10 Best Laptops for Payday 3 in 2023

Payday 3

When it comes to the high-octane, adrenaline-pumping world of Payday 3, having the right equipment can make all the difference between a successful heist and a trip to the slammer. Finding the best laptop for Payday 3 involves more than just looking at the minimum system requirements; it's about finding a machine that can handle the game's intense graphics, speedy gameplay, and complex AI systems, all while maintaining a smooth, lag-free experience.

As a longtime fan and player of the Payday series, I've spent countless hours planning heists, strategizing with teammates, and evading law enforcement on a variety of laptops. Through extensive trial and error, I've learned that a laptop that excels at running Payday 3 needs a balance of power, speed, and graphics capabilities. That's why I've taken the time to comb through a comprehensive laptop spreadsheet of recent releases, comparing specs and reviews to find the top options for this specific gaming requirement.

Given the game's unique mechanics and intense graphics – think high-quality textures, realistic lighting, and an immersive environment – a laptop for Payday 3 must have not just a powerful processor and ample RAM, but also a top-tier graphics card. Also, considering the game's multiplayer nature, a good internet connection is crucial, so a laptop with reliable and fast networking options will make the difference. While these details might seem overwhelming, rest assured that this guide is designed to help you navigate the process of finding the best laptop for Payday 3 with ease and confidence.

The Powerhouse Processors: Choosing the Right Engine


With so many options available in the laptop CPU market, it can be challenging to decide on the right processor for your Payday 3 gaming laptop. In this section, we'll discuss why a fast processor is not necessarily crucial for Payday 3, explore whether you need an i7 or if an i5 will suffice, and provide some benchmark-based recommendations for processors at different budget levels.

Why a fast processor is not necessary for Payday 3

While Payday 3 is a game that can take advantage of multiple cores, it's important to note that single-thread performance is still vital, especially for tasks like UI responsiveness and general gameplay. However, it's worth mentioning that the game's performance is often limited by the capabilities of the graphics card, memory, and storage. As such, you don't necessarily need the highest-end processor available to have an enjoyable gaming experience.

Do you need an i7 or can you get away with an i5?

When it comes to choosing between an i7 and an i5, it ultimately depends on your budget and gaming requirements. If you're on a tighter budget or primarily interested in casual gaming, an i5 processor should suffice. On the other hand, if you have a larger budget and want to future-proof your laptop for more demanding games, an i7 processor would be a better choice.

How to choose a processor based on its benchmarks

To compare laptop processors, I recommend using benchmarks such as Cinebench R20 and PassMark. Cinebench R20 is a popular benchmark for gaming laptops and provides easy-to-find scores online. It focuses on single-core performance and can give you a good idea of how a processor will perform in Payday 3. Alternatively, PassMark offers a more comprehensive assessment of overall performance, although it may not be as accurate for gaming-specific tasks.

Table of recommended processors for various budgets

Here are some recommendations for processors based on different budget levels:

Budget Processor
Minimum i3-1115G4
Recommended i5-1135G7
High-end i7-11370H

Please note that these recommendations are based on a balance of performance and affordability for Payday 3. If you're looking for an affordable gaming laptop, you may need to make some sacrifices and opt for a mid-range or entry-level processor.

In conclusion, while a fast processor can enhance your gaming experience, it's not essential for Payday 3. By considering your budget, gaming requirements, and benchmark scores, you can make an informed decision on the right laptop processor for your needs.

Power Up Your Gaming Experience!

The Current Market Situation

When it comes to laptop graphics cards, Nvidia continues to dominate the market. While their recently released RTX 40 series cards are making waves, the majority of laptops still feature the RTX 30 series cards. It's worth noting that there has been a shift in power consumption, with desktop GPUs becoming more power-hungry compared to their notebook counterparts. This has widened the gap between power-limited notebook graphics and desktop graphics cards in recent years. Another important change is that Nvidia has discontinued the Max-Q label for its RTX graphics cards. Now, the exact GPU wattage is determined by the laptop manufacturer (OEM). This variance in graphics performance can lead to differences even among laptops featuring the same GPU chipset.

Is a High-End GPU Necessary?

When it comes to Payday 3, the game can be played on a wide range of laptops, from low-end to high-end. The requirements for the game are fairly straightforward – you just need a mid-range GPU. While Payday 3 supports DirectX 12, it's not the optimal choice for gaming laptops. Instead, I recommend using Mantle or Vulkan (D3 uses V-API) for better performance.

