Gaming PC vs Laptop

What is your preference - budget permitting.


  • Total voters
    30

! 0 t A

Well-Known Member
Skilled
Hey, I have been a PC Gamer primarily for the past 10+ years and have been slowly upgrading it through the years. ( Big thanks to TE Members for it).

I am at a stage now where I am contemplating my next upgrade to Ryzen / GTX 2060 or equivalent setup.

I was checking options on if I should invest about 50k and upgrade my PC or invest around 80k and migrate to an equivalent Laptop ?

The laptop does have an advantage - I can move around - both in the house and also stays with me on travel ( whenever that happens ) - plus I can hook it up to a Keyboard / Mouse / Monitor to mimic a Desktop.

Are there any major disadvantages to a Gaming Laptop - apart from the fact that a desktop equivalent spec will give me a 5% - 10% more juice / FPS / Performance. Which I am OK with to sacrifice for mobility.
 

john1911

Active Member
Disciple
Are there any major disadvantages to a Gaming Laptop -
Overheating and thermal throttling.
Almost zero upgradability. You'll be stuck with the same configuration for the laptop's life.

desktop equivalent spec will give me a 5% - 10% more juice / FPS / Performance
I think it will be much more than 5-10%, correct me if I'm wrong.

Currently, it is much easier and cheaper to find a laptop with good dGPU rather than building a system / buying a GPU.
 
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AINDRASIS_GUPTA

Well-Known Member
Disciple
GPU prices are a nightmare right now. All thanks to miners and price gouging by retailers. Basic GTX 1660 Super which used to cost 21K INR, now costs 46K INR.
That's more than 200% increase in MSRP.

I suggest getting a gaming console (the Xbox Series S for 35K INR looks good) or get a gaming laptop.

The biggest beef I have with gaming laptops is that they're a time-ticking bomb. If your laptop doesn't have good cooling mechanism, expect problems overheating problems to creep in after six months or a year.
 

TheCoolerPlayer

Well-Known Member
Disciple
I suggest getting a gaming console (the Xbox Series S for 35K INR looks good) or get a gaming laptop.
I agree with this. Get a console for 35k (Series S) or 50k (Series X or PS5, bit less available than the Series S though) and a cheap-ish laptop/desktop for work. Makes no sense to pay 1L+ for equivalent desktop/laptop specs right now, when you can get a better out of the box experience with even the 35K console, and remember that the 35k/50k console has the entire system within it, not just the GPU. for 50k, you can barely get a 3060 now a days, so the value proposition is just not there. Plus the headache of deciding what to build, this or that etc (though yes I admit that this is also fun in itself :p)
 

! 0 t A

Well-Known Member
Skilled
True - the availability of parts is a nightmare right now. I already own a PS4 for Sony exclusives but use PC for FPS mainly and competitive BRs.

The upgradability is definitely a bummer for laptops. Does the heating really cause a major disruption in the overall life of the product ?
 

TheCoolerPlayer

Well-Known Member
Disciple
True - the availability of parts is a nightmare right now. I already own a PS4 for Sony exclusives but use PC for FPS mainly and competitive BRs.

The upgradability is definitely a bummer for laptops. Does the heating really cause a major disruption in the overall life of the product ?
If you maintain it nicely (use it with some sort of stand, or even just books lol) to increase airflow to fans, keep it clean (every 6 months or so) and repaste about once a year, I see no reason why it shouldn't last at least a good 7-8+ years. If you don't do the above, it'll still run decently, just hot which might reduce life to max of 5-6yrs (if you use it heavily for gaming on a regualr basis)
 

t3chg33k

Well-Known Member
Adept
True - the availability of parts is a nightmare right now. I already own a PS4 for Sony exclusives but use PC for FPS mainly and competitive BRs.

The upgradability is definitely a bummer for laptops. Does the heating really cause a major disruption in the overall life of the product ?
I sold off my 4-7 year old desktop last year and switched to a Ryzen 4800H/RTX 2060 laptop. I really missed being unable to game when I had to travel for several months in the past, so laptop is an automatic choice if you are going to travel around or if you are going to switch between displays like I sometimes do between my TV, monitor or continue gaming in some other area of the house. Also, it has freed up a lot of space as I can keep the laptop on the desk, next to the monitor.

On the flip side, for absolute performance you are going to deal with multiple fans spinning at 6000 rpm and temperatures that will hover at least around 85 degrees for the GPU and higher for the CPU. I limit the CPU thermals though as it gives me more headroom for the GPU. Some laptops (specifically MSI) have whinny fans that can be irritating but it is generally not an issue if you use headphones or run the laptop at Performance instead of Turbo mode.

From 3D Mark Time Spy comparisons, I can get little over 6800 from it with overclock compared to about 7600 you would get from a founder's edition desktop RTX 2060. So it is at least 10% slower with OC and about 15-20% slower on stock. Regarding upgrades on desktop, realistically you will only be upgrading the GPU during its lifetime as the motherboard and all other components will be incompatible in a few years. It is much easier reselling a laptop though compared to doing it piecemeal for a desktop, so you might recover a better part of the original price.

