It’s Razer, so obviously this is expensive. The new 14-inch Blade starts at $1800, and scales up from there if you want to upgrade the 128GB SSD to 256 or 512GB.
The full specs include next-gen Haswell Intel processors; 8GB onboard DDR3 RAM; Nvidia GTX 765M (2GB GDDR5 memory) & Intel HD4600 graphics; 14-inch 1600×900 display; and 3 USB 3.0 ports. It’s claiming six hours of battery life, but good luck with that; we’ll let you know what the number looks like under a gaming load once we get our hands on a review unit. Overall, there’s nothing unexpected in the specs, really. The real news comes from Razer’s well-made Blade sizing down to 14 inches.
There are other 14-inch gaming laptops, of course. But like the original 17-inch Blade, this one is a good deal slimmer than its predecessors. The Alienware M14x, for example, is 14 inches and 6.5 pounds (and comes with a 1.3-pound power block—Razer’s always had nice power supplies).
Comparing it to non-gaming laptops and ultraportables, the 14-inch Blade’s tininess holds up, more or less. The Blade weighs 4.135 pounds and is 16.8mm thick. The Aspire S7, one of our favorite ultrabooks, has a 1080p 13-inch screen is weighs just 2.86 pounds (11.9mm); the 13-inch Yoga is 3.4 pounds. A 13-inch MacBook Pro is 4.5 pounds (24.1mm), and the Retina 13 is 3.57 pounds (19mm). So it’s is brawny and trim—thinner than a retina MBP 13, even—but not exactly an ultralight.
Until now, anyone who wanted a nicely made and designed but still powerful laptop was mostly looking at a 15-inch MacBook Pro. Nothing wrong with that, really, but some people like Windows. And Windows manufacturers have been sticking their A-team designers on less robust ultrabooks for a few years now (and didn’t even have A-team designers before that, really).
Add in the fact that Razer’s keyboards have been great on the past two Blades, and that the 14-inch drops the gaudy Switchblade keys on the right-hand side, and this should be a pretty awesome Windows laptop, and the best small one with a real graphics card.
The old 17-inch Blade, now the Blade Pro, also got bit of a makeover. It’s mostly the same as last year’s updated model, and shares the same specs as the 14-inch, except for that bigger 1080p screen. But now its Switchblade macro keys are updated to work better with professional uses. To that end, it also comes stocked with full versions of nice apps like Photoshop, Premiere Pro, and Maya. It starts at $2300.
We’ll have full hands-on impressions shortly, so check back for that, but for now, going by the specs, this looks like it could be incredible. Assuming you’ve got the coin.