6 Best Laptops For World Of Warcraft : Shadowlands (2022) & Classic WoW

I’m sure you’ve come across those comments claiming that virtually “ANY CHEAP LAPTOP” can run WoW.

That may be true if you want low detail torture graphics (15 fps, 720p, low settings) …

But NOT….

If you want a stable 60fps on 900p/1080p during every instance of the game: Epic Battlegrounds, +25 man Raids, Main Cities, etc. You will need to invest at least 350$ for this. 

And if you want ultra settings…

With at least 60fps on 1080p resolution. You will only need to invest around 700$.

That’s right.

You don’t have to spend 2000$ for ultra graphics unless you want to play the game in 1440p or 4k 

So ignore those...

“Get a desktop” “PC or go home” “PC master race” ” guys on Battle.net forums and reddit too.

They’re old school.  

Laptops are decent these days and the recent ones (12th gen Core i9+3080Ti RTX) are just as powerful as desktops.

Anyways…

The good news is that…

If you’re on a budget, you’ll be okay. The game has been designed to run on some low end systems and as long as you invest at least 300$ you’ll 60fps on low settings as shown above.

Those are good numbers by the way.

That’s basically how I played the game from the glorious days of Vanilla (that’s one of the oldest achievements by the way /flex ) to Battle For Azeorth.

It was only last year when I decided to invest on a “beast” like rig ( a 3060RTX laptop) .

So…

If you’re one of those people stacking papers to the ceiling looking for a BEAST-like rig that can play the game at “BEAST” settings….

Don’t worry I’ve got you too…

We’ll go through all kinds of laptops here from the most budget friendly to the uggliest biggest heaviest and most powerful beast that can output +100fps on Ultra w/ 80+ players on Tarren Mill, Tol Barad,etc.

Recommended Specs for World Of Warcraft

Before that let’s briefly talk about the selection process so you understand what specs YOU need to focus on in case you have to buy laptops outside of this list due unavailability issues.

GPU
This is where people can spend unnecessary cash.
WoW IS a very GPU demanding game but ONLY if you want to play at 1440p/4k resolutions and get ~100fps. 
A mainstream GPU like a 1650GTX is enough for 1080p gaming at the highest “ultra” settings ~70fps.

Anything above 60fps will look smooth by the way

NVIDIA: MX350/450,1050,1050Ti,1650GTX,1060,1660Ti,3050Ti,2060RTX,3060RTX,3070RTX,3070Ti, 3080RTX,3080Ti
AMD
Radeon Pro RX 555X,  RX540, RX550, RX 560X, RX 580, RX5550M, Radeon RX 6800S, Radeon RX 6700S

Black: these are the mainstream GPUs and they’re found on 650-700$ laptops.
Blue: the most budget friendly GPUs(pay no more 600$!). High settings (6) ~50fps.
Green: mid-range GPUs(850$+). 75-100fps ultra settings(RTX OFF). 1080p.
Purple:  +100fps Ultra (1440p) RTX ON: High. 
Pink:   Useful for 4k gaming. ~90fps

These are approximations. Accurate benchmarks and links to the videos are listed in the last section. 

*In order of ascending power.  Red GPUs are obselete.
* Ultra settings doesn’t just look prettier but will let you see barrens or goldshire all the way from orgrimmar or stormwind.

CPU
While a dGPU will unlock more details and higher resolution, a CPU’s clock speed is in charge of pushing those framerates up in the sky.  

So pick the CPU w/ the best clock speed performance. It’s easy to tell which one is faster if they’re both from the same brand. Just compare numbers 3.5GHz vs 4GHz. 
 

The numbers don’t really help if they’re different brands. But basically…

Ryzen 3 3200U = Core i3-10300U…..Core i5 10300H = Ryzen 5 5600HCore i7 11800H = Ryzen 7 5800H, ….Core i9 12900H  = Ryzen 9 6900HX , etc…*  

Remember: WoW doesn’t care about #Cores! Just Clock Speed Performance, so don’t worry about hexa-cores/octa cores CPUs(Ex: Core i5 11400H vs Core i5 10300H, the latter is cheaper and faster). 

*If this break down is too simplistic for you, there’s a complete table outlining the relative performance of every CPU found on laptops at the end of this post. 

MUX SWITCH
Without getting into details, a MUX Switch is a nice piece of hardware that will turn off the integrated GPU so that the dedicated GPU can FULLY take over. This will increase GPU performance (more framerates) by 10-20%. 

RAM & Storage
8GB: This is almost universal and it’s fine for WoW. Windows 10 take 2GB. Wow will take 2GB. Discord takes something <1GB …so you have plenty left.
16GB:
doesn’t help that much but it provides headroom for other stuff running in the background (a must for streaming). 
Dual-Channel: depending on your CPU, it can get you +10-20fps. More in the last section.

Storage
256GB vs. 512GB: If you want to install several more games like WoW, 256GB is not going to be enough. WoW can take up to 100GB w/ Shadowlands (even more w/ Classic) and Windows 11 ~64GB, that’s more than 50% of 256GB.

Type: virtually all laptops have SSDs now and that’s good because they’ll eliminate loading screens(switching between worlds/entering a raid/PvP instance will be instant). If you get a dual set up: SSD+HDD be sure to install WoW on the SSD. 

