Best Gaming Laptops – January 2013

Top 10 Gaming Laptops – January 2013

This list is based on actual or estimated gaming performance, factoring in the hardware specification (particularly the graphics card) relative to the laptop’s size.

January Update: Not many changes from last month; current gaming laptops are all based on Intel’s Ivy Bridge platform (Core iX-3XXX series) which is an improved version of its predecessor Sandy Bridge. Some more affordable alternatives based on AMD’s Trinity chips can also be found. On the graphics front, Nvidia and AMD have rolled out Kepler and GCN-based GPUs, which are all-new architectures as well as die shrinks (down to 28nm from 40nm). The fastest mobile graphics card at present is Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 680M followed by AMD’s Radeon HD 7970M. It’s important to note that the GeForce GTX 675M and 670M are renamed (and perhaps slightly modified) versions of the 580M and 570M, respectively. There are however newer GPUs with almost identical names: GTX 675MX and 670MX, which are Kepler-based cards. GeForce GT 650M and GTX 660M are also Kepler GPUs.

The Ivy Bridge processors have names in the ix-3xxx range, with a ‘QM’ at the end of the model name signifying quad core. The quad-core Ivy Bridge range was updated late 2012 with revised clock speed. The most common CPUs in gaming laptops are therefore the Core i7-3630QM (45W, replaces 3610QM),  i7-3740QM (45W, replaces 3720QM), i7-3840QM (45W, replaces 3820QM), i7-3632QM (35W, replaces 3612QM) and finally the Extreme Edition, unlocked Core i7-3940XM (55W, replaces 3920XM).

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Top 10 17″+ Gaming Laptops
Sub 17″ Gaming Laptops

17-Inch +

1. Alienware M18x R2

Alienware M18xThe Alienware M18x R2 has been updated several times–almost meriting an M18x R3 designation. The most important update by far is on the GPU  front: Dell’s gaming monster is now available with two of the fastest mobile graphics cards on the planet–dual Nvidia GTX 680M’s in SLI. The second-best option is two of AMD’s best chips, Radeon HD 7970M’s in Crossfire. There are also single card configurations starting with the GTX 660M, the GTX 675M (a rebadged GTX 580M), or a single GTX 680M. In all, the M18x remains an exceptional gaming laptop that will handily defeat quite a few gaming desktops in terms of frame rates and visual bliss. It also comes with a choice of 3rd-generation (Ivy Bridge), quad core Intel Core i7 CPUs, the fastest of which is a factory overclocked i7-3840QM that runs at up to 3.8 GHz in Turbo Boost mode. Other features include USB 3.0, optional 1866 MHz DDR3 memory, the usual AlienFX back-lighting artillery, as well as extremely fast RAID 0 SSD storage configurations. The base model starts at $1,999 and includes a Core i7-3630QM and a single GTX 660M.

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2. Clevo P370EM

Origin PC Eon 17The original Frankenlaptop, the Clevo X7200 with desktop processors, has been discontinued by most vendors and replaced by the more conventional (in relative terms) P370EM. It is also sold under other names depending on the builder, such as Origin PC’s EON 17-SLX (European readers: check out Schenker Notebooks (mysn.de). It’s still a monster at 8,6 lbs/3,9 kg but more compact than its predecessor due to the fact that it uses regular notebook processors, up to the Core i7-3960XM (overclockable Extreme Edition). The range of quad-core Ivy Bridge GPUs can be combined with dual graphics cards in SLI/CrossFire up to the fastest models from Nvidia and AMD–the GTX 680M or HD 7970M, respectively and up to 32 GB RAM. It will also hold two laptop hard drives or SSDs (three if you replace the optical drive) as well as an optional mSATA SSD.

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3. Alienware M17x R4

The M17x R4 has also been given the Ivy Bridge makeover and new GPU options, but this smaller (relatively speaking) Alienware gaming machine can only house a single GPU. Pretty much every component in the M17x R4 is configurable. It offers a choice of high-end Nvidia or AMD GPUs, up to 32 GB of 1600 MHz RAM, various quad-core Core i7 processors, 1600×900 or 1920×1080 panels and dual hard drives or SSDs in RAID 0. It is also available in a 3D version that includes the mandatory 120Hz panel and an Nvidia 3D Vision kit. The base model ($1,499) includes a GTX 660M, but from a price/performance perspective, the Radeon 7979M upgrade is unbeatable. The best optional GPU is the fastest on the planet: the GTX 680M.

