Laptops

7 Best Laptops For QuickBooks: Top Picks By Accounting Experts

Keeping accounts is a necessary task for businesses small and large, and many companies choose to streamline this process by using software solutions like QuickBooks. QuickBooks is one of the world's leading accounting and inventory management programs.

It's available in both Desktop and online versions and is the accounting software of choice for freelancers, small and large businesses worldwide. However, QuickBooks can be a demanding software for older computers to handle, so it's important to have an up-to-date laptop that can easily manage all of the functions that QuickBooks offers.

If you're an accountant, an accounting student, or a small business looking for a laptop that can run QuickBooks well, this guide is for you.

Image

Model

Operating System

Processor

RAM

Storage

Screen Size

Battery Life

Check Price

Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop, 15.6' Full HD IPS...

Windows

i5

8GB

256GB

15.6 inches

9.5 hours

Lenovo Thinkpad E590 15.6' HD Business Laptop...

Windows

i5

16 GB

512GB

15.6 inches

12.2 hours

Asus Vivobook S15 S512 Thin and Light 15.6”...

Windows

i5

8GB

256GB

15.6 inches

8.5 hours

Dell Inspiron 15 5593, i5593-5964SLV-PUS,...

Windows

i5

8 GB

512GB

15.6 inches

6 hours

Apple MacBook Air (13-inch, 8GB RAM, 128GB...

Mac

i5

8GB

128GB

13 inches

12 hours

HP Pavilion 15.6-inch FHD Laptop, Intel 10th...

Windows

i5

8GB

256GB

15.6 inches

7 hours

Microsoft Surface Pro 6 (Intel Core i5, 128GB...

Windows

i5

8 GB

128 GB

12.3 inches

13.5 hours


Comparing QuickBooks Online vs. QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online is the most popular version of the software. It is a cloud-based version that is suitable for smaller businesses and some big businesses.

The main benefit of using QuickBooks online is that it's cloud-based, so you won't have to back up your files, and you won't need to worry about losing your accounts if your computer crashes. QuickBooks Online is Intuits' leading software solution, and the software is being updated continuously to meet the needs of the users.

To get started using QuickBooks Online, you simply need to head over to the QuickBooks website and make an account. New users are eligible for a 1-month free trial of the software.

QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Desktop is the older version of QuickBooks, but it is still available and gets updated yearly. This software is not cloud-based, and therefore, you will need to backup files if you use the desktop version.

QuickBooks Desktop has been around for a while, and therefore, many accountants prefer to use this software because they know their way around it better than the Online version. For some types of businesses, QuickBooks Desktop is actually more suitable, as it's inventory management and costing functions are superior to the online versions.

QuickBooks Desktop is available in DVD-ROM format, but you can also download the software from the Intuit server straight to your computer with no discs required.

So, which is better?

It’s difficult to say which version of the software is better because it really depends on your business type.

Amongst accountants, the general consensus is that QuickBooks online is more user friendly, it has a lot more automation to make managing various functions like invoicing and expense easier, and it's cloud-based, which is more efficient for accountants and clients.

However, some larger businesses with complex accounting needs may find that QuickBooks Online has some limitations, and therefore, Quickbooks Desktop Premiere or Quickbooks Desktop Enterprise may be more suitable.


Recommended Laptop Specs For QuickBooks: A Buyer’s Guide

With the Desktop version, the laptop you choose will need to meet some minimum spec requirements. These are detailed on the QuickBooks website. You can view them here

In this buyer's guide, we've suggested some recommended laptop specs that will make using QuickBooks Online, or Desktop a breeze.

Processing Power/Clock Speed

For running QuickBooks, you'll need a processor with a clock speed of at least 2.0 GHz, according to Intuit's recommendations. This is the minimum required for single users. However, I'd recommend at least 2.4GHz for QuickBooks to run smoothly. Any processor equivalent to Intel i5 or above should be plenty good enough.

RAM

RAM is another essential factor to consider when buying a new laptop. RAM is short for random access memory, and the more RAM you have, the more windows you can have open on your computer at one time without it becoming slow or sluggish.

