Best Laptop for Making Beats – He choice is up to you, but hopefully this list of good laptops for making music has provided you with a solid amount of options of laptops (some more expensive and others being more budget friendly) for what you’ll need in order to make the right purchase based on the best laptops for music production in 2021.
Choosing a laptop capable of running CPU-intensive audio production work can be tricky. Some options focus heavily on battery life. Others major on performance, and favour higher-grade processors (CPUs) to ensure operations run snappily. Add into that differences in screen sizes, aesthetics and any number of other variables and we can easily see how it’s hard to justify buying one model over another.
Remember that there’s no right or wrong answer and that whatever you end up choosing will be based on what is best for you and your needs.
You’re essentially looking for two major things on the spec-sheet above all others: the CPU and the available RAM. The CPU is what does the real work. So every time you load a new MIDI instrument, fill the piano roll with data, or bounce down audio to new tracks, you’re asking the CPU to translate it into sound.
Adding extra effects or instrument plugins works the CPU. Exporting finished versions of your tracks works the CPU. You get the picture. If it involves processing, the CPU is your best friend so it pays to prioritise a solid model over most other features.back to menu ↑
- Precision cut from a block of aluminum in two pieces so there is no variability in construction.
- Corning Gorilla Glass 6 is tough, damage resistant, durable, elegant and allows for no flex in its display.
- Dual fans separated to spread heat over a larger area, to dual heat pipes to hidden exhaust venting through the hinge,
- The power button lets you log on with just a touch
- A 2.25mm high quality HD webcam gives you the best camera experience.
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- This Certified Refurbished product is tested and certified to look and work like new. The refurbishing process includes functionality testing, basic cleaning, inspection, and repackaging. The product ships with all relevant accessories, a minimum 90-day warranty, and may arrive in a generic box. Only select sellers who maintain a high performance bar may offer Certified Refurbished products on Amazon.com
- 13.3" Retina LED Glossy 2560x1600 Display, Precision aluminum unibody enclosure, Mac OS X 10.9.4
- Intel Core i5-4278U 2.6GHz Dual Core Processor, 3.6GHz Max Turbo Frequency, 3MB L3 Cache
- 8 GB DDR3L SDRAM, 128 GB SSD Hard Drive, No optical drive, Intel Iris 5100 Graphics, Integrated audio with built-in stereo speakers
- Built-in omnidirectional microphone, No Ethernet, 802.11ac WiFi, Built-in Bluetooth 4.0, Built-in 720p FaceTime HD camera
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- Intel Evo platform powered by 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 1.3 GHz turbo up to 4.7 GHz
- 13.3-inch diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080), multitouch-enabled, IPS, edge-to-edge glass, microedge, BrightView, Corning Gorilla Glass NBT, HP Sure View integrated privacy screen
- 8 GB DDR4 SDRAM (onboard); 512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
- Intel Iris Xe Graphics; Audio by Bang & Olufsen with dual speakers; Full-size, backlit, pale gold keyboard with Fingerprint Reader
- Windows 10 Home, Battery Up to 11 hours and 45 minutes (mixed usage), Wi-Fi 6 AX201, Bluethooth 5, Thunderbolt support
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- Powerful 8th Generation Intel Core i5 8250U 1.6GHz (Turbo up to 3.4GHz) processor
- 15.6 Inches Full HD WideView display with ASUS Splendid software enhancement
- 14.2 inches wide, 0.8 inches thin and portable footprint with 0.3 inches ASUS NanoEdge bezel for a stunning 80% screen to body ratio
- 8GB DDR4 RAM and 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD storage combo; Ergonomic chiclet keyboard with fingerprint sensor
- Comprehensive connections including USB 3.1 Type C (Gen1), USB 3.0, USB 2.0, and HDMI; Lightning fast 802.11ac Wi Fi keeps you connected through any congestion or interference
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- Zero-Compromise Creative Mobile Workstation: Built for creative work in a 0.7" thin CNC aluminum unibody with high-performance, vapor chamber cooling powered by an NVIDIA Quadro series GPU
- Futureproof Design: Thunderbolt 3 capable, compatible with Razer Core external GPU enclosures for additional power; supports dual-channel memory and SSD upgradability
- Professional-Grade Studio Display: Features an individually calibrated 4K OLED touch display covering 100% DCI-P3 with a blazing fast 1ms response time
- Ready to Connect: Plug in multiple devices directly to expand the view on up to 3 extrenal displays via Thunderbolt 3, MiniDislayPort, and HDMIm and get over gigabit speeds through Intel Wi-Fi 6 for a desktop-class editing experience
- Biometric Security: Supports Windows Hello instant facial unlock with integrated webcam and IR sensor
- Customizable RGB Individual Key Lighting: Includes 16.8 million colors available with multiple preset profiles
- Summary: 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H 6 core processor w/ 2.6GHz/4.5GHz (base/max turbo), NVIDIA Quadro RTX 5000, 15.6" 4K OLED DCI-P3 100% display, 32GB RAM, 1TB NVMe SSD
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6.Asus ROG Strix
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 4GB GDDR5 (base: 1395 MHz, Boost: 1560 MHz; TDP: 50W)
- Latest 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750h Hexa-Core processor. 48WHrs, 3S1P, 3-cell Li-ion battery
- 15.6” Full HD 1920x1080 IPS Type Display
- 16GB DDR4 2666MHz RAM | 1TB PCIe SSD | Windows 10 Home | Gigabit wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 (802.11AC 2x2)
- Rog intelligent cooling Thermal system with dual 12V fans, anti-dust technology, and adjustable fan modes
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- 14.0" FHD IPS Touchscreen display features Dolby Vision and a robust Corning Glass touchscreen, with Intel Iris Xe Graphics provides maximum high-efficiency power for your all day work, study and entertainment, Harman speakers and dual-array mics allow for high-quality videoconferencing.
