Hey everyone! I got my hands on a 2023 Razer Blade 16 with the RTX 4080 in it and have been using it exclusively for the past week.
I put my early opinion up after a week, but have now had it long enough to make some final calls on what I’ve seen during my testing. In short, it’s been pretty good for the most part.
I really like some of the design improvements that Razer has offered in this year’s model, particularly the 16:10 form factor and the added thickness to support a higher-wattage CPU and GPU. Making the 14” Blade model the ultraportable solution allows this model to be more of a contender to the Legion and Strix models of their competitors, which balance portability and favor performance.
Considering how well the device has performed for me throughout my testing, I can see why Razer chose a thicker and heavier device with this model – it’s well worth the sacrifice! But is it worth the price tag they are asking? I’d like to think so, but it’s really going to come down to whether or not you value the build quality and design.
Here’s what I found out.
Specs sheet as reviewed – Razer Blade 16
Razer Blade 16 (2023)
Screen 16 inch, 2560×1600 px, IPS, 240 Hz, 3ms, MUX switch, 100% DCI-P3
Processor Intel i9-13950HX, 24 core, 32 threads (5.5 GHz max)
Video Intel Iris Xe + Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 with 12GB of DDR6 VRAM
Memory 32 GB DDR5 5600Mhz (2x 16GB DIMMS)
Storage 1x 1TB M.2 NVMe gen 4(SSSTC) + extra slot
Connectivity Killer AX211 Wifi 6E with Bluetooth 5.2
Ports left: DC-in, 2X USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type A, 1x USB3.2 Gen 2 Type C, headphone/mic combo
right: lock, HDMI 2.1, 1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type A, 1x USB Type C with Thunderbolt 4, UHS-II SD Card reader
Battery 95.2 Wh, 330 W GaN charger
Size 355 mm or 13.98” (w) x 244 mm or 9.61” (d) x 21.99 mm or .87” (h)
Weight 2.45 kg (5.4 lbs) + charger
Extras backlit keyboard(RGB), HUGE trackpad, FHD webcam with IR, quad speakers, vapor chamber cooling, SD card reader
If interested in the larger 18-inch model, my
review of the Razer Blade 18 is also available over here.
Design and construction
The Blade 16 is an entirely new chassis, due to the larger form factor. But at the end of the day, it’s a very familiar design, barely distinguishable from its predecessor unless you had them side by side. But if you were a Blade 15 owner in the past, you’ll notice the difference the second you pick it up.
Fact is, this is a bigger device. It’s not only .2 inches thicker, but it’s also a full pound heavier than the
Razer Blade 15 I reviewed last year. Of course, this is intentional. With the Razer Blade 14 offering similar performance to the Blade 15 over the past several years, it makes sense that with this redesign they try to add some power into the chassis. And the only way to do that is to make the device a little larger to support higher TDP and TGP. Thus the result we have here.
The good news is the build quality is just as strong as before. The chassis is made of aluminum and is a unibody construction, which is the bulk of why it feels so sturdy, no matter where you pick up the laptop. I’ve done my fair share of handling this device and I couldn’t find any creaks in the chassis, nor does the material flex. It’s also well balanced so you likely won’t favor picking it up one way over the other.
The only exception to this is when the device is running and if you grab it from the side. There is a minor weak spot at the fan that I have noticed only once so far. If you grip your fingers right at the fan grate, you could press it in slightly, which will come into contact with the spinning fans. And if this happens, you’ll definitely hear it. So that’s a spot you’ll just have to learn to avoid grabbing it from.
The top of the device is the same as every other Razer laptop. It’s a matte brushed aluminum lid with no major features except the integrated Razer logo.
It’s still green and yes, it still glows. Thankfully the light can be turned off, but you’ll need a skin if you expect this laptop to look even remotely professional. I’m very disappointed that Razer still doesn’t have an optional feature where the logo is simply embossed – pretty much everyone except Razer and Alienware have ditched the gaudy glowing logos.
Opening the lid is a one-finger gesture, but you might struggle to get your finger in the cutout due to the small size. A fingernail works fine though. Once opened, you get a good look at the nearly bezel-less screen. Centered at the top of the screen is a small FHD webcam with doubles as a face unlock option. And this time there’s a webcam shutter – nice touch!! Centered below the screen is a very subtle Razer logo.
