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10 Things to Look for in a Gaming Laptop

by Chloe Parker
things to look for in gaming laptop

Gaming is so much fun that you don’t want to just do it in the comfort of your own home. If you travel a lot, you don’t want to stop playing games just because you can’t take your gaming PC with you. While mobile phones are only good for having a bit of fun when you’re stuck in a bus, a proper gaming laptop can help you enjoy your time on the road a lot more.

But what do you need to look for when it comes to finding the perfect gaming laptop? Here are the 10 things you need to focus on when buying a portable device for your gaming needs.

1. Keyboard

Depending a little on the games you play, the keyboard can be one of the most important things about a gaming laptop. Your gaming PC is likely to have a mechanical keyboard, however, laptops rarely have them. Nor should you even opt for one, as keyboards have started to improve in a modern keyboard.

Other issues you might want to focus on include the lighting. A lot of gaming laptops come with built-in lighting, which is great for those looking to play games in the dark. But again, this might not really be an issue and you shouldn’t feel the need to pay a lot of extra just for the lights.

2. Monitor

Of course, the other crucial part of laptop gaming – indeed, any gaming – is the monitor. First, you need to think about the size. If you are all about portability, you would want to stick to a 14- or 13-inch monitor. However, if you don’t care too much about the size, a 17-inch monitor will make the gaming experience better.

Naturally, the main thing to consider is the resolution of the panel. The standard is the 1080p but you can find some with much better resolution as well. However, the higher the resolution, the more taxing it will be on the processor -4k is not really useful for a laptop.

3. The size and weight

Now, the kind of monitor you want will also influence the size and the weight of the laptop. For gamers, thinner is often not better because the whole idea of a gaming laptop is not to get something lightweight but to ensure you have enough juice in the laptop to play games.

But again, you really need to figure out whether you want the laptop to be portable first and a gaming laptop second or the other way around. If you want a proper gaming laptop, don’t expect to get something like the Macbook Air. However, if you need portability, you can find semi-powerful laptops that don’t weigh as much as your PC.

4. Ports

One of the crucial aspects for gamers is the availability of ports. If you have a lot of accessories – mouse, headset, extra memory and so on – you will need to ensure the laptop comes with enough ports. You need to check:

  • The available USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports
  • Is there a USB C-connection?
  • Does it come with a SD card slot?
  • Does it have a HDMI and Display Port connection?

5. Speakers

Speakers used to be rather horrendous in gaming laptops but the quality is definitely improving. You definitely need to focus on the speakers if you play FPS games – knowing the ambient noises will be crucial to winning the game.

However, you probably won’t be using the speakers a lot with your gaming laptop so you don’t want to make it a priority. Most gamers use a headset to play games and if you have a proper one, the speakers shouldn’t be your priority.

6. Trackpad

Now, you will most likely utilise the mouse for gaming but you don’t want the trackpad to be horrible either. The problem with trackpads and gaming laptops is that you can’t really test it out until you have the laptop bought. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to check reviews and make sure you talk to people who have the laptop you are looking to buy. The most important features of a trackpad? You need to know how the scrolling works, what kind of zooming option it offers and if there are any integrated buttons on the trackpad.

7. CPU

When it comes to gaming laptops, you must get one with the quad-core CPU. You don’t want anything below because it won’t provide enough juice for your games. However, you also shouldn’t waste your money on anything over four cores either. Games aren’t really optimised for those today and you’d just be wasting your money.

In addition to the core numbers, you also need to pay attention to the core frequency. In terms of gaming, you don’t need to go for the chips that offer hyperthreading – these are not going to have much impact on the gaming experience.

8. Graphics Card

Aside from focusing on the monitor side, your visual gaming experience will also rely on the graphics cards. You have different brands to choose from but Nvidia is definitely the best to go with. You definitely want to consider something that is able to run games at 1080p.

9. RAM

You also need to pay attention to the RAM. Never opt for anything below 8GB of RAM. If you are serious about gaming, you definitely want to consider opting for 16GB but don’t go higher than that – it won’t really be needed for gaming. Furthermore, you might want to set up your RAM in dual-channel mode for a better experience.

10. Storage

Now, when it comes to laptops, storage space is often rather limited. You definitely should consider getting an SSD and using it for storing your games. A 240GB SSD will supplement the laptop storage perfectly.

If you want to find out more, check out the best gaming laptop recommendations at Techsive. Don’t forget to compare prices and be careful at picking something that covers your needs.

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