Everything You Need to Know About Selecting the Best Gaming Laptop

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Gaming laptops are not exactly a special breed of laptop- in fact, any laptop on which you primarily play games can be called a “gaming laptop”. Even a laptop that costs less than 500 dollars, and comes with an AMD APU and integrated graphics can be classified as a gaming laptop if you have purchased it with the primary purpose of playing games.

You see, gaming laptops comes in numerous sizes and at widely varying prices. If you wish to purchase a gaming laptop within a certain budget, remember that performance comes first and everything else after that. If the primary purpose of a laptop is to play games, most of the budget is dedicated to a good CPU and GPU. The audio, keyboard, build quality, battery life- all of these are secondary aspects which come after you have the best CPU and GPU that you can get for the price.

Most gamers will use an external keyboard and mouse for gaming, along with a nice headset if they play online shooters or MOBAs. Which is why you shouldn’t focus on the keyboard and built-in audio too much, unless the laptop costs above a thousand dollars.

In premium gaming laptops, the built-in audio consists of more than the standard 2 speakers, these high-end laptops often come with cutting edge surround sound technology and subwoofers to provide you with an immersive gaming and movie viewing experience. As you gradually begin to increase your budget, you will notice that gaming laptops offer more than sheer performance- they will come with features that are geared towards to improving your gaming experience as a whole.

Features like customizable RGB keyboards, 120 Hz G SYNC display panels, IPS screens, and triple-fan cooling systems are commonly found in gaming laptops costing 1500 dollars, and above. In this article, we shall discuss about the primary components of any gaming laptop- the CPU, GPU, RAM, and storage. Then, we will tell you how to select the right gaming laptop for your needs. Finally, we shall review some of the best gaming laptops in each of the 4 different price ranges- Below 500, 500-1000, 1000-1500, and 1500-2000. So, let’s get started!

 

Gaming Laptops vs Desktop: Which is Better?

 

Before we begin, there is one thing that needs to be clarified. Some people say laptops are better, while the others argue that desktops can easily trash laptops on any given day. Well, think about it this way- neither of the two designs is “better” or “worse” than the other. It is like saying bikes are better than cars, or apples are better than oranges- to each his own. Some people want portability and a compact for factor because they tend to travel a lot. Or maybe they just want a computer that can be turned on at any time, and can be carried along with them on their trips.

If you are a college student who lives away from home, or a working person who does a lot of travelling, then you need a laptop. If you already own a desktop, but want a smaller gaming machine that can be easily carried to LAN parties or taken with you wherever you need to go, then a gaming laptop is the way to go.

Remember- desktops do offer better performance per dollar, there is no question about that. However, you can’t carry a desktop with you, which is why laptops exist. But are gaming laptops worth the money? Some people will make the argument that for the amount of money it takes to buy an expensive gaming laptop, you could build a desktop that offers the same amount of performance and buy a normal laptop with the amount of money that you saved.

This is a possibility, and seems very compelling at first. But the desktop is still a desktop, and has all the weakness of one- immobile, consumes a lot of power, requires external peripherals such as a keyboard, speakers, UPS, webcam, etc. A gaming laptop is a unique kind of machine, and while not all gaming laptops are worth buying, there are some which offer excellent value for the money. There are gaming laptops which include a Core i7 processor, 16 GB of DDR4 RAM, an SSD, and GTX 1060 graphics for 1100 to 1200 US dollars. These are the laptops you want to look for- the ones that are loaded with the best hardware you can get for a given price tag.

Most good gaming laptops also come with IPS displays, G-SYNC panels, and RGB keyboards amongst several other cool features. So, if you want to buy a gaming laptop because you feel like you need the portability- read this list and take a look at some of the gaming laptops which we have reviewed. We selected 4 different price ranges for our laptops- Under 500$, 500-1000$, 1000-1500$, and 1500-2000$.

