The 5 Best Laptops For Minecraft 2023 (Shaders Mods & RTX Mode)

I’m sure you headed over to reddit to see what people thought of what the best laptop for minecraft was. 

And as usual you got crazy comments like:

” Minecraft can run on a microwave. Get optifine and you can run the game on a toaster. Just get any cheap laptop srsly”

“I’ve seen MC run on CPUs and integrated GPUs made 15 years ago”

“My 10 year old PC eats MineCraft for breakfast”

“I got a 10 year old lapto from  walmart with the screen falling off and Minecraft still runs good”

Now…

Those comments do hold some truth to it.

But only…

If you want to play a bare bones version of Minecraft,  “Vanilla” Minecraft. That is, Minecraft with nothing else added to it: zero shaders, zero mods,  low settings & low # of chunks. If you want a more ‘fancy’ looking version of Minecraft, then not any laptop will do.

What follows is a quick summary of what each laptop can do with Minecraft:

Note that the following laptops are just examples, yes you can buy these but you may want to read the next section to see more options.

A) Minecraft Laptop Under $200:  is only going to have a Pentium or Celeron CPU, which are the exact same processors used on table devices and phones. Phones are fast but that’s because they don’t have Windows on them. You can ONLY play a downgraded version of MC: Minecraft For Windows with these kind of laptops, NOT the full version of VANILLA minecraft java edition. 

 

 B) Minecraft laptop under $300 (or around): this much budget will let you run the most popular and full version of Minecraft (Java Edition) with no lag because you can get a late generation Core i3 or Ryzen 3, both can run Windows 10 Home or Windows 11 with no hiccups.


 
But you’ll be limited to low or medium settings (8-12 chunks loaded max) and although you can add mods to the game, it is unlikely you’ll find ‘decent’ looking shaders that will run at 60fps.

C) Mineraft laptop under $500: Once you have anywhere from 450-500 dollars. You can start looking at laptops with powerful integrated graphics like the Intel Xe or RX Vega 7 which should let you play Minecraft Java Edition with mods (including the FTB Revelations and FTB Interactions modpacks), fancy settings and even the MEDIUM versions of shaders like Sildrus and Chocapic.


 
D) The Best Laptops for Minecraf have Dedicated GPUs –  550 dollars and up

The real fun starts when you have a dedicated GPU especially the 1650GTX or the 3050Ti RTX. They will both run MC on Turbo Mode with all coolest looking shaders like ChocaPic v13 High & all mods available on the fanciest of the fanciest settings with no lag or stuttering (at least 60 and up to 300 if chunks are small).

Unlike the 1650GTX, the 3050Ti RTX can run Minecraft on RTX Mode. We’ll talk more about the features you can lock and exact performance but you can get a sense of it here:

 

Notice framerates going as high as 1000fps, at some point in the video. You’re only going to get that if you get a MUX Switch (doesn’t have any additional costs, you just have to know what they are and how to look for one). We’ll talk about that later also. 

Below you can see a summary of the kind of performance you can expect from different hardware (the average price is shown too but you can always find them cheaper).

Before we get to the top 5 best laptops for minecraft. We’ll talk about how to get the best perforamance out of a laptop for minecraft across all budgets. You can skip to the best laptops section if you’d like.

Best Laptop Specs for MineCraft

There are two ways to get the best hardware and that depends on your budget… 

1. If you’ve got a budget under 550 bucks, you won’t get a dedicated GPU so focus on the CPU*!  Read the CPU section only (skip the GPU section). 

2. For those with more than 600 dollars. Focus on the GPU. You are entitled to. a dedicated GPU, you might even get a 1650GTX for 600 dollars. 700 bucks can get you a 3050Ti to play RTX Minecraft. All laptops above 600 dollars should run HEAVY SHADERS like Chocapic High 13 v7 & Seus Renewed.

You can get more details (this will be a summary) in the last section which has dozens of benchmarks for different hardware and shaders

CPU(Processor)
Although the 12th gen Intel and 6th gen Ryzen CPUs are out they are way too expensive, the following are just as good:
 Core i3 1050G1, Core i3 1115G4, Core i5 10210U, Core i5 1135G7. Ryzen 3 3200U, 4300U, 5300U  Ryzen 5 3500U, 4500U, 5500U*

Good news is that all of these can get at least 60 frames per second with all the mods you want.
The 11th Core i5 and 5th Ryzen 5 CPUs , however, can run the LITE & MEDIUM version of some shader packs  with 50-60fps because they have better integrated GPUs: AMD Ryzen Vega 7, Vega 8 & Intel Xe*
 
*You should pick laptops based on CPUs and not integrated GPUs. They come in hand in hand. For more details check the last section. 
*Ryzen 7 and Intel Core i7 “G” or “U” are faster and better but way too expensive. 
 
GPU(Graphics Card)
Avoid the following: MX250, MX150, 940MX and anything weaker than a MX350
500-550 dollars: MX350, MX450,  1050GTX. They’ll run most “medium” shaders and some of the high ones w/ at least 50fps.
600-650 dollars:
1050Ti & 1650GTX. The 1650GTX is more powerful and common but the 1050Ti can also run high versions of shaders with ~50fps & 16 chunks loaded. Ex:  Chocapic 13 v7(High), Sildrus (High), SEUS Renewed,Oceano,etc.
750-900 dollars: 1660Ti, 1060GTX, 2060RTX, 3050Ti . These can all run extreme versions of shaders but with higher framerates ~80fps. Only the 2060RTX & 3050Ti can unlock minecraft in RTX mode. 
900-1300 dollars: 3060RTX useful for 1440p & RTX minecraft . Laptops with this GPU have different wattages. However, for MC it makes little difference. Read more about wattage here.
1300+ dollars: 3070RTX, 3080RTX, 3080Ti, 3070Ti, AMD Radeon RX 6700S, AMD Radeon RX 6800S and equivalents. Too much power  only useful for Minecraft running at 1440p or 4k resolution. 
***Don’t worry about CPUs . Laptops with  dedicated GPUs will perform more or less the same regardless of the CPU.
RAM
8GB: This is the minimum and most gaming laptops have this much. It’s only an issue if you’re buying under 400 dollar laptops which only have 4GB RAM. If that’s the case, you must do the upgrade to 8GB.
12-16GB:  Having more RAM will help look the game look better (due to its paging chunk system) but only up to 12GB. 12-16GB is also useful for budget laptops with integrated GPUs, if you get this much they can match the performance of some dedicated GPUs. Hence why I said to avoid those dedicated GPUs in red. 
Storage
MC doesn’t use a lot of storage even if you’ve got hundreds of mods and shaders, 128GB will still be fine. 

Solid State Drives (SSD): You must get an SSD though!
Especially if you’re only buying a laptop under 350 as they’ll take some load off a  CPU running  which should free up CPU power to handle Minecraft. Ive seen FPS increments from 15 to 45 just by adding an SSD to a slow old laptop.

Top 5 Best Laptops for Minecraft

The cheapest laptops cost anywhere from 350-500 bucks and they can run all mods and some of the light shader packs (Medium or Lite).

The ones above 600 bucks can run heavy shaders like ChocaPic and Sildrius ( High & Extreme versions ). Every laptop regardless of price on this list will handle all the ftb modpacks like interactions and revelations though.

Note that these laptops are only available in the United States. In case the links do not take you to a laptop on your region, just write down the model and/or check out the alternatives which I post in every review
 


1. Newest HP

Best Laptop For Minecraft Under 500

  AMD Ryzen 5 5500U

  8GB RAM

  Radeon Vega RX 7

  256GB SSD NVMe PCIe

  15.6” FHD 

  4.2 lbs

  8 hours

 

This is the cheapest laptop on the list but by no means the slowest, in fact, I’d say it’s going to be useful for 90% of the people looking for the best laptop for minecraft.

I know there are cheaper laptops (~350 dollars or so) with maybe a Core i3 and a Ryzen 3 which work just fine for the vanilla version of Minecraft and some mods .

The one featured here however has a AMD Ryzen 5 5500U which is a LOT more faster than the Ryzen 3 and Core i3 models. It also has a much much faster integrated GPU, AMD Radeon Vega 7, what does that matter? Well for additional stuff like shaders. That’s probably all you need to know, if you are interested in the vanilla version of MC just buy the acer aspire 5, if you want to run some shaders then consider adding 80 more bucks and buy the model featured here. 

