6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

First Look: A portable gaming PC that deserves a better screen

About Video Transcript

First Look: A portable gaming PC that deserves a better screen

2:20 /

The Maingear Pulse 14 gaming laptop is easy on the wallet, hard on the eyes.

I'm Dan Ackerman and we are here taking a look at the Maingear Pulse 14. This is another one of a reasonably long line of midsize gaming laptops that we've seen this year. We've seen examples from Alienware, Origin, and Razer. Maingear is another boutique PC maker and it's really cool ever seeing people making gaming laptops with 13- and 14-inch screens rather than just the big 17- or 18-inch monitors that we're used to. Of course, there are some trade-offs involved. If you get a system from a boutique PC maker like Maingear or Origin, these guys can't make their own custom bodies from scratch the way Alienware, which is owned by Dell, does. They basically use an off-the-shelf body which is what you see here and they customize it. In this case, they do an actually very nice color back of the lid. This is done in automotive painting. You're getting different colors. It's got some really great kind of automotive sparkly detail to it. Otherwise, it looks like a fairly standard chunky 14-inch laptop and the keyboard and touchpad are really not designed for gaming. I'm hoping that you're going to hook up an external mouse and maybe plug the whole thing into a monitor and use your own keyboard with it as well. Now, this guy, configuration-wise, is just around $2000, but you can get it down to about $1250. And for that $1250, you still get the same Core i7 CPU and Nvidia 760M Graphics card that we have in a more expensive version which is great. The big letdown here, however, is the screen. It is a 1600x900 screen. It's not a full 1920x1080 screen which most of the other midsize gaming laptops and all of the larger gaming laptops have. You really do wanna be able to play in full HD. In order to do that here, you have to do, what I did a lot of time which is take an HDMI output to a larger monitor and then you hook up a mouse and a keyboard and you're basically just using the hardware here. If this system had a better display, it loses a lot of detail with off-axis viewing, although I like that it's kind of a matte display, not over the glossy. If you can't get past that display, you can certainly save a couple bucks over some of these other systems and still get those high-end components, but that's if you're gonna plug it into a monitor all the time. As a standalone gaming laptop, I'd say the 1600x900 display really turned me off. I'm Dan Ackerman and that is the Maingear Pulse 14.

New releases

Aston Martin Vulcan: Exclusive first look at this 800+ bhp, V12 track monster
4:20 March 2, 2015
Aston Martin is entering the hypercar race with the Vulcan, a limited edition track only special. 24 of the 800bhp+ hypercars will...
Play video
Tomorrow Daily 137: HTC Vive, playing music with mold, 3D-printed snacks and more
27:23 March 2, 2015
On today's show, Ashley and Producer Logan discuss HTC's new VR headset, listen to a pianist play music with a fungus, and debate the...
Play video
6 Spotify tips and tricks
1:15 March 2, 2015
Learn some new tricks to make the most of Spotify desktop and mobile apps.
Play video
Samsung Galaxy S6's missing features, split-personality problem
2:55 March 2, 2015
Is Samsung afraid to commit to one Galaxy S6? The two new models are the same, except for the screen -- and both remove features fans...
Play video
Top 5: Car tech game-changers
3:05 March 2, 2015
Brian Cooley lists the top five ways electronics have made your car better.
Play video
Blackphone+ is an encrypted tablet
1:25 March 2, 2015
We get to grips with Silent Circle's Blackphone+, a tablet built to foil hackers and spies.
Play video
Blackphone security-conscious smartphone gets a sequel
1:17 March 2, 2015
Silent Circle is showing off its 5.5-inch Blackphone 2, which offers encrypted texts and video calls.
Play video
Huawei's MediaPad X2 is a vast phablet
0:54 March 2, 2015
A 7-inch display and octa-core processor lurk in this huge, beautiful tablet. Or is it a phone? It's both!
Play video