5 Best Laptops For Architects And Architecture Students (+ Other Top Picks and Guide)

For architects and architecture students looking for a laptop that will render your models very fast is not an easy task. And not all laptops are suited for this task.

Software used in architecture are pretty much demanding making it quite difficult to find the best laptop especially if you are on a budget. In the case of an architecture student, portability is greatly favored because you will definitely carry your laptop everywhere with you.

There are so many things to look out for when searching for the best laptop for architecture. That’s why we did the work for you. In this article we will discuss about the best laptops for architecture.

We also have a section at the end of the article to help you narrow down your laptop if its not in our list. Here are the best laptops for architects and architecture students.


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MSI WS65 8TK-888 15.6" FHD Thin and Light Mobile Workstation Intel Core i7-8850H Quadro RTX 3000 32GB 512G NVMe SSD Win10 Pro TPM2.0 TB3 Fingerprint
Lenovo ThinkPad P52s Mobile Workstation Ultrabook Laptop (Intel 8th Gen i7-8550U 4-core, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 15.6" FHD 1920x1080 IPS, NVIDIA Quadro P500, Fingerprint, Backlit Keyboard, Win 10 Pro)
Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop PC, 15.6 inches Full HD 144Hz 3ms IPS Display, Intel i7-9750H, GTX 1660 Ti 6GB, 16GB DDR4, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Backlit Keyboard, PH315-52-78VL
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The MSI WS65 is a workstation meant for professional architects. It has more than enough power for CAD, BIM, Rhino, etc.

The Lenovo ThinkPad P52s is an affordable workstation. Plenty of RAM and an NVIDIA Quadro card that's great for modelling and rendering.

A solid laptop for architectures students. The Acer Predator Helios 300 has a high-end graphics card and processor. Powerful enough for modelling and rendering.

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MSI WS65 8TK-888 15.6" FHD Thin and Light Mobile Workstation Intel Core i7-8850H Quadro RTX 3000 32GB 512G NVMe SSD Win10 Pro TPM2.0 TB3 Fingerprint
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The MSI WS65 is a workstation meant for professional architects. It has more than enough power for CAD, BIM, Rhino, etc.

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Lenovo ThinkPad P52s Mobile Workstation Ultrabook Laptop (Intel 8th Gen i7-8550U 4-core, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 15.6" FHD 1920x1080 IPS, NVIDIA Quadro P500, Fingerprint, Backlit Keyboard, Win 10 Pro)
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The Lenovo ThinkPad P52s is an affordable workstation. Plenty of RAM and an NVIDIA Quadro card that's great for modelling and rendering.

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Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop PC, 15.6 inches Full HD 144Hz 3ms IPS Display, Intel i7-9750H, GTX 1660 Ti 6GB, 16GB DDR4, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Backlit Keyboard, PH315-52-78VL
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

A solid laptop for architectures students. The Acer Predator Helios 300 has a high-end graphics card and processor. Powerful enough for modelling and rendering.

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Last update on 2019-11-13 at 16:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Here’s Our Recommended List Of The Best Laptops For Architects And Architecture Students


NameProcessorGPU & RAM 
MSI WS65 Intel Core i7-9750HNVIDIA Quadro RTX 3000 & 32GBBuy On Amazon
Acer Aspire E15 Intel Core i5-8250UNVIDIA MX150 & 8GBBuy On Amazon
Lenovo ThinkPad P52s Intel Core i7-8550UNVIDIA Quadro P500 & 32GBBuy On Amazon
Dell Precision 5530 Intel Core i7-8850HNVIDIA Quadro P1000 & 32GBBuy On Amazon
Acer Predator Helios 300 Intel Core i7-9750HNVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti & 16GBBuy On Amazon

