Gaming

We really want Razer’s new Blade Pro

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Razer Blade Pro

Gaming notebooks are designed to blow minds, as proven by ASUS and Acer’s recent launches on the grand stage. As each company continues to one-up the other, Razer discreetly released its latest Blade Pro model, to the delight of gamers everywhere.

While the ROG GX800 and Predator 21 X wowed us with built-in water cooling and a curved display, this year’s Blade Pro takes all the technologies needed to make the best possible gaming notebook, and crams everything into a shell that mimics a conventional laptop.

Seeing a laptop as big as an Apple MacBook Pro doesn’t seem that special, but once you know how far Razer has gone this time around, you’d understand why it’s priced at a jaw-dropping $3,700.

Razer Blade Pro

For one, there’s a low-profile mechanical keyboard equipped, which is far more pleasurable to game on than with plain membrane-lined keyboards. Razer claims it’s spent so much time designing it to perfection, that it could have created a whole new laptop instead.

Squeezing in such a sophisticatedly complicated keyboard is a challenge in itself, but knowing that there’s a full-sized NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card inside adds to the amazement. This makes the new Blade Pro a true desktop PC replacement, and not just some second-rate gaming alternative.

To make the most out of the dedicated video card, Razer made sure to leave space for an Intel Core i7-6700HQ processor, 32GB of RAM, and a 17.3-inch 4K resolution display that supports NVIDIA’s G-Sync technology. If none of that makes sense to you, just know that this is as good as it gets for a gaming laptop that you can actually purchase.

Razer Blade Pro

Razer Blade Pro

Storage options range from 512GB to 2TB of the SSD kind, making it way faster than HDD speeds. In terms of connectivity, anyone able to afford this gets three USB 3.0 ports, one Thunderbolt 3-compatible USB Type-C port, an SD card reader, and a Killer DoubleShot Pro card for both wireless and wired networks.

So yes, virtual reality games should work just fine on the Blade Pro. The only catch is it’s still 22.5mm thick and weighs 3.54kg — amazing for a rig this powerful, but bulky for a mobile computer.

The Razer Blade Pro will be available in November, so start saving up (or dreaming about it, like us).

[irp posts=”4303″ name=”IFA 2016: Acer Predator 21 X first look”]

Source: Razer

Features

What does the GPU Turbo do to your phone?

Is it more than just a marketing gimmick?

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It’s been two months since Huawei rolled out the GPU Turbo update to its smartphones. Promised with a 60 percent increase in performance and reducing 30 percent on power consumption, a lot of fans and users were excited after the announcement.

Back then, everyone (including me) was hyped about lag-free games and longer battery life while playing. However, upon receiving the update, I began to wonder: Has GPU Turbo delivered what it promised?

What’s inside the update?

GPU Turbo was originally marketed as an improved gameplay experience, available only to PUBG and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang.

The Game Suite app, which comes with the update, offers an uninterrupted gaming feature, hiding all notifications when enabled (except for calls, alarms, and low-battery alerts).

Mistouch prevention is another feature to avert users from clicking the back and home button while playing — perfect for when you want to focus on your game.

Screenshots by Miguel Pineda, Huawei Mate 10 user

To some older smartphones like the Huawei Mate 10, the Game Suite App offers three performance modes: Gaming mode, which improves game performance but increases power consumption; Smart mode, which balances performance and power consumption; and Power saving mode, which saves power but reduces game performance.

For the newer Huawei P20 Pro (which I’ve been using) and Honor Play, it only has a gaming acceleration mode to toggle on or off.

Thoughts on the reduced power consumption

Because I used the Mate 10 before and recently transitioned to the P20 Pro, I’ve experienced the GPU Turbo update in both phones and I can guarantee that they’ve delivered on lowered power consumption.

With Game Suite, I can put my phone on power saving mode to further save battery. For instance, I was only able to drain the Mate 10 down to 15 percent during a 12-hour road trip despite switching between the games I play and other apps, such as Messenger, Netflix, Spotify, and taking photos and videos every once in a while. The same goes for the P20 Pro.

As a power user, I already get a lot of things done with these highly efficient smartphones and GPU Turbo; these allowed me to do more on a single charge. However, it’s a different case for gaming.

Improved gaming experience, but there’s a catch…

When I started playing games on gaming mode (or game acceleration mode on the P20 Pro), I could run Mobile Legends: Bang Bang on a high frame rate with the highest graphics setting available. Compared to how the game stuttered and lagged during 5v5 clashes, with GPU Turbo, it now runs smoothly, as if I have a smartphone made for gaming.

System notice when enabling the high frame rate on Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and the effects it may have on your gameplay

As shown above, most mobile games will notify their users about the possible repercussions of higher frame rates and using the best settings available. To prove that a smartphone with GPU Turbo can handle this, I sought out to confirm my suspicions.

After asking fellow Huawei users, I found out that after installing GPU Turbo, energy consumption is a lot faster than before. Their smartphones also heat up more easily, especially when playing games with the game acceleration mode on. This isn’t part of what was promised, and it’s pretty disappointing.

It’s not yet perfect

In my experience, GPU Turbo tries to boost performance above a smartphone’s limit hoping that users can experience better gameplay.

GPU Turbo can’t choose when to perform its best. It’s an update that is constantly running in our smartphones without any way to switch it off. We can only hope that Huawei will address these issues for the next batch of updates.

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Gaming

ASUS ROG Phone receives US pricing

Last piece of the puzzle

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ASUS is certainly taking its time with the release of its one and only gaming phone. First announced at Computex 2018, the ROG Phone finally has an official price to go with its US release.

For the model with 128GB of storage, you’d have to shell out US$ 899. For the larger 512GB storage variant, the cost goes up to US$ 1,099. Both come with a high-end Snapdragon 845 processor and 8GB of memory.

Of course, there are accessories to go with it. First is the ROG Mobile Desktop Dock, which costs US$ 229; the ROG Phone Case retails for US$ 59; the ROG Professional Dock is valued at US$ 119; you can buy the ROG TwinView Dock for US$ 399; the ROG Gamevice Controller is at US$ 89; and lastly, the ROG WiGig Dock goes for US$ 329.

Those are a lot of accessories for one phone, but that’s what makes the ROG Phone a truly gamer-centric device.

As stated last week, the ROG Phone will hit US shores starting October 18, with other regions to follow soon after.

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Gaming

PlayStation’s PSN Online ID change coming soon

Full rollout coming early 2019!

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You’ll soon be able to retire your DarkWarrior1214 PlayStation ID. In a blog post, Sony PlayStation said they will soon begin testing the PSN Online ID change feature as part of their preview program.

Beta testers part of the preview program will be able to change their PSN ID as much as they want. However, once the feature rolls out to everyone, only the first name change will be free. Succeeding name changes will cost US$ 9.99 for regular users.

PS Plus users will be charged a smaller fee of US$ 4.99. The online ID can be changed through the profile page on your PS4 or at the Settings menu. There’s also an option to display your old PSN ID alongside your new one so your friends can recognize you right away.

Not for all games

The feature isn’t available for all games, though. Only PS4 games published after April 1, 2018 along with other most-played titles that were published before that date will have the feature. PlayStation also warns that changing the ID might cause some issues with some games that can be fixed by reverting to the old ID. Here’s to hoping PlayStation finds a way to address those issues some time down the line.

The planned full rollout of the feature is in early 2019. What will be your new PSN Online ID?

SEE ALSO: Sony unveils PlayStation Classic, comes pre-loaded with 20 games

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