If you’re looking to get into PC gaming but don’t have the space or funds to invest in a full gaming PC, then perhaps one of the gaming laptops from our expertly chosen list is the right compromise for you.
A powerful graphics card is what separates a gaming laptop from a regular one. These can be expensive, but the performance per pound in the best gaming laptops easily beats that of a stylish ultraportable. You can also get reasonably affordable powerful gaming laptops these days, particularly if you are happy playing at 1080p resolution. In this list of the best gaming laptops we’ll look at a classic all-rounder, a surprisingly portable performance model and an option that won’t drain your bank balance too much.
Lenovo Legion 5
- Best buy
- Buy the Lenovo Legion 5
Lenovo’s Legion 5 is one of the best gaming laptops around at the moment. It has a very powerful version of Nvidia’s RTX 3070 graphics card, an excellent high resolution 165Hz screen and a more-than-solid keyboard. Lenovo also makes a higher-end Pro version in this series, but by choosing this model you can get the next-level graphics card for around the same price. It may not be cheap, but the Legion 5 is undeniably good value.
Where’s the drawback? It has a plastic touchpad, which frankly doesn’t matter much if you’ll use a mouse anyway. The Legion 5 Pro’s design is also a bit snazzier, but we still like how the Legion 5 looks and feels.
- Great performance per pound
- Excellent high-res, high refresh rate display
- Good keyboard
- Plastic touchpad
Asus Zephyrus G14
- Best portable gaming laptop
- Buy the Asus Zephyrus G14
The first Asus Zephyrus G14 changed what we thought about the limits of portable gaming laptops. This newer model has a powerful Nvidia RTX 3060 graphics card and high-end Ryzen processor, but weighs just 1.7kg and is only around 2cm thick. It’s one of the few powerful gaming laptops you can treat like an ultraportable, without your shoulders reminding you it is not one after a couple of hours.
- Powerful and yet portable at the same time
- Magnesium alloy casing
- Smart looks
- Does get warmer under pressure than a larger gaming laptop
Acer Nitro 5
- Value Pick
- Buy the Acer Nitro 5
The best gaming laptops available change from week to week, but you should always consider the Acer Nitro 5 if you are after a deal. This is a practical gaming laptop aimed at getting you the most power for the least outlay. It has a plastic casing, plastic touchpad and a 1080p screen; however, you still get a keyboard backlight and high refresh rate display. This is Acer cutting off the fancy bits to get to what a gaming laptop needs more: high performance.
- Great value
- It’s not excessively heavy at ~2.2kg
- Higher-end versions have seriously powerful components
- Build is more modest than the higher-end alternatives
Gamers can get into the world of computer gaming without having to set up a dedicated gaming PC. At the same time, they get a high quality gaming experience — and with our comparison of the best gaming laptops on the market, you’ll find the one that suits you best.