While gaming laptops used to be niche enough that it was a little easily to search for the one that happened to be packing the best processor, GPU and RAM assortment, the field has exploded since then and it can be a little harder to determine the best gaming laptop.
The gaming laptop we’re used to seeing – thick chassis with RGB and tapered flares – isn’t the only option any more, with a variety of advancements (such as Nvidia’s Max-Q technology) allowing the sleeker ultrabook form factor to harbour some incredible grunt as well.
Regardless of if you’re in it for the stealthy, sleek numbers to slip in your satchel on the go, or an all-in-one replacement for a desktop rig, we’ve sifted through what’s on offer to bring you the best gaming laptops available in Australia.
1. Gigabyte Aero 15
CPU: Intel Core i7 8750H | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB GDDR5) | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 15.6-inch, FHD (1,920 x 1,080) LCD anti-glare | Storage: 512GB SSD
Super thin bezels
Deceptively thin and light
Unfortunate webcam placement
It used to be that the best gaming laptops were thick, bulky devices that were necessary to experience the best PC games on the move. Those days are over. The Gigabyte Aero 15 packs a 6-core 8th-generation Intel Core i7 processor and a GTX 1060 into a package that allows it to pass as an Ultrabook. And, thanks to that beefy 6-core processor, it’s not just the best gaming laptop right now – it’s one of the best laptops, period.
Read the full review: Gigabyte Aero 15
2. MSI GS65 Stealth
Thin. Beautiful. Powerful.
CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB GDDR5X VRAM, Max-Q) | RAM: 16GB | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) anti-glare, wide-view 144Hz panel | Storage: 512GB M.2 SSD
Beautiful, subtle design
Underside gets very hot
If you want to play some of the best PC games on the move, but you don’t want everyone to know you’re playing games, the MSI GS65 Stealth is the best gaming laptop for you. Coming in at just 17.5mm thick and featuring impressive hardware 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 ton of power into a very svelte package. There’s nothing you won’t be able to throw at this thing that’ll slow it down. And, thanks to the subdued design, you’ll be able to bring this beefy rig everywhere you go, making it on of the best gaming laptops on the market right now.
Read the full review: MSI GS65 Stealth
3. Razer Blade 15 (2018)
A gaming-ready MacBook Pro rival
CPU: Intel Core i7-8750H | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB GDDR5 VRAM) | RAM: 16GB | Screen: Up to 15.6-inch UHD (3,840 x 2,160) 60Hz | Storage: 512GB M.2 SSD
Impressive battery life
4K display option
Fans whir loudly under load
Limited upgrade options
The 15.6-inch Razer Blade might still have an unbearably edgy name, but now that the 2018 version is here, it’s fitting – it’s still on the cutting edge. Beyond its insanely high-end specs and beautiful chassis, it can fit up to a 4K Ultra-HD display, with the specs to actually back it up. That’s not to mention the expandability that the Razer Core X opens up. It might be expensive, but if you’re a Razer fan looking for the best gaming laptop, it might just be for you.
Read the full review: Razer Blade
4. Asus ROG G703GI
CPU: Intel Core i7-i9 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 (8GB GDDR5X VRAM) | RAM: 64GB | Screen: 17.3-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080)144Hz | Storage: 3 x 512GB SSD (M.2, RAID 0), 2TB HDD
Thin and light gaming laptops are everywhere right now, but if you don’t care about that, and want a thick, heavy and monstrous laptop that can demolish any game you throw at it – the Asus ROG G703GI is for you. This is a massive – and expensive – laptop, but it justifies its size and price with gaming performance that rivals the best gaming PCs. Just don’t think you’ll be able to haul it along with you to your local coffee shop without its two power bricks – or awkward stares.
Read the full review: Asus ROG G703GI
5. Dell XPS 15 2-in-1
CPU: Intel Core i5-i7 | Graphics: Radeon RX Vega M GL Graphics with 4GB HMB2 Graphics Memory | RAM: 8GB | Screen: 15.6-inch, 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) InfinityEdge anti-reflective touch display | Storage: 512GB PCIe SSD
Kind of expensive
If you want one of the best gaming laptops, but don’t want to miss out on the ultra-portable craze, you need to consider the Dell XPS 15 2-in-1. Packed with an Intel Kaby Lake G-series processor, this gaming laptop can keep up with its competitors rocking a GTX 1050 without featuring truly discrete graphics. And, when you combine that gaming horsepower with a chassis that looks this good, it’s a total win – even if you have to endure some fan noise to get there.
