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Best Gaming Laptop 2023: All the best laptops for gamers

There are a wide variety of gaming laptops on the market, with some offering immense power alongside portability and others offering near-desktop performance, with a large size to match. We’ve tested a whole bunch, here are the best.

Choosing a gaming laptop isn’t easy with many brands offering an obscenely large range of devices, that look very different but can also have subtle differences between them. You often have to cut through some marketing spiel too. Thankfully you have us, the experts here at Trusted Reviews, to do that for you.

We’ve put a lot of these gaming devices through their paces and plenty haven’t made it only this illustrious list. All have been evaluated for their value, performance, and hardware. The very best excel in at least one of these areas, with most of this list truly shining in one in particular.

Our testing revolves around industry-standard benchmarking as well as games that truly test what these machines are capable of. We’ll test everything from the latest and greatest AAA titles to high FPS competitive games, before seeing how they match up with key rivals.

On top of key gaming features, the Trusted team will be thoroughly evaluating everything from the design, display, keyboard, selection of ports, dimensions and more. This is all essential with the aforementioned huge selection of gaming laptops available, with specs like 4K resolution, high 360Hz refresh rates, mechanical keyboards and laptops thinner than 20mm all defining a broad choice of machines.

If you’re not tied to a gaming laptop, you can find plenty more top picks in our other laptop guides, from Best Laptop, Best Budget Laptop to Best Student Laptop. Or, if you fancy a different flavour of gaming, we’ve got a Best Games Console roundup. And, finally, laptops can be pretty expensive, so we’ve put together a selection of best laptop deals too.

Everything on these lists, and right here in our best gaming laptops guide, will be updated regularly so make sure to bookmark them and come back later for new top picks. There are a lot of exciting devices coming in 2023 and we’ll be expertly testing as many as we can.

Don’t worry if this list doesn’t have anything that’s catching your eye right now; just bookmark this page and make sure you come back soon as we update this list every time another high-quality gaming machine comes through our doors. Without further ado, read on to find out our top picks for gaming laptops in 2023. 

Best gaming laptops at a glance

How we test

Learn more about how we test gaming laptops

Every gaming laptop we review goes through a series of uniform checks designed to gauge key things including build quality, performance, screen quality and battery life. 

These include formal synthetic benchmarks and scripted tests, plus a series of real world checks, such as how well it runs when running a AAA game. 

We also make sure to use every gaming laptop we review as our primary gaming laptop for at least a week to ensure our review is as accurate as possible.

Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 (2023)

Best overall
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Pros

  • Huge levels of processing power
  • Awesome gaming performance
  • Stunning 16-inch Mini LED screen
  • Strong overall spec

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Trackpad could be better
  • Very heavy

The Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 is our pick for the best overall gaming laptop you can buy. We’ve reviewed a lot of laptops and some are more stylish than this machine, better for creators, or more portable. However, the ROG Strix Scar 16 nails what this guide is all about–gaming.

This gaming titan has processing power that will leave you floored–eating up high-end gaming demands with a combination of Intel’s latest 13th Gen chips and Nvidia’s 40-series graphics cards. This laptop has a ridiculously high 244Hz refresh rate display but, remarkably, our review model combination of an Intel Core i9 chip and RTX 4080 almost hit that mark at the 2560 x 1600 resolution. Max settings on titles that focus more on detail and quality were a breeze for this monster too, surpassing 120Hz comfortably.

All of this is presented on a luxurious 16-inch Mini LED panel. This glorious display provides impressive brightness and pristine contrast. The 16-inch size gives you more than enough room to truly appreciate AAA titles and get the most out of the graphics this hardware can offer.

Rounding out what makes this the true top gaming laptop pick is the excellent keyboard. Asus has showcased great gaming keys on its portable machines for several years now and the ROG Strix Scar 16 is the pick of the bunch. Bags of travel and feedback that offers a satisfying crunch under your fingertips.