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4. MSI GT70

gt780rMSI has updated its 17-inch gaming laptop with Ivy Bridge processors and new GPUs ranging from the Nvidia GTX 670M to the GTX 680M. Instead of various model names and numbers in the preceding GT780 series (DX, DRX, 783 etc.), it is now simply known as the MSI GT70, and most configurations ship with the new quad-core Core i7-3610QM. It comes with a multi-color backlit keyboard designed by SteelSeries that resembles the Alienware counterparts. What makes this and other high-end MSI laptops a little more interesting than the competition is the TDE (Turbo Drive Engine) feature that automatically overclocks the laptop by up to 30%. It also ships with 12 GB of DDR3 and either lots of conventional hard drive storage or an SSD/HDD combo.

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5. Clevo P170EM

EON 17-SThe 17-inch Clevo P170EM is the Ivy Bridge-based successor to the P170HM and is sold by several different boutique gaming brands. Besides the new Intel processors, it can be configured with the new HD 7970M from AMD or the GTX 680M from Nvidia. The new model also comes with a backlit keyboard. In combination with the fastest single-GPU graphics solution on the market and (in its class comparatively) lightweight chassis (8.6lbs), this is a very desirable laptop. If you don’t want to pay a premium for the fastest of everything, you can also opt for the base configuration, which (usually) includes a capable GTX 660M. The laptop has four memory slots with room for up to 32 GB of RAM. Moreover, it has room for dual hard drives or SSDs that can be configured in RAID 0 mode. Or you could use an ultra-fast Vertex 3 as the boot drive and a secondary 7,200rpm hard drive for storage.

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6. ASUS Republic of Gamers G75VW

The Asus G75VW picks up the mantle from the G74Sx as the manufacturer’s 17-inch flagship; the design has been updated but the cooling solution seems to have stayed intact, which is a good thing that keeps the laptop reasonably cool and quiet even under load. Naturally, the G75VW has been updated with new Intel CPUs and Nvidia GPUs–either the new GTX 660M or the GTX 670M depending on configuration. Just like its predecessor, the G75VW is also available in a 3D edition that ships with an Nvidia 3D Vision kit and a compatible 120Hz panel. One of the best things with the G75 lineup is that it is still very favorably priced compared to the closest competitors. Read the review (by Florian Glaser).

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7. Toshiba Qosmio X875

Toshiba Qosmio X870Qosmio is Toshiba’s premium entertainment brand, so the most surprising aspect of the new X875 is the attractive price point for the entry models (considering the hardware). For less than $1,500 (at this writing) you get a capable desktop replacement with a quad-core Ivy Bridge Core i7 CPU and most importantly a GeForce GTX 670M to take care of your gaming needs. There are other, more pricey configurations available as well; some that include 3D kits from Nvidia, but the base model should hold up pretty well in just about any game thanks to the solid GPU. It can also be equipped with dual hard drives–some hybrid drives with better performance–for up til 1.75 TB of storage space. The base model’s processor is a Core i7-3610QM.

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8. Razer Blade R2

Razer BladeWhether Razer’s most advanced piece of gaming hardware is the world’s “first true gaming laptop”, as Razer claims, is a subject of some debate. However, it is clearly an original machine, and the latest revision made it considerably more interesting. Gone is the dual core processor in favor of a quad core, 35W Ivy Bridge (3632QM) CPU that is considerably more powerful than its predecessor without inflating the power consumption, which has to be kept low considering the Blade’s thin-and-light build. The somewhat mediocre (by today’s standards) GeForce GT 555M has also been replaced by a much more capable GeForce GTX 660M. This duo is complemented by an HDD/SSD combo that should provide ample storage performance.

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9. HP Pavilion dv7t Quad Edition

dv7t quadThe quad-core edition of the HP Pavilion dv7t is another interesting option for gamers–not least because it offers a great deal of powerful hardware for the money. You can order it with a range of 3rd-generation Core i7 CPUs, and the graphics card has now been upgraded to the new GeForce GT 650M with 1 GB or 2 GB of GDDR5 video RAM, which should be almost as fast as its almost identically-specced big brother the GTX 660M. This pushes the dv7t and it’s 15.6-inch counterpart the dv6t into the high-end segment while retaining a highly affordable (in relative terms) price tag. It’s important to note that the GT 650M is an optional upgrade, but this is an absolute must-have if you want to call it a gaming laptop.

