Best Gaming Laptops for College Students in 2020

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Winner
Dell G5 15 Gaming Laptop (Windows 10 Home, 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H, NVIDIA GTX 1650, 15.6" FHD LCD Screen, 256GB SSD and 1TB SATA, 16 GB RAM) G5590-7679BLK-PUS
Best Price
Acer Nitro 5 AN515 Laptop: Core i5-8300H, 15.6inch Full HD IPS Display, 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD, NVidia GTX 1050 4GB Graphics
HP Pavilion Gaming Laptop 15.6" Core i5-8300H 15.6-inch Diagonal Full HD IPS Anti-Glare WLED-Backlit Display(1920 x 1080) with 8GB RAM + 1TB HDD Storage
Model
G5
Nitro 5
Pavilion
Test Result
Test Result 9.6/10 Excellent April 2020
Test Result 9.4/10 Excellent April 2020
Test Result 9.2/10 Very Good April 2020
Manufacturer
Dell
Acer
Pavilion
RAM
16 GB
8 GB
8 GB
CPU
Intel Core i7-9750h
Intel Core i5-8300H
Intel Core i5-8300H
Graphics Card
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 with 4GB GDDR5
NVidia GTX 1050 4GB Graphics
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050
Storage Capacity
256GB SSD + 1TB HDD
1TB HDD
1TB HDD
Battery Time
Value for money
Weight
8.6 lbs
5.95 lbs
4.85 lbs
Pros
  • Best Gaming Performance
  • Fingerprint Sensor
  • Awesome Clickpad
  • Best Price
  • Great Gaming Performance
  • Good Battery Runtime
  • Great Gaming Performance
  • Beautiful Design
  • Good Price
Cons
  • High Performance means higher Price..
  • Only HDMI Port for external Connections
  • No Thunderbolt 3 Connection
Winner
Dell G5 15 Gaming Laptop (Windows 10 Home, 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H, NVIDIA GTX 1650, 15.6" FHD LCD Screen, 256GB SSD and 1TB SATA, 16 GB RAM) G5590-7679BLK-PUS
Model
G5
Test Result
Test Result 9.6/10 Excellent April 2020
Manufacturer
Dell
RAM
16 GB
CPU
Intel Core i7-9750h
Graphics Card
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 with 4GB GDDR5
Storage Capacity
256GB SSD + 1TB HDD
Battery Time
Value for money
Weight
8.6 lbs
Pros
  • Best Gaming Performance
  • Fingerprint Sensor
  • Awesome Clickpad
Cons
  • High Performance means higher Price..
Best Price
Acer Nitro 5 AN515 Laptop: Core i5-8300H, 15.6inch Full HD IPS Display, 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD, NVidia GTX 1050 4GB Graphics
Model
Nitro 5
Test Result
Test Result 9.4/10 Excellent April 2020
Manufacturer
Acer
RAM
8 GB
CPU
Intel Core i5-8300H
Graphics Card
NVidia GTX 1050 4GB Graphics
Storage Capacity
1TB HDD
Battery Time
Value for money
Weight
5.95 lbs
Pros
  • Best Price
  • Great Gaming Performance
  • Good Battery Runtime
Cons
  • Only HDMI Port for external Connections
HP Pavilion Gaming Laptop 15.6" Core i5-8300H 15.6-inch Diagonal Full HD IPS Anti-Glare WLED-Backlit Display(1920 x 1080) with 8GB RAM + 1TB HDD Storage
Model
Pavilion
Test Result
Test Result 9.2/10 Very Good April 2020
Manufacturer
Pavilion
RAM
8 GB
CPU
Intel Core i5-8300H
Graphics Card
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050
Storage Capacity
1TB HDD
Battery Time
Value for money
Weight
4.85 lbs
Pros
  • Great Gaming Performance
  • Beautiful Design
  • Good Price
Cons
  • No Thunderbolt 3 Connection

You want to use your Laptop for Gaming and at the same time for your University / School ? We tested the Best Laptops for Gaming and School.

Notebooks in College have to meet very specific requirements. These include a certain basic mobility, for example, as well as an ergonomic display and solid input devices. All of these are abilities that can usually only be inadequately taken from a shop leaflet or the Internet presence of a manufacturer.

We chose Laptops that are well usable in College / School, but at the same time are affordable and deliver a great Gaming experience. Above you will see the Ranking of the best Gaming Laptops for Students and below you are going to find the in-depth Reviews of each Laptop.

