Editor note: check out our Black Friday deals for some fantastic savings on Apple and Windows laptops.
As a DJ, you need a laptop that can handle the demands of your craft. Whether you’re playing live sets at a club or preparing a set at home, the right laptop can make all the difference.
First and foremost, you’ll want to find a laptop with strong performance capabilities. DJing software can be resource-intensive, so you’ll need a laptop with a fast processor and plenty of RAM to keep up.
A quad-core Intel Core i5 or i7 processor and at least 8GB of RAM should be sufficient for most DJing tasks, but if you’re using particularly demanding software or working with large audio files, you may want to consider a laptop with even more powerful specs.
In addition to strong performance, you’ll also want a laptop with a high-quality display. Many DJing software programs have a lot of visual elements, so a crisp, clear display is essential.
A 1080p or higher resolution display should be sufficient for most purposes, but if you want the absolute best picture quality, you may want to consider a laptop with a 4K display.
Another important consideration is portability. As a DJ, you’ll likely be traveling with your laptop to gigs and studios, so you’ll want a machine that’s lightweight and easy to carry. Look for a laptop that’s on the thinner and lighter side. A decent battery life is a nice bonus too.
Finally, you’ll want to consider the durability of your laptop. DJing can be a rough-and-tumble profession, so you’ll want a laptop that can withstand the wear and tear of the road. Look for a machine with a sturdy build and, if possible, a spill-resistant keyboard. Some business class laptops are best in this instance.
With these factors in mind, let’s take a look at some of the best laptops for DJing currently on the market:
MacBook Pro or MacBook Air
Editor note: You can currently get the Macbook Air M1 for just $750 through Amazon.
Apple’s MacBook Pro and MacBook Air laptops are among the most popular options for DJs. There are several reasons for this:
First and foremost, the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air offers strong performance capabilities, with a range of processors to choose from, including the M1 or M2 chip, which is known for its fast speeds and efficient performance. The M3 chip is on the way too.
The MacBook also has plenty of RAM, with options for up to 64GB, which is important for handling the demands of DJing software. The storage is fast making transfers quick too.
In addition to strong performance, the MacBook also has a high-quality display, with options for resolutions up to 4K. This is important for visualizing the various elements of DJing software and for creating and editing audio files.
The MacBook Pro and Macbook Air is also known for its slim, lightweight design, making it easy to take on the road to gigs and studios. It has a durable build, with a sturdy chassis and a spill-resistant keyboard, which is important for withstanding the wear and tear of the road.
The MacBook comes in 13″, 14″ and 16″ variants, so there’s a size for everyone. For many years Macbook has offered a combination of strong performance, a high-quality display, portability, and durability.
Shop now on Amazon
Dell XPS 13
The Dell XPS 13 has been a formiddable model for many iterations and is a great laptop option for DJs because it offers strong performance, a beautiful display, and a slim, lightweight design.
The Dell XPS 13 is equipped with a fast processor, such as an Intel Core i5 or i7, and plenty of RAM to handle the demands of DJing software. It also has a high-quality display, with a 1080p or higher resolution screen, which is important for visualizing the various elements of DJing software.
In terms of portability, the Dell XPS 13 is lightweight and slim, making it easy to take on the road to gigs and studios. It has a durable build, with a sturdy chassis and a spill-resistant keyboard, which is important for withstanding the wear and tear of the road.
Overall, the Dell XPS 13 offers strong performance, a beautiful display, and portability, making it a good choice for DJs. This is my personal choice when it comes to Windows laptops.
Shop now on Amazon
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon is a great laptop option for DJs because it offers strong performance, a beautiful display, and a durable build.
The ThinkPad X1 Carbon is equipped with a fast processor, such as an Intel Core i5 or i7, and plenty of RAM to handle the demands of DJing software. It also has a high-quality display, with a 1080p or higher resolution screen, which is important for visualizing the various elements of DJing software.
The ThinkPad X1 Carbon is lightweight and slim, making it easy to take on the road to performances. It also has a durable build, with a sturdy chassis and a spill-resistant keyboard, making it able to withstand the wear and tear of the road.
