Review of 16" RTX 40-Series IONICO Laptop

ArnPiz

Member
Full disclosure statement: This is a solicited review; PCSpecialist invites reviews from new purchasers on the basis that the reviewer receives an additional 3months warranty, that said, they make it clear that they don’t care if the reviews are favourable or unfavourable.

This is an updated and substantially amended review based on my previous review post.




Dimensions.

The actual dimensions are 360 x 272 x 22, this differs slightly from the published dimensions.

Build quality.

The lid is made from alloy and feels strong with very little flex, the rest of the chassis is plastic but feels firm and well-engineered.

Weight; yes, it’s a little on the weighty side but I’d rather have a strongly-built laptop versus a slightly lighter one that falls apart after a couple of years.

The most critical engineering feature on a slim laptop is the hinges. For some unfathomable reason manufacturers seem to always set the hinge preload too high resulting in a large bending moment on the lid, screen and bezel whenever it is opened/closed, resulting in early failure (my previous MSI GP66 hinges snapped TWICE in 3months and I used the refund to purchase this machine), I can happily confirm that the Ionico preload is about right; not too stiff, not to floppy with no alarming creaking.

Keyboard.

I’m not a fan of chiclet keyboards and this machine’s is no better/no worse than others I have used, Clevo have managed to fit in a numerical pad however which is very welcome.

The keyboard is RGB and I believe it is programable if you like that sort of thing.

The clamshell back is easily removed for upgrade with no stupid warranty stickers. Internally, the laptop is dominated by the large vapour chamber which covers most of the motherboard (see Picture)
Ionico 1.jpg


The PCB assembly is pretty much industry-standard pick and place (although the eagle-eyed might notice the slightly wonky choke on my PCB). There is room for another M.2 SSD and a second SODIM.

Overall, this feels like a premium, well put together machine.

Battery life.

The battery on these machines is pretty small and is probably ok for 2-3 hours of productivity as long as the GPU is switched off (this is in line with other machines with similar specs) A very welcome feature is the ability to set the battery charge state at less than full (I run mine at 50%) -this is a great feature if the machine is being run predominately from mains power and should result in the battery lasting for effectively the life of the machine.

Screen.

The machine has a variable refresh rate, 2560 x 1600px panel that has a stated 100% sRGB coverage (I will test the panel and post the results later)

LCD panels will always have some backlight bleedthrough -its not a bug, its a feature...but seriously, the technology of blocking light with crossed polarisers will never approach the inky-blacks of OLED technology but, I can say that the 1600p 240Hz panel on the 16" Ionico is among the best example of the technology that I've seen. I created a black BMP file and viewed it with the panel brightness at 100% (see below) note-this is just a quick and dirty view with plenty of ambient light -to the eye, the panel is black (the irregular splotches are reflections off the rear wall.)
20230305_173810a.jpg



I could repeat this experiment in a totally dark room (with a camera that has a better dynamic range) and I'd predict that under those conditions we might be able to observe some light leakage around the points where the panel was under some stress (usually around the hinges) but, if present this would be negligible and invisible under normal viewing conditions



Performance.

The cooling system is audible at idle and the noise generated by the fans has a noticeable high-frequency whistle located around 2KHz (see below), I don’t find this intrusive but this is very much a personal preference and at idle, the CPU runs at about 35 degrees above ambient.
Screenshot 2023-03-07 163439.png


Under load, the fans ramp up pretty aggressively and are definitely audible but, if you buy what is essentially a monster GPU with a laptop attached you have to expect that all that waste heat has to go somewhere. If the machine will be used for gaming/GPU workloads you might want to invest in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. Stressing the CPU quickly raises the die temperature to its design maximum of 100C where it will thermally throttle, likewise the GPU power limits under heavy load, this is expected and is normal for this configuration.

This machine has a locked CPU so there is no scope for undervolting.

I’ve tried some preliminary GPU undervolting using Throttlestop (see below) and although I was able to prevent the GPU power throttling, this doesn’t seem to alter the Benchmark results very much, but this is very much a work in progress.
Screenshot 2023-03-07 164639.png



With regards to the Optimus system, there seems to be little audible difference whether you run on the integrated vs the discrete GPU at idle although I expect some battery life benefits running on the integrated GPU.

