It also has a Hz screen and smaller bezels, putting it more in line with sleek thin-and-lights than its more bulky brethren of the previous generation. The only real drawback is the diminutive SSD, although the laptop has slots for two SSDs and an HDD, which makes upgrading your storage as easy as getting a screwdriver. You often need to get handy with the upgrades at this end of the price spectrum, and the Helios is no different in that respect.
If you're desperate for just that little bit of extra gaming performance and hang the sense of it—or the sound and fury of it—the Turbo button is Acer's one-touch GPU overclocking feature. The Predator laptops have this simple feature designed to eke out as much extra gaming performance as possible.
It also makes your system run very hot and distractingly loud. Honestly, I really don't think it's worth it unless you're truly militant about maximizing your frames per second. Or have a really good noise-canceling gaming headset. Even without the dubious utility of the Turbo button.
And that all makes the Acer Predator Helios a strong contender for one of the best gaming laptops around. Read our full Acer Predator Helios review. With Intel's speedy P-Cores making short work of whatever you throw at them, and GeForce RTX forming an incredibly potent core, hooked up to a Hz p display, this is portable gaming nirvana. Yes, it's expensive, but this is the pinnacle of high-end gaming. Best gaming PC : the top pre-built machines from the pros Best gaming laptop : perfect notebooks for mobile gaming.
There's absolutely no question you can buy a much more sensible gaming laptop than this, but there is something about the excesses of the ROG Strix Scar 17 that make it incredibly appealing. It feels like everything about it has been turned up to 11, from the overclocked CPU—which is as beastly as it gets—to the gorgeously speedy Hz screen on the top model.
Asus has pushed that little bit harder than most to top our gaming laptop benchmarks. And top the benchmarks of the best gaming laptops it does, thanks in the main to the GeForce RTX Ti that can be found beating away at its heart. This is the W version of Nvidia's new Ampere GPU, which means it's capable of hitting the kind of figures thinner machines can only dream of. And if that's not enough, you can also grab this machine kitted out with an RTX Ti too.
The inch chassis means the components have a bit more room to breathe compared to the competition too, and coupled with the excellent cooling system, you're looking at a cool and quiet slice of gaming perfection. This extra space has allowed Asus to squeeze an optomechanical keyboard onto the Scar 17, which is a delight for gaming and more serious pursuits.
Importantly, all this power comes at a cost not only to the temperatures but also to the battery life. Sure, you're not as likely to play games with the thing unplugged, but if you ever have to, an hour is all you get. I'm not enamored with the touchpad either, while we're nit-picking. I keep trying to click the space beneath it, and my poor, callous fingers keep forgetting where the edges are.
This particular model doesn't come with a camera either, which is a glaring omission for the price, and there's a distinct lack of USB Type-A ports for the unnecessary arsenal of peripherals I'm packing. There are a couple of USB Type-C ports around the back to make up for it, though, and I'm happy there's a full-sized keyboard. Such gripes are easy to overlook when Asus has managed to pack such an immense config in here.
For a machine with a inch chassis, it doesn't weigh the world and doesn't need two power adapters to work to its full potential either. For that, it doesn't feel as much like a hulking desktop replacement as we've seen. And that's okay. Particularly when you crown a portable machine like this off with a p, Hz IPS panel with 3ms response time, which also does a smashing job of reducing glare. And for something that can outpace the laptops of yesteryear in almost every running, I'd pay that price for sure.
When it comes to gaming, the obvious answer is the graphics card, but that's where things have gotten a little more complicated recently. With GPU performance now so dependent on cooling, you have to pay attention to what wattage a graphics card is limited to and what chassis it's squeezed into.
As we said at the top, an RTX confined in an 18mm chassis will perform markedly slower than one in a far chunkier case with room for higher performance cooling. That really depends on what you want to do with your laptop. An 8-core, thread AMD Ryzen chip will allow you to do a whole load of productivity on the road, but honestly, it will have little benefit in gaming.
That's one of the reasons Intel has launched its Tiger Lake H35 chips; they're quad-core, 8-thread CPUs, but they're clocked high to deliver high-end gaming performance when paired with something like the RTX This will arguably have the most immediate impact on your choice of the build.
Picking the size of your screen basically dictates the size of your laptop. A inch machine will be a thin-and-light ultrabook, while a inch panel almost guarantees workstation stuff. At inches, you're looking at the most common size of the gaming laptop screen. We love high refresh rate screens here, and while you cannot guarantee your RTX will deliver fps in the latest games, you'll still see a benefit in general look and feel running a Hz display.
