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7 Best Laptops For GIS and Cartography Professionals – Ultimate Buying Guide

Finding the Best Laptop For GIS? If you are choosing the field of GIS (Geographic Information Systems), you might be landed over here to find the best laptop for GIS softwares like ArcGIS, QGIS. Since everyone in the field of geographic information system must have an excellent laptop to process and capture the data.

Performing these task may cause a lot of trouble in an ordinary laptop. Therefore, you should pick up a laptop with powerful specs to overcome these problems.

Here is the list of 7 best laptops for GIS which has best system requirements for the softwares like ArcGIS, QGIS, MA publisher e.t.c. Every laptop in this list is perfectly suitable to run almost any GIS software and hence are best for the field of GIS.

7 Best Laptops for GIS (Geographic Information System) in 2020

1Acer Aspire E15Intel Core i7-8550U8GB DDR3 Check Price
2MSI GL62MIntel Core i7-7700HQ8GB DDR4 Check Price
3Dell Inspiron i5577Intel Core i7-7700HQ8GB DDR4 Check Price
4Asus Vivobook SIntel Core i7-8550U8GB DDR4 Check Price
5Acer Predator Helios 300Intel Core i7-7700HQ16GB DDR4 Check Price
6Lenovo Legion Y520Intel Core i7-7700HQ16GB DDR4 Check Price
7Microsoft Surface ProIntel Core i5-6300U8 GB LPDDR3 Check Price

Moreover, these laptops are affordable, i.e. they have the best specs with meager prices.

1. Acer Aspire E15

Acer, A reputed brand for the production of laptops, has it laptop Acer Aspire E15 on the top of this list the reason is that Acer Aspire E15 has the best specs at an affordable price and it surely don’t need to justify its price.

First of all, The 15.6 inches 1920 X 1080 pixels IPS display makes it perfect for GIS because it gives a very good color reproduction with decent viewing angles.

Talking about the build quality, You will get a plastic body yet it is rigid and study as well. Considering its price, this build quality is not so bad.

This laptop comes with the storage of 256 GB SSD since 256 GB is probably not enough storage nowadays that’s why Acer has offered an empty memory slot for additional SSD/HDD. My recommendation for you is that you should buy 1TB of HDD with the cost of less than $100 From here.

There is nothing much to argue about its processor. Most importantly, Acer has updated Aspire E15 with the new 8th Generation Intel Core i7 8550U Processor so you can expect a performance improvement of at least 10 to 20% by means of this new processor.

With the help of GeForce MX 150, a discrete graphics card offered on this machine. You can run ArcGIS Smoothly. Moreover, this GPU you can easily play A lot of modern demanding games or programs.

To give an idea about how this laptop plays games you can check out the following video:


The port selection on this laptop is not bad at all. you may have an idea by looking at the list of available ports on Acer Aspire E15. Available Ports For Acer Aspire E15 are:

  • 1 USB 3.1 Type-C (Up to 5 Gbps)
  • 2 USB 3.0
  • 1 USB 2.0
  • An HDMI Port

Another excellent specification of this laptop is the optical drive. Which is quite rare in the laptops coming nowadays. This laptop is neither lightweight nor a heavy machine with a weight of 5.3 lbs which is equal to 2.4 kg.

If you do not travel at all, you can get this laptop without any hesitation. But if you travel occasionally, you may carry the laptop into a suitable laptop bag.

Based on some reviews about battery life, you can expect the battery life of up to 12 hours with a single charge. However, Acer claims to offer 15 hours of battery life. 12 to 15 hours of battery life is quite impressive. Therefore, this machine at number 1 in this list.

Overall, Acer Aspire E15 is one of the best laptops for GIS. This laptop is best for you if you want a laptop with good specifications at an affordable price.

  • Outstanding Battery Life.
  • Great Value For Money.
  • Good Performance.
  • Basic Design.
Hardware Specifications Recap of ACER ASPIRE E15
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-8550U 8th Generation.
  • RAM: 8 gigs of RAM.
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce MX150.
  • Display size: 15.6 inches screen.
  • Weight: 5.3 lbs.
  • Storage: 256GB SSD.
  • Operating System: Windows 10.

2. MSI GL62M

The second best laptop in this list comes from MSI i.e. MSI GL62M. When compared with Acer Aspire E15 here are some specifications of this laptop.

