7.6 Awesome

Razer Blade 15 2018 is an attractive machine but it comes with some flaws. Yes, you will get a 144Hz refresh rate but the keyboard outlay is annoying for some people. The screen is smooth but it has below average battery life. The heat management needs some work as it tends to heat up during gameplay. Also, there is no support for Windows Hello security login. The TechSeer will give it a 7.6 out of a solid 10.

  • Design 8.3
  • Display 9.2
  • Gaming & Hardware 7.0
  • Battery Life 6.5
  • Value for Money 7.0

The slim and sleek Razer Blade 15 2018 gaming laptop is the only model that has been launched by Razer company this year. It has an attractive all-new design with latest Intel 8th gen processors, 16GB RAM and GTX 1060/1070 Max-Q graphics options. The 15.6-inch machine is packed in a 14-inch wide lid. Most of the brands are going for this strategy and redesigning their gaming laptops to give their users a more compact and portable experience. Razer has done the same with its Razer Blade 15 2018.

Razer Blade 15 2018 Review

Pros

  • Sleek and solid high-quality aluminum build
  • Chroma Keyboard with many options
  • 4K display option

Cons

  • Heats up pretty quick during gaming
  • Poor Battery Life
  • Annoying “Shift” key placement
  • No Windows Hello

Pricing

Razer Blade 15 2018 has a starting price of US $1,899 (£1,699, AU$2,899) which is almost equal to its last year Razer Blade 2017 model. The base model has 60Hz display, Nvidia GTX 1060 and 256GB SSD.

The high-end model would cost you somewhere around US$2,899 (about £2,199, AU$3,919). This seems pretty high but most of the high-end gaming laptops fall in the same price range. However, you will get a 144Hz display together with GTX 1070. MSI GS65 Stealth Thin has the same screen in this price range but it also offers almost twice more storage and memory.

The good news is that RazerBlade 2018 models are on sale now in the US, the UK, Canada, France, Germany, and China, with worldwide availability in the initial period of June. You can check out if Razer supports your country and whether you can order it from their website or not. Alternatively, you can check out Best Buy and Amazon in the USA and most of the countries. In Australia, you can also try Alliance Computers or Jb-Hifi.

Specs on Razer Blade 15 2018 we reviewed

  • CPU: 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-8750H (6-cores, up to 4.1GHz Turbo Boost)
  • Screen: 15.6-inch FHD (1,920 x 1,080) (144Hz matte display)
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 (dual-channel, 2,667MHz)
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB GDDR5 VRAM Max-Q design)
  • Storage: 512GB M.2 SSD (NVMe PCIe 3.0 x4)
  • Weight: 4.63 pounds (2.10kg)
  • Size: 13.98 x 9.25 x 0.68 inches (35.5 x 23.5 x 1.73cm; W x D x H)

Design

The sharp-looking and angular-shaped Razer Blade laptop with its Aluminum made weigh only 1.99 kgs which is actually very light for a gaming laptop. The company has made a few changes to its current Razer Blade 15 2018 model. The 15.6-inch screen has been crafted beautifully in a 14-inch wide lid keeping the webcam at the same place.

Razer Blade claims it is the world’s smallest 15.6-inch gaming laptop available in the market. This claim is quite right because the thickness of the laptop is either 16.8mm or 17.3mm depending on the specific model you have purchased. It also claims it to be the 15.6” edge-to-edge display model which is not that much true because, on edges, there is a 4.9mm bezel surrounding. The laptop is almost half a pound heavier compared to its competitors making it a bit denser.

Keyboard: The keyboard on Razer Blade 15 2018 is pretty okay. You can use it for routine assignments and gaming comfortably. But still, it’s not a mechanical keyboard like we found in Gigabyte Aorus X9. The ‘Shift’ key is in an awkward position. You can confuse it with ‘Up arrow’ key. But it’s not that bad if you are going to keep it for a long term. We picked it up after a week but if you change your keyboards very often then this laptop might not be for you. You also cannot see the “Fn” keys on the top row if you are using the Razer Blade 15 2018 in the dark but changing the button lights to different colors through its built-in software on specific keys will make your work easier.

Razer Blade 15 2018 comes with Chroma backlighting keyboard which is customizable with the help of Synapse software. Users have access to more than 16 million color options. They can easily customize by creating macros, personalizing the lighting keys, etc.

Trackpad: Trackpad has been finally changed on the Razer Blade 15 2018. It is now a clickpad design which works with Microsoft Precision drivers. There are no more physical buttons. There are but they are actually under the trackpad this time. The trackpad is a bit wide compared to other laptops and you can accidentally touch it during typing. This is one of the major issues we have observed in most of the laptops.

On the left side of Razer Blade 15 2018, you will find 2 USB 3.1. One the right side you will find a USB-C Thunderbolt 3 port, an HDMI, and a miniDisplay port.

