The Cooler Boost 4 is one of the best technologies for cooling known today. Also, the Steel Series keyboard has a beautiful colorful backlighting you can customize macros keys for added convenience.
The laptop is rather heavy and bulky.
One of the most powerful gaming laptops present on the market, its aggressive look and high performance will assist you in domineering any cyber battle.
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
(Up to 3.8GHz)
16GB DDR4 SDRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1070 with 8GB GDDR5
- Full HD (1920x1080)
256GB SSD + 1TB HDD
8-Cell Li-Ion 75Whr
- 2x 3W Speakers
- 1x 3.5W Woofer
The pre-installed PredatorSense software makes it possible to monitor and control the laptop processing of certain tasks.
You will need to upgrade the drivers before the initial use.
Powerful hardware and sturdy metal body make this laptop an obvious choice for many hardcore gamers. Be a player all your opponents will consider a threat. Be a predator.
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
(Up to 3.8GHz)
16GB DDR4 SDRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 with 6 GB dedicated memory
- Full HD (1920 x 1080)
4-Cell Li-Polymer 3220 mAh (7 hours max run time)
Acer's TrueHarmony speakers
The model features array microphones designed specifically to filter any ambient noise and provide clear sound for your gaming party to hear you and not your cat playing with paper.
The battery could be more powerful for a gaming laptop.
Stylish laptop with gaming level of performance at a fairly moderate price. Make gaming process as comfortable as possible.
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
(Up to 3.8GHz)
16GB DDR4 SDRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 with 3GB discrete graphics
- Full HD (1920x1080)
- LED backlit
128GB SSD + 1TB HDD
4-Cell 64Whr (approx. 4 hours runtime at medium load)
Built-in speakers backed up by Dolby Audio Premium and Acer True Harmony create a truly immersing sound and make you dive into the game.
Your fingerprints will be visible on the housing.
Slim and elegant yet wild, this laptop is filled with hardware that will offer you gaming at the highest settings. And it will definitely look good on your desk.
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
(Up to 3.8GHz)
16GB DDR4 SDRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1050Ti with 4 GB of dedicated memory
- Full HD (1920x1080)
3-cell 4605 mAh Li-ion (6 hours run time)
Acer TrueHarmony Speakers
The built-in MaxxAudio Pro system with included subwoofer makes explosions in your games sound like the real deal. The highest level of entertainment.
Not the largest RAM there is.
Your gaming laptop that can double as a work one and no one will suspect a thing. Best choice for gamers who are often on-the-go for work.
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
(Up to 3.5GHz)
8GB DDR4 SDRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1050 with 4GB graphics memory
- Full HD (1920 x 1080)
- Anti-Glare LED-Backlit
Waves MaxxAudio® Pro and built-in subwoofer
WASD buttons red backlit
What is a Gaming Laptop?
Everybody knows what a laptop is, but it's also quite true that most laptops are less performing than conventional PCs and that's the reason why many people prefer the latter to maximize their gaming experience. Several years ago the difference in performance between laptops and PCs was very big, but not today. The situation has become a lot better for mobile computers. A gaming laptop is a usual notebook that boasts the most cutting-edge and high-performing hardware which makes it fast enough to compete with PCs in running all kinds of video games. However, a gaming laptop is often heavier than a conventional one and that's something you need to take into account.
If you still want to have a high-end PC at home and enjoy all of your favorite video games without any problems - check out our review of gaming PCs. Keep in mind that all further upgrades are much easier to carry out on gaming PCs.
What Features to Compare
The first thing to take into account is the performance of the gaming laptop you're going to buy since it determines how long your laptop will remain good enough for modern games. There are several important issues that impact the performance and the CPU is certainly the most important one. The CPU, or central processing unit, is the brain of any computer and there are 2 major manufacturers: Intel and AMD. Intel is considered to be more performing than AMD and that's why most gaming laptops are equipped with one of the most up-to-date Intel CPUs - quad-core Core i5 or Core i7 models with the frequency of 2.4 GHz and more. Another crucial piece of hardware is the GPU or graphics processing unit which transforms a 2-digit code into a realistic image you see on the screen. There are 2 types of GPUs: integrated (they are built into CPUs) and discrete (the independent one which you can easily replace). Of course, most conventional laptops have just an integrated GPU but if your aim is playing video games - you must get a laptop with a discrete GPU. There are 2 main manufacturers of GPUs - NVIDIA and ATI (which is associated with AMD). NVIDIA graphics cards are usually considered to be better for laptops and that's why all of the devices we've picked in this review boast NVIDIA GPUs.
