Are you looking to incorporate some cardio into your daily routine? If you dislike running or biking outside and gyms aren’t your thing, you should try Zwift. We have reviewed the best laptops for Zwift and other similar cycling games.
Table of Contents
What is Zwift?
Zwift is a virtual game that allows you to link your turbo trainer to your computer, iPad, iPhone, or TV. This enables you to ride with other cyclists in virtual cities such as Richmond, London, and a fantasy island called Watopia.
Why is Zwift so popular?
Connecting with other virtual cyclists allows you to switch from outdoor biking to being in the comfort of your home. The weather is no longer an excuse not to get on your bike. You can train by accessing specially designed workouts or racing against other people.
What Are The Laptop Requirements For Zwift?
Zwift is a pretty demanding software when it comes to graphics. Sure, you could try running it on your laptop’s integrated graphics, but let’s be real. That’s not going to cut it. To get the most out of Zwift, you will want to invest in a dedicated GPU. And not just any GPU, mind you. We recommend using an Nvidia GPU since they’re the most optimized for Zwift. And if you want to ensure a smooth and seamless experience, we suggest going with a laptop with at least a GTX 1000 series or better. Trust us. Your Zwift sessions will thank you.
Laptops are the most common choice for Zwift for their ease of use and versatility. However, you may be unable to run the game on your old computer due to software requirements. Here are the specs you will need in a laptop:
- OS: Windows 7×64 bit, OSX 10.8
- Memory: 8 GB RAM
- Hard Drive: 8 GB free space
- Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo
- Graphics: 1GB dedicated GPU or embedded Intel HD 400/AMD R5
These are minimal requirements, so everything above that is enough to run the game smoothly. However, before you choose a laptop, make sure to consider them all.
Laptops are somewhat tricky to return, so think carefully about which would suit you the best.
We’ve reviewed the best laptops for Zwift in 2023 and have listed their key features, software specifications, and pros and cons.
The 8 Best Laptops For Zwift In 2023
- Quick startup time
- Sharp image
- Versatile connectivity
- The touchpad is quite sensitive
- Easy to use
- Sleek design
- Smooth performance
- The frame is made of plastic
- Quick response time, perfect for gaming
- Incredibly quiet even under load
- May need an external drive
- Ideal for multitasking
- Energy-efficient display
- Not the best image from all angles
- Anti-glare display
- Ideal for school/work/zwift
- The screen doesn't bend too far
- It may be too heavy for some
- Lightweight and portable
- Easy to work with
- It takes a while to startup
This 15.6" full HD widescreen is comfortable to look at from all angles. It's LED-backlit and has the innovative Acer Color Blast technology providing sharp images and well-balanced colors.
A 10th-generation Intel Core i5-1035G1 processor backs it up to 3.6GHz. As a result, the Acer Aspire is a powerful laptop that will run Zwift smoothly and many other apps, games, videos, and photos. In addition, it comes with an NVIDIA GeForce 940MX graphics chip with 8GB of DDR4 video memory.
The battery of this one is among the most long-lasting as it provides up to 8 hours of life. This is convenient as you won't always have to plug it in before training.
Key specs include a 256GB SSD drive, Bluetooth 5.0, Gigabit Ethernet, HD webcam, USB 3.1 Gen 1, two USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 port, and an HDMI port HDCP support. The maximum display resolution is 1920x1080 pixels.
Another Acer model that will serve you for more than just Zwift is the Nitro 5. This one looks sleek and futuristic, thanks to the sharp lines and angles. In addition, it seems much more powerful, thanks to the bright red backlit keyboard.
It features dual fans with Coolboost technology for higher sleep and cooling ability. This allows you to adjust the cooling process to your needs manually.
It's incredibly convenient if you use the laptop for more than just Zwift, as the added cooling boost will come in handy to maintain its temperature.
Powered by the 7th generation Intel Core i5 processor, the laptop will run the game smoothly and quickly without any issues. In addition, its GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics with 4GB of GDDR5 video memory helps everything run seamlessly.
It weighs 5.51 lbs, and its maximum display resolution is 1920x1080 pixels.
Are you tired of sluggish performance and slow processing speeds? Look no further than the MSI laptop, powered by the latest Intel i5-11400H 6-Core processor. With PCIe Gen4 performance and DDR4 memory speeds of up to 3200MHz, this laptop is a productivity powerhouse.
It all starts with the latest generation Windows 11 Home, perfect for all your everyday needs. For business use, MSI recommends upgrading to Windows 11 Pro. And let's not forget the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Series Graphics, powered by Turing NVIDIA's award-winning architecture.
It's a game-changer for all your favorite titles, delivering lightning-fast speeds and seamless gameplay. Upgrade your computing experience today with the MSI laptop.
This Lenovo is ideal for smooth multitasking as you can use it for Zwift and much more. The AMD Ryzen 7-4700U Octa-core processor provides seamless performance with all your favorite apps and games. In addition, the 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD make it possible to run multiple things simultaneously.
This 15.6" HD display has a maximum 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution. It's energy-efficient, LED for the best color payoff and contrast balance.
It features Dolby Audio and AMD Ryzen 4000 series mobile processing with Radeon graphics. In addition, Lenovo IdeaPad comes with an HDMI, USB-C port, 10/100 Ethernet, and a headphone/mic combo jack.
Ready for use as the Windows 10 6 operating system is installed. The laptop is 5.24 lbs. heavy and 2.9" thin, so it's a great laptop to carry around.
This is a great option to consider if you want to replace your old laptop. Thanks to its specifications and features, this Dell laptop is versatile and ideal for multitasking.
The 7th generation Intel Core i5-7300HQ Quad Core processor will run your virtual cycling with ease and no interruptions. Plus, this powerful machine can support many other games, apps, programs, etc. It comes with 8GB 2400MHz DDR4 up to 32GB, with additional memory sold separately.
Its display is 15.6" full HD with a maximum resolution of 1920x1080. It's an anti-glare display that's LED-backlit for maximum eye comfort. You can view it from all angles, too.
Though it's fully portable, the laptop weighs 5.82 pounds, which may be too much for some. However, it comes with Windows 10 already installed, so it's only left to you to install and set up your Zwift equipment before you can finally enjoy some indoor cardio.
At 0.63 inches thin and weighing 2.3 pounds, this Acer isn't as tricky to carry around to work or school unless you plan to use it as a dedicated Zwift laptop. So if you want something you can use for work or virtual cycling, this one will be handy.
The 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8565U processor runs the game efficiently and makes the device suitable for multitasking. If you're one of those people with many tabs opened simultaneously, you'll appreciate its ability to run seamlessly.
The 16GB DDR4 RAM and the 256 GB Solid-state drive back up the processor allowing smooth performance and quick startup. Another thing that enhances the experience is Intel HD Graphics 620.
This one features a 15.6" screen with a 1920x1080 maximum resolution. The battery can hold up to 10 hours, depending on how you use the laptop.
It's a handy laptop with a crisp image and a superb display. Thanks to its user-friendly specifications, you'll find it easy to run Zwift at any time. In this list, I highly recommend this laptop for all-around use.
Our top pick for the best laptop for Zwift cycling is the MSI, as we love the responsiveness important for gaming, and it has all the specs required for a tremendous Zwift session.
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