I’ll cover the keyboard and trackpad more in the next section, but note that unlike last year, the power button is now the upper right-hand key, instead of being integrated into the chassis.
Flanking both sides of the keyboard are the upward-facing speakers. There are four of them this year, so I’m really looking forward to hearing how they perform – especially since it’s been something I’ve constantly criticized the Blade line about.
The IO is identical to what was offered last year. On the left, there is a power adapter that is proprietary to Razer. Can’t complain too much since it’s a proven robust design. It’s reversible, but you’ll find that it’s really not because of the way the cable comes out 90 degrees.
In front of the power adapter, there are two USB-A slots and a single USB-C slot that supports Thunderbolt 4 and PD charging 3.0. This supports up to 100W adapters too. Lastly, there’s a headphone/microphone combo jack.
On the right-hand side, there’s a standard Kensington lock followed by an HDMI 2.1 port. There’s another USB-A port and an additional UBC-C port, which also supports Thunderbolt 4 and PD charging. Finally, there’s a full-sized SD card reader.
The bottom panel is a lot like last year’s design, except the lower vents are actually vents and not fake. This provides a lot of opportunity for airflow which we’ll test and see if it keeps the heat out. One addition to the bottom is the second pair of downward-facing speakers in the corners.
All in all, this is a great design even though it really hasn’t changed its look over the years. I’m certainly ok with it since it’s not bad by any means. But I do look at it as kind of a missed opportunity in some ways. For example, the material is still a fingerprint magnet, even with the coating they used. I also would have liked to see that logo finally go away.
These complaints are minor in comparison with the pros of this design, though. It’s arguably the strongest construction out there and I’ve proven that in the past when I accidentally dropped my 2019 model on a tile floor. And let’s not forget that even though this unit is thicker than last year, it’s still significantly smaller than most of the major competitors out there in the 16-inch performance segment. Here’s a picture of the Blade 16 next to my
ROG Flow X16.
So in the end I’m still giving the design an A in my book.
Keyboard and trackpad
The keyboard is exactly what I expect, as it seems to be the same as last year. As a past Blade owner, I’m very used to Razer keyboards so it took me no time at all to start typing well on this machine. The layout is well thought out and all of the keys are in logical places. The only oddity is the power button being where the Del key typically is.
Where some might struggle is the shallowness of the keystroke, but I find that this just takes time to get used to. It helps that the keys are fairly large and there is also ample feedback when you press them.
One thing I don’t care for so far is the coating on the keys. The wasd keys in particular look very used even just after a week of use. We’ll see if this evens out over time.
The keyboard has Chroma RGB backlighting which to this day is still my favorite implementation across all laptops. Synapse has excellent software to program the colors to your liking and there are also some neat little effects Razer offers that most competitors don’t even come close to.
Overall, while I give the keyboard a good grade, I was kind of hoping for a little more key travel on this model, especially with the added thickness to the machine. I guess they needed that space for the cooling system though.
The trackpad on this model is HUGE! I guess this is a good thing but it’s a bit excessive to me, to be honest. Not only has the height increased from the extra real estate on the chassis, but the width got bigger as well. Instead of spanning from the spacebar to the right Fn key, it now spans one key further in each direction.
The added width has given me middling results though. On quite a few occasions, my palm had hit the corner resulting in unwanted mouse movement. And during some click and drag operations, I release my fingers only to find that it doesn’t release, again because of my palm touching the corner. A couple of times I thought it was a Windows glitch – that’s how unobvious it was that my palm was in contact. In the end, I had to move my right hand significantly further to the right in order to get used to this and yes it definitely felt awkward doing so.
I’m not sure why they did this – the old trackpad was big enough so this doesn’t really help to have it bigger. I remember HP and MSI doing this with their ultrawide trackpads and I’m pretty sure they both stopped doing it. I’m sure if I were to keep this and it still annoyed me, I would probably just set the zone to something smaller – I’ve done it in the past with other machines.
Outside of that gripe, the trackpad is still really good! It’s smooth glass and tracks my fingers very well. Razer typically uses top-notch trackpads and this one is no different. It’s an integrated clickpad, so there are left and right clicks located on the lower corners of the glass. Just keep in mind that the right clicks are now even lower and further to the right than before. For me, I just opt for single and double finger taps.