I’ve only tested the HDMI output so far; and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that this machine is capable of outputting 4k at 120fps (lesser resolutions/ framerates are of course available).

Based on this, I’d imagine that the lower-level RTX cards would perform just fine on modern graphical/GPU compute workloads. And yes, it will run Crysis.

The 3Dmark score for firestrike is >25K (and could probably be pushed even higher with some GPU undervolting) it is worth mentioning that space and power-constraints mean that a laptop GPU will never be able to match an identically-labelled desktop GPU, for example, I have the RTX4070 which is very roughly equivalent to a RTX3070-Ti desktop GPU

That’s not to say that the IONICO is underpowered, on the contrary; there’s not a single current game that won’t run well with all the graphical bells and whistles turned up, for example, Doom runs at 240fps on ultra at 2K, Halo infinite runs at an amazing >60fps at 4K (medium settings).

With regard to the CPU performance, this is in line with the well-documented results published for this iteration and this processor can keep the GPU well-supplied with draw calls (which is all most people will care about) and should be more than capable of running most conceivable CPU workloads.

In summary, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how good this machine is; in the past I’ve has Dells, Asus’ and (shudder) MSI’s and this is probably the best of all of them.

If you have any questions regarding this machine let me know and I will try to answer them.



Arn
 

SpyderTracks

We love you Ukraine
Full disclosure statement: This is a solicited review; PCSpecialist invites reviews from new purchasers on the basis that the reviewer receives an additional 3months warranty, that said, they make it clear that they don’t care if the reviews are favourable or unfavourable.

This is an updated and substantially amended review based on my previous review post.




Dimensions.

The actual dimensions are 360 x 272 x 22, this differs slightly from the published dimensions.

Build quality.

The lid is made from alloy and feels strong with very little flex, the rest of the chassis is plastic but feels firm and well-engineered.

Weight; yes, it’s a little on the weighty side but I’d rather have a strongly-built laptop versus a slightly lighter one that falls apart after a couple of years.

The most critical engineering feature on a slim laptop is the hinges. For some unfathomable reason manufacturers seem to always set the hinge preload too high resulting in a large bending moment on the lid, screen and bezel whenever it is opened/closed, resulting in early failure (my previous MSI GP66 hinges snapped TWICE in 3months and I used the refund to purchase this machine), I can happily confirm that the Ionico preload is about right; not too stiff, not to floppy with no alarming creaking.

Keyboard.

I’m not a fan of chiclet keyboards and this machine’s is no better/no worse than others I have used, Clevo have managed to fit in a numerical pad however which is very welcome.

The keyboard is RGB and I believe it is programable if you like that sort of thing.

The clamshell back is easily removed for upgrade with no stupid warranty stickers. Internally, the laptop is dominated by the large vapour chamber which covers most of the motherboard (see Picture)
View attachment 36219

The PCB assembly is pretty much industry-standard pick and place (although the eagle-eyed might notice the slightly wonky choke on my PCB). There is room for another M.2 SSD and a second SODIM.

Overall, this feels like a premium, well put together machine.

Battery life.

The battery on these machines is pretty small and is probably ok for 2-3 hours of productivity as long as the GPU is switched off (this is in line with other machines with similar specs) A very welcome feature is the ability to set the battery charge state at less than full (I run mine at 50%) -this is a great feature if the machine is being run predominately from mains power and should result in the battery lasting for effectively the life of the machine.

Screen.

The machine has a variable refresh rate, 2560 x 1600px panel that has a stated 100% sRGB coverage (I will test the panel and post the results later)

LCD panels will always have some backlight bleedthrough -its not a bug, its a feature...but seriously, the technology of blocking light with crossed polarisers will never approach the inky-blacks of OLED technology but, I can say that the 1600p 240Hz panel on the 16" Ionico is among the best example of the technology that I've seen. I created a black BMP file and viewed it with the panel brightness at 100% (see below) note-this is just a quick and dirty view with plenty of ambient light -to the eye, the panel is black (the irregular splotches are reflections off the rear wall.)View attachment 36217


I could repeat this experiment in a totally dark room (with a camera that has a better dynamic range) and I'd predict that under those conditions we might be able to observe some light leakage around the points where the panel was under some stress (usually around the hinges) but, if present this would be negligible and invisible under normal viewing conditions



Performance.

