|➕ Multiple ports for connecting a range of devices and peripherals, including Thunderbolt 4 ports, USB 3.1, HDMI 2.0, and a headphone/microphone combo jack.|
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How We Selected and Tested the Best Laptops for Music Production
We understand the importance of finding the perfect laptop that can handle the rigorous demands of music production. Our goal is to provide you with a list of laptops that cater specifically to the needs and preferences of music producers like you. To achieve this, we meticulously followed a two-step process: Selection and Testing.
In this section, we’ll dive deeper into the details of our selection and testing processes.
To ensure that our recommendations would genuinely benefit music producers, we extensively researched the essential features and specifications crucial for a laptop tailored for music production. We gathered input from other music producers, scoured online forums, and studied reviews to understand the must-haves and deal-breakers for professionals in the industry.
After identifying these crucial factors, we reached out to manufacturers and retailers for their top recommendations. We also scoured online marketplaces and tech websites for laptops that met our criteria. We then compiled a list of potential candidates and compared their specifications, pricing, and user feedback to narrow down our list to a select few that we believed would best serve the needs of music producers.
Once we had our shortlist, we put each laptop through a series of rigorous tests to ensure they performed well in real-world music production scenarios. Our testing process was designed to simulate the demands and challenges music producers face daily. Here’s a more detailed breakdown of the tests we conducted:
1. DAW Compatibility: We tested each laptop with a range of popular DAWs to ensure smooth operation and compatibility. This involved loading up multiple projects, editing tracks, and exporting files to evaluate performance and stability.
2. Plugin Performance: We installed a variety of resource-intensive plugins, including virtual instruments, effects, and mastering tools, to assess how each laptop performed under heavy workloads. We paid close attention to CPU usage, RAM consumption, and overall system stability during these tests.
3. Stress Test: We used benchmarking tools like Cinebench, Geekbench, and AIDA64 to evaluate each laptop’s overall performance, cooling efficiency, and thermal management. This allowed us to determine how well each laptop would handle the demands of professional music production.
4. Audio Latency: We measured audio latency using tools like DPC Latency Checker or LatencyMon, ensuring that the laptops met the requirements of professional music producers. This involved testing the laptops with different buffer sizes, sample rates, and audio interfaces to find optimal settings.
5. Noise Level: We checked each laptop’s fan noise during heavy workloads using a decibel meter, making sure it remained at acceptable levels.
6. Display Quality: We evaluated the laptops’ display quality, color accuracy, and sharpness during music production and video editing tasks.
7. Audio Quality: We tested the built-in sound cards or audio interfaces by recording and playing back audio, ensuring high-quality sound.
8. Portability and Build Quality: We assessed each laptop’s build quality, weight, and portability, making sure they met the requirements of traveling music producers.
9. Battery Performance: We tested battery life under heavy processing workloads, ensuring that it could support extended music production sessions.
After the thorough selection and testing process, we were able to narrow down our list to the top laptops that meet the needs and preferences of music producers.
Our final recommendations are not only based on their specifications but also on their real-world performance, ensuring that you get a laptop that’s reliable, powerful, and perfectly suited for your music production needs.
Buying Guide: Best Laptops for Music Production
Wondering what to look for in a laptop for music production? Then check out the buying guide below to find the best laptop for your music production needs.
✅ At Least a i5 5th generation Processor
Music production requires a powerful CPU, especially when using multiple plugins, virtual instruments, and processing audio in real-time. Look for at least an Intel i5 5th generation processor or equivalent AMD processor for smooth performance. However, consider upgrading to an Intel i7 like in the HP Spectre x360 for more demanding projects or professional use.
✅ 8 GB RAM is Enough to Get you Started
RAM allows your laptop to handle multiple tasks simultaneously, which is crucial when running multiple plugins, virtual instruments, or large projects. A minimum of 8GB RAM is recommended, but 16GB or higher like in ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo or Dell XPS 17 is ideal for better performance and future-proofing your system.
✅ Aim for a Minimum 512 GB SSD Storage
Music production involves working with large audio files, samples, and projects, so having sufficient storage is essential. A 512GB SSD is the minimum but consider a larger capacity SSD like in the Apple MacBook Pro M2 or LG Gram 17 if you have a vast library of samples or work on multiple projects simultaneously.
