While it can be said that there is one laptop model for everyone, it’s really difficult to say the same about 17-inch laptops. The biggest of all mobile computers (except for some crazy 18.4” gaming models), they come with a pretty heavy body – the price to pay for the huge display. However, the 17-inch laptops have a share of about 15% of the market, being third place after 15 and 14 inchers. This shows that when people want a laptop, they don’t necessarily want something they can fit in a bigger pocket. They want desktop-level experience in a device they can take with them on holiday or move from their desk to a friend’s house and have an old-fashioned LAN party without the hassle of carrying around a desktop PC.
To make a choice easier for you, we’ve prepared a list of our favorite 17-inch models. They include laptops for every type of user, so you’ll find something for yourself. Of course, if you don’t, you’re free to look for something better yourself. At the very least, this list will give you a couple of great clues as to where to start searching. Without further ado, we introduce you to our top 17” laptops:
1. New Alienware 17 R4 AW17R4-7352SLV-PUS
The new 17” Alienware models are the delight of every gamer. Among gaming devices, they have the best screen and sound system, as well as some of the best components (MSI and Asus do offer some serious competition). This model, in particular, has a beautiful 300-nit UHD IPS display. Alienware is the very icon of gaming, along with Razer (when it comes to accessories), and we’re sure that if you can afford such a device, you won’t regret it the least bit.
This alien mother ship is powered by an ungodly latest-generation Intel i7-7820HK, quad-core, 2.9GHz, overclocked up to 3.9GHz, super-overclocked (what the hell, Alienware) up to 4.4GHz. It was barely launched in January 2017, and it’s a beast. It comes as a pack with an equally overpowered nVidia GTX 1070M, 8GB GDDR5. Then, there’s 32GB DDR4 @2400MHz, 256GB SSD and 1TB HDD @7200RPM. All in all, a perfectly VR-ready machine which could control an actual alien ship no problem.
2. Asus ROG G752VS-XB78K OC Edition
Another crazy delight for the power-crazy, this Republic of Gamers model poses a serious threat to Alienware. As far as looks are concerned, it has a unique design which is instantly recognizable by any gamer; in fact, all proper gaming laptops have a very particular appearance. It has an FHD screen with wide viewing angle (178o) and one of the best, if not the best cooling system on the market, with the proprietary Asus Vapor Chamber Technology.
The CPU at the heart of this perfect machine is an i7-6820HK, 2.9GHz and overclocked up to 4GHz. The graphics card is also an overclocked nVidia GTX 1070M with 8GB GDDR5, and the RAM is also an overclocked and completely insane 64GB DDR4. The storage is not overclocked, but that’s not necessary either – it’s a 512GB SSD paired with a 1TB HDD. Such is the world of monsters.
3. MSI GE72VR Apache Pro-009
We’re only introducing this model because there are already enough OP models on this list. In fact, MSI has the GT73VR 7RF Titan Pro, which totally overpowers both the Alienware and the ROG. At any rate, if you want something under $1500 that still performs epically well, this must be it. You can tell from a mile away that it’s a real gaming laptop and God, you’d be right.
This Apache helicopter works on an Intel i7-6700HQ, 2.6 and up to 3.5GHz with Turbo Boost, and a pretty brilliant GTX 1060M with 6GB GDDR5. The setup is completed by a nice 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, and 1TB HDD @7200RPM. It may not seem exactly as powerful as the others, but IT’S HALF THE PRICE.
4. Asus ROG Strix GL702VM-DB74
In the same price range as the Apache Pro, our second model from Asus will be your favorite choice if you want some epic gaming on a model that doesn’t scream “I’M SHOOTING ALIENS AND IT’S AWESOME”. In fact, if it were not for the ROG logo on the back and the lines somewhat resembling a gaming rig, you simply couldn’t tell it’s a gaming laptop. At only 0.94” thickness and 6lbs, it’s light and thin even for a normal 17-inch laptop, let alone for a gaming one.
The setup is in every respect identical to the Apache Pro so that we won’t repeat the same description. It’s claimed to have an improved battery and comfortable typing experience, but that remains to be seen. At any rate, the reviews are almost perfect, and nobody seems to have any serious complaints to address.
5. Lenovo ThinkPad P50 Touch
Why would anyone pay so much for a laptop, or any computer, for that matter? Easy: because they want to edit three 4K videos at the same time and still have a free display for playing Solitaire. This amazing machine has a 4K UHD IPS display and can accommodate another three displays, being able to run VR applications no problem.
