Best Architecture Laptops (2022)

Best Architecture Laptops

 

What is the best laptop for architecture?

 

 

In order to recommend some of the best architecture laptops for architects and students, I take a look at the requirements of popular software that we use in architecture (AutoCAD, Revit, Rhino, 3DS Max etc) and check out all the latest in computing and laptops.

Buying a laptop that is capable of fulfilling the needs of an architect can be difficult. We are not ordinary people! We need laptops that can do a lot more than your average. Architectural design now uses many different softwares in order to fulfill different needs. Much of the software we use is very resource intensive and as a result we need a powerful laptop to carry out our architectural designs. Although many laptops are able to run the likes of Revit or 3DS Max, it’s important to note that they may not run it well. 

I would also like to mention that I have had situations where I have gone to a shop for advice, as to which architecture laptop to buy, and the sales assistant didn’t fully understand the requirements of some of the architectural software that we use. As a result I was advised to purchase a sub standard specification computer. This meant I needed to upgrade pretty quickly as the machine just wasn’t up to the job. So, lesson learnt. It is really important to do your research if you want to make a one off investment that will last – and give you as little headaches as possible!

Make sure you scroll all the way through as there is some really useful information right the way through this blog post.

Our list of the 10 best architecture laptops

 

First In Architecture provides free content and advice. If you purchase using the links below we will get a small commission at no extra cost to you. This commission goes a long way to help keep the content on FIA free. If you are considering purchasing an architecture laptop, please use the links below – it means a lot to us 🙂

 

Please note: Recommendations are based on available laptops on Amazon in August 2022

 

I sometimes find that the software requirements are the bare minimum, and wherever possible I would go higher spec than recommended. I have made mistakes with past purchases where the laptop just isn’t powerful enough and it is constantly crashing/freezing. So with that in mind – here are our recommendations in no particular order:

 

Lenovo IdeaPad 5 Pro 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – AMD Ryzen™ 7 5800H Processor 

Processor speed – 3.20 GHz up to 4.40 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3050 Max-Q2

Memory (RAM) – 16 GB

Storage – 1TB SSD

Display – 16″ 2.5K, (2560 x 1600)

(other higher spec models available)

Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – Quad-core 11th Gen Intel® Core™ H35 i7-11370H Processor

Processor speed – 4.8 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3050 Ti Laptop GPU, 4GB GDDR6

Memory (RAM) – 16GB

Storage – 512 GB removable SSD

Display – 14.4”2 PixelSense™ Flow Display, (2400 x 1600), 3:2 Aspect ratio

(other higher spec models available) 

Acer Nitro 5 AN515-45 Gaming Laptop

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – AMD Ryzen™ 7 5800H processor Octa-core

Processor speed – 3.20 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3070 with 8 GB dedicated memory

Memory (RAM) – 16 GB

Storage – 1 TB SSD

Display – (15.6″) Full HD, (1920 x 1080), 16:9 Aspect ratio

(other higher spec models available)

Dell XPS 17 9700 

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – 10th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-10750H 

Processor speed –  2.60 GHz to 5 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX® 1650 Ti, 4 GB GDDR6

Memory (RAM) – 16 GB

Storage – 1 TB SSD 

Display – 17-inch UHD+, (3840 x 2400)

(other higher spec models available)

ASUS ROG Strix G15 G513IE Gaming Laptop

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – AMD Ryzen™ 7 4800H Processor 

Processor speed – 2.9 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3050 Ti, 4GB GDDR6

Memory (RAM) – 16GB 

Storage – 1TB SSD

Display – 15.6-inch FHD, (1920 x 1080), 16:9 Anti-glare 

(other higher spec models available)

Gigabyte AERO Creator Laptop

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – 11th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-11800H 

Processor speed – 2.3GHz~4.6GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – Intel® UHD Graphics, NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3060 Laptop, GPU 6GB GDDR6

Memory (RAM) – 16GB

Storage – 1TBGB SSD + Spare Bay

Display – 15.6″ Thin Bezel UHD, (3840×2160) Samsung AMOLED

(other higher spec models available)