There's another important feature that impacts an overall performance of the laptop - RAM or random-access memory. It's responsible for short-term information retention and if you have a rather small RAM, your laptop won't be able to run all the games smoothly enough. RAM types are different - there are DDR, DDR2, DDR3 and even DDR4, but the newer one you get, the higher frequencies it will be able to support and the faster the data traffic will be. You need to choose a gaming laptop with at least 8 GB of RAM, though the more the better and the best laptops for games have as many as 16 GB.
Finally, check the capacity of the storage device and the technology used in it. For example, most simple laptops have hard disk drives (HDDs) which are quite affordable and have a huge capacity but they are relatively slow and somewhat outdated after solid-state drives (SSDs) have been invented. Of course, SSDs are much faster but more expensive than HDDs. That's why most gaming laptops have an SSD and an HDD. SSDs are used as system drives (Windows is installed on them), while all of your files are stored on HDDs.
Once you've decided on the previously mentioned features, consider the next one - the display, because the game is displayed on it. Therefore, you need to have a high-quality screen in order to enjoy the gaming experience. Game graphics have made a breathtaking progress within the last decade, so playing video games isn't only about killing some monsters, but also about admiring the graphics. So, begin with the screen size - most gaming laptops have a usual diagonal of 15.6 inches but if you want to feel as comfortable as possible while playing games - choose a larger screen (17.3 inches, for example).
Also, consider the resolution the screen provides. You can customize the settings before starting playing a video game and it's an advantage if your laptop supports one of the highest resolutions available. Most gaming laptops allow you to choose the resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels (it's called Full HD). However, the best laptops for games can support a higher resolution.
In the end, check what technology is used in a display. All modern laptops have flat LED screens, but they are based on totally different technologies. The cheapest displays are based on the TN technology which has fairly poor viewing angles but boasts the excellent response time (1-5 ms), but gaming laptops belong to the upper class of computers and usually have displays based on the IPS technology which provides much more vivid colors and better viewing angles, but they're a bit slower - 5-8 ms. In general, the minimal response time of the screen for a gaming laptop has to be 10 ms.
Finally, you can't imagine a cutting-edge device without a touchscreen and most gaming laptops have it. It helps us a lot to use Windows, browse the websites, but it isn't a must-have feature for games.
Battery and Sound
The next step to make is to consider the battery. Any laptop is purchased for the sake of autonomous work without a necessity of plugging it into an outlet. And so the battery is important and you need to choose a laptop that provides a good battery life. Keep in mind that gaming laptops are very powerful and it means they consume a lot of energy, so no laptop for games is strong enough to ensure 10 hours of autonomous work. And yet, choose the one that provides no less than 5 hours of battery life - otherwise, you will need to have a power cord around.
Games aren't only about image and display, but also about sound, particularly if you like playing online. Present-day games allow you to even speak with other gamers and that's why the sound matters. And if a conventional laptop has just 2 simple speakers, gaming laptops are usually more 'charged' in terms of sound and boast high-end speakers and even a subwoofer. Surely, you can use the headset while playing video games.
Ergonomics and Design
At last, we've come to the last criteria to take into account - design and ergonomics. First of all, you need to choose the laptop by its appearance and material it's made from. Most laptops are made from plastic but the top-rated models have a metal casing (usually aluminum) which is better in terms of durability and cooling (keep in mind that a laptop has to have an efficient cooling system). The best and most expensive laptops for games boast a cutting-edge carbon casing which makes them really lightweight. However, if you choose a plastic model - it's good enough since fewer fingerprints and scratches are left on plastic.
And, of course, you need to check the keyboard - a crucial feature for any experienced gamer. A keyboard has to be convenient and that's why a lot of attention is paid to a keyboard layout by manufacturers. Although, only you can decide if a keyboard is comfortable. In the end, check the backlighting of the keyboard - most gamers like playing in the evening and at night, so a backlighting is important. The best gaming laptops allow you to even change the color of backlighting.
MSI GT62VR Dominator Pro-238
Domineering Force in the Industry
There is a reason Micro-Star International had named this gaming laptop model the way they did—the MSI GT62VR is definitely a force to be reckoned with both in specs and in looks. The black matte machine with two aggressive red lines and a stylish MSI dragon logo on the lid looks like a supercar hood. Open it and you'll find a 15.6" FullHD screen with IPS panel and a super-comfortable gaming keyboard with colorful backlighting and customizable macro keys. And when it comes to specs, it's like a supercar among regular sports cars—they are all good, some even great, but still none at the same level of awesome.
