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Hands-on: Razer Edge is a Whole New Class of Device

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 18 comments

As expected, the Razer Edge gaming "tablet" is pure awesomeness..

The Razer Edge is a whole new class of device. That's what I told the team after spending some hands-on time with the Windows 8 Pro gaming tablet during a private showing Wednesday night. Just like the Oculus Rift which we saw in another private showing just two hours later, I expected to be blown away by Razer's new product, and I wasn't disappointed whatsoever.

We've covered the hardware specs for quite some time, so there's no need to really re-hash the subject. But as a brief recap, the Core i5-based Razer Edge will start at $999 and the Core i7-based Razer Edge Pro will start at $1299. Both run Windows 8 Pro, and feature Nvidia's GT640M LE GPU, a USB 3.0 port, SSD-based storage and more.

The Razer Edge is seemingly a re-imagining of a mid-range all-in-one (AIO) PC, sporting enough x86-based horsepower under its 10-inch screen to cough up 59fps in Bethesda's Dishonored using the default settings and a 1366 x 768 resolution. The Razer Edge isn't iPad thin, and its form factor reminded me of the first Kindle Fire, only substantially larger.

In an AIO scenario, Razer shoved the Edge in the optional $80 dock and attached a Razer gaming keyboard and mouse. Dishonored played just as one would expect if it were running on an actual desktop, whereas the Razer Edge unit slapped into the optional $250 gamepad attachment proved more challenging based on the fact that users must move and "mouselook" using thumbsticks instead – console junkies should feel right at home.

That said, the Razer Edge was again surprisingly light even when crammed into the gamepad accessory. Holding the device felt similar to holding a gaming steering wheel with straight handles rather than curved ones, but fatigue could possibly set in after a few hours of play (it's not a Nintendo 3DS, after all). That's where the optional docking station comes into play.

With the tablet docked in front of an HDTV, gamers can dial up a USB or Bluetooth-based gamepad and forgo the handheld solution altogether. However one of my biggest beefs with the tablet thus far is a lack of a native HDMI output port on the tablet itself – this feature is only available through the dock, thus pushing customers to tack on another $$80 on top of their original tablet purchase.

All in all, we were impressed with the Razer Edge based on the little time we had to fondle the device. The $200 keyboard dock won't be out until 3Q13, and there was mention that it may undergo a few changes before it hits the market. But all else displayed in Razer's private showing was pure excellence -- probably one of the best devices shown at CES this year.

We look forward to getting our hands on the device again to do a thorough review (with benchmarks) at a later date.

 

 

 

 

 

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Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    tarzan2001 , January 10, 2013 3:59 PM
    This is one of the most useless devices I have ever heard of. It is basically a very expensive tablet--without all of the conveniences of a tablet!! If you use it without the dock, you are pretty much just holding a heavy tablet in your hands that will no doubt be uncomfortable to game with. Not to mention that the battery life is probably not very good either, considering the specs in it. If you use the dock, then basically you have a very expensive netbook that can play games. Why not just use the money to buy a proper gaming laptop if you're gonna be using the dock at a desk anyway?? Think about it: for $1299 + $80 = $1379, just add a couple hundred more dollars and you can buy a decent MSI gaming laptop, which will give you a better and larger screen, better processor and graphics card, more storage space, more ports, and an optical drive! And if you buy the gamepad accessory, that pushes the price to $1299 + $250 = $1549, not to mention that it relegates you to some sort of limbo zone where you're not quite gaming on a PC (due to the use of the thumbsticks), but not gaming on a console either (which costs much less to buy)! On top of all that, for serious gamers, the technology will likely be outdated by the time it even comes out for sale! You won't be able to upgrade it later either!

