Maingear Debuts Pulse 15 Pro Mobile Workstation

Maingear announced a new workstation laptop called the Pulse 15 Pro, which features the latest 6th generation (Skylake) Intel Core i7 or Xeon processors, 16 GB of DDR4, M.2 NVMe SSDs and an Nvidia Quadro M2000 graphics module. The Pulse 15 was previously available as only a gaming machine, configured with an Intel Core i7-6700HQ and an Nvidia GTX 970M GPU. However, in an effort to give professionals a thin and light mobile computing option, Maingear began offering workstation-class components in the Pulse 15 Pro.

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ProductMaingear Pulse 15 Pro
Processor Options-Intel Core i7-6700HQ-Intel Xeon E3-1505M
Chipset-Intel HM170 (Core i7 CPU)-Intel CM236 (Xeon CPU)
Memory-Up to 16 GB DDR4-2133 (2 x 8GB)-Up to 16 GB ECC DDR4-2133 (2 x 8GB, Xeon Only)
Graphics OptionsNvidia Quadro M2000M 4 GB GDDR5
Display15.6-inch, Up to 4K IPS Display
Storage-Up to 512 GB NVMe SSD (M.2)-Up to 1 TB HDD (2.5-inch SATA)
Ports-4x USB 3.0 -Card Reader-Mic In/ Headphone Out -SPDIF
Video Output-HDMI 1.4-2x Mini DisplayPort 1.2
Networking-Killer E2200 Gigabit LAN-Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260 w/ Bluetooth
Battery6-Cell Li-Polymer 60 Watt Hours
Dimensions10.5 x 15.4 x 0.75 inches
Weight~ 4 lbs.

The Pulse 15 Pro is both thin and light, measuring only 0.75 inches thick and weighing about 4 lbs. It can be customized with an Intel Core i7-6700HQ (for gaming) or a Xeon E3-1505M CPU (for professionals), giving customers an ideal choice for their desired workload. The only memory capacity available for the Pulse 15 Pro is 16 GB (2 x 8 GB), and choosing the Xeon processor will automatically get ECC DDR4 memory, a staple for professional workstations.

The Pulse 15 (for gaming) features an Nvidia GTX 970 6 GB graphics module, but the Pro edition sports a Quadro M2000M 4 GB workstation-class GPU. The Core i7 can be equipped in both models, but similar to the Quadro GPU, the Xeon processor is only configurable on the Pulse 15 Pro. The 15.6-inch screen can be configured as a 1920 x 1080 panel or a glossy 4K (3840 x 2160) IPS display.

Storage comes in the form of a 256 GB “Maingear Certified” M.2 NVMe SSD or a branded 512 GB Samsung 950 Pro SSD, and a 2.5-inch 1 TB 7,200 RPM HDD comes standard. In addition, the Pulse 15 Pro can be configured with two 256 GB Samsung 950 Pro SSDs or two 512 GB Samsung 950 Pro SSDs in a RAID 0 configuration for even faster storage speed and capacity.

Killer gigabit LAN, Intel dual-band wireless AC and a 1080p webcam (with an internal mic) are also static features of the Pulse 15 Pro. The six-cell lithium-polymer battery is rated for 60 watt hours, and Maingear claimed the Pulse 15 Pro can provide up to five hours of battery life with typical office workloads. We're not sure how that estimate will hold up with a professional-grade workload, but it seems to offer a decent run time.

The full-color RGB LED-backlit keyboard is fully customizable, and Soundblaster Cinema speakers should provide a suitable onboard audio experience, on paper. Surprisingly, the Pulse 15 Pro features an 8x DVD-RW drive, despite its thin profile. This can be upgraded to a 12x Blu-ray burner for an additional cost. USB connectivity is limited to four USB 3.0 ports, and the lack of a USB Type-C port is somewhat disappointing.

The Pulse 15 Pro can be configured with 64-bit versions of Windows 10 Home or Professional. It also comes with a free one-year subscription of McAfee Antivirus Plus, and Maingear promised no pesky bloatware. In addition, Maingear offers a custom paint job for the lid, offering eight pre-defined colors such as alpine white, austin yellow or epic red (we may be partial to this last choice). In addition, you can opt for a fully-custom paint color (for an additional cost) for an even more personal touch.

Mangear’s Pulse 15 Pro is available now on the company’s website, starting at $2,549.

Derek Forrest is an Associate Contributing Writer for Tom’s Hardware and Tom’s IT Pro. Follow Derek Forrest on Twitter. Follow us on Facebook, Google+, RSS, Twitter and YouTube.

Derek Forrest
Derek Forrest is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He writes hardware news and reviews gaming desktops and laptops.