There are gaming laptops, and then there are meaty desktop replacements that trade thin and light portability and battery life for more powerful hardware, wrapped in a stout chassis. Usually though the latter combines an Intel Core processor with an Nvidia GPU. That's still an option for Acer's new Predator Helios 500. However, new details reveal that users will also be able to outfit one of these desktop replacements with an AMD Ryzen 7 2700 processor and Radeon RX Vega 56 graphics.
A newly erected product page (opens in new tab) details the CPU and GPU hardware options. As we already knew from Acer's previous announcement, the Predator Helios 500 features up to an Intel Core i9-8950HK processor paired with a GeForce GTX 1070 GPU, along with up to 64GB of DDR4 RAM, up to 1TB of NVMe SSD storage in RAID 0, and up to a 2TB HDD. All of this powers a 17.3-inch panel with a 1080p resolution and 144Hz refresh rate.
That's a killer configuration, though for enthusiasts who want to go all-in with AMD, Acer will apparently offer that option. Going with an AMD setup will provide users with more multi-threaded punch in certain workloads, as the second-generation Ryzen 7 2700 is an 8-core/16-thread processor. That doesn't matter so much for gaming, but could come in handy for other tasks.
More interesting, however, is the inclusion of a Radeon RX Vega 56 GPU. To our knowledge, this the first laptop to go in that direction. There are no detailed specs just yet, but our guess is that Acer and AMD slowed the clocks (versus the desktop variant) and perhaps made other changes to lessen the power draw. We'll have to wait and see.
Same goes for pricing , and how it compares to an decked out Intel/Nvidia configuration. Acer previously said the Helios 500 will be available in North America next month starting at $1,999, and in EMEA this month starting at €1,999.