Stereo speakers on the Razer Blade 15 2018 are much better than some the laptops out there. The reason is their positioning which is at the top instead of the bottom.

One thing which disappointed us is that Razer Blade 15 2018 lacks Windows Hello secure login options despite the fact that it has a perfect power button placement. With so much going on in this world, security is one of the top factors which companies should factor in when making these products.

Display

Even though the panel is only 1080p, Razer Blade 15 2018 has all the important qualities that gamers would need in their laptops. The 144Hz refresh rate is an ideal aspect in terms of the display which allows responsive gaming environment and high framerates. It has a matte coating anti-glare screen. Razer Blade 15 2018 has the highest refresh rate a gaming laptop can achieve at the moment.

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin offers the same with almost equal pricing. Sure there is no GTX 1080 but 144Hz refresh rate would compensate for this loss on both the laptops. Like its rival, it also offers 100% sRGB color gamut which means you will find accurate colors on the display.

  • Brightness: 310 nits
  • sRGB: 99%
  • ARGB: 76%

You can go for a 4K display if you want this laptop to watch shows and movies. It would cost you a bit more but its definitely worth it. We have not reviewed the 4K model but we are of the view that it will consume your battery faster. Hopefully, there wouldn’t be issues like what we found in the 4K version of MSI GS73 Stealth.

The quality of built-in 2MP webcam is just average but we did not find any glitches in it.

Hardware, Performance & Gaming

Razer Blade 15 2018 is an exceptional machine capable of playing most of the latest titles with its 8th gen Intel core processors and 16GB of RAM. In the graphics option, you can either choose between Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q or 1070 Max-Q.  It can easily handle up to 4K Ultra-HD gaming with the help of a Razer Core V2 external graphics box. It also supports VR gaming on Oculus Go, Oculus Rift, and HTC Vive Pro.

The Razer Blade 15 2018 is made for casual gamers. You can travel with this laptop unlike Alienware 17 r15 or ASUS ROG G703GI which would be too heavy. We played some high-end titles on this machine with GTX 1070 Max-Q and the results were impressive.

The Razer Blade 15 2018 performed a bit better compared to MSI GS65 Stealth Thin. Our benchmarking results were pretty satisfactory.

  • Geekbench 4: 4,955 (single-core)
  • Cinebench CPU: 1,013 points
  • PCMark 8 Home: 3,942
  • PCMark 8 Battery Life: 2 hours and 5 minutes

Overall,  the performance was impressive but the Razer Blade 15 2018 has some heat issues which we will discuss it in the next section.

Battery Life & Heat

The Razer Blade 15 2018 comes with built-in 70Wh rechargeable lithium-ion polymer battery. In the box, you will find a 165W power adapter.

Sadly, the machine cannot put on much juice on its own and you will be needing a charger shortly after an hour of gameplay. The Razer Blade 15 2018 performed poorly in the battery and heat section. It gave us around 2:30 hours of movie time in the testing. And around 1 hour on intense gameplay. This is pretty bad considering that more and more laptops are coming with great battery life. This should be the main concern of a company; to increase battery life while keeping the laptop portable.

We have seen laptops with almost half the price such as Dell Inspiron 7000, Dell G7 7588 or Xiaomi Mi Notebook Pro gave us around 3 hours on the same gameplay and 5-6 hours of movie time. The Razer Blade 15 2018 has a heating problem as well. Believe us when we say you cannot play games on your lap. You will be constantly needing a thermal cooler for intense gaming. We have seen the same issue in MSI GS73 Stealth. We hope the Razer company will take notice on its next upgrade.

Configuration

Razer Blade 15 2018 has 5 different 15.6-inch models which come at different prices, obviously. Have a look at the table to know further. You can also customize the laptop according to your needs in some regions.

Features 1 2 3 4 5
Price $1,899/

AU$2,530

$2,199/

AU$2,930

$2,399/

AU$3,197

$2,599/

AU$3,643

$2,899/

AU$3,863

Display 15.6”, FHD 60Hz 15.6”, FHD 144Hz 15.6”, 4K Touch

60Hz

Processor 8th Gen Intel Core i7 6 Core
Storage 256GB 512GB 256GB 512GB
Memory 16GB (upgradeable)
Dimensions 0.66 x 9.25 x 13.98 inch 0.68 x 9.25 x 13.98 inch

 

Verdict: RazerBlade 15 2018 Review

Razer is not new to the industry. The company has crafted a beautiful Razer Phone this year and its Razer Blade 15 2018 is an attractive machine but it comes with some flaws. Yes, you will get a 144Hz refresh rate but the keyboard outlay is annoying for some people. The screen is smooth but it has below average battery life. The heat management needs some work as it tends to heat up during gameplay. Also, there is no support for Windows Hello security login. All these flaws together with a high price tag may help you in deciding whether to opt for another machine or choose this one. The TechSeer will give it a 7.6 out of a solid 10.

 

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