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Razer Blade 15 (9th Gen) review: Still the same sharp looker

By Koh Wanzi - 23 Sep 2019
Launch SRP: S$3839

Productivity & gaming performance

Test setup and performance

Here's a full list of the notebooks we're looking at:

  • Razer Blade 15
  • Acer Predator Triton 500
  • Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA
  • Lenovo Legion Y740

I've chosen to compare the Blade 15 against the other GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q laptops we've reviewed so far to give you an idea of how it stacks up against the immediate competition.

Test notebooks compared
  Razer Blade 15 (9th Gen) Acer Predator Triton 500 Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA Lenovo Legion Y740 (9th Gen)
  Razer Blade 15 (9th Gen) Acer Predator Triton 500 Gigabyte Aero 15 OLED XA Lenovo Legion Y740 (9th Gen)
Launch SRP
  • From S$3839
  • From S$3198
  • From S$3799
  • From S$3599
Processor and Chipset
  • Intel Core i7-9750H (2.6GHz, 12MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i7-9750H (2.6GHz, 12MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i7-9750H (2.6GHz, 12MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i7-9750H (2.60GHz, 12MB L3 cache)
Operating System
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10
System Memory
  • 16GB DDR4-2666 dual-channel RAM
  • 16GB DDR4-2666 dual-channel RAM
  • 16GB DDR4-2666 dual-channel RAM
  • 32GB DDR4-2666 dual-channel RAM
Video & Display
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  • 15.6-inch 1,920 x 1,080-pixel 240Hz IPS display
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  • 15.6-inch 1,920 x 1,080-pixel 144Hz IPS display
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  • 15.6-inch 3,840 x 2,160-pixel AMOLED display
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  • 15.6-inch 1,920 x 1,080-pixel 144Hz IPS G-Sync display
Storage
  • Samsung PM981 PCIe 256GB M.2 SSD
  • 512GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
  • Intel 760p 512GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
  • Western Digital PC SN720 NVMe 512GB M.2 SSD
  • Seagate Barracuda Pro 1TB HDD
Optical Drive
  • None
  • None
  • None
  • None
Connectivity
  • Intel Wireless-AX200
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Killer E3000 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet Controller
  • Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Killer Ethernet E2600
  • Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650 Wireless Network Adapter
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
  • Realtek PCIe GbE Family Controller
Audio
  • Built-in stereo speakers
  • Built-in stereo speakers
  • Built-in stereo speakers
  • Built-in Dolby Atmos speakers
I/O Ports
  • 1x Thunderbolt 3
  • 3x USB 3.1 (Gen 2) Type-A
  • 3x USB 3.1 (Gen 1) Type-A
  • 1x Thunderbolt 3
  • 1x HDMI 2.0
  • 1x Mini DisplayPort 1.4
  • 3x USB 3.1 (Gen1) Type-A
  • 1x Thunderbolt 3
  • 1x HDMI 2.0
  • 1x DP 1.4 & USB3.1 (USB Type-C)
  • 1x 3.5mm Headphone/Microphone Combo Jack
  • 1x UHS-II SD Card Reader
  • 1x DC-in Jack
  • 1x RJ-45
  • 1x USB 3.1 (Gen 2) Type-A
  • 2x USB 3.1 (Gen 1) Type-A
  • 1x Thunderbolt 3
  • 1x Mini DisplayPort 1.4
  • 1x HDMI 2.0
  • 1x RJ-45
  • 1x 3.5mm mic/headphone combo jack
Battery Type
  • 80Wh
  • 84Wh
  • 94.24Wh
  • 57Wh
Dimensions
  • 355 x 235 x 17.8mm
  • 358.5 x 255 x 17.9mm
  • 356 x 250 x 20mm
  • 361.42 x 267 x 22.45mm
Weight
  • 2.15kg
  • 2kg
  • 2kg
  • 2.2 kg

I ran the notebooks through the following benchmarks:

  • PCMark 10
  • AS SSD
  • 3DMark
  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
  • Far Cry 5
  • Metro Exodus
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider
  • Tom Clancy's The Division 2

 

How good is it for work?

PCMark 10 Extended evaluates systems based on workloads that can be categorized into four distinct groups, comprising Essentials, Productivity, Digital Content Creation, and Gaming. This includes tests such as app start-up times, web browsing, word processing and spreadsheets, photo and video editing, and rendering and visualization tasks. Finally, gaming performance is evaluated using the Fire Strike benchmark. 

As expected, performance in PCMark 10 was very similar for all the laptops. That said, there was still a 7 per cent difference between the Blade 15 and the Lenovo Legion Y740 in terms of overall scores, although I don't expect that this will amount to a tangible difference in real-world use. 

 

What's the storage performance like? 

The Blade 15 is equipped with a 256GB Samsung PM981 PCIe M.2 SSD. This is a smaller capacity than the other notebooks, which all come with a 512GB drive. If you want a 512GB SSD on the Blade 15, it'll cost you S$3,999. 

The Razer laptop fell somewhere in the middle of the pack in AS SSD for most of the benchmarks, although its sequential write performance could have been better.

 

How fast is it in games?

All the notebooks turned out very similar numbers again since they sport nearly identical configurations, so no one laptop really has a significant advantage. That said, the Blade 15 held its own against the competition, and I don't think you'll experience any performance issues with the laptop. Put simply, gaming performance is excellent. It'll run just about any AAA game at 1080p, although coming close to 240fps is another matter entirely. 

8.5
  • Design 9
  • Features 9
  • Performance 8.5
  • Value 7
  • Mobility 7.5
The Good
Impeccable build quality and attractive design
Bright and vivid 240Hz display
Large glass trackpad
Windows Hello IR webcam
Great gaming performance
The Bad
Runs noisy and hot
Non-standard right Shift position
No 144Hz display option for 9thGen Core CPU
Default storage capacity is small
Quite expensive
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