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Best gaming laptops 2019: the 10 top gaming laptops we've reviewed

Best gaming laptops
(Image credit: Future)

Gaming laptops these days are almost as powerful as the best gaming PCs, and they're getting closer every day. That might not sound right to you, but if you pick up the best gaming laptop, there isn't a single PC game that will stand in your way. 

You see, the best gaming laptops of 2019 are strapped with mobile versions of the best PC components. This includes high-end graphics technology like Nvidia Turing GPUs, along with speedy SSDs and Intel Coffee Lake Refresh mobile processors. 

This is excellent news for any potential gaming laptop buyers out there, as if you're looking to replace your aging gaming laptop (or even buy your very first one), there's literally never been a better time to jump on the gaming laptop bandwagon. After all, there's no better way to play all your favorite games at high resolutions and frame rates without being tied down to your home desk.

So, because the best gaming laptops are better now than they've ever been, we thought it was the perfect time to gather up all the best ones we've reviewed over the last year or so. We've tested and reviewed all of these gaming laptops ourselves, so you can rest assured that each one will be worth both your time and money. And, because we've included our exclusive price comparison tool, you should be able to get a killer gaming laptop deal, even this far ahead of Black Friday. 

What you need to know about Black Friday 2019
If you're on the market for a new gaming laptop, you should be aware of the fact that Black Friday 2019 and Cyber Monday are barreling around the corner at top speed. So, while you can find some great gaming laptop deals right now, thanks to our exclusive price comparison tool, you're sure to find some Black Friday laptop deals, too. And, of course keep an eye on Best Buy Black Friday deals too, as that retailer has been behind some of the best gaming laptop deals. 

Best gaming laptops 2019 at a glance

  1. Alienware Area-51m – the best gaming laptop
  2. Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701 – the best thin and powerful gaming laptop
  3. MSI GS65 Stealth – the most aesthetic gaming laptop
  4. Razer Blade – the most portable gaming laptop
  5. Lenovo Legion Y740 – the most accessible gaming laptop
  6. MSI GT75 Titan – the thiccest gaming laptop
  7. Asus ROG Strix GL502 – the most stylish gaming laptop
  8. Acer Predator Helios 500 – the most affordable gaming laptop
  9. Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531GX – the slimmest gaming laptop
  10. Gigabyte Aero 15 – the most balanced gaming laptop

Best gaming laptops 2019

Alienware Area-51m

Alienware Area-51m

(Image credit: Future)

1. Alienware Area-51m

An out-of-this-world gaming laptop

CPU: Intel Core i7-9700 – i9-9900K | Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 – 2080 | RAM: 16GB – 64GB | Screen: 17.3" FHD (1920 x 1080) 60Hz Anti-Glare IPS – 144Hz IPS NVIDIA G-SYNC | Storage: 1TB SSHD – 2TB RAID0 SSDs + 1TB SSHD

Extremely powerful
Perfect keyboard
Very expensive
Gets hot
Loud fans

If you fell head over heels upon seeing the Alienware Area-51m’s stunning yet quirky white chassis, you’re not alone. And, if you happen to shell out that couple of thousand dollars based on looks alone, we’d be the last people to judge. Anyway, you’ll be happy to know that it wasn’t all for naught, as this gaming laptop – or rather, the best among best gaming laptops of 2019 – packs a hefty punch, gaming-wise. This is so far the most powerful gaming laptop on the market currently, and you won’t be able to help but be impressed. Its comfy keyboard and VR readiness are just cherries on top.

Read the full review: Alienware Area-51m

Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701

Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701

(Image credit: Asus)

2. Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701

Power and beauty

CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 – GeForce GTX 2080 Max-Q (8GB GDDR6 VRAM) | RAM: 8GB – 24GB | Screen: 17.3-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) 144Hz panel with G-Sync

 Super thin 
 Tons of performance 
 Very expensive 

These days, the best gaming laptop manufacturers are scrambling to craft the thinnest gaming laptop packing raw power. Right now, the one that might be leading the charge is the Asus ROG Zephyrus GX701. At just 0.7 inches thick, this beast of a laptop boasts an Intel Coffee Lake Core i7 chip, Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics and 16GB of RAM. That means you can play any PC game under the sun on Ultra, and also take it with you wherever you go – ideal for travelers with a penchant for gaming. Plus, it’s packed with RGB lighting that’ll dazzle just about anyone.

Read the full review: Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701 

MSI GS65 Stealth

MSI GS65 Stealth

3. MSI GS65 Stealth

Thin. Beautiful. Powerful.

CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 – Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB GDDR5X VRAM, Max-Q) | RAM: 16GB – 32GB | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) anti-glare, wide-view 144Hz panel | Storage: 256GB SSD – Super RAID 4 1TB SSD

Beautiful, subtle design 
Excellent performance 
Underside gets very hot 

Play some of the best PC games on the move and very discreetly with the MSI GS65 Stealth, which might just be the gaming laptop of your dreams if you’re a traveler. Coming in at just 0.69 inches thick and packing impressive internals like Intel Coffee Lake processors and Nvidia GeForce GTX 10-series – refreshed with RTX 20-series graphics at CES – the MSI GS65 Stealth packs a punch in its very thing package. There’s nothing you won’t be able to throw at this thing that’ll slow it down. And, thanks to the smart aesthetic, you’ll be able to lug this beefy rig everywhere you go, making it among the best gaming laptops to hit the streets. 

Read the full review: MSI GS65 Stealth 

Razer Blade

Razer Blade

4. Razer Blade

The sharpest Blade yet

CPU: Intel Core i7-8750H – Intel Core i7-9750H | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB GDDR6 VRAM) – Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q (8GB GDDR6 VRAM) | RAM: 16GB | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) 144Hz – OLED 4K (3,840 x 2,160) Touch 60Hz | Storage: 256GB – 512GB SSD

Incredibly powerful
Svelte looks
Very expensive

For several years now, the Razer Blade has constantly been named one of the best gaming laptops on the market. For good reason, since it rocks some powerful components and boasts a stunning display in its elegant chassis. That’s true for the 2019 model as well, which now rocks up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080. That is, frankly, a ton of power for a laptop with this thin. If that’s not enough graphics power for you, you can use the Razer Core for future expansion. Make no mistake: it is pricey; but it might be worth it if style and power are equally important to you.

Read the full review: Razer Blade

Lenovo Legion Y740

Lenovo Legion Y740

5. Lenovo Legion Y740

Style and muscle in one

CPU: Intel Core i7-8750H | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 (6GB GDDR6 VRAM) – RTX 2070 (Max-Q 8GB) | RAM: 16GB – 32GB | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) Nvidia G-Sync 144 Hz | Storage: 256GB SSD – 256GB SSD+1TB HDD

Powerful internal components
New Nvidia discrete graphics
144Hz refresh rate
Keyboard arrangement
Poor battery life

The Lenovo Legion Y740 packs a lot of muscles inside its stylish yet accessible chassis, combining a very high refresh rate, Nvidia Turing graphics and a powerful processor with a gloriously effective thermal cooling, a nifty cable management system and a number of applications to make it truly yours. It’s as close to a complete package as you can get, wrapped in a beautiful chassis that you’d be proud to show off to friends and strangers. It still has the remnants of that gaming aesthetic, but it’s made classy so that you could be gaming in public without anyone knowing. Despite its shortcomings – unfortunate keyboard and webcam placement, as well as its subpar battery life – it’s still one of the best gaming laptops to date.

Read the full review: Lenovo Legion Y740

MSI GT75 Titan

MSI GT75 Titan

6. MSI GT75 Titan

The big one

CPU: Up to 8th-generation Intel Core i9 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 2070 (8GB GDDR6) – Nvidia GeForce GTX 2080 with 8GB GDDR6 | RAM: Up to 32GB | Screen: 17.3-inch FHD (1,920x1,080) – UHD (3,840x2,160) | Storage: 1TB, 1TB HDD

G-Sync display
Very expensive

Some gaming laptops just don’t pull any punches, allowing you to run any game you can think of on Ultra without breaking a sweat – and the MSI GT75 Titan is an excellent example. It’s the king of desktop replacements, fitted with 6-core Intel Coffee Lake processors, plenty of RAM and powerful Nvidia Pascal graphics. Aptly named, this is indeed a titan, and is neither portable nor cafe-friendly. However, if raw power is what you’re after, this is the best gaming laptop for you. Just be prepared to shell out the silver.

Read the full review: MSI GT75 Titan

Asus ROG Strix GL502

Asus ROG Strix GL502

7. Asus ROG Strix GL502

It's hard not to love a gaming laptop this good

CPU: Intel Core i5 – i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 – 1070 | RAM: up to 16GB DDR4 | Screen: 15.6-inch full HD 1,920 x 1,080 IPS | Storage: 128GB – 256GB SSD, 1TB HDD

Rocks Full HD gaming
Deliciously vibrant screen
Middling battery life

It may not have the most original or innovative design, trading in the usual black and red aesthetic for one that makes you feel like its Halloween all year round (no complaints here, but some might find it particularly unattractive). Yet, Asus ROG Strix GL502 is still one of the best laptops when it comes to gaming in 1080p. In fact, during our tests, we were able to crank the settings all the way up in Overwatch without ever dipping below 60fps. It doesn’t offer the longest battery life, but there’s an easy fix – just have your charger on hand at all times. Rounding it all out are the display, power and onboard sound system, all of which more than make up for that middling battery life.

