Home / Review / Best Gaming Laptop Buying Guide (Updated!!!)

Best Gaming Laptop Buying Guide (Updated!!!)

Some of you may not be old enough to have experienced the prehistoric era of the late 1990s, but when I first started to become interested in combining my passion for gaming with the natural desire for mobility, it was not long before I realized that passion and desire were not enough. At that time you also needed strong muscles and an extension cord. Back in the day, if wandering gamers wanted to play anywhere but at home, they needed to lug around their desktop computers and pray that nothing untoward happened to them on their way to their LAN session.

It is only a few year later, with the help of technological advancements, that the first powerful graphics chipsets became available and that I was able to participate in weekly Urban Terror or Quake 3 sessions, armed with a simple “transportable” computer… Yes, transportable. A nickname which reminded everyone that while the 3D rendering power of these machines had certainly improved, they still had hopelessly limited autonomy and were still rather cumbersome. As for their price, let’s just say I might have had to sell a few of my organs to pay for it.

If we could have only been born 20 years later…Nowadays, mobile PC gaming is accessible for under a thousand dollars on more or less powerful machines which are wirelessly connected to the internet and which have ever improving autonomy thanks to systems such as Optimus and Battery Boost.

In fact, this type of video gaming has developed to a point where the gamer is faced with a new kind of problem: choosing between all of the available offerings. Asus, Lenovo, Alienware, HP, Acer or MSI. They all offer an extensive line of gaming laptops and trying to find your way around the world of modern gaming laptop is like trying to navigate through the Amazonian rainforest. But, don’t despair, this exhaustive guide is here to explain the different characteristics of gaming laptops and to help you find your way through the jungle of products in which 3000$ and 900$ models routinely coexist.

This guide will offer you two types of solutions. If you want a simple answer to the question “what gaming laptop should I buy in order to be able to play the most recent games?”, the table below will indicate, by category, The product which will best suit your needs. However, if you are of a curious nature and you would prefer to make up your own mind about the computer you need by studying the key elements of gaming laptops, the following pages of this detailed guide will outline the reasons why we chose one product over another. Whatever your degree of intellectual involvement, we hope that you will enjoy the following article!

Our selection of gaming laptops

The Ranking of these Graphics Cards:
GTX 1070 SLI > GTX 1080 > GTX 1070 > GTX 1060 > GTX 1050 TI

Models Detail Information Screen CPU/GPU Storage Connectivity Battery/Weight
Premium Gaming Laptops (Price above 2000 dollars)
ASUS  ROG G701VI-XB72K More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080(120Hz, G-SYNC) 2.7 GHz Intel Core i7-6820HK
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 8GB DDR5X
512 GB SSD/32GB DDR4 RAM 3 x USB3.0
1 x USB3.1 Type C;
1x Thunderbolt

1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.1
DVD+RW
6-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery;
16.9 x 12.2 x 1.3 (L x W x H) 7.9 pounds
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-703D More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080(Support NVIDIA G-SYNC) 2.9 GHz Intel Core i7-7820HK
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 8GB DDR5X
512 GB SSD/32GB DDR4 RAM 4 x USB3.0
1 – Thunderbolt 3;
1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.1
8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery;
16.65 x 12.66 x 1.77 (L x W x H) 10.03 pounds
AORUS X7 DT v7-KL3K3D More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 2560 x 1440 (120Hz, G-SYNC) 2.9 GHz i7-7820HK; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 8GB DDR5X 256 GB SSD+ 1TB 7200RPM;
16GB DDR4 RAM
4 x USB3.0;
1 x USB Type C
1x Thunderbolt