- 11th Generation Intel Core i7-1165G7 Processor systems take a huge leap forward in gaming, streaming and creativity, pushing a smooth, detailed, and vivid experience on highly portable devices.
- Plenty of high-bandwidth 16GB RAM save files fast and store more data with massive amounts of storage and advanced communication power, 512GB PCI-e SSDs are great for major gaming applications, multiple servers, daily backups, and more.
- Connect to Wi-Fi 6 - 802.11 ax for fast and steady connections even on crowded public platforms, Webcam with Privacy Shutter to enjoy privacy right at your fingertips. Touch Fingerprint Reader power on and log in securely with one touch.
- A Powerful Windows 10 Professional is Built-in security, productivity, and management features save you time, money, and hassle.
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8.CUK MSI GF65
- Processor: Intel Core i7-9750H Six Core Processor (12MB Cache, 2.6GHz-4.5GHz) 45W
- RAM: 32GB DDR4 2666MHz | Hard Drive: 2TB NVMe Solid State Drive
- Keyboard: Single Backlight with Anti-Ghost Key + Silver Lining | Operating System: Windows 10 Home x64
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti 6GB GDDR6 | Display: 15.6" Full HD 120Hz IPS-Level Thin Bezel Display (1920 x 1080)
- 32GB RAM + 2TB NVMe SSD Upgrades | 3-Year CUK Limited Warranty (View warranty section below for more details.)
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- Brilliant Full HD 15” 1080p TOUCHSCREEN for hands-on control with 360-degree flip-and-fold ROTATING display
- Latest 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8550U Processor 1.8GHz base up to 4.00 GHz with TURBO BOOST
- 16GB DDR4 memory; 256GB SSD; AMD Radeon 540 graphics card with 2GB dedicated memory
- Built-in S Pen; HD Webcam; 1x USB Type-C; 2x USB 3.0; HDMI; MicroSD, TPM security
- Backlit Keyboard; 802.11ac (2x2) B, A, G, and N supported, Bluetooth v4.1
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- AMD Ryzen 7 4700U Octa-Core Mobile Processor (Up to 4.1 GHz) with Radeon Graphics | 8GB LPDDR4 Memory | 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD
- 14" Full HD Widescreen IPS LED-backlit display (1920 x 1080 resolution; 16:9 aspect ratio)
- Intel wireless Wi-Fi 6 AX200 802.11ax | HD webcam (1280 x 720) | Backlit keyboard | Fingerprint reader
- 1 - USB Type-C port USB 3. 2 Gen 2 (up to 10 Gbps) DisplayPort over USB Type-C & USB Charging, 1- USB 3. 2 Gen 1 port (featuring power-off charging), 1 - USB 2. 0 port & 1 - HDMI port
- Just 0.63" thin and 2.65 pounds and up to 11.5 hours of battery life
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Best Laptop for Making Beats – BUYER’S GUIDEback to menu ↑
CPUs: A fork in the road
Essentially, a faster processor means two things; your computer can handle more tasks being thrown at it, and it can ‘process’ those things a lot quicker. You may see only small differences; perhaps an audio file will render one minute quicker using the faster of two processors, but over time this clearly adds up.