    I'll admit that the concept is cool on paper, but realistically, I'd rather put the money into building a nice gaming desktop, or purchasing a decent gaming laptop if I wanted the portability.
Other Comments
  • 10 Hide
    tarzan2001 , January 10, 2013 3:59 PM
    This is one of the most useless devices I have ever heard of. It is basically a very expensive tablet--without all of the conveniences of a tablet!! If you use it without the dock, you are pretty much just holding a heavy tablet in your hands that will no doubt be uncomfortable to game with. Not to mention that the battery life is probably not very good either, considering the specs in it. If you use the dock, then basically you have a very expensive netbook that can play games. Why not just use the money to buy a proper gaming laptop if you're gonna be using the dock at a desk anyway?? Think about it: for $1299 + $80 = $1379, just add a couple hundred more dollars and you can buy a decent MSI gaming laptop, which will give you a better and larger screen, better processor and graphics card, more storage space, more ports, and an optical drive! And if you buy the gamepad accessory, that pushes the price to $1299 + $250 = $1549, not to mention that it relegates you to some sort of limbo zone where you're not quite gaming on a PC (due to the use of the thumbsticks), but not gaming on a console either (which costs much less to buy)! On top of all that, for serious gamers, the technology will likely be outdated by the time it even comes out for sale! You won't be able to upgrade it later either!

    I'll admit that the concept is cool on paper, but realistically, I'd rather put the money into building a nice gaming desktop, or purchasing a decent gaming laptop if I wanted the portability.
  • 3 Hide
    -Jackson , January 10, 2013 4:16 PM
    Quote:
    This is one of the most useless devices I have ever heard of. It is basically a very expensive tablet--without all of the conveniences of a tablet!! If you use it without the dock, you are pretty much just holding a heavy tablet in your hands that will no doubt be uncomfortable to game with. Not to mention that the battery life is probably not very good either, considering the specs in it. If you use the dock, then basically you have a very expensive netbook that can play games. Why not just use the money to buy a proper gaming laptop if you're gonna be using the dock at a desk anyway?? Think about it: for $1299 + $80 = $1379, just add a couple hundred more dollars and you can buy a decent MSI gaming laptop, which will give you a better and larger screen, better processor and graphics card, more storage space, more ports, and an optical drive! And if you buy the gamepad accessory, that pushes the price to $1299 + $250 = $1549, not to mention that it relegates you to some sort of limbo zone where you're not quite gaming on a PC (due to the use of the thumbsticks), but not gaming on a console either (which costs much less to buy)! On top of all that, for serious gamers, the technology will likely be outdated by the time it even comes out for sale! You won't be able to upgrade it later either!

    I'll admit that the concept is cool on paper, but realistically, I'd rather put the money into building a nice gaming desktop, or purchasing a decent gaming laptop if I wanted the portability.

    I agree.
    I think the whole concept is a silly idea, it won't be a comfortable experience, it'll be expensive and won't last very long in terms of battery life. PSPs already do the hand-held gaming job. PC games aren't called "PC games" for nothing.
    I mean really, who is actually going to play Crysis or BF3 on one of those, wait --more importantly, will it even be able to actually run PC games? I can only imagine how hot that thing will get whilst gaming. :lol: 
  • Display all 18 comments.
  • 4 Hide
    jwcalla , January 10, 2013 6:12 PM
    For $1k we're going to need a little higher res screen there.
  • -5 Hide
    sna , January 10, 2013 8:19 PM
    tarzan2001This is one of the most useless devices I have ever heard of. It is basically a very expensive tablet--without all of the conveniences of a tablet!! If you use it without the dock, you are pretty much just holding a heavy tablet in your hands that will no doubt be uncomfortable to game with. Not to mention that the battery life is probably not very good either, considering the specs in it. If you use the dock, then basically you have a very expensive netbook that can play games. Why not just use the money to buy a proper gaming laptop if you're gonna be using the dock at a desk anyway?? Think about it: for $1299 + $80 = $1379, just add a couple hundred more dollars and you can buy a decent MSI gaming laptop, which will give you a better and larger screen, better processor and graphics card, more storage space, more ports, and an optical drive! And if you buy the gamepad accessory, that pushes the price to $1299 + $250 = $1549, not to mention that it relegates you to some sort of limbo zone where you're not quite gaming on a PC (due to the use of the thumbsticks), but not gaming on a console either (which costs much less to buy)! On top of all that, for serious gamers, the technology will likely be outdated by the time it even comes out for sale! You won't be able to upgrade it later either!I'll admit that the concept is cool on paper, but realistically, I'd rather put the money into building a nice gaming desktop, or purchasing a decent gaming laptop if I wanted the portability.


