Notebookcheck

Notebookcheck's Top 10 Slim & Light Gaming Laptops

Florian Glaser, Sabine Kückemanns (translated by Andreas Osthoff), 08/01/2017

July 2019 Update. Here you will find the latest best slim and lightweight mobile gaming notebooks reviewed by Notebookcheck. Our list of top models is regularly updated, maintained and commented on and should assist in purchase decisions.

"Mobile gaming" - what sounded like a bad joke a few years ago has already become common practice; at least in the notebook range. Processors and graphics cards are getting smaller and more power-efficient, which makes cooling easier. As a result, powerful components can be packed into slimmer and slimmer cases. Although 17-inch powerhouses still dominate (see our 17-inch gaming notebook charts), the 15-inch and smaller range is steadily growing; keyword: "slim gaming". More gaming rankings from Notebookcheck:

The following table shows an overview of the Top 10 gaming laptops reviewed by Notebookcheck in the previous 12 months that weigh less than 2.5 kg and are still available. If ratings are equal, the latest review is listed first. You can sort the table by clicking its headers or via text filter (e.g. "matte").

Best Slim & Light Gaming Laptops as of July 2019

Pos.RatingDateImageModelWeightHeightSizeResolutionScreenBest Price
189%02/2019Razer Blade 15 RTX 2070 Max-QRazer Blade 15 RTX 2070 Max-Q
Intel Core i7-8750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 512 GB NVMe
2.1 kg17.8 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
287%05/2019Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XAGigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 512 GB NVMe
2.1 kg19 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
387%06/2019MSI GS65 Stealth 9SGMSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
32 GB Memory, 512 GB NVMe
2 kg18 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
487%02/2019Acer Predator Triton 500Acer Predator Triton 500
Intel Core i7-8750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
32 GB Memory, 512 GB SSD
2.1 kg18 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
586%05/2019Asus Zephyrus S GX502GWAsus Zephyrus S GX502GW
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
32 GB Memory, 1024 GB SSD
2.1 kg19 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
686%06/2019
neu!
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SGMSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
32 GB Memory, 2048 GB SSD
2.3 kg18.9 mm17.3"1920x1080matte
785%04/2019Asus Zephyrus S GX531GXAsus Zephyrus S GX531GX
Intel Core i7-8750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 512 GB SSD
2.1 kg15.75 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
885%08/2018MSI GS73 Stealth 8RF-011MSI GS73 Stealth 8RF-011
Intel Core i7-8750H
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 256 GB SSD
2.4 kg19.6 mm17.3"1920x1080matte
984%09/2018Monster Tulpar T5 V18.1.1Monster Tulpar T5 V18.1.1
Intel Core i7-8750H
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
32 GB Memory, 480 GB SSD
2.1 kg19.9 mm15.6"1920x1080matte

Top 10 of the previous 12 months at the time of writing, current articles are listed first
Link: all reviewed gaming notebooks with a size of 15-inch or smaller, ordered by rating

Editors' Comments

1st - Razer Blade 15

Razer Blade 15
Razer Blade 15

Displays with slim bezels are not only sexy to look at, but they are also very trendy among gaming laptops. Besides the Gigabyte Aero 15Acer Predator Triton 500, and Asus ROG Strix GL504, the 2019 model of the Razer Blade 15 features an edge-to-edge screen as well. The stylish metal body is one of the most noble, high-quality and best assembled chassis you can get. Keyboard, touchpad, and display (144 Hz) do not have to hide behind the competition, either.

The 15-inch laptop is packed with high-end components, despite its compact dimensions. This includes the Core i7-8750H, GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q and NVMe-SSD storage. You can adjust both the software and hardware (like RGB illumination) comprehensively via Razer Synapse. Thanks to the good cooling solution, the notebook does not get very loud or warm, either. The port selection (no card reader, no RJ45 Ethernet) on the other hand could be better. Gamers with a focus on design and ambitions to travel cannot go wrong, though.

Pricecompare

2nd - Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA

Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA

The wolf in sheep's clothing: This is a good description for the Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XAGigabyte Aero 15-Y9 (i9-8950HK, RTX 2080 Max-Q) Laptop ReviewGigabyte Aero 15-X9 (Core i7-8750H, RTX 2070 Max-Q) Laptop Review. While typical gaming notebooks are pretty bulky and/or heavy with playful designs, Gigabyte uses a slim, light, and sturdy case with an understated design for its 15-inch laptop. Only the RGB illumination of the keyboard hints at the gaming ambitions.

