In a world where new technology is released every week; each boasting all-new features, improved visuals and internet that seems to know what you want before you’ve even thought to begin your search, finding the right product to match your needs can be quite overwhelming.
Of course, there’s a reason you’ve picked this article out from many of the others across various sites and blogs and technology reviewers. And it’s probably because you’re a fan of Twitch.
Part of the world dominating Amazon family, Twitch TV is a streaming service or channel that focuses on live streaming of video games; for example, eSports games and tournaments, individual player gaming streams, and even live talk shows related to video gaming.
But back to what you really want to know – which laptops available on the market today are the most compatible with Twitch and will enhance your viewing to the best it can be?
Razer Blade Pro17
Starting with budgeting in mind, the first of our top laptops for streaming Twitch is the Razer Blade Pro17 – and if you’re already well inducted into the gaming world then Razer as a brand will need no introduction.
With a simple but practical design, the Razer Blade boasts a 17.3inch screen which is more than generous when it comes to watching live video, and a backlit keyboard which encourages easy use in darkness.
Though the refresh rate of the device is low – at just 120 Hz – the resolution is just as good as some of the pricier options we are going to explore later in this blog, and will provide a clear visual to keep you entertained.
Onto the more technical stuff now. The processing power of the Razer Blade Pro17 comes from Intel’s quad core 7th Gen Core i7 chipset, with a separate graphic plugin which is hosted by NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 graphics.
We particularly like the ease with which you can expand the RAM from its embedded 16GB up to 32GB with little to no hassle, and Razer also make it easy for you to expand your graphic capabilities with an additional 256GB SSD which you can install to the device.
All in all, a good device for those on a budget and who are happy to invest a little more time and some trial and error into making sure their laptop works for their usage.
Though it doesn’t have all the built-in storage and capabilities of the pricier models, anything that needs tinkering with can be done with ease – and all under that much lower price tag.
We’re not going to beat around the bush with this one – the name sounds exactly like something a gaming enthusiast should own. Somewhere between the Men in Black and a Marvel movie, right?
Well, besides its extremely appropriate name, the Alienware M15 is part of a range owned by household name Dell and created with gaming in mind.
A main player in the gaming laptop market, Dell have a range of devices and this is one is just right; priced at a similar rate to its competitors and boasting a few extra features that have been designed to impress.
Having said that, there are a few areas of concern with the Alienware M15. For starters, the device sports an 8th generation Intel i7 processor that clocks at just 4.1 GHz.
A disappointingly low output, although to remedy this Alienware have included some renowned graphics cards which will enable up to 16 GB GDDR5 memory.
The Alienware offers a higher built-in drive with 256 GB – higher than that you get with the Razer. However, while the Razer has capability to accept an HDD that goes up to 2TB, the Alienware will only go up as high as 1TB.
The screen is a little more compact than the Razer, and while the lighting behind the keyboard is a bit too intense and distracting, the upgraded ventilation system is said to ensure the laptop maintains a consistent temperature even during extended gameplay, and the ‘AlienFusion’ mode allows you to put the laptop in a mode somewhere between being awake and being asleep.
Doesn’t seem like much, but it will enable you to pick up the laptop and start using it again straight away, without the risk of those long-winded and usually unnecessary reboots and updates.
Asus ROG Strix GL502VM
Another one made by a well-known brand with the gaming market in mind, the ASUS ROG. ROG actually stands for Republic of Gamers which commands a certain respect among users and reviewers alike, and we must say that the new brand of smartphone launched by ASUS for the gaming community is an impressive feat – on par only with Razer’s similar device.
Onto the laptop now, and this one has a couple of great points and a couple of areas which let it down slightly. After all, we are nothing if not honest!
The screen is the same size as the Alienware device explored above, with full HD resolution which also includes a wide-view panel allowing 170-degree viewing.
Great if you’re playing surrounded by friends! Another great feature of the Asus ROG is the presence of USB 3.1 Type-C port; which basically means you can easily transfer a 2 GB movie file in less than 2 seconds. For those of us whose movie nights are inevitably held up by slow download speed, this is a really great feature.
In terms of technological details, the laptop has a built-in Intel i7-7700HQ processor, which clocks up to 3.8 GHz. To accompany the processor, Asus has put a 16 GB DDR4 2400 MHz RAM.
The graphic card is GTX 1060 with 6 GB memory, and interestingly is also features Pascal architecture – which the OEM claims to be one of the best online gaming architecture programs around at the moment.
Storage is a bit of an issue with the Asus ROG because it only comes with a 128 GB SSD; as opposed to the 256 GB offered by the Alienware and the Razer.
You should definitely consider this if you are interested in the Asus, as although it does also come with a 1TB HDD, the storage is significantly lower than some of the competitors.
HP Omen 15-DC0030 NR
Lucky for us, the usability of this laptop is nowhere near as complicated as its name. Launched by renowned technology brand HP, this device has earned a title as one of the most powerful laptops for high-end gaming; with a powerful processor, HD screen with antiglare technology, and one of the longest battery lives that we’ve seen.