Bluetooth 4.1
6-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery;
16.85 x  12.01 x 1 (L x W x H);  7.1 pounds
ASUS ROG Zephyrus GX501 (UltrathiN Laptop) More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080(120Hz; G-SYNC) 2.8 GHz Core Intel Core i7-7700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 8GB DDR5
512GB SSD /16GB DDR4 RAM 4 x USB3.0
1 x USB3.1 Type C (Thunderbolt);
1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.1
4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery;
14.9 x 10.3 x 0.7; (L x W x H) 4.9 pounds
ASUS ROG G752VS-XS74K More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080 (120Hz; G-SYNC) 2.9 GHz Intel Core i7-7820HK
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB DDR5
1TB 7200RPM + 512GB SSD/16GB DDR4 RAM 4 x USB3.0
1 x USB 3.1
1 x Thunderbolt 3
1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.1
DVD+RW
8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery;
16.4″ x 12.7″ x 0.8″ ~ 1.9″ (L x W x H) 9.5 pounds
Best Gaming Laptop under 2000 dollars (Above 1500 dollars)
HP Omen 17 4K VR Laptop More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 3840 x 2160 (4K, G-SYNC) 2.8 GHz Core Intel Core i7-7700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8G GDDR5
1 TB 7200RPM + 512GB SSD/
16GB DDR4 RAM
3 x USB3.0,
1x HDMI
Bluetooth 4.2
Up to 9 hours;
16.3 x 10.98 x 1.17 inches (L x W x H) 6.3 pounds
Acer Predator 17 More information and user reviews on Amazon 17.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080 (G-SYNC) 2.8 GHz Core Intel Core i7-7700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8G GDDR5
1 TB 7200RPM + 256GB SSD (2 x 128GB in RAID)
16GB DDR4
4 x USB3.0,
1xThunderbolt III
1x HDMI
Bluetooth 4.1;
DVD-RW
8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
16.65 x 12.66 x 1.56 inches (L x W x H) 9.3 pounds
Alienware AW15R3 10881SLV Laptop More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6 inch;
IPS;
1920 x 1080 (G-SYNC)
2.6 GHz Core Intel Core i7-6700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB DDR5
1 TB 7200RPM + 256GB SSD/16GB RAM 3 x USB3.0,
1xThunderbolt III
1x HDMI, Bluetooth 4.1
Lithium Ion (68 Wh) Battery;
15.31 x 12 x 1 inches (L x W x H), 8 pounds
ASUS ROG GL502VS-DS71
(UltrathiN Laptop)
More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6 inch IPS 1920 x 1080 (120Hz; G-SYNC) 2.8 GHz Core Intel Core i7-7700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8G GDDR5
1 TB 5400RPM + 128GB SSD/
16GB DDR4 RAM
3 x USB3.0,
1 x USB 3.1 Type C
1x HDMI
Bluetooth 4.1
4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
15.4 x 10.5 x 1.2 inches (L x W x H);  4.9 pounds
Razer Blade Gaming Laptop (Ultra Thin) More information and user reviews on Amazon 14 inch 1920 x1080 2.8 GHz Core Intel Core i7-7700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6G GDDR5
256GB SSD
16GB RAM
3 x USB3.0
1 x Thunderbolt 3
1x HDMI, Bluetooth
Up to 7 hours; 13.60 x 9.30 x 0.70 (L x W x H) 4.5 pounds
Best Gaming Laptop under 1500 dollars
ASUS GL502VM (Slim and Light) More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6 inch  1920 x 1080(G-SYNC) 2.8 GHz Core i7-7700HQ/
GeForce GTX 1060 6G GDDR5
1 TB 5400RPM + 128GB SSD
16GB DDR4 RAM
3 x USB3.0,
1 x USB 3.1
1x HDMI
Bluetooth 4.1
4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
15.4 x 10.5 x 0.94 inches (L x W x H) 4.8 pounds
MSI VR Ready GS43VR(Slim and Light) More information and user reviews on Amazon 14.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080 2.8 GHz Core i7-7700HQ/
GeForce GTX 1060 6G GDDR5
1 TB 7200RPM + 128GB SSD
16GB DDR4 RAM
2 x USB 3.0
1xThunderbolt III
1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.1
4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery;
13.58″ x 9.65″ x 0.87″;
(L x W x H), 3.75 pounds
Cyberpowerpc Tracer II TVR15600 More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6 inch  1920 x 1080 2.8 GHz Core Intel Core i7-7700HQ
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8G GDDR5
1 TB 7200RPM + 256GB SSD
16GB DDR4 RAM
2 x USB3.0, 1 x USB3.1
2 x USB2.0