Under the hood, you get high-end hardware like the Intel Core i7-9750H Intel Core i9-8950HK SoCand Nvidia's GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, which results in high temperatures under 3D load. You also get an accurate and bright 4K panel, but it only runs at 60 Hz. Gigabyte still ignores G-Sync and supports Optimus for longer battery runtimes instead. We think this is a good decision considering the mobility aspect.

Pricecompare

3rd – MSI GS65 9SG

MSI GS65 9SG
MSI GS65 9SG

At the time of writing, MSI had a total of three notebooks in our mobile gaming top 10 list. N addition to the GS73 8RF and the GS75 8SG the GS65 9SG recently also made our top 10. The 15-inch notebook is ideal for gamers on the road thanks to its low weight of just 2 kg (4.4 lbs). G-Sync is not available in favor of Optimus, which boosts battery life quite significantly.

Its 3D prowess is noteworthy thanks to a GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q that can easily outperform last year’s GTX 1080 and is capable of running all current games smoothly on the built-in 240 Hz FHD panel. Other hardware includes 32 GB of DDR4 RAM, a 512 GB SSD, and a Core i7-9750H CPU. Compared to its competitors the case was only mediocre at best as it turned out to be less robust and not as easy to maintain and upgrade.

Pricecompare

4th - Acer Predator Triton 500

Acer Predator Triton 500
Acer Predator Triton 500

While the 2017 Predator Triton 700 could not fully convince us due to its unusual placement of the input devices and the thick bezels, the Triton 500 leaves a much better impression. With the exception of the limited maintenance and the missing graphics switching, which would be a great fit for such a mobile device, Acer did not make any major mistakes.

We do not only like the metal surfaces of the 15-inch chassis, but also the Thunderbolt 3 port as well as the 144 Hz panel with G-Sync support. The necessary gaming performance is provided by the six-core CPU and a GeForce RTX 2080 in the efficient Max-Q design.

Pricecompare

5th - Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX502GW

Asus ROG GX502
Asus ROG GX502

While the keyboard and the touchpad of the GX531 were located at the front halt of the laptop, the brand-new GX502 uses a classic layout and we prefer it this way. Despite the smaller dimensions, Asus still implements a full-fledged GeForce RTX 2070. Other advantages include the 144 Hz panel with accurate colors, the nice design as well as the RGB illumination. We also appreciate the choice between G-Sync and Optimus.

The device loses points for the soldered RAM, the loud fans and the meager sound. Thunderbolt 3 and a card reader would have been nice, too.

Pricecompare

6th – MSI GS75 9SG

MSI GS75 9SG
MSI GS75 9SG

If you prefer large displays you might be delighted by the fact that MSI offers its GS65 with a large 17-inch display. The flagship model reviewed by us, the GS75 9SG, is equipped with a Core i7-9750H, a GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 32 GB of DDR4 RAM, and an SSD RAID comprised of two 1 TB drives. Other benefits include its low weight, its slim chassis, its decent battery life, and last but not least its 144 Hz display with narrow bezels.

However, the case was a mixed bag overall. As much as we liked design and quality of material its stability was in need of improvement. In addition, fan control and maintanence options could also benefit from some fine tuning.

Pricecompare

7th - Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531

Asus ROG GX531
Asus ROG GX531

The ROG Zephyrus S GX531 (now also available with Turing GPUs) represents the successor the GX501, which was very innovative at its launch. As it is common for a mobile laptop from 2018, the bezels are much slimmer, and the device is also slimmer.

However, we think Asus tries a bit too hard with the diet, because the GX531 does not only get warmer than other gaming systems in our Top 10, but also louder (which is partly caused by the mediocre fan control). The unusual position of the input devices takes some time getting used to, and potential buyers might also be scared off by the limited number of ports (no Thunderbolt 3, no RJ45-LAN, no card reader), the limited maintenance, and the small battery. The laptop still manages a good score thanks to the stylish, high-quality, and conveniently light case. We also like the RGB illumination as well as the responsive 144 Hz panel.

Pricecompare

8th - MSI GS73 8RF

MSI GS73 8RF
MSI GS73 8RF

Even though MSI did not change the chassis compared to the GS73VR 7RG, buyers also expect a good and slim 17-inch laptop in 2018. This means the GS73 8RF is not only comfortable light (2.4 kg) for gaming purposes, but also pleasantly slim (19.6 mm).

