All you Need to Know About Gaming Laptops
March 26, 2023
Gaming laptops are a good alternative if the owner requires portability. A decent gaming laptop can be used for regular office work and gaming. But as games get more challenging, there are two ways you can upgrade parts.
However, are parts upgradeable on a gaming laptop?
It is not always possible to replace components in a modern gaming laptop. This is because most manufacturers use integrated components such as graphics cards and processors. Parts such as RAM or HDD/SSD can be upgraded in most gaming laptops. But upgrading to a more powerful GPU always requires changing the motherboard.
Gaming laptops like the Alienware AREA-51M, which allow you to upgrade parts like your CPU or graphics card, are significantly more expensive than regular systems. This gaming laptop lets you use industry-standard processors like 10th Gen Intel® Core™ i9 10900K and choose between AMD or Nvidia graphics cards. Unfortunately, at $2,299.99, the Alienware AREA-51M is a high-end gaming system, and probably quite expensive for most gamers. Also, it’s just the “base” version of the 51M since the most powerful version costs $4,699.99.
Sure, other companies offer upgradable gaming laptops. Almost all of them cost more than the desktop version with the same features, though. Regular gaming PCs are much easier to upgrade and customize than gaming laptops. This is because PC cases provide enough room for innovative additions and modifications. If you want a brand new graphics card (GPU), simply disconnect both power cables, open the two stability latches on the motherboard, and then remove the graphics card. You usually can’t even modify the GPU of a gaming laptop PC, because it’s built right into the motherboard.
Fortunately, there’s another way to enhance your gaming laptop PC: with external hardware. Especially eGPUs are an amazing way to increase the power of your gaming notebook PC. Laptops with a weaker graphics card can handle not running demanding games like Tomb Rider at decent settings. However, if you put a regular PC graphics card in an eGPU chassis like the Razer Core X, you can harness the power of your PC’s graphics card.
What parts are upgradable on a gaming laptop?
A gaming laptop PC is made up of several smaller elements such as cables, drives, fans, antennas, chipsets, motherboards, heat syncs, and more. When upgrading a gaming laptop or regular gaming PC, only several of the parts can/require to be upgraded to increase performance. On gaming laptops, you only can upgrade or replace a few parts:
- Graphics card (GPU)
- Processor (processor)
- SSD and HDD drives
- Eventual Ingress Memory (RAM)
- WIFI antenna
Unfortunately, only some of the portable gaming PCs can request a partial upgrade like the Alienware AREA-51M. In most cases, it’s reduced to upgrading to more powerful SSDs and HDDs and adding more RAM. If you have enough understanding of how to change and build laptops, you can build a more powerful system with enough work and time invested. However, this procedure is only available for people with extensive experience in the field and not for the common gamer/computer client.
Can you add more RAM to your gaming laptop PC?
Newly released games or games with higher system requirements mainly need 8 GB of RAM (Random Ingress Memory). However, if your system only has a few gigabytes of RAM, the most demanding games are currently unable to run properly and start to lag, freeze, or not start at all. Therefore, upgrading to more RAM is a correct decision to be able to play more demanding games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare.
To upgrade the RAM on your gaming laptop, open the next part of the system to enter the memory banks. Make sure that the laptop is turned off and unplugged to avoid technical inconveniences and damage to the parties. To remove the existing RAM, separate the two clips and then remove the memory. When adding new RAM, insert the new modules into the open slots at a 45-degree angle and push them in until they click into place. If the RAM is installed correctly, you should hear the stability clips click. After installing new RAM modules, close the next part of the laptop and start the system.
- Start Task Manager
- Click on performance
- Select memory in the right sidebar.
At the bottom, you can see the slots that are currently in use and the RAM has been detected. Popular RAM for gaming laptops is Corsair Vengeance memory kits with 2x 4 GB DDR4 2666 MHz. Generally, it is offered to run only 2 channel configurations as it performs much better than single-channel configurations. Click here to see recent costs on Amazon.
Can you upgrade your gaming laptop’s GPU?
Upgrading to a newer GPU model can quickly increase system power. On a typical gaming PC, the GPU can be replaced in seconds, but on gaming laptops, it’s much more complex. The GPU of a gaming laptop PC can only be modified if the graphics card is not built into the motherboard or built into the processor. In laptops like the Alienware AREA-51M, the GPU can be upgraded to Nvidia RTX 2080 SUPER.
However, installing a more powerful GPU increases heat production and therefore can damage other parts. Also, the cooling system is only optimized for the original GPU. Another fact that makes upgrading to a more powerful GPU difficult is the fact that there are almost no cards on the market. If you want more GPU power in your gaming system, an entirely new laptop PC with a more powerful graphics card is on offer.
Do gaming laptops last long?
Thanks to limited possibilities for upgrading parts, a standard system in the $800-$1200 cost range can last 2-3 years of gaming. However, if the system should run at the highest performance, there are many ways the system might not run as long. Choosing a future high-performance gaming laptop PC ensures that the system can handle all recent and upcoming games without the highest performance.
The average effective life of a gaming laptop PC is 2-3 years. After this time, items lose power and become slower, resulting in lower FPS, slower load times, slower startups, and more. The battery also gets hot during gaming sessions, which can shorten the overall effective life of the battery and other items. To extend the effective life of your gaming notebook PC, the notebook PC should not operate at high temperatures and should use 100% of its power. Also, cleaning your notebook PC of dust and other debris helps keep your system cleaner and cooler.
If you want to use your gaming laptop for as long as possible by upgrading your RAM, switching from HDD to SSD, and overclocking (if possible), your graphics card can help improve its performance.Choosing stronger parts like the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 doesn’t mean your gaming laptop PC will last longer if it must use all available resources and runs at high temperatures all the time. However, a balanced system with decent specs will ensure many years of good gaming experiences.
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