Laptops for Architects

Best Laptops for Architects 2021

Whether you are an architecture major student or professional architect, you need a powerful workstation that can keep up with the latest designing tools. Architectural design and drafting are mostly done on computers, and that holds high power hardware. Best laptops for architects need such powerful components that can handle all the heavy tasks such as 3D modeling and rendering. You can, of course, work on any laptop, but low processing speed in cheap laptops will make your work lag and take time to get it done. Therefore, it is important to get the laptop made for architecture work.

Such laptops must meet specific requirements and criteria to be able to work smoothly. First, we have set up a buying guide to help you get the best laptops for architects. Next, you will see our top picks for architects, and these laptops are all from major companies and differ in the budget.

 Buying guide

When buying the best laptop for architects, there are specific specs you should look for to get the best one out of the sea of laptops. Lucky for you, below, we have explained the requirements for such a laptop and made things easy for you and saved you the hassle of hours-long research.

PROCESSOR AND RAM

Processors and RAM are crucial parts when buying a laptop for architects. You will be running heavy Softwares like CAD and Blender to develop designs, and such software needs a lot of power to run smoothly. If you have a certain budget limit, then the i5 processor is the choice to pick, and if money is not the problem, then i7 is the best decision. The processors with quad-core or higher clock speed show no limit when it comes to heavy tasking because they work like a beast.

As for the RAM, 8 GB is sufficient for all-purpose tasks and also comes under budget. Whereas, for professionals, 16 GB or more is the ideal choice. Because if you have slow RAM, then you will lag in your work and decrease productivity.

GRAPHICS CARD

The software, architects, use are hardcore graphics that needs an equally powerful graphics card to run smoothly. In this field, software like Rhino, 3Ds Max, ArchiCAD, etc. are used, so your laptop needs to have a good graphics card with at least 2 GB RAM. Nvidia and Radeon are the top of their game and make the best graphics cards. For students, 1050/1050Ti is a suitable option, and 1060GTX comes useful for pro architects. Moreover, if you are working with special plugins, then go for Quadro/FirePro.

STORAGE

Architects need a lot of space due to the large and countless files they make daily. The higher and faster you have a storage drive in your laptop, the better it is for you. First, you have a faster and reliable SSD, which is a much better option than a mechanical HDD. However, it is costly, and therefore some opt for HDD, which you can get in a high capacity at a low cost. Then there is a hybrid drive that possesses both qualities of fast SSD and mechanical parts of HDD. It is a matter of budget and needs as what works best for you, but our recommendation is to go for SSD.

DISPLAY

The screen size is important too, as you will be designing, and a large screen saves time of scrolling and going sideways when creating large fields. The recommended size is either 15 or 17 inches because the wider display is much better. Therefore, Chromebooks and Macbooks with small screen sizes are out of the question and not recommended. Also, a massive screen means compromising on portability, so you should look at your comfort too.

As for the resolution, FHD is reasonable enough for your work. But you can also choose the better such as UHD or 4K as per your work requirement.

BATTERY

Battery life is non-compromisable as designing a structure takes long hours of work, and you do not want your laptop to die in midway and halt your work. Most of the laptops will offer 8 hours of power backup on average, which is ideal for every working person. However, if you have an open budget, you can get a premium laptop that offers up to 10-12 hours of battery life.

OPERATING SYSTEM

Operating systems are a matter of personal preference as both Windows and Mac have their benefits. Windows is widely compatible with software an architect needs and has many useful features but is more prone to viruses. Whereas professionals well perceive Mac due to being great for graphics applications, and the only drawback is the price.

While taking into account the requirements for such a laptop, we have compiled the best laptops for architects from significant laptop brands. These laptops host powerful components needed for completing a task and have a different budget range so you can pick as per your preference.

Apple MacBook Pro

Apple MacBook Pro

Specifications:

Processor Ninth-generation 6-Core Intel Core i7
RAM 16GB
GPU AMD Radeon Pro 5500M with a 4GB GDDR6
Storage 512GB
Display 16-inch Retina Display with True Tone technology, 3072×1920 native resolution at 226 pixels per inch
Battery 11
Weight 4.3 pounds
Dimensions 9.68 x 14.09 x 0.64 inches

 

Due to high-quality specs and insane processing power, Apple MacBook Pro 16 ranks as the best laptop for architects. It possesses all the fastest components that one can ask for therefore priced highly too. Investment in MacBook Pro is one of the wisest decisions as it lasts for the longest time without slowing down or damaging. Notable features are the fastest processors, high functioning RAM, useful graphics card, a comfortable keyboard, and, last but not least, a fantastic display.

