Recommendations

Best Gaming Laptops

This is a table of best gaming laptops up to the GTX 780M / Radeon 8970M performance level. The table is filterable by screen size and in the near future more filtering options will be available (suggestion are gladly accepted). The recommendations include also gaming laptops that I personally wouldn’t buy or recommend, but some people might find them useful, like the Alienware m17x which I think is totally overpriced. Other options were not even included, like the OriginPC options which are also overpriced though based on the same MSI GTs barebones many others, including MSI itself, use and I can’t see why buy them.
I’ll focus especially on several specific categories. Each category highlights some of the more interesting aspects of a laptop and so it would be easier to find a gaming laptop for your needs:

  • Best for Price – best gaming laptops for the price range. This is the more interesting category for most people, as most gamers want to get the fastest gaming laptop in their budget yet having some basic qualities, like not falling apart, good enough 1080p screen, good thermals and sometimes upgrading options. This laptops in this list are ordered mostly according to their gaming performance / price ratio.
  • Ultra-portable gaming laptops: These are the more portable gaming laptops, having very good battery performance combined with low weight and slimness, for their price and compared to the competition. If you have a strong preference of portability over having the fastest laptop, these are laptops you should check. These usually wouldn’t be the fastest for gaming.
  • Small gaming laptops: smaller than 15.6″ form factor – usually 14.0″ and 13.X”. Note that some smaller laptops are not the most portable in terms of battery and weight (take the Asus G46VW for example) and also, might have other disadvantages, like screen quality, so you better check both categories.
  • Fastest gaming laptop – simply put, these are the fastest available with a performance level of a GTX 670MX / 675M and up. This list is an overview of the more interesting fastest gaming laptops. I did not include laptops with dual GPU configurations above the GT 650M/750M SLI level as currently these are very expensive and personally I don’t find them very cost effective.
  • Unique Mix – Gaming laptops who are a unique mix of features. Though might not fit well in the other categories, some gaming laptops have a combination of features that worth considering as a package, like having an excellent screen and a low weight, special design, very good cooling and so on. This list is meant to differentiate such laptops from the “best gaming laptops” list which has a more defined and specific target – see above.
  • All gaming laptops - the whole list, available with filters like which GPU or screen size you want. There are many gaming laptops there I didn’t include in one of the above category. In this state you can filter the gaming laptops by choosing some more specific filters like price range and GPU and you might find a laptop that is more suitable for your needs or taste than the above. The list is mostly ordered according to the performance / price ratio too, but other parameters are taken into account too like the extra value of a good screen, thermals and noise, keyboard, weight and so on.

Finally, I want to say that the prices are given in range in order to reflect the price changes. Check the gaming laptop deals category to see current deals stream and more updated prices.

