Razer's 14" Blade Gaming Notebook Won't Break the Bank

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tahrey:
I ain't even gonna bother clicking that. I know that Medion is Aldi's own-brand for electronics.

If you think that spending £1300 on an Aldi ownbrand laptop is a good idea, you deserve everything that happens as a result. Have you even used any of their other electronic products before?

Yes. It wasn't bad, but it didn't impress me either.

One thing I've learned, however, is that you can never trust a 'brand' to always deliver quality or always suck. Most brands deliver a wide portfolio of different hardware, which can be both good and bad. For example, my first experiences with Acer laptops (many years ago) told me they sucked, and my later experiences told me that they still do. But I've also had GOOD machines from Acer in my hand. Sometimes they nail it, sometimes they don't.

The best thing you can do before buying a laptop is to make sure the build quality is okay. The best way to do that is of course to hold the machine in your own hand and try that out, but for the lack of better, the second best thing is having a bunch of high-quality photos of the machine from different angles so you can do a visual checkup, which - if you like me have plenty of experience with laptops build quality - will give you a really good idea of what you'll eventually get in your hands.

If you actually had bothered clicking the link, you can see that Medion provides just that. From what i can see, the chassis is solid, the screen hinges are wide and look sturdy, the cooling checks out and the keyboard quality checks out and as a luxury it has 5 USB parts (3 of them being USB 3.0). The only thing I'm unsatisfied with is the location of the VGA/HDMI/DisplayPort and power outlets on the back, and it's hard to judge the sturdiness of touchpad and buttons. Beyond that, however, it looks like a quality piece of hardware.

Oh and...

tahrey:
but it's basically impossible to tell which is which until you get it home. Getting a refund for anything you've opened and used that isn't very obviously a manufacturing fault can be nightmarish, too.

Not from where I'm sitting. In Denmark, our consumer laws grant us a right of return of 14 days on internet purchases from the day we received the package, with the only condition being that the item is returned 'in basically the same state as it was received'. This was implemented exactly for the reasons you worry: that you can't truly and completely judge a product before you have it in your hand :-)

It wont break bank, but rather break completely. Razer products have terrible build quality.

Seems like the anti-laptop brigade is out in full force just like I expected.

Windows 8 on that thing kills the interest for me and that price tag is still pretty steep.

Sounds very nice indeed. Were I in the market for such a thing, it would be the no. 1 contender for the not unreasonable cost vs spec. However I'm not in the market for such a thing. My laptop is almost as powerful as this one, except for the GTX750M (Optimus) GFX card, cost me £800 and is 12". It is a gaming laptop in a tiny, ultra portable package.

If I were to buy a laptop larger than the smallest I could find with proper specs, I'd probably go with a larger, desktop replacement. the 14" category is great for business users, but for most others I imagine the smaller and larger ones are more desireable.

This is why most people don't want to get into PC gaming, prices like that are intimidating.

tahrey:
I ain't even gonna bother clicking that. I know that Medion is Aldi's own-brand for electronics.

Medion AG is a seperate company, which is now owned by... *drumroll* Lenovo. That should pretty much say all anyone needs to know - a discount consumer electronics manufacturer owned by one of the crappiest computer manufacturers ever. It's like someone took a shit in the middle of a puddle of vomit.

iniudan:
Too bad whitebox laptop are almost impossible to get these day.

Whitebox/whitebook laptops fell out of favour because sourcing the parts was a pain in the arse and it wasn't cost effective for a lot of people. If you had only generic needs for your laptop off-the-shelf was cheaper. Whitebooking was only really useful for people who had specific needs in certain areas and didn't want to pay a fuckload for the one or two laptops on the market that met those needs and added a bunch of expensive, unnecessary shit in as well... the problem there, as the manufacturers saw it, was that most people would buy the cheapest whitebox they that still had the features they wanted and then cram in the biggest CPU and as much RAM as they could. From their POV that was bad because it was these people they wanted to buy their fuck-off-top-of-the-line laptops.

(for them not following the terminology, whitebook is the selling of bare-bones laptops for the purpose of customising and/or the customising of a barebones laptop. whiteboxes are the actual barebones units)

Of course, if you have the cash to piss away and are fluent in written mandarin, you can get the parts to build yourself a laptop from scratch. It's expensive and most of the parts suppliers who'll sell single units are DODGY AS FUCK, so I wouldn't recommend it, but it is doable... at around 50% more than you'd pay for the same unit off the shelf. It'd actually be cheaper to build a custom portable Desktop Replacement (building a desktop formfactor PC into a case along with the monitor and everything. Upside is they use proper desktop components. Downside is they weigh a fuckton - you're basically lugging around a desktop, monitor and your input devices).

I think I will stay with my Sager NP150, thank-you-very-much. 3DS Max Interface is no match for it!

