Backpacking freelance illustrator looking for an affordable lightweight 2 in1 for art.


Dec 29, 2015
I need a lightweight 2 in 1 to use for illustration work, and simple photo editing. So some basic pressure sensitivity and palm rejection is must.

I am most concerned about whether it can handle lightroom and photoshop (but I also work with art rage and manga studio). I normally work with around 10-15 layers in photoshop, taking a drawing from sketch to line work to colouring. Because I am backpacking and travelling light, weight is also a concern for me.

Ideally it would come with windows 10, a few USB ports, a card reader. I would also love if it could handle me throwing some multi tasking at it ... so for example running photoshop and internet browsing while flicking back and forwards between an image reference library.

I have been looking at the surface pro 4 i5 range but they are way out of my budget. I am willing to go with something cheaper if it is capable enough to meet my needs.

My budget is $1200 or even less if I can find something to do the job. Is there anything viable in this price range?


Sorry guys, I just noticed the template questions in the sticky

1. What is your budget?
$1200, less would be ideal

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
Around 13 inch

3. What screen resolution do you want?
Something in the HD range

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Portable, lightweight, tablet surface for use with a pen

5. How much battery life do you need?
Not too picky about this, but at least a few hours

6. Do you want to play games with your laptop? If so then please list the games that you want to with the settings that you want for these games. (Low,Medium or High)?

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.)
Illustration in Photoshop, Photo editing,

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
min 256 but not a major concern

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
2 years

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?

12. Please tell us about the brands that you prefer to buy from them and the brands that you don't like and explain the reasons.
Not apple, I find being forced into apple's itunes icloud etc frustrating. I had an asus and loved it. I had a Yinova and loved it. I had a Wacom and loved it.

13. What country do you live in?
At the moment I am travelling around Europe so I am planning to either buy something in store somewhere in the EU or have it mailed to a family member in Portugal.

Hopefully that covers anything I missed in the first message.