Scroll to see more laptops or use the arrowheads

Model
Screen
Deals / Coupons
Price
Price w/OS
Main Specs
Additional
Why
Why not
Warranty
Reviews
Upgrades
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
1300$-1400$
1300$-1400$
GTX 770M, I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • Very good gaming performance/value for the money
  • 2-year warranty
  • Very good thermals (conclusion from the GT70 review)
  • Good DynaAudio sound system
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Battery performance is not great but acceptable
  • Still no in-depth reviews for the new model
  • Might be noisy for some people
  • 5400RPM HDD is the main HDD
Install an SSD for the OS
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
1420$ (cash)
~1500$ (cash)
GTX 680M, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • Gaming performance / price ratio is excellent. At least as high as current 770M solutions
  • Good thermals for such a laptop.
  • Lots of configuration options, including some nice screen upgrades
  • Good enough sound system (as the MSI GT70)
  • Not quiet
  • Some upgrades are overpriced
  • Noisy under load
17.3 (glossy, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
1750$-1800$
1850$-1900$
Radeon 7970M, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 500GB 7200RPM
  • Very high gaming performance with the Radeon 7970M
  • Good thermals and no throttling
  • Very good build quality
  • Good keyboard
  • Good touchpad
  • Screen has good viewing angles
  • Good set of connection ports
  • Distinct style
  • Highly overpriced - you can get the same performance for 300$-400$ less
  • Heavy even compared to the rest high end laptops
  • Shouty style
  • Glossy, reflective screen
  • Battery performance could be better
1, 2, 3
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
1510$
~1600$
Radeon 7970M, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 500GB Hybrid HDD or 128GB SSD
High quality AUO 95% adobeRGB coverage screen (included in price)
  • Gaming performance / price is very good.
  • Radeon 7970M performanceis very high, rivaling the GTX 680M
  • Very good matte 1080p screen included in price - good for professionals
  • Hybrid HDD/128GB SSD for low price.
  • You can get more gaming power for your money, if you are not interested in the extra features
  • Noisy under load
1, 2, 3
15.6 (glossy, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
1585$ (cash)
1687$ (cash)
GTX 780M, I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • Fastest single-GPU performance currently
  • Excellent performance/price gaming performance, probably the highest, even compared to the cheap Y5XXs
  • Good build quality, like the GT60
  • Many configuration options
  • 1080p matte screen, but that goes without saying
  • Usually have some deals
  • Upgrades are not cheap (SSD, for example)
  • Still no in-depth review (though it is basically the GT60)
  • Price is for cash and before tax
XoticPC Sager NP9150 675MXSager NP9150 (675MX)
15.6 (glossy, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
1280$ (cash)
1360$ (cash)
GTX 675MX, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • Gaming performance / price is excellent with the Radeon 675MX
  • GTX 675MX gaming performance is very high.
  • Many configuration options
  • Windows 7 option
  • Upgrades are not cheap (SSD, for example) – The Eurocom Racer 2.0 might be a better choice
123 (P150EM)
matte screen (+30$)
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
1350$-1470$
1350$-170$
  • Gaming performance / price ratio is very good
  • Good thermals for such a laptop.
  • Good enough sound system (as the MSI GT70)
  • Two HDD bays
  • Two mSata connection ports
  • Not quiet.
  • No extended warranty available
  • Noisy under load
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
1400$
1400$
GTX 770M, I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • Excellent gaming performance for the money with the GTX 770M gaming performance
  • Very good 1080p screen with high contrast and relatively good viewing angles
  • Very good thermals, even with the GTX 780M
  • Good sound
  • 2-year warranty
  • Two HDD bays
  • Two mSata connectors
  • Sometimes very good deals
  • The Lenovo Y500/Y510p with 750M SLI come very close in performance to this for a much lower price
  • Might be noisy under load
2-year
XoticPC Sager NP9150 7970MEurocom Racer 2.0 (GTX 670MX)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
1220$-1350$
1300$-1420$
GTX 670MX, I, 8GB, 500GB Hybrid HDD / 128GB Crucial m4 SSD
High quality AUO 95% adobeRGB coverage screen (included in price)
  • Gaming performance / price is very good.
  • GTX 670 (and up) gaming performance
  • Very good matte 1080p screen included in price - good for professionals
  • Hybrid HDD/128GB SSD for low price.
  • Noisy under load
  • Battery performance might be not so good
 123
Asus G75VXAsus G75VX (670MX)
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
1220$
1220$
GTX 670MX, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • Excellent performance for the money
