So you typed the Cheapest Laptop for AutoCAD and ended up getting even more confused than before.
What did you get?
A few sites claiming that most laptops and even those with integrated graphics cards work with AutoCAD and others telling you to get the latest most powerful and heavy laptop you can afford or ditch it. ‘engineering.
You get it… it seems nobody knows what they are talking about.
Cheapest laptop for Autocad 2021
Table of Contents
One reason is that for 3D modeling software like AutoCAD, there is no one size fits all.
AutoCAD will have different requirements depending on the specific projects you will be entrusted with.
Some people will settle for an inexpensive entry-level graphics card (not an integrated “Intel HD” graphics card of course). In fact, I bet the majority of you fall into this category. While a few others will have to get hold of the most expensive laptops their business can afford.
Another reason is that …
Most copywriters, unless they’re into 3D modeling or engineering, just don’t know what they’re talking about.
If you want to give people advice on AutoCAD hardware …
It should at least be used regularly and with models of different sizes. And if possible, do this on multiple computers to check their performance (it doesn’t really require investing in multiple computers, just having access to a computer lab and knowing how to play with 3D models).
By doing all of this… .you will find that…
A small 3D object in AutoCAD may not even need a graphics card. However, a larger 3D representation of a realistic industrial object with around 5000 parts will only stop working if your laptop is equipped with a workstation card or one of the latest consumer “gamer” graphics cards. . The latter may actually be a better choice… we’ll get to that later.
Most people who write AutoCAD hardware requirements articles haven’t done any of the above or even touched the software once! I will, however, mention a few sites that are worth checking out.
First, we’ll go over the different requirements you should have for AutoCAD depending on the size of your projects or what type of user you are: student or professional. As quickly as possible.
Next, we will list the best laptops for AutoCAD with the best performance/money ratio in 2021 or, as the popular saying goes, “with the best value for money”.
Choosing the best laptop for AutoCAD
This section presents the exact and specific requirements you need for all versions of AutoCAD and explains why you need them.
AutoCAD is actually a general term that encompasses several AutoDesk products. Depending on their computing needs, we can divide them into AutoCAD 2D and 3D.
These are all the different versions of AutoCAD:
- AutoCAD: This is the regular, original version of AutoCAD, which you probably already know, which allows you to model and design objects in 2D and 3D. Although there are more specialized versions today, it is still widely used, especially in universities. Indeed, this version can be useful to almost anyone who needs to get started with CAD design.
- AutoCAD LT: A less powerful version of AutoCAD described above, but only for 2D objects.
AutoCAD Electrical: Primarily for circuit design, since most circuits only require a 2D representation, this is 2D software.
- AutoCAD Architecture: Unlike classic AutoCAD where you have to design everything from scratch. This version will give you advanced tools for architectural design and provide you with prefabricated objects for your models: doors, walls, windows, etc. All this in 3D.
- AutoCAD Civil 3D: Similar to the AutoCAD architecture. Optimized for planning roads, rivers, landscapes, etc.
Cheapest laptop for Autocad 2021 | Comparison Table
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7+ Cheapest laptop for Autocad | Products Overview 2021
1. Acer Nitro 5
- CPU: Intel Core i5 9300H
- 8GB RAM
- GeForce GTX 1650
- 256 PCIe SSD
- 15” FHD 1080p IPS
- 5 hours
This year I won’t be using the “entry-level” MX250 / MX150 / 940M laptop, but I will start with a “mid-range” gaming laptop which I’m sure will have enough card power. graphic for about 80% of you.
In fact, it might be too much for students or those new to AutoCAD, but the reason I put it on the list is that it sells for less than ANY laptop with a “Dedicated graphics card”!
I’m also not going to be releasing a 10th Gen Core i7 processor or higher level NVIDIA graphics cards like the RTX 2070, as AutoCAD and Revit are not yet optimized for “multi-threading” or high video instruction sets. performance.
Also because I myself have used AutoCAD 2017 on an HP laptop with a 940MX and it worked perfectly fine. 1650 shown here is actually a much more powerful card.
I’ve seen AutoCAD run on an old Radeon 4000 (which is several years old) before and when we tried to add more complexity (more parts) to these simple models we were only hampered by the processor and RAM before the graphics card comes into play.
