Eurocom’s Core i7 Notebook: Walking The Panther

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lemonade4

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I really don't understand the point of this review. The two products in here are so different from each other.
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]lemonade4[/nom]I really don't understand the point of this review. The two products in here are so different from each other.[/citation]

Second fastest mobile processor vs second-fastest desktop processor, it shows the weakness of mobile CPUs AND the weakness of the latest notebook GPU's.

It had to be compared to something...and it's the only notebook platform available with Core i7 so you can forget about that type of comparison.

The real point of picking the MSI notebook was to compare the HD 4850 to the GTX 280m. None of Tom's Hardware's suppliers were able to deliver an HD 4870 notebook.
 
G

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the brick: 20 volt x 11 ampere is merely 220 watt?

I'm not that familiar with those kinds of power supply, but isn't that way to low for these kinds of hardware setups?
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]bodyglove[/nom]the brick: 20 volt x 11 ampere is merely 220 watt?I'm not that familiar with those kinds of power supply, but isn't that way to low for these kinds of hardware setups?[/citation]

Did you look at the power draw numbers on Page 12?
 

falchard

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I think the point of the review is to show how much the Eurocon $5000 model is a waste of money. The MSI model should have been so outclassed in every aspect, yet it managed to be competitive at lower power envelops.
Just look at the game selection, 2 games based on the same engine that heavily favor nVidia Architecture and 1 that is more processor bound.
 

mike989

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I think the main problem with this review is, that people forget that Laptop's are designed to be portable, you obviously loose some performance. It’s a compromise between battery life and performance.
 

scook9

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These 2 laptop articles today have only made me more and more happy with my Flextronics/Arima W840DI (thats an Alienware M17 for the less informed - I got it barebones though). Coming in at around $2500 now, I have 3870x2, a QX9300 (ES but still latest revision - TY ebay), 4GB DDR3 and 2 320GB 7200RPM hdd's. My system is slightly more capable than the eurocom above for gaming but of course is crushed in the CPU oriented benchmarks (not that mine does badly). Given that I am paying half as much for a smaller and lighter notebook, OK by me.
 

sublifer

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Some of the productivity benchmarks are also likely helped by the DF900's RAIDed hdd set up vs the single hdd. Not sure if you forgot about that but I thought it would help to remind people.
 

xi1inx

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Eurocom is reputed to lunch big desktop replacement at high cost. The only thing I suppose to be the point on this review, is the hype of the first Core i7 desktop replacement. The worst is the cost of this computer with another g92 derivate whith slighty poor performance. However, you can have 5k$ stover under your hands!
 

tipmen

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I wish they would of tossed in a notebook with a 4870x2. The Asus W90 would of been a better match roughly half the cost and closer specs to the i7 laptop. Maybe if toms gets their hands on the W90 they could add this too.

Is there a way Toms could add external temps of the casing?
 

cangelini

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[citation][nom]tipmen[/nom]I wish they would of tossed in a notebook with a 4870x2. The Asus W90 would of been a better match roughly half the cost and closer specs to the i7 laptop. Maybe if toms gets their hands on the W90 they could add this too.Is there a way Toms could add external temps of the casing?[/citation]

Asus has actually discontinued that product, unfortunately.
 

doomtomb

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Ummm these games are playable at the settings you picked on either laptop. I think I'll pick up the cheaper one: save about $4 grand, save my lap from catching fire, and actually keep it mobile. It would have been impressive to see this Eurocom behemoth actually do the job of a desktop but it really is just clunky, too expensive, too heavy, too hot to consider.
 

quicklite

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I don’t see why you guys have to load 900F to almost max configuration, while leaving MSI is default configuration. I mean 965 Extreme CPU, dual HDD?!? Why don’t you just stuff QX9300, some SSD into the MSI while your at it? For all the putdowns on 900F’s value, it starts at $2200, and I think you guys didn’t make that clear enough; for once, a base config of server class Clevo laptop has got all the top notch stuff, WUXGA, i7 920, 280m GTX. Where as those on the previous model - 901C costs you hefty premium for; still, load it up with top end parts, your pay for it.
So sure you can put in the extreme 965 CPU, compare it to the budget mobile quad, just cos you could; but the fact of the matter is, that’s pointless, as is this review. What you’re getting by paying the extra $3000 can only be considered diminishing return, by anyone but most demanding power users. Also Eurocom is known to list extortionate prices on their site; where as if you contact them, they would price match against other resellers, save you a lot of money.
The extra you pay on the Sager brings much greater degree of upgradability, CPU, Ram,GPU, HDD, etc, you name it.
Intel i9 is just around the corner, with wholesome 12 threads. Three Sodimm brings more affordable Ram upgrade; later GPU MMX standard is certain to support the next gen GT 300 GPU.
By contrast, if you get GT 725 now, you'd save a few hundred bucks, but would have to buy a whole new laptop if you want mobile version of i7, or next gen GPU for that matter. The Core 2 brand is being phased out, Next gen CPU, GPU, Ram, won’t work in 725, it’s a bloody dead end, and just about all the parts on 725 are soldered in. Upgradability is important aspect of an investment, if at this stage of Core 2 life cycle, you opt for a Core 2 CPU powered laptop, then you’re a fool.
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]quicklite[/nom]I don’t see why you guys have to load 900F to almost max configuration, while leaving MSI is default configuration. I mean 965 Extreme CPU, dual HDD?!? Why don’t you just stuff QX9300, some SSD into the MSI while your at it? [/citation]

