News Smach Demos its AMD-powered Smach Z Handheld PC in new Videos

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Smach published new videos showing how strategy, FPS, and action games perform on the Ryzen-powered handheld PC it plans to release later this year. Read more here.

NATHANIEL MOTT
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Nathaniel Mott is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He covers software and hardware component news.
 

Exia00

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It is a mediocre handheld with crappy touch controls because not everyone is not a fan of the steam controller layout and also for some games on there like Overwatch you would have to use your mobile data in order to play it on the road and the Ryzen V1000 is just a Ryzen 5 2500U which is alright for gaming but games that is not demanding at all (not demanding on this timeline).

I find the system will fail since gaming laptops out there costs are cheaper not to mention after looking at their "official" site all the model by default comes with the Smach OS and if you want Windows 10 on it then you have to spend 100$+ for it which after adding in 8gb dual channel (cause the 4gb and 8gb model by default is single channel and dual cost extra) with 256gb storage and with Windows 10 it comes up to over 1500$ Canadian which the Lenovo IdeaPad 330 comes with the same processor just named as the Ryzen 5 2500U (the exact same specs if you compare it to the Ryzen V1000) 8gb dual channel memory and a 256gb SSD in it you're paying 900$ for it and for the same price you have the MSI GL63 gaming laptop which has a i5 8300H 8gb memory and a GTX 1050 oh and a 1TB HDD (which you can replace).

Overall for a handheld it is too much money just to play older PC games on the go which no one would really buy it and really the Smach OS is really like a reskin Steam OS so in my opinion and i believe most others would agree with me is this will be a failure and that most people would ask for a refund on the system or you will see people trying to sell it on ebay to get their money back.
 
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The only time you need a handheld like this is perhaps a car, or bus. On a plane, Train, school, cafeteria, friends house or most other places you can find a table or desk to plop, say a 13.3" gaming laptop onto, something with a 1050ti for the amount of money they're asking for this.
 
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alextheblue

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It is a mediocre handheld with crappy touch controls because not everyone is not a fan of the steam controller layout and also for some games on there like Overwatch you would have to use your mobile data in order to play it on the road and the Ryzen V1000 is just a Ryzen 5 2500U which is alright for gaming but games that is not demanding at all (not demanding on this timeline).

I find the system will fail since gaming laptops out there costs are cheaper not to mention after looking at their "official" site all the model by default comes with the Smach OS and if you want Windows 10 on it then you have to spend 100$+ for it which after adding in 8gb dual channel (cause the 4gb and 8gb model by default is single channel and dual cost extra) with 256gb storage and with Windows 10 it comes up to over 1500$ Canadian.
Yeah I hate that type of controller, too. If I'm using something other than a KB + mouse for a PC game, it's an XB1 controller. Anyway, a 2500U isn't bad at low resolutions (which would look OK on a small screen) especially if you get a dual channel config. With that being said, yeah a gaming-focused device should focus on graphics performance, and a 2700U/3700U has 2 more CUs plus higher clocks. But I get it, the jump in cost might be substantial. That doesn't address my biggest two gripes with their device:

1) As you already mentioned, pricing for a decent config is pretty bad. The base config is nearly worthless. 4GB of single channel RAM... that's completely unacceptable. 4GB x 2 should be the base config with an option for 8 x 2. Even the budget Lenovo laptop I picked up (NOT primarily for gaming) has a 2500U with 8GB of dual-channel RAM, and it was CHEAP. Equally egregious is what they charge to slap Windows on it. They pay ~$20 for an OEM key and charge you full price. Piss on that... even IF I was inclined to buy their device, I'd buy the OS and install it myself just to make sure they don't get an extra nickel from me.

2) Are they still faking all their demos, or do they really have real working hardware this time? No, seriously. These guys have a bit of a reputation.
 

