- Strong performance
- Solid audio quality
- Weird keyboard/touchpad alignment
- Color contrast isn’t as crisp as competitors
- Fan is noisy
The Gigabyte P37x v4 has it’s faults, but few machines can match the level of portability and performance offered.
You wouldn’t know it at first glance, but the Gigabyte P37x v4 is a powerhouse. This unassuming 17.3-inch gaming Goliath packs an incredibly powerful fifth generation Intel Core i7 CPU and a Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M GPU in a sleek 6.2 pound package. That’s not to say that the Gigabyte P37x v4 is perfect, there are few issues, but they do little to mar the overall experience.
Build and Design
The Gigabyte P37x V4 doesn’t have the look of your typical gaming laptop. Unlike the company’s Aorus line — which can be easily identified by sharp cutting angles and a metallic chrome logo — the mainline P37 x V4 opts for a more barebones aesthetic. The all black aluminum chassis sports slow moving curves and silver “Gigabyte” lettering at the top center of the display lid. The clean design is perfect for users that want the performance and features of a traditional gaming laptop without the loud and aggressive look.
Users will find much of the same when opening the P37x. The laptop features a thick black plastic bezel with “Gigabyte” lettering at the bottom of the screen. A think speaker bar runs along the top of the notebook’s deck, which is split in the middle by a large silver power button. The keyboard extends across the entire deck, complete with both macros (located to the left) and a number pad (located to the right). The deck features the same cool to the touch aluminum surface, providing a comfortable wrist rest when typing.
Don’t let the P37x V4’s simplistic visuals fool you though, this machine is a powerhouse. Measuring 16.4 x 11.3 x 0.9 -inches and weighing only 6.2 pounds, the P37x is one of the thinnest and lightest 17.3-inch notebooks with a powerful Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M GPU under the hood. The P37x makes sure to protect those powerful specs under a durable build and stable display hinge design.
The only noticeable flaw is the is the P37x V4’s display cover. The aluminum surface tends to easily attract finger print marks, making it difficult to maintain that pristine out of the book look, even after only handling the device for a few minutes.
Ports and Features
The P37x V4 boasts an impressive level of connectivity with a wide array of ports. The left side of the device features a Kensington lock slot, a Gigabit Ethernet connector, two USB 2.0 ports, an SD card reader, a microphone in jack and a headphones jack. The right side of the device houses a VGA connector, an HDMI connector, two USB 3.0 ports and a Mini DisplayPort connector. With a plethora of USB ports and a wide selection of the video-out ports, users can rest assured that their gaming peripherals will pair wonderfully with the P37x. The only issue is that there isn’t all that much spacing between the ports. Especially between the the two USB 2.0 ports on the left side of the chassis. A thick usb plug could easily obfuscate the other port, luckily there are two additional ports of the right side, so that shouldn’t be such a big issues.
One thing that gamer’s love is easy access to their hardware. While the P37x isn’t fully modular, the gaming laptop does provide quick access to one of its SSDs via a slide out compartment on the front end of the device. The removable tray easily slides out when pulled allowing, users to quickly alter their storage within a matter of seconds. Simply release the sliding lock on the bottom of the chassis and pull.
Screen and Speakers
The Gigabyte P37x v4 features a 17.3-inch IPS LCD display with a resolution of 1080p. It’s not uncommon for high-end laptops to offer higher resolutions, so the FHD (1920 x 1080) screen is a bit disappointing, especially considering the price tag well north of $2,000. It’s not all bad though, the P37x’s screen is exceptionally bright at 325 nits. The bright matte panel offers excellent visibility perfect for web browsing and word processing with wide viewing angles, though colors can become slightly washed in direct or heavy lighting.
The P37x offers great color accuracy, though it doesn’t quite match the high standards of other industry leading gaming devices. The color reproduction is more than suitable for watching videos and playing games, but it’s not quite up to professional imaging standards. The one downside to the matte display is that it isn’t quite as vibrant as glossy panels. However, the P37x still offers great color contrast, we were particularly pleased by the white snowy hills in the opening sequence of Dragon Age Inquisition.
In addition to solid visuals the P37x v4 has terrific audio quality. The speaker bar is located along the top end of the deck. The speakers don’t offer a ton of bass, but they are boisterous enough to easily fill a modest sized room. What really sets the P37x’s speakers apart is the crystal clear audio. NBR thoroughly enjoyed listening Duos Sonidos’ Histoire du Tango III. Nightclub 1960. The laptop did an immaculate job of capturing the both the texture along with the sweeping highs and lows of the piece.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The Gigabyte P37x V4 houses a full-sized chiclet keyboard complete with macro buttons and a number pad. The rounded backlit keys offer a smooth plastic surface that is easy to grip. The P37x makes full use of its sizable 17-inch chassis offering excellent key travel with strong consistent feedback. While running through a dungeon in Blizzard’s Diablo III, I had no problems quickly issuing commands and key prompts with split second reactions. The customizable row of macro keys add even more functionality for gamers. The macro keys can be cycled through a number of different color presets, giving users a cornucopia of options.
The one downside to the added row of macro keys, is that it sort of throws off the balance of the touchpad’s placement. While the modestly-sized rubber pad is placed directly below the spacebar, it is a bit off center of the keyboard. It can make using the touchpad and the keyboard a bit awkward at first, but considering this is a gaming computer — which means you’ll most likely be using a USB enabled mouse with the device — it’s not too big of a deal. Besides the strange placement in relation to the keyboard, the touchpad is excellent. The soft rubber surface allows for excellent travel. It performs excellent reading swipes clicks and gestures without delay.