Then, we made sure to only include those laptops that have received extremely positive reviews from actual buyers. Their performance, value for money, build quality, features, battery life, and brand reputation were all taken into consideration before creating the reviews. So, you can go ahead and choose any of the laptops that we have reviewed, and be reassured in the fact that you are buying yourselves one of the best portable gaming machines for the price that you are paying.

 

The Main Components of a Gaming Laptop:

1. Processor-

This can also be called the ‘brains” of a laptop. It is a microprocessor chip with at least 2 or more physical cores that do the majority of the computing tasks assigned to the laptop. A good CPU is essential for a premium gaming experience, and if you wish to do more than just gaming with your laptop, you will need a processor with as many cores as possible.

Right now, the standard configuration for most gaming laptops between 1000 to 2000 dollars will include an Intel 7th generation Core i7 7700HQ processor. This is a quad core, 8-threaded processor based on the latest Kaby Lake architecture from Intel. It comes with 6MB of cache, and boasts a base clock speed of 2.8 GHz, with the ability to turbo boost itself up to 3.8 GHz.

The way turbo boost works on Intel CPUs, is- one of the cores gets boosted to the stated maximum turbo boost speed. The more load there is on that particular core, the harder it will boost, until it reaches the maximum threshold. Processors these days are extremely smart, and they are capable of allocating resources to themselves very efficiently. Whenever you are not doing something that is resource intensive, the CPU will automatically lower its clock speed, even below the base clock speed if possible in order to conserve battery life.

If you are interested in portability and battery life more than you are interested in raw performance, try looking for a laptop that comes with the Intel Core i7-U series processors. You will find the “U” suffix instead of the regular “M” or “HQ” suffix at the end of the SKU number. The “U” means ultra-low power consumption. A typical low power i7 found in an Ultrabook has 2 physical cores and 4 threads, along with relatively low clock speeds.

Generally, a processor with higher clock speeds and better IPC is more suitable for gaming, compared to a processor with low- moderate clock speeds and lots of cores. That is about to change within 2-3 years though, since game developers are slowly beginning to optimize their games to take advantage of the full power of multicore CPUs.

 

2. GPU-

The GPU is responsible for handling all the graphical work inside of a gaming laptop. It loads and displays all the textures, calculate and draws out all the shadows, positions and modifies the lights in a scene, and does much more. The better your graphics card, the smoother it will run a game at any given quality setting.

We believe that 1080p, 60 fps is the most popular platform for gamers. While 1440p is gradually becoming more mainstream, and 4k is still years away from becoming mainstream, 1080p is what most of us have known and can relate with. And as far as gaming experience is concerned, we recommend turning down the graphics settings to a mix of medium and high in order to get that sweet 60 fps.

It is far smoother than 30, and with computers you have the choice to get more fps at the expense of graphics, or more eye candy at the expense of framerate. In competitive games such as CS GO, Rainbow Six Siege, DOTA 2, and Overwatch, framerate is the top priority. In order to run most current games smoothly at 1080p and 60 fps, you need at least a GTX 1050 graphics card, although a GTX 1050ti and above is recommended.

 

3. RAM-

While 8 GB of RAM is enough for most tasks, you can’t really hope to make do with that much RAM 2-3 years from now. Which is why, 16 GB is the sweet spot when it comes to RAM. Any more than that, and you won’t be able to utilize that extra memory if you just play games and do light multitasking. Any less than 16, and you will often find the OS lagging as you switch tabs and run multiple applications run together.

Games such as Gears of War, GTA V, Witcher 3, etc. are notoriously demanding on hardware, and you need at least 12 GB of RAM in order to run such games smoothly. If you are a content creator, or you like to stream while playing, you are going to need at least 24 GB of RAM for a smooth and future proof experience.

 

4. Storage-

Storage can come in a variety of configurations- SSD only, SSD + HDD, HDD only, or hybrid drive. A hybrid drive is a HDD with a small amount of flash memory built-in, this solid-state memory is typically 32-64 GB in size. The most common configuration is a 128 GB or 256 GB SSD, along with a 1 TB or 2TB HDD. The SSD provides a place for your store your OS and most frequently played games, while the HDD allows you to store all the large files in one place. Movies, songs, document, installers, software, etc. all go into the HDD. There are several types of SSDs. The fastest ones are PCIe SSDs with NVMe, standard SSDs run on a SATA III interface.