1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.2
Up to 6 hours;
15.2 x 10.4 x 1.5 (L x W x H), 6.1 pounds
Acer Aspire V15/V17 More information on Amazon (V15 | V17) 15.6 inch / 17.3 inch IPS 1920 x 1080 2.8 GHz Core i7-7700HQ/
GeForce GTX 1060 6G GDDR5
1 TB 5400RPM + 256GB SSD/
16GB DDR4 RAM
2 x USB3.0,
2 x USB2.0
1xThunderbolt 3;
1x HDMI
Bluetooth 4.0
4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
15.39 x 10.47 x 0.98 inches (L x W x H) 5.5 pounds
Eluktronics P650HP6 More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6 inch IPS 1920 x 1080 2.8 GHz Core i7-7700HQ/
GeForce GTX 1060 6G GDDR5
1 TB 7200RPM + 256GB SSD
16GB DDR4 RAM
3 x USB 3.0
1xThunderbolt III
2 x USB 3.1
1x HDMI,
Bluetooth 4.2
4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
15.1 x 10.6 x 1.0″
(L x W x H), 5.9 pounds
Acer Predator Helios 300 More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6-Inch
1920 x 1080 (IPS);
Intel Core i7-7700HQ  2.8 GHz
GeForce GTX 1060 6G GDDR5
256GB SSD/
16GB DDR4
1 x USB3.0;
2 x USB2.0;
1 x USB3.1 Type-C;
Bluetooth 4.0
HDMI;
4-cell Li-ion Battery/15.31 x 10.47 x 1.05 inches (L x W x H) /6 Pounds
MSI GP62 MVR248 (Most affordable GTX 1060 Laptop, Price under 1000$) More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6-Inch
1920 x 1080 (IPS);
Intel Core i7-6700HQ  2.6 GHz
GeForce GTX 1060
3GB DDR5
1 TB 7200RPM /
8GB DDR4
1 x USB3.1 Type-C;
2 x USB3.0;
1 x USB2.0;
Bluetooth 4.0
HDMI;
6-cell Li-ion Battery/15.07″ x 10.23″ x 0.86″inches (L x W x H) /4.80 Pounds
ASUS FX502VM More information and user reviews on Amazon 15.6-Inch
1920 x 1080 (IPS);
2.3 GHz Intel i5-6300HQ/ GeForce GTX 1060 3G GDDR5 1 TB 7200RPM /
16GB DDR4
3 x USB3.0;
Bluetooth 4.0
HDMI;
4-cell Li-ion Battery/15.4 x 10.5 x 0.9inches (L x W x H) /4.9 Pounds

How to choose a gaming laptop?

Choosing the CPU and GPU

Bad GPU, bad overall performance!

Unsurprisingly, the primary element of a gaming laptop is its GPU. It will determine to a large extent the computer’s cost as well as the quality of the game play experience that the laptop will be able to provide. In our opinion, the minimum recommended GPU is the Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M. Many laptop which incorporate less powerful graphics chips (such as the GeForce GTX 950M) brand themselves as gaming laptops, but you need to be wary of these types of claims. Indeed, the GeForce GTX 960M chip is nowadays the bare minimum in order to do any serious gaming on a laptop with a Full HD display. As a matter of fact, there are already some games – such as Rise of The Tomb Raider – which are too demanding and will not run at Full HD definition with the game’s maximum detail settings engaged while maintaining a 60 Hz refresh rate (between 30 and 60 Hz, the fluidity of the displayed images is not optimal and some gamers may find it to be insufficient). It is therefore up to you to decide, depending on your favorite games and your expectations (there is no need for a GTX 1080 in order to play Guild Wars 2 or HearthStone!).

The graphics performance of gaming laptops took a large step forward with the recent arrival of the GTX 1060, GTX 1070 and GTX 1080 chips which make use of Nvidia’s Pascal architecture. These new chips make it possible to use very high definitions (QHD, 4K) as well as virtual reality helmets.

To help you see more clearly, here is a table which illustrates the performance characteristics of these new Nvidia chips in function of the graphics mode. This data was produced by tests conducted by Tom’s Hardware based on the desktop version of these chipsets – which have slightly higher operating frequencies than their mobile counterparts.

GPU

You should also not loose sight of the fact that these GTX 1070 and 1080 chips (even more so in an SLI configuration) are so powerful that they can be used to provide a signal for one or several external Full HD, QHD or 4K displays.

You will notice that we have not included any SLI configurations in our tables: this was done deliberately because while “extreme” configurations may appear sexy on paper, they are not without their undesirable effects – beginning with the volatility of their performance. Yes, in theory an SLI system could offer a mobile gamer an equivalent – not to say superior – gaming experience to that of a high-end desktop computer. However, this type of solution is highly dependent (probably too much so) on software – which can lead to bugs in the display, lags, or lower than expected performance. Furthermore, this extra power implies worse portability, more noise and shorter autonomy.

There is one more thing to discuss before we end this section concerning the GPU. You should be aware of the fact that the amount of memory allocated to a graphics chip is nowadays proportional to the chip’s computing power. As a result, the GTX 960M has 2 GB of RAM (although it is possible to find models with 4 GB) and the 970M has 3GB. The GTX 1060 generally has 3 or 6 GB or RAM while the GTX 1070 and GTX 1080 usually have 8 GB.

