There are many laptops with different specifications. As far as specs go, we can classify laptops into three categories: Low End, Mid Range, and High End. People purchase the laptop according to the kind of features they need. AutoCAD is a Computer Aided Drafting software which is used by designers, architects, and engineers to model various plans.
The software is used by both professionals and students. The laptop which can run AutoCAD properly must have a certain set of requirements that must be met. Only then will AutoCAD run properly.
For Instance, the minimum system requirement for AutoCAD 2019 is:
- OS: Windows 10 (64-bit only), 8.1 (32-bit & 64-bit), or 7 SP1 (32-bit & 64-bit)
- CPU: 2.5 GHz (3 or more GHz recommended)
- RAM: 8 GB (16GB recommended)
- Storage: 6.0 GB
- Display: 1080p
What this means is that you have to buy a laptop that comes around these requirements. Your laptop must be a mid end to high end, budget laptops won’t make the cut.
Let us now see the things you need to consider while making a purchase for the Laptop as the requirements given above generally implies a desktop PC.
Things To Look In Laptop for Autocad, 3D Modeling and Designing
- CPU: A 2 GHz processor is fast enough but 3 GHz is recommended, the problem is we don’t have a 3 GHz processor for most laptops, therefore, you can go with a CPU with multiple cores and/or hyperthreading, These CPU features will definitely improve your performance. The 8th Gen Intel Core i7 is the most famous and latest CPU out there. If you can’t get it then you can go with 8th Gen i5 too. Just make sure to get the H/HQ processor. What do I mean by that? Well, For example, i5-8XXXU is an Underclocked CPU whereas i-58XXXHQ is a high powered CPU. Although the U variant works fine, the HQ will provide you performance that will last for years to come.
- Memory: All the data of your AutoCAD workbench needs to sit on memory and that memory is the RAM. But how much RAM do you need? 8 Gigs will cut it but 16 is recommended. One thing to consider about laptop RAM is that dual channel beats single channel i.e, 2 RAMs of 8 GB is better than 1 RAM of 16 GB. Get a DDR4 or above RAM for better performance.
- GPU: GPU refers to the Graphics Processing Unit. You will have to render 3D scenes while working on AutoCAD. This will require some graphics horsepower. You might not need a really powerful gaming graphics card but what you are going to need is an okay, mid-range graphics. Just a bit more than the integrated Intel graphics.
- Storage: Traditionally Hard-Drives have been largely used to store data on a laptop. But recently, the wave of SSD (Solid State Drive) has largely replaced the HDD. You can install AutoCAD on an SSD, it will provide faster loading time and even faster rendering. You can store your large files on the HDD and store small sized files on SSD, this will help you save a lot of time.
- Display: The kind of display you want to use largely depends on your personal preference and your budget. In laptops, commonly you can either get a 1080p display, 1440p display or a 4K display. Don’t buy a 720p Display. If possible, get a separate monitor. Make sure your display has good viewing angles and ample resolution.
Best laptop for AutoCAD (students and Professionals)
|1. Acer Aspire E 15||7.5|
|2. Dell G3579||7|
|3. Dell Inspiron 7000||7|
|4. Acer Predator Helios 300||7|
|5. Acer CUK Aspire 7 A717||8|
1. Acer Aspire E 15
Let us first start with the mid-range segment i.e, below 700 dollars. The Aspire E 15 by Acer costs around 650-699 dollars and it can handle AutoCAD with ease. The Laptop features an 8th gen i7 processor but it is underclocked. However, since the processor is high end from the latest generation, it will be more than enough for you.
The laptop also features an NVidia MX150 graphics card which will handle most of the rendering task with ease. There is also a presence of 8 GB RAM which is okay but paired with a Solid State Drive, it can perform really fast. The RAM here is single channel. You can purchase an 8 GB RAM stick to improve it even better. Since the laptop isn’t really expensive, it can be a very good option for the students even in the base version.
The display is also very nice, an FHD IPS LED display means great viewing angles, better color reproduction, and a bigger screen. The battery lasts for 15 hours and Windows 10 is included in the package. The laptop may come with a lot of bloatware at first so, it is recommended to do a clean installation of windows initially.
Specs of Acer Aspire E15
- DISPLAY 15.6 Inch FHD Widescreen LED IPS
- CPU 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8550U
- GPU NVIDIA GeForce MX150 2GB
- MEMORY 8GB DDR4
- STORAGE 256GB SSD
- OS Windows 10
- BATTERY 15 Hours
One thing that can really be a deal breaker is the weight. With that graphics chip and a 15-inch screen, things get heavy. Most of the weight is added by the cooling mechanism as the MX150 can overheat while playing extensive games. But that’s a good thing too, this laptop can play some latest games in addition to AutoCAD.