Now we’ll just talk about WHAT kind of shaders this machine supports. Feel Free to skip to the next laptop.

Minecraft with Shaders:

The AMD RX Vega 7 graphics card is by no means a dedicated GPU, it is still an integrated GPU however because it’s recent its performance actually quite close to entry level dedicated GPUs released a few years ago (those with 2GB vRAM – MX150, MX250).

This is why it can support some shaders (light versions) as you can see in the video above. Although the video above uses a slightly older CPU, it should still be a good benchmark to see what you can do. Expect 5-10 more framerates from the model featured here though, there’s a massive jump in CPU performance between the Ryzen 5 3500U on the clip and the Ryzen 5 5500U featured here. 

8GB RAM vs 12GB or 16GB :

Having a Ryzen 5 5500U laptop with the Radeon Vega 7 or 8 does not mean you can run all shaders. Some shaders, even the medium versions of these shaders, will lag:  Chocapic & SEUS & Silrus are good examples.

However…

Once you up that RAM to 16GB, the integrated graphics will unlock it’s full potential by taking that extra RAM and use it as ‘vRAM’.  The extra RAM will also help with Minecraft paging system and if you do the upgrade in dual-channel mode (I explained all this technical jargon in the last section) you will make the CPU more efficient.

Thus with this laptop you can expect to at least run LIGHT to MEDIUM version of shaders witih decent frameartes. High versions , of say like Chocapic, will not run at high framerates but they’ll be somewhat playable (I don’t advice you run the high versions though, you will ovetax the machine).

Why was this model chosen out of all the other Ryzen 5 5500U laptops?

There are plenty of other models you can choose, below you can see the table of the best deals out there. I’ve chose the Acer Aspire (R5 5500U model) simply because it’s got the best specs/money ratio. Notice how some of the other models are cheaper but lack the full HD display! 

Link CPU RAM Display Price HP 2021 15 R5 5500U 8GB FHD 549 HP 5 5500 R5 5500U 8GB FHD 445 Acer A515 R5 5500U 8GB FHD 499 Lenovo Ideapad R5 5500U 8GB FHD 485 HP 14 Laptop R5 5500U 8GB FHD 483 Lenovo Ideapad 3 14 R5 5500U 8GB FHD 515

If the Acer Aspire runs out of stock or the prices just go significantly higher (which may be the case because it’s one of the hottest laptops right now), feel free to check the other alternatives on the table.


Acer Aspire 5: Ryzen 3 3500U Model – Cheapest laptop for Minecraft

I already talked about the Ryzen 3 3500U but let me say it again. You don’t need the Ryzen 5 5500U model (450 bucks) Im featuring here if whoever’s playing the game isn’t interested in running shaders. 

Most people are interested in running mods with minecraft and for that the 350 dollar Acer Aspire 5 with the Ryzen 3 CPU will do just fine.

Although of course the game and mods will run better with the Ryzen 5 5500U (especially the big ftp mods ~200) but if you’re on a budget, the game with mods is still playable and fast enough with the 350 model. 

Shaders

That doesn’t mean you can’t run shaders on a machine like this though. You can get a sense of what the performance is if you look for laptops with the Core i3 or Ryzen 3 CPUs as you can see in this clip, it will run some medium shaders at 35-50fps (Chocapic13 v7.1).  The Ryzen 5 5500U model just does it better with much higher framerates while keeping temperatures  cooler.

Newest HP 
PROS CONS
  • Best Multicore performance CPU Under 450
  • 256GB & 8GB Out of the BOX
  • FHD (Full HD – 1080p) under 450
  • RAM & Storage Upgradeable
  • High Performance Integrated Graphics 
  • Runs Minecraft Lite & Medium versions of Shaders
  • Supports all the BIG FTP Modpacks
  • Dual-Channel support
  • Heavy
  • Does not run medium & high shaders with 60 fps
  • Must upgrade RAM to 16GB to play with shaders

Buy Now


2. ZenBook 14

Best Laptop For Minecrat & School

  Ryzen 5 5500U

  8GB DDR4

   GeForce MX 450 2GB vRAM

  256GB PCIe SSD

  14” 60Hz Full HD IPS

  4.4lbs

  5 hours

I know most of the people reading this are probably parents trying to buy the perfect laptop for both minecraft and school.

Form Factor: Thin & Lightweight

The first laptop we just went over isn’t really a good choice for students. Although it surely has enough power to run all the software most engineering students work with in college, it is HEAVY. 

Heavier 5lb laptops with 15”-17” displays are most of the time used as desktop replacement – that is they have be plugged in most of the time or the battery will quickly run out. Plus again they’re heavy, too heavy, to be carried around everywhere.

The ASUS ZenBook is the thinnest and lightest laptop on the list. Of course there are lighter and small machines but unlike those the ASUS ZenBook has a dedicated GPU, so it is even FASTER than the heavy bricks we went over. 

GPU: MX450 Performance

Of course that means it’s more expensive too.

But it’s definitely worth the investment because the dedicated GPU will not only unlock most shaders with the game ( the high versions) but also become super useful for 3D applications which are the heaviest apps used in school.

There’s another advantage, the MX450 only uses 25W which means more battery!

Now I don’t have the exact benchmarks of the MX450 when running shaders. Im hoping to get this model myself by the end of the year but you can use the video above for now to see for yourself that it runs Minecraft NO PROBLEMs and it outperforms VASTLY outperforms the first laptop on the list.

Alternatives:

There are a lot of sellers with this laptop, it is likely the link will tell you that it’s out of stock so feel free the use the following links. Also if you feel like you can’t afford the MX450 but still want that dedicated GPU performance, you can grab the slightly older model (MX350) if its cheaper of course, it has pretty much the same capabilities as the MX450 as far as the heavy software they run in college.

Link GPU Name Storage RAM Price
ZenBook 14 MX450 Ryzen 5500U 256GB 8GB 529
Slim ZenBook 14 MX450 Ryzen 5500U 256GB 8GB 599
ASUS ZenBook 14 MX450 Ryzen 5500U 256GB 8GB 539
ZenBook MX350 Ryzen 4500U 256GB 8GB 550
ZenBook MX350 Ryzen 4500U 256GB 8GB 555

But let’s stop kidding ourselves, we both know this laptop is going to be used mostly for Minecraft and to watch Minecraft tutorials on youtube. If there’s any 3D modeling work or schoolwork with it, it’ll probably be some furniture design with the furniture mod for minecraft Mr Crayfish Furniture mods

ASUS ZenBook 14
PROS CONS
  • Great Battery for a laptop with a dedicated GPU
  • High performance multicore CPU
  • Latest MX GeForce GPU
  • Supports Medium Shaders with at least 60 fps
  • Runs all FTP modpacks
  • Relatively Lightweight
  • Cannot upgrade RAM & Storage
  • Low # of ports
  • Expensive

Buy Now


3. Lenovo Ideapad 3 

Best Gaming Laptop For Minecraft With Shaders

  Intel Core i5 10300H

  8GB RAM DDR4

   GeForce 1650 GTX 4GB vRAM 

  256GB PCIe SSD

  15” 1080p IPS 60Hz

  4.1 lbs

  3 hours

This laptop is a MASSIVE upgrade over the the MX450 laptop. The dedicated GPU: 1650GTX is far more powerful, there are dozens of laptops with a 1650GTX  to choose from (we’ll list the best deals soon) most, if not all, either come with AMD Ryzen 5 CPU or the Core i5 CPU. We’ll list models with the Ryzen 5 CPU first.

Link CPU GPU Display Price
Ideapad gaming 3 R5 5600H 1650GTX 120Hz 630
Ideapad R5 5600H 1650GTX 120Hz 679
Ideapad 3 R5 5600H 1650GTX 120Hz 689
HP Pavilion R5 5600H 1650GTX 120Hz 750

Performance: Ryzen 5 5600H (4600H) + 1650GTX 

Graphics Render Distance Shaders FPS(Building) FPS(Fighting)
Fancy 48 OFF 190~252 60
Fancy 16 OFF +290 165
Fast 4 OFF +290 258
Fast 4 Chocapic v13(High) +160 127
Fancy 16 Chocapic v13(High) +100 84

Notice how the framerates are crazy high despite the fact that one of the most hardware demanding shaders, Chocapic High, is being used (last two rows). Needless to say if you want the best performance with virtually ALL shaders, this is the laptop you want. 

