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  • nerd1 - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    This one is actually NOT any powerful than sammy chronos 17 mainstream laptop (IB quad plus 650M GPU) with half the price, and for $1800 I can get a m17xR4 with 7970M GPU and great cooling. Reply
  • SpartanJet - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    First the 660m is base clock are higher than the base 650 (and should give more OC room if the laptop is up to it since its binned higher). Second the Alienwares are horrifically ugly paired with glossy cheap plastic. Not to mention that rubbery stuff that wears off in 6 months which is very prone to oil stains. I'd much rather have a nice Aluminum shell with a laptop that doesn't look like its designed by tacky aliens. Reply
  • Yorgos - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    inspite of that alienware and any other ugly laptop with the same specs(as alienware) and the same price range is still better than that.

    Some people like to game, they don't care either about shiny pretty laptops nor castles and princes.
    (ooohh... and btw, GW2 is out and I doubt that this thing can play it smoothly even on low setting... events have a loooooot of people.)
    (you can still get a dual 6990 alienware "used" for the same amount of money +-200$)

    enough said.
  • geniekid - Tuesday, September 04, 2012 - link

    It's not so much about looks as it is about build quality and the Blade definitely has better build quality than any Alienware out there.

    That said, there's a limit to how much extra people are willing to pay for superior build quality, and I'm of the opinion that the premium associated with this thing is still much, much too high.
  • VivekGowri - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    How is a GTX 660 not more powerful than a GT 650 at stock clocks? GTX 660 is the fastest Kepler GPU other than the GTX 680M (which was outside the thermal envelope and development timeframe of this system.) GTX 670 and 675 are both Fermi based, and a 40nm GPU in a system this thin just wouldn't have been feasible. Reply
  • Roland00Address - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    Nvidia allows multiple options with the 650m, they only allow 1 speed for the 660m. It can have ddr3 or gddr5. Unlike the 660m which has a definite speed of 835mhz, nvidia allows the 650m to have 735 (aka 12% slower) all the way up to 850MHz (1.7% faster)

    So worse case scenario if you get a laptop with the gddr5 version of the 650m you are not notice the 12% slower without using a benchmarking program. Even so you may have a 650m that perfoms only 5% slower (about 790mhz) or even faster than the geforce gtx660m.

    For more info see nvidia's website on these cards and notebook check
  • Kibispark - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    The DDR3 version of the GT 650M is clocked at 850MHz, the GDDR5 version is clocked at 735MHz. Thats what i got out of notebookcheck when the GPUs came out, i dont know if they have changed anything. Reply
  • madmilk - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    The Retina Macbook Pro is lighter, faster (real SSD, higher GPU clock), has a better screen AND is still $300 cheaper. Reply
  • B3an - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    Yeah because a gamer is really going to consider a Macbook Pro. They're just SO suited for gaming and have all the features this does. /s Reply
  • EnzoFX - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    It doesn't? Install Windows. Done. Reply
  • inighthawki - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    Oh wait, except the HORRIBLE battery life and driver support on windows through bootcamp, no thanks. Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    The battery life IS inferior while bootcamping, but it's not bad. MBPs have great battery life in OSX and it becomes average battery life while bootcamping.

    Maybe it's different with modern GPU-switching machines, but my MBP13'09 gets about ~3 hours/charge (up to 7 on a new battery in OSX) in Win7x64. Part of that is driver inefficiencies, but part of it is my 3 year old battery.

    And I don't know what you're talking about with the driver support. Everything works great on my MBP13'09 in Win7x64. But I know that I'm only one data point. Have you had different results with a personal bootcamped machine?
  • ananduser - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    Everything works good enough under Bootcamp. That doesn't make it great. Perhaps it suits your needs, but that still doesn't cut it. You have to be an idiot to buy an Apple computer, if you're a Windows user. Your data point is irrelevant since you're an OSX user, you bought an Apple computer for OSX and not for Windows or gaming.
    Furthermore, gaming on the native res on your MBP screen is a POS.
  • ImSpartacus - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    I'm a Windows user. I've considered OSX, but I enjoy gaming too much and I had a spare Office 2007 license for Windows when I bought the machine. I need Office, so I would have to buy a redundant OSX license if I wanted to switch.

    And when I bought my machine in 2009, Windows ultraportables sucked. Apple had a full voltage (back when that mattered...) machine with battery life that matched or beat the current ultraportables.

    Nowadays, there are good Windows ultraportables. When I upgrade, I think I'll be able to find a Windows machine that mostly covers my needs.
  • ananduser - Sunday, September 02, 2012 - link

    Ok I admit I was wrong about your reasons. But I'm not wrong about gaming on rMBP on its native res and issues regarding battery and overall performance under bootcamp. Reply
  • madmilk - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link for a battery life comparison under Boot Camp with the original Blade.

    Point is, Razer is not in a good situation here if the rMBP does a better job and isn't even advertised as a gaming laptop. Position it at $1800 and we can reconsider, or give it a 680M like a real gaming laptop.
  • inighthawki - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    First and foremost, as you mentioned that is the ORIGINAL razer blade, equipped with a CPU and GPU that are slower AND more power hungry at the same time, of course the MBP will pull ahead. Both Kepler and ivy bridge have significant power improvements.

