[Top 11] Best Gaming Laptop Under $1500 and $1300

| Last Updated: April 16, 2022

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Surely, we can all agree that the GPU is the cornerstone of any great gaming rig.

To find the best gaming laptop under $1500, our main focus was on the GPU first and foremost. Secondly, we wanted to make sure the display was strong enough to match the great frame rates your gaming rig is pumping out. Of course, we looked at other factors as well, but wanted to describe our main methodology for our ratings.

We recently featured the best gaming laptops under $1000. We were able to showcase a few laptops that we considered to be great considering the processor and the GPU those machines have. For this review, we are going to talk about some laptops that can provide the power most gamers are looking for.

Now, there are many laptops out there with the price tag under both $1300 and $1500. However, we were looking for something with the power to provide higher frame rates.

Comparison of the Best Gaming Laptop Under $1500 and $1300

  • Comes with Windows 10
  • 16GB DDR4 Memory
  • 7th Generation Intel Core i7
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  • 7th gen intel core i7 processor
  • No optical drive
  • 17.3" FHD IPS ani-glare display
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  • 2.8GHz clock speed
  • 16Gb installed memory
  • Intel core i7 quad-core processor
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  • 15.6" FHD display
  • Duo-copper thermal module w/ dual cooling fans
  • inetl core i7 processor
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  • DDR4 SDRAM memory
  • 1TB hard drive
  • 15.6" LCD display
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  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 GDDR5 GPU
  • Fullsized backlit keyboard
  • 2 year warranty
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  • 7th gen intel core i7-770HQ quad core processor
  • Built-in backlighting for keyboard
  • Compatible with 4.0 Bluetooth
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Intel i7-7700HQ CPU

Before we proceed with the review, we want to talk about how well the i7-7700HQ CPU performs, since all the laptops we reviewed contain this processor (along with our under $1000 computers, as well).

The i7-7700HQ is the 7th generation i7 processor, based on Kaby Lake architecture. It is the successor to the i7-6700HQ based on Sky Lake. It has four cores and eight threads.

Acer Predator 17

The base frequency for the i7-7700HQ processor is 2.8 GHz and can reach 3.8 GHz with turbo (Avg. 3.45 GHz).

As for maximum RAM clock speed support, the i7-7700HQ supports 2400 MHz.

GPU Power

If we look at our list of best gaming laptops under $1000, you’ll notice that the dedicated graphics cards installed are GTX1050 and GTX1050 Tis. Such graphics cards are okay when it comes to gaming. If you are to compare them with older GTX960s, of course, you’ll see a big difference.

The GTX1050 Ti can already give you decent frame rates, and with these graphics cards, you can set your video to high and still enjoy a good gaming experience. This is the reason we recommend under $1000 laptops for budget-focused gamers.

Now, with the best gaming laptops under $1,500, you can really get butter-smooth graphics and even set your video settings to ultra.

On this list, we have laptops with GTX 1060s installed in them. Benchmark-wise there is an enormous difference between graphics cards. We are going to focus on the differences between the GTX 1050 Ti and the GTX 1060.

The GTX 1050 Ti surprisingly has a faster base core clock speeds compared to the GTX 1060. The  clock speed of the GTX 1050 Ti has 1493 MHz while the GTX 1060 has 1405 MHz.

However, if you look at the boost core, the GTX 1050 Ti only has 1620 MHz compared to 1670 MHz in the GTX1060.

Not only that, there is a significant gap between the CUDA cores of these two graphics cards. The GTX 1050 Ti just has 768, while the GTX1060 has 1280.

When it comes to memory bandwidth and capacity, the GTX1050 Ti has 112.1 GB/s of bandwidth and 4 GB size. On the other hand, the GTX1060 offers 192.2 GB/s and 6 GB memory. The GTX1050 Ti is 128-bit, and the GTX1060 is 192-bit.

So, performance-wise, looking at 3d Mark Firestrike results, the GTX1050 Ti has a score of 7757 while the GTX1060 scored 11022.

That’s a big difference.


We haven’t spent much time looking at the bloatware (if any) on these computers. Sure it’s annoying, but if you want to easily remove all the extras that were installed beyond the clean Windows 10 – then do something called a “fresh start”.

A great how-to website on all things computer is How to Geek and they have a walkthrough here.

Enough about numbers and results. Let’s take a look at the laptops we found available for your budget. With this, here are the best gaming laptops under $1500.

