Is That A Notebook? MALIBAL's Six-Core, Dual-GPU, Speed Demon

Test Settings

We included the fastest of our previously-tested notebooks in today’s comparison, though it’s really not a fair fight when the X7200 uses a desktop CPU.

Test System Configuration
MALIBAL Nine X7200 CPUIntel Core i7-980X Extreme LGA 1366, 3.33-3.60 GHz, 12 MB L3 Cache
MALIBAL Nine X7200 RAM3 x Samsung M471B5273CH0-CH9 (3 x 4 GB)
DDR3-1333 CAS 9-9-9-24, 12 GB Total
MALIBAL Nine X7200
Nvidia GeForce GTX 480M 2 GB
425 MHz GPU Core, GDDR5-2400, Mobile Driver Version 259.51
MALIBAL Nine X7200
Hard Drive
2 x Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, 160 GB (Striped), SATA 3Gb/s
Alienware M17x CPUIntel Core i7-920XM PGA988, 2.00-3.20 GHz, 8 MB L3 Cache
Alienware M17x RAM2 x Kingston KHX1333C7S3K2/4G (2 x 2 GB)
DDR3-1333 CAS 9-9-9-24, 4 GB Total
Alienware M17x
2 x AMD Mobility Radeon HD 5870 1 GB, CrossFire
700 MHz GPU, GDDR5-4000, Mobile Driver Version 8..692.2-100203a1-095371C-Dell
Alienware M17x
Hard Drive
Corsair CSSD-V128GB2-BRKT SSD, 128 GB, SATA 3Gb/s
AVADirect W880CU CPUIntel Core i7-820QM PGA998, 1.73-3.06 GHz, 8 MB L3 Cache
AVADirect W880CU RAM2 x Kingston KVR1333D3S9/2G (2 x 2 GB)
DDR3-1333 CAS 9-9-9-24. 4.0 GB Total
AVADirect W880CU
Nvidia GeForce GTX 480M 2 GB
425 MHz GPU Core, GDDR5-2400, Mobile Driver Version 258.68
AVADirect W880CU
Hard Drive
Corsair CSSD-V128GB2-BRKT SSD, 128 GB, SATA 3Gb/s
SoundIntegrated HD Audio
NetworkIntegrated Gigabit Networking
OSMicrosoft Windows 7 64-bit

In order to make this a fair fight, a desktop platform had to be added to the mix. Gigabyte’s X58A-UD3R was chosen for its comparable quality and features, and we even used MALIBAL’s hard drives and CPU to test it. Manually selecting a 133.0 MHz base clock disabled Gigabyte’s auto-overclock method while simultaneously underclocking that frequency by 1/3 of 1 MHz compared to reference specification.

Here’s where things get a little strange: we didn’t have three matching 4 GB modules on hand, so we used three unmatched DDR3-1600 modules from a previous roundup to match MALIBAL’s DDR3-1333 CAS 9-9-9-24 configuration. Identical internal organization between all three modules made triple-channel mode possible in spite of the differing brands.

Yet, that’s not where the oddness ends. Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 480M graphics processor is nothing other than a 2 GB version of its GeForce GTX 465, underclocked so excessively that no high-end desktop part is slow enough to compete. Since the responsibility for this performance-to-naming disparity rests purely on Nvidia, we didn’t want to punish MALIBAL or its supplier Clevo by comparing it to a vastly-superior GeForce GTX 480 desktop card. Instead, we chose the GeForce GTS 450 for the desktop’s SLI configuration. MSI and ECS’ GTS 450 cards were paired because of their identical clock speeds.

We’re sure that some readers will view this mishmash of components as an intentional crippling of the desktop platform, but we’re equally sure that our benchmark set will prove the validity of these choices.

Benchmark Configuration
3D Games
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2Campaign, Act III, Second Sun (45 sec. FRAPS)
Test Set 1: Highest Settings, No AA
Test Set 2: Highest Settings, 4x AA
CrysisPatch 1.2.1, DirectX 10, 64-bit executable, benchmark tool
Test Set 1: High Quality, No AA
Test Set 2: Very High Quality, 4x AA
DiRT 2Run with -benchmark example_benchmark.xml
Test Set 1: High Quality Preset, No AA
Test Set 2: Ultra Quality Preset, 4x AA
S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call Of PripyatCall Of Pripyat Benchmark version
Test Set 1: High Preset, DX11 EFDL, No AA
Test Set 2: Ultra Preset, DX11 EFDL, 4x MSAA
Audio/Video Encoding
iTunesVersion: x64
Audio CD (Terminator II SE), 53 min
Default format AAC
Handbrake 0.9.4Version 0.9.4, convert first .vob file from The Last Samurai (1 GB) to .mp4, High Profile
TMPGEnc 4.0 XPressVersion:
Import File: Terminator 2 SE DVD (5 Minutes)
Resolution: 720x576 (PAL) 16:9
DivX Codec 6.9.1Encoding mode: Insane Quality
Enhanced multithreading enabled using SSE4
Quarter-pixel search
Xvid 1.2.2Display encoding status = off
MainConcept Reference 1.6.1MPEG2 to MPEG2 (H.264), MainConcept H.264/AVC Codec, 28 sec HDTV 1920x1080 (MPEG2), Audio: MPEG2 (44.1 KHz, 2 Channel, 16-Bit, 224 Kb/s), Mode: PAL (25 FPS)
Adobe Photoshop CS4Version: 11.0 x64, Filter 15.7 MB TIF Image
Radial Blur, Shape Blur, Median, Polar Coordinates
Autodesk 3ds Max 2010Version: 11.0 x64, Rendering Dragon Image at 1920x1080 (HDTV)
Grisoft AVG Anti-Virus 9.0Version: 9.0.663, Virus base: 270.14.1/2407, Benchmark: Scan 334 MB Folder of ZIP/RAR compressed files
WinRAR 3.90Version x64 3.90, Dictionary = 4096 KB, Benchmark: THG-Workload (334 MB)
7-ZipVersion 4.65: Format=Zip, Compression=Ultra, Method=Deflate, Dictionary Size=32 KB, Word Size=128, Threads=8
Benchmark: THG-Workload (334 MB)
Synthetic Benchmarks and Settings
3DMark VantageVersion: 1.0.1, GPU and CPU scores
PCMark VantageVersion: x64, System, Productivity, Hard Disk Drive benchmarks
SiSoftware Sandra 2010Version 2010.1.16.11, CPU Test = CPU Arithmetic / MultiMedia, Memory Test = Bandwidth Benchmark
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  • Darkerson
    Dear god, that thing is a beast...
  • compton
    I'm not sure how awesome this is in practice. I'm sure someone out othere needs this, but that person would have to be blind to appreciate the asthetics.
  • iam2thecrowe
    its more of a portable pc than a notebook. look at the power consumption. Even its own power adaptor cant keep up at max load.
  • Darkerson
    In this case, its not really about looks, as much as its about "portable" brute strength. And it seems to have plenty of that...
  • bombat1994
    this is why we cant have nice things,