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10. MSI GE70

MSI GE70The GE 70 is yet another gaming machine from MSI. It is slimmer and less expensive than the GT 70 (see above). This laptop is either equipped with the GeFore GT 650M or the faster GTX 660M. A key feature in the GE70, at least according to MSI, is the use of a Killer E2200 wireless module that reduces latency in online gaming by prioritizing said transfers. Another unique feature in MSI’s line of gaming laptops is the Turbo Drive Engine (TDE) feature, which is basically an overclocking button that increases the GPU clocks in an accessible and safe way. It’s of course possible to overclock most dedicated mobile GPUs with some manual labor, but MSI removes the trial-and-error factor–presumably without warranty issues.

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Up to 15.6″

1. Clevo P150EM

Origin PC Eon 15-SWhen it’s fully tricked out in the GPU department, the Clevo P150EM is the fastest 15-inch gaming laptop on the planet. It is known under different names and built-to-order by Origin PC, Sager, AVADirect, or a number of other gaming PC specialists. What makes the P150EM special is that it’s configurable with one of the fastest GPUs on the market right now–the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680M or the Radeon HD 7970–as well as 3rd-gen quad-core Intel CPU all the way up to the Core i7-3940XM Extreme Edition. It can also house up to 32 GB of RAM. This hardware puts it a step ahead of all of the competition in the 15-inch segment today, no matter if compared in gaming performance or raw processing power.

Read our review of its predecessor the EON 15-S/P150HM here.

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2. MSI GT60

MSI GT60The new GT60 from MSI is also equipped with very powerful hardware for its size. It has the “new” GeForce GTX 670M with 3GB of GDDR5 and 3rd-gen Intel Core i7 CPUs–in most cases the Core i7-3610QM as well as 12GB of RAM and dual hard drives in RAID 0 (optional). Just like its bigger brother the MSI GT70 and the GE-series, the GT60 is also equipped with MSI’s proprietary overclocking technology TDE, which boosts the CPU/GPU clocks by up to 30% with the push of a button. The design has been revised and the 15.6-inch version of the laptop now looks like the 17.3-inch model, only smaller.

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3. Alienware M14x R2

The M14x has just been updated to its second revision, and the Nvidia GeForce GT 555M in the previous version has been replaced by a brand new Kepler-based GT 650M with either 1 GB or 2 GB of video RAM. This graphics card in combination with a choice of 3rd-gen Intel Ivy Bridge processors should be more than enough to let the Alienware M14x keep its title as the world’s fastest 14-inch gaming laptop. The base model ships with an older dual-core processor that can be upgraded to the latest quad-core Ivy Bridge models. It also has  options for a 1600×900 WLED panel and new SSD/hard drive combos that consist of an mSATA SSD and a regular hard drive, taking advantage of Intel’s Smart Response technology. Thanks to a lower resolution compared to most 15-inch gaming laptops, it should be easy to run most games at the M14x’s native resolution.

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4. Asus G55VW

Asus’ new G55VW replaces the G53SX (comparison here) which has been one of the most popular 15-inch gaming laptops on the market. The old GTX 560M has been replaced by a newer, better and faster GTX 660M, while the processor has been upgraded to a new quad-core Core i7–in most cases the Core i7-3610QM. It is more or less a 15-inch version of the 17-inch G75 and comes with a 1080p display, a backlit keyboard and an option for dual hard drives or SSDs, but this time only in an mSATA/SATA combination (and DIY upgrades are very difficult). Just like its bigger brother the G75VW, the G55VW has retained the exceptional cooling solution that keeps its noise level to a minimum. Read my full review here.

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5: Lenovo IdeaPad Y580

Lenovo IdeaPad Y580Lenovo used to be known mostly for its boring-yet-functional business laptops, but that trend is now officially broken with the manufacturer’s IdeaPad series, and in particular the 15.6-inch Y580, which is basically Lenovo’s first gaming laptop. Not only is it a real powerhouse courtesy of a GeForce GTX 660M GPU and a quad-core Intel Ivy Bridge CPU, but also surprisingly inexpensive. The range of configurations (and prices) differ mainly in what panel is used–entry-level models ship with a 1366×768 panel, while others have a 1020×1080 display. There are also versions with the slightly less powerful GT 650M graphics card instead of the 660M.

