Best Laptops and Desktops for GoPro Editing

If you want to edit your GoPro videos but don’t have any PC knowledge, I understand how difficult it can be to choose an editing laptop or computer. With hundreds of options available, it can be frustrating to pick one if you don’t have any computer knowledge.

Hi, my name is Larry. I’m a tech wizard and GoPro fanatic who’s been editing GoPro videos for nearly 10 years. I know all the ins and outs of PC specs and will explain which desktop or laptop is best for GoPro editing.

I’m excited to share the best computers for GoPro editing in today’s extensive guide. I’ll also discuss what factors to look for in your next computer and answer a few common questions about GoPro editing as well.

Key Takeaways

  • The processor and graphics card are the most important factors when choosing a laptop or desktop computer for GoPro editing.
  • Desktop computers offer more value for your dollar, while laptops are better for portability and convenience.
  • Higher resolution GoPro videos such as 4K and 5K require higher-end computer specs for smooth GoPro editing.
  • I recommend at least 8 GB of RAM, with 16 GB being the sweet spot.
  • If you want to edit videos with Final Cut Pro, you must use a Mac. 

Computers are complex machines with a lot of moving parts. You must consider the processor (CPU), graphics card (GPU), RAM, and storage. In general, I recommend a multi-core Intel i5/i7/i9 processor with 4 or more processor cores. Furthermore, you need at least 8 GB to 32 GB of RAM.

In terms of storage space, I recommend at least 256 GB and preferably SSD memory since it’s faster. Of course, you can’t go wrong with an NVIDIA GPU for your graphics card.

Desktop computers are better than laptops in terms of processing power and performance. This is because laptop GPUs and CPUs are slower than their desktop counterparts. If you look at the dollar-for-dollar comparison, you get more bang for your buck out of a desktop. Furthermore, laptops have more restricted power and thermal limits.

However, laptops offer significantly greater convenience but are typically more expensive for the same performance.

Although computers offer more video editing capabilities, you don’t necessarily need a computer to edit GoPro videos. This is because you can edit videos on the GoPro Quik mobile app. Therefore, you can use a smartphone or tablet instead of a computer to edit your GoPro videos. 

Also Read: How to Edit GoPro Videos on iPad or iPhone

I recommend at least 8 GB of RAM for video editing. However, investing in 16 GB or 32 GB of RAM is worth it since more RAM makes all your applications smooth and stable. Nonetheless, RAM requirements differ depending on your software, the codec, and the effects you use. With a new computer, I recommend at least 16 GB.

The CPU is more important than RAM for video editing because most editing tasks require a lot of CPU cycles. However, RAM is also important, and I recommend at least 8 GB at the minimum. You can think of the CPU as the engine and RAM as the gas. Therefore, both components work off each other and are important. 

What Makes the Best Laptops and Desktop Computers 

Truthfully speaking, you need a machine that matches your video editing skills. Furthermore, you need a machine that enables you to go above and beyond so that you can improve your skills. Most GoPro video editing software require hardware that provides enough power and speed to accommodate high-resolution GoPro videos. 

In this section, I’ll discuss all the factors you must consider when choosing a laptop or computer for GoPro video editing.

  • CPU: The most important factor to consider when buying a computer for GoPro editing is the processor or CPU. Video editing programs like Final Cut Pro, Sony Vegas, and Adobe Premier occupy multiple cores in your CPU and require multi-threading. Therefore, I recommend choosing a CPU with multiple core processors. 
  • GPU: Your specific graphics card requirements can differ depending on your video editing program. While professional software like Sony Vegas and Adobe Premier are more effective with higher-performance GPUs, less intensive programs like Windows Movie Maker require a less powerful GPU. 
  • RAM: You also need to think about how much RAM you want to have in your new computer or laptop. For HD videos (1080p), 8 GB to or 16 GB will be enough RAM. However, I recommend 32 GB if you plan on editing 4K or higher resolution videos. 
  • Storage: You need somewhere to save all your edited GoPro videos. As such, you need adequate storage since high-resolution GoPro videos may have enormous file sizes. Furthermore, I recommend using an SSD instead of an HHD since SSDs are faster. I recommend at least a 1 TB SSD if you plan to edit dozens of different GoPro videos. 
  • Portability: If you want a laptop to edit GoPro videos, you need to consider the laptop’s size. While 15.6 inches is the sweet spot for laptops, you may want a smaller laptop if you’re on the go and need something more lightweight. I don’t recommend purchasing a 17-inch laptop because they are extremely bulky and difficult to carry. 

