Gaming laptops are not cheap, and despite the decreasing price of technology it is highly unlikely that they will ever be as affordable as the common everyday multimedia or student notebooks that most of us own. The reason for the large discrepancy in price between a regular laptop and a gaming laptop is quite simple- they consume slightly more power than a regular laptop, but deliver much more performance per watt. This enables you to play the latest and greatest AAA titles in all their glory at the highest resolutions while on the go. You can carry over your laptop to a friend’s house for a LAN party, or even play some good old campaign based games while sitting in an airplane.
Think about it- a laptop is a combination of all three components of a computer system, i.e. the computer itself, a display, the input/output devices, and speakers. Gaming laptops of today are cheaper and offer more power than their counterparts from like 5 years ago, but the price gap between them and an ordinary Dell or Acer 15.6” notebook is simply too much for the average student or budget conscious buyer to even consider purchasing over a regular sub 500 or 700-dollar laptop.
But does that mean you can’t enjoy your favorite PC games unless you buy a laptop that costs more than a 1000 or 1500 bucks? Not at all! If you are a true gamer, then you know that gameplay and framerates are of greater importance than graphical fidelity and special effects. After all, that is why the games from the early 2000’s had such immersive stories and we all enjoyed playing them despite their lackluster graphics. If you tune down the level of eye candy on modern titles, you can play them at decent framerates on a resolution of 1080p, even with the modest levels of hardware power that comes with a budget laptop. By budget, we mean budget gaming laptop.
In this article, we shall tell you about some hidden gaming laptops out there which can play modern titles on low to medium settings with smooth framerates at 1080p. All the laptops in this list cost less than 700 bucks, so you will not have to burn a hole in your wallet to buy one of these. You can even use them as your daily driver, or as a university/ college laptop since they are all loaded with the latest Intel or AMD processors, and pack amazing storage for the price.
Do not expect to find dedicated graphics chips from NVIDIA or AMD in these models, some of them will be loaded with just the onboard graphics that comes with the respective Intel or AMD processor within the laptop. Worry not, as even these inbuilt graphics units are capable of handling older AAA games and modern indie titles. You can play MOBA’s such as LOL or DOTA 2 at medium- high settings on the built-in onboard graphics. The 7th generation of Intel Core-I series mobile CPU’s come with some very formidable onboard graphics (Intel HD series graphics for Intel CPU’s and AMD R5/R7 series graphics for AMD APU’s) that rival the low end previous generation NVIDIA and AMD dedicated mobile graphics in terms of graphical rendering power.
Without wasting any more time, let us get into the actual list of sub 700-dollar gaming laptops. Take your pick based on your needs and the games that you plan on playing, also consider the activities other than gaming that you plan on doing. For video editing and encoding, we suggest getting the latest CPU from Intel with as much RAM as you can pack (for pure gaming purposes, just a single SSD will suffice but get a SSD+HDD or a 1TB (minimum) and above HDD if you plan on using the laptop for storing college work, movies, songs, photos, etc.).
Here Is the Best Gaming Laptop Priced Under 700- Latest & Recommended
The E15 E5-575G-57D4 is one of the most affordable and well-built gaming laptops that you can find in the sub-$700 range. It is a 15.6” laptop equipped with a 7th generation Intel Core i5 7200U CPU, and 8GB of high speed DDR4 RAM. Unlike most conventional gaming laptops, it does not feature a gaming style keyboard, or an over the top body design. Instead, this laptop is designed to another one of your normal 15.6” college/ work notebooks- except for the fact that it packs some serious punch underneath the hood. Read our in-depth review of this laptop.
A powerful 7th generation Core i5 CPU (the Intel Core i5 7200U), this allows the laptop to power through almost every modern AAA title that does not require more than 4 logical cores and 2 physical cores in order to run at maximum settings. The Intel Core i5 7200U is a low voltage mobile processor with a max TDP of just 15W, meaning that it is about 3 times more power efficient than the processors found on most laptops. This is in fact a processor designed for much slimmer laptops, and it has a base frequency of 2.5 GHz, along with a Turbo-boost frequency of up to 3.1 GHz (and 3MB of L3 cache).
