MacBook Pro M1 Pro 16-inch front with display on
MacBook Pro M1 Pro 16-inch front with display on

Most modern laptops should be able to handle entry-level video editing, but if you want a device that can sail through tasks and not get bogged down by long rendering times, then you’ll want a laptop optimised for such workloads.

Our team of experts test a lot of powerful laptops each year, and from our reviews and testing, we’ve compiled this list of the very best laptops for video editing.

We’ve also made sure to focus on the things that matter the most when it comes to picking a laptop for video editing such as the processing speeds, graphics performance and colour accuracy of the screen so you can make sure the videos you’re tweaking look true to form.

To get these real world results, our team of experts has used each laptop for at least a couple of weeks, as well as using equipment such as colorimeters and benchmark software to provide accurate and comparable results.

If you can’t find a video editing laptop that you like from our list right now, we’d suggest bookmarking this page as we’ll be updating this list frequently as more excellent options pass through Trusted Labs. If a video editing laptop isn’t what you want specifically, you may also want to check out our Best Laptop, Best Ultrabook or Best Student Laptop lists for a wider selection.

How we test

Learn more about how we test laptops

Every laptop we review goes through a series of uniform checks designed to gauge key things including build quality, performance, screen quality and battery life. 

These include formal synthetic benchmarks and scripted tests, plus a series of real world checks, such as how well it runs the most frequently used apps. 

We also make sure to use every laptop we review as our primary device for at least a week to ensure our review is as accurate as possible.

MacBook Pro 16-inch (2021)

Best overall laptop for video editing


  • Stunning display
  • Amazing performance
  • The ports and MagSafe are back


  • RAM upgrades are expensive

For a brilliant all-round choice, we think the latest MacBook Pro laptops represent a truly fantastic option.

Our benchmarks tests show the MacBook Pro to offer an extraordinary level of power with a choice of either the M1 Pro chip or the beefier M1 Max. There’s a significant boost in overall performance compared to the original M1 Macs, and its benchmark scores excel against even the very best Windows laptops. This also goes hand in hand with some truly sublime thermal performance, as even when running Final Cut X and rendering in 4K, the MacBook Pro remained practically silent.

Apple has also drastically improved the screen by moving to a Mini LED backlight. An immense HDR performance and a measured peak brightness of 1600 nits makes this one of the most vibrant panels on a laptop out there today. We also found the resolution to be incredibly high to ensure sharp and detailed images, even if it was just shy of hitting the 4K mark. These panels also come with a 120Hz refresh rate thanks to Apple’s ProMotion tech, which provides a smooth output for scrolling and viewing fast-moving objects.

The new MacBook Pro has also seen the return to a boxier frame that retains the same industrial charm as previous MacBooks, but with the inclusion of a new set of ports including MagSafe power delivery, as well as an HDMI out and an SD card reader. The keyboard on offer is fantastic, with well-sized keys and good travel. There’s no Touch Bar present, with the conventional row of function keys added instead.

The battery life with these 2021 MacBook Pros is also impressive, with the larger 16-inch model dating a little better than the 14 inch option, but you are splitting hairs over what is some marvelous stamina. We managed to match Apple’s claims of 21 hours of go juice on the 16 inch model, and got through a working day comfortably without the need to charge the laptop back up again. For all-day editing though, you may need to have the lead to hand, as more intensive workloads will tend to drain the battery quicker.

If you want a laptop solely for video editing, it’s difficult to fault the MacBook Pro. It is very expensive, especially if you opt for the high RAM and storage configurations, but we still think this is the absolute best laptop for content creation. But if you like the idea of playing video games on the side, we’d suggest opting for a Windows machine like the Dell XPS 15 instead. And if you fancy yourself a MacBook but can’t justify the cost of the Pro model, the M1-powered MacBook Air is still a fantastic option, especially for those who only need an entry-level graphics performance.

Reviewer: Max Parker
Full review: Apple MacBook Pro 2021 review

Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED

Best value laptop for video editing


  • Excellent performance, even for gaming
  • Dazzling OLED screen
  • Remarkably thin and light
  • Great battery life


  • Poor port offering
  • Can run hot and loud under strain

Laptops that excel at workloads such as video editing are generally very expensive, while also being noticeably hefty due to the discrete graphics chip inside. The Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED solves both issues by using an AMD chip with powerful integrated graphics power. It may not be as powerful as an M1 Pro or Nvidia GPU, but we found it still be very capable for entry-level video editing.