Exia00

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Yeah I hate that type of controller, too. If I'm using something other than a KB + mouse for a PC game, it's an XB1 controller. Anyway, a 2500U isn't bad at low resolutions (which would look OK on a small screen) especially if you get a dual channel config. With that being said, yeah a gaming-focused device should focus on graphics performance, and a 2700U/3700U has 2 more CUs plus higher clocks. But I get it, the jump in cost might be substantial. That doesn't address my biggest two gripes with their device:

1) As you already mentioned, pricing for a decent config is pretty bad. The base config is nearly worthless. 4GB of single channel RAM... that's completely unacceptable. 4GB x 2 should be the base config with an option for 8 x 2. Even the budget Lenovo laptop I picked up (NOT primarily for gaming) has a 2500U with 8GB of dual-channel RAM, and it was CHEAP. Equally egregious is what they charge to slap Windows on it. They pay ~$20 for an OEM key and charge you full price. Piss on that... even IF I was inclined to buy their device, I'd buy the OS and install it myself just to make sure they don't get an extra nickel from me.

2) Are they still faking all their demos, or do they really have real working hardware this time? No, seriously. These guys have a bit of a reputation.
Some YouTubers has claimed that they have a working prototype and one even got just the board to test it out but overall paying that much for a handheld i would rather go on Ebay or Kijiji and buy a used Alienware 13" laptop that would still cost less and most likely have something like a GTX 870M which is still a decent GPU.

The laptop i bought for myself 2 months ago which i love and i do play games on it has an i5 8250U with a MX150 and 8GB dual channel memory and the good/bad thing about the system is 4gb is soldered onto it but i can dual channel 12gb/20gb of memory just cause of the way they have it set up which 12gb is more than enough in my opinion especially when playing games like Overwatch or even Doom (which actually looks nice at 720p medium settings).

Originally i wanted a laptop with a i5 8300H and a GTX 1050 but that would of also been a 15.6" display and no optical drive which mine is a 17.1" IPS display with a full on DVD burner (because there is still somethings that i burn and also my desktop has no optical drive so i mainly rip the CD/DVD installers for my main system) and i also have Geforce Now which is the Nvidia cloud gaming service which i can stream most games i own almost maxed out at 1080p.

The main thing with Smach Z what i find for the cost of parts and such is it should of costed about 500$ at most which would be the main competitor towards gaming laptops or even budget laptops and while i don't really like this they could of used Windows 8/8.1 instead since it is a handheld device without a keyboard and also the display could of been a 720p TN panel or even a VA panel to save a little more.

Lastly for controllers that i use on my systems is a PS3 and SN30 Pro controller (both registers as a Xbox 360 controller when plugged in wired which i use ScpServer for the PS3 controller to make my system think it is an Xbox controller).
 

Exia00

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The only time you need a handheld like this is perhaps a car, or bus. On a plane, Train, school, cafeteria, friends house or most other places you can find a table or desk to plop, say a 13.3" gaming laptop onto, something with a 1050ti for the amount of money they're asking for this.
For about 1100$ US you would be thinking of the Alienware 13 R3 AW13R3 which has a i7 7700HQ and a 1050 Ti which is still a lot cheaper than this handheld and of course would play games a lot better.
The other thing is for most games people would tend to think about playing on this would be mainly online only games which is a side effect cause you would only be playing it at home or at your friends place which if you are in your car or on a plane you have to make sure you have the system remember to do offline mode for steam which you're also going to have to remember if you still own games from like 2014 because if people buys this and most of their games are really demanding 2016 and above titles it would play pretty crappy unless it is something like Doom but even with that game you would feel bored and can't wait to have internet again to play your other games.
 

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I don't know what you can say except that the people who bought into it on Kickstarter and Indiegogo got ripped off. Both places are in the virtual wild west and just about anything goes. I read about a woman who had a patented product that was turned down on both platforms only to show up under someone else's name with a green light. Even after the rightful owner contacted Kickstarter and Indiegogo they did nothing.

I think there should be laws covering crowd funding websites that protect people just like there are at normal websites that sell products.
 

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Most critique in comments focuses on bashing a form factor: Yes, It is pricier and not as performant as Ryzen laptops, but when you compare it to similar form factor devices that are pretty uncommon (GPD Win 2 being most comparable competitor) it looks pretty well. Try to put a laptop in your pocket and then you will understand what I am talking about.
 
Try to put a laptop in your pocket and then you will understand what I am talking about.
This thing is around 10 inches wide. I don't think it's going in your pocket unless you have abnormally large pockets. : P

It does sound like it might offer some of the best graphics performance in this form factor though, assuming something similar doesn't come to market first. I do wonder how much performance will be affected in the versions with single-channel memory though, as that's bound to hurt graphics performance.

