Notebookcheck

Razer Blade Stealth (QHD i7-8550U) Laptop Review

Daniel Puschina, Felicitas Krohn (translated by Mark Riege), 12/02/2017

Dancing at two weddings with one laptop. With the Blade Stealth, Razer aims to attract gamers during the night and office workers during the day. In order to gain a performance increase compared to the predecessor, the Ultrabook is equipped with an i7-8550U of the 8th Intel generation. We took a look at the Kaby Lake refresh.

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For the original German review, see here.

The Razer Blade Stealth series gets a processor upgrade from the Intel Core i7-7500U to the Intel Core i7-8550U, which is the most current and 8th generation also called Kaby Lake refresh. The number of cores has been doubled to four, and we can also measure a 50% performance increase in the multi-core operation of the Cinebench benchmark. Yet not all four cores are running at the turbo speed of 4 GHz under full load, but they are throttled to 3.7 GHz. We will explain this behavior in more detail in the Performance section.

Otherwise, the outsides of the Razer Blade Stealth remain largely unchanged, except for the case that is 0.7 mm (~0.03 in) thicker and a slight weight gain of 20 grams (0.7 oz) compared to its predecessor. The robust and high-quality unibody aluminum case, whose form and looks have remained the same, is equipped with one USB 3.0 (Type-A) connection on each side. An HDMI 2.0 port is still located on the right side, while the Thunderbolt-3 port, which also functions as the connection for the power supply is on the left.

You can choose between two color options of the case with a different keyboard backlight on the Razer US website. You can either pick the Blade Stealth in black, with the bright green snake logo on the display lid and the Razer-Chroma keyboard backlight with 16.8 Million colors that you can combine individually, or the case in a gunmetal color with a modest gray Razer logo and the keyboard with a white backlight. In Germany, you can currently find only the first model in the shop.

We now have received the more modest gunmetal version...
We now have received the more modest gunmetal version...
... from Razer as a test unit.
... from Razer as a test unit.

In this update of the complete review of the Razer Blade Stealth i7-7500U, we will only concentrate on how the CPU upgrade to the i7-8550U increases the performance. We compare the new Blade Stealth with its predecessor in the series as well as direct competitors such as the Dell XPS 13 or the Lenovo Yoga 920, both of which are also equipped with the i7-8550U.

Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U (Blade Stealth Series)
Processor
Graphics adapter
Intel UHD Graphics 620 - 1024 MB, Core: 300 MHz, Memory: 350 MHz, 23.20.16.4849
Memory
16384 MB 
, LPDDR3-2133
Display
13.3 inch 16:9, 3200 x 1800 pixel 276 PPI, Touch display, Sharp SHP1493 (LQ133Z1JW26), glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel Sunrise Point-LP
Storage
Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP, 512 GB 
Soundcard
Realtek ALC298 @ Intel Sunrise Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI
Networking
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter (b/g/n/ac)
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 13.8 x 321 x 206 ( = 0.54 x 12.64 x 8.11 in)
Battery
53.6 Wh
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Additional features
Keyboard Light: yes
Weight
1.35 kg ( = 47.62 oz / 2.98 pounds) ( = 0 oz / 0 pounds)
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Display

In its i7-8550U version, the Razer is only available with a reflective 13.3-inch QHD+ multi-touch display and a resolution of 3200x1800 pixels, resulting in a sharp 276 PPI. The built-in IGZO panel from Sharp has the model number LQ133Z1JW26, and as with the predecessor, the subjective impression is convincing in terms of the contrast, color presentation, sharpness, and brightness. 

The values measured in our extensive display check of the Blade Stealth i7-7500U, which uses the same panel, confirmed this with top grades for black value and contrast. While compared to the Intel Core i7-7500U model with its 12.5-inch 4K display, Razer was able to use a narrower bezel around the screen, there is still a 7 mm (~0.28 in) difference to the almost bezel-less "Infinity Display" of the Dell XPS 13