✅ High Resolution Display for Great Visuals
A high-resolution display (Full HD or 4K) is great for accurately representing audio waveforms, visualizers, and plugin interfaces. A minimum 13-inch screen is recommended, but a 15-inch or larger display like the Dell XPS 17 will provide a more comfortable workspace.
✅ Extended Battery Life for Long Sessions
Battery life is crucial for extended sessions or live performances without access to power outlets. Aim for a laptop with at least 5 hours of battery life. However, a laptop with 6-8 hours of battery life like the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 or Apple MacBook Pro M2 will provide more flexibility and convenience during long sessions or travel.
✅ Wide Connectivity Option for Connecting Peripherals
Having multiple connectivity options is essential for connecting audio interfaces, MIDI controllers, and other peripherals. Ensure the laptop has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB-C, USB-A, HDMI, and audio interface compatibility (e.g., Thunderbolt, USB) like the LG Gram 17. An SD card slot can also be helpful for transferring files or expanding storage.
✅ Noise and Heat Management for Maximum Performance
Choose a capable music production laptop with efficient cooling systems like the ASUS ROG Strix G16 to minimize fan noise and prevent overheating during long sessions and heavy processing tasks. Low noise operation is crucial for recording and monitoring in quiet environments.
✅ Compatible Operating System for Softwares
Select an operating system (Windows or macOS) compatible with your preferred music production software and plugins. Both platforms have a wide range of professional music production applications, so choose the one you’re most comfortable with or offers the best compatibility with your workflow.
✅ Durable Build Quality and Design
Opt for a solid laptop with durable construction, resistance to wear and tear, and a professional design that reflects your creative nature. A sleek design and lightweight build can make transportation to gigs, studios, or collaborative sessions more manageable.
✅ Responsive Keyboard and Trackpad
Choose a laptop with a comfortable, responsive keyboard for extended use. Backlit keys can be helpful for working in low-light conditions or during live performances. A high-quality trackpad can improve your workflow by providing smooth navigation and support for multi-touch gestures.
Some music developers may prefer using an external mouse for more precise control, so consider your personal preferences and workflow.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below, we have answered some frequently asked questions about the best laptops for music production:
What laptops do music producers use?
Music producers use laptops with high processing power and good audio capabilities. Popular choices include Apple MacBook Pro, Dell XPS, and HP Spectre. Some producers also prefer to use laptops specifically designed for music production, such as the Razer Blade or the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15.
How much RAM is needed on a laptop for music production?
The amount of RAM needed on a laptop for music production depends on the complexity of the project and the type of digital audio workstation (DAW) being used. As a general rule of thumb, 8GB of RAM is the minimum requirement for basic music production, but 16GB or more is recommended for more complex projects.
How much RAM do I need for DAW?
The amount of RAM you need for DAW depends on the specific DAW and the complexity of the project. However, 16GB of RAM is generally recommended for most music production projects, and some DAWs may require even more.
Is MacBook good for music production?
Yes, MacBook is good for music production and is a popular choice among music producers due to its reliable performance, high-quality build, and good audio capabilities. Many popular music production software programs, such as Logic Pro X and Ableton Live, are optimized for use on Macs.
Which processor is best for music production?
The best processor for music production is one with high clock speed and multiple cores. The Intel Core i7 or i9 and the AMD Ryzen 7 or 9 are popular choices among music producers. Processors with hyper-threading or simultaneous multithreading (SMT) can improve performance by allowing for more efficient use of resources.
Unleashing Creativity: Choosing the Ideal Music Production Laptop
Choosing the best laptop for music production is a critical decision that can greatly impact your creative workflow and productivity. By prioritizing factors such as processing power, RAM, storage capacity, audio interface compatibility, and portability, you can ensure a seamless and efficient music production experience.
For music production, we personally recommend the Apple MacBook Pro M2 as it offers a winning combination of power, portability, and ease of use. Its top-notch performance and features make it a worthwhile investment for both amateur and professional music producers alike.
If you’d like to learn more about music production gear, feel free to check out our post on best music fonts. Happy producing!