Best Laptops Under $2000: Best Value Gaming & Work
When chosing th best laptop under 2000 Dollar there are some factors you need to keep in mind.
If the notebook is used almost exclusively at home, a 15- or 17-inch laptop is best suited to the task.
On the other hand, if you use your notebook mainly on the road, you should make sure that the weight does not exceed 4 lbs. and the screen diagonal does not exceed 14 inches.
This is the minimum amount of memory it must have
Large laptops for home use should be equipped with at least eight gigabytes (GB) of memory (RAM), preferably 1000 GB of hard disk space and a graphics card with at least four GB of memory if you play a lot, often edit photos or cut videos.
When travelling, the hard drive should be at least 256 GB in size and ideally designed as an SSD.
SSD memory is faster than conventional hard drives and thus increases the working speed.
The experts specify 7.5 hours as the lower limit for battery life when playing videos.
Whether it should be a classic Ultrabook, a convertible with a 360-degree rotatable touchscreen display or a tablet with a detachable keyboard (Detachable) for on-the-go remains a matter of taste.
Pay attention to processor and connections
Regarding the processor, the product testers recommend Intel’s Core i5 or Core i7 CPUs, regardless of the type of device.
In terms of interfaces, buyers should pay particular attention to USB-C, USB 3.0 and HDMI connections.
And the display should ideally have a resolution of Full HD (1920 by 1080 pixels) or higher.
Test Results: Best Laptops Under $2000
Best Laptop under 2000$: Asus ROG Zephyrus M
- Great feature set & Super all-around performance
- New six-core Intel Core i7 CPU
- Excellent overall and graphics performance
- Fans still get quite loud
Top performance for the Best Laptop under 2000$
The ASUS ROG Zephyrus GX501 was one of the first devices to build on NVIDIA’s efficient Max-Q graphics chips, finally heralding the slimming craze in gaming notebooks.
Despite a height of just 17.8 mm and a light weight of only about 4.6 lbs., it used real high-end hardware that was fast enough for even the most demanding game titles.
In the meantime, ASUS has added the ROG Zephyrus M to the range and, above all, lowered the price.
How the 15 incher performs in practice can be seen in this Techtestreport article.
With the ROG Zephyrus GX501, ASUS presented it at the Computex 2017 and announced an extremely compact high-end gaming notebook, which also attracted attention with a simple but very noble look.
Gone were the days of clunky, ostentatious gaming notebooks.
Despite a height of only 17.8 mm and a total weight of about 4.6 lbs., ASUS used really potent hardware and relied in its original version on the Intel Core i7-7700HQ and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, which was clearly trimmed for efficiency.
With this, even graphically demanding game titles could be played without problems, compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
With the introduction of the Coffee Lake H processors, ASUS switched to the new six-core processors and added the ROG Zephyrus GM501.
This is supposed to eliminate some of the biggest points of criticism of the top model, but above all it is offered at a much lower price.
While a good 3,000 Dollar have to be put on the counter for the flagship, the M variant is a good deal cheaper at around 2,200 Dollar.
In order to be able to finally lower the price, ASUS no longer relies on the Max-Q version of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080, but instead exclusively installs the likewise not slow GeForce GTX 1070.
This is supposed to benefit the high temperatures and the comparatively low battery runtimes, as well as of course the volume.
Nevertheless, there is a fast six-core processor, up to 32 GB DDR4 RAM and a fast M.2 SSD with PCI Express connection, including a conventional magnetic storage hard disk as an additional data grave with the Intel Core i7-8750H.
The display still measures 15.6 inches diagonally and relies on a Full-HD panel with a fast 144 Hz. not standard as you can see with the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
The unusual design of the top case has disappeared, ASUS puts the mouse replacement directly under the keyboard again and pulls it back up again.
In the ROG Zephyrus GX501, the keyboard was still attached to the lower half, which should mainly improve the cooling.
