Gaming Laptop Recommendation?

I am looking for a new laptop for gaming.

I don’t need this to be very portable at all, so this is basically a desktop replacement. I really only ever take it out onto the porch. But I want something that will game like a champ for a few years. And I think I want a 17" screen. And I don’t want to spend much over $1000.

Any recommendations? Or sites I should check?

I’m using this site as a guide to let me know what the better mobile video cards are.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.

I have a 680m. It runs most games well at 1920x1200. The most intensive game I run is probably the Total War series.

The only thought is that ATI has better multiple-display handling, because you can use hotkeys to switch. This makes it a lot easier to use a laptop as a desktop replacement with an external monitor, and quickly switch to an attached living room tv or whatever.

Nvidia has a clunkier, slow menu interface.

Could you just use the built in windows tool “DisplaySwitch.exe”

heck, create batch files and fire them with a keyboard shortcut if you’ve got 5 minutes to Google how to do that :)

Oh that’s a handy thing, Displayswitch.exe

What do you know, someone wrote an AHK script for exactly my case - a laptop that uses an external display and sometimes a projector. Thanks.

This seems like a decent deal to me. But I’m not sure. Gaming laptops in general seem to be more expensive than their desktop counterparts, so judging by that scale, I think it looks like a good deal.

Gaming laptops are a lousy deal, IMO. I bought a Sager brand laptop, since you can upgrade the graphics card. But to upgrade to a 680m would cost me $750. And since the laptop is so big and heavy (and hot, I leave fans running under it all the time), it rarely leaves my desk anyway. It still plays games decently, but for my next gaming PC, I’m going back to building a desktop.

If you’re set on buying a gaming laptop, I do recommend xoticpc. You can customize the heck out of your laptop, and service is pretty good.

Just be careful about going overboard on options. I set out to buy a $1000 gaming laptop and ended up spending twice that. I ended up with a blu-ray drive, the fastest graphics card (at the time), fastest i7 CPU, matte display, etc… it can add up fast.

Similar to XoticPC, I recommend Malibal.

So what is the sweet spot for RAM these days?

Do I need more than 8 gigs?

Not for most purposes.

No game out now is going to consistently use more than 2GB for its executable–not even “next gen” stuff like BF4 does. Some of Stardock’s upcoming efforts might, apparently (GalCiv3 is specifically mentioned as being written to take advantage of 64-bit memory levels), and it’s definitely possible that within the lifespan of your system, maximum game RAM usage might easily double to 4GB.

Then consider that Windows itself will probably gobble another 1-2.

So, the question to ask yourself is how much software you intend to have running while you game. If you’re like me, and have a four-line-deep system tray hidden away and almost always have a music player and/or browser up alongside your game on a second monitor, 16GB might start to make a lot more sense (insofar as it’s easy to get to while purchasing DIMMs in sets of two–mind you, 4&4 + 2&2 to get 12GB works fine, too).

Some very specific tasks can use more RAM than that (running lots of VMs, some software development tasks, RAM disks, etc.), but I suspect you wouldn’t even be asking that question if those things were of concern to you (I hope that sentence doesn’t come across as condescending; it’s just matter of fact).

Laptops? I think you mean the new breed of Atom and Baytrail tablets running full Windows 8.1 like the new Dell Venue 8 or the Lenovo Miix starting around $300.

Check out some gaming videos on it. The biggest downside right now actually seems to be the lack of good video output. How about Crysis or Skyrim on a tablet!

Cool information. Thanks.

And no, I didn’t take that last sentence as condescending at all. Maybe I’ll bump it up to 12, but 16 seems like overkill to me. I don’t usually have 2 monitors going as I do almost all my gaming out on the porch with a cold beer and a cigar. :)

Got this link in my email today.

Processor is an i5-4200M. 8Gb RAM. 3Gb Geforce 770M. Only $900 today with the coupon code on that page (if i copied and pasted on my phone correctly). Seems like a good Steam machine to me. Not too pricey, good video card, plenty of RAM. And I think an I5 should be good enough for games.

Who knows with laptops though, maybe it will have heat problems?

Bump! Anyone else lusting after the new Razer Blade? Still almost ultrabook-light but now with a high-resolution IPS touchscreen (!) and a better GPU, too. Not exactly cheap, though – all models are above $2000.

Im waiting to see what the Alienware 13 looks like. Probably trading some weight and thickness for an HD and a lot less money.

I don’t think that Razer’s new.

Yea, it was released in the Spring this year, it was only just recently reviewed by Anandtech.

It’s an awesome laptop but i would want something a little less hot and noisy:

Under gaming, the Razer Blade gets very hot. It can get so hot that it is uncomfortable to even touch parts of it, especially around the power button. After an hour of gaming, the hottest spot on the Razer Blade was 51.7°C which is pretty toasty. The Razer Blade pulls cool air from underneath and exhausts it out the back of the chassis at the hinge, so the upper section of keys can get pretty warm. The palm rests, trackpad, and most of the keys never get hot though, with temperatures around 34°C given an ambient 21°C. But when gaming, I would not recommend sitting this in your lap for obvious reasons.

One reason i gave up my PC for an iMac - and my laptop (more or less) for my iPad - is that i wanted something light without so much noise and heat. When i do use my gaming laptop i use it with a cooling pad. That said, the Razor is a pretty pimp MPB alike with much stronger internals.

And now I find that Razer doesn’t sell its systems in Germany anyway… oh well.

I feel like XMG made a Blade-esque knockoff recently and were demoing it during the last HomeStoryCup in Germany; it might be a reasonable alternative (I kinda like XMG, even if their stuff is a real bitch to get in the US).

Yes, I’ve looked at Schenker laptops a couple of months ago. They make very impressive systems from a price/specs perspective but the reviews I’ve seen indicate all the usual problems with gaming laptops: poor non-touch TN displays, mediocre keyboards, loud & hot even in non-gaming operation. Have you seen some particular model that stands out?

Or the slightly cheaper 404. It’s thin, and reports good cooling (but, in the end, that is still cooling a GTX860 or 870M, so, well, power comes at a price).

I saw one mention of a poor keyboard, but, again, not having any real access to this product where I am (much less a couple grand to drop on a gaming laptop), I can’t vouch for that in either direction.

It does have an IPS display, but probably not touch. In my eyes that’s a pro, but again, preferences will vary ;)