Design

The design has not much changed from its last model and looks pretty much the same. It has aesthetic design, small footprint, and ultra-lightweight at 4.3 pounds. There is not much to see, except that the chassis is durable and minimalistic, which gives it a premium quality. The only change you will see is the display size and quality, which we will discuss next.

Display

The reason this model stands out and makes the best choice for architects is due to the huge and high-quality display. Bezels are minimal to the point that they are hard to see, and therefore, Apple has managed to fit a massive 16-inch screen inside. The screen does not have 4K but still has excellent resolution at 3072 x 1920. Next, it features IPS technology and Retina color on the backlit LED display, which enhances the overall quality and gives you a gorgeous display. At 500 nits of brightness, MacBook Pro 16 has defeated all the existing laptops and claimed the throne. The display of Apple laptops is incomplete without TrueTone technology, which you see here too. It is advantageous when you work on the go as it fine-tunes the display setting automatically by sensing the outside light settings.

Keyboard & Touchpad

Apple made a wise decision when it decided to discontinue the butterfly mechanism keyboard as it showed way too many faults. The new versions have included scissor switches, an example of which you see here too. It provides a decent typing experience due to decent key travel and softer keys. This model also features a touch bar that comes in handy when working and carrying out quick commands. As for the large touchpad, it provides haptic feedback and navigates smoothly.

Performance

MacBook is loaded with super fast and efficient hardware components. It has a 9th generation 6-Core Intel Core i7 processor, matched with 16GB RAM as you can judge by six cores and i7 that it works like a beast for many hours with no slow downing in performance. It is one of the best laptops for architects; it does rendering and other tasks in a matter of a few seconds.

The storage is loaded with 512GB SSD, which is not only ample but also fast. It is essential to have such specs because work demands such. Also, you can always update these specs and get more massive options.

Graphics card is also important when working; therefore, it offers AMD Radeon Pro 5500M with a 4GB GDDR6 graphics card. It is fast, runs quietly, and enhances the graphics quality by outstanding numbers.

Battery

The battery life is truly amazing; it lasts for around 11 hours without breaking a sweat. Whether traveling or not, it gives a great advantage when working on long projects as you do not have to stick to the power socket in case the laptop dies midway.

Ports and Connectivity

On both sides combined, MacBook bears only two Thunderbolt 3 compatible USB-C ports and 3.5mm headphone jack. Apple has kept the minimalism from top to bottom, and you can see but fret not use an extra USB hub if needed.

Pros
  • Fastest hardware
  • Best keyboard

  • Long battery life
Cons
  • Expensive

 

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2019 Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB...
  • Ninth-generation 6-Core Intel Core i7 Processor
  • Stunning 16-inch Retina Display with True Tone...
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Dell XPS 9570

Dell XPS 9570

Specifications:

Processor 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8750H
RAM 32GB DDR4-2666MHz
GPU NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti with 4GB GDDR5
Storage 1TB PCIe Solid State Drive
Display 15.6” 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) InfinityEdge Touch
Battery 11 hours
Weight 4 pounds
Dimensions 19.2 x 13.1 x 3.4 inches

 

Dell XPS 9570 is the second-best laptop for architects on our list. It is a well-known laptop due to its robust durability, portability, and performance reliability. This laptop has all the premium specs that one needs and is considered the best laptop for professionals. It possesses all the highest and powerful components that will make your work easy and efficient.

Design

It has the same standard design as previous XPS models, and the only difference you see is the hardware items. The aluminum chassis stays robust and unbreakable through the years and passes the durability test with a large margin. You see a sleek and minimalistic design that looks classy in their way and stands out from other laptops. XPS 9570 weighs around 4 pounds, which makes it a lightweight laptop and easy to handle.

Display

The amazing display is another premium feature of Dell XPS 9570. It gives perfect performance from resolution to quality. XPS 9570 offers 4K resolution and an OLED display, which makes its price skyrocket. It features thinnest bezels that allow it to adjust a 15-inch widescreen. With 100 percent sRGB color gamut and 400 nits of brightness, the display is vivid, high in colors and brightness. Experience with such a high-quality display is enjoyable not only during work but for entertainment purposes also.

Keyboard & Touchpad

Like the recent XPS laptops, this also features a chiclet-style keyboard with shallow key travel. These keys are flat and evenly sized, which provides a quiet and efficient typing experience. The main feature is backlit, which has an automatic turn off sensor that remains idle for some time. Overall, keyboard ratings have been good and liked by users.

