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2020 Holiday Gift Guide: Gaming Laptops

The year 2020 has been tough for everyone as they had to adjust to a new normal of working from home. This has prompted people to go out and buy laptops, furniture and other accessories that will help them improve their work from home experience.

This holiday season if you are looking to gift someone a laptop that can double as a gaming machine, then we have got you covered. While gaming laptops usually are not value for money when compared to their PC counterparts, but they have come a long way in the last couple of years. We have curated a list of gaming laptops that can be a perfect gift for someone you love.

Asus TUF A15

Asus TUF A15 is a budget-friendly gaming laptop that packs a punch. The laptop features the new AMD Ryzen 4000 mobile processors that are paired with Nvidia GTX 1660Ti GPU. The laptop has a sleek design as well as a full RGB keyboard.

Unfortunately, Asus has cut some corners to bring the price of the laptop down. For starters, the cooling is not adequate and the display has poor colour calibration. The colour calibration will not matter much while playing games but if you have a media-oriented workflow then the Asus TUF A15 won’t cut it. You can check out our detailed review here to learn more about the laptop.

Overall, the laptop, while lacking in some aspects, is a great gift for someone who occasionally games and wants a decent gaming laptop.

Dell G5 15 SE (2020)

The Dell G5 15 SE is another very capable gaming laptop. It is powered by AMD’s new Ryzen 4000 mobile processors and Radeon RX 5600M GPU. The laptop has an excellent display and a good build quality. However, like the Asus TUF, Dell has also cut some corners to bring the cost down. The build quality is subpar at best and the heat management is just 'okay'.

However, for work from home professionals on a budget, the Dell G5 would be a great entry level gaming laptop, provided you can add an external cooling fan.

Acer Nitro 5 (2020)

Acer Nitro 5 is another laptop that is powered by an AMD Ryzen 4600H processor paired with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 GPU. The laptop borrows its design from the 2018 Nitro 5 and comes with a red keyboard with no RGB support.

However, Acer dropped the ball when it comes to gaming performance as the GTX 1650 cannot compete against laptops with a GTX 1660Ti. To add insult to injury, the laptop has just 256GB of NVMe storage which is not enough to install recent AAA titles. That being said, the Nitro 5 has an extra M.2 slot as well as a 2.5-inch drive bay.

Overall, the Nitro 5 is a decent laptop and is recommended for someone who likes to game occasionally and does not want to drop thousands of dollars on a high-end gaming laptop.

Acer Predator Helios 300 (2020)

Predator is Acer’s premium range of gaming laptops and it has its own perks. The 2019 Predator Helios 300 was praised by almost everyone in the industry. Acer has taken the same design and refreshed the specs making the Predator Helios 300 one the best laptops you can pick right now.

The Predator Helios 300 has an excellent chassis, and it sports a 240Hz 1080p display. There is plenty of storage to install all of your games, as the laptop comes with two M.2 slots and a 2.5-inch drive bay. The laptop is powered by Intel’s 10th gen 10750H CPU and a Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q GPU. Acer does have different CPU, GPU and storage combinations available so you can choose the one that suits your needs.

Unfortunately, the laptop is not perfect. The laptop gets toasty under load especially if you are using the Turbo mode that overclocks the CPU and GPU for better performance.

Lenovo Legion 7i/ Lenovo Legion 5i

Lenovo has achieved great success with its Legion branded gaming hardware. The company’s Legion Y740 laptop was touted as one of the best gaming laptops of 2019. Lenovo has continued its streak with the Legion 5i and 7i laptops. Both the laptops borrow design elements from last year’s Legion laptops and have refreshed specs.

Like the Legion Y540 and Y740, Lenovo’s line up for 2020 includes the mid-range 5i and the high-end 7i gaming laptop. Both the laptops are powered by Intel’s 10th generation processors which are paired with GeForce RTX GPUs. Both the laptops come with beautiful displays and a premium chassis.

The laptops are priced differently but personally, I feel like 5i is a sweet spot for someone who plans to game at night and work in the morning. However, the Legion 7i has its perks including the RGB keyboard and the support for Thunderbolt 3. You can check out the review of Lenovo Legion 5i and Legion 7i to learn more about both the laptops.

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is one of the more balanced offerings from Asus. At 14-inches, it is one of the smallest laptops on the list but it packs quite the punch. The laptop is powered by AMD’s latest Ryzen 4000 series CPUs which are paired with a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650.

The laptop has a clean design with a great display but it is capped at 60Hz for the GTX 1650 model. There are other models available with 1660Ti and RTX 2060 Max-Q but the availability of these vary from region to region.

Like others, Zephyrus G14 is not perfect. The laptop lacks a webcam which can be a deal-breaker if you plan to use the laptop for meetings. This can, however, be solved with an external webcam. Another issue that might bug some users are the loud fans. While the laptop is quiet during normal operations, it tends to get a bit noisy during extended gaming sessions.

Overall, the laptop packs a lot of hardware in a relatively compact form factor making it a great choice for those who have to travel with their laptop. The inclusion of a dedicated GPU means this laptop can handle all sorts of games without breaking a sweat.

Razer Blade 15 (2020)/Razer Blade 15 Advanced Edition (2020)

Razer has always been at the forefront when it comes to gaming and Blade 15 is no exception. The device again borrows design elements from last year’s Blade 15 but comes with new specs. The 2020 Blade 15 is powered by i7-10750H CPU and up to GeForce RTX 2080 Super GPU. The laptop has a premium chassis which does a great job of keeping heat away from your palms. Razer has also introduced the Blade 15 Advanced Edition which is an incremental upgrade to the Razer Blade 15. Razer also gives an option between 144Hz FHD or OLED 4K display and 300Hz FHD or OLED 4K touch display.

While both the laptops are great to look at and can handle absolutely any game you throw at them, they are also expensive. You will need some serious cash to grab one of these and if you are on a tight budget then Razer might not be the one for you.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 15

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 is definitely one of the unique laptops on the list. The laptop features a second screen just above the keyboard and has a mechanism that tilts the display for a better viewing angle.

The laptop is powered by 10th gen Intel processors that are paired with Nvidia GeForce GPUs. Both the displays on the laptop are beautiful to look at and the keyboard is decent but the small size means you will need some time to get used to it. The trackpad is on the right side of the keyboard and it can be converted into a number pad with a press of a button.

One downside of the laptop is the 60Hz screen that does not do any justice to the powerful RTX GPU. Moreover, the unique design means you will be paying a premium for it making this one of the most expensive laptops on the list. Another major issue that professionals might face is the lack of webcam.

Overall, Zephyrus Duo 15 is a great laptop to own as long as you are okay with its high price.

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