Ranking First: Dell G3

Dell G3 review 2020


Pros

  • Best Gaming Performance
  • Fingerprint Sensor
  • Awesome Clickpad

Cons

  • High Performance means higher Price..

The Dell G3 15 is one of the best gaming laptops from Dell. It offers decent gaming performance for most popular games with excellent image quality. High-end games also work with medium to high settings, depending on the game. On the plus side, the G3 15 has a long battery life, speakers, a simply beautiful design and a thin case. If you want to buy a cheap gaming laptop, then take a look at the Dell G3 review below, where we cover everything you need to know before buying.

Hardware

Dell G3 15 review: If you’re looking for a gaming laptop with decent performance that doesn’t require you to spend a fortune, the G3 15 is just the thing. It comes with an Intel Core i5-8300H CPU, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (4GB GDDR5) GPU, Intel UHD Graphics 630, 8GB DDR4 RAM and 128GB SSD memory, complemented by a 1TB HDD (5,400RPM). Measuring 14.96 x 10.16 x 0.89 inches and weighing approximately 5.57 pounds, the G3 15 packs a 15.6-inch (1920 x 1080) FHD (1,920 x 1,080) screen with a HD (720p) widescreen webcam. The device also offers a wide range of ports, including a USB 2.0, two USB 3.1 Type-A, an HDMI, an Ethernet port and an SD reader slot. You should also expect to find an Intel Wireless 9462AC card that supports both 802.11ac WIFI and Bluetooth 5.0.

Display

Dell G3 review 2020
Dell G-Series G5 5587 15-inch non-touch gaming notebook, codename Firestar MLK.

With a 15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080 panel, the G3 15’s display is suitable for both movies and games. However, I noticed that the screen was darkened several times during use, especially during gameplay. Compared to the category average, this laptop only achieves 61 percent of the sRGB color space on our colorimeter. We also measured about 231 brightness levels on our light meter, which is slightly below the category average of 254 for a gaming laptop.

Design

Dell has opted for minimal branding for this product, apart from the G3 logo on the left side of the device. Although I didn’t like the blue backlight on the keyboard and the chunky bezels on the 15-inch screen, I think the overall design looks neat and straightforward. When you open the lid, you’ll find a nice standard keyboard with a decent travel style and smooth keycaps. Although no bonus keys are available for this model, you still get the standard 10-button numeric keypad on the right side and working hotkeys. The WASD keys are well outlined to make playing easier. The trackpad is located directly under the keyboard and has a simple design that won’t get in the way of unwanted Palm input when you’re working on your laptop, whether you’re typing or playing games.

Battery runtime

One of the advantages of owning this machine is the long battery life. The G3 15’s battery lasted much longer than we originally expected. The device runs for about 6 hours and 30 minutes in simple surfing via Wi-Fi at 150 brightness levels, which is about 2 hours more than the category average of 4 hours and 53 minutes. You should also expect to spend about 3 hours watching movies at moderate brightness.

Software and Warranty

The G3 15 gaming laptop comes with a variety of useful software. This includes SupportAssist, which mainly updates computer drivers, searches for viruses or threats system-wide, performs hardware checks and optimizations. Another useful software is the Dell Power Manager, which monitors battery life and power consumption. Other software includes Dell Mobile Connect, which allows you to use your phone directly from your PC, Dell Help & Support, which mainly provides warranty and manual information, and Dell Digital Delivery, which updates all the above apps. Not only that, but there is another app called SmartByte that helps you set and control your bandwidth for things like streaming or gaming.

As with any other Windows 10 PC, there is a lot of bloatware to consider. The G3 15 includes apps like March of Empires, Candy Crush Soda Saga and Netflix out of the box. The G3 15 comes with a one-year limited warranty, which you can optionally upgrade to four years.

Price

Dell G3 gaming laptop 2020

Whether you are a beginner gamer or just want a simple, affordable gaming laptop, the G3 15 may be what you are looking for. Dell offers the base model of the G3 15 with Core i5-8300H CPU, 8 GB RAM and GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card (without SSD drive) for only 749 US dollars. However, if you’re willing to spend a little more, you can get the $1099 version with a hex-core Core i7-8750H CPU and GTX 1060 Max-Q graphics.

