The Memorial Day sales event transforms even pricier gaming laptops into some of the best deals you’ll find, next to the holidays at least. Especially as we’re in the middle of a new tech generation, retailers are looking to unload laptops with older specs. And to sweeten the deal, they’ll wait until a major holiday rolls around and then discount the MSRP.
With Memorial Day weekend nearly upon us, this is the perfect time to get a hold of the perfect gaming laptop that best suits your needs. Whether you’re looking for something under $1,000 that just needs to handle low and mid-range PC games, or a laptop with a bit more power that doesn’t break the bank, waiting for these deals while old tech is being moved is your best option.
What to look out for in a budget gaming laptop deal
Compared to the best budget gaming PCs, even prebuilt ones, the best cheap gaming laptops are ready right out of the box, with no complicated setup involved. Simply plug it into an AC adapter to charge it and begin the start-up process. From there you simply need to tweak some settings here and there, while avoiding some of the most common pitfalls for gaming laptops.
And thanks to the many Memorial Day laptop sales available for this weekend, you can shave off a sizable amount of money off the MSRP. Though many of these deals are legitimate, there are a few things that you need to know to get the best out of whichever laptop you purchase. And there are also plenty to watch out for to avoid a retailer trying to pull a fast one over you.
Unless you’re investing in the best Chromebook and purchasing a PC gaming streaming service like Nvidia GeForce Now, you’re not likely to find a gaming laptop for under $800 in this economy, even on sale. However, you can find ones with decent specs between $800 and $1,000, and if you’re willing to pay a bit over that, there are some laptops with great specs that can handle any of the best PC games at high settings.
For a gaming laptop, the GPU is most important for both game performance and frame rate stability, while the CPU plays more of a supporting role. As such, make sure that you’re getting one of the best cheap graphics cards, at least an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 or AMD Radeon RX 6600. Anything below that for $800 is not worth the cost at this point. For the CPU, as long as it’s an Intel Core i5 or above then you’re fine. As for RAM and storage space, you should be getting at least 8GB and 512GB, respectively. Though 16GB RAM and 1TGB of storage are preferable if you can afford it.
Today's best gaming laptop deals
Alienware x14: was
$1,499.99 now $999.99 at Dell.com
For a little less than $1,000, you can get an excellent deal of a gaming laptop. It comes with an Intel Core i5-12500H CPU, a GeForce RTX 3050 GPU, 16GB RAM, and 512GB of storage, meaning you'll have some surprisingly good specs that can handle most PC games at high settings just fine.
Asus TUF F17: was
$899.99 now $799.99 at Amazon
This gaming laptop comes with a massive 17-inch screen as well as an Intel Core i5-11400H CPU, a GeForce RTX 3050 GPU, 8GB RAM, and 512GB of storage. The RAM is a little lower than normal but will get you by just fine, especially for the price.
Alienware m15 R7: was
$2,149.99 now $1,499.99 at Dell.com
If you're willing to spend a bit more money for your gaming, you can a gaming laptop with even better specs. This model features an Intel Core i7-12700H CPU, a GeForce RTX 3070 Ti GPU, 16GB RAM, and a nice 1TB of storage. The GPU alone means any game can be played at high settings, and the RAM and storage are great.
MSI Creator 17: was
$2,749 now $1,599 at Amazon
This is another gaming laptop that asks for a little more money and returns a sizable amount in specs. It features an Intel Core i7-11800H CPU, a GeForce RTX 3070 GPU, 16GB RAM, and 1TB of storage. The laptop can handle any high-end PC game on high settings and the RAM and storage means it'll run smoothly and allows for a good amount of games to be installed.
Razer Blade 14: was
$2,799.99 now $1,999.99 at Amazon
The priciest laptop here, this one is outfitted with some excellent specs. It has an AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU, a GeForce RTX 3080 GPU, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of storage. The RTX 3080 is worth the price of entry alone, as it's one of the most powerful GPUs of last-gen, but the other specs are the cherry on top.
Asus ROG Zephyrus G15: was
$1,619.99 now $1,099.99 at Best Buy
An excellent gaming laptop in its own right, its specs are also quite balanced as it comes with an AMD Ryzen 9 CPU, an Nvidia RTX 3060 GPU, 16GB RAM, and 512GB of storage. The GPU is perfect to run your entire PC collection on high settings, the RAM is more than enough to smoothly run any title, and the storage will last for years.
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14: was
$1,649.99 now $1,099.99 at Best Buy
An excellent gaming laptop in its own right, its specs are also quite balanced as it comes with an AMD Ryzen 9 CPU, an AMD Radeon RX 6700S GPU, 16GB RAM, and 1TB of storage. The GPU is perfect to run your entire PC collection on high settings, the RAM is more than enough to smoothly run any title, and the storage is more than plentiful to last for years.
Asus ROG Zephyrus M16: was
$2,149.99 now $1,499.99 at Best Buy
If you're willing to pay a bit more you can get some premium specs as it comes with an Intel Core i9 CPU, an Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti GPU, 16GB RAM, and 1TB of storage. The GPU is a higher-end one from last-gen and perfect to run your entire PC collection on high settings, the RAM is more than enough to smoothly run any title, and the storage is more than plentiful to last for years.
Lenovo Legion Slim 7i: was
$1,699.99 now $1,499.99 at Best Buy
The Legion Slim 7i series is for those who are willing to pay a bit more for a slimmer laptop that doesn't skimp on the specs. It's equipped with an Intel Core i7 CPU, an Nvidia RTX 3060 GPU, 16GB RAM, and 512GB of storage. The GPU will handle any PC on high settings, the RAM ensures any of them plays smoothly, and the storage will last for year.
Sign up to receive daily breaking news, reviews, opinion, analysis, deals and more from the world of tech.
Named by the CTA as a CES 2023 Media Trailblazer, Allisa is a Computing Staff Writer who covers breaking news and rumors in the computing industry, as well as reviews, hands-on previews, featured articles, and the latest deals and trends. In her spare time you can find her chatting it up on her two podcasts, Megaten Marathon and Combo Chain, as well as playing any JRPGs she can get her hands on.