Razer Blade 17 (2022) review: ultra performance that comes with a price

The Razer Blade 17 (2022) will blow you away with its power

T3 Platinum Award
Razer Blade 17 (2022)
(Image credit: Razer)
T3 Verdict

The Razer Blade 17 (2022) goes all in on the internal specs, especially when it comes to the graphics power – it's simply one of the best performing gaming laptops around, and it looks superb too. The only major downside is that it's going to cost you a small fortune.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Astounding performance

  • +

    Superb style and build quality

  • +

    Bright, crisp 17-inch display

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Battery life isn't great

  • -

    Quickly attracts fingerprints

  • -

    It costs an awful lot

The Razer Blade 17 (2022) doesn't want you looking at any other models when it comes to the best gaming laptop – with a super-powerful Nvidia RTX 3080 Ti card inside, it has all the performance you need to handle the most demanding modern games and then some.

It's difficult to find a better-specced gaming laptop on the market at the moment, and here we're going to guide you through everything you need to know about this 17.3-inch model, from the battery life to the display quality to the level of performance to expect.

What is clear just from the price tag is that this is a laptop for serious gamers and creatives only. If you don't fall into that bracket then we've got plenty of other buying guides for you to peruse, including the best cheap laptops and the best lightweight laptops you can buy.

The Razer Blade 17 (2022) review: design and screen

Razer Blade 17 (2022)

(Image credit: Future)

The Blade laptops that Razer has been producing in recent years, with screens from 13 inches to 17 inches in size, already look great – there's no need to mess with the design formula at this stage. As with its predecessors, the Razer Blade 17 for 2022 is a gorgeous-looking black slab of aluminium metal and plastic, with a tastefully done green Razer logo on the back of the lid. What's more, it's solidly put together, and feels like it's going to last a long, long time.

With a screen measuring 17 inches from corner to corner, you're always going to have to put up with a certain amount of bulk, but this isn't a laptop that feels overly large or cumbersome to carry. If you're measuring out the free space on your desk, you'll want to know that the Razer Blade 17 measures 395 mm x 260 mm x 19.9 mm (that's 15.55 inches x 10.24 inches x 0.78 inches) and weighs in at 2.75 kg or 6.06 lbs.

You can get this laptop with a choice of screen specs, but our review unit came with a maximum resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels and a maximum refresh rate of 240Hz – all very impressive. There's support for Nvidia G-Sync and 100 percent of the DCI-P3 colour space. The panel is sharp, bright and fluid, as you would expect with such a high refresh rate, and the best games look stunning on it. The bezels aren't the thinnest we've ever seen, but they're by no means chunky – and there is room for a 1080p webcam with Windows Hello support, enabling easy logging in through face recognition.

The extra size of a laptop at the 17-inch scale means more room for ports: you get a 3.5 mm combination audio jack, two Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C) ports, one USB-C port (supporting USB 3.2 Gen 2) and three USB-A ports (also supporting USB 3.2 Gen 2). It's an impressive selection no matter what your needs in terms of hubs and peripherals – everything from secondary monitors to external SSDs can be handled.

The Razer Blade 17 (2022) review: performance and features

Razer Blade 17 (2022)

(Image credit: Razer)

As per usual with Razer, the new Blade 17 is available in a variety of configurations when it comes to the internals. The undoubted highlight of the model we were given to review was the Nvidia RTX 3080 Ti GPU, currently one of the most powerful graphics cards on the planet. That was accompanied by a 1.8GHz 14-core Intel i7-12800H processor, 32GB of RAM, and 1TB of SSD storage, specs that are going to make even the most seasoned gamers drool.

There's support for ray tracing (for realistic lighting and shadows), DLSS or Deep Learning Super Sampling (which uses AI to boost frame rates and make sure each frame is super-sharp), and 4th-generation Max-Q technology (to ensure the maximum performance possible within the space limitations of a laptop). It's a cornucopia of graphics features and there's no doubt this is one of the most well-specced laptops out there right now.

