According to research conducted by us, the $1000 budget seems sufficient for handling diversified photo editing work. You can expect the device in that price range to pack at least 8GB of RAM, a powerful processor with higher base-clock speed, decent storage support, and a dedicated GPU.
Whether you are professional photographer or a photo editor, having a feature-packed laptop is very important. While an advanced camera is necessary for clicking the best possible snaps, a decently loaded computing device, can readily help you with your photo editing requirements.
You must understand that it is a complex process which involves usage of various photo editing software such as Adobe Lightroom, Luminar, Gimp, and Adobe Photoshop, etc. Each of them have a different system requirement. Therefore, it is evident that cheap laptops with limited RAM, CPU, GPU, etc, wouldn’t suffice.
Many photo editing software are as demanding as mid-range games and therefore it is necessary to consider a specs sheet that’s based on personalized requirements. Is there any point in buying a laptop that can’t run the photo editing software, you bought it for?
For instance, If you are into hobby-based photo editing, the CPU, RAM, and Display should be the aspects to consider. However, if photo editing puts food on your plate, selecting RAM, CPU, GPU and Storage (SSD) heavy devices should become a priority. Eventually, it all boils down to the seriousness of your work and associated levels of indulgence.
Moreover, you must also account for leisure and select a computing device that also supports gaming, surfing the internet, media consumption, and even association with other productive tasks. It goes without saying that if a device is powerful enough to handle professional photo editing and basic productivity tasks, gaming, and content creation will hardly be worthy adversaries.
|Lenovo IdeaPad L340|
CPU: 3.8GHz Intel Core i7-7700HQ
|Check Best Price|
|Asus VivoBook S512|
CPU: 2.8GHz Intel Core i7-7700HQ
|Check Best Price|
|HP Envy 13|
CPU: 1.6GHz Intel Core i7-8565U
|Check Best Price|
Best Laptops for Photo Editing Under $1000
In the subsequent sections, we list down 11 powerful laptop that cost less than $1000 which make great photo editing allies. Each one of these laptops is extremely powerful and highly suitable for handling intricate requirements of high-end photo editing software.
1. Best Overall: Lenovo IdeaPad L340
Primarily termed as a gaming laptop, the Lenovo IdeaPad L340 boasts of decent aesthetics and competitive design elements. The laptop is just a perfect one to consider if you are looking to indulge in professional photo editing without having to account for lags and occasional hiccups.
When it comes to the processing power, the Intel Core i7 9750H chipset is a significant addition. The SoC is capable of clocking at speeds of up to 4.6GHz, in the Turbo Boost mode besides being ably supported by 16GB of RAM. However, it is the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 with 4GB VRAM that renders requisite speeds to the photo editing and other post-production operations.
Lenovo offers a sizeable SSD storage support of 512GB, capable of faster read/write speeds than traditional HDDs. In terms of the user interface, the device features Windows 10 Home edition, straight out of the box.
As a professional editor, you require a vibrant screen that works in cohesion with the powerful GPU. The 17.3-inch Full HD screen with 1920×1080 pixels at the helm is, therefore, a worthy edition. Besides being an energy-efficient panel, the display also boasts of sharpest possible viewing angles for the given price point.
Lenovo features a standard touchpad followed by a much-anticipated backlit keyboard with an integrated keypad. Standard design elements persist followed by a functional hinge that rotates up to 180 degrees.
The device weighs a mere 4.8 pounds and is still quite easy to carry around. As far as port arrangement is concerned, you get Type-C, Type-A, and a host of other productive slots to work with, provided you need to access photos residing on external devices.
The 7-hour battery backup offered by Lenovo is slightly below-par considering the high-end processing and graphics-intensive requirements of the photo editors. Overall, this is a feature-packed device with several highlights and a few misses.
2. Best Runner Up: Asus VivoBook S512
If you are a professional who is always on the move, this VivoBook series laptop is certainly the one to consider. The major highlights include a brilliant aesthetic layout, compact chassis, and an intuitive hinge based on the ErgoLift technology.
