AVADirect Clevo M770CUH Review

by Reads (20,196)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Software & Support
    • 9
    • Upgrade Capabilities
    • 9
    • Usability
    • 8
    • Design
    • 7
    • Performance
    • 7
    • Features
    • 7
    • Total Score:
    • 7.83
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

Overview

  • Pros

    • Good design and color scheme
    • Very good build quality
    • Comfortable keyboard
  • Cons

    • Low resolution for a 17-inch screen
    • Underperforming graphics card

Quick Take

Good looks and has great build quality but offers low gaming performance.


AVADirect’s Clevo M770CUH is a gaming notebook configurable with the latest Intel Core-series processors. Packing the ATI Mobility Radeon 4570 graphics and a 17-inch WXGA+ display, the system is a desktop replacement capable of watching HD movies or playing some of the latest games. Read the full review to see how this system performs in our tests.

Our AVADirect Clevo M770CUH Specifications:

  • Intel Core i5-540m dual-core processor (2.53GHz, 3MB Cache)
  • 4GB PC3-10666 DDR3 RAM (2 x 2GB)
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
  • 17-inch WXGA+ TFT Glossy LCD (1440×900)
  • 500GB 7200RPM 7200.4 Seagate SATA Hard Drive
  • ATI Mobility Radeon 4570 with 512MB DDR2
  • Intel 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth, 1Gb LAN
  • 6-Cell Li-ion 48WH battery, 90W Power Supply
  • Dimensions: (W x L x H) 15.64 x 11.12 x 1.56”
  • Weight: 6.39lbs
  • Starting price: $1,090.48
  • Price as configured: $1,257.53

Build and Design
The Clevo M770CUH has an almost silhouette-like appearance with a glossy black cover and bright white keyboard, palmrest, and touchpad. The top cover is spotless with no company logos or added design elements outside of a mirror-like black finish. Inside the entire typing surface is white with a silver tray surrounding the keyboard and thin silver border outlining the touchpad. If there was ever a Storm Trooper inspired notebook, it’s this one. The bottom of the notebook is matte black plastic and generally blends in with the background when it is sitting on a desk surface.

Build quality is great with a strong chassis that resists flexing and has very few creaks or squeaks. As notebooks get wider and thinner most have a tendency to flex when carrying it by the palmrest. We saw no such problem with the M770CUH; in fact it was nearly as rigid as a board. The keyboard and palmrest resisted any localized flex when pressed firmly with your hand even at the very front edge of the palmrest where the surface thins to half an inch thick. The only nagging concern we thought of during our lab tests was how well the matte-white plastic inside the notebook would hold up over time. If you aren’t the cleanest person around your personal computer it might be best to consider notebooks with a darker plastic palmrest and keyboard which would hide dirt or other blemishes.

The M770CHU is easy to upgrade with two access panels located on the bottom of the notebook. The hard drive is located under one panel and the CPU, wireless card, RAM, WWAN slot, and SIM card slot are located under the other. No warranty void if removed stickers were seen anywhere.

Screen and Speakers
For such a large notebook, the Clevo M770CUH has a lower resolution than we would like to see – 1440×900—instead of something with a higher pixel density such as WUXGA. This usually comes down to the buyer’s preference since with higher resolution, the screen becomes more difficult to read for people with poor vision. The screen has very good color saturation when viewed head on but the contrast levels seemed lacking even at a perfect 90-degree angle from panel. Backlight levels were more than acceptable for indoor viewing in a home or office, but did seem weak in very bright office conditions. We measured a peak brightness of 160cd/m2 in our lab with the screen brightness turned to 100%. Viewing angles were average with colors starting to wash our or invert within 15 degrees of tilt forward or back. Horizontal viewing angles were perfect with little or no color distortion, even at steeper angles.

The speakers are forward and lap-firing with outlet ports on the front edge of the palmrest and below the notebook. Peak volume from the speakers was more than enough to fill a small room with music, but they did leave something to be desired in terms of bass and midrange. Users who watch movies on this notebook might want to invest in headphones or connect the system to a stereo through the SPDIF or HDMI-out connections.

Keyboard and Touchpad
With its spacious 17-inch form-factor Clevo has no problem fitting a full-size keyboard with a three-key wide number pad on the M770CUH. The layout was easy to follow, including the preferred control key in the corner key position, with generous spacing around secondary keys like the direction buttons. The typing surface itself was comfortable to type on with very responsive keys. Individual key action was smooth with a light click emitted with fully pressed. If you spend hours typing, you will love the M770CUH’s keyboard. The only thing we felt was missing were multimedia keys around the keyboard. Touch-sensitive volume controls would have been a nice addition.

The M770CUH offers a spacious Synaptics touchpad with buttons integrated under the touch-sensitive surface. We had no problems with lag and the refresh rate was more than acceptable for fast game play, if you prefer not to use an external mouse. The default sensitivity was great out of the box with no adjustments needed for detecting a light touch. The integrated touchpad buttons were easy to use and didn’t cause any problems like what we saw with the Dell Inspiron 11z which has clicker-style buttons under the touch surface. Clevo designed the buttons on the M770CUH to be far enough from the touch-sensitive section that it doesn’t accidentally pick up the motion of your finger while you click one of the buttons. The buttons felt rather stiff with a strong push required to activate. Feedback was shallow with no audible click emitted when fully pressed.


Ports and Features

Port selection on this notebook seemed uninspiring with plenty of open space along the back. In total, the M770CUH included three USB ports, one eSATA port, HDMI and VGA-out, LAN, modem, analog in/out, and digital audio out. A combo USB/eSATA port would have gone a long way to increase the port availability.


Front: Speaker vents


Rear: Battery


Left: AC-power, VGA-out, LAN, eSATA, HDMI-out, two USB ports, ExpressCard/54 slot, SDHC-card reader


Right: Audio jacks, one USB port, optical drive, modem, Kensington lock slot


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