Maximum gaming laptops have desirous about getting slimmer and smaller over the previous couple of years, however that isn’t the objective for all. The Aorus 17 (begins at $1,799; $three,699 as examined) is one such laptop computer that wishes to stretch its sizable legs, measuring in at about an inch and a part thick and greater than eight kilos. Its Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 GPU and Intel Core i9-9980HK CPU queue up top-end gaming functionality, as you would be expecting given the scale and value. In the end, regardless that, no person function or design facet decisively units it with the exception of different large, even-better-performing, laptops. The Aorus 17 is a forged high-end gamer, however the Alienware House-51m and Acer Predator Helios 700 are our peak choices on this tier.
A True Gaming Behemoth
Most of the people can pass their entire lives with out seeing a laptop computer as giant because the Aorus 17, however at PCMag Labs, we see a veritable parade of them. Even in that context, I used to be shocked when passed the Aorus 17 for the primary time. Some 17-inch laptops have some way of no longer searching rather as giant as they’re, however the program makes no such effort. It is huge, deep, and most manifestly, rather thick. It isn’t on my own on this regard, however there is no denying its large length.
Extra in particular, it measures 1.49 by way of 15.6 by way of 11.five inches (HWD), larger than nearly anything else now we have observed come via for evaluation that does not have a desktop-class CPU inside of. There are, regardless that, a small staff of identical laptops. Amongst super-powered machines, the Alienware House-51m is a little bit thinner at 1.2 inches, however is another way simply as huge. Most effective the MSI GT76 Titan DT actually surpasses the Aorus 17 with its all-in design at a whopping 1.7 by way of 15.6 by way of 13 inches. If you are on the lookout for a fairly moveable 17 incher, the Razer Blade Professional 17 (2019) manages a chassis that is available in at zero.7 by way of 15.6 by way of 10.2 inches. It falls wanting this super-heavyweight category, regardless that—those 3 different laptops are in an influence, length, and value tier of their very own amongst fresh machines.
Whilst I am in relation to length, I’ve to say the truth that there aren’t one, however two giant charging bricks for this laptop computer. Now we have observed this a handful of instances up to now, and maximum just lately at the MSI GT76 Titan, however it is a noteworthy inclusion every time. Simply this sort of continual bricks is big sufficient, however two of them reduces the portability of this laptop computer to a degree I might name “most effective transfer if completely essential.” The machine weighs eight.four kilos by itself, however the general with each bricks is a staggering 14 kilos. Upload within the annoyance of packing and organizing two units of cables, and you will not need to convey the Aorus with you anyplace. The laptop computer will run with only one brick plugged in, however, like while you attempt to play video games off a gaming laptop computer’s battery most effective, the functionality is lowered.
The Alienware and MSI laptops each be afflicted by the similar factor, for what it is price. This point of wattage is most commonly necessitated by way of the tough GPU (extra on that later), and since laptops should not have the bodily house for a desktop-size continual provide, that is the answer maximum producers have landed on. The Acer Predator Helios 700 could also be large, however no less than it has a singular bodily function to justify its length, and just one continual brick. For me, the twin bricks are a borderline disqualifying function: It makes the already-cumbersome laptops that a lot more tough to take with you. They’re technically moveable in comparison to motionless desktops, however until you are taking a protracted shuttle and can play a large number of video games the place you are going, it is rarely going to look price lugging a laptop computer like this alongside.
Visually, it is a giant and blocky machine that feels extra plasticky than it will have to for the cost. There is some chassis lighting fixtures within the type of headlight- and taillight-like strips and a striped row of LEDs above the keyboard. The previous are a pleasing, restrained inclusion, however I do not actually just like the glance of the stripes. Your mileage might range.
Additionally, no longer that you’ll be able to see it steadily, however the backside panel has a cool-looking airflow cutout. It is formed like a fowl with wings, and Aorus calls it a “Hearth Phoenix” design. The lid, in the meantime, has muscle strains the corporate says are impressed by way of a fighter jet, whilst it likens the rear lighting to an unique automotive. It is a large number of influences, arguably one too many, however they proportion sufficient of the similar aesthetic to be cohesive. At the entire, the manner is a little bit at the busy and gamer-aesthetic aspect, however I do not dislike the glance of the back and front edges.
For some consumers, the facility point or even a point of portability are price it, regardless that, and a machine of this length and value does convey alongside interesting options. A type of for the Aorus 17, made imaginable by way of the thick chassis, is the mechanical keyboard. The important thing switches come from Omron, and supply each tactile and audible comments. I discovered typing in this keyboard to go with the flow temporarily, even supposing the keys are a little looser than I would like. The commute (2.5mm) is not as deep or as pleasurable as on a excellent desktop keyboard, however it is means higher than the common laptop computer keyboard.
