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Are you looking for the best laptops for financial modeling?
Guess what? You’re in the right place.
In a hurry?
Here’s our Editor’s choice:
Dell Inspiron 15 3000
We’ve done countless hours of research to find the best laptop for your modeling needs so that you don’t have to.
Since laptops for excel modeling don’t have to be that heavy on hardware so you can get away with mid-range laptops for the most part. But the trick here is to get reliable machines as well.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the best notebooks for financial modeling.
Best Laptop For Financial Modeling (Editor’s Choice) – Dell Inspiron 15 3000
The Dell Inspiron 15 3000 is our Editor’s choice for the best laptop for financial modeling in 2020.
The main reason why we chose this laptop as our Editor’s choice as opposed to any flagships is the fact that you don’t a high-end and expensive laptop for financial modeling.
You can go with a flagship laptop that costs you a couple of thousand dollars or you can get the same thing done using the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 model.
Let’s talk more about why this laptop is great for financial modeling.
The design of this Dell laptop is nothing new. If you’re familiar with the Inspiron series, then you can see that nothing has changed much. It comes in the same classic silver chassis and the build is durable for the price.
The keyboard on this Dell Inspiron 15 3000 laptop is pretty good. The keys are nice to use and they come with a good amount of travel. You can type on this laptop without losing speed or accuracy which is great. The trackpad is also pretty good and get’s the job done.
The Dell Inspiron 15 3000 model is not the most portable laptop out there. With a weight of 4.41 lbs, this laptop will be not easy to carry around. Since you will be using an office for your financial modeling needs, this should be a problem.
The display we have here is a 15.6″ display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. A full HD resolution for a display this size is good and makes for a good pixel density. The pictures on the display are sharp and you don’t many pixels that easily.
The text on the display is very sharp. Since you are going to be dealing with spreadsheets and other applications that are mostly text-based, you will enjoy using this screen and the sharp text on it.
The laptop is great for media consumption. The screen is big enough to enjoy movies and TV shows on it. The bezels around the screen are not that thin, but that’s not a huge problem. The speaker on this laptop is decent and you’ll be fine if you’re not an audiophile.
Another good thing about this display is that it also doubles up as a touchscreen. You won’t be to use this as a tablet but you can interact with the touchscreen and get a wholesome Windows computing experience.
Let’s talk about the processing power of this laptop. We have an Intel Core i5 1035G1 processor to power this machine up. This is a 10th generation quad-core processor that comes with a base clocking frequency of 1.0GHz and a maximum clocking frequency of 3.7GHz.
This is a mid-range processor but it does pack a punch when it comes to handling your everyday activities. You can run spreadsheets and other modeling applications without any issues whatsoever.
There are 12 gigs of DDR4 type RAM and these are great for multitasking. If you’re someone who loves running several applications at the same time to be more productive, this memory will serve you well.
One of the best features of this Dell Inspiron 15 3000 model is the storage. We get 512 gigs of SSD storage that is fast and helps get a snappier performance. Even though the price point of this laptop is not high, we got to give it to Dell for including premium storage on this laptop.
There is no discrete graphics card in the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 model. We only get an integrated graphics card and that Intel UHD GPU is great for your everyday graphics needs. You have to be worried only if you’re a gamer. Otherwise, this integrated GPU will take care of you.
There are several connectivity options in the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 model. You get a USB type C port, a couple of USB 3.1 gen A ports, an sd card reader, an HDMI port, an Ethernet port, and also a headphone jack.
The laptop also comes with Bluetooth 4.2 which is a lot faster than its previous version. It comes with much better over-the-air transmission and 10x more packet capacity. The WiFi that is built-in is also quite fast and helps you browse the internet a lot faster.
The battery life of the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 laptop is impressive. You get around 4 to 8 hours of battery life depending on the user’s computing needs.
Overall, the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 is an excellent laptop that comes with impressive specs. With a price tag that is not that expensive, this Dell laptop is easily one of the best laptops for financial modeling in 2020.
Runner Up – ASUS VivoBook 15
The ASUS VivoBook 15 is our close runner up when finding the best notebooks for financial modeling.
The ASUS VivoBook 15 comes with pretty good hardware and has a price tag that is affordable for most people.
There is nothing new in the design of the ASUS VivoBook 15 model. One thing to note is the thin bezels surrounding the display. That feature alone has reduced the footprint of the laptop resulting in a much more portable device.
The laptop weighs just around 3.5 pounds making it one of the lightest laptops in this size category.
The keyboard is the same one you’re going to find in all ASUS laptops. The keys are good enough to give you nice feedback and you’ll enjoy typing on this laptop. The keyboard also comes with a dedicated number pad which is really handy for financial modeling.
