The Gigabyte Aorus 17G is an absolute monster of a gaming laptop. It’s a perfect example of what a next-generation desktop alternative should be with its rigid construction and complete feature set.
Quick Review: Gigabyte Aorus 17G Gaming Laptop
The gaming laptop used to be Desktop replacement laptops such as the Gigabyte Aorus 17G. It used to be a component that could power the best PC games; you would have to say goodbye to portability entirely. Quick forward to 2020, and more gaming laptops than ever are finding ways to fit much power in a compact package, and, for example, you only have to look at the newly released Asus Zephyrus G14.
Nevertheless, there are still thick gaming laptops like the Aorus 17G coming out all the time, even in the face of compact gaming laptops being more and more viable. The principle is to provide a gaming laptop with desktop-level output without sacrificing much space to get a bulky gaming tower.
The strength, too, is undoubtedly provided by the Gigabyte Aorus 17G. This thing is more than sufficient for thoroughly chewing through any game you throw at it, packed with the new Intel Comet Lake processors and the latest Nvidia GeForce RTX Super mobile GPUs.
The Gigabyte Aorus 17G is a pricey piece of kit, setting you back $2,299. This price tag generally falls within what we might consider a laptop to be priced at in this class. For equivalent hardware, the Alienware Area-51m, our gold standard for this sort of laptop, will set you back $3,244.
With that high price tag, though, you get a great deal of control. Right now, the Intel Core i7-10875H is one of the most powerful laptop chips on the market and combined with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super. There’s no game on the 240Hz 1080p display that won’t run like a dream to achieve this quality of efficiency; of course, compromises have to be taken elsewhere. This is a bulky piece of machinery. It would help if you only forgot about ever taking this laptop on the subway with you. This isn’t the giant laptop we’ve ever used, but it’s also far from being an ultra-portable laptop.
- CPU: 2.3GHz Intel Core i7-10875H (16MB cache, up to 5.1GHz)
- Graphics: Nvidia GeForce – RTX 2070 (Super Max-Q) 8GB GDDR6
- RAM: 16GB DDR4 (2.9MHz)
- Screen: 17-inch Full HD, IPS (240Hz)
- Storage: 512GB SSD (PCIe)
- Ports: 3 x USB 3.1 Gen1, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI-out, 1 x Thunderbolt 3, 1 x UHS-II SD Card Reader, 1 x Mic-in, 1 x Headphone-out, 1 mini DisplayPort 1.4
- Connectivity: LAN E2600 (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.0
- Weight: 2.7kg
- Size: 15.9×10.8×1.0 inches
Starting at $1,799, the Gigabyte Aorus 17G is available now. For an entry-level model, that is high, but the price goes up from there. The configuration we checked is listed on the right, and you’ll be looking at a price tag of $2,299 if that’s what you want to pick up.
You can have it packed with up to an Intel Core i7-10875H, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Super in Max-Q, and 16 GB RAM if you want to go all-out with the Gigabyte Aorus 17G. This setup for overkill will cost $2,799.
Bear in mind, however, that this laptop is very flexible. You can pretty quickly open the back of the laptop, where you’ll find two storage M.2 slots, as well as 2 DDR4 slots where you can upgrade your RAM. If a more powerful GPU or CPU is enticing, the option to cut back on your primary storage and memory is fully open to you, and why wouldn’t it be?
Design: Gigabyte Aorus 17G Gaming Laptop
It is instantly clear that the Gigabyte Aorus 17G is designed like a truck. The frame is entirely made up of CNC Aluminum, and it feels like a truck will withstand driving over it, but we don’t advocate trying it out.
And when we put all of our considerable weight behind it, the keyboard deck won’t budge. Even the airflow above the keyboard is the stiffest we have ever seen. The display is the only part of the building with any form of flex, and even that is essentially less than any other laptop we’ve ever used.
This comes with a bit of extra weight, of course. It’s just an inch thick laptop, but it weighs 5.95 lb. This is undoubtedly a gaming laptop that can be punished much; the build quality is top-notch. We’re not going to try to smash it or something.
However, aesthetically, this laptop is likely to be a little divisive. Gigabyte needs people to think of a sports car when they look at it, but we’re not so sure it gets through. It is an excellent design, but the large vents disrupted by the massive power button at the top of the keyboard look awkward. The monochromatic nature does many favors for the laptop, as visual obstacles to draw users out of the game are very little in the way.
And it has to be said that these hardcore gaming aesthetics have many laptop replacement systems that sound pretty cliche in 2020. The Gigabyte Aorus 17G manages to prevent this. Yeah, the keyboard has RGB lighting, but it looks like a pretty brilliant piece of equipment when you turn it off—minus the bulk.
This implies that this lack of gamer flair will attract creative staff who need this performance level for video editing. Fortunately, they won’t want to be expandable, too. The Aorus 17G is wholly equipped with 3 USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, a Thunderbolt 3 port, HDMI, Ethernet, dedicated input and output audio jacks, as well as a full-size SD card reader. If you’re a creative person who’s sick of living a dongle of life, and you want something with many ports, you could be into something.