Verdict

In general, the Dell G3 15 has all the essential parts that any decent gaming laptop should have. You should be able to enjoy the latest titles in gaming at medium to high settings. Moreover, this device has a very long battery life. So you can be sure that you will have more hours of gaming time before the next recharge. When you talk in gameplay, you’ll love the speakers Dell has added on this machine. They are loud enough and sound good for both games and media. The 720p webcam is also great and records sharp, high-quality video. The only drawbacks here are a poorly designed keyboard and a 15.6 inch dimming screen, which still brings this Device on the First Rank of the best Gaming Laptops for Students / School.

Ranking Second: Acer Nitro 5

Acer Nitro 5 review 2020


Pros

  • Best Price
  • Great Gaming Performance
  • Good Battery Runtime

Cons

  • Only HDMI Port for external Connections

The Acer Nitro 5 comes along as a gaming notebook with a very fast 120 Hz display. It comes with a very fast SSD with Intel®_Core™-i5 processor and a latest-generation Nvidia GPU. How the angular gaming notebook performs in everyday life is clarified in our test.

The Nitro 5’s design language can only be described as “clear”, because the notebook doesn’t make a secret of its gaming claim with its corners and edges. I’m more of a fan of minimalist approaches, but you have to admit Acer that they remain coherent here. The bevelled corners and many air vents fit in well with this image.

To this end, the surface has a honeycomb pattern on the sides, while in the middle you can expect clear varnish on plastic. The middle part really likes fingerprints and is a good indication for the fat content of your skin. To carry a cleaning cloth with you is a remedy.

On the back side you can see huge air outlets, behind which you can see the two active fans. At the lower rubber feet you will also find two more air outlets, but on closer inspection they turn out to be speakers. But the four rubber studs are nice, because they are big enough and keep the notebook in a good position even during hot gaming sessions.

A nice detail is the red trim on the notebook’s hinge, which shows the name “Nitro” directed towards you.

The Nitro 5’s haptics are good overall. The display lid does bend a bit with slight pressure, but the gaps in the plastic case are very precise for this. The hinge holds the display well in position and barely gives way even when the table is wobbling. When the laptop is closed, you can open it with one hand and adjust it without much effort.

The red accents continue on the inside. So you get a chic trim around the mouse pad and red labeled keys. There are also highlighted gaming keys. The display edges are kept pleasingly thin on the sides. In return, there is a neat chin downwards, on which the Acer logo is emblazoned.

Ports

Acer Nitro 5 review

Due to the large air inlet on the right side, the remaining area for connection possibilities is relatively small. Nevertheless, the Nitro 5 offers almost everything you need for everyday use. Two USB 3.0 and one USB 3.1 Type C ports provide fast peripheral connectivity. An older USB 2.0 port is also available for the gaming mouse. For LAN parties, the obligatory LAN port is not to be missed and a 3.5mm jack for microphone and headphones.

The only downer is Acer’s renouncement of an SD card reader. Especially if you travel a lot with your camera, it is often worth its weight in gold. For the Nitro 5, you’ll have to get an adapter

Display

The Nitro 5’s display has a diagonal screen size of 39 cm and uses the proven IPS technology. This promises high viewing angle fidelity with good response times. The refresh rate is really fun, because it ensures that your games can be played smoothly and without tearing. Especially shooters like Fortnite, CS Go or Apex Legends really profit from it. Working in Windows mode is also more fun, because everything is more responsive. Once you’ve had a 120 Hz display in front of you, you don’t want to go back to the standard 60 Hz.

Unfortunately, the color accuracy of the panel used is anything but optimal for this. Our Spyder Elite measures only 65% of the sRGB color space. Only 48% of the Adobe RGB color space is even reproduced. This means that you should rather move your image processing with Photoshop to an external monitor. The display contrast of 680:1 is also well below the 1000:1 of IPS panels, which means that dark scenes in the evening Netflix series will look greyish and you’ll lose details in the shadows.

On the other hand, the uniformity of the illumination is successful. About 15% deviation is absolutely within limits. The brightness could be better, but it’s sufficient for everyday use in brighter environments, as Acer offers you a matt display. This ensures a display without many reflections.

Keyboard and Touchpad

Acer Nitro 5 keyboard

I was positively surprised by the Acer Nitro 5’s keyboard, which offers good tactile feedback and is well made. The keys offer a noticeable resistance and you don’t have the feeling of tapping on air. They also have sufficient spacing so that you don’t get the wrong button in the heat of the (shooter) battle. There are many – incomparably more expensive – notebooks with significantly worse keyboards. The red keyboard light is certainly a matter of taste, but it fits well with the Acer’s remaining red accents.

