Sketch to Screen: Finding the Best Laptops for Artists

Laptops for artists have become the primary need for art students and professionals. In order to learn digital or conventional artwork and generate income, you need the best and professional touch screen laptop along with other tools.

It can help you to get the job done effectively.

The problem is the internet has a lot of laptop variants, styles, and specifications. It is hard for users to choose the best laptop for artists under a $500 or $1000 budget. We need to shortlist and compare the top brand picks based on user’s reviews and expert’s opinions. 

Best Laptop for Artists

The laptop must have an excellent graphics processor (GPU) either dedicated(preferably) or integrated, the latest generation high-end multi-core processor to handle multi-layered complex drawings, 2D-3D animation rendering, video, and photo editing with a handsome amount of memory RAM.

The touch screen with a digital pen/stylus is mandatory for digital artwork.

The question is there, which are the best laptops for artists? In this article, we have sorted out the list of the 10 best laptops for professional artists based on the above criteria. The ultimate list contains budget laptops for artists like one of the best laptops for artists under $500.

Best Tools for Artists

As of the day, people are socializing more on different platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, or YouTube, and many others. That is the reason the public is more interested in digital art rather than conventional art. 

So, digital artists need the best software tools along with the best laptop, drawing tablet/pad. In order to get started for clients here is a list of must-have tools for artists.

Best Digital Off-Screen Art Tools

Some of the best on-screen or digital tools like pressure and touch-sensitive pen, Stylus, Surface Dial, etc.

The famous softwares are Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Clip Studio Paint, Procreate, Corel Draw, and for images get a subscription from Adobe Creative Cloud, Getty Images, or Shutterstock, etc. 

Conventional/Off-Screen Tools

You‘ll need Pencils, Erasers, Pens, Canvas, Paper, hardback, sketchbooks, Watercolor paper, and Masonite, etc.

10 Best Laptops for Artists and Photographers

Here is the list of the top 10 best laptops for digital art, gaming, photography, and graphics designing with thousands of positive reviews and recommendations by Amazon.

New Apple MacBook Pro 16-inchNew Apple MacBook Pro 16-inchDisplay: 16-inch Retina Display Screen
Storage: 512GB SSD
2020 HP 15 15.6″ HD TouchscreenHP 15 15.6″ HD TouchscreenDisplay: 15.6” Touchscreen
Storage: 512GB SSD
Microsoft Surface Laptop 3Microsoft Surface Laptop 3Display: 15.6 inch FHD (1920 x 1080)
RAM: 5-16-32 GB
Storage: 256-512 GB SSD
Battery : Up to 7 hours
Acer Spin 3 Convertible 14Acer Spin 3 Convertible 14″Display: 14” Touchscreen
Storage: 512GB SSD
Dell Inspiron 14Dell Inspiron 14 Display: 14 Inch FHD Touchscreen
Storage: 512 GB SSD
OEM Lenovo ThinkPad E15OEM Lenovo ThinkPad E15Display: 15.6" FHD (1920×1080)
Storage: 128|256|512|1TB SSD
Samsung Notebook 9 ProSamsung Notebook 9 ProDisplay: 15.6 inch FHD (1920 x 1080)
Storage: 256GB SSD
Battery : Up to 8 hours
Acer Aspire 7 15.6Acer Aspire 7 15.6"Display: 15.6 inch FHD (1920 x 1080)
Storage: 256GB NVMe SSD
ASUS ZenBook Flip SASUS ZenBook Flip S Display: 15.6 inch FHD (1920 x 1080)
RAM: 16 GB
Storage: 1 TB SSD
Dell XPS 13 7390Dell XPS 13 7390Display: 15.6 inch FHD (1920 x 1080)
RAM: 16 GB
Storage: 1 TB SSD

1. New HP 15.6” i3 – Best Laptop For Artists Under $500

New HP 15.6” i3 - Best Laptop For Artists Under $500
  • CPU: 10th Gen Intel Core i3
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 128GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 15.6 Inches FHD (1366 x 768)
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics

HP is a well-known brand for laptops and desktop computers. The New HP 15.6” laptop is one of the best laptops for drawing and animation for under $500. It has an HD touch screen that is designed for artists’ digital artwork, with its support of a 10-finger multi-touch.

