7 Best Laptops For GIS And Cartography 2019

Numerous laptops can be found on the market, we have gone through most of them making it possible to bring you the best laptops for ArcGIS, QGIS and Cartography. These laptops pass the system requirements provided on the ArcGIS website.

These laptops have enough power to process and capture data without any major problems. Aside from that, we also considered the portability, battery life and display.

Related: Best Laptops For Virtualization And Virtual Machines


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First Place
Runner Up
Also Great
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Microsoft Surface Book 2 15" (Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256 GB)
Omen by HP 2019 15-Inch Gaming Laptop, Intel i7-9750H Processor, GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB, 32 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, VR Ready, Windows 10 Home (15-dc1047nr, Black)
Huawei MateBook X Pro Signature Edition Thin & Light Laptop, 13.9" 3K Touch, 8th Gen i7-8550U, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, GeForce MX150, 3:2 Aspect Ratio, Office 365 Personal, Space Gray - Mach-W29C
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

Before there were laptops. There was the old fashioned way of using a pencil on maps. The Microsoft Surface Book 2 allows you to do this. All thanks to its convertible design. With its Surface Pen you can quickly create and make changes to maps increasing your productivity.

When your maps get big. You need to bring the BIG GUNS. And the HP Omen is just that. A powerhouse that can handle large maps.

Best laptops that provides a lot of value. Great display, battery life and solid performance is delivered by the Huawei MateBook X Pro.

Prime
Position
First Place
Snapshot
Microsoft Surface Book 2 15" (Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256 GB)
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

Before there were laptops. There was the old fashioned way of using a pencil on maps. The Microsoft Surface Book 2 allows you to do this. All thanks to its convertible design. With its Surface Pen you can quickly create and make changes to maps increasing your productivity.

Prime
Position
Runner Up
Name
Snapshot
Omen by HP 2019 15-Inch Gaming Laptop, Intel i7-9750H Processor, GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB, 32 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, VR Ready, Windows 10 Home (15-dc1047nr, Black)
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

When your maps get big. You need to bring the BIG GUNS. And the HP Omen is just that. A powerhouse that can handle large maps.

Prime
Position
Also Great
Snapshot
Huawei MateBook X Pro Signature Edition Thin & Light Laptop, 13.9" 3K Touch, 8th Gen i7-8550U, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, GeForce MX150, 3:2 Aspect Ratio, Office 365 Personal, Space Gray - Mach-W29C
What You Need To Know About The Laptop

Best laptops that provides a lot of value. Great display, battery life and solid performance is delivered by the Huawei MateBook X Pro.

Prime

Last update on 2019-09-21 at 00:25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Here’s Our Recommended List Of The Best Laptops For Gis And Cartography


NameProcessorGPU & RAM 
Microsoft Surface Book 2 Up To Intel Core i7-8650UUp To NVIDIA GTX 1060 & 16GBBuy On Amazon
HP Omen Intel Core i7-9750HNVIDIA RTX 2070 Max-Q & 32GBBuy On Amazon
Huawei MateBook X Pro Up To Intel Core i7-8550UNVIDIA MX150 & 16GBBuy On Amazon
HP Spectre x360 Intel Core i7-8565UNVIDIA MX150 & 16GBBuy On Amazon
ASUS VivoBook 15 Intel Core i7-8550UNVIDIA GTX 1050 & 16GBBuy On Amazon
Dell G3Intel Core i5-8300HNVIDIA GTX 1050 & 8GBBuy On Amazon
Acer Aspire E15 Intel Core i5-8250UNVIDIA MX150 & 8GBBuy On Amazon

Best For Professional Use

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Microsoft Surface Book 2 15' (Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256 GB)

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 is one of the best convertible laptops you can use in the professional environment. The ease of switching between tablet mode and laptop is very helpful especially when it comes to meetings.

It has an 8th Gen Intel i7 quad-core, 16 GB RAM and an NVIDIA GTX 1060. The dedicated graphics card helps immensely when you rendering millions of polygons and playing AAA games.

The processor is also a powerful quad-core. In addition, the 16 GB RAM surpasses the requirements needed to run GIS successfully allowing you to launch several applications without any lag. The storage is a 256 GB SSD for fast data access.