Display
All gaming laptops have FHD+IPS displays. It’s not something you have to double check unless you’re buying budget laptops to play WoW at low/medium settings. 
QHD/1440p:  You must demand a 4k/2k display if you’re getting a 3070/3080 GPU.
Refresh Rates:You have to demand  a display w/ at least 120Hz refresh rates if you’re paying anything more than 800$. Otherwise, your screen will only feel like its running at 60fps even though the fps counter says +100 fps.

Top 6 Best Laptops for World of Warcrat

Most of the laptops shown next will be gaming laptops, that is, they will have a dedicated GPU and a recent and fast CPU. They will cost you anywhere from 650$-1600$ (depending on what GPU/CPU  you want). 

I know there are some people on a really low budget so I will include one budget laptop that can play the game w/ no issues at low settings too.

Instead of re-stating specifications I will tell you what framerates and what performance you can expect from each of these models. If there’s footage available for that particular model, I will post it too otherwise I’ll resort to using slightly older models (which should only have slightly lower framerates since GPUs are the same and CPUs aren’t that much slower).

Please if read the reviews carefully and pay close attention to the CPU you’re choosing, I’ve tried to put the most valuable information you need to know when picking up a laptop with  each kind of GPU:  1650GTX, 3050Ti, 3060RTX, 3080RTX,etc

Let’s get started.


1. Lenovo Ideapad 3

Budget Laptop For WoW

  Core i5 10200H (Up to 4.5GHz)

  8GB DDR4

   GeForce GTX 1650 4GB vRAM

  256GB PCIe NVMe SSD

  15.6” 120Hz Full HD IPS

  4.96lbs

  5 hours

Laptops with mainstream GPUs like the 1650GTX are quite a bargain for WoW for several reasons:

  • If you’re playing the game at 1080p, you can even hit ultra settings at +70 fps. 
  • The temperatures are quite stable (~70 degrees) so you can play the game for several hours on ultra settings.
  • Only 65% of the GPU’s resouces will be used at ultra settings.  
  • They’re the cheapest laptops with dedicated GPUs as of 2022, MX450,1050Ti/1050GTX laptops are kind of obselete now and only found on models that are more than 3 years old.  

A Ryzen 5 + 1650GTX can play the game at 1080p on Ultra Settings with:

  • +70 fps on  as shown at 20:33.
  • 60 fps on Main Cities: Orgrimmar & Dalaran
  • 67 fps on Dungeons (Mob fights)

CPU: Ryzen 5 5600H vs Core i5 10300H:

Now if you keep browsing around you’ll find 1650GTX with either a high performance Core i5 or Ryzen 5. They can be from the 9th generation up to the 11th generation (Intel) or the 4th to the 5th generation ( Ryzen).

The reality is that all of these CPUs will perform more or less the same (You may get a +5-10 fps increase if you opt for newer generation depending on how the cooling system is handling turbo boost), so you can save yourself a few bucks by choosing an older generation CPU (keeping the 1650GTX in place of course).

Link CPU GPU Display Price
Lenovo Ideapad Ryzen 5 5600H 1650GTX 120Hz 750$
MSI GF53 Core i5 10300H 1650GTX 60Hz 720$
Lenovo Ideapad Ryzen 5 5600H 1650GTX 120Hz 740$
MSI GF63 3035 Core i5 10200H 1650GTX 60Hz 695$
MSIGF63 9SC Core i5 9300H 1650GTX 60Hz 690$


 

120Hz vs 60Hz Displays:

I decided to feature this model over those slightly cheaper models you see on the table because it has a 120Hz display. I think the extra cost is worth it ESPECIALLY if you want to play other games that may bump framerates past 100FPS or if you want to play WoW at high settings (which should let you hit +120FPS).

60Hz displays can only out put “60 images per second” so if you’re machine can output far more framerates, you will not be able to “see” the graphics improvement.

Feel free to save yourself 60 bucks if you’re sure about playing WoW at ultra settings exclusively though , you won’t go past 70 fps so a 120Hz display becomes unncessary.

Buy Now


2. ASUS TUF Dash 15 

Best Laptop For WoW under 1000 

  Core i7 11370H

  8GB DDR4

   GTX 3050Ti 4GB vRAM

  512GB PCIe NVMe SSD

  15.6” 144Hz Full HD IPS

  4.41lbs

  5 hours

The next upgrade would be having a 3050Ti. It’s not an RTX GPU, it still has the same architecture as the 1650GTX but it has 2x the amount of cores meaning it can process details much faster.  

CPUs paired w/ 3050Ti Laptops:

Now, there are literally hundreds of models with a 3050Ti with five or six different CPUs as shown in the table below:

CPU GPU Display Price Link
Ryzen 7 5800H 3050Ti 165Hz 1189 Lenovo Legion
Core i5 10300H 3050Ti 144Hz 791 Acer Nitro 5
Core i7 11370H 3050Ti 144Hz 938 ASUS TUF Dash 15
Ryzen 5 5600H 3050Ti 120Hz 820 Lenovo Ideapad
Core i7 11800H 3050Ti 144Hz 1149 MSI Sword


The above 5 models are basically the 5 best deals for each CPU. The lowest price with a 3050Ti will have a budget CPU like the Core i5 10300H/Ryzen 5 5600H found on 1650GTX laptops.

Now, the 3050Ti will let you unlock Ultra settings but the CPU will be responsible for getting those framerates up.  If you’re happy with 70 fps at ultra settings you could grab the Acer Nitro 5 or the Lenovo Ideapad. Unlike the 1650GTX you will not be taxing the GPU at ultra settings as much and you can play at ultra for much longer periods of time.

