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PC Specialist Optimus V Exige review

Michael Passingham
30 Jan 2015
Expert Reviews Recommended Logo
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
799
inc VAT

An amazing-value desktop replacement laptop with a big SSD and great performance, but the chassis is ugly

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Specifications

Processor: Quad-core 2.5GHz Intel Core i7-4710MQ, RAM: 8GB, Size: 413x278x44mm, Weight: 3.2kg, Screen size: 17.3in, Screen resolution: 1,920x1,080, Graphics adaptor: 2GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 860M, Total storage: 240GB SSD, 1TB hard disk

The PC Specialist Optimus V Exige is a 17.3in, 3.2kg laptop that, on paper, looks to be one of the best-value laptops we've ever reviewed, with a capable graphics card, powerful processor and a large SSD. If you're going to benefit from this great value, you're first going to have to accept that it uses one of the ugliest Clevo chassis on the market. PC Specialist hasn't helped by choosing not to add any sort of system badge or sticker to break up the monotony of the dark grey lid. Open up the machine and you're greeted with a large black keyboard sitting amongst a sea of metallic grey, and a tiny grey touchpad just below it.

The keyboard is comfortable to use, although if you're a harsh typist it does sound like you're typing onto a hollow plastic box, which doesn't exactly ooze quality. The touchpad isn't very good at all; it's not sensitive enough and its two physical buttons have very little travel to them.

The usual selection of ports are available around the back and sides of the laptop, with three USB3 ports (one of which also doubles up as an eSATA connector), two USB2 ports, a Gigabit Ethernet port, an SD card reader, a VGA port and an HDMI connector.

PC Specialist has been extremely generous with the storage, including a 240GB SSD and a 1TB hard disk. This is much more than we've ever seen from laptops at this price, and is even more generous than many more expensive laptops.

The Optimus V Exige runs quietly when not under significant load, with the keyboard and palm rest remaining cool throughout normal use. Fire up a game and the rear-facing fans begin to whirr and get louder with more intense use, but they never became overbearingly noisy during our testing. Still, the whooshing of the fans will likely overpower the atrocious speakers, which are barely capable of pushing out music at an audible volume, let alone dialogue and the more subtle noises associated with games and movies. Invest in a decent set of desktop speakers or headphones when you buy this laptop, otherwise you will be left disappointed.

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