Other Top Picks

2019 HP ZBook 15 G5 Mobile Workstation 15.6" FHD Business Laptop Computer, 8th Gen Intel Quad-Core i5-8300H up to 4.0GHz, 32GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB SSD + 16GB Optane, NVIDIA Quadro P1000 4GB, Windows 10 Pro
8th Generation Intel Core i5-8300H Processor @ 2.30GHz (4 Cores, 8M Cache, up to 4.00 GHz) provide responsive, powerful performance Whether you're gaming, streaming videos, or working on cpu-intensive projects.
$1,158.00
Sale
Dell Precision M5520 Intel Core i7-7820HQ X4 2.9GHz 32GB 1TB SSD, Silver (Renewed)
This Certified Refurbished product is tested and certified to look and work like new. The refurbishing process includes functionality testing, basic cleaning, inspection, and repackaging. The product ships with all relevant accessories, a minimum 90-day warranty, and may arrive in a generic box.
$1,470.00 −$70.01 $1,399.99
Sale
MSI GL63 9SDK-610 15.6" Gaming Laptop, 120Hz Display, Intel Core i7-9750H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX1660Ti, 16GB, 512GB NVMe SSD
Display: 15.6" FHD, IPS-Level 120Hz 3ms 94%NTSC, 100%sRGB 1920x1080 16:9
$1,499.99 −$300.99 $1,199.00
Lenovo Ideapad L340 Gaming Laptop, 15.6 Inch FHD (1920 X 1080) IPS Display, Intel Core i5-9300H Processor, 8GB DDR4 RAM, 512GB Nvme SSD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650, Windows 10, 81LK00HDUS, Black
A new dimension of gaming performance awaits - with 9th-generation Intel Core i5 processors, the IdeaPad L340 gaming has the power you need to outshoot, outrun, and outsmart anyone. Includes 8GB DDR4 RAM and 512GB NVMe SSD
$707.50

Last update on 2019-11-13 at 14:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

MSI WS65

MSI WS65 8TK-888 15.6' FHD Thin and Light Mobile Workstation Intel Core i7-8850H Quadro RTX 3000 32GB 512G NVMe SSD Win10 Pro TPM2.0 TB3 Fingerprint

Most laptop workstations are quite heavy but not the MSI WS65. A lightweight – weighs 4 pounds (1.88 kg) – workstation purposely built to excel at video editing, 3D modelling, CAD and other GPU-intensive tasks.

Performance-wise, it is powered by a 9th Gen Intel Core i7, 32GB RAM and Qaudro RTX 3000. Plenty of computing power to run Architecture software and multitask. This laptop will be able to handle demanding programs well.

The MSI has a dedicated Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000 a powerful graphics card which is comparable to the Nvidia RTX 2070 but much better at CAD, DCC, and visualising applications.

Also, the workstation is ISV-certified which means it has been optimised to run a whole lot of applications: AutoDesk, Siemens, Adobe, Rhino 3D and many more. The WS63 is VR-ready, which means it can be used to design VR applications.

Battery life, on the other hand, is not the best you can get about 3 to 4 hours under normal usage and drops quickly when performing more intensive tasks.

The display is a 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) with above colour accuracy. It is also bright and has great viewing angles.

Overall, the MSI WS65 is one of the best workstations for architects or architecture students the only problem is its expensive price tag.

Pros

Superb Performance

ISV-certified

Colour Accurate Display

Lightweight

Cons

Stiff Trackpad

Pricey

MSI WS65 8TK-888 15.6" FHD Thin and Light Mobile Workstation Intel Core i7-8850H Quadro RTX 3000 32GB 512G NVMe SSD Win10 Pro TPM2.0 TB3 Fingerprint
  • 15.6" Fhd (1920*1080), IPS-Level 60Hz 72%NTSC thin Bezel, 100%srgb1920x1080 16: 9NVIDIA Quadro RTX 30006GB GDDR5
  • Nvidia Quadro RTX 30006GB GDDR5 HDMI-Out 4K @ 60Hz
  • Hdd 512GB NVMe SSD 32GB (16G*2) DDR4 2666MHz 2 Sockets; Max Memory 64GB
  • Cpu Core i7-8850H 2.6-4.3GHz Infineon SLB 9665
  • Thunderbolt 3*1 USB 3.1 x 3 Wireless Intel 9560 Jefferson Peak (2x2 802.11 AC) bt 5 720P HD Webcam

Last update on 2019-11-13 at 16:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

MSI WS75 (17 inch Version of MSI WS65) Review

Acer Aspire E15

Acer Aspire E 15 Laptop, 15.6' Full HD, 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U, GeForce MX150, 8GB RAM Memory, 256GB SSD, E5-576G-5762

The Acer Aspire E15 is a budget laptop for architecture students who can’t afford the more expensive options. It is the best architectural rendering laptop in its price segment.

