The Medion Erazer X6811 is a power laptop from the German mail-order brand, with a decent specification for gaming
Cut-price German brand Medion always manages to offer well-specified PCs at bargain prices, and the Medion Erazer X6811 laptop certainly continues that tradition.
Not that £936 may appear exactly pocket-change price for a laptop these days. Run your finger down the specs though, and you’ll see the Medion Erazer X6811 is built for business. Or rather, for gaming business.
Two models are now offered, with either a quad-core 1.73GHz Core i7-740QM, or dual-core 2.53GHz Core i5-460M. Price difference at time of press was £70, with the dearer quad-core model also getting 6GB instead of 4GB of memory, and a full-HD 1920x1080 screen. We were loaned the cheaper dual-core model to review.
What both Medion Erazer X6811s do have in common is a meaty graphics processor in the shape of an nVidia GeForce GTX 460M. Combined here with 1536MB of GDDR5 memory, this is the kind of graphics processor that should take ambitious gaming at healthy resolutions in its stride.
Like gaming laptops of yore, the Erazer is a hefty slab of portable computing. It tips the scales at 3.2kg, while its equally brick-like charger adds another 775g to the luggage.
Yet that battery charger may not be in as much demand as older game-focused notebooks. With the help of the relatively efficient Core i5 processor, not to mention a generous 86.6Wh removable battery, we saw the Medion Erazer last over four hours in the MobileMark 2007 Productivity benchmark.
And that’s without recourse to nVidia’s Optimus technology which ordinarily would allow the machine to automatically switch over to low-power built-in Intel graphics whenever possible. The Medion Erazer is not setup for Optimus, it seems.
Styling and build quality are quite in fitting for a gaming laptop. There’s a black and steel theme, comprising black lid, black keyboard and screen bezel, and silvery coloured top deck area. Despite the grainy brushed-metal texture throughout, though, the Erazer is entirely hewn from plastic.
The keyboard of the Medion Erazer X6811 is the fashionable tablet type, with some extra red lettering to seal the deal for gamers: W, A, S and D keys are highlighted in red with corresponding arrows, while the extra number pad to the right, as well as the primary cursor keys, all bear additional red arrows to help you find your steerers for many games. Keyboard action is also somewhat plasticky in feel, and there’s some bendy flexing in the centre.
Two extra buttons on the Medion Erazer X6811 may be of interest to a gamer. One will light up ‘landing light’ blue LEDs at the front of the laptop; the other disable the Windows key, so there’s no chance of inadvertently dropping yourself out of the action if you accidently hit that key in frenetic gameplay.
We found the Synaptics trackpad a little small and insensitive but fairly usable, and its left/right mouse buttons reasonably comfortable to use.
Bucking the trend of many current consumer laptops, the Medion Erazer X6811 is fitted with an anti-glare matt display. This would normally be a reason to rejoice; but the panel fitted is a rather low-grade choice. Its viewing angles are very limited. That's fine when viewed head-on, but quickly becomes a darkened blur off-axis. For a lone gamer, that shouldn’t be an issue, but if several people are viewing together, expect heads to bang.
Around the chassis is an upmarket roster of connectors, starting with not one but two USB 3.0 ports, another USB 2.0, eSATA, ExpressCard 54, and HDMI and VGA video outputs. On the right is an 8x multi-format DVD-writing optical drive.
The raw performance available from the Medion Erazer X6811 is certainly very good. In our WorldBench 6 real-life speed test, the laptop scored 113 points, a decent score for any PC.
And graphics performance also excelled. We saw an average of 158fps in the FEAR benchmark at Maximum quality.
Stretching the Medion Erazer X6811 further, we tried the same Crysis tests normally reserved for power PCs in our monthly Charts round-up. Here the Medion reaped 54fps in our ‘low’ test at 1024x768 High quality, although the onerous ‘high’ test saw the framerate fall to 16fps.
So long as you mind your settings, this DirectX 11 card ought to play any game currently available.
In use the Medion Erazer X6811 remained reasonably cool and quiet.
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