What stands out is the 10th gen Intel i7-10510U processor, capable of clocking at speeds of up to 4.9GHz. Professional photo editing and advanced gaming requirements are perfectly handled by the NVidia GeForce MX250 GPU and 2GB of existing graphics memory.
Asus also features 16GB of built-in RAM for faster processing requirements. However, the faster and sizeable storage options steal the show with the company offering a 256GB SSD unit for faster rendering and minimal boot-up time followed by a standard 1TB HDD. ASUS also supplies Windows 10 Home Edition, straight out of the box.
In terms of display, you get a standard 15.6-inch unit, featuring 1920×1080 pixels. The Full-HD panel also supports the NanoEdge display technology besides a decent 88% panel to chassis ratio. Apart from that, this device also features several structural innovations, including the ergonomic keyboard with backlit support and a functional touchpad with an integrated fingerprint sensor.
The metallic chassis renders a sophisticated look to the device which weighs a mere 3.97 pounds. Moreover, this is also an ultra-slim device with thickness set at a mere 0.70-inch. The portable and mobile device flaunts a decent port arrangement with USB Type-C and standards slot to show for.
Asus VivoBook also features a standard Li-Po battery unit that offers up to 8 hours of uninterrupted backup. However, the best thing about the same is fast-charging capability. Overall, this is a highly productive device that ranks highly in terms of design elements, processing power, and even acoustic support.
3. Best 13-inch with 4K Display: HP Envy 13
If you are looking for a premium laptop that flaunts exceptional design elements, the new HP ENVY 13 comes across as a desirable choice. This laptop features cutting-end security specs and even amalgamates processing utilities with the likes of Kill Switch, BIOS protection, and other innovations.
HP Envy 13 boasts of an Intel Core i7-8565U processor, capable of assuming turbo clocking speeds of up to 4.6GHz. The chipset is perfectly complemented by the NVidia GeForce MX250 GPU that amplifies the processing power by almost 350 percent. 8MB cache support also plays a major role in streamlining performances while using the device for photo edits and other relevant activities.
The device features 16GB RAM followed by a solid-state storage unit amounting to 512GB. It goes without saying that the faster SSD storage allows photo editors to quickly boot-up the device. In terms of OS, you get access to the Windows 10 Home edition that simplifies navigation for the enthusiasts and professionals.
That said, this is a market-moving laptop in terms of display. The 13.3-inch 4K panel boasts of astounding color reproduction capabilities. The device flaunts 3840×2160 pixels besides offering highly responsive touch support to the customers. The screen is further strengthened by Corning Gorilla NBT glass, making this the perfect device for carrying around. The media-centric performance of the 178 degrees, the micro-edge panel gets is amplified by the inclusion of the dedicated GPU.
As expected, HP features a standard backlit keyboard with decent key travel and a resourceful ImagePad with an integrated fingerprint sensor and gesture support. You also get an integrated webcam, clubbed with a kill switch, and a decent acoustic arrangement with B&O speakers at the helm; thereby making way for better leisure indulgences.
HP Envy flaunts an iconic design that is light, slim, and durable all at the same time. Despite packing in a wide range of specs, the gadget weighs a mere 2.60 pounds. The company also features Type-C and Type-A ports for improved functionality.
Another standout feature is the 12-hour battery support, depending on the usage levels. Therefore, if you prefer editing photos on your device for hours at a stretch, the electrical outage would never be an issue. Therefore, the new HP Envy in its entirety, it an exceptionally fast device and a perfect photo editing ally, capable of responding to demanding professional requirements.
4. Best for Color Accuracy: ASUS ZenBook 13
The ASUS ZenBook 13 boasts of military-grade strength and durability besides flaunting aesthetic design elements. Moreover, this laptop is the perfect choice for professionals who subject the device to harsher working conditions.
In terms of processing power, the Intel i7-8565U chipset is a decent addition. Powered by the turbo clocking technology, the existing processor is capable of handle demanding the likes of Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Gimp, Luminar and other photo editing software units with ease. The turbo clock speed of up to 4.6GHz is perfectly supplemented by the Integrated Intel UHD GPU.