The laptop features an equally wide and spacious touchpad, which is center-aligned. Such a vast size has always been helpful as it keeps fast and efficient. As for the performance, it is entirely responsive to all gestures and works lag-free. Due to the large chassis, you get decent sized and comfortable palm rest.

Performance

When it comes to overall hardware performance, it works like a beast with the fastest components available in the market. It has the fastest processor, 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8750H process, along with massive 32GB DDR4-2666MHz RAM. Both combine give genuinely incredible experience, and professional architects will surely love this workstation.

As for the GPU, the laptop is equipped with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti with 4GB GDDR5. It works flawlessly and gives the best performance. Lastly, in the hardware section is a storage drive and which is 1TB PCIe Solid State Drive. Such a massive and fastest drive surely costs a lot, and you can see that this laptop is one of the most expensive.

Battery

It easily beats other premium laptops when it comes to power backup. The battery life lasts for around 11 hours straight, with no slowing down in performance. Even with the fastest components, it exceeds the expectation and goes above the average mark.

Ports and Connectivity

Dell keeps the ports section loaded with essentials and stays true to their principle on this laptop too. On one side, it has a USB-A Gen 1 3.1 port, an HDMI 2.0, Thunderbolt 3and 3.5mm headphone jack. While on the other hand, you get an SD card reader, another USB-A 3.1 port, and a LED battery indicator. The wireless connection supports Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11 ac/a/b/n and Bluetooth 4.2

Pros
  • Premium laptop
  • Lightweight
  • Many useful features
Cons
  • Expensive

 

2018 Dell XPS 9570 Laptop, 15.6" UHD (3840 x 2160)...
  • 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8750H Processor (9M...
  • 15.6'' 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) InfinityEdge...
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MSI P65 Creator

MSI P65 Creator

Specifications:

Processor Intel core i7-9750h 2.6 – 4.5ghz
RAM 32 GB
GPU GeForce RTX 2060
Storage 1 TB SSD
Display 15 6″ UHD (3840×2160) anti-glare Wide View Angle 4K
Battery 4-5 hours
Weight 8.28 pounds
Dimensions 15.08 x 10.24 x 0.69 inches

 

MSI is famous for high-processing gaming laptops, and the Creator series of gaming laptops have been a success. Here we have added one of their laptops in our best gaming laptop for architects list. MSI P65 is a powerful gaming laptop due to high functioning components. However, this laptop has targeted designers who work with modeling and rendering, and P65 competes with powerful workstations in this regard.

Design

MSI P65 has an attractive design with aluminum shell and silver finish and looks pretty rugged. However, the deck is made from plastic, and the surfaces flex if you put extra pressure. The overall design is a pretty sleek and precise cut that pleases on the first look but not lightweight due to hosting high-processing components.

Display

The laptop offers you a 4K resolution display on a 15-inch diagonal screen. It shows pretty sharp, bright, and high contrasting color quality images, and everything stands out of the screen. The matte finish on the screen prevents the light reflection and soreness of the eyes and makes it ideal for working anywhere and anywhere. Not to mention the huge screen which works well in favor of architects who want to design wider space.

Keyboard & Touchpad

Keyboard and touchpad both are well designed and perform up to their mark. Keys have block font, decent travel, and spacing, which all collectively give an efficient experience. Also, it has a backlight with three zones and extra function keys for the user’s ease. It is comfortable and has somewhat clicky feedback. The touchpad is large in terms of width but is shorter in lengthwise and has an embedded fingerprint reader in the corner. Smooth surface lets you glide your finger and tap smoothly, but right-clicking in an awkward press.

Performance

In the hardware section, the laptop has an Intel core i7-9750h 2.6 – 4.5GHz processor, massive 32 GB RAM, GeForce RTX 2060 GPU, and 1 TB SSD as you can judge by the specifications that every task on this laptop runs like a smooth breeze with no bumps on the way. It is the best gaming laptop for architects due to such high specifications and the ability to stay cool under overload, thanks to big vents on each side.

Battery

With high-quality display and powerful components, it is expected that battery life will be short. MSI only offers 4-5 hours of power backup. Despite the high price, they fail to load a larger battery, so you should always have a power cable with you if you do not want your laptop to die mid-work.

Ports and Connectivity

The laptop provides connectivity options in the form of an Ethernet port, three USB-A 3.1 ports, separate audio and mic jack, an HDMI, mini DisplayPort outputs, a Thunderbolt 3 port, and a connector for AC adapter. It covers all the essentials ports except for USB-C, but you get the much better Thunderbolt 3, so there is no loss.