344
cd/m²
341
cd/m²
354
cd/m²
366
cd/m²
406
cd/m²
394
cd/m²
367
cd/m²
375
cd/m²
407
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 407 cd/m² Average: 372.7 cd/m² Minimum: 15 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 84 %
Center on Battery: 402 cd/m²
Contrast: 1624:1 (Black: 0.25 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 4.5 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2
ΔE Greyscale 5.2 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
95.4% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 61.3% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.11
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
Sharp SHP1493 (LQ133Z1JW26), , 3200x1800, 13.3
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
Sharp SHP1493 (LQ133Z1JW26), , 3200x1800, 13.3
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
Sharp SHP142F (LQ125T1JW02), , 2560x1440, 12.5
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
ID: Sharp SHP144A, Name: LQ133Z1, , 3200x1800, 13.3
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
AU Optronics B139HAN03.0, , 1920x1080, 13.9
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
LC133LF2L01, IGZO TFT-LCD, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
2880x1800, 15.4
Response Times
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
46 (25.6, 20.4)
37 (19, 18)
35.6 (18.4, 17.2)
46 (20.8, 25.2)
48 (25, 23)
42.4 (20.4, 22)
Response Time Black / White *
31.2 (18.8, 12.4)
33.4 (13.2, 20.2)
27.2 (16, 11.2)
31.6 (18.4, 13.2)
35 (21, 14)
28 (14.8, 13.2)
PWM Frequency
19380 (100)
200 (30)
19690 (100)
1000 (20)
Screen
Brightness middle
406
402
386.1
297.9
414
534
Black Level *
0.25
0.45
0.33
0.44
0.36
0.31
Brightness
373
382
357
278
370
502
Brightness Distribution
84
88
83
81
81
86
Contrast
1624
893
1170
677
1150
1723
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
4.5
3.6
4.2
5.1
4.3
1.8
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
8.2
7.5
7.6
11
7.76
3.8
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.2
4.3
5.7
6.7
5.13
2.4
Gamma
2.11 104%
2.1 105%
2.28 96%
2.9 76%
2.37 93%
2.27 97%
CCT
7709 84%
6572 99%
7336 89%
6839 95%
7729 84%
6563 99%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
61.3
62.3
59
64.1
64
77.92
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
95.4
95.7
92.2
91.7
99
99.94
Total Average (Program / Settings)

* ... smaller is better

The display indoors ...
The display indoors ...
... and outdoors.
... and outdoors.

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Performance

With the processor upgrade, for the first time we are getting the new Intel Core i7-8550U in the Razer series. This is also the only version of the Kaby Lake refresh that Razer is offering, since other i7 models of Intel's 8th generation will not be available. Instead together with the CPU upgrade, the Blade Stealth will also get faster storage with LPDDR @ 2133 MHz. The size format is a soldered-in 16 GB, also without any other options available.

Processor

The four cores of the new Intel Core i7-8550U are now driving the Blade Stealth. Hold on, four cores in a "U" processor? Did a mistake creep into the test review? No, of course not. With the introduction of the 8th generation, Intel has changed the naming convention used. Before, only the more powerful multimedia or gaming laptops whose CPU names ended in "HK" or "HQ" had the privilege of owning four cores. Now, for the first time a "U" processor has been equipped with four cores.

This gives the Razer Blade Stealth i7-8550U twice as many cores as its predecessor with an Intel i7-7500U. Despite that, Intel still manages to keep the TDP unchanged at the standard of 15 watts. The Intel Extreme Tuning Utility tool reveals that Razer is following Intel's lead and keeps this setting.

The Intel Extreme Tuning Utility tool shows a maximum of 44 W possible for 28 seconds.
The Intel Extreme Tuning Utility tool shows a maximum of 44 W possible for 28 seconds.

With the same power consumption for four instead of two cores, Intel has significantly lowered the base clock speed down to 1.8 GHz. This is 900 MHz lower than the i7-7500U, whose base clock speed is 2.7 GHz. On the other hand, the Turbo speeds up to a fast 4 GHz, but only on two cores. In the quad-core operation, the performance is slightly throttled to 3.7 GHz for all four cores under full load. However, for a brief performance boost the i7-8550U can use 44 watts for a period of 28 seconds. You can find further technical background information on the i7-8550U in our benchmarks for mobile CPUs.

As expected, the Razer Blade Stealth i7-8550U does a decent job in our Cinebench single core test and achieves about the same level as the Dell XPS 13. Compared to the previous Blade Stealth model, the i7-8550U can move ahead by more than 15% additional points. In the multi-core benchmark test, the advantage is even a respectable 50% compared to the direct i7-7500U predecessor. However, compared to other i7-8550U models from Dell and Lenovo, the Razer still remains slightly behind here.

The Razer deserves some praise on the subject of throttling, which did not occur at all in the Blade Stealth in the Cinebench multi-core loop test. In comparison, the Dell XPS 13 looses 8 to 10% of the performance due to throttling in the prolonged run, dropping into the range of about 560 points. Yet, even in the throttled mode, it remains slightly ahead of the Blade Stealth. Even if the distance between the XPS 13 and Blade Stealth appears significant in the multi-core short-term test, both of the devices remain close together in the prolonged test.

