Medion has previously impressed us with some of its low cost, yet very powerful gaming laptops. The X6813 is the latest model to be added to its gaming stable.
Our configuration, the Erazer X6813 MD97762, packs a Klitschko-style punch thanks to its Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia GeForce GTX 460M graphics. Currently you can buy it from the Medion website for £999.
Let's be honest here, the Erazer X6813 is certainly no looker. Medion has tried to give it an aggressive look by using lots of sharp angles and cutaway edges. It has also added a brushed finish to the lid and wrist rest, but none of this can hide the fact that the machine's chassis is made out of quite cheap looking matte plastic. However, that doesn’t mean that it feels flimsy -- far from it, as this is a hefty beast, both in terms of its size and weight, and feels like it will stand up to quite a bit of abuse. One thing we're certainly not keen on though is the rather large power supply. It's about twice the size of a standard laptop one.
Like a lot of today's machines, this model has an isolated style keyboard. Given the size of the X6813, Medion has had plenty of room to pack in a decent sized keyboard, but strangely it has decided to reduce the size of the return key to only single key height. Nevertheless, this doesn't affect your typing all that much, as you soon get used to it. The keyboard is quite responsive too, but it feels a bit rattly under your fingers and there is a bit of flex in the middle, so it's certainly far from perfect. The touchpad is a reasonable size and the two chunky buttons respond with a healthy click when pressed.
We've criticised Medion's laptops in the past for their low resolution screens, but we've got no such complaints with this model's 15.6-inch display, as it has a full high-definition 1920x1080 pixel resolution. As a result pictures, videos and graphics really do look pin-sharp. However, the display isn’t completely fault free, as it struggles to produce really deep and convincing black levels -- even the darkest scenes in movies and games are enveloped in a slight grey mist from the backlight.
This laptop isn’t found wanting when it comes to its line-up of ports. Around the back you'll find an HDMI socket nestled next to the standard VGA port. There's also a Gigabit Ethernet socket located back here as well as an eSata port. The latter is handy for hooking up the Erazer to high-speed peripherals like external hard drives. It has two USB 2.0 ports and two faster USB 3.0 sockets, as well as a memory card reader. The 750GB hard drive provides plenty of storage space for movies, games and music tracks, and there's also a Blu-ray drive you can use to watch HD movies.
When it comes to raw power, this model has no problem delivering the goods. It's built around a quad-core Intel Core i7 2630QM processor that has been clocked at 2.0GHz. This is a quad core chip that really can give it some when it gets going. Sensibly Medion has backed this up with a large 8GB helping of RAM. It's no surprise then that it performed so well in the PCMark05 benchmark test, racking up a massive score of 9,178. This makes it one of the fastest laptops we've had in for testing.
As you would expect on a gaming machine, this model also boasts a very fast dedicated Nvidia Geforce GTX 460M chip that supports Direct X 11 graphics. It blitzed our 3DMark06 test, putting in a lightning-quick score of 16,063, so it'll have no problems running the latest first-person shooters at ferocious frame rates.
Given the sheer size and weight of the thing, you're not likely to carry around the X6813 all that often. However, its battery life wasn't actually that bad for a 15-inch model -- especially one with such powerful components. In our intensive Battery Eater test it managed to keep running for an hour and 20 minutes, which is pretty similar to other 15-inch models.
Overall, the X6813 is a decent enough low-cost gaming machine, but not one that completely blew us away. It lacks the high-end styling of many of its competitors and the screen could be better. However, when it comes to performance, we've got little to complain about because its high-level components really do deliver a lot of gaming power.
Edited by Jennifer Whitehead.