  • Excellent thermals making the G75 throttling proof
  • Low noise
  • Very good build quality
  • Comfortable keyboard
  • Two HDD bays
  • Heavier than other 17.3 laptops (not by much)
  • 5400RPM HDD and not 7200RPM, but you can replace it yourself
  • Sound issues?
replace the HDD with a fast one.
Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 GT650M dealLenovo Y500 (I7, GT 650M SLI)
15.6 (glossy, 1080p)
1000$-1050$
1000$-1050$
2xGT 650M (> GTX 670MX) , I7-3630QM, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
Now comes with 16GB mSata drive
  • Gaming performance for the money is extra ordinary and above any other laptop in this list, for most games
  • Good sound system
  • Low noise
  • Might get pretty hot under full load (use a cooling pad)
  • Not light
  • Battery performance is not good
  • Trackpad in first models was very problematic
  • 5400RPM HDD
  • Glossy screen
replace the HDD with a fast one.
MSI GX60 7970M gaming laptopMSI GX60 (7970M)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
1050$-1200$
1050$-1200$
Radeon 7970M, A10-4600M, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
BR-R
  • In Many games, the gaming performance is very high with the 7970M, exceeding anything else in the price range
  • Blu-ray player
  • Good thermals
  • Good DynaAudio sound system
  • Good battery performance(5 hours surfing)
  • Two HDD bays
  • CPU is replaceable with next gen. AMD CPU.
  • Good build quality
  • Performance in some games is limited due to the A10 cpu, but note that drivers have improved.
  • Might get noisy under full load
2-year
1, 2, 3
Sager NP7352Sager NP7352 (765M)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
~970$ (cash)
1050$(cash)
GTX 765M, I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • Very high gaming performance for the money
  • Fastest Under 1000$ (with the Y500)
  • Very good screen upgrade option for only 50$
  • No backlit keyboard
  • Battery performance is not that good
Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 GT650M dealLenovo Y500 (I5, GT 650M SLI)
15.6 (glossy, 1080p)
900$
2xGT 650M, I5-3230M, 6GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • same as the I7 version, only with an I5 and 6GB RAM.
  • Extremely cost effective
  • Might get pretty hot under full load (use a cooling pad)
  • Not light
  • Battery performance is not good
  • Trackpad in first models was very problematic
  • 5400RPM HDD
  • Glossy screen
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
1160$ (cash)
1240$ (cash)
GTX 770M, I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 750G 7200RPM
  • Very good gaming performance with thr I7 + GTX 770M. Above the GTC 675MX.
  • One of two fastest laptops under 1200$-1300$, along with the Y510p
  • Usually have some deal with it (currently – Free GRID2)
  • Highly configurable
  • Good build quality
  • Good screen upgrade option for 50$
  • Still no in-depth reviews
  • No backlit keyboard included
  • Battery performance is probably so-so
  • No OS included in price, for those who need a new copy
  • The price is for cash
HP Envy dv7t 7300 qeHP Envy dv7t-7300 (I7, GT 650M)
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
950$-1100$
950$-1100$
GT 650M, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 750GB 5400RPM
Blu-Ray player
  • Good build quality
  • Very good 1080p screen with good viewing angles and high contrast
  • Good gaming performance for the money or a 17.3 gaming laptop
  • Backlit keyboard
  • 2-year warranty
  • Blu-ray player included in the price
  • Not bad thermals
  • Might be somewhat noisy
  • Not the best gaming performance for the money, if you consider also 15.6 laptops
2-year
1 (dv6t-7200)
Dell Inspiron 17R SE GT 650M I7Dell Inspiron 17R SE (I7,  650M)
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
950$-1100$ (depends on coupons)
950$-1100$
GT 650M, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 1TB + 32GB mSSD
32GB mSSD
  • Good build quality
  • Good backlit keyboard
  • Two HDD bays
  • 32GB mSSD cache drive
  • 1080p screen has good viewing angles and high contrast, even compared to other 1080p screens
  • Good gaming performance for a 17.3 laptop in this price range
  • Gaming performance for the money is good but not great.
  • Included battery is relatively small
  • High temps
asus n56vzAsus N56VZ (I7, 650M DDR3)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
900$-1000$
900$-1000$
GT 650M DDR3, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
Blu-Ray Player, small external subwoofer
  • Very good build quality
  • Very good matte 1080p screen
  • Very good backlit keyboard
  • 7200RPM HDD as a default
  • Blu-Ray player
  • Good gaming performance for the money (not the best though)
  • Good looks
  • Very quiet even under load
  • Not the best gaming performance for the money
  • Might get a bit hot under load (shouldn’t worry you)
Sony Vaio S 15.5 640M LESony Vaio S 15.5 (I5/I7, GT 640M LE)
15.5? (matte, 1080p IPS)
900$-1000$
900$-1000$
GT 640M LE, I5-3210M, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • Very good build quality
