Gaming Desktop vs. Gaming Laptop: Which Is Better For You?

truerock

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My son dropped his notebook PC a few weeks ago and we got into repairing it.
We ended up ordering a few parts from China and found a local distributor of LCD displays for notebooks.
It had been a few years since I tore down a notebook PC.
Here is the thing in regard to this article.
Why has there never been a BYO notebook industry develop?
First of all, it is absolutely unnecessary for every notebook manufacturer to custom design a new system board form-factor for every notebook version they develop. It is a complete waste of time and money and creates no value.
This is especially true now - when HDDs are no longer used in notebook PCs.
The only possible issue I can think of is the issue with very-thin notebook PCs that Apple started - but, that is outside of what I am writing about here.
There really should be a standard 9 inch by 12 inch by 1 inch notebook PC frame, and a standard notebook PC system-board form factor that would allow anyone to put together their own BYO notebook PC.
 
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nofanneeded

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What kind of comparison is this ?

no one compares Gaming desktop against gaming notebook. they are two different products , one for use outside home and where Electricity is not around , and the other is for home at the desktop.

They are not comparable ,
 

Gurg

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I would like to see a comparison of benchmarks using a $2400 gaming laptop vs a comparably fully equipped desktop including all the items included in the price of the laptop (ie W10, keyboard, camera, speakers, cooling, fans, PSU, nvme ssd, monitor etc) .

The MSI GS 75 Stealth 1074 Gaming is selling for $2400. A comparable equipped fully priced 9600k w/ 2080 super, and similar peripherals including, case, speakers, monitor, camera, keyboard W10, 32gb RAM, 1T NVME would come in at about the same price. While I'm sure the desktop with overclocked memory, CPU and GPU would out perform the laptop, it would be very interested in seeing just how close the two were in benchmarks both before and after the OC.

https://www.newegg.com/matte-black-with-gold-diamond-cut-msi-gs-series-gs75-stealth-1074-gaming-entertainment/p/N82E16834155329?Item=N82E16834155329&quicklink=true
 
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USAFRet

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The MSI GS 75 Stealth 1074 Gaming is selling for $2400. A comparable equipped fully priced 9600k w/ 2080 super, and similar peripherals including, case, speakers, monitor, camera, keyboard W10, 32gb RAM, 1T NVME would come in at about the same price. While I'm sure the desktop with overclocked memory, CPU and GPU would out perform the laptop, it would be very interested in seeing just how close the two were in benchmarks both before and after the OC.
Slightly cheaper, much larger monitor, full size kbd.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i7-9700K 3.6 GHz 8-Core Processor ($369.99 @ Best Buy)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i RGB PLATINUM 75 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($159.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus ROG STRIX Z370-G GAMING (WI-FI AC) Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($329.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: OLOy 32 GB (2 x 16 GB) DDR4-3200 Memory ($134.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 970 Evo 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($179.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce RTX 2080 8 GB FTW3 ULTRA HYBRID GAMING Video Card ($623.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Meshify C ATX Mid Tower Case ($98.99 @ Walmart)
Power Supply: Corsair RM (2019) 750 W 80+ Gold Certified Fully Modular ATX Power Supply ($124.99 @ Best Buy)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($109.99 @ B&H)
Monitor: BenQ GL2460HM 24.0" 1920x1080 60 Hz Monitor ($111.99 @ Amazon)
Keyboard: Corsair K55 RGB Wired Gaming Keyboard ($39.99 @ Amazon)
Mouse: Logitech G502 HERO Wired Optical Mouse ($46.99 @ Amazon)
Speakers: Logitech Z200 0 nW 2.0 Channel Speakers ($20.99 @ Best Buy)
Total: $2352.86
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-04-11 18:27 EDT-0400
 
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Gurg

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desktop.


the only advantage a laptop has is portability.

it will lose in every other thing. (including price as you pay the laptop tax)

too long an article for a simple answer.
If your power goes out your PC just sits there while your laptop will run for maybe 8 hours on battery.
 

