Python Programming Essentials: Ideal Computer Specs for Python Programming and Top 5 Laptops for September 2023

Python is a versatile programming language that can be used for a wide range of tasks, such as web development, data analysis, and machine learning. However, in order to take full advantage of its capabilities and ensure optimal performance, it’s important to have the right hardware and software specifications.

Quick Guide: Ideal Computer Specs for Python Programming – 2023

Here are the details of the ideal computer specs for Python programming:

  • A modern computer with a multi-core processor is recommended.
  • A minimum of 8GB of RAM is necessary for smooth performance.
  • A 64-bit version of Python is recommended for the best performance.
  • A powerful GPU may be necessary for heavy computations or machine-learning tasks.
  • For web development, a web server and a database server may be required.

If you’re just learning Python programming, you don’t really need a powerful PC to run it. But remember that having a strong PC will help you get the job done sooner rather than later when building Python projects

It is therefore impossible to give a simple answer that fits all, as powerful PCs are better, but low-end PCs are also capable of running Python as long as they meet its minimum requirements.

However, if you prefer a tabular format for the ideal computer specs for Python programming, you can find the same information in the table below:

Python Programming Specs
AspectRecommendationAdditional InformationImportanceUse Cases
Processor (CPU)Multi-core processorEnables parallel processingCriticalData analysis, multiprocessing tasks
RAM (Memory)Minimum 8GBPrevents performance bottlenecksEssentialHandling large datasets, multitasking
Python Version64-bit Python 3.9Supports larger memory and data setsImportantCompatibility with libraries
Graphics Processing Unit (GPU)Powerful GPU for ML/Heavy tasksAccelerates machine learning workloadsSpecialized (if needed)Deep learning, AI, data visualization
Storage DriveSSD for faster I/O operationsImproves read/write speedsRecommendedFaster code execution, data access

Below I have also outlined the system requirements or hardware requirements in detail that you need for running the latest Python version 3.9.

What are the Python Hardware Requirements?

1. Processor

The Python Software Foundation does not specify a specific processor type or model in their system requirements. However, in general, a modern processor such as Intel Core i3, i5, or i7 would be sufficient for running Python. These processors are multi-core, which means they have multiple processing units that can work simultaneously, providing the necessary power to run Python efficiently.

The more cores and the faster the clock speed of the processor, the better the performance will be, especially when running heavy computations or machine learning tasks. So, if you are planning on using Python for more demanding tasks, then it would be ideal to have a more recent and powerful processor, like i7.

2. RAM

RAM is another important hardware consideration. Python is a memory-intensive language and therefore, having a sufficient amount of RAM is crucial for smooth performance. A minimum of 8GB is generally recommended, but more may be needed for larger or more complex projects.

3. GPU

In some cases, a powerful GPU may also be necessary. This is particularly true when working with deep learning or other machine learning tasks that require large amounts of data to be processed quickly. A GPU with CUDA support is recommended, as it allows Python to take full advantage of the GPU’s parallel processing capabilities.

4. Hard disk

In general, the amount of disk space required for running Python will depend on the specific tasks and workloads you plan to use it for, as well as the packages and dependencies you have installed.

For basic usage and small projects, a hard disk with a few hundred GB of storage is enough. However, for bigger tasks such as machine learning or data analysis, get a more extensive hard disk with a few TB to store large files.

It’s also worth noting that disk performance is also important, especially when working with large data files or when running computationally intensive tasks. An SSD drive is recommended as it has faster read and write speeds compared to traditional hard disk drives (HDD).

See our best GPU for programming.

What are the Python system requirements?

1. Operating system

The operating system is also an important software consideration when running Python. Python is compatible with a wide range of operating systems, including Windows, macOS, and Linux so which one of these OS(s) is best suited for your needs depends on you. However, use a 64-bit version of Python for the best performance, as it can take full advantage of the larger memory space available on 64-bit systems.

2. Web server

When using Python for web development, a web server such as Apache or Nginx may be required. These servers are responsible for handling incoming HTTP requests and serving the appropriate response.

3. Database

A database server such as MySQL or PostgreSQL may also be necessary when using Python for web development or data analysis. These servers are responsible for storing and managing large amounts of data and provide Python with the necessary tools to access and manipulate that data.

What are the Python Official Requirements?