If your models are relatively simple (or moderate), putting your budget on the last game card or even the workstation card is just wasted money because you won’t see any benefit. The 1650GTX here will only be used by AutoCAD up to 50% for most of your projects.
In other words, if you go for a 1070GTX / 2080RTX or the more expensive laptops shown later for simple or moderate models, the graphics card won’t even notice AutoCAD running, that’s money. wasted.
Gain comfort and gaming pleasure with the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55 Gaming Laptop PC! This Acer laptop is designed to deliver outstanding performance and a high level of gaming comfort!
If you check the update history, Autodesk has no plans to add video card instruction sets to AutoCAD anytime soon. Editing, drawing, and model building won’t get faster with a better graphics card in the next ten years. (Multithreaded operations are starting to surface, so investing in a high clock frequency multicore processor might be a more “sustainable” investment).
Unlike an entry-level card like the MX150, 2D vector drawing through the graphics card is enabled with more functionality.
In fact, you can also use this template to work with other software: Solidworks, Revit, etc.
IPS SCREEN WITH A FREQUENCY OF 144 HZ
Enjoy quality viewing with the 15.6 inch IPS screen with a 144Hz refresh rate and 3ms response time! Even in the heart of the action, the display will be remarkably fluid. An essential asset to better see every detail and better predict adverse actions. IPS technology delivers rich, bright colors with wide viewing angles, for consistent color display regardless of your position in front of the screen.
PERFORMANCE FOR GAMERS
Equipped with a 10th generation Intel Core i7 processor, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 graphics chip, and an M.2 PCIe SSD, the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-55 gaming laptop PC gives you the speed and performance you need to enjoy a high-quality gaming experience. Accelerated by the NVIDIA Turing architecture, the GeForce RTX 2060 chip offers gamers high graphics performance in today’s best games thanks to the phenomenal power of real-time ray tracing and artificial intelligence.
RGB BACKLIT KEYBOARD
Gain comfort and gaming pleasure with the RGB backlit keyboard. ZQSD keys and directional arrows are highlighted for better visibility. Furthermore, the response of each key will seem immediate with a travel distance of only 1.6 mm.
IMMERSIVE AUDIO QUALITY
Gain the edge over your opponents and enjoy a more immersive experience with the better sound quality from the two built-in speakers. This is because, thanks to DTS: X Ultra technology, sounds are clear and can be played in a 3D spatial soundscape, allowing you to hear where your opponents are coming from with greater precision.
In terms of connectivity, the Acer Nitro 5 provides the essentials : 3 USB 3.2 ports, 1 USB-C port (3.2 Gen 2), 1 HDMI 2.0 output, and a Gigabit Ethernet port. We would not have balked at an SD card reader, always useful. In terms of connectivity, the PC has the good taste of offering WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5. Rather compact for a 15 inch (363 x 255 x 23.9 mm) and quite light (2.4 kg), the Nitro 5 will be transported easily in a medium-sized bag, especially since its power box remains compact.
2.Acer Predator Helios 300
- Processor: Intel Core i7-8750H (2.2 GHz core in hexa)
- Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 + Intel UHD Graphics 630
- RAM: 16 GB DDR4
- Storage: 256 GB SSD
- Screen: 15.6 inch FHD (1920 x 1080 pixels)
This is probably the best laptop for AutoCAD on the list presented here (certainly not the best on the planet).
Editing, writing, and modeling are CPU-dependent and this notebook is equipped with a maximum of 5 GHz and six cores. This 10th generation Core i7 processor is one of the three most powerful processors found on laptops in 2021.
RAM is already upgraded to 16GB, so if you probably never feel stuck with low RAM, and if you do, a simple 32GB upgrade will do the trick.
Now let's talk about the graphics card. In reality, a 960M or 1650GTX will already be at the limit of what AutoCAD can offer most users. However, if you have a sufficient budget or if your business is paying for your laptop, go for a graphics card with ~ 6GB of VRAM (like a 1660Ti, 1060,1070).
These graphics cards will be the real limit on the use of AutoCAD graphics cards, regardless of the size of your models, which is corroborated by several studies (mostly done on budget systems) that have tested the performance of windows. visualization. In other words, if you get something like 1080, 2070RTX, 2080RTX, the performance of the viewport will be further slowed down by the presence of very large models. Viewport frame rates will not increase with graphics cards greater than 1060Ti / 2060RTX.