 

Selecting the Right Gaming Laptop:

Selecting the right gaming laptop means taking into consideration a variety of factors- how much will the laptop weigh, what will be its battery life, is the CPU good enough for heavy multitasking, how powerful is the graphics card, etc.

 

Display matters

You also need to consider the display resolution and quality, i.e. a 1080p 120 Hz display, or a 60 Hz 1440p display. You need to think whether you prefer higher resolution over smoother gameplay. Some laptops come with G-SYNC IPS panels that provide the absolute smoothest gaming experience possible, and we all know that IPS outclasses TN when it comes to color and contrast.

 

Get a good gaming keyboard

Finally, take a look at the keyboard- a good gaming laptop always includes a highly customizable backlit keyboard, most of the high-end laptops come with RGB backlit keyboards. Typical key travel distance is between 1.2-1.4 mm, and the switch type is scissor dome. Besides, the keyboard should be designed with dedicated gaming zones and macro binding options along with quick-launch hotkeys and easy to operate media keys.

 

Cooling system is the key

One of the things that is vastly overlooked, is the cooling system. Yes, the GPU and CPU are where it’s at. But if you don’t cool the processor, how is it supposed to perform at optimum level? One of the largest bottlenecks when it comes to shoving more and more performance into a laptop is cooling. When you have so many powerful components crammed into such a tiny space, they are going to generate a lot of heat. And if that heat is not disposed properly, it will cause the processor and graphics chip to throttle (shed clock speed automatically in order to lower temperatures).

Throttling will cause your laptop to suddenly drop frames, experience lag and stuttering, and even a possible system crash if the temperatures go beyond a certain critical point. Good gaming laptops typically have thick copper heat pipes leading to dedicated cooling fans. They also have large air vents on the rear, along with smart temperature monitoring and fan speed control.

There are a few high-end gaming laptops that use three fans, instead of the standard 1-1 configuration (one for the CPU, and the other for the GPU). There are also cooling systems that reverse the air flow direction periodically in order to prevent dust from accumulating inside the laptop. Take note of these features when you are looking to purchase a new gaming laptop. If it runs cooler, it will run faster and also last longer.

 

Gaming Laptops Under 500:

1. Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM

Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM laptop

No 1 bestselling laptop on Amazon (Buy from Amazon)

 

The Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM may have lengthy and uninteresting factory-designated name, but we shall simply refer to it as the E5-575 in this article for the sake of simplicity. When you think of a gaming laptop that costs less than 500 dollars, two things come to mind almost immediately- a weak graphics chip, and an outdated low power CPU. Well, guess what- The E5-575 doesn’t come with either of those weaknesses. It is powered by an Intel Core i3 7100 CPU, and visuals are handled by the Intel HD 620 onboard graphics.

Well, if you want to know how well the Intel HD 620 graphics stacks up against dedicated GPUs such as the ones from AMD and NVIDIA, let us tell you that this onboard graphics solution from Intel doesn’t exactly win any awards for power. Nor is it designed to go up against the newer laptop GPUs such as the RX 460 and 470, GTX 1050, 1050ti etc.

However, the HD 620 represents Intel’s best and most advanced onboard graphics solution to date, and it consumes less power than any dedicated GPU on the market right now. It can beat older dedicated graphics chips such as the GT 630M, GT 720M, etc. You will not be able to play Battlefield 1, COD Infinite Warfare, Witcher 3, or Deus Ex on this laptop. However, it will easily run MOBAs and e-sport shooters such as Overwatch, CS GO, Quake, etc. Older AAA titles such as Modern Warfare 1 and 2, Burnout Paradise, FEAR, Battlefield 3, etc. will run just fine at a mix of low-medium settings. Or, you can choose to play indie games.

