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Best Acer gaming laptops in 2024

The best Acer gaming laptops give you high-end and budget models with plenty of configurations to choose from.

Best Acer gaming laptop image showing two of the laptops in the article.

The best Acer gaming laptops give you a fine balance between price and performance. We’re trying and testing Acer’s full range of gaming machines, from its budget-focused Nitro range to the premium, powerful Predator lineup.

Whichever one of the best Acer gaming laptops you choose, you’ll need to consider whether it will spend its life on the move or plugged in on a desk. Equally, if it’s not going to be used purely for gaming, you should think about what connectivity and features you need to make your non-gaming endeavors fruitful.

Why you can trust our advice ✔ At PCGamesN, our experts spend hours testing hardware and reviewing games and VPNs. We share honest, unbiased opinions to help you buy the best. Find out how we test.

Acer Predator Helios 300

Best value Acer gaming laptop

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Acer Predator Helios 300 specifications:
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080
CPU Intel Core i7 12700H
Storage 1TB SSD
Ports 3 x USB 3.2, 1 x USB Typce-C, 1 x HDMI 2.1, 1 x Mini DisplayPort 1.4, 1 x Thunderbolt 4, 1 x 3.5mm jack
Screen 15.6-inch Quad HD (2560 x 1440) IPS, 165Hz
Dimensions 14.15 x 10.88 x 1.02-inches (359.4 x 276.4 x 25.9mm)
Weight 5.73lbs (2.6kg)
Reasons to buy
  • Strong spec for the price
  • Great keyboard and display
  • Plentiful connectivity
Reasons to avoid
  • Poor battery life
  • Cooling fans can get loud
  • On the heavy side

The Acer Predator Helios 300 sports a brilliantly designed chassis with stunning RGB keyboard backlighting but does come with a chunky form factor and weighs in at a little over 5 lbs. Still, it’s far from the chunkiest gaming laptop we’ve seen and makes up for it with a stonking spec for the money.

That strong spec comprises the Intel Core i7 12700H chipset and Nvidia RTX 3080 GPU, teamed with a stunning 15.6” Quad HD display. From that, two things are immediately apparent. One – this machine is potent enough to run the latest AAA titles at eye-popping frame rates, and two – there are few high-spec machines that can match the combination of power and affordable pricing the Helios 300 offers.

Without wanting to dwell on the negatives, battery life equates to a disappointing three to four hours from a full charge. Undoubtedly, that’s partly due to the high-spec components, including that Quad HD display with its super-slim bezel and 165Hz refresh rate.

Beneath that brilliant display lies a spacious per-key RGB keyboard with an integrated num lock pad and generous key travel that gives plenty of feedback. Ports are plentiful with three USB 3.2 Type-A ports, a Thunderbolt 4-equipped Type-C port, HDMI 2.1, and a 3.5mm combo jack.

Barring the poor battery life, there’s little to fault here, and with so many cracking deals out there, the Helios 300 represents serious power-to-price value.

Acer Predator Triton 300 SE

Best all-round Acer gaming laptop

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Acer Predator Triton 300 SE specifications:
Graphics Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060
CPU Intel Core i7-12700H
Storage 1TB SSD
Ports 2 x USB 3.1, 1 x Thunderbolt 4, 1 x HDMI 2.1, 1 x 3.5mm jack
Screen 16-inches Quad HD (2560 x 1600) IPS, 240Hz
Dimensions 13.72 x 10.33 x 0.86-inches (348.5 x 262.4 x 21.9mm)
Weight 5.29lbs (2.4kg)
Reasons to buy
  • Brilliant 240Hz display
  • Great spec for the price
  • Strong battery life
Reasons to avoid
  • Average connectivity
  • Keyboard lacks feel
  • GPU can struggle with top titles

The Triton 300 SE sits below its bigger brother, the 500 SE, in both spec and price terms, but there’s little to choose between them in terms of form factor. The 300 SE is actually slightly thicker than the 500 but shaves off around half an inch in width.

We’re looking at the 16-inch 240Hz IPS screen model, but there’s also a cracking 14-inch OLED version that’s worth a look, if only for that model’s stunning screen. That said, this 16-inch display is no slouch, serving up crisp, bright, vivid colors and deep, rich blacks. In most instances, Nvidia’s RTX 3060 can handle that stunning display but begins to wheeze a little when running top titles at high frame rates.

Connectivity is fine, if not a little below par. There are two USB 3.1 connections, a single Thunderbolt 4 port, HDMI 2.1, and an ethernet connector aside from the 3.5mm jack. The SD card reader is a definite plus point, but the lack of an extra USB-A connection, while not terminal, was unexpected. The single USB-C doubles as a Thunderbolt 4 port.

