Today we’re having a look at five of the most affordable and most powerful Gaming Laptops available in New Zealand with new additions from MSI, Razer, HP, Asus, Dell, Acer, Lenovo and Gigabyte, all vying for the top spots! Some of the laptops in our list are very new, others are proven favourites - whichever the case, all laptops below offer excellent performance for your dollar. We've done our best to choose our top 5 based on a variety of factors so you can find the best one for your circumstances.
Quick list! The Top 5 Gaming Laptops
- MSI Katana 15 RTX 4050 / Intel Core i7-13620H
- ASUS ROG Zephyrus G16 RTX 4050 / Intel Core i7-13620HX
- ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 16 RTX 4080 / Intel Core i9-14900HX
- MSI Raider GE78 HX 14V RTX 4090 / Intel Core i9-14900HX
- Lenovo Legion 9i RTX 4090 / Intel Core i9-13980HX
We use the term "gaming" because all models below feature Nvidia ShadowPlay so you can capture or stream gameplay directly from the laptop while you play, without the need for additional hardware. Previously, anything labeled "gaming" implied enough RGB to make your eyeballs bleed, thankfully that's not a condition with our list. Having dedicated graphics also makes them excellent machines for photo and video editing - and if you are worried about battery life, don't be - you can temporarily disable the power-hungry Nvidia graphics and run off integrated graphics just like the ultrabooks do.
We'll be covering the best options with consideration for both the design of the chassis and the component specs used within. Price is our primary factor for the position on this list (price/performance for the win!).
1. MSI Katana 15 RTX 4050
First up, we have the powerful MSI Katana 15 RTX 4050 Gaming Laptop which packs impressive specifications into an elegant, subtle design, along with a balance of price and performance. With an internal configuration that's significantly more powerful than previous models, the latest MSI Katana comes to the table with an RTX 4050 GPU + an Intel i7-13620H CPU + 16GB of DDR5 RAM combo pushing out frames to the 165Hz display with ease.
The MSI Katana provides high end performance that's fully capable of powering through creative tasks with ease, and can handle the running and streaming the majority of games, including AAA titles, simultaneously. The overall design for this laptop is beautifully slim, as is the backplate and detailing. It's an extremely well built laptop, with durable hinges and a frame that's built to last. It also feels wonderful to use thanks to a large touchpad for smooth and precise control.
Overall, the new MSI Katana 15 RTX 4050 Gaming Laptop is a great choice for those looking for a sleek, high-performance design, with specifications to match! We've also included some alternative options from MSI's Katana range below incase your needs are slightly different.
2. ASUS ROG Zephyrus G16 RTX 4050
Next on the list we have ASUS’s ROG Zephyrus G16 Gaming Laptop. This sleek powerhouse steps it up with a polished design that catches the eye and a visual experience that’s a treat for any gamer who wants high fidelity and fluid action. You’ll witness all of the action on a stunning 16” QHD Nebula display with ultra-thin bezels and a super fast 240Hz refresh rate.
Under the hood, the ROG Zephyrus G16 is equipped with the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4050 GPU (with the option to upgrade to the RTX 4060), along with advanced features like Ray Tracing, to ensure you can enjoy the latest AAA titles at high settings. It’s powered by an Intel Core i7-13620H processor, along with up to 32GB of RAM and 512GB of SSD storage, to deliver top-notch performance for all of the latest games, while easily keeping background apps running smoothly.
The ASUS ROG Zephyrus G16's advanced cooling is quintessential to its performance, featuring ROG Intelligent Cooling system equipped with Thermal Grizzly’s liquid metal thermal compound and a comprehensive 6-heatpipe layout for optimal heat dissipation. The innovative 84-blade Arc Flow Fans™ and targeted inward airflow ensure that the laptop stays cool and quiet during intense gaming sessions and silent of up to 0 dB during lighter tasks thanks to their Ambient Cooling technology.
3. ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 16 RTX 4080
Another excellent gaming laptop from ASUS is the ROG Strix SCAR 16 RTX 4080 that offers incredible power and performance to blast through your games, content creation and more! This beast is built from the ground up for gamers - and, of course, game developers - holding the ability to run all of the latest game engines.
Featuring a 13th Gen Intel i9-14900HX processor and a GeForce RTX 4080 GPU with 175W max TGP, NVIDIA Advanced Optimus and DLSS3; this laptop flexes its muscles with some serious gaming credentials. It also sports a crystal clear 16" QHD+ Nebula Display with an incredibly fast 240Hz refresh rate, 3ms response time, Pantone Validation, and 100% DCI-P3 coverage. Bolstered by comprehensive cooling, the 24-core, 32-thread processor clocks up to 5.5GHz to blast through even the most heavy duty games and workloads. It features up to 64GB of DDR5 RAM power for blistering fast performance, and 2 TB of SSD storage.
The ROG Strix Scar 16 is a beasty gaming laptop with incredible specs that’ll keep up with the most demanding games. Step it up a notch with the Strix SCAR 18, which offers a larger display and the option of an RTX 4090 GPU.
4. MSI Raider GE78 HX 14V RTX 4090
Next, we have the new MSI Raider GE78 HX 14V (RTX 4090) - a premium powerhouse that is made to push the boundaries! This laptop is mighty powerful, offering incredible desktop power inside a portable form factor. Featuring the powerful Intel Core i9-14900HX processor - with 24 cores and blazing clock speeds up to 5.8GHz - this laptop will take your gaming experience to the next level, effortlessly replacing your desktop and taking on the heaviest AAA titles and creation tasks.
To top it off, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 (16GB) GPU, 64GB of RAM, and 2TB of SSD, ensure the Raider GE78 HX 14V is beyond fast! It also features a glorious 17” QHD+ 2560 x 1600 display with a blazing fast 240 Hz refresh rate for unmatched visuals. All this power needs some serious cooling support and MSI’s latest Cooler Boost 5 does just that, with larger fans and broader heat pipes to ensure optimal performance, even during the most intense gaming sessions. Fan of RGB lighting? The Raider GE78 HX 14V also sports a matrix light bar design with a range of 16.8 million colours, letting you personalise lighting for the ultimate gaming atmosphere.
5. Lenovo Legion 9i 16IRX8 RTX 4090
To finish off the list, we have the new Lenovo Legion 9i 16IRX8 Gaming Laptop. This is the first laptop in Lenovo's Legion ecosystem - and in the world - with a self-contained liquid cooling system. It delivers high-end power and performance to blast through your games with ease. Sporting a 16-inch 3.2K Mini LED Display with a 165Hz refresh rate, it'll deliver a visual experience that brings your game to life.
Inside, this beast of a laptop features a 13th Gen Intel i9-13980HX processor, 64GB of DDR5 RAM, 2TB of SSD storage, and a GeForce RTX 4090 16GB GDDR6 GPU making it remarkably fast. When you've got a laptop that goes this hard, you need adequate cooling and thankfully, this one comes with a Legion Coldfront integrated liquid cooling system. This liquid cooling system - co-engineered with Cooler Master - runs over the GPU VRAM to manage heat under extreme gaming sessions, engaging when the GPU hits 84° C to bring it back down, pushing an additional 10W of graphics power for gaming and intense workflows. Coupled with the AI-tuned, triple-fan air-cooling system with 6,333 individual intake vents, the Lenovo Legion 9i stays cool even under the most grueling of gaming and content creation sessions