10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

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10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for a First Gaming Laptop – MSI Bravo 15

MSI’s Bravo 15 is the Alpha 15’s successor and an all-AMD-powered gaming notebook. It more than makes up for its predecessor’s lack of CPU grunt this time around with a new “Renoir” Ryzen 4000 series chip, which is significantly faster than comparable Intel silicon found in laptops in this price range. Although the Bravo 15 falls short in overall gaming performance when compared to notebooks equipped with Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, its powerful CPU, ample memory, ample storage, and a high-refresh AMD FreeSync display make it an excellent choice.

Price – $929

MSI BRAVO 15 SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming
Processor AMD Ryzen 7 4800H
Processor Speed 2.9 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 16 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 512 GB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support FreeSync
Screen Refresh Rate 120 Hz
Graphics Processor AMD Radeon RX 5500M
Graphics Memory 4 GB
Wireless Networking 802.11ax, Bluetooth
Dimensions (HWD) 0.85 by 14.1 by 10 inches
Weight 4.1 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes) 6:55

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for Low Pricing Plus Storage Expandability – Acer Nitro 5 (2020)

The new Nitro is powered by AMD’s new Ryzen 5 4600H—a six-core chip that costs the same as an Intel Core i5 but competes with Core i7 CPUs—and can reach 60 frames per second in top titles. It makes concessions in exchange for a low price.

Price – $699

ACER NITRO 5 (2020) SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming
Processor AMD Ryzen 5 4600H
Processor Speed 3 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 8 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 256 GB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support None
Screen Refresh Rate 60 Hz
Graphics Processor Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650
Graphics Memory 4 GB
Wireless Networking Bluetooth, 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6)
Dimensions (HWD) 0.94 by 14.3 by 10 inches
Weight 5.51 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours:Minutes) 15:33

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for Solid 1080p Play, Plus Dual Drive Support – Lenovo Legion Y545

Lenovo’s new Legion Y545 laptop. This 15.6-inch display is powered by an Intel Core i5-9300H CPU and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 GPU. It also has a longer battery life and is not lacking in build quality or features. It has a few quirks, such as a webcam that looks up at your chin and a wonky number-pad layout, but they’re not deal-breakers.

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Price – $899

LENOVO LEGION Y545 SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming
Processor Intel Core i7-9750H
Processor Speed 2.6 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 16 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 128 GB
Secondary Drive Type Hard Drive
Secondary Drive Capacity (as Tested) 1 TB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support None
Screen Refresh Rate 60 Hz
Graphics Processor Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti
Graphics Memory 6 GB
Wireless Networking 802.11ac, Bluetooth
Dimensions (HWD) 1.05 by 14.2 by 10.5 inches
Weight 5.1 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes) 4:22

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for a High-Refresh Panel, Plus All-AMD Silicon – MSI Alpha 15

The MSI Alpha 15, which combines a quad-core Ryzen 7 3750H processor and a 4GB Radeon RX 5500M GPU to compete with Intel-based rigs outfitted with Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1650, delivers smooth and reliable 1080p gaming performance.

Price – $899

MSI Alpha 15 Specifications

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for a Mix of Style and Power – Asus TUF Dash F15

For fans of mobile gaming hardware, Asus‘s new TUF Dash F15 gets 2021 off to a good start. This 15.6-inch gaming laptop performs on par with systems from last year that were much more expensive. In our testing, its combination of Intel Core i7 “Tiger Lake-H” silicon—the company’s newest mobile CPUs for power laptops—and a brand-new 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 mobile GPU produced triple-digit frame rates, with its 240Hz-refresh-rate screen keeping up. It also has practical features such as quiet fans, a comfortable keyboard, and a long-for-its-class battery life. Its most notable omission is a webcam, through its gaming performance is not necessarily better than that of the previous model.

Price – $1099

ASUS TUF DASH F15 SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming
Processor Intel Core i7-11375H
Processor Speed 3.3 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 16 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 1 TB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1,920 by 1,080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support Adaptive Sync
Screen Refresh Rate 240 Hz
Graphics Processor Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU
Graphics Memory 8 GB
Wireless Networking 802.11ax, Bluetooth
Dimensions (HWD) 0.78 by 14.17 by 9.92 inches
Weight 4.4 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes) 8:50
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10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for Giant-Screen Gaming on a Budget – Asus TUF Gaming A17

Asus’ TUF gaming laptops feature an eight-core AMD Ryzen 7 4800H “Renoir” processor, 16GB of RAM, and a generous 1TB solid-state drive. Its 17.3-inch full HD display is supported by a capable Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti GPU. It has a longer battery life and a tougher construction than many competitors, having passed MIL-STD 810H shock, vibration, and environmental extremes tests. The GTX 1660 Ti won’t be able to fully utilize the system’s 120Hz-refresh-rate screen—and the screen isn’t the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen—but the A17 is a good option for plus-size gaming on a budget.

