When buying gaming laptops, most people primarily look for high performance. But along with a powerful CPU and GPU, you also want to choose a suitable screen size.
Generally speaking, a 17″ screen is more suited to gaming, and if gaming is the biggest priority for you, just go buy a 17″. A 17-inch screen is also ideal for graphics design, game design and development, and many graphics-related tasks.
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But a typical 17-inch gaming laptop is heavier and offers poor mobility. So it may not be the best choice if you’re a professional or a college student. For a good balance of both, we recommend 15-inch gaming notebooks.
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- 1 A 17″ screen isn’t too big
- 2 17″ laptops are bulky and heavy
- 3 15″ gaming laptops are perfect
- 4 Use an external Monitor
- 5 Screen resolution and refresh rate matters
- 6 Conclusion
A 17″ screen isn’t too big
No matter what you hear, a 17-inch display isn’t too big when it comes to gaming. Serious gamers usually prefer bigger monitors when building their rigs. Most professional gamers prefer a 24″ monitor for desktop builds, as it’s the standard for all e-sports competitions.
For laptops, a 17-inch screen is still the popular choice for gamers – as a bigger screen provides better visibility and clarity. This is a very important factor if you’re playing FPS games, in which reacting to small changes is vital.
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Excellent for creators & developers
Nowadays, high-performance gaming rigs are used for many professional applications. And for content creators and designers, a bigger screen can help boost productivity. A larger, 17-inch display can help in multitasking as well as working with professional software like Photoshop or the Premiere Pro. A high-performance gaming laptop with a 17-inch display can easily replace your old workstation.
Having said that, a 15.6-inch screen isn’t that smaller than a 17.3 inch one. Plus, they’re lighter and sleeker than their counterparts. We think that it’s really a personal choice, whether you want portability more over computing experience.
Great for movies
If you also love watching movies, a large 17″ monitor is going to be a good choice. Movies look great on bigger screens, especially if your laptop has a 4k OLED display.
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Better keyboard & a lot of ports
Because of the bigger screen, a 17-inch gaming laptop has plenty of room for all the ports you’ll ever need, as well as a spacious, near-desktop-class keyboard with full keypads. On 15.6 inch laptops, manufacturers either have to ditch the Numpad or reduce the size and spacing of the keys.
Better Cooling systems
Along with a comfortable keyboard and more ports, 17-inch gaming laptops usually feature a bigger and better cooling system. This can help keep the laptop cooler when playing games. More efficient cooling also helps boost the performance of CPU and GPU, so 17-inch rigs usually perform better.
17″ laptops are bulky and heavy
Despite all their pros, 17-inch gaming laptops have one major drawback: they’re darn heavy! All gaming laptops are heavy, at least heavier than ultrabooks and business laptops. And the 17″ rigs are known to be even heavier.
A typical 17″ gaming notebook weighs at least 5 pounds. They also take up more space, so you’ll need a much larger backpack to carry it. If you have to regularly carry your laptop, you may want to reconsider before purchasing a 17″ gaming rig.
That’s because when you’re frequently on the road or going back and forth to your office, a lighter, 15.6″ or 14″ gaming laptop may be the better option.
15″ gaming laptops are perfect
Many people think that a 15″ screen is too small for gaming, but that’s not simply true. Of course, a bigger display provides a more immersive experience, but a 15.6″ screen with the same resolution looks almost identical.
Plus, a smaller screen means that you don’t have to move your head very often, as the whole screen will be in your field of vision. Some folks love 15-inch gaming laptops because of this. Many even felt that a smaller screen enhanced their reaction speed, about which we can’t say much. I think it’s more of a personal choice, rather than a proven fact.
In the last few years, we have seen a lot of portable gaming laptops, and guess what? All of them are either 15″ or 14″. And by portable, we mean a high-performance gaming rig that weighs less than 4 pounds and easily fits in conventional laptop backpacks. We have seen at least one 15-inch portable gaming rig from all major companies including Asus, Razer, MSI, Dell, & Lenovo.
Take the Asus G14 for example – it’s an amazingly sleek, 14-inch laptop that weighs just 3.8 pounds. But under the hood, it packs a powerful Nvidia RTX3060 GPU and an AMD R9 CPU.
Or take the Eluktronics max 15. It’s a high-performance laptop designed for both professionals and gamers. the 15″ notebook features a
Perfect for college
For college students, 15″ gaming laptops are ideal because they are easier to fit on a school desktop and fit more readily into a standard backpack. Moreover, a lighter and smaller laptop makes room for other college materials like books, notes, etc.
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Use an external Monitor
Even a 17″ display isn’t ideal for competitive gaming. This is why many gamers buy a portable 15″ or 14″ high-performance notebook and connect it to a bigger, external monitor. This is especially helpful for setting up a workstation at home, or in the dorm.
If you want to use an external monitor, you probably want a laptop with the optimus feature. Otherwise, you may see huge FPS drops.
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Screen resolution and refresh rate matters
When it comes to gaming, the resolution and refresh rate of the display is actually more important than its size. A higher-resolution screen provides more details, and a high refresh rate enables you to sense the slightest of changes. These specs are especially important for fast-paced FPS titles, where you have to react in a split of a second.
The key takeaway here is that no laptop is too big or too small. It’s all preference. If you are aware of the size and footprint of a 17″ laptop and you’re okay with it then get it! And honestly, I’d go buy a 17-inch gaming laptop because I feel like gaming on a smaller screen could prove difficult.
But if I were a college student or a professional, I wouldn’t want to carry a 5-pound machine every day. I’d rather get a portable 15-inch or 14-inch gaming laptop.