    Secondly, I never actually said I was in favor of the razer blade 2, I think it's still underpowered and overpriced as well. I'm just saying that I would prefer to NOT get a MBP if it's for Windows/gaming usage. There are much better laptops for that.
  • PubFiction - Monday, September 03, 2012 - link

    Just for the record , there are a ton of real gaming laptops that do not have a 680M. In fact the ASUS ROG does not even have one and it is huge compared to this.

    Samsung series 7 gamer does not have one either.
  • madmilk - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    Of course a gamer wouldn't buy a Macbook Pro, but it's the most comparable system to this in terms of specs. Therefore, it is logical that a gamer wouldn't buy this either.

    Gamers buy desktops or Clevo-type machines, not 15/17" laptops that have an identity crisis between gaming laptop and ultrabook.
  • PubFiction - Monday, September 03, 2012 - link

    It is not the most compareable system, no system compares what other machine has a touchpad that is a display?

    If you just look at the core components then tons of machines can fall in line including $1200 clevos.
  • coder543 - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    It has a higher res screen, for starters, so you get your games in better clarity, but any *serious* gamer is going to consider the whole market... not just the ones that make them feel 'better' than those 'poor apple fanboys.' Apple makes good products -- don't write them off unless they won't fit your needs. Reply
  • Death666Angel - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    Unless you play games from before 2005 you will not be able to drive that resolution with a laptop. And a lot of post-2005 games will likely not support that resolution. So that is a null-argument for gamers. Reply
  • inighthawki - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    There aren't even many gaming DESKTOPS that can handle that resolution on higher settings in newer games without $500+ video cards (even that is iffy), but any serious gamer would know that already... Reply
  • tim851 - Tuesday, September 04, 2012 - link

    I drive a 2560x1440 display with a Radeon 5870 2 GB. The only games who've given me trouble were Crysis and Metro (sh!t game anyway).

    You don't need 500$ video cards unless you're not a gamer, but a benchmarker.
  • SpartanJet - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    And for that low price you get a LG screen with burn-in issues and color defects! I don't know why nobody is talking about the bait and switch apple is pulling with its retina screens its like its being swept under the table. Reply
  • Greg512 - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    Maybe because the vast majority of Retina displays sold do not suffer from the defects you speak of. Last I heard, the issues occurred mainly with the initial batch and not subsequent ones. Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    Higher screen resolution = The need for more GPU grunt.

    Lets face it. Laptops have never been a GPU power house, they are always a step behind Desktops in that regard.
    A resolution of only 1080P is more than ample, if you want higher, grab an eyefinity set-up along with a desktop so you have the graphics horsepower to run it. :)

    Plus... Mac's look bloody ugly. This looks sleek and awesome with a nice looking touchpad.
  • chinedooo - Sunday, September 02, 2012 - link

    The rMBP is NOT faster. It has a GT 650 this has a GTX 660 Reply
  • PubFiction - Monday, September 03, 2012 - link

    Well its an interesting comparison, but you wont be able to drive the MBP to a similar level in games which this is focused on. It has a 650M not a 660M and the lower video card combined with higher resolution is a bad combination for gaming.

    Also until we know the specs on the CPU, there is wiggle room for razer. If they come in with a fast enough CPU this will need to be compared to the $2800 MBPR
  • Roland00Address - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    More info here

    Note both the asus and the retina macbook pro are 15 and a half inch portable gaming computers unlike the 17" razer. That said I personally would rather get the asus or the retina.
  • p_giguere1 - Friday, August 31, 2012 - link

    Ouch, this is even worse than the first iteration considering the time and current competition (rMBP).

    The change from SSD to a mechanical hard drive is a huge move in the wrong direction, especially considering we're talking about a $2.5k laptop in 2012.

    Basically, you're getting a thicker and uglier plastic rMBP with a mechanical hard drive and worse screen for more. Plus, a rMBP isn't even really suited for gaming, and this is even worse.

    Who the hell would buy this?

    I'm trying to find, but apparently nothing justifies the price. This should be $1000 less to sell.
  • bunnyfubbles - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    having 64GB of SSD cache is nice, but its still a complete waste for a $2500 laptop NOT to be purely SSD. SSD cache is just way too big of a compromise for a laptop that is supposedly trying to not compromise on anything (whether its power/weight/portability/etc)

    insult to injury is the HDD they pair with it is only 500GB...if Razer is going to nickle and dime us out of a 512GB SSD, at least give us a 750 or 1TB laptop HDD to be paired with SSD cache
  • MrSpadge - Sunday, September 02, 2012 - link

    I'm personally using a 60 GB SSD cache in my dekstop and I like it a lot. Much more so than shuffling programs around between SSD and HDD. However, for such a machine it probably should have been a 1 TB or at least a 750 GB 7.2k rpm HDD. At this price you can expect them to offer at least some raw power. Reply
  • Impulses - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    How many other 17" consumer laptops are there with similar IPS displays? It's gotta be a short list... Reply
  • VivekGowri - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    Neither R1 nor R2 Blade has an IPS display...I actually had that conversation with Min, to find out why the Blade has a TN panel (it's one of the best TN panels I've used in recent memory, but it's still a high-end TN panel in a world quickly moving to IPS), but I'll probably expand more on the topic in the full review. Reply
  • flyingpants1 - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    The Lenovo Y580 seems like a better deal for pretty much the same specs.