Reviewer: Stuart Andrews
Full Review: Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 (2023) review

Asus TUF Gaming A15 (2023)

Best value gaming laptop
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Pros

  • Surprisingly great battery life
  • Fantastic gaming scores
  • Amazingly clicky keyboard
  • Simple design

Cons

  • AMD processing power slightly lacking

The Asus TUF Gaming A15 (2023) is not a power juggernaut, but it could be the perfect pick for anyone who’s looking for their first gaming laptop and doesn’t want to break the bank. The TUF Gaming A15 can be configured in a multitude of ways, giving you the option to splash out a little more money for any features that are must-haves for you.

One of our favourite features on this laptop was the amazingly clicky keyboard. It comes with Mini-LED one-zone backlighting with bold lighting behind the WASD keys which made them easier to spot while gaming. Connectivity is almost faultless, including two USB-A ports, two USB-C inputs, HDMI 2.1, a LAN port and a 3.5mm combo audio jack.

The most notable downside of the TUF Gaming A15 is that is it capped at Full HD, although you can purchase a Quad HD model. That does take 4K gaming out of the question, meaning that you may want to check out laptops like the Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 (2023) or Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 (2023) for a more premium display experience. However, we were able to play various triple-A games without a hiccup on this device, as every game we tested consistently scored over 60fps.

Our playthrough of Stardew Valley ran without a hitch and looked very smooth. Generally navigating the device was also fast, thanks to the inclusion of the latest AMD Ryzen 7000 Series processor.

Overall, the Asus TUF Gaming A15 is one of the best laptops out there for newcomers. It’s more than powerful enough to play intensive games at a high refresh rate and it costs a very reasonable £1179.99, making it a lot more affordable than some similar gaming laptops on the market.

Reviewer: Gemma Ryles
Full Review: Asus TUF Gaming A15 (2023)

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022)

Best 14-inch option
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Pros

  • Customisable light-up lid
  • Lightweight and sleek design
  • Great battery life
  • Consistently impressive performance

Cons

  • Fans can get loud

The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 has been one of our favourite laptops ever since it burst on the scene several years ago. And, notice there’s no qualifier there, not “favourite gaming laptop,” but “favourite laptop,” full stop. What we love is the raw gaming performance it manages to pack into such a small body and reasonable price, and in stylish fashion too.

The lightweight and trimmed-down design really is the star. The ROG Zephyrus G14 will slip into any average backpack and you’d be hard-pressed to know it was there. We’re a big fans of the White colour option, offering something different to the typical greys and silvers you find on many a laptop. Asus goes even further to catch your eye too, with a clever customisable light-up lid too. It’s got tough competition in the style stakes, up against rivals like the Razer Blade 14, but the edginess of the G14 wins the day.

The performance of the all-AMD model we tested was more than up to standard, expectedly dominating productivity tasking while also nailing gaming. Expect the AMD Radeon RX 6800S GPU to close in on 60fps in quality-focused titles and float around the maximum capability of this 120Hz panel in games that favour high frames per second.

The cherry on top is strong battery life, a box rarely ticked by gaming laptops. The ROG Zephyrus G14 comes with a 76Wr battery and allowed for around 6 hours and a half in our testing, meaning you could push this to a full workday if you’re using it for light productivity. For gaming, expect around an hour, which isn’t half bad either for such a pocket rocket.

Reviewer: Gemma Ryles
Full Review: Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022) review

Medion Erazer Beast X40

Best 17-inch option
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Pros

  • Outstanding performance
  • Very good value
  • Great mechanical keyboard
  • Top-notch build quality and understated styling

Cons

  • No HDR capability
  • The keyboard is rather loud
  • Battery life is nothing special

It’s in the name, this laptop is a beast. The Medion Erazer Beast X40 is an impressive laptop for many reasons, particularly in terms of how much value it brings to the table. It’s not the cheapest gaming laptop, but it offers supreme high-end power at a lower price than most rivals.

Most importantly, the Medion laptop offers truly jaw-dropping performance. Our review model featured the RTX 4090 GPU, the latest and greatest laptop graphics chip from Nvidia, and it doesn’t disappoint. You’ll hit above 60fps in Quad HD for AAA games, well above in many cases, even at max settings – including raytracing. For eSports titles like Apex Legends, you’ll stretch up to an impressive 220fps.

