Get your game on with these budget gaming laptops for Less than a $1000
Gaming laptops need to have powerful processors and good displays. They also need a good keyboard for rapid input to keep you moving through the game with blazing speed. A feature of many gaming keyboards is back lighting so you can use it in dim lighting. Many sport web cams so you can show your best “game” face to intimidate your opponents. Another plus is a good sound system to get you into the spirit of the game. They all have USB ports so that you can connect your own personalized gaming keyboard and mouse or trackball. Unfortunately, they all lack odor output, so you can’t play like Tommy:
“He ain’t got no distractions, can’t hear no buzzes and bells. Don’t see lights a-flashing, he plays by sense of smell …. That deaf, dumb and blind kid sure plays a mean pinball.”
— Peter Townshend. Maybe smell-o-vision will be next year’s killer-app.
We’ve taken a look at what’s out there to bring you a selection of the best budget gaming laptops today. Each made the list for a variety of reasons, but all deserve a place in our top ten. Take your seats and get ready as we take you on a journey through the ten best budget gaming laptops.
This laptop is the standout of the (just) less than $1000 gaming laptops. There is a newer version but it’s more expensive and so doesn’t make the list. Its 17.3-inch display provides a wide-angle view of the 1920×1080 pixels which are powered by a NVIDIA GeForce GTX960M with 2GBs of video memory. The keyboard and numeric keypad are backlit using red LEDs. A special feature of this keyboard is 1.8mm travel for a good gamer’s touch. The Intel Core i7 6700HQ processor has 4 cores running at 2.6GHz.
With a whopping 16GB of memory clocked at 2133MHz it can multi-task without breaking a sweat. Main storage is a 1TB 7200RPM hard disk. It has a 1.2MP HD web cam, microphone and speakers and a dual level DVD±RW/CD-RW optical drive. Networking is provided through an RJ45 Ethernet jack, built-in 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0. The laptop has the following additional ports: USB one 3.1 type C, one 3.0 and two 2.0; card reader for SD, SDHC, SDXC and MMC cards; combination headphone/microphone jack and one HDMI port.
The case reflects the style of the angled surfaces of the F-22 stealth fighter with a metallic finish. The case sports simple access to the memory and hard disk for easy upgrades. The laptop weights 6.6 pounds. It comes with Windows 10 and special ASUS-exclusive GameFirst III software designed to prioritize the game program. The ASUS ROG AudioWizard software provides presets for specialized gaming audio tailoring. All-in-all it is an outstanding system.
This laptop combines good specifications and a price slightly more than half as much as the ASUS laptop. It has a 17.3-inch touch-screen display with 1600×900 pixels using the AMD Radeon R4 graphics chip set. It is equipped with a standard keyboard and numeric keypad. It has an HP Imagepad touch pad with multi-touch gesture support. The processor is an AMD Quad-Core A6-6310 with, obviously, 4 processors running at 1.8GHz (2.4GHz turbo) with 8GB of memory. The hard disk can contain up to 1TB of data and programs and spins at 5400rpm. Other devices include an HD web cam, dual array digital microphones, Bang & Olufson speakers and a SuperMulti DVD burner.
Networks connections are through a 10/100MB Ethernet jack, and 802.11b/g/n WiFi. The laptop also connects to the outside world with two 3.0 and one 2.0 USB ports, video through HDMI and Mini DisplayPort connectors, a combination headphone/microphone jack, and a multi-format digital media card reader. It has Windows 10 Home 64-bit operating system installed. It comes with a pleasingly purple case, weighing in at a hefty 6.7 pounds.
This laptop has a magnificent display with a 15.6-inch diagonal measurement and 3850×2160 pixels. This display is driven by the Intel HD Graphic 520 chip set. It is equipped with touchscreen and a standard backlit keyboard but no numeric keypad. The Intel Core i7-6500U dual processor runs at 2.5GHz (3.1Ghz in turbo mode) with 8GB of memory. It has a 1TB hard disk with the usual 5400rpm speed. It includes an HD web cam and built-in microphone. Networking is provided by 802.11 AC WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0.
