Best Laptop for X-Plane 11

X-Plane 11 gameplay

As a flight simulation enthusiast, I understand the challenge of finding the best laptop for X-Plane 11 that can handle the game's demanding requirements while providing a smooth and immersive experience. X-Plane 11's realistic aircraft models, detailed scenery, and accurate flight physics demand a capable machine that can keep up with the game's ever-evolving updates and addons. This guide will help you navigate the world of laptops to find the perfect fit for your virtual aviation endeavors.

In my quest to find the best laptop for X-Plane 11, I have reviewed an extensive laptop spreadsheet of recent releases, comparing specs and analyzing both professional and user-generated reviews. I have considered the specific requirements of X-Plane 11, such as the need for a powerful GPU to handle the game's high-quality graphics, a fast processor to ensure smooth performance, and ample RAM to accommodate addons like orthophoto scenery and aircraft models. Additionally, I've taken into account various price ranges, ensuring that there are options suitable for every budget.

As a member of the X-Plane community, I am familiar with the discussions on forums, the website, and the preferences of popular YouTube and Twitch streamers. I understand the importance of factors like frame rate stability, load times, and the benefits of a high-resolution display for an enhanced flying experience. With these considerations in mind, this guide will present you with the top laptops that can take your X-Plane 11 experience to new heights, whether you're a casual simmer or an aspiring virtual airline pilot.

My processor recommendations for playing X-Plane 11


One of the biggest factors for a smooth gameplay is your CPU. But how do you pick the best one? It all depends on your laptop's budget and performance needs. That's why I'm outlining all the options to help you choose the best CPU for X-Plane 11.


The game doesn't specify any particular processor, but that doesn't mean you should take any risks. I recommend an Intel Core i5 CPU or AMD Ryzen 3, both with an option for high performance – it's worth the extra money.


Choosing the best CPU for X-Plane 11 is tough given so many different options. But I'll give you my suggestions for picking up a new processor:

  • Intel Core i5-10310U – minimum required to play X-Plane 11; powerful enough to enjoy the game on high graphics settings without noticing any slowdowns; perfect for 1080p resolution screens; good for VR; not well optimized for AMD processors; pricey.
  • AMD Ryzen 3 2200U – less expensive than Intel's counterparts, but still powerful enough to enjoy X-Plane 11 on high graphics settings; well optimized for AMD processors; subpar VR performance; subpar at higher resolutions (above 1080p).
  • any processor will do, but Intel Core i5 and AMD Ryzen 3 are the best choices
  • Intel Core i5-10310U is the minimum required to play X-Plane 11
  • AMD Ryzen 3 2200U is cheaper than Intel's counterparts, but still powerful enough to enjoy X-Plane 11 on high graphics settings

Graphics card

Minimum graphics (under $1000)

Graphics card

As the minimum graphics card for playing X-Plane 11, we should ideally aim for a DirectX 11-capable video card from NVIDIA or AMD with 4 GB VRAM.

Recommended graphics ($1000 – $2000)

For a recommended GPU, we're looking at the DirectX 12-capable GPUs from NVIDIA or AMD with 4 GB VRAM (GeForce GTX 1070 or better or similar from AMD).

Best graphics ($2000 and up)

Finally, for the best possible video card, we'll need to reach for Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti and AMD Radeon VII. Both these cards come with 8 GB VRAM and should be more than enough to run X-Plane 11 on its highest settings.

  • if you're playing X-Plane 11, aim for a 4 GB GPU from NVIDIA or AMD with DirectX 11 support
  • a GeForce GTX 1070 or better is a good start for a GPU, and Radeon VII or RTX 2080 Ti is best

Memory for X-Plane 11

Minimum (8-16 GB)

Memory ram

First of all, I should mention that you could get away buying an 8GB RAM laptop. Though that's acceptable in a single situation – you're on an uncomfortably tight budget, and you could upgrade the 8GB laptop with an extra RAM stick.

Recommended (16 GB)

If you aren't in this situation – stick with 16 GB. That's the sweet spot for gaming, work, and everything in-between. I might consider 32 GB to be more future-oriented than 16 GB, but if you don't particularly care whether you're ahead of the pack or not – 16 GB is still a considerable amount of memory for most.

Best (32 GB)

Let me ask you a couple of questions. Do you care about streaming your gameplay, keeping multiple games open, or using Chrome 100 tabs open? If that sounds like you – consider paying a premium for a 32GB model. Is there a benefit going beyond that? Sure, the more, the merrier, but it's not necessary by any standard, and I'd instead invest in other components, such as CPU or GPU.

How to choose the right storage for playing X-Plane 11?

