Business people all over the world used to have to drive their cars and fly on planes to get to meetings. The costs of airline tickets, car mileage, gas, hotel rooms, and meal charges add up quickly - as well as the days away from home and family. Today, technology has made it way easier to stay close to home. Video conferencing is a powerful tool for business everywhere, and it’s important for people that want to take advantage of it to find the best laptops for video conferencing.
To start - a good camera and a good microphone are very important to be sure that conferencing goes smoothly. Your videos should come across cleanly, and the users conferencing with you should be able to hear your voice clearly as well. Having a good graphics card will help you in viewing the people on the other side of the video conference, and having a strong internet connection will go a long way towards making sure everything comes across cleanly and smoothy, without any dropped conference calls.
The Top 5 Best Laptops for Video Conferencing
CPU: Intel Core i5-8300H, Memory: 8 GB DDR, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 1050, Screen: 15.6 inches, Storage: 1TB SATA, Battery: Not Advertised
The ASUS TUF is a multipurpose laptop that is good for both gaming and video conferencing. It has a lightweight, thin form factor and is good for business people on the go. The Full HD display and dedicated video card will provide a great picture for video conferences. Users will have to deal with poor battery performance and the lack of an optical drive.
- Full HD Display
- Dedicated video card
- Battery not advertised
- No optical drive
CPU: 2.2 GHz Intel Core i3, Memory: 4 GB DDR4, Graphics: Integrated, Screen: 15.6 inches, Storage: 1 TB SATA, Battery: 7 Hours
The HP Pavilion has is an affordable laptop for business people on a budget. It offers a good amount of storage space and a decent battery life. The Bluetooth card gives the user the potential to upgrade the camera and microphone. Sacrifices to be made for the price are slower features and the lack of a solid-state drive.
- Storage Space
- Decent battery life
- Bluetooth card
- Integrated graphics card
- No solid-state drive
- Slower processor
CPU: Intel Core i5 processor, Memory: 8 GB, Graphics: Integrated, Screen: 13.3 inches, Storage: 128 GB SSD, Battery: 12 hours
The Apple MacBook Air is a popular laptop that will suit business people as well. The HD camera will provide a good video and the Bluetooth card with providing the potential for a microphone upgrade. Users will have to get used to the smaller 13.3-inch screen, but the speed features should make up for that. The all-day battery life and thin form factor will be good for users on the go.
- Long battery life
- HD Camera
- Bluetooth card
- Lower storage
- Smaller screen
CPU: 1.5 GHz Intel Celeron, Memory:4 GB, Graphics: Integrated, Screen: 12.2 inches, Storage: 32 GB Solid State, Battery: Not Advertised
Business people wanting to use a Chromebook will be happy with this option. The 13-megapixel camera is unheard of with comparable laptops, and the touch screen will give users added flexibility as well. Users will have to get used to being forced to use cloud storage and a smaller screen. The speed features may cause some slowdowns as well, but the price of the laptop will be hard to beat.
- 13 MP camera
- Low Storage
- Small screen
CPU: 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5, Memory: 8 GB DDR4, Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, Screen: 17.3 inches, Storage: 256 GB SSD, Battery: 5.5 hours
Business people looking for the best visual experience shouldn't look past the Acer Aspire. The large display and dedicated video card will allow users to see the other side of the video conference with total clarity. The decent-sized solid-state drive and speed features will keep this laptop a user favorite. This laptop does have some issues with battery life, but this is easily overlooked with the other features.
4 Attributes To Look for When Choosing The Best Laptop for Video Conferencing
To be able to be an effective part of a video conference, you must have an effective web camera. Most laptops have video cameras, but not all are made the same. The effectiveness of web cameras is measured in megapixels. Many laptop cameras are advertised with somewhere between 1 to 2 megapixels - this does not seem like much, but anything over 2.1 megapixels can stream 1080p full HD video.
An alternative to an integrated webcam would be a USB or Bluetooth webcam. This is an option for users that have laptops without a web camera or a user who is looking for a higher quality product then what a standard laptop can produce. Must of these have a resolution starting at 2.1 megapixels and go up from there.
In addition to a great camera, a video conference needs to have good microphones as well. These days, almost every laptop has one. The factors that go into the effectiveness of a microphone aren’t all numerical - but there are definitive things to be on the lookout for. Users who want a good microphone will most likely need to purchase a USB or Bluetooth microphone instead of using the integrated microphone within a laptop.
The number one feature to look for is noise cancellation. Most microphones advertise this feature - but some do it better than others. It’s a good idea to read the reviews and see how effective the noise cancellation is on a particular microphone. Directionality is important as well - if you will, in general, have one person speaking into a microphone, it’s good to have a unidirectional microphone. If the microphone is going to be a room with multiple people speaking to it - an omnidirectional microphone is the way to go.
A good graphics card will help users on a video conference be able to get a good look at the people and displays on the other side of the conference. Cheaper laptops will offer a video card integrated to the motherboard. These cards don’t offer great video quality. They have to share memory resources with the rest of the PC, which effects performance. Users that want a higher quality video experience need to shop for a laptop with a dedicated video card.
Dedicated video cards use their own memory resources, and will generally advertise the amount of RAM offered as part of its specifications. A dedicated video card lies separate from the motherboard. The most popular brand of video cards in NVIDIA, although there are other options out there as well.
Strong Internet Connection
There are a few different features that help to verify that a conference call has a strong connection. The first is a good wireless card and a good wireless router. Any laptop purchased should have an 802.11ac compliant wireless card. The 802.11ac wireless card offers speeds for up 3 times faster than its predecessor - the 802.11n standard. To be able to fully utilize these speeds, the laptop must also be connecting to a router that supports the 802.11ac standard, as well.
No matter how fast of a wireless connection you have, a wired connection will always be a better connection. Wired connections not only offer faster speeds, but also a consistent connection as well. Users looking for the best laptops for video conferencing should verify that the laptop has an ethernet port available. Alternatively, users can purchase a USB-to-Ethernet dongle for a wired connection as well.
Finally, a fast internet connection from your internet service provider is needed as well. To transmit full HD video over the internet, you will need a connection speed of at least 25 Mbps. It’s important to keep in mind that the quality of the picture that you want to send and receive depends on the speed of traffic that you are sending and receiving.
Video conferencing has absolutely revolutionized the business world. Because of that, it’s important for every business person taking advantage of it to have one of the best laptops for video conferencing. To come across in a professional way, you must offer the people that you are conferencing with a clean, clear video with high-quality sound. All must be done to also prevent any call drops or slowness.
Having a great camera and a high-quality microphone will help to provide the best presentation possible. For some users, this may need to be accomplished by an external camera and microphone - if so, be sure to verify that your laptop has the technology to support it - including a Bluetooth card and/or ample USB ports. To prevent conference drops or slowness, a fast internet connection, with the potential of a wired connection when wireless issues arise will be sure to complete this requirement.