Are you looking to buy a new gaming laptop? But unsure what type of hardware configuration you should get to play your favourite games at the highest settings?
Well, rest assured you are in safe hands as our team have devised a buying guide which will assist you to get the best laptop for gaming;
Prioritize Your Gaming Requirement
First, you need to decide what type of games you are trying to play, whether it is high-graphics games, competitive games or regular games with the minimal requirement. Prioritizing is crucial as it will allow you to decide which type of hardware you should choose and how much money you should spend. If you are eyeing all the top-end titles at maximum settings, then you need to look for laptops with top specifications that can handle those games. Or do you just want to spend your leisure time playing games and don’t mind playing in low to medium settings? Then a budget gaming model would suffice your need.
CPU plays a crucial factor in deciding the gaming experience you will get from your laptop, and you need to choose wisely depending upon your requirement. You need to make sure you have a powerful CPU of Intel or AMD to handle some intense non-GPU gaming works. If Sekiro, Devil May Cry 5, Resident Evil 5, Ghost Recond: Wildlands is your priority then look for an Intel Core i5, Intel Core i7, AMD Ryzen 5 or AMD Ryzen 7 processors. In addition to single-player games, these CPUs will also come in handy for people who want to indulge themselves in competitive games. However, if you are only looking for a casual gaming session and not a hardcore one, then we recommended going for AMD Ryzen 3 or Intel Core i3 processors.
Well, you can consider GPU as the heart of gaming laptops, and it will decide how much fps you will get from your AAA gaming titles. You can’t expect a GPU like NVIDIA 1050 or RX 540 to provide you with high fps in ultra settings of any high-end game. You need to be careful with the GPU choice depending upon your requirement.
To play AAA titles or competitive games at high to ultra-high settings and get high fps, you need to choose high-end GPUs. GPUs like NVIDIA GTX 1070, RX 2060, GTX 1080, RX 2070, RX 2080 or AMD RX 580X, RX 580, Vega 10, Vega 8, R9 M485X etc. would be sufficient for your requirement.
However, if your demand is more into casual gaming and entertainment, then stick to budget to mid-range GPUs as they will get the job done easily at an affordable price. For this type of requirement, GPUs like NVIDIA GTX 1060, GTX 1050ti, GTX 1050, GTX 1650 or AMD RX 560, RX 550, RX 540, R7 M465X, R7 M465 etc. would be ideal. These can comfortably play most of the games in low to medium settings with adequate fps.
With a powerful GPU and high-end CPU, you will need to have an excellent display that delivers exceptional visual quality. Never compromise on the display and the resolution, because it would be worthless to have a high-end configuration laptop coupled with a crappy HD screen. For a high-end configuration choose an LED or OLED screen with 1080p, 1440p or 4K resolution. These resolutions will not only offer striking details of your games but will also get the best of your gaming scenes. Although for competitive games, Full HD or 2K resolution is more than sufficient.
Make sure it has a response time as low as possible (1ms preferable) and a high refresh rate as it will ensure that you will be greeted with buttery-smooth gaming visuals. Nowadays many laptops come with NVIDIA G-Sync or AMD FreeSync technology – whose main job is to shed all screen-tearing, ghosting, artifacts, input lag, and motion blur issue. So it would be an excellent decision to get one of those technologies depending upon your GPU choice. We would recommend you to go for Full HD resolution and low response time even if you are only up for casual gaming. A good display will also come in handy for a good movie session.
When it comes to fluidic gaming performance, you also need a faster storage option as standard low RPM HDD won’t cut it. You need to choose a laptop with SSD especially modern PCIe SSDs that delivers an exceptional data transfer rate. A faster SSD will not only boost up the gaming load time but will also allow the game to fetch data as fast as possible. It would be best to opt for a 125GB, 256GB or 512GB SSD along with 1TB HDD storage as it will offer tons of storage options. Although if you not up for SSD, then you should get a 1TB HDD with 7200rpm speed as it will get the job done.
It may not seem like a necessary factor but trust us, without good sound output you won’t get excellent gaming experience. Always check whether your laptop is coming with a good sound card or not because it dictates the audio quality you will get through the headphone or inbuilt speaker. Along with the sound driver, you should also check whether it has the assistance of good audio software.
You need to have a large RAM size with high RAM speed so that your laptop won’t slow down when under heavy load. 8GB RAM with 1800Mhz RAM frequency serves as the minimum threshold when you are getting a high-end GPU and CPU. Even low to mid-range configuration, getting an 8GB RAM would be a smart decision. However, you can also get 16GB, or higher RAM size with 3000Mhz RAM speed would be a bonus for you if you are planning for graphics design work along with hardcore gaming.
In addition to other factors, you should also look into the type of keyboard that your gaming laptop has on offer. There are chances you will get a mechanical keyboard when choosing a high-end gaming laptop as they will assist you to get the finest movement of characters. However, if you are not getting a mechanical model, a keyboard with low millimetre key travel, anti-ghosting, and high actuation will work best.
Last but not least is the brand factor, and it is always smart not to emphasize the brand name. Always look for a laptop that is offering you all the required specification rather than sticking to one brand. However, it is still safe to stick to brands like Samsung, Dell, Lenovo, Asus, MSI, Razer, Aorus, Acer, and HP, as you can be assured that you won’t be duped in terms of reliability.
Check out Engadget’s short video on how to buy a gaming laptop below:
You want to make sure you’re looking at the overall computer when buying a gaming laptop. While the main specs are important, you also want to be on the lookout for a good CPU, powerful display and large enough RAM. Follow our above guide to ensure you buy the best laptop for your gaming needs.