• Operating System: Windows 10 Home
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-8750H
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060
  • Memory: 8GB DDR4
  • Storage: 240GB SSD + 1TB HDD
  • Input/Output: 1x Gigabit LAN, 1x HDMI, 1x mini Displayport, 1x SD reader, 1x audio/mic combo jack, 3x USB 3.0 Type A, 1x USB 3.0 Type C
  • Dimensions: 385 x 267 x 27.8 mm
  • Weight: 2.7kg
  • Pros:
  • Display
  • Price
  • Cons:
  • Trackpad

Oasis Of Affordable Portable Gaming

Many a local have heard of them, but it’s been a while since ILLEGEAR made regular appearances in our magazine. Following the ONYX we reviewed a few weeks ago, we’ve now gotten our hands on two other models. One of the is the ILLEGEAR Laguna, a midrange level gaming notebook.

Unlike the (almost) standard black and red design you normally see, ILLEGEAR went with a mostly grey body with some black bezels for the Laguna’s display. The lid has a brushed finishing and two strips that have LED in them, which light up when the machine is powered on. Since it’s meant to be somewhat more budget-friendly, plastic is used for the outer shell. This also helps to keep the weight down, making it slightly less tiring to lug around. The triangular power button is placed above the centre of the keyboard, looking sleek with its programmable RGB LED.

The Laguna is a gaming notebook that’s relatively bulky looking, housing a large 15.6-inch IPS display and a keyboard with a numpad. It also has three USB 3.0 ports to go with a USB Type-C port, HDMI, and mini Displayport. The included SD card reader is also a welcome addition, while the Gigabit LAN is important for getting minimal latency for gaming.

Considering its asking price, the Laguna has quite a few praiseworthy aspects as well as minor annoyances. Let’s talk about what’s good first, such as the display. The choice of IPS itself means that this notebook gets good brightness levels and contrast. Thanks to a colour gamut of 100% sRGB, it’s also more than vibrant enough for watching movies or gaming.

Another thing that we noted, perhaps due to it only being a Nvidia GTX 1060, is that this notebook doesn’t have obnoxiously loud fans. While you can still hear the fans hum in the background, they get drown out once something plays on the speakers.

However, the keyboard’s quality was a bit questionable. At first, the way it is spaced out evenly is aesthetically pleasing. But due to the trackpad, it makes positioning your palms slightly awkward. The trackpad’s palm rejection is also not 100%, making it likely for the cursor to either move or scroll accidentally.

We also noted that there were some driver issues with the audio. The quality of the speaker itself is fine, but it seems to turn ‘off’ when the machine goes to sleep mode. Going to the device manager to disable and reenable it solves the issue.

CHIP CONCLUDE: Aside from some minor niggles that really shouldn’t be there, this is a solid gaming notebook for an affordable price that’s difficult to ignore.

(previously published in issue August 2018)