backtop


Print 45 comment(s) - last by Moishe.. on Apr 4 at 3:35 PM

Relatively portable x86 gaming tablet is a dream for gamers, but very different from the iPad

Founded in 1998, gaming-electronics firm Razer built a strong name for itself in the peripherals realm and has today branched out into its own branded gaming PCs.  Its latest effort lands this week -- a gaming geared (x86) Windows 8 tablet named the "Razer Edge".

The tablet started shipping this week; the peripherals for it (read on to find out more) should be shipping in the next couple weeks.  And while Windows 8 tablets have struggled in the market, this Razer tablet does provide an interesting alternative to the market leading Apple, Inc. (AAPLfourth-generation iPad or Google Inc.'s (GOOG) aggressively priced Android-powered Nexus 7.

The device is pretty thick and heavy -- but packs powerful hardware.  It weighs approximately 2.1 lb (33.6 oz.) and measures 278.5 mm x 178.85 mm x 19.5 mm / 10.9" x 7" x .80".
Razer Windows 8
The screen is a 10.1-inch 1366x768 pixel multi-touch display (a bit lacking compared to the 2048x1536 pixel panel found in the iPad).  
Razer Edge
Under the hood is an Intel Corp. (INTC22 nm Ivy Bridge Chip -- either the i5-3317U (dual-core; 1.5 GHz std.; 2.6 GHz turbo) or the i7-3517U (dual-core; 1.9 GHz std; 3.0 GHz turbo).  That powerhouse is paired with a Kepler mobile GPU -- NVIDIA Corp.'s (NVDA) GeForce 640M LE graphics chip (with 2 GB of DDR3 graphics memory).  There's a 2 MP front-facing HD webcam, an 802.11 b/g/n adapter (no 802.11 ac support), and Bluetooth 4.0 support.

Ivy Bridge
The Razer Edge packs a dual-core Ivy Bridge chip (quad-core die pictured).
[Image Source: Intel]

Overall, the Razer Edge comes up a bit short compared to the latest iPad in several categories -- battery life, screen resolution, thickness (the Razer Edge is almost as thick as three fourth-gen iPads stacked and weighs more than three iPads), and lack of a cellular modem option.

However, the Edge does offer some interesting opportunities.  First, it's available with some unique gaming geared peripherals.  The first is a $250 USD handle-style controller, which has handholds on either side of the screen, with buttons on the handles.
Razer Edge controller handles
Alternatively you can pick up a $100 USD docking station, which charges the Edge, while offering two extra USB 3.0 ports compatible with either a keyboard/mouse combo or a pair of $80 USD Razer Elite Windows GamePads for multiplayer-gaming.  The dock also has HDMI out, so you can game on your big screen. Razer Edge controllers
Note, there's no shortage of relatively cheap gaming controllers for the iPad, but the experience of most iOS games is less geared towards them control-wise versus PC games (which often are made with controller-using gamers in mind).  Also, the Razer Edge's handle's controller is pretty unique.

When it comes to pricing, there're three different SKUs.  $1000 USD buys you 4 GB of DDR3 DRAM, 64 GB, and the i5 CPU; $1300 USD buys you 8 GB of DDR3 DRAM, 128 GB, and the i7 CPU; and $1450 USD buys you 8 GB of DDR3 DRAM, 256 GB, and the i7 CPU.

Aside from the peripherals, the Razer Edge allows you to play full PC gaming titles -- offering you much more gaming-wise than the iPad.  And the x86 CPU and Windows 8 means that you can install Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) Office suite and get "real work" done between the gaming.

Here's a quick comparison with the 128 GB iPad:
iPad v. Razer Edge
(Click to enlarge)

Razer just announced that integration with Valve's Steam service will be fully supported.  The tablet is capable of playing many titles that nearly no other tablet could -- such as DiRT 3, Civilization V, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Portal 2, and The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim.

AnandTech reports the battery life to be around 4-5 hours versus 15 hours with the latest iPad.  Despite its high price and weaknesses, AnandTech's Vivek Gowri concludes, "The Edge feels like a PC-iPad-PSP mashup from the future, and it's incredibly exciting. As much as it was hyped up with all the CES awards and social media marketing push, Razer has created a fascinating gaming machine that could change the way we view portable gaming going forward."

Sources: Razer [1], [2], AnandTech



Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: Doomed to failure
By Nortel on 4/1/2013 3:52:12 PM , Rating: 1
Let me just say a few things. The 640m is capable of driving a resolution of 3840 x 2160. Having a high resolution is excellent, if you are complaining that games would run slowly on it, you are correct and in that case you can select a lower scaled resolution. When you are browsing the web or doing anything else, use the native resolution.

Many people seem to be saying more or less the same thing :
quote:
Regardless of how good a game looks on the iPad, you can't beat numbers. The point of this isn't trying to beat the iPad. That is so far from what Razor was trying to deliver here


I brought up the iPad for a few reasons, it has a much higher resolution vs this device and therefore has a harder time driving all those pixels. The 640m pushes way less pixels and consumes far more power. The end result is being able to play x86 games not designed for touchscreen on a heavy, thick device with 4.5 hour battery life that may be able to put out decent fps on older games but at a lower resolution. The iPad (4) on the other hand cannot play x86 games but yet ported/original games play very well. Worms, Doom, Duke Nukem 3d, Max Payne, Minecraft, Modern Combat 4, etc... all work perfectly on the iPad. If you are 'liking' this device because you can play WoW on the bus, maybe this is something a niche market could enjoy but I just can't see that happening.

When I'm at home and want to play something serious, I'm on my desktop with 22 or 27 inch monitors. If I'm lazing around on the couch, I have a tablet. When I'm on the go, I have my Phone. This device isn't a phone and isn't powerful enough to play the games I want to play like Bioshock Infinite. A 10 inch low resolution screen without mouse and keyboard doesn't have me chomping at the bit. For the price of this you could buy a tablet, a phone and a laptop and be in a far better place for 3 use-cases.


"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il














botimage
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki