The best gaming laptops are defined by the screen with a refresh rate of 144Hz, Full HD resolution and top processors, from I5-8300H to I9-9900K. Along with processor technology, the best gaming laptops should also have an ultra-high-performance video card, usually NVIDIA, that allows you to play your favorite games fluently.
If you are looking for a high-performance laptop that can keep up with the latest games but also with your lifestyle then you will probably be interested in our proposals for the best gaming laptops. As desktop PCs gained more weight, some became more and more interested in the possibility of benefiting from their power in places other than the home office.
Gaming laptops have been around for a long time, a bitter compromise because you could easily carry them, but they didn't give you nearly the same experience as a desktop. Nowadays, however, we find many models of laptops that could run with the same ease and quality any game, like a desktop PC. And this is very good news for many.
Whether you need the power of the package to edit movies or photos, or because you want to play and travel a lot, there is a high-performance laptop suitable for your needs! Below we will present our selection of the best gaming laptops and the opinions of our publishers.
The Best Gaming Laptops in 2021
Alienware Area-51m – Performance Without Compromise
Acer Predator Triton 500 – Professional Design
Dell G3 – Reduced Budget
MSI GF63 – Low Budget Alternative
HP Pavilion – Low Budget Alternative
Alienware Area-51m is a gaming laptop different from any other you have come across. This uniqueness emerges not only from the bold look, generated by the shades and the logo inspired by science fiction, but also from the fact that this laptop is truly a desktop replacement.
We confidently attribute this title to him, as his components provide him with enough power to meet any challenge. Among the available processor variants we even find the i9-9900K, an 8-core processor whose power raises this laptop above any competitor on the market.
Another strength is the ability to replace components, including GPUs and CPUs. Through our tests, we discovered that it is not really as easy to do this as suggested by the marketing behind the laptop, but it is possible. Moving on from this aspect we are dealing with an outrageously powerful laptop that can run almost anything, with high framerate, on the 1080p screen at 144Hz. Even paired with a 4k monitor, it will impress you with the way the games run.
I got over 135 frames (FPS) in GTA V with the settings on high and at very high a solid average of 80, at the maximum settings I had moments when the framerate dropped below 60, but kept a decent average of 53 FPS . Dota did not create any difficulty, with the maximum FPS settings the counter did not fall below 120 and on CS GO we obtained +144 FPS.
If you are constantly on the move, then this may not be the ideal laptop, the case is quite heavy and takes up some space, and without a charger the battery doesn't last long (which is true for any gaming laptop), but if you're not interested of these aspects and you want a really powerful laptop, then you do not have to look any further.
When you are looking for a gaming laptop that is efficient and at the same time thin and light, you need to be prepared for extremely high prices. At least that's how things were in the past, but today the Acer Predator Triton 500 has already opened a new trend on the market, that of elegant and powerful laptops that despite these aspects have a much more affordable price than we would be used to.
Starting with an i7-8750H and Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q GPU and with the RTX 2080 Max-Q as an upgrade option, the Predator Triton 500 can run shoulder to shoulder with other laptops of the same caliber for less money invested. The 144Hz G-Sync screen and comfortable keyboard are meant to sweeten the business. All this fits in a slightly larger case than a MacBook Pro 15 (our publishers' recommendation for the best laptops – video editing).
There are also some small shortcomings in terms of aesthetics. Triton 500 does not have the standard appearance of gaming laptops but is not as attractive as other products in its category, the details and finesse of the case does not compare for example with the Razer Blade 15 (which is also high-performance and slim). In addition to the appearance itself, the laptop has a weak point, the battery, but we do not think that anyone intends to use a gaming laptop for an intense session without having the charger connected.
After a few good hours on GTA V I got the following results, on high around 110 fps, very high 61 and on maximum settings the average was around 48. Far Cry 5 failed even on maximum settings to drop the average below 90 .
If you are looking for a gaming laptop that offers you the maximum price-quality ratio, it is quite difficult to find a more suitable one.
Lenovo redefined Legion laptops with its 2018 collection, we liked the design changes and we remained fans. In 2019, the models in the new collection managed to do what most gaming laptops fail to do: keep the price low without sacrificing performance.
Y740-15IRHg comes with all the features specific to a powerful laptop: RGB keyboard, screen with 144Hz refresh rate, RTX series graphics, numerous ports and a 6-core processor.
Where are the shortcomings you ask? We do not find much, Lenovo has sacrificed some of the available storage space in laptops for smaller budgets, we find a 1TB SSD that offers enough space and speed. GeForce RTX 2070 gives you a clear and stable experience in any game. If you're more interested in saving some money, neither the RTX 2060 nor GTX 1660Ti will disappoint you when it comes to raw power to run games. It has 16 GB of RAM and can reach up to 4.5 GHz.
This power comes not only from the video card, but also from the Intel Core i7-9750H processor which offers a delightful experience both in everyday use and in the sessions of your favorite game.
If you are not willing to allocate more money in the budget for your laptop, then Lenovo Y740-15IRHg is the best option.
Dell G3 – Reduced Budget
Dell G3 is a budget-friendly laptop, which although it does not inspire the image of a power generator, can not be ignored, being one of the cheapest systems with a dedicated GPU.
It is much more modest than other products on this list, the standard version contains Intel Core i5-8300H and 8 GB of RAM, but the real VIP in the equation is the video card: Nvidia GeForce FTX 1050 Ti, which managed to maintain a decent position behind other much more expensive plates. This way you have enough power to play any game, but not with the same clarity and detail.
For testing we reported on Fortnite and Battlefield 1 and got around 60 frames per second at maximum settings. When it comes to high resolutions we encounter some difficulties, but there are configuration ways for GTX 1060 that would make this process easier.
The Dell G3 doesn't look exactly like a budget system, and it doesn't leave much to be desired as you'd expect when you hear "budget." It is quite heavy, covered with plastic and shades of blue. The sides of the screen are quite thick, the touchpad leaves much to be desired and the display is quite mundane. But if you can overlook these trade-offs, you'll find an extremely capable gaming laptop that doesn't go wrong when it comes to an impressive framerate. GTA V exceeds 60 fps with all settings on high and offers over 144+ on medium. CS GO with all settings at maximum offers 135 fps and dot 2 does not reduce the average of the frames even on maximum settings below 75 fps.
MSI GF63 – Low Budget Alternative
The GTX 1650 has come into the spotlight as a lower-priced GPU than you would expect from such a high-performance video card. The MSI GF63 fully follows this example, being an extremely cheap laptop that still delivers enough power.
In the category of cheaper laptops, GF63 comes with an Intel Core i5-8300H and GTX 1650 processor, this duo, although it can't run the latest triple A games on high settings, can still offer you some Dota, CS GO and Fortnite sessions satisfactory, considering that this laptop is for those more interested in the budget than in a top quality of graphics.
It comes with 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD that will ensure a quick opening of any program or game, but the remaining space may be less than most people need, you can fix this setback with an external hard drive (here is our article on the best external hard drives ). The screen is 15.6 inches and has a 1080p display. The GF63 continues the trend already specific to MSI laptops: a black case, sharp edges and red keyboard lights. It should be mentioned that it is much lighter than a more expensive gaming laptop, this can be an advantage if you plan to leave the house often with it in the back.
HP Pavilion – Low Budget Alternative
HP Pavillion was considered by many to be the most decent cheap gaming laptop, it enjoyed a lot of attention in the previous year and we consider it worth a look in this one as well.
Although the components are no longer the latest generation, they can still deliver some good framerates in most popular games. You have to keep in mind that this laptop comes with GTX 1050Ti, this GPU is in the current market the minimum required you need to run games with a satisfying look and framerate.
Compared to a GTX 1050 you will pay a little more, but you will benefit from more power, which together with the Intel Core i5-8300H processor and 8GB of RAM will definitely deliver a pleasant experience behind the keyboard. If we keep talking about the keyboard, we would like to mention that it is illuminated in green, a pleasant change from the generic and already banal red, and in addition to lighting, the keyboard has a slightly aggressive look, generated by sharp angles.
It doesn't come with an SSD, so it will be slower to access files, but the storage space is much more spacious, we have a 1TB available, with 7200 rpm, so even if it takes longer to browse its files, you will also have more space for them. CS GO with the maximum settings generated an average of 95 frames per second, so a very satisfactory score.