Make no mistake, the Intel Core i3 7100 is not a weak processor. It is a dual core yes, but hyperthreading technology allows this CPU to process 4 threads simultaneously. It has a clock speed of 2.4Ghz without any turbo, since that feature is exclusively reserved for i5s and i7s.

One of the things we love about this budget gaming laptop is its full HD backlit LED display. The colors and contrast are rather good for a cheap TN panel, and the Acer Color Blast technology enhances your movie viewing or gaming experience. The keyboard is backlit, another feature that you don’t normally see in laptops at this price point.

With 4 Gb of DDR4 RAM, this laptop isn’t exactly a multitasker. You can add another 4 GB for running multiple applications simultaneously. Running less demanding games will not be an issue even with 4GB of RAM. Newer games however, will require you to upgrade the memory. The storage is provided in the form of a 5400 rpm 1 TB HDD that is factory loaded with a copy of Windows 10 Home. Battery life ranges between 10- 12 hours.

 

2. Dell Inspiron i5555

While Dell isn’t exactly known for making cheap gaming laptops, they do make some cheap business and multimedia oriented laptops that you can re-purpose as dedicated gaming machines. You just need to know where to search, and must have some knowledge of what you can expect for a given price. Take for example, the Dell Inspiron i5555. While it doesn’t come with any gaming branding, nor does it include any flashy features such as RGB keyboards or dual cooling fans, etc., this laptop does pack quite a powerful punch for the price. It is priced at less than 500 dollars, and includes an AMD APU (Advanced Processing Unit).

The exact model of the APU used in this laptop is the A10 8700P. This is a quad core, 4-thread processor with a built-in AMD Radeon R6 graphics chip. By integrating both the graphics chip and CPU into one single module, AMD has managed to cut down on production costs as well as power requirements. This results in a cheaper, and more efficient laptop that can run for up to 6.5 hours on a fully charge battery. Even with heavy multitasking, the battery will last nearly 4 hours. This is pretty impressive, considering that AMD processors are traditionally known for their high heat output and power consumption. The A10 8700P has a base clock speed of 1.8 GHz, but can boost all the way up to 3.2 GHz whenever the program or game demands extra processing power.

There is 8 GB of DD3L 1600 MHz RAM onboard, this allows for smooth multitasking and the ability to run almost any game, even modern AAA titles, albeit at low settings since the graphics core of the A10 8700P is not particularly powerful. It is still superior to any Intel HD series onboard graphics solution that currently exists, as expected from AMD- they are renowned for their budget onboard graphics and they live up to their name.

The display resolution is a slight let down, at just 1366 x 768. But hey- it is a touchscreen with 10 finger multi-touch support. There is a 1 TB 5400 rpm HDD onboard, along with a DVD disk drive. Wireless connectivity is handled by a 802.11 b/g/n adapter, along with Bluetooth 4.0. Windows 10 Home 64-bit comes preloaded.

Click here to see our selection of best gaming laptops under this price range.

 

Gaming Laptops Under 1000:

1. Acer Aspire VX 15 Gaming Laptop

Acer Aspire VX 15 Gaming Laptop

Acer Aspire VX 15 Gaming Laptop (Buy from Amazon)

 

This is probably one of the best gaming laptops in terms of value for money right now. It is barely a thousand dollars in price, but offers so much that you begin to wonder if Acer actually cut any corners while designing this gaming laptop masterpiece. Well- the build quality is superb and the looks are amazing, so we know that Acer made no compromises there.

The cooling system performs its job extremely well, there are 2 cooling fans located towards the rear of the laptop, one each dedicated to the CPU and GPU respectively. There are thick copper heat pipes leading from the chips to the fans, where the heat is dissipated through large metal fin arrays. There are intelligent sensors that detect CPU and GPU temperatures in real time, convey this data to the cooling fan system, which then dynamically adjusts fan rpm to keep noise and power consumption as low as possible while also keeping the core of the laptop cool. Talk about efficiency!

