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The best thin and light gaming laptops 2023

Most gaming laptops are large, ostentatiously styled with massive vents and a fighter jet-like aesthetic — and they're heavy. They're not meant to be carried around everywhere like regular laptops, but rather from place to place for gaming sessions. Not everyone wants a massive laptop for their gaming needs, though, and that's where a new breed of thin and light gaming laptops comes into play.

The Lenovo Legion Slim 5 tops this list. It's not only a great gaming laptop, but it's one of the best laptops, period. It's not the only excellent thin and light laptop worth considering, though. These are our favorites.

Lenovo Legion Slim 5
Lenovo Legion Slim 5 14.5-inch
The best slim and light gaming laptop
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Razer Blade 14 (2023)
Razer Blade 14 (2023)
A powerful gaming laptop for its size
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ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
A thin and light gaming laptop with a gamer's aesthetic
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Asus ROG Flow X13
Asus ROG Flow X13
The best 13-inch gaming laptop
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Alienware x14 R2
Alienware x14 R2
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Lenovo Legion Slim 5 laptop.
Lenovo

Lenovo Legion Slim 5 14.5-inch

The best slim and light gaming laptop

Pros
  • Lightweight design
  • Impressive performance
  • Great looking OLED display
  • Fast refresh rate for responsive gaming
Cons
  • Lacks Thunderbolt 4

Why you should buy this: It's an ultra portable, fast gaming machine with loads of great features.

Who's it for: Gamers of any kind will love this laptop.

Why we chose the Lenovo Legion 5:

There's very little to dislike about the Lenovo Legion 5. It's pretty lightweight at just 3.6 pounds, and yet it packs an AMD Ryzen 7 CPU and Nvidia RTX 4060 GPU with high-TDP into its compact chassis. It's not the absolute lightest of the thin and light laptops on this list, but it's close to it, and despite that offers some of the best performance and great battery life.

The display is beautiful, with a 1800P OLED panel that is detailed, crisp, and incredibly rich. It has great contrast and color representation, helping esports and AAA games pop off the screen, and with its high-refresh rate, you'll enjoy fast and responsive gaming no matter what you play.

There's no Thunderbolt 4, which is a shame, but you do get USB-C 3.2 Gen 2x2 and USB-A 3.2 ports, headphone jack, HDMI and DisplayPort outputs, and a Wi-Fi 6e connection.

Lenovo Legion Slim 5
Lenovo Legion Slim 5 14.5-inch
The best slim and light gaming laptop
razer blade 14 2023 review 31
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Razer Blade 14 (2023)

A powerful gaming laptop for its size

Pros
  • Fantastic gaming performance
  • Relatively cool and quiet
  • Solid IPS screen
  • Great battery life and portability
Cons
  • Bulky charger
  • More expensive than the previous model

Why you should buy this: It's a powerful laptop with a reasonable weight.

Who's it for: Anyone who wants maximum gaming power in a somewhat-portable package.

Why we chose the Razer Blade 14:

The Razer Blade 14 epitomizes a high-end gaming laptop, with a few nods to portability along the way. It's relatively thin and light at 4.1 pounds. It's also elegantly designed with its all-black aluminum chassis and just a single green Razer logo on the lid. You get per-key RGB backlighting, which gamers want, and that's the most apparent visible nod to this being a gaming laptop.

Inside, you'll find a blazing-fast eight-core, 16-thread AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS CPU that makes it a powerhouse for CPU-intensive games, and you can configure up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 GPU. Even the base RTX 3060 will let you play most games at 1440p and high settings. Razer designed the thermals to handle long-term gaming sessions while maintaining performance.

The Razer Blade 14 utilizes a 14-inch, 16:9, 1440p IPS display with up to a 240Hz refresh rate, providing both high resolution and a high refresh rate. There's arguably no better thin and light gaming machine available today.

Razer Blade 14 (2023)
Razer Blade 14 (2023)
A powerful gaming laptop for its size
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 gaming laptop.
Asus

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14

A thin and light gaming laptop with a gamer's aesthetic

Pros
  • Lightweight design
  • Impressive gaming performance
  • Great looking design
  • Fast, detailed display
Cons
  • Lacks high-end GPU options

Why you should buy this: It's one of the best thin and light gaming laptops.

Who's it for: Anyone who wants a thin and light gaming laptop with a bit more gaming aesthetic.

