We’re getting treated to the 2020 Prime Day deals a bit late this year. Amazon’s big blowout, which normally takes place in mid-summer, is now falling in the first half of October, bringing with it tons of great bargains and huge price cuts on just about everything under the sun. Laptop PCs (and gaming laptops in particular) are especially pricey items for which deals are always welcome, and Prime Day is the time to find them. If that’s what you’re looking for, read on to find out what we expect to see from this year’s Prime Day gaming laptop deals along with a few bargains you can score early.
Today’s best Prime Day gaming laptop deals
Prime Day lands sometime in the first half of October, putting it less than two months ahead of Black Friday this year. This means that shoppers will have two major fall sales to look forward to in 2020 — but you’ll have to wait a little longer to get those Prime Day gaming laptop deals. But if waiting isn’t your thing, you’re not a Prime member, or you just need a PC now and not later, don’t fret: We’ve got you covered with a selection of the best gaming laptop deals you can grab right now:
- — $369, was $599
- — $419, was $499
- — $599
- — $756 with code SAVE17, was $935
- — $899, was $999
When are the best gaming laptop deals?
Prime Day started out true to its name as a 24-hour sale. It didn’t take long for Amazon to extend it, however, and it’s now a 48-hour affair that’s chock-full of bargains for Prime members to snatch up in the form of Lightning Deals. We expect this year’s Prime Day sale to be at least that long (although Amazon may extend it yet again due to the summer delay), and most of the best Prime Day gaming laptop deals are going to fall within that two-day period. Just remember that these Lightning Deals always go fast, so time is of the essence.
Amazon always throws out some teaser offers — also in the form of limited-time Lightning Deals — in the run-up to the sale, and these are just as good as the ones you’ll get during Prime Day itself. If you see what you’re looking for among these early Prime Day gaming laptop deals, snatch it up. You may not see it again at the same price, let alone a lower one, and even if you do find a better bargain, you can simply return the one you bought and grab that one instead.
What Prime Day gaming laptop deals to expect
The biggest savings to be found among this year’s Prime Day gaming laptop deals are likely to be from the high-end brands, and when it comes to gaming, that mostly means Razer and Alienware. Razer often runs deals on Amazon and we do expect to see the Blade gaming laptops (which happen to be our current favorites) marked down by a few hundred bucks at least. Alienware stuff is less common on Amazon, unfortunately, but keep an eye out for those nonetheless.
For those on a stricter budget, the big names to look out for come Prime Day are Dell, Asus, Acer, HP, and Lenovo. The Dell G series, Asus Tuf and ROG, HP Pavilion and Omen, Lenovo Legion, and Acer Predator are the best budget gaming laptops to shop for in the sub-$1,000 bracket. These all tend to be priced similarly to each other relative to their hardware configurations, though, so to help you get an idea of what discounts you might see among these Prime Day gaming laptop deals, it’s best to break things down by GPU.
Most gaming laptops pack Nvidia graphics cards so we’ll use them as a pricing metric. So far in 2020, we’ve seen gaming laptops with entry-level cards like the GTX 1650 and 1650 Super fall to as low as $600-$650, while machines with mid-range GPUs like the GTX 1660 and 1660 Ti have been on sale for around $700-$800. We’ve also seen laptops with the higher-end Nvidia 20-series cards like the RTX 2060 drop to $900-$1,000, which is a good deal if you can find one. Beyond that, you should be looking for the higher 20-series GPUs unless you’re paying extra for enhancements like 4K displays.
Also, big sales like Prime Day are when retailers like Amazon like to get rid of slightly older stuff, and some of the biggest discounts to be found might be on PCs packing last-gen hardware. These Prime Day gaming laptop deals are likely to offer great bargains, but don’t go too cheap. For instance, we don’t recommend buying a gaming laptop with an old Nvidia 10-series GPU in 2020, as the budget-friendly 16-series cards like the GTX 1650 are already cheap enough. The paltry extra savings aren’t worth struggling with a sluggish machine that chokes on today’s games.
How to choose a gaming laptop
There are always a bunch of things to consider when buying any laptop, but the most important thing when it comes to gaming is the graphics card. The CPU and RAM are also vital, but a sleepy GPU will bottleneck your system more than anything, so get a good one. As stated above, avoid the older Nvidia 10-series cards that are still floating around; the money you’ll save won’t be worth the frustration of dealing with a slow, outdated machine.
The best gaming laptops that we recommend today will feature up-to-date hardware including 9th- and 10th-gen Intel CPUs, second-gen AMD Ryzen CPUs, and Nvidia 16-series and 20-series GPUs. The GTX 16-series cards are fantastic budget and mid-range options; past $900-$1,000, however, we recommend going for the 20-series Nvidia cards like the RTX 2060 or 2070. At least 8GB of DDR4 RAM is also mandatory for modern games; 16GB is better but is usually reserved for gaming laptops in the $800-plus price range, although you can usually install more RAM if you need it. Laptops packing those higher-end GPUs will usually feature boosted RAM as well.
Pay attention to the display, too. Pretty much all gaming laptops come with 1080p screens, but the best ones will feature color-accurate IPS panels and some will even offer higher 144Hz refresh rates for smoother gaming at 60 frames per second. As with boosted RAM, you’ll usually pay more for features like these, but they’re definitely worth springing for if you have the cash (and they often aren’t as expensive as you think — plenty of our favorite budget gaming laptops sport these displays).
The vast majority of gaming laptops, including most we expect to see among this year’s Prime Day gaming laptop deals, sport Nvidia graphics cards. Some do feature AMD GPUs, however, so those are worth a brief mention. AMD’s most recent mobile GPU lineup is the RX 5000M series — the “M” moniker denoting a mobile graphics card — and are currently found on some Dell and Alienware machines (Alienware being a Dell subsidiary). These are generally every bit as good as their Nvidia counterparts, so don’t be afraid to grab one on sale if it meets your other requirements.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.