At High Performance Laptops we’ve been implementing a new reviewing system which compares every laptop we test with every other laptop we test. We compare 2D Performance, 3D Performance, Ergonomics and Features, Stability, Portability and Value and come up with an overall rating to determine the best laptop. This article will be updated every month. Just note that this list is based upon the review price… we’ll be adding other articles with fluctuating sale prices in the near future.
What is the best laptop — The answer in a nutshell
The best laptop weighs nothing, has infinite battery life, plays every game on a huge, fast screen with stunning colours, has silent cooling, looks amazing and costs nothing. Naturally, this can’t exist (with current technology) as addressing all of these issues is like making a too-small carpet fit in a room: pulling it in one direction causes issues elsewhere i.e. you can’t physically fit top-end components in an ultraportable body, they require a great deal of power and cooling and cost a lot. Meanwhile, how do you make a laptop look great at a LAN and also in a boardroom? The best laptop will always be a compromise. So what is it? Here’s what our results say…
1. Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 GA503 | $3899 | The best laptop
The 15.6-inch Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 GA503 has an unholy alliance of an AMD CPU with an Nvidia GPU – all in a near-ultraportable body. Amazingly, it just plain works. This is a phenomenal, powerful laptop with all the bells and whistles – including six amazing speakers! Did we mention the 9-hour battery life? It’s not cheap but worth every penny. While we have some issues with the Moonlight White livery, this is fixed with the Eclipse Grey variant. A stunning gaming machine and a worthy holder of the title, Best Laptop.
2. MSI GE76 Raider | $5699
It might cost silly money, but if you need the best 3D performance in a laptop that can capably wield such power stably, the latest MSI GE76 Raider is it. The grey chassis might seem a little plain but this will help it fit into a stuffy office. Activate the funky, night-club-like RGB bar at the front and you’ve got one of the most head-turning laptops anywhere. This beast has the latest and greatest everything from the CPU to the GPU through the connectivity options, ergonomics and features. A fantastic gaming machine.
3. Razer Blade 14 | $4999
It’s not cheap but the Razer Blade 14 represents another great stab at being hailed as the Best Laptop. It’s essentially a 14-inch ultraportable that has an Nvidia 3080 GPU, 165Hz UHD screen, AMD CPU, 10-hour battery life and 1.8KG weight. It’s also arguably the best-looking, MacBook shaming laptop on the market. Naturally, you will pay through the nose for it, but it’s worth it, frankly.
4. MSI GE66 Raider | $3199
Not surprisingly, the 15.6-inch MSI GE66 Raider also makes the list. We’re still waiting for the updated 11th Gen model to appear but this getting-long-in-the-tooth favourite still has it all: RTX 3070 graphics, 240Hz screen, great ergonomics and a chassis that can both hide in an office and become the centrepiece in a nightclub. At $3199 it’s good value and because it’s getting old you can find them for much much less.
5. Acer Predator Helios 300 11th Gen | $2698
The Acer Predator Helios 300 11th Gen addresses many of the issues that came with the 10th Gen version to wit… it was ridiculously noisy. The fan ramped up and down all the time but the efficiency of Intel’s 11th Gen processor and an improved cooling system means it now runs stably without the annoyance. The CPU isn’t the fastest, but there’s an RTX 3070 GPU and a fast 144Hz screen. All for just $2698. If you want the best, great-value gaming laptop, this is it.
Which is the best laptop for you?
Our selection happens to consist of all gaming laptops but if you need a laptop with a screen that suits design work or if you need an ultraportable for work, we’ll soon be publishing lists that cater more to those needs. Whatever you need, we recommend looking at www.staticice.com.au to find the latest prices (in Australia) – going global is on our roadmap but our initial tests show that the same selection holds true regardless of where you are in the world.