In this day and age, most people recommend that you should buy a laptop with at least 8GB of RAM, but I know what you’re thinking: how much RAM do I need for QuickBooks?

Well, like many other programs, QuickBooks runs best on laptops with 8GB of RAM or more. You may be able run QuickBooks Desktop with only 4GB of RAM, but this is for a single workstation installation, so it’s best to go with more RAM to ensure that the program runs smoothly and can be scaled up if you need to allow more than one person access to it.

Processor

Clock speeds aren’t the only important part of the processor. You should also look at the number of cores. Having a processor with more cores can improve performance in certain software systems and allow your computer to perform more tasks simultaneously. 

Processors with two cores are called a dual-core processor. You can also purchase 4-core (quad-core), 6-core (hexa-core) and 8-core (octa-core) processors.

For QuickBooks, I’d recommend aiming for at least a dual-core processor such as an Intel Core Duo 2 or higher at an absolute minimum. However, the Intel Core Duo 2 is a very old processor model, so you should ideally shoot for something much better, like an Intel Core i3 or above.

While QuickBooks isn’t very demanding, having a better processor will mean you get better laptop performance when running other, more demanding software programs at the same time.

Storage Space

On the official Intuit website, it says that you need to have at least 1GB of storage to run QuickBooks desktop. However, this is just a minimum, and you will need additional space to save the required data files. If you're an accountant and you're running various accounts from your laptop, the more storage space, the better.

Luckily, most laptops have at least 16GB of hard drive space, and most have upwards of 200GB. You can also use external hard drives for storage if you reach your laptop's maximum capacity. 

The other thing to consider in terms of storage is the storage type. One of the most commonly asked questions about storage for laptops is, "should I go with SSD or HDD storage type?" The answer to this is simple: SSD is best.

It can be tempting to go with HDD as these hard drives often offer more storage space for a lower price, but HDD hard drives can be sluggish when saving and loading files. SSD is much faster and more reliable to use, especially if you're using your laptop for business, and you prioritize speed and efficiency.

Display/Resolution

Intuit’s recommended specifications for QuickBooks dictate that you should have a display that is 'Optimized for 1280×768 screen resolution or higher'. However, this is quite a low resolution when it comes to modern laptops. You'll benefit from a much better display if you choose a laptop with a 1920×1080 screen resolution.

Battery Life

If you’re an accountancy student, or you’re an accountant that will be jumping from client to client all day long, battery life is definitely something to take into account.

The longer the battery life of your device, the better. Although it shouldn't take priority over RAM and processing power, it's still worth trying to find a device that has a long battery life, preferably 5 hours or more.

That way, you’ll be able to use your laptop on the go without worrying about where you’ll find your next power outlet.

Extra Features

Finally, when shopping for a laptop for QuickBooks, here are some other features that you may want to consider:

  • Size and Weight
    If you're planning on using your laptop on the go, size and weight is critical. You may want to purchase a laptop with a smaller screen and a lightweight body that can be easily slipped in your bag on the way to meetings or the lecture hall.
  • Tactile Numerical Keyboard or ‘Number pad’
    This will help you to input numbers into QuickBooks easily. Although some laptops have a number pad included on the keyboard, most have the number running across the top of the keyboard, which isn't very efficient if you'll be typing numerical values most of the time.  
  • An Updated Operating System
    When shopping for a QuickBooks laptop, be sure to look out for what operating system the laptop has. It’s best to go for a more up-to-date operating system, as this will mean that you can use the most up-to-date versions of software on your laptop.

Connectivity

When purchasing a laptop for QuickBooks, you should also think about connectivity. Think about where you will be using the laptop most and any external devices that you may want to plug into.

Although most laptops come with pretty good WiFi capabilities, you may want to check if your chosen laptop has a built-in port for wired internet connection. This can be used as a backup if your home WiFi ever drops out.

In addition to this, a good number of USB ports is always useful, as you may want to connect a keyboard, mouse, or headset to your laptop when working in the office. An HDMI port is also handy for connecting an external monitor.

Price & Warranty

Most modern laptops will be able to run QuickBooks Online and Desktop, so what you really want to look for in terms of price is a good value for the money.