144 HZ IPS DISPLAY
With its Full HD IPS display, the Acer Predator Helios 300 PH315-53 Notebook PC delivers beautiful picture quality with rich colors and wide viewing angles. With its frequency of 144 Hz, it also offers a particularly fluid and precise display.
SUPERIOR GAMING PERFORMANCE
The metal shell houses the 10th Generation Intel Core i7 6-core i7-10750H mobile processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti graphics card with 6 GB GDDR6 and DDR4 2933 MHz memory as well as ample high-speed storage space. ready to host your game library.
EFFICIENT COOLING SYSTEM
All Predator laptops use our custom cooling technology. The latest generation design reduces noise while increasing airflow to optimize performance, whatever the task at hand. And when the heat hits, Predator CoolBoost steps in. The fan speed increases with the heat generated, keeping essential areas continuously cooled.
BACKLIT GAMING KEYBOARD
The 4-zone RGB custom keyboard uses the Predator typeface and has transparent curved ZQSD keys as well as two built-in Turbo and PredatorSense keys. Tap Turbo for instant overclocking or PredatorSense to open the app.
With the Killer E2600 Ethernet Controller, AX1650i Wi-Fi 6, and Killer Control Center 2.0 , you have all the tools you need to triumph online. You deserve the low latency and reliable connection that only Killer networks can give you.
HDMI 2.0 + mini DisplayPort 1.4 connector: connect up to 2 external displays
3.ASUS TUF Gaming A15
- CPU: Intel Core i5 9300H
- 8GB RAM
- GeForce GTX 1650
- 256 PCIe SSD
- 15” FHD 1080p IPS
- 5 hours
The Asus TUF Gaming A15 2021 ships in its best-equipped version the AMD Ryzen 7 processor of the 5000 series with the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 GPU with up to 32 GB of RAM and 1 TB of SSD. On the connectivity side, Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2 are part of the game. It has a fast recharge: 50% in 30 minutes of charge.
At first glance, the design of the TUF Gaming range shows only slight changes this year. We thus find new imagery on the hood of the machine, with a logo moved in a corner and the lettering TUF on the side.
On this side, the contract is rather fulfilled on this PC TUF, with a keyboard that takes the width of the machine, allows itself to integrate a numeric keypad (quite rare on this size of machine) and with keys well-spaced. Gamers will appreciate the Z, Q, S, and D keys highlighted by the manufacturer as if to remind once again the target audience of this machine.
The aesthetic is always consensual and sober with a gaming aspect that is very present but relatively discreet, both in terms of the color chosen and the overall finishes. Apart from the cover made of aluminum, this laptop sports a frame made entirely of plastic with elements that allow Asus to reduce costs while maintaining a reasonable weight of 2.3 kg.
Asus remedied the problem with a new 15.6-inch display, in this case, a Sharp LQ156M1JW26. In addition to its much better coverage of the sRGB space, announced at 100%, it features a refresh rate of 240 Hz and is compatible with Adaptive Sync.
With our X-rite i1 Display Pro Plus probe and Calman Ultimate software, we have indeed seen by the measurement that this display holds much better promises. Despite everything, we cannot escape the weakness of IPS technology, with a low contrast ratio limited to 1147: 1 here.
Equipped with the latest generation of mobile AMD processors under the Zen 3 architecture, the Asus TUF Gaming A15 allows itself a significant upgrade with the Ryzen 7 5800H. It is armed with 8 cores and 16 threads with a base frequency of 3.20 GHz, and 4.44 GHz in boost mode. It also has an L2 cache of 520 KB per core or 4 MB, and an L3 cache of 16 MB. Its max TDP is 45 W, a power that can be adjusted with Armory Crate which gives us the choice between three profiles: Quiet, Performance, and Turbo. These profiles obviously affect the nuisance of ventilation, the energy requirements of the PC, and performance.
KEYBOARD AND TOUCHPAD
For a PC intended for gaming, the keyboard is a particularly important element to consider. The keys must arrive naturally under the finger, with sufficient size to avoid bad handling, and a long enough stroke to have a good physical return.
