Best gaming laptops 2024: 6 best gaming laptops for every budget reviewed

I’ve been a technology journalist for well over a decade. And one of the things that always brings a big smile to my face are gaming laptops. They come in a multitude of sizes with a range of designs that go from understated to over the top. And speaking of over the top, many gaming laptops allow you to adjust the lighting, create macros and overclock the CPU and GPU. 

But like other laptops, consumers are spoiled for choice. Do you go for broke with a $3,000 RTX 4090 rig with all the bells and whistles, or do you want something a bit more tame and cost effective? After all, 14th Gen Intel gaming laptops like the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 and G16 are coming in. What about screen size and resolution? Never fear dear reader, I’m here to walk you through the ins and outs of gaming laptops and have a list of some of my favorites.

You might be asking how I narrowed down our best gaming laptop list. A lot of testing. Over the course of a year the Laptop Mag staff reviews over 100 laptops covering every budget and use case. Each system undergoes rigorous benchmarking, testing everything from overall performance to battery life. Gaming laptops undergo an extra set of tests designed to test gaming performance, heat (or lack thereof) and endurance. 

Once all the testing is done, the actual reviewing begins, where the staff adds their anecdotal experience. If the system is indeed exceptional, earning four stars or higher or our Editors’ Choice award, the system will then earn a spot in this guide. Here are the best gaming laptops right now. 

Curated by
Laptop Mag: About Us
Curated by
Rami Tabari

Rami has been swimming in gaming laptops for most of his adult life, which is wild to think about, but excellent for you, those of which that need a new gaming rig in their life. Rami knows that budget shouldn't compromise on quality, and that you deserve the most for your coin. Extensive testing and hands-on has taught Rami which are the best gaming laptops for every budget.

The Quick List

Recent updates

Updated April 9 to add the "best gaming laptops you can buy today" section and tidy up the headline, links, and images.

The best gaming laptops you can buy today

Why you can trust Laptop Mag Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Each and every single gaming laptop on this list has been painstakingly tested and received full the hands-on time necessary to review them. You can rest assured that any choice you land on will see you well equipped to run the games you love the most.

Best Overall

Best gaming laptop overall

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i9-13900HX
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090
RAM: 32GB
Storage: Dual 1TB SSD in RAID 0
Display: 18-inch, QHD+ (2560 x 1600), 240Hz
Weight: 6.8 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Flashy, futuristic design
+
Captivating display
+
Full, balanced audio
+
Impressive overall and gaming performance

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricy
-
Webcam could be better
-
Below-average battery life

Our favorite config:

Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2023) | Intel Core i9-13980HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 32GB RAM | 2TB SSD

<a href="https://target.georiot.com/Proxy.ashx?tsid=45727&GR_URL=https%3A%2F%2Famazon.com%2FASUS-Gaming-Laptop-Nebula-Display%2Fdp%2FB0BS79PRQ2%3Fth%3D1%26tag%3Dhawk-future-20%26ascsubtag%3Dhawk-custom-tracking-20" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2023) | Intel Core i9-13980HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 32GB RAM | 2TB SSD
If you're looking for the best and most powerful gaming laptop, you cannot go wrong with the Asus ROG Strix Scar 18. This configuration is what we recommend if you want to make the most out of new gaming hardware. We did <a href="https://www.laptopmag.com/laptops/gaming-laptops-pcs/asus-rog-strix-scar-18-2024" data-link-merchant="laptopmag.com"" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"">review the 2024 model, and while it was more powerful, we concluded that it was not as good as the 2023 version.


The Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 is my first taste of the new chips from Intel and Nvidia and I’ve got to say, it’s absolutely delicious. The Strix Scar 18 is an unmitigated beast, running with Intel’s 13th Gen Core i9-13900HX processor and Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4090 GPU. Both are uber-powerful and highly overclockable so you can squeeze every bit of power out of the system. Plus, the notebook has this Blade Runner vibe that I’m very much into along with its 18-inch, QHD+ (2560 x 1600), 240Hz display that serves up a beautiful picture with buttery smooth rendering. 

So onto the tests. There were very few places the ROG Strix Scar 18 missed the mark. The laptop easily trounced everything we threw at it. During gaming tests, it was rare the Strix Scar 18 fell below a three-digit result. We saw a scorching 154 fps on the Assassin’s Creed Valhalla benchmark while it reached 181 and 152 fps on Rise of the Tomb Raider and Grand Theft Auto V. How about overall performance?

