The 10 Best Gaming Laptops Under $700 (2018 Guide)

Love the idea of playing PC games practically anywhere and anytime? If yes, then you definitely need a gaming laptop!

However, gaming laptops can easily set you back $1000-1500. For that price, you can already build a decent gaming PC capable of running the latest games. But for those who value portability more than anything else, we have good news: there are gaming laptops that you can get without breaking the bank.

In fact, there are dozens of gaming laptops under $700, the commonly cited price ceiling for gaming laptops in the budget category. But you need to know where to look, which can be difficult for those unfamiliar with technical specifications and laptop-related terms.

Fear not, for we are here to guide you in shopping for the best budget gaming laptops. In this list, we introduce you to the 10 best gaming laptops under $700, which range from seemingly business laptops packed with powerful hardware to laptops specifically engineered for gaming. Many of these products come with dedicated graphics cards, allowing you to play the latest games in decent settings.

But when checking out the specs of the laptops on this list, it would be wise to refrain from comparing them to gaming PCs or high-end gaming laptops that sit somewhere above $1000. Because you can’t really expect a budget gaming laptop to compete with the big players on the market. With these budget gaming laptops, you get what you pay for.

Here are the 10 best gaming laptops that you can get for $700. (Note: Prices may change. All the products listed here can be purchased for $700 at the time of writing.)

Dell Inspiron 15 i5567Dell Inspiron 15 i5567

The Dell Inspiron 15 i5567 is one of the most affordable gaming laptops available on the market, with brand-new units going for just a little over $700. It runs on a 7th generation Intel Core i7-7500U that can go up to 3.5 GHz and comes with an 8GB DDR4 memory. The memory is a step from the DDR3 found in its predecessor, the Dell Inspiron 15 i559, which was a bit disappointing.

Lightweight and easy to pack, this budget gaming laptop includes a 15.6-inch Full HD 1920 x 1080 screen capable of showing off gorgeous visuals. In the graphics department, this laptop comes with an AMD Radeon R7 M445 with a maximum 4GB of GDDR5 video memory. This should be good enough to run modern games that don’t demand high-end graphics cards. For avid players of MOBAs like League of Legends, this laptop is perfect. But for big-budget games loaded with eye-popping visuals, this laptop isn’t the most reliable.

Weighing just 5.13 lb, the Dell Inspiron 15 i5567 allows you to take gaming practically anywhere – and the great battery life guarantees that you will be able to actually play games for more than two hours before the laptop calls for you to plug it in. The battery fully recharges in about 2-3 hours, which is just about what you would expect from a laptop of this caliber.

This laptop includes a backlit keyboard, a godsend feature for those who prefer to play games in the middle of the night with the lights turned off for a more immersive experience. The backlit keyboard means you will be able to precisely hit keys even in total darkness. In games where hitting the wrong key can cost you a precious in-game life, the backlit keyboard is a game-changer.

Equipped with a 1TB SATA hard drive and a DVD drive, the Dell Inspiron 15 i5567 is a recommended gaming laptop for those working on a tight budget. Sure, the hardware under the hood may not be enough to reliably run games like Battlefield 1 and Call of Duty: WWII at high settings. But for casual gamers who are not much into graphics-heavy games, the Dell Inspiron 15 i5567 will get the job done.

Bummed out that this laptop from Dell doesn’t have enough firepower to handle the latest games? Don’t worry, we have two more Dell laptops further down the list, both of which are better equipped to run many recent games, from first-person shooters to action-RPGs.

Purchase

Lenovo Flex 5Lenovo Flex 5

Considering Lenovo is best known for producing business laptops (see: ThinkPad), the Chinese brand is probably not on everyone’s short list when shopping for the best gaming laptops under $700. Lenovo offers a wide range of laptops, with the Lenovo Flex 5 being one of the most affordable.

The Lenovo Flex 5 isn’t exactly the first laptop most people would consider for gaming purposes. But not because it runs on potato specs that can’t even run the most basic of games. No, the reason it doesn’t get much recognition is that it’s not really being advertised as a gaming laptop. It’s a 2-in-1 laptop with a 360-degree hinge, which allows you to use it in tablet mode and tent mode.

The latter is perfect for those who prefer to play games with a dedicated controller. Playing in tent mode is actually similar to playing on a Nintendo Switch in tabletop mode. But obviously, gaming on the Lenovo Flex 5 offers a more immersive experience, courtesy of the 14-inch Full HD touchscreen display. (But on the flipside, the Nintendo Switch is a lot more portable, being a hybrid home-handheld console.)