You won’t find a Mini LED panel here – that’s reserved for more expensive rivals – but the IPS panel remains bright, speedy, and vibrant. We measured strong colour accuracy in our display testing too.

The Erazer Beast X40 has fairly unassuming looks for a gaming laptop and the materials don’t offer anything in the way of luxury, but that’s not why you buy this laptop. It’s sturdy and durable – perfect. There’s also a delightful mechanical keyboard, offering bags of travel and clear satisfying feedback.

Reviewer: Alun Taylor
Full Review: Medion Erazer Beast X40 review

Acer Predator Helios 16 (2023)

Best high-performance
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Pros

  • Powerhouse GPU and CPU combo
  • Superb mini-LED screen
  • Excellent connectivity
  • Cheaper than some high-end rivals

Cons

  • Noisy in Turbo mode
  • Sound could be warmer and more open

All the stops have been pulled out with this powerhouse machine. The Acer Predator Helios 16 (2023) is made for those who want sheer gaming power and few compromises. Some gaming laptops give you one thing and not the other, but the Helios 16 brings high-end internals and a lush display.

The immense team-up of components is headlined by the Intel Core i9-13900HX and Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 graphics chip. Impressive DLSS 3 and ray tracing performance are at your fingertips. You can expect 144fps and above frame rates from AAA games.

This raw power is presented on an exciting and luxurious 16-inch Mini LED display, with a 240Hz refresh rate and QHD+ resolution. The results are endlessly deep blacks, vibrant colour and impressive HDR capabilities. This is high-end big-screen laptop gaming in its truest form.

Along with being cheaper than some equally specced rivals, the Helios 16 offers plenty of convenience. You’ll find a wide range of ports across the body of this laptop, from two Thunderbolt 4 ports, three USB-A, an HDMI 2.1, a headphone jack and Ethernet. Ok, some kind of SD card reader would be nice, but it’s a small blemish on this excellent laptop.

Reviewer: Stuart Andrews
Full Review: Acer Predator Helios 16 (2023) review

Acer Nitro 5 (2022)

Best 1080p gaming laptop
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Pros

  • Fast, well-balanced spec
  • Excellent 165Hz 1080p screen
  • Full set of features

Cons

  • Chunky style
  • Can run hot and noisy
  • Poor battery life

The Acer Nitro 5 is a gaming laptop that excels at 1080p gaming. It has everything you’d want from a mainstream gaming portable, including a high 165Hz refresh rate and enough power to play any PC game with a smooth performance.

We were really impressed with the laptop’s performance, packing the new 12th Gen Intel Core chip, as well as a generous selection of Nvidia GPUs. Our review model featured Nvidia’s RTX 3070 Ti graphics, and was capable of running games such as Rainbow Six Siege at up to 314fps, making it a good option for online multiplayer.

When activating the performance mode, the Nitro managed to play both Horizon Zero Dawn and Borderlands 3 at over 90fps. However, boosting the performance in this way will see the laptop fans become distractingly noisy. We were also impressed by the SSD speeds, ensuring this laptop can blaze through loading times.

But with great power comes great heft, as the laptop weighs 2.4kg which isn’t ideal if you wanted this machine to double up as a productivity portable. Still, if you’re craving a great value laptop for 1080p gaming, you’ll struggle to find a better option than the latest Acer Nitro 5. And if you want an even cheaper gaming laptop, we suggest checking out the Lenovo Legion 5 (Advantage Edition) instead.

Reviewer: Stuart Andrews
Full Review: Acer Nitro 5 (2022) Review

Gigabyte G5

Best budget gaming laptop
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Pros

  • Surprisingly strong display
  • Punchy 105W Nvidia RTX 3060 GPU
  • Good value

Cons

  • Uses an old, if powerful, CPU
  • Poor battery life
  • Keyboard gets a bit toasty in parts thanks to limited thermal isolation

The Gigabyte G5 is an unusual gaming laptop, as it packs an outdated 10th Generation Intel Core processor, despite most modern portables now moving onto the 12th Gen. But while that does see performance speeds compromised, it also means Gigabyte has been able to push the price far below the $1000 mark, making it the most affordable gaming laptop on this list.