Understanding GPU vs. CPU Rendering in Blender (and other 3D Apps)

If you're into 3D modeling or rendering, it's important to consider how your laptop's graphics card will perform. In software like Blender, the GPU plays a significant role in rendering tasks, allowing for faster and more efficient workflows. However, it's worth noting that certain tasks in Blender, such as simulation or physics calculations, rely more on the CPU rather than the GPU. So, if you're primarily focused on rendering, a powerful graphics card will be a valuable asset.

How Blender Utilizes the Graphics Card for Non-Rendering Tasks

In addition to rendering, Blender also utilizes the GPU for various non-rendering tasks, such as viewport performance, real-time shading, and effects preview. This means that even if you're not primarily focused on rendering, having a capable graphics card can still improve your overall experience with Blender and other 3D applications.

Recommended Graphics Cards for Different Budgets

To help you decide on the right laptop graphics card for Payday 3 and other 3D applications, I've compiled a list of recommended GPUs based on different budgets:

Budget Recommended GPU
Minimum GeForce GTX 1650
Recommended GeForce RTX 3050
High-end GeForce RTX 2060

These GPUs strike a good balance between price and performance, making them suitable for a variety of needs. Of course, if your budget allows, you can opt for more powerful options, but these recommendations should provide a solid foundation for your gaming and creative endeavors.

Remember, while benchmarking tools like 3DMark can provide a rough idea of a graphics card's performance, it's always best to refer to third-party reviews or benchmark results from real games for more accurate information. Additionally, if you plan to use your laptop for multitasking or playing other games alongside Payday 3, make sure it has an upgradeable graphics card and ample RAM (at least 16 GB) to ensure smooth performance.

In conclusion, finding the right laptop graphics card for Payday 3 and other 3D applications involves considering factors like your budget, desired performance, and the specific demands of the software you'll be using. With these recommendations and considerations in mind, you'll be well-equipped to make an informed decision that suits your needs and provides an enjoyable gaming and creative experience.

Unlocking Maximum Performance: The Power of RAM

Why memory is crucial for gaming

When it comes to gaming, memory plays a crucial role in ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience. RAM, or Random Access Memory, is responsible for storing temporary data that the computer needs to access quickly. This includes game files, textures, and other assets that need to be loaded into memory for the game to run smoothly.

How much RAM is needed to play Payday 3?

Payday 3 is a demanding game, but in terms of RAM requirements, it is actually quite reasonable. The game can use up to 8 GB of RAM, but most players will find that 4 GB is more than enough to enjoy the game without any performance issues. Therefore, if you're looking for a mid-range laptop specifically for playing Payday 3, you don't need to worry about getting a lot of RAM.

Is DDR5 worth the money?

The latest generation Intel and AMD CPUs support both DDR4 and DDR5 memory. However, it's important to note that DDR5 is still a relatively new technology and comes with a higher price tag compared to DDR4. In the case of Payday 3, which is an older game that doesn't require a lot of memory bandwidth, opting for DDR4 RAM is more than sufficient.

Furthermore, considering the current state of DDR5 and its relatively limited availability, it may not be worth the extra investment for a game like Payday 3. DDR4-3200 should be more than enough in terms of speed and latency for a smooth gaming experience.

What are secondary considerations when choosing memory modules?

While the amount and type of RAM are crucial factors to consider, there are a few secondary considerations that can impact your gaming experience. First, make sure that your laptop has enough RAM slots and supports the maximum capacity you desire. Some laptops may have limited upgradability options, so it's important to check before making a purchase.

Additionally, consider the brand and quality of the memory modules. Reliable brands like Corsair, Kingston, and G.Skill are known for producing high-quality RAM modules that provide stable performance.

What to expect at various price ranges

When it comes to choosing the right laptop RAM for Payday 3, you can find suitable options across various price ranges. Here are some recommendations:

  • Minimum: For a budget-friendly option, 8 GB of RAM will be sufficient to run Payday 3 smoothly. This will allow you to enjoy the game without any major hiccups, especially if you're not running multiple applications in the background.

  • Recommended: If you want to ensure a more comfortable gaming experience and have the flexibility to multitask while gaming, I would recommend going for 16 GB of RAM. This will provide enough headroom for running the game, as well as other applications like voice chat or web browsers, without any performance impact.

  • High-end: If you're looking for a high-end gaming laptop that can handle any game with ease, including Payday 3, then 32 GB of RAM might be an option worth considering. However, it's important to note that for the majority of gamers, 16 GB will be more than sufficient. Unless you have specific requirements for memory-intensive tasks like video editing or 3D rendering, investing in 32 GB of RAM solely for gaming purposes may not provide significant benefits.

In conclusion, choosing the right laptop RAM for Payday 3 boils down to finding a balance between performance and budget. By considering the recommended RAM requirements and factoring in secondary considerations such as DDR4 vs. DDR5 and brand reliability, you can make an informed decision that meets your gaming needs without breaking the bank.