If you're a student, or you run your business from your laptop, you may also be using other programs other than QuickBooks, so the better your laptop specs are, the easier your life will be.

Try to find a laptop with the highest RAM, the most processing power, and the most significant amount of storage space that fits within your budget, to ensure that you are getting the best possible value for money.

In terms of warranty, the longer and more comprehensive, the better. Be sure to check the warranty agreement before purchasing your laptop so you know what you’re entitled to.


7 Best Laptops For QuickBooks Reviewed

So now we’ve covered everything you need to know about buying a laptop for QuickBooks, here’s some inspiration.

1. Acer Aspire 5

Our Top Pick!

Operating System

Windows

Processor

i5

RAM

8GB

Storage

256GB

Screen Size

15.6 inches

Battery Life

9.5 hours

Our top pick for the best laptop for QuickBooks goes to the Acer Aspire 5.  It combines affordability with great specs to make it the perfect value for money option.

The Acer Aspire 5 has a large 15.6-inch screen that is perfect for using QuickBooks and performing other tasks such as typing and web browsing. This laptop also benefits from a powerful 8GB processor, which will allow you to manage all of your QuickBooks needs with ease.

In addition to this, the Acer Aspire 5 also has a ton of SSD storage, which makes saving your QuickBooks files quick and easy if you are using the desktop version. 

The laptop can be easily connected to WiFi as it has WiFi 6 technology, which means you'll be able to get a strong connection whether you're in the office or on-the-go.

The only real drawback with this laptop is the weight. While it's not the heaviest laptop on the market, it certainly isn't the most lightweight option, so it may be better suited to an accountant that is based in the office most of the time. If you're always on the move throughout the day, a more lightweight option may be a better choice.

Good
  • Large Screen Size
  • Powerful Processor
  • Good Battery life
Bad
  • Quite heavy

2. Lenovo ThinkPad E590

Lenovo Thinkpad E590 15.6" HD Business Laptop...
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 RAM; Storage: 512GB PCIe NVMe...
  • 15.6-Inch Anti-Glare (1366x768) Display with...
  • Whiskey Lake-U CPU: Intel Quad Core i5-8265U...
  • Intel 9260 11ac, 2x2 + BT5.0 Combo | HD...

Best Laptop for QuickBooks Desktop

Operating System

Windows

Processor

i5

RAM

16 GB

Storage

512GB

Screen Size

15.6inches

Battery Life

12. 2 hours

The Lenovo Thinkpad E590 is the perfect business laptop for running QuickBooks and any other business-related programs.

The laptop runs on an i5 processor, which is ideal for running QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop. The Lenovo Thinkpad E590 is also the best laptop for QuickBooks Desktop thanks to its 512 GB worth of SSD storage.

With that much space to work with, saving QuickBooks data will be quick and efficient, and there should be no need for external storage devices.

Just like the Acer Aspire 5, the Lenovo Thinkpad E590 has a generous 15.6-inch screen, which is perfect for any type of task. 

This device is known for being super-reliable and perfect for business use. Whether you plan to use this laptop in your office or take it from meeting to meeting, you should have no problems as it is one of the more lightweight models on this list. It also has a good battery life to help you run QuickBooks on-the-go.

The laptop also has a generously sized keyboard that includes a numerical pad that makes keying numbers into QuickBooks much easier. Although this laptop is a little on the expensive side, if you're looking for a perfectly designed business laptop, it's definitely worth the investment.

Good
  • High RAM
  • Lots of storage space
  • Good battery life
Bad
  • Expensive
  • Low screen resolution

3. Asus Vivobook S15 S512

Asus Vivobook S15 S512 Thin and Light 15.6”...
  • 15.6 inch Full HD 4 Way NanoEdge bezel...
  • Powerful Intel Core i5-8265u Processor (6M...
  • 8GB DDR4 RAM and 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD and...
  • Metal chassis and 18mm z-height

Best Cheap Laptop for QuickBooks Desktop

Operating System

Windows

Processor

i5

RAM

8GB

Storage

256GB

Screen Size

15.6 inches

Battery Life

8.5 hours

The Asus Vivobook is another excellent business laptop that is perfect for running QuickBooks Desktop or Online. It's very similar in design to the Lenovo ThinkPad E590, but it is slightly cheaper, which is why we think it's the best cheap laptop for QuickBooks Desktop.

