Top 5 Best Laptops for Music Producing & Recording in 2022
Are you a music producer? Are you thinking of investing in some high-end laptop to make work more effective and productive? If yes, keep reading this article
Whether you are working as a professional music producer or planning to become one, a laptop is a must-have item.
Such a laptop has to be powerful enough to record and produce music with premium quality. And more importantly, it must be a worthy investment which last for years.
Buying a laptop is not like shopping for groceries because it probably will cost you a fortune. Hopefully, with a bit of experience, I can help you to choose the best laptop for music producing.
What to consider before buying a laptop
Buying a laptop can be very challenging if you don’t know much about it, especially those product specifications can make you confused.
On the other hand, not only because there are many different brands and features, but also you need to consider your budget.
But do not worry. Trust me! It is not as complicated as it sounds.
In this article, I will go through all the essential aspects you need to consider when buying a laptop. Then there will be a review of the best five products for your reference.
Now let’s get started!
First of all, you need to decide what type of OS (operating system) you would like to work on for your projects. Ask yourself this question.
Are you a big fan of Mac, or are you a classic PC (personal computer) type?
For me, both of them are fine, I can work well either on a Mac or a PC. However, the DAW (digital audio workstation) software you want to use is of more importance than the type of OS.
A big rule of thumbs for you!
Try to figure out the software you want to use, then choose the system you feel comfortable to work with.
Now you have already decided on the main part, well done! But stay with me, there is more to it!
A good laptop for music production can be determined by these factors.
Simply put, the quicker, the better. Don’t skimp on this part because it is important. Try to get the fastest processor you can afford.
Trust me, you don’t want to wait for hours when your laptop processes a task or renders your final works.
This is the most tricky part. Ram is something that you think you have enough at the beginning, but then turns out it’s not at the end.
Don’t make the same mistake as I did. When I first purchased my new laptop, I thought a 4GB of RAM seems to be a lot and works excellent.
But guess what?
It then became a problem once the system was outdated. I found this really frustrated because my laptop run very slow, especially if I opened several software at the same time. Although this did not happen when I first bought it.
If you can afford it, you should get a laptop with a minimum of 8GB. With such capacity, you can easily do several tasks at the same time without performance issues later.
Quick tip for you, most of the new models today have an option to upgrade your RAM. You should check for that feature before buying your desired laptop.
Do you agree that no one likes to carry a heavy laptop nowadays? Luckily, lightweight and portable seems to be a trend in design these days, and laptops are not an exception.
As far as I know, most laptops with a 15-inch screen weighs around 5 pounds, which is effortless to carry from home to work every day. However, some can add up to 7 or 8 pounds or more.
My suggestion is anything that goes between 4 and 5 pounds.
For music producers, storage is like the bank where they keep all their value works. The bigger the storage, the more they can save.
We are getting a bit technical here, but I will try to make it very simple, so stay with me!
There are four types of built-in storages in the laptop. They are HDD (Hard Disc Driver), SSD (Solid State Drive), Hybrid, and eMMC (Embedded Multimedia Card).
In this review, we will not cover the last one, so you don’t have to worry about it.
Now, what’s more important? HDD, SSD, or Hybrid. There is no answer to such questions because they all have their own advantages.
While SSD draws less power and produces less heat than HDD, a maximum capacity of an SSD is no larger than 4TB for a laptop. On the contrary, an HDD can go as much as 10TB maximum for more space.
Besides, the HDD is a lot cheaper than SSD, but they are lower than an SSD in speed.
And then Hybrid storage or also known as HDD or SSHD is a combination of both types above, which gives this Hybrid storage a balance in terms of cost, capacity, and manageability.
What I like about this Hybrid is that it gives me the speed of a solid-state drive (SDD) and the big storage of the hard disc drive (HDD). That sounds like a win-win for me.
See! It’s not too complicated. I told you!
Knowing this can be very useful because it will help you decide what is good for your needs.
Last but not least, battery life is essential. You don’t want to find your laptop running low on battery while there are no power sources around.
Working with these DAW software can consume a lot of energy on the battery. Surely you know it.
For me, a good laptop is the one that can last for at least six to eight hours before it needs charging. The longer, the better.
To save you time, most of the products chosen in this review have a battery life of up to 10 hours or more.
Above all, there are some other factors you also need to consider. They are
- Screen resolution and size that is eye-friendly to work for a long time.
- Optical drive for DVD or CD burning. This is up to you because we tend to use digital formats these days for easy transfer and storage. But who knows if you like to keep a classic disc type.
- Ports and expandability. Do you want to output your video music to a TV with HDMI? Do you want to easily transfer and download your video footage through an SD card slot? Or will a built-in wifi connection is enough?
- Security features. There is always a risk when your piece of music work is stored in the laptop. Your device might get hacked while trying to access wifi from a strange place or it might be stolen. That’s why you should also consider this factor.