You will get a 15.6 inch TN panel which is not as impressive as an IPS display. However, this laptop also holds a good color accuracy and viewing angles.

Moreover, this laptop comes up because a display with an anti-glare screen which is good for using the laptop outdoors. The build of the laptop does not justify its price yet it is decent.

Most importantly, the MSI GL62M comes with dual storage options i.e. M.2 SATA SSD and 1TB 5400 RPM hard drive, which is excellent. Installing important programs on SSD and storing the rest of the files on the hard drives may result in the form of good performance.

The memory of 8GB DDR4 which is upgradable up to 32GB memory allows the laptop to perform almost every task very easily. Upgrading the memory will surely boost up the performance of the laptop.

The processor i.e. Intel Core i7- 7700 HQ is slightly underpowered compared to Acer Aspire E15’s 8th generation processor, however, its performance is not so bad.

The worth mentioning thing here is its cooling system, which is quite rare. The CPU remains quite cool even if you push it to Extreme level.

You can expect solid GPU performance with GTX 1050 Ti 4GB discrete graphics card. In fact, this laptop can perform graphics related tasks very smoothly, no matter if it’s gaming or any other. This feature makes it one of the best laptops for GIS.

Here are some gaming benchmarks of this laptop. So that you can have an idea of how powerful this laptop is.


Talking about the available ports, you will get an Ethernet, Mini DisplayPort, Ethernet, and USB type-C, on the left side, while on the left side, there is a one USB 2.0 and an SD card reader.

The laptop weight is 2.4 kg( 5.3 lbs) which can be justified considering the gaming machine. This laptop comes up with a battery life of 4.5 hours approximately for personal uses and entertainment purposes while performing heavy tasks, you might expect 1-1.5 hours of battery life.

  • Lightweight.
  • Decent Display.
  • Strong Performance.
  • Build is not good enough compared to others.
Hardware Specifications Recap of MSI GL62M
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-7700HQ 7th Generation.
  • RAM: 8 GB of DDR4 RAM.
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050ti 4GB.
  • Display size: 15.6 inches screen.
  • Weight: 5.3 lbs.
  • Storage: 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD.
  • Operating System: Windows 10.

3. Dell Inspiron i5577

Dell Inspiron is perfectly suitable for GIS softwares and costs around $100 less than the laptops discussed above which is a positive Point.

A very well-known brand in the field of hardware Technology, Dell, has decided to offer IPS display rather than a TN panel. However, this laptop comes with 15.6 inches full HD TN panel. The viewing angles are very decent and The Color contrast of the display is not good enough.

Talking about the storage capacity, this laptop has 128 GB SSD and 1TB 5400 RPM HDD. The HDD maybe slower for you but secondary drive is useful for installing important programs.

The processor is the same as the MSI laptop i.e. Intel Core i7-7700 HQ. The plus point of this laptop is the machine fans with certainly boost up the laptop performance. Therefore, here fan noise must also be considered.

Most Importantly, the graphics card provided by Dell on this laptop is GTX 1050. For a laptop of such budget, this is a pretty good day. Dell has offered 3 USB ports on this machine. Moreover, an Ethernet jack, and SD card reader and HDMI ports are also available.

This laptop weighs 5.7 LBS which is around 2.6 kg. So you will need a bag for carrying this laptop to some other location. Finally the battery life, this laptop offer battery life of 5 to 6 hours for personal or entertainment purposes. While, for heavy tasks, you can expect a battery life of no more than 2 hours.

  • Excellent Performance.
  • Decent Build Quality.
  • Slightly Heavy.
  • IPS Display Should Have Been Better.
Hardware Specifications Recap of Dell Inspiron i5577
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-7700HQ 7th Generation.
  • RAM: 8 GB of DDR4 RAM.
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050.
  • Display size: 15.6 inches screen.
  • Weight: 5.7 lbs.
  • Storage: 128 GB SSD + 1TB HDD.
  • Operating System: Windows 10.

4. Asus Vivobook S

Asus Vivobook S is best for those who demand a powerful with a good-looking laptop. The Vivobook S comes up with an attractive and sharp display. The 14 inches full HD display with few bezels at sides makes it the best laptop in the price range.

The storage offered in this laptop is 256 GB M.2 SSD. This storage is decent enough to run your important softwares. You won’t face any storage issues for storing personal data or for professional Usage.  My recommendation for you is that you should buy 1TB of HDD with the cost of less than $100 From Here.

