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Best Gaming Laptop Under $1,000 in 2023

If you need a laptop for gaming but are working with a moderate budget, we’ve rated & reviewed some of the best gaming laptops under $1,000 to help you find the right option for your needs.

Best Gaming Laptop Under $1,000 2023
Gaming laptops are always going to be outperformed by custom-built and pre-built gaming desktops on a dollar-for-dollar basis. However, desktops aren’t viable options for gamers who need a more portable option.

And, fortunately, there are decent gaming laptops out there in the ~$500-$1,000 price range.

Also Read: Laptop vs Desktop: Which Should You Get?

In this guide, we’re going to take a look at some of the best gaming laptops under $1,000 that are currently available. We’ve rated the laptops below based on their gaming performance and the price tags they come in at to give you a good idea of what kind of value they offer.

So, if you’ve got a moderate budget and you’re looking for a solid gaming laptop, one of the options listed below should work for you.

Quick Look: Best Sub-$1,000 Gaming Laptops

In order to simplify finding a solid option for your needs, we’ve provided a quick-look table below that showcases our picks for the best gaming laptops under $1,000 in a few different categories. We’ve selected our picks for the best 17-inch option, the best 15-inch option, an over-budget option, a value option, and a cheap option.

NAME SPECS RATING
TOP 17″
Acer Nitro AN17-41-R7G3

Acer Nitro 17

  • 17.3″ Screen
  • R7 7840HS
  • RTX 4060
  • 16GB RAM
8.6/10

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Read Review »

TOP 15″
Lenovo LOQ 15APH8

Lenovo LOQ 15

  • 15.6″ Screen
  • R7 7840HS
  • RTX 4060
  • 16GB RAM
8.6/10

Check Price

Read Review »

OVER-BUDGET
MSI Katana B13VGK-484US

MSI Katana 15

  • 15.6″ Screen
  • i7-13620H
  • RTX 4070
  • 16GB RAM
8.5/10

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Read Review »

VALUE
GIGABYTE G5 KF-E3US333SH

GIGABYTE G5 KF

  • 15.6″ Screen
  • i5-12500H
  • RTX 4060
  • 8GB RAM
8.4/10

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Read Review »

BUDGET
MSI Thin GF63 12VE-066US

MSI Thin GF63

  • 15.6″ Screen
  • i7-12650H
  • RTX 4050
  • 16GB RAM
8.4/10

Check Price

Read Review »

*If you click on the “Read Review »” links you will jump to our overview on that specific laptop. You can also keep scrolling down see our thoughts on our Honorable Mention picks.

1. Acer Nitro 17.3″

The best 17″ gaming laptop for $1,000

Acer Nitro AN17-41-R7G3
  • Ryzen 7 7840HS CPU
  • NVIDIA RTX 4060
  • 16GB DDR5 RAM
  • 1440P / 165Hz

Our Rating: 8.6/10

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This Acer Nitro 17 model is our pick for the best gaming laptop for $1,000. And, while it technically comes in at ~$50 over $1,000, it has some significant feature upgrades over the other option on this list that make it worth considering.

This Acer laptop comes with an AMD Ryzen 7 7840HS processor, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4060 GPU, 16GB of DDR5 RAM, and a 1TB SSD.

That hardware array is as powerful as any sub-$1,000 laptop currently offers. Only the Lenovo LOQ listed below can match it.

However, where this Nitro 17 laptop stands out is in the display it comes with. It’s a 17.3-inch screen that has a 2560×1440 resolution anda 165Hz refresh rate. It’s rare to find a laptop for ~$1,000 that offers both a better hardware configuration that is competitors and comes with a large 17.3-inch display. It’s even rarer still to find one that also comes with a higher resolution display.

That’s why we’ve placed this laptop at the top of this list despite the fact that it’s slightly over $1,000. It’s such a good deal that it would be crazy to exclude it just because it comes in a little over budget.

The only real downside of this laptop is that it won’t deliver as high of an average framerate as the Lenovo laptop below, simply because of the extra demand that the 1440P resolution display will create. Of course, in any games where that becomes a problem, you could lower your screen resolution and/or lower in-game settings.