One of the key elements that set this laptop for gaming apart from its peers is the unique Cooler Boost 4 system. This system makes it possible for you to dispose of all accumulated heat in CPU and GPU using six heat pipes and a single button to launch them into operation. Then there is an MSI Shift feature created to offer you the opportunity to select the appropriate thermal profile for the tasks at hand, from the top-performing Sports Mode to the light low-consuming Green Mode.
The Speed of Thought
The Intel Core i7-7700 with the processor speed of 2.8GHz and Turbo Boost mode at 3.8GHz offers the performance roughly 10% higher than that of the previous i7-6700HQ model. Add here a DDR4-2400 16GB RAM and 256GB M.2 SATA + 1TB hard drive and you receive flawlessly smooth gameplay in any of the latest games. The NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1070 is also 40% more performing than the previous GTX 900 generation. Feel the power and show your prowess in games with the best machine.
Make It Bigger
Matrix Display technology provides the possibility to set two additional monitors to your laptop screen and thus widen your gaming space (also useful for watching high-res videos). The connection is made via HDMI and Mini DisplayPort 1.2. There is a 4K (3840x2160) resolution support so now you can enjoy any content to the fullest.
In the MSI GT62VR Dominator Pro-238, the manufacturer implanted the Dynaudio acoustic system that uses two 3W speakers and a 3.5W subwoofer. Be it a dynamic video game or an action movie, you will hardly need any external systems to hear the sound fill your room.
Acer Predator Helios 300
A Predator on Your Desk
A few minutes of using this laptop and you'll know you've probably made the right choice. It looks stylish—all sharp edges and corners, gray and red with its two red lines and a series logo on the lid, it just screams gaming. The lid is texturized metal, it's really durable. The display is 15.6" IPS, has an LCD backlight and supports Full HD resolution. The variety of ports enables fast and reliable data transfer, you'll find two USB 2.0, a USB 3.0, and a USB 3.1 Type-C at the sides, the latter supporting up to 5 Gbit/s speed. There is an HDMI port to connect to external monitors, of course, and a slot for an SD card.
The two fans were designed using the AeroBlade 3D technology and both have an increased number of super-thin (0.004") blades. The cooled air travels through the entire laptop from its front to the back lowering the body temperature to the safe levels.
Full Control over the Beast
This gaming laptop is delivered with Windows® 10 Home, it's ready to go. Additionally, the manufacturer provides their original PredatorSense software. In a nutshell, PredatorSense is a control panel with a user-friendly interface where you can monitor all the main working system parameters, from temperature to fan speed to frequency. It also offers several customizable options like assigning hotkeys, creating profiles, overclocking, etc. Speaking of overclocking, and of the processor in general, the one in this -model is Intel Core i7-7700HQ with processing speed of 2.8GHz normally and 3.8GHz via Turbo Boost. The NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 with 6GB GDDR5 memory makes graphics fluid, you'll be able to play the most demanding games at high fps.
Gaming Day and Night
The keys have bright-red backlight and are easily seen even in a dark room at night. Moreover, the WASD keys, default for moving in most games, have enhanced highlighting than all other keys, you'll put your fingertips on them without really having to look. The touchpad here is 4.1" x 3.0", it's quite easy to use until you buy a gaming mouse.
The Acer Predator Helios 300 uses two TrueHarmony speakers which will drown you in realistic sound in any media, from music and movies to games.
The ASUS FX502VM is believed to be a somewhat "lighter" modification of a GL502VM model. But don't get it wrong, the "lighter" part is about ergonomics and not performance. The machine itself is indeed really light, 0.9" thick when closed and mere 4.85 lbs in weight thanks to the use of plastic. However, it still has a powerful Intel Core i7 processor with the speed of 2.8GHz (3.8GHz in Turbo Boost mode), a 16GB DDR RAM, and a 3GB NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 graphics, the hardware used in much more expensive models. It does have a 128GB SSD for storage when 256GB ones are a common occurrence, however, ASUS had added a 1TB HDD to the mix so we find it not too big of a problem. The system runs fast and there is ample space for games and other multimedia.
The hardware of this level produces quite some heat, to battle which the designers had included a Hyper Cool Duo-Copper cooling system in this gaming laptop. It is essentially a system consisting of heat pipes and a couple of fans to cool down CPU and GPU separately.
