It doesn’t matter whether you’re a professional disc jockey or a beginner in music production. If you’re looking for a reliable laptop that can run modern music production or DJing software like Ableton Live, Pro Tools, Serato DJ, Traktor Pro 2 smoothly, then you are in the right place.
Although many people claim that DJs don’t need a laptop, however, having a future-ready machine allows you to compile, render, produce music in a matter of clicks. Also, there are a lot of professionals who make a living out of this profession, thanks to technological advancements and easy-to-learn DJ software.
We first talked to 45 professional DJ artists and music producers with years of industrial experience to make this list. We then examined the technical specifications with the minimum required specs of the most commonly used DJ software like Serato DJ Pro, Ableton Live, Mixxx, Pioneer rekordbox, etc.
We analyzed the minimum system requirements of 18 different renowned DJ and music production software. According to us, here are the minimum & recommend specs you should consider when getting one.
- Minimum & Recommended System Requirements
- 8 Best Laptops for DJs in 2021
- Frequently Asked Questions
Minimum & Recommended System Requirements
|Minimum System Requirements||Recommended System Requirements|
|CPU||8th Gen Intel Core i5||9th Gen Intel Core i7|
|Storage||256GB SSD||512GB SSD|
|Display||13.3-inch FHD (1920 x 1080)||15.6-inch FHD IPS (1920 x 1080)|
|OS||Windows 8 / macOS X Mojave||Windows 10 / MacOS Big Sur|
|Battery||Up to 4 hours||Up to 8 hours|
|GPU||Integrated Intel HD / Iris Plus||2GB NVIDIA GeForce MX350 or better|
If you have a laptop with the minimum system requirements, you will be able to run DJ apps. For a smooth experience, we suggest opting for the ones that have the recommended specs or are above them. And at the same time, making sure that you don’t overspend.
8 Best Laptops for DJs in 2021
|Asus ZenBook Pro Duo|
|Apple MacBook Pro|
|Razer Blade 15|
|Acer Aspire 5|
|Dell XPS 13 7390|
|Lenovo IdeaPad 5|
|Microsoft Surface Pro 7|
While buying a perfect laptop isn’t a super easy task, it is not that difficult either. If you’re technically sound, you can enter the required specifications in a Laptop Finder, and you’ll get an endless list of suggestions from different laptop brands. However, if you’re looking for expert recommendations, then continue reading!
1. Best Overall: Asus ZenBook Pro Duo
The ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo is one of the best laptops suited for DJs and DJing. It has a 15.6-inch 4K display offering a screen resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels with a higher PPI than the competition. In addition to the high-resolution screen, the touchscreen display can help use software like DJ Pro and Virtual DJ.
Thanks to the touch screen display, you can control parameters like bass, treble, and even mix songs directly on the touch screen itself. Compared to a non-touchscreen laptop, the Asus ZenBook Pro Duo seems to offer more practicality, especially for professional DJs.
The Asus ZenBook Pro Duo is powered by the 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H, a high-performance 6-core processor with a base clock speed of 2.6GHz. The CPU is paired with the 6GB NVIDIA RTX 2060 GPU, enabling users to play high-end games like GTA: V at native 4K resolution.
When it comes to storage, the laptop offers a 1TB SSD-based super-fast storage solution. Thanks to it, you can now store enough tracks and load multiple professional DJ software without worrying much about space.
It weighs 5.5 pounds, which makes it a bit bulky and heavy. However, considering the specs sheet, it is an average weighing laptop and it also offers a top-notch battery life of 6-7 hours on a single charge.
- 4K Ultra HD Touch Screen Display
- Touch Support
- 1TB of SSD storage
- RTX 2060 GPU
- Bulky and heavy
- Average battery life
2. Best with MacOS: Apple MacBook Pro
If you are serious about becoming a DJ, then the 16-inch MacBook Pro is the right laptop that can handle all DJ software with ease. The 16-inch Retina display is big, bright and comes with a native resolution of 3072 x 1920p, which will let you pixel peep into your mix without any external screen or monitor. However, if needed, you can connect an external 4K display to it.
As per the hardware capabilities, the device is capable of running DJ software like Traktor, PCDJ DEX 3, Virtual DJ, and Djay without any sort of lags, even when you are running another software in the background.
