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The best laptops for 4K video editing and photo editing

This test was conducted in the United States and was originally published in English on the Wirecutter site. You can read it here in original version.

Computers dedicated to professional editing and retouching contain the power of a gaming laptop in a slim and discreet design. Their batteries last a long time and they have a large, high-quality screen. These characteristics are ideal for carrying out your projects. If photo editing, video editing or 3D rendering is your livelihood and you are looking for a model other than a MacBook Pro, the Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 offers, in our opinion, the best combination of performance, weight , screen quality and battery life.

Our first choice

Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2

The most versatile

Powerful and lighter than any other model we've tested, the ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 includes our favorite keyboard and a multitude of ports, even if the battery life and screen are only average, not excellent.

* At the time of publication, the price was € 2,100

To acquire the model that we recommend and that we tested, you will have to go to the Lenovo online store and choose the right options one by one.

Recommended configuration:

  • Processor: Intel Core i7-9750H six-core
  • Screen: IPS 4K
  • Graphics card: Nvidia Quadro T1000
  • Weight: 1.7 kg
  • Memory: 16 GB
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD hard drive

The Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 is the lightest laptop we've tested, while still incorporating powerful six- and eight-core processors and dedicated graphics card options. When you choose the IPS 4K screen in the configuration (IPS is a type of LCD screen that offers better viewing angles than older LCD technologies), the P1 Gen 2 offers different color calibration presets, unlike the other models we tested (to get the best possible color accuracy, we recommend the sRGB preset). Lenovo offers optional up to 64 GB of memory and up to 4 TB of fast SSD storage (the P1 Gen 2 is the only laptop we've tested that includes two M.2 inputs, allowing two to be connected at the same time 2TB SSD) and the ThinkPad keyboard is the best available to date on a laptop. But with a battery life of six hours, its battery takes an hour and a half less than that of the Dell XPS 15 7590, and like all the competitors in our selection, its screen is not very precise in terms of colors, even when activating calibration features.

We also tested the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 2, which is almost identical to the P1 Gen 2. It does not include calibration presets, nor the second M.2 input, Lenovo does not offer an optional 2 TB SSD , it uses an Nvidia GeForce 1650 Max-Q graphics card instead of the Quadro (the overall performance should be similar) and it generally costs a little more than the P1 Gen 2. If these features don't matter to you and you find the X1 Extreme Gen 2 for less, go for it.

Our second choice
A nicer, but heavier screen Dell XPS 15 7590

Dell XPS 15 7590

A nicer, but heavier screen

The XPS 15 7590 is as fast as the ThinkPad P1 Gen 2, which is generally cheaper, and has better autonomy, but in return, it is larger and heavier, and we like its keyboard less.

* At the time of publication, the price was € 1,899.99

Recommended configuration:

  • Processor: Intel Core i7-9750H six-core
  • Screen: 4K OLED
  • Graphics card: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650
  • Weight: 2 kg
  • Memory: 16 GB
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD

The Dell XPS 15 7590 can do the same job, about as fast as the Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2, and it usually costs a few hundred dollars less. But you have to agree to carry 350 grams more in your bag. The XPS 15 7590 has one less Thunderbolt port than the P1 Gen 2 and the stroke of the keys on its keyboard seems shallower, but this keyboard is precise and convincing enough to bring down a working day, just like the trackpad elsewhere. The version of XPS 15 we tested includes an OLED screen that provides better contrast and deeper blacks than lower quality IPS screens, as well as a battery of 97 Watts / hour (Wh), which allows it to hold an hour and a half more between two charges than the ThinkPad P1 Gen 2. You can buy a version weighing 1.8 kg, with a 56 Wh battery, but you would then lose about a third of the battery life , and it’s not a compromise that most users want to make.

We've focused on Windows laptops for this guide, but Apple’s 16-inch MacBook Pro is also a great model for photo and video editing, if you prefer macOS and are willing to spend a little more. The MacBook Pro also has a larger screen and more accurate colors compared to its Windows competitors that we tested; you can find out more in our guide to the best MacBooks.

Our selection of the best laptops for 4K video editing and photo editing

The full test

Why trust us

Wirecutter has been researching and testing laptops since 2013. Our PC team has over 37 years of collective experience in testing laptops of all kinds.

