With its new Surface Book, Microsoft one-ups its own Surface Pro line by melding the on-the-go utility of a tablet with the functionality of a laptop and the performance of a desktop. Microsoft touts the Surface Book as the "world's most powerful, thinnest laptop", and new info on the 2-in-1's dual-GPU setup helps add credence to Redmond's claims.
Rather than featuring a single graphics solution, the more expensive Surface Book models actually have dual-GPU setups: an iGPU complimented by a dGPU. The Surface Book's tablet portion houses Intel's integrated Iris Graphics by default, so this is the graphics solution you'll get with the $1500 and $1700 models.
Consumers who opt in for the $1900 and above flavors get a second discrete GPU that's housed in the attached keyboard base. The discrete solution is a Maxwell-based GPU with 1GB of GDDR5 VRAM that's been custom-built by NVIDIA. "The new GPU is a Maxwell-based GPU, and was designed to deliver the best performance in ultra-thin form factors such as the Surface Book keyboard dock," NVIDIA told Gizmodo. "With NVIDIA GeForce GPU powering this new hybrid, users will be able to speed up productivity apps such as Adobe Illustrator and Lightroom, and light PC gaming."
Not long ahead of the Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie launch and about a week before the Star Wars: Battlefront game launch, HP is releasing its Star Wars Special Edition Pavillion notebook.
It's a cheeky love letter of sorts to the hardcore Star Wars fan that packs in Star Wars sound bytes (like R2-D2 talking when you plug or unplug devices), a Death Star themed recycle bin icon that changes depending on how full it is, and a treasure trove of over 1,100 behind the scenes images, storyboards, artwork, audio selections, concept art, and more (which you can browse via the "Star Wars Command Center").
As for hardware, you can choose between a Skylake Core i5 or i7 CPU and Intel HD Graphics 520 or NVIDIA GeForce 940M7 GPUs, and set yourself up with as much as 12GB of RAM and 2TB storage. The display is a welcome 15.6'' and can be made touchscreen; an optical drive and B&O tuned speakers are also included; the battery will last you about seven hours. This is not the gaming laptop you are looking for, but if you're a Star Wars geek, it may be worth the $699.99 they're asking (an extra $39.99 if you want the themed wireless mouse and sleeve) over the $549.99 for the non-themed version.
The notebook is available for pre-order starting tomorrow, October 8; shipment starts November 8.
Microsoft has taken aim at Apple's Macbook line with its own 2-in-1 Surface Book, a 13.5-inch Windows 10 laptop that features higher-end specs while fitting right into the new Windows ecosystem.
The Surface Book is touted as the "world's most powerful, thinnest PC" and Microsoft boasts that "ounce for ounce its the fastest 13-inch laptop on the planet". The hybrid laptop can be docked or removed from the base to transform from a laptop or a tablet, but the GPU itself is located in the base so you'll need to keep it docked to tap its power.
Even with these claims Microsoft has been somewhat vague on the GPU specifics, saying that the Surface Book has an accelerated NVIDIA GeForce GPU with GDDR5 memory that's been tuned by the Xbox team. It sports Intel's latest 6th-generation Skylake Core i5 and i7 processors for beefy performance, and can utilize up to 16GB of RAM. There's word that a NVIDIA GeForce 940M could be the GPU that powers the Surface Book's base, but nothing's been confirmed just yet.
It looks like companies like ASUS and GIGABYTE will be working together in some regards, where it's being reported by Digitimes that Taiwanese notebook makers are now standardizing common components in order to reduce production costs.
Components like motherboards, heat sinks, hinges and the chassis itself will be standardized. Digitimes reports that by doing this, it will save notebook makers from rising Chinese labor costs. It also means we'll see very similar notebooks released next year, with vendors to adopt the same motherboards for 11- and 13-inch notebooks, with the same applied to 15- and 17-inch notebooks.
In order to keep up with the rest, MSI has announced the launch of its upgraded GT72 Dominator Pro, GE62/GE72 Apache Pro, GS60 Ghost Pro and GS70 Stealth Pro and prestige laptops, all complete with Intel 6th Generation Skylake processors and more.
For those looking for ultimate power, the GT72 Dominator will house an Intel Core i7-6820K processor, a 17.3" IPS screen, an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M, up to 64GB of DDR4 RAM and a Killer network plus more. All other models listed above will include Intel Core i7-6700HQ and other options ranging up to 16GB of DDR4 RAM and USB 3.1 Type-C.
Priced from $1499.99 for the GE62 models up to $2599.99 for the GT72 Dominator, it's obvious that MSI means business. If the internals aren't enough to entice you, MSI is further working with SteelSeries on selected models, providing backlit keyboards for those who like something a little flashy.
