Who said that gaming has to be an expensive affair? In fact, as long as you know how to identify the specs that matter, you’ll find that some of the low-end gaming laptops on the market perform better than some overrated blue-chip brand models. Talking about low-end gaming machines, the following write-up is specifically dedicated to rigs priced under $800. Believe it or not, this list comprises machines going for as low as $500 especially if you take advantage of instant discounts, coupons, and rewards.
|Laptop Model||Weight||Storage||Screen Size|
|Dell Inspiron 15 7567||6.61 lbs||256 GB||15.6 inches|
|Acer Nitro AN515||5.95 lbs||256 GB||15.6 inches|
|MSI GV62||4.80 lbs||1TB||15.6 inches|
|MSI GL62M||5.29 lbs||256 GB||15.6 inches|
|Lenovo Legion Y520||5.28 lbs||256 GB||15.6 inches|
|ASUS VivoBook S||3.7 lbs||256 GB||15.6 inches|
1. Dell Inspiron 15 7567 with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050
This powerful machine made it to our list of reviews all thanks to its specs and gaming capabilities. First off, it comes with a powerful GTX 1050 graphics card. The card is from NVIDIA and ranks highly as one of the most powerful pieces ever launched by the brand.
Of course, there are newer and more powerful ones like the 1060, 1070 and 1080 versions but the 1050 is still great at this price range.
One thing we can assure you is that this rig can handle almost all FHD games. That said, it may struggle with some ultra-high-definition and 4K content.
Moving on, this flagship product from Dell is equipped with an Intel Core i5-7300HQ quad-core processor. Ordinarily, this processor offers a speed of 2.5 GHz but that can always be upgraded into 3.5 GHz through turbo-charge.
What about the RAM? Well, this Dell Inspiron provides you with an 8GB RAM. This is a DDR4 RAM with the potential to attain up to 32GB capacity. So, in other words, you can always optimize this machine to attain an even higher and better level of performance.
Yet another awesome fact about this machine from Dell is that it provides you with a 256GB SSD memory alongside a 1TB HDD storage upgrade. That’s more than enough for any ordinary user. In fact, you can even take advantage of this huge memory to store some movies and music files as well as books.
As a gamer, getting an immersive experience when enjoying your favorite games starts with a great sound experience. Luckily, this Dell 15.6 incher comes with fully dedicated stereo speakers alongside a MaxxAudio Pro functionality.
That alone goes a long way to ensure that your games’ sound effects not only appear real but also remain entertaining.
To top it all up, this rig comes with a 6 cell battery. This is a Lithium-Ion battery with the potential to last for more than 10 hours in ordinary use.
- Great battery life
- Relatively powerful processor
- Above-average display
- Great sound quality
- Considering its features, we think its well-priced
- May struggle with UHD quality graphics
- Not as sleek as we’d have liked
2. Acer Nitro AN515-56U0 with GTX 1050 Graphics Card
The Acer Nitro 5, in our view, is the most underrated gaming laptop on the market so far. This rare jewel from Acer boasts a 15.6-inch FHD IPS display. The display quality is so good that you’d expect the machine to be going for prices above $1,000.
What’s more? The Nitro comes with one of the latest 7-th generation Intel Core processors an i5-7300HQ unit. As you can see, the last digits of the processor are HQ indicating that it is one of the few picks from Intel that are fully dedicated for hardcore use.
Moving on, this gaming rig fully relies on an NVIDIA 1050 GeForce GTX graphics card. The card is quite powerful since it runs on NVIDIA’s latest Pascal architecture.
Ordinarily, this machine runs cool when used to run basic games or handle basic day-to-day computing tasks. However, it may heat up when pushed to the limits. Luckily, it features an advanced cooling technology which is powered by two fans that are innovatively designed to operate at heightened speeds.
That’s in addition to the provision of the Acer Coolboost technology which allows you to manually adjust the cooling processor.
We’d like to, however, note that the fans can get a little noisy when running at optimal speeds. However, the noise isn’t something that can distract any serious gamer from a highly engaging gaming session.
- Great cooling technology
- Well-built RGD keyboard
- Powerful and fast graphics
- Great, immersive audio quality
- Superb display quality
- Can get a bit noisy when pushed to the limits
3. MSI GV62 High-Performance Gaming Laptop with GTX 1050Ti
MSI is fast building a name for itself in the gaming industry by producing cheap gaming laptops. Take the GV62 model, for instance, it’s priced at slightly below $800 yet packs the kind of features you’d expect to find in a much more expensive rig.
We’re talking about the Intel Optane memory technology. This unique kind of memory is designed in such a manner that it adapts to your unique gaming style and adjusts the loading speeds of your favorite apps.
What’s more? Instead of the ordinary IPS display technology, this one comes with a dedicated NTSC display technology. The technology helps reveal even more colors, thereby bringing your games to life.
Another major plus is that this unit comes with a well-designed Cooler Boost feature. What’s so unique about this feature? You might be wondering. Well, it provides you with dedicated thermal solutions among them 6 heatpipes.
These ensure you get an optimal performance no matter the gaming scenario. Most importantly, the machine remains cool even when used to run some highly demanding programs.
In short, if you’re looking for a resilient gaming rig, this has got to be it. And there’s more.
The GV62 comes with a built-in Nahimic 3 audio quality enhancing feature. This feature comes in handy in delivering the much-needed gaming 3D surround effects. And besides that, you can always leverage on it to have a better experience during conference calls, when watching movies or listening to music.
And the icing on the cake is that the GV62 is as good looking at it performs. Its case is machine brushed and tactically designed to provide an innovative cover design complete with a gaming feel.