Exterior connections include a memory card reader, one USB 2.0 port, an HDMI 4.1a connection and a combination headphone/microphone jack. Windows 10 Home 64-bit operating system is preloaded. The case is black and can flip back into several positions including display on top and keyboard hidden. Its price lies between the ASUS and HP systems described above. It weighs 4.8 pounds.
This laptop is an absolute powerhouse of a gaming laptop. Computer Upgrade King’s HP Pavillion 17t 7th Gen is essentially a beast of a HP laptop customized to the ultimate to bring you gaming at an outstanding level for the money. Under the hood you have an Intel 7th generation i5-7300HQ quad core 2.5 GHz processor, and a dedicated 2GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card. Real power for hard core gaming.
In terms of memory, the CUK HP Pabilion 17t Gaming Laptop comes equipped with a total of 1.5TB from both HDD and SSD drives, and 16 GB of DDR4 2400 high performance RAM. Combine this with the dedicated graphics card and you can get high spec out just about any game you want on the market right now.
The laptop comes with Windows 10 installed, 3 USB ports, a HDMI port and card reader as well as your standard headphone/mic jack. It is a real performer, packed to the max with power to bring you one of the best gaming laptops you can get for under $1000.
The Acer VX 15 is another fantastic laptop designed specifically for gaming. It displays Full HD 1920×1080 pixels in a 15.6-inch diagonal display. The display is powered by a GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics card with an ample 4GB dedicated GDDR5 VRAM. It is equipped with a Full HD web cam supporting HDR (high dynamic range). The display is not a touch screen so you don’t have greasy fingerprints disturbing your view. It has a superior Iron-Red back lit keyboard to keep you powering through the dark hours. The Intel processor is a 7th gen Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor running at 2.8 GHz (up to 3.8 GHz), and with 16GB of DDR4 RAM memory there is a significant amount of speed and power under the hood.
The storage is a 256 GB SSD drive, but if that is not enough, you can plug in an additional external drive. There is no optical drive but there is a dual fan cooling system which is a bit more important when it comes to running high demand games. In terms of connectivity, the Acer VX 15 gaming laptop connects to networks with a 10/100/1000 high speed Ethernet connection, 802.11AC/b/g/n WiFi featuring 2×2 MU-MIMO technology and Bluetooth 4.0. The other ports include two 3.0 USB, one 2.0 USB, HDMI, three-in-one card reader and combination headphone/microphone jack. In terms of sound quality the Acer VX 15 comes with Acer’s proprietary TrueHarmony tehnology and Dolby Audio Premium Sound, pumped through the 2 built in stereo speakers. This really is a major contender for gaming laptops under $1000.CHECK DEALS ON AMAZON
Lenovo’s Y700 Gaming Laptop comes in under the $1000 mark with plenty of room, but it is a real crowd pleaser and for good reason. The Full HD IPS display is incredibly crisp and clear, and the picture quality is complemented with Dolby Home Theater sound pumped through JBL surround sound speakers and sub-woofer. This provides real atmosphere to your gaming.
When it comes to power and speed, the Lenovo Y700 is no weakling couch potato either. With a 4 Core 7th Gen Intel Core i7 6700HQ 2.6 GHz processor, a 4 GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M dedicated graphics card, and 16 GB of RAM, you get a lot of bang for your buck. The keyboard and numeric keypad are backlit to keep you in the game through long sessions that creep into the late night hours. For storage, the Lenovo Y700 comes with a 1TB SATA HDD and also a 256 GB SSD, your machine has never started so quick!
In terms of connectivity, the Lenovo Y700 comes with 802.11ac WiFi, two 3.0 USB, one 2.0 USB, HDMI, a combination headphone/microphone jack and a multi-format SD card reader. Windows 10 Home 64-bit edition is loaded onto this laptop.
This gaming laptop from MSI is priced lower than it’s predecessor, with a bit of space under the $1000 mark. The display is a 15.6-inch display with 1920×1080 pixels, backed up by the GTX 1050Ti graphics chip set with 4GB of dedicated video memory. You get great frame rates from this setup. The processor is a 7th Gen Intel Core i7-7700HQ running at 3.8 GHz, this machine is fast!. All that power needs a quality cooling system and the MSI GL62M comes with Cooler Boost 4 tech built into the chassis, to allow a series of heat pipes to do their job and drag the heat out of the important areas to improve performance. The memory is a little smaller than some of the others in this list, coming in at 8GB of DDR4 RAM, but as the MSI GL62M 7REX-1896US has it’s own 4GB dedicated graphics card, this is plenty of RAM, especially for the budget. The Steelseries Red backlit keyboard is another great little feature that keeps your keys illuminated through the dark hours of gaming.