The 13th Gen CPU smoked the competition, scoring 19,233 on Geekbench 5.4; that’s more than double the premium gaming laptop overall performance average. This system completed our video transcoding test in just 2 minutes and 49 seconds (more than a minute faster than the MacBook Pro 16-inch M2 Pro Max, while its pair of 1TB SSDs dominated our file transfer tests.

However, all that power comes at a cost. The Scar 18’s battery life is on the short side at 4 hours and 26 minutes. Another con is the 720p webcam; we would expect 1080p at this eye-watering price. . But overall, the Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 is the gaming laptop to beat and has also earned its way onto our Best Asus Laptops page

Read our full Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 review

^ Back to the top

Best budget

Best budget gaming laptop

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i7-11375H
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060
RAM: 16GB
Storage: 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD
Display: 14-inch, 1080p
Weight: 3.8 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Strong performance and graphics
+
Solid battery life
+
Relatively affordable

Reasons to avoid

-
Keyboard and touchpad could use some work
-
Quiet audio

Our favorite config:

Acer Predator Triton 300 SE | Intel Core i7-12700H | Nvidia RTX 3060 | 16GB RAM | 512GB SSD

<a href="https://target.georiot.com/Proxy.ashx?tsid=45727&GR_URL=https%3A%2F%2Famazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BVD314SZ%3Ftag%3Dhawk-future-20%26ascsubtag%3Dhawk-custom-tracking-20" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Acer Predator Triton 300 SE | Intel Core i7-12700H | Nvidia RTX 3060 | 16GB RAM | 512GB SSD
Need a budget gaming laptop without compromising on quality or performance? Then this model of the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE will do you wonders. Yes, it's GPU is last gen, but don't knock this low-budget heavy hitter out yet. It'll surprise you. You should be able to score this gaming laptop for under $1,000, and it's 14-inch form factor makes it all the more portable.


The Acer Predator Triton 300 SE is a revelation. Our reviewer put it best as it sits in a “cozy spot where the company offers its best quality components packed into a relatively affordable package.” The slim, 14-inch beauty only weighs 3.8 pounds and a good grouping  of ports. It’s also got a lovely, bright 1080p panel with a 144Hz refresh rate, which is ideal for gaming. 

Speaking of gaming, the Triton’s RTX 3060 GPU is more than enough to handle most games on high or medium settings. The Predator Triton 300 SE consistently beat the category average on AAA titles such as Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Shadow of the Tomb Raider. For instance, during the Far Cry New Dawn benchmark, the Acer scored 73 fps which was enough to match or beat most of the competition. 

The Triton’s Core i7 processor didn’t do as well on our overall performance test, scoring 5,234 which beat the category average but not any of the rival systems. On the Handbrake video transcoding test, the Acer turned in a rather slow time of 11 minutes and 36 seconds. We got a rosier picture on the battery life where the system lasted 6 hours and 41 minutes. 

Other cons include weak audio and a mushy keyboard, but for the price, these are small quibbles. 

See our full Acer Predator Triton 300 SE review.

^ Back to the top

Best under $1,500

Best gaming laptop under $1,500

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i7-12700H
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti
RAM: 16GB DDR5
Storage: 512GB PCIe Gen 4 M.2 SSD
Display: 16-inch, 1440p, 165Hz, IPS
Weight: 5.5 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Stylish, sleek form factor
+
Gorgeous display
+
Strong performance
+
Quiet fans
+
Plenty of ports

Reasons to avoid

-
Webcam = potato
-
No biometrics
-
SSD is slightly slower than competition

Our favorite config:

Lenovo Legion 5i Pro | Intel Core i7-13700HX | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 16GB RAM | 1TB SSD

<a href="https://lenovo.7eer.net/c/221109/218864/3808?subId1=hawk-custom-tracking&sharedId=hawk&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.lenovo.com%2Fus%2Fen%2Fp%2Flaptops%2Flegion-laptops%2Flegion-pro-series%2Flegion-pro-5i-gen-8-%2816-inch-intel%29%2F82wk000dus" data-link-merchant="lenovo.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Lenovo Legion 5i Pro | Intel Core i7-13700HX | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 16GB RAM | 1TB SSD
We reviewed last year's model of the Lenovo Legion 5i Pro, but the newest Lenovo Legion 5i Pro bumps you up to an RTX 4070 and maintains that sub-$1,500 sweet spot. Since we haven't directly reviewed this version, we cannot guarantee it'll line up with our testing. However, the bump in GPU should be well worth the upgrade regardless of how other aspects turn out.