Review of the Best Gaming Laptop Under $1500

1. Acer Predator Helios 300

  • 15. 6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED-backlit IPS display, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 with 6...
  • 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad Core Processor (2. 8GHz Up to 3. 8GHz), 32GB DDR4...
  • 2 x USB 3. 0, 2 x USB 2. 0, 1 x HDMI, 1 x Headphone output/Microphone input combo, 10/100/1000...

The base model of this laptop was featured on our list of the best gaming laptops under $1000. This gaming laptop is again on this list.

The Predator Helios 300 -G3-571-77QK, is a gaming laptop with a screen size of 15.6” and is powered by a dedicated graphics card from NVIDIA. Also installed on this laptop is a 6 GB DDR5 GeForce GTX1060. This gives this laptop superb frame rates when playing games.

The Helios 300 has a Kaby Lake based processor, the i7-7700HQ. It has a base clock speed of 2.8 GHz and 3.8 GHz with turbo. This laptop variant comes in with max RAM, installed is a 32 GB DDR4 2400 MHz, that’s two sticks of 16 GBs of RAM. This minimizes bottlenecks during intense gaming sessions and when working on several applications at the same time. Talk about getting the bang for your buck.

There are some downsides to this gaming laptop. First, the Helios 300 G3-571-77QK only has one hard drive, which is a 256 GB M.2 SSD. You are limited to the amount of data and applications due to small storage. There are reports that the display is a bit on the dim side. Not to mention, there’s a bit of a gap between the base and the monitor. And the speakers are mounted at the bottom. The only problem you can resolve is the storage. We showed some fairly-priced hard drives you can use as a secondary drive for your gaming rig.

On the plus side, this gaming laptop has an above-average battery life. It has a four-cell Li-Ion 48Whr 3220 mAh battery that can run for up to seven hours. This is with 50% brightness and typical usage of browsing through Wi-Fi. Under full load with a game though, expect lower results.

The Helios 300 also has several ports that most laptops need on a daily basis. It has an HDMI, two USB 2.0 Ports, a USB 3.0 Port, one USB 3.1 Gen 1, and an RJ-45 for wired connection. It has 802.11ac / BT 4.0 for its wireless connectivity. A good addition to its ports would be a Thunderbolt 3 port and mini display ports.

This gaming laptop weighs 5.95 lbs and measures 10.5 x 15.3 x 1.1 in. This laptop also has a very game-centric design. It has Chiclet keys that are backlit with red LEDs. One surpising feature is the ASUS ROG and the Predator Helios 300 almost have the same top lid design. The only differences between them are the logo and the length of the line that serves as an accent.

As you will see, the trend of many of the gaming laptops on this list is that the monitor has a disappointing 60 Hz refresh rate. With a GTX1060 at the helm, there is a good chance some of the games you play will produce higher FPS rates than 60. Unless you plan on getting a great gaming monitor to use as your primary screen – this is a frustrating theme for the bottom ranks.


  • Display: 15.6" Full HD 1920 x 1080 IPS Wide viewing angle anti-glare display LCD | Features:...
  • Processor: 7th Gen Intel Quad Core i7-7700HQ (2.8-3.8GHz) | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 GDDR5...

Who is Gigabyte? They are a Taiwanese-based company, well-known for their high-performance motherboards. But their success in creating great laptops is no secret to the gaming community. The P55WV7-KL3 is one of Gigabyte’s masterpieces.

This gaming laptop is equipped with a powerful processor based on Kaby Lake architecture. It can reach 3.80 GHz with turbo and works well with most modern game titles, supporting a high-performance graphics card. Though the i7-7700HQ has a built-in Intel HD Graphics 630, it has a 6 GB DDR5 Dedicated GTX1060. This makes sure you get the best graphics settings when playing your games.

This gaming laptop has dual drives, a 256GB SSD and a 7200RPM 1TB hard drive. File storage won’t be a problem with this rig, that’s for sure!

The P55W V7 has a 15.6” IPS display that allows you to get crisp display up to 178 degrees. This gaming laptop has a Chiclet keyboard that is backlit with customizable RGB lights. It measures 14.92 x 10.59 x 1.1 inches and weighs 5.7lbs.

Ports, ports, ports. This gaming laptop has all the ports you need except for a Thunderbolt 3. It has an RJ45 10/100/1000 Mbps (LAN) for your wired connection, three USB 3.0 Ports, one USB 3.1 Type-C Port. It also has one HDMI, one HDMI 2.0, a mini display port, a mic-in and a headphone-out (Audio-in Combo). It even has an SD card reader. However, like most laptops, it does not have an optical drive. This gaming laptop uses Integrated Intel® Wireless-AC N1535 LAN + Bluetooth™ 4.1 M.2 for wireless connections.