If you want to go past +100 fps on ultra settings even on Dungeons, you’re going to need either a Ryzen 7 or a Core i7 as shown below and which is basically the same laptop featured here.

Core i7 11370H vs Core i7 11800H vs Ryzen 7 5800H:

The above benchmark was carried out with a Ryzen 7 5800H, the CPU I’m recommending  in this model with a 3050Ti has a Core i7 11370H which should be about 10% faster as shown by separate CPU benchmarks on single clock speed performance. WoW likes single clock performance, if you’re going to stream and multitask like hell, you may want to think about the Ryzen 7 5800H which is a bit more expensive (as shown in the table).  

Buy Now


3. Lenovo Legion 5 Pro

Best Laptop For World of Warcraft – Ultra Settings 1440p

  Core i7-11800H

  16GB RAM DDR4

   GTX 3060RTX

  512GB PCIe NVMe SSD (2x PCie Nvme slots free)

  15” IPS QHD 144Hz

  5.07lbs

  4 hours

Now both the 3050Ti and 1650GTX can get the game up and running at QHD resolutions (1440p) the problem is that they will struggle at doing so and their temperatures can easily go past 80C. This is not something you want if you’re playing WoW for several several hours.

Now even if you manage to buy an awesome cooling pad, you will still be limited to FHD gaming unless unless you attach an external monitor because virtually all 3050Ti/1650GTX only come with FHD.

3060RTX for 1440p Gaming: 

A mid-range GPU is the bare minimum for 1440p gameplay especially on this game (other games may require a 3080RTX/3070RTX) .

Luckily, WoW isn’t that GPU demanding at 1440p so a 3060RTX can easily handle the game at this resolution without much stress on the GPU. 

3060RTX laptops are the most versatile out of the group, they will come with all sorts of different CPUs and Displays as you can see on the table below. I’ve tried to highlight the best deals with separate colors for each display or CPU configuration.

CPU GPU Display Price  Link
Ryzen 7 5800H 3060RTX FHD 165Hz 1,249$ Lenovo Legion 5
Core i7 11800H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 1,279$ Acer Predator
Core i7 11800H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 17” 1,539$ MSI GE76 Raider
Core i7 11375H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 1189$ MSI Stealth 15M
Core i7 11375H 3060RTX FHD 240 Hz 1,299$ Gigabyte AORUS
Core i7 11800H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 1,200$ Acer AN515
Ryzen 7 5800H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 17” 1,269$ Lenovo Legion
Core i7 11800H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 17” 1,499$ ASUS TUF
Core i7 11800H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 17” 1,349$ MSI CrossHair
Core i7 11375H 3060RTX FHD 144Hz 1189$ MSI Stealth 15M
Ryzen 9 5900HS 3060RTX QHD 120Hz 17” 1400 ASUS Zephyrus
Core i7 11800H 3060RTX QHD  165Hz 16” 1700 Acer Triton


FHD vs QHD Displays: 

Now the problem is that most 3060RTX laptops do not have  QHD display (1440p), the most budget friendly 3060RTX laptops only have FHD resolution displays.

That’s all good if you want to hit +120fps on ultra settings on FHD on WoW and other games, if that’s all you’re after then by all means you can grab either the red one or the purple one (the former has the fastest Core i7 CPU w/ the best clock sped performance and the latter has a 17” display).

However, if you want to play the game as shown below: 

Basically, +80 FPS on ultra settings at 1440p then you only have two choices. I’d personally grab the Ryzen 9 featured here because it’s just a great deal that you will probably not come across again, it’s much faster than any Core i7 CPU from intel. The downside is the refresh rates but you won’t be going past 120FPS at 1440p. 

And honestly for 1700$ (The Acer Triton highlighted in Blue), you could be getting a 3070RTX laptop with QHD resolution if you look long enough as shown below:

Buy Now


4. GIGABYTE AERO 15

The Best Laptop For World of Warcraft 2022 – 4k Ultra

  Core i7-11800H

  16GB RAM DDR4

   3080RTX

  512GB PCIe NVMe SSD (2x PCie Nvme slots free)

  15” IPS full HD 144Hz

  5.07lbs

  4 hours

 

This is the most powerful beast available as of March 2022, at least for this game.

3080RTX/3070RTX are high end GPUs and for WoW they’re only useful to play the game at 4k resolution as shown below:

The video was recorded in FHD but the display is actually a 4k display so it will look far more detailed than what you’re seeing here basically like it does here. Well you probably won’t see what’s like to play in 4k on that video unless you have a 4k display at this very moment.

This is exactly why, if you’re paying for a 3070RTX or a 3080RTX GPU, you should be getting a built-in 4k display on your laptop, otherwise you’d just be wasting cash unnecessary cash, 3080RTX GPUs will increase framerates at FHD resolutions (massively) but you will not see much of a difference compared to 3060RTX/3050Ti laptops. 

4k (UHD) Displays + 3080RTX : 

CPU GPU Display Price Link
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3080RTX QHD(1440p) 2350 Acer Nitro
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3080RTX QHD(1440p) 2599 Razer Blade 14
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3080RTX QHD(1440p) 2699 ASUS ROG Strix
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3080RTX FHD(1080p) 2249 ASUS ROG Strix
Core i9-11900H 3080RTX UHD(4k) 17” 3,699$ ASUS Zephyrus
Core i9-11900H 3080RTX UHD(4k) 17” 3,499$ MSI GS76 Stealth
Core i9-11900H 3080RTX UHD(4k) 15” 3,749$ Razer Blade
Core i9-11900H 3080RTX UHD(4k) 17” 2,949$ GIGABYTE AERO
Core i7 11800H 3080RTX UHD(4k) 17” 2,479$ GIGABYTE AERO

 

As you can see there’s a huge difference in price between 3080RTX FHD/QHD laptops and 4k 3080RTX laptop.  Now I’m recommending you to buy a 3080RTX 4k Laptop if WoW is basically the game you spend most of your time on.