The keys also are for my part backlit. You’ll be able to customise every secret is lighting fixtures colour and impact, as has grow to be same old on maximum high-end gaming machines, via integrated tool. On this case, that is the Aorus Regulate Middle. This tool additionally allows you to exchange the chassis lighting fixtures, modify fan speeds, computer screen elements, use shortcuts for apps and settings, and extra. It is reasonably intuitive, as I discovered the whole lot I used to be on the lookout for conveniently, and I would say it gives an above-average collection of choices.
Every other tool function is collaboration with the Microsoft Azure AI cloud platform. What this necessarily gives makes sense switching between suitable continual modes on your CPU and GPU, relying on what sort of process you might be doing. For some, that would possibly not be that interesting. For instance, you could most effective intend to play video games in this laptop computer, and while you achieve this, you are expecting the elements to crank out as a lot juice as they may be able to.
Different customers might need to do content material advent and different duties, alternatively, and no longer run the machine at complete continual always. You’ll be able to toggle the AI help with the “Gaming and Skilled” app integrated at the laptop computer, and make a selection other settings (restricted offline use, whether or not or to not proportion your knowledge with Microsoft, and so forth). For those who go away the AI possibility on within the background, you’ll be able to be expecting some frame-rate upticks in gaming with out manually converting continual modes. It will have to memorize your settings and stay them in a database for long run use. I did certainly notice an uptick of a few frames in line with moment whilst gaming when the use of those settings, so you’ll be able to go away it operating, if you want.
Show, Ports & Configurations
The Aorus 17’s display measures, as you could have guessed, 17.three inches diagonally. The answer is most effective complete HD (1080p), which I’ve combined emotions about.
On one hand, this answer is a surer means to use its 240Hz refresh price. The decrease pixel depend will likely be much less straining at the elements, and the laptop computer subsequently will likely be higher in a position to show extra frames in line with moment. Maximizing body charges is the objective of many fanatics, particularly in aggressive multiplayer video games and in esports eventualities, and the program may be very neatly suited for doing simply that.
Alternatively, getting most effective 1080p feels a little disappointing at this worth level and display length. 1440p is a well-liked desktop-monitor gaming answer (regardless that maximum avid gamers are nonetheless the use of complete HD), and the tough elements are borderline overkill for 1080p. If really hitting 240fps is considered one of your peak priorities, this will have to be track in your ears, however a sharper image for AAA video games and observing movies has its personal enchantment. I affiliate upper resolutions with extra top rate builds, however many avid gamers might certainly price the 240fps capacity extra. You will have to make that decision for your self.
Out of doors of the answer and refresh price, the panel is X-Ceremony Pantone qualified for extra correct colours, and it options an anti-glare coating. This does reduce down reflections (regardless that it does not get rid of them), however the image is duller for it. There’s no contact capacity in this display.
The remainder of the bodily construct is rounded out by way of a swath of ports. The left aspect hosts two USB Sort-C ports, considered one of which helps Thunderbolt three, in addition to one USB three.1 port, and headphone and mic jacks. The suitable flank holds two extra USB three.1 Sort-A ports, any other USB Sort-C port, and an SD card reader. That is not all, regardless that, because the rear contains an HDMI connection, an Ethernet jack, and the 2 continual ports.
In any case, we come to configuration choices. Our tester (type YA-9US2452SH) is the top-end model of this laptop computer, ringing up at $three,699. For that, you internet an Intel Core i9-9980HK processor, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080, 32GB of reminiscence, a 1TB SSD, and a 2TB onerous power. Notice that the GeForce RTX 2080 isn’t the Max-Q model of the chip, however the full-power mobile GPU.
Max-Q GPUs are tuned-down variations of the mobile chips that experience their continual and warmth output capped so they may be able to are compatible in slender laptops. Obviously, that isn’t wanted right here, and so that you get extra graphical continual (and effort draw, therefore the additional continual brick). The Aorus 17 additionally contains reinforce for Optimus, for good switching between the discrete GeForce GPU and built-in Intel graphics to avoid wasting you continual while you do not want the RTX 2080.
Aorus gives 3 more cost effective SKUs underneath our type. The bottom begins at $1,799 and provides a Core i7-9750H CPU, a GeForce GTX 1660 Ti GPU, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 144Hz display. The following type up prices $2,199 and contains the similar processor, RAM, and garage as the former construct, however bumps as much as an RTX 2070 GPU and a 240Hz show. 3rd is a $2,999 config that gives the similar processor, reminiscence, and 240Hz show, but additionally contains an RTX 2080 and a 1TB SSD. The adaptation between it and our peak type, then, is the soar to a Core i9 CPU and the additional 2TB onerous power. Those duvet quite a lot of budgets, regardless that even the least dear is rarely entry-level pricing.
