6 Best Laptops For Maya [Reviewed & Rated]

Depending on whether you want to animate in 2D or 3D, you need a capable laptop.

In this article, we list the best laptops for Maya.


Position
First Place
Runner Up
Best Budget
Snapshot
New Microsoft Surface Book 3 - 13.5" Touch-Screen - 10th Gen Intel Core i5 - 8GB Memory - 256GB SSD (Latest Model) - Platinum
2019 Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB Storage, 2.6GHz Intel Core i7) - Silver
ASUS Zenbook 14 Laptop - AMD Ryzen 5-8GB RAM - NVIDIA GEFORCE MX350-256GB SSD - Win 10, Light Gray
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 makes creating animations very easy due to its versatile nature.

The Apple MacBook Pro is a content creator’s favourite laptop. Powerful hardware and an excellent display.

The ASUS ZenBook 14 is one of the best budget laptops for animation. It has an affordable price tag and solid performance.

Prime
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-
Rating
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Position
First Place
Snapshot
New Microsoft Surface Book 3 - 13.5" Touch-Screen - 10th Gen Intel Core i5 - 8GB Memory - 256GB SSD (Latest Model) - Platinum
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 makes creating animations very easy due to its versatile nature.

Prime
-
Rating
-
Position
Runner Up
Snapshot
2019 Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB Storage, 2.6GHz Intel Core i7) - Silver
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The Apple MacBook Pro is a content creator’s favourite laptop. Powerful hardware and an excellent display.

Prime
Rating
Position
Best Budget
Snapshot
ASUS Zenbook 14 Laptop - AMD Ryzen 5-8GB RAM - NVIDIA GEFORCE MX350-256GB SSD - Win 10, Light Gray
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

The ASUS ZenBook 14 is one of the best budget laptops for animation. It has an affordable price tag and solid performance.

Prime
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Rating
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Last update on 2021-07-31 at 04:26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Preview
Name
Rating
Processor, GPU & RAM
 
New Microsoft Surface Book 3 - 13.5' Touch-Screen - 10th Gen Intel Core i5 - 8GB Memory - 256GB SSD (Latest Model) - Platinum

Intel Core i5 - i7, Intel Integrated graphics - NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti, 8-16GB
2019 Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB Storage, 2.6GHz Intel Core i7) - Silver

Intel Core i7, AMD Radeon Pro 5300M, 16GB
Dell XPS 15 9500 15.6 inch UHD+ Touchscreen Laptop (Silver) Intel Core i7-10750H 10th Gen, 16GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB SSD, Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti with 4GB GDDR6, Window 10 Pro (XPS9500-7845SLV-PUS) (Renewed)

Intel Core i7, NVIDIA GTX 1650 Ti, 16GB
MSI Creator 15 15.6' Touchscreen Laptop Intel Core i7-10875H 16GB RAM 512GB SSD RTX 2060 6GB Space Gray

Intel Core i7, NVIDIA RTX 2060, 16GB
Gigabyte AERO Classic (SA-U73ADW) Thin & Light Performance Laptop, 15.6 4K UHD IPS, GTX 1660 Ti, Core i7-9750H, 16GB DDR4, 256GB Intel 760p SSD, 8-hrs Battery Life (AERO 15 Classic-SA-U73ADW)

Intel Core i7, NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti, 16GB
ASUS Zenbook 14 Laptop - AMD Ryzen 5-8GB RAM - NVIDIA GEFORCE MX350-256GB SSD - Win 10, Light Gray

AMD Ryzen 5, NVIDIA MX350, 8GB

Best Laptops For Maya Reviewed & Rated


Best Laptop For Maya Overall – Microsoft Surface Book 3

New Microsoft Surface Book 3 - 13.5' Touch-Screen - 10th Gen Intel Core i5 - 8GB Memory - 256GB SSD (Latest Model) - Platinum

Where To Buy

$1,189.00

Buy on Amazon

Pros

  • Solid Performance
  • Excellent Display
  • Insane Battery Life
  • A True 2-in-1 Laptop

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Doesn’t come with a stylus

CPU: Intel Core i5 – i7 Graphics: Intel Integrated graphics – NVIDIA GTX 1660 TiRAM: 8-16GBScreen: 13.5″ PixelSense (3000 x 2000)Storage: 256- 1TB SSD  

The Microsoft Surface Book 3 is one of the best laptops for Maya. Why? Microsoft really went all out in making a laptop for creators.

This 2-in-1 laptop is a true convertible that has a superb display and great hardware.

A true convertible in the sense that you can detach the display from the keyboard. Allowing you to use it as a normal tablet. Whereas, other 2-in-1 laptops require you to turn it 360 degrees.

When it comes to computing power, you have enough processing power for 2D and 3D animation.

Thanks to its Intel quad-core i7 and 16GB RAM, you won’t have any problems running demanding software or multitasking. You can even game on it because of the GTX graphics card.

