If you want a gaming laptop that’s highly portable and decently priced, Novatech is the answer, namely the Novatech Elite N1535. For a price tag of only £634.99 you get an Ivy Bridge i7-powered machine with 8GB of RAM, 750GB of storage space on a Hybrid-SSD and a high-end NVIDIA GT650 GPU. Get it now from Novatech.co.uk.

Novatech Elite N1535 Review – “Gaming on a budget” – Is There Really Such Thing?

According to hardcore gamers, there is no such thing as compromise when it comes to gaming, so the term “budget” is totally out of place in a gaming context. Believe it or not, though, there are also people that like gaming but can live with the idea that not all games will run with everything maxed out on a laptop; this may be a coincidence but these people happen to be the same masses that do not feel comfortable throwing more than £1,000 on a laptop. With these folks in mind, Novatech released the Elite N1535 laptop – a mid-to-high class gaming machine with a mid-to-low class price.

Our First Encounter

The news that we were going to review a budget gaming laptop from Novatech caught our attention right from the start because we had a look over the specs of the laptop and its price and things didn’t seem to add up very good – the price was too low for what the laptop had to offer, so we waited patiently for the laptop to arrive in our labs and see what’s the catch.

The mystery was solved the minute the laptop got into our hands – we were dealing with a laptop that could brag with its performance and that’s about it, as there wasn’t much to brag about when it came to looks. Let’s be more specific: the laptop looks very dull, with nothing special to attract attention or make it stand out from the crowd. It’s clear that, in order to keep a low price tag, Novatech had to make some compromises with the N1535 and the physical aspect is the most obvious one.

After a careful inspection we were relieved to find out that build quality was not on the compromise list so if you’re looking for a solid machine the N1535 won’t disappoint you.

Behind the Looks

Since the looks of the Novatech Elite N1535 didn’t impress us very much it all came down to its performance – will this section change the light we see this laptop in? For out tests to be conclusive we had to power on the machine, launch the games and apps we were going to test and shut it down repeatedly several times before we proceeded to the actual testing due to the presence of a hybrid SSD drive. For those of you who are not very familiar with this technology, a hybrid drive consists of a mechanical hard drive paired with a low-capacity solid state drive; the solid state drive is primarily used as cache for the files that are accessed most frequently such as operating system core files or application data but in order for the SSD part to be effective it first needs to “learn” which applications are used more often. Once the learning process was over we put the Novatech Elite N1535 to the test and, finally, the laptop really stepped up to its name.

Even though the hybrid SSD is not as fast as a genuine SSD unit, it does show significant improvements over a mechanical hard drive, as our tests managed to indicate a system boot time of well under 1 minute (43s to be precise). Applications and games opened almost instantly and the machine felt quite responsive.

In terms of gaming we went with some of the most popular titles of the moment and the results were more than decent: Battlefield 3, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Need For Speed: Most Wanted and Assassin’s Creed III all ran perfectly fluent with detail settings pushed all the way up to “high”, while titles like FIFA 2013, Diablo III, Starcraft II or CoD: Modern Warfare 3 were playable with all settings maxed out – not bad for a laptop priced around £650.

Everyday Use, Overall Feel and Final Thoughts

When put to everyday use, the laptop performed very well, the powerful hardware showing its potential with every possible occasion. The large amount of RAM allowed us to multitask intensively without any hiccups or chokes and the processor rarely reached high loads.

The simple design of the Elite N1535 might not make it the most attractive laptop but it sure makes it practical, the honeycomb texture that covers the palm rest area and the keyboard surrounding frame being a real enemy for fingerprints. We were also pleasantly surprised by the battery of the laptop, an 8-cell 5200 mAh power pack that managed to keep the beast alive for around 5 hours in normal usage conditions.

Our final verdict is that, if you can look past the design compromise, the Novatech Elite N1535 is definitely a keeper.

Features and Specifications Summary

  • Laptop Model – Novatech Elite N1535
  • Processor – Third Generation Intel Core i7-3630QM, Ivy Bridge
  • CPU Speed – 2.4 GHz (Turbo Boos up to 3.4 GHz), 6MB Cache
  • Screen Size – 15.6-inch
  • Display – 1366 x 768 HD, LED
  • Memory – 8GB RAM, DDR3-1600MHz (2x4GB)
  • Storage – 750GB Seagate Momentus XT Hybrid SSD
  • Graphics – NVIDIA GeForce GT650M 2GB
  • Connectivity – USB 3.0 x2 , USB2.0 x2, HDMI x1, VGA x1, Ethernet x1, multi card reader x1, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n x1
  • Battery – 8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery


 

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