A laptop whose gaming performance isn't crippled on battery power?


Sep 12, 2012
Are there any current middle of the road laptops which can verifiably be asserted to deliver strong dedicated GPU performance on battery power alone (i.e., not just on AC)? If not, what is the best battery-powered performer out there, presuming one's situation eliminates the option of AC-powered gaming?

I've been researching compact gaming laptops for use on battery power lately, intending to use them during my long distance train commute, and my top candidates have a frustrating tendency to eliminate themselves from contention, by not delivering meaningful gaming performance when not plugged into a wall.

For example, Engadget has this to say about Acer's TimelineU M5-481TG-6888:

But, there's a catch. In order to take full advantage of the hardware, you'll be chained to a wall outlet -- to conserve the battery, the GPU performance is severely curtailed when the machine's not plugged in. That's a serious drag, because a big part of the Acer's appeal is its prodigious gaming prowess in a super portable profile, but this limitation takes that away. We know that such sessions would necessarily be quite short due to the battery drain they would entail, but it sure would be nice to at least have the option to switch to a more performance-oriented battery profile during, say, a 30-minute train commute.

And HardwareCanucks has this to say about Acer's TimelineU M3:

These results are self explanatory: when running off of its battery, the M3 becomes a shadow of its former self. Forget about playing games at anything approaching reasonable detail settings and GPU accelerated applications slow to a crawl. Even the CPU gets throttled to a certain extent.

Is there a model of compact notebook (I've been trying to find 14", 5lbs or under), with gaming in mind or moderately accommodated, which doesn't become a glorified netbook when unplugged? Or is this just a pipe dream?


Mar 20, 2010
Well what iwould say isthat you should look for laptops with long battery life. Those will be the only ones which would deliver the longest battery life of all compared to other laptops. It also depends on the hardware, for example if you would game with gt 640 (latest gen card and not so over powered) and i7 3610qm, you'll be able to get decent battery timings on gaming.

It depends on the battery you're using (9 cell would be good) and the combination of hardware.