Keen on a laptop that is better than your desktop? Well, CYBERPOWERPC might just interest you with its new FANGBOOK 4 Xtreme, hosting within a plethora of amazing technology from Intel, NVIDIA, Samsung and more.
Sitting alongside an Intel Core-i7 6700K is a 250GB Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SSD, 16GB of DDR4 memory, an NVIDIA GTX 980m and more. Topped off with a cool programmable full color backlit keyboard, this XTREME G-SYNC 100 edition is the better of the two, further offering Bluetooth 4.1 and packaged with Windows Home 10 (64-bit) installed. Interested in all this power? Prepare to spend a minimum of $2155.
The lower model still features an Intel Core i5-6600k, an NVIDIA GTX 970M and a 250GB M.2 SSD so it's certainly nothing to scoff at. Expect to spend at least $1749 for this beast, with it also featuring an LED keyboard and Windows 10.
Brandishing 4GB of RAM, a full HD 1920 x 1080 IPS display, USB 3.0 and audio provided by Skullcandy, Toshiba's new Chromebook 2 comes in to stores during October 2015 at a nice price of $429.99 with the Intel Core i3 or $329.99 with the Intel Celeron.
If you're looking for some more goodies thrown in, Toshiba also offers up 100GB of Google Drive storage, 90 days of unlimited Google Play streaming and 12 in-air passes for Gogo internet. Other features include a 13.3-inch display, a weight of only 2.9 pounds and a lengthy 8.5 hour battery life across both models.
Also included is a SD Card slot, one USB 2.0 port and dual microphones, just in case you're sporting two voice boxes (or enjoy better microphone quality).
Alienware has just announced that it will be upgrading any of their customers who purchased a Haswell-powered gaming laptop with an upgrade to Intel's latest Skylake-based processors.
Dell/Alienware executive Frank Azor confirmed the news, taking to Twitter where he said: "Our new notebooks launched last week. If you buy one & a new CPU launches within the next 30 days, you get a frere upgrade ;) Badass". The new upgrade will be for consumers who have purchased a Haswell-powered Alienware laptop in the last 30 days, you'll receive an upgrade to a Skylake-powered machine. The upgrade applies to the Alienware 13, 15 and 17 models, with the option available to also upgrade to Windows 10.
We have seen some super exciting devices unveiled at IFA this year, with Toshiba rolling out a new 4K-capable laptop. Toshiba's new kit features a 12.5-inch display, with the Satellite Radius 12 featuring Intel's latest and greatest Skylake-powered Core processors.
Toshiba's new Satellite Radius 12 is just 0.6 inches (1.52cm) thick, and weighs just 2.9 pounds (1.31kg). This might not sounds like much, but when it packs a 4K-capable display, it should give you a smile. Toshiba has donned the new laptop with a brushed metal finish, with Engadget reporting that the feel of the laptop itself is a "prosumer-grade, professional-caliber device".
This machine is made for graphics work, where there's Technicolor-endorsed color-calibration to make sure your colors are near perfect. Inside, we have the aforementioned new Skylake-based Core processor, 8GB of RAM and at least 256GB of storage. If you don't want the 4K display, you can opt down for the 1080p display which should save some of those precious dollars off.
We also have Harman Kardon speakers, USB 3.1 and USB 3.0 ports, and it'll be made available with an infrared camera combination that will allow for facial recognition log-in.
The ASUS ROG G751 is one of the most powerful gaming laptops on the market, but the Taiwanese giant has just one-upped itself with the new GX700 gaming notebook. What makes it so special? Well, it's watercooled. Frickin' watercooled.
The ASUS GX700 features a 17-inch screen with a 4K resolution, which is a first. Inside, we have the new Intel K-series Skylake processor, and an unreleased NVIDIA GeForce GPU. The CPU itself is reportedly the Core i7-6820HK, which has a 2.7GHz base frequency and Turbo clock of 3.6GHz. There's an insane 64GB of DDR4 RAM inside, and as for the GPU, it's an unreleased GeForce chip with 2048 CUDA cores, a 1190MHz GPU clock, 128 TMUs, 64 ROPs, and 160GB/sec of memory bandwidth. The big difference between the G751 with its GTX 980M, is that the GTX 980M has 1536 CUDA cores, so this new GPU should be quite the jump.
ASUS includes a huge 'docking base' with the GX700 which is just a standalone watercooling solution. The notebook itself is very similar in its cooling design to the G751, but the watercooling base is a huge change. When attached, it can increase performance by as much as 80% according to ASUS. This is because gaming notebooks throttle the GPU speeds when it's not adequately cooled.