Razer might be best known for its RGB-bedazzled gaming gear, but the laptop we have for review today is aimed more at creative professionals. Incorporating some of the best hardware specs available in a laptop today, the Razer Blade 15 Studio is a content creation monster.
What is it?
The spec sheet includes a 10th-gen 8-core Intel Core i7, 32GB of RAM with the option to upgrade to 64GB and 1TB of fast SSD storage. Visuals are handled by a beautiful 15-inch 4K OLED touchscreen display with 100% DCI-P3 colour gamut and an NVIDIA Quadro RTX 5000 that provides 16GB of VRAM.
The Quadro is an interesting inclusion, since Razer’s other machines would usually include a GeForce graphics processor, which provides a more cost-effective solution for gaming performance. NVIDIA’s Quadro graphics line is geared towards raw horsepower for heavy workstation tasks like video rendering, 3D modelling, and other applications.
What’s good about it?
The Razer Blade 15 Studio performs extremely well in difficult processing tasks for a laptop. Test renders I ran in Blender came out very quickly, and using Adobe Premiere was a very smooth experience, even with large video files. The CPU power is on par with desktop performance from a few generations ago, while the graphics processing can rival some current desktops.
The build quality of the laptop is impressive. It has a solid metal chassis, with a sturdy hinge and great keyboard feel. On the exterior of the laptop is a scratch-resistant anodized silver finish that Razer calls Mercury White. The touchpad is large and smooth with positive click feedback all the way around. Ignoring the branding and Windows, it could almost be mistaken for a MacBook.
I can’t say enough good things about the display. Colours are reproduced beautifully and accurately, and the backlight can go retina-searingly bright if you wanted it to. That’s a good thing, because the glossy finish is very prone to reflections at lower brightness.
Connectivity is handled well; the Blade 15 Studio includes an inbuilt SD card reader, USB-C charging capability, a full-size HDMI plug, and three USB-A ports.
What’s not so good about it?
With such a solid build and all that hardware packed inside, portability is not this laptop’s strong suit. It’s large, heavy, and can run a bit hot under heavy workloads. Compared to lugging around an editing rig, it’s a big step up, of course, but I would hesitate to carry this laptop around all day on foot or bicycle – or even to use it for extended periods on my lap.
Battery life is a concern for the Razer Blade 15 Studio as well. Under a light workload it lasts around five or six hours, but any heavy lifting – like tasks the laptop is designed for – will empty the battery much more promptly. During these tasks, Windows estimated battery life at under two hours, and I found that to be roughly correct. The included charging brick is, well, a brick – it’s huge and heavy which further detracts from the portability of this machine.
How does it run?
Using the 15-inch 4K OLED panel is an absolute treat. Its bright backlight, smooth response time and vivid colour accuracy make for an incredible experience whether you’re using it for art, gaming, or simple media consumption. Picking colours for digital drawing is made easy with a calibrated display.
This wouldn’t be a true Razer review if I didn’t try some gaming on it too, and the laptop performed admirably. While plugged in, the Blade 15 Studio is capable of running Overwatch in 4K on the Ultra preset and maintaining a stable 120 frames per second, even in heavy team fights with a lot of action going on. The bright colours of Overwatch also benefit a lot from that gorgeous display. Even more graphically demanding games like Horizon Zero Dawn run relatively well on this powerhouse laptop.
While on battery power, the laptop’s graphical performance suffers. Running the 3DMark Time Spy benchmark (Time Spy 1.2, default settings, 1440p), the machine received a score of 3508 on battery power, but it scored a very impressive 7494 while plugged in.
Should I buy it?
It should be mentioned the Razer Blade 15 Studio will likely vary in price locally depending on where you shop, but it will provide an eyewatering invoice no matter where you get it. Razer themselves have the price on their online store at just shy of $8500. Overseas the machine sells for US$4300 which converts to $5994 at the time of writing.
Beware that some identical-looking models are still shipping with a slightly older Intel i7 9750H compared to the latest 10th-gen Intel i7 10875H included in our review unit. I found examples from JB Hi-Fi and the Microsoft Store with this older processor priced at $7300.
The Razer Blade 15 Studio is a complete package for creatives – with one machine you’ve got sheer processing power to handle nearly any task, and a beautiful calibrated 4K OLED display. Compared to building a desktop machine, it may be more expensive, but a one-stop option is a very attractive proposition.
Overall, the Razer Blade 15 Studio is a killer option if you need an all-in-one machine to do creative work with. The calibrated display alone makes it worthy of consideration for such tasks, and adding the Quadro RTX 5000 with so much video memory is icing on the cake.
However, if you’re looking for a machine primarily for gaming, study, or work, you can find significantly better value elsewhere. Razer’s own lineup includes slightly cheaper machines that ought to be just as good for gaming, and if you’re willing to build your own, a desktop machine can also offer significantly better value.