Benchmarks: Overall System, Gaming and Battery Life

CPU, Memory & Storage Performance

The 2015 Blade Pro provides a ton of processing power under the hood afforded by its high-end Haswell quad-core processor. It gives the Blade Pro a small edge against the Alienware 15, which was the fastest gaming laptop we had tested thus far. On the storage front, the Blade Pro performs admirably as well, using the Samsung PM851 SSD which is an OEM drive similar to the SSD 840 Evo.

GPU & Gaming Performance

On the gaming front the Blade Pro handle itself well when running at medium settings and its native 1080p resolution, but it will leave hardcore gamers wanting for more. Bioshock Infinite ran smoothly for the most part when maxed out, but in other more demanding games you'll need to keep it down a notch since the GeForce GTX 960M GPU is fast but not overly so. The 960M is essentially a rebadged 860M with a clock speed boost which provides somewhere between 5% and 15% extra performance.

Battery Life

We have updated our standard laptop battery for 2015, instead of a single movie playback test that consisted of looping a 720p movie, we are now running three different tests for gaming laptops. A 1080p video loop at 75% brightness, a web browsing simulation using Wi-Fi, and a run through of Crysis 3 until the system's battery is dead. While the Blade Pro does not stand a chance against many of the other systems in this comparison, note that it's the only laptop using a large 17" screen and also uses the fastest CPU of the pack.

In that sense, the Blade Pro actually gets pretty close to run for as long as the Alienware 13 and 15 did, both gaming systems that sport smaller screens and slower processors.

Last year we tested two 17" gaming laptops: the Lenovo Y70 Touch and the MSI GS70 Stealth Pro. In our older 720 movie loop torture test (using the movie Inception) at max brightness, those systems lasted 2 hours and 42 minutes, and 1 hour and 18 minutes, respectively. We ran the same test on the Blade Pro and got an impresive 3 hours and 36 minutes.