All in all, the basic version changes hands for about 2,199 Dollar.
For our test, ASUS supplied us with the ROG Zephyrus M GM501GS, which is a bit better equipped than the actual basic version, but with a price of around 2,400 Dollar is more expensive.
Our test device is powered by the aforementioned Intel Core i7-9750H including an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 with 8 GB GDDR5 video memory and can access 16 GB DDR4 RAM.
Windows 10 Home is pre-installed on a 512 GB PCI Express SSD, additional space for your own games and data collection is provided by a 1 TB SSHD, i.e. a conventional magnetic storage hard disk, which can access an 8 GB large and significantly higher-performance flash memory for acceleration, on which particularly frequently used data is automatically stored.
The display has a native resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels and is extremely responsive at 144 Hz.
Gamers will also be pleased about G-Sync support, whereby Optimus technology can also be used on the software side. Great for the best laptop under 2000 Dollar.
Our complete package changes hands for 2,399 Dollar in the Hardwareluxx price comparison.
With the case construction it becomes classical again
One of the biggest innovations, but certainly also one of the biggest criticisms of the first Zephyrus notebook was its construction.
With the new M-version, ASUS is rowing back to the classic construction, because while the keyboard of the GX501 was moved to the lowest position and the touchpad was placed directly next to it, the GM501 puts both back in the usual place.
The high-quality workmanship and the noble choice of materials also remain in the ASUS ROG Zephyrus M.
ASUS relies on a mix of plastic and metal.
While the bottom is made of inexpensive but stable plastic, the top of the top case and the screen cover are made of aluminum with a brushed finish.
This may look quite noble, but the surfaces are very susceptible to dirt and grease stains.
The workmanship is – as one is used to from ASUS – on a high level, even compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
There are no sharp-edged corners despite the angular design, gap dimensions are excellently worked out and even under strong pressure the case does not give way at any point.
The only negative point: The folding mechanism with its cogwheels on the underside, which jacks up the notebook slightly and thus improves its air supply, creaks slightly and can then be pressed in very strongly, especially towards the middle.
The 15 incher’s two display hinges could be more torsionally stiff, but the gaming bolide can thus be opened easily with just one hand.
The design is simple and elegant, especially for a gaming notebook in this price and performance category.
ASUS relies on a brushed aluminum finish, which is completely black.
The RGB backlighting of the keyboard as well as the red illuminated ROG logo on the cover provide colorful variety.
In addition, the edges are provided with a shimmering copper decorative rim.
Overall, the ASUS ROG Zephyrus GM501 measures 384 x 262 x 17.5 to 19.9 mm and weighs about 5 lbs.
This makes the 15 incher definitely one of the thinnest gaming notebooks of its kind and competes with models like the Gigabyte Aero 15X v8, the MSI GS65 Stealth Thin or XMG Neo 15 and the Razer Blade 15 (2018), which are partly lighter and weigh less than 4.0 lbs and all other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
As already mentioned, ASUS has returned to the classic design in its ROG Zephyrus M, but this does not apply to the even more compact S version, which was unveiled just a few days ago.
ASUS continues to try and experiment diligently.
There is no standard layout, because a few changes have been made here and there.
For example, the return key is much smaller than in the classic layout.
You don’t have to do without a separate number pad for this.
Not only has ASUS improved the keyboard layout compared to the first Zephyrus device, but also its features.
While the first devices couldn’t convince with a spongy pressure point, the keyboard of the Zephyrus M makes a much better impression.
The feedback is more pleasant, the pressure point is crisp with a medium stroke, but the keys tick a bit too lightly.
As a rule, they are sufficiently large at 15 x 15 mm and usually placed at a distance of 3 mm.
The RGB backlight can be individually adjusted in four zones, but is too dark even in the brightest level.
The comparatively poor readability of the keys is also due to the rather pale lettering.
Keyboard and touchpad with good features
Compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar praiseworthy are the four additional keys at the top of the keyboard.