As our test of the GeForce GTX 1060 3 GB shows, the difference in performance between it and the 6 GB version is variable and depends on the game (in Full HD). The maximum difference in their respective performance was on the order of 17%.

The CPU: not much choice

It has been a half of a year now since the Kaby Lake generation of processors has taken its place in the hardware configurations of gamers. These processors make the same old promises: to perform better and to have better autonomy than the Skylake generation.

CPU

It has been performing so well that manufacturers are not even bothering to give users much of a choice. At this time (June of 2017) you can basically choose between a Core i5-7300HQ (2.5 GHz) for entry-level configurations or a Core i7-7700HQ (2.8 GHz) for all other products.

As a general rule, if you are hesitating between the two configurations, it is always preferable to opt for the Core i5 processor if that means that you will be able to have a more powerful graphics chip. Some online retailers are still selling models with Broadwell (Core i5-5xxx), or even Haswell (Core i5-4xxx) processors and only a very low price would a good enough reason to buy one of these models.

Storage and RAM, the gigabyte game

Storage: 256 GB = 5 Call of Duty Advanced Warfare

SSDYou will have understood from the title that we will be speaking about storage space now, and once again, contrary to certain marketing beliefs, the emphasis will be more on capacity that on speed. It is true that SSDs are undeniably more responsive, making loading programs a much more enjoyable experience. However, in a purely gaming oriented context, this will never be a particularly decisive factor. The worst thing that can happen if you don’t use an SSD is that you will have to live with slightly longer game loading times. People on a tight budget should simply make sure that the HDD turns at 7 200 rev/min for a minimum level of comfort, or better still, that it is a hybrid – that is to say that it incorporates a few GB of flash memory in order to decrease loading time for the most commonly used programs.

At any rate, just like for processors, the choice these days is rather limited. In fact, gaming laptops which only rely on a conventional hard drive are becoming ever less numerous. Most of the time, the storage system is now of a hybrid type composed of a 1 TB hard drive and a 128 to 512 GB SSD installed in the mSATA/M.2 slot. The most sophisticated computers – such as MSI’s GT83VR – have two M.2 slots, which allows them to create an SSD RAID.

There is one final argument which may convince you to choose a better CPU or GPU instead of an SSD: upgradability. Nothing is stopping you from adding a faster storage system later on, if you have the desire and the resources to do so. Installing a new storage unit is usually a very simple operation. On the contrary, changing a portable computer’s CPU or GPU is highly complicated in the best of cases – impossible in the worst.

Memory: there is no such thing as too much!

It is true that at one point, RAM played an important role in the computer’s general performance and in playing games in particular since an insufficient amount of RAM forced the system to compensate by creating virtual memory on the hard drive. Logically enough, this type of memory has a much longer access time and caused the computer to slow down.

RAM

Nowadays, this type of problem is a long forgotten memory due to the large quantity of DDR4 RAM which most gaming systems now have. The amount of RAM is no longer dictated by a real need to boost system performance, but rather by the specific requirements of games.

At the moment, really gluttonous games require around 4 to 6 GB of RAM, so 8 GB would leave you with a good safety margin. This is actually the amount that can be found on most computers retailing for less than 1500$. After 8 GB, it tends to jump to 16 GB or 32 GB, which is not really useful, at least as far as gaming is concerned (but marketing departments love big numbers). Also, just like for hard drives, RAM is easily upgradable and can easily be increased later on. Therefore, you can buy a computer with a good CPU and GPU with only 8 GB of RAM and increase the amount of memory later on if the need arises.

Display ergonomics, sound, interface

The display: for your eyes only

Now that we have discussed the GPU, let’s move on the the second most important element you will have to consider when choosing your future gaming laptop: the display. And here is where things really start to get complicated. In fact, although this aspect is in theory a very important one, in reality is is very difficult to justify the choice of one display over another since opinions and technical specifications can often be quite volatile. Let’s take a concrete example and talk about the display panel. Just as a reminder, historically speaking, manufacturers of gaming laptops have, for a long time, preferred to use TN type display panels, since this technology offers better responsiveness and a better price to quality ratio, at the expense, it is true, of wide viewing angles and in some cases precise color rendition. The competing technology – IPS – has better color rendition and much wider viewing angles, but it is more expensive to produce and less energy efficient, not to mention its higher latency. However, this situation has been evolving and IPS display panels, which are becoming less and less expensive have been increasingly replacing their TN counterparts as of late.