From the features, it has a powerful intel core i3 10th generation processor that can run almost any latest art and graphics development software and stream games smoothly. The laptop comes with 8 Gigabyte (GB) of DDR 4 memory.

Which is pretty much enough for low to medium digital artists tools and animation software.

From the performance point of view, it is packed with the latest 128 GB SSD storage for faster boot-up and application response. Overall, it can be termed as best laptop for artists under $500.

The laptop is also good for low to medium gaming with Intel UHD (Ultra HD) graphics and a 10th generation processor. The new HP 15.6” has 1000+ positive reviews from users worldwide with an average score of 4.6 stars on Amazon.

HP 15.6” comes with two different variants such as 8 GB/128 GB SSD and & 8 GB/256 GB SSD however the price difference is just $45.

2. ASUS ZenBook 14 – Best Laptop For Artists and Gamers

ASUS ZenBook 14 - Best Laptop For Artists and Gamers
  • CPU: 8th Gen Intel Core i7
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 512GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 14 Inches FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620

Asus ZenBook 14 is the latest and powerful laptop for gaming, graphics designing, and digital artwork. It has a powerful 8th generation core i7 processor with 16 GB GB Memory.

ZenBook 14 is an Ultra slim laptop with Nano-Edge Bezel technology. The laptop is very good in terms of performance with 512 GB PCIe NVMe SSD storage and a powerful processor. It comes with a pre-installed Windows 10 pro with updated drivers and Microsoft software support.

Additionally, it offers a Backlit keyboard and a special switchable dual functionality numeric pad. This laptop is military-grade multiple tests passed and high rated on PC Mag. Asus ZenBook 14 is the winner of the design award 2019 for quality and the latest design/User experience.

For gaming, the laptop comes with MX 150 and 250 graphics for medium to high gaming, respectively. That’s why it is the best laptop for artists and gamers.

Asus ZenBook 14 has the following variants.

  • I7, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB NVMe SSD with/without MX 150 or MX 250 (Graphics)
  • No screen Pad
  • With Screen pad 2.0

3. Apple MacBook Air Best Laptop For Art and Design Students

Apple MacBook Air Best Laptop For Art Students
  • CPU: 10th Gen Intel Core i3
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 13 Inches
  • Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics

Apple MacBook Air is the best Macbook laptop for art and design students under $1000 with a unique Mac design and power. It has Intel core i3 latest processor with Iris Plus graphics.

The laptop is faster on bootup and works fine with applications with SSD storage and the 10th generation of processor. Any kind of art and graphic design work can easily run on the laptop with the latest generation of CPU cores.

Powerful Quad cores and SSD storage made it possible to run medium games on MacBook Air. It can boost the performance of graphics up to 80% on average. Which is good for graphics, video gaming, and artwork.

The long-lasting 11-hour battery will keep your artwork running. Additionally, MacBook Air offers a Backlit keyboard with touch ID, retina display, and true tone technology.

4. Dell Precision 5510 Xeon E3 – Best Laptop For Artists and Writers

Dell Precision 5510 Xeon E3 - Best Laptop For Artists and Writers
  • CPU: Intel Xeon E3
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 15.6 Inches FHD (3840 x 2160)
  • Graphics: NVIDIA Quadro

Dell Precision 5510 is the next-generation touch screen, fast performance, gaming, and graphics designing laptop. It has NVIDIA Quadro 32 GB  mobile graphics chip, designed for high graphics and high-performance tasks. The laptop touch screen has a 3k display which works great for artists and art students.

From the features, the laptop has 16 GB of available system memory that can be extended up to 32 GB later on. It has Intel Xeon E1505M 2GB v5 CPU designed for low power usage and high performance with multi-cores. 