Top 10 Best Laptops and Desktops for GoPro Editing

Now that you know what specs to look for in your new desktop or laptop, it’s time to jump into my list of the 10 best computers for GoPro editing. I’ve been building computers since I was in middle school and know exactly what type of computer you need. This list includes 5 laptops and 5 pre-built desktop computers you should consider.

Let’s jump in!

1. ROG Strix G10 Gaming Desktop PC (Best Overall)

  • CPU: Intel Core i7-11700
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 
  • RAM: 16 GB
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD

The ROG Strix G10 Gaming Desktop PC is a desktop computer that delivers incredible GoPro editing experiences powered by the latest Intel Core i7-11700 processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card. It also offers a 1 TB SSD so you can quickly access your GoPro videos.

This computer features 2 USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports, 4 USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports, 1 HDMI slot, and 3 DisplayPort slots. In addition, you get 16 GB of RAM and 1 TB of SSD storage space. This is more than enough memory to accommodate most GoPro users.

The ROG Strix G10 also features two isolated air chambers to provide excellent thermal performance when performing high-intensity GoPro editing. This way, you don’t have to worry about your computer overheating. 

In terms of value for performance, you can’t beat the ROG Strix G10 Gaming Desktop PC. This computer offers mid to high-end specs at an unbelievably affordable price tag. Although this computer is perfect for GoPro editing, you can also easily play video games, livestream, and multitask. 

However, the best part about pre-built desktops is that you don’t have to assemble your computer manually! Instead, this PC works right out of the box. All you need to do is plug in your monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

Nonetheless, the only downside to this laptop is that it only has 16 GB of RAM. Although this is enough for most GoPro video editing purposes, 32 GB is more ideal for more intense video editing. For example, I recommend purchasing additional RAM if you want to edit 5K GoPro videos.

My Verdict: The ROG Strix G10 desktop is the best overall computer for GoPro editing because it offers incredible performance for its relatively low price point. It has a powerful CPU and GPU as well as enough RAM and storage for most GoPro users.  

2. Apple iMac (Best Apple Desktop)

  • CPU: Intel Core i7
  • GPU: AMD Radeon Pro 5500 XT
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD

The Apple iMac is a 27-inch desktop computer packed with powerful tools to enable exceptional GoPro video editing capabilities. Even more, it features a stunning 5K retina display, so you can clearly see all the details in your GoPro videos. This display features one billion colors and 500 nits of brightness. As such, graphics leap off the screen, and the text is incredibly sharp.

I tested Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premier, and I was impressed by how smooth this computer runs when editing GoPro videos. The price point is 100% worth it since you get a reliable machine with robust performance. 

Personally, I’m not an Apple or PC “fanboy”. Instead, I just appreciate getting a solid return on my investment. As such, I am delighted with the capabilities of the Intel i7 chipset and Radeon Pro 5500 XT GPU. Even though the thermal output of the i7 is higher than the M1 chip, I’m pleased with the video editing and rendering times.

Although the iMac is an excellent machine, it comes with one drawback: it only ships with 8 GB of RAM. However, you can easily add more RAM into the additional free slots available on the accessible back door. Therefore, I recommend grabbing a few more RAM sticks if you want to edit ultra high-quality GoPro videos.

My Verdict: The Apple iMac is the best option if you prefer working inside the Apple ecosystem. This is the best overall computer if you plan on editing your GoPro videos with Final Cut Pro. The i7 processor and Radeon GPU are more than enough to edit high-quality GoPro videos.

3. ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop (Best Overall Laptop)

  • CPU: Intel Core i7-11800H
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050
  • RAM: 32 GB 
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD

The ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop is an unbelievably fast laptop at a reasonable price point. If you’re wondering why I included many gaming laptops and desktops on my list, it’s because gaming computers feature high-end specs, which are necessary for GoPro video editing purposes.

