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CES 2012: Hands on with the Razer Blade

Sections: CES, Computers, Gaming, Laptops, Trade Shows

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Razer BladeGaming peripheral manufacturer Razer decided to get into the PC making game last year at CES with it’s prototype Switchblade, and this year it has the first of those efforts to show off on the show floor. While visiting the Razer booth I was able to get some hands on with the Blade, which was powering a majority of the stations at the booth.

With a 17-inch screen the Razer Blade manages to be both thinner and lighter than a MacBook Pro, but it still capable of playing high-end games. Many of the stations were playing Firefall, the upcoming free-to-play shooter MMO, and it played without any sort of problem on the client side. With a Core i7 CPU and an Nvidia GeForce GT 555M 2GB GPU it shouldn’t be a surprise if it can play most modern games fairly well.

The Other draw for the Blade is the SwitchBlade UI which has 8 programmable buttons and a glass LCD panel to the right of the keyboard. The panel can be a touchpad, but it can also be used for other functions. One of the programmable buttons switches the panel into a web browser which works smoothly, though it is fairly small. It could be great for checking information from a website while playing a game or doing something else on the main screen. My one problem with the LCD panel is that it didn’t feel all that great as a mousepad. The buttons below it for left- and right-click didn’t seem to really click, and when they did I found the laptop right-clicking when I want to left-click. Moving around the cursor wasn’t too enjoyable either, though it seems like something you’d get used to overtime. Or maybe I’m just spoiled with a MacBook Pro trackpad so others just feel sort of disappointing by comparison.

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