Best gaming laptop under $700: 5 budget gaming laptops for 2023
We hand pick the best 120Hz & 60Hz gaming laptops for $700 and under
After the best gaming laptop under 700 USD? Look no further. We will be looking at five gaming laptops from a range of manufacturers that are the best currently available in this price range; which one is right for you will depend on your specific needs and priorities. We will score each laptop based on its GPU and CPU performance in-game, and other features like its RAM, storage, display quality, and weight and size to help you make your decision. If budget isn’t the most important consideration for you, then consider reading our best gaming laptop page instead.
After Christmas gaming laptop deals are live! Get huge savings on gaming laptops on the Lenovo Store, Best Buy or HP in 2023, as well as Amazon of course. If you’re interested in the non-gaming variety, have a gander at our After Christmas laptop deals page for a variety of options.:
- Lenovo IdeaPad Gaming 3 (2022) 15.6″ FHD 120Hz – AMD Ryzen 5 6600H, RTX 3050, 8GB DDR5 RAM, 256GB SSD – was
- Acer Nitro 5, Intel Core i7-11800H, RTX 3050 Ti –
- HP Pavilion, Intel Core i5, GTX 1660 Ti –
- ASUS TUF Gaming A15 (15″) – FHD 144Hz, AMD Ryzen 7 6800H, RTX 3050 Ti, 8GB DDR5 RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD – was
$1,079.99now $879.99 (Save $200)
- ASUS ROG Zephyrus (14″) – WQXGA 120Hz, AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS, Radeon RX 6700S, 16GB DDR5 RAM, 1TB SSD – was
$1,649.99now $1,199.99 ($450)
- ASUS ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition (15.6″) – QHD 165Hz, AMD Ryzen 9 5980HX, Radeon RX 6800M, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD – was
$1,699.99now $1,349.99 (Save $350)
Is the best gaming laptop under 700 USD worth buying?
Although there are cheaper gaming laptops on the market, if you’re looking for the best gaming laptop under 700 USD you still need to have realistic expectations of the restrictions your budget puts on the available products. If you’re only interested in less graphically demanding or older games, then $700 may cover your needs just fine, but if you’re interested in playing newer, more demanding titles at anything other than the minimum graphical settings, then you’ll need to seriously reconsider your budget.
We advise that you take a gander at our Things to consider when buying a gaming laptop under $700 section below, before diving into the meat of the reviews, just to get a quick overview of what you need to be aware of when shopping for a gaming laptop in this price range.
Our Top Picks
Things to consider when buying a gaming laptop under $700
Realistic expectations of gaming performance
The portability advantages of laptops, coupled with the engineering challenges of putting powerful components into a laptop’s chassis and effectively cooling them, mean you typically pay at least 50% more on a laptop compared to a desktop computer for the same Frames Per Second (FPS) in-game.
The unfortunate reality is that, when you reach as low a price as $700 for a gaming laptop, you cannot expect to get any sort of decent performance on the most demanding of games. Gaming laptops of this price range are generally limited to playing older games on higher settings, or newish games on the lower settings. You will generally have no problem playing undemanding strategy games like Crusader Kings III of course, even though they are new releases. If you need more than this from your machine then we would advise either spending more (take a look at our best gaming laptops for under $1,000 page) or alternatively consider a desktop PC you can build yourself for $700 or a prebuilt computer, for under $800.
Maximum refresh rate
Around the $700 mark, it becomes a bit harder to find gaming laptops with a 120Hz refresh rate, and 144Hz gaming laptops are rare indeed (though not unheard of). Although 120Hz+ displays can be found on laptops at this price point, they often make sacrifices in other areas such as the GPU or CPU. The most common refresh rate you will find under $700 is 60Hz, and this is not suitable for competitive, fast-paced shooters – the maximum 60FPS will put you at a considerable disadvantage.
Although at higher refresh rates (between 240Hz and 320Hz for instance) the subjective difference becomes less noticeable, the difference between 60Hz and 120Hz is night and day. 100Hz laptops, if you can find them (they tend to be rarer) are definitely an acceptable compromise, even for playing online shooters, but we cannot recommend you go with a 60Hz laptop if this is the genre of game you play. For single-player RPGs or strategy games however – 60Hz should suffice for laptop gaming on a budget.
You won’t find a gaming laptop with a resolution above 1920 x 1080 for several hundred dollars more than this price point. 1080p remains the resolution most competitive gamers who play fast-paced online shooters use regardless though, so for many this won’t be much of a negative.
Hard drive and RAM
Besides the rare exception, 256Gb is the largest SSD you can hope for in a gaming laptop if your budget is limited to $700. Generally, we’d argue that 256GB for an SSD is too small a size to be practical: many games can need over 50GB to be installed on your computer, and this doesn’t leave a lot of room, particularly once you consider the space taken by the operating system. Consequently, we’d advise as a general rule upgrading your SSD to a larger one or adding an additional SSD or HDD.
