The Metabox P960ED is the first laptop I’ve had with a 16.1” screen. In this review we’ll find out what this machine with RTX 2060 graphics is capable of. I’ll be looking at gaming performance, thermals, overclocking, battery life, and everything in between.
Starting with the specs my unit has an Intel i7-8750H CPU, Nvidia RTX 2060 graphics, 32GB of memory running in dual channel at DDR4-2666, a 16.1” 1080p 144Hz screen, and a 500GB M.2 NVMe SSD. It’s also got gigabit ethernet, 802.
11ac WiFi, and Bluetooth 5, however hardware can be customized while ordering. The laptop has a metallic body and the lid is a matte gunmetal colour, while the interior is matte black, no sharp corners or edges anywhere.
The dimensions of the laptop are 38cm in width, 25.2cm in depth, and about 2cm in height, so not too different from many 15 inch laptops. The weight of the laptop is listed at 2.1kg barebones, so expect differences based on hardware selection.
My configuration came in at 2.2kg, and just under 2.9kg with the 180 watt power brick and cable for charging included. As mentioned the screen is 16.1 inches, the first laptop I’ve ever had with this size.
The panel is IPS-level with a 1080p resolution and 144Hz refresh rate, no G-Sync here. The bezels are around 1.3cm on the sides and 1.2cm on the top based on my own measurements, smaller than usual for one of these Clevo units as they’re using that larger 16 inch panel.
I’ve measured the current colour gamut of the screen using the Spyder 5 Pro, and my results returned 95% of sRGB, 68% of NTSC and 73% of AdobeRGB. At 100% brightness I measured the panel at 303 nits in the center, and with an 890:1 contrast ratio, so overall fairly decent for a laptop.
I’ve taken a long exposure photo in a dark room as a worst case backlight bleed test, and there was a fair bit of bleed up the top, the left corner in particular was occasionally noticeable during darker scenes in games, though this will vary between laptop and panel.
There was an average amount of screen flex, not surprising as it’s on the thinner side, however the hinges being out towards the far corners help with stability. There were no problems opening the laptop with one finger, demonstrating an even weight distribution, no issues using it on my lap.
The camera is found above the display in the center. These Clevo units usually have a 1080p camera, but this one has a 720p camera, which I think is because they’ve had to make sacrifices in order to get it up the top in the thin bezel.
The microphone on the other hand sounds excellent. The keyboard in my unit had three zones of RGB backlighting which could be controlled through the included control center software, however there is also the option of upgrading to a keyboard with per key lighting control if you prefer.
I had no problems typing with the keyboard, the right shift is a little smaller but that’s not too uncommon, here’s how typing sounds to give you an idea of what to expect. There was a little keyboard flex while pushing down hard, but overall it was quite solid and there’s absolutely no issues during normal use.
The glass touchpad has precision drivers and was excellent, possibly the smoothest feeling one I’ve ever used. The touchpad itself does not press down, however it has physically separate left and right click buttons.
The coolest thing of all was that it’s actually got an in-glass fingerprint sensor, so after setting up Windows Hello the touchpad will glow where you need to place your finger in order to log in. Fingerprints and dirt show up fairly easily on the matte black interior, but as a smooth surface they’re easy to clean.
On the left there’s the only side exhaust vent, so no hot air blowing on your hand if you’re right handed, along with most of the I/O, including the power input, HDMI 2.0 output, mini DisplayPort 1.
3 output, two USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C ports, the first of which also has DisplayPort 1.3 available however no Thunderbolt here, followed by a USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A port. On the right there are 3.5mm headphone and microphone jacks, second USB 3.
1 Gen1 Type-A port, SD card slot, gigabit ethernet port and Kensington lock. Initially I was thinking it was good that most of the I/O and air exhaust were on the left, however having the ethernet port on the right means it may get in the way of your mouse if you’ve got limited space, as those cables are usually harder to bend.
On the back there’s just air exhaust vents towards the left and right corners, while the front just has some status LEDs towards the left hand side. Underneath there’s heaps of ventilation holes to assist air flow.
The two speakers are found on the front left and right corners and face down, they sound alright, still clear at high volumes but no bass at all. The bottom panel can be removed easily by taking out 11 screws with a Phillips head screwdriver.