Andrew Cunningham has been testing, evaluating and writing on PCs, Macs and other gadgets for AnandTech, Ars Technica and Wirecutter since 2011. He has been mounting, updating and repairing PCs for over fifteen years, and has spent five in services computers to buy and repair laptops and desktops, as well as to advise people on the purchase of the equipment that best suits their needs. He also spent dozens of hours testing the color accuracy of high-end displays, as well as decoding model numbers of processors and graphics cards for the benefit of Wirecutter readers (and others).

Who are these gifted laptops for editing?

A 13-inch ultrabook is fast enough for most of the tasks that users perform on a computer, such as web browsing, word processing, sending emails and Slack messages, watching videos, and even photo editing. and light video. But higher power can be useful if you're working with high-definition photos and videos, and you need to edit and export assets faster, or if you're doing 3D design or game development that requires better graphics card than that of an ultrabook. Also, a larger laptop might be fine if you need a large, high-resolution image that you can take with you everywhere, or if you need plenty of ports to plug in accessories and don't want operate a separate hub or docking station. As long as you don't have a problem carrying a heavier computer that costs twice as much as an ultrabook, the best choice for you will be a professional-grade 15-inch laptop dedicated to editing and editing.

Compared to an ultrabook, a professional laptop can offer the performance of a good desktop computer, equipped with a six or eight core processor, a dedicated graphics card, with its own RAM which accelerates 3D rendering and adding visual effects in apps like Adobe Photoshop, up to 64 GB of system RAM, and one or more SSD hard drives to quickly save and open large photo or video files.

But in terms of technical specs, there aren't many differences between most of these models and a mid-range gaming laptop. These computers have similar processors and mid-range graphics cards that can endure photo and video editing, 3D design, and recent games with medium to high settings. But spending more on a professional laptop allows you to benefit from a 4K screen for editing high-resolution photos and videos, a better design, more robust and more pleasant to carry and use, and a more discreet look. , without the extravagant fonts and bright LED keyboards.

Buying a pro laptop doesn't really matter if you do most of your heavy duty work at your desk. A desktop computer at around 1,000 euros is generally more efficient than most of these laptops. Indeed, the larger size of its fans and heat sinks allows its processor and graphics card to run faster, longer. A fixed also offers more flexibility to change components later. The portable version is also not the best choice if you prefer finesse, lightness and ease of transport rather than power: most models weigh between 1.8 and 2 kg and the battery of a good ultrabook holds several overtime. We also found that, although most of the pro notebooks we tested had a bright, colorful screen with excellent contrast, none were particularly accurate in terms of colorimetry when removed from the package. . If that's important to you, plan to calibrate the screen yourself or connect an external display.

In this guide, we only focus on Windows PCs, although we sometimes use Apple's 16-inch MacBook Pro as a benchmark. If you prefer macOS over Windows, or if you need a laptop with excellent color accuracy from the start, you can find more details on the 16-inch MacBook Pro in our guide to the best MacBooks.

The main reason to buy a pro laptop is its level of performance, our first criteria were the quality of the processors, the amount of memory, graphics cards and SSD hard drives. But we were also attentive to the resolution of the screens and the correctness of the colors, to the precision and the quality of the keyboards and the trackpads, to the size, the weight and the autonomy of the battery. Here are the features to look for on a professional laptop, knowing that the order of priority varies depending on the tasks you want to perform:

  • Technical characteristics :

Processor : Above all, we looked for laptops with eighth and ninth generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors, focusing on six- or eight-core processor models; 10th generation processors will be released sometime in 2020, but they're not worth the wait if you need a pro laptop now. Quad-core processors remain common on many laptops and work great for most tasks, but adding a few cores ensures that your laptop will stay fast for years, especially for tasks that use all cores simultaneously, such as video encoding for example.

Memory : we recommend at least 16 GB of memory, preferably with a 32 GB option if you know you will need it; the possibility of adding it yourself is a plus. More memory will keep your computer responsive when juggling multiple heavy image or video files, as well as with your browser tabs and other apps.

Graphic card : a dedicated graphics card is especially important if you work with 3D rendering software, use a CAD program, or develop a game. Most of the models we have studied use GeForce GTX 1650, GTX 1660 or RTX graphics cards. 2060 mid-range. High-end options like the RTX 2070 and RTX 2080 are sometimes available, but as we found by doing research for our guide on gaming laptops (guide in English), they are often very expensive and offer more performance than necessary for most users. Avoid the GeForce GTX 1050 and 1060 as they are much older and slower than the GTX 1650 and 1660, which replaced them. If you want to be able to play from time to time on your laptop, a good graphics card is also a significant advantage compared to the Intel integrated in most ultrabooks.

