All the laptops in this category should be sporting powerful GTX 1070 gpus. Build quality is solid, and higher end cpus and display options start to become more common in this price range. Desktop cpus also become available here in powerful desktop replacement machines.
A couple things to note is the GTX 1070 is noticeably more powerful than the 1060, around 30%. The laptops also aren’t listed in any particular order, they each have unique pros and cons. With that said, let’s get into it.
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1.Clevo P650RS/Sager NP8153:
Similar to the Clevo P650RP6 in the under 1500 dollar category, this is essentially that machines bigger, better brother. In the United States it’s commonly sold as the Sager NP8153.
The machine keeps the design similar to it’s 1060 brother, while subtly giving it a beefier cooling system, with larger exhaust vents and having extra options available. This means it’s still a subtle looking gaming machine, that doesn’t scream its packing so much power under the hood. The chassis is all metal, with a flimsier (but still serviceable) plastic lid. While the P650RP6 has an i7 6700HQ and 1080p GSync display as its only options, the P650RS can come with an unlocked i7 6820hk cpu, and a 4K PLS GSync display if you so choose. It also sports Two M.2 slots (one PCIe NVMe and one SATA) and two 2.5” bays as well as four ram slots. This gives you a ton of flexibility to customize the machine to your needs. Two other noteworthy features are the two USB 3.1 Type C ports (non thunderbolt) and the SABRE HIFI DAC chip worthy of high end headphones. The DAC is in fact well worth considering if your an audiophile, as only Clevo offerings sport it at this price point.
To keep the internals cool, the P650RS sports a triple fan set up (one for the cpu and two for the gpu) as well as more heatpipes than the P650RP6. It performs exceptionally, making it one of the better cooled 1070 systems on the market, and only 1.1” thick. The standard Sager NP8153-S comes with a 1080p IPS GSync display, i7 6700HQ, GTX 1070, 16GB of RAM, RGB keyboard, and 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD for just $1629.
2. MSI GT62VR:
Again a repeat from the under 1500 dollar category the MSI GT62VR is a great option. The best built of the bunch, the GT62VR offers great cooling, and exceptional thermals at the cost of portability.
It comes equipped with an i7 6700HQ, GTX 1070, 1080p IPS GSync display, four ram slots, two drive slots (one M.2 PCIe + one 2.5” bay), RGB keyboard, and a USB 3.1 Type C port. One of the other big benefits of this machine is that the speakers are easily the best in the under $2000 category. With two surprisingly good speakers and a dedicated subwoofer, if your not a fan of headphones this is easily the best sounding option. Additionally, unlike the P650RS, the gpu on this machine is MXM-B, meaning it is potentially possible to upgrade it down the line (though it can’t be confirmed until Nvidia 11th gen Volta/Pascal R2 gpus are announced).
Something important to note is that Eurocom offers their Tornado F5 model which is an MSI GT62VR with a desktop 6700k cpu (that can be replaced!) instead of a 6700HQ laptop cpu. Eurocom is also currently working on putting in a 120Hz display option in the near future and possibly even a GTX 1080, which would make it the only GTX 1080 15” laptop. Definitely worth a look.
3. Clevo P750DM:
This is Clevo’s offering with a desktop cpu. Again, like the Eurocom MSI variant it’s completely socketed, so the cpu, gpu, ram, and storage can all be switched out individually. It includes 4 storage options, 4 ram slots, and a SABRE DAC for audio (a pattern you’ll notice for Clevo’s high end offerings). This laptop will support the Prema bios mod which is worth mentioning for any overclocking fans, as it will make this the machine to do it with. The Prema bios mod gives users complete control over the system, with everything unlocked just like a desktop (though that means use caution).
It’s a hard toss up between this and the MSI/Eurocom. The P750DM offers a better DAC and better overclocking potential, but the MSI offers slightly better build quality and better speakers. So both get a recommendation. Though note the Clevo will push the budget more than the non-desktop cpu MSI GT62VR.
These are the kings for performance in this range. Other options are worth looking at, but not when looking for value for the money. Some notable missing options are the Asus GL502VS and Alienware 15. The Asus GL502 with a 1070 is horribly cooled. Avoid it, the cpu temps hit the 90s according to notebookreview forum owners regularly, which is way hotter than even the desktop cpu equipped recommended options.
Another great option for a gaming laptop with 1070 GPU is The Alienware 15 is… Partially recommendable. If you can get a good price then it would offer great value, however, avoid the i7 6820hk models. The heatsink design is causing issues, where one core is massively (sometimes 20C+) degrees hotter than the other cores, which will cause problems.