While in the last posts we reviewed some top of the class gaming laptops, now we will consider some affordable options for the ones who are thinking about a laptop with modest portable gaming experience, however you don’t expect the highest frame rate, or the extreme graphic settings.
We decided to lower the price range from 1000 dollars down to 800 dollars, and find the best gaming laptop solution in this price range. Didn’t come as a shock finding that we have found there are tons of options in this price group, some even surprisingly good for the money you’ll spare.
In our manner, by dong a massive research and analysis, and limiting the playing range even more, we have managed to make a list of top five gaming laptops in the range of 800 dollars on the market momentarily. Although not looking as pretty as high end laptop, the performance of these laptops is surprisingly good, so they can freely be named “mid-high end”.
The below listed configurations are equipped with a moderate processor, considerable amount of video memory, larger enough HDD even SSD, and a lot options for upgrade per your request, offering a satisfying working performances.
However, don’t expect the high-end graphic cards in these laptops that like in the over $1200 budget laptops, but do expect a satisfying gaming experience playing on any of the five listed down below; nevertheless, these are not the cheapest laptop either. For those who are looking for something even cheaper, we encourage you to look at some previous posts describing the best gaming laptop in the 600$, or even the 500$ budget range.
This list will be periodically maintained and updated, and one can always find the latest educational and informational chooses. True, a lot of the pc-gamers would not agree, but we can guarantee with our long experience that you will find a flowing gameplay and finer graphics than the ones at the Xbox or PlayStation 4 consoles.
Our most recommendation:
1, MSI GL62M 7RE-407 15.6”
This is a product which we have reviewed before and in quite a bit of depth too, needless to say it catches every gamer’s attention and gets complemented a lot. At $900 this is not surprising but rather something you’d expect. Often laptops even at the mid-to-high range market suffer a lot of design flaws being overly verbose and vibrant. MSI fortunately knows how to design with perfect aesthetics and appeal.
It has an i5-7300HQ which is a 4-cores/4-threads processor at 2.8GHz (turbo up to 3.5GHz) with 6M of L3 cache and 8GB of DDR4 RAM. The most influential components, however, are the Nvidia GTX 1050Ti and the 256GB M.2 SSD. The GTX 1050 Ti is comparable to a GTX 970M, it can beat GTX 1050 and GeForce GTX 965M by around 30%, you can play most games at medium to high even ultra setting at 1080p. ((Benchmarks) This is so close to being the gamer’s ideal laptop that you will cringe when you see that it has a TN panel display. The Achilles’ heel for any gamer will be this 1920 by 1080 panel which has poor color reproduction and poorer viewing angle. Although the response time is reportedly faster than IPS panel, most would have preferred an IPS panel.
Moving a little lower, you will see a that there is a Cooler Booster button which you can click to get better cooling manually, if you don’t mind the extra noise. This feature from MSI ensures that you don’t lose any of the computational horsepower that the 1050Ti or the 7300HQ has to offer, in the name of thermal throttling.
Ports are abundant for all type of peripheral like 2 USB 3.0, 1 Type-C, 1 USB 2.0, a mini-display port and an HDMI port. Also available are the 802.11 ac and Bluetooth 4.1 technology, which is fairly obvious to expect.
The keyboard is from steelseries, and although it is not a mechanical keyboard it will get the job done without any complains. At 2.4kg or 5.3 pounds this is a heavy laptop but considering the amount of computational horsepower it packs, this is understandable. It is however, much more portable than a full desktop if you are planning on LAN parties or gaming for a weekend at your friend’s place.
Finding a good gaming laptop with satisfying performances and not being costly can be quite difficult. The ASUS ZX53VW-AH58 on the other hand, comes with some impressive features at a good price. Providing a smooth gaming at all except the highest settings, with the subtle Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M graphic card and full HD display, makes this system pretty powerful, and not just for gaming. When not playing, it works efficiently as daily works and media tasks performer. It is ranked by its configuration on the same level as the previous top-picks – Dell i7559-763BLK, ASUS K501UX and ASUS K501UW-AB78. As all of these being high-end in this particular category, the ASUS ZX53VW brings fresh perspective in the entry-level gaming, showing performance increase at significant level.
Design and features
With lines inspired by the F-22 stealth fighter, the ASUS ZX53VW kicks with style, with an impressive metallic and slim design, giving a look as seen in Asus’s ROG (Republic of Gamers). The lid is presented with impressive curves alongside the “Asus” label, stretching to the keyboards, giving it astonishing looks. Measuring 0.8 by 15.1 by 10 in. (HWD), and weighing at 5.5 pounds, it’s slimmer, but also heavier than the ASUS FX502VM-AH51(0.9 by 15.4 by 10.5 inch; 4.9 pounds), a laptop considered to be from the same establishment.
