Top 7 Best Laptops for Adobe After Effects in 2022 (Expert’s Guide)


Laptops for people who want to have some visual effects fun!

Video editing and visual effects can really take a toll on your computer and if you want to create anything even remotely close to what you see in commercials or even on YouTube meaning that your dad’s old laptop will not cut it anymore! 

But there’s no need to worry because we have brought to you, the Top 7 Best Laptops for After Effects in 2022. The laptops in our list cover a wide range of prices, from budget to high-end, so you can find one that perfectly meets your needs.

Along with a list of the Top 7 Best Laptops for After Effects, you will also find the following in this article:

  • Important information about After Effects
  • Tips on how to learn After Effects faster
  • Important hardware for After Effects
  • A detailed buyer’s guide to buying the best laptop for After Effects

In a hurry? Here are our top 3 favorite picks when it comes to the best laptops for Adobe After Effects in 2022!

Name

Best Overall

ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo

Premium Pick

Apple Macbook Pro

Runner Up

GIGABYTE AERO 15

What Hardware In A Laptop Is Important For After Effects?

Compared to other visual effects software, After Effects doesn’t rely as much on your laptop’s graphics card, as it does on its CPU. Single-core performance is really important for After Effects. 

However, that doesn’t mean that your GPU isn’t important, some effects perform much better thanks to a powerful GPU. In short, your first priority should be a good CPU and second, a good GPU.

Are Laptops For After Effects Worth It?

This is really a question you should ask someone who works with After Effects on an old computer. They know the value of a fast machine to work on. Imagine having to wait 10 minutes for your laptop to boot up, then another 10 for After Effects to launch, then having to wait a few seconds for each click. 

Sounds like a nightmare! Think of all the time you could save and how pleasant working on a competent machine would be. 

Even if we disregard the time aspect (which is too big to disregard), we can’t ignore the fact that having a software crash on you while you’re trying to work is extremely annoying!

Buying a laptop for After Effects is definitely worth it, especially if you plan on making a career out of visual effects, animation or motion graphics. 

Having a fast laptop will be beneficial for you even if you’re a YouTuber; decreasing rendering and times exponentially. Ideally, your machine should be able to work as fast as you can think and the laptops on this list will help you do that.

Up ahead, we have a list of the Top 7 Best Laptops for Adobe After Effects in 2022. All the laptops on this list at least meet or far exceed the minimum requirements needed to run After Effects smoothly. They’ve been carefully selected to offer you the best After Effects and all-over performance.

Pros

  • Well built and highly capable laptop designed with the next generation of creators in mind
  • Sensational display with bright and accurate colors
  • Additional screen adds to versatility and usability
  • Can handle just about any software you throw at it

Finally, we arrive at our top pick for the best After Effects laptop in 2022. It is none other than the ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo 15 OLED UX582. This stallion of a laptop has the 11th generation Intel i9 1900H processor alongside 32 gigs of RAM and a 1 TB SSD Storage. 

The GPU on this beast is an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 and the screen it sends its images to is a 15.6-inch OLED 4K UHD touch screen display setup. This display is cinema-grade with highly accurate colors. 

You get a whole second mini-screen at the bottom for maximum control and customizability! The laptop also has the added bonus of having a wide port selection for added connectivity.

Features

  • Processor: Intel Core i9-11900H 
  • Number of Cores: 8 cores, 16 threads
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080
  • RAM: 32 GB DDR41
  • Memory Speed: 4.9 GHz
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Display: 15.6 inch OLED 4K UHD touch screen display
  • Operating System: Windows 11 Pro

Why Is This The Best Laptop For After Effects In 2022?

We’ve chosen this laptop simply because it’s the most premium, super powerful, creator focussed laptop out there. 

The power, the graphics capabilities, the display and even the secondary display, all are well suited for not just After Effects, but a wide range of other creativity and productivity softwares. With the Asus Zenbook Pro Duo, the sky’s the limit!

Pros

  • M1 Chip works superbly
  • Premium build and style
  • RGB Backlit keyboard can be customized
  • No heating issues
  • Entry to Apple’s amazing ecosystem for creators
Cons

  • Low number of ports
  • You can’t upgrade the laptop on your own
  • A little pricey

The next product on our list is from the giant Apple itself, it’s the M1 Apple MacBook Pro from 2021. Apple shook the tech world once again with its revolutionary M1 chip, which brought a giant leap in laptop performance. 

