Performance – Synthetic 3D, Game Benchmarks – Conclusion
Synthetic 3D Performance
Though synthetic benchmarks aren’t real games, they’re a good approximation. We use 3DMark 06 and 3DMark 11 because each offers a good representation of technologies from a certain period. It’s not unusual to see a newer GPU prove to be so-so in 3DMark 06 and then blow things away in 3DMark 11. So how does the GTX 670M manage?
The answer is – pretty well. It dominates 3DMark 06 but surprisingly comes up short in 3DMark 11, where the Alienware M17x beats the G75 by over 450 points. That’s a healthy margin – and one that could be cause for concern.
Real-World Gaming Performance
Now it’s time to delve in to real-world performance in today’s games. Because this is a gaming system with a 1080p display, we’re going to jump straight to those results. That means the 1600×900 Alienware 14x must bow out of the running – but given its GT 555M graphics solution, it’s already obvious that it won’t be able to compete.
Let’s start with our least demanding game, Dawn Of War 2: Retribution.
This game tends to be CPU-bound in many situations, so I’m not surprised to see that the ASUS G75 is able to completely dominate the older Alienware M17x. With that said, ever computer listed here is capable of providing a playable experience at 1080p – even the Dell XPS 15z.
Let’s move on to something that’s always GPU-bound.
In this game the separation between the Alienware M17x and the ASUS G75 tightens. It’s so close that, in the real world, you probably would not notice the difference between the two. The game is extremely smooth on both – something that can’t be said for the XPS 15z, which is simply overwhelmed at this resolution. It’s clear that you need a gaming laptop to play this title at 1080p.
Now let’s see how this latest laptop handles one of today’s most demanding titles – Battlefield 3.
Battlefield is quite playable even at 1080p with High detail settings. It doesn’t exceed the 30 FPS mark by much, but the actual in-game experience is quite smooth. With that said, the overall results here are just a tad be worse than what we extracted from the Alienware M17x and its Radeon GPU. These results are respectable, and that’s it.
This is the third ASUS G-series I’ve reviewed, and I’ve enjoyed every one of them. The design is the perfect combination – aggressive, yet also functional. Including an excellent matte display that somehow looks good while also dispelling reflections serves to reinforce this theme.
While the new G75V is a bit thinner than previous incarnations, it is also quieter and cooler, a rare combination of traits made possible by both a CPU and GPU designed with efficiency in mind. This laptop has the ability to perform like Superman, but it never steps in a phone booth to change clothes. It instead remains mild in manner – which translates to a better user experience.
If you read our Ivy Bridge for mobile review you already know what to expect from the Core i7-3720QM. It’s awesome, fantastic, the fastest mobile processor yet and a bit quicker than the out-going Sandy Bridge parts. Turbo Boost is now more aggressive, yet overall power use is down. If it weren’t for Nvidia’s 3D Vision – and its inability to operate with Optimus switchable graphics – the G75 would likely offer solid endurance. I personally recommend against the 3D Vision feature, as you will enjoy both better battery life and a lower price if you buy a system without it.
Speaking of which, the GTX 670M is just okay. It’s fast, to be sure – fast enough to handle modern games at 1080p with medium to high detail settings. But it’s also only 20% to 30% quicker than the ASUS G74 (equipped with a GTX 560M) that we reviewed last year and can only trade blows with the Radeon 6990M rather than defeating it outright. It’s what Nvidia needs to be competitive, and no more.
The model reviewed here is not currently available for purchase outside of the UK (according to ASUS). The company has taken pre-orders for a less powerful configuration that included a Core i7-3610QM and a GTX 660M, and the price on that was a tad under $1500. Given the differences between that model and our review unit we expect a price closer $2000 when a similarly equipped version comes to North America.
The ASUS G75 replaces the G74 as my go-to recommendation among pre-built gaming laptops. Other competitors can match ASUS on performance, but there’s more to this system than that. This is a winning combination of design, performance and price that will sure to appeal to gamers that don’t have over two grand to spend.