The backlighting of the keyboard has a nice effect. However, it is satisfied with relatively little since it incorporates very few customization possibilities, and even less leaves the choice of lighting key by key. The three levels of brightness respect what one expects from a backlight of this type, with a discreet low level and a very bright high level without being unpleasant. It can be managed quickly via a keyboard shortcut with the directional keys, which leaves the choice between several modes (color cycle, static, strobe and pulsation). Everything can be synchronized with other devices via Aura Sync and the Armory Crate software, which also allows you to have light effects with Philips Hue products.
The TUF Gaming A15's 90Wh battery comes with a 200W power supply, which takes just over two hours to fully charge the PC. Autonomy differs more or less widely depending on the profile used. In silent mode, we can count on the autonomy of between 12 and 14 hours in office automation with a little multimedia content. In performance mode, we could not exceed 8 hours of autonomy. Turbo mode is only available on mains.
Nothing new on the horizon, the camera of this laptop is barely good for troubleshooting and is far from satisfactory for daily use in the context of teleworking in particular.
Most of the connections are grouped together on the left side of the machine. Only a USB-A 2.0 port remains on the right, where there is also a Kensington security slot (K-lock).
On the left, we, therefore, benefit from a Gigabit RJ45 Ethernet port, two USB-A 3.2 connectors, a USB-C gen 2, as well as an HDMI 2.0b port and a 3.5 mm jack for headphones and microphone.
4.Microsoft Surface Book 3
- Processor: Intel Core i5-7300U – Intel Core i7-8650U 1.9 GHz
- Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620; Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 (2 GB GDDR5 VRAM)
- RAM: 8 GB – 16 GB
- Display: PixelSense 3000 x 2000 (267 ppi)
- Storage: 256 GB – 1 TB SSD
While the Surface Book and Surface Pro can both run AutoCAD 3D models, the Surface Book 2 here handles it better because it has a dedicated graphics card.
In managing it, I'm only talking about modeling, editing, and drawing, and getting exceptionally smooth visualization performance. Rendering is out of the question for both, these are portable machines / delicate machines that shouldn't be put under heavy loads for hours, especially the Surface Pro.
So what is this Surface Book 2 useful for?
It becomes useful if you use AutoCAD a lot and regularly visit construction sites or meetings. But the Surface Book 2 isn't just for that, it was certified to work with SolidWorks a few years ago and AutoCAD is much less demanding 3D modeling software. I still wouldn't do everything with the Surface Book 2, unless you're just a student or just starting with AutoCAD.
But if you're a pro and don't plan on splurging with this software and leaving most of the workload (especially rendering) to your desk at home, this is an excellent investment.
With the third version of its Surface Book, Microsoft is playing the card of continuity. Should we complain? No! Computers made by Microsoft are distinguished by their elegant lines and premium materials. All-clad in magnesium, the Surface Book 3 shines with its minimalism and the quality of its finishes. We find the now traditional accordion fold characteristic of this model. Love it or hate it. As far as we are concerned, we are rather seduced by this touch of originality.
The imposing size of the machine allows Microsoft to integrate a rather comfortable connection (see connection part) and a particularly pleasant keyboard to use. The only small trick that the manufacturer allows itself is the 8-megapixel rear camera placed in the upper right corner and quite discreet that we will use mainly in tablet mode, and more. The 5-megapixel front camera (Full HD video) positioned just above the screen will be used more often (video). It also allows you to unlock the PC using Windows Hello (particularly responsive).
this Surface Book 3 retains the DNA of previous versions for our greatest happiness. If MacBook fans often highlight the quality of their design, this Surface Book 3 shows that Microsoft has nothing to envy Apple.
If the keyboard appealed to us a lot, the trackpad left us unsatisfied. If its use is pleasant (thanks in particular to a well-balanced click) we regret its small size. For comparison, the MacBook Pro 16's trackpad (which yours truly uses in the office) is almost twice the size. That of the Dell XPS 13, a much more compact ultrabook, is more or less identical to that of the Surface Book 3. It is all the more disappointing that Microsoft has enough space to enlarge the surface of this trackpad.
If the integration of the panel (thick borders) is far from PC standards, we can excuse Microsoft by the simple fact that its Surface Book 3 is also a tablet. As such, the majority of components are grouped together at the top, behind, and around the screen. We forgive him all the more for this weakness as the quality of the PixelSense screen (3: 2 format; 4K - 3240 x 2160 pixels) is a little marvel… on condition that you accept to watch videos with large black bars. Because the 3: 2 (more vertical) format turns out to be more pleasant for productivity, gaming, creative software, photo retouching, or editing, it is much less comfortable for watching films or series designed for broadcast in 16: 9.