The following paragraphs we’ll deal with more technical aspects of the GPU & graphics set up of the 1650GTX on this model and most models so feel free to skip it (Skip to the last laptop on the list).

Read the following and the next laptop, if you want to research more 1650GTX laptops on your own.

Maximize Performance : MUX Switch & GPU Usage

If you’ve watched my video playing the game and focused on the stats on the upper left corner, you probably noticed something interesting: 

There is GPU 1 and GPU2 showing up in the stats.

The GPU1 stands for the integrated graphics (RX Vega 7 in this laptop) which is present in nearly every gaming laptop because it’s attached to the CPU. The GPU2 stands for the 1650GTX dedicated GPU. 

The screenshot was taken while running Chocapic V16 High with most graphics settings maxed out (fancy – 16 chunks).

Q: The question is why is the integrated GPU used here and the fact it’s being used makes the game run faster?

No, actually, although the game is using both that doesn’t make the game run faster. Having the integrated GPU used simultanously sort of ‘slows down’ the performance of the dedicated GPU (1650GTX) . Thus if you can get rid of the integrated GPU impact on the game, the dedicated GPU (#2) will take over and run the game at much much higher framerates. 

How do you do that?

You can only disable the iGPU (GPU #1) ONLY and ONLY IF your laptop comes with a MUX Switch as explained in my post here. Otherwise, you will be stuck with the performance. That’s not say the machine is slow with heavy shaders, it’s still plenty fast, framerates are crazy high but they could be much higher (though higher framerates are useless I know some people still want higher framerates so I thought I had to mention this phenomena).

If you want the iGPU disabled to hit higher framerates check the next laptop! The advantage of using both GPUs though is more battery so keep that in mind!

Lenovo Ideapad 3
PROS CONS
  • Best CPU found on 1650GTX laptops
  • SSD+8GB RAM out of the BOX
  • 120Hz Display
  • Dual-Channel support
  • Easy to upgrade RAM & Storage
  • Decent sound system
  • Superb gaming keyboard
  • Cheap plastic quality chasis
  • Lacks USB ports on the left side
  • Extremely low battery
  • Flimsy design

Buy Now


4. Lenovo L340

Best Budget Laptop For Minecraft with Shaders

  Intel Core i5 9300H

  8GB RAM 

   1650GTX 4GB vRAM (No Optimus)

  256GB PCIe SSD (Free 2.5” Bay Slot)

  15” FHD IPS 60Hz

  4.10lbs

  3 hours (Gaming) – 6 hours (Work)

This is an sort of old model which has a weaker CPU but still has the same dedicated GPU. What’s funny about this machine is that, like I said, has the iGPU disabled (it doesn’t have a MUX Switch but it still has the iGPU disabled through other means) and thus the dedicated GPU vastly outruns the same dedicated GPU found in the previous model.

Gaming Performance:  Core i5 9300H/10300H vs AMD Ryzen 5 5600H

Graphics Chunks Shaders FPS(Building) FPS(Fighting)
Fancy 48 OFF +500 60
Fancy 16 OFF +600 ~400
Fast 4 OFF +1000 ~500
Fast 4 Chocapic v13(High) +260 198
Fancy 16 Chocapic v13(High) +173 80

As you can see this old little machine is crazy crazy fast because it’s got a better dedicated GPU set up (has the iGPU disabled permanently). The downside is that like I said, battery is going to be lower. So it’s totally up to you: performance or battery?

Another very cool thing about this model is the price, because it’s got an older CPU (which I hope you believe me now that it makes little difference once you take care of the GPU) it’s about 80 dollar cheaper than your average 1650GTX laptop.

Anyways, the point is this 1650GTX laptop despite being old will outperform VIRTUALLY all 1650GTX laptops in Minecraft.

Display & RAM:  60Hz FHD – No Dual Channel

This model only has a 60Hz display and 256GB storage. It also does not support RAM in dual-channel mode because there’s a 4GB RAM stick soldered into the motherboard. You can still upgrade the other slot to make 20GB (16GB stick) but you won’t get the extra 5-10 fps from dual-channeling RAM. Well you probably won’t need it anyways, just look at those numbers with the mighty 1650GTX embedded in this machine.

Lenovo L340
PROS CONS
  • SSD+8GB RAM out of the BOX
  • No Optimus – +15% increased GPU Power
  • Can run all High versions of Shaders w/ 80fps
  • Higher performance 1650GTX Laptop on single-core games
  • Storage & RAM Upgradeable
  • Cheapest 1650GTX Laptop
  • Cheap plastic cover 
  • Weak sound system
  • Extremely bad battery
  • No Dual Channel Support
  • Outdated CPU

Buy Now


5. Acer Nitro 5

Best Laptop For Minecraft RTX 

  Core i5 10300H

  8GB DDR4

   3050TI GTX 4GB vRAM

  256GB PCIe NVMe SSD

  15.6โ€ 144Hz Full HD IPS

  4.96lbs

  5 hours*

FInally, the last laptop on the list and yes it’s the most powerful  because it has an even better graphics card.

But that’s not the reason why I’m listing this graphics card, we don’t really need more framerates after you’ve seen what laptop #3 and #4 can do with shaders right?

RTX GPU: 3050Ti

What this laptop offers is NOT more framerates (well it does output more framerates but that’s not the reason why you should buy it).

What this offers is enabling the RTX (Ray tracing) feature on Minecraft. This option will show up once your laptop or PC has an RTX GPU, the 1650GTX or any of the graphics we went over before are not RTX GPUs. The 3050Ti along with the 3060, 3070RTX and 3080RTX are all RTX GPUs. Im not going to list the other RTX GPUs because they’re way too powerful for this game.

Anyways…enough RTX talking…

What this feature does is basically render the interaction between light and objects (thus shadows) at a much more realistic level as shown in the image below: 

Most sites usually recommend an 3060RTX to activate this cool feature but actually you don’t need an 3060RTX or any of the other RTX GPUs, the 3050Ti is ALL you need here.

Those guys are probably not aware that the 3050Ti is still an RTX GPU.

Anyways…the point is if you want to activate this feature and play maps that support Ray Tracing you don’t need to spend more than 800 bucks

3050Ti: RTX Minecraft GPU Performance

Pay no attention to the framerates (they’re not high because the graphics have been completely maxed out), pay attention to how smooth the color transitions look and how the light interacts with the objects creating more realistic shadows and making the scenario dramatically change for ex check Neon District starting at 21:35.

The alternative to this model is the Lenovo Ideapad 3 witih the 3050Ti. I have that model myself which should be slightly faster than the Acer Nitro 5 (due to the better multicore performance of the AMD Ryzen 5


Shaders

The most hardware demanding shader I can think off the top of my head is SEUS PTGI HIGH HRR, far heavier than Chocapic, and this is the only laptop that will run it smoothly (provided you up the RAM to 16GB – I have a tutorial here on how to do just that on the Lenovo Ideapad Gaming 3 3050Ti model).

Mods

The most extreme mod pack is the patrix resource pack  and it will probably crash most laptops on this list and this one although will run it OK…will probably have frame drops and slow down from time to time. If you want to have that mode in your arsenal and want to run it smoothly, you don’t need to up your GPU, you should just find a laptop with a better CPU. There’s a tutorial in the next section showing you the hierarchy of CPUs for Minecraft. 
 
What about 3060RTX? 3070RTX? Are they really useless?

Imo, they are useless if you just want to play the game at 1080p with shaders and mods. However, if you want to play the game at 1440p and even 4k resolution. I’d say the 3060RTX is perfect for 1440p gaming and the 3070RTX / 3080RTX for 4k gaming. Since most people do not play minecraft with that much resolution, I thought it was a waste time to go over those. You can find benchmarks videos of laptops with those GPUs running the game at higher resolution down below in the “Minecraft Laptops over 600 USD section – Part V” if you are intereted.

