Best Laptops For Animation : Creating animations and graphics requires high-end laptops and PCs. If you want to create transformative animation and graphics, you will need a PC or laptop with a powerful processor, plenty of RAM memory, a large hard drive, and a good graphics card. Our list of the best laptops for animators can help you find the right laptop. This page features our selection of the best laptops for animators, regardless of whether you use traditional hand-drawn art or computer-generated 3D images.
At a Glance:
Most of the laptops listed here can run popular 2D and 3D animation applications like After Effects, Blender and Maya. Multi-core processors, plenty of RAM, and dedicated graphics cards will be able to create complex 3D animations on a laptop.
Best Laptops For Animation (Our Top Picks)
Besides being powerful, they will also be thin and light enough for you to carry around. The screens and speakers on them will be excellent, as well. A stylus can also be used to draw on the touchscreens of our 2-in-1 laptops, which can serve as digital canvases. Also, make sure you take a look at our guide to the best laptop for graphic design.
1. MSI GL65 LeopardBest Pick
MSI’s GL65 Leopard is a great option if you’re looking for the perfect laptop for animation. Its cutting-edge hardware makes it an ideal desktop replacement and scales above most contemporary devices. Regardless of whether users work on 2D animation applications such as Harmony and After Effects or deploy 3D solutions such as Blender, AutoCAD, SolidWorks, and Maya, Intel’s Core i7-10750H chipset delivers reliable performance. Depending on the task, you can use the advanced processor to set keyframes precisely or obtain a shaded view that fits your needs.
The perfect combination of six cores and the exceptionally high turbo clock frequency of 5GHz, allows you to maximize performance on both single and multithreaded tasks. However, MSI manages to stack in a RTX 2070 that can assist during heavy rendering despite not being a limiting factor. You will also have access to 8GB of VRAM so you will be able to render textures more efficiently.
This system has 16GB RAM, which enables you to handle multiple processes, images, or meshes with ease, making it ideal for multi-tasking. The 512GB SSD module supports ultra-fast data storage. While booting up the Windows 10 Home OS in a heartbeat, users can retrieve last-minute animations and scenes quickly with the solid-state drive.
With its 15.6-inch IPS panel, the MSI GL65 Leopard meets the expectations of animators. The total resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels isn’t a surprising result, but the NTSC color gamut of 72 percent is what our experts found most pleasing. The color-accurate panel implies a 144Hz refresh rate, which is an excellent feature for video game players as well as animators.
Besides a brilliant backlit keyboard, a high-resolution acoustic setup, a revolutionary thermal layout with seven heat sinks, and the efficient Dragon Center, the MSI GL65 Leopard also offers several productivity-centric features. Even so, the device is expected to weigh a substantial 5.07 pounds and MSI obliges with the price. It comes with Type-C and Type-A USB 3.1 interfaces, WiFi 6 standard, and other features.
Despite its superior battery backup capability, MSI’s GL65 Leopard is not the best in its class due to its preexisting module, which only offers 4 hours of battery life on standard usage. This laptop is the perfect replacement for a desktop if you do a lot of animation-related work.
- Display of stellar quality
- GPU with excellent performance
- Memory that can be upgraded
- Its GPU capable of heavy rendering
- Batteries that don’t last very long
2. Acer Predator Helios 300Staff Pick
An excellent option for your animation or graphic design projects is the Predator Helios 300 from Acer. Artists who do video and film editing, such as painters, painters, illustrators, animators, and others, will benefit greatly from this amazing device. The Predator Helios 300 will fit your animation needs even though it is marketed as a gaming laptop. As a laptop for graphic design and animation, it offers a string of impressive specifications. Intel Core i7-10750H processors, clocked at 2.6GHz, are installed in the Helios 300. With Turbo Boost, the CPU speed can be improved to 5GHz for even greater rendering.
Additionally, 16GB DDR4 RAM is coupled with 512GB SSD storage for maximum speed and multilayer editing efficiency. Acer Predator’s large RAM also ensures smooth transitions and rendering during every use. Whenever you do not have any tasks to complete, you can also play high-end games such as Overwatch, Minecraft, Fortnite, etc. With this remarkable machine, you can also take courses such as Android development and game development.