Need a gaming laptop that’s affordable without making too many sacrifices? Then the Lenovo Legion 5i Pro is just the system for you. Beneath its understated yet elegant design is a laptop that’s chomping at the bit to lay waste to the big bad in whatever game you’re playing and their minion horde. Despite its office-ready appearance, the Lenovo still has some gamer cred thanks to its vibrant RGB backlighting. And it’s got plenty of ports to create a formidable battlestation. 

The Legion 5i Pro marches onto our Best Lenovo Laptops and Best Lenovo Gaming Laptop pages with its last-gen RTX 3070 Ti GPU. While it’s not the latest 4000 series GPU, the Legion 5i Pro shows that the 3000 series still has plenty of punch, delivering an impressive 81 fps on Red Dead Redemption 2 and 132 fps on Grand Theft Auto V. The notebook’s 12th Gen Intel processor is also not to be underestimated as it crushed on both Geekbench 5.4 and our video transcoding tests. 

As good as the Legion 5i Pro is, there are a few hiccups, namely a lackluster webcam and a sluggish SSD. However, the gorgeous 16-inch, QHD display with its 165Hz refresh rate coupled with everything I mentioned above makes the Lenovo Legion 5i Pro an absolute win of a value buy. 

Read our full Lenovo Legion 5i Pro review.

^ Back to the top

Best under $2,000

Best gaming laptop under $2,000

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i7-13620H
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070
RAM: 16GB
Storage: 1TB SSD
Display: 15.6-inch, 1080p
Weight: 8.8 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Superb RTX 4070-performance
+
Solid productivity scores
+
Affordable for its specs

Reasons to avoid

-
Low peak brightness
-
Lackluster display
-
Abysmal battery life

Our favorite config:

MSI Katana 15 | Intel Core i7-13620H | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 16GB RAM | 1TB SSD

<a href="https://target.georiot.com/Proxy.ashx?tsid=45727&GR_URL=https%3A%2F%2Famazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BT3FKZ3N%3Ftag%3Dhawk-future-20%26ascsubtag%3Dhawk-custom-tracking-20" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">MSI Katana 15 | Intel Core i7-13620H | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 16GB RAM | 1TB SSD
You'll love this. When we originally reviewed the MSI Katana 15, it came in at $1,600, so it was a perfect fit for our sub-$2,000 category. However, now it has crossed into the sub-$1,500 category. Getting a RTX 4070 is a reliable gaming laptop like this for the price it's at now is fortuitous. If you're on a budget and you want a gaming laptop with premium qualities, the MSI Katana 15 is the one to buy.


Why pay more for an Nvidia 4090 GPU when the 4070 GPU exists? MSI seeks to answer that question with the excellent Katana 15. A laptop that kept pace with more powerful competitors without breaking a sweat. For those who prefer a more understated look, the Katana 15 exterior is done in all black aluminum chassis with the company’s logo engraved at the top of the lid. The interior’s a lot more colorful with its comfortable, 4-key customizable RGB keyboard. It’s on the heavier side at 8.8 pounds, so you’ll need a backpack with strong straps to tote this system around.

But let’s talk performance. Our reviewer reported the Katana 15 consistently gave between 50 and 55 fps on Elden Ring at 2K resolution. The Katana also dominated on the Borderlands 3 benchmark at 99 fps (1080p, high) as well as Assassin’s Creed Valhalla (106 fps), Dirt 3 (103 fps), Far Cry 6 (94 fps) and Red Dead Redemption (72 fps). Long story short, the Katana gave a master class in gaming performance. The MSI kept up the pressure during the overall performance. The system’s Core i7 CPU hit 11,581 on Geekbench 5.5 test and smokey the competition on the Handbrake benchmark with a blistering time of 5 minutes and 4 seconds. 

But there are a few places where the Katana 15 could stand for improvement. The 2 hour 48 minute battery life is abysmal in this day and age. And we wish MSI could have found a better panel compared to the dim, lackluster display its stuck with. But coming in at $1,600, it’s a much better value than the RTX 4090 systems that cost upwards of $4,000. 

See our full MSI Katana 15 review.

