The best gaming laptop changes a lot throughout the year. The early days of mobile gaming were largely desktop replacements — clunky chassis, multiple power bricks, and RGB lighting galore. But the top contenders now are different. Manufacturers are finally putting powerful specs in thin gaming machines: sleeker, more portable, and more professional builds. They have excellent, fast refreshing screens that are necessary for a great gaming experience. These laptops aren’t just great for gaming, but for everyday work as well.
The best gaming laptop of 2023 is the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14. It can handle the most demanding games on the market today, it’s portable, and it also makes a great daily driver. Other good options are the Razer Blade 16 and the Lenovo Legion 5 Pro.
One more thing to keep in mind is the power you can expect. Not all chips with the same name are created equal — the RTX 3070 in one laptop may not deliver the same frame rates as the RTX 3070 in another laptop due to its wattage (as well as other factors like the processor and cooling). Nvidia now requires companies to disclose clock speeds and graphics power on each model’s product page, but plenty of manufacturers haven’t done that yet.
Out of the many gaming laptops we test each year, here are the ones that make the list. If you’re looking for a more multipurpose device, check out our best laptop page. If you’re an Android gamer, we’ve also got a list of the best Chromebooks you can buy.
1. Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
The best gaming laptop
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
The ROG Zephyrus G14 is an astonishingly powerful gaming laptop. Its AMD Ryzen 9 processor and GeForce RTX 3060 can push powerful, smooth graphics performance in games with its QHD display while also being surprisingly efficient for other tasks.
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS / GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6700S / RAM: 8GB / Storage: 1TB / Display: 14-inch IPS, 2560 x 1600, 120Hz, no touch option / Dimensions: 12.28 x 8.94 x 0.73/ Weight: 3.64 pounds
The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is the best gaming laptop for its price.
There are a couple configurations, and you should make sure that you’re buying the $1,649.99 SKU with the 6700S GPU. We feel that this model, specifically, is the best 14-inch gaming laptop you can buy.
This is a great device for travel and commute gaming, at just 3.79 pounds and 0.77 inches thick. It comes with a great keyboard, touchpad, port selection, and screen. The frame rates it produced in our testing were solid, and we didn’t see a huge difference in performance between the 6700S and 6800S models. We also got all-day battery life, which you don't see in too many gaming laptops these days. Oh, and there's even a webcam.
If you are interested in having an animated grid of colored lights on your computer, you can also pay more for a model that has Asus’s AniMe Matrix. We don’t think these models offer particularly good value for their price, but they do have some cute benefits – you can customize them to display words or images of your choice, and there’s a virtual pet on it that you can play with. Regardless, if you're looking for a 14-inch laptop with powerful gaming chops that can double as a daily driver, this device should top your list.
Read our Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 review.
2. Razer Blade 16
The best dual-mode gaming laptop
The Razer Blade 16 is the best laptop for playing the most demanding games on the market, offering a 16-inch Mini LED display, an RGB keyboard, and hardcore chips from Intel and Nvidia. It’s just not cheap.
CPU: Intel Core i9-13980HX, Core i9-13950HX / GPU: Nvidia Geforce RTX 4060, RTX 4070, RTX 4080, RTX 4090 / RAM: 16GB, 32GB / Storage: 1TB / Display: 16-inch Mini-LED, Dual UHD/FHD+, 120Hz/240Hz / Dimensions: 13.98 x 9.61 x 0.87 inches / Weight: 5.4 pounds
If you want your games to look as gorgeous as they possibly can, the Razer Blade 16 is worth considering. The Blade comes with an optional Mini LED screen that can swap between native UDH Plus / 120Hz and FHD Plus/ 240Hz modes with one click.
Inside, the Blade is equipped with top-end chips from Nvidia and Intel, and can run most of today’s demanding games at their highest settings with all the effects you want. If the dual-mode display isn’t a priority for you, you can go for more affordable (but still pricey) models.
Read our Razer Blade 16 review.
