Best Cheap Laptop For Editing YouTube Videos

Vukasin Ilic 7 min read
Table of Contents

Lots of devices can be used for editing videos, from computers to smartphones. However, the best choice that can allow you to have advanced editing features and portability is a laptop.

There are so many laptops on the market nowadays. Some are more basic and are used for browsing the internet and creating Word documents.

These aren’t powerful enough for video editing. Others are highly advanced and can be used for tasks like streaming gameplay, but are really expensive.

This guide includes a list of the best cheap laptops for editing YouTube videos.

They are all good enough for editing full HD videos but won’t leave your wallet feeling too light.

You’ll also learn about some factors that you should keep in mind when deciding on which to get.

It won’t be long before you’re ready to edit great content for your channel.

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i - The Best Cheap Laptop For Editing YouTube Videos

There are lots of contenders for the best cheap laptop for editing YouTube videos, but the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i comes out on top. Here’s why:

  • Plenty of storage space on the 512 GB solid state drive.
  • 8GB RAM - perfect for editing videos in full HD.
  • Intel processors for the smoothest workflow.
  • 1200p display resolution.
  • Dolby audio optimization.
  • Versatile touchscreen for animators.
  • Full HD webcam for video calls with your YouTube team.
  • And much more.

There’s a more detailed explanation below, as well as some other laptops that are great for video editors on a budget.

What To Keep In Mind About Your Videos

There are several factors to keep in mind about your videos before you buy a laptop. They are:

  • Type of content: if you’re making short videos for YouTube, you won’t need as much power than if you were making full-length movies. Knowing what type of content you plan to make can save you lots of money.
  • Editing software: what editing software do you use? Some can put a bigger strain on your CPU than others. Also, not all programs work on the same computer. If you use iMovie, you’ll need to invest in a Mac and not a Windows laptop.
  • Video resolution: are you going to be making videos in 4k? Does your camera even support such a high resolution? If not, you can get a less powerful laptop that works perfectly well and is a lot cheaper.

Specifications To Look For In a Laptop For Video Editing

Not all laptops are the same. Some have a lot of storage but aren’t fast enough for video editing. Others have great audio systems but don’t have high-resolution displays. You should keep the following factors in mind before investing:

  • Storage
  • RAM
  • CPU
  • GPU
  • Display and Resolution
  • Audio Drivers


Storing files on a laptop used to be done on a hard disk drive (HDD). Solid state drives (SSDs) have become a lot more common as they are faster and lighter.

You can always get an external hard drive to back up your files, but you should save whatever projects you’re currently working on on your laptop’s storage system. Aim for a device with at least 512GB of storage.


When you’re working on a project, the temporary files are stored in the random access memory (RAM), not the storage drive. For tasks like video editing, you need a higher amount of RAM.

For videos in 1080p, 8GB should be enough. However, for 4k videos, you should aim for at least 32GB.


Computers process instructions with their central processing unit (CPU). The better the CPU, the faster your laptop will run and the smoother the tasks will be performed.

Intel and AMD Ryzen processors are the best known today. Keep an eye out for these, as well as Turbo Boost features which work well for video editing and gaming.


The best video editing laptops come with powerful graphic processing units (GPU). Within these units, a certain amount of RAM is used for video processing (VRAM). You should aim for 6 to 8GB of VRAM for great results.

Display and Resolution

Your videos will be displayed with a certain resolution. Your laptop should at least match this resolution so that you can have a clear view of what you’re editing. For example, a full HD (1080p) display won’t be good enough to edit 4k videos because the colors can distort.

So make sure to check your camera’s settings to see what resolution you’ll be filming in. If you’re only focusing on editing and are getting your footage from clients, higher resolution displays are recommended.

Audio Drivers and Sound Cards

Editing audio is an important part of video editing. You can’t have high-quality video content if the audio is bad.

The sound card is the processing unit for audio. Your laptop will have one built-in, but you can buy separate ones like an external audio interface. You need to get a good sound card for making the best decisions when editing your video’s audio.

Audio drivers are software files that influence the overall audio on your laptop. They are already installed on your device. One of the most common drivers is Realtek HD Audio. This program will make sure your audio is shared and reproduced correctly throughout the whole process.

Best Cheap Laptops For Editing YouTube Videos

You’ve seen the pick for the best cheap laptop for editing YouTube videos: the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i. If for some reason this doesn’t suit your needs, here are a few more contenders.

All of these can be bought new for a maximum of just over $800. However, it’s good to keep in mind that you can search for similar second-hand laptops for less or even more powerful ones for around the same price.

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i

The Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i has the basics you want, like 512GB of storage and 8GB of RAM, with a slightly higher display resolution of 1200p (1920x1200 over 1920x1080). This higher resolution gives you some headroom for displaying your videos in full HD so the color quality will be even clearer.