Storage: all of these models are equipped with a PCI Express solid-state drive (SSD) much faster than older rotary hard drives. We searched for models with a hard drive of at least 500 GB, although you may prefer a 1 TB drive if you manage and export heavy video files in 4K and don't want to use an external storage device. .

  • Screen: we favored laptops with a 15-inch screen with a resolution of 3840 × 2160, better known as 4K. A laptop with a 15-inch screen offers much more usable space than the screen of a 13-inch ultrabook, while remaining small enough to carry easily, unlike a 17-inch model. And with a 4K screen, you don't lose any detail in high-resolution photos and videos. We looked for screens with precise colors that covered 99 or 100% of the sRGB color palette. Support for the DCI-P3 color gamut is a bonus, as is an OLED display that can display better contrast than IPS.
  • Keyboard and trackpad: if you're mostly typing, you're unlikely to need a pro laptop, but it should still have a comfortable, responsive keyboard and a precise trackpad that are fun to use over long periods.
  • Height and weight : we didn’t look at laptops that weighed more than 2.3 kg, and we preferred models that weighed around 1.8 kg. A pro laptop will never be easier to carry than an ultrabook, which weighs less than 1.3 kg, but you shouldn't hurt your back either by carrying it all day.
  • Ports: one or two USB Type-A ports are useful for connecting all types of accessories, and a professional laptop must include at least one HDMI port or a DisplayPort to connect an external monitor. A Thunderbolt 3 or USB Type-C port for connecting high-speed accessories (or another display) is also useful, and SD or microSD ports are useful for photographers.
  • Battery life : Since they provide superior performance, pro notebooks use more power than ultrabooks, so it is generally difficult to work all day without access to a wall outlet. But a pro laptop should survive at least an hour or two more than a gaming laptop with similar characteristics; most of the models we tested lasted between six and seven hours during our battery test.
  • Price: if you're on a tight budget, you shouldn't start your research with a pro laptop. Conversely, there is no point in spending too much. The models we reviewed generally cost between 1,500 and 2,500 euros, or a little more if you want 32 GB of RAM or 1 TB of storage.

Michael Murtaugh

We have researched around 20 pro laptops that meet all or most of our criteria. After discarding those that are too heavy, do not offer an optional 4K screen or do not offer the technical characteristics we were looking for, we ended up with seven models to test; you can find out more about the models that we did not keep in the Competition section.

Comparing the performance of different laptops was difficult this time because we did not manage to obtain identical configurations from all manufacturers: some models were equipped with a Core i9 processor instead of an i7, that we recommend for most users, and others had an expensive and expensive graphics card. But we used each model for several days to be able to assess its performance, comfort, heating level and noise from its fan.

To test the battery life, we set the backlight of each laptop to 150 nt (nit is the brightness unit that measures candelas per square meter, or cd / m²) and launched an online test juggling activities, like viewing multiple pages, reading emails, Google Docs, and videos. This gave us a pretty good idea of ​​the battery life for basic tasks, even if when we export videos or run 3D apps, that time is dramatically reduced.

We conducted the same tests of colorimetric accuracy as when we tested independent screens, with the X-Rite i1Basic Pro and X-Rite OEM i1 Display colorimeters, and the CalMAN 2019 software calibration suite. CalMAN measures different elements: the rate of contrast, or the difference between the brightest white and the darkest black; whether screens can display shades of gray without a visible color tint; and how many colors the screen can display, how accurately compared to the actual colors.

For each laptop in our sample, CalMAN tests produced DeltaE 2000 numbers, which show if the displayed color is close to the actual color: the lower the number, the better. A DeltaE value less than 1.0 is perfect. Below 2.0, that's enough for a print job and you don't usually notice the difference with a reference document. Above 3.0, you start to see a difference with the naked eye.

Our first choice for photo and video: the Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2

Michael Murtaugh
Our first choice
The most versatile Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2

Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2

The most versatile

Powerful and lighter than any other model we have tested, the ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 includes our favorite keyboard and a multitude of ports, even if the battery life and its screen are only average, and not excellent.

* At the time of publication, the price was € 2,100

To acquire the model that we recommend and that we tested, you will have to go to the Lenovo online store and choose the right options one by one.

