I recently purchased the Gigabyte AORUS 15P XD with the latest Intel 11 Gen i7 processor and an Nvidia RTX 3070P version. This was a much-awaited upgrade since my last purchase, which was an Acer Nitro v-15, which was upgraded to its fullest potential.
To be honest I have not been out laptop shopping for a long time and since I don’t review a lot of gadgets, I was overwhelmed by the options available these days. I purchased it in Melbourne, Australia so depending upon your location, you might have a different experience or configuration.
After week-long research, I decided to go with the Gigabyte AORUS 15P XD 2021 version, and here are the five things I absolutely love about this laptop.
I was kinda hesitant between Gigabyte AORUS 15P XD and the ASUS ROS Strix Scar 15, and I have a reason why I choose the AORUS 15P XD instead. More on that later.
1. Gigabyte Aorus 15P XD Review – 1 Year Later
I have used this laptop for over a year now and I am confident that I can help anyone reading this decide if this is the laptop for them. This is the Gigabyte AORUS 15P XD’s review after a year of using it every day.
Like you, I also hate long boring reviews. For that reason and save your precious time, I’ll try to keep it short yet informative.
If you have any other questions, please leave a comment and I’ll make sure I’ll respond as soon as I can.
1.2 Things I Like
- AORUS 15P XD Build – If you are looking for a laptop that feels like it is built with high-quality material and will last, you should consider this.
- Cool as a cucumber – The vents are superb, and if you tune the fans properly, the laptop hardly gets hot. I use it for at least more than 10 hours of heavy usage and at the end of the day the laptop cools down within a few minutes. Please look at the vents in the image below.
- Decent keyboard & touchpad– I do quite a lot of typing on a daily basis. I like the keyboard, the key travel is not a lot but it is not very mushy and does not feel very “plasticky” if that makes sense. It is backlit and you can customize the led patterns and the brightness. If you have used a mechanical keyboard, I would say you will feel like using a keyboard that is a hybrid between a mechanical and a normal keyboard.
1.2 Things I Don’t Like So Much
Gigabyte Control Centre – I feel like the machine is capable of so much if there was no fine-tuning done by Gigabyte. I was initially excited about Microsoft Azure AI but I would say it’s a gimmick more than a real usable feature. Please give us a mux switch next time and make it easier for people that spend this kind of money to get the most out of it. Sometimes it struggles to play a 1440P video, like come on bro!
If you are struggling too, I’ll write a guide on how I fixed my AORUS 15P XD lagging issue. Leave a comment, please.
- Screen Is A Nightmare Outside – If you are looking to use it outside as well, you should try it first if possible. You have to be under a shed if you want to be able to even see the screen properly. Yes, I kinda knew this before making the purchase but since I have it connected to an external monitor, it is not much of an issue for me.
- The Battery Life Man – I have to do another test for this after a year but I try to manage the laptop’s battery life as much as I can. And I cannot give you an exact number of how many hours of usage you can get out of it. The reason is that it depends upon a plethora of settings that can be altered and also the applications that you are using. I would say 2-4 hours is a good range you can get out of it, but of course, this can increase or decrease depending on how much you stretch it.
Ports Location – This is a personal choice over a defect of the laptop. All the ports including the charging port are either on the left or right. If you connect the charger, a monitor, or headphones it can take up some space on the desk. If few ports were at the back, it would make it a much cleaner laptop to set up as a desktop replacement.
But you would be giving up the vents that make the laptop cool, so it is understandable.
2. AORUS 15P XD, Nvidia RTX 3070P, Intel i7 – Five Killer Features
Alright, all the features mentioned below are in random order. All these features collectively make it one of the best gaming laptops for me.
2.1 AORUS 15P XD Unboxing & First Impressions
I have been using this laptop for about 3 weeks now and these are 5 things I love about my Gigabyte AORUS 15P XD intel 11 Gen i7, running an Nvidia 3070P graphics card.
2.2 It’s Built Like A Tank
The first impressions of this laptop were quite impressive. Not from the unboxing experience point of view but seeing and holding the laptop for the first time. I absolutely love the stealth, spaceship vibe it gives. The material I believe is plastic(good quality) with some sort of aluminum plate on top of it.
I know, you must be thinking that since it’s plastic, it will feel cheap. That’s exactly what I thought the first time, but it is very close to using a unibody chassis laptop. The vents look absolutely well crafted, and the laptop feels very rigid and compact. It does not give off a gaming laptop vibe unless you open the lid and turn on the laptop.
