Opera GX review: In-depth look at Opera’s browser for gamers

by Milan Stanojevic
Milan Stanojevic
Milan Stanojevic
Windows & Software Expert
Milan has been enthusiastic about PCs ever since his childhood days, and this led him to take interest in all PC-related technologies. Before joining WindowsReport, he worked as... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Browser & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • Opera is a well-known browser developer and in this guide, we’re going to review Opera GX and see what can it do.
  • Do note that it comes with an array of unique features that gamers might find useful.
  • The software includes GX Control, GX Cleaner, and a fair share of other interesting elements.
  • This browser is also secure, with a strong focus on user privacy thanks to the built-in Opera GX VPN feature.
True gamers use the best gaming browser: Opera GX - Get early accessOpera GX is a special version of the famous Opera browser that is built specifically to fulfill gamer's needs. Packed with unique features, Opera GX will help you get the most out of gaming and browsing everyday:

  • CPU, RAM and Network limiter with hot tab killer
  • Integrated with Twitch, Discord, Instagram, Twitter and Messengers directly
  • Built-in sound controls and custom music
  • Custom color themes by Razer Chroma and force dark pages
  • Free VPN and Ad blocker
  • Download Opera GX

Opera GX is a new browser from Opera, and it’s touted as the world’s first gaming web browser. The browser is optimized for online gaming, and it comes with a wide array of features for gamers.

In today’s guide, we’re going to take a closer look into Opera GX and see what it can offer to its users and whether it’s worth checking out.

It’s by far one of the best browsers with gaming features built into its design.

Let’s dive deeper into this subject and understand even more about what makes this browser a very good choice in today’s market.

Is Opera GX the best browser for me?

A brief history lesson

Opera has been present for more than two decades. The browser went through various changes, and it’s still available on almost all desktop and mobile platforms.

Their gaming-oriented Opera GX is the latest product from the company with a similar name, and it was initially released in 2019. As mentioned earlier, this is a web browser optimized for gamers, with some unique features.

In this guide, we’re going to take an in-depth look and see what Opera GX can do.

Installation

The installation process is simple as it can be. You can complete this task with a single click of a button, so there’s no need for additional configuration, you just hit the Install button and that’s it.

The setup process took more than a minute on our test PC, and once it was finished, the browser started automatically.

Interface

The browser comes with its dark theme out of the box with red highlights, bringing a cyberpunk look that gamers would like. The whole theme looks minimalistic and easy on the eyes, which is a major plus.

The interface is divided into two parts, the main area that you’ll use to navigate websites and perform other online activities, and the sidebar, which is used for quick access.

Sidebar

The sidebar works like a powered-up shortcut center, and you can use it to access crucial features of the web browser.

You can also quickly access your history, installed extensions, or settings right from the sidebar, which will surely come in handy.

Of course, you can customize the sidebar and choose what features and shortcuts you want to be available in the sidebar.

Added to that, extensions from the Opera Store are situated right in your sidebar for quick and easy access.

Sidebar customization

While the sidebar works great if you need to access certain features quickly, some users prefer to have an extra workspace in their browser.

If that’s the case, you can just hide the sidebar entirely from the Settings, but also choose which elements are activated on it.

  1. Click on Settings from the sidebar.
  2. Scroll down through the list and click on the Manage sidebar option.
  3. Tick the boxes next to any option that you want to appear in the sidebar, or unclick to deactivate.

As you can see, there are a variety of options to choose from, including Instagram, Bookmarks, Speed Dial, and many others.

This ensures that only the most important information for you is always accessible by simply clicking on the respective icon in the sidebar.

Browser customization

Customization is a big part of the Opera GX experience, and the browser comes with 23 different color themes, so you can easily find the best one that works for you.

Of course, there are custom theme options, so you can choose between several predefined primary and secondary colors.

For even more customization, there are advanced settings that allow you to adjust the hue, saturation, and lightness of primary and secondary colors for any theme you choose in the previous step.

To reach the advanced settings for themes, follow these simple steps:

  1. In the Settings window, click Configuration from the Themes section.
  2. Toggle the Advanced Configuration button.
  3. Move the sliders and choose the exact values you want for every element.

If you prefer, you can even set a HEX value for your primary and secondary colors to get the perfect results.