Related: Best Laptop Deals

The display is a 15-inch PixelSense (3240 x 2160) touchscreen. The display is bright, has great viewing angles, colour accuracy and reproduction.

The high resolution and brightness make it have a great screen. When it comes to weight, the keyboard and display combined is almost 3.2 pounds and even less in tablet mode.

The battery life of the convertible depends on how you going to use it. If you are working in tablet mode you will get an average of 6-8 hours of usage. Laptop mode is around 10-12 hours of normal usage.

This is because there are batteries in both the keyboard and the display of Surface Book 2 combining them will give you something of a double battery hence the long battery life.

The downside of the convertible is the absence of a Thunderbolt 3 which is disappointing. Being available for a hefty price should no doubt include a Thunderbolt 3.

In addition, you will have to buy your own surface pen. Also, gaming and heavy-duty tasks on the Microsoft Surface Book 2 causes it to thermal throttle because the cooling system is not great.

These are the major things that plague the Microsoft Surface Book 2.

Overall, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 is one of the best 2-in-1 laptops for GIS and Cartography in the professional environment.

The ease at which you freely detach the keyboard from the display somewhat makes superior to other convertibles. It would have been the best if not for the cons mentioned above. You can get the lower spec model.

Pros

Great Performance

Great Battery Life

Great Display

Cons

Pricey

Surface Pen Not Included

No Thunderbolt 3

Sale
Microsoft Surface Book 2 15" (Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256 GB)
  • Microsoft Surface Book 2 Features a 8th generation Intel Quad Core i7 Processor, 256 GB of storage, 16 GB RAM, and up to 17 hours of video...
  • Enhanced Graphics performance with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 discrete GPU w/6GB GDDR5 Graphics Memory
  • The fastest Surface Book yet, with 4x more power
  • Vibrant PixelSense Display: now available with a new 15" touchscreen
  • Four versatile modes of use and new USB-C port. Contrast ratio: 1600:1

Last update on 2019-09-21 at 00:25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Microsoft Surface Book 2 Review

Best Performance

HP Omen

Omen by HP 2019 15-Inch Gaming Laptop, Intel i7-9750H Processor, GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB, 32 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, VR Ready, Windows 10 Home (15-dc1047nr, Black)

The HP Omen blows away all the system requirements needed to run GIS smoothly. Basically, one of the best gaming laptops if you prefer overwhelming performance over anything else.

The 9th Gen Intel i7 has clock speeds of 2.2 GHz and it is a hexa-core processor. The HP Omen has 32 GB RAM which is a lot, to be honest.

You won’t need to worry about upgrading it in the future and it’s more than the recommended amount provided by GIS.

The NVIDIA 2070 Max-Q will be able to handle the rendering just well and play AAA games on high settings. The storage is a 512 GB SSD, large enough to store and access your files, data and launch applications quickly.

The HP Omen’s display is a 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS. The viewing angles are great with reasonable brightness and anti-glare. It also has a nice port selection, a Thunderbolt port and 3 USB 3.1 ports.

Poor battery life and bulkiness is the HP Omen’s greatest flaws. The battery life lasts about 3 hours on average.

Most gaming laptops with Max-Q cards last an average of 6-8 hours. Being a little over an inch thick and weighing about 5.5 pound hurts its portability.

Overall, the HP Omen is a powerful performer which crushes the system requirements for GIS and Cartography.

Pros

Excellent Performance

Great Display

Thunderbolt 3

Cons

Poor Battery Life

Bulky

Sale
Omen by HP 2019 15-Inch Gaming Laptop, Intel i7-9750H Processor, GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB, 32 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, VR Ready, Windows 10 Home (15-dc1047nr, Black)
  • Hyper-realistic Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (8 GB GDDR5 dedicated). enjoy new levels of gaming realism and performance with real-time...
  • Cutting-edge gaming performance: play The latest games, including Fortnight, PUBG, and Overwatch, from anywhere-without sacrificing...
  • Omen command center: easily turn up your performance with included software that enables control over your CPU overclocking settings and...
  • Super Fast Processor: 9th Generation intel(r) core(tm) i7-9750h Processor, 6-Core, 2.6GHz up to 4.5GHz for superior gaming performance
  • Memory and storage: 32 GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM (upgradable with 2 accessible Memory Slots) and Fast boot-up, file transfer and a snappier...