Buying the best laptop for music producers
Here is what I promise, a list of the best laptop for producing music. Are you ready?
|Apple MacBook Pro (15-inch)||Laptop||4.3|
|MSI GS75 Stealth-093 17.3″||Laptop||4.3|
|Razer Blade 15 Gaming Laptop 2019||Laptop||4.1|
|2019 ASUS ROG 15.6||Laptop||3.9|
Now stick with me, we will have some in-depth analysis of these above products. Please scroll down for more details.
#1 Apple MacBook Pro (15-inch)
Is anyone of you a big fan of Apple? I guess I am not the only one here right?
But don’t get me wrong. This Macbook Pro comes on top not because I give it a priority.
To be honest, this laptop really earns the place for its high power and excellent performance. From a music producer’s perspective, this Mac is just perfect for our needs.
Firstly, the new Intel 6-core and quad-core processors will give you the freedom to create your masterpieces without any limit.
Secondly, the Touch-bar control with personal customization makes it a lot easier to work with DAW software. This is what I love the most.
Apple gives you two options for storage capacity of 256GB and 512GB. And for this 15-inches model, you can always get your storage upgraded up to 4TB, however, it will cost you a fortune. And most of us hardly ever use that much.
Besides, this Macbook Pro comes with 32gb of RAM, which is more than needed for working with large raw music files and running multiple applications at once.
Finally, when it comes to design, you cannot go wrong with this Macbook Pro. It’s very thin, fashionable, and portable.
However, what I don’t really like is its high price. In my opinion, unless you have a generous budget and are really crazy about this Macbook, you can always go for something else with the same performance but a lot cheaper.
- Excellent performance and lightweight (only 4 pounds)
- Large SSD storage.
- Battery last up to 10 hours.
- Versatile ports for easy connect and output.
- Advanced security with fingerprint.
- High price.
- Keyboard feel a bit stiff.
- Heat up quick when running multiple programs.
#2 MSI GS75 Stealth-093 17.3″
MSI GS Stealth is a high-tech looking laptop made for gamers, but it is not only limited to playing games. On the contrary, it does quite a good job in working with music editing software.
This laptop runs an 8th gen intel with 6-core processors, which is believed to be 40% more effective than its previous generation. For most tasks that require working on DAW software, such a powerful processor will be enough to run smoothly.
But guess what’s best? I will tell you what I really like about this one.
The average display of most mid-size laptops ranges from 14 to 16-inch. But this MSI allows you to opt for a screen size as large as 17.3 inches. Isn’t it impressive?
Apart from the cool design with glowing key edges on the keyboard, you will not have to worry about your laptop getting overheated under pressure.
You know why?
Because this MSI has the best cooling system ever. Its 3 fans, 7 copper heat pipes, and 4 exhausts will make sure your laptop always runs at a balanced heat.
However, there is one big problem. With the weight of 10 pounds, the MSI is for sure not something that you want to carry far away from your workstation.
- Fast and powerful processor.
- Large screen-size.
- Long battery-life (up to 8 hours)
- Effective built-in cooling system.
- Not portable
#3 Razer Blade 15 Gaming Laptop 2019
Investing in a good laptop for music production can cost you a lot of money. With a low-end product, we hardly can work effectively and produce quality music production. This is why we cannot just buy one without consideration.
Now, if you are still not satisfied with the first two, there is more to come.
This built-in 9th Gen Intel Core i7 Razer Blade is something you should think of. To play most of the latest games, any laptop has 4 to 6 core processor will suit the need. Same goes for music production.
At first glance, it might appear big and heavy, but don’t get fooled by its look. Made of Aluminium with a square-off unibody design, this Razer Blade is compact and weighs only 5 pounds.
One of the features I like best in most gaming laptops is how it cools off the heat. Those cooling fans do their job quite well to keep the mainboard balanced under pressure.
Unlike others, the Razer Blade has a unique system called the “vapor chamber cooling system ” to protect it from getting hot. This includes 68 heat exchangers and two built-in fans with 44 blades. Does it sound great?
However, this laptop has a weakness. It comes out of the box with only 16GB of memory, which is too little for work, although you can upgrade it up to 64 GB.
In my opinion, it should come with at least 32 GB at this price.
- Good build quality
- Excellent performance
- High resolutions with accurate colour display
- Unique cooling system.
- Lightweight and compact.
- Battery life is short (5 to 6 hours).
- Memory is too little (only 16GB).
Also read: Best overhead drum mics 2022
#4 Alienware M15-15.6″
Alienware M15 is not something new or revolutionary in the high tech industry. This laptop has been around for years and famous among professional gamers. Besides, Alienware M15 also works well for music production.
Here is why:
This cool-looking laptop can do a lot more than its humble size and weight. Although the system does not have the latest Intel core, this i7-8750H processor still can handle any recording and heavy tasks without a flinch.