A generous amount of DDR4 high speed RAM, this allows you to play with the maximum graphics settings turned on, even in open-world games such as GTA and Assassins Creed. Most modern games require 6-8 GB of RAM in order to run smoothly, and you are getting 8GB of 2133 MHz DDR4 inside this Acer laptop which can be upgraded to 16 GB later down the road.
A powerful midrange laptop graphics chip is embedded in the Acer E15 E5-575G-57D4. With the power of the NVIDIA GEFORCE 940MX, you can play any of the latest AAA games at a mix of medium-high settings, and 1080p resolution. This graphics solution is designed for budget-midrange gaming laptops just like the E5-575G. It packs 384 CUDA cores, and runs at a clock speed of 1122-1242 Megahertz. The memory bus is 64 bits wide, and runs 2 GB of GDDR5 dedicated video memory at around 5012 MHz.
Unlike most laptops in this price range, the Acer E15 E5-575G-57D4 comes with a 256GB SSD and 8GB of DDR4 RAM. This ultra-fast storage allows you to boot the laptop up within seconds, and it also helps games run much more smoothly with less loading times, especially open-world games such as Far Cry, GTA, etc.
The NVIDIA GEFORCE 940MX which is actually an improved version of the GT940 graphics unit, packs more than enough punch to run any modern AAA game title at a mix of medium to high graphics settings. It isn’t the most powerful laptop GPU out there, and certainly isn’t anywhere near as powerful as a Pascal series graphics card, but hey- at this price you can’t expect anything better. Besides, we believe you are buying this laptop to play games at moderate graphics settings and 1080p, 60 fps. The Core i5- 7200U, 8GB DDR4 RAM, and GEFORECE 940MX allow you to enjoy your games within a budget.
Build quality is superb for a budget 15.6” laptop, and the display is also very crisp. The Acer Color Blast technology helps colors pop out on the full HD LED backlit screen, and contrast ratios as well as brightness are splendid right out of the box.You’re also getting a backlit keyboard at this price. And oh, did we mention the 12-hour battery life?
The black matte finish and flat sides make the laptop look kind of bland and uninteresting. Not that we are looking for edgy designs and futuristic styling in the sub-$700 laptop market, but a little bit of character in the overall design to give the laptop a unique look wouldn’t hurt at all.
Even though the Acer True Harmony audio system and the Color Blast display technology ensure that both visuals as well as audio are super awesome, you are getting a mediocre trackpad that feels heavy and unresponsive to the touch. Which is not the biggest flaw in a laptop that you are purchasing for gaming, since we assume you already own a mouse or controller for playing your games anyways, so the trackpad quality isn’t a deal-breaker at all.
The HP 455 G3 ProBook is loaded with some pretty impressive stuff for the price, and it is probably the cleanest and most professional looking gaming laptop in this list. You can carry this one to college or office without drawing unwanted attention. Heck, people will never even know that you are a gamer until they see you playing games on it!
The sleek metallic grey finish and the black keyboard match together perfectly, and the trackpad doesn’t protrude out as much as it does on some other models from competing manufacturers. The 15.6” active matrix TFT LCD display is low on resolution but delivers some pretty impressive colors and has a brilliant contrast ratio. Probably the best 1366×768 display we have seen on any laptop in recent times.
It comes with a 15.6” 1366 x 768 resolution TFT LCD display that is definitely the best 768p laptop screen on the market in this price range. The colors are extremely vibrant and accurate, while the contrast is just perfect. Out of the box settings are great for movies, games, etc. but you can adjust the color gamut and contrast ratios if you are into photo editing. Talking of photo editing, you need a decent chunk of RAM to do that. Photoshop and Lightroom alone take up nearly 1-2 GB of memory just when they are in the foreground, and if you load multiple image files into the workspace it will easily consume 4-6 GB of RAM.
