need help: bang for the buck 14" gaming laptops

jethrov

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Sep 15, 2012
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help me decide
asus g46
razer blade 14"
msi GE40
lenovo Y500
alienware m14x

my budget is limited so i need help choosing the bang for the buck of these gaming laptops. I am open for suggestions and new brands and models but i preffer 14" and below 3kg which is available in canada. please provide links if you find hot deals :) thanks in advance
 

Indefatigable

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May 18, 2013
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They do not exist. The only 14" laptop that's good all round is the Alienware 14, but it's expensive and almost as thick and heavy as a high-end 15" laptop. The GE40 and Razer Blade have mediocre screens.

The Clevo W230ST looks OK, but it's 13".
 

elrui

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May 28, 2011
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Well for actual specs I believe MSI has the highest specs/performance for the price with the GE-40 variant that has a 675m 128gb ssd + 750gb 7200rpm hd clocking in around 1,300 bucks. The availability of the SSD and a HD is what makes me choose this one.

I have been looking in the same range of laptops and every one has something that makes me not want it.

Razer is just too expensive and it's screen is borderline terrible based off of reviews at Anandtech
Lenovo is a great value, poor quality screen and only a 750m card (not terrible). No SSD either at the 850ish price range and the storage expansion is limited to M.2 drives which aren't readily available in the market as of yet.
Alienware is pretty solid but again you pay the boutique bonus.

Long story short there is no "great" 14 inch laptops out there that checks all of the boxes.

You either get great performance with a terrible screen.
Great screen, decent performance but sloooow hdd which just ruins a laptop for me personally.

If a company can come out with a laptop in the 1200-1400 range that has a nice IPS display, a ssd and a 7200 hdd with at least a 660m I think it would rule this market.

On a side note if you do not care about HDD speed and don't mind jumping up to 15.6" there is a nice Asus laptop that I actually bought and tried out, the Q550LF (http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Asus+-+15.6%26%2334%3B+Touch-Screen+Laptop+-+8GB+Memory+-+1TB+Hard+Drive+-+Black/8937158.p?id=1218954926513&skuId=8937158). This had a decent graphics card, a BEAUTIFUL IPS Full HD screen, backlit keyboard. It just had a crappy 5400 RPM hard drive and no expansion slots for an SSD to be added so the only option would be completely replace the drive and that just makes you have to add another 150-200 bucks for a decent SSD and drives up into the GE40's range, of course the screen is way better than the GE40's but like I said no perfect solution laptop out there.

Could look into Clevo based custom laptops too, can get decent specs from sager or xoticpc
 

jethrov

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Sep 15, 2012
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I also think ge40 is the bang for buck but msi is known for poor cooling system(ge40 has 1 intake below, 1 exhaust left side) i think you need a cooling pad on this to be perfect but that destroys the portability

i've been eyeing on asus g46 cheapest of the 14"ers out there and great cooling system, but i5 3rd gen and gtx 660m. i dont know
 

jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
Most 14" laptops have issues with heat. The chassis is kinda small and low weight means a light/small heatsink which means poor heat transfer. I've read a lot of reviews of 14" gaming laptop... unfortunately, after buying my 14" Lenovo Y470. CPU temps usually hits 90c - 92c when playing games. GTA 4 made it hit 99C and it started to throttle. The GPU generally isn't an issue. I think the GT 550m maxed out at 68c.

Unfortunately, many or most reviews I've read focused on the external heat of the laptop like how hot the keyboard, touchpad, and other parts of the laptop's surface, not the actual CPU temp.
 

Indefatigable

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May 18, 2013
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They do not exist. The only 14" laptop that's good all round is the Alienware 14, but it's expensive and almost as thick and heavy as a high-end 15" laptop. The GE40 and Razer Blade have mediocre screens.

The Clevo W230ST looks OK, but it's 13".
 

Joe San

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Aug 25, 2013
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The alienware 14" has a terrible battery life, defeating the whole purpose of a gaming laptop. If I were in need of a great bang-for-buck gaming machine, I would just build my own budget gaming desktop. If you really needed a portable gaming laptop I would either go with the msi ge40, or the asus g46. BTW the razer blade 14's screen is not "terrible". It is not 1920x1080p, but it is still 1600x900p, which is HD+ and shouldn't be bad unless you expect a 1080p screen on all of your devices.
 
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