It features one of AMD’s brand new Ryzen 6000 series processors which, during testing, provided a noticeable improvement over previous generations, and offered benchmark results similar to that of Apple’s M1 chip. Support for PCIe 4.0 also enabled immensely quick read and write speeds, doubling the performance of a standard laptop SSD, making loading large video files an absolute breeze. 

The screen is also important for video editing, so it’s good to see the Asus feature an OLED display, which we found to offer incredible contrast with inky blacks and vibrant colours. In addition, colour space coverage provded to be excellent, with 100% sRGB, 96% Adobe RGB and 97% DCI-P3. This essentially means the Zenbook S 13 OLED is able to produce all the required colours to display image or video pretty much perfectly, making it an ideal candidate for video editing.

The design here is a little bit plain and simple with a non descript metal deck that looks a little bland by comparison to other premium ultrabooks such as the Dell XPS 13 OLED. This is thinner than the XPS though, which looks fantastic but has the adverse effect of offering minimal ports – the Zenbook S 13 OLED only has three USB-C connections and a headphone jack. If you want to hook up old peripherals or use USB stick, you’ll need to live the dongle life.

Our tests show the battery life to be absolutely incredible for such a powerful machine. Running the PC Mark 10 benchmark revealed the Zenbook S 13 OLED to have quite the runtime inside it, with our test causing it to last around 13 and a half hours. This is practically double what other premium ultrabooks offered in the same test, which goes to prove how power efficient these new Ryzen 6000 chips are.

So the Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED may not be the most powerful laptop on this list, but its low price, OLED display and ultra-portable clamshell design nevertheless make it a stellar option for budding video editors.

Reviewer: Ryan Jones
Full review: Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED review

Dell XPS 15 (2021)

Best 15-inch laptop for video editing


  • Sleek, sturdy and impressive design
  • Lots of processing power
  • High-quality keyboard
  • Vivid, bright and high-resolution display


  • Some colour accuracy issues
  • Middling battery life
  • Some missing ports
  • Underwhelming graphics core

If it’s a larger screen laptop you’re after for video editing, the Dell XPS 15 (2021) is a fantastic option.

The large 15.6-inch panel comes with a little extra vertical space thanks to a 16:10 aspect ratio. For video editing, colour accuracy is also integral, and we’re pleased to report the XPS 15 (2021) features an accurate display. With our colorimeter in hand, we measured it to have 99.9% sRGB and 99% Adobe RGB coverage, which means both photos and videos should be displayed accurately.

The XPS 15 comes with a sturdy carbon-fibre and aluminium frame that weighs 1.8kg, which is light enough to carry around on the regular. At 18mm, this is also quite a thin laptop, which has the adverse effect of reducing options for connectivity. The XPS 15 doesn’t feature any USB-A, HDMI or Ethernet connections – you can use dongles, but it’s not as elegant. 

Under the hood, it features a speedy Intel Core i7-11800H that we found to power through both general multitasking and intense workloads. The fact that this is an H-series chip also means it’s specifically designed for those high-intensity workloads such as video editing. The addition of an RTX 3050 Ti dedicated GPU also provides a graphics boost for for such workloads, making it a more powerful option than the Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED above, albeit still lagging behind the MacBook Pro.

During testing for battery life, we found the XPS 15 to last for an average of 10 hours over both a video loop test and the PC Mark 10 Modern Office. This means you’ll comfortably be able to get through a working day, although the battery life will notably drop off if you do engage in more intense tasks, as you might expect.

Reviewer: Mike Jennings
Full review: Dell XPS 15 (2021) review

Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo OLED

Best dual screen laptop for video editing


  • Dual-screen design is great for select apps
  • Lightning-fast performance
  • OLED screen looks dazzling
  • Optional Nvidia GPU


  • Poor battery life
  • Keyboard feels cramped

The option to have a dual-screen setup will likely be a draw for video editors, as it not only allows you to use the second display as a toolbar for certain content creation apps, but also to give you more room to see additional windows and apps. The Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo OLED is a shining example of what it can do.