The well-positioned trackpad is excellent, while the keyboard has quite shallow travel. Unless you’re penning a novel, however, it’s comfortable enough for the long haul. One of the biggest plus points of this machine is the lengthy battery life. It outlasts comparable laptops by a huge margin, clocking up around 7-8 hours of average use.

Probably the most well-rounded machine here, the Triton 300 SE scores well on all fronts, lacking the all-out power of the 500, but with a spec list that makes it a very attractive proposition. That it’s only slightly more expensive than a high-end Nitro 5 model makes it arguably the best value laptop in this round-up.

Acer Predator Helios 16

Best Acer gaming notebook

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Acer Predator Helios 16 specifications:
Graphics Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080
CPU Intel Core i7-13700HX
Storage 1TB
Ports 1 x HDMI, 1 x Gen 1 USB-A, 2 x Gen 2 USB-A, 2 x Gen 2 USB-C, 2 x Thunderbolt 4
Screen 16-inch LCD, 2560 x 1600, 240Hz
Dimensions 357.8 x 278.7 x 24.9mm
Weight 2.7kg
Reasons to buy
  • Top-notch performance
  • Beautiful screen
Reasons to avoid
  • Smudgy case

The Acer Predator Helios 16 is an impressive machine. You need only look at those specs to be able to see that it’ll have no trouble at all running the best PC games – even the latest triple-A releases. The fact that you’ve got all of that in a compact notebook shell makes it worthy of even more praise.

Speaking of its shell, however, one thing to mention (which we know is going to bother some people) is the fact that its pristine lid is extremely prone to smudges and fingerprints. When you take it out of the box, it looks wonderful, but that won’t last long. Still, that’s purely an aesthetic thing.

Back to this machine’s capabilities, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention PredatorSense. This is a central app that allows you to easily access to all of its pre-installed tools (and anything else you add to it). This makes it really easy to switch between different performance and audio modes on the fly, as well as giving you a central control point for any RGB lighting you have in effect.

Its screen is pretty fantastic too. Its 16-inch screen manages to provide an impressive 2560 x 1600 resolution. Meanwhile, with a 240hz refresh rate, you’ll be able to enjoy a consistently high FPS rate, even if you’re playing huge new releases like Starfield.

Acer Predator Helios Neo 16

Best cheap Acer gaming notebook

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Acer Predator Helios Neo 16 specifications:
Graphics Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060
CPU Intel 13th Generation Core i7
Storage 1TB
Ports 1 x HDMI, 3 x USB-A, 2 x Thunderbolt 4
Screen 16-inch LCD, 2560 x 1600, 165Hz
Dimensions 360.17 x 279.9 x 28.19mm
Weight 2.59kg
Reasons to buy
  • Cheaper counterpart to the Helios 16
  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • Capable of running most games
Reasons to avoid
  • Lower screen refresh rate
  • Slightly heavier

While there are certainly cheaper Acer laptops out there, the Acer Predator Helios Neo 16 essentially gives you all the benefits of the Predator Helios 16, but at a cheaper price. So what’s the difference between these two models?

Well, the biggest thing is the fact that the Neo 16 is a slightly bulkier model than the Helios 16. It’s not quite so compressed or streamlined, so if you want something more portable, its smaller sibling will be the more appealing purchase. Overall, there’s not a huge difference in size and weight, but it adds up to being about 100g heavier. You definitely notice the difference if you had the two of them in front of you.

Its specs are just a smidgen below that of the Helios 16 too – with a slightly inferior CPU and GPU. You can still play a lot of the big games of our time, but you’ll notice that they don’t run quite as quickly and smoothly. Notably, with a 165Hz refresh rate, you’re not going to get such an impressive framerate as you would with its more premium counterpart.

We’ve spoken a lot about how the Neo 16 pales in comparison to the Helios 16, but we certainly don’t want to give the impression that it’s a bad bit of hardware. In many ways, it’s just as impressive as the other model, and since this was specifically designed to be a more affordable, partially down-graded model, we certainly wouldn’t like to complain. We just want to illustrate the differences, rather than suggest that this notebook isn’t worth the cash, because it absolutely is.

Acer Nitro 16

Best entry-level Acer gaming laptop

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Acer Nitro 16 specifications:
Graphics GeForce RTX 4050
CPU Intel 13th Generation Core i5
Storage 512GB
Ports 1 x HDMI, 1 x Gen 1 USB-A, 2 x Gen 2 USB-A. 2 x Gen 2 USB-C
Screen 16-inch LCD, 2560 x 1600, 165Hz
Dimensions 360.68 x 279.4 x 27.94mm
Weight 2.8kg
Reasons to buy
  • Decent price
  • Decent specs list
Reasons to avoid
  • Won’t reach 60FPS
  • May struggle with high-performance new releases

Looking to buy your first gaming laptop? Well, we can think of a much better starting point than the Acer Nitro 16. It’s one of the more inexpensive options from Acer, and won’t require an enormous amount of technical expertise to get it up and running your favorite PC games.

