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Gamereactor's Hardware Awards 2019: Best Gaming Laptop

Cramming extreme performance into a small chassis is an art and these are the laptops that did it best in 2019.

Laptops have always had serious limitations when going up against desktop computers, as the manufacturers have to push something very powerful, heavy and hot into as little space as possible while keeping the weight and temperature down and without compromising the performance of the product. Although one machine may differ in its approach from another on this list, you will see a number of themes and structural similarities, and we're also gradually finding that while the basic components of most comparable laptops are the same, it's up to each manufacturer to make its monitors, its cooling and extra features stand out.

Winner: Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX502

Manufacturers creating something truly different in the laptop space is fairly rare. However, Asus chose, a few generations ago, to abandon the traditional cooling template. The company's move away from traditional cooling inspired it to create its Active Aerodynamic System solution, which is the marketing language that explains how the entire bottom of the device opens up and gives a huge increase to both the cooling surface as well as the achievable airflow. This solution made it so that the computer, despite its extremely compact size and very slim profile, could achieve impressive numbers with regards to cooling.

The display is of a slightly newer variety, that is, Asus has chosen to Pantone colour calibrate it at the factory, and it also comes with 240Hz support. In addition, the ROG Zephyrus S GX502 isn't too pricey either.

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Runner-up: Razer Blade Stealth (2019)

The Razer Blade Stealth sits at a strange place on the market. Sure, it's an ultrabook, but it also houses a GTX1650 graphics card that can manage most titles at a reasonable quality. Thus, it's a gaming ultrabook.

As expected, the laptop is extremely nice, weighs in at a mere 1.4kg and is just 15 millimetres thick. At the same time, it sports Intel's latest i7-1065G7 CPU and is even available in a 4K variant if the resolution is important to you.

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Runner-up: MSI GE 65 Raider 9SF
MSI joined the fight in 2019 as well and it went in strong, especially with the 240Hz display in its Raider range, which is a bit more affordable than most of its competitors. However, by essentially keeping up with the specifications of the Asus GX502, the Raider 9SF is hardly cheap.

MSI's offering doesn't just offer great components, it also boasts a massive cooling solution since half of its underside is perforated to increase airflow, as well as offering extremely fine performance overall. The build of the computer is a bit more cheaply made than our Asus winner, but that's also reflected in the price.

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Runner-up: Razer Blade 15 (2019)

Beautiful, slim, lightweight and equipped with various levels of components within, there are plenty of options with this lovely machine. Most importantly, however, even with an RTX 2070 Max-Q, this machine is very quiet, and even at full tilt we never got noise levels above 33dB and no components went above 83 degrees temperature-wise, so the cooling is undoubtedly phenomenal as well. Razer, as usual, does not disappoint.

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