Powered by an 8th Gen Intel Core i5 and 8 GB of ram. A minimum specification requirement for architectural software in college. The ram can be easily upgraded to 16 GB if you think the 8 GB is not enough.

The storage is also a 256 GB SSD which will ensure that you will have fast boot up speeds, launching and loading of applications.

The display is a 15.6 Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS display so viewing angles won’t be a problem.The battery life is also great averaging about 10 hours under normal usage but will quickly drop if you use it for more intensive tasks.

The weight is standard averaging about 5.27 pounds which is neither too heavy nor light just portable enough to carry around. The build is also a plastic build.

The dedicated entry-level graphics card MX150 will be able to get the job done and also play games on low to medium settings if you like to work hard and play hard.

The keyboard is decent and backlit which is a rare feature for a laptop available at this price.

Pros

Solid Performance

Great Battery Life

Plenty of Ports

Lightweight

Cons

Chassis is not of the best quality

Acer Aspire E 15 Laptop, 15.6' Full HD, 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U, GeForce MX150, 8GB RAM Memory, 256GB SSD, E5-576G-5762
1,215 Reviews
Acer Aspire E 15 Laptop, 15.6" Full HD, 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U, GeForce MX150, 8GB RAM Memory, 256GB SSD, E5-576G-5762
  • 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8250U Processor (Up to 3.4GHz)
  • 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED-lit IPS Display
  • 8GB Dual Channel Memory & 256GB SSD
  • Up to 15-hours of battery life.Adapter: 65 W
  • Windows 10 Home

Last update on 2019-11-13 at 14:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Acer Aspire E15 Review

Lenovo ThinkPad P52s

Lenovo ThinkPad P52s Mobile Workstation Ultrabook Laptop (Intel 8th Gen i7-8550U 4-core, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 15.6' FHD 1920x1080 IPS, NVIDIA Quadro P500, Fingerprint, Backlit Keyboard, Win 10 Pro)

The Lenovo ThinkPad P52s is a solid workstation for architecture. Because it has a certified graphics card and plenty of performance. Aside from that, it is one of the lightest workstations you can get.

It weighs 4.4 pounds (2 kg) and it’s less than an inch thick. Certainly a lightweight and thin workstation.

The workstation has a similar design and build quality found in all ThinkPads. A clean design with a body made from glass-fibre. There is little or no flex. Moreover, you get a workstation built like a tank.

When it comes to performance. It has an 8th Gen Intel Core i7, 32GB RAM and a Quadro P500. The Intel Core i7 is a low-power processor. Not the most powerful CPU but enough computing power to take care of your projects.

Plus, the 32GB RAM adds to its computing power. Overall, you have a quite powerful machine that can run a lot of programs at the same time.

Fortunately, the low-power processor also means better battery life. You can consistently work on it for 8-9 hours. Impressive for a workstation laptop.

The Nvidia Quadro P500 is similar to the MX150 but better in performance when it comes to AutoCAD, 3D modelling and rendering.

The display is a 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS with thin bezels. It is bright and has above-average colour accuracy and reproduction. Viewing angles are also great.

Overall, the Lenovo Thinkpad P52s is a workstation that has been optimised for Architecture software. A highly recommended laptop for architecture.

