Are you an avid gamer looking for the best laptop for gaming that is currently available? If so, you’ve stumbled upon a great resource for figuring out what you need in a laptop in order to really dominate when you play. Advertisements for the best gaming laptop 2016 are rampant in today’s market, but not all models are created equally; and not all expensive models are necessarily better than their more affordable counter parts.
Depending upon what type of gaming you plan to engage in most frequently, you may need some very heavy duty internal hardware. On the other hand you may not need a ridiculously expensive graphics or video card; and may enjoy play without anything particularly fancy as far as equipment goes.
Things to Consider When Looking for a Gaming Laptop
Before you decide what you need, you should probably figure out what kind of gamer you are. There are three basic types of gaming; which are ultra-portable gaming, casual gaming, and hardcore gaming. Each tier of game play has different system requirements that are ideal for performance. The type of gamer you are will define what kind of gear you need, and how much you’ll need to spend in order to achieve the gaming performance that you’re looking for.
The main things you want to look for in a gaming laptop are:
- Audio Equipment. Many gaming laptops currently available come equipped with subs and tweeters to increase users experience; stepping away from the ‘flat’ sound of regular laptop speakers.
- Screen Quality. You want to make sure that your screen is at the very least Full HD. Anything less will take away from the shadowy scene visibility, contrast, and color quality.
- Heat. Laptops designed for gaming purposes are typically equipped with as many high-performance, high quality internal components as they can be within reason. You need to make sure that the fans are large and numerous enough to effectively cool your system while running the CPU and graphics card. If appropriate cooling isn’t provided, the system will over heat; causing damage to itself.
- Size. For hardcore gaming; you definitely want a decent sized screen so that you can see all of the action; something around 15” or larger. If you aren’t on the cutting edge of gaming updates however and are more concerned about portability, a more compact 11” might be the right system for you.
Top 10 Gaming Laptops Ultimate Chart
Three Types of Gaming Laptop
There are three basic types of gaming laptops; each of which has its own unique advantages. Before you spend a large sum of cash on your new system, you should be sure that you’re getting exactly what you need. Laptops are much more difficult to upgrade than personal computers are, so you want your system to come pre-equipped with everything it needs to maximize your gaming experience.
- Ultra-Portable Gaming. This type of gaming laptop is; as it says; ultra-portable, unlike the average gaming laptop. It is lighter in weight than the average gaming model, and is typically equipped with a smaller screen; usually 11 to 13”; making the overall product much more compact and east to store in a backpack or carrying case.
The ultra-portable gaming laptops tend to have longer battery life than their higher-end counterparts as well; mainly because they are not running as demanding of hardware. They do provide high quality gaming performance; as long as they are equipped with an internal optical device.
- Casual Gaming. This type of gaming laptop is pretty self-explanatory as well. This is the mid-range for gaming laptops. These systems are typically equipped with high-medium end hardware; decent cooling systems and are considerably larger than the average ultra-portable system. The average casual gaming laptop is 15 to 17”; which gives gamers a much better visual experience.
- Hardcore Gaming. Hardcore systems are designed for gamers that are unwilling to settle for anything less than the most current, absolute best laptop for gaming. Typically these gaming laptops are available in 17” and larger, but become increasingly expensive; and increasingly difficult to transport; as the size goes up. Hardcore gaming laptops are intended to be able to keep up with gaming software updates for a minimum of a couple of years.
Top 5 Best Laptop for Gaming Reviews
The Acer Aspire V17 Nitro is probably the best laptop for gaming if you do not want to spend several thousand dollars. It is an excellent choice for gamers that require a lot of power coupled with great graphics capabilities in order to run the latest gaming software.
In addition to the specs mentioned in the chart; this model is equipped with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 860M graphics coprocessor and a 2000 MB graphics card. It promises an impressive 4 hour battery life; and its 17.3” screen has a max resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. The installed operating system it is running is Windows 8.1; a great OS for gaming.
This model is also surprisingly light weight for its size and hardware; weighing in at only 6.6 lbs. Gamers searching for the best of both hardcore and casual gaming features are sure to be impressed with the Acer Aspire V17 Nitro; as it offers the best of both worlds.
The Apple MacBook Pro MD314LL/A is yet another great option for serious gamers who are on the go. Macs are notoriously well known for their beautiful screen displays, and intuitive interactive features. This model is a 13.3” full glass screen, with 1280 x 800 pixel resolution.
In addition to the internal specs that are listed in the chart above; this model is equipped with an Intel HD Graphics 3000 with 384 MB of DDR3 SDRAM; which is shared with the main memory. Like all of the Apple MacBook models, this laptop runs OS X Lion. This is accentuated with new Multi-Touch gesture capabilities; which allow users to more quickly and efficiently use touch screen features; an excellent feature to have on a gaming laptop.
The Acer C720 Chromebook is one of the best 11” (actually it’s an 11.6”) gaming laptops available. This model is a great choice for many reasons, but portability definitely tops the list of its great features. The Acer C720 only weighs 2.8 lbs. and is an incredibly slim, compact model that can easily be slipped into a small to medium sized bag or tote.
Few gaming laptops provide this much portability alongside a reasonable battery life; but the Acer C720 boasts a battery life of up to 8.5 hours! It is equipped with an Intel HD Graphics coprocessor with 128 MB of RAM. While that isn’t enough power for a hardcore gamer, it does meet the requirements for casual gaming; as well as dominating the ultra-portable gaming tier.
The Toshiba CB35 Chromebook 2 is another good ultra-portable gaming laptop. In addition to the internal specs mentioned above, it is equipped with a basic Intel HD graphics card; which does well with browser games and other low-demand 2D games.
The Toshiba CB35 Chromebook 2 only weighs 3 lbs. making it incredibly easy to carry around with you so that you can game on the go. It has an incredible battery life of 9 hours on average; making it an even more attractive option for many busy, on-the-go gamers.
The MSI GT70 Dominator is a lower-end hardcore gaming capable laptop. It boasts a nice large 17.3” full HD screen with a max resolution of 1920 x 1080. This larger sized laptop comes in a much heavier package than the other laptops we’ve listed in this guide, weighing in at 8.6 lbs. It is definitely hardcore gaming friendly however; making the weight less of a deal breaker for gamers that want to travel with their laptops frequently.
In addition to the internal specs mentioned above, it is equipped with an NVIDIA Geforce GTX870M graphics coprocessor with 3000 MB RAM. It runs Windows 8.1 operating system; the most up to date operating system available; as well as the leader in touch screen compatibility.