In the hardware department, the Lenovo Flex 5 is no complete slacker. It includes an 8th generation Intel Core i5-8250U clocked at 1.6 GHz and has an 8GB DDR4 memory. In terms of storage space, it comes with a 128GB hard disk, which immediately tells you that it’s not built to hold a lot of modern games. Not that you would be inclined stuff it with flashy modern games in the first place – the Lenovo Flex 5 isn’t exactly made for those types of games.

Featuring Harman Audio speakers, the Lenovo Flex 5 surprisingly produces a respectable sound quality while gaming. But obviously, having a dedicated pair of headphones is the better option. Everything considered the Lenovo Flex 5 is a decent pick-up for those looking for a budget gaming laptop capable of running simple games and a few modern games in low settings.

If you’re willing to cough up more money, the flexible laptop is also available in a more formidable setup, with a more powerful processor and a better graphics card in the form of the Nvidia GeForce GT 940MX. But if you’re serious about sticking to an under-$700 budget laptop for gaming, this listed product should be good enough.

Purchase

Asus ZX53VWAsus ZX53VW

Stuffing powerful hardware into a small chassis is no easy feat, one reason why laptops capable of consistently running modern games in high settings are hard to find. And the manufacturers that do manage to put together a powerful gaming laptop understandably ask for a premium price. But thankfully, you have laptops like the Asus ZX53VW, a wallet-friendly gaming laptop packed with powerful hardware under the hood.

Featuring a 15.6-inch Full HD screen, the Asus ZX53VW runs on a 6th generation Intel Core i5-6300HQ clocked at 2.3 GHz, which can go up to 3.2 GHz. It includes an 8GB DDR4 memory and a 512GB SSD for storage. But more importantly, it comes with the Nvidia GTX 960 graphics card with a full DirectX 12 support. All of these specs mean that the Asus ZX53VW is more than capable of running the latest games even at high settings, which is really impressive considering the economic price tag.

The Asus ZX53VW was designed with only one thing in mind: gamers. And as such, it’s packed with features meant to significantly enhance the experience while gaming. First of all, the keyboard is extremely sturdy, which is just what the doctor ordered for those who often rage and furiously press keys out of anger while playing. The WSAD keys are also optimized for gaming.

Boasting an F-22 stealth fighter-inspired chassis, the Asus ZX53VW includes the SonicMaster Technology and the GameFirst III Technology. The former helps the laptop produce a more immersive audio experience while gaming, enhancing clarity and loudness. The GameFirst III Technology optimizes the laptop to keep lags at bay, which is huge when playing online multiplayer games like Overwatch in which a few seconds of lag can mean the difference between victory and defeat.

And to top it all off, the Asus ZX53VW comes with an anti-glare matte display, resulting in vivid and accurate visuals no matter where you’re gaming. So feel free to play games while outside in the middle of the day with the sun in full swing. If you’re serious about playing the latest games while on-the-go, the Asus ZX53VW is definitely for you. Not many laptops in the same price range can offer the same gaming experience.

Purchase

HP Pavilion 15 (2018)HP Pavilion 15 (2018)

Like Lenovo, HP isn’t usually the first brand people think of in regard to gaming laptops – the American company is more known for producing top-class business laptops. But HP actually has a line of laptops specifically engineered for gaming, which comes in the form of the HP Omen series.

However, like other high-end gaming laptops, the Omen series requires you to part with a hefty amount of money. For a more affordable option, check out the HP Pavilion 15. Yes, we’re fully aware that the Pavilion series is meant for work and school. And no, we’re not losing our minds here by including the HP Pavilion 15 on our list of the best gaming laptops under $700. Because, like the Lenovo Flex 5, the HP Pavilion 15 does a good job at running games.

But let’s be more specific. The good news is that, yes, the HP Pavilion 15 is capable of running games for on-the-go entertainment. The bad news is that it won’t be able to reliably run the latest games in maximum settings. But for popular games that don’t come with rich graphics like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, the HP Pavilion 15 is more than adequate for the job.

The HP Pavilion 15 includes a 7th generation Intel Core i7-7500U, clocked at 2.7 GHz and capable of running all the way to 3.5 GHz. It has a 12GB DDR4 memory, a 1TB SATA hard drive, and an integrated Intel HD Graphics 620. The latter pretty much explains why the HP Pavilion 15 isn’t really up to the task of running the latest games in ultra-high settings.