This gaming laptop has a Chiclet, RGB backlit keyboard. Battery life is below average for this gaming laptop, while using Wi-Fi and 50% brightness, you barely get four hours. So it’s a bit of a con that cannot be resolved easily. Another thing is that when this is under heavy loads, the fans can be a bit noisy. Well, that’s because this gaming laptop only uses a single fan to cool off your rig.

Considering the specs  of this gaming laptop, it is still fairly priced.

Best Small Form Laptop

The Phantom is aptly named – we chose this laptop for being lightweight and powerful.

3. MSI GS43VR Phantom Pro

  • Display: 14.3" Full HD | Non Reflection eDP IPS Level 1920x1080 | Operating System: Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-7700HQ (2.8-3.8GHz)

MSI’s GS43VR Phantom Pro-069 is the lightest gaming laptop we have on our list finding the best gaming laptop under $1500, at just 3.7 lbs. So, there is no question about its portability. It can fit in almost any laptop carrying bag since it only measures 13.6 in x 9.6 in x 0.9 in.

They installed the SteelSeries keyboard with a red backlight on this laptop. Due to its size, they had to make the keyboard compact, thus, the arrow keys are smaller than the other keys, and it only has 83 keys.

It’s a light, compact gaming laptop. But the performance it brings is amazing. It can go toe-to-toe with any gaming laptop within its price range. The GS43VR has an i7-7700HQ 2.8 GHz processor, the RAM is 16 GB DDR4 2400M Hz. And it has a VR-Ready 6 GB DDR5 GeForce GTX1060 from NVIDIA, making this laptop really beefy.

The primary storage is a bit smaller than the P55W V7 and the Helios 300, it only has a 128 GB SSD, but it has a 1TB 7200 RPM secondary drive. Connections of all sorts are possible since the GS43VR features all kinds of ports. It has an RJ45 LAN port, an HDMI port, a microphone input, a headphone/SPDIF combo jack, a USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 port, a mini display port, and two USB 3.0 ports. A wireless connection is also not a problem since it has Killer Wireless-AC 1535 and Bluetooth 4.1 installed in it.

This gaming laptop’s battery life is about average. During normal use of browsing using Wi-Fi, it can go up to five hours. It gets its juice from a four-cell Li-Ion 61Wh battery. If we put it head to head with similarly sized gaming laptops like the Razer Blade (14”) and the Alienware 13 R3, the MSI is still a better option. The other two laptops are much more expensive.

If you’re looking for a compact laptop, this is the best one to get for under $1500.

4. ASUS ROG Strix GL502VM

  • Latest-generation NVIDIA GTX 1060 6GB Graphics Card, Intel Core i7-7700HQ Processor, 2.8GHz (6M...
  • 16GB DDR4 2400MHz RAM, 128GB SATA III SSD + 1TB HDD

ASUS is at it again. The ASUS ROG Strix GL502VM gaming laptop is somewhat an entry level for the best gaming laptops under $1500 with G-Sync capabilities. Like all the laptops featured earlier, this gaming laptop from ASUS has an i7-7700HQ 2.8 GHz Processor, backed up by 16 GB DDR4 2400 MHz RAM.

The GL502VM is a sister model of the GL502VS. However, this model is slimmer, it measures 10.5 x 15.4 x 0.9 inches and weighs 4.9 lbs. It is thin and light and can easily fit inside a carrying bag. Not to mention, it won’t strain your shoulders carrying it around, even for hours.

This gaming laptop has a 15.6” IPS panel with G-Sync, so frame rates are expected to be solid.
The GL502VM does not have an integrated GPU and display is powered by a 6 GB DDR5 GeForce GTX1060. Together with the G-sync capability of the screen, you get smooth graphics, even on ultra settings.

The overall design of this gaming laptop screams “I am a gaming laptop”. The keyboard is Chiclet-type with scissor switches and has red backlighting. The WASD keys are highlighted orange, which gives accent to the whole keyboard. It is a full-size keyboard with the number pad included.

The casing is made of aluminum, and the top lid has a brushed metal finish. Like other ROG series laptops, it has the Republic of Gamers logo on the top lid. The bottom of the laptop is made of plastic, with vents to help the dual fans of this laptop cool the entire system.