Not only can the volume of the integrated speakers be regulated here, but the microphone can also be muted with just one click.
It is also possible to start the Gaming Center Tool, which can be used to read out and configure the most important system parameters of the ASUS ROG Zephyrus M GM501.
ASUS relies on a click pad that is slightly shifted to the left for the touchpad. Dedicated keys for the left and right mouse click are thus not available.
They are executed directly in the touchpad, which can be easily recognized by the label.
Thanks to the glass surface, the gliding characteristics are excellent and the precision even towards the edges is good.
Multitouch gestures like pinch-to-zoom or scrolling over two fingers in the browser are basically understood, but the implementation is very slow.
With 105 x 60 mm, the touchpad is clearly too small for a 15 inch notebook, especially in height & compared to other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
There are also changes in comparison to the original version in the interfaces.
Although there is still no card reader and no Gigabit LAN port due to the limited space and slim height, thanks to Coffee Lake H all USB ports now work according to the fast 3.1 Gen2 standard.
On the left side, the ROG Zephyrus M provides two ports, one as a conventional type A and the second as a type C connector.
The latter supports the Thunderbolt 3 protocol and thus transfer rates of up to 40 GBit/s and compensates for the likewise missing DisplayPort output.
On the opposite side, there are three more USB interfaces according to Type A, a 3.5 mm jack socket for connecting a headset – two of which would certainly have been more convenient for input and output – and an HDMI port for an external display.
The power supply unit is also connected on the right side of the device.
Overall, the placement of the connections isn’t quite as good.
They are usually located in the front area, while the rear areas are intended for ventilation slots for cooling.
This doesn’t make the cabling on the desk very easy, especially since the power supply unit is also connected in the middle.
A maintenance flap, over which one could have had quick and comfortable access to the ASUS ROG Zephyrus M’s memory, is unfortunately not available in our test notebook.
If you want to exchange or upgrade the M.2 SSD, the 2.5 inch drive and the RAM, you’ll have to remove the complete bottom side.
The trick with the cooling remains
In order to ensure the cooling of the quite hot and potent hardware with such compact dimensions, ASUS resorts to its Zephyrus-typical trick:
When the notebook is opened, it is jacked up via a cleverly devised mechanism on the rear underside and the lower cover is extended. The 15 incher obtains additional fresh air through the gap thus freed, which benefits the cooling of the processor and graphics card, which are kept at a temperature by a total of four copper heatpipes and its own radial fans.
Our test sample is supplied with power via an external 230 W power supply, which turns out a bit heavier and especially larger than the competing devices with about 650 g.
A 55 Wh battery, which is also comparatively weak, must be sufficient for the supply on the road, not as good as the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
Other manufacturers usually use power supplies with 70 to 82 Wh, Gigabyte even with 94 Wh.
How this affects the runtimes will be clarified in the course of this test.
The display of the ASUS ROG Zephyrus M GM501 measures 15.6 inches in its diagonal and has a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels.
Contrary to the current trend, however, the screen edges are relatively thick.
Therefore, the software can be switched between Optimus technology and the G-Sync standard, which is especially pleasing for gamers.
You can optionally use the G-Sync technology and thus minimize annoying judder and tearing effects.
Moreover, the viewing angle stable IPS panel is very fast with a refresh rate of 144 Hz, which is great in comparison to all the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
With a maximum brightness of 313 cd/m², the gaming bolide is barely recommended for outdoor use, the illumination is very good with a homogeneity of just over 92%.
The display gets very dark, especially towards the bottom.
However, only 24 cd/m² lie between the brightest and darkest value. In comparison to the top model, ASUS has thus been able to improve the display a bit.
The built-in panel from AU Optronics also has the typical blue cast of a gaming notebook.
It turns out even more than usual with average color temperatures of well over 9,000 K.
Optimal would be 6,500 K. However, the color values can be optimized using the GameVisual tool.