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6: Gigabyte P2542G

Gigabyte P2542GGigabyte is a very well-known quantity in PC parts, having manufactured graphics cards, motherboards and other components for decades (the company was founded in 1986). However, it was only recently that the company moved into the notebook segment with a few exciting products. One of them is the P2542G – a compact 15.6-inch gaming laptop based on quad-core Intel Ivy Bridge processors and the Nvidia GTX 660M (Kepler). A very attractive value proposition is the inclusion of a 128 GB mSATA SSD in combination with a mechanical hard drive The SSD is used in conjunction with Intel’s Rapid Start Technology (RST) to speed up boot and load times significantly.

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7: HP dv6t Quad Edition

dv7t quadHP’s Pavilion dv6t is the more portable version of the dv7t, and just like it’s bigger counterpart the Quad Edition of the dv6 comes with a choice of the latest quad-core CPUs from Intel as well as a GeForce GT 650M GPU (optional upgrade). This graphics card is a major upgrade over the previous versions of the dv6t, but the pricing is largely unchanged and it all adds up to a very affordable yet powerful 15.6-inch laptop capable of playing all the latest games without breaking the bank.

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There are lots of factors to take into consideration when choosing a good gaming laptop; hardware, build quality, features you value personally, and of course the price tag. As for the hardware, the graphics card plays the key role in a gaming notebook. Sure, the processor is very important for overall performance, as is the hard drive (or preferably: SSD), but at the end of the day the graphics card is what determines the frame rate and whether your games are playable.

To play the latest titles at high resolution with all the detail knobs turned up, you are going to need a powerful GPU. No amount of tweaking or optimizing will substitute better hardware. Both AMD (formerly ATI) and Nvidia have highly capable mobile video cards on the market. In bigger, 17-inch plus laptops, you will also find them in dual GPU configurations–called SLI or CrossFire for Nvidia’s GeForce and AMD’s Mobility Radeon series, respectively. The fastest mobile graphics cards as of January 2012 are the AMD Mobility Radeon HD 7970M and the Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 680M (actually the GTX 680MX, but this GPU is thus far unavailable in current laptops, it has only been unveiled as part of Apple’s new iMac).

Site founder and gaming hardware enthusiast.

257 Comments
  1. Hi Qindon! No sales pitch here, quite the opposite: I wouldn’t buy anything from someone who tried to sell me a GTX 560M claiming it’s faster than a GTX 660M. That’s bull droppings. The 660M is from Nvidia’s new Kepler (28nm) lineup with 384 CUDA cores, whereas the 560M is an old Fermi card with half that amount of cores and a higher power consumption. There’s a new Asus on the way called G55, which will probably ship with the faster and better 660M.

    The GTX 670M and 675M, on the other hand, are rebadged 570M and 580M GPUs, but the 580M/675M is still the fastest mobile GPU available.

    For that price and those specs, please tell me where to order the Gigabyte. Seriously. I want to know 🙂 You can drop me an email at ‘admin [at] gaminglaptopreport.com’. Gigabyte is a new name in laptops, but the company has manufactured computer parts (graphics cards, motherboards etc) for decades, so they are most likely good.

    The Clevo P150HM was just updated to the P150EM, with a backlit keyboard, a new chipset prepared for Intel’s upcoming Ivy Bridge CPUs and some other updates. And if you understand a bit of German you can actually get one from Schenker Notebooks (http://www.mysn.de/ – it’s their XMG P502 model, Swedish backlit keyboard available). Their base model is affordable, but it requires quite a few upgrades, including an operating system 😉