Fortunately, this laptop comes with 16 GB of DDR3L RAM running at a speedy 1600 MHz for all your multitasking and workstation needs. Be it video encoding or photo editing- you can effortlessly power through all your work with the HP 455 G3 ProBook. There is a reason it is called the “ProBook”, that is because it comes with more RAM than the regular models. Not only does the extra RAM help with workstation tasks, but it also serves as a nice boost to gaming performance since most AAA titles these days feature large in-game worlds and open cities/ forests. Games such as Assassins Creed, GTA, Witcher, etc. need a lot of RAM to load the levels and perform smoothly, and 16 GB is just perfect for that.
The processor is a beast too, it is an AMD 1.8 GHz A10-8700P. This is a quad core processor with a crazy 3.2 GHz boost clock, that is almost a 78% increase in clock speeds when the application gets more demanding. This shows that the A10-8700P can switch from a passive and relaxed state to a hyper aggressive and power-hungry state within microseconds. Games will run smoothly, thanks to the inbuilt R6 graphics chip that is the equivalent of a GT 740M. This ensures that you can play most games released in the last 2-3 years at medium to high settings on 768p resolution.
The CPU has one of the best turbo boost gains, pumping up the frequency from a measly 1.8 GHz to over 3.2 GHz. This allows the processor to be extremely power efficient when nothing is going on, but at the same time very effective when a demanding application is launched. Four processing cores and 16 GB of RAM allow you to multitask effortlessly while also boosting gaming performance. Photo editing and video encoding are very easy to do, thanks to the massive RAM size and large 1TB 5400 rpm hard drive where you can store all your work data, games, songs, movies, etc.
Lots of I/O options- VGA, HDMI, USB, Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11 b/g/n WIFI, RJ45 LAN port, USB 3.0 and 2.0, along with a full-sized keyboard and multi card reader + DVD R/W drive.
Measures just 14.9” x 10.4” x 0.9” and weighs 4.95 pounds with the 4-cell Li-Ion battery installed. Comes with Windows 10 Home 64-bit preinstalled.
The keyboard is not the best to game on, we suggest an external keyboard along with a good mouse for gaming.
Webcam quality is inferior to its Acer and Dell counterparts.
With a power-efficient Intel 7th generation Core i5 7200U processor, a 13.3 inch full HD IPS display, 8GB of LPDDR3 RAM, a blazing fast 256 GB NVMe M.2 SSD drive, and a 14-hour battery life, the HP ENVY 13-ab016nr is truly an object of envy for your friends and fellow gamers with whom you shall play on this laptop during LAN parties and online matches. Not only is the performance phenomenal for something that is this thin and lightweight, but the battery life and incredibly fine display enhance the gaming experience even further. It is not just games that benefit from the IPS panel. You will find that movies and photos burst to life on this incredibly well calibrated display that is so accurate with colors and has incredible levels of contrast to make any scene better than what it would like on a standard TN panel. The SSD is not a standard SATA express based SSD that has a maximum throughput of about 500-550 MBPS. This is connected via a NVMe M.2 interface, allowing for much higher speeds. Basically, what this means is that your games and OS will load faster than they would have on a normal SSD, which is already several times faster than a 5400 rpm HDD.
Gaming is not the forte of this laptop due to its lack of a dedicated graphics chip, although it is good for casual gaming and a mix of multimedia workloads such as video encoding or photo editing. The super-fast SSD coupled with the upgradable 8GB of LPDDR3 RAM means that you can work, watch movies, stream songs and videos online, and download large files without having to plug in your laptop. The Intel HD 620 series graphics is not the best low end graphics solution, but beats the previous generation Intel HD graphics by miles in terms of power and efficiency. Windows 10 comes preloaded, and the laptop is equipped with the latest Wi-Fi technology, 802.11 A/C, as well as Bluetooth 4.0 for seamless wireless connectivity between all your appliances. Combine that with the Beats audio solution and Hi-Def webcam+ microphone combo, and you have yourself one of the best work + play machines on the market that you can take with you on the go wherever you want.
