If you are looking for the Best Laptop for Cricut Explore Air and Cricut Explore Air 2, then pat yourself on the back because you’ve landed on the right page.
Cricut, as you know, is a company that produces Die-Cutting Machines like Cricut Explore Air and Air 2 that can be used to cut paper, felt, vinyl, fabric and other products for home use and DIY projects.
It’s a major hit among ladies and used for scrapbooking and various homemade crafts as well.
The Cricut Explore Air and Air 2 looks like a printer, but is actually a cutting and plotting machine that takes instructions from Cricut’s own Design Space browser-based software.
With the help of the software; it can turn online designs into reality.
However, even though the software is browser-based, you’ll still need a reasonably powerful laptop to work efficiently without any hiccups.
Hence this guide will help you choose the best laptop computer to use with Cricut.
Are you ready?
Let’s Get Started!
5 Best Laptop for Cricut Explore Air
Cricut Explore Air System Requirements
These are basic system requirements for Cricut’s Design Space online application that you will be required to use with Cricut Explore Air.
|OS Version||Windows 8 OS and higher||Mac OS X 10.12 or later|
|CPU||Intel Core series or AMD equivalent||CPU 1.83GHz|
|Browser||Latest Version of Firefox, Chrome or Edge||Latest Version of Safari, Firefox, Chrome or Edge|
|Disk Space||50MB Free Space||50MB Free Space|
|Connectivity||USB or Bluetooth||USB or Bluetooth|
|Resolution||Minimum 1024 x 768||Minimum 1024 x 768|
Now that we’ve taken a look at the Cricut Explore Air System Requirements, let’s check the Top 5 Best Laptop for Cricut Explore Air.
In case you don’t want to get fussy about choosing a laptop and want “the” best laptop for Cricut Explore Air and Air 2, then the Asus Vivobook F510UA is your best bet.
It is one of the most up-to-date laptops in our list that comes with the latest 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8250U processor that is more than capable enough of handling Cricut’s Design Space software.
To make things special, you get a 15.6-inch Full HD screen that is tucked within a body width of just 14-inch.
Additionally, you get very slim bezels around the screen that is only 0.3” thick and gives you the feeling of owning a very expensive laptop.
Since Cricut Explore Air will mostly be used by women, they will appreciate a laptop that weighs less on the shoulders.
The Asus Vivobook F510UA hits the bull’s eye because it weighs only 3.7 lbs, making it one of the lightest laptops in our list.
On the brighter side, the laptop is only 0.8” thick on its side, which makes it easy to slide inside a laptop case or backpack.
Moreover, you can’t help but appreciate the Star Gray color of Asus Vivobook F510UA that has brushed metal finish on top with Asus’ unique concentric shine.
Even though the laptop is built entirely out of plastic, it looks totally premium, and Asus has put in a lot of effort to keep this laptop under $500.
To be honest, for our use of best computer for Cricut Explore, this laptop does not disappoint at any level.
It has 8GB RAM, 1TB Hard Disk, latest Windows 10 Operating System, 80% Screen-to-Body Ratio, future-proof USB-C port and one of the rare traditional laptops that is light on your wallet as well as on your shoulders too.
No doubt, it’s my top-most recommendation as the Best Laptop for Cricut Explore Air, and I bet very soon it would be your companion as well.
If you need a laptop from a trusted brand, then it doesn’t get better than Dell.
Dell has been producing quality laptops as long as I can remember. Earlier Dell laptops were a bit pricey compared to laptops from other brands.
However, due to increased competition and modern innovation, Dell laptops are now available for mostly the same price as laptops from Lenovo or HP.
Dell’s Inspiron Series is the bread-winner for the brand, and hence Dell takes special care to keep the series updated with latest technologies in the industry.
Hence why, the Dell Inspiron 15 5575 comes with AMD’s latest Ryzen 5 2500U CPU, which offers similar performance to the previously mentioned Intel Core i5-8250U and up to 20% more powerful than the previous generation Intel Core i7-7500U.
In short, the Dell Inspiron 15 5575 is an ideal laptop to use with Cricut Explore without any disappointment.
Though, it doesn’t have slimmer bezels as seen in previously mentioned Asus Vivobook F510UA; however, it does come with Full HD IPS display along with Touch Screen capability.
This, in turn, minimizes the use of trackpad or an external mouse for designing on Cricut’s Design Space Software.
Along with CPU, you get a dedicated AMD Radeon RX Vega 8 Graphics that help boost the laptop’s performance.
