10 Best Gaming Laptops under $1500 in 2019

Best Overall

Best Overall: Razer Blade 15 8750H  Gaming Laptop

Best Overall: Razer Blade 15 8750H Gaming Laptop
  • GTX 1060 Max-Q GPU is prepped for virtual reality play
  • Can connect to up to three separate monitors at once
  • Razer Synapse 3 provides a deep bench of control and monitoring options
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Premium Choice

Best Performer: MSI GV63 8SE-014  Performance Gaming Laptop

Best Performer: MSI GV63 8SE-014 Performance Gaming Laptop
  • Dragon Center offers robust management control options
  • Panel delivers an impressive 120Hz 3ms and is largely tear free
  • SSD drive is enhanced by NVMe SSD read speeds
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Great Value

Best Value: Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop

Best Value: Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop
  • SSD and DDR4 memory combine to produce lightning fast loading speeds
  • Uses PredatorSense to monitor fan and cooling systems and oversee customization
  • Designed to work with VR headsets
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Buying a performance gaming laptop off the shelf can easily cost you sums approaching $5000, and there are even options on the market that cost double that. But that doesn’t mean you have to write off the notion of a gaming laptop just because you’re working with a tighter budget. The ability to produce high-quality and smaller hardware becomes less costly every year, and manufacturers are becoming especially savvy at mitigating common gaming laptop issues like overheating.

For less than $1500, you can get a laptop that will allow you to play the hottest new games at respectably solid quality settings, and the downsides of computers in this price range are minimal. We’ve identified twelve of the best gaming laptops under 1500 dollars, and we’re here to give you the details.

The Best Gaming Laptop Under 1500 Bucks

Best Overall

1. Best Overall: Razer Blade 15 8750H Gaming Laptop

Best Overall: Razer Blade 15 8750H  Gaming Laptop

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The base model of Razer's Blade 15 comfortably fits in the category of performance laptops. The Full HD performance should be more than you'll need for crystal clear resolution, but if you're looking for a 4K gaming laptop (and willing to flex your budget a little over $1500), you may want to look into the advanced model. Razer boasts that it's the smallest gaming laptop in the world, and they accomplish that due to efficient design sensibilities and remarkably small bezels. In terms of specs, the GPU and CPU are par for the course, but the inclusion of one of the fastest SSDs around gives it an edge in terms of loading performance.

And despite the compact size of the Blade 15, fan and cooling noise is practically nonexistent on this model. That's the result of a bespoke heat pipe system produced from ultramodern thermal materials.

Key Features
  • GTX 1060 Max-Q GPU is prepped for virtual reality play
  • Can connect to up to three separate monitors at once
  • Razer Synapse 3 provides a deep bench of control and monitoring options
  • Aluminum body and SSD contribute to an overall sturdy design
Memory16GB DDR (upgradeable)ProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HDisplay Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1060 Max-Q
Premium Choice

2. Best Performer: MSI GV63 8SE-014 Performance Gaming Laptop

Best Performer: MSI GV63 8SE-014  Performance Gaming Laptop

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MSI's GV63 may be pushing our pricing limit pretty closely, but it's easily one of the top gaming laptops under 1500. The RTX 2060 GPU built in can compete almost toe to toe with NVIDIA's higher tier (and significantly more expensive) GTX 1070 Max-Q, and MSI has also packed in an eighth generation Intel i7 CPU. The two balance each other well and ensure optimal performance even with the most resource hogging games. Factor in the fact that the GV63 utilizes a screen panel well above its class, and you can look forward to butter smooth graphics.

While the GV63 isn't exactly a powerhouse in terms of connectivity, its Killer Gaming network card should provide competitive gamers with reliable online performance with little lag. The presence of dedicated mouse keys provides a satisfying sense of tactility, while the SteelSeries keyboard is better than that found in many budget gaming laptops.