Gurg

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Slightly cheaper, much larger monitor, full size kbd.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i7-9700K 3.6 GHz 8-Core Processor ($369.99 @ Best Buy)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i RGB PLATINUM 75 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($159.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus ROG STRIX Z370-G GAMING (WI-FI AC) Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($329.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: OLOy 32 GB (2 x 16 GB) DDR4-3200 Memory ($134.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 970 Evo 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($179.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce RTX 2080 8 GB FTW3 ULTRA HYBRID GAMING Video Card ($623.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Meshify C ATX Mid Tower Case ($98.99 @ Walmart)
Power Supply: Corsair RM (2019) 750 W 80+ Gold Certified Fully Modular ATX Power Supply ($124.99 @ Best Buy)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($109.99 @ B&H)
Monitor: BenQ GL2460HM 24.0" 1920x1080 60 Hz Monitor ($111.99 @ Amazon)
Keyboard: Corsair K55 RGB Wired Gaming Keyboard ($39.99 @ Amazon)
Mouse: Logitech G502 HERO Wired Optical Mouse ($46.99 @ Amazon)
Speakers: Logitech Z200 0 nW 2.0 Channel Speakers ($20.99 @ Best Buy)
Total: $2352.86
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-04-11 18:27 EDT-0400
Throw in a camera and the price is almost identical.
 

Gurg

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Yes. Same price.

Now...compare performance at stock and upgradability...;)
Not disagreeing, but wish there was a comparison to the gaming and performance benchmarks to see how the laptop measures up and just how far off it is from a comparable prices desktop. Is the difference 5%, 10% 30%?????? Some of the high end gaming laptops are being touted as desktop replacements----are they?

Maybe when TH reviews the new 10th gen Intel equipped laptops it could run a comparison benchmarks to similar desktop components.
 
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hotaru251

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If your power goes out your PC just sits there while your laptop will run for maybe 8 hours on battery.
cost of a gaming desktop and a UPS is still less than cost of a gaming laptop. (personally i have a ups always atatched just incase)

and sure, u can play on battery of a laptop...but you aint getting 8hrs of gaming xD
(and w/o modem you arent getting net...unless you turn on bluetooth and drain battery that way)
 
Cost of Gaming Desktops vs. Laptops
Winner: Tie. A custom desktop is cheapest, but that’s before the display and peripherals.
You can't compare a laptop with a 1660 Ti Max-Q versus a desktop with a 1660 Ti. Those two cards are not even close in performance, despite Nvidia's deceptive naming scheme suggesting otherwise. The desktop 1660 Ti is over 30% faster than the laptop "Max-Q" variant, which isn't even as fast as a 1650 SUPER, a card that can be had for as little as $160. The desktop 1660 Ti even outperforms a laptop 2060, let alone the lower-powered 2060 Max-Q. And since graphics hardware will tend to affect gaming performance more than anything else, you should make a point of matching that more than anything. A closer comparison might be between a desktop with a 1660 SUPER versus a laptop with a 2060, or between a desktop with a 1650 SUPER versus a laptop with a 1660 Ti Max-Q.

And even on the other hardware, a desktop i5-9400 outperforms a 9300H by a decent margin. Even an $85 Ryzen 1600 AF should be a better processor for gaming than that. It seems like the article was going out of its way to prove a point that the desktop would cost just as much as a gaming laptop once you add peripherals, when that's really not the case if you actually attempt to match performance. This build should match or exceed the performance of that $1,050 laptop, while coming in at around $600...

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 1600 (14nm) 3.2 GHz 6-Core Processor ($85.00)
Motherboard: Gigabyte B450M DS3H Micro ATX AM4 Motherboard ($72.98 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V Series 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 Memory ($72.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Intel 660p 512 GB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($72.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER 4 GB OC Video Card ($159.99 @ B&H)
Case: Phanteks P300 ATX Mid Tower Case ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic FOCUS 550 W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply ($89.99 @ B&H)
Total: $613.93
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-04-11 18:55 EDT-0400


I went with a better PSU, but one could arguably cheap out on that like the article did to save another $25 or so. A lot of people may have a monitor and peripherals already, but those wouldn't cost much to add if needed. A 24" 1080p monitor can be had for as little as $100, or a 21.5" model for even less. And even a $20 keyboard will likely be as good for gaming as whatever the laptop has. As for a mouse, you'll need one for the laptop as well, since gaming on a trackpad isn't going to be practical. The same goes for speakers or headphones, since the one's built into a laptop are generally not particularly good. Who doesn't have headphones though?

