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Gaming PCs vs Laptops Weighing Up the Pros and Cons

by Tim

Traditionally, desktop computers that come with towers, separate screens, monitors, and keyboards have been the preferred option for gamers, and the main reason for this is that they are more powerful than their laptop counterparts.

However, both platforms have pros and cons, which we will be closely examining right here.

Which platform is better for gaming, a laptop or a desktop computer with a tower?

At the end of the day, it all boils down to what device/platform you prefer for gaming as an individual. Some people prefer laptops, while others prefer desktop computers, and nothing will be able to change your opinion, no matter how good one particular device is.

For example, a desktop computer might be more powerful for handling hours of playing the more graphically demanding, high-end triple-A video games, but you might still prefer the convenience laptop gaming offers.

Therefore, no matter how powerful desktop computers are compared to laptops or how convincing the argument might be that desktop computers are better than laptops for gaming, you will always be the kind of player who prefers gaming from a laptop.

There are many things to consider when comparing the two different platforms, and both have their advantages and disadvantages.

Although desktop computers are often the number one choice for gamers, dedicated gaming laptops have become more prevalent in recent years, thanks to huge various significant advancements in laptop technology (hardware and software).

If you only like to play casual games, puzzle games, and Indie games online, traditional table & card games or any other computer-generated games like online slot machines on licensed and regulated ‘sweepstakes’ casinos or ‘regular’ online casinos, then pretty much any cheap modern laptop or desktop computer will do.

If you’re now wondering what sweepstakes casinos are, now that we’ve mentioned them, you can find a comprehensive guide to sweeps casinos on the globally renowned CasinoLifeMagazine.com iGaming review site.

Budget laptops and towers are also great for playing classic games, retro games, arcade games, and all other games that don’t require too much computing power. You won’t need anything powerful to run these games.

Things to consider before buying a desktop computer tower or laptop

When comparing desktop computers and laptops, some of the most important things to consider are the following:

  • Price/cost/value for money
  • How well certain games perform
  • Day-to-day function and what kind of features the device has
  • Portability
  • Power consumption, heat, noise
  • Cooling system (liquid-cooled systems are better for gaming but far more expensive)
  • RAM (Random Access Memory)
  • CPU (Central Processing Unit or motherboard)
  • GPU (Graphics Processing Unit)

If you decide to invest in a PC desktop computer, you will also need to invest in various other items, such as a gaming desk, gaming chair, mouse, keyboard, screen/monitor (curved screens are excellent for playing open-world games, but super-expensive), a webcam, sound system, and headset/headphones.

Some of these gaming peripherals will also be required for laptops, but you won’t have to think about additional items like desks, chairs, monitors, and keyboards when buying a gaming laptop.

Pros and cons of laptops and desktop computers for gaming

  • Laptops are lightweight, portable and easier to move around. Desktops are clunky, static, and aren’t easy to move around
  • Laptops come with a built-in display, touchpad, and keyboard, so there is no need for multiple external devices, unlike desktop computers
  • Laptops can be plugged into the mains or run on battery power alone (however, when playing high-end games, batteries often run out of life). You never have to worry about batteries dying when gaming from a tower
  • Laptops are easy to set up. You’re pretty much ready to go as soon as it’s out of the box. Desktop computers can take a while to set up
  • Gaming laptops are cheaper than gaming desktop computers
  • The best gaming laptops are not as powerful or reliable as the best gaming desktop computers
  • Desktop computers are easy to upgrade, whereas most gaming laptops aren’t so easy to upgrade

Final thoughts

Before deciding whether to get a PC desktop computer or laptop, you must consider your gaming needs by weighing up the pros and cons of both items of hardware.

You may find that a specific type of laptop built specifically for gaming might trump the tower you have had your eye on, or vice versa.

Also, don’t forget that some of the more powerful gaming laptops are much better than the cheaper, low-end gaming PC towers, meaning the PC desktop computer doesn’t always win when it comes to gaming.

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