Recommended configuration:

  • Processor: Intel Core i7-9750H six-core
  • Screen: IPS 4K
  • Graphics card: Nvidia Quadro T1000
  • Weight: 1.7 kg
  • Memory: 16 GB
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD hard drive

The Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 is fast, has a decent 4K display, a great keyboard and trackpad, and all the ports that most users need to connect all of their accessories and get the job done. The battery life is not exceptional, but it is the lightest pro laptop we have tested, and it has significant advantages such as easily accessible memory slots to be able to add and a second M.2 input to install a second SSD hard drive. Like all professional notebooks, it is much more expensive than a conventional ultrabook, but at a reasonable price for what it has to offer.

We tested another Lenovo laptop, almost identical, which could also suit most users: the ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 2. In terms of design, ports, weight and battery life, it's exactly the same laptop. But the X1 Extreme Gen 2 has only one M.2 input, doesn't have the screen calibration presets of the P1 Gen 2 and it normally costs a little more. The X1 Extreme Gen 2 also uses an Nvidia GeForce graphics card, compared to an Nvidia Quadro for the P1 Gen 2, but they are generally the same cards, under a different name. If these don't matter to you and you find an X1 Extreme Gen 2 cheaper than the P1 Gen 2, don't hesitate.

The ThinkPad model keyboards are among our favorites among laptops, and the P1 Gen 2 keyboard is great to use for long periods of time.
The ThinkPad model keyboards are among our favorites among laptops, and the P1 Gen 2 keyboard is great to use for long periods of time. Michael Murtaugh
From left to right: the brand's own power port, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, an HDMI port, a mini-Ethernet port, and a headphone jack.
From left to right: the brand's own power port, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, an HDMI port, a mini-Ethernet port, and a headphone jack. Michael Murtaugh
On the other side, there is the full-size SD slot for the computer, two USB Type-A ports (one of which allows you to charge devices when the computer is turned off) and a slot for anti-theft cable .
On the other side, there is the full-size SD slot for the computer, two USB Type-A ports (one of which allows you to charge devices when the computer is turned off) and a slot for anti-theft cable . Michael Murtaugh

The configuration of the P1 Gen 2 that we recommend generally costs around 2,000 euros and offers the best performance / price ratio. But if you regularly encode videos, you can add an eight-core Core i9 processor; you can also choose a slightly more powerful Quadro T2000 card that slightly improves the performance of games and 3D design apps, or opt for a 4K OLED screen with better contrast and deeper blacks. In addition, Lenovo offers up to 64 GB of memory and up to 4 TB of storage on two 2 TB hard drives, but these are relatively easy (and also a bit cheaper) to add by yourself later; all you need is a Phillips screwdriver to remove the bottom of the P1 Gen 2 and access both the RAM slots and the two M.2 storage slots.

The 4K versions of the P1 Gen 2 have built-in X-Rite color presets that change the way the screen displays colors. We found that the sRGB configuration was much more precise in terms of colors than the factory settings and the other calibration presets.

These are the most important numbers we look at when we assess the color accuracy of a screen; the lower the note, the better. A grayscale score greater than 3.0 means that the shades of gray may have a visible shade of color. ColorChecker and saturation scores greater than 3.0 mean that the colors displayed on the screen may be visually different from a reference image for color accuracy.

We are looking for DeltaE numbers of 3.0 or less, as this is the threshold at which the human eye can see the difference between what is displayed on the screen and a reference photo. The gray scale measurement of the sRGB preset (2.12) is good; it means that the computer displays shades of gray with no visible color tint, but the ColorChecker score of 4.47 and that of saturation (3.78) indicate that the P1 Gen 2 does not have sufficiently precise colors to professional colorimetry. In our tests, he did well with the soft colors, but the brighter and more vivid colors were much more pronounced than they are supposed to be. Its contrast ratio of 1,127: 1 is not exceptional, but it is on average correct laptop screens (unlike all other values, for the contrast ratio, the higher the figure, the better c 'East). And overall, the P1 Gen 2, with its sRGB preset, remains more accurate than the other Windows notebooks we tested.

The keyboard and trackpad of the P1 Gen 2 are exemplary. ThinkPad keyboards are our favorite on laptops because the keys are well laid out and sufficiently spaced, they are firm without being stiff and have a satisfactory depth. The red TrackPoint button is not essential, but the large, one-piece trackpad meets Microsoft's precision touchpad specifications, which means it's precise and fun to use and supports all Windows Multitouch trackpad gestures 10; that won't make you change your mind about trackpads if you prefer a mouse, but that’s the best in Windows trackpads. In our tests, its click was less noisy than that of other trackpads that we tried, including on the Dell XPS 15. The P1 Gen 2 does not have an integrated numeric keypad, like some 15 inch laptops. This omission did not bother us, because the numeric keypads can clutter a keyboard and center it. But if you want one, you will need to purchase an external numeric keypad.

