High-end ’boutique PC builders’ target hardcore gamers and usually focus more on desktop machines than on notebooks, since desktops enable faster and more powerful specifications and allow manufacturers to provide jazzed-up cases complete with space-age lighting and such like. Origin is one such company, originally founded by former Alienware employees.
The Origin Eon 17-S is a typical boutique gaming notebook – full of high-end components crammed into a lightly-modified version of a Clevo chassis. Clevo, for those who didn’t know, is a Taiwanese company which turns out baseline, generic chasses for other manufacturers to tweak and market as their own creation. It all makes for a powerful hand-asembled system, but which can be a bit plain in terms of appearance.
The key advantage the customm-build gives to Origin Eon 17-S and its customer base is that the firm can overclock both CPU and GPU for ultra-high performance. Not that they compromised on specs in the first place – the Eon 17-S packs the best available components to start with – an Intel Extreme Edition i7-2920XM processor with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 580M on polygon-cruching duty. That goes some way to justifying the $3600 price tag. Entry-level models featuring a Core i5-2520 start at $1675. However for that outlay, mainstream brands such as Dell’s Alienware line offer more bang for your buck.
Design-wise the Clevo chassis is reminiscent of the shells found on laptops made by smaller electronics companies who can’t or won’t manufacture their own laptop cases. The bog-standard black chassis has been modified to offer a custom back panel on the lid, and buyers can further customize their machine with the color or design of their choice, either airbrushed onto the lid or laser-etched.
The barebones interior of Origin Eon 17-S offers a basic island-style keyboard with a two-button mousepad and row of indicator lights, though dedicated quick-launch or media control buttons are missing. The keys could have been a bit larger, and were a bit clunky, although that might add to the raw-to-the-core look and feel of the Eon 17-S for some. There’s also a fingerprint reader situated between the left and right mouse buttons. Of course many a gamer will be using an external keyboard and mouse anyway…
The 17.3-inch 1920 x 1080 pixel full HD display is sharp and bright, and comes backed by a no-dead-pixel guarantee, valid for 45 days.
The port selection of Origin Eon 17-S is impressive – with support for DVI and FireWire included. There are two USB-3 sockets, so gamers needn’t worry about lag when using external input devices. Origin have also provided two regular USB-2 ports and a USB/eSata combo port.
That overclocked Intel Extreme Edition Core i7 CPU ticks over at a mighty 4.1GHz and the GTX 580M can be upgraded to an Nvidia Quadro GPU for anyone wanting hardcore multi-screen functionality. The combination of overclocked CPU and GPU is teamed with a hybrid storage solution – a 128GB SSD is coupled with a 750GB 7200rpm hard drive for optimal data transfer.
Origin Eon 17-S performance (not surprisingly) blows the competition out of the water, be it the Toshiba Qosmio X775 or the Acer Aspire Ethos AS8951G, and it comfortably outperforms the Alienware M18x by reaching 39fps at full 1080p HD resolution in Metro 2033, the most demanding game currently available. It’s clearly a future-proof machine.
As far as battery life goes, with overlocked CPU and graphics card, power demand is gonna be pretty high, so 2 hrs 20 in a video-looping test is very impressive.
If it performance you’re after, and you have deep enough pockets to pay for it, the Eon 17-S has it in spades.
Enjoy this Origin Eon 17-S video review courtesy of cnet:
Sign up to the Gadgetmix Newsletter (free) for news and reviews mailed directly to your mailbox CLICK HERE