Guide to the Best laptops for film students (+ 5 Top Picks)

Film student Film students often need to have fairly powerful and capable laptops in order to really excel in their chosen major. As a current major in film who wants to eventually direct 3-D animated movies, I am in a unique position to understand exactly what kind of devices are the best laptops for film students.

As a student who intends to work for a company like Pixar or Dreamworks, I find that after I’m done working on my scripts, I do a lot of editing on my high definition files. This can happen inside my school’s film lab or even in my off-campus apartment, but in any situation, it’s really nice to have a good laptop for this part of the job.

Some university film programs like the American University School of Communication have computing requirements for their film schools, so make sure that you know what type of machine you need before you start your semester.

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5 Best laptops for 4K video editing: The few laptops that can do it

4K video editing

So you've decided to look for a laptop capable of 4K video editing? I'm assuming you're in one of two situations: you already own a desktop PC (or Mac) for video editing and need a portable machine for on-the-go work, or you're looking for a desktop-replacement level laptop that can do it all, including serving as your primary 4K editing workstation.

It could be the case you're also looking for the best possible video editing laptop or trying to be extra penny-pinching; maybe the best cheap 4K video editing laptop is your primary concern – I've got some great budget options.

There is an abundance of premium and budget options these days. It's easy to get lost with all the choices. Without getting into too much detail – below is what's essential for a good 4K video editing laptop.

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Best laptops for Sony Vegas and Vegas Pro

Vegas Pro logo Whether you’ve been video-editing for awhile or you’re just starting out, you’re here because you want to find the best laptop for Sony Vegas. One thing you need to know if you want a laptop for video editing is that you aren’t going to find much at budget prices. If you are experienced at video editing, some of this information may be old news, but if you’re a beginner, you might also find some useful information on video editing and how it works. Either way, I hope you find some good information on choosing the best Sony Vegas laptop.

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Best laptop for photo and video editing

Finding the best laptop for photo and video editing requires balancing a lot of power-hungry components with a top-notch screen while keeping a personal budget in the equation.

Photo and video editingAnd it gets even more complicated.

When you need a lightweight machine that can run for hours on its battery alone while still being able to provide the smoothest workflow.

In this post, I will describe what you need to look for EXACTLY in a notebook for creative work and what you should expect at your price range to the dollar.

Finally, I’ll list out 7 best options when it comes to best laptops for video and photo editing. To pick them out, I went over a 100 hottest laptops and evaluated them using specs and benchmarks that took me days to find and collect.

What are we looking for in a photo and video editing laptop?

What is essential for the best laptop for photo and video editing?

Major requirement SSD

How much storage do I need?

You need to decide on the total amount of storage that you’ll need. A basic starting point should be 500 GB. But if I were you, I would advise going up to 1 TB or more.

Do I need an SSD?

Yes. I recommend getting at least a small 250 GB SSD for OS, Photoshop, Lightroom or your favorite photo editing app and several “hot” photo folders. It will make a world of difference. When I edit photos, I notice a measurable difference between my files on SSD and HDD. And I don’t have to work with super high-resolution uncompressed RAW images that would benefit the most from an SSD.

But the main issue with laptop SSDs is that there aren’t many laptops that come with 1 TB SSD built-in. That’s why sometimes you’ll need to limit yourself to 500 GB + 1 TB setup or you’ll need to spend ~$320 for 1 TB SSD.

What should be my target?

At the end of the day, everything revolves around two variables:

  • Size of a desired laptop
  • Your spending budget

That’s what I would recommend and what you should optimistically expect:

13-inch 15-inch 17-inch
Under $1000 250 GB SSD + external storage 250 GB SSD + 1 TB HDD 250 GB SSD + 1 TB HDD
Under $1500 500 GB SSD 500 GB SSD + 1 TB HDD 500 GB SSD + 1 TB HDD
Over $1500 500 GB SSD + external storage 500 GB SSD + 1 TB HDD 1 TB SSD + 1 TB HDD

The good part with 15.6″ and 17.3″ laptops is that they often have 2 or 3 slots for storage. That allows easy upgrades in the future.

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The best laptop for GoPro Video Editing

background for Go Pro video editing

I think we can all agree that editing the videos is a headache. It's worth it in the end, though, if you want to immortalize an awesome experience. Assuming you're just a regular (though awesome) dude or dudette trying to record your activities with your Go Pro Hero 10 camera, you might be feeling stuck as far as what would make for the best laptop for go pro video editing is concerned.

This comprehensive guide will walk you through the core laptop requirements for editing GoPro videos and how I choose which ones fit the bill the best.

So don't hesitate, scroll down past my introduction to see which laptops are best for you!

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