The P1 Gen 2 has the same built-in security cover on its webcam as the other ThinkPads.
The P1 Gen 2 has the same built-in security cover on its webcam as the other ThinkPads. Michael Murtaugh

At 1.7 kg, the ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 is the lightest pro laptop we've tested. It weighs 340 grams less than the Dell XPS 15 7590, while these two models have very similar dimensions. We really felt the difference when we carried the P1 Gen 2 in a shoulder bag. The weight of the computer is tolerable even if you are used to a 13 inch (like me), which generally weighs 500 g less.

If the possibility of using accessories without a station, hub or key is an important criterion for you, you will appreciate the selection of ports of the P1 Gen 2. It has two Thunderbolt 3 ports (which can also accept USB accessories – C and connect to external displays), two USB 3.0 Type-A ports for connecting accessories, an HDMI 2.0 port, a headphone jack and a full-size SD card reader. Its Mini Gigabit Ethernet port requires a specific adapter, which is annoying, but it is inexpensive and saves you from having to use a USB port if you need it for wired Ethernet. The only real downside is that the P1 Gen 2 (like all of the pro notebooks we've tested) requires a brand-specific 135W charger to charge at full speed. It can accept charging via a USB-C power adapter, but the maximum USB-C charging capacity of 100 W is not enough to keep it charged while you are using it.

The battery life of the P1 Gen 2 is in the low range for a pro laptop, lasting just over six hours in our tests. The only models that lasted significantly longer are the Dell XPS 15 7590 and the HP Specter x360 15t Touch, and they are both much heavier (and, in the case of the Specter, more bulky). The ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 2, the Acer ConceptD 7, the Razer Blade 15 and the MSI P65 Creator all lasted between six and six and a half hours. It is not long enough to be able to work all day, especially if your tasks require more processor and graphics card than our battery test based on general use, but it is the average duration in this category, on models with similar characteristics.

Non-crippling faults

As we said above, none of the Windows notebooks we tested proved to be accurate enough in terms of colorimetry on delivery. If your job requires it, we advise you to connect an external screen, calibrate the screen yourself (video) or consider a 16-inch MacBook Pro, the colors of which seemed to us more accurate.

If you work in the cinema and you are looking for a laptop to do video editing without an external screen, you will notice that the screen of the P1 Gen 2 also covers the DCI-P3 color palette less well than that of its competitors; it covers approximately 86% of the range, against 100% for the Dell XPS 15 7590 and the Razer Blade 15, 95% for the MSI P65 Creator and 90% for the Acer ConceptD 7. Only the IPS version of the HP Specter x360 15t worse, with around 76%. DCI-P3 coverage is especially important for professionals in the sector. If you need it, the P1 Gen 2 isn't the best choice, but it should do the trick for most other users.

Our second choice: the Dell XPS 15 7590

Michael Murtaugh
Our second choice
A nicer, but heavier screen Dell XPS 15 7590

Dell XPS 15 7590

A nicer, but heavier screen

Le XPS 15 7590 est aussi rapide que le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2, généralement moins cher, et il bénéficie d’une meilleure autonomie mais en contrepartie, il est plus grand et plus lourd, et nous aimons moins son clavier.

*Au moment de la publication, le prix était de 1899,99 €

Nous avons inclus différentes versions du Dell XPS 15 dans ce guide ces dernières années, et le Dell XPS 15 7590 est un bon choix si vous voulez une batterie qui tient plus longtemps que celle du ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 (un ordinateur portable qui coûte 200 à 300 euros de moins) et si cela ne vous dérange pas qu’il soit un peu plus lourd. Le XPS 15 7590 est équipé d’un bel écran qui produit un meilleur contraste et qui affiche davantage de couleurs que celui du P1 Gen 2. Il a un bon clavier, un bon trackpad et une sélection de ports bien pratiques.