A standard drive is installed on the GL502VM but in this variant from Amazon, it comes with a 128 GB SSD as the primary drive while the secondary drive is a 1 TB 7200RPM 2.5” hard drive.

As mentioned earlier, this model has 16 GB DDR4 2400 MHz, the laptop can support a maximum of 32 GB. However, upgrading the memory of this laptop is going to be a pain. You will need to remove all the screws on the back panel and unscrew the motherboard itself, since the other SODIMM port is hidden under the opposite side of the motherboard.

Other than that, this laptop is okay. Yt connects wirelessly through its 802.11ac Wi-Fi 2×2 and Bluetooth 4.1. You also have several ports on this laptop, like one HDMI 2.0 Port, a mini display port, one USB 3.1-Type C (Gen 2), a headphone-out and audio combo jack, and an RJ45 LAN jack, if you want to go wired.

Certainly, it is an excellent choice if you’re looking to save some dollars.

5. Alienware AW15R3-7001SLV-PUS

  • This refurbished product is tested and certified to look and work like new. The refurbishing...

Dell decided to launch gaming laptop under a different brand name, thus the rise of Alienware. Though nowadays, you’ll see Dell’s laptops with “Gaming” in their models, Alienware is somewhat on a different level.

The AW15R3-7001SLV-PUS is packed with the i7-7700HQ, along with 16 GB DDR4 2400 MHz, 8 GB on each slot. Its GPU is a 6 GB DDR5 GeForce GTX1060 that is VR ready.

If you think all that sounds pretty common, well, think again. The screen is a 15.6” IPS panel that has G-Sync capabilities. Along with the GTX1060, you get buttery smooth gaming experience with the highest frame rates, without the ghosting and screen tear.

It’s not all roses with the screen though. At only 60 Hz, you’re limiting the power of the GTX1060, as it should get higher than 60 fps on many games.

And there’s no stopping this monster from delivering high-performance. This gaming laptop has dual drives, including its primary drive, which is a 512 GB PCI-E SSD, and a secondary drive, which is a 1 TB 7200RPM hard disk. That’s more than enough space for your files and applications.

The design of the laptop has gaming written all over it. It is colored silver with a black edge and a spiderman logo. Just kidding. It has the famous Alienware logo and grooves that look like an inverted letter “Y,” by using your imagination, it looks like a spaceship’s hatch.

It measures 12 x 15.3 x 1 inches and weighs 7.69 lbs. It is going to be a challenge bringing this around in a backpack. It has the Alienware TactX keyboard installed, with full tenkey and RGB backlighting. It uses AlienFX to customize how your keyboard lights up, as well as other functions for your gaming laptop.

Under normal usage, browsing the web on Wi-Fi with 50% brightness, you’ll get seven hours running on battery. The AW15R3-7001SLV-PUS uses the Killer DoubleShot Pro through its Killer Gigabyte Ethernet and the Killer 802.11AC 2×2 dual-band wireless adapter. This technology utilizes both wired and wireless connections at the same time.

Ports included in this laptop are; the RJ-45 Killer Networks e2400 Gigabit Ethernet Port for wired connection. You also get a type-A SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Port, one type-A SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Port with PowerShare technology. There is also a type-C SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Port, a Thunderbolt™ 3 Port (USB type-C™ with support for SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps, 40 Gbps Thunderbolt, and display port). It also has the Alienware Graphics Amplifier Port, 1 HDMI 2.0 output, a mini-display port 1.2 (certified) output for external display connection.

Additionally, there's an audio out 1/8″ port (compatible with inline mic headset), 1 headphone 1/8″ port (re-programmable for microphone/line-in analog audio input),1 Noble lock port (cable and lock sold separately). This laptop covers all your wired connection needs. It also has Bluetooth 4.1 for your wireless file transfers and connecting to other Bluetooth devices.

The only con for this laptop is the loud fan noise once you start playing. Aside from that, you can’t complain about how this machine performs.

6. Alienware AW17R4-7002SLV-PUS

  • 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ (Quad-Core, 6MB Cache, up to 3.8GHz w/ Turbo Boost)
  • 8GB DDR4 at 2400MHz included; 32GB Maximum
  • 1TB 7200RPM SATA HDD; No Optical Drive

The AW15 R3 and the AW17 R4 have identical specifications except for the screen size and weight, and the R4 has a 120 Hz monitor. This gaming laptop from Alienware comes with an i7-7700HQ processor capable of getting speeds up to 3.8 GHz with turbo.

