best budget laptop for music production
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And this is a video on the best alternatives to the 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro Now it’s hard to find a truly comparable device to that 15-inch MacBook Pro Because it’s got some pretty unique features, like the Touch Bar and macOS But if you’re comfortable using macOS or Windows And you’re just looking for a premium laptop that has good build quality, has good performance, with a quad-core CPU and has good portability — this video’s for you. Now this is not an exhaustive list, but these are ones that I personally really like These are all quad-core laptops, so no Surface products Or Ultrabooks because those are all two-core CPUs Ok, first up we have the 2016 15″ MacBook Pro itself. Super thin, pretty powerful but very expensive. And it’s only equipped with Thunderbolt 3 ports. Next up we have last year’s 15-inch MacBook Pro It’s bigger, but it’s still a very capable machine. It has more ports, and it’s at a cheaper price point right now. We have the ASUS UX501. This is the most premium laptop that ASUS makes, outside of their gaming lineup. Not the thinnest laptop but it has a really big battery The MSI GS63 is one of the most powerful laptops in here since it has a GTX 1060. It’s a gaming laptop, but because it’s pretty thin and light, it makes the cut. Next up, we have the Dell XPS 15 It’s still one of the best laptops ever from Dell The carbon-fiber finish and the Infinity Display really makes this a strong contender here. We also have the Aero 14 from Gigabyte. Comes in black, green and orange. And it’s also equipped with a GTX 1060, but this is a smaller 14-inch screen. Lastly we have the 2016 Razer Blade. Also with the GTX 1060 One of the thinnest laptops with this powerful graphics chip. It also has a 14 inch screen and it has Chroma lighting So like I’ve done in other videos like this, I’m going to go through some categories, and then tell you my top picks for each particular category. In terms of build quality, the MacBooks are the kings here. They’re really well-built The Razer Blade and the XPS 15, I would say, are tied for second place The XPS 15, I feel a little more durable, the Razer Blade looks cleaner to me. You can actually get skins for all three of these laptops, from dbrand. They can look awesome. I’ll link them below. The 4K display on the XPS 15 is really nice. It’s not the brightest of the group, but it’s still plenty bright. It’s the most color accurate, and it has super thin bezels. The 2016 MacBook Pro has lower resolution, but it’s very bright, which is great if you use your laptop outdoors alot It has a very wide color gamut but it isn’t as color accurate. The UX501 also has a great 4K display. None of them have bad screens though, it’s just a matter of preference for resolution and screen size. MacBooks tend to have terrible user-upgradability In fact, the 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro can’t be upgraded at all. The RAM and the SSD are both on-board. Now all of the Windows laptops have upgradeable RAM and storage, except for the Razer Blade. You can only upgrade the storage for the Razer Blade. The most upgradeable is the MSI GS63. It has two RAM slots and two drive bays. The XPS 15 can also do this, but it’s a little bit more complex. Gotta order some parts in, to do that. These all have good keyboards. None of them are bad. Personally, I like the keyboard on the 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro, the most. I know a lot of people would disagree, but I personally can type the fastest and most accurately with it. No joke. The GS63, the XPS 15 and the Razer Blade with Chroma Lighting are also good. But you know what? You can’t go wrong with any of these keyboards. They’re all enjoyable to use. The MacBooks are still the trackpad leaders. The Taptic Engine, the surface texture, the precision. They’re still the best It’s kinda sad. We’re rolling into 2017 here, and Windows laptops still haven’t perfected the trackpad. But of this bunch, the one that I like the most, is the XPS 15. Now any of them that can use native Windows Precision drivers are going to be better, But the MacBook trackpads are still the best. The laptop with the best selection of ports is definitely the MacBook — No, I’m kidding. I’d say the winner is the MSI GS63 It has a ton of ports but the SD reader is slower. I think it’s USB 2.0 But basically all the Windows laptops tend to have a pretty good selection of ports. The Razer Blade is missing an SD reader. The Aero 14 doesn’t have Thunderbolt 3 support But aside from that, they’re all well-equipped with ports. The only one here with rock-solid external GPU support is the Razer Blade. So if you connect that to the Razer Core, it works perfectly. The XPS 15 isn’t bad either but the rest of them are still kinda flaky right now with external GPUs. Aside from MacBooks, they’re all rocking the Skylake, 6700HQ processor. Very similar CPU performance across the board. The laptops with the GTX 1060s are the best performers. Between them, they’re too close to really say which one is the winner, maybe the GS63. But they’re all really powerful. Now thermally, the laptops with the weaker cards are going to produce less heat and have quieter fans. The MacBook and the XPS 15 are the most quiet when they’re under load. The Razer Blade and the Aero 14 are the loudest, when they’re gaming. The 2016 MacBook’s speakers can’t be beat. No one is making better speakers right now. And to be honest, all the Windows laptops speakers sound similar in overall quality. I mean they sound different from each other, but it’s hard to really label a winner. So if the 2016 MacBook has first place, the 2015 MacBook has second place. And maybe the Razer Blade for third place? None of them are bad though. In general, battery life isn’t going to be amazing on laptops like these. Skylake processors are reasonably energy efficient, but when you take a quad-core CPU, And you put it into into a thin and light chassis, you can only expect so much. The 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro has the best battery life. It’s an older processor but it has a big battery, and macOS is pretty energy-efficient. Of the Windows laptops, the UX501 is the longest lasting here. The XPS 15, when it’s configured with the big battery, is also pretty good. Ok, in terms of value none of these laptops are going to be particularly cheap. They’re all premium in some way or another. I think the best value overall would be the MSI GS63. You’re getting really good performance for the price Now, whether or not you need or even want that kind of performance, is something else. But it delivers really good bang-for-the-buck. The UX501 is also pretty well-priced, with its 4K screen. And a used, or refurbished 2015 MacBook Pro, can also be a pretty good value. Now, you can’t go wrong choosing any of these laptops, and there’s other really good options out there That aren’t in this video. Something like the Alienware 13. It’s a little bit thicker and heavier than the rest of them here. It is a great quad-core laptop In terms of like the best overall one, it really depends on what you’re doing. As a video editor, my personal top pick is the XPS 15, mostly because of the screen. I really like the color accuracy and I really like the fact that it has really thin bezels. That just seals it for me. If you need more information about any of these laptops, they’re gonna be down below Individual reviews, as well as some benchmarks for some of the video cards Actually one of the video cards — The GTX 1060 But yeah, hope you guys enjoyed this video. Thumbs, if you liked it. Subs, if you loved it. It’s been nice. I’ll see you guys next time.
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