Once removed the keyboard needs to be popped off, and there are a further 5 screws here. Once inside from left to right we get access to the two M.2 slots, two memory slots, WiFi card and 2.5 inch drive bay.
There are also three fans for the heatsinks, and we’ll see how well these do soon. Powering the laptop is a 4 cell 62 Watt hour battery, and with a full charge and just watching YouTube videos with the screen on half brightness, keyboard lighting off and background apps disabled, I was able to use it for 4 hours and 8 minutes.
The Intel integrated graphics were in use during this test, thanks to Nvidia Optimus. While playing the Witcher 3 with medium settings and Nvidia’s battery boost set to 30 FPS the battery lasted for 1 hour and 15 minutes, and the frame rate didn’t drop at any point.
Overall the battery lasted longer than I expected, and I never saw the battery lose power while using it, the slim 180 watt brick seemed to be adequate. Thermal testing was completed with an ambient room temperature of 24 degrees Celsius, so expect different temperatures in different environments.
Also keep in mind there are heatpipes shared between processor and graphics, so a change in one component may affect the other. Starting at the bottom of the graph, at idle the temperatures were good, considering my that the fans were silent.
The gaming tests were done with Watch Dogs 2, as I find it to use a good combination of CPU and GPU, while the stress tests were done by running the Aida64 stress test and the Heaven benchmark at the same time in order to attempt to fully utilize both the processor and graphics.
In all tests the fans were left at default, however there was no change when setting the fan speed to maximum, so under these workloads at stock the fans were at full speed already, no need to test both fan speeds.
Overall the temperatures are looking very good for this hardware, most likely due to the three fans inside. These are the average clock speeds for the same tests just shown, and although power limit throttling was taking place on the CPU under these combined loads, the performance is still quite good for the temperatures.
We can see that by applying the -0.12v undervolt to the CPU we’re able to improve performance a bit, as this helped reduce the effect of the power limit throttling. Under a combined CPU and GPU load the CPU TDP was running at 39 watts, so a little under the 45 watt TDP of the i7-8750H CPU.
I’ve seen limits like this used in the past to help reduce thermal throttling, however as we’ve seen here the temperatures are quite good, so it probably wouldn’t hurt to boost the TDP. These are the clock speeds I got while just running CPU only stress tests without any GPU load, and without that combined load the results are better.
There was still some power limit throttling at stock, but the undervolt took care of that allowing for full performance in this test. These are the temperatures from the same stress test, with the undervolt applied it was also running cooler as the CPU TDP dropped.
To demonstrate how this translates into practical performance I’ve got some Cinebench CPU benchmarks here. Full performance was achieved with single core in either test, as power limit throttling only takes place under multicore workloads, and once undervolted we’re getting full speed of the i7.
Here are the GPU only clock speeds while under a graphical only stress test, and the RTX 2060 was power limit throttling under both tests. With the overclock applied there were no changes to the temperatures as it was power limit throttling.
As for the external temperatures where you’ll actually be putting your hands, at idle it was in the low 30s, fairly average. While gaming and under stress test it got to the mid 40s in the center, a little warm but not too bad on the actual keys, and the wrist rest area was still cool comparatively.
As for the fan noise produced by the laptop I’ll let you have a listen to some of these tests. At idle it was pretty much silent, then while gaming and under stress test the fans were at maximum by default, although you do have the option of changing this in the control center software, and considering the temperatures we saw earlier it should be fine to run them quieter.
Finally let’s take a look at some gaming benchmarks, I’ve tested these games with the latest Nvidia drivers and Windows updates to date installed. Metro Exodus was tested using the built in benchmark, and this is the first time I’ve tested this game so I don’t have anything else to compare it with at the moment.
Only low and normal settings were able to get above 60 FPS in this test, and the RTX setting at the top is just using the built in RTX preset, which uses ultra settings with ray tracing set to high and DLSS on.
Battlefield 5 was tested in campaign mode and not in multiplayer mode, as it’s easier to consistently reproduce the test run. The purple bars show performance with RTX disabled, and it was working well, even ultra settings were playable at 77 FPS.
With RTX on, shown by the green bars, the performance drops quite a lot and was only really playable now at low and medium settings. With RTX and DLSS on, shown by the red bars, the frame rate does rise back up, but in my honest opinion it looked pretty bad, just too blurry, I wouldn’t use it.
