I hope RTX 3060 and RTX 3050-powered gaming laptops stay under $1,000

An MSI and a Gigabyte gaming laptop on a blue background.
(Image credit: MSI / Gigabyte)
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Amazon Prime Early Access sale has rolled in, or Prime Day two as many are calling it. It's brought a whole bunch of excellent PC gaming deals (opens in new tab) in with it, including some excellent discounted laptops (opens in new tab). If you want to get your outdoor game on but prefer the trusty old keyboard and mouse (or trackpad) to the Steam Deck's sticks and buttons, you'll find yourself well-served by this event's slate of portable powerhouses.

Even if you aren't dead-set on playing games at your local Starbucks, the extra oomph offered by a gaming laptop will come in handy if you're doing heavy editing work, running a bunch of programs at once, or trying to open more than four Chrome tabs. There's no force like brute force, and being able to chuck oodles of power at basic productivity tasks can come in very handy indeed. 

Below, I've rounded up a selection of currently-discounted gaming laptops going for under $1,000, and there's some real bright spots in there. The Gigabyte A7 K1, for example, is a behemoth of a machine, equipped with an RTX 3060; 16GB of RAM; and a 17.3 inch, 1080p panel that runs at 144hz. It's normally $1,299, but the current sale has cut that down to a seriously tempting $999 (opens in new tab).

There is, admittedly, one drawback here: the laptops listed below top out at 512GB of storage, with one of them — the Acer Nitro 5 (opens in new tab) — coming in at just 256GB. That's gonna get cramped no matter how you slice it, unless you restrict yourself to very old or very indie games.

Not to worry, though, because we've collected the best Amazon Prime Day SSD deals (opens in new tab) on one handy page. If you're buying an SSD for a laptop, you'll want to skip past the internal drives, but there are numerous well-priced and speedy external SSDs to hook up to your new machine.

$839.99 (opens in new tab)

Acer Nitro 5 | Nvidia RTX 3050 | Intel Core i5 10300H | 15.6-inch | 1080p | 144Hz | 8GB RAM | 256GB SSD | $839.99 $769 at Amazon (save $70.99) (opens in new tab)

Alright, so the RAM is a little lacking, but this nifty little laptop should see you right at its native 1080p in most plenty of games. A 10th Gen Intel CPU like this is still just about relevant today, and the CPU/GPU combo makes this one a tidy entry level gaming laptop. You might want to grab some more storage for this one, though, depending on the kind of games you play.

MSI GF65 Thin | Nvidia RTX 3060 | Intel Core i5 10500H | 15.6-inch | 1080p | 144Hz | 16GB RAM | 512GB SSD | $909.99 (opens in new tab)

MSI GF65 Thin | Nvidia RTX 3060 | Intel Core i5 10500H | 15.6-inch | 1080p | 144Hz | 16GB RAM | 512GB SSD | $909.99 $851.62 at Amazon (save $58.37) (opens in new tab)

It may come in at the lower end of the gaming spectrum, but this is a dependable machine that's lighter than your average gaming laptop. It falls down a little when it comes to storage space, but the CPU is still pretty relevant today. It's a good price for a portable gaming machine with a current gen GPU, either way.

Gigabyte A7 K1 | Nvidia RTX 3060 | AMD Ryzen 7 5800H | 17.3-inch | 1080p | 144Hz | 16GB RAM | 512GB SSD | $1,299 (opens in new tab)

Gigabyte A7 K1 | Nvidia RTX 3060 | AMD Ryzen 7 5800H | 17.3-inch | 1080p | 144Hz | 16GB RAM | 512GB SSD | $1,299 $999 at Amazon (save $200) (opens in new tab)

A nice wide view with this 17-inch gaming laptop, and though it may not be the most powerful thing around, you still get a current-gen GPU with ray tracing ability, coupled with a sweet Ryzen CPU. It has a good mid-range gaming spec to back it up, though some more SSD space would've been nice.

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.