Acer Nitro 5
PROS CONS
  • High Performance RTX GPU
  • Unlocks RTX mode on Minecraft
  • Supports the heaviest shaders with 60fps
  • 3050Ti Laptop Under 800
  • Easy to upgrade RAM & Storage
  • Latest WiFi 6 Protocol
  • Cheapest 3050Ti Laptop
  • Extremely low battery
  • Bulky and Heavy
  • Low quality material

Hardware Guide For Minecraft Java Edition

In this section you’ll find ALL the information you need to find the best laptop for minecraft for every budget. I will divide into three sections depending on your budget:

You’ll need to understand some computer jargon so I suggest you take a quick read to my beginner’s guide to computer specifications post
 

A) Minecraft Laptops 300-500 USD: The focus here will be the CPU, I will show you benchmarks on how a specific laptop with a given CPU set up performs on Minecraft. Basically the more recent, the better.

B) Minecraft Laptops over 600 USD:
With this much budget you can get a dedicated GPU which will unlock cool looking and heavy shaders and all the big FTP modpacks. Not all dedicated GPUs give you the best bang for your buck though.

C) Minecraft Laptop Under 300 USD: If you’re on an extremely low budget, there’s still plenty of good options from refurbished laptops to desktops. I’ll go through every single option here.


Before we get started with A , B and C I want to talk about the official hardware requirements for those skeptics who want to go with what the official site says .

Laptop Requirements For Minecraft

First, let us go through the official hardware requirements for those of you interested in breaking down what the “official source” has to say about this.

Minimum

The requirements listed above are for desktops and if you know a thing or two about computers, you’d know that’s pretty outdated hardware but the truth is, it’s still damn fast because desktop hardware is bigger thus more powerful. It should be able to run the vanilla version of minecraft with no issues and even handle some mods. That’s FOR desktops though!

The translation to laptops will be sort of like this:


CPU: Core i3 7th gen onwards or Ryzen 3 any generation
GPU: Intel HD 6200 or RX Vega 3
RAM: 8GB (Windows 10 or 11 take a lot more than 3GB)

Recommended

The recommende section is also listed for desktops, the dedicated GPU listed there is pretty old and outdated nonetheless it can run heavy shaders. We’ll talk about outdated desktops for those on a really low budget.

However, when translated to laptops things are different and more expensive:


CPU: Core i5 or Ryzen 5
GPU: MX350 (2GB vRAM dedicated GPU basically)
RAM: 8GB (again Windows 10 or 11 take a lot)

A) Minecraft Laptops: Under 500 Dollars 

This much budget isn’t enough to get you a “dedicated GPU”, you’ll only find non-gaming laptops usually made for school and work which have integrated GPUs. Nonetheless they are still useful for MC and some are so powerful they can even support shaders like Sildrus and Chocapic on medium.

The tricky part is how do you find them?

1. CPU: Recent & integrated GPUs

Now I said before the focus is on the CPU and I said that because the best integrated graphics are paired up with certain CPU.  To make it short and sweet:

The most recent CPUs (latest generation) is paired up with the most recent integrated GPU which means the fastest one
 

Below you can see some examples on how this works:

CPU iGPU
i3 1115G4 Intel Xe*
i5  1135G7 Intel Xe
i7 1135G7 Intel Xe
Ryzen 3 5300U RX Vega 6
Ryzen 5 5500U RX Vega 7
Ryzen 7 5700U RX Vega 8

The fastest integrated GPU are the RX Vega 7 and the Intel Iris Xe 80 (out of that table there are obviously several more). The Core i3 113G5 will always be paired up with the Intel UHD Xe 64 and so on. Thus it is much easier to look after CPUs on laptops.

2022 CPUs: 300-500 dollars

Below’s a list of all the CPUs you’ll find in this price range, we’ll go over cheaper ones later.

Intel Base Turbo Cores
i3 8130U 2.2 3.4 2
i3 8145U 2.1 3.9 2
i3 10050G1 1.2 3.4 2
i3 10100U 2.1 4.1 2
i3-1115G4 3 4.1 2
i5 8265U 1.6 4.9 4
i5 8250U 1.6 3.4 4
i5 1115G4 2.4 4.2 4
i7 8550U 1.8 4 4
i5 1235U 3.3 4.4 10
i7 1165G7 2.8 4.7 4
i5 1240P 3.3 4.4 12
i7 1260P 3.4 4.7 12

The last two just came out a few months ago and they should be under 500 dollars by the end of the year (you can ignore them now).
Those highlighted in cyan should be your top choice, they’re the most recent ones if they are out of stock or too expensive for you grab the other ones, they will perform all perform more or less the same but definitely slower than the latest ones highlighted.

Minecraft Laptop BenchMarks

The following are benchmarks are taken out of gaming channels and my own channel.  You can click on the link to see fottage and you’re also welcomed to buy the specific laptops listed (if you’re happy with the performance of course).

i) Core i3 & Ryzen 3 Benchmarks: $300-400 Laptops 

Processor FPS # Chunks Resolution Settings Youtube Shaders FPS(Shader) Laptop
Ryzen 3 3200U 145 6 720p Fast Kostan Chocapic13 (Low) 43 HP DK0028WM
Ryzen 3 3200U 155 6 720 Fast Gadget Kostan      
Ryzen 3 4300U 107 8 720 Fancy MineCastle Sildrus Vibrant(Lite) 30 Ideapad Slim 3
Ryzen 3 5300U 104 8 720 Fancy Kostan Sildrus Vibrant(High) 28 Ideapad Slim 3

Intel Core Laptops

CPU FPS Chunks Resolution Settings Youtube Laptop
Core i3 10100U 52 5 720p Fancy CRSTNBENCH HP 14-cf2636ng
Core i3 10100U 60 8 720p Fancy Alijin Manoq ?????
Core i3 1005G1 80 10 720p Fancy Nightfiber ????

  • It’s not that only the Ryzen CPUs can run shaders. I wasn’t able to find benchmarks on the Core i3 models with shaders.
  • 11th gen Core i3 models should ALSO be able to handle medium or even high shaders ~30fps. Note that this is not ideal and although playable can be jumpy. 
  • Ryzen 3 and Core i3 are more useful for Lite version of shaders and vanilla MC with mods.
  • Lastly, note how even the Core i3 can pull off +100fps at 720p.
  • Unfortunately, MC isn’t very playable at 1080p resolution with these CPUs.

ii) Core i5 & Ryzen 5 Benchmarks: $400-500 Laptops 

Intel Core Laptops

CPU FPS Chunks Resolution Settings Youtube Laptop
Core i5-1035G4 43 12 1080p Fancy Technoriales  
Core i5 1035G4 86 10 2k Fast yeungbear Surface Pro 7
Core i5 1135G7 62 16 1080 Fancy Noteb  
Core i5 1135G7 62 12 1080p Fancy CRSTNNBENCH ZenBook 13  UX325EA

Ryzen 5 Laptops

Processor FPS # Chunks Resolution Settings Youtube Shaders FPS(Shader) Laptop
Ryzen 5 3500U 42 12 FHD Fancy TheTechGamer Chocapic16 (High) 40 Lenovo Ideapad C340
Ryzen 5 4500U 94 12 FHD Fancy legos45 Sildrus Vibrant (Med) 44 Lenovo Ideapad 5
Ryzen 5 4500U 101 12 FHD Fancy CRSTNBENCH HP ProBook x360 435 G7
Ryzen 5 5500U 106 12 FHD Fancy CRSTNBENCH —- HP Envy x360 15-eu0055ng

  • Having a Core i5 or Ryzen 5 is the bare bone minimum for FHD resolution at decent framerates. 
  • A Core i5 or Ryzen 5 will also let you run cool looking shaders with decent framerates.
  • For a very fluid with zero lag gameplay with cool graphics (12-16 chunks) you need one of the latest Ryzen 5 or Core i5.

iii) Core i7 & Ryzen 7 Benchmarks

Processor FPS # Chunks Resolution Settings Youtube Shaders FPS(Shader) Laptop
Ryzen 7 4700U 70 20 FHD Fancy Zucos Sildrus Vibrant (Lite) 30 Lenovo Ideapad 5
Ryzen 7 5700U ??? 8 FHD FANCY TSM channel —- Asus VivoBook 15 M513

CPU FPS Chunks Resolution Settings Youtube Laptop
Core i7-1165G7 135 12 1080p Fancy legos 45 MSI Summit B15

โ€‹

  • Core i7 and Ryzen 7 will run the game at FHD with very high framerates.
  • Unfortunately, the average core i7 or ryzen 7 is more expensive than a laptop with an entry level dedicated GPU (which performs better) hence there is a lack of benchmarks for these CPUs.
  • I do not recommend you buy these laptops anyways UNLESS you want something portable

BenchMarks Conclusions

  • You should take these benchmarks with a graint of salt, there are a few more variables that may skew results thus making it appear slower CPUS * integrated graphics outperforming the more recent ones:
    • RAM is a big factor. 12GB and even 16GB RAM in dual-channel mode (we’ll get to that) will make a huge difference.
    • Settings may also be slightly different from row to row
    • Optifine will massively increase performance when used in some cases (most of these benchmarks use Optifine).