Our biggest gripe with the HP Pavilion 15 is that it doesn’t come with a built-in optical drive, which means you won’t be able to easily play older games that you have physical copies of. Other than that, it’s a solid option for those looking to buy a gaming laptop without spending more than $700. The gaming performance may not be on par with the Asus ZX53VW. But if you want a decent laptop that you can use for both work/school and casual gaming, the HP Pavilion 15 is a good choice.

Purchase

Lenovo Ideapad 700Lenovo Ideapad 700

If the Lenovo Flex 5 is too weak for you, check out the Lenovo Ideapad 700, a laptop more equipped to handle gaming right out of the box. It runs on a 6th generation Intel Core i5-6300HQ clocked at 2.3 GHz and has a 12GB memory, with available options for 8GB and 16GB – the latter configuration is packaged with the Intel Core i7 model.

For the graphics card, the Lenovo Ideapad 700 comes with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 950M, giving it enough juice to run the latest games in decent settings. But for gaming at max or near-max settings, it doesn’t hold up very well, especially when it comes to graphics-heavy games. Then again, expecting a $700 gaming laptop to perform on the same level as a high-end gaming laptop or PC is downright unfair.

Featuring a 15.6-inch Full HD display and a 256GB SSD hard drive, the Lenovo Ideapad 700 is an ultra-portable gaming laptop, measuring just 0.89 inches thick and weighing 5.06 lb. You will never feel burdened carrying it around, which can’t be said for extremely high-end gaming laptops that look more like a suitcase than a laptop. And no need to worry about the durability of the laptop while mobile – being from Lenovo means that it comes with the same level of durability and sturdiness associated with all Lenovo laptops.

The Lenovo Ideapad 700 is not without flaws, however. First off, the lack of a built-in optical drive means you’re pretty much stuck with digital copies of games, which is far less desirable than owning physical copies. And second, the audio system isn’t exactly the best one out there. But we didn’t really expect it to provide a 7.1 surround sound experience. Since gamers usually play with headphones on, the latter probably won’t be much of an issue.

For a low-cost Lenovo laptop engineered for gaming, the Lenovo Ideapad 700 is an excellent choice, with brand-new units going for just a little over $700. It has the necessary hardware power to keep up with modern games and comes with superb durability. Not to mention, the keyboard is top-notch, another signature feature of Lenovo laptops.

Purchase

MSI GL62MMSI GL62M

MSI is one of the most popular brands in the gaming laptops department. The Taiwanese company is known for producing a wide range of laptops tailored for high-performance gaming. And the MSI GL62M from the GL Series is one of the most affordable units in the lineup.

All-black and discreet (except for that MSI logo at the back), the MSI GL62M is a powerful gaming laptop capable of running the latest games with little trouble. It boasts a 7th generation Intel Core i5-7300HQ clocked at 2.5 GHz, with the option to go up to 3.1 GHz, and an 8GB DDR4 memory. Most impressively, it features the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 with 2G of GDDR5 video memory inside the chassis, allowing it to run modern games such as Overwatch, Gears of War 4, For Honor, and DOOM at high settings in a reliable manner.

Featuring a 15.6-inch Full HD LCD display and a 256GB SSD M.2 SATA for storage, the MSI GL62M includes a SteelSeries Keyboard for precise key inputs, a Nahimic 2 Audio Enhancer for more sound immersion, a True Color technology for eye-candy visuals, and, most crucially, the Cooler Boost 4 Technology.

Backed by a 1-year warranty, the MSI GL62M has a dual-fan setup, ensuring that, along with the Cooler Boost 4 Technology, the laptop stays cool while you play games. No need to worry about the laptop overheating in the middle of a match – the cooling system easily takes care of that, allowing you to simply focus on winning.

The fact that you can get the MSI GL62M for $700 is absolutely outrageous. Considering all the hardware inside, the laptop should have been hovering near $1000. Not that we’re complaining. For even more power, you can go for the other versions of the laptop, which come with a 7th generation Intel Core i7. But that would cost you a lot more money.

The one downside of the MSI GL62M is that the battery drains really fast while gaming, which is hardly surprising considering all that power packed inside. This means you won’t be able to play for extended stretches while outside before scrambling to find a power outlet. But this won’t be an issue if you exclusively play games at home. In which case, we recommend just building a gaming PC instead. For $700, you can already build a decent gaming PC.

