The Best 13” Laptops for Gaming (Ratings/Reviews)
Many of the best-selling gaming laptops feature 15 or 17 inch displays. For most PC gamers, a larger display (or multiple displays) enhances their experience. So, when a laptop screen is your primary, or only, display in your gaming rig, it’s understandable that 15 and 17 inch displays are more popular.
But, no two battlestations are built the same. The size of your working area, the budget you’re working with, and the overall aesthetics you’re looking to achieve will determine which is right for you.
There are a few scenarios in which a 13 inch gaming laptop is the perfect fit:
- If you have limited desk space and want to run two to three external monitors, a large laptop will take up too much space.
- If you’re constantly on the go and gaming in various locations, a 13 inch laptop will be much lighter and more portable than those with larger displays.
- If you’re docking your laptop or under mounting it on a shelf beneath your desk, there’s no need to spend the extra cash on a large display you won’t be using.
Is a 13-inch laptop too small for gaming?
Without the use of additional displays, many find that a 13-inch laptop is too small for gaming. However, since most PC gamers build setups with multiple monitors, there are several ways to integrate a 13-inch laptop successfully. Plus, 13-inch gaming laptops will generally cost less, and are more portable, than gaming laptops with 15”, 17”, or bigger displays.
Our team has researched and tested all of the most popular 13” gaming laptops on the market - excluding, of course, custom builds. The options are much more slim than gaming laptops with bigger resolutions, so it’s important to take some extra time in comparing each model before making your decision.
The three laptops we chose separate themselves from the pack in terms of performance and portability. If you’re a PC gamer seeking the best 13” laptop, look no further.
Top Three 13-Inch Gaming Laptops
1. ASUS Rog Flow X13 Supernova Edition
If budget isn’t a primary concern, ASUS made your choice for you. The Rog Flow X13 packs an incredibly powerful punch for its size. The main performance specs are in line with what you’d expect from a custom-built large form factor PC, but its compact nature makes the Rog Flow X13 extremely portable.
If the Supernova edition is outside of your price range, there are other versions which cost as low as $1,744.97. You won’t get quite the same hardware and specs on this model, but it is certainly comparable to the Razer and Alienware models below.
2. Razer Blade Stealth 13 Full HD Touch
The best 13 inch gaming laptop under $2000 is without a doubt the Razer Blade Stealth 13. For those who don’t care for touch screens, there is another model available without that functionality which will save you a couple hundred dollars. Similar to the ASUS model above, the Razer Blade Stealth 13 is very lightweight and compact. For gamers on the go, this is a great option.
The Razer chroma keyboard and precision glass touchpad perform exceptionally well, and the backlighting apparently comes with 16.8 million color options. (Note: we have found that 16.7 million just isn’t enough, so props to Razer on that.)
3. Alienware 13 R3
Alienware and gaming laptops have been synonymous for a long time. Their 13 R3 model is one of the best gaming laptops available under $1200, and has specs that rival a lot of more expensive gaming computers. The Alienware model is quite a bit less portable than the other two laptops. Yet, compared to 15 or 17 inch laptops (or desktop rigs), it is not too large or heavy to be transported from point A to B without much hassle.
This laptop is branded as VR-ready, and passes the Oculus Ready and Vive Optimized certifications. Reviewers rave about the effectiveness of the anti-glare finish which is fantastic for outdoor gaming.
|ASUS Rog Flow X13 Supernova Edition||Razer Blade Stealth 13 Full HD Touch||Alienware 13 R3|
|Graphics||NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650||NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q (4GB GDDR6 VRAM)||NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060|
|Processor||AMD Ryzen 9 5980HS, 3.1 GHz base||11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 Quad-Core 1. 3GHz/3. 9GHz (base/max turbo)||Intel Core i7-7700HQ (Quad-Core, 6MB Cache, 3.8GHz w/ Turbo Boost)|
|Memory||32GB||16GB dual-channel (fixed)||16GB DDR4 at 2400MHz (2x8GB)|
|Storage||1TB SSD||512GB SSD||512GB PCIe SSD|
|Display||13.4” 4K Ultra HD Touch (3840 x 2400)||13.3" OLED Full HD Touch 60Hz w/ 4.9 mm slim side bezel||13.3" FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS Anti-Glare 300-nits Display|
|Dimensions||8.74 x 11.8 x 0.62 inches||8.27 x 11.99 x 0.6 inches||10.59 x 12.99 x 9.44 inches|
|Weight||2.87 lbs||3.11 lbs||5.80 lbs|
Which is the most portable gaming laptop?
Coming in with a weight of just 2.87 pounds and dimensions of 8.74” x 11.8” x 0.62”, the ASUS Rog Flow X13 is the most portable gaming laptop available today. This laptop packs a serious punch of performance and can keep up with most custom-built, large form factor PCs. Plus, it’s size and weight (or lack thereof) makes it a breeze to bring from place to place.
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Now that you’ve selected the perfect 13” gaming laptop, finish your setup with the laptop stand and get to gaming!