17.3" OCTANE VI? Yes please! Nice work PC Specialist! | PCSPECIALIST

17.3" OCTANE VI? Yes please! Nice work PC Specialist!

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
17.3" OCTANE VI? Full desktop spec but portable? Yes please! Nice work PC Specialist!

I recently decided to upgrade/change my gaming PC, though really, I only wanted a smaller case and an RTX graphics card. Looking at desktops I couldn’t find a case I really liked so looked at a desktop replacement laptop.
After searching various sites and configuring various laptops I decided I was sticking with PC Specialist and going for the 17.3" OCTANE VI. It offered the spec I was looking for cheaper than other sites and better than opting for a gaming laptop made by a big name like ASUS, MSI, Razer etc
I opted for the spec below, choosing a 1080P screen over the 4K because I feel 17.3” is too small for 4K and I still have the 32” Acer Predator 4K G-Sync monitor I used with my desktop.

Chassis & Display
Octane Series: 17.3" Matte Full HD 144Hz 72% NTSC LED Widescreen (1920x1080) + G-Sync
Processor (CPU)
Intel® Core™ i9 Eight Core Processor i9-9900K (3.6GHz) 16MB Cache
Memory (RAM)
32GB Corsair 2666MHz SODIMM DDR4 (2 x 16GB)
Graphics Card
NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX 2080 - 8.0GB GDDR6 Video RAM - DirectX® 12.1
2nd Storage Drive
2TB SEAGATE 7mm SERIAL ATA III 2.5" HARD DRIVE WITH 128MB CACHE (5,400rpm)
1st M.2 SSD Drive
1TB SAMSUNG 970 EVO PLUS M.2, PCIe NVMe (up to 3500MB/R, 3300MB/W)
2nd M.2 SSD Drive
1TB SAMSUNG 970 EVO PLUS M.2, PCIe NVMe (up to 3500MB/R, 3300MB/W)
Memory Card Reader
Integrated 6 in 1 Card Reader (SD /Mini SD/ SDHC / SDXC / MMC / RSMMC)
AC Adaptor
1 x 330W AC Adaptor
Battery
Octane Series 8 Cell Lithium Ion Battery (82WH)
Power Cable
1 x 1 Metre UK Power Cable (Kettle Lead)
Thermal Paste
COOLER MASTER MASTERGEL MAKER THERMAL COMPOUND
Sound Card
Intel 2 Channel High Definition Audio + MIC/Headphone Jack
Bluetooth & Wireless
GIGABIT LAN & KILLER™ WIRELESS-AC 1550 M.2 GAMING 802.11AC + BLUETOOTH 5.0
USB/Thunderbolt Options
4 x USB 3.0 Ports + 2 x USB 3.1 Type C Ports

Being impatient I opted for the Fast Track, 3 working day dispatch. I quickly received a call, which I missed, and an email letting me know they didn’t have the 2666MHz RAM I wanted so did I want to wait or go for the 2400MHz instead. Being impatient I opted for the 2400MHz and my laptop was then quickly built, configured and tested. Any questions I emailed over were promptly answered and very polite & friendly.
Luckily the laptop was due to be delivered on a day I work from home, so I was in to receive it. I wasn’t sure how big a box to expect but I was surprised when it was as big as it was.
Initially, when I turned on the laptop and went through the initial Windows 10 setup, I was unable to change the volume other than on and off also the Nvidia Control Panel couldn’t be found anywhere.
I wasn’t aware of the download page in my PC Specialist tech support page for the laptop so transferred everything from the drivers & apps disc to a pen drive via my desktop. Once I got the Sound Blaster X and Realtek drivers installed my volume issue was fixed but the Nvidia Control Panel took a little longer to suss because fresh installs of the driver and GeForce Experience didn’t work. Eventually I installed the control panel and set 144hz G-Sync and gave a few games, I had installed while looking for drivers, a try.
Wow! The Octane VI I configured is a BEAST! It’s definitely an upgrade from my previous gaming desktop and that was no slouch. I love the sound from the speakers and over headset is fantastic too with the Sound Blaster X settings. Loading times, for anything, with the M.2 NVMe SSD’s are super quick and definitely worth the little extra over standard SSD’s.
The control panel software to look at and configure CPU, GPU, fan speeds and keyboard options looks really nice and is easy to use though, for some reason, the keys backlight timeout option doesn’t seem to stick so I may need to look at Folder/App permissions through Windows Defender I think.
Gaming at upto 144hz G-Sync is definitely noticeably different to gaming on 60hz G-Sync. So far, I’ve tried Battlefield 5 and Metro Exodus for the new graphical options RTX cards offer and a few other games – Anthem, GTA V and Shadow of the Tomb Raider to see how they ran. Obviously the 1080P screen doesn’t tax the RTX 2080 so I’ll be looking at how they all play on my 4K screen. Currently GeForce Experience maxes everything out including Ray Tracing.
I need to try my Tobii Eye Tracker 4C. With my 4K monitor it didn’t work properly as it doesn’t support 32” but it should work fine on the laptop adding a bit more functionality in some games.
I have disabled the trackpad and am using an external Razer mouse as it’s easier for everything, not just gaming.
Overall, I love the laptop. I love that I can have, an upgradeable, top desktop spec in a portable chassis and at a pretty good price too. The desktops I specced were similarly priced and didn’t include a monitor, keyboard and mouse that you get built into a laptop. Yes I had them already for my previous desktop but the laptop means I can save space and be mobile with it.
I definitely recommend PC Specialist as I have had two systems from them now. The first desktop lasted me over 4 years! The only changes I made were to graphics, the AIO CPU cooler and adding an extra SSD. It has now gone to serve as an upgrade for one of my brothers.
Each time I have purchased from PC Specialist the customer services & support have been fantastic and the systems a good price when compared to other places.
Thanks to all at PC Specialist that were involved in building, configuring and testing my new laptop and to Alice, in Customer Services for helping me with any queries and changes to my order.
I’ll definitely be back again sometime in the future. 😊
 
