Are gaming laptops worth it?
Have you ever found yourself debating whether or not to purchase a high-end portable gaming rig? The cost of entering the world of mobile gaming can be intimidating, especially if you haven’t previously purchased a high-end laptop computer.
Take the plunge, however, because the ability to play your favorite games from any location cannot be overstated as a significant benefit of going this route.
Having said that, expensive gaming laptops aren’t for everyone, despite their popularity. To get straight to the point, is a gaming laptop worth the money spent?
We’ll quickly walk you through all of the best arguments for and against so that you can arrive at the correct conclusion and decide what to purchase (or when to save your money for something else).
Is Gaming Laptop worth buying? (Frankly, I don’t know.)
A gaming laptop is an excellent investment for those who fall into a specific category of users. If you have the means to spend the money and prefer portability over power or the ability to upgrade, then a gaming laptop is a solid investment that we can strongly recommend.
Reasons Against Buying A Gaming Laptop:
Several Arguments Against Purchasing A Gaming Laptop
That recommendation, on the other hand, is subject to some important conditions.
Some people will conclude that purchasing a gaming laptop is not worth the money spent because of a few issues that do not exist when using a desktop or gaming console.
- The Price Barrier: Gaming laptops tend to be significantly more expensive than desktop computers with identical specifications…
This is, without a doubt, the most compelling argument against purchasing a portable gaming rig. Without a doubt, gaming laptops tend to be significantly more expensive than desktop computers with identical specifications.
Models ranging from $1,200 to $1,300 are typically used for serious gaming laptops that are capable of running anything new on high settings. The bottom line price for anything that is VR ready is also going to be around that level of affordability. The price of a top-of-the-line experience typically starts at $2,000 and goes up from there. Due to the fact that you can get an Xbox One X or a PlayStation 4 Pro for less than $400, a laptop may not be the best option unless you want to play specific PC games and require portability.
2. Dimensions and Weight: Obviously, portability comes at the expense of screen size when compared to what you can get with a larger screen connected to a desktop computer.
15″ will be the standard screen size, which may be a little smaller than some players prefer. There are 17″ models available, but they are significantly more expensive and significantly heavier.
In some cases, switching to a 17″ wheel can more than double the weight, increasing it from 4 – 5 pounds to 7 – 10 pounds in some cases.
Alternatively, gaming ultrabooks are also available, but there is always a trade-off in terms of graphical power, and the price skyrockets as a result of this.
3. There is less room for improvement: Even though gaming laptops are more portable than desktop computers, they have significantly less upgrade potential. This is an important consideration that must not be overlooked.
To be fair, most models allow for relatively simple access to the RAM and the SSD, which can be swapped out by simply removing a few screws. This is beneficial for keeping up with technological advancements and for future expansion of memory or storage space.
In most cases, however, replacing or upgrading the graphics card or CPU are out of the question for laptops with a large number of components. What you get there is what you’ll have for the rest of your life.
If you want to be able to upgrade your graphics card in a few years, a laptop isn’t the best option for you.
4. Power consumption has been reduced: It is important to note that many gaming laptops actually provide less performance than they advertise…
While laptop manufacturers don’t usually advertise this, it’s important to remember that many gaming laptops actually have lower performance than their non-gaming counterparts.
Because of their portability, the hardware inside them is typically equipped with underclocked GPUs and Max-Q designs that provide less power than their full-sized counterparts on the desktop.
Thus, a GTX 1070 in an Acer Predator, for example, will provide slightly less graphical power than the same card in an identically configured full-sized computer monitor.
It’s also worth noting that modern gaming laptops must be kept plugged in at all times, or else they will throttle both the CPU and the GPU, preventing them from operating at their full potential.
5. Heat Buildup: Finally, one consideration that many laptop buyers overlook is the amount of heat generated by a high-end graphics card.
Gaming laptops typically get too hot to be held directly on your lap, and you must keep their exhaust ports away from cables that could melt. Fortunately, there are some solutions.
However, as previously stated, inexpensive cooling pads can be used to effectively combat this problem (check out our top 5 picks here).
The Benefits of Purchasing a Gaming Laptop
Okay, so we’ve gone over all of the negative aspects — and there are a lot of them — but for many gamers, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks in terms of overall enjoyment. Let’s take a look at the reasons why you should purchase a gaming laptop in the first place!
