The best gaming laptops

The best gaming laptops this year will shine brightly in what could be a challenging year for PC technology. Great gaming laptops will not be long behind when new Intel, AMD, and Nvidia GPUs and CPUs are released. Maybe even some that aren’t too expensive.

With multicore CPUs, Nvidia RTX 30-series and AMD Radeon RX 6000-series GPUs, and fast NVMe SSDs to top it off, the latest portable powerhouses have all the bells and whistles of high-end gaming PCs. Under the hood, you’ll find plenty of RAM and super-fast refresh displays… mechanical keyboard laptops, such as the Asus ROG Strix Scar 15, are even available.

While getting a new graphics card, as well as some fancy DDR5 RAM or even good CPU silicon, may be difficult this year, gaming laptops appear to have mostly evaded the chip shortage. However, this does not imply that manufacturers have shifted their concentration to high-end products. As a result, intermediate and budget models may have fewer options. At the very least, there are enough models to meet demand.

Over the years, we’ve evaluated hundreds of gaming laptops and will continue to update this list as new models are released. The laptops we tested that offer the best blend of performance, portability, and pricing are listed below. Whatever you’re looking for, there should be a laptop here that fits your needs.

The best gaming laptops

Razer Blade 15

CPU: 12th Gen Intel Core i7 and Core i9
GPU: Up to Nvidia RTX 3080 Ti 
Up to 32GB of RAM is available.
1080p @ 360Hz, 1440p @ 240Hz, or 4K @ 144Hz on the screen
SSD storage up to 1TB
80 Wh battery
9.25 x 13.98 x 0.78 inch dimensions
4.63 pound weight


  • +Extremely high build quality 
  • +A wide choice of CPU/GPU options 
  • +Looks as nice as it performs 
  • +Extremely long battery life


  • It’s not the quickest mode of transportation. RTX 3080 SKU 
  • -Trackpad can be inconvenient.

The Razer Blade 15’s latest iteration improves on one of the best gaming laptops ever created. It boasts the same beautiful CNC-milled aluminum chassis as its predecessor, but it now has room for one of Nvidia’s new RTX 30-series GPUs and an Intel 12th Gen Core i9 CPU.

We tested the Razer Blade 15 Advanced, which features a 10th Gen Intel processor and an RTX 3080 (95W) GPU. And we fell in love all over again, and we’re excited to get our hands on the Intel Alder Lake models with the RTX 3080 Ti inside.

These new models, as you can see, have improved graphics processing even more than prior models, with support for up to a 16GB RTX 3080 Ti, which is astounding in such a small chassis. Because of the slimline design, there will be some throttling, but this attractive machine will still provide excellent performance.

One of the best aspects about the Blade 15 is the variety of options available from Razer. There’s something for practically everyone, from the RTX 3060 Base Edition to the RTX 3080 Ti Advanced with a 144Hz 4K panel. It’s one of the most visually appealing gaming laptops on the market, and it’s also one of the most powerful.

We believe the Razer Blade 15 is the greatest gaming laptop on the market right now, regardless of configuration, albeit you will pay a premium for the now-classic design.

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14

The best gaming laptops

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14

CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HS
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Max-Q
RAM: 16 GB DDR4-3200
Screen: 14-inch IPS 1080p @ 120Hz
1TB NVMe PCIe 3.0 SSD storage
75Wh battery
12.76 x 8.74 x 0.70 inch dimensions
3.53 pound weight


  • +Amazing CPU performance 
  • +Beautifully colorful screen 
  • +Amazing design and materials


  • -Looks a little plasticky 
  • -When pushed, it can be quite noisy

Not everyone requires the lightest and most powerful gaming laptop available. Sometimes just being light and quick is enough. The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 strikes a good balance between portability, performance, and pricing. The initial system was an amazing RTX 2060 Max-Q notebook, whose incredible AMD CPU performance impressed our top-secret PC Gamer lab’s devoted team of hardware testers.

The G14 is still a fantastic laptop, especially now that the RTX 3060 is available in that clever chassis. Despite being loud, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is a dependable 14-inch PC with high-end graphics that can compete with certain gaming desktops.

Razer Blade 14

The best gaming laptops

Razer Blade 14

AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX
GPU: Nvidia RTX 3080 Ti
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX
Screen: 14-inch 1080p @ 144Hz or 1440p @ 165Hz 
RAM: 16 GB DDR4-3200
1TB Samsung 981a SSD storage
61.6Wh battery
0.66 x 8.66 x 12.59 inches in size
3.92 pound weight


  • +Excellent all-round performance 
  • +Ultra-portable ultrabook style 
  • +Looks amazing 
  • +Outstanding build quality


  • -The only way to get a Razer Ryzen processor
  • -Expensive for 1080p gaming 
  • -Higher-spec GPUs will degrade performance

I’m tempted to move the Razer Blade 14 up the list solely because the 14-inch screen size has completely won me over. In the No. 2 slot, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 reintroduced the criminally under-utilized laptop design, but Razer has nailed it. The Blade 14 is notably smaller than the 15-inch Blade and more akin to the ultrabook Stealth 13, with a matte black MacBook Pro-style design and true PC gaming pedigree.