The Mobility HD 4850 was the fastest ATI graphics Tom's Hardware could get for comparison, and the only notebook Tom's Hardware could get with Mobility HD 4850 was the GT725. Knowing that the HD 4850 should be competitive with any G92-based card, this shouldn't have been such a big problem in games. Unfortunately, MSI's card thermal throttled due to a cooling issue, screwing up the game results. The heat problem cannot be easily fixed, and Tom's couldn't secure a substitute ATI graphics notebook of a high-enough graphics calibre to replace the GT725.
 

Luscious

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Nice attempt at a comparison, but I'll give you guys cred for finally doing a notebook review.

Now, get you hands on a Alienware M17x for benching with dual graphics cards and overclockable mobile CPU.
 

Crashman

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Do you have one to lend? Because Alienware said it would take a little over a month to deliver one.
 

dmccarron

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[citation][nom]quicklite[/nom]I don’t see why you guys have to load 900F to almost max configuration, while leaving MSI is default configuration. I mean 965 Extreme CPU, dual HDD?!? Why don’t you just stuff QX9300, some SSD into the MSI while your at it? For all the putdowns on 900F’s value, it starts at $2200, and I think you guys didn’t make that clear enough; for once, a base config of server class Clevo laptop has got all the top notch stuff, WUXGA, i7 920, 280m GTX. Where as those on the previous model - 901C costs you hefty premium for; still, load it up with top end parts, your pay for it. So sure you can put in the extreme 965 CPU, compare it to the budget mobile quad, just cos you could; but the fact of the matter is, that’s pointless, as is this review. What you’re getting by paying the extra $3000 can only be considered diminishing return, by anyone but most demanding power users. Also Eurocom is known to list extortionate prices on their site; where as if you contact them, they would price match against other resellers, save you a lot of money.The extra you pay on the Sager brings much greater degree of upgradability, CPU, Ram,GPU, HDD, etc, you name it. Intel i9 is just around the corner, with wholesome 12 threads. Three Sodimm brings more affordable Ram upgrade; later GPU MMX standard is certain to support the next gen GT 300 GPU. By contrast, if you get GT 725 now, you'd save a few hundred bucks, but would have to buy a whole new laptop if you want mobile version of i7, or next gen GPU for that matter. The Core 2 brand is being phased out, Next gen CPU, GPU, Ram, won’t work in 725, it’s a bloody dead end, and just about all the parts on 725 are soldered in. Upgradability is important aspect of an investment, if at this stage of Core 2 life cycle, you opt for a Core 2 CPU powered laptop, then you’re a fool.[/citation]

Yup. The price comparison is quite skewed. But even with the price-break diminishing-return effect on these top-end parts, it's still more money than if you bought it from another vendor. Even though Eurocom does a portion of Clevo's design work, they charge 20% more for the machine a two dozen resellers would otherwise. You'd think they'd be the guys before the middleman - so much for "buying direct", I guess.

The desktop-replacement segment has been around for some time now, so the specs of powerhouse Clevo derivatives aren't as exotic or compelling as they once were say, ten years ago.

But you are right - we are looking at a greater number of desktop parts crammed inside, so aside from the less-than-stellar graphics numbers this time around (expect a few resellers to remedy this in time), not only obviously performance, but the upgrade capability of these things remains more or less unmatched as far as notebooks go.

That (robust upgradeability that is), not ultimately price, lightweight portability, heat output, or battery life is of far more concern to its target buyers. I would think (or have thought) this was clear to most readers.
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]dmccarron[/nom]Yup. The price comparison is quite skewed. But even with the price-break diminishing-return effect on these top-end parts, it's still more money than if you bought it from another vendor. Even though Eurocom does a portion of Clevo's design work, they charge 20% more for the machine a two dozen resellers would otherwise. You'd think they'd be the guys before the middleman - so much for "buying direct", I guess.The desktop-replacement segment has been around for some time now, so the specs of powerhouse Clevo derivatives aren't as exotic or compelling as they once were say, ten years ago. But you are right - we are looking at a greater number of desktop parts crammed inside, so aside from the less-than-stellar graphics numbers this time around (expect a few resellers to remedy this in time), not only obviously performance, but the upgrade capability of these things remains more or less unmatched as far as notebooks go.That (robust upgradeability that is), not ultimately price, lightweight portability, heat output, or battery life is of far more concern to its target buyers. I would think (or have thought) this was clear to most readers.[/citation]