The particular variant that we’re interested in is the MacBook Pro with 32 gigabytes of RAM and 512 GB SSD storage. This bad boy is miles ahead of most laptops, including the previous-gen Macbooks. Not only performance, but battery life has also seen a major boost, with the MacBook Pro now claiming up to 21 hours of battery life. 

The display, as always with MacBook Pros, is pristine, with a wide dynamic range, contrast, sharpness and brightness and a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels thanks to the Liquid Retina XDR display.

Features

  • Chip: Apple M1 Pro Chip with 10 core CPU and 32 core GPU
  • RAM: 32 GB DDR4
  • Memory Speed: 3.2 GHz
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD
  • Display: 16 inch 3840 x 2160 Liquid Retina XDR
  • Operating System: MacOS Monterey

Quick Tip: If the 2021 M1 MacBook Pro is out of your budget, you can get the M1 MacBook Air! There will be a difference in performance, but the M1 MacBook Air is still a very capable laptop with a lot to offer!

Pros

  • More than enough computational power to smoothly run After Effects
  • Crystal clear AMOLED display
  • Sturdy build quality and premium look and feel
  • Gets a handy fingerprint sensor
Cons

  • Battery life could have been better
  • Can get hot with heavy use

We’re starting off our list with the Gigabyte AERO 15 OLED, a true workhorse with a 15.6” UHD 4k AMOLED IPS Screen that can display stunning images. The keyboard is backlit for better key visibility at night. 

The Gigabyte AERO 15 OLED is powered by an 11th generation Intel Core i7 processor, with 16 gigs of RAM and a 512 GB SSD. As for graphics capabilities, this machine has a mighty NVIDIA GeForce RTX3060 with 6 GB of VRAM and can truly blow your mind with its power. 

If you value color accuracy, then be rest assured as this laptop has Pantone Validated Color Accuracy. There are 9 I/O ports on this device, with the inclusion of a Thunderbolt 4 port along with a UHS-III SD Card Reader. To cool down this beast, you get Windforce Infinity Next-gen cooling for laptops.

Features

  • Processor: 11th Generation Intel Core i7
  • Number of Cores: 8
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
    RAM: 16 GB DDR4
  • Memory Speed: 4.6 GHz
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD
  • Display: 15.6 inch 3840 x 2160 AMOLED
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Pro
Pros

  • Comes with the capable RTX 3070
  • Strong build quality
  • RGB Backlit keyboard can be customized
  • Can take on heavy loads
  • Speakers are nice and loud
Cons

  • Battery life could have been better
  • Has some heating issues

Up next, we’ll take a look at the Pulse GL66 Gaming Laptop from MSI. This mighty machine has a 15.6” FHD display with a 144Hz refresh rate and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 to help process and show some mind blowing images on it. 

The MSI Pulse GL66 comes with an 11th Gen Intel Core i7 with 8 cores and a 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD storage to go along with them. This laptop uses something called the Cooler Boost 5 with 2 fans and 6 redesigned heat pipes with thinner walls than regular to cool its machinery. 

You also get a Mystic Light RGB backlit keyboard for gaming at night. The audio in this laptop is handled by Nahimic 3 which lets you have more control over the sound you experience. 

Features

  • Processor: 11th Generation Intel Core i7
  • Number of Cores: 8
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070
    RAM: 16 GB DDR4
  • Memory Speed: 3.2 GHz
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD
  • Display: 15.6 inch 1920 x 1080 FHD
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Home
Pros

  • Strong processor with 8 cores and 16 threads
  • Flagship level quality
  • 4 Zone RGB Backlit keyboard
  • 32 GB RAM
  • Amazing value at the price
  • Low fan noise
Cons

  • Battery life could have been better

Now we move on to a slightly more budget, yet capable option in the form of Acer’s 2021 flagship, the Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop. The Predator Helios 300 gets an 11th gen Intel i7 processor with 8 cores and 16 threads. 