In the CPU world, there are two major players. Intel is the big name, with a huge share of the market. Intel’s range goes from i3 – the least powerful – all the way up to i9. Most common in mid-to-upper tier laptops, however, are the i5 and i7 variants, and within that sphere you have different speed ratings, measured in gigahertz, as well as the option to turbo-boost when you’re placing the computer under major stress. The other name to look out for is AMD, which produces the Ryzen processors. These follow a similar nomenclature to the Intel versions, so R3, R5 and so on, and are popular amongst the gaming crowd.
Where things might change in the coming years is with Apple’s switch to using its own in-house silicon CPU, called the M1. It’s been well-documented about the changes that are on the way, and the resulting boost in power and performance, but for musicians and producers the true benefits to this are likely a way off yet. For a start, the software vendors must ensure compatibility with this new architecture which is by no means guaranteed. So, while it’s worth keeping an eye on developments, it doesn’t necessarily mean holding off on your purchase in the short term.back to menu ↑
With RAM, as we mentioned, you can ignore the ‘minimum specs’ listed on the websites of the major DAWs. Anybody who tries to run a multitrack Ableton Live session on a laptop with 4GB of RAM is braver (or more patient) than we are. That’s because RAM is effectively the short-term memory of your machine. With audio applications, particularly those involving lots of recorded audio, a higher amount of RAM means your audio playback is buttery smooth and glitch-free because the computer isn’t having to ‘grab’ the audio from the hard drive each time it wants to play.
If you’re buying now, with the next few years of use in mind, we’d suggest 8GB of DDR4 memory is the absolute minimum you should be looking for. Ideally, you’d want 16GB, as this will handle much larger arrangements, although there is a cost to this extra resource.
It’s also worth investigating whether the laptop you choose can be upgraded with extra RAM in the future. Apple laptop fans won’t have this luxury, due to their sealed chassis, but laptop PC users might.
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Storage memory comes a close second. For audio applications, particularly those involving sample libraries where audio is streamed from disk, you’ll want to use a solid state drive (SSD). The benefit of these drives is the rapid data transfer, meaning files load quicker, although they are slightly more expensive than their hard disk drive (HDD) equivalent. For music production applications, however, the extra expense is totally justified.
It’s not uncommon however to see a combination employed – a HDD for storage of files, photos and videos, and an SSD for tasks where more instantaneous responses are required. The alternative involves using external hard drives; SSDs, particularly those that take advantage of USB-C technology, are more than capable of the types of transfer speeds required for music production.back to menu ↑
So, clearly there is a lot to think about when choosing the best laptop for music production.
It’s easy to see why a good all-round laptop can fetch a premium price tag, but, as with anything from the best samplers and studio monitors to home studio mixers, you get what you pay for, so it’s always wise to get the best you can afford, rather than skimping and regretting your purchase later (often quicker than you thought). Our price comparison software will come in handy here. Next to each product entry on this guide our price widgets will display the best deals online right now to save you shopping around.
We won’t be focussing on various legacy ins and outs, such as the number of USB sockets, or lack of, for your audio interface, and so on. With so many dongle and docking options available, this shouldn’t be a deciding factor in your purchasing journey. In this guide we’re talking sheer horsepower for music-making. For example, can your portable rig cope with large multitrack sessions, running handfuls of plugins and MIDI instruments? Want to take a closer look? Hit the ‘product guide & reviews’ button above.back to menu ↑
Frequently Asked Questionsback to menu ↑
Is Mac better than Windows or vice versa?
This is more of a personal preference thing. Some people like Apple computers better and others like Windows. Both Mac and Windows laptops have their own specifications, and that means that some Windows models will have better specifications than some Mac models and vice versa. Windows laptops for music production are just as good as Mac laptops as long as you do your research on the technical specifications.back to menu ↑
Are gaming laptops a viable option for music production?
Absolutely. If anything, gaming laptops are more than capable of running DAWs, plugins, and storing project files.back to menu ↑
Regardless of which platform you opt for, there are some factors which remain the same. When it comes to choosing the best laptop for your home studio, you’ll want to pay close attention to the power and memory specs of the machine you’re eyeing up. While the basic requirements for most DAWs is a multi-core processor, around 4GB of RAM and a few gigabytes of storage, this won’t be enough for real-world applications. Buying based on the ‘minimum recommended’ specs is a recipe for future angst. Instead, you need a laptop with enough power to handle the latest software and expanding file sizes, with enough juice in the tank to cope with whatever your future requirements may be.
For any DJs or traveling musicians reading this, weight – and portability – is likely to be another major factor. After all, some of the highest spec, beefiest laptops in the world also weigh a fair amount, and your shoulders will quickly tire of lugging those behemoths around.