^ Back to the top

Best performance

Best gaming laptop performance

Specifications

CPU: Intel Core i9-14900HX
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090
RAM: 128GB
Storage: dual 2TB SSD
Display: 18-inch, 4K, 120Hz Mini LED
Weight: 7.9 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Intense display
+
Mechanical Cherry keyboard
+
Killer performance

Reasons to avoid

-
Over $5,000
-
Short battery life

Our favorite config:

MSI Titan 18 HX | Intel Core i9-14900HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 128GB RAM | 4TB SSD

<a href="https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1807799-REG/msi_titan_18_hx_a14vig_036us_18_titan_18_hx.html?CID=product&BI=20811&KBID=16572&SID=hawk-custom-tracking" data-link-merchant="bhphotovideo.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">MSI Titan 18 HX | Intel Core i9-14900HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 128GB RAM | 4TB SSD
Yeah, you read that right. The MSI Titan 18 HX comes with a whopping 128GB of RAM. Yeah, you could get the 64GB model, but if you're already spending $5,000, what's $400 more really? If you're looking for the king, look no further than this very model of the MSI Titan 18 HX. This gaming laptop has no equal in terms of performance, and if it does, it can crush them with its Mini LED display and delicious mechanical keyboard.


MSI has always taken a kitchen sink approach to its flagship gaming laptops, and we’re not complaining when you get something as powerful as the MSI Titan 18 HX. This is an exorbitantly priced system even for a top-tier gaming laptop. But for that arm, leg and vestigial organ you’re contemplating selling, you get an absolute powerhouse that shrugs off almost everything you can possibly throw at it. 

The Titan’s Nvidia RTX 4090 with 16GB of VRAM cut through frame rates like a hot knife through ice cold butter, smoothly and immensely satisfying. It crushed every single one of its competitors in the battle for frame rates, even its predecessor. And with its Intel Core i9-14900HX CPU and 128GB of RAM, the notebook decimated our overall performance tests. Its dual SSDs in RAID 0 configuration posted a blistering 2,664.34 megabytes per second in our file transfer test.

The thorn in this mighty beast’s paw is the 2 hours and 40 minutes of battery life. But if you’re looking for the most powerful gaming laptop on the block, you’d be hard pressed to find one better. If the MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) isn’t your speed but you still want an MSI notebook, check out our Best MSI laptops page.

See our full MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review.

^ Back to the top

Best battery life

Best battery life

Specifications

CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070
RAM: 16GB
Storage: 1TB M.2 PCIe SSD
Display: 14-inch QHD+ 240Hz, 2560 x 1600
Weight: 4.1 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
RTX 4070 performance
+
Gorgeous display
+
Impactful speakers
+
Excellent battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
Loud while gaming

Our favorite config:

Razer Blade 14 | AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 32GB RAM | 1TB SSD

<a href="https://shop-links.co/link?skuId=6570246&publisher_slug=future&exclusive=1&u1=hawk-custom-tracking&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bestbuy.com%2Fsite%2Frazer-blade-14-14-gaming-laptop-qhd-240-hz-amd-ryzen-9-8945hs-nvidia-geforce-rtx-4070-32-gb-ram-1-tb-ssd-mercury%2F6570246.p%3FskuId%3D6570246&article_name=hawk-article-name&article_url=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Razer Blade 14 | AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 32GB RAM | 1TB SSD
There was a time where I wouldn't dream about adding a "best battery life" section to anything gaming-laptop related, but here we are. We've got the Razer Blade 14 lasting over 8 hours on a single charge. That's enough to get in a full workday. So what's changed? Well, AMD. The company has been a star ever since it got serious about the laptop game half a decade ago. We're recommending the Ryzen 9 7000-series model of the Razer Blade 14 — it is a little older, but I can guarantee its battery life as opposed to the newer one (at least until we test it).


Who said that gaming laptops always have bad battery life? Can't be me, because the Razer Blade 14 is coming in swinging with 8 hours and 35 minutes of battery life. That's enough time to get through an entire workday before you have to go home and plug it in to get some gaming in. But battery life isn't the only massive feature that the Razer Blade 14 has going for it.

The Razer Blade 14 is packed with a powerful AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS and Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 GPU that'll clock through pretty much every game you throw at it. Top that off with a stunning 14-inch, 2560 x 1600, 240Hz display. It's sharp as a razer, and smooth as a clean shave. Let's not forget about these bangin' speakers. It's rare for a gaming laptop to come out of left field with great audio. Oh, and of course, it's a Razer laptop, so that means we get that gorgeous aluminum chassis that's as premium as a MacBook.