3. Lenovo Legion 5 Pro
The best affordable 17-inch gaming laptop
Lenovo’s 2021 Legion 5 Pro features a 16-inch QHD display, the RTX 3070 graphics chip, AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800H, and it supports expandable storage and RAM.
CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 6800H, 6900HX / GPU: Nvidia Geforce RTX 3050 Ti, 3060, 3070 Ti / RAM: 16GB, 32GB / Storage: 512GB, 2TB/ Display: 16-inch IPS, 2560 x 1600, 165Hz, no touch option / Dimensions: 14 x 10.3 x 1.06 inches / Weight: 5.51 pounds
The Legion 5 Pro is the best gaming laptop Lenovo has ever made. For well under $2,000, you get exceptional performance from AMD’s Ryzen 5000 processors in an attractive 16-inch chassis. It delivered respectable results on every game we tried, even at its native 2560 x 1600 resolution. And with the 165Hz display, you’ll be able to fully take advantage of the Legion 5 Pro’s power.
Performance aside, the highlight of the Legion 5 Pro is its 16:10 screen. A screen this tall is hard to find on the gaming laptop market these days, and it allows you more room for multitasking if you want to use the Legion 5 Pro as a daily driver. The keyboard is also a delight to use, with 1.5mm of travel and four-zone programmable backlighting.
The Legion’s main downside is its battery life. We only got about four and a half hours of continuous use in our testing. While that’s not the worst we’ve ever gotten from a gaming laptop, it’s nowhere near what you’ll see from Asus’ Zephyrus G15. However, it does charge very, very fast with the included 300W power brick. Overall, though the G15 will be a better option for folks who often work on the go, the Legion is still a solid choice — and we have to give Lenovo props for the 16:10 screen.
Read our Lenovo Legion 5 Pro review.
4. MSI GE76 Raider
The flashiest gaming laptop
MSI GE76 Raider
The MSI GE76 Raider is a flashy, colorful notebook for gamers who want the best of the best. It’s thick and heavy, and its battery life isn’t great, but it houses the most powerful gaming specs you can get.
CPU: Intel Core i7-12700H, Core i9-12900HK / GPU: Nvidia Geforce RTX 3060, 3070, 3080, 3080 Ti / RAM: 16GB, 32GB / Storage: 512GB/1TB / Display: 17.3-inch IPS, 2560 x 1600/1920 x 1080, 144Hz/240Hz/360Hz, no touch option / Dimensions: 15.63 x 11.18 x 1.02 inches / Weight: 6.39 pounds
The GE76 Raider costs an arm and a leg, but it packs some serious power. You can configure it all the way up to Nvidia’s top mobile GPU and Intel’s top processor, and it has the cooling to keep them in line. You can get it with a QHD screen (which we’d recommend for most people, as these hefty specs can take full advantage of it) as well as a 1080p 360Hz display.
Keep in mind that this laptop is really just for gaming. Its battery life is mediocre, and its chassis is quite thick and heavy, so you’ll want to look elsewhere if you’re looking for a computer that could double as a portable work driver. (The power brick is also huge.) But if you’re looking for what’s essentially a desktop you could travel with, the GE76 Raider will deliver a premium experience.
Read our MSI GE76 Raider review.
5. Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition
An all-AMD gaming laptop
Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition
The Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition is all RGB and all AMD. It delivers great battery life and exceptional gaming on battery.
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX / GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6800M / RAM: 8GB / Storage: 512GB / Display: 15.6-inch IPS, 1920 x 1080, 300Hz, no touch option / Dimensions: 13.94 x 10.20 x 1.07 inches / Weight: 5.51 pounds
The ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition is one of the few gaming laptops you’ll find that includes both an AMD processor and an AMD GPU. Not to worry — it delivers gaming performance on par with what you’ll see from laptops with Nvidia’s top GPUs. It also delivers one of the best gaming battery experiences we’ve ever seen — it was able to maintain playable frame rates on Red Dead Redemption 2 for over an hour with no charger attached.
