Tear-Down, Hardware & Cooling
In this case, a tear-down is necessary because PNY doesn't provide detailed specs on all of the PrevailPro's hardware. For example, we didn't know what memory the company used, nor did we have a make/model on the SSD.
To open the notebook and get a look inside, it's first necessary to loosen two screws in back holding the keyboard in place. Next, nudge the keyboard away from the chassis by pushing it from behind through one of the screw holes. This allows the keyboard to be carefully removed from its mount. Once this is done, the two connecting cables can be pulled out using the designated lugs.
The tactile feedback of the keys is noticeable in both feel and sound. However, they're still relatively soft. Typing on the keys is comfortable thanks to large surfaces and plenty of space between them. A little more resistance would make the keys even better, we think. Unfortunately, this form factor's height limitations prevent the use of more-tactile scissor keys.
Included FlexiKey software provides customizable macros, keyboard recording options, and a three-zone RGB backlight. The absence of LED indicators for caps and number lock is a bit unfortunate.
Next, we loosen five exposed screws underneath the keyboard that hold the top to the bottom, close the notebook, and carefully turn it on its back to remove the remaining nine screws. After that, the bottom part of the case is reasonably easy to remove, exposing the platform's internals.
This is a fairly classic configuration, with the GPU and CPU cooled separately. The battery pack and other modular components are now accessible for easy replacement.
For memory, PNY uses OEM RAM modules made by Samsung. Two 16GB DDR4-2400 SO-DIMMs add up to 32GB in dual-channel mode. Together, they max out the platform's capabilities; you cannot add any more than 32GB of of memory.
PNY doesn't provide much information about the SSD, either. Our tear-down reveals that it's actually a Samsung PM961 featuring the following specs:
|Model Series||PM961 NVMe|
|Form Factor||M.2 2280|
|Interface||M.2/M-Key (PCIe 3.0 x4)|
|Controller||Samsung Polaris (S4LP077X01-8030) controller, eight-channel|
|Memory Type||3D-NAND TLC Toggle|
|IOPS (Random 4KB Write)||260,000|
|Special Features||Low-power standby|
This is a desirable model that was originally designed for OEMs only, but it can still be purchased online. As far as pricing goes, however, there aren't really any advantages versus Samsung's standard consumer models.
PNY's Wi-Fi module of choice is the Intel Dual-Band Wireless-AC 8265. Two connected cables for the antennas are visible on the right side.
Components from Auras Technology, one of the largest heat-pipe suppliers, are used for the thermal solution. The blackened copper heat sink and composite pipes making up the GPU cooler are arranged as a single module. Air flow and exhaust are provided by a pair of radial fans that suck air in from the enclosure's bottom and push it through two finned chamber coolers. Warm air then leaves the chassis through an opening on the back.
The CPU is cooled separately. Its module is made by Auras, as well, though two heat pipes and a shorter cooling chamber must suffice for this lower-power component. Heated exhaust is blown out the notebook's left side, not the rear. Since most users are right-handed, Clevo's design ensures they aren't (unpleasantly) affected by the hot air.
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