But you can still grab those 3080RTX w/ QHD/FHD displays, they’re still a decent choice for other games that are so hardware demanding to the point that 4k gameplay is impossible and QHD gameplay is more realistic (like Call of Duty).

WoW is one of the very few games that can sustain 4k resolution game play on a laptop though and that’s why it’s a great investment if you have the budget to buy a 4k laptop. Not such a great idea for QHD/FHD gameplay.

Also notice what a great deal the GIGABYTE AEROs are right now, they’ve got a 4k display for 500 or even 1000$ cheaper. This is sort of rare so by don’t be dissapointed if they’re unavaialable by the time you read this.


5. Acer Aspire 5 A515

Cheap Laptop For WoW

  AMD Ryzen 3 3200U

  8GB RAM DDR4

  AMD Radeon Vega 

  128 GB PCIe NVMe SSD

  15” IPS full HD 1080p

  3.75lb

  8 hours

For those of you on an extremely low budget (below 400$), the good news is that WoW can run on pretty low-end machines if you set graphics settings to Low.

That doesn’t mean you can just grab any laptop and expect to get 30 fps on low settings though, you still need a bit of a CPU “humph”.

Cheapest Laptop To run WoW Shadowlands: 

If you’re on a extreme budget look only for Ryzen 3 or Core i3 laptops, the generation doesn’t really matter, they won’t make much difference in framerates at low settings. What I mean by this is that 8th, 9th 10th and 11th gen Core i3 laptops will work fine. Ex: Core i3 8250U, Core i3 10100U, etc. 

The same applies for Ryzen CPUs which are not over two years old, any generation will be fine. Also don’t worry about what integrated GPU you’re getting, they are all equally good in this price range (350-500$). Integrated GPUs are only close to dGPUs once you get a Core i7/Ryzen 7 Laptop which can cost as much as 800$ (you might as well grab a 1650GTX laptop here). 

Core i3 vs Ryzen 3 Laptops:  I’m featuring a Core i3 laptop instead of a Ryzen 3 here not because they’re more powerful but because they’re currently the cheapest ones.

Anyways… here’s what you can expect from a Ryzen 3/Core i3 laptop:

Because budget laptops have integrated GPUs and these do not have their own “memory” as dedicated GPUs do, you’ll be doing a huge favor to your laptop if you upgrade your RAM to at least 12GB, that way the integrated GPU can use the “extra” RAM available to run the game faster. You will have to do so anyways as 4GB isn’t even enough to run Windows 10 or Windows 11 properly.

You can also make sure to install RAM dual-channel, this will increase CPU-RAM communication efficiency and squeeze 5-10 more framerates per second. 

We try to update our posts on a regular basis but if you still don’t any of these laptops on stock and don’t have the time to look for one on your own. Try to check our post best gaming laptops under 700$ which is updated every 2 weeks 


6. MSI Raider GE76 12U

The Best Laptop For WoW – 4k Beast Settings

  Core i9-12900H 5.0GHz

  32GB RAM DDR4

   3080Ti RTX 16GB vRAM

  1TB PCIe NVMe SSD (Up to 2GB)

  17” IPS 4k UHD 120Hz-360Hz

  6.6lbs

  4 hours

This laptop holds the latest and most powerful dedicated GPU as of 2022 , the 3080Ti, which was released this year and the latest 12th generation Core i9 CPU released just a few weeks ago.

This is as much power as you’re going to get to play ANY game at 4k resolution.

This laptop isn’t widely available yet so you can only buy it directly from the MSI store, the price can be anywhere from 2000$ to 4500$ depending on the configuration you’re after.

I’d say if you’re buying this to play the game at 4k, you can save a few hundreds of dollars by opting for a 120Hz display as opposed to a 360Hz display because you won’t be going past 120 fps at 4k resolution.

Performance:

There aren’t any WoW benchmarks on a 3080Ti/Core i9 yet however since the 3080Ti is basically a 3080RTX desktop GPU, you can get a sense of the performance by looking at a desktop’s 3080RTX performance on WoW:

 


How To Buy The Best Laptop For WoW

This section  will dig depper into the “World of warcraft laptop requirement” section .  We will get into every detail here so you can get  the best performance out of a laptop whatever your budget is.  

Since laptops and desktops share the same hardware, you can also use this section to get a sense of what you need to know when building a PC for World of Warcraft.

World of Warcraft Laptop Requirement

We’ll talk about CPU/GPU requirements for those that want to run low/med settings and those who want to push the game to 1440p/4k ultra settings. We’ll divide them in sections so just scroll down to the “High/Ultra” sections if you want to buy or build a rig for that. 

Note: I decided to use benchmarks when in questing mode since that’s what you’ll be doing 90% of the time. Cities/BGs are not good for comparison purposes because bigger maps and bigger number of players can skew results.

You can watch the videos on your own and make your own conclusions though.

1. CPU

Unlike games like Call Of Duty, WoW isn’t a very GPU demanding if you don’t mind playing at low/medium or even high settings.