Key Features
  • Dragon Center offers robust management control options
  • Panel delivers an impressive 120Hz 3ms and is largely tear free
  • SSD drive is enhanced by NVMe SSD read speeds
  • Cooler Boost provides superb heat management
Memory16GB DDR4 (max 32)Processor Intel Core i7-8750HDisplay Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1070 Max-Q
Great Value

3. Best Value: Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop

Best Value: Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop

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The Acer Predator Helios 300 is a great gaming laptop under 1500 dollars that will look good on your gaming desk and provide you with all the power you need to perform at your peak in both competitive and single player gaming. It sports the same CPU as the previous two entries and an identical GPU to the GV63 while costing a few hundred dollars less. The real selling point here is its display. A max resolution of 1080p is ideal for a screen of this size, and it promises a refresh rate of 144Hz. The absence of G-SYNC integration is a notable but not game changing disappointment all things considered.

The cooling solution performs exceptionally well, ensuring that you're actually getting the speeds that are promised by the specs. The inclusion of an SSD drive is also a nice touch, and there's 256 GB of memory packed in.

Key Features
  • SSD and DDR4 memory combine to produce lightning fast loading speeds
  • Uses PredatorSense to monitor fan and cooling systems and oversee customization
  • Designed to work with VR headsets
  • Quality sound performance via Dolby Audio Premium and Acer TrueHarmony tech
Memory16GB DDR4, 256GB PCIe NVMe SSDProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HDiaply Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1060

4. ASUS ROG Strix Hero II Gaming Laptop

ASUS ROG Strix Hero II Gaming Laptop

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With a price tag of just under $1500, the ASUS Rog Strix Hero II earns its place on our list by just a hair. It's a good thing too, as this is arguably the best gaming laptop under 1500. It utilizes the same central processor as MSI's aforementioned powerhouse, the Strix Hero trades in the RTX 2060 for a respectable if slightly less powerful GTX 1060. The panel is upgraded to 144 MHz to keep pace with the high standards that GPU sets.

ASUS has been generous with its ports, It includes a MiniDisplay, RJ45, two USB 3.1s, and a USB type-C in addition to the headphone jack and power outlet. There's also an HDMI 2.0 port if you're looking to hook it up to a 4K gaming TV. You probably won't find yourself needing to use the 3.5 mm port either. The sound quality on this laptop is exceptional.

Key Features
  • Customizable RGB settings for the logo, keyboard, and light bar
  • Hyper Cool Pro thermal system maximizes the efficiency of the CPU and GPU
  • High refresh rate makes it ideal for competitive esports players
  • Compatible with the comprehensive ROG Gaming Center software
Memory16GB DDR4 ProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HDisplay Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1060

5. Dell G5 15, 5590 Gaming Laptop

Dell G5 15, 5590 Gaming Laptop

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Dell is far from the biggest name as far as gaming rigs are concerned, but they've opted for a more customizable approach with their G5 15 5590. The most expensive model comes with a ninth generation Intel CPU and GTX 1660 Ti GPU, a step up from many competitors. That it comes in modestly under $1500 dollars is a feat. But you wouldn't know it by looking at it. Dell has stripped the ostentatious design aesthetics that dominate the gaming market for a design that could go undercover as an office laptop.

It's a hard laptop to review because there is so much variance between the builds, but that's an asset as well. The best version exceeds practically every expectation for an affordable gaming laptop, while the cheapest offers slightly below average specs for a great price. But the one constant is the ratio of value to price.

Key Features
  • A highly customizable option ideal for gamers on a budget
  • Alienware Command Center lets you control settings on a game-by-game basis
  • WiFi connection is consistently stable and free from lag
  • Great battery life and super fast charging times
  • Custom gaming laptops with multiple spec options
Memory8GB DDRProcessorIntel Core i5-8300H, i5-9300H, i7-9750HScreen Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti, 1650, 1660 Ti

6. Lenovo Legion Y740 Gaming Laptop

Lenovo Legion Y740 Gaming Laptop

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Many of the laptops on our list are tested favorites that have been recommended by gamers for years, but the Lenovo Legion Y740 is hot off the line. That allows it to take advantage of hardware that's newer and components that have recently been reduced in price. Consider, for instance, the RTX 2060 Max-Q, a processor largely absent from the budget to mid-range market. While it makes use of an eighth generation Intel processor (the i7-8750H to be precise) rather than the newest models, it's still a beefy choice, and one that outstrips a lot of ninth generation alternatives.

