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An ultimate guide for the best laptops for interior design students in 2021.
- 0.1 Introduction
- 0.2 Minimum/Recommended System Requirements
- 0.3 Laptops vs. MacBook For Interior Design
- 1 Best Laptops For Interior Design Students
- 2 Buyer’s Guide
- 3 Frequently Asked Questions
- 4 Final Words
With technology becoming a part of our daily lives, it is essential for all to invest in a laptop to get through their day to day tasks. Some of us need laptops for surfing the web or sending emails whereas interior design students need them for educational purposes. Without a laptop, an interior design student wouldn’t be able to get through his college years.
But the catch here is that since interior designing requires the need for specific software and tools therefore students need to make sure that they are investing in the right laptop, meaning the one equipped with the required system requirements.
With hundreds of options in the market, choosing one out of many can be an intimidating experience especially for first-time buyers. Therefore, we decided to help you out and put hours of research to come up with a list of the best laptops for design students.
Furthermore, we also have included a detailed buyer’s guide and frequently asked questions in the guide to help students make the right design. So, continue reading to find out which laptop out of all would be best suited to meet your needs.
Minimum/Recommended System Requirements
Since as a beginner you might not have an idea of what components are added to a laptop in order for it to work and how each component contributes to the performance, therefore we decided to include a list of the minimum and recommended system requirements that you need to look for in a laptop if you need it for interior designing.
Minimum System Requirements
- CPU: Intel Core i3
- GPU: NVIDIA or AMD
- RAM: 8GB
- Display: 13 inch
- Storage: 256 GB
- Battery: 7 Hours
Recommended System Requirements
- CPU: Intel Core I5
- GPU: NVIDIA or AMD 8TH or 9th Generation
- RAM: 16 GB
- Display: 15 or 17 inches
- Storage: 512 GB
- Battery: 10 Hours
Remember, these are only the suggested specs. You might not find a device with the exact same specs so make sure to go for the one that offers the latest or the best combination of specs for better performance.
Laptops vs. MacBook For Interior Design
There has always been a major competition between Windows and MacBook. So as a student you might be wondering which out of the two would be best for interior designing. Well, as a student you can roll with it because your colleges might not have an issue with it.
But we suggest that you opt for a Windows laptop because most of the 2D and 3D modeling software is only compatible with Windows at present. You might be able to overcome this issue by using boot-camp to log into Windows.
Yet, there still remains the question of GPUs. If the software and tools that your professors recommend depend on the NVIDIA GeForce or Work Station graphics cards, then you have no choice but to opt for a Window’s device.
Plus, if you look at it in terms of budget, Windows laptops are much more affordable as compared to a MacBook. Furthermore, most universities offer their student’s tech support but that too is only related to Windows devices so in case your MacBook has any technical issue, you will have to pay extra to get it fixed.
Best Laptops For Interior Design Students
1- Apple MacBook Pro (Best Laptop for Interior Design Students)
Apple products are great but not as flexible and diverse as the others. But there are always Apple lovers looking to invest in a laptop for their interior designing course. So, if you are one of them then we suggest that you go for the Apple MacBook Pro as it comes with the latest features and more advanced as compared to the previous models.
The interior design Mac is equipped with the 9th generation 6-core Intel i7 processor which is paired with the AMD Radeon Pro 5300M Graphics with GDDR6 memory and Intel UHD Graphics 630 card. Together they work side by side to deliver you the best performance especially when it comes to rendering and 2D modeling. Furthermore, the MacBook comes with ultra-fast DDR 16 GB RAM which is perfect for students looking to multitask and run demanding applications with utmost smoothness.
Apart from the processing features, the laptop is also equipped with Ultra-fast 512 GB SSD storage which is more than enough for college students. Also, let us not forget the stunning 16-inch Retina Display with True Tone technology and six-speaker system with force-canceling woofers which make your working experience enjoyable.
2- Lenovo ThinkPad P52s
If you are planning on running highly demanding applications on your system and wish to enjoy an uninterrupted experience, then the Lenovo ThinkPad P52s is the best and silent laptop for designers in the market. The laptop comes with everything from a fast processor to high-end RAM which makes your processing experience unparalleled.