Speaking of battery, we averaged nine hours and 16 minutes of work use between charges, which makes the Strix G15 far and away one of the longest-lasting gaming laptops on the market. That’s doubly impressive because it’s powering a ton of flashy LEDs, including a per-key RGB keyboard and a colorful light strip around the front edge of the deck.
Read our Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition review.
6. Razer Blade 14
The best stylish gaming laptop
Razer Blade 14
The Razer Blade 14 is a heavy-duty gaming laptop in a light and portable chassis. It features a Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU and RTX 3080 GPU, with a vibrant RGB keyboard.
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX / GPU: Nvidia Geforce RTX 3060, 3070 Ti, 3080 Ti / RAM: 16GB / Storage: 1TB / Display: 14-inch IPS, 1920 x 1080/2560 x 1440, 144Hz/165Hz, no touch option / Dimensions: 12.59 x 8.66 x 0.66 inches / Weight: 3.92 pounds
If you’re looking for a powerful 14-inch device that can keep up with the best 15-inch gaming laptops on the market, the only place you’ll find that is the Razer Blade 14. This slim and portable device includes Nvdia’s RTX 3070 and RTX 3080, Nvidia’s top-of-the-line mobile GPUs, as well as a powerful eight-core AMD chip. It’s a gorgeous device, with a QHD 165Hz display option and a classy RGB keyboard. There’s even a reasonable port selection, including HDMI 2.1 as well as two USB-C ports.
Read our Razer Blade 14 review.
7. Razer Blade 18
The best big-screen gaming laptop
The Razer Blade 18 is a powerful gaming laptop with a compact and attractive design.
CPU: Intel Core i9-13980HX, Core i9-13950HX / GPU: Nvidia Geforce RTX 4060, RTX 4070, RTX 4080, RTX 4090 / RAM: 16GB, 32GB, 64GB / Storage: 1TB, 2TB / Display: 18-inch, 2560 x 1600, 240Hz / Dimensions: 15.74 x 10.84 x 0.86 inches / Weight: 6.8 pounds
The Blade 18 delivers some of the best gaming performance you can find in a laptop — but that’s not even its superpower. What makes Razer’s 17-inch flagship so impressive is its massive 18-inch screen that delivers a fully immersive gaming experience. And at 0.86 inches, it’s impressively thin for such a powerful device — thin enough to carry in a briefcase or backpack.
This year’s model comes with a QHD Plus 240Hz display. It also has a customizable per-key RGB keyboard, which adds a touch of color without being too intense for the office.
The Blade 18 certainly isn’t cheap, but it’s the laptop to buy if you want big gaming.
Read our Razer Blade 18 review.
8. Asus ROG Flow Z13
The best convertible gaming laptop
Asus ROG Flow Z13
The ROG Flow Z13 is a gaming tablet with a detachable keyboard, kickstand, and plenty of chops for QHD gaming.
CPU: Intel Core i9-13900H / GPU: Nvidia Geforce RTX 4050, RTX 4060 / RAM: 8GB / Storage: 1TB / Display: 13.4-inch IPS, 2560 x 1600, 165Hz, touch option / Dimensions: 11.89 x 8.11 x 0.51 inches / Weight: 2.6 pounds
If you’re looking for a super-portable gaming laptop that doubles as a tablet, the Flow X13 is one of your only options. The model we tested is the Acronym Edition, which has a funky and unique design done in collaboration with the apparel brand Acronym. You don’t have to buy this particular model (and the plain one will certainly be more affordable, so that’s what’s linked here), but it’s covered in logos and typography, with a multicolored keyboard that looks like it belongs at a fashion show. We recommend going for the non-Acronym model if you’re looking for the best value.
Design aside, the Flow Z13 has the chops to run all kinds of demanding titles at its native QHD resolution. What’s more, it’s compatible with Asus’s XG Mobile external GPU. That means you can plug the Z13 in for heavy-duty performance while you’re at your desk at home. That setup should give you a better gaming experience than you can expect from most gaming laptops on their own.
Read our Asus ROG Flow Z13 review.