You there…yes you! I can see you shedding some tears as you type in your search engine, “Best laptops for GIS Software in 2022”.
Remember how we read about the five stages of grief and how acceptance was the last step?
Grieve, accept and move on from the laptop that just isn’t giving you what you want from this relationship. The freeze and full memory are red flags, signifying that it’s over.
We have all been there: lamenting over our laptop that won’t budge from its lag or won’t download the GIS software. Well, stop banging your keyboard and hop on board the ship sailing towards the best laptops for GIS software in 2022.
It’s time to take a vacation because you deserve better, and we know it. And don’t worry, we have a list of the best life-saving laptops on deck that will surely turn your frown into a happy smile.
Do I Need A Laptop For GIS?
Yes, it would be best if you had a laptop for GIS. And here’s why. GIS or Geographic information system software is a helpful tool in analyzing and mapping different kinds of data. The system maxes out, and the CPU becomes strained when you run GIS software like ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro. Which happens because the GIS software is intense, heavy, and takes a lot of power.
So, you get why it is essential to get the right concoction of features in your laptop for the interface to run smoothly.
Using ArcGIS is not a smooth sail, and powerful software like this one requires high-end specs. So, let’s go over our list of requirements included in our guide.
Upcoming, we have a list of 7 noteworthy Best laptops for GIS software in 2022 that are worth your time and consideration.
Also read: best laptops for web browsing
Here’s a glance at what we have in store for you.
Best Laptops For GIS Software In 2022 – At A Glance
1. ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo – Best Dual-screen laptop for GIS software
2. HP Envy – Best computer for ArcGIS pro
3. ASUS VivoBook 15 – Best Laptop For GIS Students
4. Apple MacBook Air – Best Mac For GIS
5. Acer Predator Helios – Gaming Laptop for GIS
6. Acer Aspire E 15 – Best Multi-tasking Laptop
7. Microsoft Surface Book – Best Computer for ArcGIS
Also, read Best Touch Screen Laptops.
What To Look For In Best Laptops For GIS And ArcGIS?-Buying Guide
Due to the ease and portability of the laptop, not many people are on the lookout for the best computer for GIS or a GIS workstation. Instead, the focus has shifted towards navigating the sea of options and selecting the Best laptops for GIS software in 2022.
You must understand ArcGIS system requirements before purchasing the best GIS laptop. A mediocre laptop that does a menial job won’t do. This buying guide about GIS computer requirements will help you make a sound decision.
What Processor Do I Need To Run ArcGIS?
GIS is a power-hungry software so, when it comes to cores, the more, the merrier. Having more cores means that the processor can run more efficiently when launching ArcGIS 10 or ArcGIS Pro software.
For ArcGIS, your minimum CPU requirements are either the Intel Core i3 or AMD Athlon Dual-Core processor.
But for power users, we recommend getting at least a quad-core processor (4 cores), with a clock speed above 2.0GHz and hyperthreading support.
For powerful and efficient performance, you’d be comfortable with a 10th Gen Intel Core i7 processor.
Do I need A GPU For GIS?
Since ArcGIS is a visual interface that makes extensive use of graphical objects, it is dependent on high resolution and 3D imagery. High-quality GPU makes all the difference when running GIS software. And since graphics chip comes embedded within the system, you can’t upgrade in the future.
You can choose between NVIDIA, ATI, or Matrox chipsets, but don’t spend too much unless your work involves 3D modeling or another geospatial app that can use the extra horsepower.
How Much RAM Do I Need To Run GIS?
You need a minimum of 4 GB worth of RAM to run GIS, but if you’re a professional working on the ArcGIS program, we recommend 16 GB or more for optimal functioning. Higher RAM will help you run multi-layered projects like geo-visualization smoothly.
What Are My Storage Requirements?