So, they didn’t compromise on the build quality, the cooling system is excellent, the laptop looks like a mix of a sports car and a spaceship. There is an iron red backlit gaming keyboard with tactile short-travel gaming optimized scissor dome switches and dedicated macro buttons as well as gaming key zones.

The touchpad is large and features two tactile buttons that are stylish and easy to press. There are subtle flaring accent lines on the body to indicate that this is a gaming laptop designed for hardcore gamers. The vents are positioned optimally, and airflow is never a concern even when the laptop is placed on an uneven surface such as a bed or your lap.

Well, since we were unable to find any issues with the design or build quality- let’s take a look at the important stuff. Surely Acer made some compromises there to keep the price below 1000. Wait… this laptop comes with an Intel Core i7 7700HQ CPU, the exact same quad core, 8-threaded 7th generation Intel CPU that is found in laptops costing as much as 2000 or even 2500 dollars.

So, what graphics card are they using in the Aspire VX5-591G-75RM? It is a NVIDIA GTX 1050ti. This is a 4GB GDDR5 beast of a midrange GPU which will comfortably run any game at 1080p and 60 fps with a mix of medium to high settings. Talking of 1080p, let us also mention that this laptop comes with a Full HD 15.6” widescreen IPS display. Colors are as accurate as they can be, and the contrast is amazing.

There is 16 GB of DDR4 RAM onboard, along with a 256 GB SSD. Optional HDD upgrade kit is available for free by contacting Acer support after your purchase. If you are still in doubt as to whether or not you should buy this laptop… well- why don’t you take a look at the next laptop on our list?

 

2. ASUS FX502VM

While the Acer Aspire VX5-591G-75RM is one tough gaming laptop for the money, nothing beats the ASUS FX502VM when we talk about value for money. Here, let’s put it out early so you get an idea of what we are talking about- there is absolutely no other laptop on the market that offers the same specs as this ASUS gaming laptop for even close to the same price.

Don’ believe us? Well, why don’t you search for a laptop that offers an Intel Core i5 6300 HQ processor, and a NVDIA GTX 1060 3GB graphics card along with 16 GB of DDR4 RAM for less than 900 dollars? Let’s save your time and tell you that this is the only one.

So, exactly how does the ASUS FX502VM perform in games? From our experience, an Intel Core i5 6300HQ is more than sufficient for all but the heaviest of multitasking workloads. It can handle 30 browser tabs opened in Chrome, along with a 1080p video playing on the media player of your choice, along with a virus scan running in the background and an update/ download going on in the foreground.

All of this, with some software such as Microsoft Office/ Photoshop/ any compiler program opened- the Core i5 6300HQ can handle all of it with its 2 cores, 4-thread design. The CPU has a base clock of 2.3 GHz and a turbo speed of 3.2 GHz. There is 16 GB of DDR4 RAM for running multiple programs at the same time, and it is more than enough for even the heaviest of games.

The NVIDIA GTX 1060 card in this laptop is the slightly cut-down version with 3 GB of video memory instead of the usual 6 GB. But it still performs better in games compared to a GTX 1050ti 4GB card. In fact, the 3GB GTX 1060 is about 25-30% faster than the 4 GB GTX 1050ti in games. Memory size is not everything when we talk about graphics cards, since each of them is like a little computer with its own processor, memory, I/O systems, and cooling. There is a 1 TB 7200 rpm HDD onboard for mass storage, along with USB Type C and HDMI/ D-SUB for wired connectivity. There is 802.11 ac WIFI onboard, along with Bluetooth 4.1 and a SD card reader.

 

Gaming Laptops Under 1500:

1. PROSTAR Clevo Gaming Laptop N850HP6

You may not have heard of PROSTAR or Clevo before, but we are sure that after you read about this laptop, you will never forget their names. While it costs less than 1200 dollars, the PROSTAR Clevo N850HP6 packs an enormous amount of processing power.

