Aorus X7 Pro Notebook Review: GeForce GTX 970M Gets Slim In SLI

Results: Arma 3 And Battlefield 4

Arma 3

The desktop system starts off with a lead in Arma 3, but that’s probably because it sports a faster CPU. Increased graphics resolution allows the X7 Pro’s GeForce GTX 970M SLI configuration to take precedence, at least while plugged-in.

We see a nice flat line at the target 30FPS rate when only a single GeForce GTX 970M is enabled. Current hardware and drivers even keep that line flatter than the previous standard set by Nvidia's 870M.

SLI is useless when the battery-powered X7 Pro is subjected to Arma 3’s Ultra preset. The same system magically becomes playable simply by disabling SLI, which simultaneously enables BatteryBoost on one GeForce GTX 970M GPU.

Battlefield 4

All of our Battlefield 4 results are important, but often for different reasons. At medium quality defaults, the X7 Pro’s pair of GTX 970Ms in SLI match the single Radeon R9 290X in my $1600 PC. The single GeForce GTX 970M outpaces the GTX 870M by about 40%. And the default 30FPS setting for single-GPU “BatteryBoost” is slightly higher on the newer machine.

SLI performs horribly at high resolutions in battery-operated mode, since BatteryBoost doesn’t work with SLI enabled.

The case against mobile SLI gets stronger at Battlefield 4’s Ultra preset, since we suddenly find sub-20FPS performance at the panel’s native 1920x1080 resolution. SLI can be disabled in software, allowing BatteryBoost to take over as a performance booster rather than a power-saver.

Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.
  • Nuckles_56
    A nice machine but I wouldn't consider buying one til Nvidia fixes up the issues that the machine is having with SLI
  • blackmagnum
    Boo SLI. You create more miserly than happiness. Do yourself a favor and buy a top single-gpu gaming notebook instead.
  • StarBound
    I'm assuming the screen is a 60hz making the SLI somewhat pointless. Still the machine is impressive but at the end of the day I cannot see myself getting something that lasts only 40min when performing its primary function (in this case gaming).
  • eriko
    Certainly has my attention...
  • Steveymoo
    Colour me impressed. This could be the first truly functional gaming desktop replacement! It's faster than my desktop, and my GPU is less than a year old. Wowzers. And such a slim package.
  • AndrewBrodie
    Does the HDMI Port support HDMI 2.0? I would like to use it with a 4K TV and hope to exceed 30 FPS.
  • xyster
    FYI: Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M is offered also in 8GB capacities; not just 4gb. ie: MSI Dominator versions have it.
  • npyrhone
    The performance figures are really impressive, but why on earth are the "idle" and "reading" power consumption levels so absurdly high?

    I mean, I can somehow even understand the zombie drain by the other gpu, but even so: how is it possible that if you just write a word document and read news from the internet, you get something like 2h of battery life.

    Obviously, the person who purchases this might not need even 1h battery life ever, but that does not change the fact that something seems to be wrong here, or even broken, when the previous gen laptop achieves 5-6h of battery life in such scenarios.

    I am like 95% sure that either the power saving options were not enabled, or they were not functioning properly or some component was flawed or some driver was misbehaving. Or then something else weird was going on.

    In any case, I am 100% certain that I can get 3-4h of battery life in a light use, non-gaming scenario with a properly built laptop even if it was sporting this kind of hardware (ie. i7-4870HQ, 970M SLI, 17,3" FHD...)

  • sportfreak23
    Was thinking of purchasing this to replace my current Sony Vaio S as the dual core is starting to show its age. But the 1080p screen is kinda turn off when aorus offers a high res screen on its X3. Wish they made a high res 980M sli option to be purchased as this current 970m setup doesn't impress me much.
  • hst101rox
    On page 4, it is not just the Aorus x7 pro that has an AC adapter with an efficiency rating of "V", but the Delta 180W of the MSI GT60/70 and most any other new laptop, and tablet/smart phone charger should also be at that efficiency rating.