From the 6-year-old hooked to ItzaBitza to the 60-year old reliving war through Call of Duty, gaming has a wider audience than we actually credit it with. You may call yourself a gamer after one session of Candy Crush but once you begin exploring more games, you would realize how much you need a good gaming rig to enjoy a good gaming experience.
The laptop market is flooded with choices. You can get a gaming laptop from anywhere between $500 and $5,000. And the price is not the only thing that determines the abilities of your laptops. So, you can’t just rely on buying the most expensive one and hoping that you are all set.
For me, buying a laptop is a journey. It has to be planned well to avoid hiccups and to ensure that the experience is a good one. This journey is exclusively yours, and all I can offer is some tips and advice to help you plan it well and end up making a decision that you will be happy with.
Size and Weight: Are you in search for something portable or are you willing to discount portability for higher performance? In most cases, bigger laptops pack in more power. They are less portable because they are bigger in size and heavier in weight.
If you are a frequent traveler and you prefer something lighter then you may end up foregoing some of the powerful features on your laptop.
You can also pick different screen sizes according to your comfort but larger screens give a more immersive gaming experience. Small screens can be too compact for you to completely enjoy gaming. A 15-inch laptop falls in the mid-range. Anything smaller than this will be ultra-portable but less powerful and anything more than 15 inches will mean that they are very bulky to travel with. Portability will be a big deciding factor keeping your lifestyle in mind.
Ports: Serious gamers end up connecting everything from a separate mouse to speakers and keyboards. While these are not immediate additions, you may eventually end up adding these accessories to your laptop. Make sure that your laptop features adequate ports. These should include:
- USB 2.0
- USB 3.0 port
- USB type C port (With New Thunderbolt 3 Compatibility)
- SD card slot
- HDMI port
- Ethernet port
It will help you use accessories of a wide range on your laptop.
Ergonomics: Gaming needs you to stare at the computer for long hours. You will be using the keyboard and trackpad continually as well. Be sure to invest in a laptop that allows you to play games comfortably.
- Keyboard – Keyboards which feel more tactile are preferred by gamers because they want to be sure that a specific key is pressed or not. You will also find that latest keyboards come with RGB lighting or are backlit at least to help you play in dimly lit environments. While lighting is definitely not a must, they can add to the experience especially if you use your laptop for gaming in the late hours of the night with a very less ambient light.
- Trackpad – The trackpad is something of a personal experience. Choices vary from gamer to gamer. While their sensitivity can be changed there are a few things that you may not want to compensate. Look for trackpads that offer extra features like two-finger scrolling and pinch to zoom.
If you lean towards the flashy side of laptops then some brands also have trackpads that glow. While it may not be related to Ergonomics it surely is a great conversation starter for gamers. If it makes a difference, you may want to walk to a physical store and experience how the trackpad feels before you actually buy the laptop.
#The Foundation of Gaming Laptops
CPU: Intel is ideal. AMD CPUs tend to be weaker this is why gaming laptops aren’t usually fitted with these. Good gaming requires at least an Intel Core i5 CPU higher models are better, but anything lower than this may not be able to keep up with the PC requirements of most new games.
You must also make sure that you invest in a quad-core PC. You don’t need anything higher than a quad-core and if you are getting an Intel Core i7 processor then you can choose dual core but the experience is always better with quad-core processors. Another factor to look in the CPU of your laptop is its clock speed. 2.6 GHz is good but 3.5GHz is notably better. Suggested Link: How To Buy A Processor (CPU) For Desktop PC?
GPU: The graphics card is considered the most important part of the gaming laptop. This card is responsible for the graphics you see on your computer and since gaming is all about good visuals, there is no way that you can get away by ignoring this part.
NVIDIA dominates the graphics cards market. Depending on your gaming requirements anything from GTX 1050 which is good for entry level gaming to the more powerful GTX 1080 which helps you enjoy the 4K gaming experience. Suggested Link: AMD Vs NVIDIA – Which One to Choose When Buying a Graphics Card?
VRAM: Tied with the graphics card is the Video RAM that the GPU has. Average gaming can be done with 2GB VRAM but taxing games will require 4GB VRAM if the laptop’s resolution is too high. Higher VRAM enables you to game at high resolutions without problems. You may come across 8GB VRAMs too. While they aren’t too necessary right now you can invest in them if you want to own a more futuristic gaming laptop where you will not feel limited with new game launches that require more power.
#Other Details That Matter
Display: A good CPU, GPU, and VRAM will always be complemented with good displays. New laptops are getting better with display too. So this shouldn’t be much of a problem but you must try to go through online specs or visit a nearby store to find out if the laptop features excellent display or not.
You may be interested in anti-glare features too which help you game long enough without having to experience eye fatigue.
RAM: 8GB RAM is the lowest you must go for. Higher RAMs are better. They make a big difference in your laptop’s gaming performance. Don’t discount this.
Speakers: Game developers spend a lot of time and energy ensuring that the game has the right sounds so that the whole gaming experience is an amazing one. Good speakers will help you experience the game just the way the developer wanted it to be. While laptops aren’t really created with speakers that would be ideal for gamers, it will be worth your while to check the effectiveness of the speakers before you buy a gaming laptop.
Storage: SSD rules gaming laptops because of the speeds they offer. If you want a fast machine then pick a laptop with at least 240GB SSD. Not so heavy gamers will find 120GB SSD to be adequate. Hybrids are faster than the traditional hard disk drives but they are not as fast as SSDs. If you like your computer to be significantly fast then you will prefer SSDs over other storage types. Some serious gamers even end up using two SSDs by configuring them on RAID 0 but it can be kind of risky given that you can end up losing data on both if either one fails.
#Companies That Are Known for Their Gaming Laptops
Dell’s Alienware: Dell’s range of Alienware laptops are one of the best ones in the market. They are almost all areas that we have talked about and they are excellent in terms of reliability. These laptops come in a range of sizes and options but don’t expect to pay anything too low for one of these. All Alienware laptops may seem priced on the higher side. Click here to check out some new dell gaming laptops >> @Amazon
MSI: Another computer manufacturing brand that aces gaming is MSI. They believe in offering all the bells and whistles loved by gamers. This makes their laptops ideal for gaming. From advanced cooling systems to mechanical keyboards that accentuate the gaming experience, MSI offers a lot to serious gamers who travel frequently.
It tends to slant towards the best graphics card, innovative technologies and ideal CPUs for your gaming requirements. It was also one of the first brands to back their laptops with accidental damage protection. This one is for powerful games so if you plan to stick with less taxing games then you are good with an average Lenovo or Dell laptop. Click here to check out some new MSI gaming laptops >> @Amazon
Razer: All serious gamers prefer desktops because they can be built to pump in more power than laptops but traveling gamers can rely on Razer because it has been created to provide an equally amazing experience through its laptops. With the best of technologies, the latest chipsets and graphics cards set inside them, Razer laptops are really cool. The more popular computer brands like Dell, Lenovo, Acer, and Asus have their own gaming laptops which are built to meet the requirements of the average gamer. I like to see these more as entertainment laptops that can double up as you work laptop but they hardly qualify for serious gamers. Click here to check out some new Razer gaming laptops >> @Amazon
“And that’s all for now, thanks for sticking with the article, and you know it will always good to let me know about the article, in the comments down below.” 🙂