The Vivobook S and the Acer Aspire E15 discussed above, nearly have same specs. the major difference between this is the portability of vivobook s. This laptop has a weight of 3.2 Pounds which is 1.45 kg which is much better than Aspire.

In fact, a difference of 1 kg makes Vivobook a short and a smart choice. Whether to choose Vivobook S costing $100 more money because of portability or not? the choice is yours.

Asus Vivobook S has GeForce MX 150. This GPU can play some low to modern demanding games or programs. I would recommend you the next laptop if you want to perform some extreme tasks.

The ports available on Asus Vivobook S are 2 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0, 1 USB 3.1 Type-C, HDMI and SD card reader. The laptop also has a backlit keyboard for using the laptop at night or in dark.

Lastly, the battery life, the average battery life of entertainment purposes is 5 to 6 hours. While, 1 to 2 hours of battery life can be expected for heavy tasks.

  • Perfectly Portable.
  • Decent Performance.
  • Great Display.
  • The GPU is not Good Enough.
Hardware Specifications Recap of ASUS VIVOBOOK S
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-8550U 8th Generation.
  • RAM: 8 GB DDR4 RAM.
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce MX 150.
  • Display size: 14 inches screen.
  • Weight: 3.2 pounds.
  • Storage: 256 GB of SSD.
  • Operating System: Windows 10.

Also Read: 10 Best Laptops for Mechanical Engineering Students 2018

5. Acer Predator Helios 300

The Acer Predator Helios 300 is the most powerful laptop in this list. However, it will cost more than the other laptops which are almost $200 to $300 less than this laptop.

If you have a budget of $1,000 or above, I will recommend you to choose this laptop. This excellent laptop is worth buying. The Helios 300 comes up with 15.6 inches IPS display with reasonably good color accuracy and viewing angles.

A plus point for this laptop is its superb build quality. The body of this laptop is made of plastic while the top panel is made up of metal. so this laptop is best in the build quality of all the others in this list.

When it comes to the storage, this laptop comes with 256 GB M.2 SATA SSD and a 2.5-inch empty slot for extra HDD. The read and write speed of 520mb and 450mb respectively boost performance.

This laptop weight is 6 lbs i.e. 2.7 kg. In fact, this is the heaviest laptop in this list. Acer offers 16GB ddr4 RAM for this laptop this RAM is enough to manage system superbly. You will get an Intel’s 7th generation core i7 Processor, that is, core i7-7700 HQ. This processor is perfect is suitable for any kind of tasks.

The GeForce GTX 1060 with 6gb GDDR5 VRAM has made this laptop worth buying point for this laptop, in fact, you can play any game or program with this powerful GPU. To have an idea how games can perform on this GPU here is a video:

Acer Predator Helios 300 Laptop Review BY: Tech Deals

The available ports for this laptop are as follows:

  • 3 USB 3.1 (1 is Thunderbolt)
  • HDMI
  • SD Card Reader
  • Ethernet Jack

In the last battery time, you can expect 4 hours of battery life for basic tasks and 2 hours of battery life for heavy tasks. This battery life is not quite impressive as the others but still, it is one of the most powerful laptops in this list.

  • Amazing Display.
  • Coolest & Stylish Gaming Design.
  • Dual Fan Cooling System.
  • Faster Performance.
  • Decent Battery Life.
  • Heavy Laptop.
Hardware Specifications Recap of Acer Predator Helios 300
  • CPU: (7th Generation) Intel Core i7-7700HQ Processor.
  • RAM: 16GB of DDR4 RAM.
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB.
  • Display size: 15.6 Inch Full HD Widescreen IPS Display.
  • Weight: 5.95 lbs.
  • Storage: 256GB of fast SSD.
  • Operating System: Windows 10.
  • Battery Life: Up to 7 Hours.

6. Lenovo Legion Y520

The next laptop in this list is one of the well-known companies Lenovo i.e. Lenovo legion Y520 point is laptop has some remarkable features which are suitable for GIS softwares like MA Publisher, or Arc GIS.

Firstly, the quality of this laptop is fine. The body is made up of the plastic. There is a metal frame underneath it all. So, the device is study. However, the design of the device is not much appreciated by the customers.

You will also get a backlit keyboard which can be used for uses at night. You also have a right backlighting option. The Lenovo Legion Y520 features an Intel Core i7-7700 HQ processor, which is the same as the laptops mentioned above. So, it will provide much similar performance.