Like the general design, the Surface Book 3's the keyboard and trackpad don't change from their predecessor. And we won't complain. Microsoft certainly delivers the best keyboard you can find on a laptop PC with the Dell XPS 13. The size of the keys coupled with a stroke of 1.55 mm provides exceptional comfort. Add to this the silence of a cathedral and a three-level backlighting, two not insignificant advantages for working in the dark.
Despite everything, the quality of the panel quickly makes us forget this peculiarity. Perfectly balanced (excellent contrasts, 100% coverage of the sRGB spectrum, 75% of Adobe RGB, and 75% of DCI-P3), the Surface Book 3 screen is a real eye-catcher. As for those who fear that they will not be able to work outdoors because of its shiny appearance, rest assured: the excellent brightness of the panel allows the Surface Book 3 to be used in any environment. The only downside: the lack of HDR and/or Dolby Vision compatibility. For a product sold at this price and designed for creators, we would have liked to take advantage of these little extras.
The rather imposing format of the Surface Book 3 allows Microsoft to be more generous in terms of connectivity it only integrates a single USB-C (2nd generation, 10 Gbit / s) compatible Display Port 1.4, capable of slowly charging the computer, but not supporting Thunderbolt 3 (for security reasons Microsoft assures). Alongside this unique USB-C, the manufacturer integrates Surface Connect, its proprietary charging port, which could have accommodated at least one additional USB-C.
Fortunately, the American makes up for it by integrating two USB-A 3.1 as well as an SD card slot which has become so rare despite their success with content creators. Finally, it should be noted that the Surface Book 3 is WiFi 6 compatible, a real highlight.
5. ASUS ProArt StudioBook Pro 17 W700G3T
- CPU: Intel Core i7-9750H
- 16GB RAM
- NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060
- 256 PCIe SSD
- 15” FHD 1080p IPS
- 5 hours
The ASUS ProArt Studio book Pro 15 Laptop PC is designed to handle the heaviest loads with ease while its 15.6 "4K Ultra HD display is PANTONE certified to ensure excellent pixelation in every frame.
ASUS ProArt StudioBook Pro 15 Laptop delivers top-notch performance and fast operation thanks to its Intel Core i7-9750H processor, 16GB DDR4 memory, 1TB PCIe M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 SSD, and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 graphics chip.
- Beautiful, sturdy, and lightweight design
ULTRA HD SLIM BEZEL 4 DISPLAY
The Studio book 4K Ultra HD panel displays a level of detail quadrupled compared to that of Full HD panels. This Pantone-certified display features 100% Adobe RGB colorimetry and a Delta-E difference of less than 1.5, for exceptionally precise and detailed colors with great realism.
The complete cooling system of this notebook PC combines hardware and software features to ensure the Studio book 15 optimal cooling no matter what the task at hand. Its six heat pipes dissipate heat away from the processor and graphics chip while the ultra-thin copper fins of the four heat sinks also dissipate heat efficiently.
The StudioBook 15 is an ultraportable workstation that you can take anywhere with you thanks to its slim 18.9mm profile and minimum weight of 2kg. Edit your designs with ease and multi-layered 3D rendering of files using the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 graphics chip. The ProArt StudioBook 15 delivers exceptional performance for ultra-smooth 3D animations and video editing workflows in high resolution. It helps creators to create quality visuals or videos faster and more efficiently than with other techniques. Ideal for professionals in 2D / 3D design, architecture, editing or animation.
there is a security lock slot, power supply, a Thunderbolt 3 USB-C port, an HDMI 2.0 port, a USB 3.1 port, a headphone jack, and a UHS-II SD card slot, while the right side offers two additional USB 3.1 ports. The wireless modules Wifi 6 (802.11 ax) and Bluetooth 5.0 are also present, as well as a fingerprint reader. Only the RJ45 port is missing from the call but can very well be recovered via a USB-C adapter.
6.Lenovo Ideapad 3
- CPU: Intel Core i5 9300H
- 8GB RAM
- GeForce GTX 1650
- 256 PCIe SSD
- 15” FHD 1080p IPS
- 5 hours
Lenovo's IdeaPad 3 claims to be one of the best laptops on the market today, but it's not because of its illustrious appearance or excellent performance - it's very affordable and because Lenovo gives you enough for your money.