Even so, the least expensive $629 configuration seems like the best option for those willing to do a few upgrades themselves, since the device is upgradable, using standard laptop memory modules and an M.2 2242 SSD, according their FAQ. So, while they want $85 to add a second 4GB stick of ram, you could do the same for not much more than $25 on your own. Or swap out the existing stick of memory and upgrade to 16GB with a 2 x 8GB kit for around $90. And while that's not a particularly common size for SSDs, it's possible to find some (off-brand) 240GB drives in that size for not much more than $50. Or store games on a fast 200+GB SD card or external drive, and leave the internal storage for the OS. And one could also install and run Windows 10 unactivated, if needed.

So, you could pretty much give the standard configuration the capabilities of the ultra, and have it running Windows, for less than $800. Or with 8GB of memory in a dual-channel configuration for not much more than $700. And with the prices of RAM and SSDs likely dropping over the course of the year, you might be able to do it for a bit less still by the time these things actually ship.

Text is going to be tiny on that 6 inch 1080p screen though. : P
 

alextheblue

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The laptop i bought for myself 2 months ago which i love and i do play games on it has an i5 8250U with a MX150 and 8GB dual channel memory and the good/bad thing about the system is 4gb is soldered onto it but i can dual channel 12gb/20gb of memory just cause of the way they have it set up which 12gb is more than enough in my opinion especially when playing games like Overwatch or even Doom (which actually looks nice at 720p medium settings).
Performance on your machine will be virtually unaffected by single vs dual channel, since you have a dGPU.

With that being said I have no idea how you would come up with 12GB of dual channel on that laptop if you have 4GB soldered onboard. Doesn't make any sense. Even if you had dual SO-DIMM slots, you'd end up with 8GB or 16GB for dual channel operation. Any other config and well... if you run CPU-Z you'll find you're in single channel mode or don't actually have 12GB of usable memory.
Or store games on a fast 200+GB SD card
Good in theory, bad in practice. The only really fast microSD cards (as in, more than a handful of real-world IOPS, not as in on-paper max read speeds) out there are actually quite expensive. This is assuming the system can make full use of a fast UHS-II mSD card (varies greatly by device). Either way It would be far better to just replace the M.2 drive. Even the odd duck smaller M.2 drives in a no-name brand are cheaper and far faster. mSD only really makes sense where it's the only option, or for people who can't upgrade the internals themselves and run out of space. Even then, it's best used for things that don't require good random performance.

It does kind of suck they couldn't squeeze in a 2280 form factor though. I mean they don't take up THAT much more space in the scheme of things and this isn't a tiny device really. Didn't even have to be flush mounted directly on the board itself like a conventional system, raise it, stack it, run a cable, etc. There's also a lot more competition among 2280 drives, which potentially could translate into cost and power efficiency benefits.
 
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Exia00

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Performance on your machine will be virtually unaffected by single vs dual channel, since you have a dGPU.

With that being said I have no idea how you would come up with 12GB of dual channel on that laptop if you have 4GB soldered onboard. Doesn't make any sense. Even if you had dual SO-DIMM slots, you'd end up with 8GB or 16GB for dual channel operation. Any other config and well... if you run CPU-Z you'll find you're in single channel mode or don't actually have 12GB of usable memory.
I have actually spoken with people in the Acer community that has the same or a similar laptop to what i have and to most that is running is as 12gb or 20gb in CPU-Z it is actually registered as dual channel memory still and not single channel and for my laptop i am also going to replace the 1TB WD Blue with a 2TB Hybrid as well also it can handle a M.2 SSD but i have to remove the whole bottom cover and i feel a little worried that i might end up breaking it which is why i am going with a Hybrid drive.

Most critique in comments focuses on bashing a form factor: Yes, It is pricier and not as performant as Ryzen laptops, but when you compare it to similar form factor devices that are pretty uncommon (GPD Win 2 being most comparable competitor) it looks pretty well. Try to put a laptop in your pocket and then you will understand what I am talking about.
The GPD Win 2 i find it's still a better option cause most games like Overwatch can be handled pretty well on it since the m3-7Y30 is a pretty good processor with the Intel HD 615 and also for people that has cloud gaming as well like Geforce Now (which supports Nvidia, AMD and Intel GPU's) is a good option as well and that can fit in your pocket.