Browser sound customization

In addition to visuals, there’s an option for customizing sounds, and you can set the volume of browser sounds or turn them off completely. Sadly, there’s no option for using custom sounds.

Being able to customize what sounds are produced by the browser is a very useful feature, especially if you’re running the browser on a different display while playing your favorite games.

This way, you will always only get notified with the most important updates, while ensuring that you keep your focus where you need to have it.

Background music

Background music is available as well, and you can choose between 5 different ambient tracks while using the software. Of course, you can turn this feature off whenever you want.

This comes as a very thoughtful addition to this type of software and will be handy especially when reading texts, working, or simply browsing the internet.

Besides choosing the track you want as your background music, you can also activate the Dynamic audio visualizer option for some visual effects.

Even more, if the Mute automatically option is toggled on, then the ambient music will automatically stop if playing a video online, or any sort of content which has sound.

This ensures that you don’t need to waste any time first turning off the ambient music and then playing whatever content you want to listen to.

Browser wallpapers

Opera also has the feature that lets you force dark pages, so they could blend better with the dark theme of Opera GX.

Lastly, you can customize the Speed Dial page with several available wallpapers or simply download additional wallpapers from the Opera’s Addon page.

If you don’t like any of these wallpapers, you can always any picture from your PC as wallpaper for Opera GX.

Unique features

GX Corner

GX Corner works as a news hub for gamers. You can easily view the release date of new gaming titles, so you won’t miss out on the latest games.

In this section, you also have access to free games and deals, which is perfect since you won’t have to constantly monitor services such as Steam for discounts.

Lastly, there are trailers and news sections, staying up to date with the latest gaming news has never been easier.

GX Control

This feature allows you to manage your resource usage in Opera GX. Thanks to the Hot Tabs Killer feature, you can monitor CPU and RAM usage at a glance.

In case a certain tab is slowing down your PC or using too many resources, you just need to click it and it will be automatically closed.

We found this feature incredibly useful especially on low-end PCs that aren’t suitable for heavy multitasking, and we wish that other browsers would incorporate this feature.


The Network Limiter is another welcome feature that will limit the bandwidth usage in the browser. With this feature, you can see both download and upload speeds in your browser at a glance.

If needed, you can choose between one of the 15 available presets according to your needs. Sadly, this feature doesn’t support custom values, and there’s no option to set the upload limit.

Overall, Network Limiter will surely be useful and ensure that you have enough bandwidth for game download or other network-intensive tasks on your PC.


Lastly, there are RAM and CPU Limiter features. Certain websites can use more resources than you’d like which can negatively affect your gaming sessions or other tasks.

To prevent that, you can set a limit on CPU and RAM usage in Opera GX. Keep in mind that limiting CPU and RAM usage can negatively impact your browser performance, so use this feature carefully.

Overall, the GX Control feature is incredibly useful, especially on lower-end PCs since it will limit resource usage and provide more hardware power to other PC applications.

DigitalTrends has a detailed explanation of why RAM and CPU limiting feature is important:

You can also limit memory usage, which is arguably the more important throttle. Modern web pages can chew through enormous sums of memory if given free reign, so Opera GX has a built in limiter with a soft and a hard edge to it. The soft one does its best to stay roughly within your set limit, however many gigabytes you decide is OK. The toggleable hard limit means any new tabs you open once you’ve hit that limit will start killing old ones.

Having quick access to these features simplifies the process considerably and allows you to quickly manage your PC’s resources.

GX Cleaner

GX Cleaner is a feature that lets you easily clean your cache, cookies, browsing history with just a couple of clicks.

With this feature, you can observe the amount of space the browsing data occupy on your PC, and you have the ability to choose one of three available presets to quickly clean your files.

If needed, you are able to select which type of data you want to remove and set the desired time range.

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This feature doesn’t bring anything new, but it lets you quickly and easily clean your cache and other data, so it will surely come in handy.

Integrations

Opera GX offers integration with various services, allowing you to easily access them from the sidebar. First off, there’s Twitch integration that lets you easily see your favorite channels and notifications.

You can even keep watching Twitch in the sidebar while working on different tasks.

