Notebookcheck

Gigabyte P37X v5 Notebook Review

Andreas Osthoff, Tanja Hinum, 03/05/2016

Hot laptop. Gigabyte refreshes its thin 17.3-inch gaming notebook and equips it with a modern Skylake CPU. The cooling does, however, have problems with the fast components and the processor in particular warms up quite a bit.

For the original German review, see here.

Gigabyte’s P37X v5 is one of the thinnest 17.3-inch gaming notebooks you can get and does not make any compromise in terms of performance, which was already evident in the review of the pre-predecessor P37X v3. Our current test model is once again equipped with a powerful GTX 980M GPU. Besides the update with a modern Skylake processor and DDR4-RAM, the manufacturer also includes an M.2-NVMe-SSD. The new model v5 is available for around 2,600 Euros (~$2863).  

There are some competitors in this price range, even though not all of them use a similarly thin chassis. The direct rival is the MSI GS70 6QE. Schenker Technologies offers the XMG P706 and Alienware the 17 R3. We will obviously compare our test model with the P37X v3 as well. The Gigabyte P35X v5 might also be interesting if you are looking for a smaller device, because it accommodates the same components in a smaller 15-inch chassis.

The basic construction does not differ from the previous model, so we won’t evaluate the sections Case, Connectivity and Input Devices in this article. The corresponding information is available in the review of the P37X v3.

Gigabyte P37X v5
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M - 8192 MB, Core: 1038 MHz, Memory: 2500 MHz, GDDR5, ForceWare 354.35, Optimus
Memory
16384 MB 
, 2x 8 GB DDR4-2133, Dual-Channel, 2of 2 Slots occupied, up to 32 GB
Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel, LP173WF4-SPF1 (LGD0469), IPS, Full HD, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel HM170 (Skylake PCH-H)
Storage
Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e, 256 GB 
, + HGST HTS721010A9E630, 1 TB HDD @ 7200 rpm
Soundcard
Realtek ALC255 @ Intel Sunrise Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 VGA, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: 1 Headphones, 1 Microphone, Card Reader: SD up to 128 GB, Brightness Sensor
Networking
Realtek RTL8168B/8111B Family PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet NIC (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2
Optical drive
Matshita DVD-RAM UJ8G2
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 23 x 417 x 287 ( = 0.91 x 16.42 x 11.3 in)
Battery
76 Wh Lithium-Polymer, 11.1V
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD
Additional features
Speakers: 2x 1.5 Watts (Dolby Digital Plus Theater), Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, Accessories: HDD cage for optical drive, 200-Watt PSU, warranty information, quick-start guide, cleaning cloth, Software: Adobe Reader XI, CyberLink PowerDVD 12, MS Office 365 (Trial), several manufacturer tools, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
2.92 kg ( = 103 oz / 6.44 pounds), Power Supply: 700 g ( = 24.69 oz / 1.54 pounds)
Price
2600 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Changes

The new USB 3.1 Type-C port is very noticeable.
The new USB 3.1 Type-C port is very noticeable.

Besides the new Skylake processor, Gigabyte now also uses DDR4 instead of DDR3 memory for the P37X v5. There were changes in terms of storage as well, because the two mSATA slots were replaced by two M.2 slots (NVMe, 2280). At the right side of the case is a new USB 3.1 port (Type-C, 10 Gbps). It replaces a common USB 3.0 port and the chassis did not change, so Gigabyte uses an adapter to compensate for the different size. This is no problem, but this part is flashy orange, which unfortunately does not match the rest of the design at all. Finally, the HDMI port was updated to the 2.0 standard, so you can drive a 4K panel at 60 fps. Some of the following pictures were taken from the similarly constructed P37X v3.

Display

Subpixel array
Subpixel array

The Gigabyte P37X v5 is also available with an optional UHD screen, but our review model uses a matte Full HD screen just like the predecessor. The 4K panel produces an even sharper picture, but we think that 1920x1080 pixels is still sufficient for a gaming notebook. Even though both devices use the same panel from LG Philips (LP173WF4-SPF1, ID: LGD0469), there are pretty big differences between the P37X v5 and v3. While the average luminance is about 50 cd/m² lower (294 vs. 345 cd/m²), the contrast (729:1 vs. 493:1) benefits from the much lower black value (0.42 vs. 0.73 cd/m²). Subjectively, there is no criticism and the P37X v5 also fares pretty well within the competition.

