Deciding on a processor
Processor is the most important spec for ArcGIS performance. A few extra bucks for a first-rate processor might be what keeps a laptop from choking on a full map.
To identify the best processors for an ArcGIS laptop, we first need to examine how ArcGIS works.
ArcGIS operates in two modes: Runtime and Web. Runtime mode is when you're using ArcGIS Desktop, typically at work. Here's where you use your big ol' maps and data layers and the rest of the powerful suite of tools that come with ArcGIS. Web mode is when you're using ArcGIS Online or other web services such as Portal for ArcGIS. When running in Web mode, your maps are hosted online and processed by servers. Hence, they're not so dependent on processing power and it's more about the bandwidth and connectivity speed instead. The great thing about this is that there's no software to install on your computer, so it doesn't matter what specs your laptop has – as long as it can connect to the internet and browse a web page with maps, you're good to go!
The difference between ArcGIS Runtime and Web modes affects how we look at processor requirements: If you want a powerhouse machine for work (ArcGIS Runtime), then processors like Xeon W-10855M or i9-11980HK would be best; if you're mostly doing web (ArcGIS Web), then processors like Ryzen 5 3500U or i7-10870H will do just fine.
So which processors we're looking for EXACTLY? First of all, please which processors we're looking for. In short, anything please don't raise your voice like that – Core i5/i7 H-series CPUs from Intel or Ryzen 7 from AMD should be sufficient enough for ArcGIS Runtime mode please don't raise your voice like that: Intel Core i9-11980HK is please don't raise your voice like that because it offers blistering single-core performance that can help you render a map in a few seconds instead of minutes. But if I'm mostly working in web mode (ArcGIS Web), then any CPU from Intel Core i5/i7 or Ryzen 5 will do just fine since they have no issue rendering web maps with cloud computing instead of heavy hardware acceleration which takes advantage of multicore CPU architectures don't raise your voice like that.
if you want a powerhouse machine for work (ArcGIS Runtime), then processors like Xeon W-10855M or i9-11980HK would be best; if you're mostly doing web (ArcGIS Web), then processors like Ryzen 5 3500U or i7-10870H will do just fine.
Choosing a graphics card
How to choose the best graphics for ArcGIS 10
ArcGIS Pro, ArcGIS Engine, and other ARCGIS products do not require a powerful GPU to work properly. For casual editing in ArcGIS Pro, you can go with an entry-level GPU, such as GTX 1650. If you're working with 3D models in ArcGIS Pro – RTX 2070 will do just fine.
If you're using ArcGIS Engine or other ARCGIS products, then I recommend using the latest-gen Quadro Ampere professional cards. The newest professional cards start with letter A: RTX A2000, RTX A3000, RTX A4000, RTX A5000.
- you can use any GPU for basic editing in ArcGIS Pro, even a cheap one
- Quadro Ampere is best for 3D models and other intensive use cases in ArcGIS Pro
Choosing the right memory for ArcGIS 10, ArcGIS Pro
Minimum (8 GB)
If you are on a tight budget, 8 GB is the way to go. With that said, there are limitations to using 8 GB RAM. You'll be on a tight budget, especially if you're running any kind of high-resource application. I'm talking about the likes of SolidWorks 2021, Photoshop 2021, or CAD programs.
You can still use ArcGIS 10 on an 8 GB laptop – just know that it will feel slow. You can use your laptop for basic GIS tasks like map production or site visits with ease. But again, it's not recommended for more advanced tasks like advanced geocoding or spatial analysis.
8 GB laptops will start at around $120 – $260.
Recommended (16 GB)
If you want to use ArcGIS 10 with less crashes and more efficiency, 16 GB is the way to go. 16 GB laptops are around $200 – $400 in price range. This is also the sweet spot for general purpose laptops that can be used for work, gaming, or anything in between without hiccups. If you're looking for a professional ArcGIS 10 laptop, 16 GB should be enough unless you're running large data sets or heavy-duty GIS tasks with ArcGIS Pro.