The laptop is equipped with the 8th generation Kaby Lake R Intel Core i7-8550U processor which comes with quad cores, 8 MB Cache 1.8 GHz of frequency which boosts up to 4.0 GHz for maximum speed and performance. For your graphic needs, the NVIDIA Quadro P500 with 2 GB dedicated GDDR5 VRAM is ready to deliver stunning visuals on your 16.6 inches full HD display with backlit technology.
The highlighting feature of the laptop is the 32 GB RAM which makes this system future-proof. This means that you can use the system for both college and professional life because it will run all your powerful and demanding software like a pro. Also, the 512 GB built-in SSD storage and multiple connectivity ports along with the built-in fingerprint reader make this laptop worth the investment.
3- Acer Aspire 5
If you are looking for an affordable laptop that is equipped with suitable features to cater to your interior designing needs then the Acer Aspire 5 is one of the best options in the market. Everything from the design and layout to the hardware/software combination is designed to meet the needs of mainstream users.
The laptop comes with the fast and highly responsive AMD Ryzen 7 3700U dual-core processor which has the ability to overclock to the base frequency of 4.0 GHz to deliver you a powerful performance. To support the processor in terms of graphics, the laptop comes with the AMD Radeon RX Vega 10 mobile graphics card which is suitable for rending and modeling.
Furthermore, the laptop is equipped with 8GB RAM which might not seem enough but is perfect for students only using basic designing software. Also, with the 512 GB built-in SDD storage you won’t need to invest in additional storage devices anymore. Along with that, you get to enjoy immense connectivity with a wide range of USB ports available. So get your laptop now and enjoy up to 8 hours of uninterrupted performance.
4- Microsoft Surface 3
If you are looking for a device that comes with a stunning exterior and a powerful blend of hardware components then the Microsoft Surface 3 is one of the best options for you on the list. The best thing about this laptop for design work is that it comes with a compatible touch screen, which means that you can enjoy hand-drawing and designing on your screen using the compatible pens as well.
In terms of processing, the laptop comes with the AMD Ryzen 5 Microsoft Surface Edition processor which is two times faster than the last model. The processor is paired with Intel HD Graphics 615 GPU and together they deliver 15% faster rending and 2D + 3D modeling experience to the interior designers.
Apart from that, the 8GB RAM comes in handy when it comes to supporting heavy applications and running multiple applications smoothly on your system. The 15-inch laptop is highly lightweight which makes it easy to carry around. Plus, you won’t need to opt for power outlets all throughout the day since the system can run for 12 hours at full usage.
5- Dell XPS 15
If you are looking for a device that is easy to use especially when it comes to a touchpad then the Dell XPS 15 is one of the best options for you on the list. The laptop is equipped with all high-end features packed in a highly polished diamond-cut design to deliver the best working experience to both students and professionals.
The device comes with a highly powerful and responsive 10th generation Intel Core i7 processor which is paired with the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti which comes with dedicated 4D GDDR6 to deliver maximum performance. Plus with the 16 GB RAM supporting your heavy and demanding applications, this device allows you to enjoy a smooth rendering, 2D, and 3D modeling experience on your device.
Whether you wish to run AutoCAD or Photoshop, the laptop is equipped to deliver the best performance. Not to forget the 512 GB SSD storage which is ultra-fast and reliable, catering to all your high-end storage needs. Furthermore, the laptop comes with a more expanded design offering a 62% larger touchpad, 5% larger screen, and 5.6% smaller footprint for an enhanced experience.
6- ASUS ROG Strix G
If you are looking for a laptop that comes with a powerful blend of hardware and software then the ASUS ROG Strix G is one of the best options for you on the list. It is also regarded as the coolest gaming laptop in the market. The laptop is equipped with everything from a powerful processor to high-end connectivity options to deliver you unparalleled performance in an affordable price range.
The laptop comes with the highly powerful Intel 9th Gen 6-Core i7-9750H processor that offers a 2.6 GHz base frequency which boosts up to 4.5 GHz at Turbo speed, 12MB Cache, and 12 Threads. To support the graphical needs of your designing degree, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 with 4GB dedicated graphics memory is added to the system. With this system, you can run Revit, Photoshop, and AutoCAD with ease.
Further, the laptop comes with 16 GB DDR4 RAM which is paired with 512 GB SSD storage to deliver both reliable and sufficient volatile and permanent storage. Enjoy multitasking with ease and never find yourself interrupted withs system failure again. Plus, with a diverse range of connectivity ports, you can connect multiple peripheral devices to your system to enhance its functions.