The cooling system is audible at idle and the noise generated by the fans has a noticeable high-frequency whistle located around 2KHz (see below), I don’t find this intrusive but this is very much a personal preference and at idle, the CPU runs at about 35 degrees above ambient.
View attachment 36218

Under load, the fans ramp up pretty aggressively and are definitely audible but, if you buy what is essentially a monster GPU with a laptop attached you have to expect that all that waste heat has to go somewhere. If the machine will be used for gaming/GPU workloads you might want to invest in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. Stressing the CPU quickly raises the die temperature to its design maximum of 100C where it will thermally throttle, likewise the GPU power limits under heavy load, this is expected and is normal for this configuration.

This machine has a locked CPU so there is no scope for undervolting.

I’ve tried some preliminary GPU undervolting using Throttlestop (see below) and although I was able to prevent the GPU power throttling, this doesn’t seem to alter the Benchmark results very much, but this is very much a work in progress.
View attachment 36221


With regards to the Optimus system, there seems to be little audible difference whether you run on the integrated vs the discrete GPU at idle although I expect some battery life benefits running on the integrated GPU.

I’ve only tested the HDMI output so far; and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that this machine is capable of outputting 4k at 120fps (lesser resolutions/ framerates are of course available).

Based on this, I’d imagine that the lower-level RTX cards would perform just fine on modern graphical/GPU compute workloads. And yes, it will run Crysis.

The 3Dmark score for firestrike is >25K (and could probably be pushed even higher with some GPU undervolting) it is worth mentioning that space and power-constraints mean that a laptop GPU will never be able to match an identically-labelled desktop GPU, for example, I have the RTX4070 which is very roughly equivalent to a RTX3070-Ti desktop GPU

That’s not to say that the IONICO is underpowered, on the contrary; there’s not a single current game that won’t run well with all the graphical bells and whistles turned up, for example, Doom runs at 240fps on ultra at 2K, Halo infinite runs at an amazing >60fps at 4K (medium settings).

With regard to the CPU performance, this is in line with the well-documented results published for this iteration and this processor can keep the GPU well-supplied with draw calls (which is all most people will care about) and should be more than capable of running most conceivable CPU workloads.

In summary, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how good this machine is; in the past I’ve has Dells, Asus’ and (shudder) MSI’s and this is probably the best of all of them.

If you have any questions regarding this machine let me know and I will try to answer them.



Arn
Excellent review, every in depth, nice job (y)
 

Alex_

Active member
Full disclosure statement: This is a solicited review; PCSpecialist invites reviews from new purchasers on the basis that the reviewer receives an additional 3months warranty, that said, they make it clear that they don’t care if the reviews are favourable or unfavourable.

This is an updated and substantially amended review based on my previous review post.




Dimensions.

The actual dimensions are 360 x 272 x 22, this differs slightly from the published dimensions.

Build quality.

The lid is made from alloy and feels strong with very little flex, the rest of the chassis is plastic but feels firm and well-engineered.

Weight; yes, it’s a little on the weighty side but I’d rather have a strongly-built laptop versus a slightly lighter one that falls apart after a couple of years.

The most critical engineering feature on a slim laptop is the hinges. For some unfathomable reason manufacturers seem to always set the hinge preload too high resulting in a large bending moment on the lid, screen and bezel whenever it is opened/closed, resulting in early failure (my previous MSI GP66 hinges snapped TWICE in 3months and I used the refund to purchase this machine), I can happily confirm that the Ionico preload is about right; not too stiff, not to floppy with no alarming creaking.

Keyboard.

I’m not a fan of chiclet keyboards and this machine’s is no better/no worse than others I have used, Clevo have managed to fit in a numerical pad however which is very welcome.

The keyboard is RGB and I believe it is programable if you like that sort of thing.

The clamshell back is easily removed for upgrade with no stupid warranty stickers. Internally, the laptop is dominated by the large vapour chamber which covers most of the motherboard (see Picture)
View attachment 36219

The PCB assembly is pretty much industry-standard pick and place (although the eagle-eyed might notice the slightly wonky choke on my PCB). There is room for another M.2 SSD and a second SODIM.

