The Truth About Budget Laptops for Video Editing: Separating Fact from Fiction

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Video editing is a task that requires a powerful and reliable laptop. While many claim to offer budget options for video editing, not all laptops live up to the hype. In this article, we’ll take a close look at the so-called “best budget laptops” for video editing and recommend the key specs you should look for in a machine capable of working well but affordable.

We’ve got a few recommendations towards the end, but these recommendations are an investment based on our recommended specifications for video editing.

Processor Budget Laptops

Image from iStock

One of the most important factors for video editing is the laptop’s processor. Many cheap laptops have the latest processors, but they often lack the processing power needed for seamless editing. Look for a laptop with at least a quad-core processor, such as the Intel Core i7 or AMD Ryzen 5 series. This will ensure smoother multitasking and faster render times.

Graphic Card Budget Laptops

Image from NVIDIA

Don’t be fooled by the beautiful graphic claims of cheap laptops. Integrated graphics may be enough for basic tasks, but for video editing, a dedicated graphics card is required. Aim for a laptop with a discrete GPU, such as the NVIDIA GTX or RTX series or the AMD Radeon RX series, with at least 4GB of VRAM. This will greatly improve video rendering and playback performance.

RAM – Real Deal when buying a budget laptop

Image Stock from Frfeerange Stock

One of the most common misconceptions is that 8GB of RAM is enough for video editing. While it might work for light editing, serious video work requires more than that. For a smoother editing experience, choose a laptop with at least 16GB of RAM. This should provide enough headroom to handle large video files and run resource-intensive applications.

Storage:

Budget laptops often compromise storage to cut costs. However, it can have a big impact on your video editing workflow. Look for a laptop that offers a combination of a fast SSD (Solid State Drive) for your operating system and applications, combined with a spacious hard drive (HDD) for storage. video files. This balance will ensure faster startup times and quick application launches while providing ample storage space for your projects. Thought most thin and light laptops now offer a 256 GB or 512 GB SSD coupled with an extra slot for an extra SSD.

Display quality

Your laptop screen is your window into the world of video editing. Avoid laptops with low-quality TN panels as they have poor color accuracy and limited viewing angles. Instead, choose an IPS or OLED display with a resolution of at least Full HD (1920×1080). This will ensure more accurate colors and clearer images, essential for video editing tasks.

Cooling and thermal performance

Video editing can put stress on the laptop’s hardware, leading to increased heat generation. Look for laptops with efficient cooling solutions and good thermal performance. If you’re looking at articles or YouTube videos, make sure that they cover the thermals as overheating can cause thermal throttling, which negatively affects your laptop’s performance and can cause problems during long editing sessions.

Connections and ports

Don’t overlook the importance of connection options. Make sure the laptop has multiple USB ports (preferably USB 3.0 or higher), an HDMI port, and an SD card reader. These ports will come in handy when connecting external storage devices, monitors, and cameras, simplifying your video editing workflow. If you’ve got the extra budget for it, a USB Type-C would really come in handy especially if you’ve got an external SSD as this would add extra storage and of course, you wouldn’t need to transfer your files to your laptop.

Recommendations

Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 14ACN6

The purchase of something of this caliber would mean that portability is a priority for you while you are on the go. Although it checks all the right boxes for someone who would need a workhorse while travelling, a higher GPU would have been better then again, the price would also shoot up. The graphic card of the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 is an NVIDIA GeForce MX450 which is equivalent to a GTX 1650 but would definitely be faster and more reliable compared to a discrete GPU. Lastly, more USB-Type A ports would have been a good option but having a portable dongle for extra ports would also come in handy.

14-inch QHD (2880 x 1800) OLED, 400 Nits
HDR500, 100% DCI-P3, 90Hz
AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
NVIDIA GeForce MX450
Soldered LPDDR4x-4266
512GB PCIe NVMe SSD
Wi-Fi 6 2×2 AX
Bluetooth 5.1
1x USB-C 3.2 Gen 1 (Data Transfer Only), 2x USB C 3.2 Gen 2 (Data Transfer, PD 3.0, and DP 1.4)
Dolby Vision Atmos Speakers
Win11
Microsoft Office Home & Student 2021
Lenovo Casual Backpack B210
Lenovo 3-Year Premium Care

For convenience, you may order the Lenovo Slim 7 14ACN6 on the SM Online App for PHP 78,995, or if you’re up to it, visit Villman and get it for PHP 71,995. Although, Datablitz offers the same for PHP 68,995, unfortunately, they are out of stock.

MSI GF66 12UC-898PH

If you’re in the market for something that can game or render, the MSI Katana GF66 deserves a spot on your list of laptops to consider. Equipped with a robust next-generation processor and an equally impressive graphics card, the MSI GF66 Katana is an excellent choice for both work and play, ensuring a satisfying gaming experience and efficient performance for various tasks.

15.6-inch FHD (1920×1080), 144Hz, IPS, Anti-Glare
Intel Core i7-12650H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GDDR6 4GB
16GB RAM 3200MHz
512GB NVMe PCIe Gen3x4 SSD
Wi-Fi 6 2×2 AX
Bluetooth 5.2
1x Type-C USB3.2 Gen1, 2x Type-A USB3.2 Gen1, 1x Type-A USB2.0
1x HDMI 2.1 (4K @ 60Hz) HDMI
1x RJ45
Win11

The MSI GF66 12UC-898PH can be easily availed through the SM Online App for PHP 64,995. If you are in need of more storage, the Villman is offering one with an Intel Core i7-11800H, 8GB DDR4-3200 MHz, and a 1TB SSD for PHP 74,995. You can even easily upgrade the RAM to 16GB for as low as PHP 2000. All the same, Datablitz offers the same for a lowered price of PHP 61,995 but is out of stock.

MacBook Air 15-inch (M2 Chip)

Despite its hefty price tag, the Macbook Air 15-inch with M2 Processor offers a sleek design, superb performance, and the convenience of the macOS ecosystem. However, potential buyers should be aware that the lack of upgradability and limited port options may pose future limitations and force users into expensive accessories, making it a questionable long-term investment.

15.3-inch 2880 x 1864 IPS Display, 500 Nits, True Tone Technology
HDR with Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG
Apple M2 Chip
Up to 8GB RAM
Up to 2TB SSD
Wi-Fi 6 2×2 AX
Bluetooth 5.3
Thunderbolt 3, USB 4, USB 3.1 Gen 2

If you’re keen to try out the latest Macbook, Beyond the Box just recently announced the availability of their MacBook Air 15-inch with M2 Chip. Having personally experienced a MacBook, we can attest that the absence of a dedicated GPU doesn’t hinder the smooth performance of the new M1 and M2 chips.

The price for these starts at PHP 82,990 and yes, we are also aware that you can get a laptop with Windows that has equivalent or higher specs that can go head-to-head with a MacBook.

Conclusion about Budget Laptops

Choosing the best budget laptop for video editing requires careful consideration of specs and performance, rather than relying solely on price tags or marketing claims. To ensure a smooth and efficient video editing experience, choose a laptop with a powerful processor, dedicated graphics card, enough RAM, and a quality screen. With these important factors in mind, you can find a cheap laptop that doesn’t compromise on performance and fulfills your video editing needs without paying too much.

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