That top-tier CPU and top-tier GPU equates to top-tier performance, as you would expect. We ran the 3DMark Time Spy benchmark on the laptop and got a score of 11,826 – that blows away most laptops and gets close to some of the best desktop gaming rigs on the market. You would expect bigger gaming computers to score higher of course, with extra cooling and full size components, but the Blade Razer 17 for 2022 gives them some serious competition with everything that it has to offer.

Even at the top resolution and the most advanced graphics settings you can find, the top games are still going to run super smoothly on this laptop: in testing games like Red Dead Redemption 2, GTA V and Cyberpunk 2077 we were getting at least 60 frames per second (with a little DLSS help) and in many cases way above that. Dial down a graphics setting or two and those frame rates can quickly rise too. It can take every demanding game you can throw at it and then some.

Razer Blade 17 (2022)

(Image credit: Razer)

Noise was never a problem with the laptop, and although the sound of the cooling system is definitely noticeable once it gets going, it's not as loud as some other gaming laptops we've tested (and there is a Whisper Mode you can use to sacrifice some performance for less noise). Likewise the cooling system seems to work relatively well, although the underside of the laptop can get very hot to the touch during intensive gaming sessions – this is a laptop to keep on a desk rather than on your lap.

You won't always be gaming on the Razer Blade 17, and we're pleased to report that the keyboard and spacious trackpad stand up to scrutiny as well (as you would expect if you've used any of the Razer Blade models in the past). The trackpad is sensitive and responsive, and the individual keys on the keyboard have a pleasing amount of travel without getting in the way of your typing flow. Writing part of this review on the laptop itself was a far more comfortable experience than using our regular computer.

Sound is provided by eight separate speakers creating a stereo array with support for THX Spatial Audio, and it's difficult to fault them – even at louder volumes, details are crisp and clear and sharp. There's sometimes a lack of bass punch, but that's to be expected on a laptop like this, and overall the audio is great. So too is the per-key RGB lighting, which you can control via the supplied Synapse software to be as dramatic or as subtle as you want.

You shouldn't expect too much from the Razer Blade 17 in terms of battery life, though you know that going in when you buy a gaming laptop. In our tests an hour of video streaming – on maximum brightness, with the volume set low – knocks down the battery level by about 40 percent. When gaming, we were seeing drops of around 30 percent every quarter of an hour. In other words, you're going to have to keep your charging cable close by. Again though, this can be tweaked via on-board software settings, so you can find your perfect battery life vs performance sweet spot.

The Razer Blade 17 (2022) review: price and verdict

Razer Blade 17 (2022)

(Image credit: Future)

The 2022 edition of the Razer Blade 17 is a hugely impressive and powerful laptop, whichever way you want to look at it. The quality of the Razer Blade series, the power of the 12th-gen Intel chips and the performance of the RTX 3080 Ti GPU from Nvidia have all been well established in countless reviews and benchmarks, and here you're getting them all together in one comprehensive unit.

So why wouldn't you opt for this for your next laptop upgrade? Well, the price is clearly too much for a lot of people – the best components cost the most money, and the amount of power that's available here is way more than you'll need if you're simply writing out essays and reports, doing some light emailing, watching movies and so on. This is strictly for serious gamers and video editors with a healthy bank balance.

Check the widgets embedded on this page for the latest pricing on the Razer Blade 17 and also check our Razer discount codes, but at the time of writing you can pick up this impressive laptop in the configuration that we reviewed for around £4,300 or $4,000. Now, you can get a pretty decent car for that price, so it's a question of just how much you're willing to spend to get the best performance you can currently squeeze into a laptop chassis.

Every laptop is a compromise between performance, size, battery life, price and various other considerations, and it's clear where Razer has and hasn't compromised here. As with the rest of the Razer Blade range, it's certainly worth considering if you need a laptop that can game at the highest levels without looking out of place in a coffee shop, and the Razer Blade 17 (2022) is currently one of the best gaming laptops you can get your hands on.

Dave has over 20 years' experience in the tech journalism industry, covering hardware and software across mobile, computing, smart home, home entertainment, wearables, gaming and the web – you can find his writing online, in print, and even in the occasional scientific paper, across major tech titles like T3, TechRadar, Gizmodo and Wired. Outside of work, he enjoys long walks in the countryside, skiing down mountains, watching football matches (as long as his team is winning) and keeping up with the latest movies.