Illegear is probably the biggest surprise of a brand I have ever encountered in my short time of reviewing PCs and laptops for Geekturf. It’s a brand that not many are familiar with and not exactly the popular choice when it comes to Bruneian’s radar, despite the brand actually coming from Malaysia.
It is honestly a shame because it really is a force to be reckoned with in terms of design, build and price point which is arguably something every average PC gamer here can agree with.
First up to the plate is the Illegear Laguna GTX1070Ti, which falls under the brand’s lifestyle gaming category as it combines power and style under its sleek aluminium finish, complete with RGB lighting and minimal design.
My initial first impression of the Laguna was with an apathetic squint. It’s bulk and size looked like a heft to carry and, after seeing the bezel around the screen, made it odd in a world where everyone’s trying to shrink the borders of displays to the rim.
But they say, never to judge a book by it’s cover and this certainly applies to the Laguna where its strength lies within as well as over time.
When it comes to gaming laptops, most brands tend to exaggerate the characteristics by adding all these edgy factors and flashy gimmicks that they think would make us flock to their stores with bags of money.
Contrary to that, I enjoy the minimal attempt of a design to the Laguna simply because it isn’t trying to be anything more than to keep its low profile of a design. The metallic finish adds a premium feel to the exterior and placing your hands on the base gives you a solid grounding as you type or press your keys while in game.
The power button in the top centre gives you this cool looking mini Arc Reactor design which is kind of reminiscent of Ironman but what really tops the idea is the touchpad that lights up upon contact. If you take a step back and look at the laptop overall, you can kind of see the Ironman-like design as the touchpad lights up – which you can also customise the colour through Illegear’s software.
With great power comes great weight! That’s something to keep in mind even when it comes to a laptop that prides itself on performance and gaming capabilities. The Laguna isn’t shy to show that it packs a punch with its build – sturdy and solid but not heavy enough to feel like you’re carrying a brick in your backpack.
The back and bottom have well placed vents that compliment the Unique Heatpipe Cooling it prides itself with that guarantees to keep your laptop cool even while gaming. Additionally, this is the first time I’ve seen a small square driver at the bottom which houses the subwoofer, and it performs quite well.
The side ports like power, USB 3.0, ethernet, thunderbolt, display, HDMI, audio and even an SD Card slot are nothing special but having them is always welcomed when it comes to gaming and productivity work such as video editing.
The Laguna model we got was packed with the GTX1070 Ti and 8GB RAM and though that may not sound like much, this laptop is still able to power through the latest games in your library. For this review, we pushed the Laguna through Overwatch, Far Cry 5 and Apex Legends (of course!) which are mostly shooters and it was interesting to see how the 144hz display does with these triple A titles.
Overwatch is the least tasking of the three in terms of graphics so the Laguna performed without a hitch at 60fps and smooth as silk throughout. Far Cry 5 is when things get a bit more interesting since there are more textures for the GPU to render and though it stutters a bit during the benchmark test, actual gameplay was acceptable – stable and solid at 60fps.
The hiccups start to show when things start getting hectic, explosions everywhere and NPCs coming from every corner, comes off as a minor annoyance when you’re trying to react to the action but otherwise a passable problem that could be solved with a future upgrade for the laptop.
Apex Legends faces similar issues with the minor stutters in frames but this could be the combination of my internet speed and early iterations of the game which may still suffer from glitches. The animations of the main menu worked smoothly but frames start to drop once the map loads up, stutters are more noticeable with the rendering of the background as well as all the other players dropping down. Things started stabilising once my squad was on the ground and even hostile moments were smooth enough for me to land a few (lucky) kills.
To ensure a satisfactory gaming experience, I recommend running on medium to high settings with the Laguna for most games unless you’re willing to go through the technicality of tweaking your graphic settings and know how to optimise them from game to game.
Overall, the Illegear Laguna still packs a punch where needed and though it’s bulky cosmetics makes it stand out among the near bezelless slim crowd, its price and performance is something worth noting when you are on a tight budget.
Now that you know about the brand, you’d also be happy to know that PressPlay Enterprise supply their line up of products in Brunei. For more information and orders, be sure to check them out on Facebook & Instagram.
Want to get B$100 off for this laptop at PressPlay? Use this Promo Code: LAGUNA2019