Display

Finally, the debate over matte or glossy coatings is no longer valid since in reality, nowadays, almost all the displays found on gaming laptops have a matte finish which does away with the bothersome reflections that can be seen on more conventional computers.

That having been said, the choice of the display’s size – 14.1, 15.6, 17.3 – has an impact on how cumbersome the computer is and as a result on its mobility. Only MSI dares to offer a computer with an 18.4 inch display (which weighs 5.5 Kg!). The most common display definition is Full HD (1 920 x 1 080 pixels). Some models – often in a higher price range – offer 4K definition (3 840 x 2 160 pixels), such as MSI’s GT73VT 6RF-074FR, and the new Alienware 17. The latter is also one of the rare models with a display that provides QHD definition (2560 x 1440 pixels).

Furthermore, we have seen in the last few months the appearance of displays compatible with Nvidia’s G-Sync technology which allows for a fluid image display under all circumstances and which is not subject to the tearing effect, even when the framerate drops drastically. Acer’s latest Predator 17 is one example of a computer incorporating this technology. Lastly, there is one other alternative which has been exploited by MSI’s GT73VR for example: use a display which operates at 120 Hz in order to provide maximum display fluidity – provided that the graphics card is able to maintain the fast rate.

Ergonomics, audio components and design: a matter of taste and brand identification

USB PortYes, it’s true…Given its title, this section appears to be one of those infamous miscellaneous sections where we stick everything that we were not able to cover in the the previous chapters. In reality though, we have grouped all of these considerations together mainly because they all have two points in common: they do not rely on technical or numerical considerations, but rather on choices made by the manufacturer to which the consumer will be more or less receptive. In fact, instead of recommending that you pay attention to this or that technical specification, in this section we will describe the current state of affairs in the areas of audio components, keyboards and useful accessory functionality. In and effort to avoid being too long-winded, since we have tried to cover the maximum number of things, we will limit our comments to the brands present in our comparison.

Let’s start by taking a look at keyboards. Apart from MSI and Lenovo (on their latest Ideapad y520) which sometimes make use of mechanical keyboards – like all of the best external keyboards – all specialist manufacturers use a keyboard with “chiclet” type keys for their laptops. This type of keyboard usually offers a comfortable typing experience.

Whatever the case may be, as we mentioned earlier, the choice of keyboard is mainly a matter of taste, and the ideal thing to get an idea of what kind of keyboard you prefer is to try out the demo models on display in stores (this is also true of the display). It is also a matter of personal taste that makes some people prefer the sobriety of the red unified backlighting of the Acer Aspire V-Nitro, Asus ROG G752VS or Asus ROG G502VT, to the glitzy multicolored zones found on MSI and Acer products.

Let’s discuss the audio aspect now. In general, manufacturers love to advertise their collaboration with prestigious audio equipment companies in order to brag about the merits of the audio rendering of their respective products: JBL, Dynaudio, Bang & Olufsen and others. In reality, some models – such as the MSI GT or the Acer Predator 17 – prove to be very effective at reproducing a rich sound environment. Others however, provide a much less impressive audio experience due to a lack of volume or to barely audible bass tones. However, this factor is of little importance to many gamers who prefer to use headphones.

Lastly, we need to speak about the computer’s connectivity – it’s inputs and outputs… Nowadays, you will almost always find 3 to 5 USB ports located somewhere on the computer – all of which or part of which will be USB 3.0 ports. All computers will also have WiFi, Bluetooth and a card reader. Among the other non-standard inputs and outputs that you may find are an HDMI 1.4 or 2.0 connector, a mini DisplayPort connector or a USB 3.1 type C port (which might be of the first or the second generation and which might also function as a Thunderbolt connector). If you have specific needs in this regard, pay close attention to the technical datasheets and the various tests that have been conducted for the model that you are interested in purchasing.

What if you can’t find a power outlet?

Well, here we are, at the last section of this article – the one concerned with autonomy. Once again, this is an aspect which will be more or less important to users depending on their particular needs.

power outletWithout a doubt, there are some people who never unplug their gaming laptop from the mains power since they consider this type of computer a means to gain more room on their desk, compared to a full-sized desktop PC. Other uses will be somewhat concerned – “just in case” – with autonomy since they move around on a regular basis. Other still will be highly attentive to this issue since they are looking for a very laptop which will still allow them to do some gaming (this is probably the segment of the market that Alienware was attempting to appeal to with its “13” model which has a 13.3 inch display).

