When I first got my hands on this little gem, first thing I thought was “Gaming laptop? … Please, it’s an over glorified netbook!” I took hold of the device and realized how well it is built… The cover has a rubberized feel with the distinctive “Origin O” logo on the front which looks great. Because of the rubberized material when holding the laptop I never worried about it slipping from my hand … a real benefit for heading out to a lan party. The machine has a solid feel and is surprisingly dense, unlike many laptops of this size. The first and largest drawback and biggest negative is the power supply; it is a brick and not very lan party friendly – it’s huge and feels like it weighs as much as the laptop. I soon found out why this device needs such a beast of a power supply (more on that in a minute).
When I opened up the lid of the laptop for the first time, I was greeted with a very average looking display, keyboard, and trackpad mouse. But as everyone knows looks can be deceiving … the keyboard is compact but functional with keys that are raised and easy to type on, the only thing I wanted to see was a backlit keyboard for working with the lights off. The track pad is just what a trackpad should be, responsive and functional. But the real gem was the display; I don’t know if I was just not expecting much because of my initial impression, but found the display to be bright, crisp, and VERY clear, with a more than adequate resolution – keeping in mind the actual screen size is that of a netbook.
The base unit of the line runs under $1000 but the unit I had the pleasure of playing with costs a hefty $1600, which I again thought was high for a laptop in a netbooks body. That feeling was dispelled when I turned the unit on … I found out why it costs what it does and realized that it’s a great price for what you get, I also found out why it needs a beastly power supply. The unit I had the chance to put through its paces has a powerful Core i7 processor, 8 gigs of ram, a 256 gig solid state hard drive and a very nice nVidia graphics card with HDMI out so you can display your computing on any TV or monitor that supports HDMI… needless to say this thing was quick! The machine booted up in a few seconds to that gem of a display. I was greeted with the classic Origin background and navigating around windows was quick responsive. The Windows Experience Index lists the machine at 6.3 only being slowed down by the video card … The machine ran all the usual apps just fine … Microsoft Office suite of apps, Firefox, Chrome, and IE all worked without any kind of delay or lag, and because of solid state drive and powerful Core i7 processor, all of the apps loaded up in no time. I installed VLC media player and played several videos from my USB 3.0 jump drive (did I mention that the laptop has USB 3.0 as well … yuppers!) and they were able to play without lagging or other issues. The quality of the videos ran from standard TV quality rips to high definition video files that I would be happy to watch anywhere.
Now to the reason most people would look to buy an Origin PC; or laptop in this case. As we all know Origin caters to the gaming and high performance PC enthusiast. They want to push their machines to the breaking point and they expect their PC’s to keep up. I played Need for Speed: SHIFT; and was very impressed, it played very well on the default settings. At this point my friend wanted to see how this machine handled a graphics intensive game so he installed “Steam” to setup and play “The Witcher 2”. After a 10 gig download we started up “The Witcher 2”, it played great but the game was on the default settings. The side of the machine also started to heat up quite a bit as the CPU fan kicked in to overdrive to keep the internals of the system cool. Since the machine handled the default settings we decided to push the game to its most demanding settings. On ultra settings there were some definite issues with lags and we had finally made this diminutive beast choke. So we scaled things back a little and a few settings between ultra and medium we found the sweet spot.
Overall this machine might not be for the hardcore gamer, but it definitely is for a power user who wants a machine that can handle just about anything thrown at it from spreadsheets to the latest games. This machine is definitely a machine that for the money will do it all. It will also do it anywhere, from your home, to your local LanBash, or even at your local coffee shop. I look at this machine as one that might seem expensive but actually delivers great value for the dollars spent. It leverages great performance, portability, quality workmanship, and an understated grace against cost and the perception that an Origin machine is just for gamers or high end enthusiasts. For the specs and performance alone one would expect to pay at least $2000, throw in the portability and flexibility of this machine and realistically I could see spending $2500-$3000 for something like this, especially from an enthusiast gaming company like Origin. For the money, I am looking forward to getting one of these for myself.
Specs and pricing
Intel Core i7-3720M Quad-Core Processor (2.60GHz), 6MB Cache
8GB DDR3 1333MHz RAM
Single 2GB GDDR3 NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M w/ Optimus 1.2 Technology
256GB Samsung 830 Series – Solid State Drive
Media Card Reader
Built-in 1.3 Megapixel Video Camera
Wi-Fi Link 802.11A/B/G/N Wireless LAN Module with Bluetooth – Up to 300 Mbps
Genuine MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit Edition
1 Year Part Replacement and 45 Day Free Shipping Warranty with DVD image and Lifetime Labor/24-7 Support
Total Price: $1599
SAMSUNG USB 2.0 Slim External DVD Writer 8X DVD+/-R/RW/6X +/-DL for only $40
Note that the configuration starts at $999
Important Highlights of the EON11-S
New Exclusive ORIGIN PC A-Panel Design is a new option for no extra charge that comes in Matte Red or Matte Black. The Traditional Style that you have is also available.
The EON11-S can also be Custom Painted to any color or design for an additional charge if desired.
The EON11-S comes with NVIDIA’s Optimus 1.2 Technology that allows it to reach up to 6.5 hours of battery life.
The EON11-S supports Intel’s 3rd generation “Ivy Bridge” mobile processors.
The EON11-S has a lightweight design that weighs in at roughly 3.9 lbs which makes it super convenient to travel with.
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