Although there are high-quality non-gaming laptops, they usually carry weak graphics cards, which isn’t ideal for editing videos. Therefore, you can also use this laptop as a gaming computer if that interests you.

In terms of performance, the i7-11800H and RTX 3050 combo is magnificent for editing every type of GoPro video on any video editing software. This laptop also features a 1 TB SDD and 32 GB of RAM, which is right in the sweet spot of what I recommend for memory. Overall, it runs just as you’d expect, given its impressive specs.

The 16:9 IPS display panel is 15.6 inches, full HD, and has a 144hz refresh rate. This gives you crystal clear quality while editing your beautiful GoPro videos. In terms of port availability, this laptop has 1 USB-C port, 3 USB 3.2 Gen1 ports, an HDMI port, a headphone/microphone combo jack, and an ethernet port.

My only negative assessment of this laptop is that the battery power isn’t great when it’s not plugged into a wall outlet. For this reason, I recommend keeping this laptop plugged in whenever you edit your GoPro videos. 

My Verdict: The ASUS TUF Gaming laptop is the best overall laptop for editing GoPro videos because it features a high-quality CPU and GPU. With 32 GB RAM and 1 TB SSD storage space, this is the perfect laptop for on-the-move GoPro users who need an editing powerhouse.

4. Dell XPS 8940 Desktop PC (Best Storage)

  • CPU: Intel Core i7-11700
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti
  • RAM: 32 GB
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD and 1 TB HDD

The Dell XPS 8940 Desktop PC  is the best computer for GoPro users who plan to edit many videos. This computer features a 1 TB SSD and a 1 TB HDD, enough storage space to hold hundreds of GoPro videos. Furthermore, it’s compact, ultra-quiet, and has an intelligent design you can fit in most desk spaces.

In a time when working from home is more than common, you can also use this as your work computer or to play AAA gaming titles. This PC edits GoPro videos very well from a qualitative perspective. From a quantitative point of view, the Dell XPS 8940 is in the mid-range of the pre-built PC market. In other words, it performs better than you’d expect, given its price. 

Furthermore, this computer has many ports on the back and front of the system. On the back, there are three 3.5mm audio ports, an ethernet port, a power port, and six USB-A ports. On the front there’s a 3.5mm audio jack on the front, one USB-C port, and three USB-A ports.

In essence, this desktop computer is no slouch as a productivity workhorse. Although it’s not nearly as powerful as other systems on the market, it’s well above average and offers everything you need in a GoPro video editing PC.

My Verdict: The Dell XPS 8940 is the best desktop computer if you need a lot of storage. Since high-resolution GoPro videos come in massive file sizes, you’ll need a safe spot to store all these vital video files. 

5. Apple Macbook Pro (Best Apple Laptop)

  • CPU: Apple M1 Pro Chip
  • GPU: Integrated Apple GPU
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD

The Apple MacBook Pro is a 14.2-inch laptop with incredible specs and the impressive M1 Pro CPU chip. This 10-core CPU offers up to 3.7x faster performance than previous models, and the 16-core GPU delivers up to 6.5x faster performance for video editing and graphics-intensive apps. 

This laptop can easily handle 8K video editing, which is more than what GoPros can even record. You can also render complex 3D scenes or compile code. Best of all, the MacBook Pro has up to 21 hours of battery life which is at the higher end compared to most laptops.

The MacBook Pro features a liquid retina XDR display, offering an incredibly dynamic range and excellent contrast ratio. You can see jaw-dropping details in shadows, vibrant colors, and deeper blacks. This laptop also has a 1080 FaceTime HD camera and a robust six-speaker sound system featuring spatial audio.

As a 14.2-inch laptop, the MacBook Pro is great for portability, convenience, and travel. Its sleek design means you can place it in the most miniature backpacks without any trouble whatsoever. 

However, the primary downside to this laptop is the notch and camera that sit on the upper middle of the display panel. Although most people won’t find it inconvenient, I’ve spoken with several Apple enthusiasts who’d prefer a notch-less design.

