Selecting the best laptop for therapists requires a unique understanding of the profession's specific needs and preferences. As someone who has spent considerable time researching laptops and their applications in various fields, I am well-equipped to guide you through the process of finding the perfect device for your therapy practice. My approach involves reviewing an extensive laptop spreadsheet of recent releases, comparing specs, and evaluating professional and user-generated reviews. Then, I narrow down the top laptops based on requirements specific to therapists and price ranges, ensuring that my recommendations cater to the unique needs of this profession.
Therapists require laptops that can efficiently manage client records, appointments, billing, and communication while maintaining privacy and security. A powerful, reliable, and secure laptop is essential for handling sensitive client information and managing day-to-day tasks. Furthermore, as therapists often need to be mobile, having a laptop with a long-lasting battery life and a lightweight design is crucial.
In addition to these essential features, therapists may benefit from a laptop with a high-quality display and noise-cancelling microphone for conducting teletherapy sessions with ease. This ensures a professional and seamless experience for both therapist and client. By considering these factors in my laptop selection process, I aim to provide tailored recommendations that cater specifically to the needs of therapists, helping you find the best laptop for your therapy practice.
The Heart of Your Laptop: Choosing the Right Processor for Therapy Work
If you're a therapist looking for a new laptop, the processor you choose will depend on your specific needs. MacBooks are a popular option for their ARM-based M1, M2, M2 Pro, and M2 Max system-on-chip modules, which offer exceptional single-core performance and battery life. However, Windows laptops also have their advantages, and we'll include them in our recommendations.
While a fast CPU isn't necessary for most therapy applications, if you're using any DAW or VST plugins, you'll need a mid-range to high-end processor. Otherwise, you can get away with a budget processor.
Other specs that are worth considering include RAM, storage, and graphics card. These components also play an important role in determining the overall performance of a laptop.
When comparing processors, there are many ways to do it, including single-core/multi-core performance, PassMark scores, Cinebench R20 scores (or even R19), and 3DMark scores (if you're into gaming). However, these benchmarks only tell part of the story and don't account for other components such as graphics card and RAM speed.
Here are my recommendations by price bracket:
Keep in mind that a processor is only one part of the equation, and you should also consider other components when choosing a laptop. With that said, these processors should provide sufficient performance for most therapy applications.
Visualize your Therapy Practice with a Powerful Graphics Card
When it comes to choosing a laptop for therapy work, a dedicated graphics card is not a requirement. However, having one can make your work easier, especially if you need to handle visual data. With that said, let's dive into what you need to consider when choosing the right laptop graphics card.
Firstly, it's essential to note that desktop GPUs are now a lot more power-hungry than laptop GPUs. This means that the gap between power-limited notebook graphics and desktop graphics cards has widened in the past few years. Additionally, Nvidia has discontinued the Max-Q label for its RTX graphics cards, which has resulted in a wide variance in graphics performance even in laptops with the same GPU chipset.
So, how do you decide which GPU is right for you? One way is to use industry-standard benchmarks such as 3DMark. However, it's worth noting that these scores can be slightly inflated due to thermal limitations and power throttling. Therefore, it's crucial to also consider factors such as battery life and thermals when making your decision.
For most therapy applications, a mid-range GPU will suffice. However, if you're looking to play games on your laptop, you'll need a dedicated GPU from Nvidia or AMD, as integrated graphics are not sufficient for gaming. When it comes to gaming laptops, make sure the laptop has enough power delivery (PDC) to support the GPU's power requirements to avoid any throttling issues.
Here are our recommendations for laptop GPUs, grouped by price bracket:
- For budgets up to $500: The minimum GPU we recommend is the GeForce GTX 1650.
- For budgets up to $600: We recommend the GeForce RTX 3050.
- For budgets of $700 and above: The high-end GPU we recommend is the GeForce RTX 2060.
In summary, a dedicated GPU is not required for therapy work, but it can make your life easier, especially if you're working with visual data. When choosing a GPU, consider industry-standard benchmarks, battery life, and thermals, and match your choice with your budget.
Your Therapy Laptop Questions Answered
Memory Matters: How Much RAM Do You Really Need for Your Therapy Laptop?
As a therapist, your laptop's RAM may not be a top priority, but it's still important to have enough for smooth and efficient multitasking. Most mid-range laptops come with 16 GB of RAM, while high-end laptops offer 32 GB or more.
For most therapists, 16 GB should be enough. However, if you're working with multiple patients at the same time or using a lot of plugins, then 32 GB is ideal.
While the latest-gen Intel and AMD CPUs support DDR4 and DDR5, DDR5 is still quite expensive and needs time to mature as a technology. Therefore, DDR4 is currently the most common and cost-effective choice.
RAM speed is not a major concern for most therapists. However, if you're looking for the best possible laptop for your work, then getting DDR5 would be a nice bonus. But that's only if you can afford it – DDR5 is significantly more expensive than DDR4.
If you're looking for a laptop that will last you for years to come, then consider getting one with upgradable memory (not soldered). This way, you can easily upgrade your RAM in the future if you need more.
Other specs to consider when choosing a laptop for therapy include the CPU, storage capacity, screen size and resolution, and battery life.
Here's a table of recommended RAM configurations for various price ranges:
|Price Range||Recommended RAM|
|Under $500||8 GB|
|$1000-$1500||16 GB or 32 GB|
|Above $1500||32 GB or more|
In summary, while RAM may not be the most important consideration for therapists when choosing a laptop, having enough RAM is still essential for smooth multitasking. DDR4 is currently the most cost-effective choice, and upgrading to DDR5 may not be worth the cost yet. Consider other specs, such as CPU and storage, and choose a laptop with upgradable memory if you want to future-proof your investment.