Pros
  • Solid performance
  • Attractive and portable design
  • Great display
Cons
  • Poor battery life

 

MSI P65 Creator-1084 15.6' 4K UHD Display,...
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MSI P65 Creator-1084 15.6" 4K UHD Display,...
  • Display 15 6" Uhd (3840X2160) anti-glare wide view...
  • Processor intel core i7-9750h 2.6 - 4.5ghz
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Lenovo ThinkPad P1

Lenovo ThinkPad P1

Specifications:

Processor 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H
RAM 16 GB
GPU NVIDIA Quadro T1000 with 4 GB
Storage 256 GB
Display 15. 6″. LCD, In-plane Switching (IPS) Technology, 1920 x 1080.
Battery 4-6 hours
Weight 5.99 pounds
Dimensions 19.6 x 12.7 x 3.2 inches

 

The Lenovo Thinkpad P1 is known for being a powerful workstation with superb performance, portable design, and a decent display. Moreover, its keyboard is also praised worthy with a comfortable layout, and the only drawback this laptop has is the battery life. Thinkpad P1 has many configurations and seemingly at higher prices, and this reviewed version has the minimum components it has to offer but still fast and reliable.

Design

Exterior wise, it looks like a clone of X1 and T580 model as it bears similarities but also stands out among them. The laptop has a soft matte-black finish on the cover and deck and is made of carbon fiber case. The only pop of color you see is the red pointing sticking and outline of the touchpad. Overall, the chassis is thin and easily portable and makes a good choice for architects.

Display

Thinkpad P1 also has a different screen resolution, and here we have reviewed with standard 1080p resolution. The laptop features a wide 15-inch screen with bright colors and details. On colorimeters, it hits 179 percent on sRGB color gamut; therefore, you get vivid colors and make you experience pleasant. The brightness goes at 285 nits maximum, which is quite lower than the premium laptop average, and this is the only con you will find in the display.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The ThinkPad series has the most comfortable keyboard, and it stays true to it in the model too. Keys are bouncy, have shallow key travel, and give pleasant feedback. On top of that, it has backlighting, which completes the set of positive things this keyboard possesses. It provides a maximum 91 percent accuracy rate on your average wpm mark. The touchpad is fairly average-sized and has physical three buttons for more tactile feedback when using. It is super responsive and executes all Windows 10 gestures accurately in a matter of less than seconds.

Performance

These are the least configuration ThinkPad P1 offers but still the fastest you can find in this price range and best for architects. The laptop provides a 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H processor along with 16 GB RAM and NVIDIA Quadro T1000 with 4 GB graphics card. The fastest processor, massive RAM, and high processing graphics all collectively execute heavy Softwares like CAD and Blender smoothly. If you want an ultimate power machine, then this is an ideal pick for you. Moreover, you get the 256 GB SSD for storing your files and all those designing software.

Battery

You should not expect long battery life with such power-consuming components and small watt battery. With heavy tasking and fast hardware configuration, it lasts for around 4 hours minimum, and by toning down settings, you get at least 6 hours of battery life. It might not be enough but pretty decent and overshadowed by reliable performance for many users.

Ports and Connectivity

Despite the slim chassis, the laptop has managed to fit all essential ports to save you the hassle of extra dongles. The laptop includes a headphone jack, a mini Ethernet port, an HDMI 2.0, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and an AC adapter only on the left side. On the right hand, you get an SD card reader slot, two USB-A 3.1 ports, and a Kensington lock. Such a diverse variety of ports is always big on the advantage side no matter what you work is, and ThinkPad P1 delivers that.

Pros
  • Solid performance
  • Slim and lightweight
  • Best keyboard
Cons
  • Base gets warm
  • Poor battery life

 

Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 20QT0012US 15.6' Mobile...
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Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 20QT0012US 15.6" Mobile...
  • Processor Manufacturer: Intel
  • Processor Type: Core i7
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ASUS VivoBook F510UA

ASUS VivoBook F510UA

Specifications:

Processor  8th Generation Intel Core i5 8250U 1.6GHz (Turbo up to 3.4GHz)
RAM 8GB DDR4
GPU Intel UHD Graphics 620
Storage 1TB HDD
Display 15.6 inches Anti glare full HD
Battery 4-5 hours
Weight 3.70 pounds
Dimensions 14.20 x 9.60 x 0.80 inches

 

ASUS VivoBook was designed mostly for office work use, but we have included it in our list of best laptops for architects due to solid and reliable performance it shows under heavy tasks. A laptop has a lightweight and compact design ideal for carrying around but limits the possibility due to low battery life. It sports a shiny gray finish on the lid and all over the chassis and made up of plastic.