  • Very good IPS 1080p screen with very good viewing angles
  • Lightweight 4.42lbs laptop
  • 750GB 7200RPM
  • Good battery (at least 4 hours surfing through WiFi)
  • Gaming performance is much lower than what you can get for this pricerange
Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 GT650M dealLenovo Y500 (I7, single GT 750M)
15.6 (glossy, 1080p)
800$-850$
800$-850$
GT 650M, I7-3630QM, 8GB, 1TB (optional: 16GB mSSD)
Optional: 16GB mSSD
  • Gaming performance and value for the money is good with GT 650M and I7.
  • Good sound system
  • Glossy screen
  • 16GB mSSD
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Low noise
  • Might get pretty hot under full load (use a cooling pad)
  • Not light
  • Battery performance is not good
  • Trackpad in first models was very problematic
  • 5400RPM HDD
  • Glossy screen
MSI GE60-0NC GT 650M gaming laptop
MSI GE60-0NC (I5, 650M)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
850$-900$
850$-900$
GT 650M, I5-3230M, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • good matte 1080p screen
  • 7200RPM HDD
  • not heavy compared to other 15.6 gaming laptops in the level
  • Gaming performance is good for the price.
  • Might get hot under full load
  • Battery performance is so-so
  • There are faster options for the price (look aside)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
750$-900$
GT 650M, I5-3210M, 6GB, 640GB 5400RPM
  • Good matte 1080p screen with good viewing angles
  • Relatively good battery performance
  • With some good coupons, good gaming performance for the money
  • Windows 7
  • Nice looks
  • Without coupons the price isn’t that good
  • 5400RPM HDD as a default
Backlit keyboard upgrade
14.0 (matte, 768p/900p)
Current deals / Direct link
950$-1075$
950$-1075$
GT 650M, I5-3230M, 6GB DDR3, 500GB 7200RPM
  • Very good build quality
  • Very good keyboard
  • Good gaming performance (not the best for the money)
  • 900p screen with high contrast and relatively good viewing angles
  • 14.0 form factor
  • Default 7200RPM HDD
  • Though 14.0, not lightweight at around 2.8-3kg
  • 900p screen colors are not good and the screen is glossyt (although it is not a bad one)
  • Bulky
  • Gaming performance for the money is not as good as other laptops
1, 2
900p screen upgrade
Asus g46vwAsus G46VW (660M)
14.0 (matte, 768p)
Current deals / Direct link
900$-950$
900$-950$
GTX 660M, I5-3210M, 8GB DDR3, 750GB
  • 14.0 form factor
  • Very good gaming performance for the price
  • Excellent cooling system
  • Good battery
  • Very good build quality
  • Good touchpad and keyboard
  • Screen is average at best. Disappointing for such a high end laptop
  • Compact, but not lightweight
  • 5400RPM HDD
Replace the 5400RPM HDD
Sager Clevo NP6165 GT650MSager NP6165 (I5, 650M)
15.6 (glossy, 1080p)
Current deals / Direct link
820$ cash
~900$ cash
GT 650M, I5-3230M, 8GB, 750GB 7200RPM
  • Highly and easily customizable
  • Two HDD bays
  • Good gaming performance for the money (espeically if you don’t need Windows OS)
  • Very high quality 95% adobeRGB Gamut screen upgrade option
  • Not the best gaming performance for the money
  • Bulky, not as light as others
  • Battery performance isn’t that good
1 (user review)
Screen upgrade
Dell Inspiron 15R SE 7730M I5Dell Inspiron 15R SE (I5/I7, 7730M)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
600$-800$
600$-800$
Radeon 7730M, I5-3210M/I7-3630QM, 8GB, 750GB 5400RPM
  • Matte 1080p screen
  • Good build quality
  • Battery performance
  • Gaming performance is lower than competitors significantly
Asus N56DP A10-4600M 7730MAsus N56DP (A10, 7730M)
15.6 (matte, 1080p)
750$-800$
750$-800$
Radeon 7730M, A10-4600M, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
small external subwoofer
  • Good matte 1080p screen with wide horizontal viewing angles
  • Cool & Quiet
  • Excellent keyboard
  • Big trackpad
  • Very good build quality
  • Gaming performance for the money is lower than competitors
  • The trackpad buttons are unified and sometimes are not very comfortable to use
  • 5400RPM HDD
Lenovo Y410pLenovo Y410p (I7, GT 750M)
14.0 (matte, 900p)
800$-850$
800$-850$
GT 750M GDDR5, I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM (sometimes with a 24GB mSSD)
Optional ultrabay with another GT 750M
  • 14.0 form factor
  • Fastest 14.0″ in this price range
  • Sometimes includes a 24GB mSSD for around the same price
  • Optional ultrabay with an additional GT 750M GPU
  • Matte 900p screen
  • Still no in-depth review
  • Although a 14.0, not lightweight
V3-571G-6622Acer V3-571G-6622 (I5, GT 730M)
15.6 (glossy, 768p)
600$-630$
600$-630$
GT 730M, I5-3230M, 4GB, 500GB 5400RPM
  • Very good gaming performance for the money with the I5 and GT 730M (~GT645M)
  • Low noise
  • Good keyboard
  • Average glossy 768p screen (low quality)
  • Not lightweight
1 (w/ 1080p), 2
HP 15z-j000 FullHDHP 15z-j000 (A8-5750M, 8750M)
15.6
580$-620$ (w/ 1080p)
580$-620$ (w/ 1080p)
Radeon 8750M, A8-5750M, 750GB 5400RPM HDD
  • Very good matte 1080p screen for around 600$
  • [probably]Good battery performance