301
cd/m²
310
cd/m²
304
cd/m²
298
cd/m²
306
cd/m²
287
cd/m²
290
cd/m²
277
cd/m²
277
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 310 cd/m² Average: 294.4 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 89 %
Center on Battery: 306 cd/m²
Contrast: 729:1 (Black: 0.42 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 3.51 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.1
ΔE Greyscale 2.23 | 0.64-98 Ø6.4
85% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 56% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.51
Gigabyte P37X v5
LP173WF4-SPF1 (LGD0469)
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
Chi Mei N173HGE-E11 (CMN1735)
Schenker XMG P706
LG LP173WF4-SPD1
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
CV69H_173WF4 (LGD0459)
Gigabyte P37X
LG Philips LP173WF4-SPF1, ID: LGD0469
Gigabyte P35X v5
SHP144E
Response Times
20%
-33%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
45 (17, 28)
33 (13, 20)
27%
51.2 (21.2, 30)
-14%
Response Time Black / White *
26 (5, 21)
23 (5, 18)
12%
39.2 (8.4, 30.8)
-51%
PWM Frequency
200 (20)
Screen
-1%
-10%
-9%
-4%
-28%
Brightness middle
306
172
-44%
306
0%
360
18%
361.7
18%
278.9
-9%
Brightness
294
161
-45%
302
3%
336
14%
347
18%
272
-7%
Brightness Distribution
89
85
-4%
90
1%
90
1%
91
2%
80
-10%
Black Level *
0.42
0.26
38%
0.34
19%
0.44
-5%
0.734
-75%
0.562
-34%
Contrast
729
662
-9%
900
23%
818
12%
493
-32%
496
-32%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
3.51
2.06
41%
5.49
-56%
4.76
-36%
2.81
20%
4.47
-27%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
8.39
10.8
-29%
8.64
-3%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
2.23
2.42
-9%
3.97
-78%
3.69
-65%
1.92
14%
6.13
-175%
Gamma
2.51 88%
2.45 90%
2.15 102%
2.24 98%
2.21 100%
2.2 100%
CCT
6346 102%
6855 95%
6163 105%
6091 107%
6384 102%
7047 92%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
56
62
11%
55.5
-1%
55
-2%
57.95
3%
60.87
9%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
85
97
14%
84.5
-1%
84
-1%
95.43
12%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-1% / -1%
-10% / -10%
6% / -5%
-4% / -4%
-31% / -28%

* ... smaller is better

CalMAN ColorChecker pre-calibration
CalMAN ColorChecker pre-calibration
CalMAN Grayscale pre-calibration
CalMAN Grayscale pre-calibration
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps pre-calibration
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps pre-calibration
CalMAN ColorChecker post calibration
CalMAN ColorChecker post calibration
CalMAN Grayscale post calibration
CalMAN Grayscale post calibration
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps post calibration
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps post calibration

Gigabyte offers different picture profiles in the Smart Manager to adjust the color temperature. Our measurements were performed with the profile "Native Color". The average DeltaE-2000 deviations compared to the sRGB reference color space are already pretty good ex-works at 2.23 for the grayscale and 3.51 for the colors, even though we can see some outliers at more than 8. Calibration does not really improve the colors and the outliers are still visible, while the grayscale performance is much better at 0.77. The panel covers 56% AdobeRGB and 85% sRGB.

sRGB coverage: 85%
sRGB coverage: 85%
AdobeRGB coverage: 56%
AdobeRGB coverage: 56%

You can use the full luminance on battery power, so the outdoor usability is pretty good in combination with the matte display surface. The visibility is still comfortable in bright environments as long as you can avoid direct light sources. Thanks to the IPS technology, the viewing-angle stability is very generous.

Outdoor use
Outdoor use
Viewing angles
Viewing angles

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
26 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 5 ms rise
↘ 21 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 45 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25.5 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
45 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 17 ms rise
↘ 28 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 69 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (40.7 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9705 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Performance

Our test model represents a very powerful configuration of the Gigabyte P37X v5. Thanks to the modern Skylake processor and the fast GeForce GTX 980M, the performance is sufficient for modern games. You can use up to 32 GB of RAM, but there are only two slots and they are already in use. The following screenshots show the most important information about the components and software.

 

Processor

Intel's Core i7-6700HQ is a modern quad-core processor with a TDP of 45 Watts. It is a very powerful chip that is currently used for many gaming and multimedia notebooks. The performance is on the expected level compared to the rivals. An upgrade is hardly justified for users of the pre-predecessor though, because the advantage is in the single digit range. The CPU performance is reduced by around 30% on battery power (490 vs. 682 points Cinebench R15 Multi). More benchmarks of the processor are available in our Tech section.

Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
6833
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
20186
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
5548
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
50.01 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
7.47 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.67 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
62.89 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
682 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
142 Points
Help
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
142 Points ∼94%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
144 Points ∼95% +1%
Schenker XMG P706
Intel Core i7-6820HK
151 Points ∼100% +6%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
146 Points ∼97% +3%
Gigabyte P37X
Intel Core i7-4720HQ
133 Points ∼88% -6%
Gigabyte P35X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
147 Points ∼97% +4%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
682 Points ∼96%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
633 Points ∼89% -7%
Schenker XMG P706
Intel Core i7-6820HK
709 Points ∼100% +4%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
680 Points ∼96% 0%
Gigabyte P37X
Intel Core i7-4720HQ
662 Points ∼93% -3%
Gigabyte P35X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
675 Points ∼95% -1%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
1.67 Points ∼97%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
1.64 Points ∼95% -2%
Schenker XMG P706
Intel Core i7-6820HK
1.73 Points ∼100% +4%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
1.68 Points ∼97% +1%
Gigabyte P37X
Intel Core i7-4720HQ
1.52 Points ∼88% -9%
Gigabyte P35X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
1.66 Points ∼96% -1%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
7.47 Points ∼96%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
7.01 Points ∼90% -6%
Schenker XMG P706
Intel Core i7-6820HK
7.78 Points ∼100% +4%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
7.5 Points ∼96% 0%
Gigabyte P37X
Intel Core i7-4720HQ
7.2 Points ∼93% -4%
Gigabyte P35X v5
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
7.41 Points ∼95% -1%

System Performance

The system performance is excellent thanks to the fast SSD. Applications launch very quickly and the whole handling is subjectively very responsive, which is also confirmed by the high PCMark scores.

PCMark 7 Score
5422 points
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
4041 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
4947 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
5061 points
Help
PCMark 7 - Score (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
5422 Points ∼86%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ, Toshiba HG6 THNSNJ256G8NU
5912 Points ∼94% +9%
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK, Samsung SM951 MZHPV512HDGL m.2 PCI-e
6054 Points ∼96% +12%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung PM951 NVMe 512 GB
5938 Points ∼94% +10%
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ, 2x Lite-On LMT-128L9M (RAID 0)
6302 Points ∼100% +16%
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
6176 Points ∼98% +14%
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
5061 Points ∼100%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ, Toshiba HG6 THNSNJ256G8NU
5043 Points ∼100% 0%
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK, Samsung SM951 MZHPV512HDGL m.2 PCI-e
5022 Points ∼99% -1%
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ, 2x Lite-On LMT-128L9M (RAID 0)
4462 Points ∼88% -12%
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
3999 Points ∼79% -21%
Creative Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
4947 Points ∼99%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ, Toshiba HG6 THNSNJ256G8NU
4873 Points ∼97% -1%
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK, Samsung SM951 MZHPV512HDGL m.2 PCI-e
4893 Points ∼98% -1%
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ, 2x Lite-On LMT-128L9M (RAID 0)
5002 Points ∼100% +1%
Home Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
4041 Points ∼99%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ, Toshiba HG6 THNSNJ256G8NU
4002 Points ∼98% -1%
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK, Samsung SM951 MZHPV512HDGL m.2 PCI-e
3961 Points ∼97% -2%
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ, 2x Lite-On LMT-128L9M (RAID 0)
4070 Points ∼100% +1%
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ, Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
3301 Points ∼81% -18%

Storage Devices

Transfer rates SD-card reader
Transfer rates SD-card reader

The NVMe-SSD from Samsung has a capacity of 256 GB and manages very high transfer rates of up to 1570 MB/s for sequential reads. This result even clearly beats the RAID-0 configuration of the predecessor with two mSATA-SSDs. Great: You can also integrate a second NVMe-SSD for even more performance.

Sufficient storage capacity is provided by a 1 TB hard drive from HGST (7200 rpm), which also manages good transfer rates (113 MB/s on average according to HD Tune). A bit disappointing is the performance of the integrated card reader, because up to 87 MB/s read (64 MB/s write) is clearly below the possibilities of our reference memory card (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS II, up to 260 MB/s).

More benchmarks and comparisons are available in our HDD/SSD list.