The unit we reviewed comes with the following specs:
This spec configuration offers suitability for most work, college and social tasks, and fulfils most of the gaming needs. With a quad-core processor, it will run over any obstacle given, and if you have some speed issues, check somewhere else, it is not the processor. We tested it thoroughly, and it showed that it can remain cool and quiet for hours of usage.
HD video editing, spreadsheet processing and media project are completed in no time, and are done with no stammering or faltering of any type, which comes very handy for students involved in MS office projects who later switch to gaming.
For an entry-gaming laptop, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M (4GB) is not the worst choice, but on the other hand, it hasn’t been the best for the gaming world. Most entry level laptops, including the ASUS K501UW-AB78 use this same graphic card, although others in the same category come with a more powerful GPU. The two mid-range gaming configurations, Editor’s choice ASUS FX502VM, packed with GTX 1060 GPU (3GB) and the more potent ASUS ROG GL502VS-DB71 with the more powerful Nvidia GTX 1070 graphics card, are two powerful gaming rigs with more higher price, but if you are looking for affordable gaming laptop, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M can easily please your requirements.
The ASUS ZX53VW was tested while playing GTA-V, and was producing astounding 50 FPS (frames per second) at 1920-1080 resolution, which is more than enough for a memorable gaming experience. Other more demanding titles, such as Cities and Skylines, on heavy load starts stuttering, forcing us to lower the settings down to Medium- Quality (1366-768 resolution).
When compared to competitor’s ASUS FX502VM packed with powerful Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 GPU, the gaming performances with ASUS ZX53VW are not dull at all, although the first one offers more FPS than the other. Add the difference between the GTX 960M card and the GTX 1060 based on Pascal, you’ll find that for a hardcore gamer, the GTX 960M card wouldn’t be the best choice, but for a growing gamer it would still be a good option.
For a good and reasonable price, the ASUS ZX53VW-AH58 presents outstanding value, offers good gaming experience and neat performance. During testing it comes close to some more expensive configurations, and in some cases even beats them. The looks, equipped with solid metallic chassis, full HD display, backlist keyboard and fair port options, are sure worth mentioning. In comparison, it does steer clear of competition with the 512GB SSD, dedicated graphic card and backlit keys. Taken all in consideration, it is very easy to offer this money worth gaming laptop to anyone in the market, giving the user an all handle gaming machine.
Dell Inspiron i7559-2512BLK
The Inspiron 7559 is a notebook series from Dell, known for its orientation towards gaming. The Dell Inspiron i7559-2512BLK is no exception to the rule, and its price tag, of just 850USD, puts it in the league of affordable laptops for gamers.
The Full HD resolution it is capable of is just the tip of the iceberg. A Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M provides great, dependable video processing power and its CPU is an Intel Core i7-6700HQ of the 6th generation. Its RAM is ensured by 8GB, and its hybrid HDD has a total capacity of 1TB, and 8GB of SSD storage, for increased performance.
This laptop is quite fast, thanks to the quad-core CPU it comes appointed with. You can safely use the Inspiron i7559-2512BLK for playing games and working with video and photo processing software, without a glitch. For students and home office workers, this is an ideal configuration.
One thing that needs to be mentioned is the presence of two slots of RAM on the motherboard. One is occupied by the 8GB the laptop comes with, as its initial configuration. In case you feel like you could use more processing power, you can always add another stick with 8GB RAM to double it.
Some may argue that regarding storage, this unit could have done better. The hybrid drive has a small SSD storage capacity can be used for cache, so overall your computer will run faster. However, do not expect this combination to offer the same superior performance as real SSDs. Plus, you will not be able to choose what the cache will serve for, which means that you will not be able to increase performance by storage memory management.
Expect your laptop to run all the popular modern video games, as its GTX 960M graphics card comes with 4GB GDDR5. Nonetheless, if the video requirements of a certain title are more expensive on your configuration, just lower the detail settings, and the resolution, to get a glitch-free performance.
The FHD display comes with a native resolution of 1920×1080. A nice touch is that you can run multiple software programs at the same time and have them displayed on the screen. The anti-glare feature helps with overall value and performance, and the IPS display capabilities will eliminate any blurring or loss of color when watching the screen from wider angles.
One of the strongest points of this model is its 74 WHr battery. That means that you will get to use this laptop without recharging for up to 10 hours, provided that you only restrict yourself to using the device for low power consuming applications.
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