Despite our benchmark tests showing the CPU speeds to be behind the competition, this laptop arguably makes up for that with the inclusion of Nvidia’s RTX 3060 GPU. Our testing showed this laptop to be a fine choice for 1080p gaming. You will see higher frame rates with the Acer Nitro 5, but those who just want a casual gaming performance will benefit from the more affordable price.

Bargain laptops usually have poor screen quality, but that’s not the case here. During testing, we were impressed with contrast and colour accuracy, as well as the fact you get a 144Hz refresh rate. Our only major concern is the poor battery life, lasting for only 2hrs and 44mins in our benchmark test. But that shouldn’t be an issue if you plan on using this laptop within reach of a power source. Plus, its 2.1kg heft rules this out as a laptop for on-the-go use anyway.

So if you want the cheapest gaming laptop possible that still provides a good 1080p performance, we recommend checking out the Gigabyte G5. You only really need to look elsewhere if you crave a higher resolution, faster refresh rate or a more portable and premium design.

Reviewer: Andrew Williams
Full Review: Gigabyte G5 Review

Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 (2023)

Best luxury option
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Pros

  • Incredible gaming and processing speed
  • One of the best laptop screens ever
  • Fast, comfortable keyboard
  • Sleek, sturdy and light chassis

Cons

  • Other laptops will be even faster
  • Annoying LEDs in lid
  • Better connectivity and ergonomics elsewhere
  • Difficult to get inside

The Razer Blade 15 has long been the obvious pick for an accolade such as this–the closest thing to a gaming MacBook around. But, the phenomenal Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 (2023) is now deserving of the accolade, with the caveat of it having a stonkingly high price.

The skinny is that, as a straight-up gaming laptop, the performance is top-drawer. The model we tested was sporting the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 so big results were expected, and the ROG Zephyrus M16 delivered incredible gaming performance. This is another typically excellent gaming keyboard from Asus too, with tons of travel and pleasing feedback. Whether you’re an eSports fan or a player of lushly-designed AAA games, this laptop will surpass your expectations.

This wondrous gaming power is presented on a 240Hz QHD+ Mini LED display. The reality of these specs is a display that, like the performance on offer, is great for any type of gaming and invites you to marvel in bountiful colour and deep blacks.

All that’s great but what truly makes it the luxe pick is the stealthy black design, which also has an edginess to stand out. The Razer Blade 15 is gorgeous but it’s straightforward. This Asus offers a brave angular look that deftly toes the line between unassuming and eye-catching.

Reviewer: Mike Jennings
Full Review: Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 (2023) review

Asus ROG Flow X16 (2022)

Best hybrid gaming laptop
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Pros

  • Impressive hybrid design
  • Great gaming ability
  • Bold, high-resolution screen
  • Satisfying keyboard

Cons

  • Faster, cheaper rivals available
  • Hot, loud operation during games
  • Missing connectivity features

The Asus ROG Flow X16 is a remarkable gaming laptop, featuring a 180-degree screen hinge that allows you to flip the device into a tablet form. This enables you to use the laptop like a 16-inch tablet, or even prop it up in tent mode to continue gaming with a controller.

The screen looks lovely too, with a sharp 2560 x 1600 resolution and speedy 165Hz refresh rate. We were impressed with the results when testing the screen too, with an incredibly high brightness that enables you to use the laptop outside without fear of sun glare impairing your view.

This 2-in-1 laptop is packing powerful specs too, including an AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS processor and Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti GPU. Our performance tests show that you can find more powerful systems for less money (such as the Razer Blade 15 and Alienware x15 R2) but then you’d be missing out on that versatile screen hinge.

There are a couple of noticeable omissions such as Thunderbolt 4 connectivity, while the laptop can get hot and noisy when under stress. But if you’re really keen for a hybrid gaming laptop, those minor blemishes are easy to forgive.