Samsung SM951 MZVPV256HDGL m.2 PCI-e
Sequential Read: 1570 MB/s
Sequential Write: 1256 MB/s
512K Read: 940.4 MB/s
512K Write: 1231 MB/s
4K Read: 51.97 MB/s
4K Write: 145.1 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 630.6 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 384 MB/s

GPU Performance

Nvidia's GeForce GTX 980M is a high-end graphics card and provides sufficient performance for smooth gameplay even at high details. We already tested the GPU a couple of times, so we do not want to cover all the technical specifications at this point. One noteworthy aspect is the fact that Gigabyte – contrary to some rivals – implements the bigger version with 8 GB VRAM. The benchmarks scores are excellent and usually rank the P37X v5 at the top of our comparison group. The smaller sibling P35X v5 is on a similar performance level. The 3D performance is reduced by around 50% on battery power (6332 vs 12373 Graphics score @3DMark 11). More benchmarks for the GTX 980M are available here.

3DMark 11 Performance
11171 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
87420 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
22845 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
8355 points
Help
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
9673 Points ∼97%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
7486 Points ∼75% -23%
Schenker XMG P706
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
9687 Points ∼98% 0%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
9227 Points ∼93% -5%
Gigabyte P37X
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
9927 Points ∼100% +3%
Gigabyte P35X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
9677 Points ∼97% 0%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Score (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
8355 Points ∼100%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
6555 Points ∼78% -22%
Schenker XMG P706
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
8380 Points ∼100% 0%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
8099 Points ∼97% -3%
Gigabyte P37X
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
8304 Points ∼99% -1%
Gigabyte P35X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
8345 Points ∼100% 0%
3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance GPU (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
12373 Points ∼96%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
9962 Points ∼78% -19%
Schenker XMG P706
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
12402 Points ∼96% 0%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
11388 Points ∼89% -8%
Gigabyte P37X
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
12655 Points ∼98% +2%
Gigabyte P35X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
12853 Points ∼100% +4%
1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
11171 Points ∼97%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
9421 Points ∼82% -16%
Schenker XMG P706
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
11514 Points ∼100% +3%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
10464 Points ∼91% -6%
Gigabyte P37X
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
10864 Points ∼94% -3%
Gigabyte P35X v5
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
11433 Points ∼99% +2%

Gaming Performance

The performance of the Gigabyte P37X v5 is sufficient even for maximum details in modern titles like Rise of the Tomb Raider. Gaming in 4K (optional UHD screen) will require lower details based on our experiences to ensure smooth gameplay. More games and their requirements are listed in our Tech section.

Rise of the Tomb Raider
1920x1080 Very High Preset AA:FX AF:16x (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
47.2 fps ∼96%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
42.2 fps ∼86% -11%
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
49 fps ∼100% +4%
1920x1080 High Preset AA:FX AF:4x (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
55.6 fps ∼98%
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
52.9 fps ∼93% -5%
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
57 fps ∼100% +3%
The Witcher 3
1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+) (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
34.1 fps ∼100%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
25.4 fps ∼74% -26%
1920x1080 High Graphics & Postprocessing (Nvidia HairWorks Off) (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
61.5 fps ∼100%
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
46.7 fps ∼76% -24%
BioShock Infinite - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset, DX11 (DDOF) (sort by value)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
88.9 fps ∼98%
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ
90.9 fps ∼100% +2%
low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 189.1166.615588.9fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 172.9112.361.534.1fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 14095.355.647.2fps

Emissions

System Noise

All measurements in this section were performed with the Smart Manager mode "Normal" (Fan Tweak). The fans are always running while idling and clearly audible at 32-36 dB(A), so you cannot hear the mechanical hard drive. The fans slowly increase their speed in 3D applications and reach 40-44 dB(A) in medium workloads. Maximum load can result in up to 51 dB(A). This is a lot, but the murmur is subjectively still reasonable and free of annoying noises. The fans will quickly slow down after load periods.

System noise idle
System noise idle
System noise load
System noise load

Noise Level

Idle
32 / 34 / 36 dB(A)
DVD
37 / dB(A)
Load
40 / 51 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1 (15 cm distance)
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
Noise
0%
6%
5%
-8%
-1%
off / environment *
30
Idle Minimum *
32
30.8
4%
30.9
3%
31
3%
36.3
-13%
32.2
-1%
Idle Average *
34
31.2
8%
31.2
8%
32
6%
36.4
-7%
32.3
5%
Idle Maximum *
36
36.6
-2%
31.2
13%
33
8%
36.5
-1%
32.6
9%
Load Average *
40
41.8
-5%
40.5
-1%
38
5%
47
-18%
44.4
-11%
Load Maximum *
51
53
-4%
47
8%
50
2%
51.1
-0%
54.6
-7%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

Stress test
Stress test

The temperature development was already a problem for the predecessor. The situation was slightly improved while idling, because the whole device will now stay conveniently cool. The P37X v5 will get much warmer under load. We can measure 51.7 °C (!) on average at the bottom and many spots are close to 70 °C. Those values are too high and can cause burns. The keyboard area is also very warm at more than 50 °C.