  • [probably]Good thermals
  • Only ~4.5lbs (~2.1kg)
  • Good looks
  • Very good gaming performance under 600$
  • Still no in-depth reviews
  • No dvd/br included
15.6 (matte, 768p)
Unavailable currently
550$ (before tax and shipping)
550$
Radeon 7730M, I5-3230M, 6GB, 750GB 5400RPM
  • Very high gaming performance for the money
  • Good build quality
  • Low noise
  • OK keyboard, good trackpad
  • Tax & shipping make add significantly for price
  • 768p screen
  • Not always available
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
1300$-1350$
1300$-1350$
GTX 675MX, I7-3630QM, 16GB, 750GB 7200RPM
BR player
  • Excellent gaming performance for the money
  • Good build quality
  • Good matte 1080p screen with very high contrast
  • OK keyboard, good trackpad
  • Blu-Ray player
  • Not quiet
  • Not light (not heavier than compatitors though)
  • Though screen is relatively very good, it is not for professionals who need adobeRGB covered
Lenovo IdeaPad Y510p GT 750M SLI dealLenovo Y510p (I7, GT 750M SLI)
15.6 (matte(?), 1080p)
1000$-1100$
1000$-1100$
2xGT 750M (> GTX 770M) , I7-4700MQ, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • Gaming performance for the money is very high and is the best under 1200$-1300$
  • Also best performance under 1200$-1300$
  • 1080p screen – good reports from users about its quality, Probably a matte (vs glossy in the Y500)
  • SSHD – a Hybrid HDD with 8GB-16GB SSD inside
  • Good sound quality
  • Users report good thermals
  • Backlit keyboard
  • When the second GPU pulled out, the battery performance is quite good with 6-7 hours at least
  • Not light
  • SLI solution might have drivers problems
Samsung NP770z7e ultraportable gaming laptopSamsung NP770z7e (I7, Radeon HD 8870M)
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
1100$
1100$
Radeon HD 8870M, I7-3635QM, 8GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • Relatively lightweight for a 17.3″ at 3kg
  • Good battery for a 17.3″ gaming laptop – 5 hours surfing, up to 10 hours of light work
  • Very good 1080p screen especially with very good viewing angles, very high contrast
  • Very good keyboard
  • relatively slim (for a gaming laptop)
  • Radeon 8870M gaming performance (GTX 660M to GTX 670M)
  • Might get hot under full load resulting in throttling – not neccesarily though
  • 5400RPM HDD
replace the HDD with a fast one.
Samsung NP770z7e ultraportable gaming laptopSamsung NP770z7e (I7, Radeon HD 8870M)
17.3 (matte, 1080p)
1100$
1100$
Radeon HD 8870M, I7-3635QM, 12GB, 1TB 5400RPM
  • Less than 2.4 lightweight 15.6″ gaming laptop
  • Excellent battery with 10-11 hours surfing the web through WiFi
  • Very good 1080p screen with very good horizontal and vertical viewing angles, very high contrast
  • Very good keyboard
  • Low noise
  • relatively slim
  • Radeon 8870M gaming performance (GTX 660M to GTX 670M)
  • Some users reported screen problems. Defective screens will be replace however
    • 5400RPM HDD
    replace the HDD with a fast one.
    Sager NP7330 (GTX 765M)
    15.6 (matte, 1080p, IPS)
    $1030-$1070
    $1100-$1170
    GTX 765M 2GB GDDR5, I7-4700MQ, 8GB DDR3,
    1080p IPS screen, CMN1343
    • Gaming performance / price is very good and the best for its class of compact gaming laptops
    • GTX 765M gaming performance would suffice for most games on close to highest settings
    • Very good 1080p IPS display with good contrast and excellent viewing angles
    • A compact 13.3″ form factor, less than 2.1kg
    • Though not cool, the laptops handles heat quite well
    • Battery performance isn’t great – 3-3.5 hours of light use, but that might be improved with future bios/drivers
    • Noisy under load (like many other laptops though)
    • Screen has some white leaks mainly in the bottom but that’s practically invisible under common circumstances
    1

    I would suggest installing an SSD.

    How to choose a gaming laptop for yourself

    And how to use this filtering system. If you’ve tried to use the filtering, you’ve probably noticed that the laptops are not ordered according to their price. Actually, it is a real problem how to arrange this list according to the laptop’s quality since each one of us have different needs and while one will prioritize high mobility over top performance, another one might prefer it differently. Therefore the laptops are divided to several different categories which should ease finding the right laptop for you – I’ve explained the categories above

    When you choose your laptop you are trying to get the best gaming laptop (in this case) for your money and needs. Therefore, you need to think it over once or twice and define for yourself what are your needs (performance, weight, screen quality, battery) and what is the budget. Sometimes you need some more opinions and I suggest discussing your thoughts and questions over the forum – this way your can refine your choice. But generally, the laptops in this table are – again, in my opinion – the most interesting ones to be counted as the best gaming laptops currently available.