Powered by a 6th generation “Skylake” processor from Intel, the X555UB is a laptop designed for light gaming, entry level photo editing, and general multimedia usage. The full HD 1080p LED backlit display on this ASUS is among one of the best that we have ever seen on any sub-$600 laptop, in terms of color reproduction and contrast. To power this display, the laptop is equipped with a 2 GB NVIDIA GT 940M graphics chip, and 2 GB of dedicated DDR3 graphics RAM. At the center of it all, lies the 2.8 GHz Intel Core i5 6200U processor, which is a low voltage ultrabook processor and is designed to extend battery life. But it can kick up the core clock to 2.8 GHz when you are running games or heavy software. The 8 GB of DDR3 RAM is pretty standard for a laptop at this price point, and it comes with an ergonomically designed keyboard that is among one of the better budget laptop keyboards out there.
For storage, you have a 1 TB 7200 rpm hard drive, which is actually faster than the standard 5400 rpm drives found in similarly priced budget laptops. For connectivity, there is Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11 ac Wi-Fi, and some USB ports. Windows 10 Home comes pre-installed, and the whole laptop weighs about 5.07 lbs with the battery. Our verdict on this machine is that it is a great option if you’re into casual gaming and also want to do some photo editing, video encoding, etc. on the side. It also doubles up as a great multimedia PC, since the 1080p LED backlit display is great for watching movies.
Normally we don’t expect to see an MSI laptop at this price range, since they are known for their super powerful, ultra-flashy gaming laptops that look like miniature Transformers. But MSI did surprise us, with the amount of processing power that they have put into this compact 15.6” laptop. It is labeled as a “business laptop”, but with the addition of a NVIDIA GeForce 940MX graphics chip it seems more like a hybrid gaming laptop. The 6th generation Core i5-6300HQ is a standard voltage laptop processor and delivers sufficient processing power for all your daily gaming, web browsing, and movie- watching needs. You can comfortably hit 40+ fps on any AA or indie title on medium-high settings, and 30+ fps on the latest AAA titles at medium settings.
The 2 GB of GDDR5 VRAM is sufficient to last you for the next couple of years, and stuff like Dota 2, Counter Strike GO, League of Legends, Minecraft, etc. will run at extremely smooth frame rates, if you play around with the graphics settings. The display is rather mediocre, it is a 1366 x 768 TN panel, and is LED backlit. The RAM is 8 GB, but it is DDR4, meaning that it is going to be faster than the standard DDR3 that you find at this price point. For storage, you are getting a 5400 rpm 1 TB hard drive with genuine Windows 10 preinstalled on it.
Lenovo just released one of the best budget laptops of 2017, and it is the Ideapad 510 15.6” notebook. This little multimedia/work notebook comes with an Intel Core i7 7500U processor, arguably the most power efficient core i7 processor available for laptops in the market right now. It is backed up by 8GB of high speed yet low power DDR4 RAM, and for main storage there is a 256 GB SSD that comes with Windows 10 preloaded. Downloading games and drivers will be easy thanks to the 802.11 A/C Wi-Fi card and Rj45 LAN port for seamless wireless as well as wired internet access. There is a FHD (1920 X 1080) IPS display on this laptop that is 15.6” in size and features one of the best contrast ratios that we have seen on any laptop display under 700 bucks. Bluetooth 4.0 further enhances connectivity, while a sleek brushed metal finish on the body ensures that your laptop looks costlier than it is, despite most the shell being plastic.
The trackpad and keyboard are way better than you would expect on a laptop of this price. There is no flexing on the keyboard no matter how vigorously you type, and the trackpad is pleasantly accurate and smooth to the touch. The trackpad buttons feel tactile and have just the right resistance to them- not too heavy, nor too light. The cooling system is a great one too, as we notice that this laptop does not heat up too much despite playing games for several hours continuously, even when you put it on an uneven surface such as a bed or your lap (although we recommend playing games or using heavy duty software only when the base of the laptop is resting on a flat surface for proper ventilation on heat from the exhaust ports).
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