In terms of storage space, the MSI GL62M 7REX-1896US comes with a 1TB SATA HDD and a 128 GB SSD with Windows 10 pre-loaded. Networking is provided by 802.11 A/C WiFiand there is an RJ-45 wired Ethernet jack, two 3.0 USB, one 2.0 USB, an HDMI, headphone and microphone jack, and a card reader. The system is in a black case and weighs 5.4 pounds.
MSI has been a leader for years in gaming computers, not only building laptops, but also supplying components for full-sized systems. They build over-clocking motherboards and high-end video cards which are well known to gamers worldwide.
This laptop is called a Yoga because it can assume many poses from the standard laptop to keyboard face down and the display facing up, converting it into a tablet. If the angle between the keyboard and this display is more that 190° the keyboard and touch pad are turned off, with input limited to touchscreen (and its associated Windows’ button.) An oddity of the keyboard is that the function keys are co-located with the top row (numeric keys) and to enter a function key you need to press the (FN) “shift button”.
The keyboard has back lighting. The processor is an Intel M-5Y71 normally running at 1.2GHz, with a 2.9GHz turbo setting. It has 8GB of main memory. The main storage device is a 512GB solid state drive (SSD), but there is no optical drive. The laptop has the following built-in devices: an HD web cam, microphones, 802.11AC WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0. The laptop has the following external connections: two 3.0 USB ports, micro HDMI port, memory card slot for SD and MMC cards and a combination headphone/microphone jack. One of the USB ports will supply power to a external device (for recharging) if at least the battery is charged at 20%, even when the computer itself is turned off.
The computer display is a 13.3-inch diagonal measure with an amazing 3200×1800 pixels powered by a Intel HD Graphics 5300 chip set. The display will change its orientation depending on which edge of the screen is “down”. The system is a platinum silver colored light weight of only 2.6 pounds. It comes with Windows 10 Home Premium as the operating system.
These laptops are available as refurbished by Dell (good as new) systems. The display almost covers the entire surface of the “lid”, leaving the smallest of margins. The display is 13.3-inch diagonal with 1920×1080 pixels controlled by an Intel HD Graphics 5500 chip set. The processor is an Intel Core i5-6100U normally running at 2.2GHz with turbo speed to 2.7GHz. It comes with 4GB of memory and a 128GB solid state drive. It has a HD 720p web cam with dual digital microphones, 802.11a/c WiFi and Bluetooth 4.1.
It has a large array of external ports possibilities, namely two 3.0 USB (one with powershare), one Thunderbolt 3 connection which can support numerous power and signal applications and a card reader for SD, SDHC and SDXC cards. An adapter, sold separately, can support VGA, HDMI and USB-A. The case is made of CNC-machined aluminum, the display is covered with Gorilla glass, and the palm rest is carbon fiber composite with soft touch paint. It weights less than 3 pounds. The operating system is Microsoft Windows 8.1 64-bit edition.
Like the Lenova Yoga, this laptop can have the screen rotate 360° from fully closed to back-to-back with the keyboard. The display is only 12.5 inches when measured diagonally, but it has marvelous detail with an amazing 3840×2160 pixels. The display is controlled by Intel HD 520 graphics (using shared memory). The processor is an Intel Core i7-6500U processor with 2.5GHz base speed and 3.1GHz turbo. It has 8GB non-upgradeable memory. The main storage is a 256GB solid state drive, while an external optical drive is sold separately. Input is from a standard backlit keyboard, touch pad, and 10 point multi-touch screen. Other internal devices include an HD web cam, dual microphones with beam forming technology. Networking is provided by 802.11 WiFi and Bluetooth. External connections are through three USB ports, HDMI 4K ultra HD port, combination headphone/microphone jack and memory card reader. It is enclosed in a brushed black, brushed metal case and weighs only 2.9 pounds. It comes with Windows 10 Home edition.