The model I have on hand has a 240Hz 2560×1600 px resolution screen. It’s an IPS variant made by CSOT. Overall it’s a very nice screen. Arguably perfect viewing angles and there is no backlight bleed on my screen at all.
I did get a chance to use my Xrite tool to measure the screen specifications. Here’s what I got:
Panel HardwareID: CSOT MNG007DA4-1 (CSO1624)
Coverage: 153.6% sRGB, 108.8% DCI-P3, 105.8% AdobeRGB;
Measured gamma: 2.2;
Max brightness in the middle of the screen: 465 cd/m2
Contrast at max brightness: 1211:1
Native white point: around 6100 K;
Black on max brightness: 0.38 cd/m2.
Overall a very nice screen and I literally have no complaints about it. It defaults to 240Hz but you can switch it in Synapse to be 60Hz when you need it. You can also set it to automatically switch when you go on battery, which is very helpful.
The only other screen option available is a
4k mini LED 120Hz panel which also has a dual mode to switch to a faster refresh rate 1080p 240Hz. I’m very interested in this screen and will hopefully have another review unit with it in the coming weeks.
If I were to choose, I’d probably lean towards the QHD screen, mainly because you get better framerates above 90fps for almost every game at this resolution, and it’s still crisper than 1080p. I think the 4000 series GPU is just overkill for FHD gaming and you start to get diminishing returns with a 4k screen @ 16”, but that’s just me. Maybe I’ll change my mind when I see the other screen though.
Hardware and performance
Our test model is a mid-specced configuration of the early-2023 Razer Blade 16, built on an Intel Core i9-13950HX processor, 32 GB of DDR5-5600 memory in dual channel, 1 TB of fast SSD storage, and dual graphics: the Nvidia RTX 4080 dGPU with 12 GB of vRAM and the UHD iGPU integrated within the Intel processor.
Core i9-13950HX is a Raptor Lake 13th gen HX processor with a hybrid design, with 8 Performance Cores, 16 Efficiency Cores, and 32 Total Threads. It’s paired with fast memory (DDR5 overclocked at 5600 MHz) and gen4 storage.
The RTX 4080 is a high-tier dGPU in the Nvidia RTX 4000 Ade Lovelace series, only one step down from the
top-tier RTX 4090 Laptop variant.
The overall performance on the day to day tasks is excellent. Realistically, it’s been like this for years now, but now that we’re putting 24 core processors in these laptops, it’s just plain overkill. Really, these CPUs are for gaming, but if you plan on using this laptop for anything else, you won’t be disappointed.
Synapse can be used to change the power profile and adjust the CPU and GPU power limits based on what your needs are. It also affects how much heat is generated and how fast those fans will blow to keep the device cool.
Here’s a chart that shows the observed TDP/TGP I’ve seen in each power mode:
Max settings in Custom
First off, let’s go over the CPU sustained performance on the available profiles, in the Cinebench R15 loop test.
This Blade is really powerful at Max Settings, but also noisy and fairly hot. The Balanced profile is a lot quieter, but also aggressively limits the CPU in this kind of load.
Still, even on Balanced, the 2023 Blade 16 is more powerful than the
2022 Razer Blade 15 on its max settings. In fact, it’s pretty much on par with a lot of other modern performance laptops, and much faster than the 2022 hardware available in 16-inch devices, both from Intel or AMD. Details below.
Here are some of the synthetic benchmarks I’ve taken.
For all testing, I left advanced Optimus on, which correctly selected the dGPU as needed.
In this round of testing, I set the CPU and GPU to max in Synapse. Here were my results in this mode:
3DMark 13 –CPU profile: max – 12398 16 – 9558, 8 – 7470, 4 – 4201, 2 – 2232, 1 -1119
3DMark 13 – Fire Strike: 31485 (Graphics – 39972, Physics – 30744);
3DMark 13 – Time Spy: 17425 (Graphics – 18476, CPU – 13181);
3DMark 13 – Port Royal (RTX) Graphics: 11759;
3DMark 13 – Speed Way: 4712;
Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Extreme: 10151;
Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Medium: 27488;
GeekBench 5: Single-Core: 1905, Multi-core: 17216;
CineBench R15: OpenGL 270.87 fps, CPU 4319 cb, CPU Single Core 272 cb;
CineBench R23: CPU 27955 pts, CPU Single Core 1932 pts;
SPECviewperf 2020 – 3DSMax: 172.48;
SPECviewperf 2020 – Catia: 95.66;
SPECviewperf 2020 – Creo: 126.18;
SPECviewperf 2020 – Energy: 63.26;
SPECviewperf 2020 – Maya: 464.99;
SPECviewperf 2020 – Medical: 52.08;
SPECviewperf 2020 – SNX: 29.26;
SPECviewperf 2020 – SW: 367.39.