The Precision 5510 has dual graphics (integrated and dedicated) Ultra HD (UHD) with IPS LED & Nvidia graphics for dedicated high load applications.

The laptop is pretty much good for gaming, rendering, 3D animation, and graphics, etc. The most loved feature is its ultra-smart shape even with the dedicated graphics card.

Dell Precision 5510 comes with a 90-day money-back guarantee (renew) from Amazon via our link. That means it is guaranteed by Amazon for high quality and performance.

5. New Apple MacBook Pro i7 – Best Laptop For Artists and Photographers

New Apple MacBook Pro i7 - best laptop for artists and photographers
  • CPU: Intel Core i7
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 512GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 16 Inches
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 630

New Apple MacBook Pro is 2019’s latest laptop from Apple with support up to an i9 processor. The latest design and powerful processor made it Amazon’s choice, the most selling laptop and most reviewed product on Amazon.

Talking about technical features, the laptop has a powerful i7 (6 cores ) or i9 processor (8 cores). The powerful processors made this laptop a mini PC workstation capable of handling the high load processing.

The laptop has AMD Radeon Pro 5300M DDR6 graphics and works well for graphics designing, art, gaming, and animation. Additionally, MacBook Pro has integrated Intel UHD (Ultra HD) graphics 630 for desktop and application performance.

The New Apple MacBook Pro supports memory expansion up to 64 GB and up to 8 TB storage with 4.3 times increase in performance under virtual machines and rendering. The laptop is very good for HD to Ultra HD gaming with the latest CPU cores, SSD, and Radeon Pro Graphics.

Apple MacBook Pro has good battery timing of approximately 11 hours under media play and browsing. Keeping the view of these features MacBook Pro is the best laptop for artists and photographers.

From the look and design, it has a beautiful retina display of 16 inches. It has a beautiful new designed magic keyboard with Touch ID and inverted-T arrow keys. The keys shortcuts are specially designed for the programming and gaming experience with the shortcuts.

The laptop comes with the following variants:

  • Intel Core i7 or  i9 Processor
  • Up to 512 or 1 TB SSD Storage

The price may be different for each variation of the laptop.

6. Lenovo Flex 14 2-in-1 Best Laptop For Drawing and Animation

  • CPU: AMD
  • RAM: 12GB
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 14 Inches FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon Vega 8

Lenovo Flex 14 is a convertible touch screen laptop with 14 inches full HD screen display. It just fits under the $1000 budget laptop for artists with the latest features and design for everyone.

Lenovo Flex 14 has 12 GB of DDR 4 RAM and an AMD Ryzen 5 processor with 256 GB SSD, which works efficiently under video editing, photo editing, and art designing work. The laptop boots fast with the latest SSD storage and Windows 10 Pro registered operating system.

From design, the laptop is a very slim, lightweight, and stylish full convertible screen. The laptop looks like a tablet PC with 240-degree rotation and a smartpen. These unique features have made it the best laptop for drawing and animation (2D or 3D) work.

Lenovo Flex 14 has an excellent battery timing of 10 hours with fast recharging technology to re-charge up to 80% under 1 hour. The laptop is perfect for artists and drawing as it has a pen and a highly sensitive touch screen.

The laptop comes in the following variants:

7. Newest HP Spectre x360 – Best Laptop For Makeup Artist

  • CPU: 8th Gen Intel Core i7
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 512GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 12 Inches FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620

HP Spectre x360-13t is the 360 degrees convertible 2 in one laptop with IPS backlit touch screen and corning gorilla glass display. It has the 8th generation quad-core i7 processor with 16 GB of memory. 

This laptop delivers excellent performance with 512 GB NVMe SSD, quad-core processors, and Intel UHD graphics 620 (16 GB). It comes with Windows 10 Pro digital licensed and optimized for fast boot-up.

