Stuck at home with nothing better to do? A good game or two helps keep the brain fog out. All work and no play will make anyone a dull boy, after all. That’s why we’ve rounded up a trio of great gaming laptop deals for those shopping on a budget, including a must-have offer on the Acer Nitro 5 that sees it on sale for less than $500. With their heavy-duty specs, these bad boys are built for work and play — perfect for getting down to business in your home office during the day, and heading into the battlefield at night.
— $479, was $649
The Acer Nitro 5 gaming laptop is the most affordable option on our list. For the gamer on a budget, this is a great option. Its 15-inch screen is optimal for most games, not being too small or obtrusively large. It’s also capable of pumping out great graphic quality with its AMD Radeon RX 560X graphics card — which is marginally better when compared to Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1050, despite the latter’s reputation as the go-to for some budget gaming setups. The AMD Ryzen 5 2500 U processor, coupled with 8GB of RAM, can also run some pretty hardware-intensive games like Borderlands 2 with ease. If it ever gets too hot or needs extra firepower, Acer’s CoolBoost will help keep your laptop in tiptop shape.
You won’t need an additional hard drive either because the laptop already comes with its own 1TB HDD storage. This way you won’t have to worry about downloading huge 50GB games for a long while. And unlike some gaming laptops with cheap sound, the Acer Nitro 5’s TrueHarmony and Dolby Audio Premium complete the audio-visual experience with powerful beats and rich music. Unfortunately, the Acer Nitro 5 is a bit on the chunky side. Its compromised portability is its biggest flaw (and it only lasts up to five hours when it’s not charging), but if you won’t be moving around too often, then this powerhouse is a great budget option — especially because It’s currently on sale on Walmart for only $479, scoring you $170 in savings.
— $600, was $749
The HP Pavilion is next up on our list, with its green backlight serving as a strong contrast to the Acer Nitro 5’s red. With a 15.6-inch screen and 1,920 x 1,080 resolution, you’re getting an excellent visual display. The laptop comes with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card, which is a standard among any gaming laptop worth its salt. You can run most games, like Grand Theft Auto 5, on medium graphics with no problem. The ninth-generation Intel Core i5 processor also makes sure your games and other applications run smoothly for the most part. Just like the Acer Nitro 5, the HP Pavilion also comes with 8GB of RAM, so most everyday tasks and moderate games will run absolutely fine. And the laptop can also last a much longer time than the Acer Nitro 5 with its eight-hour battery life. Plus, it’s also relatively more lightweight, making it more portable.
There are some weak points with the HP Pavilion, though. The first concerns its B&O dual speakers, which aren’t the best, sounding grainy and crackling at times, even at low volume. If you want a full gaming experience, a separate speaker or pair of headphones is definitely a must-have. The storage space is also another field that’s lacking with just a 256GB SSD. But, if you’re already prepared with additional storage, then you’re good to go. It’s best for gamers and users who already have speakers or headphones and storage upgrades ready. Check it out on Walmart where you can get it for $150 off at only $599.
— $699, was $899
With almost nothing but good reviews, you’ll be glad to know that the MSI GF75 gaming laptop offers great bang for your buck. It’s the biggest of the bunch, boasting a 17.3-inch screen with 1080p resolution, making this a good — and far more portable — replacement for any desktop setup. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card performs better than the GTX 1050 in nearly every field and can handle most if not all games in Full HD with up to 60 frames per second. Every game will feel incredibly smooth and visual lag will be minimal, giving you the full frame-by-frame experience. The ninth-generation Intel Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM also ensure your gameplay and workflow aren’t interrupted by any operational delay from slow processing speeds.
But don’t get your hopes up too high about the sound. It isn’t the best, but considering it’s a laptop and not a desktop with a dedicated sound system, it’s pretty good, especially for budget 3D surround sound quality. The MSI GF75 is also impeccably slim despite its size. This makes it a great option for gaming on-the-go if you aren’t too bothered by the large screen. The 256GB SSD isn’t very good either considering how fast internal storage can fill up. If you’re thinking about getting the MSI GF75 gaming laptop, then you’re going to need extra storage. Other than that, it’s a pretty good gaming laptop that can handle work and play without a hitch. It’s currently on sale on Adorama for only $699, netting you $200 in savings.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.
- Acer, Asus, HP gaming laptops on sale at rock-bottom prices
- These Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Razer gaming laptops are on sale for Memorial Day
- The best cheap gaming laptop deals for June 2020
- Cheap Gaming Laptops: Acer, Dell, HP, and Razer in the sale bin at Best Buy
- Cheap Gaming Laptops: Huge savings on Acer, MSI, and Razer