As most gaming gears, this Alienware M15 is equipped with a powerful Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 and 6GB GDDR5 – this allows you to work smoothly to compose music. And at the same time, be creative as much as you can on video editing.
The best thing about this laptop is its generous storage. Unlike other products which are often limited to 512 GB, you will get 1000 GB right out of the box with this one.
But here is what makes me feel this product is worth the money.
Either you choose to pay more or stay with this version, you can still get the same i7-8750H processor. The difference only lies in its storage, display, and processor count.
However, even great things come with weakness. This Alienware M15 has a memory size of only 16GB. Again, in my opinion, this is not enough when I need to run multiple programs. But luckily, it is upgradable.
Above all, Alienware M15 is quite a good one for you to consider, especially when your budget is limited.
- Cool-looking design.
- Large SSD storage (1000GB).
- Lightweight and portable.
- Powerful graphic card.
- Short battery life span.
- Memory is too low (16GB).
- Getting overheat quick.
#5 2019 ASUS ROG 15.6″
The last one in this review is the 2019 ASUS ROG 15.6″ for gamers. For years, ASUS never makes me disappointed with their high-quality products and excellent performance.
This ASUS ROG is not an exception. Although there is nothing special in its look, it’s supposed to be one of the best laptops for gaming in 2019.
But how about for music production? Now, let’s dig a little deeper.
My first impression of this laptop is probably the 15.6’’ Full HD display. The 1920×2080 screen resolution gives the most accurate color and image clarity, but still less energy-consuming with ASUS’s LED backlight technology.
Although this is the cheapest one in this review, this laptop inherits the latest 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H and 6 processor cores that are powerful enough to tackle any heavy workload. I found this too good to be true.
This ASUS comes with 512GB PCIe SSD storage. But the good point is that you can upgrade to 1TB with a cost less than buying a new external hardware.
More importantly, they also let you upgrade other parts of the laptop to your specific configuration.
And here is the downside of it.
Memory capacity seems to be the biggest problem often found in these mid-range laptops. They only come with 16GB, which is enough at first, but as I said above, you would need more in the long term.
Besides, this ASUS ROG has a quite short battery life, which I found very inconvenient sometimes.
- Latest Intel Core (9th Gen)
- Impressive display with accurate color and clarity.
- Large storage.
- Lightweight and portable (5 pounds).
- No built-in webcam.
- Short battery life (4 hours).
- Small memory (16GB).
- No optical disc.
As a music producer, you should aim for a laptop that can leverage your skills and give you the freedom to be creative. This is why you should get one that works smoothly.
You can take my review and buying guide as your reference. I hope it will help you make the right decision and choose the perfect laptop for your needs.
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Q: What laptop specs do I need for music production?
It is hard to define specific specs needed for music production as it depends on your workload. However, to sum up, average specs you need to work on music production include:
- Minimum 2.2Ghz Intel Core i7, quad or 6 core processor.
- You need to have at least 16GB of RAM.
- 64-bit operating system.
- Either HDD or SSD, you need to have at least 256 GB or more.
- For better software interface, anything from 15-inches and above is good.
Q: Is a gaming laptop good for music production?
Gaming laptops are built with high-performance and a powerful processor to handle big-heavy graphic display in games. For music production, a high-end GPU (Graphic Processor Unit) is not very necessary.
However, if you are thinking of doing some real time visual performance, you might need these laptops with high GPU to tackle such work.
Above all, a good standard laptop for gaming can work well with music production.
Q: Is a Mac or Windows better for music production?
Here comes a million-dollar question. Which one is better for music production? Mac or Windows?
It is not easy to answer this questions. However, for someone who has been working in the field for years like me, I would say they are both good. It is you to find the one that works best for your needs.
To me, a professional music studio should have both systems. Many audio and video types such as WAV, AIF, MP3, MOV, AVI, MP4, and so on works on both OS.
Besides, each of the systems also has many DAW software built particularly for them. It is very typical when you have to work on different projects on many specific programs made for MAC or Windows.
So what I mean is that you should try to learn and familiarise yourself with either MAC or Windows.
Be versatile and flexible!
Q: Is 256 Gb enough for music production?
256 GB is quite an ideal number to start, but be mindful about your memory space. You don’t want to find yourself unable to save a project due to the lack of memory storage.
If you can afford a bigger storage than 256 GB from the beginning, go for it.
Q: Are MSI laptops good for music production?
The answer is yes. These stylish laptop brands are not only suitable for the pickiest gamers but also for those working on music production.
First of all, the 15.6 display meets the minimum requirement and is big enough to work on any DAW interfaces. Then, an i7 CPU and 16GB of RAM also suit the need of music production.
And finally, this laptop allows you to opt for 2TB of HDD, which is excellent for someone who needs a big storage like me.
All in all, while MSI does not offer anything extraordinary, it is still considered as one of the best laptop for music production.