Efficiency Checking out: Energy to Fit Its Measurement
For functionality trying out, I in comparison the Aorus 17 to different top-end 17-inch gaming laptops. A few of these don’t seem to be rather as giant or dear, however they are all about as shut as you’ll be able to get amongst fashionable machines. The chart underneath presentations what elements every one packs…
I lined the Alienware ($four,409.99 as examined) and the MSI ($four,599 as examined) previous, and they’re certainly the one laptops right here dearer than the expensive Aorus. The in a similar way hulking Acer Predator Helios 700 ($2,199.99 as examined) is not rather as dear, and it contains the step-down RTX 2070 GPU and a lesser CPU. Razer’s system ($2,799 as examined) is the least tough in this listing, with a Max-Q model of the RTX 2070, however it is by way of a ways the sleekest and maximum moveable. That is what the Aorus 17 is up in opposition to, so let’s have a look at the way it did.
Productiveness, Garage & Media Assessments
PCMark 10 and eight are holistic functionality suites evolved by way of the PC benchmark experts at UL (previously Futuremark). The PCMark 10 take a look at we run simulates other real-world productiveness and content-creation workflows. We use it to evaluate general machine functionality for office-centric duties reminiscent of phrase processing, spreadsheet jockeying, internet surfing, and videoconferencing. The take a look at generates a proprietary numeric rating; upper numbers are higher. PCMark eight, in the meantime has a Garage subtest that we use to evaluate the velocity of the machine’s garage subsystem. This rating could also be a proprietary numeric rating; once more, upper numbers are higher.
I’m going to stay this quick, since you almost certainly would’ve guessed a laptop computer like that is greater than able to dealing with on a daily basis house and workplace duties. It used to be the second-fastest in this take a look at, and given the baseline for those tough programs is excessive, the Aorus 17 will velocity via any workaday techniques you throw its means. Its SSD velocity used to be minutely slower than the remaining, however all of those constitute snappy drives that may boot and cargo temporarily.
Subsequent is Maxon’s CPU-crunching Cinebench R15 take a look at, which is totally threaded to use all to be had processor cores and threads. Cinebench stresses the CPU somewhat than the GPU to render a posh picture. The result’s a proprietary rating indicating a PC’s suitability for processor-intensive workloads.
We additionally run a customized Adobe Photoshop image-editing benchmark. The usage of an early 2018 unlock of the Inventive Cloud model of Photoshop, we follow a chain of 10 advanced filters and results to a normal JPEG take a look at picture. We time every operation and, on the finish, upload up the whole execution time. As with Handbrake, decrease instances are higher right here.
Those two assessments are a lot more strenuous than PCMark 10, and the Aorus 17 did neatly. It used to be in particular fast on Photoshop, slower most effective than the beefy MSI. The 2 desktop-grade Core i9 laptops have been the one ones that carried out higher on Cinebench, however they carried out markedly higher—you’ll be able to see the place the additional juice is available in for those stressful multi-threaded duties. The Aorus 17’s chip is wanting the i9-9900Ok’s point, however it is nonetheless a lusty Core i9 CPU. You might have considered trying this laptop computer essentially for gaming, however it is lots able to legit multimedia and different strenuous skilled paintings.
3DMark measures relative graphics muscle by way of rendering sequences of extremely detailed, gaming-style 3-D graphics that emphasize debris and lighting fixtures. We run two other 3DMark subtests, Sky Diver and Hearth Strike, which can be suited for several types of programs. Each are DirectX 11 benchmarks, however Sky Diver is extra suited for laptops and midrange PCs, whilst Hearth Strike is extra stressful and made for high-end PCs to strut their stuff. The effects are proprietary ratings.
Subsequent up is any other artificial graphics take a look at, this time from Unigine Corp. Like 3DMark, the Superposition take a look at renders and pans via an in depth 3-D scene and measures how the machine copes. On this case, it is rendered within the corporate’s eponymous Unigine engine, providing a special 3-D workload situation than 3DMark, for a moment opinion at the system’s graphical prowess.
The 3-D prowess of the Aorus 17 is on complete show right here, posting excessive effects at the two extra stressful assessments (3DMark Hearth Strike and Superposition Prime). The 2 muscle laptops edge it out in every case, however taking into consideration the additional worth and gear, the Aorus 17 holds up neatly.