However, only prefabricated profiles can then be adjusted. The contrast values are right for this.
Our test sample achieves a ratio of 1.299:1
Verdict: Best performance for the Best Laptop under 2000 Dollar
ASUS has usefully expanded its Zephyrus family, which finally heralded the slimming craze in high-end gaming notebooks with the introduction of the first Max-Q graphics cards.
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 built into the ROG Zephyrus M is no less slow than the Max-Q version of the larger model, but in terms of temperatures and especially power consumption, the Max-Q design would have been the better choice here as well.
The device always plays the latest game hits smoothly, mainly due to its native Full HD resolution, and everyday performance is also impressive thanks to the six-core Intel Core i7-8750H and the fast PCI Express SSD.
However, the SSHD doesn’t inspire our test device with average transfer rates of only 100 MB/s.
The workmanship is on the usual high level for ASUS, even though the two display hinges could be more torsionally stiff and the folding mechanism on the bottom creaks a bit.
It slightly jacks up the notebook during operation and thus provides an additional air gap for cooling the processor and graphic card.
This works well in practice because the hardware doesn’t throttle down despite the high temperatures in the CPU and the surface temperatures are also right for cooling despite the compact dimensions and thus small space available.
However, the noise level isn’t exactly a paradise discipline, just like in the first generation.
Our test device still remains relatively quiet in office mode with about 38 dB(A), but turns up considerably under load to about 52 dB(A), or even over 55 dB(A).
The display is a bit dark and extremely bluish, but very well illuminated and high-contrast. Overall it is the best in the best laptops under 2000 Dollar segment
It’s especially praiseworthy that the user can decide for himself whether he wants to use the G-Sync technology for minimizing jerking and tearing effects or fall back on the economical Optimus technology via the gaming center.
It theoretically helps the notebook to have a longer endurance.
The ASUS ROG Zephyrus M doesn’t last long, though.
The screen turns black after only about one and a half to three hours.
This is due to a high power consumption and a comparatively weak battery with 55 Wh.
The competition scores significantly better.
ASUS has eliminated one of the biggest points of criticism of the ROG Zephyrus GX501 and has returned to the classic construction in the top case area.
The keyboard and touchpad make a good impression.
In terms of price, you pay a bit less than for the top model, but still have to dig deep into your pocket.
A whopping 2,300 Dollar are called up for our configuration.
This is above the level of the competition and therefore the best laptop under 2000 Dollar.
Second Best Laptop under 2000$: Acer Predator Triton 500
- Very good performance
- Best price-performance ratio
- G-Sync, 144Hz monitor
- RTX 2080 Max-Q option
- Annoying boot sound (can be deactivated in the BIOS)
Best price performance ratio
In the course of the presentation of the first RTX graphics cards for notebooks, Acer also announced the first offshoots based on the Turing architecture at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas at the beginning of the year.
Among them was the Predator Triton 500, an especially compact gaming bolide, making it the second best laptop under 2000 Dollar.
How the 15 incher performs in practice is shown in detail in this Techtestreport article on the following pages.
Acer also announced its first gaming notebooks with the new RTX graphics cards from NVIDIA at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
In addition to the Predator Triton 900, which can be converted to a convertible thanks to its unusual form factor, they also announced a small sister model, the Predator 500, which attracts attention with its particularly compact and light dimensions and thus competes with models like the MSI GS65 Stealth Thin, the ASUS ROG Zephyrus M, the Razer Blade 15 or the Gigabyte Aero 15.
The Acer Predator Triton 500 is available with either an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 or a significantly faster GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q.
Acer leaves the GeForce RTX 2070 as a medium opponent completely out of the picture in this model variant.
There are also differences in the processor, as the Taiwanese equip the 15 incher with either the quad-core Intel Core i5-8300H or the Intel Core i7-8750H with six cores, depending on the SKU.