Producing a budget laptop typically means cutting corners at the least painful points possible, but the only hit the Y740 really takes is in terms of battery life. The 144Hz refresh rate is partnered with G-SYNC technology, and the cooling systems are exceptionally effective, a necessity in a laptop this powerful.

Key Features
  • Some of the best specs across the board in the mid-range market
  • Packed with all the modern ports you could need
  • Webcam supports recording and streaming in 720p resolution
  • Dolby Vision HDR delivers brighter and more vivid images
Memory16GB DDR4ProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HScreen Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA RTX 2060

7. ASUS ROG Strix SCAR II Slim Gaming Laptop

ASUS ROG Strix SCAR II Slim Gaming Laptop

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On a surface level, the ROG Strix Hero II and the ROG Strix Scar II are indistinguishable. They sport the same design with the same chassis with very similar specs, but the former is built with the needs of MOBAs in mind, and the latter is targeted for serious and professional FPS players. In practice, that means that the Scar II is a little more serious. The GPU has been boosted to a GTX 1070, while maintaining the same Intel i7 core processor. The screen has also seen a substantive upgrade, allowing for refresh rates of up to 144GHz.

Due to pricing considerations, the Strix Scar II cut it close in terms of making our list. While it retails for over 1500, savvy shoppers can find it for less. Ultimately, the pure performance and value of this workhorse machine made it worth inclusion.

Key Features
  • A powerhouse laptop built specifically with FPS gamers in mind
  • RangeBoost technology allows for more consistent internet connectivity
  • Four customizable RGB zones supported by Aura Sync technology
  • A decent boost over the Strix Hero II for a modest price bump
Memory16GB DDR4ProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HScreen Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1070

8. Alienware M15 Gaming Laptop

Alienware M15 Gaming Laptop

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Dell's made something of a name for themselves due to the levels of customization they allow with their machines, and just like the G5 15, the Alienware M15 comes with a lot of variants. We picked the one bordering on $1500 due to the sheer performance built in. The M15 first rolled off the shelf at the beginning of the year, and it offers specs pretty similar to what you'll find elsewhere. The GTX 1070 is pretty standard for these mid-range machines, but Dell's decision to use the Max-Q model allows you to squeeze more performance out of the laptop with less risk of overheating.

But where the M15 stands apart from the competition is with its battery. The five to six hours of life this laptop offers for high intensity play is well above average, and it gives this otherwise solid but standard machine a unique identity.

Key Features
  • Ultra slim frame makes it easy to carry with you
  • Battery life is well above the recognized standard
  • Over a terabyte of storage space
  • Uses Killer Network protocol for more stable internet connections
Memory16GB DDR4ProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HScreen Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1070 Max-Q

9. HP OMEN 17″ Gaming Laptop

HP OMEN 17″ Gaming Laptop

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The HP Omen distinguishes itself from the rest of the laptops on our list for its 17" screen, and somehow it manages to do so without sacrificing the core trinity of CPU, GPU, and RAM. The GTX 1060 isn't the best graphics card you'll find on our list, but it's comfortably strong, and the i7-8750H is on more of these computers than not. The screen isn't just for show either. It delivers crisp Full HD graphics, offers a refresh rate of 144Hz, and supports NVIDIA's G-SYNC technology.

It's a great looking computer too, not too flashy but distinctly built with gamers in mind. The beautifully backlit keyboard ties the whole package together in a truly gorgeous manner. And while it won't be able to compete with gamer-focused external mechanical keyboards, the keys have a satisfying response and support anti-ghosting tech for the sake of simultaneous key presses.