0102030405060708090100110120130140150160170180190200210220230240250260270280290300310320330340350360370380390400410420430440450460470480490500510520530Tooltip
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
Intel Core i7-8550U
170 Points ∼100% +4%
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
Intel Core i7-8550U
167 Points ∼98% +2%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
Intel Core i7-8550U
164 Points ∼96%
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
Intel Core i7-7820HQ
160 Points ∼94% -2%
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
Intel Core i7-8550U
154 Points ∼91% -6%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
Intel Core i7-7500U
139 Points ∼82% -15%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
Intel Core i7-7820HQ
757 Points ∼100% +45%
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
Intel Core i7-7820HQ
630 Points ∼83% +21%
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
Intel Core i7-8550U
603 Points ∼80% +16%
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
Intel Core i7-8550U
576 Points ∼76% +11%
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
Intel Core i7-8550U
553 Points ∼73% +6%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
Intel Core i7-8550U
521 Points ∼69%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
Intel Core i7-7500U
348 Points ∼46% -33%
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
7365
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
16554
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
6183
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
42 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.88 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
6.28 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
164 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
521 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
47.25 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
97.81 %
Help

System Performance

Even though the Razer Blade Stealth i7-8550U remains behind the Dell XPS 13 in the system performance, at 6% in the Work-Score test and 5% in the Home-Score test, the differences are only marginal and not really relevant in practice. The difference to the Lenovo Yoga 920 is more meaningful here, since it has a similar configuration with the i7-8550U and the same Samsung PM 961 SSD. It is also striking that the Razer with the i7-8550U is not really able to score a performance advantage in the Home Score with its four cores compared to the two cores of the Razer Blade Stealth i7-7500U. How a multi-core system can optimally implement its performance in everyday usage depends a lot on the device drivers and the ability of the software used and whether this can really make use of the four cores. 

PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
5154 Points ∼100% +23%
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV256G
4436 Points ∼86% +6%
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
Radeon Pro 560, 7820HQ
4412 (min: 4384, max: 4412) Points ∼86% +5%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
4184 Points ∼81%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 500GB m.2 NVMe
4017 Points ∼100% +23%
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
3999 Points ∼100% +22%
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
Radeon Pro 560, 7820HQ
3819 (min: 3816, max: 3827) Points ∼95% +17%
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV256G
3432 Points ∼85% +5%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
HD Graphics 620, 7500U, Samsung PM951 NVMe MZVLV256
3362 Points ∼84% +3%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
3268 Points ∼81%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3268 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
4722 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4184 points
Help

Graphics Card

With the new Intel generation, for the first time the Intel Graphics UHD 620 is also introduced into the Razer. Apart from the renaming from HD 620 to UHD 620 and an increase of the turbo clock speed by 100 MHz to 1150 MHz, the new graphics chip does not bring any further changes. In both runs of 3DMark, the Razer Blade Stealth achieved about the same level as the Lenovo Yoga 920 and Dell XPS 13, which are also equipped with the UHD 620.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
AMD Radeon Pro 560, Intel Core i7-7820HQ
5305 (min: 5279, max: 6622) Points ∼100% +217%
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1810 Points ∼34% +8%
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1709 Points ∼32% +2%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1675 Points ∼32%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
1631 Points ∼31% -3%
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
1534 Points ∼29% -8%
3DMark - 1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
AMD Radeon Pro 560, Intel Core i7-7820HQ
23105 (min: 23091, max: 26320) Points ∼100% +147%
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
9678 Points ∼42% +4%
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
9511 Points ∼41% +2%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-8550U
9349 Points ∼40%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
8289 Points ∼36% -11%
3DMark 11 Performance
1888 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
8218 points
3DMark Time Spy Score
386 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Looking at it neutrally, the Razer Blade Stealth does not deliver a stellar gaming performance with the UHD 620 and neither the Razer logo, nor the affinity of the manufacturer for gaming can make much of a difference here. Anyone who looks at the pure FPS values will see that the current graphics-heavy games such as "Deus Ex Mankind Divided", "Resident Evil 7" or "Prey" only remain relatively playable with minimum details. In some circumstances, it might be possible to play games that are a little older in medium details, but you should not expect much more than that.

