The best laptop for video conferencing

The best laptop for video conferencing

The best laptop for video conferencing

When running video-conferencing software on a computer, you can use a desktop computer or a laptop. A benefit to using a laptop for video conferencing is that you can move to wherever you want for the call, rather than being tied to a desk with a desktop computer. If the dog is barking or the kids are being loud in the media room, you can take the laptop to a quiet location.

We’ve rounded up some of the key features to seek in a video-conferencing laptop.

What to know before you buy a laptop for video conferencing

For the easiest option, the laptop needs to have a webcam built into it, usually installed just above the screen. Although you can use this camera, if you want better video quality, you’ll need to purchase a separate webcam to connect to the laptop.

When participating in a video-conferencing session, a large display screen is important. If you are conferencing with several people, the big screen can show each of them clearly. A screen of at least 14 inches (measured diagonally) is a desirable size.

If the video conference requires that you watch videos or view a presentation, you will want a high-resolution screen. Resolution refers to the sharpness of the image on the screen, indicating the number of individual pixels (or dots) in the display. A screen resolution of at least Full HD (1920 by 1080 pixels) is desirable.

Laptop for video conferencing features

Some of the most important features for a laptop made for video conferencing include the following.

The central processing unit is the primary processing chip in the laptop. A powerful CPU will allow you to run all kinds of software, including video-conferencing software, without pauses or skips in the video quality.

Start by paying attention to the processor model name. Intel Core processors will outperform Intel Pentium processors. An Intel Core i9 processor will have significantly better processing power than the Core i5, for example.

For CPUs with the same model name, you can compare them through their clock speeds (measured in GHz). Larger numbers in the clock speed are better.

Another way to ensure your laptop can run the video conferencing software at a high-quality level is through the amount of random access memory included in the laptop. RAM is the area where the laptop stores data currently in use. Having more RAM simplifies the process of running multiple types of software simultaneously.

You’ll want at least 8GB of RAM in your video-conferencing laptop, and more will provide a higher level of performance.

Laptop for video conferencing cost

The most expensive and powerful laptops you’ll find for video conferencing will cost $1,000 to $2,500. For those on a budget, it’s possible to find a decent video-conferencing laptop in the $400 to $1,000 range.

Laptop for video conferencing FAQ

Why is my new laptop struggling to run video conferencing apps, like Zoom?

A. Although it’s important to have high-end components in a laptop to run video-conferencing software successfully, it’s also important to have a fast, reliable Internet connection, or the video stream may have skips and pauses.

What if I need my laptop for more than just video conferencing?

A. Fortunately, the majority of features that make a laptop a strong video-conferencing performer also give it the power needed for other computing tasks. So your new video-conferencing laptop should work well for many jobs.

Which laptop for video conferencing should I get?

Best of the best laptop for video conferencing

Apple MacBook Pro: available at Amazon

Our take: Apple laptops are well-known for their high-quality screens and speakers, which are ideal features for video-conferencing success.

What we like: The MacBook Pro has a large 16-inch screen, so all of the call participants will be visible.

What we dislike: This is one of the most expensive laptops on the market.

Best bang for your buck laptop for video conferencing

Dell Inspiron 3000: available at Amazon

Our take: With its low price and large screen, this Dell model is a good choice for students taking online classes.

What we like: You won’t find many laptops in this price range with a large 15.6-inch screen and SSD hard drive storage.

What we dislike: Hard drive limited to 256 GB of storage. Display is less than Full HD resolution.

Honorable mention laptop for video conferencing

Microsoft Surface 3: available at Amazon

Our take: Includes touch screen capability, which simplifies the process of running video conferencing, especially when sharing the screen with others.

What we like: It has a 15-inch screen, which is a great size for video conferencing. Long battery life.

What we dislike: Lags other laptops in its price range in terms of RAM (only 8GB) and hard drive space (128GB).

Kyle Schurman is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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