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jeatre

Member
Thanks for the great reply. I'm actually about to order the exact same spec except one thing: I had only picked a single 1TB SAMSUNG 970 EVO PLUS M.2, PCIe NVMe (up to 3500MB/R, 3300MB/W).

Why do you get two of the same on top of a storage HDD? Are you setting them up in Raid? or just more fast storage?

I also have questions about the keyboard if you don't mind: how does it feel typing? playing? I heard that the LED RGB backlighting is not so powerful. Can you actually see it? Not that I want my laptop to look like a Christmas tree, but simply that I can easily see the keys in the dark.

thanks!
 

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
Why do you get two of the same on top of a storage HDD? Are you setting them up in Raid? or just more fast storage?

I also have questions about the keyboard if you don't mind: how does it feel typing? playing? I heard that the LED RGB backlighting is not so powerful. Can you actually see it? Not that I want my laptop to look like a Christmas tree, but simply that I can easily see the keys in the dark.
I chose two 1TB NVMe so I could have 1 for apps, video editing etc and one for games. I'm a gamer and running them on such fast storage is great. On my previous desktop I had a 240GB ASUS® RAIDR Express PCIe SSD for my OS, and a 500GB Samsung 840 EVO SSD for games which I then added a further 1TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD for more games as the 500GB wasn't enough. I also had 2 x 1TB SEAGATE ST1000DX001 1TB/8GB SSHD 64MB HYBRID DRIVEs for backup drivers, apps, music, movies, photo's, documents etc.

I have the 2TB SEAGATE 7mm SERIAL ATA III 2.5" HARD DRIVE WITH 128MB CACHE (5,400rpm) to replace the backup drives I had in the desktop. In this I still have space for 1 more drive down the line, likely an SSD. I sort of regret getting the HDD because it's a noisy and much slower drive compared to the other two.

The keyboard... I used a Razer Deathstalker Ultimate on my desktop, which I am keeping for when I connect the laptop to my 4K monitor for gaming, so I am used to chiclet style keys with low travel and actually prefer them to mechanical or normal keys that have a further travel. The LED RGB Backlighting is powerful enough IMO. There are 4 brightness settings and I only have it set to the second and can see it fine in a darkened room while gaming. For me the only disapointment is that you cannot change the colour of individual keys. That would be ace for setting up different lighting for various games/keys. Unfortunately the only options are changing the colour of the whole keyboard, the keyboard split into 3 parts or using an effect - wave, breathe, cycle etc.

I have to say I am loving it. With it having a G-Sync display even lower FPS isn't noticable so I, sometimes, have the games settings maxed out and whisper mode turned on in the GeForce Experience app. This limits the FPS to whatever you set in NVidia Control Panel for each game and the laptop runs cooler and quieter. The default looks to be 40fps so I've left it at that and games look great still. When gaming on battery, which doesn't last long, it limits the FPS to 30 which, again with G-Sync, isn't noticable.
 
