Buying a laptop to run DaVinci Resolve on a $1500 to $2000 budget is easier than you’d think. I’ve selected a few excellent options.

Any of the choices I suggest below represent better value for money than a Macbook Pro. Full disclosure, I’m an Apple user. As much as I’d like to, I can’t put a Mac in this list. DaVinci Resolve has a few important minimum system requirements that need to be met, and in this price range Apple gives me nothing that can compete with these Windows laptops.

Below is a summary of what to look for in a 2019 / 2020 model gaming laptop to run DaVinci Resolve.

  • The Intel 9th generation i7-9750H and 8th generation i7-8750H are the common processors to the laptops I investigated in this price and performance range. Nothing changes faster than computer specs, so I’ll do my best to update the info here and my selections at least every couple of months.
  • At least 16GB system RAM, but as you’ll see in my selections below, if you look carefully you can find 32GB in this price range also.
  • A decent GPU. Below you’ll see GeForce RTX 2060 6GB, GeForce GTX 1070 8GB, and GeForce GTX 1060 6GB. Any of these will be just fine for your average HD and 4K use in Resolve with most common AVC/H.264 mirrorless camera files, Blackmagic BRAW, ProRes, ProRes RAW etc.
  • All of the below has SSD storage, some have SSD + HDD. In any case you’d likely want to consider fast external video storage as well.

Top Five Best Laptops for DaVinci Resolve Under $2000 in 2020

Below are a few good budget laptop choices for DaVinci Resolve. In fact, they will be suitable for any video post production software. These are Amazon affiliate links. It’s also worth taking a look at the “other products related to this item”. If you click on “see more product details” you can also check “compare with similar items” as well. You might find something slightly different that suits you better, or even at a better price.

Best Laptops for DaVinci Resolve for $1000 in 2020

Below I’m listing the best laptops for DaVinci Resolve that I can find around the $1000 or under mark. I’ll add more as I research what’s available and update them as often as possible. There is no Thunderbolt 3 on these, so expanding via a Thunderbolt 3 eGPU won’t be an option.

Expand DaVinci Resolve Performance with an eGPU

One important thing to consider when selecting a laptop for Resolve is if it has Thunderbolt 3. This makes it possible to use an eGPU to expand performance.

All laptops now come with USB Type C ports. It can be confusing because both USB 3.1 Gen 2 and Thunderbolt 3 use the USB Type C connector. However, just because a laptop has a UBC Type C port, doesn’t mean it has Thunderbolt 3. Be careful and check the technical specs of the laptop carefully.

All of the laptops I’ve mentioned have Thunderbolt 3, and will be able to take advantage of an external eGPU for a performance boost in DaVinci Resolve.

Further Reading

Please don’t hesitate to comment with your questions either here, on Youtube, or hit me up on twitter, I will always reply.

11 Comments

  1. Hi, great selection, thank you very much. Please tell me if there is a chance to pick up a laptop for the price of $ 1000? In order to learn how to work in the program and perform non-complex projects?

  2. Bolton Peck

    It looks like all the Turing architecture cards do everything in hardware, up to and including 8K; VP8 and 9, HEVC 4:4:4, the whole enchilada. I’d be lying if I claimed that I even knew what every one of those is.. but apparently the machine I’m getting is pretty future-resistant 馃槈 (Nothing’s really future proof, they always come up with something new which necessitates hardware to match..) and as an added bonus: I ordered my Gazelle right as they’d run out of this year’s model so I’m getting the new one with 10th gen Intel 6 core/12 thread CPU instead of the 9th gen and faster memory clock, at no extra charge. But I have to wait a couple weeks. Super stoked!!

    • Richard Lackey

      Awesome! I鈥檇 love to know how it performs for you. I may hit you up in a few weeks to find out!

  3. Bolton Peck

    Right on, thanks! Resolve runs in Linux on my current laptop, an older core i7 with Geforce 840M 2GB graphics, except it won’t decode the videos from my Fuji camera because they’re H.264. But it’s really not up to anything other than 1080p, so I’m upgrading. I’m willing to buy the key and upgrade however, if it means I don’t have to command line decode/encode all my movies. The paid version handles said files, correct?

  4. Bolton Peck

    There seem to be a number of pretty nice laptops with CPUs as above, but with the GTX 1660 Ti 6GB GPU on board. I notice that one of your options has the older GTX 1070, another has the 1060.

    Is there some reason that no laptops with the Turing architecture 1660 Ti made the cut? It has 6 GB of RAM, but is there some other limiting factor that makes it less ideal for Davinci than a 1060? Also if it matters, I’m looking at a System 76 Linux laptop versus Windows-the new Gazelle with 15″ screen, 1660 Ti GPU option and lots of RAM/NVMe storage. Thanks!

    • Richard Lackey

      I will definitely look into this. It may have just been a limit in the number of models I researched. Now you have me curious though to check and maybe refresh the list. (I just updated the Razer Blade 15 to the model with the GTX 1660Ti) I鈥檒l check out the System 76 Gazelle for sure, it looks impressive for the price. I鈥檝e never tried to run Resolve on Linux on a laptop.

  5. Your Amazon link above to the MSI GS65 Stealth | 15.6鈥 | i7-9750H, 16GB, 512GB NVMe, RTX 2060 6GB
    links to the HP Omen on Amazon.

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