Display

VivoBook F510UA hosts a 1920 x 1080 resolution inside a 15-inch screen. It further features an IPS Nanoedge display technology and an 80% screen-to-body ratio. The screen supports a visual optimization technology that shows satisfactory performance and sometimes goes unnoticed. The only drawbacks are the large bezels and lack of decent brightness.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The keyboard and deck have the same material as the lid and chassis, which sometimes is a rare occurrence. It is widely spread and has decent sized keys with big letters which gives good feedback and comfortable typing. Moreover, there is not much noteworthy here and gets the job done without an issue. The touchpad is relatively ok and responsive to every action. As compared to premium laptops, it offers relatively lower quality.

Performance

Performance-wise, it is a decent mid-range laptop that you can afford and work with easily. It might not have the fastest components like the other laptops, but have a fair share of reliable performance. You get an 8th Generation Intel Core i5 8250U 1.6GHz (Turbo up to 3.4GHz) processor, along with 8GB DDR4 RAM and Intel UHD Graphics 620 graphics card. You can efficiently work on 3D modeling software and will only feel lag if you multitask with such heavy software. Lastly, it has a 1TB HDD for storage space, which is massive but slower than SSD. It has its advantage, like at less price; you get the huge drive.

Battery

A laptop is disappointing in terms of battery life because it only offers 4-5 hours of power backup. This might cause problems for architects who have lengthy projects and need to take long hours to complete because laptops on a single charge will die soon under heavy tasking.

Ports and Connectivity

Due to thinner chassis, you will find minimum ports and no optical drive. On ASUS VivoBook, you get a USB-C 3.1 port, a USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports, a full-size HDMI port, an SD card reader and a 3.5mm headset jack. For internet connectivity, you only have the option of Wi-Fi 802.1ac because the laptop has excluded the Ethernet port.

Pros
  • Aesthetic design
  • High processing processor
  • Massive storage
Cons
  • Mechanical and slow storage
  • Average battery life

 

ASUS VivoBook F510UA 15.6” Full HD Nanoedge...
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HP ZBook 15u G5

HP ZBook 15u G5

Specifications:

Processor Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-core 1.80GHz (Up to 4.00GHz)
RAM 32GB DDR4
GPU AMD Radeon Pro WX3100 2GB Dedicated
Storage 1TB PCIe-NVMe SSD
Display 15.6″ FHD (1920×1080) IPS anti-glare
Battery 8-9 hours
Weight 3.8 pounds
Dimensions 14.60 x 9.91 x 0.72 inches

 

HP ZBook has all the specs an architect needs to carry out tasks and design models. It got a strong processor, workday battery life, firm keyboard, and overall durability. On the first look, it has a meaty grey texture and cutting edges to give it a cool look. Inside base and deck is no different from the inside and looks the same. Portability is an option due to weight and battery life, and it is a good way for architects to take it outside and work.

Display

The ZBook hosts a 15-inch screen with standard 1920 x 1080 p resolution but somehow does not live up to the expectation. It gives you low viewing angles to the point that the center looks extra bright as compared to the corners, therefore making an uneven distribution. The screen produces nearly 631 nits of brightness, a mark much above the average category. The colors are bright with decent contrast due to the 112 percent of SRGB on the color spectrum.

Keyboard & Touchpad

It features a full extensive keyboard, including a number pad, but keys are way too shallow. With backlight and neatly spaced keys, typing is comfortable and does not let you sway away from your average wpm mark. As for the touchpad, it features buttons both on top and bottom side, but they might accidentally click when typing. Nonetheless, the pad is smooth and responsive to Windows 10 gestures and works lag-free.

Performance

In terms of performance, HP is an absolute beast and works like a machine high on coffee. It is due to the powerful hardware it hosts. The laptop offers an Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-core processor with 1.80GHz up to 4.00GHz, massive 32GB DDR4 RAM, and for the graphics card, it has an AMD Radeon Pro WX3100 2GB Dedicated. As you can judge by the specs, what a performance would be like, and it won’t disappoint. The storage drive has an ample 1TB PCIe-NVMe SSD, which is the max you can get with no extra desire for storage.

