Gigabyte’s Aorus X5: The most powerful 15-inch gaming laptop ever? (hands-on) – Pocket-lint.com
The Gigabyte Aorus X5 is billed as “Earth’s most powerful 15-inch” laptop in the company’s official literature. That’s a bold statement for any manufacturer to claim and so Pocket-lint went to have a look at this gaming behemoth at this year’s Computex show in Taipei. Does the X5 live up to the hype?
Let’s start with the basics: the Gigabyte Aorus X5 is a gaming laptop that you could get away with taking into a boardroom, yet which has an incredible amount of punch under the hood.
The sleek black case with some nifty laser etching on the lid might indicate that this isn’t a run-of-the-mill workhorse, but those who play games would quickly spot the enlarged vents on the side which allow the X5 to run some of the best graphics around without overheating.
Inside the X5 there are dual graphic cards: both 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M SLI GDDR5s, paired with an Intel Core-i7 processor.
The laptop sports Nvidia G-Sync which eliminates tearing, an Xsplit Gamecaster and a built-in video encoder which permits gamers to stream their gameplay via Twitch when on the go.
Several years in the making, Nvidia’s G-Sync technology promises to synchronise the display’s refresh to the Graphic Processing Unit (GPU) render rate, so images display the moment they’re rendered. The result is that scenes appear instantly. Objects are sharper. Gameplay is smoother.
Previously this hasn’t been possible because displays have had fixed refresh rates – typically 60hz, for a 60-times-a-second refresh (in US NTSC terms). But due to the dynamic nature of PC games, GPUs render frames at varying rates. As the GPU seeks to synchronise with the display, persistent tearing occurs. Turning on V-Sync (or Vertical-Sync) can eliminate tearing but causes increased latency and stutter. Put simply, G-sync eliminates this tradeoff.
A quick test of the display with the G-Sync turned off and then on and the smoothness was instantly noticeable, and seamless in transition.
The 15.6-inch, 2880 x 1620 IPS panel display looks mighty fine too, with great colours and contrast. It scores P12000+ in 3DMark 11, which is pretty much as high as you could hope for in a laptop.
But it’s not just about the screen. As you’d expect there’s a backlit keyboard, but this one comes with individual macro keys. Gamers can assign up to five profiles for instant shortcuts on these keys and also store up to 100 sets of personalised macros and assign 25 of those as “active” for super-fast access. There’s great attention to detail reflected by the tracking pad too – a glorious glass affair with a laser-etched Aorus logo and much like the rest of this machine it looks and feels top of the range.
All of this weighs in at a mere 2.5kgs and is 22.9mm thick, which we have to say is pretty impressive given the power packed within.
An added bonus: you can set the Aorus X5’s fans in one of four modes depending on the scenario, from Quiet for normal browsing (or meetings), to Gaming for maximum cooling when you’re blasting your way through another zombie horde.
This sexy beast is hitting the UK this week, and we’re expecting it to move pretty fast. So if you want to buy a Gigabyte Auros X5 then get your orders in on the double, soldier.