Battery life on this is insane. You are looking at 12 hours or more. 12 hours if you use the tablet or display by itself. 12 hours and more if the display is attached to the keyboard.

Overall, Microsoft Surface Book 3 is one of the best laptops for Maya. Great benefits and hardware that makes it a solid option.


Best MacBook For Maya – Apple MacBook Pro

2019 Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 16GB RAM, 512GB Storage, 2.6GHz Intel Core i7) - Silver

Where To Buy

$1,999.99

Buy on Amazon

Pros

  • Well-made construction
  • Great performance
  • Great battery life
  • Beautiful display

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Not all animation software will be fully functional
  • Only Thunderbolt ports

CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: AMD Radeon Pro 5300M | RAM: 16GB | Screen: 16″ Retina (3072×1920) Display | Storage: 512GB SSD 

The Apple MacBook Pro is one of the top choices when looking for the best laptop for Maya.

However, keep in mind that the Apple MacBook Pro cannot run all animation software only the most popular and most used, so you have to check yourself.

The MacBook Pro is also a pricey device that is understandable because of the benefits.

Apple has made the Apple MacBook Pro faster, better, and stronger.

The keyboard has been changed and it’s better than before, and the Apple MacBook Pro is more powerful and runs cooler.

You will easily be able to multitask, render, animate, and run demanding applications without any issues.

When it comes to the display, the Apple MacBook Pro maintains its retina display and we all know how it looks like.

Sharp, bright, great viewing angles, and high colour accuracy. It’s known that Retina displays are one of the best displays.

Battery life is above average. You are looking at 10-11 hours under normal usage, and that’s a lot all made possible because of its large battery.

The build quality is exceptional, thanks to its aluminum unibody design. A strong laptop that you can use for years on end.

If you are going to use the most popular animation software, then the Apple MacBook Pro is best laptop for Autodesk Maya.

Highly-recommended because it has the hardware to do so.

One more thing, the Apple MacBook Pro has only Thunderbolt ports, so you need a dock to use the normal USB ports.


3rd Best Laptop For Maya – Dell XPS 15

Dell XPS 15 9500 15.6 inch UHD+ Touchscreen Laptop (Silver) Intel Core i7-10750H 10th Gen, 16GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB SSD, Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti with 4GB GDDR6, Window 10 Pro (XPS9500-7845SLV-PUS) (Renewed)

Where To Buy

$2,049.71

Buy On Amazon

Pros

  • Thin and light
  • Long battery life
  • Great performance
  • Beautiful display
  • Sold build quality

Cons

  • Runs hot

CPU: Intel Core i7Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 1650 TiRAM: 16GBScreen: 15 6″ FHD (1920*1080) IPS-LevelStorage: 512GB SSD 

The Dell XPS 15 is the best laptop for Maya. However, due to its thin and light chassis, it runs hot. 

Undervolting and applying thermal paste is a necessary action to take if you want the best performance.

This is packed with an Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, and a GTX 1650 Ti card. 

More than enough power for Adobe Animate, VFX, Cinema4D, Blender, etc. This will handle them easily. And if it fits your fancy, you can use it to play games.

The Dell XPS 15 is a well-built laptop that is thin and light, and the display is excellent. A very bright full HD display that is sharp and colour accurate.

To be honest, Dell XPS 15 displays do not disappoint. Hence the main reason why they are the top choice of most content creators.

Dell XPS 15 has an impressive battery life. Enough battery power to last you 10 hours under consistent use.

Overall, the only flaw of the Dell XPS 15 is the tendency to run hot and thermal throttle. However, applying thermal paste and undervolting will solve the problem and a much more stable system.

Highly-recommended laptop for Autodesk Maya. 


Best Value Laptop For Maya – MSI Creator 15

MSI Creator 15 15.6' Touchscreen Laptop Intel Core i7-10875H 16GB RAM 512GB SSD RTX 2060 6GB Space Gray

Where To Buy

$1,349.00

Buy On Amazon

Pros

  • Great display
  • Thin and light
  • Excellent performance
  • Good keyboard

Cons

  • Runs hot
  • 4-5 hour battery life

CPU: Intel Core i7Graphics: NVIDIA RTX 2060RAM: 16GBScreen: 15.6″ FHD (1920 x 1080) Storage: 512GB SSD  

The MSI Creator 15 is a powerful laptop meant for creators and gaming, a simple looking laptop that houses powerful hardware.

This is packed with an Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, and an RTX 2060.

Enough processing power for not only animation but also running demanding games. This laptop can handle anything you throw at it. It will get the job done.

The build quality is also top-notch, an aluminium chassis that has been painted white.

However, battery life is not impressive. All that powerful hardware and high-resolution display negatively impact battery life. 

At best, it can last 4-5 hours which is still impressive than most high-performance laptops.

MSI Creator 15 also runs hot just like most thin and light laptops. Undervolting and thermal paste application is a must.

