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Best laptop for DJs 2020: the best laptops for music production

best laptop for music production
These are our picks of the best laptop for DJs in 2019. (Image Credit: TechRadar)

Still on the fence about getting the best laptop for DJs, trading in your aging and agonizingly slow portable for a more powerful one? You shouldn’t be. Utilizing one of the best laptops for music production makes perfect sense, even if you’re on a budget and think your old laptop will do.

Such a portable machine, after all, is vital if you’re a musician or a professional DJ. You need one of the best processors and plenty of fast RAM, first of all, to smoothly tackle multiple music tracks at a time. And, you’ll also require a fast and spacious storage drive – or a dual drive comprised of both an SSD and a hard drive should be plenty – to save your massive music files in.

And, especially if you’re on the road a lot, you might even need a laptop that's rugged as well as light and thin like an Ultrabook so that it can take a beating or two and is extremely portable.

The best thing about shopping around for the best laptop to DJs is that your options are practically limitless. The MacBook Pro may be the default for most musicians, but that doesn’t mean that one that runs Windows 10 won’t be ideal for you.

And, on that note, we put together a list of the best laptops of your music production needs. This way, you won’t have to scour the laptop market and get overwhelmed with a ton of choices. Guaranteed, you’ll find something on this list. Keep an eye out of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals as well. Who knows? You might just take home your dream laptop for DJs at your dream price.

Best laptops for music production and DJs at a glance

  1. MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2019)
  2. Dell XPS 13 (2019)
  3. Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition
  4. Surface Laptop 2
  5. Surface Pro 6
  6. Apple MacBook Air (2019)
  7. Dell XPS 15

MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2019)

The MacBook Pro has been the go-to laptop for musicians. (Image Credit: Apple)

1. MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2019)

The most powerful MacBook ever made

CPU: 6-core Intel Core i7 - i9 | Graphics: AMD Radeon Pro 555X – Radeon Pro Vega 20 | RAM: 16 - 32GB | Screen: 15.4-inch, 2,880 x 1,800 Retina display | Storage: 256GB - 4TB SSD

Powerful 
Gorgeous design 
 Expensive 

For years, the MacBook Pro has been the go-to laptop for musicians all over the world, and its 2019 refresh follows in those footsteps. Actually, it fits the bill even more. If you can justify the price of entry, the MacBook Pro is without a doubt the best laptop for music production, particularly if you’re already invested in the macOS ecosystem. With its 9th-generation Intel Core chips and up to 32GB of RAM, you’ll be able to load up as many tracks as you want in Logic Pro X without crippling your laptop or have it suffer slowdowns. It’s also surprisingly robust – you won’t have to worry about things bumping into it in your tour bag or dropping it a couple of times. This is because Apple has designed their MacBooks with a sturdy aluminum chassis that can survive hard falls and bangs.

Read the full review: MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2019)

Dell XPS 13 (2018)

The Dell XPS 13 has had our vote as one of the best laptops on the market. (Image Credit: Dell)

2. Dell XPS 13 (2019)

New and improved for 2019

CPU: 8th generation Intel Core i5 – i7 | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 13.3-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) – 4k (3840 x 2160) | Storage: 256GB – 1TB SSD

Centered webcam
Battery life better than ever
Beautiful optional 4K display
2019 update isn't huge
Expensive

The Dell XPS 13 has had our vote as one of the best laptops on the market for a few years running, so it’s no surprise that its successor, the newly-released 2019 model is no different. For budding music producers, the XPS’ move to an 8th-generation Intel Core chips should be alluring, as it will cut the time it takes to process tracks, making your creative process more streamlined and time-saving, which gives you more time to dedicate on other things. What’s even better, the 1TB storage drive configuration is back, which means you’ll have more storage space than ever to save your large files in.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 13

Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition

Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition is crafted for creative professionals and content creators. (Image credit: Razer)

3. Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition

A seriously powerful pro laptop

CPU: 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8750H | Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q – NVIDIA Quadro RTX 5000 Studio Edition | RAM: 32GB | Screen: 15.6" OLED 4K Touch 60Hz, factory calibrated | Storage: 1TB SSD

Powerful
Beautiful screen
Expensive

If you think Razer laptops are only for gaming, then the new Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition is here to prove you wrong. Razer takes its ever popular Razer Blade 15, fits it with even more impressive specs and turns it into one of the best mobile creative workstations 2019 has to offer. This powerhouse has been crafted for creative professionals and content creators, and is therefore ideal for musicians as well. You’ll be spending a lot of money to take this laptop home. But, make no mistake, it will be one of the smartest investments you’ll ever make. That is, if you can afford it.

