Best Gaming Laptops of 2018

We’ve gathered an assortment of the best gaming laptops, starting from the $500+ price range and going all the way to the $2000 price range. Whether you’re looking for entry-level or high-end gaming performance, you’re sure to find the right machine for you here.

If you’re looking for laptops, chances are you move around a lot and therefore a desktop isn’t viable for your situation. This is a particularly common scenario for students, but can apply to people of many walks of life for all kinds of reasons.

Regardless of the reason why you’re here, we’re going to help you find the best gaming laptop suited to your budget and your needs. It’s important to note, however, that you’ll spend a lot more to get desktop-level performance on the go. If you want pure price/performance gaming builds, consider looking at our desktop PC builds instead.

If portability and convenience are a higher priority in your PC gaming experience, however, then finding the best gaming laptop for you is probably what you should do. Use our guide below to find the price range to start in, and from there, the laptops to buy.

Acer Aspire VX 15 Gaming Laptop

$500-$600 is the price range wherein laptops actually become capable of playing some good ol’ video games. In this price range, you’ll notice better discrete graphics solutions, like GeForce 900MX series chips, as well as dual-core i5 CPUs. Screens are usually standard 15-to-17 inch LCD (no IPS here) as well, while drives will be either large HDDs or small SSDs, but not both.

Expect decent entry-level performance at this range.

Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-57D4The Prodigy

Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-57D4

This Acer Aspire E 15 trounces its younger brother in just about every conceivable way, bumping up the display [...]

Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-52RJTHE ENTRANT

Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-52RJ

First up is the cheap option. This Acer Aspire E 15 has the same basic specs as most laptops in this range, but [...]

Acer Aspire 17.3 Inch Full HD Flagship High Performance Black Edition Gaming Laptop PCThe GIANT

Acer Aspire 17.3 Inch Full HD Flagship High Performance Black Edition Gaming Laptop PC

The Acer Aspire 17.3 Inch offering is the best gaming laptop under $600 right now. Unfortunately, we can’t be sure [...]

Things begin to get a bit more interesting in this price range for a number of reasons. The most noticeable of these reasons would likely be the implementation of IPS panels within the laptops, providing better viewing angles and color reproduction than most displays. CPUs also step up to better quad-core i5s, while RAM and GPUs both get slightly more beefy.

Expect good entry-level performance at this range.

Asus X756The Giant

Asus X756

The Asus X756 is the “big” option in this price range, offering a 17-inch laptop display, a full numeric keypad and [...]

Lenovo IdeaPad 700The Entrant

Lenovo IdeaPad 700

The cheapest of our options on this list still manages to be an interesting, well-rounded machine. The Lenovo [...]

Dell Inspiron 15 7000-7559The Powerhouse

Dell Inspiron 15 7000-7559

Dell’s Inspiron line is one of the most well-known in laptops and for good reason: these are good computers. This [...]

The improvements of this range over the under $700 range are relatively minor, but there are a few worth noting, including a laptop with a Quad-Core i7 processor and more prominent 960M laptop GPUs.

Expect great entry-level performance at this range.

Dell Inspiron 7559 Gaming LaptopLightning Bruiser

Dell Inspiron 7559 Gaming Laptop

The Lightning Bruiser has a lot to offer, right out of the gate.It starts by effectively doubling the CPU power [...]

ASUS X756 17.3-Inch Full HD Premium LaptopGentle Giant

ASUS X756 17.3-Inch Full HD Premium Laptop

First up is the Gentle Giant. It’s the cheapest option here, running a full $100 lower than $750.Despite the [...]

Dell Inspiron i7559-2512BLK 15.6 Inch FHD LaptopMighty Glacier

Dell Inspiron i7559-2512BLK 15.6 Inch FHD Laptop

The Mighty Glacier offers the best overall gaming performance in this price range, thanks mainly to the i7 CPU [...]

This is where it starts getting real interesting- not only are quad-core Intel processors standard in this price range, but so too are full desktop GPUs. Thanks to the innovations of the GTX 1000 series, desktop GPUs like the 1050 and 1050 Ti are now available in laptops, offering insane performance benefits over laptops in the lower price ranges. SSDs and IPS are becoming much stronger options in this price range, too.

Expect decent mid-range performance in this range.

MSI GL62M 7RE-407 Performance Gaming LaptopPure Performance

MSI GL62M 7RE-407 Performance Gaming Laptop

This gaming laptop comes in at just around $800 and focuses mostly on gaming performance. Its gaming performance is [...]

Prostar Clevo Gaming Laptop N855HJPower In The Processing

Prostar Clevo Gaming Laptop N855HJ

This contender for the best gaming laptop under $900 puts everything into its CPU power, with an i7 for just $800. [...]

Acer Aspire VX 15 Gaming LaptopNo Compromises

Acer Aspire VX 15 Gaming Laptop

Our overall winner is aptly nicknamed No Compromises, because it doesn’t seem to make any.It offers the best [...]

This price range ups the ante with full-blown GTX 1060s being on offer, rivalling the power of current-gen consoles while still having portability that neither they or your typical desktop gaming PC could even dream of. Quad Core i7 CPUs are also the standard now. IPS has now completely taken over as a display standard in this price range, ensuring that you’re guaranteed to have an easy-on-the-eyes viewing experience. SSDs aren’t as prominent here, though.

Expect great mid-range performance in this range.

Eluktronics P650RP6Stein

Eluktronics P650RP6

The Eluktronics laptop on offer here has been named “Stein”. The name is short for “Frankenstein” (the doctor, not [...]

Prostar Clevo N850HK1High Entrant

Prostar Clevo N850HK1

Here’s our entry-level option for the high-end laptop range, which we’ve named the High Entrant. (High [...]