  2. Forgot to type down the RAM: 8GB or get 16GB which costed around $200 more $1378.

    Hope for help,

    Qindon

  3. Hey,
    I came by this web site by chance, and I’m going out on a limb here hoping for good and objective advice. As I’m getting tired of sales pitch and biased sellers.
    I’m looking for a new laptop, focus on gaming (SWTOR, SC2, WOW) and heavy programs like CAD, Adobe etc. I had an Acer Aspire TimeLine i7, which broke down. Got money back and looking for a replacement in 15, 6-inch segment.
    I have been looking at Asus G53SX or the Gigabyte’s P2542G Gaming Notebook.
    The Gigabyte spec’s I almost bought had these:
    A quad-core 3rd generation Intel Core i7 processor, 15.6 “Full HD 1080p, NVIDIA GeForce graphics drives GTX660M – 2GB Graphics Card NVIDIA working on Optimus, Two hard drive’s one SSD Sata III 120 GB and a second HDD 500 GB 7200 rpm. Blue-ray/DVD drive, USB 3.0 and HDMI 1.4 with support for 3D
    Price: $1178 with 3 year warranty. It would be delivered in 30th May in Sweden.
    For me with studying it is a lot of money. But I am willing to pay for computer that is good.
    Alienware in Sweden cost over $2200. Clevo P150HM can’t be delivered to Sweden, with Swedish keyboard (Å,Ä,Ö) and friends of mine got Asus G53SX with minor problems (power cord, over heating), cost over $1500.

    So my questions are: Is the gigabyte a good laptop? Heard from a Asus computer seller that the Asus graphic card GeForce GTX 560M was twice as good as the Gigabyte’s GTX660M version. Is it worth the money? Do they break down faster? Overheating? Or is there a other laptop that is recommended? Razor in 15,6 inch only sold in US?
    As this is like ancient Greek to me about finding a good laptop for around $1500. I would appreciate any help or guidance throw this ocean of computer tech.
    Happy Eastern!

    Qindon

  4. from pcspecialist sorry for some reason the link didnt work :S

  5. i would highly recommend , after doing some more research, building a custom laptop from you can get a very nice laptop. Personally I was going to get the HP Dv7 but for the same price I got a similar laptop with the same processor but a GPU which is alot better with all the other features I needed.

  6. The Razer (not “Razor”) Blade looks great, although it would have been even better with a quad-core CPU, a considerably faster GPU and a less ridiculous price tag.

  7. 2.8GHz Intel Core i7 2640M Processor
    8GB, 1333MHz DDR3 Memory
    17.3-inch LED backlit display (1920×1080 pixels)
    Nvidia GeForce GT 555M
    Built-in HD webcam
    Integrated 60Wh battery
    320GB, 7200rpm SATA HDD
    all those laptops are crap. razor blade is the best gaming laptop in the world which only cost $2600 and these are my specs:

    802.11 b/g/n compatible
    42.70cm (W) x 27.69cm (D) x 2.24cm (H); 3.16kg
    Razer says that the system will be available in the US in the fourth quarter of 2011 for US$2799. Local availability and pricing is yet to be announced.

    go on this site

    http://www.cnet.com.au/razer-blade-339321302.htm

  8. ddd123: I believe they both build on the Clevo laptops listed above. That also includes Sager, AVADirect and several others.

  9. Where do Ibuypower and DigitalStorm products rank? I’ve really had a good experience with my desktop and am considering a new laptop, but didn’t see them anywhere on this list…

  10. @Riley,
    There will always be compromises (unfortunately). The M14x is just the right size to manage that single, upper mid-range card within the heat constraints of a 14″ casing (although the upcoming R2 might be equipped with something a bit faster). Same goes for the 15.6″ Eon 15-S/P150HM (https://www.gaminglaptopreport.com/reviews/origin-eon-15-s-review-clevo-p150hm-gtx-580m/), which just barely manages to cope with a single 580M. Full SLI/Crossfire setups (not counting hybrid) are more or less out of the question in laptops smaller than 17″.

    @Maro,
    No flaws that I’m aware of (haven’t tested it personally). Going by the specs (GT 555M + Core i7) it should be on par with the M14x (https://www.gaminglaptopreport.com/reviews/alienware-m14x-review-hdd-ssd/), which should have no problem running those games.

    @Robbie Bek,
    Thanks! And no, there shouldn’t be a noticeable difference unless there are some design flaws in a specific model, like CPU/GPU throttling due to excessive heat buildup.

  11. The list is amazing, but I have a technical question.
    If you get the exact same specs (Same CPU, GPU, RAM, HDD…etc.), would it still differ if the factory is different (Like Toshiba or HP or Dell with same specs)?

  12. Hey i was just wondering about the xps 17 if there is any serious cons about it , or anyways im thinking bout buying a new laptop for most likely casual gaming… games like diablo 3 , LoL ,Guild wars 2 when ever its out … if you guys could give me a tip id be thankful

  13. Hey, I am looking into buying a gaming laptop in the near future and I am wondering what would be the best option. I am not on a serious budget because if I can find the one I want I can just save longer for it if it is too pricey. I am looking for a bit of portability like the M14x, but I also am interested in the power of a dual graphics card. Is there anything that has both the power of the larger desktop replacements and the versatility of the gaming notebooks?