The situation is unfortunately not better for the components. Our stress test (Prime95 and FurMark for at least one hour) clearly shows that the cooling with the two fans and the combined heat pipes cannot keep the components cool. The processor quickly reaches values of up to 98 °C, which causes thermal throttling to 2.2-2.3 GHz. The clock of the GPU is also slightly reduced. A 3DMark 11 run immediately after the stress test, however, did not determine a lower score compared to a cool run. 

We also check the performance with the Unigine Heaven Benchmark 4.0, which is a more realistic test for the requirements during gaming. The processor reaches around 94 °C after a couple of minutes and the Turbo Boost will be limited, while the GPU can maintain its maximum core clock of 1126 MHz. However, there is not much headroom and there could be certain limitations in warm summer months.

Max. Load
 48.1 °C
119 F
52.7 °C
127 F
49.1 °C
120 F
 
 46.1 °C
115 F
51.7 °C
125 F
49.1 °C
120 F
 
 31.7 °C
89 F
35.2 °C
95 F
34.6 °C
94 F
 
Maximum: 52.7 °C = 127 F
Average: 44.3 °C = 112 F
68.9 °C
156 F
70 °C
158 F
54.1 °C
129 F
66.9 °C
152 F
68 °C
154 F
46.4 °C
116 F
29.8 °C
86 F
30.8 °C
87 F
30.8 °C
87 F
Maximum: 70 °C = 158 F
Average: 51.7 °C = 125 F
Power Supply (max.)  53.1 °C = 128 F | Room Temperature 22 °C = 72 F | Voltcraft IR-900
(-) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 44.3 °C / 112 F, compared to the average of 32.9 °C / 91 F for the devices in the class Gaming.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 52.7 °C / 127 F, compared to the average of 39.3 °C / 103 F, ranging from 21.6 to 68.8 °C for the class Gaming.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 70 °C / 158 F, compared to the average of 41.8 °C / 107 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 27.8 °C / 82 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (35.2 °C / 95.4 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.7 °C / 83.7 F (-6.5 °C / -11.7 F).
Idle bottom
Idle bottom
Idle top
Idle top
Load bottom
Load bottom
Load top
Load top
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
Gigabyte P37X
GeForce GTX 980M, 4720HQ
Gigabyte P35X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
Heat
-7%
15%
5%
-13%
11%
Maximum Upper Side *
52.7
53.8
-2%
44
17%
51.1
3%
50
5%
52.4
1%
Maximum Bottom *
70
65.4
7%
42.3
40%
53.2
24%
66.8
5%
58
17%
Idle Upper Side *
30.9
36.3
-17%
31.7
-3%
31.7
-3%
36.2
-17%
26.6
14%
Idle Bottom *
31
36.3
-17%
29.9
4%
32.2
-4%
45.2
-46%
27.4
12%

* ... smaller is better

Speakers

Speaker measurements
Speaker measurements

Similar to the P37X v3, you get two speakers with 1.5 Watts each. They are located at the front and are faced downwards. Despite the missing subwoofer, they create a pretty balanced sound that is sufficiently loud at up to 78 dB(A). The preloaded Dolby software offers some presets for movie and music playback, for example. External speakers or headphones can be attached via two 3.5 mm stereo jacks; some rivals offer more in this respect.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Some of the rivals consume slightly less power while idling, but the results of the P37X v5 are okay in general. Our measurement device shows 96 Watts in the first scene of 3DMark06 and 217 Watts under maximum load. The 200-Watt power adaptor is therefore not generously sized.