Purchase

Dell Inspiron 15 i7559Dell Inspiron 15 i7559

If you feel that the Dell Inspiron 15 i5567 model is holding you back from playing the latest games, go for its big brother, the Dell Inspiron 15 i7559, instead. The price difference between the two isn’t much of a deal-breaker, though brand-new units of the latter will cost you nearly $200 more. But that price range is fairly reasonable, considering the upgrades the Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 brings to the table.

Featuring a matte finish for a more discreet profile, the Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 is a 15.6-inch gaming laptop with an Ultra HD 4K (3840 x 2160) display. Coupled with the True Color technology, this translates to undeniably gorgeous visuals, treating you to a more immersive gaming experience. Same thing when watching action-packed, CGI-heavy movies such as Transformers: The Last Knight.

The Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 runs on a 6th generation Intel Core i7-6700HQ clocked at 2.6 GHz, which can run up to 3.50 GHz for even more high-performance gaming. The memory is an 8GB DDR3L SDRAM, though you can get up to a maximum of 16GB if you feel 8GB still won’t cut it. In terms of storage, the laptop includes a 1TB HDD, giving you the freedom to install all the storage-eating latest games.

In the graphics department, the Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 features the Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M with 4GB of GDDR5 video memory, which allows you to run the latest games at decent settings with respectable frame rates. On the other hand, older games will have little trouble going 1080p at 60 fps in maximum settings. If you don’t really care about frame rates and just want to play games, the Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 is more than capable of running the latest games at low settings.

The listed average battery life is 10 hours, which sounds impressive at first until you realize that number is most certainly for general use. For gaming, expect the laptop to run for about 3-5 hours, depending on the game settings. Obviously, the higher the game settings, the faster the battery will drain. No need to be alarmed by that battery lifespan – gaming laptops packed with powerful hardware typically drain the battery faster than laptops built for business use.

The Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 come with two notable downsides, however. First, the laptop is heavy, weighing 6.07 pounds, which hurts its portability. And second, an optical drive is nowhere in sight, which means if you own physical copies of games, you won’t be able to just pop them in and play straight away. But overall, the Dell Inspiron 15 i7559 is one of the best gaming laptops you can get without breaking the bank.

Purchase

Dell Inspiron 15 i5577Dell Inspiron 15 i5577

If you’re not impressed by both the i5567 and i7559 models of the Dell Inspiron 15, then maybe the i5577 model will appeal to you more. The Dell Inspiron 15 i5577 is sort of a mix between the i5567 and the i7559 models, making it the perfect choice if you’re looking to get the best of both worlds.

On one hand, the Dell Inspiron 15 i5577 includes a 15.6-inch Full HD backlit display with anti-glare, which is similar to the display of the i5567. But on the other hand, it comes with a more powerful graphics card, similar to the i7559. But not exactly similar – it has the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050, which allows for more impressive gaming experiences across the board.

With this laptop, you will have little trouble running all the latest games, from loot boxes-filled online multiplayer games to immersive single-player games. But of course, some games may require you to bring down the settings in order to get a more consistent performance. In regard to older games, this laptop aces it, allowing you to catch up on all the games you missed when you still owned a pitiful laptop that couldn’t even handle Minecraft in potato settings.

All-black with striking red details, the Dell Inspiron 15 i5577 includes a 7th generation Intel Core i5-7300HQ that can run up to 3.5 GHz, easily beating the minimum CPU requirement of most modern games. It has an 8GB DDR4 memory, with the option to go all the way to 32GB if you’re willing to spend more, and a 256GB SSD for storage. But once again, this laptop lacks an optical drive, forcing you to go all-in on digital games from Steam. But on the bright side, discounts galore!

Built to last for years, the Dell Inspiron 15 i5577 is one of the best gaming laptops that you can get for $700. Our biggest issue with this particular model is that the 256GB storage feels really inadequate to handle all your gaming needs. Getting the more expensive 1TB model would be a much better option in the long run, especially if you play a lot of games. But unless you’re willing to cough up more cash for that, stick to the wallet-friendly 256GB model.

Purchase

Acer Aspire E5-573GAcer Aspire E5-573G

Acer is a popular brand when it comes to laptops for both gaming and business use. In the former category, which is what this list is all about, the Acer Aspire E5-573G is one of the most affordable products offered by the Taiwanese company.

