So you’re planning on buying a new gaming laptop but you’re not sure if it’s the best choice for work or school. After all, they’re expensive. Do you really need a powerful laptop for work? Or can you get by with a cheaper alternative?
Gaming laptops are a good choice for work and school because they have powerful hardware to run demanding office-tasks and apps without any slowdowns or freezes. But if portability and battery life is a concern, you might want to settle for a mid-range laptop.
First, let’s see if a gaming laptop is the best option for you.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Gaming Laptops
Since gaming laptops are designed to run resource-heavy games, they usually have powerful hardware under the surface. The main advantage of a gaming laptop is the hardware, a powerful CPU and graphics card.
These two components can dramatically improve other non-gaming tasks, such as video-editing or even watching HD media. A fast CPU, in general, will improve the performance of every task, from browsing the internet to managing office documents. In a nutshell, gaming laptops are designed to be as fast as possible.
The Downsides of Gaming Laptops
As you might have already guessed, the downside is their much more expensive than regular everyday laptops. You will need to set aside a significant budget for a gaming laptop, especially the latest models with the best hardware.
1 – Big and Heavy
Gaming laptops are also a bit heavier, bigger, and overall much bulkier than regular laptops because the gaming hardware generates a lot of heat and the laptop needs proper ventilation. Not to mention screen size, most gaming laptops have 17-inch screens.
2 – Poor Battery Life
Another factor to keep in mind is battery life. Since gaming laptops consume a lot of power, they tend to have poor battery life, which is not ideal for portability. You won’t be able to work for very long without plugging the laptop in.
What it boils down to is whether you prioritize performance or budget. They’re by no means cheap, the latest gaming laptops can cost a few thousand dollars. On the other hand, there are plenty of mid-range gaming laptops with hardware that is much more budget-friendly.
Are Gaming Laptops Good for Work?
The answer depends on the kind of work you do. For regular Microsoft Office use, such as Powerpoint presentations, Microsoft Word, and Excel, a gaming laptop might not be worth it. Almost any regular laptop with a modern CPU can handle those programs with no problems.
On the other hand, if you’re work involves graphics-intensive tasks, such as video editing, Photoshop, graphic design, or 3D modeling then a gaming laptop might be a good fit. You’ll just have to factor in the mobility issues.
Jeff Finder from laptopcut.com contributed by adding:
The ideal laptop for work is a lightweight laptop with a modern CPU and a good battery life. You could also find laptops with a dedicated graphics card that’s a little dated but can still provide extra performance when you need it.
Ideal Laptop Specs for Work
If you’re looking for a decent laptop for work but you’re not sure which specs to look for, here’s a ballpark figure. Your ideal laptop specifications will vary depending on your type of work. Assuming you’re only going to use it for office-related tasks, here are some specs to look for:
- Modern I5 or I7 with Four Cores
- 16 GB of RAM
- Solid State Harddrive (256 GB recommended)
- Optional: Dedicated Graphics Card
A couple of other features, such as a fingerprint scanner, adds a nice extra layer of security in the office environment. Generally, a graphics card isn’t needed for office work.
Is a Gaming Laptop Good for School?
A gaming laptop can be useful in school, but there are downsides too. The most important downside is you probably don’t want to risk breaking your expensive gaming laptop.
In school, you have to pack and unpack your laptop multiple times, and there’s always the risk you might drop it or spill something on it. For school, I wouldn’t recommend a gaming laptop. I would settle for a cheaper alternative, a laptop with no dedicated graphics card but a powerful-enough CPU for note-taking and research. The reason for this is you won’t be set back thousands of dollars if your gaming laptop breaks down.
Another important factor is gaming laptops are usually big and heavy, so carrying it around every day can be bothersome. You can find plenty of regular laptops that are smaller, lighter, and have better battery life than gaming laptops.
An ideal laptop for school would have similar specs as to our work example, except smaller and lighter. You could also get away with less ram, 16GB won’t hurt, but if you’re on a budget, you might want to settle for 8GB and the option to upgrade later. You could also look into other options, such as Chromebooks, for an even more budget-friendly choice.
Wrapping it Up
To summarize, gaming laptops are a bit overkill for work and school. Most gaming laptops are big and heavy you’ll probably get tired of carrying them after a few days. I recommend slim laptops that can slide right into a backpack or briefcase, so you can pull them out whenever you need them, without having to worry about the battery level.
Of course, if you have the budget, don’t mind the weight, and feel like the extra power provided by gaming laptops will benefit your work and school, then, by all means, go ahead with a gaming laptop. It certainly won’t hurt.