Design

From a distance, you would be hard pressed to tell the Razer Blade Stealth apart from the Razer Blade 14, if not for the fact that it’s a bit smaller. The Stealth is made out of the same CNC aluminum shell, with a matte black finish. The finish looks great, but it’s a bit of a fingerprint magnet, so keep a cloth handy. The top of the lid has Razer logo, which is really the one thing that moves away from the subtle look that the rest of the laptop has. With the matte black finish, and clean lines, the Stealth is as elegant as any Ultrabook around.

The left side has the Thunderbotl 3-enabled USB-C port for charging and docking, as well as a single USB 3.0 port and 3.5mm jack. The right side has a full-size HDMI port and the other USB 3.0 port. Other than those, the Stealth is devoid of openings or buttons on the outside.

It’s not too often we give much time to the underside of a notebook, but Razer is one of the few companies to do this right. The cooling intakes are found here, as well as some extremely sticky feet which run the entire width of the laptop. This gives the Stealth a very solid posture when sitting on a desk, and I know this is hard to believe, but that’s not always the case with every laptop.

Razer’s unique cooling solution puts the cooling exhaust vents in the hinge between the display and back of the laptop, which is the same cooling solution they offer on the larger Blade 14. This hides the exhaust vents for a cleaner look, although it can cause some heat build-up in the hinge itself. This isn’t as big of an issue in the Stealth as it is in the Blade 14, due to the much lower thermal output of the Stealth.

Opening the lid, you see a couple of things right off the bat. First, Razer has kept the same deck mounted speakers as the Blade 14, which is nice to see since most Ultrabooks end up putting the speakers on the bottom. You also see that the display bezels are quite large, and Razer could have easily put a 13.3-inch panel into this notebook. Thin bezels seem to be something only Dell and Microsoft want to offer. The larger bezels do allow Razer to fit a good size keyboard into the chassis, in addition to the side mounted speakers, and there is also plenty of room for the generous trackpad.

The keyboard in the Razer Blade Stealth is a typical Ultrabook keyboard, with shallow travel due to the limited thickness of the device. Anyone who is going to be writing a novel is going to want something with a bit more travel. It’s a common complaint but I understand there is only so much travel available when trying to keep the device as thin and light as possible. The resistance on the keys is decent, which helps a bit. Surprisingly, and once again likely due to Razer wanting to expand their customer base, the Razer font which is used on their other products is not on the Stealth. Instead you get a much more traditional look to the key faces. Razer’s trackpad is quite good, which a nice large smooth surface and accurate responses. The trackpad leverages Synaptics software for multi-touch.

Likely the most interesting aspect of the keyboard though is the backlighting. The Stealth is the first laptop to offer per-key RGB backlighting, and Razer uses their Chroma branding to distinguish this. This means you can change the key lighting to any of 16.7 million colors (red green blue, 256 levels per color) and the Razer Synapse software gives full customizability to this. There are several patterns you can choose from, including spectrum cycling to shift among all of the colors, breathing, wave, ripple, or just static. It also lets Razer do some funky things like being able to change the function key lighting when the function key is pressed. It’s a great effect, and being able to change the backlighting lets you customize the laptop to your own tastes, and considering the pricing on the laptop it’s a nice addition.

The design of the Stealth is pure Razer, and they’ve done a great job taking the look and feel of their larger laptops and scaling it down to the Ultrabook form factor. The CNC aluminum shell is solid, and the build quality is very nice. The entire package is just 13.1 mm or 0.52” thick, and weighs 1.25 kg or 2.75 lbs.

Introduction System Performance
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  • forgot2yield28 - Thursday, March 31, 2016 - link

    Won't benefit the end user? Are you kidding? If you do any kind of work viewing fine vector images, such as architectural displays, a high DPI display is a godsend. For productivity software, if you have good eyesight and don't mind shrunken UI elements, you fit your work on more of the screen. It's obviously a tradeoff against battery life, but it's a tradeoff some would gladly make. It's simply not true to state there are zero use cases where a high DPI display provides a tangible benefit. Reply
  • niva - Friday, April 1, 2016 - link

    You can disagree all you want, but anything below 1080p should be immediately disqualified from being purchased 5 years ago. An argument about 1080p for the sake of efficiency can be made, but discouraging companies from adopting higher resolution standards is just wrong. The UHD display can be ran as a 1080 for performance purposes. Reply
  • moozooh - Saturday, April 2, 2016 - link

    > An Intel GPU in a 12.5 inch laptop display that is unable to drive games at much lower resolutions should be paired with a 1366x768 panel of decent quality with good viewing angles.