The CPU runs at 110W sustained in CPU-only loads, while the GPU runs at up to 175W TGP, both being major updates from the past Blade 15 models.
Next, I set the mode to Balanced in Synapse. Here were my results:
3DMark 13 –CPU profile: max – 7580 16 – 6769, 8 – 5622, 4 – 3761, 2 – 2200, 1 -1078
3DMark 13 – Fire Strike: 24413 (Graphics – 33970, Physics – 24319);
3DMark 13 – Time Spy: 15017 (Graphics – 16250, CPU – 10502);
3DMark 13 – Port Royal (RTX) Graphics: 10709;
3DMark 13 – Speed Way: 4334;
Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Extreme: 10082;
Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Medium: 28016;
GeekBench 5: Single-Core: 1930, Multi-core: 14085;
CineBench R15: OpenGL 257.74 fps, CPU 2774 cb, CPU Single Core 289 cb;
CineBench R23: CPU 17757 pts, CPU Single Core 1997 pts;
Finally, here are my results after switching to Quiet mode:
3DMark 13 –CPU profile: max – 5513 16 – 4901, 8 – 4007, 4 – 2859, 2 – 1733, 1 -994
3DMark 13 – Fire Strike: 18562 (Graphics – 26995, Physics – 16647);
3DMark 13 – Time Spy: 11211 (Graphics – 12581, CPU – 6934);
3DMark 13 – Port Royal (RTX) Graphics: 9916;
3DMark 13 – Speed Way: 4093;
Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Extreme: 9079;
Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Medium: 24211;
GeekBench 5: Single-Core: 2000, Multi-core: 10963;
CineBench R15: OpenGL 239.56 fps, CPU 1715 cb, CPU Single Core 276 cb;
CineBench R23: CPU 9983 pts, CPU Single Core 1711 pts;
Excellent results in my opinion and you can definitely see the potential over the 3080 Ti from last year. But what’s really apparent is the RTX performance bump this year. I’m also fond of those Quiet mode results, which I probably would use a lot if this were my machine.
I also did some testing in some games. I took these readings in different performance options in Synapse:
QHD+ – Max settings
QHD+ – Balanced
QHD+ – Quiet
Battlefield V (DX 12, Ultra Preset, Ray-Tracing OFF) 142 fps avg, 15 fps 1% low
134 fps avg, 30 fps 1% low
138 fps avg, 103 fps 1% low
Battlefield V (DX 12, Ultra Preset, Ray-Tracing ON) 88 fps avg, 26 fps 1% low
75 fps avg, 35 fps 1% low
72 fps avg, 45 fps 1% low
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (DX 11, Ultra Preset, TAAU) 141 fps avg, 43 fps 1% low
121 fps avg, 27 fps 1% low
94 fps avg, 17 fps 1% low
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (DX 12, Ultra Preset, TAAU ) 72 fps avg, 28 fps 1% low
64 fps avg, 24 fps 1% low
58 fps avg, 27 fps 1% low
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (DX 12, RT Ultra Preset, TAAU, DLLS Off) 39 fps avg, 19 fps 1% low
32 fps avg, 17 fps 1% low
29 fps avg, 18 fps 1% low
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (DX 12, RT Ultra Preset, TAAU, DLLS On) 64 fps avg, 30 fps 1% low
55 fps avg, 28 fps 1% low
52 fps avg, 26 fps 1% low
Horizon Zero Dawn (Ultra) 138 fps avg, 103 fps 1% low
125 fps avg, 88 fps 1% low
73 fps avg, 63 fps 1% low
Cyberpunk (Ultra, Ray Tracing On, DLSS Off) 42 fps avg, 33 fps 1% low
40 fps avg, 27 fps 1% low
46 fps avg, 30 fps 1% low
Cyberpunk (Ultra, Ray Tracing On, DLSS Auto) 87 fps avg, 65 fps 1% low
73 fps avg, 52 fps 1% low
39 fps avg, 19 fps 1% low
Cyberpunk (Ultra, Ray Tracing Off) 86 fps avg, 55 fps 1% low
74 fps avg, 53 fps 1% low
40 fps avg, 19 fps 1% low
Valheim (High preset) 138 fps avg, 58 fps 1% low
112 fps avg, 52 fps 1% low
93 fps avg, 39 fps 1% low
Elden Ring (Max settings, QHD, borderless) 60 fps avg, 49 fps 1% low
60 fps avg, 41 fps 1% low
55 fps avg, 43 fps 1% low
Final Fantasy 7 remake (Max settings, QHD) 120 fps avg, 59 fps 1% low
120 fps avg, 52 fps 1% low
99 fps avg, 9 fps 1% low
For the record, Witcher 3 added DX12 and Ray tracing to their settings so it’s apples and oranges trying to compare it with prior machines. But I am doing consistent settings with Andrei on his reviews and will include a DX11 run for comparison’s sake.