On a much less head-to-head foundation, those ratings are objectively excessive, and level to a large number of graphical continual. For non-gaming duties like video modifying, animation, modeling, and extra that require potent graphics hardware, this non-Max-Q RTX 2080 is greater than as much as the duty. As for gaming…
Actual-Global Gaming Assessments
The artificial assessments above are useful for measuring common 3-D flair, however it is onerous to overcome complete retail video video games for judging gaming functionality. A long way Cry five and Upward thrust of the Tomb Raider are each fashionable, high-fidelity titles with integrated benchmarks that illustrate how a machine handles real-world video video games at more than a few settings. Those are run on each the average and most graphics-quality presets (Commonplace and Extremely for A long way Cry five, Medium and Very Prime for Upward thrust of the Tomb Raider) at local answer to pass judgement on functionality for a given machine. The effects also are equipped in frames in line with moment. A long way Cry five is DirectX 11-based, whilst Upward thrust of the Tomb Raider can also be flipped to DX12, which we do for the benchmark.
As mentioned previous, those elements are greater than able for 1080p, and the consequences right here display simply that. A long way Cry five and Upward thrust of the Tomb Raider are a ways from aggressive titles the place you want the very absolute best body charges, and this laptop computer nonetheless pushes 117fps and 144fps, respectively, at most settings. Extra-demanding video games will push the ones body charges a little decrease, however at 1080p, the strain of essentially the most state of the art titles will likely be lowered fairly.
Those video games exhibit that the Aorus 17’s portions don’t seem to be rather overkill for 1080p, for the reason that body charges do not, in truth, hit the 240Hz cap in video games like those. It’s possible you’ll most effective want 60fps in AAA video games, however extra frames does result in a smoother revel in. In multiplayer titles which can be a lot much less taxing, the program will make a lot better use of the 240Hz refresh price. For instance, in a tribulation I ran the use of Rainbow Six: Siege at most settings and 1080p, it averaged 254fps at the integrated benchmark take a look at.
In general, the functionality is in an extraordinary tier for laptops, even supposing it takes its vital length to get there. For instance, the Blade Professional 17 is a pricey, slick laptop computer with undeniably high-tier hardware, however even then there’s a transparent hole between it and behemoths just like the Aorus 17. I can additionally upload that for a laptop computer of this length, it wasn’t too loud, and stays reasonably cool because of its “Windforce Infinity” cooling machine and vapor chamber. For those who ramp the fan speeds to most the use of the Aorus Command Middle, the machine will get very loud. It’ll upload a pair additional frames in your video games, nevertheless it will not be definitely worth the noise.
Battery Rundown Check
After totally recharging the laptop computer, we arrange the system in power-save mode (versus balanced or high-performance mode) and make a couple of different battery-conserving tweaks in preparation for our unplugged video rundown take a look at. (We additionally flip Wi-Fi off, hanging the laptop computer in Plane mode.) On this take a look at, we loop a video—a in the neighborhood saved 720p record of the Blender Basis quick Tears of Metal—with display brightness set at 50 % and quantity at 100 % till the machine conks out.
One space the place the Aorus 17 does not shine—no wonder—is its battery existence. I predicted a deficient outcome like this with only one have a look at the machine; laptops this length hardly closing very lengthy. The hardware and have set is just draining, as mirrored within the sub-three-hour battery existence. Although you do convey the Aorus 17 with you, I will’t envision a situation the place you would need to use it off the charger for lengthy. It isn’t lap-friendly, and it would possibly not are compatible on any plane tray I have ever observed. Remarkably, two of the programs on this batch tired even quicker, whilst the MSI will get credit score for lasting so long as it does given its length and gear.
Large & Daring, However No longer Our Favourite Beast
The Aorus 17 is a beast of a gaming laptop computer, regardless that I would not name it the most productive in its category. It’s more cost effective than its major competition, however price is rarely a priority on this over-the-top worth tier, and the number of configurations method you will have to take outlined worth variations with a grain of salt. The opposite top-tier choices and their desktop CPUs be offering awesome functionality around the board, and their builds are nicer besides. The Alienware House-51m, particularly, has a gorgeous design that is merely a step above, versus the massive black chassis that outline the Aorus 17 and the MSI GT76 Titan DT.
The Aorus 17 delivers excessive body charges at most settings, however that is the desk stakes from a laptop computer of this length and value. It is aggressive, to make sure; it is simply no longer an unassailable select for spending greater than $three,00zero. On this worth vary, even supposing you might be no longer getting price, you wish to have to no less than really feel like you might be getting the height of design and elements. The Aorus 17 is just a little off that mark, and because it is priced a lot nearer to its behemoth-laptop pageant than the midrange choices, it is tough to suggest within the $three,699 type we won. (I believe I would had been a little keener on a configuration just like the $1,799 access one.) For those who do desire a laptop computer this giant and robust and are looking to persist with any roughly price range, this may occasionally prevent some money. Differently, pass all in with the Editors’ Selection Alienware House-51m or the original, sliding-keyboard Acer Predator Helios 700.