It’s a standard plastic construction which may not be the most premium material, but it is at very least sturdy, even if it isn’t particularly fancy. It doesn’t feel cheap, exactly, and you won’t find it becoming easily damaged if you carry it around in a bag or anything like that.

Its graphics card and CPU combo is a smidgen behind some of the other, more powerful laptops on this list, but that’s no reason to think that this laptop is subpar. The majority of games will run like a dream on it, though it might struggle a little bit with some of the most cutting-edge releases.

If you’re a stickler for consistently high FPS rates, the 165hz refresh rate of its monitor might be disappointing. While it might not reach the lofty heights of 120FPS, it will often sit within the 60 – 90 range, which is by no means bad – especially not for an affordable, entry-level machine like this one. If you want something even cheaper though, read on to find out about the Acer Nitro 5.

Acer Nitro 5

Best budget Acer gaming laptop

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Acer Nitro 5 specifications:
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce GTX 3050 Ti
CPU Intel Core i5 11400H
Storage 512GB
Ports 3 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB-C, 1 x HDMI 2.1, 1 x RJ45 Ethernet, 1 x 3.5mm jack
Screens 15.6-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS, 144Hz
Dimensions 14.29 x 10.04 x 0.94-inches (363 x 255 x 23.9mm)
Weight 5.07lbs (2.3kg)
Reasons to buy
  • Excellent performance for the price
  • Built-in fan speed adjustment
  • Solid battery life
Reasons to avoid
  • Poor trackpad
  • Shallow viewing angle
  • Average speakers

Though preceded by the Nitro 16, the Acer Nitro 5 is spoken of affectionately in gaming laptop circles – it’s arguably one of the finest budget machines on the market today if not one of the best Acer gaming laptops.

Sure, it has its foibles, the two main ones being a shallow viewing angle, which, to be fair, doesn’t detract from your gaming pleasure but makes multimedia viewing trickier, and the unresponsive trackpad. The trackpad is easily remedied with the addition of the Acer Nitro gaming mouse, which should be on your shopping list if you’re considering getting hold of a Nitro 5.

Despite the lackluster trackpad, the red-backlit keyboard is about as good as it gets in budget terms. Nothing exceptional, you understand, but a good, solid keyboard that’s comfortable to type on and gives excellent gaming feedback.

Under the hood, you get a GTX 3050 Ti graphics card and a relatively modest i5 processor, but these components measure up favorably to similarly-priced competition.

Build quality is suitably tank-like, with all-plastic construction keeping the weight down somewhat, but you’ll find everything has been screwed together well. There’s little creaking or play in the hulking black case, which bears more than a passing resemblance to the Helios 300.

The Full HD screen has that viewing angle issue, but in most other respects, it’s a solid display. It’s not as bright as some, but it’s sharp and clear and, despite a chunky bezel, does a fine job of in-game visuals.

The built-in speakers are so-so, and some users complain that the Nitro 5’s fans make it tricky to hear in-game audio. However, the pre-installed NitroSense software lets you configure fan speed and can alleviate most of these issues.

Overall, the Nitro 5 delivers a lot of fun for little money and is one of the best budget gaming laptops on the market. You won’t be disappointed.

Acer Nitro 17

Best quiet Acer laptop

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Acer Nitro 17 specifications:
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4060
CPU Intel Core i7-13700H
Storage 1TB
Ports 3 x USB 3.2, 2 x USB 3.2, 1 x Thunderbolt 4, 1 x HDMI 2.1
Screen 17.3-inch LCD 1920 x 1200 144Hz
Dimensions 400.3 x 292.37 x 28.96mm
Weight 3.03kg
Reasons to buy
  • Decent price
  • Quiet fans
  • Large screen
Reasons to avoid
  • Weaker performance
  • Heaviest laptop on the list

Do you find yourself getting frustrated by laptop fans making loads of noise whenever you start playing a game? Well, the Acer Nitro 17 runs like a dream. It’s as quiet as a mouse, and not because it’s letting your hard drive overheat and melt.

It’s similar to the Nitro 16 above in many ways, though with a few slight downgrades (which it makes up for with a lower asking price). It’s slightly heavier, it offers a slightly lower refresh rate, and its overall performance is a little lower. Besides that, everything we mentioned about the Nitro 16 applies just as much to the Nitro 17 – except, of course, that we found this model to be the quieter of the two (and it has a bigger screen too).

