Many gamers have struggled with needing the expansive resources of a high-end desktop and the lure of portability. The choices in the past have included challenges with processing power, size and weight. With the increasing demand of 3D games and the near future of AR games, the world of gaming laptops needs to be adaptable. Thanks to the forward thinking of companies like Razer, MSI, and Alienware, there are some interesting solutions to previous compromises.
Newer portables like the Razer Blade Stealth gaming laptop and the MS65 Stealth models offer significantly upgraded processors with a quad-core i7-8550U processor. This CPU has multicore performance, runs quietly and handles most multithreaded tasking. Prior gaming laptop offerings did not have the multi-core abilities and the processing power to handle high framerate games. The invention of external graphics enclosures has helped bridge the gap between the performance of the gaming laptops and desktop gaming levels. Some laptops choose to go big with the direct installation of a high-end graphics card like the NVIDIA MAX-Q GTX 1070. This graphics card adds big gaming and video performance to the laptop with 8 Gigs of dedicated graphics memory.
Display and Battery
With the detailed world of today’s games, a beautiful display can make a huge difference between just playing a game or feeling fully immersed. Display choices now include QHD+ (3,200 x 1,000) and 4K. Larger 15.6-inch screens add bulk and significant weight over smaller 13.3-inch screens. However, as long as the display technology is solid, all are beautiful and vibrant. Touch screen displays help with everyday tasking, but this useful feature is not included on all gaming laptops. When looking at display technology and screen size, another consideration is battery life. The world of gaming laptops has battery life that ranges from 3 hours up to 10 hours on some models. As with any battery-operated technology, the rate of power drain is very dependent on the usage. This is where the higher demand displays, and bigger screen sizes can significantly affect battery operating times
Memory and Storage
The newer gaming laptops have started including 16GB of dual-channel memory which is better than the older versions that had only 8GB, although future models would benefit from 32GB. Hard drive technology has improved with the advent of solid state drives which offer more storage in a smaller form factor without the moving parts. Generally, 256GB of storage is offered as a base, but there are some options for adding up to 1 terabyte of solid state storage. While a terabyte may initially seem like alot for a laptop, newer 3D games have increasingly bigger installation files and 4k video takes up storage at a much faster rate than lower quality video.
Gaming laptops keep evolving thanks to the increasing focus on hardware innovation and integrating the needs of the gaming community. With large, vibrant, displays and thin, ultraportable designs, these laptops far exceed the performance of those in the past. The combination of the eighth-generation i7 quad-core processor and 16GB dual-channel memory ensures today’s gaming laptops are able to handle most multithreaded tasks with ease. For avid gamers, the option of a speedy graphics card with onboard memory or external graphics enclosure are excellent options for real desktop gaming performance and portability when needed. Up to 1 terabyte of solid state memory ensures that a lack of drive space won’t be a factor for any large game installation or video download. Many of these laptops weigh in at less than 3lbs and offer up to 10 hours of battery life. With all these new options, the line between desktop performance and portable gaming is thinning.