As a result, rather than trying to describe the exact performance of each model, simply remember that the Optimus system – sometimes criticized for the problems it causes for certain games (forced use of the Intel HD chipset rather than the Nvidia GPU) – allows many gaming laptops to reach 3 to 4 hours of autonomy for performing general computing tasks.

On the other hand, as the recent results of the tests conducted by our American colleagues show, the latest generation of portable PCs with a Core i5/i7 and GeForce GTX 1060 or 1070 graphics chip, have a gaming autonomy (calculated by using the benchmark integrated into Tomb Raider) – of between one and a half to two hours.

For its part, the Battery Boost technology which is integrated into Nvidia chips makes it possible to increase gaming autonomy, but you should keep in mind that its efficiency depends on how much demand a given game puts on the system’s resources. Indeed, Battery Boost restricts the number of images calculated per second, and instead of maintaining a completely unnecessary 110 fps framerate, it will provide 40 to 60 fps in order to economize energy consumption. A logical consequence of this is: on Hearthstone for example, the amount of gained autonomy will be significant. On the latest Assassin’s Creed however, the gain will be negligible.

My recommendation of Best Gaming Laptop:

High End Choice: MSI GT73VR TITAN Pro

The brand new MSI GT73VR (7RF or 7RE) has come with a few notable changes. The most notable change of all is in the processor which has seen an upgrade from the Core i7-6820HK to its direct successor, the Core i7-7820HK (based on Kaby Lake architecture).

MSI VR Ready GT72VR Dominator Pro

You can be disappointed if you presumed that Kaby Lake made big improvements. While benchmarking the new chip of Kaby Lake has shown nothing breathtaking. The next in line Skylake, packed with the same clocks, runs ahead by a mere couple of percentages. Showing speed improvement of 3%, the Core i7-7820HK is only a bit faster that Core i7-6820HK, which is shown when conducting Cinebench R15 and Cinebench R11.5 at 4.0 GHz

Without more overclocking, there is a noticeable distinction in notebooks, mainly because Kaby Lake models have clock of a few hundred MHz more than their Skylake equivalent. Although, for a price- performance causes, we don’t think you have mistaken with taking an older notebook. The GPU is the main factor in most of the games, and even the Core i7-6700HQ is more than enough for the coming few years.

Furthermore, the new CPU architecture is not reducing temperature and noise spread, and considering consumption metrics and performances it barely makes difference from analog Skylake notebooks with same clocks.

Being the fastest mobile graphics adapter, Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1080 combined with Intel Core i7-7820HK shows astonishing performances at 1080p. The 100 FPS was easily achieved for many games, and even the heaviest games succeeded 60 FPS at 1080p. For certainly, this is one of the fastest gaming laptops, and the GTX 1080 makes sure of experiencing the same satisfaction as using a top-class desktop.

While those who prefer higher FPS would like the base model’s 120 Hz 1080p panel display with G-Sync, the GTX 1080 GPU is also performing well at 4K display.

Take time to get used to the massive and heavy chassis, and you’ll find that the GT73VR is a space friendly, very powerful desktop alternative, containing some feature like SLI optional – up to 4 storage drives, or 10 het pipes for the cooling system.

Overclocking the GT73VR is really easy and will cause no harm to your device. By pressing the built-in button for achieving maximum fan speed, you basically reduce the overall temperature inside the case by 15 degrees Celsius and even more. The only drawback to this method is that the noise from the fans can get quite loud, but otherwise, the internal components, like the processor and graphics card, will be protected, even when pushed to their maximum performance output.

Regardless of the low color accuracy (blue cast ex-works), the Full HD panel shows real potential, and the sound and picture quality are also very persuasive. The 120 Hz display refresh rate and the Nvidia’s G-Sync technology combo averts hard to watch tearing and offers much smoother picture. However, the 100% sRGB and 75% AdobeRGB are still kept for workstations and other professional devices only, very suited for design and photo editing.

The easy to use maintainability and the MMX graphic card fusions with the 17 inch gaming laptop, which is cleaning-friendly and easy to upgrade, and it by far surpasses the competitors (mostly the Asus G752VS, where you’ll find it hard to access the fans if you lack experience).

Overclocking the GT73VR is really easy and will cause no harm to your device. By pressing the built-in button for achieving maximum fan speed, you basically reduce the overall temperature inside the case by 15 degrees Celsius and even more. The only drawback to this method is that the noise from the fans can get quite loud, but otherwise, the internal components, like the processor and graphics card, will be protected, even when pushed to their maximum performance output.