On the hardware front, you get an 8GB RAM coupled with 1TB 5400RPM Hard Disk and a 720p Webcam.
Compared with Asus Vivobook F510UA, the Dell Inspiron 15 5575 weighs a bit heavier at 4.48lbs, and the USB Type-C port is absent as well.
However, on the connectivity front, you do get 2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, 1x HDMI and 1x Headphone/Microphone Combo port.
For people who are all about design, then this laptop’s design won’t disappoint a bit. It comes in Platinum Silver color with Dark Grey Dell Logo etched on top and similar color used on the screen panel.
The keyboard is backlit and has number pad, whereas the keyboard panel comes with a smaller but durable touchpad and a smooth matte finish that has a very comfortable to feel.
Lenovo being a Chinese brand has always been known to manufacture laptops that offer bang for your buck.
Lenovo’s Ideapad series is meant for users who are looking for cheaper yet durable and powerful laptops, mainly targeted towards young-adults, Lenovo’s Ideapad series comes with the right mix of design and power.
Hence why Lenovo Ideapad 330S is no exception either. It comes with a minimalistic design that most of you will love.
Even the top of this laptop is completely blank, with the Lenovo logo appearing towards the left corner for the lid and camouflages with the laptop’s color.
Even when you open the lid, Lenovo branding is towards the lower-left side of the screen bezel, which is dipped in black with glossy finish on the logo.
This kind of approach speaks volume about a brand and indirectly mentions that it’s product-first rather than brand.
Though not only is the laptop cool looking, but it’s also the most powerful Personal Computer in our list.
The reason being, it comes with Intel Core i7-8550U CPU coupled with Intel’s own UHD 620 Graphics that helps speed up graphical elements in Cricut’s Design Space application.
By default the laptop comes with 4GB RAM, however on its Amazon page, for an extra $60, you can upgrade to 8GB RAM.
Just like the previously mentioned Dell Inspiron 15 5575, the Lenovo Ideapad 330S comes with a Full-Size keyboard that contains a number pad; however, the spacing between the keys is smaller.
Additionally, the touchpad is a bit larger than the one on Dell Inspiron 15 5575, but keyboard backlighting is absent.
On the connectivity front, the laptop hosts 2x USB 3.0, 1x USB-C, 1x HDMI and 1x Headphone/Microphone combo jack.
However, the deal-breaking factor is that this laptop comes with a 1366×768 resolution screen rather than a 1920×1080 Full HD screen.
#4: Asus VivoBook S410UN
Do you want a laptop that wouldn’t even feel that it’s in your backpack?
If yes, then the Asus Vivobook S410UN is an excellent choice.
Similar to Asus Vivobook F510UA, this laptop is a great mixture of style and power.
It comes with a powerful Intel Core i7-8550U process that is coupled with Nvidia MX150 GPU.
Along with that, you get an 8GB DDR4 RAM that comes with a 256GB SSD storage.
On paper, 256GB storage may not seem a lot compared to 1TB Hard Disk on other laptops; however, SSD storage is 5-10x faster than a traditional hard disk and would help you speed up your work.
This is great for people who are using Cricut Explore Air for commercial purpose, where time is of the essence.
Design wise, the Asus Vivobook S410UN looks similar to previously mentioned Asus Vivobook S510UA, just it comes in a smaller frame.
It comes with a 14-inch screen that has Full HD resolution, and the screen looks very sharp compared to Full HD display on 15.6” displays.
The smaller screen size reduces the laptop’s width at 13.2-inch. This, in turn, reduces the laptop’s weight at a whopping 3.2lbs.
This, in turn, will reduce the weight on your shoulders if you intend to carry around the laptop in a backpack.
On the sideways, the laptop measures only 0.7” thick and has a 77% screen-to-body ratio, which is excellent for such a small laptop.
Additionally, the laptop comes with a Backlit Keyboard and a Fingerprint Sensor embedded within the TrackPad.
The Fingerprint sensor, with the help of Windows Hello feature, can be used to log into the laptop without password.
On the connectivity front, the laptop comes with 1x USB 3.1 Type-C, 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, Dual Band Wifi, Bluetooth 4.2, 1x HDMI and 42WH Battery.
#5: Acer Aspire E 15
If you’ve just bought Cricut Explore Air or Air 2 and don’t want to spend a bomb on a brand new laptop, then going with Acer Aspire 15 is a wise choice.
The laptop isn’t as powerful compared to other laptops in our list, but it’s still powerful for Cricut’s Design Space application.