Music Player

Music player integration is also available, allowing you to access services such as YouTube Music, Apple Music, Deezer, Soundcloud, Tidal, and Spotify right from the browser sidebar.

Sadly, you can’t use the seek bar while the player is minimized, so if you want to skip a certain part of a song, you’ll need to open the player in the sidebar.

Ensuring quick access to any media player of your choosing proves extremely useful no matter what workspace you’re using at that time.

Messaging services

Opera GX supports a wide array of messaging services, such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Telegram, and VK. Of course, support for Discord is also available.

If you’re a fan of social networks, we’re pleased to inform you that Opera GX has full integration with Instagram and Twitter, so you can keep up with your feeds at all times.

Most of these integrations aren’t available out of the box, and you’ll have to enable them from the Sidebar settings, but that takes only a couple of moments.

Here’s how to activate them:

  1. Click the Settings button from the botton of the sidebar.
  2. Scroll down through the list, and choose and click on Manage sidebar.
  3. Tick the boxes of the messaging services you want to use to activate them, and remove any ticks to remove apps from the sidebar.

After choosing which messaging apps you want to use, they will appear in the sidebar, and will allow you instant access to write new messages and even respond.

Other features

Opera GX inherits many features from the regular version, so you get all the great elements that Opera offers, plus all the unique ones that we mentioned above.

As for regular Opera features, let’s take a closer look at see what Opera GX has to offer.

Workspaces

One of the most useful features that Opera GX has to offer is the Workspaces feature. That’s your chance to organize all your open tabs into workspaces.

Each workspace is represented by an icon on your sidebar and you can switch between them with a single click. This is perfect if you need to separate tabs into groups.

Of course, you can move the tabs between workspaces by right-clicking the desired tab and choosing the appropriate option from the menu.

This feature isn’t enabled out of the box, but you can enable it easily by following these steps:

  1. Click the Sidebar settings shortcut represented by 3 dots.
  2. Activate the Workspaces toggle by clicking it.
  3. Customize the workspaces as you see fit, set icons, names, and create new ones.

Optimizing your workspaces allows you to configure settings for each of them, thus considerably simplifying your experience, no matter if you’re using the browser for work, casual browsing, or gaming.

Privacy protection

Another great feature of Opera GX is privacy protection, and just like with Workspaces, this feature is disabled out of the box, but you can enable it by following these steps:

  1. Click the Easy setup button from the top-right corner.
  2. Scroll down to the Privacy & Security section.
  3. Activate it by clicking the respective toggles.

The browser has a built-in ad-blocking feature that should block all ads with a single click. In our testing, it managed to block ads on all websites that we visited.

Regarding tracking protection, this feature will block websites such as Facebook and others from tracking your online activity.

These two features are customizable, and you can easily manage exceptions or add blocklists to filter ads better, which is a welcome addition.

VPN

Opera GX also has a built-in VPN, which can be used to protect your online privacy. The VPN offers three locations to choose from, which should be enough for basic needs.

There’s also a useful graph that can show you your network usage for a week. As for bandwidth, we have to mention that Opera GX offers unlimited VPN for free, which is a major plus.

As for the VPN speed, that is a bit of a mixed bag. While using servers closer to our location, we didn’t notice any changes in the download speed.

However, when using servers on a different continent the speed dropped drastically, so be sure to choose the location that is closest to you to avoid this issue.

Overall, the VPN works great, as long as you pick the right location. Our only complaint is that the VPN feature is disabled and somewhat hidden, and you have to manually enable it from the settings page.

Flow

Opera Flow is another great feature that lets you share content between your PC and phone. After you download the Opera app for your phone, you need to set up Flow and connect your phone with your PC.

The process is simple and seamless, and you’ll instantly get a notification on your phone. The feature works like an instant messenger of sorts, and you can share links, files, or texts from your devices.

Flow is a unique and simple way to share data between devices, but it’s not available on the sidebar by default, so you’ll need to adjust your settings to enable quick access to it.

Opera GX offers an extensive number of features, and PCMag had this to say about the features:

These features work as advertised, and individually are very straightforward. But it’s the sheer number of them that really impresses. If anything, it’s overwhelming. I didn’t always immediately know where I needed to go to access certain features, because there are so many things to potentially click.

