Less than two years ago, Razer entered the notebook market with a 17-inch notebook called the Blade. It was slim for a 17-inch notebook, but let down by its dated specifications. Quick to learn, Razer capitalized on the recent launch of Intel’s new fourth-generation Core processors by refreshing its notebook lineup with a new ultraslim and ultra-portable 14-inch model, called the Blade, while renaming its 17-inch as the Blade Pro.
Decked entirely in Black and with the bright green Razer logo emblazoned on its lid, the Blade is easily the best-looking and slimmest notebook in our shootout. Razer goes as far as to call its new 14-inch Blade the world’s thinnest gaming notebook, and it is hard to disagree. The Blade is just 16.8mm thick, which is comparable to the thickest point of the MacBook Air.
Despite being so thin, it feels solidly constructed, thanks mainly to its full aluminum chassis, which helps keeps it light yet strong. In terms of weight, the Razer weighed in at around 1.9kg. The chassis has so also been given an anodized finishing to give it some texture, making it nicer to touch and also visually appealing.
To give it more visual pizzazz, the keyboard sports green backlights, which look really cool in the dark. The keyboard is excellent to use and makes a satisfying “click” sound when depressed, but felt a bit shallow. It also features anti-ghosting, which should be a boon to Starcraft players.
The trackpad, on the other hand, is spacious, but tracking is erratic and unpredictable. The Blade also comes preloaded with Razer Synapse 2.0 software, which lets users rebind keys or assign macros on both the Blade and any other Razer peripheral. It saves these configurations to the cloud so it can be accessed any time. Despite being so thin, the Blade does not scrimp on hardware. Under its hood is Intel’s latest fourth generation Core i7-4702HQ processor, complemented by 8GB of RAM, a speedy 256GB SSD and NVIDIA’s new GeForce GTX 765M discrete GPU with 2GB of GDDR5 video memory, both comparable to its rivals and impressive considering its size.
Again, in spite of its size, the Blade offers decent options when it comes to connectivity. To begin, it offers three USB 3.0 ports and Killer Wireless-N 1202 for superior online gaming performance. It also has a HDMI port for users who want to use an external display. Finally, it also has a headphone and microphone combo jack that can be used with headsets.
Sadly, the display is easily the Blade’s weakest link. Unlike the Dell Alienware 14 and Aftershock XG13, which have Full HD IPS displays, the Blade’s display only puts out a resolution of 1600 x 900 pixels and it is a TN panel. And although the Blade’s TN panel display is of reasonable quality, it looks washed out and bland when compared with the IPS panel displays of the Dell and Aftershock notebooks.
“RAZER GOES AS FAR AS TO CALL ITS NEW 14-INCH BLADE
THEWORLD’S THINNEST GAMING
At just 16.8mm thick, the Blade is comparable to the MacBook Air. The keyboard has funky green backlights and features anti-ghosting for those with quick fingers.