It has an Intel Core i5 processor and a ton of storage space for saving QuickBooks Desktop data. It also benefits from a large 15.6-inch display. The laptop is modern and updated with the latest Windows 10 home software, which is perfect for running QuickBooks Desktop. 

The Asus Vivobook is also perfect for accountants that are looking to use QuickBooks Desktop outside of the office, as its design is slim and lightweight, making it easy to slip into a briefcase or backpack.

However, the slim design doesn't mean that you have to sacrifice any other great features. It still comes complete with a tactile numerical keypad and a bunch of USB and other ports for using external accessories.

It also has an ErgoLift keyboard design that makes it easier and more comfortable to type or input numbers. Unfortunately, Asus doesn't advertise the exact battery life of the Vivobook, which may be problematic if battery life is a priority for you.

Good
  • Lightweight design
  • Good value for money
  • Large screen
Bad
  • Battery life not specified

4. Dell Inspiron 15 5593

Dell Inspiron 15 5593, i5593-5964SLV-PUS,...
  • 10th Generation Intel Core i5-1035g1...
  • 8GB, 8Gx1, DDR4, 2666MHz
  • 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe solid state Drive
  • Sd card reader, USB 3.1, 2.0

Best Laptop for QuickBooks Online

Operating System

Windows

Processor

i5

RAM

8 GB

Storage

512GB

Screen Size

15.6 inches

Battery Life

6 Hours

The Dell Inspiron 15 5593 is a fantastic all-purpose laptop and our pick for the best laptop for QuickBooks Online. This laptop has an i5 processor that is perfect for running browser-based programs like QuickBooks Online.

It also has a full-HD 15.6-inch display, which is sure to make completing every task more manageable. The laptop also benefits from 512GB of SSD storage, which means your QuickBooks will run smoothly no matter how many documents and programs you have stored on your computer.

This laptop also has a built-in webcam that is perfect for video-conferences with clients. The keyboard has a numeric keypad and is wide enough to use comfortably for long periods. However, the standout feature of this laptop really is the price.

For less than $750, you can get all the storage, RAM, and processing power you could ever need to run QuickBooks online, and you easily be able to use it to run most other programs you may need as well. It definitely offers fantastic value for money and is perfect for fledgling accountants or accountancy students that require a great device on a budget.

Good
  • Powerful processor
  • Large, high-resolution display
  • Affordable
Bad
  • Heavy
  • Battery life not specified

5. Apple MacBook Air

Apple MacBook Air (13-inch, 8GB RAM, 128GB...
  • 1.8 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 Processor
  • Intel HD Graphics 6000
  • Fast SSD Storage
  • 8GB memory

Best Apple Laptop for QuickBooks

Operating System

Mac

Processor

i5

RAM

8GB

Storage

128GB

Screen Size

13 inches

Battery Life

12 hours

Although Mac laptops aren't necessarily the best choice for use with QuickBooks, many people favor Apple products, so we've included the best Apple laptop for QuickBooks in this list. We chose the Macbook Air because it balances a reasonable price, with great specs that are perfect for running QuickBooks for Mac or QuickBooks Online.

The Macbook Air is the perfect QuickBooks for Mac laptop as it is complete with an i5 processor and 8GB of RAM, which is more than enough to run the application and other programs smoothly. The Macbook Air is perfect for students who want a trendy and lightweight laptop that can run QuickBooks for Mac or Online easily.

With just a 13 inch display, the Macbook Air can easily be slipped into a college bag or briefcase. The only drawback with this model is that it doesn't have as much storage as some of the other options on the list.

Although 128GB is more than enough to run QuickBooks, you can get much better storage options for the price if you go for a non-Apple product. However, if you're an Apple loyalist as I know many people are, this is the perfect Apple laptop for the job.