Software like ArcGIS requires ample storage capacity since there is a load of geographical and spatial data that needs storing. These data files are detailed, have multiple formats, and are linked to spreadsheets, graphs, and tables, etc. (you get the gist)
Minimum 32 GB worth of storage capacity will do if you’re a casual user. And for professionals, it is recommended to have an SSD with 512 GB storage which, of course, can be upgraded as per your needs. Any laptop with a storage capacity of up to 256 GB will be good enough to top the list of Best laptops for GIS students.
What Resolution Do I Require For ArcGIS?
The visual quality of images is directly related to the efficiency of the software and program. And the better the resolution, the greater the performance. The minimal requirements of screen resolution are 1280 x 800 pixels. Moreover, it would help if you had a laptop with a full HD resolution. Primarily, your budget, as well as the type of use you have in mind for ArcGIS, will dictate the kind of resolution you’ll get.
Apart from these factors, you also need to consider other nitty-gritty details of getting a GIS laptop. You should have a laptop with at least 5 hours of battery life and screen size with a 14-inch display. Moreover, you should select a laptop according to your connectivity, ports, and multimedia requirements.
So now that we’ve sailed halfway let’s read ahead to our list of Best laptops for GIS Software in 2022, as promised!
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Best Laptops For GIS In 2022- Detailed Review
1. ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo – Best Dual-Screen Laptop For GIS Software
On the front runner of our list of Best laptops for GIS software in 2022, we present you the ASUS Zenbook Pro duo. The incredible dual-screen laptop brings you productivity and power in a mighty package.
With the power of the 10th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and 16GB RAM, it fulfills the needy demands of the GIS software. The brilliant performance of this laptop means you can easily plan, map, analyze and crunch your data peacefully.
To say this laptop has a generous storage capacity is an understatement. With 1 TB SSD storage, it is the perfect build for handling heavy ArcGIS data. Plus, you can run your GIS software seamlessly and handle multi-layered projects with outstanding ease.
We’re not done yet. The ASUS Zenbook has an NVIDIA RTX 2060 card with to-die-for graphics. A 15.6-inch, 4K OLED display at 3840×2160 pixel, together with NanoEdge bezels, makes for an exceptional combination for your GIS needs and the best computer for remote sensing. You can use the Screen for aerial imaging, satellite viewing, and visualizing geographical statistics.
The ScreenPad is a fantastic feature. The added panel of 14 inches 4 K matte screen makes it an excellent device for multi-tasking and optimizing your workflow.
Since this laptop is perfect for creative professionals, it gives you superfast connectivity and sports the latest Thunderbolt 3 USB-C port and Intel WiFi 6 with Gig+ (802.1 1ax), making for a speedy wireless connection.
These super-duper features combined easily make this machine one of the best GIS software laptops on the market.
5 hours of battery life
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2. HP Envy – Best Computer For ArcGIS Pro
HP Envy, like the name suggests, is an envy-inspiring laptop. This laptop incorporates quality, design, and power in a lightweight package. Powered by 10th Gen Intel i7-10510U-a 4 Quad CPU, with NVIDIA MX250(4GB) graphics and a whopping 1TB SSD,16GB RAM, this laptop is a fully loaded gun.
Is it not perfect for your GIS software needs? With this much storage capacity and drive, you can easily power up multiple GIS software programs, like ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro, and run other geological software smoothly.
What’s more, is this laptop has a battery life of up to 10 hours. You can enjoy mobility in its most authentic essence.
The touchscreen laptop sports a 17-inch FD touchscreen with a 17.3-inch diagonal FHD Anti-Glare WLED UWVA. The screen resolution is 1920×1080 with multi-touch-enabled edge-to-edge glass.
Coupled with the Bang & Olufsen speakers, you can enjoy movies on this laptop alongside your ongoing ArcGIS work. Work hard, but party harder!
Now, you may not need more convincing, but Hp Envy is also a beauty. It is sleek and stylish with its aluminum-colored and delicate angular looks.