At this point, we should mention that Razer does not advertise the Blade Stealth as a gaming monster as such. Gaming such as on a desktop gaming PC is only possible in combination with the Razer Core V2, which enables the use of an external graphics card via the Thunderbolt-3 port. We are already working on a test review of this.

Need for Speed Payback
1920x1080 Medium Preset
HP 17-bs103ng
Radeon 530, 8250U, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
12.1 fps ∼100% +46%
MSI PL62
HD Graphics 630, 7700HQ
9.5 (min: 6) fps ∼79% +14%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
8.3 (min: 5, max: 11) fps ∼69%
1280x720 Low Preset
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
26.3 fps ∼100% +45%
HP 17-bs103ng
Radeon 530, 8250U, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
24.2 fps ∼92% +34%
MSI PL62
HD Graphics 630, 7700HQ
19.9 (min: 15) fps ∼76% +10%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
18.1 (min: 12, max: 24) fps ∼69%
MSI CX61-i572M281BW7
HD Graphics 4600, 4200M
16.3 fps ∼62% -10%
Asus F555LF-XO029H
HD Graphics 5500, 5200U
15.5 fps ∼59% -14%
Resident Evil 7
1920x1080 High / On AA:FXAA+T
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
10 (min: 7, max: 13) fps ∼100%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
8.2 fps ∼82% -18%
1920x1080 Medium / Off AA:FX
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
18.5 fps ∼100% +24%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
14.9 (min: 10, max: 20) fps ∼81%
Dell XPS 13 9365-4537 2-in-1
HD Graphics 615, 7Y54, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPUK
9.5 fps ∼51% -36%
1280x720 Very Low / Off AA:FX
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
54 fps ∼100% +78%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
40.2 fps ∼74% +32%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
30.4 (min: 29, max: 34) fps ∼56%
Asus F555LF-XO029H
HD Graphics 5500, 5200U
25 fps ∼46% -18%
Dell XPS 13 9365-4537 2-in-1
HD Graphics 615, 7Y54, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPUK
22.2 fps ∼41% -27%
Lenovo IdeaPad V110-15IKB 80TH001SGE
HD Graphics 610, 4415U, Ramxel S121 RTNRB256RFM4KWDL
18.9 fps ∼35% -38%
F1 2017
1920x1080 High Preset AA:T AF:8x
Lenovo V320-17IKB 81AH0002GE
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, SK Hynix HFS256G3BTND
13 fps ∼100% +30%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
13 fps ∼100% +30%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
10 (min: 9, max: 12) fps ∼77%
1920x1080 Medium Preset AF:4x
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
15 fps ∼100% +7%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
14 (min: 12, max: 16) fps ∼93%
Lenovo V320-17IKB 81AH0002GE
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, SK Hynix HFS256G3BTND
13 fps ∼87% -7%
Acer Spin 5 SP513-52N-566U
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
13 (min: 11, max: 14) fps ∼87% -7%
1280x720 Ultra Low Preset
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
39 fps ∼100% +22%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
34 fps ∼87% +6%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
32 (min: 29, max: 36) fps ∼82%
Lenovo V320-17IKB 81AH0002GE
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, SK Hynix HFS256G3BTND
31 fps ∼79% -3%
Acer Spin 5 SP513-52N-566U
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
30 (min: 26, max: 34) fps ∼77% -6%
Asus F555LF-XO029H
HD Graphics 5500, 5200U
23 fps ∼59% -28%
Prey
1920x1080 High Preset AA:2TX SM AF:8x
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
10.5 fps ∼100%
Lenovo V320-17IKB 81AH0002GE
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, SK Hynix HFS256G3BTND
9.2 fps ∼88% -12%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
9.2 fps ∼88% -12%
1920x1080 Medium Preset AA:FX AF:4x
Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) i7
Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7660U, Samsung PM971 KUS040202M
18.1 (min: 4, max: 25) fps ∼100% +40%
HP 17-bs103ng
Radeon 530, 8250U, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
14.1 fps ∼78% +9%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
12.9 (min: 9, max: 18) fps ∼71%
Lenovo V320-17IKB 81AH0002GE
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, SK Hynix HFS256G3BTND
11.6 fps ∼64% -10%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
11.3 fps ∼62% -12%
Dell XPS 13 9365-4537 2-in-1
HD Graphics 615, 7Y54, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPUK
6.6 fps ∼36% -49%
MSI CX61-i572M281BW7
HD Graphics 4600, 4200M
6.5 fps ∼36% -50%
1280x720 Low Preset AF:2x
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
51.1 fps ∼100% +68%
Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) i7
Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7660U, Samsung PM971 KUS040202M
45.4 (min: 27, max: 68) fps ∼89% +49%
HP 17-bs103ng
Radeon 530, 8250U, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
35.3 fps ∼69% +16%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
30.4 (min: 2, max: 46) fps ∼59%
HP 15-bs103ng
Radeon 520, 8250U, Samsung SSD PM871a MZNLN256HMHQ
30.1 fps ∼59% -1%
Lenovo V320-17IKB 81AH0002GE
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, SK Hynix HFS256G3BTND
27.8 fps ∼54% -9%
Acer Spin 5 SP513-52N-566U
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
26.6 (min: 7, max: 39) fps ∼52% -12%
Asus F555LF-XO029H
HD Graphics 5500, 5200U
21.7 fps ∼42% -29%
MSI CX61-i572M281BW7
HD Graphics 4600, 4200M
16.7 fps ∼33% -45%
Dell XPS 13 9365-4537 2-in-1
HD Graphics 615, 7Y54, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPUK
14.3 fps ∼28% -53%
Battlefield 1
1920x1080 High Preset AA:T
Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) i7
Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7660U, Samsung PM971 KUS040202M
9.2 (min: 8, max: 11) fps ∼100% +5%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
8.8 (min: 8, max: 10) fps ∼96%
1366x768 Medium Preset AA:FX
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
26.1 fps ∼100% +39%
Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) i7
Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7660U, Samsung PM971 KUS040202M
19.6 (min: 16, max: 21) fps ∼75% +4%
HP 17-bs103ng
Radeon 530, 8250U, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
19.1 fps ∼73% +2%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
18.8 (min: 17, max: 20) fps ∼72%
Acer Spin 5 SP513-52N-566U
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
17.9 (min: 16, max: 20) fps ∼69% -5%
Asus F555LF-XO029H
HD Graphics 5500, 5200U
13.3 fps ∼51% -29%
Lenovo IdeaPad V110-15IKB 80TH001SGE
HD Graphics 610, 4415U, Ramxel S121 RTNRB256RFM4KWDL
8.9 fps ∼34% -53%
1280x720 Low Preset
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
40.5 fps ∼100% +37%
Acer Spin 5 SP513-52N-566U
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
29.8 (min: 28, max: 32) fps ∼74% +1%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
29.5 (min: 24, max: 33) fps ∼73%
HP 17-bs103ng
Radeon 530, 8250U, Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
28.5 fps ∼70% -3%
Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) i7
Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7660U, Samsung PM971 KUS040202M
26.6 (min: 24, max: 30) fps ∼66% -10%
Asus F555LF-XO029H
HD Graphics 5500, 5200U
20.7 fps ∼51% -30%
Lenovo IdeaPad V110-15IKB 80TH001SGE
HD Graphics 610, 4415U, Ramxel S121 RTNRB256RFM4KWDL
16.1 fps ∼40% -45%
Deus Ex Mankind Divided
1920x1080 High Preset AF:4x
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
6.3 (min: 4.6, max: 8.9) fps ∼100%
1366x768 Medium Preset AF:2x
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
14.8 fps ∼100% +21%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
12.2 (min: 8.9, max: 16.5) fps ∼82%
1280x720 Low Preset AF:1x
Asus F555LF-XO029H
GeForce 930M, 5200U
21.6 fps ∼100% +28%
Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) i7
Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7660U, Samsung PM971 KUS040202M
20.2 (min: 16, max: 27) fps ∼94% +20%
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
16.9 (min: 12.2, max: 23.7) fps ∼78%
Dell Inspiron 13 7370
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
16.8 fps ∼78% -1%
Acer Spin 5 SP513-52N-566U
UHD Graphics 620, 8250U, Micron 1100 MTFDDAV256TBN
15.3 (min: 11, max: 20) fps ∼71% -9%
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low med. high ultra4K
Dota 2 Reborn (2015) 67.844.11916.8fps
Rainbow Six Siege (2015) 4125.914.510.8fps
Deus Ex Mankind Divided (2016) 16.912.26.3fps
Battlefield 1 (2016) 29.518.88.87.9fps
Resident Evil 7 (2017) 30.414.9108.5fps
Prey (2017) 30.412.910.59.2fps
F1 2017 (2017) 3214106fps
The Evil Within 2 (2017) 0 game wont start0 game wont start0 game wont startfps
Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (2017) 0 game wont start0 game wont start0 game wont startfps
Need for Speed Payback (2017) 18.18.3fps

Noise Emissions

The measurements of the fans in various load scenarios show slightly lower noise emissions than in the test of the Razer Blade Stealth i7-7500U. Our subjective impression also shows a comfortable and silent work machine. Unlike the predecessor, we are not hearing any coil whining in the Razer Blade Stealth i7-8550U. This positive point flows into our evaluation, slightly improving the rating of the Kaby Lake refresh model.