The same is true for RAM – you won’t find higher than 8GB here and we’d strongly advise upgrading this to 16GB or higher.
Although you can get a decent enough color gamut for playing games on in this price range, 100% sRGB replication is unlikely, as is much expectation for color accuracy. This means that none of the laptops below would really be suitable for color-accurate design work in addition to gaming, even if they have the CPU power to run the applications well enough.
The The best gaming laptops under $700 in 2023
- 17.3” display for a budget price
- 120Hz display
- 512GB SSD
- relatively quiet fans
- relatively lightweight
- narrow color gamut
At the time of writing the MSI GF75 17.3 inch version is out of the price range of this guide, however, we have seen it reduced to around the $700 level and if you can catch it at this price it is by far the best laptop listed on this page for fast-paced online gaming. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card is not as good as the GTX 1650 Ti listed on some of the 60Hz laptops on this page, however, combined with the Intel Core i5-10300H CPU it still does the job on most games, provided you don’t mind playing on medium-low settings.
There are however three big selling points to this laptop. Firstly, the 120Hz screen means for competitive shooters it has the capability to actually display the higher FPS needed. Secondly, the 17” screen is a rarity on this budget, and if you desire the extra real estate on your screen this is a great budget option. Thirdly, the 512GB SSD is again something you are unlikely to see come as standard on most sub-$700 gaming laptop. As we typically recommend upgrading any laptop that comes with a 256GB SSD, buying this admittedly more expensive laptop becomes a bit more cost-effective when you consider you don’t have to pick up another SSD separately.
The laptop has a narrow color gamut, but that is to be expected at this price range. If you want to upgrade the 8GB of RAM (something we generally recommend), be advised that this will void the warranty. The MSI GF75 does however have relatively quiet fans for a gaming laptop, and is also lightweight considering its larger display. All-in-all, if you can get this laptop for a price around the $700 mark, we cannot recommend it enough.
- 120Hz display
- decent brightness
- weaker AMD Ryzen 5 R5-3550H CPU
- narrow color gamut
- battery life could be better
As mentioned, 120Hz displays are hard to come by in gaming laptops at this price range, and if you can’t afford the MSI GF75 17.3”, then this ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop is a great alternative. The high refresh rate display also comes with a decent max brightness, although the color gamut of the screen could be wider. This makes it unsuitable for any graphic design work but for gaming purposes however, the color replication is perfectly serviceable.
Power-wise the Nvidia GTX 1650 GPU is the best you can expect at this budget. In terms of the CPU the AMD Ryzen 5 R5-3550H processor is of an older generation compared to others listed here; although the performance reduction is not significant, it is noticeable on CPU-intensive tasks – nevertheless, for games the graphics card will do most of the heavy lifting.
Portability and fan noise are around what you’d expect for this budget, though the battery life lags beyond some of the other competitors. The 256GB SSD and 8GB RAM aren’t ideal but again, to be expected on this budget, and both features are upgradable. All told, this 120Hz laptop is a good deal for gaming on a budget.
- Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti graphics card
- strong single core performance from Intel i5-10300H
- good contrast ratio
- only 60Hz display
- narrow color gamut
- battery life could be better
This 60Hz iteration of the ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop obviously suffers from being capped to an effective 60 FPS, making it unsuitable for fast-paced online competitive gaming, first-person-shooters in particular. Nevertheless the beneficial trade-off is that for this low price you get a more powerful GPU and CPU than the 120Hz examples on this page. The Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti graphics card and the Intel Core i5-10300H processor mean you will be better able to play games on higher settings at a consistent 60 FPS than on the 120Hz versions, so if your interests are limited mostly to RPG/strategy titles and the like, you will be able to get console-level performance out of this machine.
In terms of the display, the color gamut could certainly be wider, however, it does have a good contrast ratio – ultimately it will definitely suffice for playing games. The size, weight, and ports and sockets on this machine are all typical of what you’d expect at this price, although the battery life is not the best out there.
The 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD are standard for this budget, though we would recommend upgrading them Ultimately this is a solid 60Hz gaming laptop.
- strong multi-core performance from AMD Ryzen 5 4600H
- good battery life
- decent contrast ratio
- only 60Hz display
- narrow color gamut
- low peak brightness
The HP Pavillion Gaming Laptop with the AMD Ryzen 5 4600H CPU is a decent choice for those who want a bit of multi-core power for low-level workstation tasks alongside their gaming. The 60Hz display does cap performance to 60FPS, so for online competitive shooters it probably isn’t the best choice, but for those who want a budget machine with the power to play less demanding games at a solid 60FPS then this HP Pavillion can do the job with its Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 GPU.