In addition, there are between 8 and 16 GB of RAM and various mass storage combinations, which range up to a fast RAID 0 array with two NVMe SSDs.
The display resolves with Full HD resolution, supports NVIDIA’s G-Sync technology and has a high refresh rate of 144 Hz, great even compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
Thanks to narrow display edges of only 6.3 mm, the Predator Triton 500 achieves a high screen-to-body ratio of 81%, but remains very compact with a height of only 17.9 mm.
Depending on the model, one pays between 1.699 and 2.499 Dollar for this, whereby the cheaper model variants only get into the shops slowly.
In return, the flagship with a Core i7-8750H and GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q is already available for a few days and is now in our review.
For our review, Acer provided us with the top model of the Triton 500, which is currently offered together with Intel Core i7-8750H, 16 GB DDR4 RAM, 512 GB SSD and GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q for 2,499 Dollar.
How the high-end gaming bolide performs in practice in terms of performance, volume, runtime and temperature behavior, and how the values of the display or the processing quality turn out, we will show in this Techtestreport article.
The core of our test sample is an Intel Core i7-8750H, which can reach speeds of up to 4.1 GHz with its six Coffee Lake cores and has twelve threads.
The Acer Predator Triton 500 is currently not yet offered with the recently introduced ninth core generation Intel models.
For gamers, the graphics card is far more important and here Acer has also reached for the top and installed a GeForce RTX 2080 in the efficient and economical Max-Q version.
It technically corresponds 1:1 to the desktop counterpart, can fall back on 8 GB GDDR6 video memory, but has been cut back considerably in clock speed.
The 80 W version of the TU104-based graphics card gets down to work with a basic and boost clock rate of 735 and 1,095 MHz respectively.
In practice, however, our test device reaches clock rates of almost 1,200 MHz. That is an amazing score in the best laptops under 2000 Dollar segment.
In addition, there are 16 GB DDR4 RAM with 2.666 MHz in dual channel mode and a 512 GB M.2 SSD with PCI Express connection.
An additional 2.5-inch drive as a data grab is not provided for space reasons.
The display measures 15.6 inches in its diagonal, works with 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, is a viewing angle-stable IPS panel and is very responsive with 144 Hz at 3 ms.
G-Sync support is also included. The keyboard is RGB-backlit, modern connectors up to USB Type-C and Thunderbolt 3 are also available.
Including the 82 Wh battery in a metal case, you pay almost 2,500 Dollar for this.
Housing, keyboard and touchpad
Despite its powerful GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q and the Intel Core i7-8750H, the Acer Predator Triton 500 doesn’t want to be a pure gaming notebook, but also wants to appeal to the demanding user who wants to get some performance on the go.
So it’s no wonder that Acer keeps the design very simple, because apart from the Predator logo on the screen lid, which shimmers bluishly when turned off, the 15 incher is completely covered in black.
The compact dimensions of 358.5 x 255 x 17.9 mm and the light weight of just over 4.3 lbs also speak for this.
Even absolute high-end gaming notebooks don’t have to be thick and bulky for a long time and no longer have an aggressive design structure as they used to be.
The Acer Predator Triton 500 clearly targets competitors like the MSI GS65 Stealth Thin, the Gigabyte Aero 15 or the ASUS ROG Zephyrus M and the Razer Blade 15 and is thus fully in line with the trend.
In order to be able to cope with the waste heat despite the low height and the comparatively small space conditions, some air inlets are provided on the underside of the metal case for cooling the processor and graphics card.
The 15 incher draws most of its fresh air from the back – the numerous aluminum fins are even slightly bluish in color to match the Predator skin.
However, a maintenance flap, which would have given quick and easy access to the memory, has to be omitted. The battery is also permanently installed.
There’s only little to complain about in terms of workmanship quality for the second best laptop under 2000 Dollar.
The Acer Predator Triton 500 is extremely stable thanks to the high-quality material selection – both the bottom and the area around the keyboard bed and touchpad are made of aluminum.