It has a 17.3” G-Sync IPS panel, so you get good, clear images from any angle up to 178 degrees. It is powered by a dedicated graphics card; the GTX1060 which is VR ready and has 6GB DDR5. Hold on tight because this gaming laptop is about to blow your mind when used in gaming.

Finally, a gaming laptop that can use the GTX1060’s higher frame rates and not be restricted to a 60 Hz screen – 120 Hz is a very nice feature.

There are a few cons with this variant; the AW15 R3 reviewed earlier has 512 GB SSD and 16 GB of RAM. For this AW17 R4, it only has a 1TB 7200RPM hard drive and 8 GB of RAM. If you wish to upgrade, then its price will be over $1500. But that’s just a small amount to pay for a high-performing gaming laptop with a big screen.

Since this has a bigger screen, you’ll get a shorter battery life compared to the AW15 R3. You can get five hours from the battery while browsing using Wi-Fi. 

This gaming laptop is expensive, considering it lacks some bits and pieces it really needs especially for the memory and storage. You can get similar laptops for a much lower price.

Although other products won't offer all the ports that are included in the AW15 R3 and AW17 R4. These have all the ports you can think of. It has the RJ-45 port with Killer Networks e2400 Gigabit Ethernet adapter, a type-A SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Port, one type-A SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Port with PowerShare technology. You also get a type-C SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Port and a Thunderbolt™ 3 Port (USB type-C™ with support for SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps, 40 Gbps Thunderbolt, and display port).

It also has the Alienware Graphics Amplifier Port. For external display you can use the HDMI 2.0 output and the mini-display Port 1.2 (certified) output. For your private listening or for when you want just to stay quiet, you have an audio out 1/8″ port (compatible with inline mic headset), and a headphone 1/8″ port (retaskable for microphone/line-in analog audio input). And to secure it you have a Noble lock port (cable and lock sold separately).

The outside appearance of the AW15 R3 and the AW17 R4 are identical, with the same hatch-like look with the Alienware logo, and weighs 9.7lbs. It looks nice, has the gaming feel all over it, and can perform well. 

If you’re going to connect your laptop to an external monitor for gaming, and for some reason, the screen size isn’t important to you – the R3 is your better bet.

7. Acer Predator 17

  • 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ Processor (Up to 3.8GHz)
  • 17.3" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen IPS display with NVIDIA G-SYNC technology
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 with 8 GB of dedicated GDDR5 VRAM

This is a gaming laptop from a company who’s been creating high-performance machines of all sorts. From office and general use to high-powered gaming rigs. Acer first released their Predator lineup back 2008 for desktop computers, from that point, they developed laptops of similar capabilities.

Now the Acer Predator 17 is here to conquer the under $1500 category. This beast is a fast and powerful gaming laptop within this price range. It showcases portable components that give its gaming prowess.

The Predator 17 is powered by a Kaby Lake processor, the Intel i7-7700HQ with top clock speed of 3.8 GHz with turbo boost. It has a 16 GB DDR4 2400 MHz that can still be upgraded to a maximum of 64 GB. With these two components, it can already go toe to toe with the top brands of gaming laptops like the Alienware 17 and ASUS GL702VM. But the Predator 17 has a slight advantage when it comes to the maximum supported memory.

It is bulky and heavy, but that’s expected of a serious gaming laptop. It is 12.66 x 16.65 x 1.56 in and weighs 9.26lbs. It has a 17.3” IPS monitor with a 75 Hz refresh rate; it also has native G-Sync support to ensure that your GPU and monitor is in sync, achieving solid frame rates even with modern game titles. Of course, the monitor with G-Sync is not enough; you need a powerful GPU to feed your need for great graphics. Installed is a 6 GB DDR5 Geforce GTX1060 from Nvidia.

This laptop has gaming written all over it, the top lid has two red lines with the Predator logo. It has a brushed metal finish, as well and has oversized air vents to make sure the system stays cool. The keyboard is not fully mechanical, it’s the same as most gaming laptops from other manufacturers. The main keyboard has programmable macros and the backlight is red. The number pad is backlit with blue LED lighting.

When it comes to ports and connectivity, it has its own set of artillery. For wired and wireless connections it utilizes the Killer DoubleShot Pro technology. Installed in the Predator 17 is the Killer Wireless-AC 1535 802.11ac Wi-Fi featuring 2×2 MU-MIMO technology (Dual-Band 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz) – in tests reaching ~85 MB/s.