The touchpad is also convincing, although most gamers will probably hang a mouse on the Nitro 5 after a short time. It’s not quite clear whether it has Microsoft Precision certification, but the fast display at least gives this impression. During testing, I repeatedly found myself switching to the touchpad, which is slightly offset to the left, while surfing.

Software

In our model Microsoft Windows 10 Home is pre-installed. Unfortunately there is a lot of useless Bloatware in addition to that. Beside the obligatory Candy Crush and Farm Heroes saga you’ll find the password manager GoTrust and the after all passable Norton Anti-Virus on the Nitro 5.

There are also a few programs from Acer that should help you in everyday life to control your notebook. None of these programs is absolutely necessary. If you don’t want to use them, you can simply uninstall them.

Gaming Performance

In everyday use, the Nitro 5 is very performant in all office applications, surfing or streaming. The built-in 1 TB SSD is the real star here, as it achieves really fast values in our benchmarks and fits in the upper range of the tested storage media. It achieves read rates of more than 2600 MB/s and is also well on top when writing with just over 1500 MB/s.

In our new Lightroom benchmark, the Nitro 5 exports 20 raw files in just 59 seconds. A Ryzen 3700U from AMD took 31 seconds longer for the same normal student task. This is where the fast SSD comes in handy.

Even more demanding tasks like light video editing or Photoshop sessions are no problem thanks to the hardware equipment. The display is the only limitation here. Due to the built-in GTX 1650 and the high single-thread performance of the Intel®_Core™-i5 processor, you should be able to display almost all current games at medium settings in Full HD and 60 fps. However, if you really want to make use of the 120 Hz display, you’ll have to make do with lower settings or a lower resolution.

In the Far Cry 5 benchmark, the Nitro 5, at high settings and Full-HD, averages 53 frames – a good figure. If you turn the settings down to “Low”, the average is about 80 FPS. That’s still a long way from the high frame rates at which the 120 Hz screen can play out its class to the full. Nevertheless, it already delivers a much smoother gaming experience than with 60 Hz monitors.

Battery runtime

Acer Nitro 5 review

As with other gaming notebooks, the Nitro 5’s battery isn’t the most enduring. For our test we set it to 74% screen brightness in order to reach the targeted 200 cd/m². This is already more than sufficient for working in a bright office. With this setting you’ll get about four hours of battery life with moderate surfing and texting. The battery profile is already set to “More battery efficiency”, which slightly throttles the Intel® Core-i5-CPU on the go. The integrated Intel solution UHD 630 is used as GPU without a connected charger as standard. It is easily sufficient for 4k streaming for students in 60fps.

If you need a bit more power, the profile is set to “Best performance” to be able to access the Nvidia GPU on the go. Photoshop and co. are displayed smoothly by the Intel®_Core™-i5-CPU even on the road. In everyday use, however, you only have about ninety minutes of battery life.

Overall, the Acer Nitro 5 offers an average battery life. This means that it’s best to leave the house with a charger only. Nevertheless, it still ranks in the upper third of the gaming notebooks.

Noise levels and Heating

For a gaming notebook for students – with a hundred air vents felt – the Acer Nitro 5 remains very distinguished in everyday use. If you’re watching a YouTube video or editing some images in an office environment, you won’t hear it at all. Only with more computationally intensive tasks, like gaming, do you have to expect a certain amount of background noise. In our AIDA64 stress test you can hear it clearly at least right next to it. The temperatures remain at a solid 40 degrees in idle. Even under load in battery mode it barely gets more than 50 degrees – an outstanding value. If you then connect the charger, the Intel®_Core™-i5 processor’s power consumption increases considerably and the temperatures accordingly.

The temperature of the case is kept within limits even under load. The i5 then reaches up to 88 degrees at 24 degrees room temperature. The GPU stays at a very good 68 degrees. The case stays extremely cool and only gets hand-warm above the keyboard.

Upgrading

As already mentioned, Acer even includes an HDD upgrade cable with the Nitro 5. The upgrade option is thus practically in the notebook’s cradle. And in fact, access to the interior is relatively easy. Previous models of the Nitro 5 even came with a maintenance cover, though. This made upgrading even easier. On the current model you have to loosen the twelve screws, which works with a normal Phillips screwdriver. You’ll then need a thin plastic spatula to lever out the entire back of the car.

