So you are looking for a new computer to video edit on? Then you’re most likely looking for the best computer for video editing. Let’s take a look at what we consider the top options for powerful video editing.
Nowadays you can edit a video on just about any device. If you have a simple 60 second video, you can edit it on your smartphone in no time.
However, if you’re looking to do some serious editing on anything a simple YouTube video, a short film or even a full-length narrative feature, you’ll need a stronger machine to take care of it.
While having a top-tier editing software is important, having a powerful computer to run it is equally important. You’ll want a smooth editing process, not a computer that freezes and lags every time you scan through a clip.
An inadequate computer will just stall and frustrate you. After all, who wants to sit and wait 5 hours for a render of a 30 second piece of footage?
In this guide, we’ll see the things you need to consider before buying a computer for video editing.
Also, we’ll see a few computers that are recommended for specific needs. Hopefully, by the end of the guide, you’ll have a good idea of your requirements and what you’re going to get.
Best Computers For Video Editing
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some recommendations for the top editing computers:
- Operating system: macOS
- Processor: 8-Core 3.2GHz Intel Xeon W
- Memory: 32GB of 2666MHz DDR4 ECC memory
- Internal Storage: 1TB SSD
- Graphics: Vega 56 Radeon Pro Vega 56 graphics processor with 8GB of HBM2 memory
- Mouse and keyboard: Space Gray Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad and Space Gray Magic Mouse 2
- USB ports: Four USB 3 ports, Four Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports
- Wireless: Wi-Fi 802.11ac Wi-Fi wireless networking IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n compatible and Bluetooth 4.2 wireless technology
- Warranty: 3-year limited hardware warranty
This might just be the strongest computer that Apple ever released.
This computer was designed with content creators in mind. It boasts a slick and slim all-in-one machine design. At just 0.2 inches thick, the Apple iMac Pro fits nicely on your desk without taking up much space.
The screen is 27 inch, which is perfect for video editing, offering a lot in the way of screen real estate.
Now, despite the compact design, what this machine has on the inside is what’s really impressive. You get 128GB of RAM, which is more than enough for your editing needs.
Also, the Apple iMac Pro comes with an Intel Xeon W processor and an AMD Vega 64 graphics card. This means editing will be a breeze on this machine. Think powerful!
Of course, with this much horsepower, the cost is bound to be just as high. This is perhaps the biggest downside of the Apple iMac Pro.
You should expect to pay a premium price, but you are buying a very premium piece of equipment.
Also, you cannot upgrade this machine yourself. What you get is what you get. Still, if what you’re looking for is the strongest machine out there, this is probably it.
- 27-Inch (diagonal) 5120-by-2880 Retina 5K display
- Stunning 5-mm-thin design
- 6-Core 9th-generation Intel Core i5 Processor
- Radeon Pro 570x, 575x, or 580x Graphics processor
- Two Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports
- Operating system: Windows 10 Home
- Processor: 8th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-8700 processor
- Memory: 16 GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM memory (2 x 8 GB)
- Internal Storage: 2 TB 7200RPM SATA hard drive , 256 GB M.2 SATA Solid State Drive
- Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 graphics card with 3 GB GDDR5 dedicated memory
- Mouse and keyboard: HP wireless keyboard with volume control and optical mouse
- Optical drive: DVD-Writer(6a)
- USB ports: 11 (2 x 2.0, 8 x 3.1, 1 x 3.1 Type-C™(42))
- Wireless: Wireless LAN 802.11a/b/g/n/ac (2×2) and Bluetooth® 4.2 M.2(19a)(26)
- Warranty: 1-year limited hardware warranty
If the iMac Pro is a little out of your budget, or if you’re just more into PCs than Macs, this next offering is sure to do the job for you.
HP ENVY 795-0050 is perfect if you’re looking for something for mid-range video editing.
While its specs are not as sky-high as the iMac Pro, you’ll get your money’s worth for the asking price. For starters, we have 16GB of RAM that’s upgradeable if your budget allows it.
While 16GB doesn’t seem like much, trust me, it’ll do the job. HP chose an Intel Core i7-8700 3.2GHz as its processor which is an excellent choice.
In terms of storage, you get a 2TB hard drive. So you can store all your footage without having to worry about prematurely running out of space. Of course, we highly advise external hard drive use, too, especially if you’re on the move.
We also need to mention the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 graphics card, which is strong enough to take care of all your editing needs.
The best thing about this computer, however, might be the price. You’re not going to have to break the bank with this machine in the way you need to with the iMac listed earlier in the guide.
So, if you’re just into mid-range editing and don’t need the biggest, strongest machine out there, this one will do the job.
- A powerful PC to fuel your creativity: experience performance Designed to let you render, edit, and...
- Super-fast Processor: 9th Generation intel(r) core(tm) i7-9700 Processor Processor, 8-Core, 3.0GHz;...