The standard p resolution means that the generally slower mobile GPUs are all but guaranteed high frame rates, while companies are slowly drip-feeding p panels into their laptop ranges. A p screen offers the perfect compromise between high resolution and decent gaming performance. At the same time, a 4K notebook will overstress your GPU and tax your eyeballs as you squint at your inch display.
Your guess is as good as ours. He built his first gaming PC at the tender age of 16, and finally finished bug-fixing the Cyrix-based system around a year later. When he dropped it out of the window. Now he's back, writing about the nightmarish graphics card market, CPUs with more cores than sense, gaming laptops hotter than the sun, and SSDs more capacious than a Cybertruck.
Included in this guide:. Image 1 of 5. Image 2 of 5. Image 3 of 5. Image 4 of 5. Image 5 of 5. Razer Blade Screen: p Hz, p Hz, or 4K Hz. Battery: 80Wh. Dimensions: 9. Weight: 4. Reasons to avoid - Trackpad can be awkward. View Deal. Image 1 of 6. Image 2 of 6. Image 3 of 6. Image 4 of 6. Image 5 of 6. Image 6 of 6. Screen: inch IPS p Hz.
Battery: 76Wh. Dimensions: Weight: 3. Reasons to avoid - Not as affordable as I'd expect from G Image 1 of 4. Image 2 of 4. Image 3 of 4. Image 4 of 4. Screen: inch p Hz or p Hz. Battery: Dimensions: 0. Reasons to avoid - Only way to bag a Razer Ryzen. Dell G3 Screen: Battery: 51Wh. Weight: 5.
Reasons to avoid - A little chunky compared to pricier thin and light options. Image 1 of 7. Image 2 of 7. Image 3 of 7. Image 4 of 7. Image 5 of 7. Image 6 of 7. Image 7 of 7. Screen: inch Hz x Storage: Up to 2 TB M. Battery: 86Wh. Reasons to avoid - Poor mic and speakers. Storage: Up to 2TB M. Reasons to avoid - Gets loud. Acer Predator Helios Storage: 1TB M. Battery: 58Wh. Reasons to avoid - Average CPU performance. Image 1 of 3.
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Touch Screen 7. Windows 10 Windows 10 Pro Windows 11 Windows 11 Pro 2. GeForce GTX 1. GeForce GTX GeForce RTX 3. GeForce RTX 2. GeForce RTX Nvidia Quadro 3. Other 2. SSD AMD 3. Other 3. Business Laptops Creator Laptops Gaming Laptops Mobile Workstation 6.
Premium Laptops Windows Laptops Backlit Keyboard Fingerprint Reader Intel Optane 4.
Also, with the S17, you get a high refresh rate display that gives you tons of detail with 4K resolution. And, for a laptop with such impressive capabilities, it doesn't sacrifice much in terms of portability.
This laptop isn't the device most gamers can or should buy, but it's the one all of us want. The Razer Blade Pro 17 view at Amazon is an exceptional gaming laptop that can replace a desktop. We threw every demanding piece of software at it during testing, and it never even flinched, going so far as to handle intense VR gaming.
If money is tighter, something like the HP Victus It's somewhat limited, but it's a better value if you can't afford to go further, and it presents a good middle-ground between performance and cost. The single most important feature of any gaming laptop is its video graphics card GPU. If you want to play a specific game, check its video card specifications and choose a gaming laptop that meets or exceeds the recommended specs.
If your laptop doesn't at least exceed the minimum requirements, the game will run poorly. If you buy a gaming laptop that doesn't have a decent amount of RAM memory , you're just setting yourself up for disappointment. The central processing unit or processor CPU is also an essential consideration in gaming laptops, even if it does take a back seat to the GPU. Most great gaming laptops come with at least an AMD Ryzen or Intel Core i7 processor, but you may be able to get by with less.
Gaming laptops use more powerful hardware than the average laptop, which means they use more power. As a result, some of the AC adapters they use can be much larger than what you'd see on other laptops. These adapters can range from to W and usually weigh more than 5 pounds, making them a serious consideration if you plan on toting your gaming laptop around with you. Unlike desktops, the size of your screen will usually dictate the overall size of your gaming laptop. Your preferred size will tie into how portable you want the laptop to be.
If you're planning on using your laptop as a desktop replacement, portability is less important, but so is the screen size, as you can hook it up to an external display. However, if you're relying solely on your laptop display and need more screen real estate, you may want to spring for a larger model, providing you don't have to worry about portability. While having a greater variety of redundant ports is always preferable, laptops generally have a limited amount of space for extra ports.