Also the most common critique on the system is the system itself since they are using a small screen and having it as 1080p which should of been a 720p display as well because most games you will be playing on it will be in 720p anyways also with crappy steam controls that most people hates which they should of made it something similar to the Xbox controllers and the processor exact model is the AMD Ryzen Embedded V1605B which for their price point they should of went for a AMD Ryzen Embedded V1807B which is similar to the Ryzen 7 2700U the only difference is instead of a Vega 10 it is using Vega 11 and sure that one use a little more power and what AMD suggests for these chips is that you should be using them with dual channel memory so single channel could have a performance drop by i have no idea how much but enough to make you spend more money on dual channel.

Overall the system is a failed system because sure you can't really put a laptop in your pocket but at least for laptops like the Lenovo IdeaPad 330 is about 600$ right now which uses a Ryzen 7 2700U with Vega 10 graphics and 16 GB DDR4 dual channel memory and sure the laptop display is 1366x768 but it is actually perfect for it since most games you would be stuck playing at 720p like Doom which i have seen my friend play on his laptop getting an average of 38 fps on medium settings which isn't laggy or even games like Overwatch which you should be able to play on high settings and getting that 60fps which is why a handheld like this right now is a little too early and the form factor of it is a little big because even from the image above shows that it is thick which you are going to have to have it in your backpack and last thing i would like to mention as well is that if you have thing like Windows 10 installed which if they claim will have a touch screen typing on a 6 inch screen will be a pain to do because when i had a 10" windows 10 tablet i had a hard time typing with the on screen keyboard in which if you want to play a game with a friend on Battle.net or Steam it would be hard to type in general so you can see there is going to be a lot of failure with the system.



P.S. Also just a quick note is the Smach OS is going to be a Linux based OS similar to the Steam OS then how are you going to play your Battle.net and other launcher type games because if the Smach OS is just a re-skinned Steam OS then that would mean you would be stuck with only Steam games.
 
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alextheblue

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I have actually spoken with people in the Acer community that has the same or a similar laptop to what i have and to most that is running is as 12gb or 20gb in CPU-Z it is actually registered as dual channel memory still and not single channel and for my laptop i am also going to replace the 1TB WD Blue with a 2TB Hybrid as well also it can handle a M.2 SSD but i have to remove the whole bottom cover and i feel a little worried that i might end up breaking it which is why i am going with a Hybrid drive.
I'm saying it's not possible. Each channel has to have the SAME amount of RAM, remember? You've only got two channels. 12GB doesn't add up. You can't have 4GB on one channel and 8GB on the other and be dual channel. Even IF they have two SODIMM slots and the board is designed to let you combine the soldered RAM with one of the SODIMMs (acting as a third slot sharing a channel with slot 1 or 2), 12GB means you'd still have 4+4 on one channel and 4 on the other. Those people must be confused, to be polite. If this was a DESKTOP PC with 4 DIMM slots, then it's possible. 4+2 and 4+2. Not on a laptop with 1 or 2 SODIMM slots and 4GB soldered on the board.

Now, as for your storage... don't bother with a hybrid drive. I've used several of them in various system builds over the years. These days, a new build that needs a ton of storage on a dime budget, yeah a hybrid drive like a Firecuda is slightly better than a decent conventional drive (like a WD Black). But really you're FAR better off with a real SSD, there's just no comparison. Pull the bottom off, just make sure you get all the screws and it shouldn't be a big deal. Sometimes they like to hide screws under rubber feet or whatnot, you can probably find a teardown video or service document if you're nervous. It would really be a shame to have an M.2 slot and not utilize it.

I guess you could just install a 2.5" SATA SSD, but then you'd either end up with substantially less storage or a much larger price tag.
The GPD Win 2 i find it's still a better option cause most games like Overwatch can be handled pretty well on it since the m3-7Y30 is a pretty good processor with the Intel HD 615 and also for people that has cloud gaming as well like Geforce Now (which supports Nvidia, AMD and Intel GPU's) is a good option as well and that can fit in your pocket.
Ehhhh….. neither one of these is a powerhouse but the Ryzen in the Smach Z (if it ever comes to market) will beat the snot out of the m3-7Y30. The biggest issue is the price, you either have to get a base model and upgrade it yourself or shell out big bucks.
 