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Rajen

Active member

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
Wow. I could have saved myself time writing a user review & just posted a link to an "informative" one... cheers. ;)
 
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ubuysa

Moderator
Moderator
Wow. I could have saved myself time writing a user review & just posted a link to an "informative" one... cheers.
I'm sure the poster didn't mean that there was anything wrong with yours. At least I hope not...

Reviews of PCS builds directly from the customers who bought them is far and away the most valuable source of information for prospective purchasers, and for those who like to see how PCS builds perform. The problem with all third-party reviews, like the KitGuru one posted, is that they didn't spend hours speccing up exactly the right PC/laptop, nor did they wait a couple of weeks for it to be built, and they're just not as objective when it arrives.

You simply can't beat a review from a real user, so thank you again for your detailed and very informative review and for taking the time to write and post it here. I have no doubt it's helped others considering a similar build. I gave you +rep for your review at the time, and I'll add to that because we just don't get enough customer reviews on here. :)
 

Continuent

New member
I’m looking at your exact spec. 1080p also...

I understand the card is a monster, but I’m looking to have the machine last at least 3 years at ultra with 60 FPS (Outside of any unoptimised games). With G-Sync any eventual drop in FPS wouldn’t be the stutter mess it would otherwise be.

How is the screen? Do games at 1080p look good with all AA at max or supersampled?
 

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
My last PC, also from PC Specialist, is still going strong in games 4 years later. Admittedly the graphics have been changed from whatever had initially to a Maxwell Titan X and finally the Pascal Titan X. The I7 4930K 6 core CPU is still strong enough to help push games along at 4K High/Ultra, with the 4K G-Sync monitor hiding any frames dropped below 60FPS.

I'll be honest and say that coming from a 32" 4K monitor down to a 17.3" 1080P monitor isn't easy. More for the size than the picture quality. I have gamed on bigger screens for many years and my eyes aren't what they used to be. So far the games I have played look fantastic though. I do have AA maxed out but I don't think I've used supersampling. I've played Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Metro Exodus (with Ray Tracing set to Ultra), Battlefield V (with DXR set to Ultra), DayZ, Tom Clancy's The Division 2 (Beta) and Anthem. When I have more time I will sit and check each games settings in-game to see if I can lower from Ultra anything that doesn't look any better than High and get a few more FPS though at 1080P FPS isn't a problem. I may see it struggle more when I link up my 4K monitor.

Not being used to laptops I have to say the noise of the fans when gaming can be quite loud. I've taken to turning on whisper mode in Geforce Experience. It's meant to offer optimised settings & run at a lower FPS so it can have quieter fans. I keep the games set to ultra but the max FPS default is 40fps (could be set to 60) and it's much quieter. The G-Sync monitor means games still look smooth.

I've got a new Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable so I can try on $k now and see if it still performs as sweet without lowering too many settings.
 

jeatre

Member
Absolutely ubuysa. I totally agree. I actually had already read the KitGuru review *and* watched the video. But I appreciated far more the comments from TremF on the keyboard leds and the G-sync. I'm actually waiting for an answer from PC Specialist to see if there is a way to get a 4K screen *with* G-sync (a poster on this forum said he has one on his)

Thank you for taking the time to write.

and now I just read TremF last post on noise... oops... that worries me. Do you mean that the fans on the laptop are louder than the ones you used to have on your dekstop? Too loud? Anything you can compare it to? I've been buying Asus ROG laptops because I've found them to be very quite. I had hoped this one is also quite
 
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TremF

Bronze Level Poster
There is an informative review here

https://www.kitguru.net/lifestyle/mobile/laptops/leo-waldock/pc-specialist-octane-vi-rtx-i9-9900k-and-rtx-2080-max-p-in-a-laptop/

key points:

CPU power limited to 65W rather than (95W = rated specs):
all core turbo speed of 3.4GHZ (4.6 = rated specs
GPU power limited to 150W (230W = rated spec)
GPU boost speed of 1600MHZ (1800 MHZ = rated spec)
CPU temp under sustained load = 80C
GPU temp under sustained load = 82C
I've just linked the laptop to my 32" 4K G-Sync monitor and played Metro Exodus in 4K with the Control Center 2.0 on the laptop display.

I'm not sure how many cores were being used but the screenshot shows the CPU with 27% utilisation at 4.5GHz (4480MHz) and the temp 67c. The GPU at 99% utilisation at 1710MHz and 75c. The fans weren't too bad sound wise for their speeds.

With Metro Exodus settings at - DX12, PhysX On, Quality Ultra, Tessellation On, Texture Filtering AF 16x, DLSS On, Ray Tracing High, I was getting 40+fps. I could have got more with tweaking but it was smooth and very playable with G-Sync.