    most laptops out there have the 640m gpu even most of AIO desktops.

    not all people want to max out everything to play
    an this tablet is one of the best
    battery life ? same as norml tablets coz u can disable the 640m gpu

    i think u like it and crying coz you cant afford it thats all
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , January 10, 2013 8:57 PM
    I stopped reading after 1366 x 768 resolution. Money better spent on upgrading my GTX 680 desktop card to a 780 in April.
  • 1 Hide
    tarzan2001 , January 10, 2013 9:03 PM
    snamost laptops out there have the 640m gpu even most of AIO desktops.not all people want to max out everything to playan this tablet is one of the bestbattery life ? same as norml tablets coz u can disable the 640m gpui think u like it and crying coz you cant afford it thats all


    I can afford, actually. I just recognize that it's a product that's made less desirable due to its high price--a price that bumps it into competition with better-products-for-the-money.

    Also, the only people that don't want to "max out everything to play" are people that can't afford the hardware to do so.
  • 2 Hide
    vmem , January 10, 2013 9:15 PM
    call me an ass if you all want, but there are those of us who have a nice gaming desktop, have or might have tried a tablet such as an ipad, and have a gaming laptop. now, out of those three devices, the desktop's not changing. it's there to stay, but the laptop and the tablet? hmmm, well here's the thing:

    I'm a working man myself, carrying a laptop AND a tablet around is a pain in the ass to be honest, but there are those times during lunch breaks that I'd like to read the news, check facebook, etc etc where I'd hate to have to lug around a laptop for, a giant, heavy, gaming laptop at that, so I want that tablet. but how the crap will I get any realistic work done on a tablet on the go? i'll need the laptop on occasion, especially for those x86 apps.

    Now the above is the exact thinking behind the microsoft surface pro. what Razer has done is the same thing as the surface pro, except downscale the resolution a tad-bit (which I don't like, but is willing to let slide), and stick in a strong mobile GPU. now I can even carry my razer edge to lan parties (provided my friend can find a spare keyboard/mouse at their places, which in all honestly most of has a few spares).

    So you can keep calling this thing useless, i'm gonna buy one the day it comes out
  • 3 Hide
    vmem , January 10, 2013 9:17 PM
    tarzan2001 Also, the only people that don't want to "max out everything to play" are people that can't afford the hardware to do so.


    FALSE. if you want to max out everything to play, chances are you have a 50lb or so full tower sitting under your desk. now if you like to work out by lifting that thing everywhere you go, be my guest. otherwise, you'll end up making compromises somewhere. even top of the line 18 in gaming laptops can't hold a candle to a maxed out desktop. so what do we look for in a mobile gaming system is actually PORTABILITY and being GOOD ENOUGH.
  • -1 Hide
    xpeh , January 10, 2013 9:24 PM
    tarzan2001I can afford, actually. I just recognize that it's a product that's made less desirable due to its high price--a price that bumps it into competition with better-products-for-the-money. Also, the only people that don't want to "max out everything to play" are people that can't afford the hardware to do so.


    Know of any other gaming tablets?
  • 0 Hide
    tarzan2001 , January 10, 2013 9:55 PM
    Like I said, the Razer Edge is a nice concept, but you can get much better products for the price. I would not consider an 18" laptop to be very portable at all, save for moving it into different rooms around the house; certainly not for taking to work or college on a regular basis! I personally have a 15" MSI gaming laptop that I bought 2 years ago for ~$1500. When I got it, I played all of my games on max settings, save for a few like Battlefield 3. Even now, I can play many games on very high settings, and for a few I reduce the resolution to 1600x900 instead of 1080p, or I tweak the AA, etc. I feel it is decently portable at 7 lbs. Yes, I know it's heavy compared to most average laptops, but if you are one of those people already carrying a laptop and a tablet around, it's not too bad. And if you really want to enjoy your portable gaming experience, it's literally worth the weight.