Inside you will not only find a free RAM slot, but also a 2.5″ HDD/SSD slot and a place for another PCIe SSD. So you can upgrade the Acer Nitro 5 significantly in a few years.

Sound

The sound of the Acer Nitro could honestly surprise me: Because the two small speakers reproduce midrange and treble music very neatly. Even at maximum volume, nothing screeches in your ears and you even have a slight stereo image when sitting centrally in front of the laptop.

The low frequency range, however, is – as expected – non-existent. The Acer Nitro 5 simply lacks volume or a resonance chamber. Should you ever forget your headset, the Nitro’s small speakers are a good substitute. Even the occasional Netflix series can be watched without any problems. Although the speakers don’t get very loud, they’re enough for small dorms, as i had in my student times for example. Overall, the Acer Nitro delivers a very good gaming performance here.

Verdict

You can tell from the first moment that Acer is fully committed to gaming with the Nitro 5 series. All the features available for this are good to very good. The display gives you an excellent refresh rate for shooters and the interaction of Intel®-Core™-i5 processor and GPU is powerful enough.

The SSD is the secret star of the Nitro 5, as it is racy fast and also comes in a small m.2 form factor. This leaves enough space for the installation of an HDD and the RAM can also be expanded very easily. The input devices are also convincing: The keyboard has a good pressure point and types very comfortably. The touchpad works precisely and also benefits from the fast display.

The Acer Nitro 5 offers the all-round carefree package here, with installed Windows 10, good input devices, strong sound and good workmanship – while Asus comes along with more gaming performance. What is ultimately more important to you, you have to decide for yourself. You won’t do much wrong with this device, that’s why its ranking second in the best Gaming Laptops for Students and earning the winner position in our Best Price category!

Ranking Third: HP Pavilion

HP Pavilion gaming review


Pros

  • Great Gaming Performance
  • Beautiful Design
  • Good Price

Cons

  • No Thunderbolt 3 Connection

HP’s Pavilion Gaming 15 is an entry-level gaming laptop. Under the hood, however, is the latest hardware. The equipment sounds promising for a starting price under $900, but HP had to save accordingly on some corners, as the test shows.

Gaming laptops are a dime a dozen, but most of them cost well over $1,000 and are quite heavy. HP does the opposite with Pavilion Gaming and wants to offer an affordable total package. Whether the manufacturer has succeeded in this, you can read here.

Design

Visually, the device looks quite good. The design is modern and relatively simple. The two slightly angled fan slots on the back aren’t as disturbing as in other gaming laptops and the display has only five millimeter thin side edges on the left and right. The keyboard also makes good use of the available space, as there is only eight millimeters of space to the edge on each side.

Between the keyboard and the centrally placed display hinge, the loudspeakers are located behind a handsome structure. On the black laptop there are all kinds of color accents in neon green (HP calls it acid green). Overall, it reminds of Razer devices because of the color tone and doesn’t look playful. However, if you don’t like green, you should look around for other gaming laptops for students.

Because of the low price, the manufacturer had to save on the materials used. The case weighs 5.07 lbs, but is made entirely of plastic. This is not only susceptible to fingerprints, but also easily vulnerable. We noticed this not only in the keyboard and trackpad area, but also in the display. There it’s even quite dramatic and seems even more unstable due to the central hinge. The panel bends frighteningly strongly with only little effort. Even in this price range this shouldn’t be the case.

Keyboard and Ports

HP Pavilion gaming review

The chiclet keyboard offers a good typing feel and a two-stage backlight, which is also green. The upper and lower arrow keys have been noticeably reduced in size to make room for a number pad, and the row of F keys has also turned out very small. The key “<>”, normally located next to “Y”, has been moved next to the right Alt key. Nevertheless, the keyboard has not only convinced us in games, but also in everyday life. The complete test report was written with it.

The trackpad measures just under 13 centimeters diagonally and is relatively wide for a Windows laptop. It responds reliably and accurately due to Windows Precision drivers. Unfortunately, it is also made of plastic and already rattles with a light touch. But you will probably use a real mouse or gamepad when playing games anyway.

On the left side of the device you will find some connectors: HDMI 2.0, USB 3.0, Ethernet, USB-C (USB 3.1 without Thunderbolt 3) and an SD card reader. On the right there are two more USB 3.0 ports, a jack plug and the charging jack.

