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Photo editing: which computer should you choose?

A good photo is the result of proven talent, and technical skills acquired and sharpened with experience.

However, the quality of a photograph is also determined by the photographic equipment used by the photographer. The equipment is composed of various tools ranging from the camera to various accessories. The photographer’s equipment also includes computer tools, such as the computer, which is an indispensable component of modern and professional photography.

Among the different ranges and the profusion of computer models offered for sale, discover those that can be chosen to achieve successful editing and obtain high-quality images.

Table of contents

Criteria for choosing your photo-editing computer

In a computer market filled with increasingly sophisticated models, the photographer must take into account various criteria to find the photo editing tool that best meets their needs. An overview of the main elements of assessment.

The brand

With the plethora of manufacturers present on the market, it is essential to ask yourself which brand of computer you should choose. In this regard, Apple is acclaimed as one of the most trusted brands in the industry.

Indeed, with its desktop and laptop Macs, the American manufacturer offers photographers a catalog of computers considered almost unanimously as the most powerful for editing images.

Which computer to choose for photo editing 3

The type of computer

Choosing a photo editing system according to its type comes down to asking the fundamental question: desktop or laptop?

The answers to this question are not always unanimous, because everything depends on the needs of the user. In addition, each type of computer has its advantages and disadvantages.

Laptops are appreciated by many photographers for their convenience and mobility. Desktop computers are relatively cheaper with components that are easy to change, but have the disadvantage of not being transportable and therefore being much less practical than the aforementioned.

Processor type

Considered the brain of the device, the computer’s processor is one of the most important components to pay attention to when choosing.

To facilitate photo processing and, more precisely, editing, it must have a high clock rate. As such, computers with Intel Core i5 or AMD A12 processors, for example, are ideal models for sharpening shots.


Photo editing requires a computer with enough RAM to store the image data being processed. 

To do this, it is advisable to turn to models with a RAM of at least 8 GB. It should also be noted that computers with a RAM of 32 GB are to be preferred if heavy editing software is to be used.

Speaking of memory, we should not forget the mass storage of the machine, which must be just as high. To have sufficient memory, there is a choice between an SSD hard disk and an HDD disk. The ideal choice is a computer with a 500 megabyte to 1 terabyte SSD and a 2 terabyte HDD.

The graphics card

The graphics card of the computer is the component that communicates the information necessary for the screen to be displayed. It must be high enough to facilitate the rapid transmission of data. As such, a graphics card with at least 4 to 8 GB of Nvidia, MPX Radeon Pro, ATI Radeon, etc. modules is a recommended choice.

The screen

When choosing a computer, it is important to look at the monitor or screen of the device. The most recommended models for photo editing should preferably be full HD monitors with a high graphics card. Computers with 4k, 5k and 8k screens are recommended models.

In addition, the size of the screen should be taken into account because the level of working comfort also depends on it. Indeed, computers, laptops in this case, which are equipped with a screen of 15 to 16 inches, for example, are better suited to photo editing because they are large enough and comfortable.

Compatibility with the editing software used

From Photoshop to Adobe Lightroom, photographers use various editing software released by various publishers. Some of these editing tools are compatible with specific types of computers. Before choosing, it is therefore advisable to make sure that the machine you choose is compatible with your editing software and, preferably, with as many photo processing programs as possible.

In addition to these criteria, it is also important to pay attention to the price of computers, since this parameter is a decisive part of the purchase decision. As such, you should opt for models that suit your budget while avoiding compromising on performance by choosing a computer at a low price.

The best laptops and desktops for photo editing

Of the various surveys and reviews, Mac computers are the best suited for photo editing. Whether you’re looking at laptop or desktop models, Apple computers dominate the rankings of the best computers for photography work. This position is justified by many technical qualities.

A reliable brand

Mac computers certainly owe their success in photography to undeniable technical qualities, but they also owe it to Apple’s popularity. The American electronics and computer giant has accustomed the public to computer models appreciated by the majority for their performance. Among the models suitable for photo editing and more generally for photography, we can distinguish:

  • the MacBook Air;
  • the MacBook Pro;
  • the Mac Mini;
  • iMac;
  • the Mac Pro;
  • etc.

Screens suitable for image processing

Mac computers are known to be equipped with displays designed to facilitate color and contrast management, which is an essential operation in photo editing.

With laptop models, for example, you can enjoy very high-definition IPS panels capable of faithfully reproducing sRGB and DCI P3 spectra. They guarantee a large color space and optimal color rendering. In addition, Mac computers offer a wide range of screen size choices. From portable to desktop, you can choose between sizes ranging from 13 inches to 27 inches.

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An efficient operating system

The macOS operating system used by Mac computers makes them ideal models for editing photos. In fact, this system is relatively easy to get used to and, therefore, simple to use when it comes to image editing. It also has a built-in backup software program, namely Time machine, which is ideal for storing information and therefore very beneficial for photographers.

Compatibility with a large number of editing software

Affinity Photo, Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop, Photos, Capture One, etc., Mac computers are compatible with a multitude of photo editing software and applications. Indeed, with their technical qualities, including their graphics card, processor, memory, etc., Mac computers can be used with light and heavy software.

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