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BEST GAMING LAPTOP IN 2020!

  This is the best gaming laptop I’ve testedso far in 2020! It uses the same Tongfang chassis as the ElektronicsMech-15 G3 and XMG Neo 15. This is the Infinity W5, as sold in Australiaand New Zealand markets, so let’s find out what makes this machine so impressive. My unit has an 8 core Intel i7-10875H processor,Nvidia RTX 2070 Super graphics, and that’s full power, no Max-Q here, 32gb of memoryin dual channel, a 15.6” 1080p 240Hz screen, and a 1TB NVMe M.2 SSD. It’s got gigabit ethernet, WiFi 6 and Bluetooth5, but there are a few different configurations available. XMG also sent me the same chassis with samespecs, so I’ve got 2 to look at. The top lid is a matte black aluminium alloy,and the interior is the same, overall build quality feels excellent and there are no sharpcorners or edges anywhere. 

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The weight is listed at 2.1kg, though minewas closer to 2.2kg. With the 230w power brick and cables for chargingthe total rises to more than 3kg or 6.75lb. The dimensions are quite good for a 15 inchgaming laptop with this level of hardware inside, it’s not too thick, and this smallerfootprint allows for 8mm thin screen bezels on the sides. The 15.6” 1080p 240Hz screen has a mattefinish and viewing angles looked fine. We have the option of using optimus, or swappingto integrated or discrete graphics only through the BIOS, but there’s no G-Sync here. Here are the screen response time resultsfor the 1080p 240Hz screen in my unit. You can check the link in the descriptionfor an explanation on what all of these numbers mean, but basically the average grey to greyresponse time is around 5ms. 

I’ve tested the screen with the Spyder 5,and got 97% of sRGB, 71% of NTSC, 76% of AdobeRGB and 75% of DCI-P3. At 100% brightness I measured the panel at294 nits in the center with a 710:1 contrast ratio, so quite good results overall, contrastaside. Backlight bleed wasn’t too bad, there weresome patchy spots in my unit but I didn’t notice this while viewing darker content,but this will vary between laptops and panels. There was some screen flex when intentionallypushing it which seems to be due to the thinner lid despite the metallic build, but this wasnever an issue and overall the lid and hinges felt quite sturdy. It opened up easily with one finger, demonstratinga somewhat even weight distribution, no issues using it on my lap. As a result of the thinner bezels, the 720pcamera is found below the screen.

 It’s got infrared for Windows hello support,but you have to tilt the screen back for it to actually see you. So we’ve got the nose cam down the bottomwhich can be adjusted by tilting the screen back to get yourself in frame. Here’s what typing on the keyboard soundslike, and this is what it sounds like if we set the fan to max speed, so you can stillhear me ok over the fan. The mechanical keyboard has per key RGB backlightingwhich illuminates all keys and secondary key functions. It also has project aurora support, so there’sa lot of customization that can be done. Brightness can be adjusted between 4 levelsor turned off with the F6 and F7 keys, or through the software. The keyboard looks a little cramped, but thebuttons aren’t small and I had no problems using it. It felt great to type with and has 2mm keytravel, but due to it being mechanical it was on the louder side to type on, here’show it sounds. There’s a power button above the keyboardto the right, as well as another button to swap between the three performance modes. There’s also what appears to be an air ventup the back, at first I thought it might be speakers but I couldn’t hear any soundswith my ear next to it. Keyboard flex was quite minimal when intentionallypushing down hard, it felt very sturdy compared to most other laptops. The glass precision touchpad clicks down anywhere,feels very smooth to the touch, and for the most part works great. If you lightly tap it it seems to move andmake a noise without actually being the full click, I noticed it occasionally in both myunits but didn’t see it as a deal breaker personally. You can double tap the top left corner toquickly disable it, and doing so will turn on a light to let you know it’s off. Fingerprints show up easily on the matte blackinterior and lid, but as a smooth surface they’re fairly easy to clean with a microfibercloth.