Let’s start, as ever, with the complicated technology stuff. In a bid to ensure the smoothest running of your games and visuals, this laptop packs in an 8th Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-8750H, and a processor which clocksan incredible 4.1GHz. In terms of gaming performance, the offering from the HP Omen far outweighs that of its rivals, due to sheer capacity and speed.
Despite the powerful built-in processor, the HP Omen has a 128 GB SSD built in to the device, and offers an accompanying 16 GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM for even faster processing. And if that’s not enough, the hard disk that comes separately from the laptop can increase the graphic definition even further.
Onto the aesthetics of the HP Omen now, and we must say that the small alterations made by HP have really given their Omen device an edge.
The 15.6-inch screen has the anti-glare protection to shield your eyes and ensure a high definition visual in all light setting, while the inclusion of full-size arrow keys on the keyboard makes game playing even easier for users and sets this laptop apart as one of the best for gamers.
The battery life is said to last through an impressive 6 hours 15 minutes of game play – better than most of its rivals. The built-in fan also keeps the laptop cool throughout play, with a sophisticated system of dynamics and blades that you wouldn’t even know were there.
Inevitably, all these mod cons and extra touches do come at a price, and the HP Omen is unlikely to be the top choice for those shopping on a budget. That being said however, the Omen is certainly one of the best laptops on the market this year when it comes to streaming and playing through Twitch.
Acer Predator Helios 500 PH517-61-R0GX
Often pitched in direct rivalry with the HP Omen, the Acer Predator is another on our list with a name that perfectly matches its premium as a gaming laptop – after all, isn’t Predator in fact a well-known movie about chasing other worldly creatures?
Onto the laptop itself, and this particular device has its own positives and negatives against the HP Omen and our list of other Twitch-streaming rivals.
First up is its ability to provide a great gaming experience, with the built-in AMD Ryzen 7 2700 8-Core desktop processor under the hood, clocking speeds upto 4.1GHz (with Precision Boost up to 4.3GHz).
Not only does this surpass the requirements made by Twitch streaming, but it ensures a smooth and stutter-free experiences for users.
The screen is slightly bigger than that of the HP Omen, though without the anti-glare technology. Not a big issue, but one that may pitch the HP Omen as slightly better suited to bright rooms.
The backlit keyboard however is a feature that many night owls and darkroom gamers will appreciate, and is one that has made both the Acer Predator and the Omen popular devices – alongside the likes of the Razer Blade laptop above.
The 16 GB DDR4 2666MHz Memory doubled with 256 GB PCIe NVMe SSD allows for multiple applications running at any one time, meaning you can be streaming through Twitch and still rely on other applications working effectively.
Our other top feature about the Acer Predator is its speaker system, boasting two speakers and a subwoofer that made any gaming audios a complete delight to enjoy, and the ‘PredatorSense’ application – an addition created for this device which gives the user greater control over their own gaming session, including the ability to alter fan speed, lighting and varying gamer profiles. Of course, these extra features do add to the Acer Predator’s price point, but for those heavily invested in a great sound experience and immersive gaming session then it may well be an investment worth making.
Eluktronics N850HK1 Pro
Last up on our list is a laptop made by a brand that isn’t widely recognised yet, although its high customer ratings on Amazon are sure to change that very soon.
Having trawled the internet to bring you something different, we’ve pulled together a series of information about the Eluktronics brand and the N850HK1 Pro, to deduce its effectiveness when running Twitch – and here’s what we found.
Eluktronics is a largely USA based company, which specialises in both manufacturing premium performance computers and laptops, and reselling value-added devices on behalf of other larger brands.
Eluktronics say that they purchase premium products in bulk for a lower cost, and do not hike the price for the end consumer – which is why their laptops are so affordable for the average buyer.
The laptop in question has a few variations you can make depending on your own requirements, for example it comes with both a smaller and a slightly larger screen, and you can also alter the GPU and processor generation – all things that will impact the effectiveness of the device.
Much like the HP Omen, the Eluktronics product features an anti-glare technology on the screen to aid users playing in bright spaces, while the backlit keyboard has been commonly reviewed online as one of the best available right now.
Powering the graphics is NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with 4 GB GDDR 5 VRAM, which supports a more than adequate level of gameplay, while the built-in processor clocks up to 3.8 GHz.
The main area which does disappoint in the Eluktronics model is the storage, which unfortunately cannot even be boosted with a hard disk plug in.
Reaching only 500 GB with the built-in SSD, the Eluktronics N850HK1 Pro may provide a good experience at a great price, but if a decent level of storage is one of your priorities then the low price may not be enough to make up for the lack of storage space.
All in all, when it comes to picking the best laptop for streaming Twitch, the choice you have to make really does come down to your budget, your individual gaming preferences and requirements, and how else you plan to use your device.
This article provides a snapshot of some of the best products on the market at the moment, but make sure to fully research all the selling points and drawbacks of any potential purchase, before you commit. Good luck gamers!