Desktops vs. Laptops for Computer Gaming

One of the first choices you have as a gamer, when looking for a new computer, is whether or not you’d like to invest in a desktop or a laptop. There are a number of important pros and cons to each type of machine, which you should always put into consideration before making your purchase. Consider the three most important issues:


Money is one of the main factors which gamers use when choosing a computer (although it should never be your primary basis for deciding on a machine). Generally speaking, laptops will always be more expensive than their counter-part desktop computer. The hardware components themselves are more pricey (sometimes even double the price), because smaller parts, which still provide high-performance comparable to a desktop, are needed to fit inside the laptop’s casing.

Another issue regarding price with laptops is that their repair, labor, and service costs are also much higher than with desktops. Repairing components in a desktop, for the most part, simply involves sliding open the side or back panel, and replacing the part. With a laptop however, the construction and configuration of the various components in the laptop’s design and size, greatly affect the ease of repair. In addition, options to switch out parts for higher-performance hardware components, also affect pricing as a secondary cost. This brings us to our next issue:


The process of upgrading a computer system, is in fact, much more easier with a desktop than with a laptop. In addition to a laptop’s design and size limiting your options, laptops in general become obsolete very quickly when compared to desktops. This is because a desktop’s components can be upgraded easily over the span of its life, extending the overall value of the machine in the future. As a gamer, it is easy to see that computer technology around us evolves as a blazing pace. New games are released continuously which demand the best possible components for your machine, to maximize performance. Therefore, being able to upgrade components when the time comes, is one of the advantages to having a desktop over a laptop.

It is also important to note that some components inside laptops may not even allow for an upgraded component to be switched in. Many times, parts such as the graphics card or the hard drives, cannot be changed unless the entire laptop is rebuilt. Essentially, to stay current with technology in the gaming world, a laptop would have to be replaced every one or two years.

Size and Portability:

If there’s one aspect of gaming where a laptop really shines over a desktop, it’s in the department of size and portability. This is a given. Would you rather transport a bulky desktop around with all its peripherals (monitor, keyboard, cords, etc.). Or, would you prefer to put your thin laptop into a bag and carry it to your destination? Laptops can be taken anywhere, and their one-package deal definitely carries an advantage in many situations. Although there are different models (some of which are more thin/light than others), the overall size and design of a gaming laptop, compared with a desktop, makes it perfect for traveling, LAN parties, gaming-on-the-go, etc. The fact that laptops can utilize a battery when not plugged in, also add to the convenience factor of carrying a laptop around.

Another point regarding laptop portability is that the technological advancements of wireless internet have allowed for high-speed connectivity just about anywhere. No longer do you need to be plugged in with cables, to access the benefits of high-speed connections. This is a major bonus for those who travel around with their gaming machine. More about computers and broadbands are in

A potential disadvantage to a laptop’s size and portability is their increased vulnerability to be damaged or lost. A hard fall, or the spillage from a drink, could very well lead to the destruction of some of the components, or the entire machine itself. Therefore consider the care and caution that also goes into utilizing such a computer, when transporting it around.

(Side note: “Hybrids”):

With technology constantly evolving, and companies always striving to appeal to the consumer, many computer manufacturers have started to build “hybrid” computers. Essentially these machines provide some of the portability and size features of a laptop, while still maintaining the price, and upgrade features of a regular desktop. Although these types of machines are less-utilized, they are starting to make a strong presence among gamers. Many are shaped like cubes or small rectangular boxes, and some even have handles for easy transportation. And although separate peripherals (monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc.) would still need to be carried with the machine, it’s a bargain many are willing to take because of its overall advantages.


Leave a Reply