Read the full review: Dell XPS 15 2-in-1
6. HP Omen 15 (2018)
Is HP’s latest gaming laptop a sign from the gods?
CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 – 1070 | RAM: 16 – 32GB DDR4 | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD 1,920 x 1,080 IPS | Storage: 128GB – 512GB SSD, 1TB HDD
Solid performance and build
While there are other gaming laptops opting for the sleekness and subtlety of an ultrabook, the HP Omen 15 offers up aesthetics that are unashamedly on the louder side of gaming. Thankfully, this is matched with a solid, sturdy chassis and some seriously solid performance to back it up. In fact, for the price, the Omen 15 performs remarkably well with either its GTX 1060 or 1070, and all of its configurations will offer up something of value to those who buy it.
7. Dell G3 15
CPU: Intel Core i5 8300H – Core i7-8750H | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 – GTX 1060 | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 15.6-inch, FHD (1,920 x 1,080) | Storage: 1TB SSHD – 512GB PCIe SSD
Great performance for the money
When you’re setting out to buy one of the best gaming laptops, one of the first things you’ll likely notice is how expensive they can get. Luckily, the Dell G3 15 is not just extremely affordable, but it punches above its weight class with great 1080p gaming performance. With up to an Nvidia GTX 1060 GPU, you’ll be able to play all the latest games at 1080p without breaking a sweat, even if it’s not at max settings all the time. And, that blue on black color combo is quite a looker, if that’s your aesthetic.
Read the full review: Dell G3 15
8. Acer Nitro 5 (2018)
This budget gaming laptop is dynamite
CPU: Intel Core i5-i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050-1060 | RAM: 8-16GB | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) IPS | Storage: 128-512GB SSD with 1-2TB HDD
Awesome performance for the price
Great battery life
While there are a handful of laptops in the budget space that offer great gaming solutions for those who are tight on cash, the Acer Nitro 5 is this year’s budget-laptop to beat. Whether it’s the entry level offering that doubles the RAM allocation to 16GB and throws in an additional 16GB of Intel Optane system memory/storage, or the mid-tier option offering a Nvidia GTX 1060 GPU, the Acer Nitro 5 is really showing up the competition in the budget gaming space
Read the full review: Acer Nitro 5
9. Acer Predator Helios 500
Big screen, big chassis, big power
CPU: 8th-generation Intel Core i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 | RAM: 16-32GB | Screen: 17.3-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) | Storage: 256-512GB SSD, 1-2TB HDD
17.3-inch, G-Sync, 144Hz display
Bulky and heavy
Although the Predator Helios 500 from Acer might be almost as big as some desktop rigs, it’s sporting an awesome 17.3-inch screen and has the performance to back it up. With a 144Hz refresh rate and G-Sync, this huge display matches up with a GPU that performs considerably better than other laptops with the same configurations. As long as you’re not having to carry this one too far, the Predator Helios 500 is a great choice.
Read the full review: Acer Predator Helios 500
10. Asus ROG Zephyrus GX501
Under an inch thick and still kicking ass
CPU: Intel Core i7 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 (8GB GDDR5X VRAM) | RAM: 16GB | Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) anti-glare, wide-view 120Hz panel with G-Sync | Storage: 512GB M.2 PCIe x4 SSD
Innovative and quiet cooling
Laughable battery life
Poor keyboard and ergonomics
Kicking Nvidia’s Max-Q technology off right, the Asus Zephyrus GX501 combines the heralded thinness of an Ultrabook with the performance of a gaming PC to bring the best of both worlds to your fingertips. Despite exhibiting subpar times in our battery life benchmarks, this svelte powerhouse of a notebook is one for the books when it comes to both portability and style. Plus, it’s virtually silent if noise is a cause for distraction in your everyday routine.
Read the full review: Asus ROG Zephyrus GX501