Choosing the ultimate 2 kg laptop


#1

So, I am looking for the ultimate laptop that delivers high performance in a lightweight slim chassis with fantastic screen and great battery life. That means, I am looking for a device with:

  • Quad-core Intel CPU
  • Cutting-edge dedicated graphics (Nvidia Pascal)
  • QHD or better screen
  • Touchscreen
  • At least 6 hours real-use battery life (should translate to 8-10 hours advertised battery life)

So far, there are 3 candidates:

- Dell XPS 15
- Lenovo Yoga 720 15"
- Microsoft Surface Book 2 15"
- Razer Blade 14"

All models feature optional 4K touch display, Core i7-7700HQ (except for the Surface), large battery (97Wh, 72 Wh, 80 Wh, and 70 Wh), and powerful graphics (GTX 1060 on the Razer and Surface, 1050 on the rest). Unfortunately, the Surface is nowhere to be found outside of North America region.

But anyway, using USD as the comparison, comparing the model with 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD, the Razer costs $2400, the Surface costs $2500, the Dell costs $2250, and the Lenovo seems like a massive bargain at just $1500.

Key differences of the Dell:

  • (+) Largest battery (~35% larger than the other two)
  • (+) Slimmest bezel
  • (+) Charges from USB-C

Key differences of the Lenovo:

  • (+) 360 hinge
  • (+) Wacom AES digitizer
  • (-) No HDMI or card reader
  • (-) Reported to have Turbo Boost disabled

Key differences of the Surface:

  • (+) GTX 1060 graphics (50-100% faster than 1050)
  • (+) Detachable
  • (+) 3:2 aspect ratio
  • (+) Charges from USB-C
  • (-) No HDMI port
  • (-) No Thunderbolt 3 port
  • (-) Marvell WiFi

Key differences of the Razer:

  • (+) GTX 1060 graphics (50-100% faster than 1050)
  • (+) RGB keyboard, gotta mention it somewhere, right?
  • (+) Full 4 lanes PCIe on the Thunderbolt 3 port
  • (-) Smallest screen, big bezel (14")
  • (-) Reported to have loud fan

What do you think? Do you have any other alternative?


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#2

I’d go for the lenovo as it’s the most versatile device and also best value for money, plus yoga’s have good build quality so they’re not cheaping out on that. Are you sure there’s that much of a performance gap between 1050 and 1060 I would have assumed 30-50% difference at the most.


#3

razerrazerrazerrazer(20)


#4

For me I suggest another device, HP spectre x360 15t, Quad core 8550 i7 8 Mb cash, 16 gb DDR4 2400, 4k screen, Nividia mx150 2gb DDR5 , and comes with Hp active pen (2048 pressure level) , and what is important for power rapid charging battery! For me it’s best value and specs


#5

Would vote for razer, who cares about bezels on a laptop srsly, it’s not a smartphone. Would wait with buying anything new rn tho if possible. I would recommend to wait for q1(18) till the latest offerings with cfl or ravenridge are out.
Even if they won’t interest you the other devices will have become more affordable.


#6

While I agree Yoga has better build quality than the average laptop, from my short experience at the store shelves, the Dell and Razer feels like they have better, more solid build quality than the Lenovo.

While it sounds interesting, I wouldnt qualify MX150 as a decently powerful GPU for 2017. It’s also not cheaper than the Lenovo with a similar configuration (16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD), despite it’s lacking in CPU and GPU department.

It’s less about the bezel, but about the fact that the device has a smaller 14" screen while the others have 15" inside a similarly-sized body.

Agreed, and hopefully by then, the 4K Blade would have been released outside of NA


#7

I’ve got a Gigabyte Aero 15 at work (games developer) which has been pretty good and battery life is decent. Only issue is that it’s 1080p (which IMO, doesn’t matter that much on a 15" screen).

If you must have a 1440p or high, consider the Gigabyte Aero 14. It lacks Thunderbolt but sports a 1440p screen and has a centralised keyboard.

I did consider getting the Razer but was reading a lot of issues with customer support and overheating issues under sustained load with (from what I read) the Aeros don’t have.

Edit: Oh wait, you need a touch screen? Nevermind then.


#8

Totally in the same boat with you on this one - I’m stuck deciding on what device to get next.

I think the Surface Book w/ Performance Base is a wildcard option - it meets most of those criteria, with the exception that it’s a little bit outdated now, but there’s literally nothing out there that small and that powerful today, that’s also convertible.

Hopefully the SB will get refreshed towards the end of October with a quad core CPU and Pascal, but I’d bet on it being super pricey.


#9

Asus ROG Zephyrus

The 1070 version comes at $2300.
Also, while the spectre might not be as powerful you’ll get great build quality and cool functionality with the hinge.
One important thing I would suggest is to buy a warranty for whatever you end up choosing because at this price you want to make sure that if anything goes wrong you can have it fixed or replaced.


#10

Seems to be in that ballpark. Remember, its the 1050 and 1060 6 GB we are talking about, not 1050 Ti or 1060 3 GB.


#11

They compromised literally everything to be able to fit the GTX 1070/1080 in that slim chassis. That means, terrible battery life, flimsy build quality, suboptimal keyboard positioning, and to make it worse, it only comes with 1080p TN panel. 1080p TN panel on a laptop that costs $2000+ is laughable imo.


#12

my bro in law got a top of the line dell xps 15 and had nothing but trouble with it. after many attempts to repair it and a replacement machine, he ended up getting a full refund. I can’t remember all the issues he had, happy to ask for you if you’re interested, but I suspect he will never touch dell again with a barge pole…


#13

Yeah. I knew it meet like none of your desires but all I usually care about in gaming laptops is performance. It’s the first of the maxq designs done so well. I’m sure future iterations will fix those problems.


#14

Spectre price is very competitive, 1500 $ with pen


#15

I think new Xiaomi Mi Notebook pro might be interesting alternative.

8 gen processor, MX150 (not powerfull but still pretty ok). No thunderbolt, 1080p but quickcharge, slim bezels and great price:)


#16

Seems to me that it come down to ranking the importance of:

a) Battery Life
b) Pen
c) Graphics performance

Other factors seems to be relatively minor, and that the alternatives have other equally minor dis/advantages to cover up.

Provided that this is a 15" 2Kg machine, I would personally prefer Graphics Performance over Battery Life, and that over Pen.

Reason is that this is what “15-inchers” are good at - offering unrivaled performance over thin and light or ultraportables.


#17

I’ll just leave it here when it comes to this particular brand…


#18

…and my personal experience with Xiaomi is totally different. I have nothing but good things to say about them.
Remember: one anecdotal negative review of one product doesn’t make an entire company incapable of making good, or even great, devices!


#19

The Zenbook UX550 series includes a few different configurations in two main families, the UX550VD (with Nvidia 1050 graphics, the one we have here) and the UX550VE (with Nvidia 1050 Ti graphics). All are available with various screen choices (FHD and UHD, matte or touch) as well as multiple CPU (i5-7300HQ, i7-7700HQ), RAM (up to 16 GB) and storage (M.2 80 mm NVMe) options.


What should a new notebook device offer?
#21

It seems that the UX550 is such a recent release, that the market availability is somewhat patchy - unfortunately…