 On the left from the back there’s a kensingtonlock slot, air exhaust vent, USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A port, and separate 3.5mm mic and headphonejacks. On the right from the front there’s a fullsize SD card slot, two USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A ports and another air exhaust vent. The back has a couple of air exhaust ventstowards the corners as well as the rest of the I/O, which from left to right includesa Type-C Thunderbolt 3 port, HDMI 2.0 output, gigabit ethernet and power input. I confirmed that both the HDMI and Type-Cports connect directly to the Nvidia graphics, the laptop cannot be charged over Type-C however. In order to actually use the ethernet portthough, I had to lift up the back of the machine as I wasn’t able to push the tab down withthe cable with the laptop on the desk. There’s a light bar on the front which canbe customized through the software or turned off. Underneath there are heaps of air intake ventsat the back, much nicer to see after the recent ASUS TUF testing. 

Getting inside involves taking out 11 phillipshead screws of the same size, the panel basically came right off so it’s very easy to getinside. Inside we’ve got the two NVMe M.2 slotstowards the left in the middle, two memory slots in the center, WiFi 6 card to the right,and battery down the bottom. Heatpipes also appear to cover VRM which isnice to see. Here’s what that bottom panel looks like,so there is a piece of metal that acts as a heatsink for the two M.2 slots. The speakers are found on the left and righttowards the front, and I thought they sounded pretty good for a laptop, above average withsome bass and still clear at higher volumes, which can get quite loud when maxed out, andthe latencymon results were looking decent too. This laptop is powered by a 6-cell 94Wh battery. I’ve tested with the screen brightness at50%, background apps disabled and RGB lighting off. The result while playing the witcher 3 wasone of the best so far, however the frame rate was 22 FPS and not hitting the default30 FPS cap, so that may explain why.

 Outside of gaming in the YouTube playbacktest it was possible to get an hour with Optimus enabled. As we’ve got the option of changing theGPU in use in the BIOS, I’ve retested the YouTube playback test in the available modes. We’re able to boost battery life in theiGPU only mode, as it’s not possible for any calls to go out to the Nvidia graphics,while using the Nvidia GPU only resulted in much worse battery life. I don’t normally test how long it takesto charge, but I did notice that this laptop seemed to take a long time, after 3 hoursit was only 80% charged. Next let’s get into the thermal testing. The Gaming Center software lets you selectbetween different performance modes, which from lowest to highest are office mode, gamemode, and turbo mode in the Infinity unit, while XMG label them as balanced, enthusiastand overboost so this will vary. Unlike many other 10th gen laptops, undervoltingworks fine and can also be controlled in the BIOS, though neither of my units had undervoltingor overclocking done by default, but that could easily change with updates. Thermals were tested with a 21 degree Celsiusambient room temperature. Idle results down the bottom were lookingfine. Worst case stress tests were done with theAida64 CPU stress test with CPU only checked and the Heaven benchmark at max settings atthe same time, and gaming was tested with Watch Dogs 2 as I find it to use a good combinationof processor and graphics. The CPU would thermal throttle at 90 degreescelsius which was happening any time turbo mode was engaged, and personally I preferhaving a limit like this rather than just letting it run up to say 100 like other machines,especially when performance is still good. No GPU thermal throttling was ever observed. These are the clock speeds in the same tests. 

The GPU doesn’t really change outside ofoffice mode as no overclocking is done with the different modes in the Infinity W5 versionof this chassis, but the CPU performance can vary a fair bit depending on the mode selected. Undervolting was able to improve performancefrom turbo mode as CPU thermal throttling was the limit in these tests, and this iswhy the cooling pad further helped. Remember I’ve got the 8 core processor here,so 4GHz over all 8 cores in both heavy stress test or gaming workloads sounds pretty reasonableto me given the 90 degree cap. Regardless of which mode was used, the RTX2070 Super had no issues running up to its 115w limit. CPU power is limited to 25 watts in officemode, then in game mode PL1 raises to 120 watts, however in game mode the thermal throttlecap of the processor seems to be set to 85 degrees which is what prevents this goingfurther. 

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