Notebookcheck

Notebookcheck's Top 10 Slim & Light Gaming Laptops

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

May 2020 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 May 2020

Pos.
Rating
Date
Image
Model
Weight
Height
Size
Resolution
Screen
Best Price
185 %
05/2020
neu!
Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XB-8DE51B0SPGigabyte Aero 15 OLED XB-8DE51B0SP
Intel Core i7-10875H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 512 GB SSD
2.2 kg20 mm15.6"3840x2160glossy
285 %
03/2020
Asus Zephyrus G14 GA401IVAsus Zephyrus G14 GA401IV
AMD Ryzen 9 4900HS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 1024 GB SSD
1.6 kg17.9 mm14"1920x1080matte
384 %
09/2019
Razer Blade 15 GTX 1660 TiRazer Blade 15 GTX 1660 Ti
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile
16 GB Memory, 256 GB NVMe
2.1 kg19.9 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
484 %
09/2019
Schenker XMG Fusion 15 XFU15L19Schenker XMG Fusion 15 XFU15L19
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 500 GB SSD
1.9 kg20 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
584 %
08/2019
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-51-71PZAcer Predator Triton 500 PT515-51-71PZ
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 512 GB SSD
2.1 kg18 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
684 %
06/2019
MSI 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
784 %
08/2019
Schenker Key 16Schenker Key 16
Intel Core i7-8750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
32 GB Memory, 1024 GB SSD
2.2 kg19.9 mm16.1"1920x1080matte
883 %
09/2019
Alienware m15 R2 P87FAlienware m15 R2 P87F
Intel Core i7-9750H
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 1014 GB SSD
2.2 kg18.3 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
983 %
05/2020
neu!
MSI GS66 Stealth 10SFSMSI GS66 Stealth 10SFS
Intel Core i9-10980HK
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q
16 GB Memory, 1024 GB NVMe
2.2 kg20 mm15.6"1920x1080matte
1083 %
06/2019
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

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 – Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XB

Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XB
Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XB

Gigabyte’s more recent Aero 15 update brings us a new very thin case that remains rather conservative in design. One of its most noteworthy features is the bright high-contrast OLED display. Unfortunately, it suffers from noticeable reflections due to its glossy surface. The device was also fairly loud under load. Our review unit was equipped with a Core i7-10875H and a GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q.

Connectivity is plentiful, the built-in Wi-Fi modem is very fast, and the overall design with its slim bezels is definitely very attractive.

Pricecompare

2nd – Asus Zephyrus G14

Asus Zephyrus G14
Asus Zephyrus G14

There are two reasons why the Zephyrus G14 is an interesting device. For starters, there is hardly any 14-inch gaming laptop on the market, and only a few high-end models are equipped with AMD CPU. Asus shows quite impressively that this combination works. The Ryzen 9 4900 HS and the Max-Q version of the GeForce RTX 2060 are powerful enough for smooth gameplay in almost all modern titles on the high-contrast FHD screen (120 Hz). The extremely light and compact chassis is another highlight.

We were slightly disappointed by the fan behavior, the battery runtime, and the port selection.

3rd – Razer Blade 15

Razer Blade 15
Razer Blade 15

Narrow bezels are not only particularly good looking but also the flavor of the month for gaming notebooks. Like many other competitors on this top 10 list the 2019 Razer Blade 15 offers an edge-to-edge screen. The stylish metal case is one of the most noble, most high-quality, and best made cases available right now. Keyboard, touchpad, and 144 Hz display are also respectable.

Despite its compact footprint the 15-inch device is packed with high-end hardware: a Core i7-9750H CPU, a GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, and an NVMe SSD. Hardware and software can be extensively and individually configured with Razer Synapse. Gamers that travel frequently and those looking for  a stylish and good looking device cannot go wrong with the Razer Blade 15.

