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Panther 5D Teardown

Eurocom Panther 5D Notebook Review: Faster Than Your Desktop
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We start with the Panther 5D flipped upside down. We've established that the bottom-left compartment houses the battery. The bottom-center section, which is ventilated, covers one hard drive cage. And the upper two-thirds of the system is covered by a large panel with four fan intakes.

Yanking the battery necessitates removing those slotted screws. A coin will suffice in the field. A screwdriver is your best bet in the lab.

We run across the Panther 5D's first SSD under the system's battery.

Once the other drive compartment's cover is off, we see the cage holding SSDs two and three.

Here is a closer look at the hard drive cover. You can see that it's well-ventilated. Also note the bar on the left side. It holds the hard drive ribbon connector firmly in place when the cover is installed. 

Now we're above the system with its battery and storage cover removed. The aforementioned ribbon connector is clearly visible.

We have to remove four screws to free the hard drive cage. The quartet of fasteners is decoupled from the chassis by rubber grommets to help isolate mechanical disks you might install from physical shock.

This is the cage, removed. Our Panther 5D came with two drives installed, and plenty of space between them. You shouldn't have any trouble with mechanical storage running hot.

Moving on to the third drive under the battery, it's mounted in a sled that also employs rubber mounts to help cushion the drive. The sled is secured through slots in the chassis. It then slides forward to lock into place when there's a drive installed. In case that mechanism isn't enough, four screws reinforce the configuration.

Here is another look at the rubber-lined mounts.

This is a shot of the vacant drive bay. We have the cage out and to the side.

Opening up the larger flap, we see extensive shielding and reinforcement. We also get our first glimpse at the real extent of the cooling necessary to make a 150 W CPU and two 100 W GPUs work in a mobile platform.

This is how the fans and heat sinks line up with the rear exhaust vents.

Peering in from the front corner, we see the hard drive connector under the battery's mount.

These are the two fans and corresponding heat sinks that make up Eurocom's CPU cooler.

And here are the CPU coolers from above.

Moving on, this is one of the GPU fans covering a heat sink from above.

With all of the fans unfastened, there's a veritable copper mine hidden inside the Panther 5D. The size difference between the normal CPU fan (center-right) and the "full-power" CPU fan (far-right) is interesting. When that second fan spins up, you know it.

Looking in from the front, we see the CPU heat sink on the left and both GPU heat sinks on the right. There's just so much copper.

These are the two GPU thermal solutions from above. That heat pipe and sink on the bottom-left cover Intel's X79 Express PCH.

If you look closely from the back of the Panther 5D, you can see the heat sinks through the plastic grating.

A closer look at one of the graphics module heat sinks reveals two heat pipes over the GPU and one over its GDDR5 memory.

This is a more detailed shot of the CPU heat sink on the right.

And here's the one on the left. Four heat pipes connect them. Curved chassis dividers direct air to the back of the machine.

As you know, the X79 platform supports four channels of memory. Two of this system's four slots can be found just under the outer CPU fan.

The CPU fans have small foam rings around their intakes, which help ensure that all of the air going through the cooling system is fresh, rather than recirculated from inside the chassis.

Let's get the fans back in place, though.

Now the Panther 5D's thickness makes a lot more sense!

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Top Comments
  • 31 Hide
    vmem , December 4, 2013 9:13 PM
    I want the satisfaction of just dropping this monster on someone's desk, and say

    "personal server: DEPLOY!"
  • 20 Hide
    Razerium , December 4, 2013 10:17 PM
    Sure it's better than my desktop, but it's also three times more expensive!
  • 15 Hide
    coffeecoffee , December 4, 2013 10:14 PM
    Great for individuals that moves around often (i.e LAN parties, get togethers, etc) IF the hardware can be kept cool AND if the fan doesn't sound like a space rocket taking off. However, one will need a deep pocket to afford something like this.

    @vmem "Personal Server: Please insert Credit Card to continue! $_$"
Other Comments
  • 31 Hide
    vmem , December 4, 2013 9:13 PM
    I want the satisfaction of just dropping this monster on someone's desk, and say

    "personal server: DEPLOY!"
  • 15 Hide
    coffeecoffee , December 4, 2013 10:14 PM
    Great for individuals that moves around often (i.e LAN parties, get togethers, etc) IF the hardware can be kept cool AND if the fan doesn't sound like a space rocket taking off. However, one will need a deep pocket to afford something like this.

    @vmem "Personal Server: Please insert Credit Card to continue! $_$"
  • 20 Hide
    Razerium , December 4, 2013 10:17 PM
    Sure it's better than my desktop, but it's also three times more expensive!
  • 2 Hide
    f-14 , December 4, 2013 10:20 PM
    now this is how you're meant to play crisis 1-2-3 right by any one with an iMac.

    the main people i can see needing this bad boy is division commanders on a battlefield as well as NSA hackers and CIA spies and Drone operators
  • 1 Hide
    airplanegeek , December 4, 2013 10:28 PM
    you guys didn't review the sound volume :( 
    but what i really wanted to see was the effects of ocing the gtx 680Ms :p 
  • 5 Hide
    16bit , December 4, 2013 11:14 PM
    Great article. Puts my 17.3 inch laptop to shame.

