Schenker XMG Neo 15 with Oasis liquid cooling put to the test: Cool and quiet high-performance gaming at last?
Who wouldn't want to play their favorite games on a completely silent gaming laptop without a fan in the (distant) future? Okay, Stadia and the like have taken a step in this direction, but they have other drawbacks, such as latencies, lack of WQHD resolution, dependence on a provider, expensive prices etc.
Fanless laptops, even good ones, already exist, such as the Macbook Air, the HP ProBook X360 11 or various convertibles or Chromebooks. But they are still not real gaming laptops. Other solutions will have to make do until the technology is finally ready.
Thank goodness that at least some manufacturers are still willing to experiment. Schenker, for example, has equipped this year's Neo 15 with a port for an external liquid cooling system and an additional internal liquid cooling circuit. The manufacturer also offers an external water cooling system named XMG Oasis, which costs EUR 199 extra.
The advantages are clearly noticeable in our review of the Neo 15 with an RTX 3080 Ti, but one should not expect too much: the experiment succeeds, but there is definitely room for improvement. Our measurement results attest to a significant drop in the core temperatures of the CPU and GPU, and surface temperatures also benefit.
Things becomes a little more complicated in terms of noise. When gaming and under heavy loads, the Neo remains much quieter with the Oasis. However, the Oasis itself isn't necessarily quiet; its single fan does not spin particularly quietly in the default "Balanced" mode (the highest mode). While this is quieter than the loud fans of the Neo during gaming, the Oasis is clearly louder during light loads or in office use.
The Oasis' other fan modes "Quiet" and "Very Quiet" can only change this to a limited extent, especially since an annoying electronic whirring in the latter mode renders the advantage of the now quieter laptop fan obsolete. The Oasis thus proves less useful for office use, but high temperatures and volumes do not play a role here anyway, so you can turn the Oasis off.
The Oasis certainly confers performance benefits, but only in cases of extreme load and when thermal limits are reached. Since this rarely happens, the performance gains are rather minor and rare.
All in all, we welcome the manufacturer's willingness to experiment and we hope to see further attempts, preferably with compatible solutions from other manufacturers, since this is the only way for new solutions for age-old problems to come onto the market.
Our complete review reaveals all advantages and disadvantages of the combination and especially how the Neo 15 performs without the Oasis.