Other standout elements include 16GB RAM and a powerful 512GB Solid State storage unit. These components work in cohesion to achieve exceedingly better performances. ASUS also offers a Windows 10 Pro version as the pre-configured operating platform.
In terms of display, you are well-served by the 13.3-inch 1080p panel. The NanoEdge display technology on offer makes way for almost 95 percent screen-to-chassis ratio. Besides the vibrant interface, the device also boasts of accurate color reproduction and the highest possible pixel density, as per the given price tag.
ASUS also features a host of physical inclusions, namely a resourceful touchpad, functional ErgoLift hinge, and a decently spaced keyboard. Besides optimal typing performance, this device also achieves a lot in the cooling and acoustic department.
Asus ZenBook flaunts ultra-slim bezels and weighs a mere 2.6 pounds, making it one of the lightest gadgets in the given category. The metallic undertones further add to the credibility of this device. Moreover, you also get to experience the functionality of USB Type-C and Type-A port, based on preferences.
The supplied battery is capable of handling resource-intensive tasks throughout the day, with on-paper support of up to 14 hours. Despite an average GPU, the performance and display quality of this device is at par with some of the other devices in the same price segment.
5. Best For Professional Photo Editors: Dell Inspiron 15
If you are a professional photo editor, interested in purchasing a sleek yet efficient business laptop, you can easily opt for the newest Dell Inspiron 15 5000. Here is a powerful device belonging to the $1000 category of laptops.
The processing power is rendered by the Intel i7-8550U process, capable of clocking at speeds of up to 4.0GHz. Besides the turbo clocking mode, the chipset is ably assisted by the 8MB of cache memory and the Intel UHD integrated GPU. Although the graphics rendering isn’t as good as devices with dedicated GPUs, this laptop performs satisfactorily in terms of offering decent visuals and editing outputs.
You also get 16GB DDR4 RAM support followed by a dedicated 512GB SSD on this functional device. The exiting storage unit also minimizes the device boot-up time. Once the gadget boots up, there is Windows 10 Home edition at the helm as the featured interface.
In terms of display, we get a 15.6-inch panel with 1920 x 1080 pixels on offer. The touch panel associated with this product is extremely responsive and boasts of sharper viewing angles.
This gadget also features a standard backlit keyboard clubbed with a functional touchpad. Some of the other utilitarian specs include decent connectivity support and availability of built-in stereo speakers with exceptional sound output, courtesy of the MaxxAudio Pro technology.
Dell Inspiron 15 flaunts a standard design that is aesthetic, sleek, and extremely minimalistic. This laptop weighs a mere 4.85 pounds and flaunts a metallic chassis to accentuate the visual presence. Moreover, the structural aspects make sure that you get a decent arrangement of USB 3.1, HDMI, and USB 2.0 ports to work with.
The 3-cell battery unit offers a 10-hour backup upon medium usage. Therefore, it can be inferred that this device from Dell is less glamor and more functionality courtesy of decent processing power, exceptional display, and best-in-class battery life.
6. Best 2-in-1 Under $1000: Acer Spin 5
Professional photo editors are always moving around to meet clients and therefore a feature-packed Acer Spin 5 convertible laptop comes across as the best possible computing option. Be it exceptional aesthetics or class-leading processing components, the Spin 5 from Acer is a force to reckon with.
The 1.8GHz Intel i7-8550U is a decent addition, capable of clocking at almost 4.0GHz, based on the demanding nature of the editing software and other relevant tasks. However, it is the NVidia GeForce GTX 1050 GPU that steals the show, courtesy of 4GB of VRAM support. These components are further assisted by 8MB of cache memory.
8GB dual-channel RAM support is available for simplifying the intricate processing requirements. The device also packs in a 1TB HDD storage unit against our expectations for a dedicated SSD. In terms of operating platform, Acer features the Windows 10 Home edition.
When it comes to the display, the 15.6-inch 10-point touch panel comes across as an extremely sharp, vibrant, and responsive addition. Acer flaunts 1920×1080 pixels as the display resolution, boasting of fantastic viewing angles.