To create some intermediate Python projects, it’s best to know the basic Python 3.8.3 system requirements right off the bat.

Minimum Requirements

  • Processors: Intel® Core™ i3 or AMD Ryzen 3250u CPU
  • Operating System: Windows 7, Linux 64-bit RHEL or Mac OS X 10.11 & up
  • RAM: 1GB of on-board system memory
  • Disk Space: 1-2GB of Hard Drive space
  • Processors: Any two or higher core processor including Intel® Core™ i5 @2.60GHz, new-gen Xeon® processor @2.30 GHz, or AMD Ryzen 5 CPUs running at higher frequency
  • RAM: 4GB of system memory from any decent manufacturer
  • Disk space: 2-3GB of SEAGATE Hard Drive
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Official, Mac OS 10.12.6 (and up), or Linux/Ubuntu 16.10+

Best Laptops for Python Programming 2023

In the ever-evolving world of software development, having the right laptop can significantly impact your Python programming experience. As we step into 2023, the demand for powerful yet portable laptops tailored to programming needs is higher than ever.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced coder, choosing the best laptop can enhance your productivity, code execution speed, and overall development journey. In this guide, we’ll explore some of the top laptops that excel in supporting Python programming tasks, helping you make an informed decision for your coding endeavors in the year ahead.

Best Laptops for Python Programming – Our Top Pick

Top Pick

Apple 2020 MacBook Air Laptop M1 Chip

The MacBook Air (2020 model) from Apple is a complete programming laptop, and that’s for a number of reasons. For once, it supports Apple’s standalone M1 chip, which behaves like an 8-core CPU to give you maximum performance. Then there is its sleek and minimalist design, which you can easily bring outdoors. The MacBook Air also has a staggering 11 hours plus battery life, so you can stay sharp as you code.

Quick Comparison of the Best Laptops for Python Programming

With the following specifications in mind, here are some of the top-rated programming laptops that will assist you in kick-starting your career in Python:  

Apple 2020 MacBook Air Laptop M1 Chip

  • Apple’s 8-core M1 chip
  • 8GB of installed RAM
  • 256GB of storage
  • 13.3inch retina glass display

The MacBook Air (2020 model) from Apple is a complete programming laptop, and that’s for a number of reasons. For once, it supports Apple’s standalone M1 chip, which behaves like an 8-core CPU to give you maximum performance. Then there is its sleek and minimalist design, which you can easily bring outdoors. The MacBook Air also has a staggering 11 hours plus battery life, so you can stay sharp as you code.

Apple MacBook Air Key Features

  • A performance-driven machine that is supported by powerful hardware
  • Its Retina glass display allows you to see crystal-sharp pixels
  • It comes provided with a long-lasting battery life.

Pros

  • Powerful hardware
  • Robust design
  • Awesome battery timing

Cons

  • Sensitive mouse cursor
  • A bit expensive

LENOVO ThinkPad X1 Carbon 9th Gen

  • Intel’s 11th Gen i7 processor
  • 16 of built-in RAM
  • 512GB of NVMe SSD
  • 14-inch modern display

Like the MacBook Air, the Lenovo ThinkPad x1 is a reliable machine that will support both new and experienced Python programmers. Thanks to its powerful 11th-generation i7 processor, you won’t have to complain about the compile times. Then there is its 16-gig memory, which ensures you have a smooth experience. You’ll also love its vibrant 14-inch display that’s going to give you maximum clarity as you run your Python scripts.

LENOVO ThinkPad X1 Key Features

  • Being an ultra-thin laptop, it is quite suited for Python programming
  • Latest features such as fingerprint reader and Thunderbolt 4 connection
  • Room for upgradability

Pros

  • A responsive keyboard
  • Fingerprint reader for added security
  • More vertical screen space

Cons

  • At times, it can be overpriced

Dell 2022 Newest Inspiron 15 Laptop

System Specs

  • Intel’s Celeron processor
  • 16 Gig DDR4 RAM
  • 1 TB M.2 Storage
  • 15.6-inch panel

The Inspiron 15 is another top-tier laptop that most Python developers would love to get their hands on. Compared to its predecessor, it comes equipped with Intel’s Celeron processor, which will definitely keep your compile times in check. As far as design goes, this laptop comes in a compact profile and looks good to the eye. It also features seamless keystrokes for quick code execution.   