I've seen more powerful and sophisticated Lenovo laptops over the past few months, but if you don't want to spend that much money on cheap laptops, IdeaPad 3 must be in the conversation. With a full review of this laptop, we'll explain exactly why.
Lenovo's IdeaPad 3 can't play top-notch games or start a career as a video editor, but it has many advantages. Ideal for day-to-day computing, web browsing, e-mail processing, and testing, watching movies, etc.
The IdeaPad 3 is equipped with a compact 14-inch screen with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, and the screen has moderate brightness and sharpness. The bezel around the screen is thicker than the best laptops, and the angle of view and maximum brightness is not particularly good, but it is a laptop that should be judged in terms of price, and we have it. I am very satisfied with the price.
Whether you're browsing the web, writing a try essay, or watching a movie from your favorite video streaming platform, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 display is tolerable. It's not a touchscreen, but you don't expect it at this price. The height/width ratio of 16:9 is not as good as 16:10 for documents and web pages, but if you look at YouTube, it fits perfectly to video content.
Lenovo has a long history in the field of laptops, which is reflected in the solid manufacturing quality and peace of mind of IdeaPad 3. The hinges of the screen are sturdy and the plastic exterior case is also durable. For example, if a child reaches out, he doesn't have to worry about having... Maybe.
Also of note is Lenovo's IdeaPad 3 typing experience. The keys are soft but firm, the keys are widely spaced and the function keys at the top have regular shortcuts (volume, brightness, etc.). There is no backlighting of the keyboard, but this is tolerable. The trackpad is smaller, but it is strong and responsive.
It's no exaggeration to say that Lenovo's IdeaPad 3 looks like a cheap laptop. However, this laptop is a well-built laptop, weighing 1.6 kg, making it perfectly suited to the office or home. This laptop is a great place as you can see many screens without sacrificing mobility unless you need a very compact or widescreen. It is cheap, but it will work for a few years.
The IdeaPad 3 review unit was equipped with a 10th generation Intel Core i3-1005 G1 processor. It's not the latest and greatest Intel chipset, but it's enough to handle everyday computing tasks. The built-in Intel UHD Graphics G1 processor makes it unsuitable for games and other graphics-intensive tasks (like editing high-end images and videos), but most people do it on a computer. There is no problem with the work.
The review unit we got had 4GB of RAM and 128GB of internal SSD storage. I tried web browsing, email, media playback, etc. on the Lenovo IdeaPad 3, and everything went well. However, if you open a lot of browser tabs and apps and try to overload your laptop, you might run into issues.
It's also worth noting that the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 ran silently in this interview, with the fan spinning sometimes when the laptop was charged. Please note that this computer has enabled Windows 10 S Restricted Mode.
In general, IdeaPad 3 has been able to keep applications and websites running smoothly. The built-in Dolby sound system isn't something you can gain right away, but it's more than you'd expect from a laptop at this price point, listening to some music, listening to the lines and sounds of movies and TV shows. This is more than enough to listen. I was not unhappy with the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 as a media player.
The battery life was 3-4 hours with the screen brightness set to maximum, but if it is possible to reduce the brightness a bit, the charging time will be longer. This is when the screen brightness is set to maximum. If you use it in a slightly darker environment, you can charge it longer. Of course, other laptops offer longer battery life, but at a higher price.
In testing, we did a 2-hour video broadcast at full-screen brightness and the battery level dropped from 100% to 75%. This is not a bad thing. If you just watch the video, you can enjoy it from morning till night.
The range of retro connections is complete with a full-size SD card slot and a full-size HDMI. To be honest, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 has everything I use every day, but it's surprising that it doesn't have USB-C.
7.Newest Lenovo Premium PC
- CPU: Intel Core i5 9300H
- 8GB RAM
- GeForce GTX 1650
- 256 PCIe SSD
- 15” FHD 1080p IPS
- 5 hours
How to Choose The Cheapest laptop for Autocad in 2021 | Ultimate Buyer’s Guide
I have quickly summarized below the specs you should look for to get the “best performance for AutoCAD”.
To make it even easier for you, I've broken down the requirements you'll need based on the size of your projects.
When reading the following table, be sure to also read what I mean by small, medium, and large projects and AutoCAD 3D and AutoCAD 2D.