If you are looking for a powerhouse for animation, then the MSI Creator 15 is a solid option. To be honest, nothing can wrong with an i7 processor, 16GB, and an RTX 2060.

Overall, one of the best laptops for Maya.


Best Gaming Laptop For Maya – Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic

Gigabyte AERO Classic (SA-U73ADW) Thin & Light Performance Laptop, 15.6 4K UHD IPS, GTX 1660 Ti, Core i7-9750H, 16GB DDR4, 256GB Intel 760p SSD, 8-hrs Battery Life (AERO 15 Classic-SA-U73ADW)

Where To Buy

$1,699.00

Buy On Amazon

Pros

  • Thin and light
  • Great performance
  • Beautiful display
  • Good battery life

Cons

  • Runs hot
  • Low storage space

CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti | RAM: 16GB | Screen: 15.6″ UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS | Storage: 256GB SSD 

If you are an animation student, the Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic is the best animation laptop you can get. Plus, it can play most games.

This gaming laptop has powerful hardware that can handle almost everything you throw at it. And if you are tired of animating, you can switch to playing games on high graphic settings.

Just look at the hardware – Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, and GTX 1660 Ti. You won’t have any problems running animation software. The only problems are overheating which can cause CPU throttling.

Thin and light laptops like the Gigabyte Aero 15 are susceptible to overheating, so you need to apply thermal paste and undervolt.

Also, 256GB is not enough in today’s world. Fortunately, you can easily swap it out for larger storage.

At 100 percent Adobe RGB and 4K resolution, this is the best colour accurate display for animation and graphic design, even better than the Apple MacBook Pro.

It is sharp, bright and has great viewing angles. To be honest, this is the type of display you find on high-end and expensive laptops.

For battery life, it is decent. You can get 6-7 hours of power under normal use. Not impressive but still good enough.

To sum it all up, the Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic is the best laptop for Maya. It has an excellent display and powerful hardware to run demanding applications.


Best Laptop For Maya on a Budget – ASUS ZenBook 14

ASUS Zenbook 14 Laptop - AMD Ryzen 5-8GB RAM - NVIDIA GEFORCE MX350-256GB SSD - Win 10, Light Gray

Where To Buy

$614.99

Buy On Amazon

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Great price-to-performance ratio
  • Thin and light
  • Good display
  • Good battery life

Cons

  • Ergo lift makes it unstable on most surfaces
  • Bloatware

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 | Graphics: NVIDIA MX350 | RAM: 8GB | Screen: 14″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) | Storage: 256GB SSD 

Affordable, solid performance and good battery life. The ASUS ZenBook 14 is the best budget laptop for Maya.

This is also one of the best option if you are an animation student looking for something affordable.

The ASUS ZenBook has a 14 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) almost bezel-less display. The almost bezel-less design gives the ZenBook a great aesthetic appeal.

It’s also bright, sharp and has good colour accuracy. The laptop has a smooth and shiny finish making it look and feel professional.

Performance is also not lacking. It has an AMD Ryzen 5, 8 GB of RAM and NVIDIA MX350, enough performance to handle 2D and 3D animation.

Apart from performance, it is also very light and slim. Battery life is about 7-8 hours which is good. Depending on how you use it, it can get you throughout a day of work.

Overall, the ASUS ZenBook 14 is one of the best budget laptops for Maya because of its performance, good battery life and lightweight.

It is a rigid and robust ultrabook that will last a very long time and still be able to perform.


Which Laptop is Best For Maya Buyer’s Guide

CPU

Having a powerful CPU is important. Intel i5 processors and higher are strongly recommended. For AMD, go with Ryzen 5 and 7s.

These are also comparable in performance to Intel i5 and i7 processors respectively.

To know the meanings in the Intel letters you can read this guide. You can also read this guide to better understand AMD Ryzen processors.

Graphics Card

Autodesk Maya, Blender, Cinema4D, VFX, Adobe Premiere Pro etc. have their requirements on which graphics cards to use.

To be on the safer side, NVIDIA GTX 1060 or higher is recommended.

Display

Another important thing to look out for is the display since you will be working with colours all the time.

You need a display that is able to show and reproduce colours well. That means you should get a display with a high colour gamut.

One trick to quickly identify displays with high colour accuracy and reproduction is the resolution. Laptops that have high-resolution displays always have high colour accuracy and reproduction.

But keep in mind that there are also laptops with full HD (1920 x 1080) displays that also have high colour gamut.

How Much RAM is Needed for Maya?

The minimum is 8GB RAM. Recommended RAM is 16GB and for best results 32GB RAM.

You need enough RAM for the program to run and to multitask. Insufficient RAM will just cause problems for you.

Final Thoughts

Depending on what animation – 2D or 3D – you will need a laptop with good hardware and a display.

Fortunately, our list of laptops covers all the system requirements found in Autodesk Maya, so you don’t have a problem here.

That’s it for the best laptops for Maya.

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