Reviewer: Mike Jennings
Full Review: Asus ROG Flow X16 review

Asus ROG Flow X13

Best ultra-portable gaming laptop
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Pros

  • Superb, versatile design of laptop and dock
  • RTX 3080 delivers great gaming speed
  • GTX 1650 is a solid eSports chip
  • High-quality display

Cons

  • Laptop and dock design won’t suit everyone
  • Laptop is sometimes too hot
  • Middling battery life
  • Minimal laptop connectivity

One of the biggest issues we’ve found when reviewing the majority of gaming laptops is that they’re substantially larger and heavier than your average notebook. That isn’t the case with the Asus ROG Flow X13, which impressed us during testing thanks to its ultra-portable design, weighing a dainty 1.3kg.

Asus has been forced to make compromises to the power of the laptop to achieve such a portable design, although our benchmarks results showed it can still achieve 30fps and beyond for modern games at a 1080p resolution.

Fortunately, Asus also provides the option of an external RTX 3080, which plugs into both the laptop and a power source simultaneously to provide the GPU with a major performance boost. Our benchmark results saw the gaming performance climb above 90fps for the likes of Horizon Zero Dawn and Borderlands 3, which is remarkable. However, the ROG XG Mobile is extremely expensive and so won’t be worthwhile for everyone. 

Still, we really enjoyed using the Asus ROG Flow X13 (2021) without the external GPU, with the ultra-portable design allowing us to use it for both productivity and gaming workloads. Just be mindful that our benchmark results prove you can find more powerful portables elsewhere. It’s also worth considering the Asus ROG Flow Z13, which also supports the external GPU, but has a 2-in-1 form factor so you can use it like a tablet.

Reviewer: Mike Jennings
Full review: Asus ROG Flow X13 review

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

Best dual-screen gaming laptop
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Pros

  • Brilliant main display
  • Useful secondary screen
  • Impressive gaming performance
  • Ultra-fast storage

Cons

  • Large, heavy and expensive
  • Lack of game support for second screen
  • Poor positioning of keyboard and touchpad
  • Noisy in Performance and Turbo modes

The Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 is the latest iteration in the company’s dual-screen gaming laptop series. With a second display, this laptop allows you to perform multiple tasks simultaneously, so you can navigate the web, skip a track on Spotify or video chat with a friend all without pausing your game. We found this feature to be incredibly useful, especially if you’re editing video and need multiple windows open at once.

There is a major drawback to the dual-screen design however, as the keyboard has been shunted to the front of the laptop’s deck while the trackpad has been squashed into the bottom-right corner. We found both the keyboard and trackpad to be awkward to use, which could be problematic if you need to churn out long essays or reports on the regular.

This laptop is also packing cutting-edge specs such as the Ryzen 9 6900HX and Nvidia RTX 3080 Ti. Our benchmark results show this laptop to have one of the most powerful graphics performance currently available, although its CPU single-core processing speeds weren’t quite as high as what Intel’s 12th Gen chip is capable of.

But with such powerful specs, and the inclusion of the second screen, the Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 is very large and heavy. From our experience, we’d only really recommend this as a laptop that’s going to spend most of its time sitting on your desk at home. But if you’re simply looking for a versatile alternative to a desktop gaming PC, and like the idea of a dual-screen setup, then you’ll likely be very happy with a Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 purchase.

Reviewer: Stuart Andrews
Full review: Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 review

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FAQs

What is a gaming laptop?

A gaming laptop is a portable computer that has been purposefully designed for gaming workloads. This means it should feature a discrete graphics card from either AMD or Nvidia, enabling it to run AAA games with a smooth performance. Gaming laptops are also likely to have RGB lighting on the keyboard, and more overt design choices than conventional notebooks.

What is a good refresh rate on a gaming laptop?

A high refresh rate will ensure your display can keep up with the number of frames generated per second by the GPU. It’s generally recommended to opt for at least a 144Hz refresh rate on a gaming laptop. You’ll probably only need a faster display if you’re sticking to a Full HD resolution and want to play competitive online games such as Apex Legends and Fortnite, which aren’t very taxing on your laptop’s graphics card.

What is ray tracing?

Ray tracing is an advanced graphics technology that can render realistic lighting and shadow effects.

What is DLSS?

DLSS is a smart feature from Nvidia that can boost the frame rate performance of a game. This is done by rendering a game at a lower resolution, but using upscaling technology so there isn’t a noticeable negative impact to the image quality.

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