Moreover, it sports a full-size backlit keyboard and a lifting hinge for ergonomic typing and offers an adequate number of ports.
Sleek and durable
great for multi-tasking
good battery life
Subpar webcam quality
Also read: Dell XPS all in one laptop
3. ASUS VivoBook 15 – Best Laptop For GIS Students
The ASUS VivoBook 15 is a mid-range laptop that is super affordable, perfect for you if you are a student on a budget.
It may not be a premium, high-end laptop and certainly has flaws. But, it does do a dang-good job of fulfilling your needs.
Out of all the variants on the market, this model gives you the right merger of performance and affordability.
Super-charged with the Intel Core i3-1005G1, with 4GB DDR4 worth of RAM and 128GB SSD, it is plenty capable of powering you through any GIS software. These specs are packed neatly in an ultra-fine, sleek-looking package in Slate Gray color.
The keyboard on this laptop is similar to those on the premium models and is fully backlit. It features a snug number pad, a wide-enough track-pad, which still leaves enough room to rest your wrist during work and play, and a fingerprint scanner to lock up your system.
The VivoBook 15’s 15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080 NanoEdge display is apt for your ArcGIS needs.
It is one of the best cheap laptops for GIS that proves to be an excellent device to learn the software on. Though the display is subpar, the viewing angles are odd at best. The widescreen makes it easier to work on 2D and 3D models. And, is also perfect for viewing geographical and visual representations and data.
All-in-all it is the best cheapest laptop for ArcGIS and makes for a budget laptop for students and beginners.
Full keyboard Layout
Adequate number of ports
below-average battery life
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4. Apple MacBook Air – Best Mac For GIS
Apple MacBook Air 2020, with the revolutionary M1 chip, is an absolute steal. With its combination of fantastic features, it is like coming to a one-dish party but finding an an-all-you-can-eat buffet.
It’s super performance is fueled by Apple’s M1 Chip and 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD Storage. The M1 chip has an eight-core CPU, four high-performance, and four high-efficiency cores. The core energy combined with ample RAM and storage capacity means you can seamlessly use GIS software like QGIS.
However, you could virtualize a windows machine using Parallels software to run ArcGIS since ArcGIS is not supported on Mac.
As with all Apple products, it has a premium, high-end look with an aluminum body. Designed to be a sleek and lightweight portable, it weighs just about 2.8 pounds. Even though this model has a fan-less design and runs super silent, it does not mean the MacBook Air is either thinner or lighter. Sadly this is a missed opportunity for Apple and could’ve set this model apart from the previous ones.
This beauty is also a beast of a machine. With five times faster graphics powered by 7 or 8 core GPU and 18 hours of battery life, you can run GIS and enjoy videos and games simultaneously with a fully immersive experience.
The MacBook Air sports a 13.3″ Retina display with a 400 nit LED-backlit display. The screen resolution of 2560 x 1600 coupled with Apple’s Truetone technology means that it delivers stunning image and video quality. It automatically adjusts the color temperature, making your visuals super aesthetic and vibrant.
The MacBook Air is hands-down the best Mac for GIS software.
fanless and silent
Great battery life
new M1 chip and MacOS Big Sur
outdated 720p webcam
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5. Acer Predator Helios – Gaming Laptop For GIS
The Acer Predator Helios comes with an exceptional package of features, making it a worthy GIS laptop. It comes equipped with the Intel i7-10750H, with a six-core processor, meaning a turbo-boost frequency of up to 5.0 GHz. Plus, this bad-boy has the power to handle Arc GIS 10 and ArcGIS Pro easily, seamlessly, and effortlessly.
The graphics on this portable are powered by NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6G coupled with the 15.6-inch display with 1920 x 1080 pixels; the laptop makes for a befitting device for undertaking GIS projects.
Moreover, the laptop sports a widescreen Full HD LED-backlit IPS display.