The chassis doesn’t yield at any point even under strong pressure, gaps are excellently worked out and there are no sharp edges.
Only the two display hinges could be more stable, as the screen wobbles disturbingly for a while even with slight vibrations.
However, opening with only one hand is thus problem-free and even opening up to 180° is possible.
It’s also a bit of a pity that the surface is very susceptible to grease and dirt stains.
Despite its compact dimensions, the Acer Predator Triton 500 doesn’t lack modern connections and even the clunky Gigabit Ethernet port is included.
There are also three classic USB interfaces according to type A and a type C socket, which even copes with the Thunderbolt 3 protocol and thus not only enables high data transfer rates of around 40 GBit/s, but can also be used as a DisplayPort.
However, an HDMI and mini DisplayPort output are available for external monitors anyway.
A headset can be connected via the two 3.5 mm jack sockets, the device communicates wirelessly via AC-WiFi and Bluetooth 5.0, and of course the DoubleShot Pro technology is used especially for gamers, with which the game data is processed in the network with priority.
However, a card reader is missing for everyday work on the road. This makes the competition, such as the Gigabyte Aero 15, better.
The arrangement of the ports is mostly pleasing, whereby the large display ports would have been better positioned in the rear area on the two side panels, but here some additional air inlets for cooling are placed.
Keyboard and touchpad
The Acer Predator Triton 500 cannot hide its gaming ambitions in the keyboard area. Great pro point for the second best laptop under 2000 Dollar.
You don’t rely on mechanical keys, but the WASD and arrow keys, which are important for gamers, are highlighted in color and bordered with the typical Predator blue.
With 16 x 16 mm, the chiclet keys are extremely generously sized, but you have to do without a separate number pad, which is rather unusual even for a 15 inch device in 14 inch format.
The RGB backlight can be adjusted in several steps, is relatively bright and ensures that the keys are very easy to read even in darker surroundings.
The typing behavior is good, the feedback is crisp with a medium stroke.
There is no macro function, but a special key is included, with which the cooling can be brought to its maximum performance with just one touch of a button.
But then the Acer Predator Triton 500 is anything but quiet.
A button for starting the Predator Sense software is also included. Commendable:
Acer otherwise relies on a standard layout with many additional functions that can be called up via the FN combination.
The touchpad is sufficiently large with dimensions of 106 x 61 mm, but has moved a bit to the left and can easily be understood with multi-touch gestures, such as scrolling in the browser with two fingers or enlarging pictures via pinch-to-zoom.
It works precisely and quickly, and thanks to the glass surface the gliding characteristics are almost perfect – even in the corners and towards the edges.
Acer uses a click pad without dedicated buttons for left and right mouse clicks.
The feedback is good and the clicking is very perceptible.
Overall, the touchpad thus counts among the better ones and is above all significantly better than older Acer devices from the manufacturer.
Verdict: Best price performance ratio for second best laptop under 2000 Dollar
The Acer Predator Triton 500 does many things right and therefore earend its place in the best laptops under 2000 Dollar segment.
Thanks to the Intel Core i7-8750H and above all the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, more than enough power is available for everyday use and even graphically demanding games can be played in the highest graphics settings without any problems.
But this is also due to the fact that Acer relies on an IPS panel with native Full HD resolution, which reduces the demands on the graphics card.
In return, the high refresh rate of 144 Hz at 3 ms makes more sense.
Players are also pleased with the G-Sync technology, which further minimizes annoying jerking and tearing effects.
The display is overall very high-contrast and very well illuminated, but could be brighter and better color-coordinated for outdoor use – the blue cast is already very pronounced.
The rest of the equipment in the form of 16 GB DDR4 memory in fast dual channel mode, a brisk NVMe SSD with a lush 512 GB and an RGB-backlit keyboard is also impressive.