It is equipped with an Intel Core i7 7700HQ CPU. This is based on Intel’s latest 7th generation Kaby Lake architecture, and is the most widely used high-end gaming laptop processor in the market right now. All premium gaming laptops, beginning from 1000-dollar machines, all the way up to 2000 and even 2500-dollar beasts use the 7700HQ processor. It completely redefines what you can do with a laptop CPU.

There are 4 physical processing cores, and a total of 8 threads (thanks to hyperthreading). Base clock is 2.8 GHz, boost speed is a whopping 3.8 GHz, the fastest we have ever seen on any processor in any laptop, ever. It is backed up by 16 GB of DDR4 RAM that is more than sufficient to run any modern AAA game title, as well as multiple programs simultaneously in the background. There is a 120 GB M.2 SSD that is significantly faster than conventional SSDs, along with a 1 TB HDD for mass storage. Graphics is handled by a GTX 1060 6GB graphics card.

This 1060 is the full, uncut 6 GB version. It comes with 1280 CUDA cores and a boost clock of over 1700 MHz. With the 7700HQ CPU and GTX 1060 6GB graphics card, you can easily run any AAA PC game title in existence at 1080p, 60 fps on high settings. Things get even better with the 1080p widescreen 15.6” IPS matte black display. There is a HDMI output for connections to external displays, as well as a mini Display Port and USB 3.1 for nearly unlimited connectivity options. The keyboard on this laptop is RGB backlit and fully customized for hardcore gamers with macro buttons and customizability options accessible through included software. This laptop also features the Intel 8265 ac WIFI and Bluetooth adapter for seamless wireless connectivity.

 

2. Asus ROG Strix GL702VM-DB74

If you liked the PROSTAR CLEVO N850HP6, then you are going to love this one. It is probably the finest mid-range gaming laptop that ASUS currently has to offer. Meet the ASUS ROG Strix GL702VM-DB74 (pardon the uninteresting factory designation).

This beast of a gaming laptop costs less than 1500 dollars, yet is equipped with a FHD 17.3” G-SYNC IPS panel that has a 160° viewing angle (ridiculous for a laptop display). Meaning that, you and your buddies can all sit down together to watch a movie. Or your friends and family can watch you pawn noobs in your online shooter games as you confidently breeze through enemies with your lighting fast reflexes, unhindered by hardware limitations.

Since this laptop packs a Core i7 7700HQ processor and a NVIDIA GTX 1060 6GB graphics card, you can expect to achieve extremely high framerates in most games. No matter how demanding the game, you shall be able to run it at 1080p and 60+ fps with all settings turned to high. Ultra-settings are another story, since this graphics card is more of a high-midrange card.

For ultra-settings, you are going to need a GTX 1070 8GB card, which is found in the 1500 to 2000-dollar range. When you achieve high framerates, there is an issue that occurs- screen tearing. This happens when the frames pumped out by the GPU do not coincide with the refresh rate of the display (60 Hz in this particular case).

Which is why G-SYNC’s here to save the day- it automatically and dynamically synchronizes the refresh rate of your display with the framerate being delivered by your GPU. G-SYNC is an NVIDIA exclusive technology and requires a very special kind of display panel to work. The panels that are G-SYNC certified have to pass a series of tests. They have to be capable of instantaneously altering their refresh rates.

Color and contrast are also a factor, and IPS displays are known to have the best color of them all. We are pleasantly surprised to see a laptop with a GTX 1060 6GB card and G-SYNC IPS display for less than 1500 dollars. The keyboard is red backlit and features short travel gaming keys optimized for fast response. There is a 256 GB M.2 SATA III SSD onboard, along with a 1 TB 7200 rpm HDD. A copy of Windows 10 Home 64-bit is installed on the SSD.

 

Gaming Laptops Under 2000:

1. Acer Predator 15 G9-593-71EH 15.6” Gaming Laptop

The Acer Predator 15 series contains some of the best gaming laptops that this industry has ever seen. They are fast, reliable, great looking, and priced reasonably. This particular model in general, the Predator 15 G9-593-71EH, comes with a 15.6” full HD widescreen IPS display. What’s even cooler is that this display has been outfitted with NVIDIA G-SYNC technology.

