Walking through your local coffee shop you’ll more than likely be able to pick out the gaming notebooks from the hardcore business ultrabooks.
The sleek lines and thin bodies of the business class are easily distinguishable from the hulking game-ready monoliths with angled edges and a glitter of LED lighting behind the keyboard.
There is, of course, a reason for the bulk we see in gaming notebooks. Manufacturers need space to cram the hardware PC gamers demand into a portable notebook that runs games well and doesn’t weigh as much as a small freighter.
In recent years though that has changed. Today thinner processors and chips offer more than their thicker predecessors did in terms of both performance and minimum space requirements.
Gigabyte is jumping at this new, smaller tech and with the release of the Aero 14 it’s showing us that gaming notebooks don’t have to stick out from their ultrabook counterparts any more.
Thin and hefty
For starters the Aero 14 is just 19.9m thick and weighs 1.89kg. Despite this thinner form factor the Aero 14 houses both a discrete GPU and the latest Intel CPU from the Skylake family. Other notebooks with similar specifications typically measure 22.8mm.
That is where the low numbers end however, because once you power the Aero 14 on its another kind of beast altogether.
Swept away with a GeForce
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M offers notebook gamers a 49% increase in performance from the older GTX 960M GPU.
This new GPU helps the Aero 14 take 3DMark’s Sky Diver benchmark in its stride scoring an incredulous 18 598.
This translates into a smooth gaming performance with high presets in games such as Dota 2, Overwatch and other popular esports titles. If single player games like The Witcher 3 are more your stride, the Aero 14 can run more demanding games as well after you’ve tweaked the settings a bit.
Overwhelming power to last
When you aren’t laying waste to your opponents in-game the battery lasts quite long. For one thing Gigabyte has fitted a much larger battery in its notebook, 54% bigger than other notebooks actually.
The 94Wh behemoth contained within can last up to 10 hours if you’re just doing basic work tasks. When you aren’t working you can use the that battery life to watch the entire Lord of the Rings Trilogy and start watching The Hobbit trilogy before the battery gives up the ghost.
If you’re looking for a notebook that you can use for business during the day and gaming glory at night there really isn’t a thinner and lighter alternative to the Gigabyte Aero 14.[su_box title=”Aero specs at a glance” box_color=”#f37021″]Chipset HM170
Processor 6th Generation Intel Core i7-6700HQ @ 2.6GHz (3.5GHz Turbo)
GPU NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M 3GB GDDR5
Screen 14inch 2560 x 1440
Interface USB 3.1 Type C, USB 3.0, HDMI 2.0, Mini DisplayPort, DS card reader
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac Battery – 94.24Wh Li-Polymer
Other – Island-style backlit keyboard, HD camera[/su_box]