Regardless, you can clearly see just how powerful the 4080 is for some of these games. I am a little put off by the 1% low numbers in some of these games though. Battlefield 5 for example had some random stutters that I just didn’t see in the 3000 series GPUs. Hopefully, this gets resolved in future driver updates.
But the Ray tracing performance is so much better than before. Cyberpunk for example has basically consistent results with RT on vs off, provided you use DLSS. Witcher 3 is also very close. For the first time, I think I actually recommend putting ray tracing on.
Emissions (noise, heat), Connectivity, and speakers
It looks like Razer is sticking with a similar thermal solution to what they used last year (and the years before). A single vapor chamber is on top of the CPU and GPU, with two large fans used to keep them under control. The components are noticeably bigger though this year, which certainly helps with the higher TDP and TGP.
I ran my test with Horizon Zero Dawn, where I run the game for an extended period at each power profile. The intent is to measure the differences in temperatures as well as ambient noise levels from the fans. Check it out:
Manual (Max settings)
CPU temps 84C avg with 94C spike
83C avg with 88C spike
75C avg with 77C spike
GPU temps 80C avg
Avg fan noise after stabilized temps 52 dB
Game performance 138 fps avg, 103 fps 1% low
125 fps avg, 88 fps 1% low
73 fps avg, 63 fps 1% low
With the CPU and GPU at maximum, I got some pretty high temperatures, but they were well within the limits. I’m just glad I didn’t get 100C spikes like I did last year. Clearly, the bigger heatsink and fans help. 52dB isn’t anything to brag about, but considering the performance you get and it’s at max, it is what it is.
Balanced mode was much better. The average temps don’t improve much but the spikes are way more under control. On top of that, the fans are noticeably quieter. I think given the difference in performance between this and max settings, I would choose Balanced mode.
But Quiet mode is still pretty awesome. The noise level on the fans is super quiet and the performance is still halfway decent. I don’t think I’d use this that much but it’s nice to have the option, especially if playing directly on your lap.
External temps are pretty much what you’d expect from a gaming laptop of this caliber. On battery and doing normal tasks, the fans tend to stay silent but will kick on every now and then to keep temps under control. This will cause the laptop to get a little warm underneath, but it’s really not that bad at all.
Once you start gaming though, the laptop really starts to heat up. You should really consider using a laptop tray if you plan to use this on your lap and not on a desk. Check out my thermal scans to see the extent.
As far as connectivity goes, the Wifi reception is pretty strong and stable. Taking my typical speed test from 20+ft from my router resulted in 570Mbps, which is very good. I didn’t experience any drops throughout my usage and had good signal in all the remote places I used this test unit.
There’s also Bluetooth 5.2 on this Wifi card, which also worked perfectly for me. I was able to use my Airpods for a lot of movie streaming and games and I also got a chance to test my wireless controller, which worked fine. There’s no ethernet with this model.
One thing that has greatly improved this year is the speaker array. This year there are four speakers, two facing up and the other two down. None would qualify as woofers, but they’ve definitely tuned these speakers for better mids than ever before.
I ran my usual test song and got a maximum amplitude of 75dB(A), which is about average. But like I said before, the sound is much fuller than before as the highs and mids are more evenly distributed than the tinny speakers on the Blades 14 & 15. Bass is pretty decent too, detectable as low as 90 Hz. Overall I’m very pleased with what I’m hearing.