Noise Level

Idle
30.7 / 30.7 / 32.11 dB(A)
Load
32.9 / 36.4 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, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 30.5 dB(A)
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2039.737.235.640.635.6392534.531.330.933.932.3323132.330.23128.932.131.84030.628.73129.930.630.25029.629.329.928.728.729.36329.629.728.227.428.230.48027.827.429.327.527.427.810027.527.926.325.225.428.212526.825.525.925.424.326.516027.126.625.826.625.626.320026.22525.225.725.926.225024.824.123.724.324.123.531523.622.322.622.622.222.640022.421.721.521.321.623.150021.621.42120.320.523.563021.220.220.919.719.623.180019.819.219.318.918.721.6100019.919.419.81918.521.9125020.12020.518.518.123.7160020.119.920.518.217.823.4200021.721.321.617.717.425.3250025.923.524.317.617.427.8315018.518.619.417.417.329.9400018.117.818.117.417.321.3500017.717.517.817.417.119.6630017.817.417.617.517.319.6800017.817.717.717.517.518.21000017.617.617.517.617.5181250017.617.517.817.617.617.81600017.717.617.617.617.517.7SPL36.432.932.132.530.730.536.4N2.41.81.71.71.51.52.4median 20.1median 20median 20.5median 18.5median 18.1median 23.1Delta3.23.12.92.52.53.235.333.937.636.136.336.233.933.331.330.633.934.730.934.131.332.331.833.533.132.232.440.541.237.438.341.837.239.134.436.63836.935.735.735.134.334.53735.534.531.636.632.430.735.731.930.429.335.228.527.93127.728.226.929.22727.727.828.326.327.827.825.925.226.225.725.724.925.525.225.32524.924.623.62524.824.824.923.724.323.124.424.223.223.123.122.322.323.326.123.825.223.823.422.423.727.722.825.22321.32124.526.821.223.721.820.820.523.224.821.123.122.121.221.622.224.819.921.620.419.219.222.127.521.123.921.418.618.5232720.826.723.218.618.523.73020.926.12818.118.226.834.218.925.619.817.817.824.331.618.724.319.317.717.723.526.918.421.318.717.9182124.618.220.218.4181819.724.118.32018.818.418.319.621.418.218.818.318.418.118.719.117.91817.91817.91818.4181818.11817.918.218.518.318.318.41818.118.640.432.335.834.131.331.235.13.31.82.421.61.62.2median 25.9median 20.9median 23.9median 21.8median 18.6median 18.5median 23.31.52.72.62.932233.732.533.231.831.933.731.73231.429.63131.734.132.135.634.135.334.132.734.931.43331.632.729.62930.530.23729.629.230.227.929.329.829.227.526.227.527.425.627.526.125.125.726.226.126.12525.225.22524.22523.624.623.824.223.823.624.424.32323.52324.4242322.321.621.32425.62521.921.321.125.623.422.921.420.820.423.423.722.221.419.519.523.72321.620.618.718.92324.823.221.518.418.424.827.125.223.117.71827.125.624.221.617.917.925.626.224.522.317.717.626.22926.623.717.417.32930.430.224.117.817.730.428.724.821.217.817.728.726.32320.41817.826.321.7201918.118.121.720.71918.418.418.320.719.418.618.418.518.419.419.118.618.518.318.519.118.918.418.318.318.618.918.818.618.318.518.618.838.436.633.630.530.438.42.82.41.91.41.42.8median 24.4median 23.2median 21.5median 18.4median 18.5median 24.42.2221.91.92.241.143.540.943.341.139.339.340.139.339.331.530.229.731.931.532.329.830.528.532.331.531.930.932.831.538.438.536.336.338.429.830.530.429.729.828.829.329.430.328.826.725.726.525.926.72626.626.127.22627.527.626.126.227.523.523.523.824.323.524.424.523.623.324.421.822.321.822.121.821.922.121.521.221.921.221.420.520.321.22020.119.519.42019.319.918.518.519.318.718.81817.818.718.218.517.417.618.217.517.917.116.917.517.317.416.716.317.316.916.816.515.916.916.616.516.115.616.616.316.61615.616.316.116.315.915.516.11616.215.815.31615.816.115.715.215.815.816.415.615.215.815.916.515.715.115.930.83130.330.130.81.51.61.41.41.5median 18.7median 18.8median 18median 17.8median 18.73.53.53.84.33.5hearing rangehide median Fan NoiseRazer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550URazer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500UDell XPS 13 i5-8250UTuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017