The Razer design is timeless, and it feels fantastic in the hand. And now that the amazing AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX has finally made its way into a Blade notebook, you can get real processing power that you can sling into a messenger bag. Soon, you’ll be able to get your hands on the Blade 14 with the brand new Ryzen 9 6900HX chip, which will be able to preserve battery life while on the go thanks to its RDNA 2 based onboard graphics.

Add in some additional Nvidia RTX 30-series graphics power—now up to an RTX 3080 Ti, but wear ear plugs—and you’ve got a fantastic balance of style and function that makes it the most desired laptop I’ve ever examined.

My main concern is that the RTX 3080 Ti would be restricted by the 14-inch chassis and would be noisy. So I’d recommend the lower-spec GPU options, albeit $1,800 for a notebook seems excessive for 1080p gaming. However, you’re not buying the Blade 14 for its outright performance; rather, it’s about having all the power you need in a form factor that allows for practical mobility.

G3 15 Dell

The best gaming laptops

G3 15 Dell

CPU: Intel Core i7 (up to 10th Gen)
GPU: Nvidia GTX 1660 Ti (up to 10th Gen)
15.6-inch IPS 1080p @ 144Hz display
512GB SSD storage
51Wh battery
0.85 x 14.4 x 10 inches in size
5.40 pound weight


  • +Affordable configuration options 
  • +Good battery life 
  • +Powerful laptop 


  • -It’s a tad chunkier than the more expensive thin and light choices.

Let’s face it: finding a good gaming laptop on a budget might be difficult. Compromises must be made in areas such as performance, design, and even battery life. Thankfully, the Dell G3 15 delivers good 1080p gaming for about $1,000, and the battery life is actually quite good.

The thinner, sleeker design is the most notable change over the previous iteration. The slimmer design, which features narrower bezels around a 144Hz panel, offers it a more high-end feel. If you’re looking for a gaming laptop that doesn’t scream “gamer” as soon as you take it out of your bag, this is a nice change. The only drawback appears to be the display, which lacks the same color gamut as the other gaming laptops on this list.

Lenovo Legion 5 Pro (16″ AMD)

The best gaming laptops

Lenovo Legion 5 Pro (16" AMD)

AMD Ryzen 7 5800H CPU
GPU: Nvidia RTX 3070 or above
Up to 32GB of RAM is available.
16-inch 165Hz 2560 x 1600 resolution screen
M.2 SSD storage up to 2 TB
86Wh battery
14.01 x 10.4 x 1.1 inches in size
5.4 pound weight


  • +Excellent 165Hz QHD screen 
  • +Excellent keyboard 
  • +Affordable price


  • -Poor mic and speakers 
  • -720p webcam

The Legion Pro 5 demonstrates that AMD is a strong contender in the gaming laptop market. When you combine the mobile Ryzen 7 5800H with the RTX 3070, you have a laptop that can handle not only recent games but also more serious adventures.

The QHD 16:10 165Hz screen is a real standout, and it makes gaming and just using Windows a pleasure. It’s also an IPS panel with a peak brightness of 500nits, so whether you’re gaming or watching movies, you won’t be disappointed.

When it comes to gaming, the Legion Pro 5 is a beast, with the high-powered RTX 3070 (with a peak delivery of 140W, it’s faster than some 3080s) being a perfect complement for that bright screen. You’ll be able to play the vast majority of games at their native resolution of 2560 x 1600 at maximum settings without missing a beat. The fact that you can use DLSS and get some ray tracing enhancements for the money adds to the overall appeal of this package.

MSI GS66 Stealth

The best gaming laptops

MSI GS66 Stealth

Up to a Core i9 10980HK processor
GPU: Nvidia RTX 3080 or above
15.6-inch 1080p 240Hz or 300Hz screen RAM: up to 32GB DDR4-3200
M.2 SSD storage up to 2TB
99.9Wh battery
9.65 x 14.17 x 0.71 inch Dimensions
4.63 pound weight


  • +Sleek and strong 
  • +Long battery life 
  • +1440p alternatives on the way 


  • -Becomes noisy 
  • -Fps are harmed by the slim chassis

The MSI GS66 is a beast: it’s sleek, smooth, and incredibly powerful. However, Nvidia Ampere’s power does not come without a cost. To fit something as powerful as an RTX 3080 into an 18mm thin chassis, MSI had to be a little frugal with its power demands.

The top GPU is the 95W model, which only just beats out a fully unlocked RTX 3070 like the one found in the Gigabyte Aorus 15G XC. However, it remains an incredibly capable piece of mobile graphics silicon.

It can get a touch loud, but you have access to all of the Nvidia Max-Q 3.0 features, so it’s not all bad. This incorporates Whisper Mode 2.0, which reduces game sound to barely detectable levels for unobtrusive gameplay.

The GS66 also features a stunning 240Hz 1440p panel that perfectly complements the strong GPU in games. Sure, you’ll have to make some concessions compared to a monstrous workstation with an RTX 3080, but the MSI GS66 Stealth is a true slimline gaming laptop.

