10 Best Laptops for Video Editing under $1200 in 2023

As an avid video editor myself, I understand the importance of finding the best laptop for video editing that not only meets your budget but also your specific needs. Performance, reliability, and efficiency are crucial factors when selecting a laptop for editing under $2000. You want a machine that can handle the rigors of high-resolution footage, multiple formats, and a diverse range of software applications. In this guide, I'll share my insights and experience to help you find the perfect laptop that fits the bill.

To compile my recommendations, I've scoured an extensive laptop spreadsheet of recent releases, comparing specs, and analyzing both professional and user-generated reviews. I've then narrowed down the top contenders based on key requirements for video editing, including processor performance, dedicated graphics capabilities, RAM, and storage capacity, all within a reasonable price range. As someone who spends hours editing and refining footage, I know the importance of a fast and efficient workflow, and I've made sure to prioritize laptops that meet these criteria.

While selecting the best laptop for video editing under $2000, I've also considered the specific needs of editors working with various video formats, as well as the demands of popular editing software like Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, and DaVinci Resolve. Moreover, I've taken into account the importance of a high-quality display, color accuracy, and connectivity options for external devices. Armed with this knowledge, you'll be well-equipped to make an informed decision and invest in a laptop that will elevate your video editing experience to new heights.

Unleash the Power: Finding the Best Processor for Video Editing Laptops Under $1200

When it comes to video editing, having the right laptop processor can make all the difference in performance and efficiency. Let's take a look at the latest offerings in the CPU market and how to choose the right processor for your needs.

Apple's ARM-based M1, M2, M2 Pro, and M2 Max system-on-chip modules offer exceptional single-core performance and battery life, making them a popular choice for video editing. However, Windows laptops are also a good option if you don't need the Apple premium.

Video editing is one of the few tasks that can take advantage of multiple cores, so it's essential to consider the number of cores, frequency, and thermals when choosing a processor. While a high-end CPU can offer better performance, it's not always necessary for video editing. It's all about finding the right balance between performance and budget.

To rank processors by performance, I recommend using Cinebench R23, PassMark, or Geekbench benchmarks, as they are excellent tools for testing video editing performance.

Based on our research, we've compiled a table of recommended processors by price bracket:

Price Bracket Processor
Minimum Intel Core i5-11320H
Recommended AMD Ryzen 5 5600U
High-end Intel Core i5-11500H

These processors offer a good balance between performance and budget, making them ideal for video editing. Remember to also look for a laptop with a long-lasting battery if you want a machine that will last you for years.

Overall, when deciding on the right laptop processor for video editing, it's crucial to find the right balance between performance, budget, and battery life. With these considerations in mind, you'll be able to choose the right processor for your needs and get started on your next video editing project.

Cutting-edge graphics without breaking the bank

If you're looking for a laptop that can handle video editing, the graphics card is an essential consideration. While Nvidia dominates the laptop GPU market, the latest generation of graphics cards may not be available in laptops yet, so you'll need to settle for the previous generation or the current one.

When it comes to video editing, the GPU is not as critical as it is for gaming or machine learning. However, it can make a significant difference in certain situations, such as working with high-resolution footage or RAW files. The GPU helps accelerate rendering times, which can save you time and frustration in the editing process.

To determine which GPU is best for video editing, I recommend using industry-standard benchmarking tools like 3DMark. It measures various aspects of graphics performance, including clock speed, memory bandwidth, and OpenCL.

When considering a GPU for video editing, you'll want to look at both its performance and power consumption. Gaming laptops tend to have higher power consumption than regular laptops, so keep that in mind if battery life is a crucial factor for you.

So, which GPUs are best for video editing? Here are my recommendations based on average prices:

Minimum Recommended High-end
GeForce RTX 3050 GeForce RTX 3060 GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER
$700 $1200 $1800

Note that these prices are subject to change depending on your region and the specific laptop model you're looking at.

Lastly, if you're wondering whether it's worth upgrading your laptop's GPU, the answer will depend on your specific use case. If you're only doing occasional video editing, it may not be necessary. However, if you're a professional or someone who does a lot of video editing, upgrading your GPU could be a wise investment.

Memory Matters: How Much RAM Do You Need for Video Editing?


Video editing is one of the most demanding tasks for a laptop. It requires a significant amount of RAM to handle large video files, complex effects, and seamless rendering. When it comes to video editing, the more RAM you have, the better. However, it's essential to understand that having more RAM does not always translate to better performance.

If you're a professional video editor, you should aim for at least 32 GB of RAM. If you have a higher budget, consider going for 64 GB. On the other hand, if you're an amateur or a student, 16 GB should suffice.