The noise development is just another benefit, because the GT73VR, even in Turbo mode with overclocked CPU and GPU, will never get embarrassingly loud while working. Even in gaming mode the temperatures remain surprisingly off the critical chart.

Taken all in consideration, the GT73VR is way up on the top spot in our best gaming laptop list, regardless of the heavy weight and the average battery runtime. However, the price tag on the notebook can prove to be a bit high-priced.

More information about MSI GT73VR Dominator on Amazon: Check Here

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Middle end Choice: ASUS ROG GL502VS-DB71 (Suited for Most Gamer)

The ASUS ROG GL502VS-DB71 is a midrange laptop that’s powered by the GTX 1070. It is designed offer an incredible gaming experience to users, although its slight overclocking tendency limits its optimum performance. Since Nvidia’s introduction of the GeForce GTX 10-range GPUs for laptops, they have been gaining positive grounds even with gaming desktops. The ROG GL502VS is among the newest entrants, and it features, alongside the GTX 1070 GPU with Pascal style; a sixth-generation Intel Core i7 processor and 16GB system memory. ASUS ROG GL502VS-DB71

Its physical design is styled with gaming in mind, with extra features like the Red­ back-lit scissor­s-like keys, a 1080p display and a dust-proof airing system. It also comes with a 128 GB SSD that’s coupled with a 1TB (7200RPM) HD drive for extra storage. The MSI GT72S Dominator Pro G-219 with more ports and a Blu-ray player clearly delivers an excellent gaming experience that that makes it a choice pick for gaming laptops.

Performance

The system is powered by a 2.6 GHz Intel Quad-Core i7-6700HQ (Turbo to 3.5 GHz) processor. It has a 16GB memory on board and this can be expanded to 32GB. The discrete graphics card is the recent NVIDIA GeForce GTX1070 with 8GB GDDR5 VRAM, supports G-SYNC technology; a really impressive GPU that’s coming up in recent desktops. This is definitely a gaming laptop that has it all.

It includes one of the fastest graphics engines you can find anywhere in the mobile range and this implies that with the butter smooth FPS you can play any game. The Grant Theft Auto 5 performed ~60FPS when played at ultra settings while the Witcher 3 performed ~63FPS when played on the same settings. Its hardware delights the senses for the gaming experience.

This is quite remarkable as the system even when set to ultra quality settings at its native resolution, performs smoothly than other systems in the same category. This system though designed for gaming, can also function effectively for media and photo related tasks main.

The system’s 16GB memory is can be upgraded to 32GB using two free DIMM slots. There is a 1TB hard drive data storage space and a 256GB M.2 SSD for speedy booting and loading of programs. You can set up a SSD using the M.2 slot for more SSD storage, just in case the 256GB gets filled up with installed games.

Other Features

The connectivity, which is of various forms, is superb. The laptop has three USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 Type C, a mini display port, a HDMI port, an Ethernet jack. It also has a mic-in, headphone and line out jacks, and an SD card reader. The system also comes with Bluetooth features and 802.11ac Wi-Fi features for connectivity and a 1.2MP HD camera.

Conclusion

The ASUS ROG Strix GL502VS-DB71 is impressively remarkable and offers about twice the gaming experience of previous single-GPU notebooks, which is terrific. It’s gaming laptop that delivers on point as a result of its quad-core CPU, DDR4 memory, the most recent GPU in its class and a 256GB SSD. Its design is handy and quite portable too. You can get as much as 5 hours of battery life but as a gaming laptop it’s demanding hardware can cause the battery to drain easily but this is no big deal at all

More information about ASUS ROG GL502VS-DB71  on Amazon: ASUS ROG G752VS

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Affordable Choice: Asus FX502VM

Being Asus’s latest series in lowest “top of the class” gaming machine, Asus FX502VM is based on the Asus GL502VM chassis/body, with slight changes. It is equipped with the I5-6300HQ (cooler than I7), GTX 1060 (3GB), 2x8GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB 7200RPM HDD and 1080p TN panel. There is slight difference between the GTX 1060 3GB and the GTX1060 6GB, the first one having less VRAM. However, the desktop version of GTX1060 3 GB has less core count, and it drops from 1280 CUDA cores (GTX1060 6GB) to 1152 CUDA cores (GTX 1060 3 GB) (128 cores per SM).