Pricecompare

4th – Schenker XMG Fusion 15

Schenker XMG Fusion 15
Schenker XMG Fusion 15

In order to get the most out of its internal hardware, Schenker’s XMG Fusion 15 was developed in close cooperation with Intel. As a result, the CPU is capable of utilizing its turbo boost much more efficiently than on most of its competitors. The device also performed very well in games. The combination of Core i7-9750H and GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q is capable of running even demanding games smoothly on the integrated 144 Hz FHD display.

Battery life is decent thanks to support for dynamic graphics switching. Generally speaking, the compact and lightweight device is easy to carry around. Other pros include individual configuration and decent connectivity (including Thunderbolt 3). Downsides include high noise emissions under load and poor audio performance.

Pricecompare

5th – Acer Predator Triton 500

Acer Predator Triton 500
Acer Predator Triton 500

While the Predator Triton 700 released back in 2017 was a mixed bag mostly due to its unusually placed input devices and its massive display bezels the Triton 500 looks much better. Its only real drawbacks are poor maintainability and suboptimal fan controls.

The 15-inch metal case not only impressed us with Acer’s choice of material (metal) but also its Thunderbolt 3 port and its 144 Hz display. Inside, a 6-core CPU and a GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q ensure proper gaming prowess.

Pricecompare

6th – 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

7th – Schenker Key 16

Schenker Key 16
Schenker Key 16

Schenker’s Key 16 is a multimedia-gaming hybrid that could easily pass as business notebook thanks to its discreet and slim case. However, there is more to this beast than the restrained outer shell seems to reveal: the 16-inch notebook is powered by a Core i7-8750H CPU and a GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q GPU.

Unfortunately, the Clevo P960EN-K barebone that this Schenker notebook is based upon suffers from a fairly high level of noise. Other drawbacks include high surface temperatures, no Thunderbolt 3 port, and poor speakers. On the plus side the weight is comparatively low, the device can be configured individually to your liking, and the preloaded Windows OS is clean and without any traces of bloatware. The biggest highlight is the devices 144 Hz IPS display.

Pricecompare

8th – Alienware m15 R2

Alienware m15 R2
Alienware m15 R2

As we already noted in our review the Alienware m15 R2 is basically the miniature version of the much larger 51m. Instead of a desktop CPU it features a traditional mobile CPU paired with an energy-efficient Max-Q GPU (in our particular case an RTX 2080 Max-Q). Thanks to these measures Dell was able to reduce the device’s weight to just 2.2 kg (4.85 lbs) and its thickness to no more than 1.8 cm (0.7 inches), which qualifies the m15 for our slim & light top 10. Like almost all Alienware notebooks the slim-bezel m15 features great connectivity (including Thunderbolt 3), a one-of-a-kind design, and various lighting options. Battery life is decent thanks to support for Nvidia Optimus.

Things we did not like include its depth, its comparatively poor turbo boost performance, and its high CPU temperatures. We would have also preferred if neither the RAM chips nor the Wi-Fi chip had been soldered to the motherboard, and a card reader would have been nice, too.

Pricecompare

9th – MSI GS66 10SFS

MSI GS66 10SFS
MSI GS66 10SFS

A wolf in sheep’s clothing, that is the best and most fitting description for the MSI GS66 Stealth 10SFS. Some gaming notebooks are quite bulky, hefty, and designed very playfully in order to attract potential customers. MSI’s 15-inch gaming notebook is quite the contrary: a thin, light-weight yet sturdy case with a design language that can be best described as understatement. Only its colorful RGB keyboard backlight shows the device’s true heritage.

Underneath, we find up-to-date hardware. A Core i9-10980HK paired with a very hot and rather noisy Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q GPU and a blazingly fast 300 Hz display. In order to improve battery life MSI opted against G-Sync and for Optimus support instead. A wise choice considering the device’s overall portability.