Overall, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon is a well-rounded laptop that offers strong performance, a beautiful display, and durability, making it a good choice for DJs.
Shop now on Amazon
Lenovo IdeaPad 3i
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3i is a budget laptop for DJs which offers fast enough performance to run your DJ software, a decent amount of ram, NVMe storage and a sturdy design.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3i comes equipped with various processors, however if you’re on a budget, the i3 option might be suitable for you. It has a 1080p resolution screen, which might be useful when performing.
In terms of portability, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3i weighs 1.85kg / 4.07lbs, which is light enough for taking around to various places. It also has a durable build with an attractive design.
Overall, if you’re looking for the best budget laptop for DJing, you can’t go wrong with the Lenovo IdeaPad 3i.
Shop now on Amazon
Can you use any laptop for DJing?
Yes, in general, you can use any laptop for DJing as long as it meets the minimum system requirements for the DJ software you plan to use.
Ultimately, the specific laptop you choose will depend on your personal preferences and budget.
Why do DJs use Apple laptops?
There are a few reasons why DJs might prefer to use Apple laptops:
MacOS is known for its stability and reliability, which can be important for DJs who rely on their laptops to perform.
Apple laptops tend to have high-quality displays, which can be useful for viewing waveforms and other visual elements of DJ software.
Many professional DJs use software like Serato DJ or Rekordbox, which are available for MacOS.
Apple laptops are often seen as a status symbol in the DJ world, and some DJs may choose to use them for this reason.
It’s worth noting, however, that DJs can use any laptop that meets the minimum system requirements for their DJ software, regardless of whether it is made by Apple or another manufacturer.
Is 8GB memory enough for DJing?
In general, 8GB of RAM is sufficient for most DJing tasks, but it may not be enough for more resource-intensive tasks. DJ software can be quite resource-intensive, especially if you are using multiple decks, audio effects, and video effects. In these cases, having more than 8GB of RAM can help ensure smooth performance and prevent lag or other issues.
If you are using a laptop for DJing and are concerned about the amount of memory, you may be able to upgrade the RAM at a later date. However, this will depend on the specific laptop model and its hardware capabilities.
Ultimately, the amount of memory you need will depend on your specific DJing setup and the demands of your performance. If you are using a laptop with 8GB of RAM and are not experiencing any issues, it may be sufficient for your needs.
However, if you are using a lot of resource-intensive features or plan to use your laptop for other memory-intensive tasks, you may want to consider upgrading to a laptop with more RAM.
Why do DJs use laptops?
There are several reasons why DJs might use laptops:
Laptops are portable and easy to take to gigs, making them convenient for DJs who perform at different venues.
Laptops can store a large amount of music and other media, which can be useful for DJs who need to access a large library of tracks.
DJ software is often more powerful and feature-rich when run on a laptop, allowing
DJs to access a wider range of options and customization.
Many laptops have high-quality displays, which can be helpful for viewing waveforms and other visual elements of DJ software.
Laptops can be used with DJ controllers or other hardware to create a more immersive DJing experience.
Is Mac or Windows better for a DJ?
There is no definitive answer to this question as both Mac and Windows operating systems have their own strengths and weaknesses when it comes to DJing.
Ultimately, the choice between Mac and Windows will depend on your personal preferences and the specific needs of your DJ setup.
Some factors to consider when deciding between Mac and Windows for DJing include:
Compatibility: Some DJ software is only available for one operating system or the other, so make sure the software you want to use is compatible with your chosen operating system.
Performance: Both Mac and Windows laptops can be suitable for DJing, but some users may prefer the performance of one over the other.
Ecosystem: If you already use other Apple products (such as an iPhone or iPad), a Mac may be a more seamless choice.
Price: Mac laptops tend to be more expensive than their Windows counterparts, so budget may be a factor in your decision.
Ultimately, the best operating system for DJing will depend on your specific needs and preferences. It may be helpful to try out both Mac and Windows laptops to see which one works best for you.