When it comes to RAM speed, DDR4 is currently the most commonly used memory type in laptops. While DDR5 is available, it is still relatively new and expensive. However, if you're working with 8K footage in Premiere Pro or After Effects, DDR5 memory can provide a minor performance boost. Keep in mind that this feature is only available on the latest generation of Intel and AMD CPUs.

Latency and frequency are also essential factors to consider when choosing RAM for video editing. Lower latency and higher frequency typically result in better performance. However, in most cases, these differences are minimal and may not justify the price difference.

When looking for laptops for video editing, you should consider those that have at least two SODIMM slots that are accessible from the outside and can be upgraded later on. This way, you can upgrade your laptop's RAM without having to replace the entire device.

Here's what you can expect at different price points:

Price Range RAM
Under $800 8-16 GB DDR4
$800 – $1,500 16-32 GB DDR4
$1,500 and above 32-64 GB DDR4 or DDR5

In conclusion, if you're serious about video editing, investing in a laptop with at least 32 GB of RAM is recommended. DDR4 is still the most commonly used memory type, but DDR5 can provide a slight performance boost, especially when working with 8K footage. Other factors like latency and frequency are worth considering, but may not justify the price difference for most users.

Unleashing your video editing potential with a budget-friendly laptop: FAQs answered

Q: Which laptop is best for video editing under $2000?

For video editing under $2000, we recommend the Lenovo Ideapad3i. It comes with a powerful i5-11320H processor, GeForce RTX 3050 graphics, and 16 GB of memory. It's a great option for those on a budget who still want to get the job done efficiently.

What are the minimum requirements for a laptop for video editing?

The minimum requirements for a laptop for video editing include an i5-11320H processor, GeForce RTX 3050 graphics, and 16 GB of memory. However, it's important to note that these specs may struggle with more demanding tasks and larger files.

Which processor is best for video editing on a laptop?

For video editing on a laptop, the i5-11500H is currently the best processor available. It provides excellent performance and speed, especially when working with larger files and more demanding tasks.

How much RAM is needed for video editing on a laptop?

The minimum amount of RAM needed for video editing on a laptop is 16 GB. However, for more demanding tasks and larger files, we recommend going for 32 GB or even 64 GB if your budget allows it.

What graphics card is best for video editing on a laptop?

The best graphics card for video editing on a laptop is the GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER. It provides excellent rendering speeds and can handle even the most demanding video editing tasks.

Is a 4K display necessary for video editing on a laptop?

A 4K display isn't necessary, but it can be helpful when editing high-resolution videos. However, it's more important to have a color-accurate display and good viewing angles for accurate color grading.

What storage options are best for video editing on a laptop?

SSD storage is the best option for video editing on a laptop. It provides faster read and write speeds, which can greatly improve rendering times and overall performance. It's also important to have a large enough storage capacity for all of your video files.

Can a laptop handle 4K video editing?

Yes, a laptop can handle 4K video editing, but it's important to have a powerful enough processor, graphics card, and enough RAM to handle the task efficiently. Additionally, having SSD storage can greatly improve rendering times.

How to choose a laptop for video editing under $2000?

When choosing a laptop for video editing under $2000, it's important to prioritize a powerful processor, graphics card, and enough RAM for your specific needs. A color-accurate display and SSD storage are also important factors to consider. The Lenovo Ideapad3i is a great option for those on a budget, but if you can afford to spend a little more, the Lenovo Legion 5 Pro or ASUS ROG Strix Scar are excellent choices.

What software should I use for video editing on a laptop?

There are many software options available for video editing on a laptop, but some of the most popular and powerful options include Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, and Davinci Resolve. It's important to choose a software that fits your specific needs and workflow.

5 Best Laptops for Video Editing Under $1200

i5-12500H | RTX 3050 | 32 GB RAM | 1000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS; 1920x1080 |

1.Lenovo Ideapad3i

Lenovo Ideapad3i is not a great option for video editing.
  • Low price
  • Reasonable productivity and 1080p gaming performance
  • Good battery life
  • Dark display
  • Poor keyboard

The Lenovo Ideapad3i is not recommended for video editing due to its lackluster screen, poor keyboard, and a small SSD. However, its low price, reasonable productivity, and 1080p gaming performance could make it a good choice for those on a tight budget.