Display

HP Pavilion gaming review review

In terms of the display, HP offers a solid standard fare with a matt IPS panel, which resolves in Full-HD and has a refresh rate of 60 Hertz. The display is sufficiently bright at the highest level, but it should be happy to have a bit more. The same applies to the contrasts and color reproduction. Everything is typically IPS okay and we couldn’t find any shortcomings, such as halos or sluggish response times, in gaming and everyday use.

If you go for one of the more powerful models, you’ll reach an average of well over 60 frames per second (fps) in most games. That’s why there’s also a 144 hertz display there for a smoother display. However, we couldn’t find any mention of G-Sync in the specifications of these models, which is why we suspect that this is not supported.

Gaming Performance and Hardware

The processor at Pavilion Gaming is either an Intel Core i5-9300H with four cores or an Intel Core i7-9750H with six cores. The latter of course offers a higher performance, but the Core i5 now also offers more than enough performance for gaming. The eight gigabytes of RAM in our test device are also sufficient and an upgrade is easily possible thanks to a free slot. Samsung’s built-in NVMe SSD is very fast and offers a maximum read speed of 3.22 gigabytes per second and a write speed of 1.35 gigabytes per second.

You have to do without raytracing on Nvidia’s GTX 1650 and 1660 Ti, because only the more expensive RTX graphics cards offer this. Compared to older laptop chips, however, even the cheaper models have received a decent performance boost. You can see the results of our test device in synthetic benchmarks below.

While the cooling didn’t show any significant weaknesses in normal benchmarks even after several runs, it reaches its limits in games. Namely, when both the graphic card and the processor are heavily stressed, the graphic card reaches about 75 degrees and the processor 98 degrees Celsius. The latter must therefore reduce its clock rate in order not to overheat. We haven’t noticed any performance losses in games during this time, but a permanently such a high temperature reduces the components’ life span.

Demanding games usually run with over 30 fps on the highest graphic settings, but aren’t permanently jerk-free. Doom (2016) ran with the setting “Ultra/Nightmare” mostly with 56 fps, slipped partly to 41 fps and even reached a low of 25 fps. Fortnite also reached a minimum of 30 fps on “High”, but stayed at 83 fps on average. In Rainbow Six: Victories, on the other hand, the graphics card usually manages to hold the 100 fps mark. Just over 40 fps is the average in Assassin’s Creed Origins and Shadow of the Tomb Raider with high graphics settings. All in all, we advise you to play the games on “medium” or “high” with a GTX 1650 to avoid jerking.

Battery runtime and Noise levels

HP Pavilion gaming review

When you surf the Internet on your laptop or perform other everyday tasks on it, the fans often remain inactive. Sometimes they do start up, but remain very quiet. Under load the fans turn up a little more, but the volume is much less annoying than on other gaming laptops. This is pleasant for a students ears, but probably also the reason for the throttling of the processor. Unfortunately, the fan speed can’t be adjusted, at least not ex works.

Instead of directly reaching for the headphones because of a fan noise on the level of an aircraft turbine, we used the normal speakers with the relatively quiet HP device. Surprisingly, they are quite useful and don’t sound dull or distorted. Since there is no subwoofer, the B&O optimized speakers naturally lack depth. On top there is a webcam, which, as expected, delivers a disappointing picture quality.

The battery has a capacity of 52.5 watt hours and is charged with a 150 watt power supply. The adapter is quite compact for this and weighs 460 grams. The battery life is okay. The Pavilion Gaming lasted for 6 hours and 40 minutes in PCMark 10’s battery test “Modern Office” at 50% brightness and the energy saving mode “more battery efficiency”. Finally, a good maintainability should also be mentioned. After removing the bottom, you can easily change the hard disk, the RAM or the SSD.

Verdict

HP’s Pavilion Gaming offers convincing features for a gaming laptop under $900. The gaming performance is great for this price range, the design is modern and the fans remain relatively quiet. That’s why the Pavilion is on the third Rank of the best Laptops for Gaming and School.

What Requirements does a Laptop for school have?

Best Gaming Laptops for College Students in 2020

Not so long ago, a laptop was a rare sight at university, but nowadays no student can do without them, because they are simply practical. What you should pay attention to if you want to buy a new laptop for your studies, we show you here!

Studying without a laptop is not very recommendable. A laptop is not a luxury item or a pointless pastime in boring seminars (although this can be a nice side effect), but for many things in your studies it is even necessary. While in the past you had to copy essays and text material in the library and take notes by hand, nowadays most things are done digitally.