Comparatively, the sound is much better than the Razer Blade 15 last year, but it still sounds tinnier when I compare the sound to my
Asus x16. In the final day of this review, I also got my hands on a Razer Blade 18, which sounds significantly better than both of them. So there is room for improvement on the Blade 16 drivers but overall I think it’s good enough for most people.
Last thing to mention is the webcam and it’s actually pretty good. It’s FHD, so decent resolution there. The well lit photos are about average for a FHD shooter, but what’s weird is the low light photos look about the same. I can’t really complain about that.
The camera is also IR and supports Windows Hello, which worked flawlessly throughout my use. I set up since day one and had zero problems since. Oh and there’s also a webcam shutter this year which is awesome! Hopefully Razer leaves this camera alone in future models, because it’s basically fine as it is now.
The Razer Blade 16 has a 95Whr battery which is a step up from the 80Whr in the Razer Blade 15 last year. I took did my usual series of tests with brightness set to 30% which is about 100 nits. Here’s what I got:
12.7 W (~7 h 30 min of use)– idle, Quiet mode with battery saver on, screen at 0%, Wi-Fi ON, backlighting off;
17.2 W (~5 h 32 min of use)– text editing in Word/Excel with light internet use, screen at 30%, Wi-Fi ON;
18.3 W (~5 h 12 min of use)– 1440p 60hz Youtube fullscreen in Chrome, screen at 30%, Wi-Fi ON;
18.7 W (~5 h 5 min of use)– 1080p HBO Max fullscreen video in Chrome, screen at 30%, Wi-Fi ON;
25.3 W (~3 h 46 min of use)– heavy browsing in Chrome, screen at 30%, Wi-Fi ON;
83.4 W (~1 h 8 min of use)– Gaming – Witcher 3 60fps, screen at 50%, Wi-Fi ON.
It’s a bigger battery than the Razer Blade 15 was last year, but the results are practically the same across the board. This is most likely because of the QHD+ screen, so it certainly makes sense. These results aren’t bad at all though – it’s about the best you can expect from a gaming laptop.
Synapse has a new setting this year which allows you to optimize the battery by limiting what it charges to. It’s set off by default but just needs a quick toggle to turn on. You can use the slider to choose what battery percentage you want to charge to before it stops.
The charging brick on this model is great! It’s a tiny bit bigger than the 230W power supply on last year’s models, but when I say a tiny bit, I mean it. But this year it’s 330w, which is what makes it special. This is the smallest 330w adapter I’ve ever used and it’s because it’s GaN instead of a traditional power brick. Good move on this because I always dreaded carrying my 300+w adapters on some of my old laptops.
Price and availability – Razer Blade 16
Razer Blade 16 models range from $2699 (for the 4060 + IPS model) to $4299 (for the 4090 + miniLED config) this year, depending on the GPU and screen you choose.
The model I have on hand, with the RTX 4080 and the IPS display, is priced at $3599. This is steep, yes, but it’s also the equivalent price of the 3080 Ti model I reviewed last year.
While I criticized Razer about their pricing last year, a lot has changed with pricing across the brands this year, and Razer seems to have at least stayed consistent. On top of that, there’s a lot more to offer in the Razer Balde 16 this year, so maybe the price point is more worthwhile.
After a couple of weeks, I think that is the verdict too. Last year’s model made no sense, but with all the additions this year, I think we’re back to “normal” Razer pricing. Which is still expensive, yes, but you’re really paying that boutique pricing for a niche market.
Regardless, if you want to pull the trigger now, you can find the Razer Blade 16 both on
Amazon and their own website.
Final Thoughts – 2023 Razer Blade 16
So after a few weeks with this laptop, I’m back to believing in the Blade – I really enjoyed my time with it for the most part. Sure, it’s a little heavier and thicker than before. But the small sacrifice is worth the added performance from the GPU. I made this sacrifice before when I switched from the Blade 15 to the Legion 7 and this is basically that same leap.
Fact is, this is exactly that gap Razer is trying to fill and they did it well. If you want something more portable, you still have the Blade 15 and even the Blade 14 to fall back on and still get decent gaming performance. If you want a desktop replacement, the Blade 18 is a good option too. But if you want something in the middle, this Blade 16 is a perfect fit.