Is HDD an option?

ssd hdd inside pc

SSDs are best, but if you're on a budget, HDDs are the way to go. For the purposes of this article, we will focus on laptops with SSDs.

Picking an SSD

We've sorted through specs and picked out our favorite SSDs for X-Plane 11. But don't worry – it's not as hard as it sounds. We've checked for NVMe support and made sure that there is an expansion slot for upgrades. On top of that, some benchmarks just for kicks – read/write speeds, data rates, IOPS – all that good stuff. If you're still unsure about what to get – check out our shortlist below:

  • A 256 GB SSD is entry-level and will fill up quickly
  • 512 GB is a lot more (yes, I know, twice as more) and a good starting point
  • 1 TB SSD is plenty for most people
  • 2 TB SSD and more is perfect for comprehensive collection of games, movies, and what have you.
  • don't get a HDD – get an SSD instead
  • get a 256 GB SSD if you're on a budget and you'll need plenty of space
  • get a 512 GB SSD if you need a lot of space and/or you don't want to upgrade in the future
  • get a 1 TB SSD if you need even more space and/or you want to store all your games on one drive (in case your other drives fail)

Choosing a display

selecting display for gamming

What should you look for in a laptop display for playing X-Plane 11? Honestly, I can't say. The game is visually unimpressive, and the quality of the display is not what makes it worth playing. There are other factors that you might be more interested in – framerate, response time, adaptive sync. But if you're an aviation fanatic who wants to fly this game at homeanything will do.


X-Plane 11 is not particularly demanding, so any laptop display will do. If you're an aviation fanatic who wants to fly this game at home, you can use anything. I can't say.

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Table of Best Laptops for {topic}

LaptopPrice (approx)

X-Plane 11 FAQs

Q: What are the recommended laptop specs for X-Plane 11?

To have the best experience playing X-Plane 11, we recommend a laptop with at least an Intel Core i5 processor, 16 GB of RAM, a dedicated graphics card like the NVIDIA RTX 3060, and a 256 GB SSD for faster loading times.

Can I run X-Plane 11 on a budget laptop?

While it is possible to run X-Plane 11 on a budget laptop, you may experience limitations in performance and graphical quality. For a smooth gameplay experience, we recommend investing in a laptop with at least the minimum requirements mentioned above.

Which laptops are best for running X-Plane 11?

Several laptops excel in running X-Plane 11. If you're looking for a reliable and budget-friendly option, consider the ASUS Zenbook priced at $640. For those who want a more premium experience, the MSI Summit E13 (starting at $1,400) offers exceptional performance. If money is not a concern, the ASUS ROG Strix Scar ($2,310) and the Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16 ($3,390) are top-of-the-line options.

Is an Intel Core i5 processor sufficient for X-Plane 11?

Yes, an Intel Core i5 processor is generally sufficient for running X-Plane 11. However, for the best performance and to future-proof your laptop, we recommend opting for an Intel Core i7 or AMD Ryzen 7 processor.

How much RAM do I need for X-Plane 11 on a laptop?

X-Plane 11 can run on 8 GB of RAM, but for a smoother experience, we recommend having at least 16 GB of RAM. This will allow the game to load faster and handle complex flight simulations more efficiently.

Can I play X-Plane 11 on a MacBook Pro?

Yes, you can play X-Plane 11 on a MacBook Pro. However, to ensure optimal performance, make sure your MacBook Pro meets or exceeds the recommended specifications mentioned earlier. Also, keep in mind that MacBook Pro models with dedicated graphics cards tend to perform better for gaming.

Is a dedicated graphics card necessary for X-Plane 11 on a laptop?

While X-Plane 11 can run on integrated graphics, a dedicated graphics card is highly recommended for the best visual quality and smooth performance. We suggest investing in a laptop with at least an NVIDIA GTX 1650 or better, such as the recommended RTX 3060 or RTX 3070.

What are the minimum system requirements for X-Plane 11 on a laptop?

The minimum system requirements for X-Plane 11 on a laptop are an Intel Core i5 processor, 8 GB of RAM, a GTX 1650 graphics card, and a 1 TB HDD. While the game will run with these specifications, we recommend meeting or exceeding the recommended requirements for an optimal experience.

Will X-Plane 11 run smoothly on a gaming laptop?

Yes, X-Plane 11 will run smoothly on a gaming laptop that meets or exceeds the recommended specifications. Gaming laptops are designed to handle demanding games and simulations, making them an excellent choice for running X-Plane 11.

Are there any specific laptop models recommended for X-Plane 11?

