bit-tech.net

Core i7 notebooks hit the market

Core i7 notebooks hit the market

The new laptops from Dell's Alienware brand are the first to use the mobile Core i7 processors, pipping rival MSI to the post.

Intel's Core i7 processors are finally making it to the notebook market, with manufacturers Dell and MSI racing each other to be the first to announce products based around the chip.

The winner by a nose was Dell, which CNet reports as having been the first company to officially announce a Core i7-based laptop under its Alienware branding. The 15" Alienware M15x - aimed firmly at gamers - comes with a Clarksfield-based Core i7 920XM processor running at 2GHz which is capable of switching to single-core mode and ramping up to 3.2GHz should you be running a single-threaded application you want to give plenty of horsepower.

Being a gaming laptop, the unit also comes with an nVidia GeForce GTX 260M GPU, which has 1GB of dedicated video memory. Add in the open to have a 500GB mechanical drive or 256GB SSD, up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, a slot-loading Blu-ray drive, and the usual host of inputs and ouputs - including both VGA and DisplayPort video outputs - and you're looking at a bit of beast measuring almost two inches thick and weighing a not-inconsiderable 4KG.

The runner up in the Clarksfield race is MSI, which Fudzilla reports as launching a pair of GT-series laptops featuring the new mobile i7 chips: the GT640 and GT740. Using the 1.6GHz Core i7 720QM and an nVidia GeForce GTS 250M, the pair are somewhat slower than their Alienware equivalent. This should, however, result in a lower price - especially as the units use up to 4GB of cheaper DDR2 RAM compared to the still-expensive DDR3 which populates the slots of Dell's M15x.

Although you get a slower system, there are advantages to MSI's offerings: at 1.55 inches thick, the GT740 is significantly more svelte than the Alienware offering, and the GT640 brings the size down still further to just 1.26 inches at its thickest point.

Do you believe that i7 has a place in notebook computers, or should manufacturers be concerned with performance per watt rather than just raw benchmark results? Can you see yourself splashing out on the Alienware for a portable gaming rig? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

17 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
proxess 24th September 2009, 16:00 Quote
i7 Centrino, where is it?
wuyanxu 24th September 2009, 16:12 Quote
how does it compare with i5 750 desktop?

looks to be quicker because of HT..... damn, my new platfrom got outpased by a laptop.
l3v1ck 24th September 2009, 16:29 Quote
I think the GPU's are the weak link here. Nvidia can call them what they like, but they're really just rehashed 8 series GPU's.
I'd rather wait until a real new high end mobile GPU comes along.
l3v1ck 24th September 2009, 16:30 Quote
Also, Display port is a poor output option. HDMI would be more useful.
Tim S 24th September 2009, 16:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by l3v1ck
I think the GPU's are the weak link here. Nvidia can call them what they like, but they're really just rehashed 8 series GPU's.
I'd rather wait until a real new high end mobile GPU comes along.

The mobile GPUs being used are DX10.1... the GTS 250M is a 40nm chip supporting DX10.1
M7ck 24th September 2009, 16:48 Quote
Kobalt has had an i7 notebook on sale for some time now. http://www.kobaltcomputers.co.uk/comanche_overview.php comes with the m280GTX GPU
hexx 24th September 2009, 17:36 Quote
hmm i hope that apple will update mbpros too, the best would be in january :)
faugusztin 24th September 2009, 18:07 Quote
@VadimWolf, there is a desktop i7 and mobile i7. The Kobalt notebook uses a desktop Core i7, which also have a desktop CPU power usage. It's like if you would have slapped GTX295 in laptop body and then said "everyone else sucks, we have GTX295 in our laptop".
M7ck 24th September 2009, 18:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
@VadimWolf, there is a desktop i7 and mobile i7. The Kobalt notebook uses a desktop Core i7, which also have a desktop CPU power usage. It's like if you would have slapped GTX295 in laptop body and then said "everyone else sucks, we have GTX295 in our laptop".

Ah:o I failed to read the thread correctly
HourBeforeDawn 24th September 2009, 19:53 Quote
"Fast, but no mention of battery life."

because there probably is none lol or the battery weighs more then the laptop itself lol.

Seriously in an everyday laptop no see no point, in those highend gaming/3d laptops where you are always plugged into a wall anyways, that makes sense and I also wonder how ridiculously loud it must be with the fans trying to keep that chip cool.
ZERO <ibis> 25th September 2009, 00:51 Quote
I think that new NVIDIA mobile gpus come out in about a month so it will be interesting to see if that is for one true and second if they are going to be available for these new laptops. Without a minimum of a 260m it is really a pointless buy...
smc8788 25th September 2009, 10:59 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim S
The mobile GPUs being used are DX10.1... the GTS 250M is a 40nm chip supporting DX10.1

Wait, I thought nVidia weren't bothering with full DX10.1 support, only certain (unnamed) features? Something along the lines of 'it's not worth it' or 'we couldn't be bothered'.
l3v1ck 25th September 2009, 11:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim S
Quote:
Originally Posted by l3v1ck
I think the GPU's are the weak link here. Nvidia can call them what they like, but they're really just rehashed 8 series GPU's.
I'd rather wait until a real new high end mobile GPU comes along.
The mobile GPUs being used are DX10.1... the GTS 250M is a 40nm chip supporting DX10.1
Although this is about a different laptop, the comments in this review are about the GPU.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Custom PC issue 74 p63
Gaming performance is provided by a single GTX260M chip. In fine Nvidia tradition, and in total contrast to its name, this isn't a new part at all - it's actually an overclocked version of the G92 cor, otherwise known as the 9800M GTX. This GPU originally debuted in the GeForce 8800GT desktop card in 2007.
Are you saying the mobile 250 is newer and better than the rehashed 260? (serious question)
I can't really believe that.
Also, no Nvidia card officially supports DX10.1. Their current cards only take a few unspecified features of 10.1, that;s why they're listed as 10.0 cards.
Cupboard 25th September 2009, 17:11 Quote
Interesting to have an I7 with DDR2 memory, the laptop versions must have more -or different- features to the desktop ones.
l3v1ck 25th September 2009, 18:19 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cupboard
Interesting to have an I7 with DDR2 memory, the laptop versions must have more -or different- features to the desktop ones.
I'd say "stupid" rather than "interesting". As DDR3 becomes more common than DDR2, the price of DDR2 will go up. Also I think I'm right in saying that DDR3 uses a lower voltage than DDR2. Surely on a laptop lower power consumption is important.
DaMightyMouse 29th September 2009, 11:40 Quote
4Kg ... Laptops!? NO THNX
Itbay 30th September 2009, 10:33 Quote
Really!!! I didn't know that it hits the market and really a good news.
Thanks
;)
Log in

You are not logged in, please login with your forum account below. If you don't already have an account please register to start contributing.



Discuss in the forums