    What the Razer Edge offers is decent gaming, lower weight compared to gaming laptops, but on a miniscule 10" screen at a pretty hefty price for a tablet!! So if you're in the market to make a purchase for a new portable gaming system and you've narrowed your choices to either the Razer Edge or a gaming laptop, you can pay more for less with the Edge and carry less weight around, or you can get more bang for your buck and carry more weight around. Both options are fine as long as your wallet allows, but personally I'd rather go for the gaming laptop. Just my two cents. :) 
  • 0 Hide
    tarzan2001 , January 10, 2013 10:03 PM
    vmemFALSE. if you want to max out everything to play, chances are you have a 50lb or so full tower sitting under your desk. now if you like to work out by lifting that thing everywhere you go, be my guest. otherwise, you'll end up making compromises somewhere.


    Also, I see your 50 lb tower and raise you this:
    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Revolt-Gaming-PC-Specs-Price-Release-Date-CES,20340.html

    :) 
  • 1 Hide
    RADIO_ACTIVE , January 10, 2013 10:14 PM
    Notice when its on it is always connected to a power source...
  • 0 Hide
    sha7bot , January 10, 2013 10:43 PM
    Does it have Baldur's Gate Enhanced edition? :) 
  • -2 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , January 10, 2013 11:38 PM
    What a stupid idea for a laptop. At least make it wider and taller to allow for slightly bigger keys, and your standard key layout for desktop keyboards, to include a number pad and in between, INS/DEL/HOME/END/PGUP/PGDOWN, PRNT SCR/SCROLL LOCK/PAUSE and the arrow keys. With that, will come a bigger screen, too. Gamers would like that. Put one fat battery on it, as well.
  • 0 Hide
    killerb255 , January 11, 2013 1:29 AM
    Well...this IS Tom's after all. Its audience consists of people that build PCs as a hobby. The whole smartphone/tablet-esque era by itself is a turnoff for almost everyone here.
  • 0 Hide
    ojas , January 11, 2013 10:30 AM
    Quote:
    The Razer Edge is a whole new class of device. That's what I told the team after spending some hands-on time with the Windows 8 Pro gaming tablet during a private showing Wednesday night.

    Hah. You also claimed that an over sized tablet PC woud make PCs obsolete. I hope the team didn't believe you on this one.

    Quote:
    There are two sides to this. It’s clearly a very powerful piece of tech. The notion of having a chunky tablet that can simply play my library without having to hunt down a cut-down port is very compelling, and it’s not actually ugly. Not even with the sticky-out controllers. I’d happily play games on it, and I’d expect those with a surfeit of strategy games would find it a lovely thing to use on a train. My current gaming laptop is bigger and weaker than the Tabslatelutely Phabusl8te, but then it was way cheaper as well. So what I’m saying is IWANTONEIWANTONEIWANTONEIWANTONE!

    On the other side, it’s a big ask. Portable kit has long occupied the second-tier of gaming devices when it comes to PCs. The cost is up there with a very decent desktop and aside from the external peripherals, there’s no upgrade route. Laptops at least have expandable RAM. I’d also question it’s use a tablet: it’s really chunky, and doesn’t look like it would work as an e-reader or casual queue-enhancing device. It’s hardly pocket-sized, but at least it’s not this monstrosity. Not that I’d want to stand in a bank reading my Kindle library with something so expensive, but this is really a modular, powerful laptop, with a few tricks up its sleeve. And did you notice the careful evasion of the battery life question by the Razer CEO in that video?

    http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2013/01/09/pc-pancake-razers-edge-is-a-gaming-pc-in-tablet-form/
  • 0 Hide
    Muzarie , March 13, 2013 7:25 PM
    This is a very nice device , I have no idea why anyone wouldn't want this ?
    Yeah , Yeah .. I thought the same as most of you , " I can get a better laptop for that much "
    But in reality you cant get something this portable , this good .
    Also , Ps-Vita, 3ds , ect have better power/ba
  • 0 Hide
    Muzarie , March 13, 2013 7:28 PM
    MuzarieThis is a very nice device , I have no idea why anyone wouldn't want this ?Yeah , Yeah .. I thought the same as most of you , " I can get a better laptop for that much " But in reality you cant get something this portable , this good .Also , Ps-Vita, 3ds , ect have better powerlife because they aren't as good with graphics & stuff . This is a very good product & runs all games very well (crysis 3 & down) My only question is , Will I be able to change the graphics card if I wanted .