The laptop comes with a lot of connectivity options as well. You get a USB 3.1 type C port, a couple of USB 2.0 gen A ports, a USB 3.0 gen A port, an HDMI port, a microSD card slot and also a headphone jack. There is also support for Bluetooth and WiFi as well.
How good is the display on the ASUS VivoBook 15?
The display we have here is a 15.6″ display that comes with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. Like we mentioned above, the thin bezels are a blessing on this laptop. It gives you the feeling of using a modern device and also makes for an uninterrupted viewing experience.
The image quality is pretty good. The full HD resolution makes sure you don’t see pixels on the screen. The reading experience is also very good, thanks to the sharp text you’re going to see. The display is also excellent for media consumption. You will enjoy watching movies and tv shows on this laptop.
The speakers on this laptop are decent. They will not compete with the best laptops but are sure to keep you hooked on to this one. You might get some distortions at high volumes but that’s to be expected in a budget laptop like this one.
The laptop is powered by an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U processor. This is a mid-range processor that comes with a maximum clock speed of 3.5GHz. With a quad-core processor in place, the laptop does well when it comes to financial modeling.
You will be able to run spreadsheets without any issues. Running office applications and other day to day apps will not be a problem with this processor in place.
The memory department in this laptop is loaded with 12 gigs of DDR4 RAM. This memory will enable you to run several applications at the same time without any issues. You can even run multithreaded applications as the processor here is capable of handling them.
With 512 gigs of space in the solid state drive, the laptop comes with a ton of storage to work with. With financial modeling, you’re not going to need a lot of space on a per-file basis so this storage setup should suit you well.
Having an SSD in your laptop also makes sure that your system does not lack when it comes to speed and performance. The operating system boots up real quick and the same is true for the opening speeds of applications as well.
The ASUS VivoBook 15 does not come with a dedicated graphics card. With a laptop at this price point, it is fair that we don’t get a graphics card. Also, graphics cards have very little to do when it comes to financial modeling. So you should be fine with the integrated AMD Radeon graphics card.
With a light load, the ASUS VivoBook 15 will last for about 8 hours which is excellent considering the price. Even with a medium load, the laptop will be usable for 6 hours which is brilliant.
Overall, the ASUS VivoBook 15 is an excellent laptop for financial modeling. You get very good hardware for an affordable price and you can do a lot more with this laptop if you know what you’re doing.
Best Budget Laptop For Financial Modeling – Acer Aspire 5
If you don’t have a lot of money to play with but still need a laptop for your financial modeling needs, then we would suggest going with the Acer Aspire 5 laptop.
When we think of a budget laptop, there is very little chance that this Acer Aspire model will not be the right choice.
The laptop comes with an excellent set of specs for a price of under $400 and together, they all work so well to give you excellent computing experience.
The design of this laptop is nothing special. This is a budget laptop and the design of the laptop shows pretty much the same thing. The construction of the laptop is not that solid but it should be durable for a decent period.
The keyboard on the laptop is a good one for the price. What surprised us is the fact that this is a backlit keyboard. You can use this keyboard even in dark conditions which is a nice feature to have. The typing experience on this laptop is also good and it doesn’t affect your typing speed or accuracy which is even better.
At 3.97 pounds, the Acer Aspire 5 laptop is not that heavy. For a 15.6″ laptop, this is actually very light. In terms of portability, you can easily move around with this laptop in your backpack.
Let’s talk about the screen on the Acer Aspire 5. We have a 15.6″ display that comes with full HD resolution and for a budget laptop, that is a lot more than we what expected.
The display is suitable for watching movies and tv shows and other kinds of media consumption as well. Being a widescreen, the display gives you a lot of screen real estate to work on. You can work on multiple windows side by side without any issues.
The speakers on the Acer Aspire 5 are decent. They are not great but they are not poor as well. If you’re not an audiophile, then you shouldn’t have to worry about the speakers on this laptop.
The Acer Aspire 5 is powered by an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U processor. This is a quad-core processor and comes with enough power to handle your workload without any hiccups.
Being a mid-range processor, the AMD chip does well when it comes to everyday issues. You will be able to run your financial modeling applications smoothly. You can also run other complex apps fine as this processor has the legs to deal with it.
There are 8 gigs of DDR4 RAM and that allows you to smoothly work on multiple applications at the same time. While multitasking is a priority, this memory also makes running multithreaded applications easy. You will have a smooth overall experience, thanks to this RAM.
With a 256GB SSD, the Acer Aspire 5 does well on the storage front. The SSD is snappy and improves every single performance you can visibly notice while working on the laptop.