The RAM on this laptop is massive, with a 32 GB DDR4 setup and it also gets a 1 Terabyte PCIe SSD drive for storage. In terms of graphics capabilities, the Predator Helios has an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 with 6 GB GDDR6 video memory. There is an RGB backlit keyboard with four separate zones. 

The Predator Helios 300 uses the 5th Gen AeroBlade 3D Fans for better cooling than previous generations. This laptop has a 15.6” Full HD Widescreen IPS display with a refresh rate of 144 Hz.

Features

  • Processor: 11th Generation Intel Core i7-11800H 
  • Number of Cores: 8 cores, 16 threads
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
    RAM: 32 GB DDR4
  • Memory Speed: 3.2 GHz
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Display: 15.6 inch 1920 x 1080 Full HD
  • Operating System: Windows 10
Pros

  • Premium build quality and feel
  • Bang & Olufsen speakers perform well
  • Quickly converts video files
  • Great heat distribution
Cons

  • Battery life could have been better
  • Priced a little high

Up next, we have a premium product called the HP Victus 16. This laptop features a 16.1 inch FHD screen with a refresh rate of 144Hz along with an audio system from the legendary Bang & Olufsen to give you a delightful audio-visual experience. 

On the software side of things, the HP Victus 16 gets an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 with 6 gigs of video memory and an 11th generation Intel Core i7 Processor. The RAM on this laptop is 16 GB, while the storage is a 1 TB SSD. 

You get WiFi 6 connectivity while the laptop uses Windows 10 Home Advance for its operating system. HP claims a battery life of up to 10 hours and gives you a 720p webcam to chat with friends.

Features

  • Processor: 11th Generation Intel Core i7-11800H 
  • Number of Cores: 8 cores, 16 threads
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
    RAM: 16 GB DDR4
  • Memory Speed: 4.6 GHz
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Display: 16.1 inch 1920 x 1080 Full HD
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Home Advanced
Pros

  • The complete high end package for someone who wants a professional laptop that isn’t afraid of heavy video editing.
  • Gorgeous touch screen display
  • Fingerprint reader
  • High quality webcam
Cons

  • Could have used a slightly more powerful GPU
  • Pricey

Things will now start healing up (in a good way) with our final two laptops that might be on the upper spectrum where price is concerned, but they’ll definitely give you the power you need to run After Effects smoothly. 

The first of these is the Dell XPS 17 which is a complete powerhouse of a laptop. Everything with this laptop is large, starting with the screen, which is a 17 inch UHD+ unit with touchscreen. 

The power on this laptop comes from an 11th Gen Intel i7 11800H paired with 32 gigabytes of RAM and a 1 Terabyte SSD storage. 

This laptop also gets an HD 30fps RGB IR Webcam and a fingerprint reader for easy logins. The graphics in this machine are powered by an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 graphics card.

Features

  • Processor: 11th Generation Intel Core i7-11800H 
  • Number of Cores: 8 cores, 16 threads
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050
  • RAM: 32 GB DDR4
  • Memory Speed: up to 4.6 GHz
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • Display: 17.0-inch UHD+ InfinityEdge Touch Screen Display with Dolby Vision
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Professional 

How To Choose The Best Laptop For After Effects In 2022?

So now that you know the best laptops for After Effects in 2022, here’s a quick buying guide to help you choose one for yourself! 

These details for the minimum and recommended specs have been given out by Adobe themselves for After Effects. So as long as you stick to these, you should be able to find a laptop that can smoothly run this amazing software!

Processor (CPU)

Like we discussed earlier, After Effects is a processor heavy software, this means that your first priority should be to check the CPU of your potential laptop.

Your processor requirements are at least a 4 Core Intel or AMD Processor, with them recommending 8 cores for Multi Frame Rendering as that needs a lot of power.

RAM

RAM is where your laptop does its magic and gets work done. When it comes to RAM, getting anything less than 16 GB would greatly reduce the number of years your laptop can perform well. 

Get a laptop with at least 16 gigs of RAM or choose one with 32 gigabytes to future proof it for at least the next 3-4 years to come.

GPU VRAM (Graphics Card Video Memory)

VRAM (video memory) matters for a lot of effects in After Effects. Your laptop’s GPU should have a minimum of 2 GB of VRAM, while Adobe recommends that it has video memory of more than 4 GB.