Dell Inspiron 15 Key Features

  • A budget-friendly machine that touches basic programming features
  • Minimalistic deck with responsive keys
  • A plethora of USB slots helps with productivity

Pros

  • Brilliant display and build
  • Support for Windows
  • Good warranty

Cons

  • A bit costly

ASUS VivoBook 15.6″ FHD Touchscreen Notebook

  • Intel’s 10th Gen i5 CPU
  • 8GB upgradable RAM
  • Supports 256GB SSD
  • 15.6″ Touchscreen Display

The ASUS VivoBook 15 is a professional laptop that is built for productivity (mainly coding). It makes use of its 10th-generation processor to make your Python sessions more enjoyable. While the large display will give you added comfort as you type. Another cool feature is the fact that its keyboard is backlit compatible, meaning you can even work in low-light conditions.

ASUS VivoBook 15 Key Features

  • 2 in 1 laptop that’s packed with some brilliant specs
  • Think and lightweight design makes it easy to carry around
  • 37 Wh battery gives you better screen time

Pros

  • Pretty stylish and compact
  • Highly rated on Amazon
  • Superb battery timing

Cons

  • The fingerprint reader is at the top
  • You have to buy an external hard drive separately

HP Envy 13 Ultra Thin Laptop 13.3

  • 8th Gen i5 processor
  • 8GB of System Memory
  • 256GB SSD Space
  • 13.3-inch HD Display

Finally, at number 5, we have the infamous HP Envy 13. This is a tried and tested laptop from HP that has more to offer than just the looks. The machine is powered by an 8th Gen Intel processor, which means you’ll get maximum performance out of your coding sessions. Similarly, the internal storage is tucked at 256GB, so you won’t have to worry about slow boot time. Not to mention the backlit enabled keyboard that will give you added comfort.

HP Envy 13 Key Features

  • Great for multitasking and productivity apps
  • Up to 9h+ battery timing and a decent panel
  • Responsive keyboard with membrane keys

Pros

  • Responsive keyboard with membrane keys
  • Full aluminum body
  • Responsive touchpad

Cons

  • Entry level graphics
  • Lack of add-ons

Best Laptop for Python Programming – Buying Guide

Other than the ideal computer specs for Python programming, here are some additional things that you should look at on your machine:

1. Display Panel

An ideal laptop for Python programmers is one with a decent panel. That’s why you should look for a model with a large panel (preferably 13 inches and above). Similarly, make sure it uses a high-definition setup for better clarity,

2. Battery Life:

The great thing about Python developers is their ability to work remotely. This is why it’s so important that your laptop supports reliable battery timing. The rule of thumb here is anything above 8h+.

3. Dimensions:

A compact laptop is also a game changer for Python programmers. So, it is recommended that you don’t go for the bulkier options (as in the case of gaming laptops).

FAQs

What are the recommended specs for Python programming?

Your machine should at least support the latest generation of i3 processor, accompanied by 8GB of RAM and 256GB of SSD storage.

How much RAM do I need for Python?

For Python programmers, 8GB of RAM is more than enough for their day-to-day ventures.

Do you need a strong PC for Python?

No, you don’t need a hardcore gaming PC for running Python. Anything with decent specs will get the job done.

What is the best CPU for Python?

Regarding the ideal computer specs for Python programming, you are better off with a 10th or 11th gen i5 processor.

Does Python use more RAM?

Contrary to popular belief, Python itself runs on a few MB of memory. It’s the IDES and similar things that take up the most RAM.

Final Verdict!

    In conclusion, when considering the ideal computer specs for Python programming, it’s essential to prioritize a multi-core processor, a minimum of 8GB RAM, and a 64-bit Python 3.9 installation for optimal performance. These specifications are crucial for handling various Python tasks effectively.

    Depending on your specific needs, a powerful GPU may be necessary for machine learning or data-intensive applications. Additionally, having an SSD for faster I/O operations is recommended. In summary, a well-equipped computer with these specifications ensures a smoother and more efficient Python programming experience.

    Written by

    Haris is an undergrad student who is enthusiastic about writing, especially writing about tech-related stuff. His main goal is to provide friendly as well as easily digestible content for his viewers.