DJing involves playing with multiple tracks to create custom music, and the 9th Gen H-series processor, Intel Core i7-9750H with a base clock speed of 2.6GHz can handle the task without any issue. Additionally, it has 16GB RAM which allows you to keep multiple DJ software running in the background for seamless switching between them.
The laptop comes with 512GB flash storage, which is more than enough for most DJs, but you could use External HDDs for backups. This SSD-based laptop offers higher read/write speeds than HDD, which should decrease the time taken to load files into the mixing software.
The battery life is an important aspect for a DJ, as it is hard to find a charging plug near the stage. But with this machine at your service, it won’t be an issue at all, as it can deliver 11 hours of battery on a single charge. The best part is, it also supports fast charging.
Lastly, it weighs 4.3 pounds, which might seem a bit heavy. However, considering that it has a 16-inch display, this is even lighter than a lot of 15-inch laptops.
- Good battery backup
- Plenty of fast storage
- Good display
- Amazing software support
- Good after-sale support
3. Best for Gamers: Razer Blade 15
If you are a DJ and want to buy a modern laptop with brilliant design and sturdy build, the Razer Blade 15 seems to be the best option for you. It comes with a 15.6-inch IPS screen with thin bezels and offers a native resolution of 1920 x 1080p with an anti-glare finish, which will reduce the light reflection from the parties.
The laptop comes with the 10th Gen Intel Core i7-10750H processor; that’s why it is capable of running resource-intensive DJing software such as DJ Intro or the Serato DJ. Also, The 6GB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 is powerful enough for those who are into making custom tracks or even podcasting.
To show you how powerful the GPU is, we ran multiple 3D modeling and CAD software that includes AutoCAD, Blender, Revit, and Cinema 4D. Not to mention, it worked just like a charm! Not just that, it is also capable enough of running high-graphic games such as Fortnite, PUBG, WOW, Civ 6, LOL, and more at 60FPS without any lags or stutters.
As per the storage, the Blade 15 from Razer offers a 512GB SSD. This lets DJs having DJ software load quickly. Thanks to 16GB RAM, the machine can run the Virtual DJ and MixVibes Cross DJ at the same time.
This is a bit bulky 15-inch laptop, as it weighs 8.75 pounds, which makes it a bit harder to carry and play for a DJ. Besides, the built-in speakers are also powerful, which can also be used at pre-party and after-party scenes. Lastly, the machine delivers 6 hours of battery life on a single charge and supports fast charging.
- Premium build
- Modern Design
- High-end CPU
- Upgradable storage
- Average battery life
- Lower brightness
- Bit heavier
4. Best Under Budget: Acer Aspire 5
As a professional Disc Jockey on a budget, you can blindly put your trust and money on the new Acer Aspire 5. While the existing specs sheet is in line with faster mixing and track combining requirements, the laptop comes bundled with a dedicated Predator Galea 310 headset for you to be in better control of your tracks.
Acer houses a reliable AMD Ryzen 7 3700U chipset that is power-efficient and graphics-optimized at the same time. While you cannot associate the processing bells and whistles relevant to a Ryzen 7 chipset with the same, it is still a good enough computing resource for running software solutions like Virtual DJ, Ableton Live, Serato DJ, and more.
Although the track remixing capabilities aren’t top-notch, the turbo boost clock speed of up to 4GHz minimizes lags and helps get better outputs for smaller files. The integrated AMD Radeon RX Vega 10 allows you to design certain graphics for brand promotion and even indulge in entry-level games.
However, we were most impressed with the 8GB DDR4 RAM. The existing chunk of system memory is fast enough for helping you add presets and synths to the mixes. Besides, the high-bandwidth RAM is also a good asset for professionals who are into live remixing.
As far as the storage is concerned, the 512GB SSD unit is a reliable resource. In addition to helping you load mixes to the software in no time, the solid-state drive also speeds the gadget boot-ups, concerning the Windows 10 Home OS.
While the display isn’t as important to the Disc Jockey, the 15.6-inch IPS screen ensures that you do not miss out on any UI-centric detail. As far as the resolution is concerned, you get to experience 1920 x 1080 pixels, to be exact, making it one of the best panels for other creative tasks like photo editing and video editing. However, the widescreen panel furthers the resourcefulness of this Aspire 5 as a DJing resource.