Inside, the Intel Core i7-12700H processor offers a smashing performance, with our benchmark results showing it to be one of the fastest Windows laptops currently on the market. The Xe integrated graphics on offer will suffice for basic video editing work, and if you wish for an added boost in graphics performance, you can configure the Zenbook Pro 14 Duo OLED with a discrete Nvidia RTX 3050 Ti GPU.

A real standout feature here is the 14-inch OLED panel that we found to offer excellent colour accuracy alongside inky blacks which help to boost the contrast significantly. We measured colour coverages of 97% DCi-P3 and 96% Adobe RGB, ensuring the Asus laptop is capable of accurately presenting photos and video.

The only real downside here is battery life, as the Zenbook Pro 14 Duo OLED could only muster four and a half hours in our tests before shutting down, albeit with both screens running. Even with the smaller ScreenPad Plus off, Asus’ dual-screen candidate lasted for only around six and a half hours. This means this is really a laptop that’s best used when plugged in for your video-editing exploits.

Reviewer: Ryan Jones
Full review: Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo OLED review

Acer ConceptD Ezel 7

Best convertible laptop for video editing


  • Superb colour depth
  • Well-designed, versatile display hinge
  • High-end Wacom EMR digitiser
  • Textured glass screen is a great stylus surface


  • Noticeable fan noise
  • Uses last-gen CPU/GPU
  • Expensive
  • Weak speakers

The Acer Concept D Ezel 7 is a smartly designed convertible laptop with a clever hinge that allows the screen to be tilted towards the user, as well as flipped around the back of the keyboard for a more traditional tablet-style experience.

It offers an incredible LCD display , with our colromiter proving that it’s capable of some truly fantastic colour overage, which is very important for video editing. Interestingly, the LCD display here also works with a stylus that uses the same digitizer tech that’s present in some of Wacom’s high-end drawing tablets. This means the Ezel 7 is a great choice for illustrators too, given the stylus support and the responsive nature of such a light stylus.

Packing a 10th generation H-series Intel Core i7 processor and an Nvidia RTX 2070 Max-Q GPU, the Ezel 7 can blaze through tasks for professional creators. The SSD inside the Ezel 7 is also pretty fast, and will be quick enough for loading and saving large video files in no time at all. Thermal performance is decent enough, and there’s a good amount of cooling on offer, although the fan system can get a little noisy at times. 

At 2.5kg, the Ezel 7 is a heavy beast and compares more in weight to one of the best gaming laptops than one for creatives. Nonetheless, it feels excellent in hand with some fantastic build quality thanks to a metal frame. We found the connectivity here to be excellent with support for Thunderbolt 4, as well as ethernet, HDMI and DisplayPort. Just watch out for the slightly shallow keyboard compared to the Ezel 3 Pro, and the quite garish and dim orange backlight.

Reviewer: Andrew Williams
Full review: Acer ConceptD Ezel 7

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Is 256GB storage enough for video editing?

We would not recommend opting for 256GB when buying a laptop for video editing. One hour of 4K footage can take up around 42GB of storage. Add in other important files such as audio, and you can see how your laptop hard drive can quickly be filled up to the brim. If you work with lots of video files, we suggesting opting for 1TB model, while a 512GB configuration should be enough for most people too.

How much RAM do I need to edit 4K video?

Intel suggests that you need at least 32GB of RAM for 4K editing. We reckon you could get away with 16GB if you want to keep your budget down as low as possible.

Do you need a high end laptop for video editing?

If you want to frequently edit video without sluggish rendering speeds, then you’ll need a laptop with a powerful GPU. AMD and Nvidia supply lots of discrete graphics chips in a huge range of laptops, with Apple’s M1 processor series also excel at such workloads.

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Trusted Reviews test data

Horizon Zero Dawn frame rate (Full HD)
Dirt Rally (Full HD)
Borderlands 3 frame rate (Full HD)
PCMark Battery (office)
CrystalMarkDisk Write Speed
CrystalDiskMark Read speed
3DMark Time Spy
Geekbench 5 multi core
Geekbench 5 single core
Black level
White Visual Colour Temperature
Adobe RGB
Battery Life
PCMark Battery (gaming)
PCMark 10

Comparison specs

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Storage Capacity
Front Camera
Battery Hours
Size (Dimensions)
Operating System
Release Date
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Model Number
Model Variants
Refresh Rate
Audio (Power output)
Display Technology
Screen Technology
Touch Screen

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