It will use more CPU power than GPU power to get you 50-60fps at those settings.

Cores vs Clock Speed

More explicitly, it will use the CPU’s clock speed, NOT #cores.

So if you are building a PC or buying a laptop (on a budget), this is what you need to focus on: clock speed performance
 

A) Low-Medium Settings

Q: Are you sure I don’t need a dGPU for low/med settings?

NO.

In order to make the game affordable to everyone (since the addition of a dGPU adds a lot to the overall cost of a computer), the engine has been written in a way to accomodate PCs with no dedicated GPUs.

Luckily, this isn’t like to change anytime soon even though we have a new expansion every year UNLESS they dig deep into the core and decide to go crazy on GPU requirements.

Virtually all CPUs similar to those in the table (with a U or G somewhere) should run the game at least on Medium settings w/ 40fps

AMD FPS(avg) Settings Instance* Resolution Youtube
Ryzen 3 3200U 50 low(2) questing 900p
Ryzen 3 5300U 60 Low(2) questing 900p
Ryzen 5 4500U 65 Med(4) questing 1080p
Ryzen 5 5500U 60 Med(4) questing 1080p
Ryzen 7 5700U 75 Med(5) questing 1080p
Core i3 10100U 67 Med(3) questing 720p
Core i3-1115G4 70 Low(1) questing 720p
Core i5-1035G4 45 Med(5) questing 720p
Core i5-1115G4 40 High(6) questing 1080p

This list is not complete and you are not limited to the settings and resolutions shown. The benchmarks were just carried at those settings and resolutions. 

Here’s a more compelte list of CPUs with no dGPUs:

CPU 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 3.9 4
i5 8250U 1.6 3.4 4
i5 1115G4 2.4 4.2 4
i7 8550U 1.8 4 4
i7 1165G7 2.8 4.7 4

Warning:  only Ryzen and Intel Core CPUs will let you play the game at low/medium settings. You could go a generation lower or higher than what’s shown here but you can’t go for any other CPUs that do not say “Intel Core” or “Ryzen”. Ex: Celeron, AMD-A9, Pentium,etc. The game will either not run or only run at 15fps.

Older CPUs: 6th, 7th gen Intel Core & Non Ryzen AMD CPUs

I don’t recommend going for CPUs from older generations.

Older generations will heat up pretty fast plus they also have sort of outdated integrated GPUs which will put your framerates into the teens (~20fps) even when questing in the middle of nowhere.

You can tell which generation a CPU belongs to by looking at the first number: 

Ex: an i5-6200U is from the 6th generation.

Although 20FPS maybe okay for questing , walking around, chatting  and checking the AH…. raiding as a healer and trying to follow game mechanics is going to be a nightmare.  

The same rules apply to any AMD CPU that doesn’t have the word Ryzen in the name.

B) High-Ultra Settings

Q: I have deep pockets I want high and ultra settings and 1440p/4k resolutions, what CPU is best for me?

For high/ultra settings you will need a dedicated GPU. We’ll talk about what GPUs in the next section. Try to read this section and the “High-Ultra Settings” GPU section below simultaneously.

For now just know that the CPU is in charge of “getting those settings” to run at high framerates. So let’s say you have two laptops with all hardware pretty much the same except that they have two different CPUs.

If you want to squeeze every bit of framerates at those super high settings:

Pick the CPU with the best clock speed performance

Intel

CPU Base Turbo Cores
i5 8300H 2.3 4 4
i5 9300H 2.4 4.1 4
i5-11300H 2.6 4.4 4
i5 11260H 2.6 4.4 6
i7 8750H 2.2 4.1 6
i7 9750H 2.6 4.5 6
i7 10750H 2.6 5 4
i7 11375H 3 5 4
i7 11370H 3.3 4.8 4
i7 10870H 2.2 5.00  8
i7 11800H 2.3 4.6 8
i9 10885H 2.4 5.3 8
i9 10890K 2.4 5.3 8
i9-11900H 2.5 4.9 8
i9-11980HK 3.3 5 8

AMD

CPU Base Turbo
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3.3 4.6
Ryzen 9 4800HS 2.2 4.4
Ryzen 7 5800H 3.3 4.4
Ryzen 7 4800H 2.9 4.2
Ryzen 7 3750H 2.3 4.0
Ryzen 5 5600H 3.3 4.2 
Ryzen 5 4600H 3.0 4.0
Ryzen 5 3550H 2.1 3.7

It is easy to pick the faster one  just by looking at the numbers if they’re from the same brand (Turbo).

But it doesn’t work so well if you compare CPUs from two different brands.

For example: The AMD Ryzen 5 4600H has lower clock speed than  a Core i5 9300H yet it’s faster.  

AMD vs Intel 

Instead what you should is look for “SINGLE CORE” benchmarks.

Using benchmarks like Cinebench:

You’ll find:

i9-11900H>AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX
i7-11800H>AMD Ryzen 7 5800H
AMD Ryzen 5 4600H>Core i5 11300H


Outside of those three comparisons, it isn’t easy to tell which one is faster ON LAPTOPS for several reasons: different TWD, cooling performance, form factor,etc. So performance will vary depending on the laptop. This isn’t the case for desktops. 

Same colors = similar performance is a good approximation though

2022 6th gen Ryzen and 12th gen Intel Core CPUs

These beasts have just been released this month and are scarcingly available on laptops.
They are on a class of their own faster than any of their counterpart CPU above.

