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Aftershock APEX-15 review: Performance you can afford

By Koh Wanzi - 26 Jul 2018
Launch SRP: S$2576

Introduction

 

The APEX-15 comes with a mechanical keyboard and a 144Hz display. (Image Source: Aftershock)

Checking the right boxes

Gaming laptops have seldom looked more attractive than they are now. The advent of slim and light Max-Q designs with ultra-thin bezels means that now more than ever, you can enjoy a tantalizing combination of both performance and portability. Many of these laptops are also paired with 144Hz displays, so you can expect a really smooth gaming experience with up to an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q GPU in a slim package.

Unfortunately, many of these laptops will cost you well over S$3,000, so you’re paying a hefty premium for what they offer.

That’s something local startup Aftershock is trying to do differently with the APEX-15. The company has typically been known for its value-for-money approach, so this isn’t surprising.

The APEX-15 is Aftershock’s latest ultra-portable, and it combines a svelte, portable design with goodies like a 144Hz display and a mechanical keyboard. The latter is probably the highlight of the laptop, as it’s pretty rare to see a mechanical keyboard on such a thin chassis and at this price point.

Here’s an overview of the laptop’s specifications:

  • Intel Core i7-8750H processor (2.2GHz, 9MB L3 cache)
  • 16GB single-channel DDR4-2666
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB
  • 256GB PCIe SSD
  • 46.74Wh battery
  • 359 x 240 x 19.9mm
  • 1.95kg

The above will cost you just S$2,576, which is a fairly attractive price, all things considered. To put things in perspective, the Razer Blade with a 144Hz display and GeForce GTX 1060 6GB Max-Q costs S$3,299. It does come with a larger 512GB PCIe SSD, but that still doesn’t fully account for the over S$700 price difference between the two. What’s more, the Razer Blade doesn’t even come with a mechanical keyboard.

But are there trade-offs for the price of the APEX-15? Read on to find out.

8.0
  • Design 7.5
  • Features 8.5
  • Performance 7.5
  • Value 9
  • Mobility 7
The Good
Good value for money
Mechanical keyboard with optical switches
144Hz IPS-type display
Slim, light, and compact design
The Bad
Lackluster audio quality
Poor battery life
No Windows Precision Touchpad
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