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Evesham Voyager C720 Preview

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A few years ago the concept of a laptop that could be used for gaming was something of an oxymoron. Laptops were great for portability but if you wanted to play games properly, at high resolutions with features turned on, your only option was a proper desktop computer with a proper graphics card. However, that’s simply no longer the case.

Both ATI and nVidia both offer top drawer mobile graphics chips that give laptops almost all the power of their desktop counter parts. Up until recently the brightest star in the mobile laptop firmament that we'd seen was Dell’s Inspiron XPS Gen 2, an awesome looking, hugely powerful, and hugely expensive machine.

It cost a mighty £2,561 at launch – and if you’ve bought one you probably won’t be best pleased to learn that Evesham are offering a machine that’s significantly faster for about a grand less. Hey, don’t you just love computers. Admittedly, Dell is now selling the XPS for £1,798 but that’s still more than the Evesham Voyager C720, though we’ll have to wait and see what Dell comes out with to compete. The reason the Evesham is faster is because hot on the heels of its success with the GeForce 7800 GTX GPU, nVidia has released the mobile version, named the GeForce Go 7800 GTX, and it’s one of these that’s powering Evesham's new machine.

What’s truly impressive about the part is that it features virtually the same specifications as the desktop version – primarily the 24 pixel pipelines and eight vertex shaders that make the desktop GTX and GT parts such performance heavyweights.

The only real concession to this being a mobile part is that nVidia has slightly reined in the clock speed, with it running at 400/1,100MHz for core and memory respectively compared to 430MHz and 1,200MHz for the desktop GTX. In fact, the clocks on the Go 7800 GTX are virtually that of the reference desktop GT part, which comes in at 400/1,200 – though of course most desktop GTs are in fact clocked higher. nVidia has clearly done well though to physically get the chip into a space constrained notebook chassis while keeping heat output down.

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