As far as the performance in AutoCAD goes, it smashes every task we threw at it. The thing that will turn off many people, however, is the lack of storage space. You don’t get a hard disk but you have an SSD with limited storage. It’s a bummer. You have to buy an external hard disk separately.
2. Dell G3579
The Dell G3579 is a mid-range laptop which comes at a price of under 1000 dollars. The best and the latest CPU and Processors are there with the Dell G3579. For instance, it has an i7 processor with the H specification meaning it is high powered. The 8th gen i7-8750H is great for professional people who work with AutoCAD. There are many other features too, a backlit keyboard is featured which will help you to work in the night time.
The GPU is literally a Titan. The GTX 1050 Ti has an impressive clock speed and 4 GB of VRAM which will handle anything with ease. Even the latest games will be rendered at 60fps with this card. Content consumption is facilitated by an FHD Display which is an IPS panel equipped with Anti-Glare technology. Switching to the RAM, a dual channel 16 GB DDR4 RAM means one thing; PERFORMANCE! Any task, even the most resource consuming, on AutoCAD will be a walk in the park for this machine. The storage is perfect here, an SSD+HDD combo is always great.
You don’t have to spend any extra money to upgrade the laptop. Speaking of money, the laptop costs around 1050$ in retail but you can get it around 950-975$. Even at 1050$, this laptop is worth it, mainly because of the Specs. With these specs, you can do anything that a laptop can possibly do.
Specs of Dell G3579
- DISPLAY 15.6″ FHD IPS Anti-Glare LED-Backlit Display
- CPU 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8750H
- GPU NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB
- Memory 16GB DDR4
- STORAGE 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD
- OS Windows 10
- BATTERY 5 Hours Battery Life
Out of the 5 main areas; CPU, GPU, Memory, Display, and Storage, 4 areas are covered by this laptop. The display is nice too but a 4K would’ve been the icing on the cake. In addition to AutoCAD, you can do video editing, gaming and all sort of content production like Music, Animation, and VFX with it, the laptop has the power that really is something.
These Specs, however, raise some problems. First, it increases the size of the laptop and a heavy laptop can feel a bit too much for people. Secondly, There are heating issues because of the pack that it has so much CPU and GPU horsepower.
The cooling system is nice but there can be a lot of problems with it. Finally, the most crucial problem is with the battery, if you’re working at a remote and rural place with limited access to electricity then, this laptop isn’t for you. You can definitely get a better and a lot cheaper laptop for you.
3. Dell Inspiron 7000
The Inspiron 7000 by dell is yet another good laptop for any purpose. It may lack the performance of the G3579 but it does have really comfortable use modes and even better battery performance. The Laptop can be used foldably as a convertible that kind of does the work of a tab. This means it has a touchscreen display and can be really useful to take important notes on the go. The silver build here is pretty premium and it gives a classy vibe.
The laptop is best suited for professionals. It has a U processor which will work fine as the RAM is 16 GB. In addition, the MX 150 is an entry level card that will handle all the rendering works without any hassle. The display is a 17-inch FHD IPS touchscreen which is pretty sturdy as well. Another good feature is the 500 GB SSD which is just amazing. What is even more impressive is that the SSD is combined with a 2 TB HDD so, if you’re someone who wants to store a lot of data, this laptop is for you.
Windows 10 is included in the package, and you get around 6 Hours of battery life. As far as the ports go, you get almost all the ports despite it being a slim build. You get an HDMI, USB 2.0 and 3.0, an audio jack and an SD Card Reader. The stylish well-specced, lowkey laptop comes at a bit of a price though, you can get it for just over that 1000$ mark.
Specs of Dell Inspiron 7000
- DISPLAY 17.3 Inch Full HD LED backlight IPS Touchscreen Display
- CPU 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8550U Processor
- GPU NVIDIA GeForce MX150 2GB Graphics
- Memory 16GB DDR4
- STORAGE 512GB SSD + 2TB HDD
- OS Windows 10
- BATTERY 6 Hours Battery Life
For a U processor, 6 hours of battery life isn’t something to talk about but other areas of this laptop is just great. The main strength is the storage. There are minor heating issues present but it’s not a real deal breaker. Another thing that really bothered me was the build quality, the slim build here raises some eyebrows on the physicality of the device.