Other productivity-centric specs include the slim and reliable backlit keyboard followed by a numeric keypad and amplified speakers with True Harmony acoustic technology. This feature helps you check the quality of the mixes before you start performing in front of a maddening crowd. However, we were equally pleased with the Galea 310 gaming headset, best known for exceptional audio clarity and high-fidelity output.
The Acer Aspire 5 is relatively slimmer as compared to other laptops allocated for the audiophiles and the Disc Jockeys. Not just that, the portability quotient is furthered by the 5+ hours of steady battery backup. Moreover, Acer also accommodates an extensive and diverse connectivity suite with Type-C, USB 3.1 Gen 1, 2x USB 2.0, and HDMI ports featured for connecting data repositories and external devices, with ease.
Besides, you also get access to the Wi-Fi AX standard, which is handy enough for establishing high-speed wireless connections. Overall, the Acer Aspire 5 is easily one of the best and most complete notebooks for Disc Jockeys, doubling down as a reliable professional machine owing to the HD webcam, USB charging, and other specs.
- Wi-Fi 6 suppor
- High-speed RAM
- Widescreen display
- Not meant for power users
5. Best 4K Laptop: Dell XPS 13 7390
A lot of professional DJs look for a compact laptop with a 4K screen, and the Dell XPS 13 7390 seems like a great option for those who need a 13-inch laptop with touch support. Just like most of the XPS series of laptops, this device also flaunts thin bezels. Also, it offers a screen resolution of 3480 x 2160 pixels with 10-point multi-touch support and a higher screen-to-body ratio.
The laptop is based on the latest energy-efficient Intel Core i7-10710U, which is a 10th gen Intel processor with a base clock speed of 1.1GHz and a boost clock speed of 4.1GHz. Having an extremely low base clock speed will help the CPU to offer better battery life and the higher boost clock speed will ensure that software like DJ Pro and Virtual DJ will run smoothly throughout the concert.
There’s also integrated Intel UHD graphics, capable enough for basic graphic-intensive tasks and can be used to connect an external 4K monitor. Although it isn’t the best graphics, you’ll get on a laptop, but it’s more than enough for most of the DJs.
As for the RAM and storage, the Dell XPS 13 7390 offers a whopping 1TB of SSD storage, which is a substantial amount of storage for DJs, especially those who likes to use multiple DJing software like Serato DJ, Virtual DJ, and it will also help DJs to compose new tracks directly on the laptop, as it offers higher write and read speeds.
Though the Dell XPS 13 7390 is a 4K touch laptop, thanks to modern design, it just weighs 2.93 pounds and offers an amazing battery life of 8 hours on a single charge. Overall, this is a great laptop for DJs, those who want one with a touch screen with a higher resolution panel with great visibility.
- Bezel-less 13-inch screen
- 4K touch-enabled panel
- 10th Gen Intel processor
- 1TB of SSD storage
- Good Battery Life
- Lower base clock speed
- No dedicated GPU
6. Extensive RAM + Storage: HP 15
The HP 15 2-in-1 laptop is for those who want more built-in RAM and storage with a good screen with touch support. It has a 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080p IPS grade screen.
It comes with the AMD Ryzen 7 4700U processor, which offers a base clock speed of 2GHz and a boost clock speed of 4.1GHz. When it comes to raw performance, the processor that powers the HP 15 can even outperform laptops with the Intel Core i7-7500U. Also, the built-in AMD Radeon Graphics card allows you to play some light games such as Minecraft at 1080p.
The laptop also ships with a massive 2TB SSD storage, which makes it a great option for DJs, especially for those who like to make their own tracks and save them locally on the computer, instead of an external hard disc. The 32GB RAM in the machine allows great multi-tasking.
Coming to the battery life, the laptop comes with a 41Wh battery, that usually lasts for six hours on a single charge. Lastly, it weighs 3.74 pounds, making it not such a heavy machine and one can easily carry this around on a daily basis.
- 15-inch screen with touch support
- 2TB SSD storage
- 32GB RAM
- Good battery life
- Average trackpad
- Average keyboard
7. Best Battery Life: Lenovo IdeaPad 5
The Lenovo IdeaPad 5, based on Windows OS also offers a huge set of features that a DJ might look for in a laptop. It has a 1920 x 1080 high-resolution touch screen with a narrow slim bezel design allowing DJs to create native high-resolution photos and graphics, which can be used in concerts.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 5 features the Intel Core i7-1165G7, 11th gen quad-core processor, which is power efficient and offers a base clock speed of 2.8GHz, delivering a good battery life. This laptop does not have a dedicated GPU, instead, it comes with the Integrated Intel Iris X Graphics, which uses system memory and can power an external monitor with up to 4K resolution.