On the design front, the laptop isn’t a looker, and hence it wouldn’t get any brownie points on the style department.
However, the laptop has a functional design with brushed metal finish on top lid and keyboard panel; though the laptop is built entirely out of plastic.
It comes with Intel Core i3-8130U processor that is coupled with 6GB RAM and 1TB HDD, along with an 8X DVD Drive.
Even though the laptop is priced around $350; you get a Full HD display with LED backlighting and preinstalled Windows 10 OS.
For the price, it comes with USB 3.0 port and USB 3.1 Type-C port and since the laptop hosts low power consuming hardware, the Acer Aspire E 15 offers a battery life of over 10 hours, which the highest in our list of Best Laptop for Cricut Explore Air.
For the price, Acer has put up an excellent piece of hardware that offers a complete bang for your buck.
However, my suggestion would be to only go with this laptop if budget is your main constraint; otherwise, the #1 laptop in this list, i.e. Asus Vivobook F510UA is “the” best laptop for Cricut Explore Air and Air 2.
Frequently Asked Questions
Even though we’ve suggested the best laptop for Cricut Explore Air, there are obviously going to be some questions in your mind before you make a purchase, and the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ Section is an effort from my side to solve all your queries at one place.
1. How to Connect Cricut Explore Air or Air 2 to Laptop?
Cricut Explore Air and Air 2 come with Bluetooth capabilities. However, for the first set up, it is advisable to connect Cricut Explore Air to your laptop via the provided USB cable.
Step 1: Connect the Cricut Explore Air to a wall socket via the provided power cable.
Step 2: Connect the Cricut Explore Air to your laptop with the provided USB Cable. Connect the square end of the cable to Cricut Explore Air; this port will be next to power port. Secondly, connect the other end of cable to any USB port on your laptop.
Step 3: Once the Explore Air/Air 2 is connected to your laptop, make sure the laptop is connected to the Internet. If yes, then type https://design.cricut.com/#/setup URL on your laptop’s browser and hit enter.
Step 4: There you will be asked to create a Cricut Account and download the Cricut plugin and do the software setup. The software setup will help laptop recognize the Cricut Explore Air or Air 2.
Step 5: Log into Cricut Account, and you’ll be able to use Cricut’s Design Space software.
2. How Does Cricut Explore Air Work?
As I mentioned earlier, Cricut Explore Air is a Die-Cutting Machines meant for Home Use and DIY Project.
To know how does a Cricut Explore Air work? Take a look at this article published by LaurasCraftyLife.
3. What Blades come with Cricut Explore?
Inside the box, only 1 blade comes with Cricut Explore Air or Air 2. This blade is called Premium Fine Point Blade and can be used to make incredibly detailed and precise cut.
It is useful for paper, cardstock, posterboard, vinyl, iron-on and other thin to medium weight materials.
However since the blade is meant for precision cut, make sure to check sharpness of the blade from time-to-time as it may get blunt after multiple uses.
There’s also an aftermarket blade called as ‘Deep Point Blade’ that can be purchased here, this blade is meant for cutting of thicker materials like magnets, chipboard, stamp material, thick cardstock, stiffened felt, foam sheets, cardboard, and some fabrics.
Get the Deep Point Blade, if you want something that will last a long time compared to blade that comes within the box.
4. Can you Use Cricut Cartridges with Cricut Explore Air?
With the modern Cricut Explore machines, Cricut eliminated the use of cartridges, and everything can be done online.
However, if you still own Cartridges from older machines, then you can again use them with your Cricket Air or Air 2 machines with the provided Cartridge Slot on your machine.
Once the cartridge is loaded, go to Cricut’s Design Space (browser-based) application and link your cartridge to use it.
5. What is the difference between Cricut Explore Air and Cricut Explore Air 2?
At first glance, both the machines look similar. However, there are multiple differences between the two machines that make them different from each other.
To get to know a detailed comparison between the two machines, do check this article from artsyfartsymama.com.
If you’ve reached till here, then I would like to assume that you loved this article very much and I hope that this article would help you choose your next laptop for Cricut Explore Air.
To say the least, you do not need a powerful laptop to use with Cricut Explore Air because most of the interaction will be with the Cricut’s Design Space application.
And since it is a browser-based application, it doesn’t require an extremely powerful laptop compared to a standalone Computer Software.
However, this doesn’t mean that your 5-6 years older PC or Laptop will be suffice to use with Design Space. Hence spending a few bucks more on a newer laptop is a wise choice to use Cricut Explore Air and Air 2.
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Last update on 2018-11-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API