This machine is powered by an i7-6920HK, 2.9GHz and up to 3.8GHz with Turbo Boost. There’s a discrete graphics card specially designed for this kind of purpose, a nVidia Quadro M5500M with 8GB GDDR5, which is the ultimate VR-ready workstation-class graphics card. It also has 16GB DDR4, as well as a 128GB SSD and 1TB HDD. While we believe that storage is a bit lacking, especially in that price range, it won’t cost you much to upgrade if you need it and, overall, this is the single most powerful workstation we could find.
6. Acer Aspire V17 Nitro Black Edition VN7-792G-709L
The Nitro power of this model comes from, as said, a gaming-oriented setup. It has an i7-6700HQ, as well as a nVidia GTX 960M with 4GB GDDR5, 16GB DDR4 RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 1TB HDD. All the components for a successful laptop. Add a battery life of up to 7 hours, and you will understand why this model is our choice as the best overall 17-inch laptop.
7. HP Pavilion 17 AB020NR
A classic design from a company known for its tradition and reliability, this Pavilion model is one of the best 17-inch laptops for the average user. If you’re just planning to watch movies, listen to music, do online shopping, read, write, do office work, and any other similar tasks, this is something that will work perfectly for all of these. You may even do some gaming and light graphic design, as this is the only model here that has an FHD touchscreen.
The Pavilion 17 is based on almost the same setup as the V17 Nitro, benefiting from the processing power of an i7-6700HQ and a GTX 960 with 4GB GDDR5. It’s true that it only has 12GB DDR4, a 128GB SSD, and a 1TB HDD, but it’s also much cheaper than the Nitro, which makes it an excellent choice in this price range.
8. Dell Inspiron i5767-0018GRY
A nice design, with a warm gray color and rounded edges, is what we’d like to have when we’re watching a movie with our partners, on a cold winter night, at a mountain cabin, while we’re drinking hot cocoa under the blanket. As far as we’re concerned, this model is the best budget choice among 17-inch laptops, without sacrificing either looks or too much performance.
Speaking of performance, there’s a latest-generation i5-7200U in there, 2.5GHz and up to 3.1GHz overclocked, with Intel HD 620 graphics. It has 8GB DDR4 @2400MHz, upgradable to 16GB, and a 1TB HDD. All things considered, it’s a great all-around laptop.
9. Lenovo 17-300
A very simple model with a very simple name, this Lenovo 17-inch laptop is an excellent budget choice for those who don’t have the money or the need to buy one of the aforementioned overpowered devices. It has a nice HD+ (1600×900), and it’s slim and light for such a big screen, at only 1” thickness and 6.7lbs. It has a nice and comfortable keyboard for those who type a lot and will provide movie watchers with the biggest screen a laptop has to offer.
As far as performance is concerned, this laptop is powered by a more than sufficient i5-6200U, dual-core, 2.3GHz and up to 2.8 with Turbo Boost, with the Intel HD 520 integrated graphics chip. It also features 8GB DDR3L SDRAM, as well as 1TB HDD.
There isn’t such a large variety of 17-inch models, due to their being completely unappealing for those who prefer portability to comfort, and also because they are more expensive than smaller models. There is, however, enough of a choice for those who want sheer power, and it’s true that the highest-performing devices are not classic 15.6”, but rather 17”. It makes perfect sense if you think of it: a bigger laptop can accommodate significantly more powerful components as it has room for a bigger power supply and coolers. What’s more, such a large display and keyboard offer a comfortable experience you could never get on a 13-inch laptop.
Due to there being not so many 17-inch laptops, the choice is rather easier than it is with classic models. There are, nonetheless, the same two main difficulties to face: your budget and your purpose. Of course, you must buy a laptop according to your needs, but that’s simply not possible if you can’t afford it, so you’ll have to consider budget first. Don’t spend more than 10% over what you decided – that’s the secret to not being sorry for your purchase later.
As far as purpose is concerned, there are about four categories of people who’d require such a big device. First, it’s the gamers: the best gaming rigs are, indisputably, 17-inchers. If you belong to this category, make sure that the processor and the graphics card are up to the task, first and foremost; everything else can be changed or upgraded. Next, it’s the video editors, graphics designers, image editors and multimedia creators. To that extent, you’ll need a good processor, as well as a specialized graphics card such as Nvidia Quadro, Intel Iris or something similar. Also (especially valid for image creators and editors of whatever kind), a good-quality screen is essential. QHD is preferable, or even UHD if you can afford it.
The third category comprises accountants, writers, and people who want to perform office duties more comfortably than they would on a tiny 13-inch laptop. If you’re one of those, you need not concern yourself with high-performance laptops – just get something with a good screen that doesn’t bother the eyes and a comfortable keyboard. Trust us – it’s really important. Same goes for the fourth category, those who just want to watch a good movie on a big screen. Just about any budget laptop will do fine, just make sure it’s not some lame thing with a Celeron processor and 2GB RAM.
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