Looking for New Laptop Suggestions

David dubow

Novice Member
Original poster
Pro Member
Pro Member
Aug 22, 2020
Not strictly a Sony Alpha question, but I would value your input

I am in a situation where I have some money that's got a use-it-or-lose it aspect to it. So I'm seriously considering a hardware upgrade. I use LrC and Ps as well as Luminar (no flaming please) for still photo post processing. I do not do any video editing. I would consider myself a beginner, but have steadily advanced my skills and expect to continue to do so. I am an amateur and enjoy photography as a hobby, not to pay the bills. Since my "studio" is the kitchen table, I am restricted to using a laptop as my platform (I really don't think that the rest of the family would be okay with a tower and 20+in monitor taking over our eating space.) I am also deep into the PC/Windows ecosystem and have been ever since 1982, so I'll not be considering Apple/Mac based options.

Ps, LrC, and Luminar run pretty well on my hardware, with some lag time when processing, but nothing too painful. I can run Topaz DeNoise slowly, but no chance that I could run Topaz Sharpen. My laptop has been pretty stable, no blue screens of death nor other major problems. I do regular backups to the cloud with Backblaze, and I also backup documents, photos, etc, locally onto a 1 TB ssd external drive.

Moving to a new computer is a PIA in my opinion and am only considering it because if I don't use the funds provided from an external source, I will loose them, and they have to be used on computer hardware. It would also be nice to work off a 15in screen, and if newer hardware give a performance boost that's icing on the cake.

I no longer travel with my laptop, so an new system does not have to be overly portable.

I have until the end of Sept to purchase before the money dries up.

My current system is a Lenovo Thinkpad Carbon w a 14 in screen Intel i7 8650 1.9 ghz 8th gen 4 core CPU with 8M cache. It has 16 GB RAM and a 1TB ssd hard drive.

My budget is approx $2500 or less.

So hit me with your suggestions for a system upgrade (remember please, Windows only)

PS The most highly suggested machine that I've found doing internet searches has been the Dell XPS 15. I have seen many comments about the fan noise, but also many solutions. If you used this machine in the past year or less, please let me know your thoughts.

PPS I'm also considering using Laplink to migrate from my old laptop to the new one (assuming I do the upgrade). The approx $40 cost of the single use software would be worth it to me to ease the pain of moving to a new machine. If you've had experience using Laplink please share

Thanks in advance, much appreciated.


Expert Member
Pro Member
Pro Member
Aug 18, 2020
Kev Harper
United Kingdom
I would probably look at getting one built, rather than off the shelf, because you can get a higher spec for the same or less money. It depends on which camera you are shooting with, but for my RIV files I'm using an HP Envy, 17", i7 3.25ghz with a 500gb SSD (not big enough really, but all that was available at the time) and 16gb RAM + Nvida GForce Graphics chip with 4gb Dedicated RAM. I run Photoshop CC, Bridge and a couple of plug ins, and nothing else, it's stripped bare just for photography. It's plenty fast enough really. I can Denoise a 175mb file in Topaz in about 45 seconds, that's some data crunching.
I would aim at getting a bigger SSD and the newest gen i7 chip and as much RAM as you can. The graphics chip isn't used in processing so is unnecessary, but t's good for viewing your pictures.
If I wanted an off the shelf laptop, I'd look at the Huawei MatePro.


Well-known Member
Pro Member
Pro Member
Sep 17, 2020
United Kingdom
What was your choice in the end?

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