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28 9月 2018 - 15:47:07

Dell Vostro 2510 Battery all-laptopbattery.com

Even though both machines have lower-tier graphics cards, the two laptops are both technically VR-capable due to Oculus’ Asynchronous Spacewarp technology. On the SteamVR Performance Test, the XPS 15 scored a 3 out of 11, while the ZenBook Pro hit only a 2. We don't recommend either of these laptops for VR, but the XPS 15 would likely have a better go of it.Powered by 8th Gen Intel processors, the XPS 15 (Core i7-8750H) and ZenBook Pro 15 (i9-8950HK) tore through our performance tests. And while the beefier ZenBook Pro beat the XPS 15 as we expected, it didn't win by much.On the Geekbench 4 overall performance test, the ZenBook Pro scored 20,076, though the XPS 15 was not far behind, hitting 19,775. The XPS 15 didn’t slow down on the Excel test either, matching 65,000 names and addresses in 44 seconds, which nips at the heels of the ZenBook Pro’s 40 seconds.When we ran the HandBrake test, which measures the amount of time it takes to transcode a 4K video to 1080p, the XPS 15 actually showed up the ZenBook Pro, completing the challenge in 10 minutes and 16 seconds, versus the XPS 15’s 10:53.

When tasked with copying 4.97GB of multimedia files, the ZenBook Pro took 12 seconds, for a rate of 424 megabytes per second, while the XPS 15 was just short of that mark, at 391 MBps.It’s been a close race so far, but the divide in battery life between these two laptops is huge. When surfing the web over Wi-Fi at 150 nits of brightness, the XPS 15 survived for a solid 8 hours and 28 minutes, while the ZenBook Pro 15 endured for less than half of that time, at 4:05. When we turned the ZenBook Pro 15's ScreenPad off, the laptop's battery life improved by just a tiny amount, to 5:14.The ZenBook Pro 15 I tested costs $2,299 and comes with a 2.9-GHz Intel Core i9-8950HK processor, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti GPU with 4GB of VRAM. There’s only one other version, which sells for $1,799, removes the ScreenPad and downgrades to a 2.2-GHz Intel Core i7-8750H CPU.

The XPS 15 I tested goes for $1,849 and comes outfitted with an Intel Core i7-8750H processor, 16GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD, a GTX 1050 Ti GPU and a 4K display. Dell offers a number of other configurations, including one with a Core i5-8300H CPU, 8GB of RAM, a 1TB HDD, an Intel UHD 630 GPU and a 1080p display, all for $999. The capped-out version costs $1,999 and gets upgrades of 32GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD storage. You can also configure the systems individually.The XPS 15 offers more value in every way, especially considering that its Core i7 configuration performs close to the ZenBook Pro's Core i9 on many of our tests. And on the amount of configurations alone, the XPS 15 takes this round.If battery life doesn't matter as much to you, then the ZenBook Pro 15 is a compelling option for productivity and entertainment, especially because of its awesome ScreenPad feature. But if you don't need a luxurious color display as a touchpad, you might prefer the XPS 15, which is a much cheaper choice that's pretty powerful in its own right.

How do you define what makes for a "real" gaming laptop? We don't consider any laptop a true gaming machine unless it comes with a dedicated graphics chip (aka, a "GPU"), as opposed to the integrated graphics built into the PC's main processor. For us—and for sellers of laptops—that's the bright line that divides a gamer from a pretender.Still, depending on the kind of games you play and how fussy you are, sometimes a laptop doesn't have to pretend. On some level, almost any recent notebook PC can work as a gaming laptop. Current laptops using Intel's seventh- or eighth-generation ("Kaby Lake" or "Coffee Lake") Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs, or AMD's less commonly seen A10 or A12 chips, can play basic game titles passably if you roll back the screen-resolution and graphical-detail settings far enough. These chips have modest graphics acceleration built in, and that's all you need for casual or Web-based games. Plants vs. Zombies, here you come.

But we assume you want to do more than harvest potato mines and pea-shooters—you have a Steam account, and you ache to play some of the latest AAA titles: the newest rev of the Battlefield series, the latest Tom Clancy-fest, the newest iteration of Tomb Raider or Far Cry. That's where a dedicated graphics chip comes in. It's the starting point for getting serious about gaming on a notebook.If you're truly serious, and insist on playing all your games at very high detail settings and the highest possible screen resolution (for most laptops, that's 1,920 by 1,080 pixels, assuming you're playing on the laptop's screen and not an external display), you're just going to have to shell out some bucks, especially if you want that laptop to stay game-viable at those settings for more than a couple of years. Future-proofing like that demands top-end graphics silicon: Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1070 or GTX 1080. And that means spending, at current prices, $1,500 or more on your laptop.