Ultimately, the Nitro 17’s comination of the 7840HS CPU, the RTX 4060 GPU, and the 17.3-inch 1440P 165Hz will deliver a far superior in-game experience when compared to the other options in this price range.

2. Lenovo LOQ 15.6″

The best 15-inch option under $1,000

Lenovo LOQ 15APH8
  • Ryzen 7 7840HS CPU
  • NVIDIA RTX 4060
  • 16GB DDR5 RAM
  • 1080P / 144Hz

Our Rating: 8.6/10

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If you’re absolutely deadset on spending $1,000 and not a penny more, then this Lenovo gaming laptop would probably be the best option for you. It comes with basically the same core hardware configuration as the Acer Nitor 17: a Ryzen 7 7840HS CPU, an NVIDIA RTX 4060 GPU, and 16GB of DDR5 RAM.

However, its 15.6-inch 1080P 144Hz display is weaker in every regard. It won’t give you as much screen real estate, the lower resolution will mean worse visuals, and the refresh rate is slightly slower.

There are two upsides of the Lenovo LOQ’s screen , though. The smaller screen means this laptop will take up less space and weigh less than the Acer Nitro 17 (about a ~1lb. difference).

And, this laptop’s lower resolution screen will provide a higher average framerate in games. For non-demanding titles, this difference will be insignificant, but for demanding titles (like Starfield), you may prefer the higher framerate.

In the grand scheme of things, though, we’d still opt for the better display that the Acer Nitro 17 comes with. With an RTX 4060 GPU, you can always tweak settings to raise your framerate to an acceptable level, but you can never upgrade your laptop’s display size or screen resolution.

3. MSI Katana 15.6″

The best choice if you can spend more

MSI Katana B13VGK-484US
  • Intel i7-13620H CPU
  • NVIDIA RTX 4070
  • 16GB DDR5 RAM
  • 1080P / 144Hz

Our Rating: 8.5/10

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Is your budget really $1,000? Would you stretch it another $200 if it meant upgrading to a higher-end GPU and CPU? Because that’s what this ~$1,200 MSI laptop offers.

The MSI Katana comes with an Intel Core i7-13620H processor, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070 GPU, 16GB of DDR5 memory, and a 1TB SSD.

The RTX 4070 will give you a noticeable increase in gaming performance and the i7-13620H outperforms the AMD Ryzen 7 7840HS in the majority of benchmarks.

Unfortunately, though, the RTX 4070 GPU is a bit underutilized in this laptop thanks to a lower resolution 1080P screen. It’s also only a 15.6-inch display.

But, with the extra GPU power you will be able to average a much higher framerate. And, if you’re playing competitive esports titles, a higher resolution display won’t help you, but more frames per second will.

So, in our opinion, if you want a better visual gaming experience or you’re not willing to pony up the extra $200, skip this laptop and opt for the Acer Nitro 17. If you are willing to spend more and you want to ensure you get as high of a framerate as possible, then this MSI laptop is worth looking into.

4. GIGABYTE G5 KF 15.6″

The best value gaming laptop

GIGABYTE G5 KF-E3US333SH
  • Intel i5-12500H CPU
  • NVIDIA RTX 4060
  • 8GB DDR4 RAM
  • 1080P / 144Hz

Our Rating: 8.4/10

Check Price on Amazon

Just because you’ve set a budget doesn’t mean you have to spend all of it. For those of you who wouldn’t mind saving some money, either this GIGABYTE G5 KF laptop of the MSI Thin GF63 laptop below might be a better option.

The GIGABYTE G5 KF comes in at a little under $900, but still offers a solid hardware configuration. It comes with an Intel Core i5-12500H processor, an NVIDIA RTX 4060 GPU, 8GB of DDR4 memory, and a 15.6-inch 1080P display.

With the RTX 4060 GPU and the 1080P 144Hz display, you can expect this laptop to provide similar performance to the Lenovo LOQ 15 listed above.

