Updated: Sep 8, 2022
Until recently, I never had a PC that I could overclock. It was just a little over 15 months ago I finally managed to get a custom build desktop PC, and I really looked into what I wanted in depth before I made a decision. I literally looked at things for MONTHS before making a choice. I also called on the experience of some other squadron members, asking the questions that needed to be asked, so it's also thanks to their input.
I did that research because last time I spent money on a PC I bought a gaming laptop. It cost me about £850. This was a mistake ... well in some ways. But it was part of the learning curve that got me where I am today in terms of the PC I now have and the experience gained from it.
So I eventually reached a point where it was no longer competitive in terms of performance. Sure it did well for a while, but with an industry continually improving the products in terms of hardware capabilites and improvements to the games we play, you have to be able to keep up, and to a point you can upgrade .... Unless you have a laptop.
Despite what people might claim, you cannot, without going to a lot of effort, upgrade your gaming laptop.
There was talk a few years ago of making laptop's GPU's more upgradable, but in reality it's nowhere near as easy as pulling one out and putting another one in it's place, which for the majority of desktop users is the case.
You can also get EGPU's, which run via pcie express slots or thunderbolt connections, but, everything I've read about them states that you'll never achieve the same performance as if the card was in a desktop.
GPU's get put into PCIE Express slots on desktops that have X16 for a reason. that's 16 lanes for data to transfer. Running an EGPU via a pcie express x4 expansion slot on a laptop is throttling performance, it's no different using one via thunderbolt.
That's why I'd never really reccomend a laptop for gaming. The other thing is that the screen is tiny and you struggle to see anything, even with a 17.3" screen like I had, and then there are refresh rates, and response rates, which are nothing like a gaming monitor. I eventually ended up buying a gaming monitor and ran it from the laptop's mini display port.
The only reason I'd say "well ok, I can see why" to someone who wants a gaming laptop is for someone who travels ... a lot ... and wants to game wherever they are. Upgradability is still an issue there.
In general terms, a desktop's processor should last you many years, providing you do buy a good one to begin with. It's mostly the GPU's and our desire for better graphics and buying better monitors that will see you replacing your GPU long before needing a CPU replacement. There are some other upgrades that you could do, but we'll go into them in another post.
I hope this article has been of use to you if you're considering whether to buy a gaming laptop or desktop. Comment below and let me know wether or not you liked this content. Please click the heart in the bottom right corner to show some love for the post.