Jeeze. No wonder all the console tards on this site think PC gaming is expensive.

That really isn't cheap. It's a fine high end machine, I suppose. But it's a bank breaker. You can get something almost as good and just slightly heavier for less than half the price.

UrKnightErrant:
That really isn't cheap. It's a fine high end machine, I suppose. But it's a bank breaker. You can get something almost as good and just slightly heavier for less than half the price.

No you can't. Granted it isn't cheap, but if what you say is true, I'm sure you are capable of providing a link to the machine you're talking about, right? :o)

Athinira:

UrKnightErrant:
That really isn't cheap. It's a fine high end machine, I suppose. But it's a bank breaker. You can get something almost as good and just slightly heavier for less than half the price.

No you can't. Granted it isn't cheap, but if what you say is true, I'm sure you are capable of providing a link to the machine you're talking about, right? :o)

Well, it's been a while since I shopped around, and the Toshiba I landed on last time I did so is no longer available.
http://us.toshiba.com/computers/laptops/satellite/S850/S855D-S5253/

I have no intention of conducting a search all over again to find a similar machine when I'm not the one buying it, but I think it's a pretty safe bet something similar is available to anyone willing to do the legwork.

I have an excellent history with Toshiba. These machines are made of granite. I have an old satellite still running Windows 95!

Anyway... check out their site. I've also been hearing good things about Acer and Lenovo. You might want to take a look there, too. You can save a lot of money by looking at off-brands and the quality is typically better than similarly priced machines from major manufacturers like Dell and Gateway. Heck... I reckon the machine in the OP would be two bills cheaper if it didn't have the brand "Razer" on it.

I find PC Magazine a pretty good place to start a search.
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2375410,00.asp

No... you may not get the quad core or the 1600 pixel wide screen, but any of these rigs will run any game on the market. You'll have to settle for 38 or so fps with higher graphics settings on graphically intensive titles, but the truth be told 15 is good enough for the human eye.

I mean hey, if you want "the worlds thinnest gaming laptop" then by all means... Fork over the dough. But I have a kid to feed and tuition to pay. And I'm pretty strong. I can handle an extra pound or two in my laptop bag if it means an extra grand in the bank.

UrKnightErrant:
I have an excellent history with Toshiba. These machines are made of granite. I have an old satellite still running Windows 95!

Anyway... check out their site. I've also been hearing good things about Acer and Lenovo. You might want to take a look there, too. You can save a lot of money by looking at off-brands and the quality is typically better than similarly priced machines from major manufacturers like Dell and Gateway. Heck... I reckon the machine in the OP would be two bills cheaper if it didn't have the brand "Razer" on it.

The thing is that i find this funny considering that Acer and Toshiba are amongst the worst ranking in 'Favorite laptop brand' polls. For Lenovo, however, you're right on track since they keep coming in 1st or 2nd place in those polls alongside Apple. They are a tad expensive though. Congratulations on making your Satellite run for that long though, most laptops would have burned out by now.

You are also right that machines like Razer are slightly more expensive just because of their brand.

My experience with laptop brands - which is rather extensive, considering I've done laptop repairs for an IT-company - is that Lenovo, Asus and Dell (god bless thy expensive price though) are amongst the top laptop brands when it comes to durability. HP machines unfortunately often suffers a terrible case of bad cooling systems (meaning battery burnouts, crotch burnout and palm burnout and sometimes laptop burnouts), while Asus are very adept at making cooling systems for their laptops.

Asus and Lenovo also make some pretty damned impressive Ultrabooks, although those are mostly useless for gaming.

For gaming laptops, i once again prefer Asus most of the time (Although their G75VX series is demanding a new generation a a cheaper price point), although there are some good gaming laptops around from both MSi and Medion at really good price points. You can also boot Windows on a Mac (if you cannot be bothered to find a mountain to throw your money off a cliff) since Macbooks are amongst the most stable machines when running Windows! :o)

Edit:

UrKnightErrant:
I mean hey, if you want "the worlds thinnest gaming laptop" then by all means... Fork over the dough. But I have a kid to feed and tuition to pay. And I'm pretty strong. I can handle an extra pound or two in my laptop bag if it means an extra grand in the bank.

Just wanted to add that i don't disagree at all. My next gaming laptop is gonna be a monster and weigh a lot - but it's gonna be a lot of bang for the buck and have excellent cooling, build quality and keyboard. Those are the 4 aspects i weigh highest when shopping for machinery :-)

Man. Wouldn't break my bank, but I'm definitely not comfortable paying that much for a laptop. I'd just get a friend to help build me a rig or two at that price. But hey, whatever floats your boat or lifts your luggage. If that's what someone wants to get, go for it. Ain't my money.

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