PHOTO_20190310_153632.jpg
 

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
and now I just read TremF last post on noise... oops... that worries me. Do you mean that the fans on the laptop are louder than the ones you used to have on your desktop? Too loud? Anything you can compare it to? I've been buying Asus ROG laptops because I've found them to be very quite. I had hoped this one is also quite
My desktop was down & out of the way, so when gaming I didn't really notice the fans so much but they could get loud under very heavy load (3 big case fans, 2 radiator fans and 1 GPU fan). With the laptop being right in front of me, it did seem quite loud initially but while testing Metro Exodus on my 4K screen, using the laptop keyboard and an external mouse for control the fans weren't as bas as I initially thought. I haven't seen / heard an ASUS ROG laptop in action to be able to compare but thinking about it it is quieter than my PC was.
 

Rajen

Active member
When i posted the review from Kitguru, i was only emphasising the difference in performance and specs between the Octane Laptop and a similarly specced desktop ie that there would be performance constraints due to confines of the laptop. It also gave some temps and benchmarks.

This is in fact not a criticism of TremF's review in any way; On the contrary it was meant to to help the current and prospective owners with information about the above. And Kitguru has given an overall 8/10 score
 

Continuent

New member
(In reply to someone on previous page but I cocked it up)

OK thank you for your thoughts.

I recently plugged my Xbox one X back into my 1080p display, instead of the 4K HDR portable monitor, or 4K HDR TV I was switching between.

I found the 1080p (29inch I believe) to look better, I think due to the smoothness of the display in regards to respone and Hz (No ghosting)

I actually don’t miss the higher resolution or HDR at all. I’m now thinking this means I can remove the red lines of “Has to be 4K and HDR capable” from my wish list and put “Must be G Sync and high refresh rate with decent colour gamut” as it feels waaaay better.

Therefore the Octane becomes even more tempting. Only issue now is...does the fashionista in me think it looks garish.
 

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
Thanks for the food for thought regarding resolution & refresh rate etc...

Admittedly it isn't the best looking. The only thing I'd like to change, though, is the size of the screen bezel. Apart from that I like it's bulk, the raised speakers and it's car bonnet like appearance when closed. :)

If you want power you have to look at the bigger & bulkier laptops/desktop replacements otherwise you get Max-Q watered down hardware.
 

jeatre

Member
(In reply to someone on previous page but I cocked it up)

I found the 1080p (29inch I believe) to look better, I think due to the smoothness of the display in regards to respone and Hz (No ghosting)

I actually don’t miss the higher resolution or HDR at all. I’m now thinking this means I can remove the red lines of “Has to be 4K and HDR capable” from my wish list and put “Must be G Sync and high refresh rate with decent colour gamut” as it feels waaaay better.

.
If you could have a screen that is 4K and G-sync capable at 60Hz refresh on the Octane VI, would you still take the 1080p? Meaning that having G-sync on both cases, the refresh rate would be enough of a reason? Or is the 1080p colour gamut far better than the 4k screen? (the ones in stock in the configurator)
 

TremF

Bronze Level Poster
If you could have a screen that is 4K and G-sync capable at 60Hz refresh on the Octane VI, would you still take the 1080p? Meaning that having G-sync on both cases, the refresh rate would be enough of a reason? Or is the 1080p colour gamut far better than the 4k screen? (the ones in stock in the configurator)

I think I'd stick with the 1080P 144Hz G-Sync. 4K at 17.3" is way too much. I think my 32" monitor is the sweet spot for 4K so I'll keep that for when I fancy a bigger screen. Without seeing the 4K version of the Octane VI in action I couldn't really comment between the two but the more I use the 1080P 144Hz the more I see that higher FPS does make for a smoother game.

From what I am reading elsewhere the Clevo P750TM1 do use a 4K G-Sync screen so I'm not sure why PC Specialist don't/say they aren't.
 

dukiss

New member
Hi,

Sorry for upping that post but i am thinking about buying that huge laptop (with an i7 8700 and 2070 rtx).
I was wondering if it was possible to undervolt the CPU ? Even if the temp is apparently decent around 80 degrees after reading that post.
 

iminhull

New member
Apologies for being a bit late to the discussion, but it is unclear if the 1080p panel is IPS or not. Does anyone have this info? I am very interested in this beast of a laptop.
 

Oussebon

Moderator
Moderator
Call PCS and ask them for the panel model. The panels are subject to change so just because someone got X 2 months ago doesn't mean you'll get X if you order today. If you call them and find out, do let us know as it's always interesting and could be helpful to others in a similar position. :)
 
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