Normally you would have to pay well over a $1,000 to buy a decent gaming laptop. Alienware laptops, the top brand for gaming, cost well over $1,500. There’s no law saying you need an Alienware computer to play games. There are plenty of other far more affordable options to choose from if you are on a budget. Affordable does not mean bad specs. For starters my best cheap gaming laptop, the Acer Aspire E, costs only a little over $500 but has excellent specs for playing games like World of Warcraft and Metal Gear Solid 4 without lag. Read ahead for more recommendations:
10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptop – 2017
I got this Acer for about $550. While Acer is not the top brand that comes to mind when it comes to gaming laptops, I’ve been very impressed with the performance on this one. It has a solid Intel Core i5 processor, which is more than enough for many games. The graphics card is NVIDIA 940MX and the laptop has a 256GB SSD. Combined with a 15.6″ full HD widecreeen with a 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution, this laptop can generate quite sensational graphics for the price. It has a high-performance sound system as well to play using the speakers. I’ve played World of Warcraft, Minecraft and Grand Theft Auto V on this laptop without any issues. The downside, if you can call it that, is that this laptop runs on Windows 10. I’m a solid Windows 7 fan and 10 has had some issued. If you can downgrade to 7 if you want to though. I’d say this is the best cheap gaming laptop that your money can buy.
For about $400, you can get this laptop with a powerful quad-core AMD FX-7500 processor. Other specs include 8GB of RAM, IT HDD and backlit display. All in all, these specs are superb for playing most PC games. Performance is solid and has no lag. However, I strongly recommend closing all, or at least most, background programs before starting to play a graphics-gravy game like Gears of War. This laptop is great for home use as well. It has a battery that can last over 8 hours. Of course battery power will vary depending on the games you play.
Dell Inspirons are wonderful laptops known to last a long time. The latest Inspiron comes with an AMD A8-7410 quad-core processor, 500GB HDD, 6GB RAM, and high-def backlit screen. It also has a Radeon™ R5 Graphics, a definitely upgrade from older Inspirons. My old laptop was an Inspiron I sued for about 7 years with minimal issues. This one seems even better than that. At $319, this laptop is unbelievable affordable. And it’s wonderful for playing PC games, even ones like Gears of War 4. If you want a gaming laptop with excellent use for everyday tasks as well, this is a solid and reliable choice.
Yes, it’s a $200 notebook. It’s small but has a generous backlit screen with 1920×1080 resolution for displaying graphics. It also packs a rather powerful quad-core AMD E2-7110 QC processor. These are excellent features for casual home use. Believe me or not, these specs are excellent for casual gaming as well. I’ve played WoW and Minecraft on this laptop without any issues. Older games play really well on this computer. Only some really graphics intensive new ones may result in lag. However, if you can keep the drives clean, memory capacity high and close all background programs, even graphics intensive new games can be played. If you are a casual gamer or an online MMORPG player, this laptop will suit your needs perfectly.
If you are looking for an HP Notebooks that packs a little more punch than the one mentioned above, then this is a solid choice. For about $500, you get a 6th Gen Intel Core i5-6200U processor, 8GB DDR3L SDRAM and 1TB HDD for playing games. These specs are great for casual gaming. I trust this laptop to play even graphics intensive games with the background programs closed. The advantage with a laptop like this one is that parts are easy to upgrade and replace. You can modify this with cooler features in the future with ease when needed.
This silver Asus look very sleek and stylish on the exterior and is definitely one of the best cheap gaming laptops. It’s intended as a high-performance work laptop for labor intensive tasks. However, it can also double as a regular gaming laptop. RAM is only 4GB, but that’s enough to play games like WoW without a hassle. It has an Intel Quad Core Pentium N3700 Processor up to 2.4 GHz. This may seem like an older processor, but it’s not. The quad-core Pentium has similar functionality to the Core i5 (and the dual-core Pentium is basically the same as Core i3). It’s simply a matter of branding. You will be able to play MineCraft and most PC games without an issue. However, you might need to store some games in an external hard drive because this only has a 500GB HDD.
If you can’t afford Alienware, MSI is a solid choice for gaming laptops. The large, backlit screen displays graphics almost flawlessly. And the processor is an Intel Core i7-5700HQ 2.7 GHz Processor! It has a 1TB 7200 rpm hard drive, and a NVIDIA Geforce GTX950M graphics card. You will only have to pay about $800 for this and you will be able to play pretty much any PC game. The biggest downside is the OS, which is Windows 8.1. I strongly recommend either downgrading to 7 or upgrading to 10 before you start playing.
This laptop is about 5 years old, but it’s still a solid choice for playing games. It has a wonderful Intel Core i5 5200U processor, 8GB of RAM, 1TB hard drive and a large screen with mobile HD graphics. The screen is amazing for watching movies as well. The specs are just enough to play most PC games without any lag. Toshiba is also a solid brand and this laptop will last for years. However, it can be a bit heavy to carry. Other than that, this work computer will wonderfully double as a gaming computer.
This is a relatively new brand for me, but a friend bought this laptop for gaming and it has worked wonderfully for about a year now. It’s super fast thanks to the Intel Core i& processor and 16GB DDRs. It has a triple 128 SSD and 1TB HDD. The specs are amazing if you can overlook the Windows 8 OS. I’ve seen this laptop at work and it’s really good. The price is between $600 and $1,000 depending on where you buy from. So make sure you shop around to find a good deal.
This is the newest Asus intended for gaming use. You will have to be willing to spend about $700 for this one. You will get a solid Intel Core i7-6500U, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M graphics card, 8GB of RAM, 1TB HDD and a big 15.6 inch full HD screen with 1920×1080 resolution. All these specs are perfect for a budget PC gaming laptop. I highly recommend this if you are a casual to moderate gamer.
Tips for Choosing a Budget Gaming Laptop
Here are some tips for choosing the best budget gaming laptop you want:
First, adjust your expectations. You will not be able to get the same specs as those in very expensive gaming laptops like Alienware. Budget gaming laptops are often high-performance work laptops. That means, you may not get features like a super-duper cooling system like on Alienware laptops. You may need to use additional supplies like a cooling pad (which costs around $10).
You may want to complement your gaming laptop purchase with a gaming mouse and a keyboard. Most budget gaming laptops don’t have keyboards optimized for gaming.
As for the processor, Interl Core i5 or above is the best for gaming. Intel Pentium quad-core processors are quite adept as well. The more cores the processor has, the faster it will be. The processor alone is not good enough for a fast gaming experience. A good processor should be combined with at least 4GB of RAM and a spacious HDD for a seamless experience.
SSD are better for gaming than other types.
It all depends on the type of games you want to play. Most laptops, even those $200 ones mentioned above, are good for playing games like Minecraft and WoW. You will need to upgrade depending on how graphics intensive the games you want to play are. You can get a decent gaming laptop for prices between $500 and $1,000. But in some cases you may have to close background programs.