The gap between the price of a gaming rig and a laptop that offers similar performance keeps shrinking, making it look more and more appealing to those who travel a lot. I know I will always game on a big rig, but I happen to work from home, so I’m not lugging the beast around. For those who do travel a lot, or go to gaming events regularly, the laptop is a pretty sweet option. The Gigabyte P55K V4 is a 15″ machine that weighs 2.5 kg. It packs a mean punch, with its GTX 965M, scoring just shy of 5,000 points in Firestrike.
The thicker design of this laptop has solved an issue I had with a previous Gigabyte machine, which ran really hot while during benchmarks. This laptop gets rid of heat pretty well, without sounding like a jet turbine. There is no better way to annoy people in a quiet area or a work space than listening to a jet engine test happening while you merrily play games with headphones on.
Speaking of playing games, you will want to take your charger with you if you plan on doing anything serious on this laptop. While it is by no means the worst battery life for a gaming machine, the laptop lasts for two hours of serious use before retiring. If you do find a nice place to sit with access to power, you are in for a treat though. Normally I ignore the speaker setup and quality of laptops because they tend to be barely there and hardly adequate for my needs. The P55K has pretty good sound which, when paired with a shiny, responsive IPS panel makes for a great entertainment option. I watched more than my fair share of Dota 2 games on this machine, while typing on my desktop.
My only gripe with the machine is its trackpad. Towards the buttons there is no mouse tracking, but there is no division on the trackpad or any other haptic marker to indicate that your finger is now in a dead zone. This can cause a few errors in getting your cursor to the correct part of the screen. If you always use an external mouse this is no problem, but it is something that could have been easily avoided with a little ridge or change in texture.
Easy to use
Gigabyte’s Smart Manager is a pretty nifty program for controlling various aspects of your laptop all from one place. While most users are pretty comfortable fiddling through various setting menus to get their machine running nicely, the smart manager makes it easy to check at a glance what your machine is up to and make a few changes. This is especially handy if you forget where a specific OS hides various settings, or you want to allow someone who isn’t all that tech savvy to be able to change settings without turning your machine into a large, expensive brick.
The P55K comes bundled with a laptop backpack and the Gigabyte M6900 gaming mouse, which handles the task of playing games so much better than a trackpad ever could. It doesn’t sound like much until you realise that a proper backpack and extra mouse are essential, and not having to deal with that extra cost after spending a large chunk of money on a laptop is a pretty nice bonus. If you are looking for a machine that can handle gaming requirements and don’t need a desktop machine, this might be the purchase for you, if you don’t mind the chunky, all plastic finish that screams gaming machine at everyone around you.
[toggle_simple title=”Specifications” width=”Width of toggle box”] Processor: Intel Core i7-5700HQ (quad-core, 2.7GHZ, 3.5GHz with Turbo Boost)
GPU: Nvidia Geforce GTX 965M (2GB GDDR5); Intel HD Graphics 5600
RAM: 8GB DDR3L
Screen: 15.6-inch full HD 1,920 x 1,080 LCD
Storage: 128GB SSD, 1TB HDD (7,200 rpm)
Optical drive: Super Multi DVD-RW
Ports: 4 x USB 3.0, HDMI, VGA, RJ45, microphone-in, analogue/optical headphone-out, SD card reader
Connectivity: 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
Camera: HD webcam
Audio: 2 x 2 watt speakers, microphone, Dolby Digital Plus Home Theatre certified
Battery: Li-ion 6-cell 5400mAh (63Wh)