Pros

Great Keyboard

Good Battery Life

Optimised For Architecture Work

Durable

Cons

Runs Hot

Lenovo ThinkPad P52s Mobile Workstation Ultrabook Laptop (Intel 8th Gen i7-8550U 4-core, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 15.6' FHD 1920x1080 IPS, NVIDIA Quadro P500, Fingerprint, Backlit Keyboard, Win 10 Pro)
17 Reviews
Lenovo ThinkPad P52s Mobile Workstation Ultrabook Laptop (Intel 8th Gen i7-8550U 4-core, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 15.6" FHD 1920x1080 IPS, NVIDIA Quadro P500, Fingerprint, Backlit Keyboard, Win 10 Pro)
  • 8th Generation Kaby Lake R Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-Cores Processor (1.8 GHz up to 4.0GHz, 8 MB Cache), NVIDIA Quadro P500 with 2 GB GDDR5...
  • 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS Technology LED Backlight Display, 1 x 10/100/1000 Mb/s Gigabit Ethernet (RJ45), 802.11ac; Dual-Band and...
  • 32GB DDR4 Memory, Built-in HD webcam, Full-Size Backlight Keyboard, Numeric Keypad
  • 512GB SSD (Solid State Drive), 1 x Thunderbolt 3, 1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C, 2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A, 1 x Docking Connector, 1 x HDMI 1.4, 1...
  • Windows 10 Professional (Win 10 Pro), 4 (32Wh) cell Battery, 1 Year Manufacture warranty from the Seller

Last update on 2019-11-13 at 14:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Lenovo Thinkpad P52s

Dell Precision 5530

Dell Precision M5530 Laptop, 15.6 inch FHD (1920x1080) Non-Touch, Intel Core 8th Gen i7-8850H, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, NVIDIA Quadro P1000, Windows 10 Pro (Renewed)

If you are looking for the best Dell laptop for Architecture. Then the Dell Precision 5530 is that laptop. This workstation has identical looks to the Dell XPS 15 and has the hardware for stability in SolidWorks.

The Dell Precision 5530 has a similar build quality to that of the Dell XPS 15. An aluminium body with a carbon fibre keyboard deck. Plus, it is slim and lightweight (4 pounds).

When it comes to performance. It has a high-performance 8th Gen Intel Core i7, 32GB RAM and an NVIDIA Quadro P1000. Enough firepower to tear through modelling and rendering.

Moreover, the 32GB RAM is more than enough for multitasking and running demanding applications. Combine that with its high-performance processor. You have a future-proof workstation.

Another great thing about the Dell Precision. It is one of the few workstations to have above-average battery life. To be honest, this is impressive.

Because workstations have powerful hardware which eats a lot of battery power. It can last 8-9 hours under consistent use. Don’t expect the same amount of hours under heavy usage.

The display is a 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) with thin bezels. A colour accurate and bright display.

Overall, the Dell Precision 5530 is one of the best laptops for architects.

Pros

Excellent Performance

Very Lightweight and Portable

Above Average Battery Life and Great Build Quality

Cons

Webcam Placed at Awkward Position

Dell Precision M5530 Laptop, 15.6 inch FHD (1920x1080) Non-Touch, Intel Core 8th Gen i7-8850H, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, NVIDIA Quadro P1000, Windows 10 Pro (Renewed)
1 Reviews
Dell Precision M5530 Laptop, 15.6 inch FHD (1920x1080) Non-Touch, Intel Core 8th Gen i7-8850H, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD, NVIDIA Quadro P1000, Windows 10 Pro (Renewed)
  • Intel Core 8th Generation i7-8850H Processor (6 Core, 2.60GHz, Up to 4.30GHz with Turbo Boost, 9MB Cache, 45W)
  • 15.6 inch UltraSharp FHD (1920x1080) IGZO4 Anti-Glare Non-Touch 72% Color Gamut, Platinum Silver | NVIDIA Quadro P1000 4GB GDDDR5
  • 32GB DDR4 Non-ECC SDRAM 2666MHz
  • 512GB PCIe M.2 NVMe Class 40 Solid State Drive
  • Dell Factory Refurbished | One Year Dell Warranty

Last update on 2019-11-13 at 14:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

LG Gram Review

Acer Predator Helios 300

Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop PC, 15.6 inches Full HD 144Hz 3ms IPS Display, Intel i7-9750H, GTX 1660 Ti 6GB, 16GB DDR4, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Backlit Keyboard, PH315-52-78VL

Power specs and great gaming performance the Acer Predator Helios 300 is a great laptop if you are an architecture student who likes to work hard and play hard.