Acer brings forth an ergonomic keyboard and the aesthetic touchpad clubbed with a responsive fingerprint sensor. Other utilitarian specs include built-in speakers, bolstered by the ‘Acer True Harmony’ technology and an integrated HD webcam. Acer also features built-in Alexa for responding precisely to the user commands, playing music, and streamlining professional and personal requirements.
This convertible is ultra-slim and weighs a mere 4.85 pounds. However, it is the aesthetic layout that steals the show with Acer featuring a 360-degree hinge with dual-torque support. This innovation allows you to use the device in multiple modes, including a tent, display, notebook, and more. Besides that, Acer also wins it in terms of the port arrangement with USB Type-C, USB 3.0, USB 3.1, and other slots on offer.
The Spin 5 from Acer also offers a decent 10-hour battery backup, courtesy of the 4-cell unit. Overall, this convertible is perfectly suitable for running high-end photo editing applications and software like Lightroom and Photoshop with relative ease.
7. Best Battery Life: Dell G5
Professional photo editing requires an exceptional specs sheet, featuring a powerful processor, functional GPU, and decent RAM support. Taking every aspect of photo editing into account, including the lag-free performance of the software units, the Dell G5 2019 comes across as a sought-after laptop.
This gadget features an Intel Core i5-8300H processor, featuring a decent base clock speed. The chipset is further complemented by the dedicated NVidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti GPU and 4GB of VRAM; thereby making way for excellent video rendering and multitasking conglomerate of components.
Dell G5 features 16GB of RAM for lag-free multitasking followed by dual-storage support. This laptop allows you to utilize the 512GB SSD unit for faster file availability and quick boot-ups whereas the 1GB HDD maximizes the storage capacity in general. Dell also makes way for a decent user interface, courtesy of the Windows 10 Home edition.
In terms of display, the 15.6-inch Full HD or 1080p panel is a worthy addition. The IPS panel flaunts anti-glare properties which allow editors to work relentlessly, without having to compromise on productivity.
Apart from that, Dell also features a backlit keyboard, functional touchpad, and array of potent speakers, featuring the MaxxAudio technology. Besides that, you also get an HD webcam, enviable wireless and Bluetooth support, and a decent collection of ports, including Type-A, USB 3.1, and more.
This device flaunts a basic design and a predictable layout, besides weighing almost 5.57 pounds. In addition to that, the company packs in a 4-cell 56Whr battery module that translates to almost 14 hours of uninterrupted backup.
The Dell G5 isn’t the best-looking device on our list but it fulfills diverse professional demands courtesy of a beefed-up specs sheet. Every photo editing software unit and the application runs smoothly on this device.
8. Best For Freelance Photo Editors: HP Envy x360
If you are interested in a convertible that is powerful, aesthetic, and portable at the same, consider buying the newest HP Envy x360. Besides being glamorous, this is also an extremely resourceful gadget for the professional photo editors.
Every photo editor will readily dig into the powerful AMD Ryzen 5 4500U chipset that performs beyond the requisite levels and can clock at speeds of up to 4.0GHz, in case the software has more demanding requirements. Better image and video rendering are possible with a decent AMD Radeon integration GPU.
Here is an upgraded gadget with 16GB of RAM that assists the SoC, in the best possible way. However, the 1TB SSD is a highly productive inclusion, making this an extremely fast laptop with decent storage capacity and a capable image post-processing capabilities. In terms of the operating system, HP features Windows 10 Home edition, right out of the box.
Moving on, the Full HD panel on offer is a distinctive addition with HP featuring 1920×1080 pixels, clubbed with decent pixel density. The 15.6-inch screen is touch responsive as well and boasts of anti-glare properties.
Other specs on offer include a backlit keyboard, bundled KKE mouse pad, functional device touchpad, and an HD webcam. What stands out is the arrangement of powerful Bang and Olufsen speakers, showcasing the Audio Boost 2.0 technology from HP. In terms of ports, the gadget packs in the Type-C, USB 3.1, HDMI, and other functional slots.