This selection allows you to connect to an external display, a mouse, or keyboard and also allows you to connect a USB-C hub for added connectivity. You may want to keep an eye out for Ethernet ports for a wired internet connection and a microSD digital media card slot, although this will be less important if you can connect to a USB-C hub. Jennifer Allen has been writing about technology since She specializes in iOS and Apple technology, as well as video games.
Andy Zahn is a writer specializing in consumer technology, including gaming laptops. He's reviewed cameras, weather stations, noise-canceling headphones, and more for Lifewire. Jonno Hill is a writer who covers tech such as computers, gaming equipment, and cameras for Lifewire and publications including AskMen. By Andy Zahn. Andy Zahn. Andy Zahn is a writer specializing in tech. He's reviewed cameras, weather stations, noise-cancelling headphones, and more for Lifewire.
Tweet Share Email. The Rundown. Best Overall:. Best Keyboard:. Best Lightweight:. Best Storage:. Best Battery Life:. Best Value:. Best Budget:. Best Splurge:. Our Picks. What to Look For. About Our Trusted Experts. Best Overall: Razer Blade Pro 17 4.
View On Amazon. Razer Blade Pro 17 Review. Tested by Lifewire During 50 hours of testing, I experienced the Blade Pro 17 as handling everything I threw at it without complaint. What We Don't Like No fingerprint reader. Best Lightweight: Razer Blade Stealth 13 4. Razer Blade Stealth 13 Review. Tested by Lifewire I tested the Razer Blade Stealth 13 for over a week and found it to be one of the best-looking laptops in its category.
What We Don't Like Very expensive. The 6 Best Gaming PCs of Asus Zephyrus G14 Review. Tested by Lifewire I spent over 40 hours testing and using the Zephyrus G14, and consider it a favorite for a few reasons other than long battery life. What We Like Extremely high refresh rate monitor Well rounded and powerful components Excellent value. Best Budget: HP Victus What We Don't Like Mind-boggling price. Why is the power adapter for this gaming laptop so big, and can you use a smaller one?
What screen size should you get? What ports do you actually need? Was this page helpful? Thanks for letting us know! Email Address Sign up There was an error. Please try again. You're in! Dell's cheapest gaming laptop is back and better than ever.
Combine that with great battery life, with plenty of ports and a relatively comfortable and you have a badass gaming machine. However, the G3's affordable price does come at the cost of a relatively dull Still, the G3 15 is one of the top gaming laptops you can get at its price point. See our full Dell G3 15 review. Oh, and this one has a webcam. It's easily one of the best gaming laptops you can buy. From its performance and inch display to its battery life and clicky keyboard, this baby is worth considering if you're on the market for a gaming laptop.
On the Laptop Mag battery test, the Zephyrus M16 lasted 6 hours and 34 minutes, putting it on a par with competing systems. Overall, the Zephyrus M16 is a truly badass gaming laptop worth your time and money. The Lenovo Legion 5 Pro proves what's possible when two opposing forces come together for the greater good. Those forces are AMD and Nvidia, and the greater good is the gaming community. The Legion 5 Pro flaunts one of the best keyboards I've ever used.
Paired with a comfortable typing experience is a bright and vivid inch display, a generous selection of ports and decent battery life. Best of all, the Legion 5 Pro is priced aggressively. And what it lacks in flashy aesthetics, it makes up for with a gorgeous inch QHD display.
And despite harnessing so much power, the Legion 5 Pro delivers respectable battery life. If you're a fan of Lenovo's line of gaming laptops, check out the battle between the gaming brothers: Lenovo Legion 5 vs. Lenovo Legion 7. Read our full Lenovo Legion 5 Pro review.
Imagine what an all-AMD system can do. The result? You also get a lot of nifty tech focusing on balancing performance and power efficiency, with butter-smooth graphics and over 10 hours of battery life. Alienware continues to raise the bar of what a gaming laptop can and should be.
Need more? The svelte powerhouse also boasts a revamped cooling system to keep things running at optimum performance and powerful speakers. It also lasted over four hours on our battery test, which is pretty good for a gaming laptop of this caliber. See our full Alienware X1 review. Asus has done it again. The XG Mobile is the proverbial trap card, transforming it into the dark magician of gaming laptops.
