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You gamers out there probably love the idea of a great dedicated gaming laptop. But let's be honest: No matter how much cash is flowing into your pockets, you're not going to drag two computers everywhere with you. If you buy a gaming computer, it needs to be able to handle everyday work and school tasks too, as well as any other projects you may want to work on.
Fortunately, the best gaming laptops of 2016 specialize in both speed and space, so if you stick with a trustworthy brand your computer will be able to handle anything you throw at it, from on-the-go gaming sessions to entertainment to your latest work report (you know…as long as you don't need a Mac).
Asus ROG G75 – $2,000
If you are looking for power, an Asus ROG is always a good choice – and this particular 17.3-inch model is filled with features that can deal with even highly demanding games. We're talking about a 2.6GHz Intel Core i7 processor, 1TB of storage, up to 512 of extra SSD storage for faster gaming responses, and up to 32GB of RAM so that speed will never be an issue.
Note that the version we chose has a more moderate 1TB drive, 256GB SSD, and 24GB of RAM (with G-Sync). There are several options based on cost, but thanks to the power of this model any of them can handle basic work tasks without much trouble.
It's also important to note that this is an older model: It comes with a free upgrade to Windows 10, but some features are a bit dated (there's also no ultra HD resolution, but this isn't really an issue on laptop screens). The reason we still love it is because it continues to do everything well, but the price has fallen, making this model more affordable.
Alienware 15 – $1,600
Alienware usually has a highly dependable gaming machines, so when you find a highly-rated laptop with the Alienware brand you know that it's worth paying attention to. This particular model has a 15.6-inch screen, so it's more useful for carrying around than our first pick – especially if you don't really need a couple more inches of space for your game aim.
Specs include an Intel Core i7 processor, and (for the model we chose) 16GB of RAM, 1 TB of traditional storage and a 256GB SSD, and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 970M. As you can see, for good gaming laptops these are fairly middle-of-the-road specs. We like them because they are still completely suitable for work purposes (especially with so much storage), but don't overburden you with expensive (and weighty) features.
When it comes to pricing, there's good news and bad news. The good news is that, because this is also an older model it's easier to find discounts. The bad news is that even with the discounted versions available, this will cost $1,600. It's not that much when buying a gaming laptop, but it's still very expensive for the average consumer.
MSI GT80S 6QE – $3,399
Here's a newer model for you – but now you can probably see why we like older models; they have lower prices! But you get a whole lot of high-end specs for spending this much on a gaming laptop. This one includes an extra-large 18.4-inch screen to make it feel as much like a desktop as possible, with a 2.7GHz Core i7 processor underneath to make sure the computer can handle everything.
Storage includes the typical 1TB hard drive and 256GB SSD, while RAM is at 24GB, enough speed to handle anything you care to throw at this laptop. It isn't the prettiest thing in the world, but if you want some of the latest laptop tech and the capability to do everything, work or fun, then this may be a great pick for you!