How to use These BenchMarks

  • They’re sttill good to give you an idea of what you can expect from each type of CPU.
    • I could not find benchmarks with shaders for the Intel Core CPUs but they should give you approximately same performance as the AMD Ryzen CPUs with shaders 

Which CPUs give you the best bang for your buck?

  • Most of these CPUs can handle shaders but only their low graphics version on FAST settings.
  • Notice how the most recent the CPU (you can tell this by the first number – the generation) the better the performance.
    • The Core i5 and Ryzen 5 give you the best bang for your buck here.
    • Out of the Core i5 and Ryzen 5, the R5 on average will outperform the Core i5 due to better multi-core performance (has more cores and every core runs at high speed).
    • The Core i7 & Ryzen 7 CAN handle shaders with medium and even high graphics but the issue is that these laptops are expensive and that much money can get you an integrated GPU. It’s only a good investment if you find them under 500 dollars.
  • There’s still no benchmarks for the recent 12th generation Intel CPUs on the table because they’re too recent and way too expensive  for now

CPUs for Modded Minecraft

You want at least a Core i5 and Ryzen 5 for Although ALL CPUs I’ve shown you will run most mods. Only the latest Intel Core i5 (10th,11th or 12th) and Ryzen 5 (4th,5th,6th gen) will let you run modpacks like the big ftp modpacks or any modpack  with +200 mods like Interactions and Revelations.

2. RAM & Storage:  12-16GB RAM & SSD

4GB vs 8GB

You’ll probably read this online as being the bare bone minimum but that’s probably true for only true for Vanilla MC running on a desktop. I’ve tested running MC with 4GB on a laptop , it was way too slow.

That’s because the latest versions of Windows take up a lot more memory. They will most of the time take 3.5GB leaving Minecraft with 500MB. 4GB might be good enough for Minecraft Bedrock Edition which can run on Windows 11 in S mode though. 

The ideal amount is 8GB

12-16GB RAM: a MUST for Integrated GPUs

Some of the laptops you’ve seen on the table actually have RAM upped to 12GB or even 16GB, that makes a huge difference on minecraft because the iGPU can use the extra RAM as vRAM turning itself into some sort of dedicated GPU. In fact, if you up RAM on the laptops with integrated GPUs like the RX Vega 7 or Intel Xe (found on Core i5 and Ryzen 5 CPUs) , they will outperform some of the laptops in the next section which have dedicated GPUs.

SSD: Best Storage

As you probably know Solid States Drives are several times faster than HDDs. It’s going to put your laptop on turbo mode although it may not help with minecraft that much, it depends. It’s not a problem if you are buying modern laptops made within the past 4 years virtually all of them have Solid State Drives.

However if you are start looking at old and refurbished laptops , most of them will only have a Hard Disk Drive, this is painfully slow and it must be replace. If done so  you’ll get massive fps gains.

B) Minecraft Laptops: $550 and Up

1. GPU

If you have a budget anywhere around 530 bucks, you’re entitled to a dedicated GPU. You no longer have to settle for laptops with integrated GPUs or the laptops we went over thus far.

A dedicated GPU will massively increase framerates and unlock higher settings, shaders, mods, rendering distance and so on.

Minecraft running with a massive number of chunks. The more powerful the dedicated GPU (more specifically: the more vRAM it has), the higher the number of chunks loaded.

Although virtually all modern dedicated GPUs can handle HEAVY shaders: Sildrus or Chocapic with ~16 chunks.

If you want to get the best bang for your buck, you ought know WHICH dedicated GPUs are most useful and for what are they useful. More importantly at what point do dedicated GPUs become useless (way too powerful for this game).

i) MX 350 MX 450 1050GTX Benchmarks ($500-600)

NVIDIA Cores vRAM Speed
MX250 384 2GB-4GB 1582
MX350 640 2-4GB 1354
MX450 896 2-4GB 1580
1050 640 2GB-4GB 1493

AMD Radeon Shaders vRAM Speed Equivalent
Pro RX 555X 768 2GB 855  MX150/MX250
RadeonRX 540 512 4GB 1219 ~950M
Radeon RX 550 640 4GB 1287 – 1476 +950M
Radeon RX 560X 1024 4GB 1172 – 1275 1050GTX

Note those with the same color are equivalent in power and performance (RX 550 ~ MX250). It’s very rare to find AMD Radeon RX GPUs on laptops though so most of the benchmarks seen next will be restricted to NVIDIA GPUs.

GPU CPU Graphics Chunks Resolution Shader FPS  
MX150 Core i5 8250U Fancy 10 1080p Sildurs(Lite) 38 KangVladi
MX250 Core i5 10210U Fancy 10 1080p BLS 33 Splitsecond
—- 1080p Sildurs(Lite) 42
MX330 Core  i5-1035G1 Fancy 16 1080p Sildurs(High) 45 SpecKenTang
MX350 Ryzen 5 4500U Fancy 12 1080p None 115 legos45

GPU CPU Graphics Chunks Resolution Shader FPS  
MX450
1050 8300h Fancy 8 1080p BLS 7.2 50 iNordap
1050 8300h Fancy 8 8300h Chocapic13 v9 Beta 43 iNordap
1050 8300h Fancy 8 8300h Sildurs (Med) 62 iNordap
1050 8300h Fancy 8 8300h Seus Renewed 1.01 40 iNordap

MX150 & MX250: I’d recommend to aoid these because they have the performance of Integrated GPUs (intel xe and Vega 7 or 8) found on 11th gen Core i5 or 5th gen Ryzen CPUs, most of the time at a cheaper price.

MX3XX Series: The MX330 isn’t substantially more powerful than its precedessors. However, the MX350 is significantly faster (~ 2. 5 times) thus it can handle heavy shaders on High.  You definitely want this if under 600 bucks.

MX450:  This is the most common dedicated GPU you’ll find on budget gaming laptops (500-600) and unfortunately there are no benchmarks with a MX450 for Minecraft. However, to give you an idea, the performance is going to be between the MX350 and the 1050GTX which we’ll go over next. Significantly faster than the MX350. 

1050GTX: Performs just as well as a MX450. Do not pay more than 600 for it either.


ii) 1050Ti 1650GTX Benchmarks: $600 to 750 

NVIDIA Cores vRAM Speed
1050Ti 768 4GB 1620
1650 1024 4GB 1560
1060 1280 6GB 1670

GPU CPU Graphics Rend. Distance Resolution Shader FPS  
1050Ti Core i5 8300H Fancy 16 1080p Sildurs(high) 1.27 48 xFlame
1650GTX AMD Ryzen 5 4600H Fancy 16 1080p Chocapic13 v6(High) 60 Laptopstudy
1650GTX Core i5 9300H Fancy 16 1080p Chocapic13 v6(High) 70 Laptopstudy

1050Ti vs 1650GTX: Both are found around the same price but the 1650GTX is only slightly faster than the 1050Ti ESPECIALLY if you get the 4GB version of the 1050Ti.

How to compare benchmarks properly?