Temperature

Bottom during load
Bottom during load

According to our temperature measurements, the Intel i7-8550U produces considerably more heat than the i7-7500U. In the stress test, we measured increases in the temperature by up to 10 °C (~18 °F) in the area on the top, between the touchpad and the display. The central area on the bottom also gets about 7 °C (~13 °F) hotter than in the i7-7500U. Only in the  palm rest area the temperature remains almost unchanged. 

Idle (top)
Idle (top)
Idle (bottom)
Idle (bottom)
Load (top)
Load (top)
Load (bottom)
Load (bottom)
Max. Load
 45 °C
113 F
48 °C
118 F
45 °C
113 F
 
 44 °C
111 F
47 °C
117 F
39 °C
102 F
 
 34 °C
93 F
32 °C
90 F
31 °C
88 F
 
Maximum: 48 °C = 118 F
Average: 40.6 °C = 105 F
41 °C
106 F
50 °C
122 F
46 °C
115 F
41 °C
106 F
47 °C
117 F
44 °C
111 F
35 °C
95 F
40 °C
104 F
40 °C
104 F
Maximum: 50 °C = 122 F
Average: 42.7 °C = 109 F
Room Temperature 20 °C = 68 F | Fluke 62 Mini, Amprobe TMD-50
(-) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 40.6 °C / 105 F, compared to the average of 30.7 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Subnotebook.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 48 °C / 118 F, compared to the average of 35.9 °C / 97 F, ranging from 22 to 57 °C for the class Subnotebook.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 50 °C / 122 F, compared to the average of 40.3 °C / 105 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 9.6 °C / 49 F, compared to the device average of 30.7 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (34 °C / 93.2 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.7 °C / 83.7 F (-5.3 °C / -9.5 F).

Power Management

Power Consumption

Compared to the direct predecessor and the Dell XPS 13, with 7.5 watts on average during idle, the Blade Stealth pulls almost a quarter more power out of the battery with its i7-8550U and the larger display. On the other hand, the Razer shows its better side during full load, offering the best consumption results of the comparison models in the table below. The maximum value of 34.6 watts during full load is probably not completely realistic though, but due to measurement constraints might have been recorded only after the top value was reached. We can assume that the maximum is also in the range of at least 50 watts, as in the Blade Stealth i7-7500U. At 65 watts, the compact power supply is also generously sized even for more power-hungry applications.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.47 / 0.57 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 5.6 / 7.5 / 8.4 Watt
Load midlight 33.7 / 34.6 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP, , 3200x1800, 13.3
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
7500U, HD Graphics 620, Samsung PM951 NVMe MZVLV256, , 2560x1440, 12.5
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV256G, IGZO IPS, 3200x1800, 13.3
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.9
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung SSD 960 Evo 500GB m.2 NVMe, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
7820HQ, Radeon Pro 560, , , 2880x1800, 15.4
Power Consumption
-2%
7%
14%
-6%
-86%
Idle Minimum *
5.6
4.4
21%
4.1
27%
3.1
45%
4.5
20%
3.7
34%
Idle Average *
7.5
5.8
23%
5.8
23%
6.6
12%
8.2
-9%
16.2
-116%
Idle Maximum *
8.4
8.6
-2%
6
29%
7
17%
10.6
-26%
18
-114%
Load Average *
33.7
35.2
-4%
42.5
-26%
35.2
-4%
36.1
-7%
58.4
-73%
Load Maximum *
34.6
52
-50%
41.4
-20%
34.6
-0%
38
-10%
89.6
-159%
Witcher 3 ultra *
31

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

One thing is sure: the Blade Stealth will definitely not get you through a whole workday with its 53.6 Wh battery. With barely six hours of battery life during the simulated Internet surfing at 40% display brightness, the new model fares as badly as the Blade Stealth with the identical display panel (13.3-inch, 3200x1800 pixels, i7-7500U, Sharp SHP1493) from our display test, which also achieved only 6:26 hours of battery life. However, the Blade Stealth with the 12.5-inch display (2560x1440 pixels, i7-7500U, Sharp SHP142F) achieved 8:18 hours. We can therefore conclude that the built-in 13.3-inch panel is not entirely blameless in the shorter battery life, since the Intel i7-8550U as well as the i7-7500U perform their work with the same TDP of 15 watts.