Price – $1585

ASUS TUF GAMING A17 SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming, Budget
Processor AMD Ryzen 7 4800H
Processor Speed 2.9 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 16 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 1 TB
Screen Size 17.3 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support None
Screen Refresh Rate 120 Hz
Graphics Processor Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti
Graphics Memory 6 GB
Wireless Networking 802.11ac, Bluetooth
Dimensions (HWD) 1.0 by 15.7 by 10.6 inches
Weight 5.7 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes) 8:51

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for an Extra Emphasis on CPU Power – Dell G5 15 SE (2020)

The 2020 Dell G5 15 SE uses all-AMD for its CPU and GPU, delivering excellent multimedia and gaming performance at a reasonable price. But it’s a crowded field, and the G5 15 SE might not be able to differentiate itself enough. The design is simple and heavy; gaming frame rates don’t compete with those of similarly priced Nvidia-based laptops, and storage capacity is limited.

Price – $879

DELL G5 15 SE (2020) SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming
Processor AMD Ryzen 7 4800H
Processor Speed 2.9 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 16 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 512 GB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support None
Screen Refresh Rate 144 Hz
Graphics Processor AMD Radeon RX 5600M
Graphics Memory 6 GB
Wireless Networking 802.11ac, Bluetooth
Dimensions (HWD) 0.85 by 14.4 by 10 inches
Weight 5.5 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours:Minutes) 7:33

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for Configuration Flexibility – HP Pavilion Gaming 15

The HP Pavilion Gaming 15 has a six-core Intel Core i7 processor rather than a quad-core Core i5, 16GB of memory rather than 8GB, and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti GPU rather than a GTX 1650 GPU. The 1660 Ti, on the other hand, is a scaled-down Max-Q version, and the Pavilion’s screen refresh rate is the lowest-common-denominator 60Hz rather than the 144Hz of some competitors.

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Price – $749

HP Pavilion Gaming 15 specifications

 

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for an Emphasis on Chassis Quality – Lenovo IdeaPad Gaming 3i

The IdeaPad Gaming 3i’s Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 GPU is a letdown. Comparable or lower-priced gaming rigs provide comparable or better graphics performance, while some slightly more expensive laptops provide significantly higher frame rates.

Price – $849

LENOVO IDEAPAD GAMING 3I SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Gaming
Processor Intel Core i7-10750H
Processor Speed 2.6 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 8 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 512 GB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support None
Screen Refresh Rate 120 Hz
Graphics Processor Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650
Graphics Memory 4 GB
Wireless Networking 802.11ax, Bluetooth
Dimensions (HWD) 0.98 by 14.13 by 9.83 inches
Weight 4.8 lbs
Operating System Windows 10 Home
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes) 7:33

10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops for 2021

Best for Basic Budget Gaming – Dell G3 15 (2021)

The IdeaPad Gaming 3i’s GPU is the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650, which is a little underwhelming. Comparable or lower-priced gaming rigs provide the same or better graphics performance, while some slightly more expensive laptops provide significantly higher frame rates. The Dell G3 15 is the epitome of an entry-level gaming laptop, with its simple design, modest performance, and low price. It ups the ante with a 120Hz Full HD display that its GeForce GTX 1650 Ti graphics chip can use in online multiplayer games, but it can’t quite push AAA titles to 60 frames per second (fps) at higher settings. The 256GB SSD in our review unit is too small for a game library, so we recommend upgrading the capacity.

DELL G3 15 (2021) SPECIFICATIONS

Laptop Class Budget, Gaming
Processor Intel Core i5-10300H
Processor Speed 2.5 GHz
RAM (as Tested) 8 GB
Boot Drive Type SSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested) 256 GB
Screen Size 15.6 inches
Native Display Resolution 1920 by 1080
Touch Screen No
Panel Technology IPS
Variable Refresh Support None
Screen Refresh Rate 120 Hz
Graphics Processor Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti
Graphics Memory 4 GB
Wireless Networking Bluetooth, 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6)
Dimensions (HWD) 0.85 by 14.4 by 10 inches
Weight 5.18 lbs
Operating System Windows 10
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes) 6:22

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