Make sure you compare framerates in the same scenario, usually what works best is measuring framerates when the character is in the middle of the map and there’s a lot of stuff you can see over yonder (mountains, houses,etc), that way you force the GPU to render a lot of stuff (because you’re in an open field) and not only will you be able test it to the limits but also get a good measuring point for comparison purposes.

Optimus on 1650GTX: 

I may have talk about this in the reviews will mention it again anyways. Having “NO OPTIMUS” on a laptop’s GPU set up means more framerates. It basically means there’s a direct connection between the display & the GPU (usually gaming laptops will not have direct connection thus slowing down GPU performance). This is why the Core i5 9300H + 1650GTX found on the Lenovo L340 will outperform most gaming laptops with a Core i5.

There’s a post where I talk about MUX Switch which works sort of like having “NO OPTIMUS”. It is a must read if you want to get the best bang for your buck when shopping laptops with the following GPUs: 3060RTX, 3070RTX, 3080RTX

iii) 3050Ti 1660Ti 2060RTX Benchmarks: $750 to 900 

NVIDIA Cores vRAM Speed
1660 Ti 1536 6GB 1590
3050Ti 2560 4GB 1485
2060 RTX 1920 6GB 1680

These three GPUs will give you more or less the same performance. The 2060RTX is kind of obsolete and usually way more expensive than both the 1660Ti & 3050Ti. The 1660Ti is pretty old but faster than all three. The 3050Ti is the most common and only slighty slower than the other two, it’s also much cheaper.

AMD Radeon Shaders vRAM Speed Equivalent
RX 580 1536 6GB 1077 ~1060GTX
RX5500M 1408 8GB 1327 – 1645 ~1660Ti

These two AMD GPUs are found on MacBook Pros only. Since Minecraft is no longer supported on Mac OSX we’ll ignore these GPUs.

GPU CPU Graphics Rend. Distance Resolution Shader FPS  
1060GTX  6th Core i7 Fancy 16 1080p Sildurs (High) 1.53 80 GGPC
1660Ti Ryzen 7 4800H Fancy 12 1080p Sildurs (High) 1.53 93 GGPC
2060RTX Core i5 10300H Fancy 16 1080p SEUS renewed 70 Omen
3050Ti Core i5 10300H Fancy 8 1080p BSL v8 1.01 90 Kaeza
3050Ti Core i5 10300H Fancy 8 1080p Chopic 13 v7(Lite) 105
3050Ti Core i5 10300H Fancy 8 1080p Sildurs(Extreme) 85  
3050Ti Core i5 10300H Fancy 8 1080p Sildurs(Lite) 101  

Despite the 3050Ti being more recent, as predicted, it is outperformed by the 1660Ti, 2060RTX and even the much older 1060GTX.

The reason is simple: vRAM.

vRAM vs Minecraft Rendering:

vRAM (video RAM memory) is where all the ‘graphical details’ are stored for processing. That means the more demanding and high quality (resolution + shaders + rendering distance) the graphics are, the more ‘memory’ is going to require. 

Since the 3050Ti only has 4GB vRAM and the rest have 6GB vRAM, it is understandable why it’s outperformed and this is more obvious with more ‘shaders’ and higher resolutions ‘more rendering distance’.

How’s that info useful?

Well , if you can find any of the other 3 GPUs cheaper than the 3050Ti . Go For it.

On the other hand, if you want RTX graphics (it makes lightining and shadows look a bit cooler – check video above), you want an RTX GPU ( 2060RTX or 3050Ti ) . 

iv) 3060RTX 2070RTX Benchmarks: 900-1400 dollars

NVIDIA Cores vRAM Speed
2070 RTX 2394 8GB 1620
3060 RTX 3584 8GB 1780

AMD Radeon Shaders vRAM Speed Equivalent
AMD Radeon RX 6700S 1975 10GB 1890 ~3060

GPU CPU Graphics Chunks Resolution Shader FPS Youtube
3060RTX Ryzen 7 5800H Fancy 16 1080p Sildurs (High) 1.53 70 Engineering Zone

Out of all of these GPUs (there’s also the 2080RTX) the 3060RTX is the ony that’ll give you the best performance/money ratio. You can find it on laptops as low as 850 dollars (85W 3060RTX) and as high as 1400 dollars (130W 3060RTX) depending at what TGP it runs.

This brings me to a very important point when you buy a laptop for minecraft in this price range: Wattage.

Here’s my article on GPU Wattage. A must read if you’re buying laptops with this much power

Wattage becomes the single most important factor for high performance and the only spec to look at when buying a 3060RTX laptop. Although MC does not need this much power, some settings like running the game with heavy shaders at 2k-4k resolution and +30 chunks of rendering distance will need all the power you can get from a 3060RTX. There’s HUGE difference in performance between the 85W 3060RTX & the 130W 3060RTX.

The above benchmark is using a 95W GPU and framerates will literally DOUBLE with a 130W 3060RTX (same GPU different TGP).

v) 3070RTX 3080RTX Benchmarks: 1400$ and up 

AMD Radeon Shaders vRAM Speed Equivalent
AMD Radeon RX 6800S 2048 12GB 1975 +3070

NVIDIA Cores vRAM Speed
3070 RTX 5120 8GB 1620
3080 RTX 8704 10GB 1710
3070Ti RTX 5888 8GB 1485
3080Ti RTX 7424 16GB 1590

GPU CPU Graphics Rend. Distance Resolution Shader FPS  
3070RTX Ryzen 7 5800H Fancy 16 1080p Seus 80 Gillis

These are the highest and most powerful GPUs as of 2023. They are WAY TOO much for minecraft.

However, they become useful IF you want to play Minecraft with very fancy shaders AND at very high resolutions (2k-4k) while still being able to pull off +60fps. Basically the game will look as shown below. 

Lastly, they can be useful if you have sort of a project with minecraft that involves large scale & high resolution world building. Although a much better option would be to use the desktop GPUs on a desktop (they’re even more powerful). A few examples of what you can do with this much hardware are shown below:

2. CPU (Processor)

When you have a budget over 530 bucks, the GPU becomes the #1 spec to look at. The rest is really not that important, all laptops with dedicated GPUs are paired with high-end CPUs and plenty of RAM since they’re meant to be used by gamers like you. 

However, in the off-chance, you find two laptops around the same price but with different CPUs, you may want to pick the one with the faster CPU whicih should increase framerates even more (although not significantly) because CPUs CANNOT be upgraded (RAM & Storage can be so don’t worry about those).

So what CPU spec is more important for minecraft?

Hopefully you read my post: beginner’s guide to laptop specs. We are going to get a bit more technical again.

When it comes to CPU, there’s no such thing as ‘vRAM’ or wattage or mux switch. There are only two specs: clock frequency (speed) and # cores.

A multicore game is one that can make good use of multiple cores within a CPU.

Most games are NOT multicore however Minecraft beginning with patch 1.17.10 and subsequent versions have all been multicore.

 

If you look at the graph above, Minecraft is only using two or three cores at best. That means that it is a multicore game sure but considering the fact that nearly ALL CPUs now have at least 4 cores, it does NOT become the most important factor to look after.

So what is it? 

It’s simply clock frequency or in layman term’s speed. Those numbers next to the GHz abreviation.

In summary:

Pick the CPU with the highest clock speed  or “clock speed performance”.

Wait what do you mean by “clock speed performance”?

Yes, it’s not as easy as just picking the CPU with the highest number. Sometimes, a slightly lowered clock speed CPU will outperform the other, especially if they are from different brands. Ex: AMD Ryzen 5 5600H > Core i5 11300H.   