The 144Hz refresh rate makes your gaming experience fully immersive and exceptionally smooth.
What’s more, is Predator Helios comes fully loaded with 512 GB SDD alongside 16 GB RAM. You can launch any version of ArcGIS and save data files with relative ease due to its ample storage capacity.
Primarily a gaming notebook, the Predator Helios 300 is a medium-sized device that weighs around 5.07 pounds and has dimensions of 14.31 x 10.04 x 0.9 inches.
The build on this laptop is of partial aluminum design but exhibits strength and durability under duress.
Various configuration options
Heavier than most
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6. Acer Aspire E 15 – Best Multi-Tasking Laptop
Acer Aspire E 15 is the perfect gaming laptop and one of the best laptops for GIS software in 2022. Powered by an 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U processor that is incredible enough for a smooth sailing multi-tasking experience and comes with Turbo Boost Technology up to 3.4GHz. It shares the same features and capabilities as a premium high-end laptop with more power, optimum performance, and excellent battery life.
Connectivity is a major plus on this laptop. You get all the USB and HDMI ports you need. Plus, the latest 802.11ac WiFi gives you an out-of-the-world internet experience.
This laptop also features an exceptional display; a full HD display with a 15.6-inch screen with an IPS display.
The graphics on this laptop is powered by the NVIDIA GeForce MX150 that has only 2 GB worth of RAM. The battery life is outstanding, giving you non-stop streaming of up to 15 hours. It offers all the specs and features you want for ArcGIS at a great price.
Moreover, this laptop provides the upgradability of hard drive and memory with ease. You can expand your storage capacity through the convenient compartment door as per your needs.
Amazing Battery life
poor viewing angles
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7. Microsoft Surface Book – Best Computer For ArcGIS
We present you with the Mighty Microsoft Surface Book 2-plain and powerful for our final product.
The Microsoft surface offers no gimmicks. It stands to compete with Apple MacBook Pro as a testament to its incredible performance.
What sets it apart from its competition is the window’s characteristic touchscreen and the detachable-tablet convertible option it offers.
The Surface 2 has the all-powerful 8th generation Intel Quad-Core i7 Processor. Consolidated in a sleek-looking laptop with 1 TB worth of storage capacity and 16 GB RAM, this device proves to be capable, robust, and powerful enough to give you a worthy computing experience.
It houses NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 with 2GB GDDR5 Graphics Memory, helping your laptop achieve better performance in CPU-intensive tasks.
Furthermore, it has a comfortable backlit keyboard with substantial critical travel distance and a track-pad that is responsive and smooth to touch.
When it comes to looks, this model is no different from its predecessor, and neither is its slightly larger 15-inch counterpart. It gives you the same premium vibe as the magnesium chassis. But upon deeper inspection, you’ll find a fan-less design and is lighter (at 3.62 pounds) and thinner than the previous model.
The battery life on this laptop gives you up to 17 hours of non-stop use. Moreover, it has a stunning and Vibrant PixelSense Display, a 13.5-inch touchscreen, and a screen resolution of 3000 x 2000 pixels, making it one of the best computers for ArcGIS.
Amazing battery life
runs practically silent
sleek and compact design
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Best Laptops For GIS In 2022- The Finale
Now that we’re ashore, I hope you enjoyed our cruise. With the conclusion of our review, we sincerely hope that we have helped you make an informed decision and helped you work out the configurations and requirements needed in your laptop to run the GIS software.
We realize how difficult it can be to select a laptop-compatible with your needs. Not to fret, we have worked out all the kinks for you in our mini buying guide.
Furthermore, we have also added all the relevant information and included minute details to help you find your suitable match for GIS. Our reviews on the best laptops for GIS software in 2022 will not disappoint and will certainly help you narrow down your list to the perfect GIS laptop for you.
Have you chosen your laptop yet?
Let us know your thoughts about the best laptop for GIS software. Happy shopping!
Also, read best gaming laptops.