Exia00

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I'm saying it's not possible. Each channel has to have the SAME amount of RAM, remember? You've only got two channels. 12GB doesn't add up. You can't have 4GB on one channel and 8GB on the other and be dual channel. Even IF they have two SODIMM slots and the board is designed to let you combine the soldered RAM with one of the SODIMMs (acting as a third slot sharing a channel with slot 1 or 2), 12GB means you'd still have 4+4 on one channel and 4 on the other. Those people must be confused, to be polite. If this was a DESKTOP PC with 4 DIMM slots, then it's possible. 4+2 and 4+2. Not on a laptop with 1 or 2 SODIMM slots and 4GB soldered on the board.

Now, as for your storage... don't bother with a hybrid drive. I've used several of them in various system builds over the years. These days, a new build that needs a ton of storage on a dime budget, yeah a hybrid drive like a Firecuda is slightly better than a decent conventional drive (like a WD Black). But really you're FAR better off with a real SSD, there's just no comparison. Pull the bottom off, just make sure you get all the screws and it shouldn't be a big deal. Sometimes they like to hide screws under rubber feet or whatnot, you can probably find a teardown video or service document if you're nervous. It would really be a shame to have an M.2 slot and not utilize it.

I guess you could just install a 2.5" SATA SSD, but then you'd either end up with substantially less storage or a much larger price tag.
Ehhhh….. neither one of these is a powerhouse but the Ryzen in the Smach Z (if it ever comes to market) will beat the snot out of the m3-7Y30. The biggest issue is the price, you either have to get a base model and upgrade it yourself or shell out big bucks.
For something that doesn't make sense for you makes sense for a lot of other people out there and i already bought the memory and installed it in my system and when i used CPU-Z it actually said dual for the memory and really with this laptop you can't do 16gb because of the fact that 4gb is soldered onto the board.

For storage i actually used 3 hybrid drives right now 2 in my desktop and a 1TB on my Nvidia Shield which i have been using for 2+ years (about 4-5 years for my 1tb desktop Hybrids) and it just seems to be you have bad luck or you filled them to the point that they would slow down a lot.

The Ryzen APU that is in the Smach Z isn't really a power house because i have used a laptop with a Ryzen 5 2500U which is pretty much the same thing inside the Smach Z and for games like Overwatch as an example you are mainly playing on medium settings which yes it doesn't look that bad but on a small display using the m3-7Y30 you can still play the same game on medium at 720p and come on these systems are made for most eSports titles and/or games from 2014 and below.
 

alextheblue

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For something that doesn't make sense for you makes sense for a lot of other people out there and i already bought the memory and installed it in my system and when i used CPU-Z it actually said dual for the memory and really with this laptop you can't do 16gb because of the fact that 4gb is soldered onto the board.
Explain to me how you achieved 6GB per channel on that laptop. If you "can't do 16GB" that just means you have a single SODIMM slot, which you never bothered to clarify. That just makes the situation worse. I was trying to be polite before but you're being obstinate. Dual channel memory operation requires both channels to have the same amount of memory. Period. Sorry, that's reality - ask around if you don't believe me.
For storage i actually used 3 hybrid drives right now 2 in my desktop and a 1TB on my Nvidia Shield which i have been using for 2+ years (about 4-5 years for my 1tb desktop Hybrids) and it just seems to be you have bad luck or you filled them to the point that they would slow down a lot.

The Ryzen APU that is in the Smach Z isn't really a power house because i have used a laptop with a Ryzen 5 2500U which is pretty much the same thing inside the Smach Z and for games like Overwatch as an example you are mainly playing on medium settings which yes it doesn't look that bad but on a small display using the m3-7Y30 you can still play the same game on medium at 720p and come on these systems are made for most eSports titles and/or games from 2014 and below.
Hybrid drives are just not that good. I barely used any storage on them, and I kept my mechanical drives defragmented. The newer Firecudas are OK but again, outside of the cache they're just HDDs. Compared to a decent SSD they are just slow - especially a good PCIe M.2 drive with a fast CPU to decompress data at the same pace. For hybrid drives, load times in more demanding games is pretty terrible. More so if you play more than one title on a regular basis. eSports games like Overwatch are not too bad, I guess, especially if that's all you play (the cache gets more opportunity to do it's thing if you're always loading the same data). If you don't believe me there's plenty of benchmarks. If it's what you're used to, you wouldn't notice. For me, mechanical drives are unbearable for anything outside of mass storage.

