Razer Hones Its Blade 17, 15 And 14 Gaming Laptops With AMD And Intel CPUs, RTX 3080 Ti GPU
Razer warned us at the end of last year that gaming laptops were about to get more expensive. One of the only consistent ways for gamers to get their hands on current-generation GPUs was to buy a whole system, so the laws (and sad realities) of supply and demand take hold. That hasn't stopped companies from announcing new models, however, and Razer is right in the middle of it all with its stylish and relatively lightweight Blade series. While the prices might be higher, the specs still look mighty tasty.
One of the more interesting combinations appears to be AMD's Ryzen processors and DDR5 memory. Razer's announcement for the updated Blade 14 includes that unique pairing, which comes courtesy of the new Ryzen 9 6900HX with Radeon 680 integrated graphics. These processors were inadvertently outed on Monday before CES really opened up, and ahead of AMD's own announcement. Shipping with a GeForce RTX 3060, 3070 Ti, or 3080 Ti notebook GPU, the Blade 14 packs a ton of horsepower into a modestly-sized package that's barely any thicker than the 2021 MacBook Pro 14. Displays range from 1080p at 144Hz with 100% RGB color coverage to 1440p at 165 Hz with 100% DCI-P3 capabilities. Both display options support FreeSync Premium.
To go with the impressive GPU and CPU, there's also 16 GB of non-upgradeable DDR5-4800 memory and a 1TB SSD stock. While the memory can't be pushed beyond 16 GB, the SSD can be upgraded to a 2TB option. Pricing on these is higher, as Razer warned, as it starts at $1,999 for the RTX 3060 model and makes its way up to $3,499 for the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti. It's not cheap, but it's small and fast, which should make up for it.
Next up the ladder is the Razer Blade 15. This one sports the brand new Alder Lake-H family of 12th generation Core i7-12800H from Intel, which has 14 cores in total including six Performance cores across most of the variants. Once again there is a GeForce RTX 3060, 3070 Ti, or 3080 Ti in these notebooks along with 16GB to 64GB of DDR5-4800 memory and a 1TB or 2TB SSD. Pricing on this bad boy starts down at $2,499, which gets a 15" 1080p display running at 360 Hz, or can be upgraded for a 1440p display that hits 240 Hz with G-Sync. That includes the GeForce RTX 3060, Core i7-11800H, 16 GB of DDR5 and a 1TB SSD.
There are no fewer than six different variants of the Blade 15. When we get to the heap, it certainly looks like something to behold: a Core i9-12900HK, GeForce RTX 3080 Ti, 32 GB DDR5 (upgradeable to 64 GB at the time of purchase), and a 2TB SSD. The display should be a monster, too: Ultra HD 3840 x 2160 with a 1 millisecond response time and a 144 Hz refresh rate. This kind of excess doesn't come cheap, of course, but all that separates you from the baddest 15" gaming notebook in town is $3,999.
Last but certainly not least is the Blade 17, which Razer is targeting towards a more professional audience. On top of all the internals, Razer has stuffed eight discrete speakers into this thing, claiming impressive audio capabilities. It's a laptop, though, so don't throw away your studio monitors just yet. This one has much the same hardware as the Blade 15: Core i7-12800H or i9-12900HK, GeForce RTX 3060 to 3080 Ti graphics, DDR5, and a fast PCIe SSD. There are a lot of different display options: 360Hz 1080p and 165Hz 1440p both with 100% sRGB coverage, or 240Hz 1440p and UHD 2160p at 144Hz.
Pricing on this one is pretty hefty, as expected: $2,699 to start and up to $4,299 for the Core i9-12900HK, RTX 3080 Ti graphics, 32 GB of DDR5, 2TB SSD, and the 144 Hz 4K display. Again, these things deal in excess when it comes to component choices so the pricing should not come as a surprise. These things will most likely keep up with the latest games for a long time to come, too.
Eager buyers won't have to wait too long. Razer will start taking pre-orders for the Blade 15 and 17 on January 25th, and the Blade 14 on February 10th. They'll all find their way to retail sometime during quarter one of this year.