Even if we figure in the cost of a Windows license from a proper retailer, the desktop would still be over $200 less, while providing a slightly better gaming experience. And of course, if we put that $200 toward the system, we could move up from a 1650 SUPER to something like a 2060 SUPER or 5700 XT, cards that will be around twice as fast. To claim that a gaming desktop would cost as much as a gaming laptop once peripherals are added in is a bit silly, when such a desktop would be running demanding games roughly twice as well.

There really should be a standard 9 inch by 12 inch by 1 inch notebook PC frame, and a standard notebook PC system-board form factor that would allow anyone to put together their own BYO notebook PC.
The problem is, different components will have different cooling requirements. What might work fine for cooling a low-end gaming laptop probably won't for a higher-end model. That's why higher-powered gaming laptops tend be rather bulky, making them a bit impractical from a portability standpoint. And non-gaming laptops would need less cooling still. You also have things like the size of the battery that can change depending on the needs of the system. The main advantage of laptops is that they are portable, but to make the system as portable as possible, you ideally need to build it around the components that it's intended to be used with.

If your power goes out your PC just sits there while your laptop will run for maybe 8 hours on battery.
Except you might not have internet access unless your router and modem are on battery backup as well, and in the case of gaming laptops, you probably won't be gaming on battery power for more than an hour before the battery runs down. If you just want to use it to browse the web or do other desktop tasks, you don't need a gaming laptop for that.

In my opinion, most people looking for a gaming PC would probably be better off with a desktop. If they want a laptop for taking with them places for non-gaming tasks, then they can get something like a thin and light 2-in-1 with the money saved, which should be a lot more portable, and will generally offer better run-time. So, better performance for gaming when at home, and better portability when on the go, rather than a single system that does kind of a mediocre job at both.
 

IceQueen0607

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Why is this even a review? Laptops offer nothing except absurd prices for what you get.

Unless you're into overheating and throttling. Poor support, long downtime if you have problems, lack of configuration, customization and BIOS options. And the screens are so damn small and fragile.

Damn microphones and webcams you can't disable or remove. And a total lack of options.
 

Deicidium369

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My son dropped his notebook PC a few weeks ago and we got into repairing it.
We ended up ordering a few parts from China and found a local distributor of LCD displays for notebooks.
It had been a few years since I tore down a notebook PC.
Here is the thing in regard to this article.
Why has there never been a BYO notebook industry develop?
First of all, it is absolutely unnecessary for every notebook manufacturer to custom design a new system board form-factor for every notebook version they develop. It is a complete waste of time and money and creates no value.
This is especially true now - when HDDs are no longer used in notebook PCs.
The only possible issue I can think of is the issue with very-thin notebook PCs that Apple started - but, that is outside of what I am writing about here.
There really should be a standard 9 inch by 12 inch by 1 inch notebook PC frame, and a standard notebook PC system-board form factor that would allow anyone to put together their own BYO notebook PC.
There have been a few attempts - just never seemed to get off the ground - small niche in a small market. Similar to the roll your own cell phone - cool idea on paper, terrible implementation

Kudos on taking that project on
 

nofanneeded

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Keep in mind that gaming notebooks will not last long if they work full load for a long time ... what ever they claim about the cooling , a 50-60mm fans will never live long nor cool the CPU enough if you use the notebooks full load for hours daily .. unlike desktops..

The person who prefers Notebook at home over desktop needs to think it over.

Also, the Keyboard and trackpad gets dirty beyond cleaning after a year or so ... and will look ugly , the grease from your hand will leave permanent traces on the trackpad and keys ... with a desktop you just replace the keyboard and mouse when they get dirty and ugly.


Even if they are priced Equal , Desktops for home win .
 
Gaming desktop I am isolated in my room/office. However I can play at 1440p 144Hz with the latest AAA games.