Battery

For a workstation working with powerful, power-consuming components, usually deemed a laptop with low power backup, we do not see such a thing. On a single charge, the laptop can survive for 8-9 hours straight and, of course, depending on the usage. Nonetheless, it can go through an average workday without a sweat.

Ports and Connectivity

HP offers plenty of ports on both sides and saves you the hassle of extras. The left side has a security lock along with an RJ45 port, two USB 3.0 ports from which one is for charging and other for attaching peripherals, and an SD card slot. The right side of the laptop hosts a power jack, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, an HDMI port, a USB 3.9 port, a Smart Card reader, and a headphone jack.

Pros
  • Durable
  • Strong performance
  • Work day battery life
Cons
  • Narrow viewing angles
  • Average design

 

HP ZBook 15u G5 15.6' FHD (1920x1080) Mobile...
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HP ZBook 15u G5 15.6" FHD (1920x1080) Mobile...
  • Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-core 1.80GHz (Up to...
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Dell Inspiron 15 7559

Dell Inspiron 15 7559

Specifications:

Processor 6th Gen Intel Quad-Core i5-6300HQ
RAM 8GB DDR3
GPU Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M
Storage 256GB SSD
Display 15.6-Inch FHD IPS, Wide-Angle, Anti Glare Screen
Battery 7 hours
Weight 6 pounds
Dimensions 15.08 x 15.08 x 10.43 inches

 

The Dell Inspiron 15 7559 belongs to a 7000 series that offers a reasonable price for solid gaming performance. This laptop is the second-best gaming laptop for architects in our list and a truly deserving. The Inspiron 15 is hefty and large due to 15-inch size and powerful hardware that keeps the work running despite the load. The Exterior has all black plastic and a sturdy build that goes a long way.

Display

The 15-inch display bearing a 1080p resolution has an anti-glare coating, which prevents the eye strain because of working longer hours. Specs of the screen are relatively minimal for a gaming laptop, and its competitors are offering much better. However, for an architect, this works perfectly fine and does not hinder work.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The keyboard with backlit and chiclet-styles keys gives an aesthetic impression. Key travel is short, quality good, and overall a very nice keyboard to type on. The button-less and left-aligned touchpad have a smooth and sturdy surface, unlike other hollow touchpads in plastic chassis. Responsive and tracking works perfectly fine even if the external mouse is attached.

Performance

In the hardware section, it has a 6th Gen Intel Quad-Core i5-6300HQ processor, an 8GB DDR3 RAM, Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M graphics card and 256GB SSD storage space. It is entry-level specs for a gaming laptop but works perfectly well and without an issue. You can choose this laptop if you are tight on budget and still want a powerful machine.

Battery

On average, the laptop can last for 7 hours under any task and work. It is relatively longer than other gaming laptops in the same category, making it a better choice for architects.

Ports and Connectivity

As for the ports, there are three USB 3.0 ports, a headphone jack, an HDMI port, a 2-in-1 SD card reader, an Ethernet port, and a Kensington lock. As you can see, it has all the necessary ports, and you do not need an extra hub for work.

Pros
  • Affordable range
  • Solid performance
  • Backlit keyboard
Cons
  • Heavy

 

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Toshiba Satellite S55-C5274

Toshiba Satellite S55-C5274

Specifications:

Processor Intel CoreTM i7-5500U
RAM 12GB DDR3L
GPU NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M
Storage 1TB 5400 RPM, Serial ATA Hard Drive
Display 15.6 HD TruBrite LED Backlit
Battery 4-5 hours
Weight 4.8 pounds
Dimensions 14.96 x 10.20 x 0.89 inches

 

The Toshiba Satellite S55-C5274 comes under a mid-range laptop for architects. It features a smart and sleek design from the outside and has powerful hardware on the inside. Chassis shows a striking aluminum outer shell, but some parts have plastic, the overall quality is good. The drawback you may see in terms of design is the sharp front lip of the laptop, which may be uncomfortable while typing.

Display

The laptop comes with a 15.6-inch IPS touchscreen and 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution. Color accuracy and viewing are great and enjoyable. As for the brightness, it is decent and does not make the screen look dim. The touchscreen is multi-touch, responsive, precise, and works pretty fine. However, due to hinges, not that firm, the feature is limited but still useful.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The keyboard is extensive and has to be sized down to keep some space on both sides. The chiclet-style keyboard has decently sized keys and well-spaced and on top of that backlighting, which makes it a comfortable and decent keyboard. Trackpad has a unique look with that rounded edges and looks like one with the deck. It features two buttons, which are clicky and smooth responsive, just like the whole touchpad.