Apple MacBook Pro

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – Apple M1 Pro chip

Processor speed – 3.2 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – 16-core GPU

Memory (RAM) – 16GB unified memory

Storage – 512GB SSD

Display – 16.2-inch (diagonal) Liquid Retina XDR display, (3456×2234)

(other higher spec models available)

HP Victus Gaming Laptop

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – AMD Ryzen™ 7 5800H

Processor speed – 4.4 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3060 (6 GB)

Memory (RAM) – 16 GB  

Storage – 512 GB SSD

Display – 40.9 cm (16.1 “) FHD, (1920 x 1080)

(other higher spec models available)

MSI Creator Z16 A11UET-202UK

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – 11th Gen. Intel® Core™ i9 Processor

Processor speed – ‎4.9 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3060 Laptop GPU, 6GB GDDR6

Memory (RAM) – 16 GB

Storage – 1 TB SSD

Display – 16” QHD+ , (2560 x 1600)

(other higher spec models available)

Razer Blade 15

 

 

Key features: 

Processor (CPU) – 14-core Intel i7-12800H processor

Processor speed – 4.80 GHz

Graphics card (GPU) – NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3060 (6GB GDDR6 VRAM)

Memory (RAM) – 16 GB

Storage – 1TB SSD 

Display – 15.6″ QHD 240Hz

(other higher spec models available)

 

The bottom line is get the best architecture laptop you can afford. If you are considering going for a mac – just be aware that Revit and 3DS Max are not available on the mac (at time of writing). You can use parallels or boot camp which is fine but just makes things a bit more tricky. I guess it just depends how much of a mac geek you are – in my case having a mac is worth it!

For your info I have included all the system requirements at the end of this post – a good reference all in one place. If you think there is a great laptop out there that we have missed then let us know. We would like to hear your comments on what laptop you use, which laptop works for you or which one hasn’t worked – please feel free to comment below.

Architecture Laptop Buying Guide

 

Still not sure which architecture laptop to get? 

Check out our full Architecture Laptop Buying Guide here:

Architecture Laptop Buying Guide Feature Image
FIA Architecture Software Recommended System Requirements Table

 

Recommended specification

This is a quick overview of the recommended specification for an architecture laptop, as set out by the system requirements listed below. 

 

Operating System: 

Windows 10 or later

MacOS 10.15 or later (12.3  if you plan to use ArchiCAD 26) 

 

Processor (CPU): 

Intel Core i7 or i9  processor 

AMD equivalent 

3.0 GHz or higher 

 

RAM/Memory: 

16GB minimum, with the option to upgrade or 32GB if you can afford it 

 

Storage (Hard Drive): 

500 GB + with a speed of at least 7,200rpm 

Look at SSD if you can afford it or a hybrid HDD SSD. 

Please Note – Requirements vary according to software. Make sure you check the software requirements you plan on using.

 

Graphics Card (GPU): 

At least 4GB of discrete/dedicated memory 

NVIDIA and Radeon are good options

Please Note – Some heavy graphics based softwares will require more powerful graphics cards. Refer to the software requirements.

 

Display: 

The more pixels you have, the sharper your screen will look. Try and go for a higher pixel count of 1680×1050 or 1920×1080 – given the amount of graphic work you will be doing, it’s worth splashing out on a laptop with a good display. 

If weight isn’t an issue go for a larger screen size if possible, 15 to 17 inches will be better for rendering and drafting. If you can, try and go for UHD, 4K or 5K if you want to future proof your machine. 

 

Please Note: All based on recommended requirements not minimum.

Be sure to double check the full system requirements for the software you plan to use to ensure that the laptop is suitable for your requirements. To ensure the most suitable purchase, seek advice from a professional.

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Final thoughts

 

I hope you have found this post useful and that it helps you to make a decision on your laptop for architectural design.

As I mentioned before, First In Architecture provides free content and advice. If you purchase using the links above I will get a small commission at no extra cost to you. This commission goes a long way to help keep the content on FIA free. If you are considering purchasing a laptop, please use the links above – it means a lot to me. Thank you 🙂 

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  1. Very nice addition to your content! Congrats!

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