Intel CPUs – Clock speed # Cores

CPU Base Turbo Cores
i5 8265U 1.6 4.9 4
i5 8250U 1.6 3.4 4
i5 1115G4 2.4 4.2 4
i5 8300H 2.3 4 4
i7 8550U 1.8 4 4
i5 1235U 3.3 4.4 10
i7 1165G7 2.8 4.7 4
i5 1240P 3.3 4.4 12
i5-11300H 2.6 4.4 4
i5 11260H 2.6 4.4 6
i7 8750H 2.2 4.1 6
i5 12450H
3.3 4.4 8
i5 12500H 3.3 4.5 8
i7 9750H 2.6 4.5 6
i7 10750H 2.6 5 8
i7-11375H 3.3 5 4
i7 1260P 3.4 4.7 12
i7-11370H 3.3 4.8 4
i7-11800H 3.3 5.0 6
i9 8950K 2.9 4.8 6
i9 9900K 3.6 5.1 8
i9-11900H 2.5 4.9 8
i9 10890K 2.4 5.3 8
i9-11980HK 3.3 5 8
i7-12800H
3.7
4.8
6/8
i7-12700H
3.5
4.7
6/8
i9 12900H
1.8
5
6/8

CPU Max Speed Cores(Threads)
Ryzen 9 6980HX  5 8 โ€“ 16
Ryzen 9 6900HS
4.9
8 โ€“ 16
Ryzen 7 6800HS 4.7 8 โ€“ 16 
Ryzen 7 6800H 4.7 8 โ€“ 16
Ryzen 9 5900HX 4.6 8 โ€“ 16
Ryzen 9 4800HS 4.4 8 โ€“ 16
Ryzen 7 5800H 4.4 8.- 16
Ryzen 7 4800H 4.2 8 โ€“ 16
Ryzen 5 5600H 4.2 6 โ€“ 12
Ryzen 5 4600H 4.0 6 โ€“ 12
Ryzen 5 3550H 3.7 4 โ€“ 8


**Those with same color have similar performance for MC. For details you may want to head over to notebookcheck and watch the single-clock performance benchmarks.

I’ll give you a good summary here using the most common CPUs though:  

Core i7 11800H>Core i7 11375H=AMD Ryzen 7 5800H=Core i5 12500H>AMD Ryzen 7 4800H>AMD Ryzen 5 5600H>Core i5 11300H>AMD Ryzen 5 4600H> Core i5 9300H>AMD Ryzen 5 3550H = Core i5 8300H

Those are the most common CPUs you’ll find. 

3. RAM

RAM can give you more framerates if you choose the correct amount for what you’re doing in minecraft. How much you need will depend on what you’re doing.

8GB: bare minimum

Virtually all gaming laptops will have at least 8GB which is the bare bone minimum anything more is a plus to hit high framerates when you unlock more features.

What’s the Maximum amount that’s helpful for more framerates?

Most JAVA apps can only use up to 12GB and since Minecraft still runs on Java it also applies to it, there will be almost no performance gains (for Vanilla MC) after reaching 12GB UNLESS you make it dual-channel.

Dual-Channel RAM

If you decide to do the upgrade, you can get a BOOST in framerates if you do the upgrade in “dual-channel” mode. 

This means using TWO ram sticks of the same size, type, speed, etc, (basically the same RAM and brand) to do the upgrade. x2 4GB = 8GB RAM, x2 8GB = 16GB RAM. I explain why it increases performance and by how much in my post here: Dual-Channel RAM for gaming.

I have another post explaining why this works but it basically makes your CPU work more efficient at reading data.

RAM for Mods

Vanilla MC takes approx. ~0.5GB.

Windows 11 (~3.5GB)

80 Mods ~ 1GB.

The Big FTP modpacks (200 mods) ~ 2.5GB.

This is a total of 8GB. You want a bit more to provide headroom for all the stuff running in the background and multitasking. So I would say at least 12GB for the big FTP modpacks and 8GB for simple mods. 

RAM for Shaders

If you’re running shaders, RAM is not going to help much.

It will help if you have an integrated GPU but not so much if you have a dedicated GPU. However, making whatever you’ve got (8GB or 16GB) Dual Channel will help the CPU perform better (thus more framerates) whether you’ve got an integrated or dedicated GPU.

C) Minecraft Computers: 300 dollars and below

I bet most people reading this are buying a laptop for someone else but cannot afford a gaming laptop or even a regular modern laptop because Minecraft is a very old and as you’ve probably noticed it doesn’t have fancy graphics (they are optional), it is reasonable to think some cheaper laptops should run the game no problems.

Let’s look at all of your options

1. Intel Pentium/Celeron Laptops For Minecraft

You’ll find these laptops brand new under 350 bucks and sometimes as low as 250 bucks. Some even can even cost 150 bucks but most of these will not come with the full version of windows which is a requirement to play the most popular version of Minecraft, MC Java Edition.

Why are they not ideal for MC Java Edition?

Although most of these laptops have only 4GB of RAM, that’s not the issue. The issue is the CPU: Celeron and Pentium CPUs are way too slow for Windows itself, not Minecraft. If you could run Minecraft without Windows, then Celeron and Pentium CPUs will do fine but it isn’t possible on laptops (maybe on XBOX and consoles).

So why even mention these CPUs?

Because these laptops can run the Pocket or BedRock Edition of Minecraft. Since virtually every Intel or Pentium CPU has zero problems with Windows in S mode (it is much much resource intensive) , there’s plenty of CPU power for MC Bedrock edition. Maybe if they release the Java Edition for Windows S devices, the Java edition will run on these laptops but for the time being they do not.

What to Avoid when shopping for Old CPUs?

However, you have to avoid those CPUs that do NOT say Intel Core like those Celeron or Pentium Laptops selling for the same price. They may be good for the Bedrock edition of the game not for the Java version of the game.

Follow this small guideline when picking up older CPUs:

    • For AMD: Avoid anything that says E1, E2, etc.
    • For Intel: Avoid anything that says Celeron, Atom or has the letter M/Y somewhere in the label. Ex: m5-6Y54 , m5-6Y57.
    • Avoid 3rd,4th gen intel CPUs. (These are not that slow but integrated graphics here not only outdated but also incompatible with the  current version of Windows).
    • AMD CPUs with 7xxxP, 8xxxP or 9xxx will WORK!
    • Intel processors with 5xxx, or 6xxx  part numbers will WORK TOO!

2. Rerfurbished Laptops For Minecraft

If you want to run Minecraft Java Edition on a laptop with a budget below 300 dollars, your only option is to go for refurbished laptops.

The truth is, this is a very very good option. Very few people are aware that refurbished does not mean second-hand and faulty especially if you get them from Amazon where they have to go through a quality control process.

90 Warranty:

Refurbished laptops from Amazon also come with a 90 day warranty, that means if you don’t like it and it suddenly stops working, you can return it and get all your money back. 90 days is PLENTY of time to find out if there’s anything wrong with said laptop.

Good brands:

Obviously, even brand new laptops can break within 90 days due to a bad manufacturing process. The chances slightly increase with refurbished machines but you can minimize this by trying to pick the best brand (if you have option of course, as you’ll realize even refurbished machines without Intel Celeron and Pentium CPUs are RARE to find below 300 dollars)

Here’s the hierarchy:  Lenovo > ASUS > MSI > Acer > HP = Dell .

Upgrading:

Don’t forget nearly all laptops are upgradeable. It’ll be rare for you to find a refurbished cheap laptop that’s not upgradeable because that would mean it is a thin laptop and thin laptops are suppsed to be expensive.

Say if you buy a refurbished Intel Core Laptop or AMD laptop for 200 bucks, you can install an SSD+RAM (if it doesn’t have one) for 70 bucks and it’ll make a HUGE difference with vanilla MC, you might even be able to run mods on it!

Just be sure it’s NOT a laptop with a Pentium , Celeron or similarly weak AMD CPUs. Anything that says Intel Core or AMD Ryzen will be fine.

3. Cheap Desktops 

There are some desktops (usually refurbished as well) below 300$ and few new ones around 300 dollars. If you just add a monitor you have at home + keyboard and mouse lying around the house you’ve got yourself a full computer to play not just Minecraft Java Edition but most games that are a bit hardware demanding.

That’s because DESKTOPS are MANY MANY times more powerful than laptops EVEN if they seem to have OLD or SLOW hardware. 

Why is old desktop hardware more powerful?

Because processors are bigger and there is more space to accommodate a fan, a proper fan and a proper cooling system, which allows the CPU to hit the highest clock speeds without melting. 

Dedicated GPUs on desktops:

A dedicated GPU will massively increase performance even more on desktops because just like CPUs, desktop GPUs are many times more powerful than than their laptop counterparts. The cool thing about desktops is that you can ADD a dedicated GPU or replace ANY hardware in it very easily later when you have money to afford it.