    but seriously, the 480m is just a small 450
  • thats actually really good performance from a top end system
    at most rates it is still fairly close to a desktop in price also
  • maxiim
    This quite useless if you want all that power for gaming, you surely cant have it on the go with a battery provided....might as well build a with almost the same specs for less money.
  • compton
    Its the same price as a base model Kia Rio just about. Kudos to them for the engineering needed to make this gear work in a mobile chassis. I may not be sold on the concept, or see the need of, but I hope they sell a ton of them. It is kinda cool just because its so powerful -- but for the price you could build or buy two highly specialized systems. It could be a mobile workstation or for AV production work on site instead of just for gaming. Clearly these ultra powerful 'notebooks' are a niche segment, but there are quite a few now. Someone must be buying them.
  • sudeshc
    Not that impressive to me main reason for Lappy is portability and thats where this lacks i wounder even if under no load how much heat it would generate and also the battery wont last long..
  • Crashman
    comptonIt could be a mobile workstation or for AV production work on site instead of just for gaming. Clearly these ultra powerful 'notebooks' are a niche segment, but there are quite a few now. Someone must be buying them.
    Actually, that's what the X7200 is! Tom's Hardware got the "gaming" version simply to show off its capabilities to enthusiasts, but the Quadro versions are equally viable (and likely more valuable) in their own respective markets.
  • Khimera2000
    I remember having some of clevo's other offerings. This thing although hard to lug is a god send for any one in the military... It was the only way i was able to game on deployement at the time. but on a negative note these things way a ton >.< don't do the messanger bag if you like where that sholders at :D
  • ridewya
    DaMn This laptop is soo freakin ugly
  • IzzyCraft
    That's one hell of a power brick.
  • amdgamer666
    ridewyaDaMn This laptop is soo freakin ugly

    It's thick for sure but not ugly. There is a difference

    The day I can justify a purchase like this is the day I die a happy man.
  • barmaley
    Maybe it’s because of my lack of imagination, but somehow I fail to find an appropriate application for it. Portable gaming of roughly 30 minutes on battery is next to useless. Which means you must have power outlet if you want to play most the time. In that case you might as well build a mini desktop for a quarter of the price and haul it everywhere with you along with a monitor, lol :)

    On a more serious note, I can see it being a good option if you are at one of those insane doctor appointments where they make you wait for like 3 hours for no reason before you get seen; or on a road trip; or at an airport and then on a plane if power is made available to you (business class).

    If I had a $6000 budget to blow on a computer, this thing would not be on the list. Desktop beats this thing for LAN parties hands down. With all of its performance you still have to live with this pricey, bulky, hot, heavy and butt-ugly unit.
  • joytech22
    I think the idea of this laptop is more of a desktop replacement, it's got the awesome power of a decent desktop in a small package with everything in one, so you don't need to lug around a mouse, keyboard and screen.

    But then again you'll still need those things for LAN's but at least it weighs less than most Enthusiast systems.
  • arkadi
    Imagine....Your new "speed daemon" cup of coffee and sudden move...With one year warranty i will never spend 5k on computer...i wonder who will.....
  • kingnoobe
    Theres very good reason to buy a laptop like this. One of those is being in the military. It would've sucked to pack up my desktop and bring here. Not to mention it wouldn't have made it anyways (all our shit got stolen). With a laptop like this (I personally don't have it but I do have the asus-g series) I don't have to worry about all the bullshit of a desktop (space). We're living in tents so that is a serious issue.
  • the battery at 7844 mWh capacity is about one third of ipad battery which is 25Wh or 2500mWh
  • alexcheng
    Anyone still need a definition for "hardcore"??
  • ghnader hsmithot
    My brother did spend 4k on one..And i clearly didnt like it..
  • climber
    You can buy the X7200 config from Eurocom and iBuyPower.
  • molo9000
    "AC Adapter 3.6 lbs"
    WTF? The power adapter is heavier than most laptops.

    This might make sense for professionals who really really need a mobile workstation but it's extremely pointless for gamers.
  • gti88
    Great article!