La configuration du XPS 15 7590 que nous recommandons coûte généralement dans les 2000 euros. Nous avons testé la version dotée d’un écran OLED 4K, un peu moins chère que la version IPS ; l’écran IPS est peut-être un peu plus lumineux, mais la version OLED a un meilleur contraste et des noirs plus profonds1. Nous recommandons d’acheter la batterie de 97 Wh au lieu de la version 56 Wh : une batterie plus grande alourdit l’ordinateur, mais lors de nos tests, elle a permis au XPS 15 de durer plus longtemps que la plupart des autres ordinateurs portables pro que nous avons testés. Parmi les autres options disponibles figurent des processeurs Core i9 huit cœurs, jusqu’à 64 Go de mémoire et jusqu’à 2 To de stockage. Les emplacements mémoire et l’entrée M.2 sont simples d’accès et la partie inférieure de l’ordinateur portable s’ouvre rapidement, mais il n’y a pas de second emplacement M.2 sur le P1 Gen 2. La carte graphique GTX 1650 ne peut être remplacée, mais ceci ne pose pas de souci à la plupart des utilisateurs. Elle est un peu plus rapide que la Quadro T1000 du P1 Gen 2, et à peine plus lente que la Quadro T2000, disponible en option.

Plus la note est basse, mieux c’est. Un score d’échelle de gris supérieur à 3,0 signifie que les nuances de gris peuvent avoir une teinte de couleur visible. Les scores ColorChecker et de saturation supérieurs à 3,0 signifient que les couleurs affichées à l’écran peuvent être différentes à l’œil par rapport à une image de référence pour la précision des couleurs.

Avec sa configuration d’usine, l’écran du XPS 15 7590 affiche des couleurs à peu près aussi précises que celles du préréglage sRGB sur le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2. Sa note d’échelle de gris est inférieure à 3,0, ce qui signifie qu’il affiche des nuances de gris sans teinte de couleur visible, mais ses autres notes indiquent que ses images à l’écran sont sursaturées et exagérément vives par rapport à une image de référence aux couleurs précises. Le XPS 15 7590 excelle au niveau du contraste, en raison de la nature des écrans OLED. Les IPS, qui sont plus courants, sont toujours rétroéclairés, même lorsqu’ils affichent du noir, alors que les OLED peuvent désactiver entièrement les pixels noirs. Cela signifie que le taux de contraste du XPS 15 7590 est en réalité infini. L’écran couvre aussi 100 % de la palette de couleurs DCI-P3, contre environ 86 % pour le P1 Gen 2, ce qui fait de cet ordinateur portable un meilleur choix (une fois calibré) si vous travaillez dans le cinéma et avez besoin de voir ces couleurs supplémentaires.

Nous aimons le clavier et le trackpad du XPS 15 7590, mais par rapport à ceux du P1 Gen 2, le clavier est un peu moins profond, avec une frappe moins confortable, et le trackpad produit un clic plus bruyant et plus prononcé.
Nous aimons le clavier et le trackpad du XPS 15 7590, mais par rapport à ceux du P1 Gen 2, le clavier est un peu moins profond, avec une frappe moins confortable, et le trackpad produit un clic plus bruyant et plus prononcé. Michael Murtaugh
De gauche à droite : une prise d’alimentation propre à la marque, un port USB Type-A, un port HDMI, un port Thunderbolt 3 et une prise casque.
De gauche à droite : une prise d’alimentation propre à la marque, un port USB Type-A, un port HDMI, un port Thunderbolt 3 et une prise casque. Michael Murtaugh
De l’autre côté, on trouve un emplacement pour carte SD plein format, un autre port USB-A, le bouton et les témoins lumineux du niveau de batterie et un emplacement pour câble antivol.
De l’autre côté, on trouve un emplacement pour carte SD plein format, un autre port USB-A, le bouton et les témoins lumineux du niveau de batterie et un emplacement pour câble antivol. Michael Murtaugh

Le clavier du XPS 15 7590 n’est pas aussi bon que celui du ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 car les touches sont moins fermes et la frappe est moins profonde et agréable. Mais la disposition et l’espacement des touches restent satisfaisants et le clavier est assez confortable pour qu’une utilisation toute la journée ne vous fasse pas regretter les claviers mécaniques (guide en anglais). Et le grand trackpad tactile est aussi précis et agréable à utiliser que celui du P1 Gen 2. Il est plus ferme et plus bruyant que celui du Lenovo ; aucun des deux n’est de mauvaise qualité, mais si les clics vous énervent, vous préférerez sûrement celui du P1 Gen 2. Le XPS 15 7590 n’intégrant pas de pavé numérique pour gagner de la place, il vous faudra acheter un pavé numérique externe si vous en voulez vraiment un.

