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Many of the gaming laptops we've seen since Nvidia started shipping its RTX graphics cards earlier this year have been thin and relatively light -- but not all of them. Origin PC's Eon17-X is a huge 17.3-inch model like the gaming laptops of yore, though instead of being disappointingly underpowered, the Eon17-X is essentially a desktop with a screen attached.
Starting at $2,434 (though its price fluctuates with component prices), the Eon17-X base model has a desktop-class six-core Intel Core i5-9600K and a 6GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060. The config I tested had Origin's top offerings for the model: An Intel Core i9-9900K and the Nvidia RTX 2080 GPU. It's a powerful combo that achieved some of the best frame rates we've seen to date. (It was predictably bad on battery life, barely crawling across the two-hour mark.)
These are also the same components found in the Alienware Area-51m we reviewed. While their other parts might differ in brand or minor specifications here and there, they essentially performed the same in our tests. They each come in around the $4,000 mark when similarly configured as well. It's in design and features that these two really differ.
|Price as reviewed||$4,072|
|Display size/resolution||17.3-inch, 144Hz 1,920x1,080 display|
|CPU||3.6GHz Intel Core i9-9900K|
|Memory||16GB DDR3 SDRAM 3,200MHz|
|Graphics||Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 8GB|
|Storage||500GB NVMe PCIe SSD; 2TB hybrid HDD|
|Networking||802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 5.0|
|Operating system||Windows 10 Home (64-bit)|
The massive 17.3-inch desktop replacement is based on a P775TM1-G gaming laptop from OEM/ODM PC manufacturer Clevo and doesn't look any different than the past few versions of it. Origin takes it, puts in the components you want, tests the hell out of it to make sure it runs at peak performance and then backs it with personalized service and support that includes lifetime free labor and a year of part replacement. Origin will also paint it for you (for a price, naturally), so the outside is just as customized as the inside.
Regardless of what's inside the laptop, the system itself is generic-looking and it will cost you a minimum of $150 if you want it in a color other than red, white or black. The plastic body has a very sturdy feel to it, but at 9.3 pounds (4.2 kg) for the configuration I tested, it's unlikely you'll be tossing it around like you would a thin-and-light. Plus, the body measures a sizable 16.4 by 1.6 by 11.6 inches (40.6 by 4.1 by 29.5 cm). After all, putting a desktop processor in a laptop body requires space not only for the components, but for keeping them cool.
Helping keep temps in check are two large fans that seemingly never stop blowing when you do anything more demanding than opening a web browser. The fans are loud, too, so you'll either have to pump up the volume or pop on a headset. The speakers sound remarkably good, but the integrated audio includes a two-in-one jack for headphones or S/PDIF optical output and there are also separate line-in and -out jacks.
Actually, one of the nicest parts about the design is the number of connection options. Out of the back is the power jack along with two Mini DisplayPort 1.3 and one HDMI output. On the sides you find two USB 3.1 (gen 2) Type-C ports -- one with Thunderbolt 3 -- and four full-size USB 3.0 ports as well as Gigabit Ethernet and an SD card reader.
Basically, it's enough to easily turn this into a desktop without resorting to any docks or adapters. For those times when you're not a desk, the 17.3-inch full HD IPS matte display with G-Sync and 144Hz refresh rate is excellent. Origin also offers a 4K UHD 3,840x2,160-pixel IPS G-Sync matte display if you want the extra resolution.
Gaming laptop performance has gotten considerably better in the past few years. That said, gaming desktops still hold not only a performance advantage, but an upgradeability edge as well. The Area-51m does allow you to update both the CPU and GPU in the future giving it a leg up on the Eon17-X and others.
Origin, however, does offer free labor on RAM and storage upgrades if you send the system in. Origin PC, in addition to its stellar reputation for hands-on support, offers a much wider array of configuration options in its system-building tool, so you should be able to hit your dream specs pretty closely from the start. This now includes Corsair components since it acquired Origin PC earlier this month.
The Origin PC Eon17-X turned in some of the best gaming performance we've seen from a laptop. It has a bounty of ports and connections and is available with a choice of three desktop processors, top-end mobile graphics, up to 64GB of memory and up to four storage drives: Easily enough to replace a desktop. Hell, even the speakers sound decent. And you get personalized service and support. That said, it's dull-looking, big and heavy like a small gaming desktop, battery life is short and keeping it cool means you'll hear the constant whir of its fans.
|Alienware Area-51m||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 3.2GHz Intel Core i9-9900K; 32GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080; 1TB SSD + 1TB HDD 5,200 RPM|
|Acer Predator Triton 900||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.6GHz Intel Core i7-9750H; 32GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,666MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080; 1TB SSD|
|Asus ROG Zephyrus GX701||Microsoft Windows 10 Pro (64-bit); 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-8750H; 24GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,666MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 with Max-Q Design; 1TB SSD|
|MSI GS75 Stealth 8SG||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-8750H; 32GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,666MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 2080 with Max-Q Design; 512GB SSD|
|Origin PC Eon17-X (2019)||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 3.6GHz Intel Core i9-9900K; 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 3,000MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080; 500GB SSD + 2TB HDD|
|Razer Blade Pro 17||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.6GHz Intel Core i7-9750H; 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,666MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 with Max-Q Design; 512GB SSD|