You still get potential hardware. The GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q has absolutely no problem with the native resolution of the test model. The high-contrast 120 Hz TN display features 1920 x 1080 pixels. We like the RGB illumination of the keyboard as well as the fast card reader, but not so much the port layout, the sound, and the temperatures during 3D workloads. A WLAN battery runtime of 3.5 hours is not really good, either, despite the lack of G-Sync support.

Pricecompare

9th - Monster Tulpar T5

Monster Tulpar T5
Monster Tulpar T5

The Tulpar T5 from the Turkish notebook manufacturer is based on a barebone from Tonfang, more precisely the GK5CN6Z chassis. It is pretty exotic, which is supported by the keyboard. We get more and more mechanical keyboards, but they are still rare on machines for less than 2000 Euros. We also like the RGB illumination and the slim-bezel design of the 144 Hz panel.

There are also some drawbacks like the sound, the battery capacity, and the performance of the card reader, bu we think the main issue is the poor fan control. A Thunderbolt 3 port would have improved the score as well.

Pricecompare

10th - currently vacant

Top 10 in Comparison

Size Comparison

412 mm / 16.2 inch 285 mm / 11.2 inch 19.6 mm / 0.772 inch 2.4 kg5.31 lbs396 mm / 15.6 inch 259 mm / 10.2 inch 18.9 mm / 0.744 inch 2.3 kg5.03 lbs360 mm / 14.2 inch 252 mm / 9.92 inch 19 mm / 0.748 inch 2.1 kg4.55 lbs359 mm / 14.1 inch 240 mm / 9.45 inch 19.9 mm / 0.783 inch 2.1 kg4.58 lbs359 mm / 14.1 inch 255 mm / 10 inch 18 mm / 0.709 inch 2.1 kg4.73 lbs358 mm / 14.1 inch 248 mm / 9.76 inch 18 mm / 0.709 inch 2 kg4.35 lbs360 mm / 14.2 inch 268 mm / 10.6 inch 15.75 mm / 0.62 inch 2.1 kg4.63 lbs356 mm / 14 inch 250 mm / 9.84 inch 19 mm / 0.748 inch 2.1 kg4.68 lbs355 mm / 14 inch 235 mm / 9.25 inch 17.8 mm / 0.701 inch 2.1 kg4.63 lbs

Measurement Results

Razer Blade 15 RTX 2070 Max-Q
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
Acer Predator Triton 500
Asus Zephyrus S GX502GW
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Asus Zephyrus S GX531GX
MSI GS73 Stealth 8RF-011
Monster Tulpar T5 V18.1.1
Response Times
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
16.8 (9.2, 7.6)
15.2 (7.6, 7.6)
13.6 (8, 5.6)
8 (4, 4)
7.2 (3.8, 3.4)
7.2 (3.8, 3.4)
7 (3.6, 3.4)
7.8 (4.4, 3.4)
16 (8.4, 7.6)
Response Time Black / White *
11.6 (7.2, 4.4)
11.2 (6.8, 4.4)
12 (7.6, 4.4)
11.2 (6, 5.2)
8.8 (4.4, 4.4)
10 (5.2, 4.8)
9.6 (4.4, 5.2)
6.2 (4.4, 1.8)
12 (6.8, 5.2)
PWM Frequency
23580 (24)
23260 (19)
25510 (17)
25510 (14)
Screen
Brightness middle
314.7
266
282.3
304
286
366
323.6
262
335
Brightness
312
248
269
299
275
343
315
261
315
Brightness Distribution
90
89
90
89
90
91
91
94
89
Black Level *
0.38
0.31
0.32
0.27
0.37
0.29
0.29
0.2
0.33
Contrast
828
858
882
1126
773
1262
1116
1310
1015
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
2.56
2.78
1.17
4.66
2.19
1.51
3.31
3.96
3.66
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
4.89
5.96
3.29
9.65
4.4
3.22
5.74
7.29
6.56
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
1.71
0.91
1.06
1.72
2.27
0.71
2.73
2.18
1.37
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3.4
3.58
1.3
5.53
2.2
1.93
2.9
3.09
4.26
Gamma
2.3 96%
2.46 89%
2.2 100%
2.5 88%
2.41 91%
2.38 92%
2.29 96%
2.48 89%
2.35 94%
CCT
6435 101%
7186 90%
6643 98%
8028 81%
6405 101%
6881 94%
6765 96%
6977 93%
6461 101%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
60.7
62
63.8
60
59
60
59.7
76
61
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
94.6
96
97.5
93
91
94
91.8
100
94
Noise
off / environment *
28.8
30
28.3
29
30
30
28.7
30
29
Idle Minimum *
28.8
31
30.4
30
31
31
29.8
30
29
Idle Average *
28.8
34
30.5
32
33
32
32.4
34
33
Idle Maximum *
29.4
39
30.6
34
38
38
38
36
39
Load Average *
35.7
46
37.6
44
50
47
38.2
43
49
Witcher 3 ultra *
42.5
53
46
46
53
48
56.6
45
52
Load Maximum *
45
55
55.1
47
56
49
56.6
45
58
Heat
Maximum Upper Side *
49
58
45.6
49
54
55
47
58
52
Maximum Bottom *
49
64
53.8
58
47
65
48.6
63
65
Idle Upper Side *
25.4
30
28.6
33
33
30
28.8
32
30
Idle Bottom *
27.2
31
33.2
33
34
32
33.2
30
30
Battery Runtime
Reader / Idle
682
545
335
353
461
346
305
WiFi v1.3
387
421
362
190
220
357
181
200
243
Load
88
181
81
62
74
60
101
Power Consumption
Idle Minimum *
10.4
21
18.3
16
24
13
16.1
8
10
Idle Average *
14.6
23
22
22
27
17
20.9
14
12
Idle Maximum *
16.3
32
28.8
32
33
25
27
22
18
Load Average *
88.5
97
93
89
129
96
93.4
92
93
Load Maximum *
182.4
213
215.9
173
216
239
215.3
207
152
Witcher 3 ultra *
155.4
148
142.6
147
176
156
168.2
154
110