Overall, this feels like a premium, well put together machine.

Battery life.

The battery on these machines is pretty small and is probably ok for 2-3 hours of productivity as long as the GPU is switched off (this is in line with other machines with similar specs) A very welcome feature is the ability to set the battery charge state at less than full (I run mine at 50%) -this is a great feature if the machine is being run predominately from mains power and should result in the battery lasting for effectively the life of the machine.

Screen.

The machine has a variable refresh rate, 2560 x 1600px panel that has a stated 100% sRGB coverage (I will test the panel and post the results later)

LCD panels will always have some backlight bleedthrough -its not a bug, its a feature...but seriously, the technology of blocking light with crossed polarisers will never approach the inky-blacks of OLED technology but, I can say that the 1600p 240Hz panel on the 16" Ionico is among the best example of the technology that I've seen. I created a black BMP file and viewed it with the panel brightness at 100% (see below) note-this is just a quick and dirty view with plenty of ambient light -to the eye, the panel is black (the irregular splotches are reflections off the rear wall.)View attachment 36217


I could repeat this experiment in a totally dark room (with a camera that has a better dynamic range) and I'd predict that under those conditions we might be able to observe some light leakage around the points where the panel was under some stress (usually around the hinges) but, if present this would be negligible and invisible under normal viewing conditions



Performance.

The cooling system is audible at idle and the noise generated by the fans has a noticeable high-frequency whistle located around 2KHz (see below), I don’t find this intrusive but this is very much a personal preference and at idle, the CPU runs at about 35 degrees above ambient.
View attachment 36218

Under load, the fans ramp up pretty aggressively and are definitely audible but, if you buy what is essentially a monster GPU with a laptop attached you have to expect that all that waste heat has to go somewhere. If the machine will be used for gaming/GPU workloads you might want to invest in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. Stressing the CPU quickly raises the die temperature to its design maximum of 100C where it will thermally throttle, likewise the GPU power limits under heavy load, this is expected and is normal for this configuration.

This machine has a locked CPU so there is no scope for undervolting.

I’ve tried some preliminary GPU undervolting using Throttlestop (see below) and although I was able to prevent the GPU power throttling, this doesn’t seem to alter the Benchmark results very much, but this is very much a work in progress.
View attachment 36221


With regards to the Optimus system, there seems to be little audible difference whether you run on the integrated vs the discrete GPU at idle although I expect some battery life benefits running on the integrated GPU.

I’ve only tested the HDMI output so far; and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that this machine is capable of outputting 4k at 120fps (lesser resolutions/ framerates are of course available).

Based on this, I’d imagine that the lower-level RTX cards would perform just fine on modern graphical/GPU compute workloads. And yes, it will run Crysis.

The 3Dmark score for firestrike is >25K (and could probably be pushed even higher with some GPU undervolting) it is worth mentioning that space and power-constraints mean that a laptop GPU will never be able to match an identically-labelled desktop GPU, for example, I have the RTX4070 which is very roughly equivalent to a RTX3070-Ti desktop GPU

That’s not to say that the IONICO is underpowered, on the contrary; there’s not a single current game that won’t run well with all the graphical bells and whistles turned up, for example, Doom runs at 240fps on ultra at 2K, Halo infinite runs at an amazing >60fps at 4K (medium settings).

With regard to the CPU performance, this is in line with the well-documented results published for this iteration and this processor can keep the GPU well-supplied with draw calls (which is all most people will care about) and should be more than capable of running most conceivable CPU workloads.

In summary, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how good this machine is; in the past I’ve has Dells, Asus’ and (shudder) MSI’s and this is probably the best of all of them.

If you have any questions regarding this machine let me know and I will try to answer them.



Arn
Thank you for the review! Did you notice at which temperature does the cpu stays under longer stress condition? Spikes up to 100C should be normal, but after 10/15 minutes under load the cpu usually tries to get more stable with the wattage.
 

ArnPiz

Member
Hi Alex

I've attached a screenshot from my 16" Ionico (RTX4070) whilst playing Halo Infinite for 10 minutes or so; you'll notice that the cpu temp climbs to 100'C then levels off at around 95 with spikes of 100'C. The CPU is designed to run happily (if not quietly) like this and the cooling solution certainly makes itself known.
 

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