Acer's Predator Helios 500 gaming laptop is a Core i9 powerhouse

There are also Nitro and Predator Orion desktops.

It wouldn't be an Acer launch event without high-powered gaming PCs in the mix, and this year is no exception. The company is kicking things off with the Predator Helios 500, a 17.3-inch brute of a laptop with up to an overclockable Core i9 chip (with or without speedy Optane memory), overclockable GeForce GTX 1070 graphics and either a 1080p 144Hz screen or a 4K panel. You can load up to 64GB of RAM and either 1TB of SSD storage or a 2TB spinning drive. As always, this kind of portable speed won't come cheap: the Helios 500 shows up in June starting at $1,999.

A special edition of the Helios 300, meanwhile, comes in a "chic" white-and-gold color scheme along with a faster 144Hz display. It's not as powerful as its bigger sibling with its maximum of a Core i7 chip, GTX 1060 video and 512GB SSD option (or 2TB disk), but this should lower the price -- not that Acer has provided launch details just yet.

Desktops are on the way as well. The Predator Orion 3000 and 5000 (below) towers provide more affordable alternatives to the all-out Orion 9000. You can outfit them with up to a Core i7, dual GeForce GTX 1080 Ti cards and 3TB of storage (plus a 512GB SSD), but you can also go for more modest Core i5 chips and graphics as modest as the GTX 1050. And if you only need "casual" gaming, the Nitro 50 maxes out at a Core i7 and GTX 1070 but includes perks like a Qi wireless charging pad.

Both the Orion 5000 and Nitro 50 will reach North America in July with starting prices of $1,499 and $799. If you're looking for the $999 Orion 3000, you'll have to wait until October.

Acer Orion 5000 desktop