Despite the four cores, the battery life under load remains at about the same level as that of the predecessor. Here you will appreciate the small and light power supply, since gamers need to find an outlet after 1.5 hours at most.

Battery Runtime
Battery Runtime The Witcher 3 ultra
1h 55min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
5h 58min
Gaming
1h 55min
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 53.6 Wh, 13.3
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
7500U, HD Graphics 620, 53.6 Wh, 13.3
Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-7500U
7500U, HD Graphics 620, 53.6 Wh, 12.5
Dell XPS 13 i7-8550U
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 60 Wh, 13.3
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB-80Y7
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 70 Wh, 13.9
Tuxedo InfinityBook Pro 13 2017
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 36 Wh, 13.3
Apple MacBook Pro 15 2017 (2.9 GHz, 560)
7820HQ, Radeon Pro 560,  Wh, 15.4
Battery Runtime
8%
39%
65%
91%
-23%
28%
Reader / Idle
817
1108
1655
WiFi v1.3
358
386
8%
498
39%
589
65%
685
91%
277
-23%
677
89%
Witcher 3 ultra
115
76
-34%
Load
105
143
140
67

Verdict

Pros

+ high quality metal case
+ no throttling
+ bright display with a good contrast
+ high color space coverage and easily calibratable
+ insides are easily accessible
+ extensive configuration options via Razer Chroma Keyboard
+ HDMI 2.0 and Thunderbolt 3

Cons

- weak battery life in the WLAN test
- CPU performance remains behind that of the competitors
- no SD reader
- very little feedback from the keyboard
The Razer Core V2 and the Blade Stealth: a perfect team.
The Razer Core V2 and the Blade Stealth: a perfect team.

In all likelihood, the Blade Stealth will only address a small target audience. Even if Razer is associated primarily with gaming and gives the impression that it has brought a gaming laptop to the market, with its Intel-UHD-620 graphics chip the Blade Stealth is not powerful enough for the real gamer. Most of the current games that need a little more graphics power run on the medium detail level at most. And neither does the Razer completely fulfil the expectations of another group of buyers who need their laptop more in the office or on the road, due to the short battery life, the lack of a matte display option, and the few connection options. 

"Laptop during the day, desktop at night." Razer was aware of the necessary balancing act between two different groups of buyers. The Blade Stealth surely is interesting in combination with the Razer Core V2 for gamers at night. 

The Core with an external graphics card completely replaces the internal UHD 620 via the Thunderbolt 3 connection, offering astonishing performance increases throughout all games. We have already tested this extensively. As an example, we use the "Resident Evil 7" game with high details (1920x1080 with AF, FXAA, and TAA): While the Razer Blade Stealth only achieves unplayable 10 FPS with the Intel UHD 620, the frame rate with the Razer Core V2 and an external Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 shows an increase by 82% to 56 FPS. The 40 Gbit/s of the Thunderbolt port hardly slow things down here, since the same graphics card achieves about 59 FPS in a desktop configuration. Shortly we will also publish a review of the Razer Core V2 and the Blade Stealth with all the interesting benchmark results of the current games, contrasting the performance differences between an internal and external monitor.

However, something that might speak against the nightly excursion into gaming is the price. The list price of the Razer Blade Stealth i7-8550U with a 256 GB SSD is at about 1600 Euros (~$1900; $1699 with a 512 GB SSD in the US). Added to this are 520 Euros (~$618) for the Razer Core V2, so you quickly reach 2120 Euros (~$2518) and that does not include the graphics card. However, it is tempting to sit in the office with an inconspicuous notebook during the day and transform this into a gaming monster at night.

Razer Blade Stealth QHD i7-8550U - 11/28/2017 v6
Daniel Puschina

Chassis
91 /  98 → 93%
Keyboard
73%
Pointing Device
83%
Connectivity
61 / 80 → 76%
Weight
71 / 35-78 → 83%
Battery
88%
Display
86%
Games Performance
57 / 68 → 84%
Application Performance
85 / 87 → 97%
Temperature
87 / 91 → 95%
Noise
92%
Audio
80 / 91 → 88%
Average
79%
86%
Subnotebook - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Razer Blade Stealth (QHD i7-8550U) Laptop Review
Daniel Puschina, 2017-12- 2 (Update: 2017-12- 4)