Regarding the integrated graphics: Not sure what you're reading but I specifically said NEITHER of those was a powerhouse. But it offers more gaming performance within that power envelope than any Intel chip remotely in that price bracket. Maybe regardless of price, at the 12W-15W range. A 2700U/3700U would have been even better, but that aside: The 2500U beats the stuffing out of the 7Y30 in gaming. Even in the worst possible configuration (12W plus gimped cooling) running the most out-of-date OEM-approved drivers, it's far better than a m3 with a 615. Again if you don't believe me there's tons of data. For a more fair comparison: it's also generally much faster even against Intel's bigger UHD 620 in their higher-power "U" series chips in gaming performance. Just because they both "run at 720p" doesn't mean anything, all things equal the 2500U will enable better settings or higher framerate (or a mix of both). If you want to operate off opinion then there's no point in continuing... the facts won't change because you will it.
 
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Exia00

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Explain to me how you achieved 6GB per channel on that laptop. If you "can't do 16GB" that just means you have a single SODIMM slot, which you never bothered to clarify. That just makes the situation worse. I was trying to be polite before but you're being obstinate. Dual channel memory operation requires both channels to have the same amount of memory. Period. Sorry, that's reality - ask around if you don't believe me.
Hybrid drives are just not that good. I barely used any storage on them, and I kept my mechanical drives defragmented. The newer Firecudas are OK but again, outside of the cache they're just HDDs. Compared to a decent SSD they are just slow - especially a good PCIe M.2 drive with a fast CPU to decompress data at the same pace. For hybrid drives, load times in more demanding games is pretty terrible. More so if you play more than one title on a regular basis. eSports games like Overwatch are not too bad, I guess, especially if that's all you play (the cache gets more opportunity to do it's thing if you're always loading the same data). If you don't believe me there's plenty of benchmarks. If it's what you're used to, you wouldn't notice. For me, mechanical drives are unbearable for anything outside of mass storage.

Regarding the integrated graphics: Not sure what you're reading but I specifically said NEITHER of those was a powerhouse. But it offers more gaming performance within that power envelope than any Intel chip remotely in that price bracket. Maybe regardless of price, at the 12W-15W range. A 2700U/3700U would have been even better, but that aside: The 2500U beats the stuffing out of the 7Y30 in gaming. Even in the worst possible configuration (12W plus gimped cooling) running the most out-of-date OEM-approved drivers, it's far better than a m3 with a 615. Again if you don't believe me there's tons of data. For a more fair comparison: it's also generally much faster even against Intel's bigger UHD 620 in their higher-power "U" series chips in gaming performance. Just because they both "run at 720p" doesn't mean anything, all things equal the 2500U will enable better settings or higher framerate (or a mix of both). If you want to operate off opinion then there's no point in continuing... the facts won't change because you will it.
If you want an actual explanation on how it would work having the 4gb solder memory with a 8/16gb stick to work as dual channel you could ask Acer themselves since it is their laptops because really i can't explain for what they did to make it work but it just does work like that.

For hybrid drive again they do what they need to do and they are still better than your average mechanical drives which the SSD part of the system mainly just focus on the executable part of Windows and your everyday use executable which is similar to having a SSD with a HDD since if you have a small SSD like a 60gb one as an example you would be running windows and steam/b.net/uplay/origin while your games would be running off of your hard drive which again it is just the executable off of the SSD but the main game would run off of the HDD which is pretty much the same with Hybrids right now.