Last update on 2019-09-20 at 21:55 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

HP Omen Review

Best Value

Huawei MateBook X Pro

Huawei MateBook X Pro Signature Edition Thin & Light Laptop, 13.9' 3K Touch, 8th Gen i7-8550U, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, GeForce MX150, 3:2 Aspect Ratio, Office 365 Personal, Space Gray - Mach-W29C

The Huawei Matebook X Pro is the Windows Apple MacBook. It is one of the lightest and thinnest laptops on the market. It even rivals the MacBook Air.

It weighs almost 3 pounds and it’s half an inch thick. This makes it very easy to carry around during your travels.

The performance also meets the recommended specifications of GIS. An 8th Gen Intel i7 quad-core and 16 GB RAM. It also has a dedicated NVIDIA MX150 which is an entry-level graphics card.

The graphics card is powerful enough to handle casual games, but AAA games won’t be able to run properly unless you play on low settings. It also helps in the rendering your projects in GIS.

The storage is a 512 GB SSD PCIe which is very fast in accessing data and booting up your laptop.

The display is a 13.9 inch 3K (3000 x 2000) touchscreen. A very bright display with very thin bezels. It is also vibrant, colour accurate and has great viewing angles.

On the port side, there is a Thunderbolt 3, one USB 3.1 and a USB 3.0 Type A port. The battery life averages 8 hours under normal usage.

For the flaws, the Huawei Matebook runs hot when you tax it heavily. A trait that is common in ultrabooks. Ultrabooks have poor cooling systems so they are not able to get rid of the heat as fast as possible.

The laptop then thermal throttles resulting in drops in performance. In addition, the touchpad feels cheap and it rattles quite a bit.

MacBooks are limiting when it comes to GIS software. The Huawei MateBook X Pro brings the features of a MacBook over to the Windows side.

But with better hardware without the hefty price tag. A great MacBook substitute for GIS and Cartography.

Pros

Great Performance

Great Display

Solid Build Quality

Cons

Not The Best Touchpad

Loud Fans

Sale
Huawei MateBook X Pro Signature Edition Thin & Light Laptop, 13.9" 3K Touch, 8th Gen i7-8550U, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, GeForce MX150, 3:2 Aspect Ratio, Office 365 Personal, Space Gray - Mach-W29C
  • World's First FullView Display: Immersive 13.9-inch 3K touchscreen with 91% screen-to-body ratio, only 0.57-inch thin and weighs only 2.93...
  • Powerful Inside: Windows 10 Home Signature Edition with no bloatware. 8th Gen Intel Core i7 8550U processor + NVIDIA GeForce MX150 - boosts...
  • Home Theater: 3K touchscreen with 3, 000 x 2, 000 resolution, 1500:1 contrast ratio and 260 PPI allow you to see vivid details when viewing...
  • One Touch Power Button: Enabling users to power on the notebook, finish identity authentication through Windows Hello and access the desktop...
  • Includes compact Mate Dock 2.0: USB-A port, USB-C port, HDMI port and VGA port. Includes 1 year Office 365 Personal and 1 year manufacturer...

Last update on 2019-09-21 at 00:35 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Huawei Matebook X Pro Review

HP Spectre x360

2019 HP - Spectre x360 2-in-1 15.6' 4K Ultra HD Touch-Screen Laptop - Intel Core i7 - 16GB Memory - 512GB SSD - 15-DF0013DX (Renewed)

The HP Spectre x360 is a 2-in-1 laptop that provides tremendous value for its price. This convertible has great build quality made from aluminium.

Its aluminium is also the reason why it gives an “illusion” of being heavy whilst weighing 2.78 pounds and a little over an inch thick.

Tablet mode is also uncomfortable to use because of the aluminium body. This is the only downside of the HP Spectre.

On to the performance, it is powered by an 8th Gen Intel Core i7 quad-core, 16GB RAM and has an NVIDIA MX150. Performance pretty much fits the system requirements for running GIS smoothly.

