While $800 isn’t enough to buy the absolute best gaming laptops out there, you’d be surprised just how much it can get.
Buying a new gaming laptop is always a hassle, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the latest hardware. Even if you are, there are many other factors to consider, like panel type, built-in features, and overall appearance. We’ve done the heavy lifting for you by picking out the three best options under the crucial $800 price mark. Here are three excellent options for gamers needing raw power, versatile looks, and the cheapest option.
Acer offers one of the best dedicated gaming laptops for $800
Acer is a household name in both business and gaming laptops, offering one of the absolute best options in the $800 price range. The Nitro 5 AN515 ticks almost every box gamers could draw up for a portable battle station. It’s powered by an Intel Core i7-11800H with graphics processing enabled by an Nvidia RTX 3050 Ti. This is a hard combo to match at under $1,000, but this particular machine doesn’t skimp out in other areas.
The screen is a 15.6” IPS panel running at 144 hertz, giving both chips plenty of room to flex their power. The 8 gigabytes of DDR4 RAM and 512 gigs of storage are a little less exciting, but both should be plenty for gaming on the go at 1080p. An integrated Wi-Fi card and red keyboard backlighting confirm the Acer Nitro as a fantastic option for budget gamers looking for portability.
The HP Victus is perfect for student gamers
HP has you covered if you’re looking for something a little more mature. The established brand currently offers its Victus gaming laptop at an incredible price of $720. Our chosen model comes with an i5-12450H CPU paired with a GTX 1650, which is enough to run almost all modern games at the 144 frames-per-second the display is capable of.
Unlike the Acer option, the HP Victus doesn’t disappoint on storage with a full terabyte of SSD space and 16 gigabytes of RAM. This paints the device as one of the best laptops for students who enjoy gaming in their free time and have $800 to spend. The lack of garish red lighting or flashy logos won’t make it stand out in a classroom setting.
Save even more with MSI’s MSI GV15 gaming laptop
$800 can be a big ask, but dedicated gaming brand MSI has an option for gamers looking to save dough and still enjoy a great gaming experience. The MSI GV15 is the cheapest option on our list at just $680 all-in, but it doesn’t sacrifice much. An i5-11400H and GTX 1650 put it in the same weight class as our other options while maintaining fancy extras like a 144-hertz screen and built-in lighting.
The GV15 doesn’t have the best performance of our three picks for $800 gaming laptops, but it’s hard to turn down such a comprehensive spread of features for this price. Onboard Wi-Fi, USB-C ports, SSD storage, and even an audio card provide several creature comforts usually saved for higher-end models. Spending less on the laptop also frees up your budget for a nice gaming mouse or reasonably-priced headset to complement your future setup.