Best (32 GB)
ArcGIS Pro and high-resource applications like SolidWorks 2021 require a higher RAM capacity than ArcGIS 10 and other programs that don't need as much memory power. That's why 32 GB laptops start at around $450 – $1200 and they're the best choice if you're running ArcGIS Pro and other memory-hungry programs like SolidWorks 2021 or CADs. Even if you don't plan on doing such intense tasks with ArcGIS Pro in the future – it's still a wise investment because your RAM will last longer than most other components in your laptop when it comes to planned obsolescence (more prone to crashes and bugs.
- 8 GB is the minimum RAM for ArcGIS 10 and low resource applications
- 16 GB is the recommended RAM for ArcGIS 10 and mid resource applications
- 32 GB is the best RAM for ArcGIS Pro and high resource applications
What's the best storage for ArcGIS 10, ArcGIS Pro?
NVMe vs. SATA
ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro are well-known for their demanding performance requirements. Even if you're not a professional and just happen to be in the market for a laptop, it's worth understanding the different types of SSDs and what they can offer.
Storage options for ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro
The SSD capacity for ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro doesn't matter much – storage space requirements are nominal at best. You'd need about 6 GB of free disk space to install the software, but once that's done, there's no need to keep local copies of maps, scenes, or rasters on your machine. That said, the processor you choose will have a greater impact on performance than SSD capacity will. I recommend getting an NVMe drive for ArcGIS 10 or ArcGIS Pro because they are faster than SATA drives.
- NVMe drives are faster than SATA drives, so they're better for ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro
- If you want to install ArcGIS 10 or ArcGIS Pro on your laptop, you'll need about 6 GB of free disk space (but you don't need a lot of disk space after that)
How to choose the right display for ArcGIS 10, ArcGIS Pro?
Right resolution for ArcGIS work
It's hard to find an application that requires anything more than Full HD resolution. There are exceptions of course, but they're rare. For example, if you're working with satellite imagery – then you'll need to get a 4K display or better. But generally speaking, there's [no good reason to get anything higher than Full HD resolution](a reddit thread on full hd vs. qhd) in your laptop.
Panel and image quality
Panel type is a key to many display qualities. Here are three types of panels you need to know:
- TN – the most basic display panel. [Very common in entry-to-mid-range laptops](a laptop with tn display). If properly calibrated, then it's not that bad for non-color-sensitive work.
- IPS/PLS – better in nearly every aspect, nonetheless quite costly, especially professional-grade IPS. [Common in mid-range and premium laptops](a laptop with qhd display).
- OLED – latest, greatest, and the priciest panel technology. Exceptional color accuracy, often paired with HDR. Sometimes found in top-of-the-line models. Meanwhile, image quality consists of brightness, contrast, and color accuracy. These three observable characteristics can vary a lot from model to model. Panel type can be a decent proxy to gauge these metrics roughly. But it's always best to judge them in person or by reviews.
Laptop display recommendations for ArcGIS work
ArcGIS is fairly forgiving when it comes to displays – just get any screen with an IPS panel and it should be fine enough for your needs (though if you want the [best laptop for ArcGIS work](notebookcheck arcgis pro benchmarks) – go for one with QHD resolution).
- Full HD is fine for ArcGIS work
- TN panels are the most common in entry-to-mid range laptops
- IPS/PLS panels are better for non color sensitive work (ie. ArcGIS)
- 4K is not needed for ArcGIS work, and even QHD is overkill (except for satellite imagery)
As a seasoned GIS enthusiast, I understand the unique challenges faced by users searching for the best laptop for ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) applications like these demand powerful hardware to handle complex spatial data and perform advanced geoprocessing tasks. With the right laptop, you'll not only enjoy seamless performance but also improve your overall GIS productivity.