Read the full review: Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition

Surface Laptop 2

If you don’t need Logic Pro X, the Surface Laptop 2 is a perfect match. (Image Credit: Microsoft)

4. Surface Laptop 2

Microsoft’s laptop, perfected

CPU: 8th-generation Intel Core i5-i7 | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 13.5-inch 2,256 x 1,504 PixelSense Display | Storage: 128GB - 1TB SSD

Much more powerful
Gorgeous new black color option
No Thunderbolt 3

With all the 2-in-1 laptops that can turn into a tablet and is bursting with features you might not even utilize that saturate the market, a more traditional Windows 10 laptop can be refreshing and might be best for what you need. If you’re a fan of the Surface devices, you’ll be ecstatic to know that Microsoft has released the Surface Laptop 2, which is one of the best laptops in its lineup. This best laptop for music production features a quad-core processor and plenty of memory, as well as a stunning touch display and many of the ports you’ll ever need – minus the Thunderbolt 3 port, that is. If you don’t need Logic Pro X, the Surface Laptop 2 is a perfect match.

Read the full review: Surface Laptop 2

Surface Pro 6

The Surface Pro 6 is the best laptop for music production that can also moonlight as a Windows tablet. (Image Credit: Microsoft)

5. Surface Pro 6

The Windows tablet, refined

CPU: 8th-gen Intel Core i5 – i7 | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 12.3-inch, 2,736 x 1,824 PixelSense display | Storage: 128GB – 1TB SSD | Connectivity: 802.11ac Wi-Fi; Bluetooth 4.1 | Camera: 8MP rear-facing, 5MP front-facing

Quad-core processing
Long battery life
Still no USB-C

If you want the best laptop for music production that can also moonlight as a Windows tablet to do some light gaming and movie watching on in your downtime, the Surface Pro 6 might just be the ideal laptop for you. Not only does this laptop alternative boast powerful internal components that are ideal for music production, but it also has a superb display as well – not to mention, a number of legacy ports for connecting your equipment. It might be missing USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 ports, but if you’re just in it for music production, that shouldn’t matter as much.

Read the full review: Surface Pro 6

MacBook Air (2018)

The MacBook Air brings Apple’s thin and light mainstream laptop into the modern age. (Image Credit: Apple)

6. Apple MacBook Air (2019)

A solid entry with an excellent new screen

CPU: 1.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 617 | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 13.3-inch (diagonal) 2,560 x 1,600 LED-backlit display with IPS technology | Storage: 128GB – 1TB SSD | Dimensions: 11.97 x 8.36 x 0.61 inches (30.41 x 21.24 x 1.56cm; W x D x H)

Lovely design
Screen is great
Fantastic battery life
New lower price    
Underpowered
Lack of storage space

Recently refreshed, the MacBook Air brings Apple’s thin and light mainstream laptop into the modern age, flourished with a lustrous aluminum build, Apple’s Retina display and an actual modern processor. All of those add up to the best laptop for music production, especially if you’re invested in the macOS ecosystem but need to save some money in the process. Bear in mind though that you’ll need to invest in a couple of dongles or a port hub, since the two Thunderbolt 3 ports aren’t compatible with many music equipment. 

Read the full review: MacBook Air (2019)

Dell XPS 15

For a bigger and more powerful laptop, the Dell XPS 15 is the best laptop to meet your needs. (Image Credit: Dell)

7. Dell XPS 15

The best 15-inch laptop available this year

CPU: Intel Core i5-7300HQ - i7-7700HQ | Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce GTX 1050 with 4GB GDDR5 | RAM: 8GB - 16GB DDR4 | Screen: Up to 15.6-inch Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) InfinityEdge touchscreen | Storage: 1TB HDD - 512GB SSD

Amazing power
Sublime screen
Slim design
Poor webcam position

If you need a bigger and more powerful laptop for running music production software on, the Dell XPS 15 might just be the best laptop to meet your needs. Touting the same InfinityEdge technology as the smaller XPS 13, the screen extends right to the edge of the machine, which means that this laptop is as small as it’s possible to fashion a 15-inch laptop. It's indeed pricey, depending on which version you get. However, the very top end configuration has a 4K color-accurate display, which gives you a brilliant overview of all the tracks you're working on.

Read the full review: Dell XPS 15