The plus point is the copper heatsink and two fans which help to boost laptop performance to a great extent. However, GPU offered in this laptop is Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 ti 4GB, which is perfect for running GIS softwares.

Lenovo Legion Y520 Gaming Test Video By: GameGangsta

Having storage of 256 GB M.2 PCI-E SSD and 2tb HDD with 5400 RPM may help you to store your files as well as perform tasks smoothly.

The Random Access Memory (RAM) in this device is 16GB, as a result, it can run almost any software or game without lagging. As a result, you can expect an excellent performance.

Available ports in this laptop are USB 2.0 headphone jack, full-size Ethernet port. Moreover, 2 USB 3.0 and HDMI, USB type-C and SD card reader. Most importantly, one of the port is thunderbolt.

The display of Lenovo legion Y520 is quite accurate. The display is a 15.6 inch full HD unit 1920 X 1080 with a Matte finish. Moreover, Color contrast and viewing angles are also excellent. So, you will get a sharp and bright display which makes it best on the list.

Battery life offered by this laptop is 4 hours for usual tasks, as a result, you can expect 2 hours of battery life while performing heavy tasks. Therefore, the battery life of this laptop is not good enough as compared to others.

  • Decent Build Quality.
  • Excellent Keyboard and Touch Panel Experience.
  • Good Performance.
  • Low Battery Life.
  • The Display Might Be Better.
Hardware Specifications Recap of Lenovo Legion Y520
  • CPU: Intel Skylake Core i7-7700HQ 7th Generation.
  • RAM: 16 gigs of DDR4 RAM.
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 ti 4GB.
  • Display size: 15.6 inch FHD IPS DISPLAY.
  • Weight: 5.29 lbs (2.4kg).
  • Storage: 256GB SSD(M.2 PCI-E) + 2TB HDD (5400 RPM).
  • Operating System: Windows 10.

7. Microsoft Surface Pro

With the Surface Pro 4, Microsoft is also included in this list. The reason why I included this laptop in this list is due to its portability and resolution. Because these features are very helpful while using GIS softwares. Therefore, This is the best gis laptop. Therefore, Its the best laptop for arcgis to use.

Most importantly, the most appreciated feature of this laptop is its weight. Because this laptop weighs only 1.69 lbs i.e. 766 grams. So, you can take this laptop everywhere with you.

The build quality of this laptop is also excellent. Most imprtantly, the display of this laptop is 12.3 inches in the sharp display. As a result, the display is plenty bright too even in direct sunlight. As a result, this display also has good color accuracy and viewing angles.

The storage offered in this laptop is 256GB SSD PCI-E 3.0. This storage is the same as the other laptops mentioned in the list the 8GB lPDDR3 RAM is quite good to use GIS softwares. However, the processor of this machine i.e. Intel core i5 6300U which is boostable upto 3Ghz turbo boost is not good enough as compared to others.

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 has Intel HD graphics 520 which can run low demanding games. Microsoft claims to provide 5 hours of battery life for habitats. As a result, The users also have experienced the battery life of no less than 5 hours.

Intel HD 520 Gaming Test Video By: yasin erkan
  • Light-Weight.
  • Can Also Be Used Both As a Laptop And Tablet.
  • Versatility.
  • Battery Life.
  • Very Expensive.
  • The Display Might Be Better.
Hardware Specifications Recap of Microsoft Surface Pro
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-6300U 6th Generation.
  • RAM: 8 gigs of RAM.
  • Graphics Card: Intel HD Graphics 520.
  • Display size: 12.3 inches Pixel Sense Display.
  • Weight: 1.69 lbs i.e. 766 grams.
  • Storage: 256GB SSD (PCI-E 3.0).
  • Storage: Windows 10.


There are maybe hundreds of laptops available in the market for GIS ( Geographic Information System)  and Cartography professionals. However, you should choose the best based on your demands and budgets. The laptops provided in this article are appreciated and rated highly by the customers. So, this list might help you choose the best laptop for you. Which one is the best laptop for GIS and Cartography? You also may share your thoughts and experience below. Your feedback will be much appreciated.

Fassih Fayyaz

Fassih Fayyaz is a student and part-time affiliate and digital marketer. He is doing online marketing by Creating Several Websites And Youtube Channel on the internet and he loves blogging.

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