I plan to use one of the new Thunderbolt 3 external GPU enclosures to connect a GTX 1070 to a laptop.

Obviously the video card of the laptop itself is unimportant, so I'm hoping to save some $$ by getting a laptop with a good CPU but a mediocre graphics card.

However, it has to have good cooling, because a CPU like a 6700HQ can still really cook. So, probably an ultra-thin laptop is not going to cut it. Good ventilation is crucial.

Btw, when I say cheap, I mean awesome quality, but less money than an awesome quality top-of-the-line gaming laptop. Probably an ASUS, Gigabyte, Lenovo or Alienware, and something sporting a GTX 965 or worse would probably be fit the bill.


I'd really like to see at least one option from the above brands. I probably should have said "must be". Also it should be an HQ or HK CPU or better.

Budget is relative. If there's a Gigabyte laptop which fits the bill and is cheaper than the equivalent Gigabyte laptop with beefy graphics, then we're winning.

  • What kind of budget are we talking about here?
    – ArtOfCode
    Aug 6, 2016 at 18:19
  • Basically, if it's not saving money compared to an equivalent laptop with beasty graphics, then it defeats the purpose. Aug 7, 2016 at 1:34
  • Please note: There has been reports if instability of certain eGPU and laptop combinations, especially the Razer Core may perform suboptimal if paired with a non-prepared (e.g. you can't toggle the internal GPU off) non-Razer laptop with an integrated GPU.
    – SEJPM
    Aug 7, 2016 at 13:34

1 Answer 1


So, there's no budget, so I'm going to stay below $1500. If you have a specific price point to stay below, please comment and I will add more answers.

Dell XPS 15 95501

  • Price: $1400
  • CPU: i7-6700HQ
  • RAM: 8GB DDR4-2133
  • Disk: 256GB PCIe SSD
  • GPU: GTX 960M
  • Size: 15.6" screen, 13.3" chassis.
  • Screen: 1920 x 1080, no touch (touch available) (Not IPS!)

Razer Blade Stealth1 2

  • Price: $1150
  • CPU: i7-6500U
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3-1866
  • Disk: 256GB PCIe SSD
  • GPU: Intel HD Graphics 520
  • Size: 12.5" screen
  • Screen: 3200 x 1800 IGZO, multi-touch

1Other configurations available.
2This question was edited after I wrote this answer

  • I'd hardly call the 960M a mediocre graphics card... not top-of-the-line, sure, but it's not a "meh" card to have. It wastes money, in a laptop that's going to have an external graphics card connected to it anyway - IMO.
    – ArtOfCode
    Aug 6, 2016 at 22:08
  • Although I did say GTX965 or lower is good. Basically it is likely to be cheaper than a laptop with a GTX970M or GTX980M, and that's the point. Thanks. Aug 7, 2016 at 1:37
  • Please note that the i7-6500U is a 15W dual core processor and thus significantly less powerful than the i7-6700HQ which is a true quad-core with hyper-threading and a much higher allowed TDP of 45W.
    – SEJPM
    Aug 7, 2016 at 13:32
  • @SEJPM Noted. This was my secondary answer as Adam Wykes' answer was upvoted, so I had assumed that an i7-6500U was acceptable.
    – Rubydesic
    Aug 7, 2016 at 14:27

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