6 Best Laptops for therapists
1.ASUS ZenbookASUS Zenbook UM425QA: A Powerful, Portable Ultrabook for Therapy Sessions.
- Lightweight and compact design
- Powerful Ryzen CPU for smooth performance
- Long battery life
- Excellent IPS display with good visuals
- Soldered RAM cant be expanded
- Fan noise can be annoying at times
- High emissions under load
- Weak Wi-Fi connectivity
The ASUS Zenbook UM425QA is a slim and lightweight ultrabook that delivers impressive power and long battery life. Its Ryzen CPU and IPS display offer smooth performance and excellent visuals, while its sleek design and compact dimensions make it an ideal choice for therapists who need a portable device for their sessions.
HP Victus 15
- Affordable gaming laptop
- Good gaming and productivity performance
- Poor display and webcam quality
- Too much pre-installed software
2.HP Victus 15HP Victus 15: A budget gaming laptop worth considering, but with a short battery life and plain design.
- Good gaming performance at a low price
- Can double as a work laptop
- Solid array of ports
- Bad battery life
- Rather plain design
- Weak GPU yields unsatisfactory frame rates.
The HP Victus 15 is an affordable gaming laptop that can run high-end titles well while still managing most other tasks. Although it may not be the best option for those seeking a long battery life or a stylish look, its price is unbeatable.
MSI Summit E13
- Large battery with respectable runtimes
- Great CPU and GPU performance
- Slow display response times with noticeable ghosting
- Slightly larger and heavier than some comparable models
3.Lenovo Legion 5 ProLenovo Legion 5 Pro packs a punch for therapists who also game.
- High-quality 165Hz 16:10 IPS display.
- Easy serviceability.
- Integrated numpad.
- Fast charging.
- Low-resolution webcam with no IR or privacy shutter.
- Warm CPUGPU temperatures when gaming.
- Moderate-heavy uneven backlight bleeding.
- Only average battery life.
The Lenovo Legion 5 Pro is a powerful laptop that's great for gaming and can easily handle any work that a therapist might need it for. It has an upgraded CPU and GPU from its predecessor and a high-quality 165Hz display.
ASUS TUF F15 FX507ZM-ES74
- Powerful GeForce RTX 3060
- 300 Hz IPS panel with full sRGB coverage
- Chassis base and lid exhibit some flexing
- No per-key RGB lighting
4.GIGABYTE AORUS 15 XE4GIGABYTE AORUS 15 XE4: A high-performance laptop for therapists who need a powerful machine.
- Highly responsive 165Hz panel
- High system performance
- PCIe 4.0 SSD
- Individual key lighting
- High power usage at idle and low load
- No card reader
- Only one USB-A port
The GIGABYTE AORUS 15 XE4 is a great laptop option for therapists who need high performance from their machine. Its individual key lighting, responsive 165Hz panel, PCIe 4.0 SSD, and Thunderbolt 4 make it a powerful option to run multiple applications.
ASUS ROG Strix G15 G513RM
- Fair design and solid build quality
- Good inputs and IO
- High CPU and GPU temperatures with games demanding loads (can be tweaked in Manual mode)
- No ThunderboltUSB 4, card-reader, camera or biometrics
5.ASUS ROG Strix ScarASUS ROG Strix Scar is a powerhouse for gaming and creative tasks, but its high heat and noise emissions make it a poor choice for quiet environments.
- Sturdy construction
- Fast Wi-Fi 6E
- Excellent performance and response times
- Wide color gamut coverage with Dolby Vision support
- High heat and noise emissions under load
- Heavy SSD throttling during continuous reads
- Limited display angle
- No biometric login
The ASUS ROG Strix Scar 15 G533 is an excellent laptop for gaming and creative tasks, featuring an improved WQHD 240 Hz panel, Core i9-12900H and RTX 3070 Ti performance, and Dolby Vision support. However, the laptop has high heat and noise emissions, making it unsuitable for quiet environments.
Acer Predator Triton 500
- High-performance capabilities
- Excellent, bright 240-Hz display
- Soldered-in RAM
- Inaccessible SSD
6.Dell XPS 17 9720The Dell XPS 17 9720 is a great performer for therapists who require an exceptional display but falls short on graphics and cooling.
- Excellent 4K display with AdobeRGB
- High-quality case
- Thunderbolt 4 PCIe 4.0
- Very high system performance
- Lower graphics performance than the predecessor
- Performance not completely stable under combined load
- Not Wi-Fi 6E compatible
- 720p webcam
The Dell XPS 17 9720 offers a stunning 4K display with AdobeRGB and excellent system performance, making it ideal for therapists who require a high-quality display for their work. However, the graphics performance is weaker compared to its predecessor, and the cooling system is slightly inadequate.
ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo
- Powerful gaming performance with GeForce RTX 3080 Ti GPU and Ryzen 9 CPU
- Elegant design despite dual displays and high power
- Very expensive, especially when fully configured
- Keyboard and touchpad layout are awkward
Table of the Best Laptops for therapists
|HP Victus 15||$880|
|Lenovo Legion 5 Pro||$1,350|
|GIGABYTE AORUS 15 XE4||$1,600|
|ASUS ROG Strix Scar||$2,310|
|Dell XPS 17 9720||$5,600|