Pricecompare

10 – 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

Top 10 in Comparison

Size Comparison

396 mm / 15.6 inch 259 mm / 10.2 inch 18.9 mm / 0.744 inch 2.3 kg5.03 lbs380 mm / 15 inch 252 mm / 9.92 inch 19.9 mm / 0.783 inch 2.2 kg4.85 lbs360.5 mm / 14.2 inch 276 mm / 10.9 inch 18.3 mm / 0.72 inch 2.2 kg4.76 lbs359 mm / 14.1 inch 255 mm / 10 inch 18 mm / 0.709 inch 2.1 kg4.73 lbs356.4 mm / 14 inch 233.7 mm / 9.2 inch 20 mm / 0.787 inch 1.9 kg4.17 lbs358 mm / 14.1 inch 248 mm / 9.76 inch 18 mm / 0.709 inch 2 kg4.35 lbs356 mm / 14 inch 250 mm / 9.84 inch 20 mm / 0.787 inch 2.2 kg4.88 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 19.9 mm / 0.783 inch 2.1 kg4.63 lbs324 mm / 12.8 inch 222 mm / 8.74 inch 17.9 mm / 0.705 inch 1.6 kg3.53 lbs

Measurement Results

Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-51-71PZ
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
Asus Zephyrus G14 GA401IV
Razer Blade 15 GTX 1660 Ti
Schenker XMG Fusion 15 XFU15L19
Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
Schenker Key 16
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Alienware m15 R2 P87F
Response Times
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
5.2 (2.6, 2.6)
15.2 (7.6, 7.6)
43.6 (21.2, 22.4)
13.6 (7.2, 6.4)
8 (4, 4)
2.4 (1, 1.4)
13.6 (8, 5.6)
18 (8.8, 9.2)
7.2 (3.8, 3.4)
16.4 (7.6, 6.8)
Response Time Black / White *
11.2 (6.8, 4.4)
11.2 (6.8, 4.4)
34.8 (20.4, 14.4)
10 (6, 4)
9 (5, 4)
2.2 (1.2, 1)
12 (7.6, 4.4)
10.4 (6, 4.4)
10 (5.2, 4.8)
8.8 (4.4, 4.4)
PWM Frequency
23580 (24)
200 (99)
60 (80)
23260 (19)
25510 (20)
25510 (17)
23810 (24)
Screen
Brightness middle
288
266
322.2
312.7
331
373
282.3
296
366
324.2
Brightness
265
248
302
305
309
375
269
271
343
304
Brightness Distribution
84
89
87
90
85
93
90
88
91
90
Black Level *
0.22
0.31
0.26
0.27
0.32
0.32
0.26
0.29
0.38
Contrast
1309
858
1239
1158
1034
882
1138
1262
853
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
3.22
2.78
2.43
4.57
4.5
3.98
1.17
2.24
1.51
5.01
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
6.26
5.96
5.07
6.81
8
6.28
3.29
4.04
3.22
12.7
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
1.5
0.91
2.29
2.91
1.9
1.06
0.72
0.71
1.64
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3.43
3.58
3.3
4.3
4.7
2.81
1.3
2.76
1.93
7.9
Gamma
2.41 91%
2.46 89%
2.22 99%
2.29 96%
2.31 95%
2.62 84%
2.2 100%
2.52 87%
2.38 92%
2.35 94%
CCT
7290 89%
7186 90%
6902 94%
7098 92%
7537 86%
6434 101%
6643 98%
6830 95%
6881 94%
8455 77%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
60
62
60
59.4
59
78
63.8
60
60
60.8
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
93
96
91.9
91.3
91
97
97.5
99
94
95.5
Noise
off / environment *
30
30
28.1
28.5
30
30
28.3
30
30
28.3
Idle Minimum *
30
31
30.4
30.3
30
34
30.4
30
31
28.5
Idle Average *
33
34
31.5
30.5
30
35
30.5
31
32
28.5
Idle Maximum *
39
39
33.7
30.5
30
45
30.6
34
38
49
Load Average *
45
46
34.3
41
46
43
37.6
47
47
49
Witcher 3 ultra *
49
53
53.5
48
51.5
52
46
48
48
49
Load Maximum *
51
55
53.5
51.9
51.6
54
55.1
49
49
55
Heat
Maximum Upper Side *
49
58
36
52
52.7
49
45.6
51
55
53.8
Maximum Bottom *
59
64
46.4
52.2
52.2
59
53.8
59
65
58
Idle Upper Side *
28
30
29
38
35
33
28.6
32
30
29.8
Idle Bottom *
29
31
32
40.4
37.3
32
33.2
36
32
32.2
Battery Runtime
Reader / Idle
666
545
342
559
591
585
461
554
WiFi v1.3
478
421
241
330
360
342
362
329
357
332
Load
96
181
108
88
149
69
74
44
Power Consumption
Idle Minimum *
7
21
30.8
18.7
7.5
23
18.3
10
13
19
Idle Average *
12
23
34.9
30.7
14.6
25
22
15
17
40.5
Idle Maximum *
22
32
36.4
33.9
17
33
28.8
22
25
52
Load Average *
86
97
92.2
93.4
181
96
93
88
96
132.3
Load Maximum *
177
213
156.6
195.3
243
197
215.9
191
239
217.2
Witcher 3 ultra *
144
148
112.4
158.9
170
168
142.6
145
156
183.3