Key Features
  • A rare, quality 17 inch gaming laptop under 1500
  • Utilizes a hybrid hard drive and SSD with over a terabyte of space
  • Compatible with virtual reality headsets
  • Keyboard supports anti-ghosting and macro programming
Memory8GB DDR5ProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HScreen Size17 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1060

10. Acer NITRO 5 gaming laptop

Acer NITRO 5 gaming laptop

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Rounding out our list of gaming laptop s under $1500 is one of the lowest budget options around. And while the Acer Nitro 5 takes a slight hit in terms of performance, it makes up for it by slicing a few hundred dollars off the price of the competition. The GTX 1060 and 1070 cards that are so popular in the mid-range has been replaced with a GTX 1050 Ti, but it still uses a respectably strong eighth generation Intel processor.

If you're looking to save even more money, there's a significantly less expensive AMD gaming laptop. It's the only gaming laptops under 800 dollars that we can comfortably say holds its own in our guide. But even the more expensive, featured model is a great laptop with an entry level price and performance bordering comfortably on the mid-range.

Key Features
  • An incredibly affordable option for gaming
  • Available in a variety of different variants
  • 12GB of system memory for peppier performance
  • Incorporates Acer ComfyView tech to reduce glare
Memory12GB DDRProcessorIntel Core i7-8750HScreen Size15.6 inchGraphicsNVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti

Best Gaming Laptops Under $1500 Buyer’s Guide

The advantage of gaming laptops vs desktops is that they offer more portability, but they also tend to cost more. That means if you’re shopping on a budget, you’ll probably have to recognize that you’ll have to make some sacrifices for the sake of staying within budget. Our guide will help you understand the intricacies of the most important specs and help you shore up some of the disadvantages of a gaming laptop by helping you determine what peripherals you’ll need.

Memory

While random access memory, or RAM, isn’t as important a factor as the central processor or graphics processor when determining a gaming laptop’s speed and effectiveness, it’s still worthy of consideration.

You can think of RAM as essentially the short term memory of your computer. Every time your CPU performs a task, it has to draw the relevant data where it’s stored. Typically this means taking the data from your hard drive, but the process can take noticeable time and affect the speed of your game’s performance. RAM holds the data that your CPU will most likely need, allowing it to access that data more quickly.

RAM can affect everything from startup loading times to frame rates to texture loading, and the more you have, the smoother and more immersive your experience is going to be. It’s especially necessary in open world games where vast environments have to be loaded and in online gaming where a frame drop can significantly diminish your performance.

Eight GB of RAM is essentially the minimum for AAA modern games, although some of the laptops we’ve highlighted feature 16. Investing in 32 will almost certainly require you go above the $1500 price point, but if you’re worried about the RAM available, look for the models on our list – like the MSI GV63 – that have space for expandable RAM.

Processor

The central processing unit, or CPU, is sometimes defined as the brain of your computer. It prioritizes the tasks that need to be performed and delivers them to the appropriate hardware. That makes a necessity for multitasking and work related projects, and while it plays an important part in a gaming rig, it’s not nearly as valuable as the GPU.

As a result, there’s not a whole lot of variance between the processors on our list. You don’t need to concern yourself too much with the model of the CPU, but if you’re going off list, there are a couple of good rules of thumb to follow.

An i5 is suitable for gaming, but if you’re going to throw over a thousand dollars on a computer, you should look skeptically at anything less than an i7. You’ll also want to opt for an eighth generation or later processor, because Intel made some substantive improvements in that generation. The generation is indicated by the first number in the four digital model number.

Screen Size

With a single exception, all of the laptops on our list sport a 15.6″ screen. That’s a practical issue of economy. Bigger panels cost more, and investing in a costly screen means that cuts will have to be made elsewhere. While laptops for under $1500 are available with larger screens, we ultimately had to make the decision to focus on the quality of hardware rather than the size of the display. The one exception is the HP Omen which somehow finds the balance between size and performance.