And, the MX150 is also great for casual gaming and playing AAA games on low settings. In addition, it has massive amounts of storage, a 512 GB PCIe SSD, which is very fast in accessing data and the like.

The display is a 13.3 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) Corning Gorilla Glass touchscreen. A bright screen with great contrast. The protection also provided by the Corning Gorilla Glass is great.

Basically makes it have a scratch-resistant display. On the port side, there are two Thunderbolt 3 and a USB 3.1. Battery life lasts an average of 9 hours on normal usage.

The HP Spectre has a great price-to-performance ratio. Apart from its tablet mode which can be uncomfortable, it is a great lightweight laptop for GIS and Cartography.

Pros

Great Build Quality

Great Performance

Long Battery Life

Cons

Tablet Mode Is Uncomfortable

2019 HP - Spectre x360 2-in-1 15.6" 4K Ultra HD Touch-Screen Laptop - Intel Core i7 - 16GB Memory - 512GB SSD - 15-DF0013DX (Renewed)
  • HP Stylus Pen Included
  • Intel Core i7 8565U (1.8 GHz base frequency(2b), up to 4.6 GHz with Intel Turbo Boost Technology(2g), 8 MB cache, 4 cores)
  • 15.6" diagonal 4K IPS anti-glare WLED-backlit micro-edge touch screen (3840 x 2160)
  • 512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD, 16 GB DDR4-2400 SDRAM (2 x 8 GB)
  • NVIDIA GeForce MX150 (2 GB GDDR5 dedicated)

Last update on 2019-09-21 at 00:35 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

HP Spectre x360 Review

ASUS VivoBook 15

ASUS VivoBook K570UD 15.6' Laptop, Intel Core i7-8550U, GeForce GTX 1050 4GB, 16GB DDR4, FHD Display, 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD, Fingerprint Sensor, Backlit keyboard,  K570UD-ES76 Casual Gaming Laptop

The ASUS VivoBook is yet another laptop with a great price-to-performance ratio. A lightweight (4.18 pounds) that is able to dish out the required performance for GIS.

It has an 8th Gen Intel Core i7 quad-core processor, 16 GB RAM and combined storage of 256 GB SSD and 1 TB HDD. The graphics card is a GTX 1050 which is much more powerful than the MX150 so it will perform much better on AAA games.

The display is average at best. A 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS. Colour accuracy, sharpness and vibrancy are average.

Nothing that will put you off or WOW you. For the ports, there are two USB 2.0, one USB Type-C and a USB 3.0 port. Battery life is decent lasting about 5-6 hours on normal usage.

The greatest weaknesses of the ASUS VivoBook is its ability to attract a lot of fingerprint smudges on its body and trackpad.

Too much and it reduces the aesthetics of the laptop and it also has to be regularly wiped. In addition, the fan starts to make a lot of noise when it comes under heavy load. It might be unpleasant to some people.

Still, the ASUS VivoBook provides a great price-to-performance ratio. In addition, it is thin, light and has a nice design which is pleasant to look at.

Pros

Thin And Light

Nice Design

Decent Battery Life

Cons

Body And Touchpad Are Fingerprint Magnets

Loud Fans

Sale
ASUS VivoBook K570UD 15.6" Laptop, Intel Core i7-8550U, GeForce GTX 1050 4GB, 16GB DDR4, FHD Display, 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD, Fingerprint Sensor, Backlit keyboard, K570UD-ES76 Casual Gaming Laptop
  • 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8550U Processor, 1. 8GHz (8M Cache, Turbo up to 4. 0GHz)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 4GB Graphics
  • 15. 6" FHD IPS-level Display; WebCam: VGA Web Camera
  • 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD; Windows 10 Home
  • Comprehensive connections including USB 3. 1 Type-C (Gen1), USB 3. 0, USB 2. 0, HDMI, & headphone/mic port

Last update on 2019-09-21 at 00:35 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Best For GIS Students

Dell G3

Latest_Dell_G3 High Performance Gaming 15.6-inch FHD IPS Laptop with i5-8300H CPU, 8GB RAM, 1TB Hybrid HD with 8GB Cache, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 4GB Graphics, Windows 10

The Dell G3 is a great laptop for students (GIS and geography students included). Available at a budget price, it has the performance and portability every student desires.