This is a sleek convertible with an overall thickness of a mere 0.74-inch. Moreover, despite being a durable machine, it weighs a mere 4.41 pounds, which makes it easy to carry around.
The 3-cell battery performance well and offers an average, 3-hour backup. In culmination, the HP Envy x360 thrives on portability and performance but leaves a lot to be desired in the battery department.
9. Best Value For Money: Lenovo Yoga 730
Provided you are only looking for a portable professional device that assists in RAW format image encoding, the Lenovo Yoga 730 is a pretty good option to consider. This 2-in-1 offer added levels of flexibility to the photo editors and makes it easier for them to use the device based on preferences.
The processing support is rendered by the Intel Core i5-6265U SoC with a turbo clocking speed of up to 3.9GHz. The existing chipset clubbed with 6MB of cache memory readily improves the efficiency and speed of picture edition. The built-in integrated Intel UHD GPU with 1GB of dedicated memory smoothens out the image editing process.
The stand-out performer is 12GB of RAM that renders additional support to the existing processor! You also get a standard 256GB SSD unit that is fast and improves the speed of RAW-format image processing for the editors to make use of. Lenovo also offers Windows 10 Home edition with this device.
The 15.6-inch 1080p panel is bright and presents extremely accurate colors, precisely helping the editors view the quality of the post-processed images. The touch panel allows you to interact better with the device and zoom in on specific image areas that require retouches. Despite 1920 x 1080 pixels on offer as the screen resolution, this is still an energy-efficient gadget.
We also get a backlit keyboard, functional touchpad clubbed with a fingerprint scanner, and a usable HD webcam. If the photo editor in you wants to listen to some casual music while working, the built-in stereo speakers are recommended, courtesy of the HD audio support and rendering.
This is a meticulously crafted gadget that weighs a mere 4.17 pounds. In terms of the port arrangement, Lenovo offers the entire gamut, including Type-C, Thunderbolt, and eve the Type-A slots. The 51.5 Whr battery unit is a significant addition and allows photo editors to work for at least 12 hours without requiring a recharge.
Overall, the Lenovo Yoga 730 is a promising device for the professional photo editors with reliance on portability, performance, and battery backup.
10. Best Under Budget: Acer Aspire 5
The new Acer Aspire 5 offers several advantages to the professional and enthusiastic photo editors. Be it the slimmer layout for improved portability or an exceptionally glossy display for addressing the aspect of hue management and color saturation, this gadget from Acer is the perfect image editing ally.
The functional Intel Core i5-8265U processor renders exceptional processing power to the device. The best thing about this SoC is that it can clock at speeds of up to 3.9GHz. Besides a competent chipset, you also get a commendable NVidia GeForce MX250 GPU with 2GB of built-in VRAM. The processing conglomerate makes image post-production easier than ever.
8GB RAM support is available followed by a fast and reliable 512GB SSD storage unit. The featured SSD unit makes way for faster boot-up and readily loads the Windows 10 Home edition sans lags or hiccups.
In terms of display, the 15.6-inch screen is something that stands out. Acer flaunts a display resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels which is further bolstered by the color intelligence technology on offer.
Other essential features include a standard backlit keyboard, navigable touchpad, and built-in speakers with the True Harmony Technology to further amplify the acoustic output. You also get a dedicated HD webcam and an embedded array of microphones to go with the same.
Here is one aesthetic notebook from Acer that features enterprising design elements and an overall weight of 3.97 pounds. In terms of port management, the company generously packs in USB Type-C, USB 3.1, and a host of other outlets. Last but not least, the Aspire 5 is also known for the adequate battery backup of almost 10 hours, upon moderate usage.
Acer Aspire 5 is a simple yet efficient device that steals the show with a fantastic display and an efficient graphics processing unit.
11. Best MacBook Under 1000 Dollars: Apple Macbook Air
Often termed as the perfect laptop, the latest Apple Macbook Air is probably the cheap yet powerful choice for the photo editors in the sub $1000 category. Brilliant aesthetics, class-leading display, and top-notch processing components make this a gadget that would automatically find a place on any list.
