Introduction and Product Tour
The Digital Storm Equinox has a pleasant, understated look and relatively thin dimensions for a high-end gaming laptop. However, the GTX 1070 Max-Q-powered system suffers from a flimsy lid, mediocre battery life and a mediocre display. Those who buy the $1,875 Equinox can expect outstanding overall performance and good cooling.
|Display||15.6” FHD (1920x1080) IPS, 144Hz|
|CPU||Intel Core i7-8750H|
|Graphics||Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 8GB with Max-Q Design|
|Memory||16GB DDR4 2400MHz|
|SSD||500GB M.2 SSD|
|Networking||Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 9560, RJ-45 LAN Port|
|Video Ports||HDMI 2.0, Mini DisplayPort 1.4 x 2, Thunderbolt 3 via Type-C|
|USB Ports||USB 3.1 via Type-C x 2, USB 3.0 x 3|
|Audio||Speakers x 2, Sound BlasterX Pro 360°, Microphone-in, Headphone-out|
|Camera||2.0M HD Video Camera|
|Operating System||Windows 10 Home|
|Dimensions (WxDxH)||15 x 10 x 0.7 inches|
|Other||RGB Illuminated Keyboard, Card Reader (6-in-1)|
|Price (as configured)||$1,875|
The first thing you’ll notice about the Equinox is that, well, there’s not much to notice at all! The Equinox’s understated design is a nice change of pace from the hyper-aggressive and flashy gaming laptops you find everywhere today. If you’re shopping for a gaming laptop that you can carry shamelessly in public, then the Equinox’s subdued aesthetics should be on your radar.
The Equinox’s top cover is constructed out of metal with a matte black painted surface. Near the top, you’ll find Digital Storm’s company logo painted in gray. We noticed that the top cover will flex with a moderate amount of pressure, which in turn bends the display. The Equinox is quite thin and light, so users will likely travel with it; in this case, you’ll have to make sure your bag has adequate space and that you don’t pack bulky items next to the laptop's lid.
Speaking of the lid, the bezels surrounding the display are relatively thin, measuring 0.625” thick. On the top, you’ll find a 2.0 megapixel HD webcam surrounded by a pair of array microphones.
The bottom panel and interior area are also constructed out of metal. Thankfully, they don’t have flexing issues. In the interior area, you’ll find a Digital Storm badge on the bottom left and the power button at the top right.
The bottom panel features two long rubber feet and plenty of ventilation cutouts for the cooling solution.
The speakers are located on the top end of the interior area, just above the keyboard. This is the best place to position the speakers because they won’t be obstructed by your hands while typing.
The Equinox’s dimensions are quite thin for a gaming laptop; it’s 0.7” thick and weighs only 4.4 lbs, making it ideal to take on-the-go if not for the lid’s flexing issue. You’ll find two sets of exhaust vents on the back for the CPU and GPU heat fins, as well as an additional GPU vent on the left.
There are plenty of I/O ports, which should appease most of your needs, including VR. On the left, you’ll find an HDMI port, two Mini DisplayPorts, two USB 3.1 Type-C ports and two USB 3.0 ports. The right side hosts a headphone jack, microphone jack, another USB 3.0 port, a multi-card reader and a Gigabit Ethernet port.
The Equinox features a 15.6” Full HD (1920x1080) IPS display with a snappy 144Hz refresh rate and a matte finish. However, it's not a particularly bright panel, clocking in at just 263 nits on our light meter, which is about 20 nits less than the average mainstream gaming laptop. It covers a modest 113 percent of the sRGB color gamut, which is 14 points below average.
The Equinox features a full-length keyboard and number pad with a translucent font that allows the RGB illumination to peer through without light bleed. The keys are well-spaced making for a comfortable typing experience.
The touchpad is quite smooth and responsive, and its matte surface prevents surface drag. On the top left of the touchpad you’ll find a fingerprint reader, which makes logging into Windows seamless. Finally, two separate left and right clicks are located on the bottom.
Accessing the Equinox’s interior is simple. There are 11 screws securing the bottom panel to the rest of the laptop; remove these, and the panel will pop right off. At the rear, you’ll find the cooling solution, consisting of three fans, a CPU and GPU heat sink, five heatpipes and two sets of heat fins.
On the front, you’ll find the 55Wh battery, the M.2 SSD slot and an HDD slot. In between these is an Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 9560, which handles the Equinox’s wireless capabilities. Finally, two DDR4 memory slots are located in the middle.
The Equinox is based off the Clevo P955ER, so it uses Clevo’s updated Control Center 2.0 software. From here, you can monitor system resources, adjust fan profiles, customize keyboard backlighting and more.
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