My Verdict: The Apple Macbook Pro is the best laptop for Apple users who need a portable laptop to edit GoPro videos. Featuring the M1 Pro Chip, this laptop is built for high performance tasks such as video editing. 

6. Omen 30L Gaming Desktop PC (Best Premium Desktop)

  • CPU: Intel Core i9-10850K
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080
  • RAM: 32 GB
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD and 2 TB HDD

As someone who’s built dozens of gaming and work PCs, I’m incredibly impressed with the Omen 30L Gaming Desktop PC. On top of its high-end performance, it’s also exceptionally well built and attractive. As a result, this is the one of the only desktop computers you should consider if you want the best of the best. 

With a PC this powerful, you won’t experience any hiccups or stutters. Even the most intensive GoPro video editing sessions will go as smooth as butter. All you need to do is unbox the PC and plug in the power cable. The i9-10850K and RTX 3080 combo offers unbelievable performance.

If you opt for this PC, I recommend pairing it with an ultra-wide display to make the most out of this computer’s specs. I use a 3840 x 1600 160hz display and am mesmerized by the display panel quality while editing GoPro videos. 

My only criticism of this PC would be the fans’ volume under heavy load while performing intense GoPro video editing duties. Nonetheless, the Omen PC features a custom-built RTX 3080. In addition, it features three curved fans that automatically shut off at 30 degrees Celcius. 

My Verdict: The Omen 30L Gaming Desktop is the most premium option on today’s list because it features the Intel Core i9-10850K CPU and GeForce RTX 3080 GPU. These are top-of-the-line computer specs and perfect for GoPro users who plan on editing high resolution GoPro videos in premium editing software. 

7. Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio (Best Touchscreen Laptop)

  • CPU: Intel Core i7-11700
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050
  • RAM: 32 GB
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD

The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio is the most potent surface laptop because it features the quad-core 11th Gen Intel Core i7-11700 processor. This CPU can handle your most intensive GoPro video editing sessions. 

This is one of the best laptops I’ve ever purchased because most laptops have underwhelming screen quality, a poorly backlit keyboard, misrepresented battery stamina, and or a poor trackpad. The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio doesn’t have any of these issues. 

In essence, I’d label this as an epic laptop for video editing and office duties. I use it for heavy video editing and as my daily or travel laptop, and I’m more than satisfied with its performance. Best of all, this laptop folds flat as a tablet and has basically replaced my iPad whenever I want to use a device on the couch or bed. 

My only complaint about this laptop is that it only features two USB 3 ports and one audio port. This means you need a USB 3 hub for peripherals such as external monitors and card readers. Nonetheless, the lack of ports is understandable given its compact size. 

My Verdict: The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio is an excellent option if you want a portable and lightweight touchscreen laptop. Although this laptop is compact, it offers more than enough power to edit high-resolution GoPro videos smoothly. 

8. HP Pavilion Gaming Desktop (Best Budget Desktop)

  • CPU: Intel Core i5-10400F
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Super
  • RAM: 32 GB
  • Storage: 1 TB SSD

For the money, you can’t go wrong with the HP Pavilion Gaming Desktop. You get adequate specs all across the board and can comfortably edit most GoPro videos. Unless you plan on exclusively editing 4K or 5K GoPro footage, this is the most affordable video editing desktop.

As a budget-friendly desktop computer, you won’t get the best specs available. However, it gets the job done and has a small case that fits nicely on my desk. This computer also has a fast bootup, all the ports you need, and is perfect for moderate GoPro editing purposes. 

The 10th Generation Intel Core i5-10400F processor features 6 cores and 12 threads which is ideal for most video editing programs. It also features 32 GB of RAM and a 1 TB SSD, which is quite impressive given its affordable price point.

In terms of drawbacks, the stock cooler on the processor is louder than I prefer. However, it seems to do its job since it only gets loud when the temperature goes above 65 degrees Celcius. Furthermore, this computer offers little room for expansion since the case isn’t big enough for a cooler, fan, or memory upgrades.