By that, I mean AutoCAD Civil 3D, AutoCAD Architecture, or normal AutoCAD with 3D models. If you have a laptop that can run AutoCAD 3D, you can also use software like SketchUp, Solidworks, Revit, and 3DS Max *.
Of course, you can also use all AutoCAD software in 2D.
* To do larger projects with other software like 3DS Max, I recommend using a laptop with at least a GTX 1060 / 2060RTX.
- a) Small projects: students taking undergraduate courses in regular AutoCAD software (most of the time). Typically 300 pieces.
- b) Medium-sized projects: those taking an Autocad course outside of school or those planning to work with AutoCAD for “individual clients” ~ +500 part sets and rarely +2000 part projects.
- c) Large Projects: Engineers working for companies involved in collaborative projects, which may include large 3D drawings with a large number of polygons/parts *, for example, ~ +5,000 parts on multiple pages.
* Only a few professional engineers deal with large projects, most of the time, professionals are equipped with desktops by their company. Most people reading this should fall into categories a and b.
Normal AutoCAD can run models in 2D and 3D. If you are an electrical/chemical engineer or just do contour maps, you fall into this category. The specifications are the same as in the “small projects” column of the table below.
These specifications will also allow you to use software such as StadPro, MatLab, anything that does not require viewing a 3D model.
|GPU||Intel HD *, MX150,940M, MX250, Radeon Pro 555X||960GTX, 1050, 1050ti|
1650, Radeon RX 550, Radeon RX 560X
|980, 1060, 1660Ti, 1070, 2060,|
2070, RX 580, RX5500M
NVIDIA Quadro / AMD FirePro
|CPU||Core i5 Any generation||Core i5 or Core i7 7 and above.||8th to 10th generation Core i7 “H”.|
|RAM||4 GB to 8 GB||8 GB||16 to 64 GB|
|Storage space||128 GB +||256 GB SSD or 1 TB hard drive||256 GB SSD + 1 TB HDD or 512 GB SSD|
|Display||13 to 15 inch FHD (1080p)||15-inch FHD||15 to 17-inch FHD|
Processor for AutoCAD
It is the heart of your machine that does all the computing work. Intel series like i3, i5, and i7 are mainly used in consumer PCs and laptops and Xeon dominates almost entirely in businesses and design offices.
But Intel is not the only dominant player in the processor market. More recently, AMD has made a comeback in the high-end market with its Ryzen and Ryzen Threadripper processors, although they have yet to become a staple in enterprise desktop setups.
Choose the highest clock speed (measured in Hz) that you can afford. Even in 2021, AutoCAD does not use multiple cores. Dual-Core or Quad-Core is the same, clock speed is all that matters unless you're trying to use rendering tools like MentalRay.
Hearts and threads
Processors have many cores, and the speed at which those cores can perform calculations is called the clock frequency, which is measured in gigahertz (GHz). Single- and dual-core processors are rare today, and most common processors have a minimum of four cores, with the high-end i7 having 6, the Ryzen 8, and the Xeons / Threadripper 12 and above.
Simple 3D modeling and drafting software like AutoCAD is mostly single-threaded, meaning they only use one core to complete the task, so in this case, a higher clock rate. high is obviously recommended.
Although Autodesk is continually developing and rewriting its source code to allow more functionality to be supported by multiple threads, there are now many features in 2D and 3D CAD applications that can use multiple cores.
A larger number of cores will make it possible to perform several simultaneous operations and therefore faster processing. In the case of multithreaded software, I would recommend a standard consumer-grade quad-core processor with hyperthreading or SMT (simultaneous multithreading). This should be sufficient for almost any light to medium CAD workflow.
However, if you use simulation software like Ansys or rendering software like Keyshot, you will benefit a great deal from the additional cores which, over time, will give you a good return on your investment for the higher price of a higher processor. range.
Overclocking the processor?
You may have heard of overclocking, which apparently improves your processor performance. But I always say never overclock a PC that you rely on for money i.e. if you are working on a commercial project or in a professional office, I do not recommend overclocking.
It is an objective fact that overclocking increases the instability of a computer, no matter how many stress tests that person has done and passed, overclocking increases the chances that the computer will crash completely.
So for home or student this is fine, but I would never recommend a professional user to overclock. The gains are usually minimal for CAD software and not worth the risk of losing work.