The HP Spectre x360 can run low to medium PC games on 720p (HD) resolution without any lag. It has the highest battery timing of 14 hours with multimedia usage. The laptop supports fast-charging, which can charge up to 80% in under 1 hour. 

A highly sensitive touch-screen, corning gorilla glass protection, active stylus, multi-touch gesture, and an IPS quality display make it the not only best laptop for graphic design beginners but the best for makeup artists as well.

The Spectre x360 is one of Amazon’s choices and has an average rating of 4.3 stars out of 5. You can claim a full money-back guarantee in case of broken, faulty (not opened) within 30 days according to Amazon’s refund policy.

8. Dell XPS 13 i7 – Best Laptop For Artists and Musicians

  • CPU: 8th Gen Intel Core i7
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 13.3 Inches FHD (3840x 2160)
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620

Dell XPS 13 is the 8th generation laptop with 16 GB RAM and 1 TB of SSD fast storage. This powerful laptop has a UHD InfinityEdge Display with 4K ultra HD resolution which is best for video editing, graphics, and photo editing.

This laptop has a very high demand on Amazon after the CES innovation ward in 2018. The XPS 13 is very fast in terms of Windows 10 boot-up, artwork, and animation tools.

Just like the other popular laptops, XPS 13 has an excellent battery timing of 10 hours on average with fast charging support. It has dual cooling fans that optimize the performance at high temperatures and keeps your laptop cool & running.

This best laptop for artists and musicians comes with two different variants:

  • Core i7 Processor, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB OR 1 TB SSD Storage

9. HP Spectre x360 15T – Best Laptop for Digital Art and Gaming

  • CPU: 10th Gen Intel Core i7
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 15.6 Inches FHD (3840x 2160)
  • Graphics: Nvidia

HP Spectre x360 is the 2nd release of the x360 version in 2020. This laptop is specially designed for high graphics processing such as gaming, video editing, animation rendering, and 3D animation. When it comes to storage, this laptop has 1 TB of SSD drive and 16 GB DDR4 memory.

Additionally, it has the dedicated Nvidia GeForce GTX-1050Ti 4GB graphics card for the ultimate artistic and gaming experience. That is the reason it is the best laptop for digital art and gaming. This laptop also has the integrated intel Ultra HD graphics that share the graphics memory with the system as well.

Spectre x360 has the latest 10th generation Octa-Core i7 processor unit (CPU). The latest generation processor is very helpful for video virtualization, video editing, and the ultimate gaming experience.

These features made it a laptop marked as the editor choice on Amazon and certified for high-quality performance with efficiency.

10. Microsoft Surface Go Pentium Gold – Best Budget Laptop For Artists

  • CPU: Microsoft
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 64GB SSD
  • Screen Size Resolution: 10 Inches FHD (1800 x 1200)
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615

Microsoft Surface Go is the best budget laptop for artists under $500. The laptop comes with 4 GB & & 8 GB RAM with storage of 64 GB and 128 GB respectively.

The laptop delivers an intermediate performance which is best for regular users under the $500 budget. It comes with an ultra-slim keyboard and pen and is also the best laptop for drawing and animation.

The surface pro has good battery timing of an average of 8-9 hours on playback. It comes with Windows 10 in S mode and comes with Microsoft-certified security, windows defender, windows 10 support, and much more.

It comes with the following variations:

  • 4 GB/64 GB OR 4 GB/128 GB OR 8 GB/128 GB
  • Cobalt Blue Type Cover


All of the above laptops are on the favorite list of best laptops for art students. But if you really want to choose one laptop from them, it’s upon the budget that you choose, as upgrading more SSD storage, RAM, or getting a dedicated graphics card can cost more. 

However, Asus ZenBook 14 is a more reliable and budget-friendly laptop for you. This laptop is certified for unique numeric pad and keyboard design, and high quality from Amazon and PC MAG. 

For a higher budget, we recommend the new Apple MacBook Pro as it has pretty much the same features except MacOS operating system and support for an 8 TB SSD Storage upgrade.