AMD Base Turbo Cores
Ryzen 9 6980HX 
3.3
5
8
Ryzen 9 6900HS
3.3
4.9
8
Ryzen 7 6800HS
3.2
4.7
8
Ryzen 7 6800H
3.2
4.7
8

Intel Base Turbo Cores
Core i9-12900H
1.8
5
6/8
Core i7-12800H
3.7
4.8
6/8
Core i7-12700H
3.5
4.7
6/8

We do not have any benchmarks of these yet (we should by the end of the month) but we expect the game to run at 100fps w/ 4k resolutions. and +150fps w/ 1440p resolution. Basically just as good as the game run on desktops with a plain 3080RTX (non-Ti).

2. GPU

A) Low-Medium(720,900p,1080p): Integrated GPUs

If you don’t have a dedicated GPU, the game will use the “integrated GPU” that’s embedded on each CPU. 

These are all the most RECENT integrated GPUs available on laptops.

AMD: Radeon Vega 3 graphics, Radeon RX Vega 6, Radeon RX Vega 6Radeon RX Vega 7
Intel:  Intel HD Graphics 620  Iris Plus Graphics Integrated Xe graphics

All recent integrated GPUs will get you at least +50fps on low/medium settings.

If you want to squeeze more framerates out of your budget, just try to get the most recent and most powerful CPU you can afford, that will automatically get you one of the best integrated GPUs ( Radeon RX or Intel Xe).

You should be paying more than 650$ for a laptop with an integrated GPU though because that’s how much laptops with dedicated GPUs start to cost
 

B) High-Ultra Settings: Dedicated GPUs

Like I said, if you want +60fps at higher settings, you will need a dedicated GPU.  

These are all the dedicated GPUs found on laptops. I tried to listen in order of ascending power (for gaming). I will show you exact fps numbers right after.

NVIDIA

NVIDIA Cores vRAM Speed
MX250 384 2GB-4GB 1582
MX350 640 2-4GB 1354
MX450 896 2-4GB 1580
1050 640 2GB-4GB 1493
1050Ti 768 4GB 1620
1650 1024 4GB 1560
1060 1280 6GB 1670
1660 Ti 1536 6GB 1590
3050Ti 2560 4GB 1485
2060 1920 6GB 1680
2060 Super 2176 8GB 1650
2070 2394 8GB 1620
2070 Super 2560 8GB 1770
2080 2944 8GB 1710
3060 3584 8GB 1780
2080 Super 3072 8GB 1815
3070 5120 8GB 1620
3080 8704 10GB 1710
3070Ti 5888 8GB 1485
3080Ti 7424 16GB 1590

AMD

Name Shaders vRAM Speed Equivalent
Radeon 610 320 2GB 1030  Intel UHD 620
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
RX 580 1536 6GB 1077 ~1060GTX
RX5500M 1408 8GB 1327 – 1645 ~1660Ti
AMD Radeon RX 6700S 1975 10GB 1890 ~3060
AMD Radeon RX 6800S 2048 12GB 1975 +3070

Note that these benchmarks are not 100% accurate (maybe 90%). FPS can vary depending on location. You’ll get higher framerates on open areas with low details and no players around and lower framerates on closed areas with a high number of people and character

Entry GPUs: These are entry level gaming. You can only squeeze around ~40fps on high setting w/ 1080p resolution out of these. . The light green ones  will bump you up to  80fps on high settings.You should be paying no more than 650$ for these. 

CPU GPU FPS Instance Settings Resolution Video
Core i5 8265U MX250 40 Questing High 1080p WildGamerSK
Core i5-7300HQ GTX 1050 80 Questing High 1080p Maiquera

Mainstream GPUs:  These are mainstream GPUs and in fact far more common than entry level GPUs. You’ll find them on 650-750$ laptops and should get you at least 70fps at ultra settings 1080p.

CPU GPU FPS Instance Resolution Settings Video
Ryzen 5 4600H GTX 1650 70 questing 1080p Ultra(10) Laptopstudy
Core i5 9300H GTX 1650 70 questing 1080p Ultra(10) Laptopstudy
Core i5 10300H GTX 1650 60-70 questing 1080p Ultra(10) Jordon J
Ryzen 5 4800H GTX 1650 73 questing 1080p Ultra(10) Technoriales

Low-Mid-range GPUs: GPUs found on 900-1100$ laptops. They should get you at least 85 fps at ultra settings 1080p. 1660ti laptops might be a lot cheaper but I advice you not to buy them if you want to play on ultra settings as they will tax the GPU quite a lot all the time which is going to reduce its lifetime significantly.

CPU GPU FPS Settings Instance Resolution RTX Video
Core i7 9750H 1660Ti 65 Ultra(10) questing 1080p Erwin Liao
Ryzen 7 5800H 3050Ti 85 Ultra(10) questing 1080p Mariush
Ryzen 7 5800H 3050Ti 97 Ultra(10) dungeon 1080p Mariush
Ryzen 7 4800H 3050Ti 93 Ultra(10) questing 1080p Mariush
Ryzen 7 4800H 2060RTX 75 Ultra(10) questing 1080p ON Tech Tyrial
Core i7 10750H 2060RTX 100 Ultra(10) raiding 1080p OFF All Systems