Prostar Clevo P650HP31.2 Grandmaster

Prostar Clevo P650HP3

The Prostar Clevo P650HP3 or, as we’ve called it, the 1.2 Grandmaster, is our pick for the best gaming laptop under [...]

This range makes one main advancement in comparison to the previous range, and that is the combination of M.2 SSDs and 1TB HDDs...within the same laptop. This allows people to enjoy fast storage for their OS, programs and a few favorite games while still having a decent HDD to store the rest of their games and media on. Ask any desktop user that uses both an SSD and an HDD in their build and they’ll tell you how great it is to have the best of both worlds in their rigs!

Expect great mid-range performance in this range.

ASUS ROG GL502VMThe Underdog

ASUS ROG GL502VM

The Underdog makes a few compromises but still makes an earnest effort at being the best. It starts by skirting an [...]

XOTIC ASUS FX502VMThe Rival

XOTIC ASUS FX502VM

The Rival comes in hot. It’s the cheapest option on this list, but it manages to do so without sacrificing too much [...]

Eluktronics P670RP6The Hero

Eluktronics P670RP6

The Hero arrives.Boasting a great IPS display (backed by G-SYNC), the viewing experience on The Hero is already [...]

The under $1500 price range still doesn’t do much in terms of gaming performance changes, but it really steps up in terms of overall build and display quality. Laptops in this range aren’t necessarily the best performance-per-dollar machines out there, but they are desktop-class PCs with amazing build quality that can fit easily into your backpack or on your lap during long trips.

Expect great mid-range performance in this range.

Gigabyte P57Wv7-KL3 NotebookRefined Giant

Gigabyte P57Wv7-KL3 Notebook

Our winner, however, is the Refined Giant. This is because it’s the strongest overall of our lineup, but what makes [...]

ASUS ROG STRIX GL502VMSleek & Slim

ASUS ROG STRIX GL502VM

The Sleek & Slim is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: a sleek, slim gaming laptop. In addition to being [...]

MSI VR Ready GE72VR Apache Pro-009RGBeast

MSI VR Ready GE72VR Apache Pro-009

Last, but not necessarily least, is the RGBeast.Right off the bat, the RGBeast throws everything into [...]

This is where laptops start to get really scary, and have little-to-no actual flaws. Laptops in this price range have stellar build quality, awesome IPS and/or high refresh-rate displays, and the best storage solutions out there, with larger SSDs to complement 1TB HDDs in the same laptop. Most importantly, however, is the change to the GTX 1070 GPU, which outclasses the current-gen consoles by a wide margin and begins to bring true high-end gaming performance to laptop users on the go.

Expect good high-end performance in this range.

MSI GT72VR Dominator Pro-450The Champion

MSI GT72VR Dominator Pro-450

The Champion is our top pick for best gaming laptop under $2000, as the name we’ve given it implies. A glance at [...]

MSI VR Ready GT62VR Dominator Pro-087The Entrant

MSI VR Ready GT62VR Dominator Pro-087

The cheapest option in this range is fittingly called “The Entrant”.Despite its name, the only real big [...]

Eluktronics Pro-X P650HS-GThe Juggernaut

Eluktronics Pro-X P650HS-G

Last but not least is The Juggernaut. The Juggernaut comes in at around $1949, which means it’s the most expensive [...]

How To Choose The Best Gaming Laptop For You

If you need help figuring out what to choose, keep reading. We’ll go ahead and start by defining a few key terms that you may not have known prior to reading this article.

  • IPS panel - IPS refers to In Panel Switching. In displays, this technology allows superior color reproduction and viewing angles, which is highly preferable to laptop users, since you’re more likely to be using them at oblique viewing angles than you would a desktop PC.
  • CPU - Your CPU. We’re using Intel chips at the current time, and typically you’ll find the best gaming performance with quad-core Intel processors on laptops and desktops alike. Dual-cores can work, but generally you’ll want to go with Quad Core i5 or i7 “HQ” processors if you don’t want to experience CPU bottlenecking.
  • GPU - Your GPU, which determines the graphical quality and performance of your games. Integrated GPUs will have terrible gaming performance, while discrete GPUs- like the ones in these laptops- will perform much better. Desktop GPUs, starting with the GTX 1050, begin to be implemented into laptops from the $900 price range and up, and provide the best performance by far.
  • SSD - Solid State Drive. This form of storage is extremely fast, making it ideal for your operating system installation and fast boot-times. However, it’s more expensive, and if your system has just an SSD than you’ll have to deal with much lower storage space.
  • HDD - Hard Disk Drive. This form of storage is slower, especially on laptops. This makes it great for storing a bunch of games and media, but not-so-great for loading times and boot times, which may be inconvenient when you’re on the go. We recommend laptops that feature HDDs and SSDs so you can enjoy the best of both technologies.
  • Screen Size - 15 inch and 17 inch are the main screen sizes you’ll see, and they generally depend on personal preference. We recommend trying out some laptops at Best Buy or something to find what size suits you, but ordering online to save money and find the best deals.
  • Build Quality - Refers to the overall sturdiness, cleanliness and quality of the components of the build. The higher the build quality, the longer you can generally expect your laptop to last. Build quality starts stepping up at $750 and above, and is the best at the highest price ranges.

Once you understand these factors, picking the right gaming laptop (or range to start in) should be easy for you.

Still Not Sure What Gaming Laptop To Choose?

This is our main selection of gaming laptops. Feel free to comment below if you need any help finding a range to start in, or a laptop to choose!

Power-Supplies Power Supplies
Ram Ram/Memory
Hard-drives Hard drives
Monitors Monitors
Headsets Headsets
Keyboards Keyboards
Mouses Best Gaming Mice
Speakers Speakers
ssd SSD
cooler Cooler
microphone Microphone
router Router
chair Chairs
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