15.6-inch Full HD display with 1920 x 1080 resolution boasts sharp and bright views. For content creators, the 6GB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 provides excellent graphics processing power. The Helios 300 is connected via Bluetooth and wireless technology, which is high-speed. Furthermore, there are multiple connection ports, including one USB 3.0 port and two USB 2.0 ports. In addition to the HDMI port, you’ll also find a backlit RGB keyboard, so you can work comfortably in low-light situations. According to the manufacturer, the battery’s longevity is unknown, however, it is expected to be shorter than that of an Ultrabook. Last but not least, the Acer Predator Helios 300 weighs 5.07 pounds.
- Setup is easy
- Multiple options for connectivity
- Great graphics dedicated to the game
- An affordable price
- The frame is bulky
3. 2019 Apple MacBook ProBudget Pick
Animators who use programs that work well on MacOS may need to choose one of those MacBooks as their ideal laptop. For what MacBook Pro 16 costs, it is a fantastic buy. A Core i7-10750H processor is inside this performance-oriented laptop and is clocked at 2.6GHz, but it can reach 4.5GHz when Turbo Boost is activated. Apple’s MacBook laptops are known for their excellent memory management. Even the toughest animation software can be run smoothly with 16GB LPDDR4 RAM. Additionally, the SSD storage capacity of 512GB is important. With this option, you can multitask and perform resource-intensive tasks and not worry about external storage.
In addition to Apple boasting about its displays, content creators also do so. Apple has installed a 16″ Retina display in the MacBook Pro, which offers excellent color evenness and sharpness. During previews or renderings, you won’t miss any detail with 3072 x 1920 resolution. Besides the Radeon Pro 5300M, we see a 4GB VRAM Radeon Pro 5300M.
Apple’s MacBook Pro, one of their newer devices, has shifted completely to USB Type C, but you’ll still get four Thunderbolt 3 ports, which you can use to charge, transfer data, and almost anything else you could need. There is also Touch ID and Touch Bar, which can be customized and add convenience. It is estimated that the Apple MacBook Pro can run for up to ten hours on a charge and weighs only 4.3 pounds.
- Effortless performance
- With 4 GB of VRAM, the GPU is extremely powerful
- Lightweight and sleek design
- Batteries that last for a long time
4. HP Mobile Workstation ZBook
Despite being very pricey, the HP Zbook 15u G3 is an extremely efficient workstation. Business notebooks will deem it as one of the best. Powered by custom-built, high-end processing hardware and graphics, this workstation is designed exclusively for power users and professionals. 3D rendering requires more resources, so this application is built to fulfill that need. While it is a high-priced laptop, there are still a lot more expensive models on the market. Nevertheless, this laptop is capable of high-grade performance and is affordable. A 2.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i7-6600u processor powers this laptop. The memory is initially 16GB, but it can be extended up to 32GB.
Processors and RAM work together to deliver this computer’s high performance. With its outstanding performance, it is the best business laptop. The 3DMark Pro performance of this system is excellent in demanding environments when using AMD FirePro W4190M graphics cards.
There is also the benefit of a graphic that is independently licensed by an independent software company (ISV). It is really important because it means that multiple vendors’ programs, such as Adobe, can run smoothly on this laptop’s GPU.
There are two USB ports on the left side, and one VGA port that can be used to connect projectors and monitors. As a means of gaining access to a system, smart cards are used in smart card slots. The feature provides additional security and is a great addition.
Another USB 3.0 port is located on the right side of the device. A wired network can be established by connecting the computer’s ethernet port to the network. There is also an SD card slot, a USB-C port, a DisplayPort, and a SIM card slot for optional mobile broadband access.
As an added security feature, it comes equipped with a fingerprint reader and a lock slot, providing physical security to the laptop. Besides the highly visible security features, the motherboard also has less visible features such as Intel’s Trusted Platform Module, which is crucial for hardware-encrypted drives and optional drive encryption. A 15.6-inch display and full HD resolution come standard on the HP Zbook 15u G3 Notebook. Overly glossy displays can reflect more light than appropriate due to their glossy surface.