Top Level Visual
Gaming computer, be it laptop or PC, is equal parts hardware performance, sound, and display. No gamer will probably play a high-end game on an old small monitor. Well, except on a bet, maybe. Anyway, this ASUS model features a 15.6" display and you can freely watch Full HD movies on it. Even better is that it supports 100% sRGB color gamut meaning you get a highly detailed bright image with real-life colors. Matte coating reduces glaring and with 178°/178° viewing angles of an IPS panel, the image will be of great quality whatever way you look at it.
A chiclet keyboard with scissor-switch keys and a 0.63" key travel was designed with gamers in mind but typing documents is nevertheless convenient. The keyboard is quiet and accurate, all keys are brightly red-backlit making night use a walk in the park.
The model is enhanced with array microphones that do a great job at blocking all the ambient noises to transfer your words to your partners clearly. No more need in additional devices for speaking.
Acer Aspire VX 15
A Breath of Future
When you look at it, the Acer VX15 is a kind of futuristic machine. Sharp corners and hard edges make it somewhat aggressive, pointing out the fact that it is a gaming laptop. The lid is texturized instead and has no glossy elements so you won't have to scrub your fingerprints off it. Red lines in combination with two red-rimmed air intakes at the back look superb. Two air intakes here means two fans means no worries about cooling as they can handle even full-load games and won't let your laptop overheat and start lagging. When you play until late red-backlit keys with intensely lit WASD keys will be visible, therefore, no losing control over your character in your favorite RPG and shooters.
Although this Acer VX15 is not a part of the Predator family where all the models have top gaming performance it nevertheless has the Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor with the 2.8GHz clock speed boostable to 3.8GHz in overclocking. All your tasks will be addressed in a blink of an eye. The RAM here is 16GB DDR4 (it can transfer data at up to 2133 MT/sec and consumes 20% less energy if compared to the DDR3).
Enjoy Modern Games
For the CPU prowess to not go to waste due to some subpar graphics, Acer added to this model the NVIDIA® GeForce® 1050Ti GPU with 4GB of dedicated memory. This is a 10th generation GPU known for 40% better performance compared to the previous GeForce® generation. The laptop was thoroughly tested on Grand Theft Auto 5 and The Witcher 3, as well as on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive at maximum settings and showed great performance with 60 fps.
15.6" IPS screen with Full HD support is not a shocker for gamers anymore, sure, more like a normal occurrence. But it is still one of the best options for a laptop.
This gaming laptop incorporates Acer TrueHarmony and Dolby Audio Premium Sound, a technology that provides surround sound of the VR level without the use of any external acoustics and headphones. You'll drown in sound just like that.
Dell Inspiron i5577-5335BLK-PUS
Respectable-looking Gaming Laptop
Now this one does not look like a gaming machine at all. It's all classic lines, matte housing, and nothing excessive in terms of outward design. You can take it to work, business meeting, or a big conference and no one will think you're here to play games. It is also really portable, 15.08" x 10.43" x 1" and 5.45 lbs. But make no mistakes, inside it is a fairly decent gaming laptop all right.
This Dell Inspiron model uses the 7th generation Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor with overclocking speed up to 3.5GB. It also has 8GB DDR4 RAM for fast processing of tasks at hand and for smooth system operation. The NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1050 with 4GB of dedicated memory will enable you to play modern games with quite high demands. Not all the games can be played here on top settings, probably, but we'd say it's close enough, the image is crystal clear and detailed, the playing process is enjoyable. The model is offered in several modifications, you can choose to have a bigger RAM, for example, a different storage capacity, or an i7 processor. However, mind the price difference.
Dell Inspiron has all the necessary interfaces for efficient connection of external devices. On the right side, there is an SD card reader, a USB 3.0 with PowerShare function (meaning you can charge your gadgets from the laptop battery), an HDMI port for your external monitor, and, of course, an RJ45 if you want to connect an Internet cable. Left side shows us the port for a laptop charger, two more USB 3.0 ports to quickly transfer data to USB flash drives, smartphones, and other USB-enabled gadgets, and, finally, a port for your headphones/external speakers/audio system. Be it gaming, movie night with your s/o and friends, Internet browsing, or business, this laptop will cover all your major needs. And watching whatever you want will be easy and comfortable as its 15.6" Full HD display has an anti-gloss coating.
Ample Storage Space
This modification has 256GB solid state drive, enough for setting up an OS and storing some games and multimedia files, but if you doubt it will be enough, there are options with 1TB HDD. Or you can purchase an external SSD or HDD.
Ready to Go
You can turn it on right away as this gaming laptop comes with Windows 10 Home pre-installed. Right now, it's the latest Windows OS that combines all the upgrades and works smoothly with general-purpose applications as well as with games.
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