7- Acer Predator Helios 300
If rendering is one of your main focuses then the Acer Predator Helios 300 is the best option on the list for you. The laptop comes with both a powerful processor and a GPU, together the combination allows you to enjoy smooth and supported modeling and rendering experience without having to worry about an application or system failure.
The laptop is equipped with the latest 10th Generation Intel Core i7-10750H processor with 6-cores and a turbo frequency of 5.0 GHz. Overclock it with the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 with 6 GB of dedicated GDDR6 VRAM and enjoy an unparalleled performance. Plus, with the 16 GB RAM running in the background, interruption shouldn’t be a problem for you.
Apart from the processing features, the laptop comes with 512 GB SSD storage, a stunning 15.6″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) Widescreen LED-backlit IPS display with a 3ms overdrive response time. Also, the laptop is equipped with 4-Zone RGB backlit keyboard which makes the entire working aesthetic simply amazing. Overall, it is the best computer for interior design.
Buying a laptop for interior designing requires that you opt for the right specs. Without the right system requirements, your laptop would be of no use to you. So here is the list of major things that you need to consider when buying a laptop for your interior designing course.
The processor is like the brain of the laptop. Every input is processed there to deliver an output. The speed and performance of the laptop mostly depend on the processor. For interior designing, we suggest that you opt for multi-core i7 or i9 processors which come with a higher frequency.
The RAM supports the processor when it comes to loading demanding applications and multitasking. It is the temporary memory that stores everything that is running on the system while it is connected to power. Since interior designing software is highly demanding thus, we suggest that you opt for a laptop that comes with at least 8 GB RAM or more. Remember, the more the better!
We all need storage, for both work and entertainment purposes. Once you start getting done with your projects you will realize that graphics take a lot of space on your system. So, we suggest that you opt for SSD storage over HDD storage since it is faster and more reliable. Also, go for at least 256 GB for the desired performance.
You will spend most of your time looking at the screen. Precision and color accuracy are the two most important features of interior design. So, you need a device that comes with an HD display and high contrast ratio. Also, opt for touch screens compatible with touch pens so you can enhance your designing skills.
5- Graphics Card
Apart from the processor, your designing software will highly depend on your graphics card. Not all GPUs have the ability to support rendering, 2D and 3D modeling. Therefore, you need to be certain that you are investing in the right one. We suggest that you opt for 9th and 10th generation cards that come with the maximum VRAM possible.
6- Battery Life
You don’t want to be hooked to the power outlet all day. The tools you are going to be using require a ton of power and will drain your battery fast. So, we suggest that you go for a system that comes with at least eight hours of battery life for the optimum experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
1- Why do you need a graphics card?
For 3D models, you will need a better viewpoint for panning, orbiting, rotating, and zooming and that is where the graphics card comes in handy and helps deliver enhanced colors, contrast ratio, and accuracy. Furthermore, it is also used in rendering along with the processor.
2- Does the processor really matter for interior design?
For interior design students, the processor of the laptop isn’t a major component to consider. But in case you are opting for heavy rendering, then having a multi-core processor with at least 4 GHz turbo speed comes in handy. Therefore we suggest that you opt for i5 or i7 processors for enhanced performance.
3- Why MacBook is not a good option for interior designing?
MacBook is a great investment for web developers but when it comes to interior designing, MacBook tends to lack the GPU that students need for better viewpoints. Plus, most rendering and modeling software is only compatible with Windows therefore, you will have to log on to Windows via boot-camp which can be a bit confusing for first-time users.
4- Why SSD storage is better than HDD storage?
Storage devices these days come in two different types, SSD and HDD. Professionals will suggest that you opt for SSD storage because it has the ability to read 17 times faster than HDD storage. But at the same time, their storage size is a problem as they only come in 256 GB and 512 GB capacity whereas your old fashioned HDD gives you up to 1 TB storage.
5- Should I get a 4k Display?
No, although it does sound interesting to invest in one as it offers better resolution than HD displays. But the problem is that most designing software isn’t compatible with the 4k display and wouldn’t deliver optimum performance.
Buying a laptop can be an intimidating task for first-time buyers. But with the right information and this guide of the best laptops for interior design students at your disposal, finding the most suitable device in your price range shouldn’t be a problem. So make sure to read through the guide carefully and opt for the device that you believe would be most suitable to run software and tools suggested by your university.