There’s not much else to say about this model, but it’s worth noting that it often comes bundled along with a gaming mouse (as on Amazon), which helps make it even better value for money. Like the Nitro 16, it’s a great entry-level machine – and one that won’t frustrate you with overly noisy fans.

Acer Predator Triton 500 SE

most powerful Acer gaming laptop

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Acer Predator Triton 500 SE specifications:
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Ti
CPU Intel Core i9-12900H
Storage 1TB SSD
Ports 2 X USB 3.1, 2 x USB Type-C, 2 x Thunderbolt 4, HDMI 2.1, RJ45 Ethernet, 2D card reader, 3.5mm jack
Screen 16-inches Quad HD (2560 x 1600) IPS, 240Hz
Dimensions 14.11 x 10.33 x 0.7-inches (358.5 x 262.4 x 189.9mm)
Weight 5.2lbs (2.4kg)
Reasons to buy
  • Gaming performance is stunning
  • Understated design and faultless build
  • Crisp, colorful display
Reasons to avoid
  • Expensive
  • Audio can become shrill
  • Noisy fans

The first thing you notice about the Acer Triton 500 isn’t a particularly stand-out feature at all. It’s the subtlety of the design. This all-aluminum, gunmetal gray machine is sleek, stylish, and doesn’t shout ‘gaming’ on first inspection. It wouldn’t look out of place on a commuter train or office cubicle. Open the lid, and you start to get a sense of the Triton’s gaming prowess from the hulking 16-inch display, beautifully designed RGB backlit keyboard, and sleek, tactile trackpad.

Weighing in at a touch over 5lbs, this is no shrinking violet, but you never really get the sense it’s particularly weighty, such is the sublime weight distribution. The case is relatively slim despite some impressive specs. By impressive, we’re referring to a 12th-generation Intel Core i9 CPU and Nvidia’s potent RTX 3080 Ti GPU paired with a generous 32 gigabytes of RAM. Be aware that such competent hardware produces a lot of heat, so you’ll regularly hear the cooling fans kicking off. It’s a minor annoyance but worth mentioning.

The 16-inch display is a stunning Quad HD panel with a refresh rate of 240Hz. Whether gaming or watching fast action films. The screen never misses a beat and delivers crisp, sharp, bright, and colorful visuals that make gaming on this laptop an immersive, dynamic experience.

There’s little to fault in the connectivity stakes, either, with an SD card slot, two USB Type-A ports, two USB Type C Thunderbolt 4 slots, HDMI 2.1, RJ45 ethernet, and the obligatory 3.5mm combo audio port. If there is one drawback to the Triton 500, it’s the punchy price tag, although there are deals out there if you shop around.

In performance terms, the Triton 500 SE is more than a match for Asus’s ROG Strix SCAR 16 or Alienware’s M16. This staggeringly fast, brilliantly specced, and incredibly stylish machine should be on any self-respecting gamer’s shopping list.

How we chose the best Acer gaming laptops

We picked out the best Acer gaming laptops around using the following criteria:

  • Power: Generally, you’re buying a gaming laptop with an eye on one thing – performance. We’ve lined up machines that offer the latest gaming hardware with an eye on the next point…
  • Price: Premium specs often equal premium prices, so we chose a variety of machines that offer a great combination of grunt and affordability.
  • Style: You want your gaming laptop to look the part. Or maybe you just want something of a sleeper for a gaming-focused machine. Either way, we gathered laptops wearing their gaming hearts on their sleeves and portables hiding their true intentions beneath anonymous casings.
  • Connectivity: At some point, you’ll want to connect peripherals from the basics, such as mice and external keyboards, to bigger items, such as monitors and 5.1 surround systems. We ensured our pick of the best Acer gaming laptops included plenty of ports.

Read our how we test page to find out more about how we put these lists together.

Acer Predator vs. Acer Nitro: Which should you choose?

Acer offers two lines in its gaming laptop range: Predator and Nitro.

Predator is Acer’s premium gaming line, offering the latest components packaged in sleek, stylish cases with the best display tech. If you’re looking for a high-end gaming experience, you’ll find it within the Predator range.

Nitro, on the other hand, puts value first and offers competitive hardware in less eye-catching clothing. A Nitro laptop may not look the part like the Predator range tends to, but there’ll still be plenty of power under the hood. In fact, you can spec up a Nitro laptop to mid-range gaming laptop levels where the lower-end models of the Predator line reside, so there’s still a certain amount of crossover between the two ranges.

And it’s worth pointing out that Acer’s Nitro 5 – its most budget-focused machine – is a serious contender for the pick of budget gaming machines out there.

For more gaming laptop recommendations, check out our expert guides on Alienware gaming laptops, the best Razer laptops, and the best Dell gaming laptops.