Read the full review: Asus ROG Strix GL502

  • This product is only available in the US and UK at the time of this writing. Australian readers: check out a fine alternative in the Alienware 17 R5

Acer Predator Helios 500

Acer Predator Helios 500

8. Acer Predator Helios 500

Big and powerful

CPU: Intel Core i7-i9 or AMD Ryzen 7 2700 | Graphics: AMD Vega 10 - Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB GDDR5X VRAM) | RAM: 16GB | Screen: 17.3-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) anti-glare, 144Hz panel | Storage: 256GB - 1 TB M.2 SSD

Plenty of power
144Hz Full HD display
Mediocre speakers

If you’re looking to purchase a gaming powerhouse, but you don’t have the cash to shell out for one of those light and thin gaming laptops, the Acer Predator Helios 500 is the obvious choice. It’s fitted with up to an Intel Core i9 processor and full-fat Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 graphics, and therefore will be able to handle any game you throw at it. But, it’s not the most portable device in the world, and the speakers and trackpad are mediocre. Still, when it comes to gaming, you’ve still got an ace here – and, you’ll be able to save some money as well.

Read the full review: Acer Predator Helios 500

Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531GX

Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531GX

9. Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531GX

A 15-inch powerhouse

CPU: Intel Core i7-8750H | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 (Max-Q) | RAM: Up to 24GB | Screen: 15.6-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) IPS, 144Hz | Storage: 1TB SSD – 512GB/1TB SSD

Slim design
Great performance
Innovative cooling
Very expensive
Screen isn't HDR

Thin like an Ultrabook, yet powerful like a gaming laptop should, and with a very effective cooling system to boot, the Asus Zephyrus S GX531GX is one of the best gaming laptops we’ve gotten our hands on in 2019. It packs an 8th-generation Intel Core i7 backed by Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics and up to 24GB RAM, which means that this beast should take you a long way in gaming, whether you’re a casual gamer or a pro. We’re massive fans, though probably not of that price tag. This pricey powerhouse is not for the shallow-pocketed, but with premium components come a premium price. Only invest if you’ve got the tenders.

Read the full review: Asus Zephyrus S GX531GX

Gigabyte Aero 15

Gigabyte Aero 15

(Image credit: Joel Burgess)

10. Gigabyte Aero 15

Thin. Light. Powerful.

CPU: Intel Core i7 8750H - Intel Core i9-8950HK | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 (8GB GDDR6) - GeForce RTX 2080 (8GB GDDR6) | RAM: 8GB – 32GB | Screen: 15.6-inch, FHD (1,920 x 1,080) LCD anti-glare 144Hz - UHD (3,840 x 2,160) 60Hz | Storage: 1TB - 2TB NVMe SSD

Sleek, thin design
Ray tracing ready
Core i9 gets hot

Fitting the svelte yet cheap bill, on the other hand, is the Gigabyte Aero 15, which – at 0.74 inches. Despite its thin chassis, it still delivers top-notch gaming performance. That’s mostly thanks to its Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 and an Intel Core i9 CPU. It’s also ray tracing ready, so it’s even more future-proof. However, its thin form factor is a double-edged sword: the Core i9 gets way too hot and can throttle. Keep that in mind if you plan on doing any sustained creative work, like editing all your videos. And, maybe have a desk fan or cooler on hand.

Read the full review: Gigabyte Aero 15

Choosing the best gaming laptop

When choosing the best gaming laptop for you, there are a few things you must take into account.

First and foremost, the most crucial thing to consider in the best gaming laptops is how well they play the latest games. When creating this list, not only do we delve deep into the specifications of each gaming laptop to see if they are up to snuff, but we also run benchmarks on each one to check out the raw performance.

Benchmarks only tell part of the story however. So, we also make sure we play a number of the latest games on each laptop to see just how well they perform. It's a tough job, but someone's gotta do it.

Display, sound quality, keyboard, trackpad and the overall design of the laptop matter as well, so these are definitely things you’d want to check out before hitting that buy button.

In fact, if the device scores highly in all these areas, it has a good chance of making it to our best gaming laptops 2019 list. That means you can buy any of the best gaming laptops in this list in full confidence that you're getting a killer gaming device that will last you for years to come.

Welcome to TechRadar's PC Gaming Week 2019. We're celebrating the most powerful gaming platform on Earth with in-depth articles, exclusive interviews and essential buying guides that showcase everything PC gaming has to offer. Visit our PC Gaming Week 2019 page to see all our coverage in one place.

Gabe Carey, Bill Thomas and Michelle Rae Uy have also contributed to this article

Images Credit: TechRadar