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  • Writer's pictureRay Campbell

I Tested And Ranked The Best Gaming Laptops Under $1500

After a long in-depth research, I finally ranked the best gaming laptops under $1500 you can buy on Amazon right now.

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FYI, prices and ratings are accurate as of time of writing.

1. Acer Nitro 5 - Best Overall

top gaming laptops

Highlight: Faster fan speed and better cooling mechanism increases overall performance significantly.

Helpful review: I’ve scoured the internet for the top machines on the market, and trust me when I say it’s not an easy feat. And then I stumbled upon the Nitro 5, an affordable option that is truly worth every penny. And yeah, the processor is on the older side, but the power isn’t bad at all. If anything, all my updated modern games still play really well. For newer games, the best way to get better rates is by reeling in the details a little to the 60fps at 1080p. For the price point, the display is pretty solid, as it's rated at 144hz and 1080p. While I haven’t tested the connection to an external monitor, there is an option for an HDMI output.
I really appreciate the cooling fans, it definitely keeps things at a level temperature, but be aware that it can be a little on the loud side, but you’ll only notice this if you’re a newbie gamer. Experience gamers know that this is the norm when you’re playing a game with this kind of memory and graphics.
Pro-tip: If you’re going to be a regular gamer, you’ll probably want to invest in a solid pair of noise canceling headphones, but that’s another story.
Now, keep in mind, there are better models out there, but they can get really pricey, so you’re going to have to consider that you do get what you pay for, and for this I’m talking about storage space. It’s only about 256gb, so if you’re going to game on this machine, either get used to deleting old games, or upgrade your storage space.
When it comes to upgrades, I really do like how this is built. The brands are reputable, the SSD is WD, the 8gb Ram stick is Macron, and I really like how everything fits together seamlessly. And if you were unsure, well, yes, there is an unused spot on the motherboard that allows you to connect an upgrade, and there’s also a 2.5 inch space for that SSD.
As long as you don’t have unnecessary apps playing in the background, you should be good when it comes to memory wise, what with the 8gb RAM stick. At the most amount of speed, you can use the memory at a level of 2933 megahertz. Personally, I don’t think it’s worth it to spend a lot on RAM that’s faster. If you’re looking for a solid option for PC gaming, or even if you’re an experienced one prioritizing affordability, then this is the system for you! Definitely recommended! — Mel D. Hallston

Get it from Amazon now: $999.99 & FREE Returns


2. MSI Katana GF66 - Best for First-Time Buyers

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Highlight: Ideal for graphic and AI rendered features.

Helpful review: So while I did wait for this to come to Amazon before purchasing it, I really can’t make it clear how happy I am to finally own this! Just a warning, the price did fluctuate a fair amount, and I saved a few hundred bucks, so I would research it before making the leap.
I really wanted a laptop that didn’t break down at the first heavy game I played, and while I’m not a huge gamer, I just don’t have the patience for things to crumble like that. I’m on the older side of the spectrum, so I knew I wanted a large enough screen that didn’t hurt my eyes. I also really like how the keyboard has a background light and that it still has the pad that shows the numbers–a lot of machines these days get rid of that.
MSI is one of the top brands for motherboards, so I knew I was getting something solid here, even though I didn’t know that they also created laptops, so that’s pretty cool. And I knew that what I was going to get would be really good, honestly. And so far, I stand assured in that. This product is awesome!
I’ve even tested it out to see how well it does with graphics, and honestly it’s going so well. Other machines have struggled to run my apps and games, and this one doesn’t even have so much as a lag. The actual exterior of the model is a little on the thicker side for something that is advertised as being a thin product, however, with all the mechanisms beneath the hood of this, I can honestly say it doesn’t bother me in the slightest.
You can tell it’s made well, and nothing about it looks cheap, either. Some of the keys aren’t where I’m used to them being–looking at you Windows key–but overall I really enjoy how the display looks. It’s larger than I expected, too.
Honestly, most of my negatives are just personal nit pickiness. Like the font is kind of weird, and I don’t really understand why they putt the output for the built-in speaker beneath the laptop, it doesn’t really make sense. Also, there’s no paper manual, which just seems odd, but maybe that’s just because I’m the type of person who really likes to learn about the machine I’m using.
Also, it can get super loud once you start playing games, but I probably should invest in some noise canceling headphones anyways. And on that note, the vents do get a little warm, but that’s to be expected. So overall, as a gaming laptop, I’m really happy. I can’t say a future update may change that, and I will write a new one if my opinion changes, but honestly, it’s really good, and I think it works very well. It looks good and performs ever better! — Brennan B. Rigger

Get it from Amazon now: $999.99 & FREE Returns


3. ASUS TUF Dash 15 - Best Mid-Tier Gaming Laptop

top gaming laptops

Highlight: GPU can communicate with display, meaning better performance and less latency.

Helpful review: I’m not just a gamer, I’m also a programmer, which means I really like my desktops. Laptops are always hit or miss for me, honestly. I was hesitant when work switched me to a Macbook Pro complete with a docking station, but all I can say is wow–seriously evolutionary. The laptop plugs directly into my dock, and I’m so surprised with how much I love it. How much you ask? After only a few weeks with this laptop, I sold my actual desktop. Yep! You read that correctly.
As a whole, the machine is super fast. It can handle multiple requests at once–it’s better multitasking than I am. With ten cores, I’ve found it barely ever runs out of juice. Not only can I review code, I can also game–at the same time! Keep in mind it gets a little warm when this happens, but honestly, that’s to be expected and happens even on desktops. I do recommend that people get a cooling pad if it gets too hot, but another thing you can do is shut off turbo by using the throttle stop. It doesn’t hurt the quality of my game, and during a six hour session it runs an average of 60 degrees C.
During gaming PC, it runs 80 degrees C, but honestly I love how well it works with games. You can get the settings to high, even to ultra, using 1080p, or even 1440p, with 60fps, and it still works! WiFI is so freaking fast, I’m obsessed.
I can play Forza horizon 5, halo infinite, and far cry 5, and it works great.
The screen is average, personally I think it could be brighter, but that may just be personal preference. It’s one of the negatives when you purchase a laptop thats under two grand. Same goes for battery. Runs about four to five hours, but during that time I can be on YouTube and gaming, and the battery stays. It’s on the thinner and lighter side, but you can tell it’s built well, and I just love that with the dock, it becomes its own workstation.
So I should start this review off by saying that I did get it on Black Friday, so it was cheaper than the standard price, and that definitely does help me admit that the value is good. But I still did my research. 105TDP for the 3060 makes it pretty solid. The brightness on the screen could be better, but the screen is still really solid, so it’s a nice compromise. Now, if you need the full color spectrum, like if you’re a graphic designer needing a professional display, I might check elsewhere. Still, it’s easy to update, meaning I can fully maximize the full lifespan of this laptop. I like how the keyboard feels, although the setup of the ports is a little weird, but that's probably because I’m just not used to having it on the left side. It’s really not a dealbreaker though when you consider you’re getting ethernet and a full size HDMI. There really wasn’t much stuff preinstalled, and what bloatware I found, I just removed, and it was pretty easy. Overall, I definitely recommend! — Craig L. Campbell

Get it from Amazon now: $1,299.99 & FREE Returns


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