iBuyPower has taken the wraps off the new Valkyrie CZ-17, boasting blockbusting performance enclosed in a brushed metal chassis. The Valkyrie CZ-17 stretches 428mm x 288mm and is 62mm thick/thin. It weighs a not insubstantial 4kg, without the extra 800 gram charger. Build quality is not surprisingly fabulous. General compututation is carried out by a Core i7-3630QM chip, supported by 8GB RAM, and pixel-painting is the job of the GTX 680M GPU. there’s a 128GB SSD for storage, bringing data transfer speeds averaging 242MB/s.
Port selection is also top-notch; VGA and HDMI interfaces, an outstanding USb array of three USB-3 ports and two USB-2 sockets, plus a 4-in-1 card reader. There’s a diabolically fast dual-band WiFi module, though Bluetooth isn’t included. The Valkyrie CZ-17′s 17.3-inch display crams in 1920 x 1080 pixels for full HD viewing pleasure. It’s brightness was measured at 252 nits, with 0.26 candelas for blacks, thus the Valkyrie CZ-17 achieves a contrast ratio of 1085:1. The sRGB spectrum is 82% covered.
For input, the backlit island-style keyboard provvides for rapid and precise typing/gameplay, and the Valkyrie CZ-17 has a double-key trackpad measuring 103mm x 55mm in area and which responds to gestures well. A 3MP camera sits out front for Skyping.
Audio is yet another strong point of the Valkyrie CZ-17; audio absolutely booms out of the five speaker grilles thanks to the THX True Audio speakers and the on-board subwoofer, thanks to the Intel Panther Point HD Audio souncard – good bass, clear high and medium tones. Obviously not the equal ofan external stereo system, but a close second.
Enough chatter, what about performance? In Metro 2033 with ultra settings the Valkyrie CZ-17 chalked up 26 frames per second at 1920 x 1080p resolution, and at 1920 x 1080p full HD pixel res and settings tuned to ultra it managed a 27fps in Sleeping Dogs. TOmb Raider at ultra with 16X anti-aliasing? 47 frames, no problem. Every other game out there plays fluidly at max settings and full HD resolution. Pointless to talk about multi-tabbed browsing or spreadsheet edits, launching Photoshop, even video edits – this is a beast of a computer. And flat out for an hour doesn’t significantly heat up the Valkyrie’s surfaces, nor did the Turbo Boost or GPU’s core/shader/memory clocks suffer from throttling – performance is truly magnificent.
Gamers aren’t too hot on peripherals as they tend to take up valuable space. There are 4 audio connectors for the necessary headsets, 2 video ports. HDMI-in would be useful, but iBuyPower doesn’t agree.
The iBuyPower Valkyrie CZ-17 costs $1900 as configured, and the manufacturer has included a 12-month guarantee free of charge. A machine that outperforms Dell’s Alienware M18x flagship gaming notebook, with its CrossFired duo of ATI HD7970M cards has no problem launchin apps in the Windows 8 OS aat lightning speed, and to cap a fantastic showing, iBuyPower have included recovery DVDs for a factory reinstall if ever things get sticky. Do we have any complaints? Nope.
Here is a short promo video for Valkyrie CZ-17:
For accurate benchmarks see notebookcheck.
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