Is Opera GX safe?

Opera is based on Chromium, so it’s safe as any other Chromium browser. In addition, it has a share of unique features, such as DLL hijacking prevention, and homepage hijacking protection that should keep you safe.

With its tracking protection and built-in VPN, Opera GX is slightly safer than most other browsers on the market.

Few users have their concerns, and they are worried about data collection and the fact that the software isn’t open-source. These are just minor concerns, and most users shouldn’t be worried about this.

Speaking of privacy concerns, the review from LifeHacker states the following:

The other drawback is how the browser tracks user data. Opera GX tracks certain data (just like the normal Opera browser), including your IP address and browsing activity, plus some activity from connected third-party accounts like Twitch. Opera shares this data with advertisers and other third-party partners, but Opera’s tracking doesn’t feel any worse than Google Chrome’s—and users can disable (some) data-sharing from the settings menu.

Is Opera GX trustworthy?

Opera GX offers users the same level of trustworthiness as Chrome and other popular browsers do, so you don’t need to worry about this element.

Even though the software employs some tracking of data, it doesn’t go overboard with this detail, and also offers users the capability to utilize the built-in VPN service, while also offering users the choice to deactivate some of the tracking features.

Opera GX impresses with its beautifully-designed user interface while offering quick shortcuts and customization features, making it one of the most trustworthy browsers on the market.

Is Opera GX free?

Yes, Opera GX is free to download and use, so you don’t need to worry about this at all. You get all the amazing features this app has to offer without any subscription or extra premium options hidden behind a payment.

Final thoughts on Opera GX

Pros
Sleek user interface
Highly customizable
CPU/RAM/Network Manager
Workspaces
Built-in adblocker
Free and unlimited VPN
Cons
Certain advanced features need to be enabled manually
No light theme

Opera GX offers a sleek and customizable interface, so it’s perfect if you’re a gamer or if you prefer a dark and minimalistic interface.

Features such as GX Control are more than welcome because they will limit the number of resources that your browser uses, and ensure that other applications work smoothly.

We were pretty pleased with available integrations, and if you rely heavily on music services, Twitch, social networks, or instant messengers, Opera GX will provide you with a way to keep a close eye on them.

Features such as Hot Tabs Killer, Workspaces, and Flow impressed us with their usability, and we hope that other browsers will start adding them to their list of features.

We had a few minor complaints, and the most notable is that the features that we found the most interesting and useful are hidden in the settings and had to be manually enabled.

This takes a couple of seconds, but if you’re a first-time user, and you want to try these features, you’ll need to make adjustments to your settings before you can use them.

How does Opera GX compare to other similar software?

As we all know, not all browser software is the same, with some offering a plethora of useful elements that improve your overall experience, and some offering a limited amount.

As you can see from the image presented above, even though there are some other useful browser alternatives on the market, none of them come close to the gaming features that Opera GX contains, while also ensuring fast speeds and quick access to your favorite social media platforms.

Opera GX download process

Downloading and installing the software to your PC is even easier than in the case of some other well-known browsers:

  1. Open the Opera GX download page.
  2. Click the Download Opera GX button.
  3. In the window that pops up, navigate your PC and choose the location for the installer to download.
  4. Wait for the download process to complete, and run the installer.
  5. Click Run inside the pop-up window that appears on the screen (appears for any executable files that have been downloaded).
  6. Click the Install button to initiate the process.
  7. Wait for the installation process to complete.
  8. Opera GX will start automatically.

As you can see, both the download and installation process for Opera GX is intuitive, and the same principle applies to using the software on your PC.

Besides the amazing gaming features it has to offer, you also get quick access to your favorite social media accounts, Discord integration, and lightning browsing speeds.

Make sure to try it out!

Opera GX

The world’s first gaming web browser is worthy of your attention. Ready to give it a try?

As we come to a close with the review for this useful software, Opera GX not only provided us with an easy-to-understand interface that allows full customization but also ensures that your online privacy is respected at all times.

Even more than that, the gaming-specific elements included in the build of Opera GX allow all gamers, no matter of what kind, to find a use for these features, while also having a very fast Internet-browsing speed.

Make your browsing experience your own without compromising in terms of security, efficiency, and versatility, with this great software today.

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