- Great storage space (1TB)
- Fantastic processor speeds
- Unbeatable sound quality
- Great aesthetics
- The case is of high quality and looks classy
- Uses the Intel Optane memory to study your gaming patterns and improve speeds
- Weaker with Triple-A games
4. MSI GL62M Ultra-Thin Light Performance Gaming Rig with GTX 1050
The GL62M may not have all the bells and whistles that the GV62 comes with but it certainly provides good value for money. For instance, it still offers you the ever-fantastic GTX 1050 GPU graphics card.
If you’re not familiar with the NVIDIA line of graphics cards, we’d like to inform you that the GTX 1050 is an upgrade of the 960M GPU. In fact, the 1050 provides as much as 30% more processor power than the 960M.
So, if you’re tired of your old machine and want to settle for a reasonably priced but powerful unit, the GL62M might prove to be your knight in shining armor.
But what about portability? As you know, gaming machines tend to be quite huge and heavy. In fact, some of them weigh as much as 10 pounds which means they’re extremely difficult to carry around.
The GL62M is, however, quite different. In fact, the first thing you’re likely to notice about it is that it’s quite thin and sleek. Its compact body is slightly over one-inch thin.
On top of that, it weighs a paltry 5.29 pounds. That makes it a darling to anyone who would like to take it to the next gaming competition.
Of course, we still have to remember that this machine comes with an i5 processor which is a bit slower than the latest generation of i7s. On top of that, unlike the GV62 which comes with Nahimic 3 sound functionality, this one comes with a limited Nahimic 2.
So, there’s no denying that the GL62M is a few rungs below its sibling the GV62. At the same time, it’s important to appreciate that the GL62M costs over $100 cheaper than the GV62.
With an 8GB RAM and 256GB hard drive memory, this unit stands out as the perfect bet for newbies. If you’d, however, want to upgrade further within this product line, you can go for a similar model with an 8-th generation i7 processor and a GTX1070 graphics card. That one goes for over $1,500.
So, as you can see, the GL62M comes from a family tree of high-end machines. Getting it at under $700 makes it, no doubt, a great bargain.
- Great 15.6-inch display
- Powered by an NVIDIA GTX 1050 graphics card
- Features a reliable 8GB DDR4 RAM with 2400MHz
- Great cooling technology
- They should improve on battery life
- The fans get pretty loud when gaming
5. Lenovo Legion Y520 with NVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti Graphics Card
If security is a top concern for you, the Legion Y520’s built-in security features would come in handy in protecting you against present and future threats. This built-in security comes at no additional cost.
But hey! We’re here talking about gaming and as you know the three features that matter the most are (1)processor speed (2)resolution and (3)sound quality. So, how does the Y520 fare in that regard?
To begin with, it comes with a Dolby Home Theater functionality alongside JBL speakers. This provides you with realistic sounds so you can fully lose yourself in the gaming experience.
Moving on, this system comes with an ever-reliable FHD display. The display is further equipped with anti-glare features so the images are easy on your eye.
To crown it all up, the Y700 comes with an NVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti graphics card. This dedicated graphics card can handle most games although it’d totally get bogged down by triple A games.
We’d, therefore, recommend this machine to any gamer looking for a cheap alternative gaming laptop who’d also like to invest in a great laptop for everyday computing.
- Powerful Intel Core i56300 HQ (Quad-Core)
- Powerful IPS anti-glare display
- Works flawlessly thanks to an NVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti graphics card
- Nicely built keyboard
- Fantastic, built-in security features
- Poor battery life
- CPU throttles during high load
6. ASUS VivoBook S
Unless you’re a hardcore gamer with a great thirst for the latest games on the market, the Asus Vivobook can be your friendly, low-priced gaming rig. This laptop has two awesome advantages.
The first one is its visual optimization technology. Thanks to its 15.6-inch anti-glare FHD display, this machine delivers an immersive experience at all times.
Above all, it’s equipped with the Splendid software from ASUS which makes images look crisp and brilliant. So, if you’re keen on detail, this superb display will most likely tickle your fancies.
The second awesome feature that drew us to this laptop is its powerful processor. We’re talking about an 8-th generation i5 processor with the potential for a speed upgrade which enables it to scale up from a 1.6GHz processor speed to 3.4GHz.
This processor pairs up well with an Intel UHD 620 graphics card. Though not as monstrous as the GTX 1050, the UHD 620 offers a great deal of energy efficiency and reliability.
So, if you’re thinking of satisfying your sweet tooth for light performance gaming, the VivoBook guarantees you of smooth visuals with zero hiccups.
Last but not least, this machine is extremely light in weight. In fact, it weighs just over 3.7 lbs. Yup, you read that right. It actually weighs less than a MacBook Pro. Its compact design, thanks to a 0.8-inch profile, makes it highly portable and user-friendly.
- Great and outstanding visuals
- Compact design and light in weight
- Great processor speed
- A versatile machine suitable for day-to-day use
- Cheaply priced
- Anti-glare display
- Poor battery
- Struggles with some FHD games
Verdict – Which One Is the Best?
There’s no one-size-fits-all gaming laptop in this world. So, ultimately, we’d encourage you to follow your heart and go for a machine that impresses you with its features. However, if you’re yet to make up your mind, we’d particularly want to single out the MSI GV62 as the best laptop under $800 in 2018. Its line-up of features makes the indisputable favorite for serious gamers within this budget range. Other than that, if you’re looking for a gaming rig with a great battery life, we’d recommend going for the Dell Inspiron 15 7567 gaming laptop.
The idea behind compiling this list of top budget-friendly gaming laptops is to help you find helpful insights so you can make an informed decision. We hope that you’ll be able to do exactly that. Most importantly, we wish you nothing but an immersive and enthralling gaming career