  14. Hi Monyx, sure I can give it a try 🙂 The dv6t Quad is good value IMO. It sells for $787 right now with the HD 7690M GPU ($25 upgrade). Check out the ‘HP coupons’ link at the top of the page. If you don’t mind waiting a while, I would keep an eye out for laptops with the new mid-range GeForce GT 640M. They should be reasonably priced and produce good frame rates. Another option might be to look at the used/refurbished market for an Asus G-series gaming laptop. I’ve seen the G53SW (Core i7-2630QM + GTX 460M: still good) go for less than $1k. Newegg and Amazon are probably the most well stocked, but I have personally made some good finds on eBay.

  15. Hey Berg, Im thinking you may just be able to help me… Right now i have 600 bucks saved up. im tryin to get to 1k but i dont wanna spend more than that. Im lookin for a laptop that can play todays games. it doesnt have to be the highest settings of course but i guess really what im lookin for is a laptop between
    600-900 dollars that can play some of the better games. i want as much bang as i can get for less than 1k. Even cheaper would be better. Some of the brands ive considered are Lenovo, Sony, Asus, Toshiba. Ive been looking on newegg so far. do you know any other good sites for laptops?

  16. @Charlie Sheen: Hi! If you are traveling a lot I would definitely choose the M14x to save your back. The M17x is more powerful but also much bigger and heavier. Viruses shouldn’t be a problem more than on any other computer if you are using a decent antivirus solution and stick with legit games.

  17. @wookieslayer: You can definitely find a great machine within that price range. Laptops with the 580M/HD 6990M will be best equipped for gaming. The Asus G series is great, but in that case I would personally wait for about a month for the next generation with the GTX 660M.

  18. Hi Berg, i was wondering if the alienware m17x is portable, or is it better if i go with the m14x? Because I’m traveling a lot. And do you think if I would like to play games half the time and the other half surf the web that viruses would be a problem?
    Thanks

  19. “Current Alienware Coupons:

    1. Take an additional $50 off any Alienware laptop configured at $999 or more (that would be pretty much all of them) with the coupon code: BHW1L0MX0D?MCX”

    As soon as I saw the word Alianware I knew this wasn’t the list I was looking for.

  20. Hi I have a spending limit range between 1000-2000. Games I currently play are WOW,old republic,Aion,FF14,Batman asylum and city, RE5,Battlefield 3,skyrim. any recommendations that would run all those at max or close to max. battlefield 3 and skyrim not so much at max but would like to play future games coming out this year at max or very close like RE6.should i increase my Price range or is there anything good around there i was thinking on the ASUS g4 series any thoughts?

  21. Are there any problems with viruses for the Alienware M14x?

  22. hey this is my first time visiting this site and was hoping you guys could help me out. Im looking to get a laptop in the 1800-2100 price range mostly for guild wars 2 and probably some diablo 3 what laptop would be able to play those games at high settings?

  23. Hey jlin06, thanks for stopping by! Neither WoW, Aion or Diablo 3 are overly demanding (relatively speaking), so most upper-midrange GPUs should be able to play them on high settings. For exemple, Diablo 3 beta put out 69 FPS on the high preset with the GTX 570M (https://www.gaminglaptopreport.com/reviews/msi-gt683dxr-review-2/), so basically half of that polygon crunching power would suffice for playable frame rates. Also have a look at this table: http://www.notebookcheck.net/Computer-Games-on-Laptop-Graphic-Cards.13849.0.html
    It doesn’t contain Aion or Diablo 3 unfortunately, but lots of other games that could give you a rough idea of the GPU’s relative performance.

  24. hey guys new to this site. I was wondering if I could get some advice on how powerful a mobile gpu I need. The games that I am interested in playing are WoW, Aion, and Diablo 3 in the future. Thing is, I have no idea how powerful a gpu I need to be able to run these on high settings with playable fps. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks :).

  25. @Verge: That’s definitely a powerful machine. You can check out some frame rates on the smaller MSI with the GTX 570M here: https://www.gaminglaptopreport.com/reviews/msi-gt683dxr-review-2/ The 570M will probably only struggle with ‘Ultra’ presets, particularly in BF3.
    @Vic: The GTX 560M graphics card in the G74SX is at least 50% faster than the GT 540M in the Vaio, so the difference in gaming frame rates will likely be about the same.
    @Bigd: The X7200 was actually just replaced in 1st position here with the almost identical P270WM. The difference is Sandy Bridge-E processors.