It has the great pairing of Intel processors, the Core i7 and the Iris Xe graphics unit. Along with the 8GB of RAM, you’ll have a smooth and steady workflow, leading to the best results.

A bonus feature of the IdeaPad is its foldable format. You can bend the screen back away from the keyboard and use it as a pad. This is perfect if you’re a video editor with a passion for animation and graphic design. You can draw with more detail to add extra character to your videos.

It has a good battery life, with the possibility to watch videos in full HD for over 11 hours. And its high audio quality comes from Dolby Audio. All of this adds up to the IdeaPad Flex 5i being the best cheap laptop for editing YouTube videos.


  • 512GB SSD
  • 8GB RAM
  • Intel Core i7 processor
  • Intel Iris Xe GPU
  • 1200p display resolution

Acer Aspire 5

The Acer Aspire 5 is a fantastic laptop that can come with a range of specifications depending on your needs. Here you’ll learn about the A515-57T-53VS Notebook which has great qualities for video editing and costs less than $600.

The processor is the Core i5 by Intel. You can be sure that this laptop will run smoothly and won’t freeze when you’re in the middle of an important cut of your video.

Its GPU is also by Intel. It’s really an amazing brand that makes fantastic graphics units and processors for gamers, editors, and more.

You get a solid state drive with 512GB of storage, so you won’t be low on space for plenty of time. And the RAM is 12GB, perfect for video editing, especially at the YouTube-recommended resolution of 1080p.


  • 512GB SSD
  • 12GB RAM
  • Intel Core i5 processor
  • Intel Iris Xe GPU
  • 1080p display resolution

HP Pavilion 15

HP offers a range of great laptops, with the Pavilion 15 (eh3047nr) standing out as a fantastic device with the specs you need for video editing at a low price.

You get 512GB of storage on a solid state drive and 16GB of RAM. You won’t have to stick to short videos with this much memory. Its processors are supplied by AMD, one of the best companies in the game.

It’s a compact laptop with a good battery life and a quick charging system. You can work for hours on your latest edit before needing to plug it in. And when you do, you’ll quickly reach full-charge. It also has a fantastic cooling system, so you won’t need to worry about it overheating.

Overall, it’s a great fit for editors who work on the go. The 1080p display will give you a solid representation of your videos. And once they’re ready, you can upload them straight to YouTube and watch your stats rise.


  • 512GB SSD
  • 16GB RAM
  • AMD Ryzen 7 processor
  • AMD Radeon Graphics GPU
  • 1080p display resolution

Acer Nitro 5

The Acer Nitro 5 is built for gaming, which actually makes it a great choice for video editors. When you get a gaming laptop, you can be sure that it will run smoothly, quickly, and have an amazing display.

It’s one of the most expensive budget laptops here, but is full of incredible features that make it worth the higher price. It has a sleek build and a fantastic cooling system with dual fans that pull cool air from above and below and expel it to the sides. Long editing sessions won’t be interrupted by overheating.

The Intel and NVIDIA processors will make sure everything runs smoothly, from multitasking on different sessions to clear images that will give you a stunning view of your footage.

It’s a really solid laptop that will serve you well, whether as an amateur or advanced video editor. The Nitro 5 will be a nice addition to your equipment for creating great video content.


  • 512GB SSD
  • 8GB RAM
  • Intel Core i5 processor
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 GPU
  • 1080p display resolution

ASUS Zenbook 13

The Zenbook 13 is an ultra-slim laptop from ASUS that stands up against so many computers in higher price ranges. It has everything you need for making great content for YouTube.

It has one of the best processors on this list: the Intel Core i7. This will make sure your laptop runs smoothly, especially seeing as it’s paired with the Intel Iris Plus graphic processing unit. A perfect combo for video editing.

You get full HD resolution, which is great for YouTube content. You’ll be able to meet the recommended settings while making sure the coloring and other features of your video look stunning.

The RAM is lower than other laptops in this guide, but it doesn’t really matter. 8GB is a perfect level for running full HD videos.


  • 512GB SSD
  • 8GB RAM
  • Intel Core i7 processor
  • Intel Iris Plus GPU
  • 1080p display resolution

Bottom Line

Editing videos isn’t easy for a common laptop. You need to have great specs to keep it running smoothly and so it gives a clear representation of your video. Just because it looks good on your device doesn’t mean it will on YouTube.

This guide gave you a deeper insight into what you need to look for in a great video editing laptop. Good processors, plenty of storage, and a display of at least 1080p to match YouTube’s recommended settings.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i meets all of these requirements and goes above and beyond with its versatile touchscreen. However, that doesn’t mean that the runners-up aren’t worth looking into. There’s something for everyone in this list. And once you’ve made your pick, you can move on to editing amazing content for YouTube.

What do you look for in a laptop for video editing? Share your experiences with other readers in the comments below.


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