Simply put: You won't find high-end dedicated graphics in gaming laptops under a grand. But times have changed, and lower-end graphics chips here in 2018 have caught up to most games and to the screen resolutions of most mainstream gaming laptops. With a little compromising, you can enjoy some very respectable gaming at 1080p in machines a notch or two down from the GeForce GTX 1070 and GTX 1080 elite, with models starting as low as $800. Budget-priced gaming laptops are now an established category, not outliers, and have been embraced by the major players. We've tested models from Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and MSI.Our first bit of advice? If gaming's your primary focus and your budget really does dead-stop at $1,000, get the best GPU you can for the money, and let everything else follow from there. That may be at the expense of another spec or two—a little less storage, say, or a Core i5 processor instead of a Core i7.

That said, notebooks aren't upgradable, apart from their primary system memory (RAM, not to be confused with the graphics memory) and in some cases, the storage. You're going to be stuck with the screen, the graphics chip, and the processor you buy now, so evaluate these parts wisely. If you can stretch your budget a bit to get the next-tier-higher component, it can pay dividends in terms of usable life.Today's games, especially in the MMORPG and real-time-strategy (RTS) categories, tend to hammer the processor. In most cases, new gaming notebooks no longer come with dual-core processors, for good reason: Some AAA games call explicitly for quad-core CPUs.

That said, a maxed-out Core i7 CPU is less crucial for gaming than it is for processor-intensive tasks such as video editing and media-file production work. With current-generation Intel CPUs, you'll get plenty of pep even from a four-core "Coffee Lake"/eighth-generation Core i5. A Core i7 of the same generation is actually a hefty six-core/12-thread processor that, we'd argue, is overkill for casual gamers who need to mind what they spend. So, our bottom line: Opt for a Core i5 or i7 chip with four true cores if you can; a six-core chip is gravy.On the AMD side of the fence, the on-chip graphics solutions in the company's A8-, A10-, and A12-series processors are pretty good (as integrated graphics go). As a result, you'll see almost no AMD-based laptops under $1,000 with dedicated graphics. That's because the presence of an AMD CPU, in the first place, is usually a low-price play by the laptop maker. Adding a GPU would just bump up the price.

Given an around-$1,000 budget, 8GB is the minimum RAM you should settle for. (We haven't seen less in a machine with dedicated graphics for some years now.) You probably won't get more in a sub-$1,000 machine with dedicated graphics, but that's a perfectly adequate amount for most moderate use and mainstream gaming.Whether the laptop's RAM is user-upgradable later on, and what the ceiling is, are further facets to investigate. That said, even if you can upgrade the memory, the laptop may come with memory modules occupying both slots, which would mean replacing them both when upgrading later. It's best to get what you need up front.

You'll see both ordinary hard drives and swifter (but lesser-capacity) solid-state drives (SSDs) in under-$1,000 laptops. The occasional 15.6-inch-screen model might offer a small-capacity SSD boot drive alongside a secondary-storage platter hard drive, though this is more common with 17-inch laptops. Opt for this dual-drive approach if you can find it and afford it. The smaller SSD would be home to the operating system and a few favorite games, and the larger, more economical hard drive would host the rest of your games and other programs that don't need quick loading times. (It's indeed possible to split your Steam game library across drives.)

In a gaming laptop, an SSD plus a hard drive is the best of both storage worlds. In terms of gaming performance, the storage subsystem affects game load times and in-game level changes. It can be of special importance in MMORPGs, where huge environments are loaded in real time. Thus, having fast, SSD-based storage is desirable. To our eyes, you should only opt for an SSD boot drive at this point in time. The difference in performance "feel" between a hard drive and an SSD boot drive is too big to ignore. (See our picks for the fastest SSDs.)Optical drives are less common on 15-inch gaming models than on 17-inchers, but they are almost extinct at both screen sizes these days. Look for one if you have lots of games on disc, but know that you can always use an external USB DVD/CD drive in a pinch, and they cost just $20 or so.

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