Best Laptops for Drawing | Top 9 Laptops for Artists and Animation

Best Laptops for Drawing
Surface Pro 8 Artist Laptop Check on Amazon
Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook Check on Amazon
Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo UX482E Check on Amazon
Microsoft Laptop Studio Laptop Check on Amazon
Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 Check on Amazon
Acer Spin 5 Artist Laptop Check on Amazon
HP Spectre x360 Check on Amazon
Lenovo Yoga 9i Check on Amazon
Apple MacBook Pro 14 Check on Amazon

In the ever-evolving realm of digital art and design, the choice of the right laptop for drawing and animation is crucial. Creative professionals, illustrators, and animators seek devices that can handle demanding tasks with finesse, offering a combination of power, quality, and versatility.

This comprehensive guide explores the top ten laptops tailored to cater to the needs of artists and animators, shedding light on their key features, performance, and suitability for creative work. The journey begins with the most revered choice, the Apple MacBook Pro 14 Drawing Laptop, and progresses through various options, each offering unique advantages.

Top 9 Best Laptops for Drawing Reviews

9. Apple MacBook Pro 14 Drawing Laptop: A Creative Powerhouse

Number 9 on our list brings us to the Apple MacBook Pro 14 Drawing Laptop. For a considerable span of time, the Apple MacBook Pro has held a prominent position in the creative professional’s arsenal. Recently, this iconic device has undergone a significant transformation, emerging as a powerhouse for creative tasks. Its capabilities now surpass those of most competitors, making it a compelling choice for artists and animators.

When seeking a laptop for drawing and animation, several factors come into play: performance, display quality, connectivity options, software support, and battery life. The Apple MacBook Pro 14 excels in all these categories, presenting itself as a holistic solution.

This device boasts Apple’s in-house M1 Pro processor, featuring an 8 or 10-core CPU and a 14 or 16-core GPU. Built on cutting-edge 5nm process technology, it efficiently manages heavy drawing tasks and 2D animations while effortlessly handling demanding 3D animation workflows and rendering.

The 5-nanometer chip architecture sets new standards for power efficiency, ensuring the MacBook Pro’s longevity, almost doubling the battery life compared to leading Windows laptops.

Moving to the screen, Apple’s reputation for excellent displays is well-deserved. The MacBook Pro 14 features a Liquid Retina XDR display with Mini-LED technology, delivering exceptional contrast and vibrant colors. With 1000 nits of sustained brightness, it outshines its competitors, even in bright outdoor environments.

Furthermore, a plethora of connectivity options accommodates various devices such as drawing tablets, making it a versatile tool for artists. However, it’s important to note that, while the MacBook Pro 14 can handle casual gaming, it isn’t the top choice for hardcore gamers.

8. Lenovo Yoga 9i Artist Laptop: A Versatile Gem

Our list’s number 8 entry, the Lenovo Yoga 9i Artist Laptop, introduces us to a versatile and modern option. Certified under Intel’s Evo program, this laptop boasts a new-generation Intel Core processor, ensuring responsive performance. With over nine hours of battery life and near-instant wake-up times, it stands out as one of the most powerful options for creative work.

The 2-in-1 design enables users to switch between a traditional laptop configuration and a tablet-like device, making it perfect for drawing on the 16:9 full HD display. A unique advantage is the inclusion of the Lenovo Active Pen stylus, a convenient addition compared to many alternatives that require separate purchases.

7. HP Spectre x360 Drawing Laptop: A Stylish Contender

Taking the 7th spot on our list, the HP Spectre x360 is the embodiment of style and functionality. With its sleek brushed-metal design and 360-degree hinge, it impresses both aesthetically and practically. The laptop offers ample space on the keyboard and remarkable key travel, enhancing the overall experience.

Performance-wise, the HP Spectre x360 is powered by 11th generation Intel processors and boasts nearly 13 hours of battery life. While it works well with styluses, including the included HP Active Pen, some users may find it slightly less comfortable to use in tablet mode when compared to other options.