    Intel Core i7-3610QM 2.3GHz
    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M
    6GB Memory
    750GB HDD

    $799 after rebate.
  • Roland00Address - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    But if you can give up those two things this is a pretty good deal. Also the Y580 motherboard has a msata slot so you can always add an ssd to it. Reply
  • flyingpants1 - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    Get the better Lenovo Y580 for another $200 and you can have 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD, Blu-ray writer (I don't know if the Razer has Blu-ray), and 1080p display. Add a 64GB mSATA SSD for $85 and you have a laptop with practically identical (and in some cases, better) specs for $1085. That's more than a $1400 difference. WTF?

    It's also smaller and lighter (15.6" and 5.95lbs). And it's available on Newegg right now.

    So where exactly does the extra $1400 come from on the Razer? The display? The case? The CPU?

    I'd really love if Anandtech could review the Y580. We need someone pushing for budget laptops. The only possible drawback I can see is that the Lenovo cooling system might be inferior. The 660M and 3610QM have a combined TDP of about 100W which is quite a bit for a budget laptop.
  • Roland00Address - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    The Lenovo y580 has a height of 1.4" tall. The Razer is almost half the height with a height of .88"

    The Razer also has a larger screen while keeping the weight within 10% of each other. Some people care about this.

    Is it worth $1400 more? I don't think so. Then again alienware charges a similar amount of money to the razer for their 18" with the 660m if you do not get their 18" on sale.
  • nerd1 - Saturday, September 01, 2012 - link

    No way, m17xr4 with VASTLY more powerful 7970m are being sold at around $1800. Reply
  • MrSpadge - Sunday, September 02, 2012 - link

    Don't all IDeapads have crappy glossy low resolution TN panels? The one listed at least says 1366 x 768, but no more information than that. Oh, and the HDD is 5.4k rpm. Reply
  • flyingpants1 - Sunday, September 02, 2012 - link

    Right, the Lenovo Y580 with 32GB mSATA SSD and 1080p panel is only $1049 on Reply
  • danjw - Monday, September 03, 2012 - link

    You said you would give an update when you got hands on, so where is it? Reply
  • zzing123 - Tuesday, September 04, 2012 - link

    This machine was just screaming for IVB and Kepler/Pitcairn, and this silicon makes the R2 the machine it should have been in R1 guise.

    As an R2 release for today, on its current specs, even if the Blade R2 was a 15" machine, then it'd still need 16GB RAM option to be a proper contender.

    For a 17" laptop, not only does it need 16GB RAM option, but also 2x 2.5" drives especially given the absence of an optical drive, and the mSATA cache SSD should be user replaceable / or BTO option (you can get 256GB mSATA SSDs nowadays). An optical drive doesn't matter at all. I've always ripped out optical drives since PIII days and put a 2nd drive in. If Razer wanted to be inventive, how about putting something like 8 mSATA drives instead of any 2.5" drives, and RAID them together?

    Even though it's still nascient on Windows, Thunderbolt support should seriously be considered in any ultra price bracket laptop like the Blade too. Both on 15 and 17". Gamers don't need TB, but the Blade R2 wouldn't really be used by gamers. 'Serious games' people and game developers might, and they need effectively a mobile workstation with stinkloads of RAM and storage with a high powered GPU, with an option for both 'Workstation' GPU (Quadro/FirePro) and 'desktop' GPUs (GeForce/Radeon). TB would help a lot in that usage scenario. Also GCN is a better bet with pro graphics than Kepler is for OpenGL/CL requirements of pro apps, so going with Nvidia is not as straight-cut as it should be. Perhaps they should've done the Apple thing of switching GPUs for each generation, but in conclusion, going with Nvidia/Kepler or AMD/GCN doesn't really matter.

    In terms of comparisons, the fact that rMBP has 768GB SSD, Thunderbolt and 16GB RAM with one notch less of GPU performance and an amazing screen for a cheaper price, does mean the rMBP is a 'better machine', regardless of how 'bad' BootCamp is under Windows. For the reasons stated above, as well, the HP EliteBooks (workstation guises) and Dell Precision Mobile workstations are also natural match ups to the Blade.

    What I don't believe matters much with the Blade R2 is the screen. 1080p is a more versatile screen than the retina display, despite the fact that the retina display is an awesome screen.

    IMO, on current specs, without sufficient storage or RAM, the R2 is a no. But it was neglect of these more fundamental specs of RAM and storage that fails the test for the Blade R2, not form factor, display or price.
  • geniekid - Tuesday, September 04, 2012 - link

    Give me a 15" version with no Switchblade, a 650M, and an i5 processor for $800 less and I'll pre-order one right now. I don't know how realistic that is, but that's what it would take for me to buy one. Reply

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