When you’ve set your eye on the target and are about to press the trigger, the last thing you need is for your game to lag, or your laptop to overheat and shut itself down. That’s where the specifications and features make a huge difference.
The best gaming laptops out there are pitting themselves against the raw power of personal computers (PCs). They’re holding nothing back, when it comes to performance, portability, and price – the three factors that matter most when buying a gaming laptop.
We found that Acer’s wide range of offerings checks all those boxes, and more. With the world's most advanced graphics processing units (GPUs) – Nvidia GeForce RTX 30 series – these laptops are fully equipped to handle any game or task you throw at them. NVIDIA RTX is the most advanced platform for ray tracing and AI technologies that are revolutionising the way we play and create. They’re creating new benchmarks in technology, with DLSS for max quality and max performance, NVIDIA Reflex for lowest latency, NVIDIA Studio technology for fastest and efficient creative workflow, NVIDIA Broadcast for best quality streams, MaxQ technologies for optimising the performance and acoustics for peak efficiency with artificial intelligence (AI) boosted performance and stereoscopic 3D gaming. RTX is the new standard.
What better time to buy a gaming laptop than right now? Get your Acer favourite during the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) to take advantage of fantastic prices.
1. Best Overall: Predator Helios 300
- Excellent 1080p gaming
- Powerful Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 GPU
- Great cooling technology
- Refresh rate of up to 165Hz
- Good array of ports
- Battery life could be better
- No fingerprint reader
- No SD or microSD reader
Don’t be fooled by its sharp lines and cheerful RGB backlit keyboard – the Predator Helios 300 is a beast, in terms of hardware, pairing an impressive Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 GPU with an impressive 12th Gen Intel Core chip. Add to this, Acer’s decision to add 1TB SSD (solid-state drive) of storage to its Predator Helios 300 line-up, at the very minimum, and it’s enough to capture any gamer’s heart. The gaming notebook’s 15.6-inch screen presents incredibly realistic ray-traced graphics, and seamless gameplay, with a refresh rate of up to 165Hz or three millisecond response time. All this power does come at the cost of a middling battery that lasts just under six hours, or half that time with continuous gameplay, according to some reviewers. But you quickly forget about this drawback in the face of its many features – the laptop has a full range of ports, a high-quality webcam, and support for Wi-Fi 6E, giving you everything you need to wipe out your competition in online gaming.
2. Best Compact Gaming Laptop: Predator Triton 300 SE
- Slim, portable design
- Vivid OLED display
- Excellent 240Hz refresh rate
- Long battery life
- Cooling technology allows for hours of gameplay
- Memory is not upgradeable
- Screen reflects light in well-lit rooms, reviewers say
Most gaming laptops are on the bulkier end of the spectrum, with 15- to 17-inch screens as a norm, but Acer’s Predator Triton 300 SE proves that you can do more with less. This 14-inch laptop is compact and sleeker than most, but still packs impressive specifications under its chassis. With Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU, and a 12th generation Intel Core i7 processor, it impressively marries performance with portability. It’s also supported by Acer’s AeroBlade 3D Fan, which generates 55 per cent more airflow than a plastic fan and has other enhanced cooling concepts to keep the laptop game-ready, always. Did we mention the Predator Triton 300 SE includes a gorgeous WQXGA (wide quad extended graphics array) screen? This means incredibly realistic details, vivid colours and superb contrast – on the downside, some reviewers said its mirror-sheen surface causes excessive glare in well-lit rooms and tends to attract dust. Still, with productivity that’s on par with much larger devices, and top-notch cinematic gaming, it’s a powerful device that you can use for both work and play.
3. Best Premium Gaming Laptop: Predator Triton 500 SE
- Bright, crisp display
- RGB backlit keyboard
- Blazing 240Hz refresh rate
- Supports Wi-Fi 6E
- Excellent array of ports
- Battery drains quickly
- Cooling fans are noisy if you switch off whisper mode, according to reviewers
The Predator Triton 500 SE may seem pricey at first glance, but take a look at all its specs, and you’ll find it’s a bargain for a high-end gaming laptop in the current market. The device uses Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3080 Ti GPU and an Intel Core i9 Processor (12th Gen) to ensure gaming performance that’s difficult to beat. Its 16-inch display features a slightly taller 16:10 aspect ratio, which gives you more gaming real estate. And with a screen refresh rate hiked to a blistering 240Hz, it means incredibly smooth, immersive gameplay that hardcore gamers will appreciate. Reviewers caution that it’s best not to play graphics-intensive games solely on battery power, since the powerful RTX 3080 graphics card can drain the battery in a little over an hour. But Acer’s MUX (multiplexer) switching technology does swap between the GPU and its more energy-efficient integrated graphics, so you can stretch out gameplay for longer when you need to. All things considered, if you’ve been looking to harness the raw power of a desktop gaming PC in a portable device, the Triton 500 SE is the one to get.
4. Best 3D Gaming Laptop: Predator Helios 300 Spatial Labs
- Powerful gaming interface
- Bright, vibrant display
- Smooth 3D experience
- Heavy, bulky device
What if you could play 3D games, with no glasses or any other special gear? Just equip yourself with Predator Helios 300 Spatial Labs. It features a 15.6-inch IPS (in-plane switching) panel display that you can use in regular 2D mode, or switch via the SpatialLabs TrueGame app to a fully stereoscopic 3D screen. The experience is created through the combination of an eye-tracking solution and real-time rendering technologies. But reviewers didn’t just stop at 3D gaming – they successfully extended the 3D effect to their photos, videos, and video calls. Apart from the obvious draw, this premium laptop has all the bells and whistles you’d expect – it’s powerful and features features Nvidia RTX 3080 GPU and a 12th Gen Intel Core i9 processor. It has an island-style keyboard with Pulsar Lighting technology that treats you to a gamut of colours that you can customise. Its battery lasts about six hours, and its AeroBlade 3D fan technology keeps it cool as you push it to the limit. The Predator Helios 300 Spatial Labs is something else, and if you’re willing to splurge, fans of 3D gaming say it is well worth its price.
5. Best Budget Gaming Laptop: Nitro 5
- Steady gaming performance
- Four-zone RGB keyboard
- Excellent 144Hz display
- Strong port selection
- Simple design
When you’re on the hunt for a budget gaming laptop, it’s difficult to find a device that doesn’t force you to compromise on the essentials. Acer Nitro 5 gives you solid performance, at a wallet-friendly price. It features Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 30 Series GPU (configurable) with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7 processor, with 1TB storage for all your big games. The laptop’s RGB backlit keyboard allows you to customise up to four zones, and its dual speakers, with DTS:X Ultra, deliver clear audio in a 3D spatial soundscape. You may not find the gamer aesthetics of Acer’s Predator series in this laptop’s design, but that’s the trade-off you’re making for its great price. Reviewers say it’s a small sacrifice they’re happy to make, for this powerful laptop.
Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission from Acer.