Aorus X5 MD review – portable 15-inch laptop with GTX 1080 Max-Q graphics


  1. SL

    August 2, 2017 at 3:00 am

    Really high quality review. I've long appreciated your detailed and insightful reviews. It's great that you give your true opinion and aren't one of those Youtubers who praise everything they review.

    Surprised and disappointed that 1080 MQ here performs worse than 1070. Are you sure it's a power supply issue? I'm disappointed that Aorus would overlook this and bring this machine to market with this performance downfall since premise of 1080 MQ is that it outperforms 1070.

    I would also be curious as to exactly how fan noise and thermals compare to the X5 v7 with 1070. From your review it sounds like both would be similar between the machines.

    I feel like Aorus should be given credit for building what is a fairly unique machine – thin and light but super powerful. They have competitors like Razer and MSI but none of these laptops match eye for eye – all are somewhat different. It's a shame that Aorus can't get their build quality and optimization to an Apple-level of polish..

    • Derek Sullivan

      August 2, 2017 at 7:23 am

      I'm not positive it's the power supply since I can't test that feature to prove it, but it's very likely that's the issue. My HWinfo results are showing the power supply is maxed out and when I OC, I get erratic results. That usually means the CPU and GPU are fighting for power. Really, there's no reason this machine shouldn't perform equivalent to the Zephyrus.

      I'm also curious about the fan noise and would like to know what the real life difference is. I'm reviewing the x7 DT now though and can tell you that the ear level fan noise on that machine is 40dB when gaming. It's still not the x5 v7 but I'm only pointing it out because I was expecting the fans to be significantly louder. So I still think the noise levels might be similar.

      One thing to note is I have complete control of the fan curves on the x7 DT. It's probably the case with the x5 v7 as well, but I don't remember having this option on the x5 MD(I might have just overlooked it).

      • David

        August 5, 2017 at 9:21 am

        Hi Derek,
        When can we expect the X7 DT v7 review and also ca. You conform on this comment fan noise while gaming on the X7 DT is only 40db, I was expecting it to be higher?

      • Derek Sullivan

        August 5, 2017 at 9:43 am

        I should have it done this weekend and up Monday or Tuesday. The fan noise under load is 40dB at ear level, while under full load. The fans actually go faster but I haven't measured the sound at that level yet nor have the fans needed to go that fast in any of my testing. In other words, it's a little louder than the x5 MD but really not that bad when you compare it to most other 17" models

      • David

        August 5, 2017 at 10:04 am

        I'm assuming you would recommend the X7 DT much more than the X5 MD? Also is the QHD screen better than UHD?

      • Derek Sullivan

        August 5, 2017 at 10:34 am

        I don't want to give it all away, but yes and yes. :) If the UHD screen on that model is B173ZAN though, you can't go wrong with either panel. Both panels have very good and different advantages to them, and it's all up to the user's personal preference. I'll explain it in more detain in my review though.

      • David

        August 7, 2017 at 5:01 am

        Hi Derek,

        Have you had a chance to test/review the MSI Stealth Pro 1070 max-q and if so what did tob think? Better or worse than the X7 DT and Zephrus?

      • Derek Sullivan

        August 7, 2017 at 6:45 am

        I haven't, sorry. I don't think I'll be getting one either. My first thought is that $2500 is a bit much for a 1070. I'd love to know how it compares to a real 1070.

  2. DonGod

    August 3, 2017 at 10:19 am

    Hi Derek,

    if you ignore the issue with the 1080 max q as well as the ugly logos on this laptop would you give it a 4 rating ?

    Other question: previous versions of this notebook were extremely loud under heavy gaming load. Do you see an improvement here (for both the md and v7 version) ? I mean 40db at ear level is slightly more than what my current Asus G750 produces and this laptop was famous for being very silent running a 780m.

    Back to the logo issue. I am wondering when OEM will realize, that most people spending 2500+ on a laptop do not want childish design. I am even wondering to give up on a 1070gtx and go 1060gtx as this seems to be the only way to avoid design from a 12-year-old. But I must say, that the logos on this laptop (at least on pictures) do not look as bad as "black&orange", "black&red", "rog" or even "predator" logos. I mean having the word predator on a laptop is an absolute no-go for me, no matter how good the machine is.

    Anyway, I would appreciate your thoughts on noise compared to previous versions.


    • Derek Sullivan

      August 3, 2017 at 12:03 pm

      Easily a 3.75 and maybe a 4, yes. On paper, everything is the same except the GPU.

      Unfortunately I never had my hands on the v6, so I can't give you an apples to apples noise comparison. This is about on par with what I've been seeing with other gaming notebooks though. The v7 should be similar to the MD, but it might get louder if it's aloud to be overcloked more. This is the case with the X7 v7 DT, which I'm currently testing.

  3. Kyle

    August 7, 2017 at 4:33 am

    I don't care if they manage to pack 10x the performance of GTX 1080. No way in hell am I spending US$3K on a laptop that doesn't last 2 hours on portable use. Maybe invest in developing better MUX technology, or drop G-Sync altogether and enable Nvidia Optimus graphics switching with a BIOS switch. Either that, or put a bigger battery on it.
    They also need to give us more options, even if it means higher or lower prices. Cheaper base models with no built in memory, storage, and OS. High quality, lower resolution displays until the Windows scaling and battery life issues are resolved. This UHD panel is a good example of a pointless pixel density when brightness, contrast ratio and color saturation are all garbage. And for god's sake, what's up with the flimsy build and crappy touchpad, webcam, microphone and speakers?
    There's a reason why people buy Macbook, Razer Blade and business Mobile Worstations, despite their underpowered performance or a ridiculous price. Please don't let me down Gigabyte.

  4. Kieron

    August 15, 2017 at 5:28 pm

    I have just ordered an Aorus x5 md please could you let me know which laptop has the quieter less annoying fans under load while playing a game the Asus Rog Zephyrus or the Aorus x5 md.

    • Derek Sullivan

      August 15, 2017 at 5:31 pm

      No question, the Zephyrus. But you can adjust the fans in the Aorus.

  5. Travis

    February 18, 2018 at 12:02 am

    Hey! Im buying one of these on ebay, and it seems they really need 230 watt over the included 200 watt adapter. Is there a 230 watt charger i could use from current, or previous aorus models? Like plug and play? Or is the firmware limited at 200 watts?

    Some reviews have shown up to 240 watts draw under extreme loads.

    And it seems a 230 watt could improve overclocking!

    Im looking at a used one with, 7820hk/gtx1070/4K/16gb/512ssd/1tb-hdd

    • Derek Sullivan

      February 18, 2018 at 7:35 am

      I'm honestly not sure if the firmware will allow a larger PSU or not. I've been keeping up with the forums and I don't remember hearing about anyone who has tried. Can't hurt to try – just make sure the voltage are the same. Sorry, wish I could help more.

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