If you read the final two paragraphs of the conclusion you'll see that it's mentioned that this is an incredibly powerful workhorse notebook, and that's why the "Mobile Workstation" name make sense.
 

dmccarron

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[citation][nom]Crashman[/nom]If you read the final two paragraphs of the conclusion you'll see that it's mentioned that this is an incredibly powerful workhorse notebook, and that's why the "Mobile Workstation" name make sense.[/citation]

Um, yeah, I know. And...I did. I was simply agreeing with quicklite and chiming in for his views. So let me clarify.

I have been keeping up-to-date on what is made in the Clevo world for well over ten years, and I have noticed that Eurocom has been using the names "mobile workstation" and "desktop replacement" interchangeably or simultaneously for some time now for many of their models, though use of the former exclusively is usually reserved only for the highest-end one or two clamshells they have at the time. They don't specifically market to gamers like Alienware does, so they seldom if ever release systems with that gaming-rig motif (at least I've never heard of their latest 'gaming rig' on sale).

My point is simply that (like quicklite) for those who are haggling about the value of the system relative to other decent systems, the comparison model is packed with ultra-expensive parts not usually worth the premium for most buyers, PLUS added to it the longstanding oddly noncompetitive markup Eurocom charges on their site store. As somewhat implied by quicklite, the true value of the system, with still excellent but slightly less-than-absolute-highest-end parts, sold by the likes of PcTorque or Hypersonic or the no-name Sager resellers, etc. in weeks to come, will be a more representative measure of its value.

Furthermore, upgradeability was mentioned by him and remains somewhat overlooked - by the forum, not you - it's perhaps beyond the scope of the article. The technology gap between such Clevo 'monster truck' desktop machines-in-a-book and bona-fide mobile-part oem brands is not as large as it once was, but ease of upgradeability (and platform lifetime) still remains a superlative for these beasts because again, they house desktop parts and are less likely to be permanently fixed to the boards.

Regarding graphics performance, one MIGHT expect better, but I think it's fine considering that's about what you could get from a mobile chip for a non-sli or Xfired rig for the time being - quadro availability or not - those things aren't touted for their frame rates anyway. Conceivably Killernotebooks or Alienware would address this with some modification (SLI or overclocking or whatever) sooner or later, but for now this is by no means disappointing.
 

quicklite

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Its kinda sad that it took so long, for the red to catching up to NV in Mobility market - its towards the end of DirectX10 age.

Despite the fact that 280m GTX is merely small improvement upon the origianal 8800m GTX series. Where as Amd ported 800 stream processors from the current gen desktop series, just to equalise the performance of last gen mobile product.
 

quicklite

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So far, 900F offers more power than most could imagine. But it's not without flaws. This chassis has been around for longer than any of the competitor, its outdated in other word. In its golded age, it has no competition in performance, same can not be said anymore. Its hardware was designed for unparalleled performance, easy hardware upgrade; but not so much for user convinence.

Many brands now has their own versions, to fufill the demand of new emerging high end segement, by offering impressive performance level. Though the buyers expect more than just performance. Preference for user friendly extras - backlit keyboards, etc; and portability has swayed favor away from 900F.

AW's M17x, Asus's W90, Clevo's own 980NU at multi-GPU laptops. Different versions of gaming machine. In a sense, not having sli in this was a a big step back. Having it probably would have been even more troublesome, internal competition towards 980NU. 900F is flawed just like most other high-end laptops, and is seen more as a niche product, than 901C has ever been - it's time for Clevo to step up.

MSI's laptop is no where near perfect neither. Its design looks odd, build quality is questionable; and its LCD panels are said to bleed light.
Using same keypad as the 15.4 inch GT627 -its keypad is considerably cramped.
Plus something must be wrong when the battery is samilar to a i7 laptop with 130W TDP cpu+ extra HDD.
Its base speak vibrates the whole laptop, etc. The list can go on, but you get the point - different package offers differentiated strength, and weakness, opportunity, cost; 900F just so happen to offer very interesting mix.
 

lordvader

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[citation][nom]tipmen[/nom]I wish they would of tossed in a notebook with a 4870x2. The Asus W90 would of been a better match roughly half the cost and closer specs to the i7 laptop. Maybe if toms gets their hands on the W90 they could add this too.Is there a way Toms could add external temps of the casing?[/citation]


I agree
That makes so much more sense
Would like to see there bench
the Asus W90 benchmark to 20,000 :)
 
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