Performance

The satellite S55 comes with an Intel CoreTM i7-5500U processor along with 12GB DDR3L RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M GPU, and 1TB 5400 RPM Serial ATA Hard Drive. The processor is the fastest in the game, and when combined with large RAM, the result is a powerful performance without a mistake. Storage drive might be slow but lure you with massive space; it is a matter of your preference which to choose.

Battery

The laptop offers a pretty low battery life, and that is 4-5 hours. However, this is expected due to powerful components and a mid-range laptop. Nonetheless, a good budget range choice and gets the work done.

Ports and Connectivity

Toshiba supports Bluetooth 4.1 and 10/100/1000 GB Ethernet and Intel Dual Band Wi-Fi 802.11ac, for connectivity purposes. As for the ports, you get an HDMI, headphone jack, memory card reader, and charging port. The section is pretty limited and only offer some essentials.

Pros
  • Budget friendly
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Solid performance
Cons
  • Mediocre battery life
  • Sharp edges

 

Toshiba Satellite S55-C5274 15.6 Inch Laptop...
  • Intel CoreTM i7-5500U Processor
  • 12GB DDR3L 1600MHz memory
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Microsoft Surface Book

Specifications:

Processor Intel Core i5
RAM 8 GB
GPU NVIDIA GeForce Graphics
Storage 256 GB
Display 13.5 inches with 3000 x 2000 resolution
Battery 10-13 hours
Weight 8.9 pounds
Dimensions 19.00 x 5.00 x 13.90 inches

 

Microsoft has the best graphics, fast processor, amazing display, and long battery life, all in one detachable tablet. The Surface Book has all the specs you need to carry out your work. Though it is renewed with old chassis, new components and com es at a lesser price, it is still an ideal choice, especially for those on a budget. If you want a model with an upgradeable option, then you have to buy the original because all have different configurations.

Design

It has an innovative and futuristic design that wows customers at first sight. The surface book has a flat design and fulcrum hinge that supports the screen at a steady angle. Screen and base have the same thickness and weight that it looks like a continuation of one long device. Hinges, however, prevent it from closing like clam shut, but you can detach the screen and use it in tablet mode. The magnesium shell gives it a premium look and durability to such an extent that it can survive anything.

Display

The 13.5 inches with 3000 x 2000 resolution touchscreen is the most incredible thing the Surface Book has offered. Visuals are crisp, colorful, and show precise details. The screen covers 130 percent on sRGB color gamut, and these numbers are higher than premium laptops; therefore, you have such a colorful display and enjoy watching entertainment. The brightness produces 374 nits, which is far higher than the average number in this range. Brightness is impressive; it has adjustable levels and does not strain eyes.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The surface Book has a chiclet-style keyboard with a bit on the shallow side. Keys are great, have decent clickiness to them, and are satisfying to type on. With a bit of use, you can easily achieve your wpm target and use it with ease. As for the glass touchpad, which is small but surprisingly smooth, it works pretty well. It is responsive to all Windows 10 gestures every time and on time.

Surface Pen, which is sold separately, is the best stylus pen in the market. It is lag-free, has 4096 degrees of pressure sensitivity, and registers gestures like tilt and shading. By attaching magnetically to the side of your laptop securely, you do not have to worry about losing it. The touchscreen is much more convenient to use with a stylus pen due to several features it offers.

Performance

As it is a renewed laptop, it has the updated and faster components, and due to the same chassis, it has an affordable price. The laptop has an Intel Core i5 processor along with 8 GB RAM and NVIDIA GeForce Graphics card. It works pretty smoothly and lag-free. You can run your heavy software for designing and enjoy working with a great display and hardware performance. As for the storage, you get a 256 GB solid-state drive. It is not only fast but also massive; however, some complain about its slow performance. One drawback should not hold you back from purchasing this great laptop.

Battery

Battery life is the highlighted feature here because no matter the usage load, it will last around 10-13 hours easily. Microsoft always gives great power back up to its laptops and list it among premium laptops. It is a great advantage for an architect as you do not have to worry about the battery while working long hours.

Ports and Connectivity

The ports section is limited, which is not surprising as Microsoft sticks to its basics and refuses to introduce new compatible ports. It features two USB 3.1 ports, an SD card reader, a USB-C port, Surface Connect port, and a headphone jack. You can also see a Surface connect port on the bottom side, used for charging the tablet. Lack of Thunderbolt 3 puts a bad impression on the laptop as you unknow it transfers the data the fastest, and every new device is compatible with it.