We also had an issue with the charging of our test model, because it was only possible when the notebook was turned on, but not in standby or when it was turned off. We hope Gigabyte can fix this bug before the launch.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.6 / 1.1 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 16 / 21 / 28 Watt
Load midlight 96 / 215 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Gigabyte P37X v5
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
Schenker XMG P706
GeForce GTX 980M, 6820HK
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
GeForce GTX 980M, 6700HQ
Power Consumption
5%
14%
12%
Idle Minimum *
16
16.5
-3%
12
25%
12
25%
Idle Average *
21
23.1
-10%
17.9
15%
18
14%
Idle Maximum *
28
26.1
7%
19.3
31%
26
7%
Load Average *
96
95.8
-0%
97.7
-2%
95
1%
Load Maximum *
215
146.4
32%
213
1%
188
13%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Runtime

Inside the Gigabyte P37X v5 is a 75-Wh battery, which only manages average runtimes in combination with the pretty high idle consumption. You can expect almost two hours under load and Wi-Fi surfing at an adjusted luminance (150 cd/m²) is possible for more than four hours. You can watch a Full-HD video (Big Buck Bunny, H.264) for around 5.5 hours on the 17-inch notebook. Our test model can still beat the rivals with these results, only the Alienware 17 R3 is much more enduring.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
6h 23min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
4h 14min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
5h 34min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 43min
Gigabyte P37X v5
76 Wh
MSI GS70-6QE16H21
56 Wh
Schenker XMG P706
60 Wh
Alienware 17 R3 (A17-9935)
92 Wh
Gigabyte P37X
76 Wh
Gigabyte P35X v5
76 Wh
Battery Runtime
-40%
-19%
58%
-4%
-3%
Reader / Idle
383
238
-38%
297
-22%
758
98%
332
-13%
345
-10%
H.264
334
154
-54%
220
-34%
WiFi v1.3
254
180
-29%
220
-13%
444
75%
237
-7%
261
3%
Load
103
64
-38%
97
-6%
105
2%
110
7%
101
-2%

Pros

+ very thin and light
+ aluminum chassis with sturdy base unit
+ manual fan control via preloaded software (Smart Manager)
+ modern ports with NVMe, HDMI 2.0 and USB 3.1 Type-C
+ up to four storage devices (2x M.2, 1x SATA III, 1x SATA ODD)
+ three video outputs
+ excellent performance
+ high-quality and matte 1080p IPS display
+ comfortable keyboard with macro keys
+ easy access to the components
+ 8 GB VRAM

Cons

- very high case and CPU temperatures under heavy load
- battery is only charged when the device is turned on
- slight throttling in extreme scenarios
- system noise could be lower while idling
- heavily reduced performance on battery power
- uncomfortable inputs via Clickpad
- slightly flexible lid
- high price

Verdict

Gigabyte P37X v5, test model courtesy of Gigabyte Germany.
Gigabyte P37X v5, test model courtesy of Gigabyte Germany.

Despite the update, our verdict for the Gigabyte P37X v5 is similar to the pre-predecessor P37X v3 that already provided plenty of performance. The cooling was unfortunately not really improved, because the processor gets very hot and also has to reduce its performance due to the temperatures in extreme scenarios. The surface temperatures are also very high at up to 70 °C at some spots. The emissions are the biggest problem of the thin gaming notebook. Thicker devices like the Alienware 17 R3 or the Schenker XMG P706 have an advantage in this respect. The performance is also heavily reduced on battery power and the manufacturer did not rework the awkward ClickPad.

Enormous performance and enormous emissions: The thin chassis of the Gigabyte P37X v5 requires compromises, but so much performance in such a thin chassis is impressive.

Positive aspects are once again the display, the performance and also the keyboard. If you need a thin device and can live with the high emissions, the Gigabyte P37X v5 is definitely worth a look, but the price is also pretty steep at more than 2,000 Euros (~$2202).

Gigabyte P37X v5 - 02/27/2016 v5
Andreas Osthoff

Chassis
82 / 98 → 84%
Keyboard
86%
Pointing Device
74%
Connectivity
62 / 81 → 77%
Weight
57 / 10-66 → 84%
Battery
80%
Display
87%
Games Performance
91%
Application Performance
96%
Temperature
74 / 95 → 78%
Noise
70 / 90 → 78%
Audio
75%
Average
78%
84%
Gaming - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Gigabyte P37X v5 Notebook Review
Andreas Osthoff, 2016-03- 5 (Update: 2018-05-15)
Andreas Osthoff
Andreas Osthoff - Senior Editor Business
I grew up with computers and modern consumer electronics. I am interested in the technology since I had my first computer, a Commodore C64, and started building my own PCs after that. My focus here at Notebookcheck is the business segment including mobile workstations, but I also like to test new mobile devices. It is always a great experience to review and compare new products. My free time is filled with a lot of sports, in the summer mainly on my bike.