- Graphics: smoothly stream content and play your favorite games with Intel's) UHD Graphics 630
- Dual storage: 512 GB SSD and 1 TB 7200Rpm SATA hard drive; by including both an SSD Drive for the...
- Memory: 16 GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM (upgradable to 32 GB); designed to run efficiently and reliably at...
- Operating system: Windows 10 Pro
- Processor: 7th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-7820HQ
- Memory: 16GB or 32GB (DDR4)
- Internal Storage: 1TB or 2TB solid-state drive (SSD)
- Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1070 8GB GDDR5 memory (with i7/32/1TB and i7/32/2TB configurations)
- Mouse and keyboard: Surface Keyboard and Surface Mouse
- USB ports: 4 x USB 3.0 and 1 x USB-C®
- Wireless: Wi-Fi: 802.11ac Wi-Fi wireless networking, IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n compatible and Bluetooth Wireless 4.1 technology
- Warranty: 1-year limited hardware warranty
This last option here is for people who want an all-in-one design, but at the same time want to use a PC.
The Microsoft Surface Studio 2 is a robust all-in-one machine. Now, it should be mentioned that it’s still not as strong as the iMac Pro – you get 32 GB of RAM and 1TB of storage. These are, of course, unlike Apple’s offering, upgradeable. A big pro here!
The processor at work in this machine is a 2.9GHz Intel Core i7. Which is fine for all your mid-range (read: not super pro) editing needs.
The GeForce GTX 1070 more than makes up for the lack of a generation 8 or 9 processor.
What sets the Microsoft Surface Studio 2 apart from the other two is that the screen it touch compatible and can be customized somewhat to your satisfaction.
So if you like doing your editing on an iPad, this will be a nice transition. You can drag and drop the clips you want to edit and get to work as you would on an iPad.
This all comes with a fairly large price tag, though. However, if you’re looking for a PC based machine, with quality speeds and editing power combined with the touch screen element, this is the video editing computer for you.
- Our most powerful Surface yet with Intel Core i7 processors, discrete NVIDIA GeForce GPU, and SSD...
- The strikingly large 28" PixelSense Display is a stunning touchscreen with 13.5 million pixels of...
- Tilt the display weightlessly to work at 20 degrees down in Studio Mode or upright in Desktop Mode
- Keep creativity flowing when you draw with the improved Surface Pen and use Surface Dial* for...
- Runs intensive professional-grade software like SolidWorks,* Adobe Creative Cloud,* and Autodesk.*
Things to Consider Before You Buy a Video Editing Computer
Let’s look at some consderations you should keep in mind when looking at the best computer for video editing.
If you already have a preferred software that you like to use, keep it in mind before you buy your video editing computer.
If, for example, you use Sony Vegas Pro, you’ll obviously want a PC. On the other hand, if you prefer getting your edit on with Apple’s Final Cut Pro, then you need a Mac.
For something like Adobe’s Premiere Pro and After Effects, you can rest assured that both PC and Mac cater to these offerings.
In the same vein, if you get a PC make sure to read the specs well. Some video editing softwares don’t work with older versions of Windows like XP or Vista.
And, of course, it should be noted that different softwares work with different hardware and some don’t play well together.
Don’t forget that you have to buy your software, or in some cases pay monthly for a license. So do adequate research and due diligence about the software before you buy it. Find out if it suits your needs before you buy your video editing computer.
Size matters! Your screen size matters a lot. You’ll want the largest LCD monitor that is, of course, compatible with your graphics card (which we’ll get to in just a minute). 27 inch monitors are the best for most video editing environments.
While they may seem excessive at first sight, you’ll want the wide display to manage multiple tabs and view your footage on the best display you can find.
There are three other main hardware considerations. Storage space, processing power and Memory.
For storage space, you don’t want anything less than 1TB. As you may know footage nowadays, especially 4K, 6K or 8K, takes up a lot of space and you want an editing computer that’ll handle that.
As for RAM, anything less than 8GB might be problematic.
Processors & Graphics Cards
Ah, processors and graphics cards – the engine room of your video editing computer!
Lastly, do your research on the processor that the computer has. For processors, I would not recommend anything under a 7th generation processor.
All the specs of any computer you consider buying are widely available on the internet so do your research.
One more thing to look for is what type of Graphics card comes with the computer.
While it’s true that you can change the graphics card and upgrade your RAM, it’s often better if you pay upfront for the full package. That is unless you want to spend some extra cash on upgrades, which might often wind up with your spending more out of pocket.
Best Computer For Video Editing – In Conclusion
There is a myriad of computers out there to satisfy your video editing needs. Computer manufacturers are very competitive and, thus, they make different computers with different specs and varying prices to satisfy all customers.
If you have something specific in mind that our recommendation doesn’t touch on, just look it up on the net. It’s guaranteed you’ll find what you need.
Hopefully, after reading this guide you know what you need to consider and look for when buying your video editing computer.
We hope you’ve found this article on the best computer for video editing helpful. Do you have a computer you’d recommend for video editing? Let us know in the comments section below. Thanks for reading!