Gigabyte Aorus 17G: A gaming laptop that's amazingly quiet
PCWorld|April 2021
Awesome GeForce RTX 3080 performance without all the noise.
GORDON MAH UNG

Gigabyte’s Aorus 17G gaming laptop, with its high-end parts and sharp-angled design, looks like it should be loud, but it’s not. It’s amazingly quiet, actually.

How quiet? On its default fan profile we registered the laptop at barely 38 dB. That’s barely louder than the background noise of our office in the daytime. Cars driving by on the street registered more noise than the Aorus 17G looping a graphically intense stress test. We’ve heard ultraportable laptops produce more noise under a load than the Aorus 17G does while gaming.

It may spoil your fun a bit to know that Gigabyte achieved this feat by taking the RTX 3080 mobile GPU down a notch in performance. If you always want to have the ultimate gaming machine, you’ll invest in a good pair of gaming headphones and put up with a shrieking hair dryer shaped like a laptop. But if you wished gaming laptops weren’t so loud, the Aorus 17G grants your wish with a modest trade-off.

DESIGN, SPECS AND FEATURES

The Aorus 17G’s design is basically the opposite of the austere laptops that seem embarrassed to be capable of gaming. It features a mostly aluminum body with sparing use of plastic. Its design is what you might call a nooks-and crannies approach, with many angles, fan inlets, and exhaust ports. While there’s no RGB strip, the angular contours and heavily vented bottom pretty much scream “gaming laptop.”

So do the specs, which we’ll break down.

CPU: 8-core Intel Core i7-10870H

GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 with 105 TGP rating and support for Dynamic Boost 2.0, Whisper Mode 2.0

RAM: 32GB of DDR4/3200

Storage: 1TB Kioxa M.2 PCIe SSD

Screen: 17.3-inch 300Hz IPS-level panel using Nvidia Optimus

Networking: Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200 with Bluetooth 5.2, and Realtek 2.5GbE

Size and weight: 15.75x11x1 inches; 6.1 pounds (add another 1.8 pounds for the 230-watt power brick)

Ports: See the photos above. The right side (bottom) gives you a full-size HDMI port, mini DisplayPort, Thunderbolt 3, SuperSpeed USB 5Gbps (USB-A), and a dedicated charging port for the 230-Watt power brick. The left side (top) gives you another two SuperSpeed USB 5Gbps (USB-A) ports, analog audio out, and analog mic port, along with a UHS-II SD reader and 2.5 Gigabit ethernet port.

A couple of nice features you don’t see as much these days are the full-size HDMI 2.0 and the mini DisplayPort 1.4 port. While the Thunderbolt 3 port is hooked up to the Intel integrated graphics, the HDMI and mini DisplayPort are plumbed directly to the GeForce RTX 3080 card. That won’t matter to many, but for VR users it’s a must-have. Older VR systems use HDMI, but newer systems such as Valve’s Index require DisplayPort.

We suspect Gigabyte’s CEO is a southpaw, however, because the power connector for the 230-watt brick is on the right side, which is sure to anger right-handed gamers. Fortunately, Gigabyte uses a cable with a 90-degree bend, so it’s not too intrusive.

KEYBOARD AND TRACKPAD

The trackpad on the Aorus 17G is a glass-smooth piano hinge design, meaning it’s hinged closer to the keyboard and harder to depress in that area. It features an integrated Windows Hello fingerprint reader and is Microsoft Precision Touchpad compliant. The trackpad seem a bit small for the size of the laptop, but it worked adequately.

Gigabyte builds in some productivity with a 10-key numeric keypad and full-size, inverted-T cursor keys. Those who are trained in the dark art of accounting should note, however, that the ten-key pad uses the telephone layout, rather than the more useful calculator layout that would put the ‘0’ key below the ‘1.’

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