The ability to move between locations is unmatched. This is without a doubt the most compelling reason to choose a gaming laptop over any other option.
However, the convenience of portability extends beyond simply taking it to a friend’s house or to the local coffee shop, or even putting it in a bag and bringing it along on vacation with you.
It’s true that some people prefer to play games at the kitchen table instead of their desk in their bedroom,…
There’s something to be said for the convenience of being able to move around within your own home as well.
Sometimes it’s more convenient to play games at the kitchen table rather than at your desk in your bedroom, and with a desktop or console, that’s simply not a viable alternative.
A gaming laptop provides much more than just graphic processing power, and it offers far more capabilities than a stationary gaming console. It can be used for both gaming and work purposes.
Gaming laptops, in particular, are an excellent choice for students or people who work from home or other remote locations but also want to be able to play games on their laptops.
For example, you won’t be able to email a friend from the coffee shop and then go home and write an article in between rounds of Fortnite if you’re using an Xbox.
High End Options:
You also get an additional layer of versatility with this machine that many buyers overlook at first glance, aside from the fact that it can be used for both work and gaming purposes.
Notably, gaming laptops are more likely to have ports dedicated to connecting to external displays or connecting to a wired network connection than other laptops.
When using wireless mice and external keyboards in the proper configuration, you don’t actually miss out on the full desktop experience at all.
Furthermore, the hardware’s adaptability does not end there either. One significant advantage of PC gaming over console gaming is that you have access to a plethora of fan-made mods at your disposal.
Through modding, the lifespan of a game on a gaming laptop can be significantly extended in ways that are not available to Xbox or PlayStation 4 players.
For those who consider gaming to be a social activity — or who simply require assistance in completing a difficult level — online communities are much more accessible on a laptop through programs such as Discord than they are on a gaming console.
Optional Extras at the High End:
However, the price tag on a gaming laptop is typically much higher, and you get some seriously impressive specifications in exchange.
Higher resolution screens are an important piece of hardware to consider when building a gaming rig. While high-end graphics cards and CPUs are typically used, there is another piece of hardware to consider: higher resolution screens.
The majority of gaming laptops, with the exception of lower-cost models that make trade-offs in order to save money, start out with a 1920 x 1080 resolution for crystal-clear gaming visuals.
Portable gaming machines are also more frequently equipped with solid-state drives (SSDs) than desktop computers these days. As a result, you get virtually silent operation and significantly faster load times than you would get with a desktop computer using an HDD.
The Aesthetics and Design of a Room:
While there are some budget options that have a plastic chassis and flimsy hinges, gaming laptops in general tend to have a higher overall build quality than their non-gaming counterparts.
Aside from durable metal construction, gaming-focused computers are distinguished by a flashy design that cannot be found on any other type of device.
With features such as multi-section or per-key keyboard backlighting, illuminated exhaust ports, and special etched red designs, a gaming laptop can be the ideal accessory for showcasing your personal style in public settings.
Alternative gaming options include:
Still not convinced that spending more than a thousand dollars on a gaming laptop is a good idea? You have a couple of other options to consider, all of which will allow you to continue playing your favorite games.
Laptop for Gaming on a Budget:
In the event that you are unable to justify spending $1,200 or more on a laptop, you will not be denied access to gaming opportunities. Many standard work or home laptops are capable of running games at medium settings without experiencing any issues.
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Classics such as World of Warcraft, Grand Theft Auto V, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive can all be played on potato computers with low-end hardware. Even Fortnite, the battle royale video game phenomenon, has low system requirements.
The majority of the time, a cheap $500 gaming laptop will be sufficient for any of those titles.
Gaming on a tablet computer:
You’re not interested in spending even as much as $500 on a laptop? Don’t worry, even those on a tight budget will be able to find plenty of entertaining games to play if they opt for a tablet instead.
On mobile devices, you can play popular Battle Royale games such as Fortnite and PUBG, as well as survival sims such as Ark, and a slew of classic SNES games.
If you don’t require the latest and greatest AAA shooters, there’s no reason not to opt for an Android or iOS tablet instead of a Windows laptop for portable gaming, according to the experts.
If you don’t absolutely require portability, it’s probably best to purchase a gaming desktop (or a console) and then a less expensive, non-gaming laptop for web browsing purposes only.