To start with, the Apple MacBook Air 2020 offers an Intel Core i3 processor that can assume turbo clocking speeds of up to 3.2GHz. The 10th gen chipset, despite being a dual-core entity performs faster than a few versions of the i5 processor. RAW image processing is further simplified by the inclusion of the Intel Iris Plus graphics processing unit. 4MB worth L3 cache memory further increases the associated processing speeds. This gadget also supports the inclusion of external GPUs for better image outputs.
You get 8GB of RAM and a fast yet reliable SSD storage unit with 256GB worth space. This inclusion makes it possible for the editors to work with bigger files, precisely for editing and storing. This device also features the macOS which is capable of exemplary performances.
The MacBook display is a show-stealer courtesy of the Retina display technology and a display resolution of 2560×1600 pixels. The 13.3-inch panel flaunts 16:10 aspect ratio and even features the True Tone technology. The display quality allows editors to work out the best settings for their RAW image processing as Apple offers 48 percent better color reproduction as compared to other brands.
Other specs include a backlit keyboard with 1mm key travel, Force trackpad, and fingerprint sensitive Touch ID support. Besides that, Apple also features a decent FaceTime HD webcam and a powerful array of speakers and microphones.
The aluminum chassis and proprietary design are predictable yet classy. The latest version of MacBook Air weighs a mere 2.8 pounds, which makes it easier to carry around. In terms of the port arrangement, you get two Thunderbolt slots, fast charging output, and almost every important output. In terms of battery backup, Apple offers continued support of up to 12 hours.
Overall, the new and improved MacBook Air is the best device that money can buy, especially when software-hardware cohesion and processing quality is concerned.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the basic requirements that a photo editor should look for?
Photo editors that are considering the purchase of computing gadgets like standard laptops and hybrids must concentrate on processing power, graphics processing capabilities, display, and battery backup, more than anything else.
Why do professional photo editors prefer SSD storage units?
Processing larger images can slow down a device and negatively impact the productivity and editing time. However, solid-state storage units eliminate this possibility by minimizing the lags experienced during interface or OS loading. And also improves software usage with high reading and writing speeds.
What is the role of the processor when it comes to handling RAW image processing?
Processors render speed to the devices and if you are a professional photo editor, you must concentrate on getting a laptop with an i7 processor that hails from the latest generations. The design, clock speed, and turbo processing capabilities determine the speed with which an editor can process the RAW images and get the output.
Can $1000 Laptops run demanding photo editing software and applications?
Most laptops priced under 1000 dollars feature at least 8GB of RAM that can easily handle photo editing applications like Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, GIMP, and Lightroom. Moreover, almost every device in this segment comes with an expandable RAM slot, provided you require additional resources to handle RAW images and multiple software units, all at once.
Is display an important factor for the advanced photo editors?
Yes, if you are into advanced photo editing, consider a device that offers a glossy display. This feature offers remarkable and reliable color reproduction standards and makes sure you add all the necessary details to the edited image.
Should I Invest time in looking for devices with a responsive trackpad, keyboard, and decent conglomerate of ports?
A photo editor needs to access the touchpad more than a writer or a content creator. Therefore, having a responsive touchpad or trackpad serves them well. Keyboard access is also important and therefore an ergonomic version is highly desirable. In most cases, you might need to pair external devices, GPUs, and other accessories to improve the post-production quality of the images and therefore a full gamut of functional ports is necessary to consider.
Despite us enlisting more than 10 laptops under $1000 for photo editing purposes, the final selection is at your discretion. For instance, if you are a photo editing enthusiast who is considering an all-around laptop, even for leisure, HP Envy 13 or Envy x360 is the best possible choice. Moreover, if portability is your preference, the Acer Spin 5 and Lenovo Yoga 730 are the preferred options.
That said, if you are interested in perfection and looking for an all-rounder, we would personally recommend the Dell GS courtesy of the dual storage support, powerful battery, and a GPU that is loaded with VRAM. So, which one are you getting?