It also has the Killer Ethernet E2400 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet LAN (RJ-45 port). The DoubleShot Pro allows you to use wired and wireless connections simultaneously. It simply redirects latency sensitive applications to use the Gigabit transfer of the wired connection, and other applications use the wireless connection. Simply put, your game stays lag-free online.

There are still other ports installed in this gaming laptop; it has a Thunderbolt 3 (Full USB 3.1 Type C) port, four USB 3.0 ports (one with power-off charging), an HDMI 2.0 port with HDCP Support, and a display 1.3 port. You can also connect to Bluetooth devices through the Bluetooth 4.1 installed in it. It also has an SD-Card reader.

Storage is not going to be a problem. Although it only has 128GB M.2 SSD for the primary drive, you can still utilize the 1 TB 7200RPM secondary drive. You can just put all the applications that need faster load times on the SSD, and you are good to go.

This laptop has an eight-cell Li-Ion 6000 mAh, and can run for three hours with full load before needing to plug it into a charger. Powerful components produce heat, especially during intense gaming sessions. The Acer Predator 17 has an optional third fan bundled with it so you can swap out the Blueray drive and put in an extra fan for a cooler system. Who needs an optical drive anyway?

The Predator bests the R4 above by being a little lighter (more plastic though), having an SSD, and more RAM.

Again though, if you’re not concerned with screen size, and want a laptop that’s a little smaller – get the R3 we featured.

If you take a look at all the components it has, hands-down it’s a top pick for our best gaming laptop under $1500.

Best Gaming Laptop Under $1300 


ASUS has been creating great machines in the electonics field. They even have the ROG series for your gaming needs. The ASUS FX502VM is different,and  just like the V15 Nitro it does not look like a gaming laptop. But unlike the V15 Nitro, it has a brushed metal finish for the top lid that is a bit contoured like the hood of a car.

It has that rugged look but not enough to say it is a gaming laptop. It measures 15.4 x 10.5 x 0.9 in, weighing just 4.9 lbs. You can get it in your backpack easily since it is still compact and ultra-light. It has Chiclet keys with scissor switches and a red backlight. The WASD keys are highlighted, so it still has that gaming identity to it.

It does not have an optical drive, but provides its users with dual storage. The 128 GB SSD is not that spacious, but it has a faster secondary drive than the V15 Nitro with its 1TB 7200 RPM hard drive. So your load times for your OS is fast, and files are safe. And still, you have enough storage on your secondary drive for all your games and other files.

It has a 15.6” TN panel for its monitor, so viewing angles are not great, along with less color production. However, a TN panel will provide higher response times than an IPS panel.

It has 3 GB DDR5 GTX 1060 installed on it as well, which is impressive for its price. On the negative side, 3 GB are not going to be good with memory-hungry games. Not to mention , the slight decrease in its performance compared to the 6 GB GTX1060.

Out of the box, this has 16 GB DDR4 2133 MHz for memory and can be expanded to 24 GB 2133 MHz. That's not a huge expansion,  considering the i7-7700HQ installed in this laptop can support up to 64 GB memory.

You get most of the ports you need; the headphone/microphone combo jack, RJ45 for LAN connection, an HDMI port, a mini display port, and 3 x USB 3.0 ports. For wireless connection, it has 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.1.

Battery life for this gaming laptop is not that bad, it can run up to five hours on battery (min brightness, Wi-Fi off) before you need to grab a charger.

Acer Aspire V 15 Nitro Black Edition

Tamed design, with monster performance in a 15-inch screen

  • 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ Processor (Up to 3.8GHz)
  • 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen IPS display
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 with 6 GB of dedicated GDDR5 VRAM

The Acer Aspire V15 Nitro Black Edition is a laptop that does not really scream gaming. You can go to Starbucks and other places without worrying that you’ll stand out much. It does not have that fancy red and black scheme that most gaming laptops have, it has a more professional look, which makes it good for people working or still going to school but would like something to use for gaming, as well.

The V15 Nitro has a Kaby Lake based processor, the i7-7700HQ, with 3.8 GHz clock speeds running on turbo. This gaming laptop has 16 GB of RAM complementing its powerful processor and can support up to 32 GB of RAM with clock speeds of 2400 MHz DDR4.

This lineup has been successful since 2015, and with the 2017 version, it comes with a lot of improvements which make it worth being on this list.