What separates a normal display from a G-SYNC display is the smoothness and fluidity. NVDIA G-SYNC technology is built into the display itself, in the form of a microprocessor. This microprocessor is responsible for communicating in live time with the graphic card, it synchronizes the refresh rate of the display with the framerate that is being output at any given instant by the graphics card.

The graphics card in this particular case is a NVIDIA GTX 1070 8GB GPU. This is the second most powerful graphics card that has ever been put into a laptop. The first one of course, being the GTX 1080 8GB GDDR5X card. With the GTX 1070 you will never have to think twice about opening a game and cranking up all the settings to “ultra”.

The Core i7 7700HQ processor is arguably the most powerful laptop processor currently in existence. It packs 4 cores, and 8 threads because of hyperthreading. The base clock is 2.8 GHz and the boost speed is 3.8 GHz. This processor is more than enough to run any game on maximum settings and any resolution, including 4k.

In terms of memory and storage, the Predator 15 G9-593-71EH packs 16 GB of DDR4 RAM along with 256 GB SSD that comes with Windows 10 Home 64-bit installed. Mass storage is taken care of by a 1 TB 7200 rpm HDD. The color is based on a black and red theme, while the aggressive edges and bold body lines give the impression that this laptop is designed to be a truly modern portable gaming machine. The iron red backlit keyboard features scissor dome switches with low travel distance and dedicated macro buttons.

 

2. MSI GT72VR Dominator Pro-448

Quite simply put, this is one of the most powerful gaming laptops in existence, as well as the most powerful laptop on this list. It costs nearly 2000 dollars, and is designed with hardcore gaming in mind. Many would be discouraged by its enormous size and weight, however this 8.5 pound, 17.3” laptop is loaded to the skin with tons of gaming specific features that lesser gaming laptops can only dream of having.

For example, consider the fact that it comes with a 120 Hz 17.3” IPS G-SYNC panel. Just IPS is great, G-SYNC is even better, but you know what is truly the epitome of gaming laptop displays? A 120 Hz IPS panel with G-SYNC. Extremely smooth gaming with zero screen tearing and lag, and you can enjoy your favorite competitive/ esports titles in 120 Hz. We all know that higher refresh rates result in faster reactions and smoother on-screen visuals, but high refresh rate displays don’t come cheap.

Such a beautiful display needs a beefy GPU to drive it- meet the NVIDIA GTX 1070 8GB GDDR5 graphics card. This workhorse of a GPU is well known to offer the most performance per dollar out of any NVIDIA graphics card. It is a high-end GPU designed for extreme gaming laptops and desktops. Any game you throw at it, it will run in 1080p and 100+ fps on high to ultra-settings. If you are a CS GO, Overwatch, or DOTA 2/ LOL player, you will love this laptop because of the extremely high framerates that it can pump out. The processor is an Intel Core i7 7700HQ, 4 cores and 8 threads with a base clock of 2.8 GHz and a boost clock of 3.8 GHz.

There is 16 GB of DDR4 RAM onboard, along with a 256 GB M.2 SATA III SSD and a 1 TB 7200 rpm HDD. One standout feature of this laptop is the SteelSeries full-color RGB backlit gaming keyboard. This keyboard is found only on select MSI gaming laptops, and is custom designed by SteelSeries, one of the most popular gaming peripheral manufacturers in the world.

Nahimic 2 virtual surround sound delivers an awesome audio experience, combined with the dual subwoofers and 4 speakers. Killer DoubleShot Pro ethernet ensures lag free gaming and low pings, the Killer network adapter prioritizes game traffic over everything else, ensuring that the majority of your internet bandwidth is dedicated to whatever online game you are playing. Cooler Boost 4 keeps the laptop chill at all times, no matter how heavy the load.