The laptop comes only with an integrated graphics card. The lack of a discrete graphics card is not a big deal as you don’t need on for running financial modeling applications.
How good is the battery life in the Acer Aspire 5? With a regular load, the laptop will easily last for about 7.5 hours which is very good considering the price of the laptop. If you need more battery life, you can try opting for a lighter workload.
Overall, the Acer Aspire 5 is the best budget laptop for financial modeling. It comes at a budget price and delivers a lot more than you bargained for.
Best 2-in-1 Laptop For Financial Modeling – Surface Pro 7
If you’re looking for a 2-in-1 laptop with no compromise, then the Surface Pro 7 is the best choice for you.
Surface Pro 7 is a solid 2-in-1 laptop and comes with excellent features that justify the price. Being Microsoft’s flagship 2-in-1 laptop, you can expect an excellent software performance from this device.
Let’s talk about the design of this Surface Pro 7 laptop. We have a 12.3″ laptop which is a pretty small screen, to begin with. But this small screen makes this one of the most portable laptops out there.
With a weight of just 1.70 pounds, you can easily take this laptop with you wherever you go without feeling anything extra.
The keyboard on this Surface Pro 7 model is easily detachable. The keyboard is not that great to type on but it gets the job done which is nice. The trackpad is pretty decent and is serviceable.
The display here is a 12.3″ one and it comes with an excellent resolution. Microsoft dubs it the PixelSense resolution and it is slightly better than the QHD resolution we’ve seen in the past.
The color output of this device is very good and makes this laptop a very good fit for anything that is color-related. You will relish watching movies and content from platforms like Netflix, Hulu and so on. The speakers on this device are also very good making this laptop a very good one for media consumption.
One of the main reasons why this laptop is on this list is because of battery life. With regular usage, the laptop should last for about 10.5 hours which is excellent. Even if you plan to do something heavy, the laptop will stay alive for 6 hours and that’s brilliant.
The Surface Pro 7 is powered by an Intel Core i5 processor. This is an i5 chip from the 10th generation of Intel chips and comes with 4 physical cores and 8 logical cores.
This processor is a powerful one and will handle even heavy applications without any issues. When it comes to day to day apps, the laptop will go through them like a hot knife through butter.
The 8 gigs of DDR4 RAM come in handy and helps you with multitasking. If you’re someone who loves to be productive, you will make good use of the bandwidth this memory provides you.
We only have 128 gigs of SSD storage but it is super fast which is nice. If you think you need more storage, then you should opt for the 256GB model or bigger models. The SSD is great for overall speed enhancements as well. You will notice it even when interacting with elements in the operating system.
The laptop comes only with an integrated graphics card. Having an integrated graphics card shouldn’t be a problem for those working on financial modeling. If you’re a gamer who wants to play the latest games, then this isn’t the laptop for you.
Overall, this is a very good 2-in-1 laptop and comes with all the stuff you’d expect in one. You can be assured that this hybrid laptop will take care of your needs without making obvious compromises.
Best Mac For Financial Modeling – Apple MacBook Air
The Apple MacBook Air, for a number of reasons, is the best apple laptop for financial modeling. With an array of expensive laptops, the Apple MacBook Air is their cheapest offering.
Cheap doesn’t have to be bad and in the MacBook Air’s case, that is very true.
The Apple MacBook Air comes with excellent hardware and if you’re a fan of finesse, you will like this device better than Windows laptops.
The design of the MacBook Air is its biggest strength. It comes with a super slim body and weighs around 2.75 pounds. This is the lightest laptop Apple has produced and it is so easy to carry it around.
Apple has given thought to even the smallest things when it comes to design. You can lift the laptop with a single finger, thanks to the well-weighed hinges. The logo doesn’t light up but that’s not a problem in any way.
The keyboard on the laptop is a solid one and is great for typing. Apple has reverted back to the old scissor-style keyboard and typing on it is much better now.
The trackpad is huge and is one of the best ones out there. The macOS comes with a ton of gestures and with this trackpad, working them is such a pleasure.
Let’s talk about the display. We have a 13.3″ display that comes with Retina resolution. With millions of pixels loaded on your screen, you will not be able to see individual pixels from a decent distance.
The colors on the display are brilliant and they make for a great visual experience. The screen is perfect for media consumption and you will have a great time watching movies and tv shows on this Retina display. The viewing angles are also very good.
The speakers on this laptop are truly impressive. They are not as good as the ones in the MacBook Pro but they do make excellent speakers and will be perfect to get a wholesome media consumption experience.