This gaming laptop has a 15.6” IPS screen, so expect a crisp, vivid display with excellent viewing angles. The older V15 Nitro has GTX 9XX graphics card, and with this laptop, they made sure the upgrade is equal to its price tag; Acer installed a 6 GB DDR5 GTX 1060 to complement the monitor. For networking, it has a 10/100 Gigabit Ethernet port, and for wireless communication, it has 802.11ac 2×2 MU-MIMO and Bluetooth 4.0.

Other essential and necessary ports are included in this gaming laptop, it has two USB 3.0 Ports (One with Power-off Charging), two USB 2.0 ports, an HDMI port with HDCP support and the best part is, it has a Thunderbolt 3 (full USB 3.1 type-C).

The Acer V15 Nitro BE measures 10.47 x 15.39 x 0.98 in and weighs 5.51 lbs. You can carry it anywhere with ease, it can fit in most laptop sleeves or bags without any issues. Being slim has its downside though, this gaming laptop does not have an optical drive (with digital copies of games, who really needs one?).

Storage for this gaming laptop is huge, it has dual drives installed, the primary hard drive is a 256 GB SSD, and it has a 1 TB 5400 HDD as a secondary drive.

Most people are not fond of a slow hard drive, but one can easily get a 7200 RPM drive or even another SSD.
Using this laptop with minimum brightness without the use of Wi-Fi, this laptop can run up to six hours on battery. However, if you are playing games with max settings, expect that this number will decrease drastically.

Audio quality is good since it has four built-in speakers powered by Acer TrueHarmony. It also has two fans to keep your system cool even when gaming. It has Chiclet keys that have a red backlight for that gaming feel. Though, there are reports that temperatures go up to 90C during intense gaming sessions. Also, the fans can be a bit loud.

The keys are a bit too crowded since it does not have space between them – but being a 15.6″ laptop, this is somewhat expected.

Overall, it is still a great laptop for general use and gaming, as well. It is a great machine in our best laptops under $1300.

ASUS GL753VE-DS74 Gaming Laptop

Big screen, great viewing angles at an affordable price

  • 7th-generation Intel Core i7 quad-core processor and with a discrete NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti...
  • ROG Strix GL753 features a 17.3-inch Full HD IPS-like panel with wide 178° viewing angles with...
  • 256GB SATA SSD + 1TB HDD for ideal balance of fastest OS-drive speeds and large storage space

This is another laptop from ASUS. The moment you see the GL753VE-DS74, you’ll immediately notice that it is a gaming laptop. The top lid has that familiar ROG logo with a brushed metal finish, and it does not stop there, the keyboard is Aura RGB backlit and the WASD keys are highlighted.

A little downside to it though, are the arrow keys. They are in  that awkward position of being placed a little bit lower than the control and space keys. ASUS used Chiclet keys with scissor switches, and has a nice tactile feedback to it.

Installed in this gaming laptop is a Kaby Lake based processor. The i7-7700HQ has a base frequency of 2.8 GHz and 3.8 GHz on turbo. This GL753 has 16 GB DDR4 2400 of RAM and can still be expanded to 32 GB.

The GL573 has enough storage for your files, as the OS is installed on the primary drive, which is a 256 GB M.2 SSD. This drive still has enough room for your files. If you are running low on storage, you can use the secondary 1 TB 7200RPM hard disk drive.

For connectivity and ports, you get almost every port you’d need. Almost, since you don’t have Thunderbolt 3 on this laptop. The GL753 has an RJ45 for your wired connection, an HDMI port, two USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 port type-C, and a headphone/mic combo jack on the left side of this gaming laptop. On the right, you have one USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0 port, and a Kensington lock port.

For wireless connection, this gaming laptop has a Bluetooth 4.0 and a 2×2 Dual Band 11AC WIFI ROG Game First IV XPLIT Broadcaster.

This is the only gaming laptop on our list to ever to have an optical drive, and it has an 8x DVDRW super combo. The SD card reader is located on the front near the trackpad.

Its ROG Overboost Cooling Single Fan Thermal System keeps your system cool, even during intense gaming sessions. It has two heat pipes going to the CPU and GPU for this laptop.

It has a 17.3” IPS screen, so not only do you get a big screen, you also get crisp, vivid display from almost all viewing angles. It may not have a GTX1060 for its GPU, but it still has enough power for gaming since it has a 4 GB GTX1050 Ti installed in it.

It’s a bit on the bulky side, since the dimensions for this laptop are 16.3 x 10.7 x 1.2 in. The weight is a decent six pounds, which isn’t bad, considering it’s a 17-inch screen (compared to our top choices in the under $1500 category where they weigh over nine pounds).