However, there are some downsides to this laptop. It features a slightly older and weaker i5-12500H processor and only 8GB of DDR4 memory. The i5-12500H is still a very capable CPU and, in terms of real-world performance, you probably won’t notice the difference between it and the Ryzen 7 or Intel Core i7 CPUs that the above-mentioned laptops come with.

On the other hand, the 8GB of RAM will hurt this laptop’s performance when you run more demanding games on it.

The good news, though, is that it isn’t difficult to add additional memory to a laptop. So, if you want to save some money now and add more memory later, this laptop would be a good option. In the end, if you want the most GPU performance possible while spending as little as necessary, this GIGABYTE laptop and its RTX 4060 will suit your needs.

5. MSI Thin GF63 15.6″

An even cheaper gaming laptop option

MSI Thin GF63 12VE-066US
  • Intel i7-12650H CPU
  • NVIDIA RTX 4050
  • 16GB DDR4 RAM
  • 1080P / 144Hz

Our Rating: 8.4/10

Check Price on Amazon

To save even more money, this MSI Thin GF63 can be hand for just a little over $800. This laptop comes with an Intel Core i7-12650H processor, an NVIDIA RTX 4050 GPU, 16GB of DDR4 memory, and a 15.6-inch 1080P 144Hz display.

The obvious sacrifice on this laptop is its downgraded GPU. The RTX 4050 won’t deliver as much in-game performance as the RTX 4060 that is found in all of the laptops above.

But, that doesn’t mean that this laptop isn’t suited for gaming. The RTX 4050 is still a very worthy laptop GPU that should be able to max out any game on the 1080P display.

And, if you’re mainly playing non-demanding games like League of Legends, Apex Legends, Minecraft, or Rocket League, the RTX 4050 will offer far more performance than is necessary.

So, really, depending on the types of games you play, this MSI laptop might be all you really need in terms of hardware. We’d prefer the better overall gaming experience that the Acer Nitro or Lenovo LOQ 15 offer, but the MSI Thin GF63 is not a bad alternative—especially if you want to save money.

6. MSI Cyborg 15.6″

Honorable mention #1

MSI Cyborg
  • Intel i7-12650H CPU
  • NVIDIA RTX 4060
  • 8GB DDR4 RAM
  • 1080P / 144Hz

Our Rating: 8.4/10

Check Price on Amazon

While MSI’s Cyborg laptop doesn’t offer the price-to-performance as the other options in this list, it is at least checking out, because if it were to drop in price, it may be worth choosing.

In terms of specs, this laptop is most similar to our Top Value pick, the GIGABYTE G5 KF. It comes with an Intel Core i7-12650H CPU, an NVIDIA RTX 4060 GPU, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and a 15.6-inch 1080P 144Hz display.

Just like with the GIGABYTE laptop, the 8GB of RAM is not ideal. For non-demanding titles, 8GB will be enough, but it will hurt your performance in more demanding games. Again, though, you can always add more memory later.

The real downside of this laptop is that it comes in at ~$100 more than the GIGABYTE G5 KF. And, even though it comes with a higher-end CPU, that doesn’t justify the significant jump in price.

Ultimately, the MSI Cyborg would need to come down closer to $900 in order to consider choosing it over the GIGABYTE G5 KF. So, for now, it remains an honorable mention.

Need A Solid Gaming Laptop Under $1,000?

While we always recommend that gamers build their own gaming computers so that they can get the most performance out of their budgets, we also realize that certain users will need the mobility that a laptop offers.

If you are interested in building your own PC, check out our guide on the Best Cheap Gaming PC Builds Under $1,000 to see the difference in hardware you can get. And, if not, and you absolutely need a gaming laptop instead, one of the affordable gaming laptops listed above should work for you

If you want to look at more affordable options, you can also check out our guide on the Best Budget Gaming Laptops (Under $500).

Hey, I’m Brent. I’ve been building PCs and writing about building PCs for a long time. Through TechGuided.com, I've helped thousands of people learn how to build their own computers. I’m an avid gamer and tech enthusiast, too. On YouTube, I build PCs, review laptops, components, and peripherals, and hold giveaways.