An 8th Gen i5 quad-core processor, 8 GB RAM and an NVIDIA GTX 1050. The i5 processor has high clock speeds which surpass the GIS system requirements (GIS recommends a minimum of 1.9GHz).

The NVIDIA GTX 1050 is also a great dedicated graphics card which can handle most AAA games on medium settings.

The Dell G3 has the flaw of running hot under intense gaming due to its not-so-great cooling system. The 8 GB RAM can be upgraded to a 16 GB if it is not sufficient for you.

The Dell G3’s 15.6 inches Full HD (1920 x 1080) is not very bright. The display is also not sharp and colour accuracy and reproduction is not great resulting in a lacklustre display.

The only redeeming factor is its decent viewing angles because of its IPS display.

The laptop weighs about 5 pounds and less than an inch thick. Lightweight and thin enough to easily carry around without any problems.

On the port side, there are two USB 3.1 and one USB 2.0. For a gaming laptop, the battery life is impressive, it will give you at most 7 hours of normal usage.

The Dell G3 is a solid affordable laptop for GIS and geography students if you don’t mind its dim display and the tendency to run hot under gaming.

Pros

Superb Performance

Good Battery Life

Cons

Runs Hot

Dim Display

Latest_Dell_G3 High Performance Gaming 15.6-inch FHD IPS Laptop with i5-8300H CPU, 8GB RAM, 1TB Hybrid HD with 8GB Cache, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 4GB Graphics, Windows 10
  • 15.6-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS Anti-Glare LED-Backlit Display, 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8300H Processor (Quad-Core, 8MB Cache, up to...
  • 8GB 2666MHz DDR4 + 16 GB Intel Optane memory accelerated, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050, with 4GB GDDR5 graphics memory
  • 802.11ac 1x1 WiFi and Bluetooth, 1x 2-in-1 SD / MicroMedia card 2x SuperSpeed USB 3.1 Type-A 1x USB 2.0 1x Power/DC-in Jack 1x HDMI 2.0 1x...
  • Integrated Widescreen HD (720p) Webcam with Dual Array Digital Microphone, Backlit Keyboard
  • Windows 10 Home 64-bit English, Black Color, Item Dimensions L x W x H 15.6 x 10.2 x 0.9 inches

Last update on 2019-09-20 at 23:56 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Dell G3

Best Budget

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 cheap laptop if you are on a very tight budget. The hardware makes it one of the best budget laptops in the market. It is has a great balance between performance and battery life for a budget laptop.

The performance is solid at best. Nothing special. Anything tasking and you will experience lags or freezes. It is powered by an 8th Gen Intel i5 quad-core clocked at 1.6 GHz below the system requirements of GIS.

On the other side, the RAM is 8 GB which is the recommended amount and an entry-level NVIDIA MX150. The entry-level will definitely help with rendering and playing casual games.

The display is good for a budget laptop. A 15.6 inch Full (1920 x 1080) IPS. Viewing angles, colour accuracy and reproduction is decent.

The Acer Aspire E15 has a lot of ports, a USB Type-C, two USB 3.0 and a USB 2.0. That’s a lot of ports and the USB Type-C is a nice addition especially in an affordable laptop. Most don’t have this.

The battery life is decent averaging about 8 hours under normal usage. The laptop weighs 5.3 pounds just portable enough to easily carry around without any problems. The keyboard is also backlit.

The downsides of the Acer Aspire is its touchpad and the bloatware. The touchpad is not stellar. It has no “smoothness” to it and feels very cheap.

The bloatware is Acer software which they rarely update. A fresh Windows installation will get rid of all the bloatware.

The Acer Aspire E15 is a great cheap laptop but only if you are on a tight budget. The clock speed of the CPU falls below the minimum system of GIS so you won’t get stellar performance.

The performance will also slow down if it’s heavily tasked. Take this into account. Nevertheless, it is a great budget laptop.

Pros

Solid Performance

Great Battery Life

Plenty of Ports

Cons

Plenty Of Bloatware

Not The Best Trackpad

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 2019-09-21 at 02:25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Acer Aspire E15 Review

Conclusion

That’s it for our list of the best laptops for GIS and Cartography. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments or if you need any help finding a laptop.

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