Good
  • Lightweight design
  • Good battery life
  • Impressive display and graphics
Bad
  • Expensive
  • No tactile numerical keyboard

6. HP Pavilion

HP Pavilion 15.6-inch FHD Laptop, Intel 10th...
  • Intel 10th Gen Quad-Core i5-1035G1 Processor...
  • 8GB DDR4 Memory, 256GB Solid State Drive,...
  • 15.6" Touchscreen WLED-Backlit Full HD...
  • 1 x HDMI, 1 x USB 3.1 Type-C, 2 x USB 3.1...

Best Laptop for QuickBooks and Excel

Operating System

Windows

Processor

i5

RAM

8GB

Storage

256GB

Screen Size

15.6 inches

Battery Life

7 Hours

The HP Pavilion is another great choice if you're looking for an all-round good laptop at a fair price. It's a trendy, lightweight, and affordable option for a QuickBooks laptop, and it has a ton of great features.

Like many of the laptops on this list, it has 8GB RAM, an Intel Core i5 processor, and it also benefits from 256GB of SSD storage.

In addition to this, the HP Pavilion has a 15.6-inch touchscreen, which is a great feature to have when working with numbers, and this makes it the best laptop for QuickBooks and Excel. The computer also has a trendy silver and black design that gives it a very professional look.

However, what's really great about this laptop is the price. It can run any kind of QuickBooks software, as well as other business and accounting programs, and you can purchase it for less than $700.

It is a great option for students on a budget and accountants that want the best of both worlds when it comes to price and functionality. If you plan on using QuickBooks, Excel, or any other accounting software, this laptop is a perfect choice.

Also Recommended: Best Laptops for Excel

Good
  • Large screen size
  • Lots of USB ports
Bad
  • Battery life not specified

7. Microsoft Surface Pro 6

Microsoft Surface Pro 6 (Intel Core i5, 128GB...
  • A best in class laptop with the versatility...
  • More power — now with the new 8th Gen Intel...
  • Ultra slim and light, starting at just 1.70...
  • All day battery life, with up to 13.5 hours...

Best 2 in 1 Laptop for QuickBooks

Operating System

Windows

Processor

i5

RAM

8 GB

Storage

128 GB

Screen Size

12.3 inches

Battery Life

13.5 hours

The Microsoft Surface Pro 6 is the perfect 2-in-1 model for a busy QuickBooks accountant or student. It's as small as a tablet but has all the power and capability of a larger laptop.

The tiny 12.3-inch screen is powered by an i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and it even has 128 GB of storage, all in one neat little package. This is by far the best 2-in-1 laptop for QuickBooks as it has all the specs required to power the QuickBooks software of your choice.

Not only is it super lightweight making it perfect for meetings and out of the office work, but it also has a whopping 13.5 hours of battery life, making it the best laptop battery life on the list.

The Microsoft Surface Pro 6 is perfect for using as a tablet, but it also has a small keyboard including typing, and inputting numbers.

The only thing to note is that the keyboard cover doesn't include a numeric keypad, which may be problematic if this is your only device for work. Overall, it's a great option for accountants or students that work and travel a lot and want a lightweight and versatile device.

Also Recommended: Best 2-in-1 Laptops Under $600

Good
  • 2-in-1 design
  • Lightweight
  • Good battery life
Bad
  • Small screen size
  • No tactile numerical keyboard

A Guide to QuickBooks for Accountants, Bookkeepers & Businesses

If you’re just starting out with QuickBooks, and you’re unsure if it’s the right solution for you, here is a brief overview of what QuickBooks is, the key features of the program, and most importantly, how much it costs.

QuickBooks is one of the leading software solutions when it comes to accountancy, particularly for small businesses. The software streamlines accounting processes for business, allowing companies to manage and track expenses, monitor incomes and send invoices, all in one place. QuickBooks can also be used to make organizing taxes easier.

The software is quite simple to use, so even non-professionals can use it, but it’s mostly used by accountants that are keeping track of the financial accounts for companies. If you’re an accountancy student, you will likely study QuickBooks accountancy in some form during your career, and it's a great software to know if you're looking for an in-house accountancy role.