    I would like to repeat to everyone though (don’t want to be the reason for anyone’s buyer’s remorse), that the next-generation mobile Nvidia cards are due in April, and they look quite promising as (no longer) Confused points out.

  26. Reply
    (No longer) Confused March 19, 2012 at 7:04 am

    KowAwA, read this: http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVIDIA-GeForce-GT-640M.71579.0.html
    Basically, it can run BF3 with medium to high settings (26-34fps), at 1360×768.

  27. Hi, what do you think of Acer Timeline M3? Not a pure gaming notebook, I heard, more of an ultrabook but it has GT640M which said can run BF3 ultra setting with around 25fps.

  28. I was looking at the battalion 101 x 7200 but that didn’t even make your list so that’s out

  29. Hi berg,

    I’m trying to get a laptop just for playing wow at a high end level for raiding. I need one that can handle add ons and run fast. I’m not using this laptop for anything but that game. I don’t mind spending the extra bucks to get the top of the line laptop. I don’t care about 3D. I would prefer a smaller screen but dont want to lose the speed by going smaller but what is out there now that will run as fast as my home pc and give me the best gaming experience. And not be outdated in 6 months. I bought the ASus g-72 when that was top of the line or I thought 2 years ago but I’m not happy with it. And if I get a smaller screen what should I upgrade in the laptop. What is the most important thing Ram/Graphic card/ or what ??? Great site and thanks

  30. Hi Berg, I recently bought a laptop from lenovo
    The U400 ultrabook the reason i bought it its because
    I read that it has an ati radeon6470m gpu but I try to play
    Arkham city at medium settings and it lag so much plus
    It was overheating,so I stopped and well now
    I’m looking to buy a gaming laptop just for that and
    Saw a couple models from Asus, hp and Sony and I decided to go with the Asus G74sx but then I read about The Sony F series, in your opinion which one of this two would run new games from 2010 and 2011
    that I can purchase that will also give me good fps without the overheating and that I can also play the new games from 2012. Please if you can give me an advise before I purchase the laptop, thank you

  31. Hey Berg,

    I am thinking buying the system below. How well can this laptop run BF3, Skyrim, ME3, SC2, Diablo 3. (i would like play all games at the highest settings if possible).

    MSI GT780DX-406US:
    17.3″ FHD 16:9 “Matte Type” Super Clear Ultra Bright LED Matte Screen (1920×1080) (SKU – X1R553)
    – 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ i7-2670QM, 2.2-3.1GHz, (32nm, 6MB L3 cache) –
    – nVidia GeForce GTX 570M 1,536MB PCI-Express GDDR5 DX11 (SKU – X3R454)
    – 16GB DDR3 1333MHz Dual Channel Memory (4x4GB SODIMMS) – SPECIAL! (SKU – X4P997)
    – 500GB 7200RPM 16MB Cache Buffer (Serial-ATA II 3GB/s) (SKU – X5R207)
    – Combo Dual Layer SuperMulti DVDRW/CDRW Drive w/ Software (SKU – X7R451)

    The way I customized it, its around ~$1464.

  32. Hi BMA!
    If battery life is important then both the MSI and Asus are pretty much out of the question since they don’t have Optimus/switchable graphics. The M14x fan noise is only an issue when playing games, otherwise it’s quite silent actually (although it might be worth waiting on the R2 with a 28nm GPU, should be both faster and put out less heat). And the Envy 15 should definitely be listed here, thanks!(that one should also have a more than decent battery life with the switchable 7690M).

  33. Just to add a other 15ish
    – Envy 15-3040nr

    And if those above can’t manage to provide me enough battery, should I get a m11x r3 and OC “him” to his limit?

  34. Hey Berg,
    I need a powerful machine with a medium battery life/runtime so which one:
    – Alienware m14x (555m seems too weak and fan noises kicking out)
    – MSI GT683DX (Cool 570m)
    – Asus g53sx-a1/dh71 (poor 560m 128bits)
    I would like to use it in the university, so I need something like 5h + oO on text editing only and powerful enough for a Desktop Replacement or at least kind of. The m14x sounds almost perfect but its fan noise its disturbing but I don’t know if in this (text) activities the fan kicks out (any owner?) and its 555m, can it perform like a ps3 on hdmi connection with a 42′ tv like?
    Games: Skyrim :DDDD and WoW ! ! ! If its possible to get a ultra like experience with a OC on the m14x I’m going to get it!
    Regards.