The Acer Aspire E5-573G is a 15.6-inch laptop with a maximum display resolution of 1920 x 1080 (Full HD), which is pretty much the standard for laptops nowadays. It runs on a 5th generation Intel Core i5-5200U clocked at 2.2 GHz that can go up to 2.7 GHz, thanks to the installed Turbo Boost Technology. It has an 8GB DDR3L memory and comes with a 1TB SATA hard drive for storage. The latter means you will not have the same limitations imposed by laptops with 256GB hard drives.

Graphics-wise, the Acer Aspire E5-573G comes with the Nvidia GeForce 940M with 2GB of DDR3 video memory. The dedicated graphics card means that you will be able to play many of the latest games available on the market. But you may need to run at low to medium settings in order to play with minimal performances issues in some games, especially in graphics-heavy games. Gaming laptops in the same price range usually have this issue.

Well-built and minimalist in terms of design, the Acer Aspire E5-573G includes two USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, one HDMI port with HDCP support, and a media card reader. It has multiple connectivity options and comes with an HD webcam. No built-in optical drive, though, which can be a deal-breaker for people who prefer to buy physical copies of games.

Another notable issue is the poor battery life. Normally, gaming laptops packed with powerful hardware don’t come with generous battery lifespans. But the Acer Aspire E5-573G takes things even lower with a listed average battery life of only 5 hours. Now, imagine how long the laptop would last when playing games continuously. Expect the battery life to sit around 2-4 hours when gaming, depending on the game settings you’re rolling with.

Battery issues aside, the Acer Aspire E5-573G is a solid option if you’re in the market for the best gaming laptops under $700. It has a generous storage space out of the box, a powerful graphics card, and an excellent Full HD display. Bonus points also for the sturdy build of the laptop.

Purchase

Acer Nitro 5Acer Nitro 5

Okay, the Acer Nitro 5 doesn’t exactly fit the criteria of this list because, at the time of writing, it isn’t available for purchase for less than $700 from all available sellers. But we still decided to include it simply because it’s too good to pass up. And technically, you CAN buy it FOR $700.

Engineered specifically to deliver high-performance gaming, the Acer Nitro 5 is available in different configurations. The most affordable of which is the AMD-based model. But we went with the Intel-based model, which is only slightly more expensive.

This listed model comes with a 7th generation Intel Core i5-7300HQ that can run up to 3.5 GHz. It has an 8GB DDR4 memory and a 256GB SSD for storage – the latter will immediately tell you that additional storage capacity may be needed if you download a lot of games. It comes with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB of GDDR5 video memory and boasts a dual-fan cooling system.

The Acer Nitro 5 offers impressive gaming performances, allowing you to play games with minimal instances of performance issues related to the hardware. But as with other gaming laptops in the same price point, some of the more recent games will require you to run them in low or medium settings to get the optimum experience. This should be a total non-issue for you if you’re not really into shiny graphics in 1080p resolution at 60 fps. But if you are, well, we suggest that you look into the higher-end gaming laptops offered by Acer (see: Predator).

Unlike some of the laptops on this list, the Acer Nitro 5 totally looks like a gaming laptop. No question about that. The all-black look with all the red highlights, including the red backlit keyboard, pretty much removes any doubt that this laptop was built with gamers in mind.

With a listed average battery life of 8.5 hours, the Acer Nitro 5 is one of the more long-lasting gaming laptops available on the market, putting to shame the paltry battery life of the Acer Aspire E5-573G. However, the battery life depends on how you use this machine. Cranking up the game settings to near-max will obviously drain the battery faster.

Powerful, portable, and reliable, the Acer Nitro 5 is one of the top gaming laptops that you can buy for $700. Considering online prices are constantly changing, maybe by the time you read this list, the price is now sitting below $700. In which case, don’t give it a second thought – pick up this gaming laptop while the price is incredibly affordable.

Purchase

 

And this where you stop and think about which of these 10 best gaming laptops is the perfect upgrade that you’ve been looking for. You can’t really go wrong with any of these products. All of them come with gaming-friendly features for both casual and hardcore gamers. Well, except for hardcore gamers that are all about high-end, beastly specs in gaming laptops.

If you have more money spare, we really recommend checking out the beefier versions of these listed products (the ones with more powerful processors and graphics cards). Because when it comes to gaming laptops (and gaming equipment in general), you get what you pay for.