- Very fast performance
- An excellent keyboard that is comfortable to use
- A good backup strength
- Color accuracy is poor
5. New Microsoft Surface Book
If you are planning on creating animations on your Surface Book 2, look no further than this device. With an Intel Core i7-8650U processor with 1.9GHz Turbo Boost speed, this incredible offering will provide you with reliable performance. The Surface Book 2 might be small and light, but it’s capable of running Adobe Creative Cloud Suite software without any difficulty. In terms of memory, your machine is equipped with 16GB DDR4 RAM, which should suffice to handle your design work. The 256GB storage supports the memory, which is a small drop from the other options, but offers reduced weight and portability.
It is possible to purchase a Surface Book 2, however, with more storage if you don’t mind paying a little more. Display is the best feature of this device. An animator can use this laptop because it has a 4K display. With a resolution of 3260 x 2160, you can see crisp, clear images on a 15″ display. Additionally, you’ll be able to use your touchscreen for more satisfying work. With a graphics card from NVIDIA and 6GB of video RAM, this machine ensures a smooth experience at all times, using the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060.
It has a versatile design that lets you use it as a tablet or a laptop according to your needs. To make your animation project more convenient, Microsoft peripherals are available. In addition to the premium performance, you’ll still get a long battery life (when streaming). Last but not least, its 2.38lb weight makes it easy to transport.
- Setup is easy
- The design is lightweight
- Battery life is long
- Support for touchscreens
- The storage is low
6. ASUS ROG Zephyrus S
If you are looking for a thin yet powerful gaming laptop, the ROG Zephyrus S will make an excellent choice if you are an animator, photo editor, or 3D renderer. Intel Core i7-8750H processor, capable of turbo boosting up to 3.9GHz, powers the device. Even the most difficult animation software can be handled more smoothly with this. Obviously, there are some lower sections because there is more emphasis on design. On the plus side, you get 512GB of SSD storage, so launching programs and booting the device up faster should be no problem with only 16GB of DDR4 RAM.
In spite of the lower amount of RAM and storage in this model, you would be able to keep your animation work refreshing. AASUS ROG Zephyrus S also has a gaming-focused feature that comes in handy for animators. This laptop has a screen size of 15.6 inches with a resolution of 1920 x 1080. You can also make those snappy changes with the 144Hz refresh rate. It is no surprise that the 8GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 is capable of doing an amazing job in terms of dedicated graphics.
A stylish performance-oriented device, the ASUS ROG Zephyrus S has a sleek and thin design. For optimum speed and stability, it is crucial to have optimized fans and a backlit keyboard. In keeping with its slim design, the laptop weighs just 4.6 pounds and lasts for up to 2 hours on batteries, which is exactly what we consider to be acceptable for a gaming laptop. All in all, you’re getting a good experience for the money you’re spending.
- Slim and sleek design
- Refresh rate of the screen is 144Hz
- Lightweight design
- Quite pricey
7. Asus ZenBook 3 Deluxe Ultraportable Laptop
The ZenBook 3 Deluxe is an ultraportable laptop that is convenient to carry around because of its sleek, stylish appearance,. Its display is vivid and the keyboard is comfortable. Its only downsides are its poor battery life and its less-than-stellar webcam, but besides that, this is a laptop you should seriously consider. ZenBook 3 Deluxe’s sleek and elegant design has set it up to be an excellent predecessor to ZenBook 3. A navy-blue aluminum lid features concentric circles and a golden Asus logo. The lid is embellished with gold accents.
As advertised on the makers’ website, the feeling of holding it is very impressive. Slim but not fragile, it is slim. It has a strong aluminum body and won’t fold under the chassis no matter how you hold it. The competing models tend to be thin and lightest on this list. Weighing only 2.7 pounds and measuring 13 x 8.4 x 0.5 inches; dimensions are 13 x 8.4 x 0.5 inches. This workstation is perfect for professionals, and it’s also pretty for aesthetic reasons.
