I’ve never been a fan of Gigabyte’s Aorus gaming laptops. They always felt a bit too clumsy in design and execution, trying too hard to be both gamery and businessy. So naturally, I wasn’t too keen on reviewing the new Aorus 15 2023 edition.
However, this new Aorus 15 is priced at just $2,759.00 before discounts and comes with the latest Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 graphics chip, paired with a 165Hz 15.6-inch QHD display and a 13th Gen i7-13700H processor.
Surprisingly, Gigabyte has made some refinements to the chassis design, so it no longer looks like the mutant love child its predecessors were. The improved design also brings better thermals, which is always welcome in a laptop.
Overall, the new Aorus 15 seems to be a serious contender in the ever-increasingly impressive mid-range gaming laptop space.
Gigabyte Aorus 15 Review
The design and build quality of the 2023 Aorus 15 are excellent. Gigabyte is using a metal chassis, which is great for durability, and at its thickest point, it measures just 2cm. The Aorus 15 has ports on the left, right, and back of the chassis, providing plenty of connectivity options.
The lid reminds me of Asus ROG designs, thanks to the silver Aorus logo in the dead center with an angled etched line in the corner. Additionally, the rear book hinge has the Aorus logo type embedded on some etched grooves, giving it a distinctive look, especially when the down-firing RGB from the display illuminates it.
This design is probably what gives away the Aorus 15 as a gaming laptop. Nevertheless, it’s an elegant design with a sophisticated and minimal gamer aesthetic, representing a step up from previous Aorus designs.
The keyboard on the Aorus 15 is lackluster, with odd feedback, making it easy to make typing mistakes. However, it does have all the gaming staples — full anti-ghosting, N-Key rollover, per-key macros, and three-zone RGB. Some might miss the per-key RGB, but this seems to be one of the first things to go with budget and mid-range gaming laptops. The trackpad isn’t the biggest and isn’t the smoothest to track, but you will likely be using an external mouse anyway.
The display is a 15.6-inch QHD display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440, which is a bit strange given the mass exodus of gaming laptops to 2560 x 1600 or 16:10 aspect ratio. The display is IPS with okay contrast but good color accuracy of 100% DCI-P3. It doesn’t support HDR, but games and content look rich with good viewing angles.
The display also has a 165Hz refresh rate with adaptive sync and works smoothly in games. Given the 1440p resolution mated to an RTX 4070, the Aorus 15 is easily capable of running games like Valorant, CoD, CS:GO at high frame rates, and the screen won’t be a bottleneck.
Above the display is a 1080p Webcam with Windows Hello support, which is a nice surprise. It works well, though I think it’s a tad bit too slow, but it’s still great to see this feature, especially in mid-range laptops.
Hidden in the keyboard deck are two 2W speakers, which sound pretty good but are obviously short on bass. They get decently loud, which is good for your video calls and gaming in a pinch, but otherwise, it’s better to stick to headphones.
Performance, Gaming, and Battery Life
The Aorus 15 I have for review came with an Intel 13th Gen Intel Core i7-13700H CPU, which has 6 power cores and 8 efficiency cores. It’s fast but not as fast as the newer 13700HX found in the Acer Predator Helios Neo 16. Gigabyte also went with 16GB of DDR5-4800 and 1TB M.2 SSD with an extra slot for expansion.
As a result, the Aorus 15 performs very well in single-core and multi-core tasks. So if you are a video editor, graphic designer, or developer, there’s plenty of power here.
Handling all the graphics processing is the new mobile RTX 4070 with 8GB memory and a maximum graphics power of 140W. That is more than enough to run games well over 60fps at the native 1440p resolution. If you then throw in DLSS 3.0 with Frame Generation, you will see numbers well over 120fps.
As I mentioned in my review of the Asus Zephyrus M16, I don’t think anyone really needs an RTX 4090 if gaming on the go is all you need. For most people, the RTX 4060 and 4070 hit the sweet spot for performance and price.
Also impressive is the thermal performance of the Aorus 15. The Windforce Infinity cooling tech this year has 5 heat pipes with two 72-blade fans and over 200 cooling fins distributed around the 4 exhausts. All this keeps the Aorus wonderfully cool under game loads. I was seeing highs of 65-75°C on the CPU and GPU. This also translates into a far less screaming machine while gaming which is always welcome.
Battery life on the Aorus 15 is likewise pretty good. I recorded 5.5 hours on a charge doing mostly office-type productivity work. That’s not bad unless you compare it with the Asus TUF A16, which managed over 10 hours of battery life.
Still, the Aorus 15 has Gigabyte’s unique Microsoft AI profile manager that uses both your usage patterns as well as crowd-sourced patterns to optimize the laptop for the best performance. I suspect that if I used it long enough, the laptop would learn my common tools and workflows and get me better battery life in the end.
The Aorus 15 2023 edition is a great evolution of the lineup. At just under $3000 (even more if you wait for discounts), this is a great gaming laptop. It’s built well, performs like a champ, and has everything the modern gamer needs to play and work efficiently. There is very little to fault here except for the average battery life.
That’s not really a deal-breaker, but you can’t deny that the Aorus 15 faces some tough competition in the mid-range sector this year, with other laptops like the Acer Predator Helios Neo, the Asus TUF A16, the Dell G16, and more, all being excellent alternatives to consider.
Gigabyte Australia kindly loaned the Aorus 15 to PowerUp for the purpose of this review.