Lenovo IdeaPad 3
  • Adequate memory amount (32GB)
  • Featherweight (4.95 lbs)
  • Not the best processor (Ryzen 5 5600H)
  • Run-of-the-mill graphics card (RTX 3050 Ti)
Ryzen 7 6800H | RTX 3060 | 32 GB RAM | 2000 GB SSD | 16″ IPS HDR G-Sync; 2560x1600 |

2.Lenovo Legion 5 Pro

Lenovo Legion 5 Pro offers impressive performance but with average battery life.
  • High quality 165 Hz 16:10 IPS display
  • Relatively easy serviceability
  • Integrated numpad
  • Very fast charging
  • Low resolution webcam with no IR or privacy shutter
  • Very warm CPUGPU temperatures when gaming
  • Moderate-heavy uneven backlight bleeding
  • Only average battery life

The Lenovo Legion 5 Pro is powered with AMD Zen 3+ CPU and 150W TGP GeForce RTX 3070 Ti. It features a 165Hz 16:10 IPS display, easy serviceability, integrated numpad, and fast charging. However, it has a low resolution webcam with no IR or privacy shutter, very warm CPU/GPU temperatures when gaming, and only average battery life.

  • Faster than most other GeForce RTX 3060 laptops
  • 300 Hz IPS panel w full sRGB coverage
  • Chassis base and lid exhibit some flex
Ryzen 9 5900HX | RTX 3080 | 64 GB RAM | 4000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS-level G-Sync; 1920x1080 |

3.ASUS ROG Strix Scar

ASUS ROG Strix Scar 15 - A High-Performance Laptop for Enthusiast Gamers, but not an Ideal Choice for Video Editing.
  • Sturdy construction
  • Fast Wi-Fi 6E
  • Excellent response times and no PWM
  • Wide color gamut coverage with Dolby Vision support
  • Limited display angle
  • No biometric login

The ASUS ROG Strix Scar 15 G533 laptop with a WQHD 240Hz panel, an Intel Alder Lake Core i9-12900H, and Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti, checks off most boxes of gaming enthusiasts. However, the laptop has limited display angles, high heat, and noise emissions under load, and no biometric login, making it not an ideal choice for video editing.

Acer Predator Triton 500
  • High-performance capabilities
  • Excellent 240-Hz display
  • Soldered-in RAM
  • Inaccessible SSD
i9-12950HX | RTX 3080 Ti | 32 GB RAM | 2000 GB SSD | 17.3″ IPS; 2560x1440 |

4.ASUS ROG Strix Scar G733CX-XS97

ASUS ROG Strix Scar G733CX-XS97: A premium choice for video editing with some tradeoffs.
  • Excellent QHD panel with 240Hz refresh rate
  • High and stable gaming performance
  • TB4, Wi-Fi 6E, and PCIe 4.0
  • Relatively quiet fans while gaming
  • Inconsistent SSD performance
  • Premium price for HX CPU not worth it for all users
  • No built-in webcam
  • Electronic noises during use

The ASUS ROG Strix Scar G733CX-XS97 is a high-end gaming laptop with top-notch hardware for video editing. Its 240Hz QHD panel and stable gaming performance make it a great choice, but its inconsistent SSD performance, electronic noises, and lack of webcam are drawbacks.

  • Splendid processor (i9-13900HX)
  • Solid graphics card (RTX 4090)
    i9-12900HK | RTX 3060 | 32 GB RAM | 6000 GB SSD | 17.3″ IPS HDR; 3840x2400 |

    5.Dell XPS 17 9720

    Dell XPS 17 9720: Great display, high performance, but not for video editors on a budget.
    • Excellent 4K display with AdobeRGB
    • High-quality build
    • 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 is a high-end laptop that delivers excellent performance, high-quality build, and great display quality for video editing. It's packed with features like Thunderbolt 4, PCIe 4.0, and fast card reader. However, its price is steep, and its graphics performance is lower than its predecessor.

    Dell XPS 17 9720 review
    ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo
    • Dual display setup is impressive and useful for video editing
    • Top-end performance thanks to GeForce RTX 3080 Ti GPU and Ryzen 9 CPU
    • Very expensive, especially as configured
    • Awkward keyboard and touchpad layout

    Table of the Best Laptops for Video Editing Under $1200

    LaptopPrice (approx)
    Lenovo Ideapad3i$920
    Lenovo Legion 5 Pro$1,350
    ASUS ROG Strix Scar$2,310
    ASUS ROG Strix Scar G733CX-XS97$3,800
    Dell XPS 17 9720$5,600
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    John Winstler
    With over a decade of experience in the tech industry, combined with a degree in computer science, I have developed an in-depth knowledge of laptops, PC games, software, 3D modeling, video editing, and photo editing. My detailed and unbiased laptop reviews have helped many people make informed decisions about their technology purchases.

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