Acer Predator Helios 300

The best gaming laptops

Acer Predator Helios 300

CPU: Intel Core i7 11800H or above
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 or above
15.6-inch IPS 1080p @ 240Hz RAM: up to 32GB DDR4-3200Screen: 15.6-inch IPS 1080p @ 240Hz
512GB PCIe NVMe SSD storage
58Wh battery
10.01 x 14.23 x 0.9 inch dimensions
5.51 pound weight


  • +Excellent performance for the pricing 
  • +Adequate battery life 
  • +Space for two SSDs and one HDD


  • -Average CPU performance

During the GTX 10-series era, we adored Acer’s Predator Helios 300, and the current generation Helios continues to punch above its weight class when compared to rival $1,500 laptops. It isn’t the best gaming laptop, but it is one of the most cost-effective. The newest Helios features an RTX 3060 GPU and a smaller form factor without considerably increasing the price.

The Helios 300 sports a 144Hz screen and reduced bezels, making it more in line with the thin-and-lights than its previous generation’s bulkier brethren. The only significant flaw is the little SSD, but the laptop offers ports for two SSDs and an HDD, making storage upgrades as simple as picking up a screwdriver.

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17

The best gaming laptops

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17

CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX 
GPU: Nvidia RTX 3080 
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX 
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX 
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX 
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900H
DDR4-3200 RAM (up to 32GB)
17.3-inch 1080p @ 360Hz or 1440p @ 165Hz screen
Up to two 1TB M.2 SSDs can be used for storage.
90Wh battery
11.1 x 15.55 x 0.92 inch dimensions
5.95 pound weight


  • +Flashy but not obnoxious 
  • +Optomechanical keyboard 
  • +Quiet cooling 
  • +Incredible screen refresh rate 
  • +Extremely long battery life


  •  It has a 17-inch screen, which makes it somewhat huge

There’s no doubt that you can get a lot more sensible gaming laptop than the ROG Strix Scar 17, but there’s something about the ROG Strix Scar 17’s excesses that makes it immensely alluring. From the overclocked CPU—which is as monstrous as it gets—to the beautifully fast 360Hz screen, it feels like everything has been turned up to 11. Asus outperformed the competition in our gaming laptop benchmarks by a hair.

And it does it by topping the benchmarks of the finest gaming laptops, due in large part to the GeForce RTX 3080 at its heart. This is the 115W version of Nvidia’s highest Ampere GPU, meaning it can achieve results that slimmer computers can only dream of. You can also use Nvidia’s fantastic DLSS, if it’s enabled, to help you attain insane frame rates.

The 17-inch chassis also gives the components more breathing room than the competition, and when combined with the fantastic cooling system, you’ve got yourself a cool and quiet piece of gaming heaven. Because of the increased space, Asus was able to include an optomechanical keyboard onto the Scar 17, which is ideal for gaming and other important tasks.

Frequently Asked Questions about Gaming Laptops

What is the most crucial aspect of a gaming laptop?

When it comes to gaming, the graphics card is the apparent answer, but things have recently gotten a little more difficult. Because GPU performance is now so reliant on cooling, it’s important to know what watts a graphics card can handle and what chassis it can fit into.
As previously stated, an RTX 3080 crammed into an 18mm chassis will perform significantly worse than one housed in a much larger case with more area for high-performance cooling.

Should I be concerned about the CPU on a gaming laptop?

What you want to do with your laptop will determine this. An AMD Ryzen chip with 8 cores and 16 threads will allow you to do a lot of work on the road, but it won’t help you much in terms of gaming. That’s one of the reasons Intel released the Tiger Lake H35 processors; they’re quad-core, 8-thread CPUs with a high clock speed to give high-end gaming performance when partnered with the RTX 3070.

What is the optimal screen size for a gaming laptop?

This will, without a doubt, have the biggest impact on the build you choose. The size of your laptop is largely determined by the size of your screen. A 13-inch display will be a thin-and-light ultrabook, but a 17-inch display will very certainly be a workstation. You’re looking at the most common size of gaming laptop screen, which is 15 inches.

Is it worthwhile to invest in high-refresh-rate displays for laptops?

While you can’t ensure your RTX 3060 will achieve 300 frames per second in the latest games, you’ll notice a difference in overall look and feel when using a 300Hz monitor.

Should I buy a laptop with a 4K display?

Nah. 4K gaming laptops are overkill; they’re fine for video editing with 4K footage, but they’re not the best option for gaming. Because of the usual 1080p resolution, even slower mobile GPUs can almost always achieve high frame rates, while 1440p panels are steadily making their way into laptop lineups.
A 1440p screen is the ideal combination of high resolution and good gaming performance. A 4K notebook, on the other hand, will overwork your GPU and strain your eyes as you squint at your 15-inch display.

Where are the AMD graphics-card-equipped laptops?

We’ll take your guess as good as ours. The RX 5000-series cards were available in a few gaming laptop SKUs, although they were scarce. However, AMD has stated that the RX 6000 and Big Navi mobile GPUs will be available in gaming laptops in the first part of this year, but we have yet to see them in the labs.

Digg deep!


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