  35. I would upgrade the GPU before anything else, to the 6990M (strangely, the 580M is not an option right now). The Lenovo definitely looks interesting, especially with the unreleased GTX 660M. Those new GPUs and Intel’s Ivy Bridge are a couple of good reasons to wait for a couple of months and see what shows up in April/May. Of course, then there’s the matter of waiting for Intel’s Haswell in 2013 🙂

  36. My buddy said that he’d definitely do this over alienware http://www.engadget.com/photos/lenovo-y580-and-z580-gallery/
    Thoughts?

  37. @Berg, You think the base M17x without any upgrades would do the trick? Because every time I try to build out the M17x it’s always over $2000 lol. If you think it DOES need some upgrades…which ones would you choose? updated wi-fi, updates speed, space? etc.

    Thanks 🙂

  38. @gstylez: With that budget you have a lot of options that will play any game at high settings! I would personally go for a laptop with a single GTX 580M or Radeon HD 6990M, like the M17x or Clevo P170HM.

  39. @Verge: I have no personal experience with ibuypower, but their top model is the same as this one: https://www.gaminglaptopreport.com/reviews/origin-eon-15-s-review-clevo-p150hm-gtx-580m/ but the GPU options seems to be limited to the HD 6990M (AMD’s top mobile GPU). The CZ-12 models have a bottleneck in the GT 540M, which is a bit weak for demanding games like BF3.

  40. info: looking to play bf3, mw3, d3, sc2, etc. Thanks!

  41. What is the best gaming laptop between the $1700-$2000 range?

  42. What are your thoughts on the ibuypower.com laptops? i think it’s called battalion.

  43. Hi Verge,
    A few that comes to mind in that price range would be the MSI GT683 or Asus G53SX (15.6″) or Qosmio X775 (17.3″). But like you said, if you can hold out for a couple of months there will probably be lots of new models on the market (and prices should continue to drop on Sandy Bridge-based laptops).

  44. Hey Berg,

    I am looking for a gaming laptop that can play skyrim, bf3, diablo3, and sc2. My budget is ~1300. Any thoughts? Also, would it be worth it to wait until the next gen ivy bridge and gpu’s come out?

  45. The GTX 260M in the G72GX should still be on par with current mid-range GPUs, but I assume that the CPU is also an older variety? In that case you might be better off opting for a new(er) entry-level gaming machine (unless the price is exceptional).

  46. I am looking to get a Asus G72GX RBBX05, I know nothing about pcs so Im surfing web for any info.

    I currently am playing SWTOR on a NON gaming laptop, and can tll I have to start searching for a gaming rig. So I would like to know if the Asus G72GX RBBX05 isa good gaming rig to run SWTOR. Doesn’t have to be super, but at least good.

    Thanks in advance for any advice.

  47. Well im in Australia and it turns out hp doesn’t do that custom Laptop here. Do you know of any laptops that have those specs ? cause i want all those specs pretty much exactly. abit of SSD and a good graphics card.

  48. Hey Camboss, there’s no question that it can handle the games you mention. $1700 sounds a bit steep, but I suppose it’s the SSD that inflates the price? (not that I would ever argue against getting one – best invention since the 3dfx Voodoo) 🙂

  49. Hey Berg, I’m looking for a laptop to play games like WoW, Hon, Lol, TF 2 while having a couple explorer pages open. Will this hp dvt7 quad do it with i7 2760, 2Gb amd radeon 7690m, 8 Gb Ram, 660Gb (160Gb SSD/ 500 Gb). Will that do the job very well? And is that with a bluejay player worth $1700 ? Thanks 🙂

  50. Thanks for the great comment and interesting input, ChrisStrawhat.
    The reason that my own experience differs somewhat is that I’ve reviewed the 128-bit version of the GTX 560M, which is bottlenecked by the smaller memory bus width and not as fast as the 560M in the G74SX (192-bit). On the other hand, even the “bottlenecked” GTX 560M plays Skyrim in 1080p on the Ultra preset minus AA/AF.

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