Coming to storage and RAM, this machine offers a 512GB SSD which can load software like DJ Pro, Virtual DJ in just a few seconds thereby saving a lot of time. Coming to RAM, the computer has 12GB RAM, which is a good amount of RAM a DJ laptop should have.
Moreover, this laptop can also be used for other professionals purposes like work from home, watching video concerts, taking Zoom calls, and more.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 5 is a thin and light laptop. It just weighs 4.44 pounds, making it easy for DJs to carry around on a backpack or a sling bag. Similarly, the machine also offers a good battery backup and on a single charge it can last up to 12 hours and the battery does feature fast charging support as well.
- Thin and light design
- Long battery life
- High-resolution screen with touch support
- Hidden web camera
- USB Type-C compatible
- No dedicated GPU
- A bit expensive
8. Best Compact Laptop: Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Microsoft makes some of the best Windows OS powered laptops and the New Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is a testament for the same. It comes with a compact 12.3-inch display, offering 2736 x 1824p resolution and the display also supports touch input, which enables DJs to use modern DJing software like Virtual DJ, which supports touch input.
The device is powered by the 10th Gen Intel Core-i5-1035G4 processor with a base clock speed of 1.5GHz. This is a quad-core processor, based on 10nm fabrication, which ensures good performance with improved battery efficiency compared to laptops with previous-generation Core-i5 processors.
Similarly, the built-in Intel Iris Plus GPU on the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 also delivers good graphics performance, which will be useful for casual gaming and rendering short music files on apps like Djay or Ableton Live, which requires high-computational performance.
This model offers 128GB flash storage along with 8GB RAM. After the OS installation, the laptop offers around 70 to 80GB of free storage, which seems a bit less. However, it does offer a dedicated USB-A port, which allows DJs to access tracks from an external storage device with ease.
If you are using a specific DJ software, then this amount of storage should be enough. However, if you usually play with different software, then you might have to consider a laptop with at least 256GB of internal memory.
Thanks to the efficient processor and software optimizations, the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 offers 10 and a half hours of battery life on a single charge. Similarly, it just weighs 1.1 pounds without the external keyboard combo, which makes it easy to carry. If you are looking for a full-fledged laptop, which can also be used as a tablet, then the New Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is the device that you should get.
- High-resolution touch screen
- Efficient processor
- Can be used as a tablet
- Good battery backup
- Limited internal storage
- Expensive accessories
Frequently Asked Questions
What laptops do professional DJs use?
Professional DJs can use a laptop that is either based on Windows OS or macOS. It should have a good screen, an audio out port, and a good processor capable of rendering music and loading music quickly.
How much RAM does a laptop that DJs use should have?
A laptop for DJs should have at least 8GB RAM, and it is also advised to get the machine with 16GB RAM, making the device future proof.
How much storage does a laptop that DJs use should have?
A laptop with 128GB storage is more than enough if a DJ uses a single software. However, a professional DJ should opt for the one with at least 512GB storage, who likes to save the custom DJ music that has been created locally.
Do you need a laptop for DJing?
Yes, a pair of good sounding headphones and a laptop will be the best friends of a DJ. Ensure that you select the one that offers high-fidelity sound output, and it should also have additional ports to connect to an external speaker or a sound system.
Do you need a MacBook laptop for DJ?
Most of the Djing software like Virtual DJ and Pro DJ are available for both Windows OS and macOS. So, you can either use a MacBook or a Windows OS-powered laptop for Djing without any issue.
Why do DJs use Mac laptops?
Most professional DJs use MacBook laptops, as they offer good battery life and good sound output. Compared to Windows OS laptops, macOS machines crash less often, which gives peace of mind for DJ, especially while performing a live show in front of a crowd.
Djing is now considered a very noble profession, where artists earn a lot of money and respect. If you are getting into it, then you can consider any one of the laptops that offer the right balance between regular usage and DJing related tasks.
Some of these laptops offer a lot of performance and storage, which makes these machines good for gaming and can also be used for other applications. Which one are you getting?