Hard Disk Space

Hard disk space is important while both installing the software and running it (for dick cache when you use the software). For this, Adobe says that you should have a minimum of 15 GB free  while installing After Effects and have more than 64 GB free for disk cache.

Monitor Resolution

Your laptop’s display should have a minimum resolution of 1920 x 1080, or a full HD display, the more the better. The colors on your laptop should be accurate, unless you want weird shades popping up when you view your renders on other screens.

Operating System    

Adobe recommends you use Windows 10 (64 bit) versions 1909 and later for the best experience.

Frequently Asked Questions About Laptops For Adobe After Effects

What is After Effects?

Let’s start with the basics, what is After Effects? After Effects is essentially a program that lets you do simple to complex visual effects, motion graphics and compositing. It’s made by Adobe, the same company that makes Photoshop (photo editing software) and Premiere Pro (video editing software).

After Effects is an important software in filmmaking, used during post production for a variety of needs like animation, tracking, chroma keying, compositing, wire-removal, etc.

Is Adobe After Effects Easy to Learn?

After Effects can seem pretty intimidating for beginners, with the amount of options, features and menus, you’re sure to get confused at some point. While it is true that After Effects has a bit of a learning curve, it’s not rocket science.

After Effects might seem hard at first, but with regular practice, you can quickly get to a level where you can get important things done. It’s important to look at After Effects as a tool like a pencil or a large set of crayons, that can help you create stunning visual masterpieces, because that is exactly what it is!

If you get stuck on something and need help, you can always use the in-program tutorials to help you or head straight to YouTube, where you can find thousands of videos that will guide you. There are also active forums where you can post queries and get solutions to your unique problems!

How Long Does It Take To Learn After Effects?

Like we said, After Effects has a minor learning curve. However, it won’t take way too much time for you to get to the point where you can navigate through and use the software like you want to. If you practice enough regularly, you can get to this level in a little over a month!

Does After Effects Have A Free Trial?

Yes! If you haven’t made up your mind on whether or not you should buy the software, Adobe offers a 7 day free trial that you can avail to test it out. After this trial, you can either choose to continue and buy the software, or cancel it!

Is After Effects on Mobile?

Unfortunately, Adobe does not offer After Effects on iOS or Android at the moment. Mobile phones are simply not powerful enough to run this massive software, but let’s see what the future holds!

How To Make After Effects Run Faster

So you’ve got a fast laptop that has good enough specs for After Effects, but the software still slows down? Don’t worry, here’s what you can do to make After Effects run faster on any machine!

First, you can try reducing your preview resolution. Then, turn off Motion Blur, and any 3D effects while you play the preview. 

Make sure only After Effects is running and there aren’t any background processes happening with other programs. You can also turn off all the effects you’ve applied for the time being. 

There is also the option of using GPU Acceleration and clearing up cache every now and then. Finally, you can also make pre-renders of your files to make things run smoothly.

Conclusion

Let’s go through a quick recap to help you remember everything you’ve read in this article:

  • After Effects is a visual effects, animation, motion graphics and compositing software made by Adobe and is used by creators all over the world to create amazing visuals.
  • After Effects requires a computer with powerful hardware to compute all the work it can do.
  • Learning After Effects might seem intimidating, but you can get there with consistent practice.
  • If you stumble somewhere while learning After Effects, a quick Google or Youtube search will help you in no time.
  • There are plenty of amazing laptops in varying budgets that can handle running After Effects.
  • Our pick of the current best laptop for After Effects is the Asus Zenbook Pro Duo, for its creator focussed approach and more than capable software and hardware.
  • You can also get After Effects for Apple and an M1 Macbook Air or Pro will run it just fine.
  • Make sure you cross-check all the specs of your laptop with the minimum or recommended specs mentioned by Adobe for After Effects for a smooth and hassle free experience.
  • All in all, After Effects is a must have software for anyone who wants to create crazy artistic videos. This software tends to use up a lot of processing power, so the computer you use it on needs to be capable enough of handling it. Remember, with After Effects, it’s CPU over GPU.

No matter your budget, you can freely choose any laptop from our list of the Top 7 Best Laptops for After Effects and be rest assured that you will have a machine that can run as fast as your creativity! Happy editing!



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