There is a headphone jack as well as a USB Type-C port for charging (which is also where the headphone jack is). You can connect external monitors, cameras, and other accessories to Thunderbolt 3’s right-hand side. The laptop comes with USB 3.0 and HDMI adapters as part of its box. In order to view your animations on a 14-inch screen, you may prefer one that is larger. The 14-inch model is still powerfully competitive, though, if that is what you require.
Despite a bright 1080p display, the ZenBook 3 Deluxe may not have the sharpest of its competitors. In terms of color accuracy, however, the ZenBook 3 Deluxe is the best. The panel scored a Delta-E of 0.2 (0 is the best). It features a low-travel keyboard. You will be surprised at how comfortable this is. You can press down on the keys with 74 grams of force and the keys have a vertical travel of just 1.3 millimeters. As a result, they are ideal for maximizing typing speed.
This laptop has a spacious 4.1 x 2.8-inch screen and a very accurate touchpad. Touchpad’s top corner takes up some space due to the fingerprint scanner. Although this is an excellent feature, some parts of the touchpad cannot be used. I definitely recommend it for animators, and apart from its solid performance, the sleek design makes it look like a workstation.
- Stunning design
- Display is excellent
- An ergonomic keyboard
- Poor-quality Webcams
8. GIGABYTE Aero
Animators who want a thin design with good performance should pick up the GIGABYTE Aero 15X laptop. Intel’s Core i7-8750H gaming laptop is clocked at 2.2GHz with Turbo Boost up to 4.1GHz. The laptop is also noted for its incredible airflow management and ventilation. Although the Aero 15X has a thinner design, it features 16GB DDR4 RAM, which is more than enough to run most animation programs smoothly. A 512GB SSD also keeps things fast. In order to get maximum speed, you have to consider these two factors.
The GIGABYTE Aero 15X’s best feature is probably its 15.6-inch thin-bezel display with a top refresh rate of 144Hz. Thus, your games and animation programs should run quite quickly. There is a standard maximum resolution of 1920×1080. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 is a dedicated graphics card with 8GB of VRAM that is more than capable of handling all graphics-intensive tasks.
GIGABYTE Aero 15X laptops are thin, as we mentioned earlier. While the company hasn’t been able to expand its connectivity, backlit keyboards and other attractive features remain. With the Thunderbolt 3 port on the computer, USB Type C connections are supported. The I/O section even contains a SD card reader. Finally, even when the weight of the laptop is reduced to 4,41 pounds, it provides a battery life of up to 10 hours.
- Design that is ultra-thin
- Long-lasting batteries
- Excellent connectivity
- A screen with 144Hz
- Noisy fan
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Is AMD or Intel Better for Animation?
The AMD Ryzen CPUs are slightly better at displaying animation than their Intel counterparts. While AMD processors are slower than Intel by around 5-10%, the fact that AMD processors have more cores makes them a more viable option when it comes to animated video and multitasking. AMD might be a better choice if you want a device for creating animations.
Q. Are Gaming Laptops Good for Animation?
Definitely yes! Animation programs can be run on gaming laptops. Many laptop manufacturers on the market tend to market their laptops as gaming laptops since the gaming marketplace is larger than the animation marketplace, hence a larger market for their products. As well as being suitable to create animations, these devices can also be used for gaming.
Q. What is a good cheap laptop for animation?
Among the best cheap laptops for animation is the Acer Predator Helios 300. The Helios 300 is powered by an Intel Core i7-10750H processor with a 2.6GHz base clock rate. With Turbo Boost, the CPU speed can be improved to 5GHz for even greater rendering.
With this list of the best laptops for animators, we hope you were able to choose the right laptop for you. There are a lot of gaming laptops to be found on this list, as you might have noticed. As an interesting fact, it is also the kind of specs required for animation software that should be able to be used for gaming. If you want the perks of portability and performance, you can also choose the Surface Book 2 or Razer Blade 15. A professional animator needs smooth performance, so if your budget limits your choices, it’s best to disregard it.