La configuration du XPS 15 7590 que nous recommandons pèse environ 2 kg, soit 340 grammes de plus que le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2. Les deux modèles ayant environ les mêmes dimensions, le XPS 15 devrait entrer dans les mêmes sacs que le P1 Gen 2 ; simplement, il tirera un peu plus sur vos épaules ou votre dos si vous le portez toute la journée. Ce poids supplémentaire est en partie dû à sa batterie de 96 Wh, qui a permis au XPS 15 7590 de tenir environ sept heures et demie lors de notre test de batterie, soit une heure et demie de plus que le P1 Gen 2 et sa batterie de 80 Wh. Seul modèle ayant duré plus longtemps : le HP Spectre x360 15t Touch, plus grand et plus volumineux. Nous recommandons vraiment le XPS 15 7590, si vous êtes prêt à porter un ordinateur portable plus lourd qui peut tenir un peu plus longtemps sans prise secteur à proximité.

La sélection de ports intégrés au XPS 15 7590 est correcte, même si elle reste en deçà de celle du P1 Gen 2. L’XPS n’a qu’un seul port Thunderbolt 3 et il est dépourvu de port Gigabit Ethernet, mais il comprend deux ports USB 3.0 Type-A, un port HDMI 2.0, une prise casque et un lecteur de cartes SD plein format. Il peut se recharger grâce à son port Thunderbolt 3, mais comme tous les ordinateurs portables pro que nous avons testés, il inclut un port de chargement distinct, car il a besoin de plus de puissance que les 100 W qu’offre la norme USB-C. Quand vous n’utilisez pas l’ordinateur, un chargeur USB-C peut malgré tout remplir la batterie, mais si vous voulez qu’il reste chargé pendant que vous travaillez dessus, le chargeur de 130 W fourni est le seul moyen d’y parvenir.

À venir…

HP a annoncé une nouvelle version du Spectre x360 15 lors du salon CES 2020. En plus d’offrir des processeurs Intel de 10e génération et de nouvelles cartes graphiques Nvidia, il a l’air beaucoup moins encombrant que la version 2019 que nous avons testée. Il est limité à 16 Go de RAM maximum, contrairement au ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 et au XPS 15 7590, mais nous pensons malgré tout le tester lorsqu’il sera disponible au printemps.

Nous avons voulu tester le MSI Prestige 15 A10SC-010, mais nous n’avons pu l’obtenir à temps pour ce nouveau guide. Son processeur Intel 10e génération ultra-basse tension est peut-être un peu plus lent que ceux de nos choix, mais il répond à tous nos critères, et avec un poids d’1,6 kg, il est encore plus léger que le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2. Nous espérons le tester prochainement.

Intel a annoncé l’existence de processeurs de 10e génération adaptés aux ordinateurs portables pro, « prochainement », sans dire exactement quand. Ces nouveaux processeurs devraient fournir des améliorations en termes de performance par rapport aux processeurs actuels de neuvième génération, mais pas au point d’attendre leur sortie si vous avez besoin d’un ordinateur portable rapidement.

La concurrence

Le Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 2 est presque identique au ThinkPad P1 Gen 2. Ils ont le même design, le même clavier, les mêmes ports, la même autonomie de la batterie et le même écran, ainsi que les mêmes performances (ou très semblables). Le X1 Extreme Gen 2 utilise une carte graphique Nvidia GeForce au lieu d’une Quadro, mais elle devrait pouvoir faire tourner la plupart des jeux et applis de façon similaire. Nous recommandons le P1 Gen 2 plutôt que le X1 Extreme Gen 2 car il est généralement un peu moins cher, il comprend une deuxième entrée M.2 pour un second disque dur SSD, et il intègre des préréglages de calibrage qui rendent son écran un peu plus précis en termes de couleurs. Achetez le X1 Extreme Gen 2 uniquement si vous n’avez pas besoin d’une deuxième entrée M.2 et si vous le trouvez en promotion, à un prix inférieur à celui du P1 Gen 2.