See our full Razer Blade 14 review.

^ Back to the top

How we test gaming laptops

When we bring a laptop into our laboratory, our goal is to see how it would work if you brought it into your home or office. While we use a number of industry standard benchmarks such as Geekbench and 3DMark, we focus heavily on real-world tests that we have developed in-house.

To test endurance, the Laptop Mag Battery test surfs the web at 150 nits of brightness until the system runs out of juice. To judge pure processing power, we use a giant spreadsheet macro that matches 65,000 names with their addresses, a video transcoder that converts a 4K video to 1080p and the Geekbench 4 synthetic test. We measure graphics prowess with both 3DMark Ice Storm / Fire Strike and a series of actual game titles.

We use a colorimeter to measure screen brightness and color gamut while other instruments help us determine a laptop's key travel and ambient heat. See this page on How We Test Laptops for more details on our benchmarking procedures.

Also tested

We deliberately make our best gaming laptops list short so you don't suffer from decision paralysis. However, if you're someone you likes having all of their options open to them, we have quite a few gaming laptops that we've also tested. Get ready to go swimming.

These can range from excellent to subpar, but each have their own pros and cons. Here's our list.

Lenovo Legion 5 Pro | AMD Ryzen 7 7745HX | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 16GB RAM | 1TB SSD

<a href="https://lenovo.7eer.net/c/221109/218864/3808?subId1=hawk-custom-tracking&sharedId=hawk&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.lenovo.com%2Fus%2Fen%2Fp%2Flaptops%2Flegion-laptops%2Flegion-pro-series%2Flegion-pro-5-gen-8-%2816-inch-amd%29%2F82wm0005us" data-link-merchant="lenovo.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Lenovo Legion 5 Pro | AMD Ryzen 7 7745HX | Nvidia RTX 4070 | 16GB RAM | 1TB SSD

Score: ★★★★½ Editor's Choice

Pros: Exceptional performance; Decent color and brightness; Sturdy chassis and hinge; Perfect keyboard; Highly affordable

Cons: Subpar battery life; Grainy webcam

See our full <a href="https://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/lenovo-legion-5-pro" data-link-merchant="laptopmag.com"" data-link-merchant="lenovo.com"">Lenovo Legion 5 Pro review.

MSI Raider GE78 HX | Intel Core i9-13980HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 32GB RAM | 2TB SSD

<a href="https://target.georiot.com/Proxy.ashx?tsid=45727&GR_URL=https%3A%2F%2Famazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BT2ZHDNV%3Ftag%3Dhawk-future-20%26ascsubtag%3Dhawk-custom-tracking-20" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">MSI Raider GE78 HX | Intel Core i9-13980HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 32GB RAM | 2TB SSD

Score: ★★★★ Editor's Choice

Pros: Rainbow road lightbar; Bright, colorful display; Comfortable keyboard; Great speakers; Powerful performance and graphics

Cons: $3,000+ hurts my soul; Poorly implemented touchpad; Terrible battery life

See our full <a href="https://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/msi-raider-ge78-hx-13vh-070us" data-link-merchant="laptopmag.com"" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"">MSI Raider GE78 HX review.

Razer Blade 18 | Intel Core i9-13950HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 32GB RAM | 2TB SSD

<a href="https://shop-links.co/link?skuId=6533837&publisher_slug=future&exclusive=1&u1=hawk-custom-tracking&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bestbuy.com%2Fsite%2Frazer-blade-18-18-gaming-laptop-qhd-240-hz-intel-24-core-i9-13950hx-nvidia-geforce-rtx-4080-32gb-ram-1tb-ssd-black%2F6533837.p%3FskuId%3D6533837&article_name=hawk-article-name&article_url=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Razer Blade 18 | Intel Core i9-13950HX | Nvidia RTX 4090 | 32GB RAM | 2TB SSD

Score: ★★★★ Editor's Choice

Pros: Beautiful design; Gorgeous vivid display; Fantastic audio; Powerful performance; Excellent keyboard; Sharp webcam

Cons: Below average battery life; Starts just below $3,000

See our full <a href="https://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/razer-blade-18-review-one-of-the-top-5-gaming-laptops-of-2023" data-link-merchant="laptopmag.com"" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"">Razer Blade 18 review.