6. Acer Spin 5 Artist Laptop: An Affordable Marvel

Number 6 brings us to the Acer Spin 5, offering an affordable yet feature-rich option for artists. In contrast to many high-end laptops on this list, the Acer Spin 5 is budget-friendly while retaining essential features for drawing.

One notable aspect is its 3:2 aspect ratio display, providing extra vertical space for drawing compared to standard 16:9 screens. The laptop comes with its own stylus, although it may not feel as robust as others, it charges rapidly and keeps you drawing without interruptions.

Impressively, the Acer Spin 5 delivers up to 12 hours of battery life, ensuring a consistent creative workflow without the need for frequent charging.

5. Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 Drawing Laptop: A Premium Choice

Number 5 takes us to the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, a premium device catering to the needs of artists. Featuring a stunning touchscreen, this laptop offers an exceptional drawing experience. Its slim aluminum shell, complemented by a patterned carbon-fiber finish, combines aesthetics and performance.

The display options provide flexibility, with touch options that cater to drawing, including an OLED screen with vibrant colors and exceptional brightness. The 16:10 display ratio offers additional vertical space, particularly advantageous for creative tasks.

For those artists engaging in other forms of creative work like photo or video editing, the Dell XPS 13 offers configurations to meet those demands. It’s important to note that Dell produces several versions of the XPS 13, so ensure you select the one that aligns with your requirements.

4. Microsoft Laptop Studio: A Versatile Creative Hub

Claiming the 4th position on our list is the Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio. This exceptional device is a testament to Microsoft’s commitment to innovative design. Featuring a dual-screen design, it offers unparalleled versatility for creative tasks.

The Surface Laptop Studio deploys a split hinge mechanism, enabling the screen to function as a tablet or to stand in an easel-like position for drawing and other hands-free activities. The 3:2 screen size is ideal for drawing, while the 120Hz refresh rate and compatibility with the Surface Slim Pen 2 stylus guarantee a responsive and enjoyable drawing experience.

With 505 nits of brightness, it offers vibrant and detailed visuals. The laptop excels not only in design but also in performance and battery life, consistently providing around 12 hours of use.

3. Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo UX482E Laptop: Unconventional Excellence

Earning the 3rd spot on our list is the Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo UX482E, an unconventional laptop tailored for creative work. Its distinguishing feature is the dual-screen design, comprising a stunning 1800p OLED touchscreen with 550 nits peak brightness and a second ScreenPadPlus.

This 12.7-inch touchscreen is both practical and innovative, accommodating apps, shortcuts, and stylus-supported drawing. The ability to angle the ScreenPadPlus enhances the drawing experience. The laptop’s powerful internals and solid build quality make it a top-tier choice for creative professionals.

2. Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook Drawing Laptop: Budget-Friendly Drawing

If you seek an affordable option for drawing, the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook, taking the 2nd position on our list, is a strong contender. Priced below $300, this 2-in-1 Chromebook delivers impressive battery life of up to 22 hours due to its low power requirements.

Running on Chrome OS, it offers access to a wide range of Android apps, making it suitable for digital art applications. It supports the Universal Stylus Initiative, allowing compatibility with digital pens from various manufacturers.

1. Surface Pro 8 Artist Laptop: The Ultimate Creative Tool

In the top spot on our list is the Microsoft Surface Pro 8, a hybrid device that blurs the lines between a tablet and a laptop. The Surface Pro 8 runs Windows 11, granting users access to fully-fledged desktop software in a compact and portable form factor.

Attach the optional keyboard, known as the Type Cover, and you transform the tablet into a fantastic thin and light laptop. The Surface Pro 8 excels as the best laptop for drawing due to its exceptional stylus support and ultra-portable design.

Unlike most 2-in-1 laptops that fold back to become a tablet, the Surface Pro 8 takes a unique approach with a split hinge design. This design allows you to slide the screen over the keyboard, making it usable as a tablet. However, it can also be propped up in an easel-like position, eliminating the need for a separate stand and providing a hands-free drawing experience.