    That is just silly. Gaming performance is never a goal with laptops of this form-factor, not even a secondary one. If you're looking for any kind of decent gaming performance you shouldn't be considering an Ultrabook at all. Their primary task is the ability to handle large amounts of text, non-computanionally-intensive media work, and internet browsing/media consumption on-the-go for as long as possible without having to be plugged in. The difference between a 120 dpi panel and a 190+ dpi panel when working with text or photos is MASSIVE. They aren't even comparable, not if you value your eyesight and comfort at all. Had you experienced that you would never write the nonsense about 768p panels.
    Reply
  • deeps6x - Wednesday, April 6, 2016 - link

    Which is why they should have had a 1080P option with a nice Matte IPS screen. 13.3", not the micro size they went with. It fits. Use it Razor. You build this fine ass machine then gimp it with the large bezels. If Dell can do it you can do it as well, if not better.

    Why 1080P? Because it uses less power than 3k or 4k, and extends battery life. Why matte screen? Because touch is Intel forced cow poop, and I like to be able to use my laptops with windows behind me. Or even outside. I don't know what kind of profit Intel makes by insisting touch screens are part of the 'Ultrabook' spec, but it is one of their dumbest ideas ever. Touch on a tablet? Of course. Touch on a laptop? Useless.
    Reply
  • jlabelle - Thursday, April 28, 2016 - link

    - Higher resolution displays, while nice looking, offer little to no added functionality after reaching the point -
    So...it does !
    And let's be honest, we are still far from smartphone resolution. I am not pushing for 4K display on a 12" screen but there is a CLEAR difference between 768p and QHD on such size.

    - after reaching the point where it becomes necessary to scale the interface in order to retain visibility of objects displayed in it -

    Which is not a issue per see. Windows Store applications and UI just scaled perfectly. It is old legacy software that needs to be adapted for that so indeed, it is a good thing to evolve in this direction to force the software manufacturer to make their homework as high DPI support exists on Windows since more than 7 years.

    - Anything more than that won't benefit the end user regardless of how much they think they need more pixels.-
    It does. What does NOT is the aRGB screen, which, as explained, for most of the operation is detrimental to the user experience.
    Reply
  • mikesackett.85 - Thursday, March 31, 2016 - link

    768 is awful, 1080p should be the minimum. Having been spoiled by nice high DPI screens (1600-1700p) I'll never go back to anything less than FHD. For me the QHD model hits the sweet spot at $999.99, for that you get an i7, 8GB Ram, 128GB SSD, and QHD touchscreen, which is higher specs than the similarly priced XPS 13 (i5, 1080p, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD, non-touch) and a similar specced MBP is $1299. This laptop also has the added bonus of having a thunderbolt connected dGPU which none of the other options have (Though the Razer dock should work on other pc's with thunderbolt ports, including the Dell XPS 13). This laptop has the ability to serve both as a road warrior and in-home gaming machine, for that I feel it is absolutely worth the price of admission. Reply
  • Kristian Vättö - Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - link

    I agree. The battery life is a big drawback considering that the competitors offer nearly twice the battery life.

    A part of my wonders why won't Razer offer a model for the normal consumer. Kill the fancy keyboard backlight and offer i3 and i5 CPUs, and the Stealth could be very competitive against the likes of Dell and ASUS. I know Razer is all about gamers, but the Stealth looks like a very solid machine and given Razer's higher-end brand status and quality I'm sure they could reach a wider audience with just a few small tweaks.
    Reply
  • zeroqw - Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - link

    Exactly. I have been monitoring the ultrabook market for 2 years and to be honest this laptop could have been a big hit with real battery life. It feels like all the ultrabook laptops got some smaller or bigger drawbacks and you just cant get what you pay for. I just hope they consider moving closer to a wider audience in the future. Reply
  • nerd1 - Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - link

    They can provide FHD (matte) screen with i5 version at $799, which should last twice longer than this. Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - link

    Since at first glance, it appears that Razer is emulating parts of Apple's strategy, I would guess that Razer is ensuring that every modern system in the Razer "ecosystem" can have a satisfactory experience with their Core.

    The Blade 14 & 17 are both easily up for the task. And Razer at least attempted to ensure that every Stealth will be a good match for the Core. However, if they put a weaker 15W CPU in there, then it might not perform as well with the Core.

    Is that the right thing to do? Objectively no, but I wonder if that kinda of Apple-esque way of thinking of part of the reason why the Blade laptops seem to be so cool in the first place. You take the good with the bad, I guess.
    Reply

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