Creative people would also fall in love with the screen. Although it is just a 1080p screen, it covers 72% of the NTSC color gamut, with each panel earning Pantone’s certification. And frankly, this leads to one of the best-looking 1080p displays on a laptop we’ve ever seen. The accuracy of color is also not only for creators-games look phenomenal.
In our lives, we’ve probably run the Metro Exodus benchmark a thousand times, but we still observed the whole story play out on this laptop because it looked so darn beautiful.
A blazing quick 240Hz refresh rate correlates to the elegance. If you ever played anything like Devil May Cry 5 at 140 fps, we don’t know, and we just did, and wow. The color precision matched with the movement of the fluid was a dream come true.
Check out: Alienware M15 R3 Gaming Laptop: Review
However, the speakers don’t hit the same degree of excellence. Bottom-mounted speakers are an absolute scourge in the laptop setting, and the Aorus 17G is guilty of that. Sound quality may worsen, but with this kind of price tag, we shouldn’t get dull, uninteresting sound while we’re playing games on a laptop. And no, we will not quit moaning about bottom-mounted speakers, especially with a laptop on the top of the system with so much extra room.
And with a full keyboard, with a full-sized number pad to boot, the extra room is there. The keyboard is also great. It’s electronic, with some of the most convenient switches on a laptop we’ve ever used. They are Omron B3KL switches with a low-profile design that enables them to respond similarly to a conventional Cherry MX switch without needing a keyboard that sticks out of the chassis.
The webcam, however, has to be the most baffling design option here. Although the bezels surrounding the display are small, they leave no room for a webcam. Instead, the power button on the bottom of the laptop is right above it. This implies that this unattractive chin cam is what you get. Most people are not the most flattering angle, and we doubt that even folks who want to do some casual streaming on Twitch would wish to use this one. With one of the best webcams, our recommendation would be to go.
Check out: Razer Blade 15 Gaming Laptop (2020): Review
Performance: Gigabyte Aorus 17G Gaming Laptop
With the new Intel Comet Lake-H processors and Nvidia GeForce RTX Super GPUs, the Gigabyte Aorus 17G is the first gaming laptop we’ve looked at, and, well, we’re thrilled. The Core i7-10875H is packed with eight cores, 16 threads and can increase to 5.1 GHz up. It is a stable specification for a laptop, which certainly reflects the Aorus 17 G’s efficiency.
The Core i7-10875H in Cinebench is around 24 percent faster than the Core i7-9750H, a relatively crucial generational change, although possibly due to the additional two cores. The Ryzen 9 4900HS in the Asus Zephyrus G14 falls about 12 percent short, but that is a higher CPU class. With the Ryzen 7 4800H, we have not had a chance to try something.
However, this laptop has substantial single-core results, scoring 1,242 points in the Geekbench 5 single-core test, compared to the Zephyrus G14’s 1,202 points. This isn’t an enormous lead, but it’s still a lead.
The single-core performance contributes to some extraordinary gaming performance. The laptop can get an incredibly high 144 fps with low Metro Exodus settings, speaking to the processor’s power. Of course, the RTX 2070 Super does heavy work here, too, and with Ultra settings, we could get 50 fps in the same game.
In a much less popular game like Devil May Cry 5, we could get a steady 140 fps with everything maxed out. The high frame rate makes the fast action feel even more frenetic, making the game feel fantastic.
Essentially, the Aorus 17G will have the horsepower to chew through everything you try to throw at it, whether you’re looking for something that can play the latest and greatest PC games or whether you want something that can crank through 4K video at the premiere.
Check out: Asus ROG Zephyrus M15 Gaming Laptop: Review
The Gigabyte Aorus 17G battery life is much more stable than it should be. Gaming laptops like this typically give only a few hours of battery life for Thicc. These are devices typically built to remain in your house or only transported between several wall outlet locations.
Yet, we must confess, we were astonished. The Gigabyte Aorus 17G gaming laptop lasted a whopping 5 hours and 8 minutes during the PCMark 10 battery test and lasted 6 hours and 27 minutes during our movie test. Looking closely at the Alienware Area-51m, the laptop only got 2 hours and 26 minutes in our movie test with its last-generation hardware. Thus, this laptop lasts almost three times longer.
Now, you shouldn’t allow this to last all day away from the charger with just 6 hours of battery life. But, if you wish to use it on your lap while watching a movie or something in the living room, that option will be fully open to you.
We’re not at a stage where bulky gaming laptops have an all-day battery life, but, amazingly, we’re this close at all.
Features and apps
Surprisingly, on the Gigabyte Aorus 17G, there’s very little in the way of bloatware. The only programs introduced by the manufacturer are Nahimic, which handles audio, a beneficial Smart Backup software, and the most notable of the bunch is the Aorus Control Center.
You can get a quick look at your hardware’s status through this app, adjust settings like the Win Key lock quickly, and even configure the device’s lighting.
There is software like this on almost every gaming laptop on the market, but it gets things done and is not as painful to use as others looking at Alienware.
There isn’t anything else to say, which is a positive thing about the apps here. Nothing was bogging down the system; nothing made us want to jump to disable the system settings quickly.
Check out: Alienware m17 R4 Gaming Laptop (2021): Review