Today we have some news that is kind of unexpected. Razer, the company known for gaming peripherals and gaming laptops such as the Razer Blade, has decided to enter the Ultrabook market with the launch of the Razer Blade Stealth. Not only is an Ultrabook not something expected from Razer, it is also priced very competitively and undercuts the competition on price.

Razer did not cut any corners either when designing the Stealth. Just like it’s more powerful and higher priced siblings, it is built out of a CNC-milled aluminum chassis, which is a designing feature of Razer laptops. But despite the solid frame, the laptop is still only 0.52-inches thick and weighs in at just 2.75 lbs. On the styling front, it keeps the black finish of other Razer laptops, but also outdoes them with a full “Chroma” keyboard with individually lit RGB keys. I’ve been hoping that they would do this for a while when reviewing the Razer Blade, so it’s great to see the RGB keyboard come to the Stealth model.

The 12.5-inch display comes in two options. The base model is a QHD (2560x1440) resolution, but you can also opt for a UHD (3840x2160) model with full Adobe RGB color gamut. I need to check in with Razer on how they are going to handle the wider color gamut, and will let you know after we get some hands-on time on the show floor.

The Stealth, as an Ultrabook, is going to be powered by Ultrabook class components, which in this case is the Intel Core i7-6500U processor. This Skylake chip features two cores, hyperthreading, and a base/turbo frequency of 2.5 GHz / 3.1 GHz. I was hoping that Razer would also offer a model with Intel’s Iris GPU, but that won’t be the case, at least at launch. The only memory option is 8 GB of LPDDR3-1866, and storage options range from 128 GB to 256 GB of PCIe storage on the QHD model, and 256 GB to 512 GB on the UHD model. The battery life will need to be tested, but the laptop has a 45 Wh battery, so it’s not going to be class leading in that regard.

For connectivity, the Stealth will have two USB 3.0 ports, and a USB 3.1 Type-C connector with Thunderbolt 3 support. The Thunderbolt is a key component to the Stealth, thanks to the accessory that Razer is also launching.

The Razer Core is a Thunderbolt 3 connected external GPU, which also acts as a docking station for the Stealth. With a single cable connection, the laptop can power an external display, all of the docking connections with four USB 3.0 ports and Gigabit Ethernet, and support for a 375W GPU.

The Core features a built-in 500W power supply, and the GPU support is for any single card which is full-length and double-wide, which means pretty much any GPU out there. The Core also features two additional Chroma lighting zones so that you can tailor it to your liking.

Razer has not yet announced any updates to the Razer Blade or Razer Blade Pro, but I would expect that both of these will also feature support for the Core when they do get their next refresh.

The Core supports plug and play with validated graphics cards, without the need to reboot.

The addition of the Razer Core brings back some of the gaming performance that Razer has been known for, although with a U series CPU it will be interesting to see what level of GPU is required to become CPU bound, especially with DX 12. If we can track down a review unit, we’ll try to sort that out.

The Razer Blade Stealth will be on-sale starting today, with a starting price of just $999. Considering the high resolution panel and Core i7, this undercuts most, if not all, of the Ultrabook competition on price. The top end 4K model with the UHD display and 512 GB of storage will be $1599.

Source: Razer

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  • mrjimorg - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    Perfect timing. I was just able to click the buy button on an inferior laptop, but this is exactly what I wanted in terms of price and performance. I can't wait to buy. I hope to see it for sale soon
  • Jon Tseng - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    The m11x lives!!! :-) :-)

    Okay maybe not quite as much gaming power on the go as Alienware's classic, but enough to run titles at low detail at a downscaled 720p (I can get GTA V to run on my Atomx7 Surface 3...).

    Drop in a GTX 970 and 1080p / ultra high detail should be the sweet spot when plugged in back at base.

    Questions for me would be a) battery life and b) whether the same Core module could be reused with future laptop releases.
  • schizoide - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    The ultrabook side isn't a gaming notebook at all, it doesn't even have intel iris graphics. If you want mobile gaming, this isn't the notebook for you.

    I suggest looking at the Dell XPS 15, which comes with a GTX 960M, which is quite capable of 1080p gaming. It also has Thunderbolt 3 so it should (eventually) work with the Razer Core for enthusiast-level 4k gaming at home.
  • ImSpartacus - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    Yeah, the m11x was so cool. I wish we could get a proper successor, but the combination of recent pixel race and the expectation that a laptop has to be able to game at its native resolution combine to make a modern m11x into abb impossible effort.
  • mkaibear - Thursday, January 7, 2016 - link

    I dunno, 2560x1440 means you can run games at 720p and get decent performance *and* a native resolution (effectively quadding your pixels). This seems fairly close to the mark...
  • webdoctors - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    This laptop seems awesome. I don't understand why my company keeps buying these big bulky heavy Dell laptops that pump out heat.
  • okashira - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    What a POS.
    Huge bezels. Overpriced. 6650 i7 not 6650 i7 with Iris like SP4. From a gaming company. An i7 SP4 would blow this away in gaming performance
  • OligarchyAmbulance - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    Yes, go ahead and plug in a desktop GPU to your SP4.

    I'm waiting.
  • aznchum - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    Anyone else appalled by the 8GB non-upgradeable memory? I think laptops should be coming with 16GB standard nowadays with a 32GB option if needed.
  • Strom- - Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - link

    Yeah, the lack of a 16 GB option here is what annoys me the most.

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