To find the perfect laptop for you, I reviewed an extensive laptop spreadsheet of recent releases, comparing specs and reviews from both professional sources and fellow GIS users. I narrowed down the top laptops by focusing on topic-specific requirements and price ranges, ensuring that you get the most value for your money. From testing the compatibility of different GPUs with ArcGIS applications to considering the benefits of high-resolution displays for cartographic work, I've got you covered.
It's crucial to remember that ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro have distinct system requirements. While ArcGIS 10 can run on more modest hardware, ArcGIS Pro demands a more powerful setup, particularly when working with 3D data or leveraging ArcGIS Pro's advanced capabilities. By targeting the best laptop for both applications, you'll be well-equipped to tackle even the most complex GIS projects, whether you're analyzing environmental changes or creating stunning map visualizations for decision-makers.
4 Best Laptops for ArcGIS 10, ArcGIS Pro
1.Lenovo Legion 5 Pro 16ArcGIS 10, ArcGIS Pro laptop
- First-class processor (Ryzen 9 6900HX)
- Exceptional graphics card (RTX 3070 Ti)
- Excellent display (16)
- Splendid memory amount (64GB)
- No IPS Panel (inferior color reproduction)
ASUS ZenBook 13 UX325EA-EH71
- Sleek and lightweight design
- Powerful overall and gaming performance
- Weak speakers
- Display could be brighter and have better brightness distribution
2.HP VictusHP Victus 15 falls short of expectations for GIS applications
- Easy serviceability
- Attractive visual design
- Relatively cool surface temperatures
- Buggy battery life and fan behavior
- Subpar Turbo Boost sustainability
- Weak hinges
The HP Victus 15 laptop may be a good option for budget gaming, but its performance falls short when it comes to handling GIS applications like ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro. The GPU is not powerful enough and the battery life and fan behavior are buggy.
MSI Summit E13
- Large battery and respectable runtimes
- PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD support
- Slow display response times and noticeable ghosting
- High core temperatures when under load
3.Lenovo Legion 5 ProThe Lenovo Legion 5 Pro is a powerful gaming and performance laptop for the price, but with some design quirks.
- Excellent CPU and GPU performance
- Good-quality 16-inch display
- Good build quality and upgradeability
- Many connections and free M.2 slot
- Drab design and bulky chassis
- Poor audio quality and camera, no biometrics
- Slow Western Digital SSD
- USB connections on the sides placed in the center
The Lenovo Legion 5 Pro is a gaming and performance laptop with impressive CPU and GPU performance for its price range. It has a good-quality 16-inch display, good build quality, and upgradeability. However, it has a bulky chassis, poor audio quality, and limited battery life without hybrid mode.
ASUS ROG Strix G15
- High-performance CPU and GPU
- Good workmanship and sophisticated design
- Skimpy connectivity may be an issue for some users
- Coil whine can occur in certain situations
4.ASUS ROG Strix ScarASUS ROG Strix Scar 15 G533 offers top-notch performance and display, but with a price on heat and noise emissions.
- Unhindered Core i9-12900H and RTX 3070 Ti performance
- Fast Wi-Fi 6E
- Wide color gamut coverage with Dolby Vision support
- High heat and noise emissions under load
- Limited display angle
- Heavy SSD throttling during continuous reads
The ASUS ROG Strix Scar 15 G533 is a powerful laptop with a fast Wi-Fi 6E and excellent response times with no PWM, along with a WQHD 240 Hz panel with Dolby Vision support. While its Core i9-12900H and RTX 3070 Ti performance are impressive, high heat and noise emissions, limited display angle, and heavy SSD throttling under continuous reads might be areas of concern.
Acer Predator Triton 500
- High performance capabilities
- Excellent, bright 240-Hz display
- Soldered-in RAM
- Inaccessible SSD
Table of the Best Laptops for ArcGIS 10, ArcGIS Pro
|Lenovo Legion 5 Pro 16||$700|
|Lenovo Legion 5 Pro||$1,600|
|ASUS ROG Strix Scar||$2,310|