The screen choices are very appealing too, and I look forward to trying that UHD/FHD screen in the near future to see if it’s a worthy option. I also appreciate how they pretty much took the CPU choosing out of the picture and just gave us the best one in all models. All you really need to do is choose the GPU that suits you.
Let’s not forget the other additions to this model like the bigger battery and the better speakers. Decent IO and upgrade options on the RAM and SSD are also a nice plus. And finally, Razer joins the 16:10 aspect ratio club, just like everyone else. It’s really quite the package.
Realistically, I only have two complaints about this model and that’s with the trackpad and the overall design. I’d really like the old trackpad back, but would accept at least some options in Synapse to adjust the palm rejection or the detectable zones. I really feel that people are going to struggle with this, so it would be nice of them to at least stay on top of it with software.
As for the design, I think it’s high time for a different look. I’d like to see that logo finally get more subtle and the chassis is long overdue for a shift to something where it doesn’t turn into a smudgy mess after just two weeks. I realize that this is probably a hard decision as Razer hasn’t changed the material since the Razer Blade was first introduced in 2011. But it’s time to stay competitive in these areas.
But that all said, if I were looking for a new laptop, I could certainly look the other way on these two areas. It’s certainly a worthy device and arguably better than most out there. I don’t think it’s enough for me to switch from my x16, but it’s pretty close and I wouldn’t necessarily be disappointed if I did.
Hope this was helpful to read though and I’m happy to answer any questions you all have. I won’t have the unit for more than a couple more days but I’ll try to answer as best I can on what I experienced.
Our content is reader-supported. If you buy through some of the links on our site, we may earn a commission.
Navigation: Ultrabookreview.com » Razer
Derek Sullivan Derek Sullivan - Review Editor
. In addition to being a tech enthusiast, I have a career as a Biomedical Engineer. I enjoy taking things apart, figuring out how they work, and finding ways to make them better. My other hobbies include spending time with my family, "Do it yourself" projects such as home automation, and running.
February 7, 2023 at 10:15 pm
Thanks for the review! Can you add a picture of the power brick?
February 8, 2023 at 5:18 am
Yes, I'll get one up soon. It's practically the same size as last year and the year before though. It's only bigger in wattage because it's GaN now.
February 8, 2023 at 5:14 am
Ugh! this material looks like the Clevo i bought in 2013. Also turned looking wasted fast. Also no numpad which is bad.
Quite mode should be quiet. No Fans at all!
It is a shame that in 2023 a powerful laptop like this can't run Office work, Youtube videos, play videos totally silent.
February 8, 2023 at 5:17 am
Hi Alex. Quiet mode is quiet. The fans in quiet mode that I measured were when a game was running. During normal operation they are nearly silent. Sorry for not clarifying – I'm still doing testing in that area.
February 11, 2023 at 4:43 am
Thanks for the update Derek.
Just to state where i am in this issue: For me listening to music "nearly silent" is not good enough.
These machines are much more powerful than computers 10 years ago. Playing music is something that a minuscule hi-fi or smartphone does without a fan.
March 3, 2023 at 9:55 am
Could you clarify "nearly silent". Are they turning on and off or how is it working when browsing the web, watching videos, compiling code or stuff like that (in silent mode)?
March 3, 2023 at 4:19 pm
I didn't stick my ear up to the unit but if it's turning on and off, I certainly didn't noticry it in my day to day use. Much of the time the fans were operating at such a low rpm that I didn't notice them being on. The only times I did notice the fan noise were when downloading files, installing programs or opening lots of tabs at once. That's typical of any laptop though.
February 8, 2023 at 7:51 pm
is it in Synapse now possible to limit the battery charge? That's the one deal breaker for me to go with a Blade.
February 8, 2023 at 8:56 pm
What do you mean by limit the charge? Like how fast the unit charges on the ac adapter?
February 8, 2023 at 10:33 pm
thanks for the reply. I mean that you can limit the charge to 80%, for example. So the battery is not always charged to 100%.
February 8, 2023 at 10:39 pm
Gotcha. Yes there's a battery optimization tab in Synapse and you can limit the battery to charge to whatever you want to. It defaults at 80% but the setting is off when you first boot it up.
February 9, 2023 at 2:52 pm
That's great to hear. In my opinion it's a very useful function to protect the battery.
February 9, 2023 at 10:42 am
Are you able to undervolt these 13th gen chips with throttlestop or xtu?
