Keyboard and TouchPad
Nearly every laptop manufacturer has moved to the island-style keyboard, and GIGABYTE is no different. The keyboard on the P2542G is an excellent specimen. It's comfortable to type on and resulted in very few typos even at the start of using it.
There's quite a bit of flex near the semi-colon and arrow keys on the keyboard, but at the all-important gamer-used WSAD keys, there is nearly no flex. It appears that there is some reinforcement in this area, which results in a better gaming experience.
The full-size keyboard and number pad resulted in a very nice typing experience. I was able to quickly adjust to the system and utilize the keyboard at near my maximum typing speed, a testament to the quality of keyboard GIGABYTE has included on the P2542G.
The keys have a fairly smooth texture on the surface and appear to be perfectly flat. The keys have a smooth travel when typing, but seem to feature a slightly shorter travel distance. The tactile feel of the keyboard is also very good as the keys feature a nice resistance and a good feeling when they bottom out.
Unfortunately, GIGABYTE opted to not include a backlit keyboard on the P2542G, something that should really be included on any notebook system, especially one that is designed for gaming, as they are often utilized in a dark room.
The touchpad is a two-piece assembly. The touchpad portion and click buttons are two different pieces. The left and right click buttons are a single piece of plastic, which makes clicking towards the middle somewhat difficult. I'd prefer two separate and distinct buttons for left and right click.
The touch-sensitive area of the touchpad has small bumps over the surface, which sets the touch-sensitive area off from the rest of the system. It is also indented into the palm rest ever so slightly, but this is barely noticeable. The touchpad is centered on the system and not on the keyboard, so my wrist would occasionally move the cursor, though GIGABYTE seems to have something that prevented mouse input while typing.
GIGABYTE has fitted the P2542G with a 15.6-inch 1080p screen. The screen is of the LED backlit variety and features a matte coating so as to reduce glare. As with most matte implementations, it has a slightly grainy texture, though it's basically not noticeable when using the screen.
Viewing angles are rather impressive, since I believe the panel to be of the TN variety. Moving your head to the left or right results in a very slight change in color and brightness, even to extreme angles. Moving vertically, the panel doesn't fare quite as well, though it does better looking down from above than it does looking up from below.
Colors are vibrant and seemingly well reproduced. Of course, no TN panel will ever be able to compete with an IPS on viewing angle or color reproduction. There shouldn't be any surprises when looking at pictures on the screen, and games look good.