Pros
  • Innovative design
  • Brilliant display
  • Long battery life
Cons
  • Renewed
  • No Thunderbolt 3

 

38 Reviews

Acer Aspire 5

Acer Aspire 5

Specifications:

Processor 8th Generation Intel Core i5 8265U
RAM 8GB DDR4
GPU NVIDIA GeForce MX250
Storage  512GB PCIe NVMe SSD
Display 15.6″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED backlit IPS
Battery 6 hours
Weight 5.84 pounds
Dimensions 14.31 x 9.88 x 0.71 inches

 

Acer Aspire 5 is the cheapest laptop for architects in our list due to the affordable price range compared to the above laptops. It is categorized as an all-purpose laptop due to versatile specs and reliable;e performance. Also, it has different configurations available according to price, and you can always update after getting with basic components.

Design

Like other budget laptops, it also has a plastic chassis that has become the main cause of low prices. Exterior with brushed metal texture is the only premium looking spec it has and gives it a unique look and ability to hold it firmly in hand. The laptop is relatively big at 15-inches and thus weighs more than pounds but not to the uncomfortable point. It is fairly easy to use on a flat and hard surface as it may be unsteady on your lap due to size.

Display

The display is reasonable as expected of the price. It supports thick bezels due to webcam placement on top and bold Acer logo on the bottom bezels. The screen comes with LED-backlit, 1080p resolution, and IPS technology, which collectively present a decent viewing experience. As for technical stuff, it hits 63 percent on sRGB color gamut and 276 nits of brightness, which is below average and common in budget laptops. Overall, display quality and performance are pretty average and still get the work done and therefore considered the best laptop for architecture students.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The matte keyboard, along with a shiny deck, makes a nice contrast and gives a nice look. It is an all-purpose keyboard featuring Numpad, an uncommon thing among budget laptops. With its short key travel, clicky, decently sized and spaced keys, typing is comfortable and efficient. Most of the commands on CAD are typed, and thus this keyboard makes work easy for architects.

The touchpad is large, smooth, and left-aligned with the keyboard, which works pretty well but unfortunately lacks palm rejection. Other than that, it is entirely responsive to multi-finger gestures, tap, and swipes. Though the material feels cheap, this is the only spec you will have to compromise with.

Performance

As for the technical and hardware, the laptop comes equipped with an 8th Generation Intel Core i5 8265U processor, 8GB DDR4 RAM, and 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD. The specs may not be massive like the above laptops, but they get the job done easily and make a great choice for users who have a tight budget.

Battery

The battery is below average and gives you 6 hours only. It may not last the whole workday but has a decent number. The only solution is to either have a power bank in case of emergency or power cable, so you do not lose work in case of a low battery. The battery takes 3 hours to fully charge, so that is why it is not a good portable option.

Ports and Connectivity

A laptop covers all necessary ports, and you rarely have to use an external one. On Both sides combined, you get an RJ45 Ethernet port, an HDMI port, two USB 3.1 ports, a single USB-C port, and a power jack along with a Kensington lock, an LED battery indicator, a headphone jack, and a single USB 2.0. This section is pretty diverse and covers all the areas, which adds a positive point to the laptop’s overall ranking.

Pros
  • Affordable and decent
  • Robust built quality
  • Good number of ports
Cons
  • Poor battery life

 

Acer Aspire 5, 15.6' Full HD IPS Display, 8th Gen...
221 Reviews
Acer Aspire 5, 15.6" Full HD IPS Display, 8th Gen...
  • 8th Generation Intel Core i5 8265U Processor (Up...
  • 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED backlit...
  • 1 USB 3.1 Type C Gen 1 port, 2 USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports...

Conclusion

Here we conclude our best laptops for architects articles. We hope that the buying guide at the start and our top picks next will help you choose the best laptop for yourself and enjoy working and designing. All these laptops are from lead brand companies, and each has the best specs and beat other laptops to make it into the list. Each has something different to offer, and the selection is just a matter of preference.

FAQ:

Yes, gaming laptops are also good for architects due to various reasons. These laptops are specially designed for running high-level apps that require powerful CPU and graphics. Such a beast of a laptop also works in favor of architects who want to run a software that equally requires such power.
You can buy many laptops for an architecture study, but the top pick would be MacBook Pro or Dell XPS. Both of these are powerful laptops that know no boundaries when it comes to executing computing tasks.
Dell XPS is the best laptop for using SketchUp. The popular 3D modeling software needs a good CPU, and GPU and Dell provide both and make it smoothly without a lag.

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