However, in comparison to the competition, the latter can’t be set individually for each key and does without macro functions, whereas the touchpad is excellent.
Modern connections like killer network chips, USB Type C and Thunderbolt 3 aren’t missing either.
The workmanship is on a high level, only the two display hinges could be more stable.
The design is kept very simple overall, which should also please demanding workaholics in view of the compact dimensions and low weight.
The era of clunky gaming notebooks with aggressive design is definitely over.
It’s just a pity that a card reader is missing.
One of the biggest disadvantages of the Acer Predator Triton 500 are the high temperatures inside, which are noticeable on the surface in places, and the associated high volume under load.
The clock rates aren’t reduced for that, though.
Prices beyond the 2.000 Dollar mark seem to be taken for granted in high-end gaming notebooks.
But you also get something offered for the 2.499 Dollar, which should be sufficient for several years.
The Acer Predator Triton 500 is convincing and can definitely bear the label “Excellent Hardware”, apart from the small weaknesses in volume and temperature behavior.
All in all, the Triton 500 is the second best laptop under 2000 Dollar.
Third Best Laptop under 2000$: ASUS ROG Zephyrus S
- Excellent gaming performance
- Great display with144 Hz refresh rate
- Compact & stylish design
- Nvidia Optimus or G-Sync
- Battery life
Third Best Laptop under 2000$
Asus has improved the ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX in comparison to its predecessor.
The big sales argument is still the “ultra-thin gaming notebook”.
Especially the ergonomics have been improved. However, Asus has kept the basic design:
The display is almost borderless.
The perforated cooling system cover takes up so much space on the device’s body that the keyboard even looks a bit cramped.
And when the display is opened, the base plate lifts so that the heat pipes are cooled through the gap. This makes the device thin, compact and light.
Maximum gaming performance
The ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX contains the best hardware for gaming notebooks currently available, but not that much more than the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
This ensures excellent performance in games, but the device does not differ significantly from the other top models.
The processor is an Intel Core i7-8750H, the graphics solution an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 in Max-Q design for laptops.
We basically see Asus on par with Dell’s Alienware and Lenovo’s Legion notebooks (for testing) in the absolute upper class in terms of performance.
In fact, the 17 inch notebook Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX showed the best result of the synthetic gaming benchmark 3DMark FireStrike in the test: 18,026 points in comparison to the 17,292 points of the 15 inch Dell Alienware m15 (in review).
The two devices don’t really give themselves anything in the gaming practical test, though:
They are on par at 93 fps in our reference value FarCry 5 in ultra mode.
The other results also hardly show any deviations. Together with the 16 GByte RAM, you get top gaming performance, which can’t be increased any more.
Very nice 144 hertz display
The Asus gaming notebooks remain strong in terms of the display.
The GX701GX comes with a 17 inch screen and Full HD resolution, but Asus also offers 15 inch devices.
The display is an excellent IPS LC panel with a refresh rate of 144 Hertz and a response time of 3 milliseconds.
According to our measurements, the standard RGB color space is displayed at 90 percent.
The chessboard contrast of 206:1 is very high, currently the second best value in our best list.
The maximum brightness is also good at 274 candelas per square meter, although not a top result.
All in all, these are excellent values for gaming requirements, further optimization is available through G-Sync support.
Limited equipment and webcam as an appendage
The equipment of the ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX is, like its predecessor, a bit poor.
Asus still doesn’t seem to know where to put the webcam.
In favor of the borderless display, the webcam moved to the lower corner in the ROG Strix Scar II (for testing).
Now it has disappeared completely: In the GX701, the camera is included as an external accessory that you have to connect first.
That’s not too practical.
There is no connection for network cables and an SD card reader is also missing, bad compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
WLAN in the 802.11ac standard and Bluetooth 5.0 are of course on board, and there is also a jack socket.
The GX701GX Thunderbolt 3 for the fastest data transfer is missing in the USB ports, but one of the two USB type C interfaces is USB 3.1 Gen2 with DisplayPort support and charging function.