The touchscreen works fine though. It has good precision overall. As far as the AutoCAD performance goes, there are no lags whatsoever. It breezes through all your work thanks to the CPU, the RAM and the SSD here. The 500 GB SSD has a really fast read/write speed and what’s great is that the HDD doesn’t fall behind much. This combination works so well and it’ll impress a lot of people out there.
4. Acer Predator Helios 300
The Acer Predator Helios 300 is yet another laptop in that 1000-1100 $ price range. The main feature of this Device is the graphics card, a 6 GB GTX 1060 means 60 fps, High Settings for gamers. As far as AutoCAD goes, any rendering task will be a breeze for this card. The CPU is also an ‘H’ CPU. So, What is the trade-off? Storage. The lack of an HDD makes it a hard sell but there is a 256 GB SSD for you to get into. Other than that, the laptop is well specced, an FHD IPS panel on a 15.6-inch screen looks amazing. Nice viewing angles with a cool finish on the build.
Specs of Acer Predator Helios 300
- DISPLAY 15.6 Inch Full HD Widescreen LED IPS
- CPU 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8750H
- GPU NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB Graphics
- Memory 16GB DDR4
- HDD 256GB SSD
- OS Windows 10
- BATTERY 7 Hours Battery
The thing that really is a letdown here is the storage. A 256 GB SSD won’t cut it so, you have to purchase an HDD separately which will cost you more. And when you add that price, you can get an even better-specced laptop so, it’s pretty difficult to recommend this. However, if space isn’t your requirement, or you already have an external HDD then, you can buy this laptop.
The value here lies in that graphics card which is pretty damn powerful. The 8th gen i7 ‘H’ processor is the icing on the cake. A backlit keyboard will also be helpful for working on your AutoCAD projects at night. There is an ample number of ports so, you don’t have to buy extra adapters.
As far as the battery goes, I think 7 hours is pretty good for an ‘H’ processor. The heat sink is built properly since it is targeted towards gamers. This means that the laptop won’t heat up while being used extensively. You can use it for gaming, content creation and all kinds of engineering purposes.
5. Acer Aspire 7
Let us now increase our budget to 1500 dollars. Laptops under this range are best known for their overkill performance and the Acer CUK Aspire A7 is no exception. Everything here is more than you could ever need. But it does make you AutoCAD related tasks pretty fast. If you are a competitor, a high-level person who wants to save time and do a lot of tasks easily, then, I recommend you to get this laptop. For an average person, it doesn’t make sense but for executives who want to save time, Overkill is the way to go.
We don’t even have to talk about the specs here but for formality, let’s jump into it. An 8th i7-8750H processor for smoothing out every task, A GTX 1060 for rendering scenes with ease and a 32 GB RAM to load buffers faster than you could ever imagine. It’s ridiculously powerful. A fully RGB keyboard is also present which will help if you’re a night owl.
In addition, the trackpad has Windows precision driver making it possible to work in AutoCAD without having to buy an external mouse. Awesome! Another hugely important feature is the FHD IPS Display, more on that later. The laptop comes with Windows 10 installed as well.
Specs of Acer Aspire 7
- DISPLAY 17.3″ FHD IPS LED
- CPU 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8750H
- GPU NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB
- MEMORY 32GB
- STORAGE 500GB SSD
- OS Windows 10
- BATTERY 5 Hours
The specs given above will give you an idea of the performance of this beast. We don’t have to analyze that. But one thing that I do have to add is that the cooling is surprisingly great. The CPU doesn’t thermal throttle and the GPU stays cool as well.
The main problem is the display. You may say, an FHD Display is great, isn’t it? Yes, it is great if your panel is sized properly. An FHD screen on a 17-inch panel won’t be anything groundbreaking. A 4K display would’ve made this laptop value for money.
In this state, the laptop isn’t really worth it for an average joe. We don’t recommend it to people who won’t need all the horsepower but if you are trying to compete then, you can definitely get this laptop without any second thoughts.
So, these are some of the Best laptops for AutoCAD. Amongst all these laptops, the Acer Aspire E 15 (with an external hard disk and an 8 GB RAM purchased separately) makes the most sense. If you’re not sure about it and want to go an extra mile, then we’d recommend the Dell Inspiron 7000.
If gaming is also your requirement, go for the Acer Predator Helios 300. Whichever your choice might be, one thing is for sure, all these laptops that we’ve reviewed will do every AutoCAD related task with ease.