It looks like the third time's the charm for Asus. In addition, you have a comfortable keyboard and a cool ROG Keystone - a magnetic encrypted key that unlocks custom lighting effects for the laptop as well a piece of storage that's locked on your hard drive.
The Strix Scar III is quite the impressive gaming laptop, offering strong performance, a Hz panel, long battery life, a clicky keyboard and decent speakers. The laptop easily barreled through our battery of tests and even managed to last over 5 hours on our battery test.
Acer Predator Triton SE is a gaming laptop that's easy to carry and a serious looker to boot. It brings to the table an increasingly common inch frame with a aspect ratio display housed in a relatively compact package. Better yet, the keyboard is comfortable to use during long gaming sessions despite the laptop's thin frame. Under the hood, this gaming rig brings the latest Nvidia RTX graphics and Intel Core 11th Gen processors, a combo that helps it punch well above its weight.
The Predator Triton SE gets enough of the basics right to make it a compelling laptop for those who want a gaming system with a large display in a relatively portable chassis. Razer still believes in going big or going home. The latest Razer Blade Pro 17 seeks to wrap the functionality of a gaming laptop and a workstation in a nice slim CNC aluminum bow.
Those powerful specs allow the laptop to go toe-to-toe with its main competitors on both the gaming and multitasking fronts. The Blade Pro 17 also manages to deliver great endurance on our battery test lasting nearly 5 hours. And it also has a great webcam, which is somewhat of an anomaly in laptops in general. See our full Razer Blade Pro 17 review. Hands down, it a great gaming laptop that looks good and plays hard. What makes the Stealth stand out is its battery life.
The notebook has a The laptop lasted over 6 hours on our battery test. This is also the first system in the Blade line to offer dual storage. And if that's not enough for you, Razer's also offering the notebook in a stunning Mercury White aluminum chassis that's sure to have all eyes on you when you make the winning play. But where Razer really apes other inch gaming systems is in its size.
The 4. But don't sleep on its performance, with an Nvidia RTX graphics card, the Blade 15 is here it comes bearing gifts of ray tracing and artificial intelligence. This top gaming laptop is ready to game, video edit, crunch numbers and more at the drop of a hat.
Read our full Razer Blade 15 review. Gigabyte got a lot of things right with the Aero 15, including its sturdy, all-aluminum, jet-black chassis, gorgeous OLED panel and satisfying, clicky keyboard. Its gaming and performance benchmarks are decent, too. However, Gigabyte gets it all wrong with that awful nosecam. The Aero 15 is an excellent choice for content creators. See our full Gigabyte Aero 15 review. The HP Omen 15 is a well-built gaming laptop that reminds us why we like gaming so much.
With its simple yet sexy styling, the Omen 15 is an attractive option you should take a serious look at. See our full HP Omen 15 review. When we bring a laptop into our laboratory, our goal is to see how it would work if you brought it into your home or office. While we use a number of industry standard benchmarks such as Geekbench and 3DMark, we focus heavily on real-world tests that we have developed in-house.
To test endurance, the Laptop Mag Battery test surfs the web at nits of brightness until the system runs out of juice. To judge pure processing power, we use a giant spreadsheet macro that matches 65, names with their addresses, a video transcoder that converts a 4K video to p and the Geekbench 4 synthetic test.
We use a colorimeter to measure screen brightness and color gamut while other instruments help us determine a laptop's key travel and ambient heat. See this page on How We Test Laptops for more details on our benchmarking procedures. When shopping for a gaming laptop, there's a lot to consider. To help you choose a system, here are five key points to keep in mind when choosing a system. It's very rare that you'll find a 13 or inch gaming laptops nowadays as smaller bezels and lighter frames have paved the way for seriously thin-and-light gaming laptops.
That means the days of chunky From there, you have the But there are still the big behemoths that don't skimp on the specs. However, weighing upwards of 8 pounds, those big boys are made for your home gaming station. When it comes to gaming laptops displays, you want to strike a balance between frame rates and aesthetics. And in case you're planning to get a truly mobile system battery life is also deserves consideration.
We recommend checking out a system with a p resolution. Panel makers are now serving up screens with high refresh rate, topping out at Hz with a 3 millisecond response rate. But don't count out 4K screens yet as we're starting to see laptops with 4K displays with Hz.
Keep in mind that laptops with lower resolutions tend to have longer battery life overall. Depending what kind of games you're playing, particularly first person shooters and MOBA, you'll take anything that will enhance accuracy. Surprisingly, the higher a display's refresh rate is, the more accurate your shot become.