High Mid-range GPUs: As much power as you’re going to need for the game, 85-115fps on ultra settings 1440p/1080p. Depending on the CPU. These can also run the game at 4k settings smoothly but I would advice you against doing so if you want your laptop to last you more than a year.
CPU GPU FPS Instance Resolution Settings RTX Video
Core i7 10870H 3060RTX 100 questing 1080p Ultra(10) OFF Tech Tyrial
Ryzen 7 5800H 3060RTX 90/80 questing 1080p/1440p Ultra(10) OFF Tech Tyrial
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3060RTX 60 Raid 1440p Ultra(10) OFF Xyonus TV
Ryzen 7 5800H 3060RTX 77 questing 1080p Ultra(10) HIGH Mariush


It’s much more difficult to give you more precise benchmarks on CPU+GPU performance as the hardware gets more powerful because performance will also depend on : temperatures, cooling system, power supply,etc, and these can all be different depending on the company and the laptop model

High-End GPUs:  I would not touch these unless you MUST play the game at 4k. If so you can easily go past 70fps 4k resolution ultra settings w/ RTX mode on HIGH. 

CPU GPU FPS Instance Resolution Settings RTX Video
Ryzen 7 5800H 3070RTX 75 Questing 4k Ultra(10) HIGH Fun Laptop
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3070RTX 115 Main City 1440p Ultra(10) HIGH Voidzu
Core i9 10980K 3080RTX 100 Main City 1080p Ultra(10) HIGH Xyonus TV
Ryzen 9 5900HX 3080RTX 95/85 25 Raid 1080/1440p Ultra(10) HIGH Xyonus TV


RTX Mode For WoW

The truth is RTX isn’t very useful for WoW, you will notice almost no difference on how the game looks.

You will only see RTX mode at work WHEN there’s a strong light source something like a brigiht sunor a fireplace, the shadows will look more vivid and realistic but other than that it will do nothing more than just make your fps drop by 10-20%.

If you get a close up on character’s faces you will also see more shadow details so it might be good for making videos/memes.

I advice you to turn it off though, it can both very taxing on a system and framerates.

CPU bottleneck*

Some of you with deep pockets are probably dissapointed with the fact that even the latest GPUs and CPUs on laptops won’t bump up your framerates past +120FPS at ultra settings on 1440p. 

That’s NOT because laptops graphics cards care weak. 

Graphics card are in charge of doing the heavy lifiting of very high resolution and detailed graphics, they are not the responsible for “processing” those super intensive graphics back into your monitor, that’s your CPU’s job

 

The real problem are the CPUs which are not able to sustain those super high clock speeds they advertise due to the high temperature environment brought on by small devices such as laptops.

Ex: if you watch the video above, you’ll these different GPUs have basically the same performance. They can’t even raise those framerates a tad more because the CPU is not quick enough to do that.

The guy was getting the same framerates using a 1060,1660Ti,2060RTX. There’s no way the 1060GTX,1660Ti and the 2060RTX are all equal in power so the CPU must be a bottleneck.

What can you do?

ALWAYS prioritize on CPU after you get a high-end GPU like a 3070RTX/3080RTX/AMD Radeon RX 6800S.

RAM

Size

Gaming Laptops: 8GB vs 16GB

If you’re spending +650$ , you’re basically looking at gaming laptops and all of them have at least 8G RAM. This is enough for WoW. You don’t really need 16GB unless you’re running a lot of stuff in the background simultaneously.

Dual Channeled

You can squeeze a few more framerates (up to 10-15) if you make your RAM “Dual Channeled”.  This means installing two RAM sticks of the same size/type for whatever amount you want: x2 4GB RAM for 8GB , x2 6GB for 12GB, etc…

Budget Laptops (below 500$) vs 4GB

 Although budget laptop have the ability to run WoW decently at low settings despite having integrated GPUs and low-voltage CPUs, MOST do not have enough RAM to handle even Windows 10 Home or much worse Windows 11, add WoW on top of that and you’ve got a machine that won’t even launch the game.

So for if your laptop doesn’t come with 8GB RAM already, you MUST upgrade do the upgrade. It should cost you no more than 20$ bucks.

Integrated GPUs: 8GB vs 12GB

Now because integrated GPUs do not have their own vRAM, you might get a boost with 12GB RAM because integrated GPUs (especially the latest) will now use “RAM” the same way dedicated GPUs use their own “vRAM”. This is a good hting because that means integrated GPU performance will approach those of dedicated GPUs.

Storage

Size

256GB: Virtually all laptops above 500$ will have at least 256GB. WoW can take up to 84.5GB with all expansions installed, Shadowlands will take an additional 100GB. So yes, you will be okay with 256GB. 

WoW+Windows 11 Pro~150GB, you’ll have approximately 100GB left for additional AAA games (about 2 I’d say).

128GB:  Some budget laptops (below 400$) will only have 128GB, you can still play WoW if you install Windows 10 on it (it takes around 20GB). But you’ll definitely have some lag spikes due to the storage being almost to full capacity.

Solid State Drives vs HDDs

Virtually all laptops have SSDs which are the fastest types of storage. Some will have a dual combination of HDD(Old fashioned hard disk drives) and an SSD.  If this is the case for you, remember to install WoW on the SSD Drive. 

It’s not going to help you with framerates but it will massively improve the time it takes to step into a new instance (BG, Dungeon) or a new area, basically any loading screen will only take one or two seconds at the most. 

Display

IPS + FHD resolution

IPS displays are overrated, they’ll basically give you more viewing angles but most people don’t game using weird positions.  They’re virtually ubiqutuous on laptops above 500$ though.