For the integrated graphics when you would mention as something as "but the Ryzen in the Smach Z will beat the snot out of the m3-7Y30 " it pretty much saying that one is more of a powerhouse and sure the Vega 8 isn't that bad but for people running a desktop (even a small console like PC) could spend a lot less for the Ryzen 3 2200G and get about the same performance as the Smach Z or even greater since you could overclock the iGPU in the 2200G and sure you might say something like "you can go out and play games on it still" which would be true but the fact is most games people would try to play on it are online games which pretty much it would be a 800$+ toilet handheld for when you're not on your actual desktop/gaming laptop/semi gaming laptop.
 

alextheblue

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If you want an actual explanation on how it would work having the 4gb solder memory with a 8/16gb stick to work as dual channel you could ask Acer themselves since it is their laptops because really i can't explain for what they did to make it work but it just does work like that.
No, it doesn't work that way. Ryzen's IMC does not support flex mode. It's OK to be wrong sometimes, it's a learning process. Regardless of what the reporting software says or what people claim, on this platform using 4GB in one channel and 8 or 16 in the other results in single channel performance. That's fine for most software but will cripple gaming performance if you rely on the iGPU.
For hybrid drive again they do what they need to do and they are still better than your average mechanical drives which the SSD part of the system mainly just focus on the executable part of Windows and your everyday use executable which is similar to having a SSD with a HDD since if you have a small SSD like a 60gb one as an example you would be running windows and steam/b.net/uplay/origin while your games would be running off of your hard drive which again it is just the executable off of the SSD but the main game would run off of the HDD which is pretty much the same with Hybrids right now.
Oh, so you're saying it's nearly as good as a popular setup from like 5-6 years ago. Yeah, maybe. These days you'd be far better served with a relatively large SSD as your primary drive. 500GB+. Prices are really good and the overall experience is better.
For the integrated graphics when you would mention as something as "but the Ryzen in the Smach Z will beat the snot out of the m3-7Y30 " it pretty much saying that one is more of a powerhouse and sure the Vega 8 isn't that bad but for people running a desktop (even a small console like PC) could spend a lot less for the Ryzen 3 2200G and get about the same performance as the Smach Z or even greater since you could overclock the iGPU in the 2200G and sure you might say something like "you can go out and play games on it still" which would be true but the fact is most games people would try to play on it are online games which pretty much it would be a 800$+ toilet handheld for when you're not on your actual desktop/gaming laptop/semi gaming laptop.
Again, I specifically said neither is a powerhouse. They are both slow compared to typical modern discrete GPUs. I can not be more clear on that, and this point you're just being obstinate. Also why are you comparing this to desktops, we're talking about a configurable TDP chip that is set at 12W. It's still slow, but it's a crapload faster than the GPD Win 2 and it's 7Y30 (or even ANY of Intel's U series chips).

In a small device that can't handle a lot of heat or power draw, the only faster choices right now would have Ryzen 2700U, 3500U, and 3700U (or embedded equivalents). Which yes, they should have offered as options.
 
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Exia00

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alextheblue it almost sounds like you don't even know what laptop i am using to begin with since i mentioned the specs awhile back which you should scroll up again and also as mentioned you should contact Acer about it because they can confirm it for you as i already know because when i looked on my laptop it says duel channel in CPU-Z.
 
I wouldn't say hybrid drives are bad, but I don't think they are worth the price premium in systems that can hold multiple drives. When hybrid drives first started appearing some years back, it seemed like a feature that would have found its way into most consumer hard drives by now, at only a moderate increase in price. Instead, they are still asking a roughly 50% premium for them over standard 7200 RPM desktop drives.

And why do they still only have 8GB of flash storage? It's possible to buy a 120GB SSD for as little as $20 now, or 240GB for $30, and yet for a similar additional cost these hybrid drives only have the same small cache that they had back in 2011. It just seems like an 8GB cache shouldn't add more than $10 to the cost of a drive at this point, and that drives at those prices should offer a considerably larger cache.
 
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alextheblue

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alextheblue it almost sounds like you don't even know what laptop i am using to begin with since i mentioned the specs awhile back which you should scroll up again and also as mentioned you should contact Acer about it because they can confirm it for you as i already know because when i looked on my laptop it says duel channel in CPU-Z.
Sorry, I was thinking of my laptop, it's also got 4GB soldered. You still can't be in dual channel mode like that, the channels have to be the same capacity. You're probably running in flex mode and CPU-Z can't scope the difference. The first 8GB should offer dual-channel like performance (or close to it) and the rest is half that. Not that it matters much with a discrete graphics card.
 

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