Origin EON17-SLX

This gaming laptop is a desktop PC in disguise

TODO alt text

With a nearly completely desktop-grade chipset stuffed into a 17-inch laptop, the Origin EON17-SLX is easily one of the heaviest laptops I've ever reviewed – and I've carried some absurdly huge laptops around in my day.

Weighing in at 10.5 pounds (4.76kg) and measuring 16.8 x 12 x 1.8 inches (W x D x H; 42.7 x 30.4. x 4.57cm), you'll definitely need a new bag. Even if this isn't your first 17-inch laptop, it puts many big rigs to shame with its chunkier dimensions and weight.

This desktop-powered notebook even sticks it to the 9.9-pound (4.49kg) MSI GT80 Titan – though, not the 12.06-pound Alienware 18 – and it has a full-sized mechanical keyboard. That said, the Titan is a bit larger overall, with its 17.95 x 13.02 x 1.93-inch (45.6 x 33 x 4.9 cm) dimensions.

Interestingly, the PC Specialist Octane II Pro is a lighter 8.33 pounds (3.78kg) despite packing a nearly identical spec sheet. This high-end PC from across the pond is also slightly more petite at 16.4 x 11.6 x 1.92 inches (41.8 x 29.53 x 4.9cm).

Origin EON17-SLX review

Spec Sheet

Here is the Origin EON17-SLX configuration sent to techradar for review:

  • CPU: 4GHz Intel Core i7-6700K (quad-core, 8MB cache, up to 4.2GHz with Turbo Boost)
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 (8GB GDDR5 VRAM), Intel HD Graphics 530
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 (2,133MHz, 4 x 4GB)
  • Screen: 17.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 IPS Matte Display with G-SYNC
  • Storage: 256GB Samsung 950 Pro SSD (PCIe, m.2 SATA); 1TB Seagate Solid State Hybrid Drive (7,200 rpm)
  • Ports: 5 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 3.1 Type-C, HDMI, 2 x mini DisplayPort, SD card reader, 2 x Ethernet, headphone jack, microphone jack, Line-in jack,
  • Connectivity: Killer Wireless AC 1535 Dual Band +BT (Killer Doubleshot Pro enabled)
  • Camera: Built-in 2.0MP video camera
  • Weight: 10.5 pounds
  • Size: 16.8 x 12 x 1.8 inches (W x D x H)

Origin EON17-SLX review

Even by the most extreme standards, this $3,305 (about £2,341, AU$4,114) loadout for the EON17-SLX you see above is bonkers. It comes equipped with the fastest Skylake desktop processor you can buy today. While the Nvidia GTX 980 isn't the highest-end GPU anymore, thanks to the GTX 980 Ti and Titan X, it's still a respectable card – especially with 8GB of video memory onboard.

You also have copious amounts of DDR4 memory on hand for more multitasking capacity than you'll ever need. The 256GB SSD is fairly standard for a gaming laptop, but I recommend upgrading. (I recommend doing it yourself, since it's easy to pop off the underside upgrade panel.)

While our rig only came with an "OK" 1080p panel, Origin tells me they will have an optional 4K display panel coming soon.

Origin EON17-SLX review

Of course, all this power isn't necessary for everyone and, if you'd rather start on the ground floor, the SLX starts at $2,101 (about £1,478, AU$2,834). At that price bracket, the SLX comes outfitted with a quad-core, 3.2GHz Intel Core i5 6500 chip, an Nvidia GTX 970M (6GB of VRAM) and 8GB of RAM.

But, honestly, if you're aiming the ball so low with mobile parts, you would be better off picking up Origin's thin-and-light EVO15-S. Alternatively, if you still need a 17-inch screen, the Origin EON17-X comes with a smaller chassis and price tag.

Packing the same power as our review unit, the PC Specialist Octane Pro is a fine alternative, too. It comes priced at £1,899 (about $2,648, or AU$3,669), so it's not only cheaper, but it comes equipped with double the amount of flash storage. That said, you're going to have to factor in the cost of importing, as PC Specialist is a UK-only brand.

The MSI GT80 Titan is easier to obtain from almost every corner of the world, and it brings its unique mechanical keyboard to the table. Unlike the Octane or the SLX, the MSI comes running a mobile chipset and, at $4,599 (£3,989, AU$6,499), this includes a 2.9GHz Intel i7-6920HQ with dual Nvidia GTX 980M GPUs in SLI.

Origin EON17-SLX review

For three grand, you can easily build yourself a top notch gaming desktop plus a monitor, keyboard, mouse and many more non-essential bits. However, if you need all of the desktop-grade processing power you can get for video editing on the go, then it makes sense to get the SLX.

The Octane II is a slightly more approachable alternative because of its lighter weight and smaller price tag. I prefer Origin's styling, but ultimately what part of the world you live in will be the deciding factor of picking between these two systems.

The MSI GT80 Titan is, categorically, the most expensive gaming laptop out of this trio. It reveals an interesting wrinkle in which high-end desktop parts end up making the SLX and Octane more affordable options than a fully decked out mobile system.