Why we chose the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14:

The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is a truly thin and light gaming laptop, weighing just 3.6 pounds and packed full of the latest-generations of hardware, from graphics, to processors, and memory. It's just 0.73-inches thick, too, making it supremely portable, and with its long battery at over 10 hours of mixed use, this is a fantastic mobile gaming machine.

In this configuration it uses the AMD Ryzen 9 7940S processor, with eight cores and a boost clock over 5GHz. That makes it blazing fast at any tasks you throw at it. Paired with the Nvidia RTX 4060 it's more than up to the task of esports, indie, and AAA gaming – whatever your favorite game, it's ready to play it.

The Moonlight paint scheme looks pretty standout too, if you're bored of the standard black designs.

ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
A thin and light gaming laptop with a gamer's aesthetic
asus rog flow x13 review 1
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Asus ROG Flow X13

The best 13-inch gaming laptop

Pros
  • Amazing portability
  • Good performance for its size
  • Comfortable keyboard and touchpad
  • XG Mobile is a good option
  • 120Hz refresh rate
Cons
  • Mediocre battery life
  • Screen could be brighter
  • Expensive for performance

Why you should buy this: It's the best 13-inch thin and light gaming laptop.

Who's it for: Anyone who wants the most portable gaming laptop but doesn't want to give up the power.

Why we chose the Asus ROG Flow X13:

There aren't many 13-inch gaming laptops – and for good reason. It's hard to pack gaming-level performance into such a tiny package. Razer did it with its Stealth 13, but that's been superseded by the Asus ROG Flow X13. Not only is the ROG Flow X13 thin at 0.62 inches and light at 2.87 pounds, it's also a 360-degree convertible with active pen support. It's useful for more than just playing games.

It's also surprisingly powerful, despite its age. With an AMD Ryzen 9 5900HS or 5980HS CPU and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU. That's if you buy the configuration that's not bundled with the XG Mobile expansion dock. If you buy a bundle, you'll get an RTX 3050 inside the chassis and up to an RTX 3080 in the dock. That makes the ROG Flow X13 not just fast enough for modern titles at 1080p and medium graphics, but also upgradable to handle 4K gaming at higher graphical settings.

We also love that the display is in the taller 16:10 aspect ratio, which is unusual for gaming laptops. The ROG Flow X13 can be purchased with either a 13.4-inch IPS Full HD+ (1920 x 1200) panel at 120Hz or a UHD+ (3840 x 2400) screen at 60Hz. And all of that can fit most comfortably in your backpack.

Asus ROG Flow X13
Asus ROG Flow X13
The best 13-inch gaming laptop
alienware x14 r2 review 03
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Alienware x14 R2

Pros
  • Thinnest 14-inch gaming laptop
  • Fantastic battery life
  • Solid performance
  • USB-C charging
  • Comfortable keyboard
Cons
  • Tiny trackpad
  • Only one USB-A port
  • Middling screen

Why you should buy this: It's the thinnest 14-inch gaming laptop you can buy.

Who's it for: Anyone who wants a powerful, portable gaming machine.

Why we chose the Alienware X14 R2:

Powerful gaming laptops are rarely portable, but the Alienware X14 R2 is a gaming laptop that ticks those boxes in surprising fashion. Not only does it bring impressive performance to the table, with its Core i7 Intel 13th-generation CPU and Nvidia RTX 4060 graphics chip, but it has fast DDR5 memory, a terabyte of NVME SSD storage, and a beautiful, fast display. This is a gaming laptop with all the bells and whistles, and yet it's only 0.57-inches thick, and 4.22 pounds, making it easy to carry around all day.

This is a laptop that rivals Razer's Blade in build quality, performance, and looks, and does it far cheaper, too. It even has good battery life at up to 10 hours of mixes use. Sure, when you're gaming it'll only last a few hours on battery, and you won't get the best performance unless you plug it in, but still, that's impressive efficiency for a machine this powerful.

It also has a great keyboard (not so great a touchpad, but who cares, you're using a mouse anyway) and the screen looks great. What's not to love?

Alienware x14 R2
Alienware x14 R2

Editors' Recommendations

Mark Coppock
Mark has been a geek since MS-DOS gave way to Windows and the PalmPilot was a thing. He’s translated his love for…
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