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|7th October 2009, 16:27||#1|
Join Date: May 2002
Intel's Core i7 for notebooks tested
Clearly, the current crop of mobile Core i7 CPUs is best suited for larger desktop replacement notebooks like the one we've tested. Even the entry-level Core i7-720QM has a 45W TDP, making it difficult to imagine these Clarksfield CPUs making their way into anything approaching thin-and-light designs. Instead, I suspect mobile Core i7s will be confined to mobile workstations, gaming systems, and larger laptops, leaving a nice swath of the market open for the dual-core Arrandale processors that should arrive next year.
As for Clevo's W870CU, my feelings are mixed. The system is obscenely powerful for something that weighs less than 10 lbs, and the fact that it can run the latest games at its native display resolution with full detail and gobs of antialiasing is impressive to say the least. The upgradeable MXM slot that promises support for next-gen Nvidia GPUs is also encouraging, and it's exactly the sort of insurance I'd want in a high-end gaming notebook. Except that this really isn't a notebook. Or a laptop. At best, it's a portable gaming rig that all but requires a wall socket—and it's an expensive one, at that.
Even the base W870CU configuration runs well over two grand. As tested, our system will set you back closer to $3,500, which is more than enough to build a couple of desktop Lynnfield rigs, complete with 24" monitors. Heck, for that kind of money, you could put together several dual-core Mini-ITX gaming rigs that would actually deliver better frame rates at higher resolutions. Those systems wouldn't be terribly cumbersome to throw into a trunk for a trip to the next LAN party, either.
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