Best Gaming Laptop: MSI GT72S Dominator Pro G Dragon
We love our desktop gaming rigs, but there are times when a full-tilt boogie semi-portable laptop just makes more sense. Take the MSI GT72S Dominator Pro G Dragon, which packs a GeForce GTX 980—Nvidia’s top-dog GPU for laptops that offers 1:1 performance with its desktop counterpart. Yes, you read that right. A laptop that performs every bit as fast as a top-of-the-line gaming desktop rig with a $550 GPU in it. In fact, our review unit even slightly outperformed the desktop we compared it against.
But the MSI GT72S Dragon isn't just a one-trick pony. Across the board, it held its own against comparable desktop systems, and even edged out the desktops in certain tasks when we overclocked its Core i7-6820HK processor from 3.2GHz to 4.0GHz.
The only drawback to this system isn't its weight, though with a 17.3-inch IPS panel it's certainly heavy. Our review model pushes $3,100, thanks to its quad-core Skylake CPU and G-Sync 75Hz display. MSI throws in a free backpack to lessen that price tag’s sting, and honestly, a comparable desktop setup isn’t astronomically cheaper—but it's still a good chunk of cash. You get what you pay for, though, and that’s true desktop performance in a laptop.
Best high-end Chromebook: Dell Chromebook 13
Whereas many lower-end Chromebooks feel like toys, the Chromebook 13 is made for grown-ups. Its build includes a tough carbon-fiber lid with a rubber gasket for even more durability. It houses a 13.3-inch, 1920x1080 IPS display—either anti-glare (as with the unit we're testing), or a Gorilla Glass touchscreen. Inside the magnesium-alloy body you'll find a Broadwell Celeron CPU. Our review unit's Celeron 3205U is looking peppy in our performance tests, and battery life seems close to Dell's promise of 12-13 hours.
Dell's Chromebook 13 is no bargain at $429 as configured. We know most people like Chromebooks costing $300 or even far less. For a category that's hitting its stride, however, with growth in education and the enterprise, the Chromebook 13 is a laptop that looks and acts like it means business.
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