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It isn’t often that I get hyped about PCs for photographers, but Razer is one of those brands that’s slowly winning me over. When going through this press deck, I audibly exclaimed, “What!” out loud. That’s because the new Razer Blade 17 is packing in a whole lot of formidable power into a laptop. Many of us photographers have been looking for a good replacement for our laptops and are really sick of the dongle life. I was driving myself crazy for an hour just yesterday, looking for the right cable for my iMac. And the Razer Blade 17 is doing a whole lot to help me and potentially other photographers.
Razer Blade 17 Inch Tech Specs
- 17.3 inches
- 8 cores
- Up to NVIDIA RTX 3080
- 16GB RAM
- 512GB PCIe
- Primarily targeted to gaming
- Starts in at 6.06 lbs
- There’s a vapor chamber.
- CNC aluminum
- Anti-fingerprint resistant coating
- USB-C charging
- 11th Gen Intel Core i9
- 2.5 GHz or 4.9 GHz
- Up to an UHD 4K screen at 120 hz
- Ultra HD claims to cover up to 100% of the Adobe RGB scale
- UHS-III SD card reader
- Thunderbolt 4, backwards compatible with USB-C, Thunderbolt 3, etc.
- USB-A 3.2 ports
- HDMI 2.1
- The keyboard is very similar to that on an Apple device.
- Starts at $2,399 and goes all the way up to $3,699
But How is the Razer Blade for Photographers?
Alright, Razer, this worth hype on the level of McDonald’s bringing back Szechuan sauce. There’s a whole lot of great things going on here. First off, you’re claiming 100% of the Adobe RGB scale coverage. I’m inclined to really want to test this with calibration devices. But I also know that most photographers don’t calibrate their screens. Then there’s the keyboard, which is very Apple-like. Previous Razer Blade laptops I’ve used had awesome keyboards that were only slightly different from Apple’s. Plus, it has a UHS-III SD card reader. How can a photographer hate that?
While Razer is mostly targeting this at gamers, it seems like it’s also a fantastic option for creatives. The price isn’t so awful. But my concern, though, is the weight. Cameras are already pretty heavy, and bringing around more weight is just annoying. However, there’s a lot to counter that.
Maybe this could be a desktop replacement computer that you hook up to external monitors. And when you need to be on the go, you bring the Razer Blade with you on your travels. Six pounds is a lot of weight, though. Putting it in a camera bag will mean that it’s going to really be a whole lot heavier. I’d opt for a backpack instead of a messenger bag for sure.
Lots of the geekier types will probably sit there saying that they’d build a computer themselves. But I can personally tell you how annoying that gets. It means more maintenance. And if you don’t do the maintenance, then you’ll run into issues. My best friend built a gaming computer for me out of custom parts. And for months, we were both trying to figure out what the problems were. He had to come over and update the driver for every single piece of hardware individually. Of course, that doesn’t happen with Apple if you keep all the regular parts. And that most likely won’t be the issue with the Razer Blade 17 because all the parts are built into it. You can probably have the same level of convenience that you would with a Macbook pro.
For what it’s worth, too, Windows isn’t awful to use. But some things just work a whole lot better with Apple–like Finder vs. the Windows File Browser. It’s a million times faster for me to find and pull an image for Instagram using my iMac and Drobo than it would be for Windows and my Drobo to do. Then also consider things like Airdrop, which I use every week.
I’m pretty excited about this laptop, and hopefully, it really puts Apple on notice.