February 12, 2023 at 4:09 pm
So which one do you prefer personally?
X16 or this one?
February 12, 2023 at 11:14 pm
It's close but the x16 feels like the better laptop to me. Pros and cons to both though. The Blade 16 has a stronger chassis and better TGP(175W vs 120W max) so you're going to get better performance out of the Blade for sure. But it's noticeably thicker and heavier than the x16 which is important to me and why I lean towards the x16.
Cosmetically, I prefer the x16 for a number of reasons. First off, it's nowhere near as bad as a fingerprint magnet, which is something that has plagued the Blade lineup since it was first introduced. It's coated this year which helps, but it's still aluminum with a matte finish, so it's always going to absorb and show those oils. The x16 is a magnesium allow with a polished finish and has build in grooves, so it maintains its grippiness while warding off most of the smudges. Another thing I am just tired of is glowing logos, which the x16 lacks. A skin would fix both of these problems though, which I would do if I became a Blade owner again.
The x16 also has the better screen given that it is mled and can have deeper blacks when needed. I also like the fact the x16 has a glossy touch screen that folds all the way back while the Blade is a matte non-touch that only supports a modest angle on the screen. I would have preferred the screen fold back 180 degrees at a minimum with the way I typically use laptops these days.
Keyboards are about equal to me though I lean towards the x16 because it feels like a deeper keystroke. But the RGB on the Blade is hands down ultra superior. Trackpads are about equal too but I really don't need the Blade 16 trackpad to be as large as it is. Especially since it occasionally gets in the way.
Battery life is slightly better on the x16 but I'm not comparing apples to apples since the 2023 version will also have an Intel processor which might be less efficient than the Ryzen model last year.
Cost and availability also factor into it too, which Asus hasn't released yet. The x16 was very expensive last year, but was still cheaper than the equivalent Blade 15 at that time. It'll probably be the same trend this year, but the Blade 16 has a lot of features they added which narrows the gap considerably. On top of that, the Blade 16 has the 4080 and 4090 options, which the x16 completely lacks. The thicker chassis really does make a difference in how much more power it can handle so having those higher GPU options really makes sense, where if the x16 even offered it you would get diminishing returns.
Sorry for the wordy response but I hope this helps. I also hope you were talking about the Asus x16 and not the Alienware x16 lol
February 14, 2023 at 8:57 pm
So sorry, I meant the X16 from Alienware. lol, no, just kidding! Was referring to Asus.
Thank you a lot for your comment and how active you are. This is the main reason I keep coming back here, even for certain articles, because you are constantly improving the reviews and the discussions make it feel so alive!
Your comment could even be part of an article :) It's really interesting to read!
February 12, 2023 at 4:40 pm
Can u please make a test with reduces TGP? For example with AB setup or something similar?
Like FPS on 80W, 100W, 120W etc.
February 12, 2023 at 10:46 pm
Not sure what AB setup is supposed to mean. Is that something that limits the TGP somehow?
February 12, 2023 at 10:58 pm
MSI after burner.
I am not sure that it works with notebooks.
It has option to adjust Power Limit of the GPU.
February 12, 2023 at 11:18 pm
I'll check it out on my last round of tests and will add it to the article(if it's available). I'm almost done so it'll be updated in the next day or two. I'll probably only do it for one game though since I'm about to move onto the next laptop. Any game you prefer?
February 12, 2023 at 11:27 pm
Yes. CP2077 will be perfect as most demanding GPU game today.
February 13, 2023 at 4:50 am
Just tried it but the PL slider doesn't affect anything unfortunately
February 13, 2023 at 9:51 am
Sorry to hear that. Thank you for trying.
February 17, 2023 at 11:52 am
thats power brick is the game changger. LOL why the hell every manufactured just make something like that too, i already tired to carry around that behemothh 300watt legion power brick every single day LOL.
thanks for your review.
February 24, 2023 at 2:45 am
Any coil whine with your Blade 16, if you put your ear up to it on idle?
February 24, 2023 at 4:19 am
I don't have my unit anymore but I didn't notice any when I was using it.
February 28, 2023 at 3:47 am
The huge touchpads on these larger laptops are just getting absurd and affect usability. I have a Dell XPS 15 9520 and even the touchpad on it is needlessly big. On the Macbook Pros the touchpads are equally absurd in size.