The battery life is not that long, it can only operate for up to five hours without a charge, though that’s a given, considering that it has a large screen.

Eluktronics N870HP6 Pro-X Premium Gaming Laptop

The brand may be unknown to many, but their laptops have specs to die for…Without the premium price.

  • 7th Gen Intel Core i7-7700HQ (2.8GHz/3.8GHz) Quad Core Processor, Genuine Windows 10 Home...
  • 6GB GDDR5 VRAM Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Graphics; 8GB DDR4 2400MHz RAM (1 Dimm)
  • 17.3" Full HD IPS 60Hz LED Anti-Glare Display (1920 x 1080); 1 HDMI; 2 Mini DisplayPorts; 1 USB...

Eluktronics’ N870HP6 Pro-X is a great gaming laptop. Well, it’s actually more on the inside rather than the outside. The design of the laptop is not that appealing to be called a gaming rig. But the specifications speak highly of its capability as a gaming laptop.

This gaming laptop has an i7-7700HQ with 8 GB DDR4 2400 MHz memory. The RAM can still be upgraded though, as Eluktronics only uses 1 DIMM slot out of the two available. It supports up to 32 GB DDR4 2400 MHz max.

It has a 17.3” IPS screen, supporting 1920×1080 (FHD) resolution. What’s great about their monitors is that you have a 30-day, no-dead-pixel guarantee to back it up. And it is powered by a 6 GB DDR5 GTX1060 dedicated graphics card.

We appreciated how they designed the N870HP6 to have a more subtle look to it, but still, with the angles and edges that still make it look like a gaming laptop. Another thing that can distinguish it as a gaming rig is the keyboard. This laptop has Chiclet keys that are RGB backlit.

This gaming laptop is not that portable. It measures 16.47 x 11.36 x 1.15″ and weighs 6.9 lbs, and it can still get heavier if you put another hard drive on its secondary hard drive bay.

You get two USB 3.0 ports, a USB 2.0, one USB 3.1 Gen 2 port (type-C), an HDMI (with HDCP), two mini display ports, a Gigabit Ethernet RJ45 port, a headphone jack, and a Microphone jack. For wireless connectivity, this gaming laptop has Intel Dual-Band Wireless-AC 8265 2×2 and Bluetooth 4.2.

The biggest upset to this laptop is the battery life, using Wi-Fi and setting brightness to 50%, you will only get up to three hours usage. If you are going to play games, then it cuts that to one-and-a-half hours.

Since we have some room on our $1300 cap, we thought it would be a better laptop if you upgrade its storage, here are some options to consider if you want better storage than the rest of the list:

Secondary SSD

Samsung EVO 850 500GB SSD. This has been rated Up to 540MB/s, and 520MB/s read and write speeds, and transfer speeds of up to 6 GB/s via SATA III. This is available on Amazon for under $150.

Secondary SSHD

Or you can sacrifice on the space and get a Seagate Momentus XT 750 GB 7200RPM SATA. This hard drive is a Solid State Hybrid Drive with 7200RPM. This Seagate ST750LX003 hybrid drive is under $110 on Amazon. See Seagate's Momentus 750GB Here

Secondary HD

You can also try a 1TB Western Digital Black Performance Mobile Hard Disk Drive – 7200 RPM SATA. This hard drive has transfer speeds of up to 6 GB/s with 32 MB cache, it is slim with only 9.5 mm thickness. The WD10JPLX is sold for under $70. See The WD 1 TB Hard Drive Here

Considering such an upgrade, you will be getting a better gaming machine no matter which of the above options you choose.


Gaming laptops have come a long way. Their specifications have improved and continue to improve as time passes. However, the additional benefit of being portable equates to reduced performance of its components. And of course, the price. 

If we are to compare the processor installed in the gaming laptops we reviewed to a high-end processor for laptops and a desktop processor, you’d see a very big difference in performance and pricing.

Another thing is that if you handpick your components when building a desktop, you have total control over the performance your build can achieve, unlike laptops, where you can only upgrade certain parts such as the memory and the hard drive. Other than these, all other components are somewhat dependent on the manufacturer.

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When the tech company I worked for restructured and I ended up jobless, I decided to put the wealth of knowledge and management skills to use somewhere new. I’d checked out a few buyer’s guides on the site in the past and reached out to the previous owner. A few months later, here we are. Now, I get to be behind the scenes, helping people find the best tech.