Far Cry New Dawn was tested with the built in benchmark, and this is another new game for me so I don’t have any other data to compare it with at the moment, however we’re able to get above 60 FPS with this test at ultra settings so the laptop can’t be doing all that bad.
Far Cry 5 was also tested with the built in benchmark, and compared to the newer Far Cry New Dawn results just shown the frame rates here are higher in this game with decent results. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was tested with the built in benchmark, and the results were alright for this test, with 60 FPS possible at very high settings.
This seems to be a pretty CPU heavy game, or at least the DRM is. Fortnite was tested with the replay feature, and as a well optimized game even at epic settings it was running very well, easily over 100 FPS averages, while high settings looks like a good match for the 144Hz display.
As expected it was a similar deal with Overwatch, which was tested playing in the practice range. We didn’t hit the 300 FPS frame cap here, however even with epic settings we’re getting an average frame rate around the refresh rate of the screen, a nice result.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider was tested with the built in benchmark, and it was performing quite well in this test, with above 60 FPS averages possible even with maximum settings. CS:GO was tested using the Ulletical FPS benchmark, and I was seeing around 200 FPS with little changes between the setting levels.
Rainbow Six Siege was tested with the built in benchmark, and was performing very well as expected. I’ve noticed that this game seems to heavily benefit from Nvidia’s Turing architecture, when I compare it with GTX test results the frame rates are quite a lot higher, so no issues here.
Watch Dogs 2 is a demanding game, but it doesn’t need a high frame rate to play. I can play it just fine with a solid 30 FPS, so even ultra settings were working perfectly fine for me, with the 1% low well above my worst case requirement.
I expected worse as this is a pretty CPU heavy game, but it was going well. Ghost Recon is another resource demanding game and I’ve tested it using the built in benchmark. The results are about as expected, always performing poorly at max settings on most laptop hardware, but decent results at very high settings or below.
The Witcher 3 was tested with Hairworks disabled, and the results were quite nice. I had no problems playing it even with max settings, which were able to average 90 FPS with just below 60 FPS for the 1% low, but there were nice improvements to be had by stepping down to high settings.
DOOM was tested using Vulkan, and seems to be pretty well optimized, as shown by the high frame rates that were achieved even with ultra settings, with over 100 possible for the 1% low. The RTX 2060 graphics, i7-8750H CPU and dual channel memory combination are giving us great performance in all games tested, even at higher settings.
I will be comparing the RTX 2060 graphics against other options in future videos, so get subscribed for those if you’re new here. Now for the benchmarking tools, I’ve tested Heaven, Valley, and Superposition from Unigine, as well as Firestrike, Timespy, Port Royal and VRMark from 3DMark, just pause the video if you want a detailed look at these results.
As we saw earlier we’ve got the option of overclocking the graphics and undervolting the CPU to increase performance, so let’s see how this actually helps in gaming. Far Cry 5 was retested using the built in benchmark at 1080p, with the manual tweaks shown by the red bars.
There was very minimal improvements here, just a 1.7% higher average FPS at ultra settings. I’ve used Crystal Disk Mark to test the storage, and my 500GB Samsung EVO 970 Plus was getting very nice read and write speeds, however this will of course vary based on the storage you select.
The SD card slot was also going quite well with my V90 card, well at least on read speeds. For updated pricing check the links in the description, as prices will change over time. At the moment the base configuration goes for $2,600 AUD, so for my international viewers without our taxes, conversion brings that to about 1600 USD, but stuff here costs more too.
In the US the P960ED seems to be sold from other retailers for around $1450 USD. So what do you guys think about the Metabox P960ED laptop? Overall I think this is one of the best Clevo units from Metabox I’ve ever had, they’ve finally got a thin bezel model and the fingerprint scanner was nice.
It’s got good specs in a thin body, and despite a little power limit throttling the performance was still good and this made it easier for the temperatures to stay cooler compared to most other laptops with this level of hardware.
The game performance was great and battery life was decent, the only other problem I had was the backlight bleed which wasn’t great in my unit, but that will of course vary. Let me know what you guys thought about the P960ED laptop down in the comments, and leave a like to let me know if you found the review useful.
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