This article aims to point you in the right direction for finding a gaming laptop under 500 dollars. Gamers aren’t always the richest bunch, or at least early on in their careers. Despite growing evidence that gaming is good for you, both in terms of intellectual development and lifetime achievements, everyone has to start off somewhere. Luckily, for thrifty gamers, times have changed enormously since even a few years ago, and high performing laptops have never been cheaper.
Naturally the first thing to consider when you are looking for a budget gaming hero laptop is the onboard graphics card. Quite a few laptops in this price range do have on-board cards, but realistically the majority won’t. Radeon tends to completely dominate mobile cards so if you are a big Nvidia fan I’m afraid you may not be in luck. These cards tend to offer semi-decent framerates for most games and sites such as Notebookcheck.net offer excellent resources you can use to check the framerate for almost any mobile card out their to see if it has the juice that you need. Of course don’t exactly expect to be playing Crysis 3 on high settings (or even medium for that matter) but luckily the majority of games aren’t such powerhouses and if you are in it for the likes of Diablo 3 or an equiavelent you will surely be in luck. Especially since Blizzard has just announced the end of the auction house at least! Boo ya. If you don’t have time to do the research you can checkout available guides to the best cheap gaming laptops where most modern gaming laptops with onboard cards have been aggregated.
The next thing to consider is stock standard RAM and CPU. From experience you’ll usually find the best deals with AMD chips as they can offer the power so much cheaper than Intel. There are even a few Quad Core AMD chips available that are serious winners. Unless you have any serious gripes with AMD, I would recommend this. Alternatively you may be able to find a dual core i5 or i3 as well if you are more of a fan of Intel. Either or should do the job! RAM is of course pretty straightforward – you are looking at 4GB max within this price range but it is also important to check if there are slots open for more if you are looking to stretch performance for major games.
All in all, best of luck in your hunt! If your budget somehow shrinks also be sure to checkout our quick write up on what to look for in the best laptops under $300.