My Verdict: The HP Pavilion Gaming Desktop is the best budget desktop computer because it offers excellent performance at a relatively low price point. In terms of value for your dollars, you can’t go wrong with this computer. 

9. Acer Swift X SFX14-41G-R1S6 (Best Budget Laptop)

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
  • GPU: NVIDIA RTX 3050 Ti
  • RAM: 16 GB
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD

The Acer Swift X SFX14-41G-R1S6 is a mid to high-end portable laptop perfect for GoPro editing. This laptop features an excellent build quality despite its lightweight and compact size. Furthermore, the Acer Swift X offers excellent thermal performance, although the fan can get loud under heavy loads.

Overall, the Acer Swift offers top-notch performance for a 14-inch ultra-thin laptop. Also, I really enjoy this laptop’s display. The display is 100% sRGB with 1080p and 60hz max. It also has 300 nits with great brightness scaling. 

The port selection includes 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB-C, 1 HDMI, combined audio, and a Kensington Lock. Unfortunately, this laptop doesn’t have an ethernet port or SD card reader since it’s thin. In terms of battery life, I get 4-5 hours while editing GoPro videos. 

The AMD Ryzen 7 5800 CPU and RTX 3050 Ti GPU offer incredible performance while editing GoPro videos in any editing program. As of 2022, this is hands down the best value you will get in a laptop for its price point. This is why this is the best budget laptop for GoPro editing. 

However, the only downside to this laptop is that it only has 512 GB of SSD storage space. For this reason, you may need to use an external hard drive if you plan on editing lots of GoPro videos. 

My Verdict: Similar to the HP Pavilion Gaming Desktop, the Acer Swift is an incredibly powerful laptop with an inexpensive price point. The AMD Ryzen 7 5800U is in the Intel equivalent to the i7-1185G7, an excellent CPU for GoPro editing. 

10. Dell XPS 13 9310 (Best Portable Laptop)

  • CPU: Intel Core i7-1195G7
  • GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • RAM: 16 GB 
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD

The Dell XPS 13 9310 is a 13.4-inch laptop that features unbelievable performance. You can think of this laptop as an alternative to the regular M1 Macbook Pro. This laptop is everything you need in a GoPro editing machine and then some. It’s incredibly quick due to its powerful CPU.

Furthermore, this laptop has a premium build quality and keyboard. The battery life is also average, and I’m overall very satisfied with this laptop’s performance. This laptop only weighs 2.8 pounds, so you can easily bring it in your backpack without it weighing you down. 

In addition, the Dell XPS 13 carries a 1920 x 1200 full HD+ display screen. The panel also has InfinityEdge touchscreen technology and an Anti-Reflective 500-Nit display. There’s also a fingerprint panel and built-in lid sensor that lets you open the lid and power up your laptop in milliseconds. 

In terms of ports, this laptop has 2 Thunderbolt 3 ports, 1 microSD card reader, and a 3.5mm headphone/microphone combo jack. It also comes with a USB-C to USC-A v3.0 adapter. 

The primary downside to this laptop is that it doesn’t have a discrete graphics card. Instead, it uses Intel’s Xe integrated graphics. However, since the CPU is so powerful and it features 16 GB of RAM, you shouldn’t have any issues editing your GoPro videos. Nonetheless, I recommend a different machine if you plan on using intense video editing tools. 

My Verdict: The Dell XPS 13 9310 is the best portable laptop for GoPro editing because it features a 13-inch display panel and powerful specs. If you need a lightweight travel laptop, this is the perfect option.

Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed my in-depth guide on the best laptops and desktop computers for GoPro editing. Although desktop computers are typically better than laptops for high-performance tasks like editing, laptops offer more convenience and portability. Therefore, you should pick the option that best suits your needs and requirements.

Keep in mind that I created this list based on my personal experiences testing dozens of different options. I put each laptop and computer to the test and edited multiple GoPro videos on each using different editing software. This list is a summary of my final thoughts.

But now I’d love to hear from you! Which desktop computer or laptop are you leaning towards for your GoPro editing needs? Do you have any further questions about computers or GoPro editing? Which editing program do you use? Let me know by dropping a quick comment down below.

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