* ... smaller is better

Benchmarks

3DMark - 1920x1080 Fire Strike Score (sort by value)
Razer Blade 15 RTX 2070 Max-Q
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
15428 Points ∼58%
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, 9750H, Intel SSD 760p SSDPEKKW512G8
15494 Points ∼58%
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
16598 Points ∼62%
Asus Zephyrus S GX502GW
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 9750H, 2x Intel SSD 660p SSDPEKNW512G8 (RAID 0)
16290 Points ∼61%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
17182 Points ∼64%
Asus Zephyrus S GX531GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Intel SSD 660p SSDPEKNW512G8
17774 Points ∼66%
MSI GS73 Stealth 8RF-011
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
12624 Points ∼47%
Monster Tulpar T5 V18.1.1
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, ADATA XPG Gammix S11 480GB
10195 Points ∼38%
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Razer Blade 15 RTX 2070 Max-Q
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
17689 Points ∼57%
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, 9750H, Intel SSD 760p SSDPEKKW512G8
18171 Points ∼58%
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
20209 Points ∼65%
Acer Predator Triton 500
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 2x WDC PC SN720 SDAPNTW-256G-1014 (RAID 0)
20149 Points ∼65%
Asus Zephyrus S GX502GW
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 9750H, 2x Intel SSD 660p SSDPEKNW512G8 (RAID 0)
18686 Points ∼60%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
21390 Points ∼69%
Asus Zephyrus S GX531GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Intel SSD 660p SSDPEKNW512G8
21324 Points ∼68%
MSI GS73 Stealth 8RF-011
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
15894 Points ∼51%
Monster Tulpar T5 V18.1.1
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, ADATA XPG Gammix S11 480GB
13166 Points ∼42%
PCMark 10 - Score (sort by value)
Razer Blade 15 RTX 2070 Max-Q
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5416 Points ∼70%
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, 9750H, Intel SSD 760p SSDPEKKW512G8
5697 Points ∼73%
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5725 Points ∼74%
Acer Predator Triton 500
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 2x WDC PC SN720 SDAPNTW-256G-1014 (RAID 0)
5883 Points ∼76%
Asus Zephyrus S GX502GW
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 9750H, 2x Intel SSD 660p SSDPEKNW512G8 (RAID 0)
5654 Points ∼73%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
5804 Points ∼75%
Asus Zephyrus S GX531GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Intel SSD 660p SSDPEKNW512G8
5492 Points ∼71%
Monster Tulpar T5 V18.1.1
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, ADATA XPG Gammix S11 480GB
4931 Points ∼64%
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Florian Glaser (Update: 2019-08- 1)