Key Features

QuickBooks is one of the leading accountancy SAAS products thanks to its range of great features. The software allows accountants and businesses to easily:

  • Track expenses and profits
  • Track sales
  • Track mileage and store receipts
  • Run reports
  • Manage bills
  • Manage stock
  • Manage tax returns

In addition to this, QuickBooks also offers payroll packages to help businesses manage their payroll using the program too. You can also connect QuickBooks to bank accounts.

The Enterprise version also has functions for inventory management, barcode scanning, and shipping tracking.

QuickBooks Desktop Pricing Structure

QuickBooks Desktop is available in 3 different versions, Pro, Premiere, and Enterprise. Pro is the most basic version, and Premiere has slightly more features. Enterprise is designed for bigger businesses and has some inventory and payroll features that are suitable for large-scale companies.

QuickBooks Desktop pricing ranges between $299.95(one-time purchase) and $1,848+/year. The version you choose will depend on your business or your clients’ needs. You can find all the information about the different versions here.

QuickBooks Online Pricing Structure

QuickBooks Online also has three versions to choose from Simple, Essentials, and Plus. The prices for the three options range from $12/month to $30/month. However, you can often find limited-time discounts that make it cheaper for the first 6 months.

In addition to this, new QuickBooks Online customers can enjoy a 1-month Trial. You can find more information about what’s included with QuickBooks Online here.


Mac OSX vs. Windows For QuickBooks

Which operating system to choose depends on the Quickbooks products that you are looking to use. If you plan to use QuickBooks Online, you are good to go with Mac OSX or Windows.

QuickBooks Desktop is only compatible with Windows devices unless you download software that simulates Windows on your device. However, Intuit also offers a desktop version specifically for MacOSX known as QuickBooks for Mac. QuickBooks for Mac is similar to QuickBooks Online and can handle simple inventory tasks.

However, the Premiere and Enterprise versions are capable of more advanced inventory tracking. They are therefore suitable for larger retail businesses, and these are not available on the Mac or Online versions.


which Operating System is better?

Since the majority of QuickBooks users are now using the online version, it really comes down to your own personal needs.

Most people agree that a Windows device is better if you are looking to use the Desktop version of QuickBooks, as it will allow you to access any version of the product and all of the features that come with it.

If you're a student or you're an accountant that is managing a few different accounts from the same device, it may be best to hedge your bets on a Windows device unless you have a different reason to choose a Mac.  You may need to use different versions of the software depending on the clients you work with, and a Windows device will leave your options open.


People Also Ask (FAQs)

Can you put QuickBooks on a laptop without a disc?

Yes, you can download Quickbooks desktop directly from the Intuit server. Most modern laptops don’t have DVD drives, so this is the most efficient way to install Quickbooks online.

Is a graphics card necessary for QuickBooks?

No, a dedicated graphics card is not required to use QuickBooks. However, a graphics card with on-board memory will help the program to run more smoothly on your computer. 

How can I switch from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online?

Switching from Desktop to Online is pretty simple. First, you will need to sign up for Quickbooks Online. Once you've logged in, it will prompt you to tick the box that says 'bring in your data.' 

After clicking this button, you’ll be given instructions on how to export your business data from the desktop program to your online account. The whole process takes around 25 minutes.

Which processor is best for QuickBooks?

Any processor that is a core 2 duo or higher will be able to run QuickBooks well. However, Intel Core i5 or i7 processors are much better for performing most tasks, including using QuickBooks.

Which is better – Xero or Quickbooks online?

It depends on your business type. Both cloud accounting systems are good, but QuickBooks has better functionality for freelancers, small businesses, and retail businesses.

Where is the best place to purchase these recommended laptops?

All the laptops recommended in this list are available on Amazon, and this is usually the best place to buy them. Laptops on Amazon are often a little cheaper than they are in tech stores, and delivery is generally speedy.


Conclusion

So there you have it, everything you need to know about buying the best laptop for QuickBooks. If you're in a rush and you need to make a choice quickly, the Acer Aspire 5 is an affordable and reliable option and definitely the best laptop for QuickBooks.