Wednesday29 March 2023

The Aorus X7 - A Gaming Laptop That I Actually Want

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CES 2014: Las Vegas, Nevada - There are a lot of companies that call some of their lineup “gaming laptops”.  Asus, Sony, Toshiba, MSI, they all have at least one laptop in their stable that they tell me I can use to game.  While I’ll be the first to admit this is technically true, invariably their definition of “gaming” and mine have been different.  Small screens, low resolution, terrible sound, poor performance (unless I turn down the graphics quality, which is a problem in its own), there are always tradeoffs that honestly have made me consider “gaming laptop” to be a contradiction. 


Maybe I’ve just had a long string of bad luck, getting my hands on sub-par hardware that was labeled wrong, but a laptop has been a laptop; useful and handy to have around for a lot of things, but gaming has always been at least second-rate.  Like a couple of other misconceptions I had, that was changed at this year’s CES.  

This one was blown away at the display suite of Aorus, when I got my hands on the new X7.  I’ll just put the list of hardware here to ogle first off.

- 4th generation Intel Core i7-4700HQ processor
- 4GB/8GB DDR3L 1600 RAM (4 slots, max 32GB)
- Two 128/256 mSATA SSD (RAID 0)
- One 500GB/750GB/1TB HDD, 5400 rpm
- Two Nvidia GTX 765M video cards in SLI, totaling 4GB of GDDR5
- 17.3” Full HD 1920 x 1080 backlit LCD display

Impressive list to be sure, but the X7 isn’t just a pile of parts.  All of that is packed into a very sleek all-aluminum chassis that’s less than an inch thick and weighs less than 6 ½ pounds.  It looks absolutely gorgeous, both in use and at idle, and if that weren’t enough, the X7 boasts a feature set that shows a serious dedication to an outstanding product.

The thermal design is unusual in its inclusion of five heat pipes and two fans, each with two vents.  By giving one of the two GTX 765 cards its own set of heat pipes and splitting three others between the CPU and the second GTX 765, heat is spread across a wide area and kept to a minimum within the case.  The fan speed is also customizable, allowing for Stealth, Auto, and Turbo modes.  

The X7 includes a series of five macro keys that can be used for a wide array of options with the included Macro Hub software.  

Three digital outputs (two full-sized HDMI and one mini-DisplayPort) allow three external monitors to be used, while still allowing the native monitor to function.  While I didn’t get to try this feature out first hand, the built-in Nvidia 3D Vision Surround Technology sounds very promising with the right hardware.  The X7 has certainly got the muscle to drive them.

Getting my hands on the Aorus X7 was like seeing a unicorn.  It has restored my belief that a true “gaming laptop” exists.  There are probably others out there, and I hope I get to see them also, but for now this is the one I want.

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Last modified on Friday, 17 January 2014 14:30

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