Le Microsoft Surface Book 2, notre ancien premier choix dans ce guide, est toujours disponible. Mais Microsoft n’a pas amélioré les composants matériels en deux ans, et avec ses anciens processeurs quadricœur et sa carte graphique GeForce 1060, il ne peut pas gérer autant de tâches que les modèles plus récents que nous recommandons actuellement. En outre, il est largement plus cher que le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 ou le XPS 15 7590. Le Surface Book 2 vaut le coup si vous voulez un grand écran détachable et le Surface Pen, ou si vous avez besoin d’un ordinateur portable Windows aux couleurs assez précises dès le départ. Mais la plupart des utilisateurs devraient plutôt acheter un autre modèle jusqu’à ce que (et à moins que) Microsoft ne mette à jour les composants.

L’Acer ConceptD 7 CN715-71-70LR est plus cher que le P1 Gen 2 ou l’XPS 15 7590, notamment parce qu’il est proposé uniquement avec les cartes graphiques haut de gamme Nvidia RTX 2060 et 2080 et des disques durs SSD de 1 To. Il fonctionne bien, il a une multitude de ports, et son clavier, son écran et l’autonomie de sa batterie sont satisfaisants. Mais il pèse 2 kg et il est beaucoup plus encombrant que le P1 Gen 2 ou le XPS 15 7590, et il ne comprend pas de port Thunderbolt 3.

La version 2019 du HP Spectre x360 15t Touch coûte quelques centaines d’euros de moins que le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 ou le Dell XPS 15 7590, même s’il est équipé du même processeur Core i7-9750H et de la même carte graphique GeForce GTX 1650. Par ailleurs, avec neuf heures d’autonomie, sa batterie est celle qui tient le plus longtemps parmi tous les modèles testés. Mais son écran IPS 4K couvre seulement 96 % de la palette de couleurs sRGB et 76 % de la DCI-P3, contre 99 à 100 % de la sRGB et 85 à 100 % de la DCI-P3 pour tous les autres modèles testés. La version OLED de l’écran s’en tire sûrement mieux, mais cette option coûte 150 euros de plus. Le Spectre pèse par ailleurs 2,2 kg et il est beaucoup plus grand que le P1 Gen 2 ou le XPS 15 7590. Enfin, ses 16 Go de RAM sont soudés à la carte mère, donc s’il vous faut davantage de mémoire, le Spectre n’est pas celui qu’il vous faut.

Le 2019 Razer Blade 15 Advanced Model est destiné aux joueurs plus qu’aux professionnels, mais il répondait quand même à nos critères de base pour un bon ordinateur portable pro. Son clavier était un peu moins confortable que celui du ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 ou du XPS 15 7590 et avec 2,1 kg, il fait partie des poids lourds, mais le principal problème est son prix. Passer à l’écran OLED 4K en option demande aussi d’acheter la carte graphique haut de gamme GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, ce qui fait monter le prix de l’ordinateur à 3 300 euros. Ce modèle renferme davantage de performances graphiques que nécessaire pour faire votre travail, et il est inutile de dépenser autant pour profiter d’un bon ordinateur portable pro.

Le MSI P65 Creator-1084 coûte généralement un peu moins que le ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 ou le XPS 15 7590, même s’il comprend 32 Go de mémoire, un disque dur SSD de 1 To et une carte graphique GeForce RTX 2060 légèrement plus rapide. Son petit capteur d’empreintes intégré au trackpad est un peu délicat à manier et la police de caractères du clavier est assez moche, mais le trackpad et le clavier sont agréables à utiliser. Et avec un poids d’1,9 kg, il est dans la moyenne pour cette catégorie. Mais au cours de nos tests, nous avons trouvé que son ventilateur tournait sans cesse en faisant un bruit insupportable, pas seulement quand nous exécutions des tâches, mais aussi quand nous naviguions sur Internet, installions des mises à jour Windows, et même quand nous étions tout simplement sur le bureau Windows. Un ventilateur bruyant, même pour des tâches a priori légères, indique que la chaleur va ralentir les performances de l’ordinateur et elle risque aussi de raccourcir la durée de vie de l’ordinateur avec le temps. Nous ne pensons pas que cela vaille le coup de supporter un tel bruit pour économiser de l’argent.

Notes

1. L’autre différence est que l’écran IPS prend en charge la palette de couleurs Adobe RGB au lieu des palettes plus courantes sRGB. Comme la DCI-P3, la palette de couleurs Adobe RGB contient plus de couleurs que la sRGB, mais si la DCI-P3 peut afficher plus de rouges et des couleurs plus chaudes, Adobe RGB est mieux pour les bleus et les couleurs plus froides.

Revenir au texte.

Sources

Conrad Chavez, How do P3 displays affect your workflow ?, Creative Pro, 8 mars 2017

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