Recommended Gaming Laptops (2017)

So I bought a gaming laptop back in 2011 that I could use basically as a portable desktop when I travel. It has served me well over the past 6 years but it is starting to get a little long in the tooth and because of its age is not quite living up to what I want it to do anymore. So I was looking at getting a new one and wondered if anyone here had any suggestions or what to look for when purchasing a laptop this time around. I had some very general ideas about what I would like.

I would like it to be able to run most modern games on at least medium settings.
I have a 17" laptop which is a great screen size but makes it pretty heavy and bulky to carry around, so I was thinking of looking in the 15" range instead but I am open to whatever would look and feel good.
I would like it to have an SSD.
Looking in the $1000-$1300 range if possible. If I kind find it cheaper than that, great but definitely do not want to spend over $1500.

Sorry if this is the wrong place to post this. I did some light searching on the forums and all the gaming laptop threads are 2014 or older. I appreciate any suggestions you all can give.

I'd recommend buying one of GameGuru's Razers next time he posts one.

I have a 15" Alienware that I bought a couple years ago for under $1500, it has been great but still pretty darn heavy.

The best value out there is still the Dell Inspiron 5577. Make sure to get the upgraded model with better graphics and also the upgraded screen if you can find it. I have the previous year's model (7559) and it is good machine for the price. It is less than $1,000 so is not as nice as some machines that are $1,400+ but has served me well. Also it stays pretty cool, which is a big deal to me for lap gaming especially when traveling.

If you want to go more expensive, EVGA just released a nice laptop that is a step up and still runs cool. I go to for reviews.

Have you considered places like CyberPower or IBuyPower?

Being genuinely ok with medium settings makes anything with a 1060 kind of the ideal aim, as a lot of 1060 laptops can be had in various form factors just below and around your $1300 price aim.

If you can find last year's Asus GL502VS (The DB71 model) for $1300, it's an i7-6700HQ with a GTX 1070. There's some refurbished ones on Amazon right now for that much. It's a lot of performance for that money, but... refurbished. Up to you. This is the laptop I bought and it's been pretty great, but will admit the gaudy orange lighting on the back of the display eventually wore on me and I ended up cracking it open and modding it a bit.

Alternately, basically the same chassis with a 1060 is the Asus GL502VM, from this year's more silver colored model. They removed the larger orange bit of lighting from the back of the display which improves the looks a bit. It's otherwise solid hardware for $1300.

ThinJ you must do gaming on a desk, because I couldn't use a laptop like the GL502VM that gets up to 150 degrees on the outside on my lap! That has been the problem with the machines Asus has been releasing lately. They are nice otherwise.

Yes but he also literally said this:

Malkroth wrote:

So I bought a gaming laptop back in 2011 that I could use basically as a portable desktop when I travel

So it didn't seem an issue

All the 1060 or above laptops squeeze out a fair bit of heat and are going to be a little to warm for one's legs when gaming. When not gaming they're fine.

Also who in the world actually games with the laptop actually on their lap? That's just crazy talk.

I have a 2016 Alienware R2. It's a nice 15" system but a little on the heavy side (although my other machine is a Surface Pro, so I'm used to something much lighter). It has a GTX 970M (the 3 GB model), and so far the only things I haven't been able to run at high or more have been Unity games, and my experience is that Unity is just a poorly optimized engine. A little bit of twiddling with settings gets things running just fine. I imagine anything in a similar spec range would suit your needs just fine.

Clocky I bet we have almost the same laptop. Mine came with the 4K monitor which is silly on a 15" monitor. Took me a while to figure out how to get it to display at 1080P because it does not have the horsepower to push that many gaming pixels.

After doing some shopping around and looking at your recommendations, I am currently looking at two different options. The ASUS ROG GL553VE and the Dell Inspiron 15 5000. I think I am leaning towards the Asus as I have bought their computers before and they are pretty solid, but do you have any input?

I think those are pretty comparable. If you haven't already I suggest reading the notebookcheck reviews and it might help you decide based on what is important to you.

Microsoft Surface Laptops and Tablets Not Recommended by Consumer Reports

Upshot: they're much less reliable than other brands. Microsoft disputes this, of course, but I trust CR's surveys a hell of a lot more than Microsoft's response.

Im curious what CR's sample size is. Do people still read CR? I can't imagine the younger generation still reading them.

Im curious what CR's sample size is.

The overall sample is tens of thousands; I don't know how many Surface purchasers are included in that, but it takes surprisingly few samples to make reasonable inferences. The pool is a little bit biased because it has an element of self-selection, but to some degree, that's true of all polling; people often choose not to participate when asked questions.

Whatever their overall quality, you're not likely to find better numbers. Even if you assume that Microsoft would tell the unvarnished truth without spin (hah, as if), not everyone chooses to get their computers fixed when they break. Even the manufacturer may not know what's going on quite as well as CR does.

Microsoft is claiming the numbers are skewed due to how horrendous the quality of the first gen Surface Book was. We got two at work and one has been sent for RMA but both were plagued with all sorts of software and hardware issues that required updates from Microsoft and they still aren't right.

Add to that the initial bugs of the Surface 4 Pro which thankfully seem to have ironed out the issues there. We have 7 of them and they are all working fine with no issues. Occasionally the Surface Docks need to be rebooted to see the Monitors but I've yet to have a dock like that be it Thunderbolt or USB work 100% like the Thinkpad docks do that use a docking connector.

More anecdotal stuff, but it supports Guru's post. Former co-worker of mine now works at a company that issues all their employees a Surface. They love them. Other than people physically breaking them (they manage projects at industrial and commercial sites) they haven't had any issues to speak of.

I have a 15" Lenovo Legion Y520, bought it for right around $1,000. I think the price has dropped a bit since I bought it, mine has an NVidia 1050ti, the newer model has the 1060. At the time I was looking just about every laptop manufacturer was putting out nearly identical devices, appearances varied but tech specs were very close. I went with Lenovo because they've done good by me historically and their prices were a little bit lower.