As for a console, I never got one because I use my laptop for other productivity work and it doubles up for gaming. At the same time, I have spent only a few thousand on my 600+ game library on PC, at which cost you will only get may be half a dozen console games.

So it totally depends on whether you will be on the move and if you are going to use the laptop for something other than just gaming. In that case, it is definitely worth it.

P. S. Forgot to mention that you will be pulling mostly around 150W, going towards 200W on the laptop which is significantly less than a console or desktop, so it is also immensely efficient. Intel's Rocket Lake alone pulls 250W under load to put things in to perspective.
 
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Panda

Well-Known Member
Disciple
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desiibond

Well-Known Member
Skilled
aaah. In that case, I would suggest to look at RoG series and TUF series from ASUS. I think ASUS is one of the few brands that has international warranty but have to make sure the same model is available in India to have spare parts availability. Also check Lenovo Legion as well.
 

t3chg33k

Well-Known Member
Adept

Can't fathom why anyone would game on battery. Otherwise, 5-6 hours for normal usage is still acceptable. With the AMD processors though, you never get thermal throttling on CPU. On the GPU, I end up hitting the power limit (since my RTX 2060 is limited to 90W despite being a 115W part), so at least manufacturers now-a-days do a good job with the design, though you have to sacrifice performance in budget laptops compared to higher power limits in the more expensive ones.

Regarding acoustics, I tracked that one quite a lot in Armoury Crate. Performance mode never touches 44 dBA with max. fan speeds of 4800 RPM while Turbo mode does go a bit crazy with 5700 RPM and 47 dBA. Good thing is that this is the limit as it never goes above that and Performance mode is not even audible compared to ambient noise.

At the end of the day, getting 80% of the desktop performance at less than 50% of the power consumption is a good bargain along with not having to be stuck in a specific corner of the house.

Crate.png
 
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TheCoolerPlayer

Well-Known Member
Disciple
5-6 hours for normal usage is still acceptable
Bro it's more like 3-4hrs at max if you use the laptop normally (30-40%+ screen brightness, wifi and bluetooth on, keyboard backlight on, screen at 144hz). Maybe when new gaming laptops might give 5-6hrs, but over time (I'd say within a year even) they lose battery capacity much faster than normal laptops since the battery is exposed to higher temperatures more frequently and consistently compared to most other laptops (excluding workstation ones).
Performance mode never touches 44 dBA with max. fan speeds of 4800 RPM while Turbo mode does go a bit crazy with 5700 RPM and 47 dBA.
Arcmoury crate's decibel meter is not a real one, it comes pre set with factory and is not reflective of actual noise levels. You can check this on youtube. It shows quit e bit lower compared to actual noise levels.
getting 80% of the desktop performance at less than 50% of the power consumption is a good bargain along with not having to be stuck in a specific corner of the house.
Agreed. Literally the only thing good for laptops is the portability. If you don't need it, I would anyday pick a cheap-midrange laptop and a desktop setup - best of both worlds :D
 

t3chg33k

Well-Known Member
Adept
Bro it's more like 3-4hrs at max if you use the laptop normally (30-40%+ screen brightness, wifi and bluetooth on, keyboard backlight on, screen at 144hz). Maybe when new gaming laptops might give 5-6hrs, but over time (I'd say within a year even) they lose battery capacity much faster than normal laptops since the battery is exposed to higher temperatures more frequently and consistently compared to most other laptops (excluding workstation ones).

Arcmoury crate's decibel meter is not a real one, it comes pre set with factory and is not reflective of actual noise levels. You can check this on youtube. It shows quit e bit lower compared to actual noise levels.

Agreed. Literally the only thing good for laptops is the portability. If you don't need it, I would anyday pick a cheap-midrange laptop and a desktop setup - best of both worlds :D
The battery life is worse on most gaming laptops because they skimp on the battery by including something like a 45-54 Wh battery. I don't use my laptop on battery often but used it for 4 hours once with over 40% battery remaining, so extrapolating it. Granted mine has a 90 Wh battery but then you shouldn't really be purchasing laptops with low-capacity batteries.

I know the Armoury Crate decibel meter is not the same as what you hear externally but I posted it in reference to the meme which included the same metric. In reality though, the Performance mode at 44 dbA is not at all distracting but the Turbo mode is.

On a whole, I am hoping that this is my last device where I have to deal with so much heat and power consumption. Would really like to switch to an Ultrabook in 3 years' time and be able to play my complete PC library on something like GeForce Now. Not there yet, but hopefully we will reach there soon, especially as the internet connection is now fast enough without any data caps and near 100% uptime. Just need the services to come to India and for publishers to not double-dip on purchases.
 
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