* ... smaller is better

Benchmarks

3DMark - 1920x1080 Fire Strike Score (sort by value)
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-51-71PZ
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, WDC PC SN720 SDAPNTW-512G
16017 Points ∼54%
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Intel SSD 760p SSDPEKKW512G8
15494 Points ∼52%
Asus Zephyrus G14 GA401IV
GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q, R9 4900HS, Intel SSD 660p 1TB SSDPEKNW010T8
14649 Points ∼49%
Razer Blade 15 GTX 1660 Ti
GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
12926 Points ∼44%
Schenker XMG Fusion 15 XFU15L19
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 500GB
17593 Points ∼59%
Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW512G8L
16110 Points ∼54%
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
16598 Points ∼56%
Schenker Key 16
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-8750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 1TB
17301 Points ∼58%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
17182 Points ∼58%
Alienware m15 R2 P87F
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Toshiba XG6 KXG60ZNV512G (RAID 0)
17504 Points ∼59%
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-51-71PZ
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, WDC PC SN720 SDAPNTW-512G
18996 Points ∼49%
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Intel SSD 760p SSDPEKKW512G8
18171 Points ∼47%
Asus Zephyrus G14 GA401IV
GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q, R9 4900HS, Intel SSD 660p 1TB SSDPEKNW010T8
18937 Points ∼49%
Razer Blade 15 GTX 1660 Ti
GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
16594 Points ∼43%
Schenker XMG Fusion 15 XFU15L19
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 500GB
20181 Points ∼52%
Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW512G8L
19110 Points ∼50%
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
20209 Points ∼52%
Schenker Key 16
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-8750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 1TB
20298 Points ∼53%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
21390 Points ∼55%
Alienware m15 R2 P87F
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Toshiba XG6 KXG60ZNV512G (RAID 0)
19885 Points ∼52%
PCMark 10 - Score (sort by value)
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-51-71PZ
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, WDC PC SN720 SDAPNTW-512G
5746 Points ∼71%
Gigabyte Aero 15 Classic-XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Intel SSD 760p SSDPEKKW512G8
5697 Points ∼70%
Asus Zephyrus G14 GA401IV
GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q, R9 4900HS, Intel SSD 660p 1TB SSDPEKNW010T8
5751 Points ∼71%
Razer Blade 15 GTX 1660 Ti
GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
5301 Points ∼65%
Schenker XMG Fusion 15 XFU15L19
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 500GB
5784 Points ∼71%
Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA
GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW512G8L
5439 Points ∼67%
MSI GS65 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5725 Points ∼71%
Schenker Key 16
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-8750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 1TB
5694 Points ∼70%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
5804 Points ∼72%
Alienware m15 R2 P87F
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Toshiba XG6 KXG60ZNV512G (RAID 0)
5374 Points ∼66%
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Notebookcheck's Top 10 Slim & Light Gaming Laptops
Florian Glaser (Update: 2020-05-22)