The second type C interface is USB 3.1 Gen1. There are also two USB 3.1 Type A ports available.
Besides DisplayPort via USB-C, you can connect an external monitor via HDMI.
The hard drive is an SSD with 1 terabyte of memory, which should be sufficient for gaming installations.
An additional HDD is not on board.
The operating system is Windows 10 Pro, with Asus’ system software you can also control the hardware profiles and the keyboard’s RGB lighting.
Nvidia Optimus can be set for intelligent graphics control.
The software switches between the processor’s on-board graphics and the RTX chip’s dedicated graphics depending on the requirements.
But you have to decide between Optimus and G-Sync. Two 2.5 watt loudspeakers in the case provide acceptable sound.
A keyboard and mouse that takes some getting used to
Most of the problems with the predecessor of the ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX we had with the ergonomics.
Especially the noise of the gaming notebook bothered us.
Asus has made improvements here.
The GX701GX also produces a loud noise under full load, but there are no annoying noises.
The operating noise is even and bearable.
The keyboard and mouse replacement have the same restrictions as already in the predecessor due to the design:
The keyboard’s positioning at the bottom edge needs getting used to, but can’t be anywhere else because the rear half of the case is reserved for the cooling system.
Because the keyboard rests on the battery, there is only a very short stroke distance.
And even though the pressure point is quite exact, there isn’t a particularly pleasant typing feel.
This solution is far away from a gaming keyboard, compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
The touchpad is right-aligned at the number pad’s position and can also be used as such.
Due to this dual function, the touch surface isn’t particularly large and therefore too narrow, especially for gaming purposes.
If you want to move the cursor further to the left, you quickly press keys by mistake because there is no real separation.
There are no separate mouse buttons.
All in all an inventive design solution – but not very comfortable to use.
Fits in your pocket, but is not very mobile
The ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX “fits in the pocket” and can be “transported without any problems” – this is how Asus advertises its gaming notebook.
The small form factor is indeed useful for this.
The device is extremely thin with two centimeters.
But the battery life is also rather slimmed down:
We measured 03:59 hours in video playback and 02:57 hours in simulated workload.
This is a pretty measly value even among generally not very economical gaming notebooks.
So you won’t be able to enjoy much mobile gaming before the notebook has to be plugged in again.
Asus is quite good at the price, esepcially compared to the other best laptops under 2000 Dollar.
At the time of testing, the ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX-EV021R (model number 90NR00X1-M01390) is available for about 2000 Dollar.
Cheaper GX701 models are optionally available with the GeForce RTX 2070 or 2060 graphics chips.
If you only look at the performance in games and hardly move the gaming notebook anyway, you’re certainly not wrong with the GX701GX.
The unusual keyboard and the small touchpad are nevertheless a matter of getting used to.
Verdict: Great score for the third best laptop under 2000 Dollar
The Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX can convince in the test with its top performance.
Thanks to the top processor and RTX-2080 graphics chip, hardly any gaming wishes remain unfulfilled.
The display also delivers great pictures.
However, the equipment is lacking and the ultra-thin and light gaming notebook shows design pitfalls.
However, Asus has improved the ergonomics in comparison to its predecessor.
The ROG Zephyrus S GX701GX is a powerful device with triggers on the side.
Final Verdict: Best Laptops Under $2000
All in all, we can recommend every laptop in our best laptops under 2000 Dollar list.
However, there are better models for different needs.
If you want the best performance & the best laptop under 2000 Dollar without making any compromises you should go with the ROG Zephyrus M.
If you want to get the best price-performance ratio, you need to go with the Acer Predator Triton 500.
If you want to get the best budget laptop under 2000 Dollar you should go with the ASUS ROG Zephyrus S, which gives you amazing performance for the price.
We keep this listed updated, so you will get the newest best laptops under 2000 Dollar.