Additionally, not all processors support overclocking; for example, Xeons are not supported for overclocking and all AMD Ryzen based processors support overclocking. Besides, you should also make sure that your motherboard supports overclocking and not just the processor.
How much RAM for AutoCAD
The RAM or physical memory installed in your PC dictates the number and size of concurrent programs and datasets you can have open at any one time. As modern software gets more complex, the need for more RAM becomes a factor, but as always, your budget can be a limitation.
For simple 2D CAD workflows, 8GB of RAM should be the absolute minimum you should consider. For 3D CAD applications, we always recommend a minimum of 16 GB of RAM. But as always, more RAM will allow you to work with more programs at once and open larger datasets.
If your CAD program requires more RAM than you installed, Windows will redirect the allocation to virtual memory (the section of the hard drive configured to emulate the computer's RAM) which will allow you to continue working, but you will find that the operations are slower.
A common mistake is to assume that more RAM will automatically make your computer run faster in each department, which is wrong. More RAM just means you have more time to work on larger data sets before Windows starts using virtual memory.
The RAM must be compatible with your processor, you will find this information on the website of your processor supplier. RAM can be classified as DDR3 / DDR4 and has a nominal frequency in megahertz.
In this case, therefore, I recommend that you consider a minimum of 8 GB for 2D CAD and 16 GB for 3D CAD, make sure that the RAM is supported by your processor, and if possible, purchase large modules to leave free memory slots on your motherboard for possible future upgrades if necessary.
Graphics card for CAD
It is generally considered and preached that CAD is one of the most demanding graphics workflows and that very expensive and powerful graphics cards are designed with CAD in mind. This is not always true, but it can vary depending on the software vendor.
For example, the graphics engine in Autodesk CAD applications is heavily CPU-dependent. Performance increases linearly as the processor clock frequency is increased, without much reliance on the graphics card. Many CAD applications use the processor to calculate what should be displayed on the screen, with the graphics card primarily used to store texture information in the card's video memory (VRAM).
Most Autodesk CAD applications support gamer graphics cards (GeForce & Radeon) and professional graphics cards (Quadro & Radeon Pro WX / FirePro). We generally recommend that home users buy a gamer card, while business users buy a business card.
There are many other factors to consider when choosing a graphics card, for example, if you plan to use a variety of applications. So it is impossible to give any suggestions on what to do, but as a general rule for CAD, make sure the graphics card has at least 4 GB of VRAM.
The refresh rates of the viewports will depend mainly on the graphics card.
However applying effects, modeling, and editing, however, does not use the graphics card as much as the processor.
Pick the best graphics card you can afford: the one with Cuda Cores / Shaders & VRAM. Higher-level graphics cards will render much faster. However, there will be little difference in viewport performance with higher-end graphics cards, unless you are dealing with large and extreme models where they make a big difference.
- Small projects: Almost all “dedicated” graphics cards of all generations. It's too risky to go for integrated graphics cards, but with good RAM and a good processor, you might get away with it.
- Medium to Large Size Projects: These projects will require a + 960GTX (870M + for 8th gen, 1050+ for 10th gen).
- Large-scale industry-level projects : 1060GTX +. Or any workstation graphics card (NVIDIA Quadro, AMD FirePro) with up to 6GB of VRAM (AutoCAD doesn't get much more than that).
When it comes to controlling, the rule is simple: the bigger the better. I highly recommend the use of ultra-wide monitors for CAD.
Widescreen displays are expensive and difficult to justify in a professional environment, but they allow incredible versatility and give you an incredible amount of modeling or drawing space for CAD.
It's also worth mentioning that if someone is considering purchasing a 4K display, this resolution isn't supported by many programs and can result in very messy dialogs and tiny, unreadable text.
It also requires a much more powerful processor and graphics card, as there are around 4x as many pixels to send to generate and send to the monitor. While AutoCAD handles 4K fairly well, I don't recommend 4K for CAD.
Hope this tremendous task is done by my team and I will help you find the cheapest laptop for AutoCAD or 3Ds Max jobs. I only focused on finding the best laptop with different budgets so that everyone can buy a laptop according to their needs and budget.
So now it's your turn to choose your best laptop from the list above. I want to clarify that this is a one-time investment, so it is possible to expand your budget and buy the most powerful, which you can use for any purpose and not for any purpose-specific.