One of the best features of this laptop is the battery life. With regular use, the laptop should last for about 12 to 14 hours and that’s fantastic. If you’re gonna do some heavy stuff, the laptop will still stand good for 6 to 8 hours which is crazy good.
The Apple MacBook Air is powered by an Intel Core i5 8265U processor. This is a dual-core processor from the 8th generation of Intel chips and does a pretty good job when it comes to everyday usage.
The processor can clock to a maximum of 3.7GHz and that’s a lot of power for most users. For financial modeling, you will not be needing the highest power this processor is capable of. You will be able to pull off all your modeling needs without reaching peak power which is great for battery life.
Other than financial modeling, the laptop can handle most everyday tasks without any problems. There are 8 gigs of RAM that help the user with some heavy multitasking. You can run your favorite browser and open tens of tabs without slowing down the system.
You will also be able to run multithreaded applications without any problems which is a good thing to have.
When it comes to storage, you’re in good hands on Apple laptops. You are going to get super fast storages in the form of SSDs. The Apple MacBook Air comes with a 128GB solid state drive and you can also opt for more storage if you want to.
The Apple MacBook Air’s connectivity options are a bit limited. You get only a couple of USB type C ports and that’s pretty much it. These are versatile ports but the lack of other ports might be a problem for others.
Overall, the Apple MacBook Air is a great laptop that brings all the Apple goodness at an affordable price. If you’re looking for the best apple laptop for financial modeling, this is it.
What To Look For In The Best Laptop For Financial Modeling?
Financial modeling is not like other use cases. You don’t have to get a laptop with bells and whistles to deal with financial modeling. At the same time, you can’t get things done with a simple entry-level laptop as well.
If you’re not happy with our recommendations, here are some criteria to consider before you get a laptop for financial modeling on your own.
If there is one thing you should focus on when getting a laptop for financial modeling, it is in getting the right processor.
Since the processor will be doing most of the work, you can not cheap out here.
As a bare minimum, go for at least a dual-core processor. If you can afford it, then we recommend going for quad-core or hexa-core processors depending on your needs.
If you want to take the Intel route, then we suggest going with an i5 processor as a minimum. You can go for i7 chips if you can afford it. If you’re going with AMD, be sure to get with a quad-core processor.
Clocking speed is important but don’t waste too much time on it. Just be sure that the processor you have supports turbo boost so that you can get some extra power when needed.
Having adequate memory is very important for a laptop primed for financial modeling.
As a minimum, you need at least 4 gigs of DDR4 RAM. Though people won’t see this as a lot of RAM, you can get a lot done with this. We do recommend going with 8 gigs of DDR4 RAM as it gives you the freedom to multitask without affecting performance.
Getting 16GB or more is overkill for financial modeling, but if it gives you peace of mind, then go for it.
Remember to get DDR4 RAM as it is the latest and comes with more bandwidth. Avoid DDR3 as it an older generation and is a tad slower than DDR4.
You can get away with a laptop that has just 128 gigs of storage. When it comes to financial modeling, you need not worry about storage that much.
One thing you have to be careful with is the type of storage.
Always go for solid state drives as opposed to hard drives. SSDs are much faster as they do not have any moving parts in them. They are super fast and bring performance improvements across the board.
One disadvantage of SSDs is that they are expensive. If you’re not up for SSDs, then the next best thing you can do is to go for hybrid drives. These are a combination of SSDs and HDDs and will give you both space and the speed you’re looking for.
You need excellent battery when performing financial modeling.
Having excellent battery life will benefit you in a ton of ways. You can travel freely without worrying about your laptop dying on you. You can move a lot so that you don’t have to plug your laptop into a power socket all the time.
Get a laptop that gives you a minimum battery life of 7 hours. It would be better if you get a laptop with a battery life of more than 8 to 10 hours. Our recommendations will get your very good battery life and you don’t have to worry.
Whatever be the case, do not ignore battery life as it can come back to bite you in the back.
If you are someone who moves a lot, then having a slim laptop is super important. You can simply slide this in your backpack or bag and just travel like nothing ever happened.
If you’re someone who presents documents and presentations to clients and other people, then having a 2-in-1 laptop surely comes in handy. It will also give you browsing freedom in tight places like commute in trains and buses.
Having a discrete graphics card is not that important here.
You will be fine with most integrated GPUs. Both Intel UHD graphics and AMD’s Radeon graphics cards will do a good job.
If you’re a gamer, then you will need a good GPU in place. But that’s a different topic and we’ll discuss it in a separate post.
That brings us to the end of this post.
If you’re looking for the best laptops for financial modeling, we hope we helped you in finding a laptop of your choice.
If you have any queries, please write to us using the contact page or just simply use the comment section below.
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