Resolution: FHD are a must if you want to have enough space for interfaces and quick action calls/macros. Luckily, this is also nearly ubiqutuous on modern laptops, if you’re paying +350$ you must demand one.  

1440p & QHD GamePlay

3070GTX/3080RTX:  You need laptops with these GPUs and these laptops should automatically come with at least a 4k resolution display. 
3060RTX: this is the bare minimum to play WoW 1440p for long periods of time. The thing is some 3060RTX laptops may or may not have a 1440p resolution display.

Refresh Rates

344Hz

3070/3080RTX: If you’re playing at ultra settings with a high end GPU like the 3070RTX/3080RTX it is very unlikely you’ll go past 140FPS, so pushing for a laptop that has +300Hz will be useless.  

144Hz 

3060RTX or mid-range GPUs: Virtually all laptops w/ mid-range GPUs ( like the 3060RTX) will have at least 144Hz so you don’t have to worry about getting a high end display.

120Hz

1650GTX:  If you’re playing at high settings, you’ll easily go past 100 fps. Not all laptops with budget/mainstream dGPUs will have 120Hz refresh rates though, some will but you may have to pay an extra 50$ bucks.

Heat

Heat control is important otherwise your laptop won’t last long.

This is because hardware in laptops are crowded and heat can’t dissipate out of a laptop as it would on desktops.  This is the main reason why most laptops will die within a few years.

If you’re using high/utra settings at 1440p,4k resolutions, depending on what CPU/GPU you have, you’re also putting a LOT OF STRESS on your system. This is fine for an hour or two. 

But you and I both know that WoW isn’t a game that can be played for one hour a day. This is exactly why the chances of your laptop dying because of heat death are pretty high this is why:  

  1. If you’re buying a laptop with a mid-range or high end GPU, buy them from ASUS, MSI. They’re the best brands with the best air cooling system.
  2. If you’re venturing into other brands (Acer, HP, Dell,etc),  you should make sure ALL reviews have nothing to complain about temperatures beign too high. If you read something about the system not handling high temperatures well, run.
  3. Go get yourself a cooling pad and use it as much as possible.  
  4. Budget laptops ($<600) will overheat massively if you play the game for too long at medium/high settings.  Reduce all settings as much as possible here.

After you buy a laptop:

  1. Don’t overclock your laptop.
  2. Reduce settings to minimum after playing the game for two hours at Ultra+ 1440p, depending on your GPU. 
  3. Or better yet Install a software to check CPU/GPU temperatures and change settings back to medium/low when Ts go past 85C.

Comments?

If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or recommendations. Please let me know in the comments below, I’ll try to answer as soon as I can.

 

8 thoughts on “6 Best Laptops For World Of Warcraft : Shadowlands (2022) & Classic WoW

  • August 5, 2018 at 4:30 am
    Permalink

    Appreciated your honesty in assessing these laptops for BfA. My MacBookPro just stopped playing WoW & I’m looking for alternatives. I’d buy a new MBP but mine still does everything I need it to do! – except play Wow, lol.

    Reply
    • August 25, 2018 at 1:23 am
      Permalink

      Really how old is your MBP? I got a 2015 MBA and I can still run WoW, even BfA on it…and it’s playable. This is BfA, check the quest on the top.

      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/5b8e5d28714163314a6bdf56ff465808019a5e1ba9d17193c2954ee24fc799fa.png

      Reply
      • August 25, 2018 at 2:04 am
        Permalink

        Hmm, a 2015 could do the trick then? Cool! I am looking into options. Will prob stay with Mac.

        Reply
        • August 29, 2018 at 2:38 am
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          2010?! Wow that’s oldschool AF, it just goes to show you these suckers last forever….

          Reply
      • August 25, 2018 at 2:14 am
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        My MBP is a Mid-2010. I’m old school 😉

        Reply
  • August 26, 2018 at 4:08 pm
    Permalink

    thank you so much for explaining all this in detail. i have found two different gaming laptops that have got my interest. I am currently on a MBP 2015, and it cant run the new wow expansions anymore. So i wanted to ask you two different questions. The first one is- are these two laptops good to run and play wow safely ? https://www.amazon.fr/HP-15-ax202nf-Portable-GeForce-Windows/dp/B01MT7MTR5/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1535296667&sr=8-2-fkmr1&keywords=CUK%2BOMEN&th=1

    https://www.fnac.com/mp34694521/Acer-Aspire-VX5-591G-55FB-PC-Portable-Gamer-15-6-FHD-Noir-Processeur-Intel-Core-i5-4-Go-de-RAM-1-To-SSD-128-Go-NVIDIA-GeForce-GTX-1050-Windows-10/w-4#

    and the second question i would have for you is, which would be more ideal ?

    Again thank you so much for these details.

    Reply
    • August 29, 2018 at 2:43 am
      Permalink

      All of them can play Wow at high settings even with the new expansion. I would pick the first one though just because the RAM size is 8GB as compared to the 4GB the other two have. You can actually pick any of the other two as long as you upgrade the RAM to 8GB on your own, if you rather not do that, then just pick the first one. HPs are quite resistant too just be careful with hinges….my monitor eventually stopped working because I’ve kept forcefully messing around with the hinges to the point something inside broke or got unplugged..some cable or connector… (you could open it up and fix it though). The hinges from Macs on the other hand seem to be undestructible….can’t say that about all other brands.

      Reply
      • August 29, 2018 at 10:16 am
        Permalink

        thank you so much !

        Reply

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