Razer sharpens up their new Blade gaming laptop

Dave James

Razer have announced their new thin and light gaming notebook will have a hefty screen upgrade along with the new Nvidia 800M series GPU .

We're not quite talking 4K resolutions here but the 3200 x 1800 native resolution of the Indium Gallium Oxide (IGZO) panel isn't far off the resolution we've seen from the beautiful, similarly IGZO-based 4K screen from Asus . Razer is calling the screen QHD+, because the world needs more display-based acronyms.

Along with a 'retina-tearing' and 'eye-popping' screen (their words, not mine) the super thin new Razer Blade also comes with one of Nvidia's latest mobile GPUs - the GeForce GTX 870M.

Sadly this high-end GPU isn't of the upcoming Maxwell ilk - like the desktop, the mobile Maxwells have only been released at the mainstream end of the market - so it's still running on the old Kepler GK 104 GPU that we saw in the GTX 680M and GTX 775M mobile chips.

It has been clocked faster, however, but comes with less video memory. I'm not entirely sure if that's going to stand it in particularly good stead when it comes to running games at the native resolution of this QHD+ screen though. It may have twice the graphics horsepower of the previous Blade, but I think it will struggle to achieve decent frame rates at 3200 x 1800.

The 3200 x 1800 screen is going to require a lot of GPU power to run natively in-game

On the desktop though, it's going to look amazing. Windows 8 is pretty good at scaling now, so even on the 14-inch display you shouldn't have any real worries about how things look. And the ten point capacitive touch will make the Modern UI less of a pain to navigate.

That all sounds rather impressive, and then you remember we're talking about a laptop that's less than two centimetres thick. The Razer Blade is a seriously slimline, impressively powerful gaming machine. Native res gaming might be an issue, but, with the number of pixels on offer in those 14-inches of display, even downscaling to 1080p is going to look great on such a vibrant IPS panel.

It's not going to come cheap, but if - like me - you've been coveting the high-res, Retina-displayed Mac Pros then the $2,199 asking price might not look too off-putting. The machines will ship in early April, so hopefully we'll get our hands on a review unit as soon as they drop on these shores.

The new Blade is just 0.7 inches thick

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