4. Older CPUs 

You may have seen laptops selling for 250 bucks or so on Amazon or eBay with 6th or even 5th gen Intel Core CPUs. Those wil lalso let you play Minecraft as shown next: 

CPU FPS Graphics Resolution Render. Dist Link Core i3 4550U* 45 Fancy 720 8 Manu Core i3 6100U +30 FAST 720p 16 SparkyWizard Core i3 7100U 60 FANCY 720p 8 TheRyzLe AMD A9-9425 45 FAST 720p 4 Noteb


*LAPTOP has 12 GB RAM

  • Once you go for older rigs, CPU performance is very hard to predict it all depends on what operating system you’ve got. If it’s Windows 10, it’s going to struggle tons and unless you can upgrade yorus to 12GB or 16GB it will not run as good as even slower CPUs with more RAM.
  • Thus if you’re buying a laptop with old hardware due to budget issues it is CRUCIAL to find out whether or not RAM is upgradeable.
  • As a bonus, if storage can be upgraded (usually through a SATA III Port), it’ll make a MASSIVE difference on the game even if you’ve got a very old CPU (look at the highlighited laptop on the tbale).

FAQ

Q: What is a good fps for Minecraft?

50-60fps is enough to make the game look smooth. More framerates are nice if you are in a big server with lots of traffic because it’ll reduce your framedrops but I’d say that’s a problem with internet connection. 

As far as framedrops without much traffic, I would say anything over 200fps will not help. 

Q: Shouldn’t I just get the cheapest laptop I can afford since Minecraft isn’t really hardware demanding? 

Yes, that’s no problem provided you’re okay playing the Bed Rock Edition of Minecraft, pretty much any laptop even those with Windows in S mode will handle it no problems.

Now for the most popular version of Minecraft: Java Edition, you will need a laptop with an Intel Core or AMD Ryzen CPU and those are usually over 350 bucks. So as a bare minimum you must spend 350 bucks, if that’s cheap for you that’s good, you’ll have zero lag spikes even with Mods and light shaders.

All those laptops with older CPUs or slower CPUs (intel celeron, pentium, AMD A9) MIGHT let you play the game with 4 chunks loaded and 720p resolution but it isn’t really a given, they may not even run the game because most of these cannot support the full version of Windows without crashing and lagging constantly.

Q: Can you play minecraft on integrated graphics?

For sure, Minecraft is more of a CPU game than a GPU game. The graphics card only plays a role when you want to play with shaders and with many many chunks loaded at 1080p.

All integrated graphics released within the past 5 years should let you play the game with at least 16 chunks loaded on 1080p resolution and even let you run some mods(virtually all within the past 5 years) and a few light shaders (the most recent ones). That’s as long as they have a good CPU of course. If you have a celeron, pentium or AMD AX (A9, A7), it’s not even going to handle the vanilla version of Minecraft Java Edition.

Q: What’s the maximum ram for minecraft will use?

It’s true that more RAM helps with most games and with minecraft this is especially true because the game uses a software paging system that scales ‘horizontally’, this means, that if you have more ram memory (or video memory) you will have better ‘paging’ or ‘refreshing’ (this means more chunks/objects will be loaded in the game BEFORE you interact with those).

In fact, when people complain about lag in minecraft , it is usually due to having the wrong graphics settings (too many chunks) for the amount of memory (RAM) they have. More chunks (rendering) needs more RAM.

The maximum I’ve found usefu is about 12 GB (assigned to JVM – MC launcher), after that having more RAM did not help with framerates when having 32 chunks set for rendering distance. Since 12GB isn’t a practical number, I’d say 16GB.

Q: Does allocating more RAM to Minecraft increase performance?

If you upgrade RAM to say 32GB and then you allocate more RAM to what Minecraft is taking as shown here. It will not speed up performance because Minecraft is a JAVA application which uses a ‘memory clean up garbage collection‘ as explained here. In fact, doing so will slow down the game because the more RAM allocated to it, the more time it’s going to take to ‘clean’ it after some processes are completed within the game.

That’s not say upgrading RAM won’t help with minecraft, it will up to 16GB but you don’t need to ‘allocate more RAM’ just let minecraft take what it needs.

Q: How much space do you need for minecraft java?

Minecraft Java Edition only takes 1GB and even less if you remove unnecessarily files (~400MB). So no matter what computer or laptop you get, it will surely have x50-x100 more space. Now…If you are a big mod guy and you also want to install the big modpacks, you will need at least 6-8GB. Most laptops have way more, so it’s not an issue at all. 

Q: How much Capacity do I need to BUILD a server in Minecraft?

A server for 12-15 players needs 35GB, a server for 30 players 70GB and so on. It’s only an issue if you’re making a server for MANY MANY players in which case you will also have internet connectivity issues and it becomes unpractical to run a server on a regular PC or laptop. 

Conclusion: a small server for 30 players will run on any laptop as virtually all laptops have way more than what’s necessary.

Q: Why does Minecraft run well on my phone but fails to run on some laptops knowing the fact that even old cheap laptops are way bigger and more powerful? 

Good question. Phones can even run CoD and PUBG which are way more graphically demanding and even Pentium and Celeron CPUs can run way better looking games through on Windows 10 S and Chrome OS.

However…Minecraft’s core engine is pretty old and is based on Java. Java is a programming language that’s not so good for game developement and large apps (it is slow due to garbage collection).

The other reason is that your xBOX, phone and ChromeBooks do not have the full version of Windows which takes a LOT of hardware resources leaving little to nothing for minecraft when the game is played on 4GB + Pentium laptops.

Rendering & MC History

There’s another reason why Minecraft is more slow than games with the same graphics: the code hasn’t changed much since its first release.

Originally, Markus Alexej Persson , wrote the game for fun with no intention to make it big. It was only the people around him WHO motivated him to make it big AFTER he wrote the game.

He chose Java probably because thats the programming language he knew most and this caused some sloppy code add the fact that it was pretty much a one man team developing the game, it probably ended up with sloppy code in places where it mattered most reducing hardware usage efficiency.

Now, he obviously hired a development team much after once he wanted to make it big. However, despite that it seems they all decided to leave most of the original code intact although this is changing to this date and as time goes on, it’ll be fully optimized (if it isn’t by now).

This is just a guess though.

Q: How to get better fps in minecraft on a laptop

There are dozens of tricks and ways to speed up performance with the game including upping RAM and adding an SSD. I’ll go through the basics you can do right now without tinkering with hardware. Note these are the basics there are far more methods on youtube. 

Optifine

The most popular way is to just install Optifine. This is going to help TREMENDOUSLY if you have a very old rig or cheap laptop that’s lagging with MC. I advice you install it and run it BEFORE you upgrade that rig physically. How does it work? Well, it improves the game’s multi-core efficiency, that means if your CPU has more than 2 threads (which is likely the case for laptops made within the past 10 years), it will make use of all other cores or threads. 

Java
You’ll find people on forums complaining how they have no problems running games like CyberPunk 2027 yet lagging when playing Minecraft. The problem is more than likely the Java version they have installed. So make sure you have the RIGHT java version for the version of Minecraft you have installed. Here’s a good tutorial with the Java versions supported.

Antivirus

Yup, installing an antivirus can help. If you’ve been using mods and downloading mods who knows from where, chances are you caught a few viruses too and of course bloatware with it. Get a free antivirus run a full scan and you might be surprised with the results.

BackGround Apps

Very basic tip most people ignore: do not run anything else in the background. You can also be a more extreme and install a software like  like Razer Cortex Game Booster which will end any unncessary tasks and background processes. It will run them again when you close minecraft. Much safer than pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL and randomly getting rid of tasks to see if it makes any difference. 

Hardware Optimization

Magic Launcher for Minecraft  . If you’re lagging and you’re using mods, that software is going to be very handy. It’s basically the optifine for modded minecraft. It’ll let you allocate more RAM to java which will make mods run efficiently. I know I said allocating more RAM doesn’t help but it does help if you’re running mods and adding more stuff to the vanilla version of the game. It’ll also reduce the window size which means there’s less image data to process which translates to more framerates. 

Comments?

If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or recommendations on finding the best laptop for minecraft. Please let us know in the comments below.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Show Buttons
Hide Buttons