That’s not to say that smaller screens don’t have their advantage. The more screen there is, the larger and harder to carry your laptop is going to be. Portability is one of the primary advantages of using a gaming laptop, and it shouldn’t be discounted for the notion that bigger is better. Intel’s i7-8750H is the preferred processor in almost all of the computers listed.

Graphics

The most important spec for gamers is going to be the graphics processing unit, or GPU. That’s because the GPU renders all of the graphics. The quality of the GPU determines not just the graphical fidelity but also how quickly textures load and the risk of render tearing. The better the GPU, the smoother and more detailed your graphics are going to be.

There isn’t a lot of variance here, but determining the quality of a GPU is easy. RTX is better than GTX, and the higher the number, the better. There are two major GPU manufacturers: NVIDIA and AMD. NVIDIA excels at high-end gaming, while AMD makes solid and high value entry level and mid-range GPUs.

While the Nitro 5 offers an AMD variant, we’ve decided to focus on laptops with NVIDIA GPUs for all of our featured models in a conscious decision to make sure that all of the laptops fit comfortably in the mid-level gaming market. If you’re interested in more affordable options, including some AMD gaming laptops, check out our guide to the best cheap gaming laptops. There you’ll find entry level gaming laptops under 800 dollars.

With VR becoming more popular, it’s also worth taking into consideration whether you require your laptop to be VR Ready and whether it can support the latest VR headsets.

Peripherals

On the surface, it may seem like stacking on a load of peripherals runs counterproductive to the convenient portability that a laptop provides, but some peripherals will be necessary for certain players. Every gamer is going to want to get a gaming mouse. While the trackpads that come on these laptops are generally highly functional, they aren’t great for the needs of any serious games. Check out our guide to the best gaming mice to direct your search.

Headsets and headphones are a little more situational. If you’re a pro gamer or looking to coordinate in any serious multiplayer game, you’ll absolutely want to get a gaming headset. If you’re a single player gamer who finds themselves regularly in crowded situations (or is simply looking for a more immersive experience), you may want to seriously consider investing in a solid pair of headphones. There are many inexpensive and compact models tailored to the needs of gamers. Check out our list of the best gaming headset for more info.

Investing in an external keyboard will be a matter of personal preference. While keyboard build is one of the first considerations a manufacturer cuts when thinking about budget, these mid-range models offer pretty solid options by and large. But you won’t find the satisfying cadence of a dedicated mechanical keyboard out of the box, and many keyboards catered specifically to gamers offer great quality of life features like dedicated macro buttons.

Maintenance – Tips and Tricks

Prevent overheating

  • Make sure the vents aren’t blocked by dust particles or any other item. Keep it clean and make sure to clear out the vents, whenever required, using the compressed air cans.
  • Do not use the laptop on a pillow, bed or lap. Keep it always on a flat surface, preferably a gaming desk. This way the vents will stay open so the air can easily be vented out. 
  • Make use of the cooling pads for keeping it nice and sort of elevated for the vents to be exposed. This way the hot air can easily be dissipated out of the system. 
  • On the hotter days, try to limit the usage. Or take the laptop to a cooler place or room and use it there.

Prevent External Damage

  • The laptops are rather sensitive. Use the laptop bag for transportation and handle with care.
  • Use a gaming mouse and/or gaming keyboard with your laptop to minimize the chances of shocks and pressure impacts.

Other Essential Tips

  • Avoid running unrequired processes on your laptop when not needed.
  • Do not overcharge. Make sure to plug out the charger as soon as the system is completely charged.
  • Minimize the number of installations. The lesser the number of installations on your laptop the more space and faster the system.
  • Before gaming, ensure to close down all backend processes. Since gaming requires a faster performance, any backend programs can slow you down.
  • Make sure to keep the food and drinks away from your game. Spills can be very damaging.

Final Thoughts

Good gaming laptops aren’t hard to find, but tracking down good gaming laptop deals that suit both your budget and your needs is a somewhat trickier proposition. That’s why we’ve done the footwork for you. We’ve carefully selected the laptops that find that right balance between value and features, and we’re confident that there’s an option here suitable for just about every gamer.