The only thing that holds it back is its poor battery life. You are able to continuously use it for 3-4 hours before it runs out of power.

The Predator is powered by an 9th Gen Intel Core i7 Hexa-core and 16 GB of ram. The storage is a 256 GB SSD the compliments and makes sure performance is great as a whole.

The graphics card is a dedicated 6 GB GTX 1660 Ti meaning it has enough VRAM to run AutoCAD and Revit and can also connect to several monitors if you need more than one screen.

The display is also great. A 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) In-plane Switching Display. Viewing angles are great and the colour reproduction is also great.

The Acer Predator has the processing power to be considered one of the best laptops for architecture students especially those who like to game.

Pros

Great Performance

Solid Build Quality

Cons

Poor Battery Life

Low Storage Space

Sale
Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop PC, 15.6 inches Full HD 144Hz 3ms IPS Display, Intel i7-9750H, GTX 1660 Ti 6GB, 16GB DDR4, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Backlit Keyboard, PH315-52-78VL
436 Reviews
Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop PC, 15.6 inches Full HD 144Hz 3ms IPS Display, Intel i7-9750H, GTX 1660 Ti 6GB, 16GB DDR4, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD, Backlit Keyboard, PH315-52-78VL
  • 9th Generation Intel Core i7 9750H 6 Core Processor (Up to 4.5GHz) with Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Graphics with 6GB of dedicated GDDR6 VRAM
  • 15.6 inches Full HD (1920 x 1080) Widescreen LED backlit IPS Display (144Hz Refresh Rate, 3ms Overdrive Response Time, 300nit Brightness and...
  • 16GB DDR4 2666MHz Memory, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD (2 x PCIe M.2 Slots; 1 Slot Open for Easy Upgrades) and 1 Available Hard Drive Bay
  • Backlit Keyboard; LAN: Killer Ethernet E2500 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet LAN; Wireless: Killer DoubleShot Pro Wireless AC 1550 802. 11ac;...

Last update on 2019-11-13 at 15:55 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Acer Predator Helios 300 Review

A Guide To Finding The Best Laptop For Architecture

You have gone through the list and can’t find what you looking for?

Being an architecture student or architect you need a quite powerful laptop to be able to run demanding software. There are so many architecture software.

And each have their own requirements. So we provide some guidelines below that can help you out. Here are some few things you should consider when looking for an excellent laptop for architecture.

Performance

In choosing a laptop for architecture performance comes first. Ideally Core i5 or Ryzen 5 and should be the lowest you should go. Architecture software need a lot of processing power to run because of the complexity of projects.

You should also make sure your RAM is high enough or else the laptop will struggle to run multiple applications and also take a lot of time rendering.

Storage

A large amount of storage is also important because of the large file sizes of the project. A combination of a solid state drive (SSD) and hard disk drive (HDD) is good.

You can store your operating system and important applications for fast boot times and launches whiles the large files are stored on the hard disk drive.

Preferably, SSDs are the best.

Graphics Card

Graphics cards are important because of the role they play in rendering. The Nvidia Quadro cards are the best for architecture and computer-aided design (CAD).

Because they have been optimized primarily for architecture software and rendering. The consumer graphics cards are also good enough but do not compare well to the Quadro cards.

Display

Display sizes of 15 inches or above are sufficient. The resolution should be at least Full HD and have In-plane switching technology.

Budget

Budget is important because it tells you how much you are willing to spend on a laptop. By knowing how much you are willing to spend you will be able to find the best laptop that suits your needs perfectly.

Workstation laptops tend to be more expensive than normal laptops. But they also provide the best performance.

Final Thoughts

There are the most important factors to consider when choosing a laptop for architecture especially if you are a student.

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