The Surface Pro 8’s 3:2 screen size is ideal for drawing, and it boasts a zippy 120Hz refresh rate. It supports the Surface Pen stylus (sold separately), offering a responsive and fluid drawing experience. When we reviewed the laptop, we found that it achieved an impressive 505 nits of brightness.

In addition to its excellent drawing capabilities, the Surface Pro 8 delivers outstanding performance and long battery life. It’s a versatile device suitable for various creative tasks, making it the ultimate tool for artists and designers.

Buying Guide: Choosing the Right Laptop for Drawing and Animation

In the ever-evolving world of digital art and animation, selecting the perfect laptop is crucial to manifest your creative visions. This buying guide will help you navigate the myriad of options available and make an informed decision. We’ll explore key factors to consider when choosing a laptop and delve into frequently asked questions to address your concerns.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Laptop for Drawing and Animation

When choosing a laptop for drawing and animation, several essential factors come into play. Let’s explore them one by one:

Performance :

Performance is paramount. For smooth drawing and animation, opt for a laptop with a powerful processor and a dedicated GPU. The Apple MacBook Pro 14 and Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio are notable examples.

Display Quality:

A high-resolution, color-accurate display is vital. Laptops like the Dell XPS 13 and Asus ZenBook Pro 14 Duo offer exceptional screen quality, making your work truly shine.

Portability and Form Factor :

Portability matters, especially if you’re always on the go. 2-in-1 laptops like the Lenovo Yoga 9i and Acer Spin 5 offer the flexibility of a tablet and a laptop in one device.

Battery Life:

Long battery life is essential, ensuring you can work on your projects without interruptions. The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook, with up to 22 hours of battery life, is a standout in this aspect.

Stylus Support :

A laptop’s compatibility with a stylus is critical for drawing. The Microsoft Surface Pro 8 is renowned for its excellent stylus support, offering a seamless drawing experience.

Operating System :

Consider whether you prefer Windows, macOS, or Chrome OS. Each has its unique advantages. For example, the Apple MacBook Pro excels with macOS, while the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook runs on Chrome OS.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Let’s address some common questions that individuals often have when shopping for a drawing and animation laptop:

Are MacBooks or Windows laptops better for creative work?

It depends on your preference and needs. MacBooks, such as the Apple MacBook Pro 14, are renowned for their display quality and build, making them an excellent choice for creative work. However, Windows laptops, like the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, offer versatility and may support a wider range of software.

Do I need a dedicated GPU for drawing and animation?

While integrated graphics can handle basic drawing tasks, a laptop with a dedicated GPU, like the Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio, significantly enhances performance for complex animations and 3D work.

Is a 2-in-1 laptop better than a traditional laptop for drawing?

2-in-1 laptops, such as the Lenovo Yoga 9i Artist, offer the flexibility of both a tablet and a laptop, making them ideal for drawing. However, traditional laptops like the Apple MacBook Pro 14 provide excellent performance and screen quality.

Can I use any stylus with these laptops?

It depends on the laptop. The Surface Pro 8 and Lenovo Yoga 9i come with compatible styluses. Others, like the Acer Spin 5, include a stylus but may have limited compatibility with third-party options.

How much RAM do I need for drawing and animation?

For smooth multitasking, aim for at least 8GB of RAM. However, laptops like the Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio can be configured with up to 32GB for handling complex projects.


Selecting the right laptop for drawing and animation is a pivotal decision that can greatly impact your creative workflow. By considering performance, display quality, portability, battery life, stylus support, and operating system preferences, you can make an informed choice. Whether you opt for a MacBook like the Apple MacBook Pro 14 or a versatile 2-in-1 like the Lenovo Yoga 9i, each laptop has its unique strengths to offer. In this ever-evolving creative landscape, the right laptop can be your steadfast companion, enabling you to bring your artistic visions to life.

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