    Finally I can have high end desktop performance on the go.
  • 1 Hide
    palladin9479 , December 5, 2013 12:51 AM
    I once had a Desktop Replacement laptop, huge monster that required a large AC adapter, was loud and heavy. These things are NOT portable, they are heavy to lug around and completely impractical for mobility. They are for people who, for whatever reason, do not want a desktop +monitor at their house. These are just desktops that are easier to transport around.
  • 0 Hide
    belardo , December 5, 2013 1:07 AM
    This seems more for bragging rights. Sure some people will NEED this... For a portable gaming system with 3 power-bricks, etc... why not get customized AIO? Or simply brink a small (SFF) case with keyboard and 20" display which would weight less? If you're gaming anyway - you'll need a mouse. The keyboard looks crappy, the numeric keypad is up against the main keys.

    Lets see, a SFF setup parts:
    PC: 5 = SFF-PC, keyboard, mouse, monitor, 2 power cords.
    5D: 7 = 5D Panther, Mouse, 2 power cords, 3 power bricks/converter.

    In return, you get a much better keyboard... then when broken, its a $10~150 replacement...
  • 2 Hide
    Avus , December 5, 2013 1:40 AM
    It may be fast, but it sure look ugly. If i compare this notebook to a car, it will be a Mitsuoka Orochi.
  • 3 Hide
    zodiacfml , December 5, 2013 4:32 AM
    awesome photography. i enjoyed looking at the parts.
  • 3 Hide
    toddybody , December 5, 2013 5:16 AM
    Incredible. Criticisms aside, awesome to see this dedication to performance..."skinny obsession" be damned.
  • 0 Hide
    corvetteguy1994 , December 5, 2013 5:38 AM
    Slam it on your friends desk and start poking it with a stick " optimus, TRANSFORM!"
  • -2 Hide
    ohim , December 5, 2013 6:19 AM
    This looks like a laptop from the 80`s :) ) and at that price point you have to be really retarded to pay such a price.
  • -2 Hide
    chesteracorgi , December 5, 2013 6:24 AM
    At over 4X the cost of my desktop, this portable monster performs only marginally better. Were I to spend as much on a desktop I'd build a Xfired (290s) or SLId (780s) machine with 4K triple monitor (at least 27" per monitor) surround graphics. The form factor of "laptops" is too confining to compete on a level playing field with desktops.

    Nice machine, but it is overbuilt for a laptop if you need external monitors to use its full graphics. Sure you can take it somewhere where you can hook it up to multiple monitors, but then it is no more portable than a desktop.
  • 3 Hide
    BigMack70 , December 5, 2013 6:38 AM
    Not faster than my desktop ;) 

    Anyways, nice review. It's fun to read about the stupidly high end laptops that most of us don't ever see or use in real life, just to know what's possible if you go for performance over form factor.
  • 0 Hide
    Elrabin , December 5, 2013 6:42 AM
    Insane.

    I understand that it's "PERFORMANCE AT THE COST OF EVERYTHING ELSE" but wow.

    To put this into perspective for that $6600, you could buy a fully loaded Precision M3800 quad core i7, 3200x1800 IGZO screen, 16gb ram, 512gb SSD + 1tb HDD and a Quadro k1100m that weighs 4lbs for $2600 and still have $4k left over to build a MONSTER workstation/gaming desktop

    Lets go nuts. A 4k UP2414Q Ultrasharp Monitor for $1400

    Core i7 4770k $300
    2 x Nvidia GTX 780ti $700 each
    512gb SSD
    4Tb HDD

    and a full build would still come out to less than 4 grand.
  • 5 Hide
    CaedenV , December 5, 2013 7:24 AM
    Ha! So that's what happens when you take a 1990's laptop case and fill it with modern hardware. Amazing!
  • -5 Hide
    Avro Arrow , December 5, 2013 7:30 AM
    I can only imagine possible military applications for this thing. If I had that kind of horsepower, I'd want a much larger screen than 17". The real problem I see with it is the same problem I see with pretty much all laptops. They're technological dead-ends because they cannot be upgraded. It's a cool thing to see what's possible but as Kurtwood Smith said in Star Trek VI: "Let us redefine progress to mean that just because we can do a thing, it does not necessarily mean that we must do that thing."

    I think that statement is perfectly applicable to the Panther 5D.
  • 1 Hide
    ram1009 , December 5, 2013 7:37 AM
    This is nothing but a status symbol for those with more money than sense and I'll never believe it stays cool under load until I see it in person.
  • 0 Hide
    Stevemeister , December 5, 2013 8:13 AM
    This just goes to prove that given enough money to spend you can get anything you want - the question is are you paying two to three times as much as you need to.
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