It’s a minute or two since our last laptop update, so we thought we should get onto it and buy some new ones. Portable production has become even more popular over the last few years and has really come to the forefront during The Covid Pandemic. With a laptop you’re able to stream from home, the office or any production site that you need to go to. It’s makes them a really flexible option as they can also be used for editing, Netflix and gaming. We usually recommend a laptop over a NUC as they’re usually more affordable, far more powerful and offer a screen. There are plenty of great gaming laptops that are $999USD, which is a great price for powerful machine!
In the past we’ve recommended laptops that offer Thunderbolt 3 and G-Sync as a part of their feature set. This year hasn’t changed that, but we’ve also added a more affordable option that doesn’t offer Thunderbolt 3 or G-Sync which would be more suited to USB3 and NDI inputs.
Recommended specs for a live streaming laptop in 2020-
- Intel i7-10750H
- NVIDIA GeFORCE GTX 1660ti or higher
- Thunderbolt 3
- G-SYNC Display
- At least 16gb RAM
These requirements will provide you with the best experience for using vMix. The i7 and dedicated graphics card will allow you to produce multi-cam productions with ease. Thunderbolt 3 connectivity will give you the option to use high-speed data transfer via a Thunderbolt 3 enclosure or AJA iO4k+. G-Sync allows for the best performance with vMix and your displays.
If you’re not looking for Thunderbolt capture, there are plenty of non-Thunderbolt i7 laptops around the $999-$1299 range that will work great with vMix.
Looking for more power?
You could also look at an Intel i9 or a more powerful GPU such as the 2080.
Specific Laptop Models-
For Thunderbolt 3 capture and G-Sync
Dell Alienware M15 R3 (2020)- Intel i7 10750H/GTX 1660ti/G-Sync/Thunderbolt 3/Upgraded the SSD to 512gb
This is a lightweight 15inch laptop that will give you plenty of power for multi-cam live streaming. It gives you the flexibility of having Thunderbolt 3 capture but of course still supports USB3 and NDI. It came with a 256gb SSD which I upgraded to 512gb to allow for more storage. You can customise the laptop through the Dell website, so if you’re looking for more storage/processor power/GPU then you can configure it to your desires!
More Affordable Option for an AMD laptop
Asus TUF Gaming A15- AMD Ryzen 7 4800H/GTX 1660ti
We’ve had many people ask for affordable laptop options for vMix, so we thought we would add this as an option. The 2020 AMD laptop processors are extremely powerful even in the base models like this one. Although they don’t offer Thunderbolt or G-Sync, they will still provide a great option for vMix users who are using USB3 inputs and/or NDI sources.
If you were looking for more power, take a look at the 4900H processors and a beefier GPU.
Older Generation Laptops
Previous generation laptops are becoming more scarce but the 9th Gen Intel i7 laptops will still get the job done. I still have my 7th Gen ASUS ROG laptop and it’s still a good option for live streaming. They have a good CPU, dedicated GPU, G-SYNC and Thunderbolt 3. If you can find one with similar specs, you might be able to save some money.
- Intel i7- 9750H
- NVIDIA GeFORCE GTX 1060/1660ti or higher
- Thunderbolt 3
- G-SYNC Display
- 16gb Ram
Don’t need all the bells and whistles?
The laptops we recommend have all the necessary features to produce, record and stream a multi-cam production with a Thunderbolt capture device. Perhaps your production doesn’t require some of the things we recommend…maybe you don’t need Thunderbolt, maybe you aren’t doing such a large production. If you are looking for another option, definitely look for a laptop with a high powered CPU, dedicated GPU, SSD and G-SYNC. These features will give you the best performance in vMix.