There’s no question that you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to PC gaming hardware, making it more of a decision as to what your setup requires rather than available power when deciding between a dedicated gaming desktop or gaming laptop. Most of the crucial questions you need to ask yourself haven’t changed over the years, but what has is your options; there are far more gaming laptops of different types today than there ever has been, complicating the decision slightly if you find yourself in the middle. We’ve compared gaming desktops vs. gaming laptops below: Here’s what to consider when shopping for either, and what options might be the best for your use case and budget.
There are three main factors to consider when comparing both gaming laptops and desktops: overall performance, portability, and price. These are where you’ll find the biggest differences, often with concessions in one impacting the other two in considerable ways. For the most part, desktop gaming PCs are more powerful and cheaper than identically setup laptops, with portability factoring into the discrepancy heavily. That doesn’t mean that the decision is as clear cut as that, and you’ll see how many top-tier gaming laptops deliver some of the best gaming performances out there while being stellar workstations that you can pop into a backpack without breaking your back.
This is the easiest factor to help you decide between a desktop and a laptop: do you need to carry it around? Sure, there are ways to make desktop PCs incredibly small, especially with the popularity recently of the mini-ITX chassis and boutique micro-builds. Despite that, carrying around a mini-ITX PC is still far, far harder than just throwing a gaming laptop into a backpack, even when you’re looking at the chunkiest ones out there.