Yes, we have a few specific laptop models to recommend for X-Plane 11. The ASUS Zenbook priced at $640 offers great value for budget-conscious users. For a more powerful and premium experience, consider the MSI Summit E13 starting at $1,400. If you're looking for top-of-the-line performance, the ASUS ROG Strix Scar ($2,310) and the Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16 ($3,390) are excellent choices. These laptops are equipped with the necessary hardware to handle X-Plane 11 with ease.

4 Best Laptops for X-Plane 11

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acer Nitro 5$680
Ryzen 7 6800H | RTX 3070 Ti | 32 GB RAM | 1000 GB SSD | 15.6″; 2560x1440 |

1.acer Nitro 5

X-Plane 11 laptop
  • Awesome processor (Ryzen 7 6800H)
  • Solid graphics card (RTX 3070 Ti)
  • Exceptional display (15.6)
  • Awesome memory amount (32GB)
  • No IPS Panel (worse contrast)
HP Victus 15t $730
HP Victus 15t
  • Low price
  • Good gaming performance
  • Weak GPU yields unsatisfactory frame rates
  • Screen only so-so despite 144Hz refresh rate
ASUS TUF Dash F15 $1,160
i7-12650H | RTX 3070 | 64 GB RAM | 2000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS-level G-Sync; 1920x1080 |

2.ASUS TUF Dash F15

ASUS TUF Dash F15: A balanced performer and competitively priced laptop for those on a lower budget.
  • Lightweight and well-built design
  • Good inputs and IO
  • Multiple screen options, including FHD 300Hz and QHD
  • Significantly more powerful than the previous generation
  • Some quirks affecting everyday ergonomics
  • Ports mostly squeezed together on the left edge
  • Be cautious of the FHD 144Hz panel option

The ASUS TUF Dash F15 is a well-built and lightweight laptop that offers good inputs and a range of screen options. With significant improvements over the previous generation, it delivers fair battery life and USB-C charging support, making it a solid choice for those looking for a budget-friendly option.

Lenovo Legion 5i Pro 16 $1,300
Lenovo Legion 5i Pro 16
  • Stylish, sleek form factor
  • Gorgeous display
  • Webcam quality is poor
  • No biometric features
Lenovo Legion Pro 5 $2,630
i9-13900HX | RTX 4070 | 64 GB RAM | 4000 GB SSD | 14.31″ IPS G-Sync; 2560x1600 |

3.Lenovo Legion Pro 5

Lenovo Legion Pro 5: A well-built mid-tier laptop with good performance, but beware of hotspots and limited battery life.
  • Good build quality and design
  • Excellent screen and IO
  • Competitively priced
  • Competent CPU with multiple GPU options
  • No Thunderbolt or biometrics
  • Some hotspots while gaming
  • Poor speakers
  • So-so battery life

The Lenovo Legion Pro 5 offers great value with its solid build quality, good screen, and ample performance. However, potential buyers should be aware of hotspots during sustained loads, below-average battery life, and subpar speakers.

Lenovo Legion Pro 5$2,840
Lenovo Legion Pro 5
  • Strong performance for the price
  • Quality build and port selection
  • Display quality is just decent
  • Bulky and heavy
Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16 $3,390
i9-13900HX | RTX 4090 | 32 GB RAM | 1000 GB SSD | 16″ HDR; 2560x1600 |

4.Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16

Lenovo Legion Pro 7i: A Sleek Gaming Powerhouse with Solid Performance and Value
  • Strong overall performance
  • Big, bright, and fast display
  • Per-key RGB lighting
  • Some flex to keyboard deck
  • Poor battery life

The Lenovo Legion Pro 7i is an impressive gaming laptop with a sleek design and powerful specs. It offers strong overall performance, a big and vibrant display, and per-key RGB lighting. However, it does have some drawbacks like a slightly flexing keyboard deck and poor battery life.

HP Omen 17 $4,290
HP Omen 17
  • QHD display with 165 Hz
  • Expandable working memory
  • Slightly below-average performance for a RTX 4080
  • High noise level

Table of the Best Laptops for X-Plane 11

LaptopPrice (approx)
acer Nitro 5$680
ASUS TUF Dash F15$1,160
Lenovo Legion Pro 5$2,630
Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16$3,390
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Mathew Greensbig
I'm an enthusiastic gamer with extensive knowledge of computers, laptops, components, and gaming. It's this depth of knowledge that I bring to writing reviews for the most suitable laptops for specific games. My finely tuned understanding of the intersection between cutting-edge technology and gaming requirements ensures that gamers are equipped with the best tools to augment their gaming experiences. I pride myself on my ability to distill complex tech concepts into understandable advice, proving myself to be a trusted guide in the vast landscape of gaming technology.