I always get suspicious about fingerprints whenever I see a matte black device. The previous Acer laptop I had was also a matte black device and boy it would attract fingerprints even with slight usage. The material on the AORUS however does not seem to be very similar and does not act as much of a fingerprint magnet as it should from the initial looks.
2.2 Those Vents & Fans Mean Business
When you see the vents for the first time, they do look like a spaceship’s exhaust. Well, it does perform very similarly especially when the laptop is really pushing those cores and the graphics card.
There are vents on the side, back, and underneath the laptop. Gigabyte claims to have packed 5 Heatpipes, 4 sets of vents, and two 12V 83 Blades power fans to properly manage heat flow in this laptop internally. Even after a whole day of heavy usage, the laptop was barely warm to touch.
As you can see in the image below, the laptop has a lot of open vents for airflow
2.3 Gigabyte Aorus 15P XD – First Azure AI-Enabled Laptop
I am not gonna get into the nitty-gritty on what this feature is or how this works. If you would like me to write a dedicated post for this, please leave a comment and I should do one in the future. basically, this feature has been built into the laptop and it utilizes Microsoft’s azure to actively determine (Based on the application you run) to allocate more GPU or more CPU for it to perform at its best.
As you know some applications are GPU heavy and some CPU heavy. If it was a full-blown system, it would be possible to run both components at it’s fullest without a problem. But since this is a laptop, different constraints such as power management, heat flow, etc come into place. So Azure AI constantly runs in the background and switches between different modes depending on the active application and makes sure your laptop utilizes the resources in an efficient way while not affecting the performance of the application.
2.3.1 Does the Microsoft Azure AI really work?
I was very suspicious of this feature that Gigabyte has been claiming to be the first AI-enabled laptop etc. etc. But yes, Microsoft Azure AI features do work as they have advertised.
A lot of new laptops with Nvidia GPU have been facing throttling issues and one of the major issues is with the Optimus feature. This feature creates a bottleneck for the GPU causing it to not perform how it should. Previously laptop manufacturers used to have a built-in “Mux switch” in their laptops but for some strange reason, they have stopped.
If you don’t know what is a Mux switch, I suggest you dig a little into that before deciding on a laptop without one.
Initially, when used to play a youtube video, the video would stutter or lag. I was very frustrated with what I was seeing. I paid a premium price for the laptop and if I could barely play a YouTube video in it, then what’s the point right?
I tried everything, every setting I could change, update the graphics driver, Disable GPU in chrome/brave nothing helped. The way I fixed this YouTube video stuttering issue is by enabling the AI mode, which is done from the control center.
There are 5 main profiles you can manually choose from in the AORUS control center and you can enable AI from a slider on the top right corner of the control center.
2.4 A RGB Lover’s Dream Keyboard
The keyboard uses a technology Gigabyte like to call “Island-style AORUS Fusion Keyboard with per-key backlit control”. I personally like a mechanical keyboard, but once I started using the Logitech MX keys, I find those kinds of keyboards a lot easier to type for a longer period. AORUS 15P XD’s keyboard hits the right spot for me, it’s not very loud yet it has enough key travel for typing faster and is easier on the fingers.
But if you are specifically looking for a mechanical keyboard on your gaming laptop, this one’s not for you. I am not trying to undermine the keyboard here, as 8/10 times if someone tries this keyboard they will like it. It’s really good. Oh, and it has a full number pad as well, which for me is a make or break kind of feature as I frequently use it.
The keys have individual RGB, meaning this gives you ultimate control to choose what and how each and every individual key should light. The RGB lights on the keyboard feel very powerful and are a really nice touch. I usually set it to white and sometimes while gaming alters between different lighting which you can easily control and set using the AORUS control center.
2.5 Compact, Powerful, Reasonable Weight
AORUS 15P weights around 2.2 KG and even though that does not sound very light. For the amount of power this machine packs and the build material, it’s quite reasonable. Even though the screen is not the best I have seen in laptops for using outside(Inside is good especially with that refresh rate, but more on that in the future articles).
When you lift the laptop, it might feel slightly heavy but once you open it and start using it you will forget about the weight. And to be honest, a laptop packing all these features and costing more than your average laptop will have to be a desktop replacement. I use it hooked up to a Samsung 5K Monitor and I cannot be more thrilled.
I have used it outside as well but like I said the screen is a big issue especially if you are not under a shade, it gets very difficult to see the screen clearly.
These are 5 of the features that I think makes Gigabyte AORUS 15P XD Nvidia 3070P, one of the best portable gaming laptop and my review after using it as my daily driver for over a year.
For anyone with this model, let me know about your experiences and your review of Gigabyte Aorus 15P XD.