Gaming laptop I can put on a little lap table and play on the sofa while still interacting with my wife. This is 1080p 144Hz but I tend to play games from a couple of years ago keeping the latest for my desktop where they are best played.

Im lucky enough I can have both. Each has its place and I do use both regularly.
 
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nofanneeded

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Gaming desktop I am isolated in my room/office. However I can play at 1440p 144Hz with the latest AAA games.

Gaming laptop I can put on a little lap table and play on the sofa while still interacting with my wife. This is 1080p 144Hz but I tend to play games from a couple of years ago keeping the latest for my desktop where they are best played.

Im lucky enough I can have both. Each has its place and I do use both regularly.
I am surprised your wife did not divorce you yet lol gaming on the sofa while your wife is near?
 

watzupken

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I feel this is a meaningless comparison. Typically people choose a gaming laptop because they want the mobility and convenience, or even due to space constraints at home. There is absolutely no way a gaming laptop will ever get close to a desktop in terms of performance, assuming both costs the same.
 

salgado18

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What kind of comparison is this ?
Why is this even a review?
I feel this is a meaningless comparison.
I've often had to explain to people that a desktop for work is better than a laptop, except for portability. Where I work, some people move around tables and offices, so a laptop is a good call, but many others don't so a desktop would be cheaper or more powerful, and more future-proof.
Instead of speaking endlessly to many people, I can just send them the link to this. Not everyone understands the differente (to many, an i7-2700 is the same as an i7-9700, because they just know the i7 name, let alone understand thermals and upgradeability).
 
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Interesting that in your price comparisons everyone leaves out the cost of the Windows License. Yes, most people gets theirs 'for free', but if you want to be fair you must account for it.

In my case I went for a laptop because it was SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper for me! I purchased a Lenovo gaming laptop for $649 on a deal and I am extremely happy. The thing is just about the target audience:

I am an adult, with a family and a full time job. I like gaming, but I only play in sessions of 1 hour, 2 at most -- and on weekends or slow nights. Now during the quarantine, I play more but still 4-5 hours. The thing is, gaming can be a costly hobby that many 'Normal' people are not willing to take. It is time consuming as well -- I remember my younger years when I literally spent more time tweaking and tweaking and tweaking my PC -- constantly swapping components, playing with BIOS settings, changing timings, overclocking and running benchmarks to manage to see that FPS counter go from 59 to 60 and cheer. The fun thing is I remember spending more time in that hobby than actual game-time. Gaming was for me almost as the Car Tuning hobby is: build the best racetrack car that you will actually race once a year, or maybe never at all. You won't go to Walmart on it for groceries.

Nowadays, I have a PS4 Pro, a Switch, a RetroPie AND a Cheap Gaming Laptop. The main use of my laptop is gaming, but the main goal is to BE ENTERTAINED. Nowadays, I don't need 200 FPS with 5K Freesync HDR Raytracing Ultra Particle Settings -- I just want a Better-or-Equal-to Experience to a PS4 Pro and this cheap laptop delivers. I can play Doom Eternal, Shadow of Tomb Raider, Control, etc at a solid 60. Yes, on my cheap laptop I need to tune down to Medium and play 1080 at most -- BUT I CAN PLAY and have a BETTER than a Console Experience!

I literally tried as many combinations as possible to have an equivalent PC and when I started adding components I quickly reached the $700 mark: Heck: A good compact ITX case, a decent PSU and a Windows License already gets you halfway that mark.

I think is a matter of managing your expectations and needs. If you want the most intense, detailed, extreme gaming experience, get a PC and make sure you spend over $1500 on it. If you want to have fun, play and still have money left for LIFE, get a $1000 or LESS gaming laptop. You can play out of the box and have a good time.
 
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I specifically included a full price Win 10 Home license in my parts list.
I see that, and you did a great job on that list!

Inspired, I tried to re-create my Cheapo Crappy Lenovo L340 Gaming i5 using the same site, and the best I could come to was around $740.00, which is almost a $100 more than what I paid and with a crappier mix of component brands. So I have extra convenience for less price, which is my main point in favor of Gaming Laptops against PCs. Both have their markets, and depending on it, there are winners and losers.
 

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