Unleashing Your Payday 3 Laptop Potential

Q: Can Payday 3 be played on a laptop?

Yes, Payday 3 can be played on a laptop. However, the performance and experience may vary depending on the specifications of your laptop. It's important to make sure your laptop meets the minimum system requirements to ensure smooth gameplay.

What are the recommended laptop specs for Payday 3?

The recommended laptop specs for Payday 3 are as follows:

  • Memory: 16 GB
  • Processor: i5-1135G7 or higher
  • Graphics: GeForce RTX 3050 or higher

These specifications will allow you to enjoy Payday 3 with optimal performance and graphical fidelity.

Is a gaming laptop necessary for playing Payday 3?

While a gaming laptop is not necessary to play Payday 3, it is highly recommended. Gaming laptops are specifically designed to handle the demands of modern games, including Payday 3. They often come with powerful processors, dedicated graphics cards, and enhanced cooling systems to ensure a smooth and enjoyable gaming experience.

Can I run Payday 3 on a budget laptop?

It is possible to run Payday 3 on a budget laptop, but you may experience lower performance and graphical quality. If you have a budget laptop, make sure it meets the minimum system requirements for Payday 3. Keep in mind that you may need to lower the graphics settings to achieve smoother gameplay on a budget laptop.

What are the minimum system requirements for Payday 3 on a laptop?

The minimum system requirements for Payday 3 on a laptop are as follows:

  • Memory: 8 GB
  • Processor: i3-1115G4 or equivalent
  • Graphics: GeForce GTX 1650 or equivalent

Meeting these minimum requirements will allow you to run Payday 3 on your laptop, but you may need to adjust graphics settings for optimal performance.

Which laptops are compatible with Payday 3?

Payday 3 is compatible with a wide range of laptops. However, it is recommended to choose a laptop with specifications that meet or exceed the recommended system requirements for the best gaming experience. Consider laptops like the HP Victus, Lenovo Legion 5i Pro 16, ASUS ROG Strix Scar, Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16, or MSI Titan GT77 HX for high performance and smooth gameplay.

Can I play Payday 3 on a MacBook?

Payday 3 is not officially supported on macOS. However, it is possible to run Windows on a MacBook using virtualization or dual-booting software. This would allow you to play Payday 3 on your MacBook, but keep in mind that the performance may be affected compared to running it on a native Windows machine.

Is an Intel Core i5 processor enough for running Payday 3 on a laptop?

Yes, an Intel Core i5 processor is enough to run Payday 3 on a laptop. However, for optimal performance and smoother gameplay, it is recommended to have a higher-tier processor such as the i5-1135G7 or better. This will ensure that the game runs smoothly and that you can enjoy the game's features without any performance hiccups.

Will Payday 3 run smoothly on a laptop with integrated graphics?

Payday 3 is a graphically demanding game, and while it is possible to run it on a laptop with integrated graphics, the performance may be significantly lower compared to a laptop with a dedicated graphics card. Integrated graphics are not designed for gaming and may struggle to deliver the necessary performance and graphical fidelity for a smooth gameplay experience. It is highly recommended to have a laptop with a dedicated graphics card, such as the GeForce GTX 1650 or higher, for optimal performance in Payday 3.

How to choose a laptop for optimal performance in Payday 3?

When choosing a laptop for optimal performance in Payday 3, consider the following factors:

  1. Memory: Aim for at least 16 GB of RAM to ensure smooth multitasking and gameplay.

  2. Processor: Look for a high-performance processor, such as the i5-1135G7 or better, to handle the demands of Payday 3.

  3. Graphics: Opt for a laptop with a dedicated graphics card, such as the GeForce RTX 3050 or higher, for better visual quality and smoother gameplay.

  4. Cooling: Pay attention to the laptop's cooling system to prevent overheating during intense gaming sessions.

  5. Price: Consider your budget and look for laptops within your price range that offer the recommended specifications.

By considering these factors, you can choose a laptop that will deliver optimal performance and a great gaming experience in Payday 3.

5 Best Laptops for Payday 3

i5-12450H | GTX 1650 | 32 GB RAM | 2000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS WA; 1920x1080 |

1.HP Victus 15

HP Victus 15: A Budget Gaming Laptop Worth Considering
  • Excellent price
  • Good gaming performance
  • Can double as a work laptop
  • Three color choices
  • Bad battery life
  • Rather plain design
  • Weak GPU yields unsatisfactory frame rates
  • Screen only so-so despite 144Hz refresh rate

The HP Victus 15 is a budget gaming laptop designed for price-conscious buyers. It offers good gaming performance and can also handle other tasks well, making it a versatile option. However, it falls short in terms of battery life and has a plain design.

HP Victus 15
HP Envy
  • One of most affordable laptops with an Intel i7 processor
  • Enormous 2TB SSD
  • Run-of-the-mill processor (i7-1255U)
  • So-so graphics card (MX550)
i7-12650H | RTX 3070 | 64 GB RAM | 2000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS-level G-Sync; 1920x1080 |

2.ASUS TUF Dash F15

ASUS TUF Dash F15: A powerful and affordable option for all-purpose/gaming laptops.
  • Lightweight and well-built design
  • Good inputs and IO
  • FHD 300Hz and QHD screen options
  • More powerful than the previous generation
  • Some quirks affecting everyday ergonomics
  • Most ports squeezed together on the left edge
  • Careful consideration needed for the FHD 144Hz panel option

The ASUS TUF Dash F15 is an affordable yet powerful laptop that offers a balanced performance for both gaming and everyday use. With its lightweight design, good inputs, and competitively priced configuration options, it's a great choice for those on a lower budget. Just be cautious of the FHD 144Hz screen option and opt for the FHD 300Hz display instead.

Lenovo Legion 5i Pro 16
  • Stylish and sleek form factor
  • Gorgeous display
  • Webcam quality is poor
  • No biometrics
Ryzen 9 5900HX | RTX 3080 | 64 GB RAM | 4000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS-level G-Sync; 1920x1080 |

3.ASUS ROG Strix Scar

ASUS ROG Strix Scar: A powerful gaming laptop with some flaws.
  • Sturdy construction
  • Fast Wi-Fi 6E
  • Excellent performance
  • Limited display angles
  • No biometric login
  • High heat and noise emissions under load

The ASUS ROG Strix Scar 15 G533 is a solid gaming laptop with a sturdy construction, fast Wi-Fi, and excellent performance. However, it has limited display angles, no biometric login, and suffers from high heat and noise emissions under load.

HP Envy 16
  • Plenty of CPU and GPU power
  • New 120Hz screen refresh rate
  • Merely adequate base screen
  • Optional OLED has fewer pixels than before
i9-13900HX | RTX 4090 | 32 GB RAM | 1000 GB SSD | 16″ HDR; 2560x1600 |

4.Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16

Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16: A mid-priced powerhouse for gaming and performance.
  • Strong overall performance
  • Display is big, bright, and fast
  • Per-key RGB lighting
  • Some flex to keyboard deck
  • Poor battery life

The Lenovo Legion Pro 7i Gen 8 is armed with a 13th-gen Core i9 CPU and RTX 4090 graphics, making it a strong performer in terms of overall performance. It features a big, bright, and fast display with per-key RGB lighting. However, it does have some flex to the keyboard deck and poor battery life.

HP Omen 17
  • QHD display with 165 Hz
  • Expandable working memory
  • Slightly below-average performance for a RTX 4080
  • High noise level
i9-12900HK | RTX 3060 | 32 GB RAM | 6000 GB SSD | 17.3″ IPS HDR; 3840x2400 |

5.Dell XPS 17 9720

Dell XPS 17 9720: A high-performance laptop with a stunning 4K display, but with some graphics and cooling limitations.
  • Excellent 4K display with AdobeRGB
  • High-quality case
  • Thunderbolt 4 PCIe 4.0
  • Very high system performance

    The Dell XPS 17 9720 offers an impressive 4K display with AdobeRGB, along with high-quality build and Thunderbolt 4 & PCIe 4.0 connectivity. It delivers very high system performance and has useful features like a fast card reader and good speakers. However, it falls short in terms of graphics performance compared to its predecessor and suffers from slightly weak cooling. Additionally, it lacks Wi-Fi 6E compatibility and has a mediocre 720p webcam.

    Dell XPS 17 9720 review
    MSI Titan GT77HX 13VH-046US
    • Excellent mechanical keyboard
    • Class-leading Mini-LED display
    • Uninspired design
    • Short battery life

    Table of the Best Laptops for Payday 3

    LaptopPrice (approx)
    HP Victus 15$880
    ASUS TUF Dash F15$1,160
    ASUS ROG Strix Scar$2,050
    Lenovo Legion Pro 7i 16$3,390
    Dell XPS 17 9720$5,600
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    John Winstler
    With over a decade of experience in the tech industry, combined with a degree in computer science, I have developed an in-depth knowledge of laptops, PC games, software, 3D modeling, video editing, and photo editing. My detailed and unbiased laptop reviews have helped many people make informed decisions about their technology purchases.

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