Lectures and presentations are put online as well as secondary literature, there are eBooks, presentations are done via Power Point and similar programs and thanks to internet access one can do quick research: So you see, the list of possible uses for a laptop in your studies is long. Either way, this little device makes your life a lot easier. Especially students who spend the whole day at the university will appreciate not having to wait for one of the permanently occupied public PCs to do their work.

How to get a cheaper Laptop as a student

Students are poor, that’s common knowledge. That is why many manufacturers offer their products at reduced prices on presentation of a student ID card, while your own university can often provide you with software, some of which is greatly reduced. This includes not only operating systems but also useful applications from Office or Adobe. The whole thing applies regardless of your course of studies.

If necessary, ask your university about the corresponding offers – the discounts are sometimes massive!

What Hardware does a Laptop for College need?

It makes sense to have a laptop for your studies, that’s beyond question, but how much do you want and can you invest? Of course, it depends on your course of study: If you study design, media production or computer science, you probably have different requirements than someone who needs a laptop mainly for word processing and research.

First of all, make sure you understand your preferences. Big screen or long battery life? Robust case or light weight? Strong processor or low price? And of course the ultimate choice – Apple, Microsoft or even Linux & Co.? In the end, the decision is always yours.

But you should not forget that you are looking for a work tool. A mobile one at that. If you walk around the campus for a whole day with many lbs in your luggage, you will quickly feel the extra weight. We therefore recommend a smaller screen diagonal of 12.5 to 15 inches and a weight between 5 and 9 lbs.

Bear in mind that reduced weight with the same performance usually drives up the price. Or even reduced performance.

When buying, there are critical hardware elements that you should deal with a little before a decision is made:

CPU/Processor: The abbreviation CPU stands for the Central Processing Unit – the heart of every computer. The processor does most of the computing work and manages the main memory. Therefore, the CPU determines the maximum processing speed of your laptop. For normal requirements, a dual-core CPU is easily sufficient. And it doesn’t always have to be the latest generation – a slightly outdated processor differs only slightly in performance from the current models, but can be significantly less expensive.

Processors from Atom, Celeron or Pentium are not recommended, as they are not very reliable and turn out to be quite weak. Even simple multitasking tasks, such as working with an internet browser and the text program, can cause problems.

RAM / Main memory: The main memory contains the currently executed programs or parts of them and the necessary data. It therefore essentially influences the performance of the entire PC. A minimum of four gigabytes is recommended. If there is no free slot left on the computer for a later upgrade, it should rather be eight gigabytes. If there is a free socket, the speed can be increased later by an additional “memory bar” if necessary. However, this may violate the warranty rights and should be clarified with the manufacturer beforehand.

Hard disk: The hard disk is the medium on which the data of a computer are permanently stored. Currently, the SDD technology (Solid-State-Drive) is on the advance. In contrast to conventional hard disks (HDD – Hard-Disk-Drive) with their moving mechanical parts, which are correspondingly susceptible to faults, the SDD disk manages completely without moving parts. It is correspondingly more robust and also has very short access times and makes absolutely no noise. However, they are much more expensive. The bottom line is that this is a question of your finances – but if in doubt, an SSD is preferable to a fast processor.

Battery: Be careful with the manufacturer’s specifications! You shouldn’t believe them naively, because they rarely correspond to reality. They usually refer to an optimum case, which has hardly anything to do with practice. Since you won’t find a power outlet everywhere, you should already have about six hours of battery life. Alternatively, a second battery can be carried along, which is of course a heavy burden. Everyone should find their own balance here.

Graphics card: As already mentioned in the introduction, laptops are subject to very different requirements depending on your course of study. This is especially true for the graphics card. For normal operation, an Intel HD Graphics for Core i processors should be sufficient. Those who work with a lot of computationally intensive software will have to dig a lot deeper into their pockets.

Screen technology: Often this criterion is completely ignored in a purchase, which is a big mistake. Because you can only work effectively outdoors from a brightness of around 200 cd/m². In this context, a matt screen is also preferable, as it does not reflect. Furthermore, the display should be based on IPS and not TN technology, as the former offers the much better viewing angle.

Conclusion

In general – think about what you want and what your requirements are for your laptop and look for it specifically. Because the range of offers is huge and sometimes quite confusing. But it’s worth the search, because in the end you can save a lot of money.


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