With the Gigabyte Aorus 15P, we have yet another top-tier, compact gaming laptop from Gigabyte. This is actually very similar to the Aorus 15G that we've already reviewed, though it comes with a choice of slightly more affordable, less powerful configurations.
You also lose the mechanical keyboard if you drop down to the Aorus 15P from the Aorus 15G, in return for saving a bit of cash. If Gigabyte's more expensive gaming laptops are a bit too rich for your blood, then this might be an excellent alternative for you to consider.
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As usual, a variety of spec configurations are available, which makes it trickier to review the laptop as a whole, but we'll explain what your options are below – together with everything else that you need to know about this Gigabyte Aorus 15P gaming laptop.
Our Gigabyte Aorus 15P review touches on battery life, gaming performance, on-board software, the design and feel of the laptop, and more besides. Picking a gaming laptop isn't particularly easy at the moment, but we can help you make an informed decision.
Gigabyte Aorus 15P review: screen and design
The Gigabyte Aorus 15P brings with it a sharp, angular design, with a grey, plastic finish. Apart from a few large air vents, the laptop has very few aesthetic flourishes, which means you can quite easily get away with using it as a general purpose laptop too – it's not going to stand out too much if you get it out at the next office meeting. At 357 mm x 244 mm x 23 mm (14 in x 9.6 in x 0.9 in) and 2 kg (4.4 lbs) it's reasonably portable too.
As for the 15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080 pixel display, it runs at an impressive 144Hz refresh rate that makes both games and streaming video super-smooth. It's not the brightest panel we've ever come across but it still looks superb in use, with the thin bezels around the edges adding to the appeal – only the bottom chin could be described as thick, which is where the Aorus label is placed.
Unfortunately those thin bezels mean the webcam is down by the keyboard, which isn't ideal for your next video chat, though you'll probably be able to live with it. In terms of ports and connectivity, you've got 3 x USB-A ports, 1 x USB-C port, 1 x HDMI 2.0 port and 1 x mini DP 1.4 port, as well as a 3.5 mm audio jack, an Ethernet port, and an SD card reader. Wi-Fi 6 is supported, so you're future-proofed from that angle.
The scissor switch full size keyboard offers a comfortable and tactile typing experience, but it can't quite match the mechanical switches of the Aorus 15G – that might be one reason you consider going for the more expensive model. Lighting on each key and the keyboard as a whole can be controlled by the usual Aorus Control Centre application, which also allows for some intelligent management of CPU and GPU load. It's one of the better gaming laptop management utilities out there.
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Gigabyte Aorus 15P review: performance and features
Our Aorus 15P review model came with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q GPU setup and all its ray tracing goodness, as well as a 10th-gen Intel i7-107050H processor, 16GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD. That's ample for our needs, but again have a look at the different configurations on sale – you can pack in 64GB of RAM if you really want to.
In the 3DMark Time Spy benchmark, the laptop put in a respectable score of 6,707, which is very decent for a gaming laptop of this spec (though just behind the Aorus 15G) – the gaming laptop average on Time Spy is 5,730. That should equate to enough power to run the best games very comfortably, and in our tests with Grand Theft Auto V we were seeing steady rates of 70 frames per second (and often above) with many advanced graphics settings turned on.
Pushing the laptop like that does create a lot of heat underneath the chassis and out of the sides through the fans, but if you've got the Aorus 15P set up on a desk then it won't be a major problem. Fan noise was definitely noticeable – as you would expect from a gaming laptop – but it never got to the point where we found it annoying or distracting from the main audio of the game. Speaking of audio, the dual-speaker Nahimic system impresses both for games and movies.
Gigabyte is promising up to eight hours of battery life, which is way above what you might expect for a gaming laptop with so much power on board. In our two-hour video streaming test – at maximum display brightness, it must be noted – the laptop went down from 100 percent battery to 66 percent, suggesting around six hours in total. Dimming the brightness would stretch that out further, but intensive gaming is going to suck power much more quickly than watching movies.
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Gigabyte Aorus 15P review: price and verdict
While the specs configuration we had in our Gigabyte Aorus 15P isn't the only one available, it shows you what this gaming laptop is capable of. It's relatively affordable, for a portable computer with gaming capabilities, and yet it still manages to run the very best games at very respectable frame rates – and without getting too loud or hot either.
Everyone's different when it comes to appreciating laptop aesthetics, but we like the rather understated look of the Aorus 15P: you could accuse it of being a bit boring in the looks department, but we actually prefer something a little less flashy. If you want to, you can still go crazy on the keyboard lighting to get yourself a laptop that's going to catch some eyes at the coffee shop.
Like other recent Gigabyte Aorus models, there's Azure AI on board: developed in partnership with Microsoft, it aims to smartly manage demands on system resources and make sure the laptop is always optimised for the best performance, whether you're gaming or browsing the web. Add in a comprehensive Control Centre utility too, and the Aorus 15P is definitely a winner from the software side.
In fact it's a winner in most departments – it's all a question of how much money you want to spend on your gaming laptop. Yes there are better-looking and more powerful machines than the Aorus 15P out there, with specs that are even more impressive, but if you need something that gives you a little bit more in the value-for-money department then we think this is well worth a look.
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