The laptop is about the size and weight you’d expect and comes with the usual limited array of ports you get at this price point, but the battery life is definitely above average and you can expect to get around 7 hours of strenuous, non-gaming usage out of it. The color gamut of the screen is fairly narrow, however, the contrast is fairly decent.
As per usual, we’d advise upgrading the 256GB SSD and 8GB of RAM you get which comes with the laptop as standard. Besides this though, the HP Pavillion is a cheap but solid option for a budget gaming laptop.
- Intel i5-10300H
- Relatively cheap
- narrow color gamut
- brightness could be better
- only 256GB SSD
There are better options in terms of straight performance than this Acer Nitro AN515 on this list, but in its favor, it can be found cheaper than all the other alternatives here.
The Intel i5-10300H CPU and Nvidia GTX 1650 GPU are solid performers for the price and will manage decent FPS in less demanding games, or in moderately demanding games when the graphics settings are turned down low. The 60Hz screen isn’t anything to write home about, but does the job for games where fast reaction times aren’t paramount – color replication and brightness is about middling. The 256GB SSD and 8GB of RAM are not ideal but these can always be upgraded further.
Port coverage on the laptop is also about average, and it’s by no means the lightest on this list either, but for this price ultimately what you’re paying for is the two main core components, and if you can find this laptop sufficiently below $700, we’d certainly consider it as an option.
The best gaming laptops under $700 in 2023 frequently asked questions
What is the best gaming laptop under 700 dollars?
At the time of writing the MSI GF75 Thin with GTX 1650 is the best gaming laptop available for around $700 though the ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop with AMD Ryzen comes a close second. If you don’t mind restricting yourself to a 60Hz display then you could also consider the ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop which comes with a 1650 Ti for more GPU power for the price.
How good is a $700 gaming laptop?
$700 is below what we’d generally recommend spending on a gaming laptop if you’re looking to play the latest games on anything over the lowest graphical presets – typically we suggest saving up for a $1,000 gaming laptop where possible. Alternatively, if you don’t really need the portability of a laptop, consider going with a gaming PC for around $500 or $800 – which will give you much more power for your money. If you don’t mind playing on the lower settings or are only interested in playing less demanding games, then $700 may do you just fine.
What is a good budget laptop for gaming?
Different people have different definitions of what classes as a budget gaming laptop, though at WePC we’d describe anything below $1,000 as ‘budget’. We have buyers guides on the best gaming laptops for under $500, $600, $700, and $800, so be sure to check out whichever matches your personal budget.
What Is The Cheapest Gaming Laptop?
The cheapest gaming laptops available can be found around the $500 mark, though the actual games these machines can play is fairly limited. If your definition of gaming laptop requires that it can play the latest, most demanding games on low-medium settings at a respectable FPS then $1,000 is the cheapest you can realistically pay. If you’re not so focused on graphically impressive games or don’t mind playing them at the lower settings then gaming laptops for $600, $700, and $800 also exist.
Is 8GB enough RAM to play games?
8GB of RAM will be sufficient to play many older games to an enjoyable standard, and will meet the minimum requirements of many more recent games as well. In order to ensure you can play more modern titles to a good standard though, and to browse the web with a decent number of tabs open, we would always recommend upgrading to 16GB RAM where possible.
Some Of Our Other Gaming Laptop Articles
In-depth laptop reviews
- XPG Xenia 15 RTX 2070 Max-Q Review
- Razer Blade Pro 17 1080p 360Hz (2021) Review
- Razer Blade 14 1440p 165Hz AMD Review
- XMG Neo 15 E21 / Eluktronics MECH-15 G3 (2021)
‘Best of’ brand guides
- Acer gaming laptop
- Alienware gaming laptop
- ASUS gaming laptop
- Dell gaming laptop
- HP gaming laptop
- Lenovo gaming laptop
- MSI gaming laptop
- Razer gaming laptop
- RTX 3080 Ti laptop
- RTX 3080 laptop
- RTX 3070 Ti laptop
- RTX 3070 laptop
- RTX 3060 laptop
- RTX 3050 & 3050 Ti laptop
‘Best of’ price guides
This has been our guide to the best gaming laptop under 700 USD in 2022. We hope that this has helped you decide which gaming laptop is right for you. If you are somewhat more flexible on your budget, take a gander at our other laptop guides for different budgetary constraints which are listed in the recommended articles alongside this page.
To recap, our best selection, if you’re after a 120Hz gaming laptop is the MSI GF75 Thin with GTX 1650 GPU. If you want something with a bit more power and don’t mind being capped at 60Hz, then consider the 60Hz ASUS TUF Gaming Laptop with GTX 1650 Ti graphics card.
If you are thinking twice about choosing a gaming laptop over a desktop PC, have a look at our guides on high-end desktop builds for under $700 and also the best pre-built PC for under $800.
If there are any specific laptops you want to see reviewed that we have not yet covered, do let us know in a comment below.
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