Novatech X70MV Pro review

A powerful machine at a decent price aimed at the first-time buyer

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Our Verdict

A laptop boasting an impressive spec, but still in need of a few improvements

For

  • Powerful
  • Great spec
  • Tough build

Against

  • Display could be brighter
  • Keyboard feels a bit flimsy

Novatech has been aggressively targeting the laptop market in recent months – it was the first company to offer Intel's Centrino 2 and has also introduced a number of new designs.

The Novatech X70MV Pro (£1479 inc. VAT) is the latest of these. It is a 15.4-inch laptop and comes with an impressive specification for the price that could quite feasibly be used as a desktop replacement machine.

Responsive laptop

The machine is made from plastic with the palm rests and lid having a brushed-metal effect, which gives the laptop a highly tactile feel. The build quality is good, but we found a degree of flex in the lid that could lead to crushing in a carry case.

The screen has a Super-TFT coating, which offered sharp image quality when watching DVDs and also faithful colour reproduction when editing photos. However, the screen is let down by its shallow brightness range.

Graphics are handled by the nVidia GeForce 9800M GT, which is a powerful GPU suitable for high-end games. Similarly, the main processor is impressive, being the Intel Core 2 Duo P9500, which runs
at 2.53GHz. Supported by 4098MB of memory, this is a responsive laptop.

Novatech offers its laptops without an OS installed, which can save you money, but our review unit came installed with Windows Vista Home Premium.

Chunky design

Weighing 2.9kg, this is a rather hefty machine for a 15.4-inch laptop, so you won't want to carry it around with you.

The keyboard is a good size and fills the main body of the chassis. The keys are individually mounted, but we found there was a fair degree of rattle as we typed. The touchpad has been designed to incorporate the mouse buttons by using the same piece of plastic.

Extra features include a webcam above the screen, while the back of the unit sports both HDMI and DVI-out ports so you'll be able to connect this laptop to either a high-definition (HD) TV set or an external monitor or projector and still maintain a digital throughput.

Power problems

We're not sure whether it was due to being a pre-production sample, but we found there was a problem with the position of the power cable.

It sits on the back of the unit and we found if we moved the laptop it would drop from mains to battery power. Hopefully a better adapter will be fitted before going into production.

The Novatech X70MV Pro is a powerful and versatile machine that suffers from a couple of minor complaints – the aforementioned power cable and its less than ideal keyboard. If these problems can be overcome, this is a great all-round machine for anyone needing a compact desktop replacement laptop.