Asus FX502VM

The chubby look of the ASUS FX502VM is made thanks to the imitation of ROG (Republic of Gamers) design with impressive curves and the unavoidable ‘ASUS’ label on the lid. Matte-finish IPS (In-Plane Switching) with 15.6 in. display, offers a 169 degree viewing angle ambient lighting reduced reflection.

Also, the lab test has shown awesome color performance at the ASUS FX502VM. Managing to produce 184.7 % of the SRGB color range, standing as one of the best we have measured. That means that not only the display is bright and filled with color, but it shows that in its price group, it is the most accurate of many.

All the way thru our review and usage, we never noticed eve a bit dim on the ASUS FX502VM display. Bright, filled with color, alive vivid look and wide angle viewing display is a rare feature. On our light meter during benchmarking, ASUS’s notebook detected an average brightness of 289 nits, which for a laptop from this class is an awesome leap from the others of the same class.

ASUS FX502VM hardware is being powered by a sixth gen gaming-centric Intel core i5-6300HQ notebook processor, clocked at 2.3GHz. In turbo mode, it can process much faster, climbing up to 3.1 GHZ, whilst for multitasking, the processor packs a paired huge 16GB of DDR4 RAM. Using dual cooling fans, the laptop offers thermal cooling technology, preventing the internals from overheating even under stressful usage.

The subtle graphics of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 3GB is being based on the latest Pascal-architecture, providing desktop performances to a laptop.  Testing the FPS (Frames per Second) on titles such as Hitman (49 FPS); Rise of the Tomb Raider (48 FPS); Shadow of Mordor (87 FPS) and, Grand Theft Auto V (59.2 FPS), have shown no difficulties in achieving well enough FPS. Even though the FX502VM is not placed on the market with Gsync support, it does not use Optimus.

Gaming benchmarks have shown lot better than many of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M GPUs equipped with Core i7-powered laptops. Much alike, the FX502VM-AH51 with its light weight does not lack the capability to perform as work and media project station.

The HDD is 1 TB 7,200rpm SATA, which is more than enough space for movies, games, photos and countless other programs. Maybe the usage of SSD rather than HDD would made the laptop far more better, because of the hard drive’s reading data at 145MB/s and writing data at 135MB/s, making it an acceptable 7200rpm model, but yet, not as fast as SSD.

With the specially designed island-style keyboard, equipped with red-backlit scissor-switch key, the ASUS FX502 offers the user a big 1.6 mm travel distance. The larger the distance, the better keystroke tactical feedback. Even more, for user suitability the WASD keys are also highlighted. Not only that this keyboard is a good choice for gamers, it also offers easy usage for college students and coding computer programmers.

Ranging at a price just round $1200, the ASUS FX502VM 15.6″ Gaming Laptop is so far our best choice, if you are looking for a high powered, yet not very costly gaming machine. Besides, you cannot find many laptops made for the gaming community at its price range. Not being as high-powered as the ASUS’s prime ROG series, or the MSI’s dominators, this laptop offers efficiency, reliability and full round performances.

More information about Asus FX502VM on Amazon: ASUS ROG G752VS

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4 comments

  1. Let me say, this is an incredible post, thank you very much for this, I have bookmarked this post for future reference. I have a question, I am considering getting the new Asus gl702vm-ds74, which is the bigger screen (17.3 inch) compared to the gl502vm-ds74(15.6 inch ). Is the smaller 15.6 inch screen going to run better than the 17.3 inch screen because it requires less power to power the screen? I really appreciate your feedback, Thank you!

  2. Hi there,
    I’ve bought an asus g752vy just 2 weeks before they released g752vm.
    g752vy has a gtx980m 8gb graphics card but 752vm has gtx 1060 6gb graphics card. ram 32gb vrs. 8gb/16gb. Now I’m in great regret that I’ve bought 752vy in greater price where they are selling 752vm in $1700 only. Can you please give me your opinion?

  3. Thank you for such an honest review 🙂 Really helped me out! This was honestly the most straight forward review i’ve ever read… so, cheers! (also your little guide at the beginning of really defining processor and graphics.. helps so much). It’s rare to find reviews that are not full of bias opinions and preferences.

    I was debating between the Asus and MSI – and to be honest I’ll go with the Asus thanks to you! I feel like the laptop market is getting alittle saturated.. which makes it hard to find what machine would suit.

  4. I got mine for 700€ 1 year ago, Acer Aspire V3-772G

    i7-4702MQ
    GTX850M GDDR5
    8Go RAM
    2x1TB HDD

    It looks to be a good deal

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