Novatech X1 GTX review

Price when reviewed

The folks at Novatech are obviously an ambitious bunch. As soon as they saw that we’d reviewed the superb Alienware M17x, they crammed the X1 GTX into a box and dared us to line it up against Dell’s finest.

Haul the Novatech from its box and it certainly looks the part, combining a glossy black exterior with silver-effect edging and an illuminated Novatech logo. That gleaming finish obsessively collects fingerprints, but there’s no denying it looks suitably expensive.

Open the lid and the air of extravagance continues, with clean lines and uninterrupted wristrest instantly reminiscent of the Alienware. As with the M17x, there are plenty of blue lights, with the row of media buttons, touchpad and neat touch-sensitive volume control all illuminated.

The X1 GTX holds its own when it comes to build quality too, feeling as solid as any laptop we’ve seen, with hardly any give in the wristrest and a respectable lack of flex from the screen. Also worth noting are the X1 GTX’s dimensions: it’s 68mm thick and weighs 5.7kg before you factor in the 1.1kg power brick, so it won’t be leaving the mains in a hurry.


The colossal 18.4in panel isn’t an edge-to-edge screen, despite looking the part. The wide expanse of glass gives way to a thin plastic bezel near the edge of the lid. The Novatech’s screen can’t match the Alienware’s panel on a technical level, either, offering a less generous but still Full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 and variable quality: while detail is sharp and there’s no sign of backlight bleed, definite graining can be seen in swathes of white and colours just aren’t as vibrant as they were on the M17x.

Novatech X1 GTX

The keyboard, meanwhile, is a Scrabble-tile design, similar to that seen on expensive machines such as the Sony VAIO VGN-AW21XY/Q and current-generation of MacBook Pros. The Novatech’s keyboard offers comparable quality, with a rock-solid base, comfortable typing action and full-sized numberpad. We’d have preferred a little more travel on the keys, but it’s hardly a deal-breaker.

There’s even enough room to the left of the keyboard for a column of eight customisable buttons. Using the X1 GTX’s GameKey software you can record and assign macros to these keys, and although you don’t get the sophisticated profiles or options that specialist keypads offer, it’s a touch that keen gamers will appreciate.

The trackpad, on the other hand is, a distinctly acquired taste, proving slow and sluggish when prodded forcefully – we found it worked slightly better with a lighter touch. The rocker button offered a bit too much resistance for our liking too.

As you’d expect from such a monster of a laptop, the X1 GTX is well-endowed in the ports department. You get four USB and one eSATA, HDMI and DVI-I outputs, a 3-in-1 card reader and even a CATV port, although there’s no DisplayPort output, which the Alienware included.


Warranty1 yr return to base

Physical specifications

Dimensions439 x 302 x 68mm (WDH)
Travelling weight6.8kg

Processor and memory

ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo P9700
Motherboard chipsetNvidia MCP79
RAM capacity4.00GB
Memory typeDDR3
SODIMM sockets free0
SODIMM sockets total2

Screen and video

Screen size18.4in
Resolution screen horizontal1,920
Resolution screen vertical1,080
Resolution1920 x 1080
Graphics chipsetNvidia GeForce GTX 280M
Graphics card RAM1.00GB
VGA (D-SUB) outputs0
HDMI outputs1
S-Video outputs0
DVI-I outputs1
DVI-D outputs0
DisplayPort outputs0


Hard disk usable capacity640GB
Spindle speed578RPM
Internal disk interfaceSATA/300
Hard diskFujitsu MHZ2320BJ G2
Optical disc technologyBlu-ray reader
Battery capacity4,650mAh
Replacement battery price inc VAT£0


Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec
802.11a supportyes
802.11b supportno
802.11g supportyes
802.11 draft-n supportyes
Integrated 3G adapterno

Other Features

Wireless hardware on/off switchno
Wireless key-combination switchyes
ExpressCard34 slots1
ExpressCard54 slots1
PC Card slots0
USB ports (downstream)4
eSATA ports1
PS/2 mouse portno
9-pin serial ports0
Parallel ports0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports0
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports0
3.5mm audio jacks4
SD card readeryes
Memory Stick readeryes
MMC (multimedia card) readeryes
Smart Media readerno
Compact Flash readerno
xD-card readerno
Pointing device typeTouchpad
Audio chipsetRealtek HD Audio
Speaker locationFront, above keyboard, bottom
Hardware volume control?no
Integrated microphone?yes
Integrated webcam?yes
Camera megapixel rating1.3mp
Fingerprint readeryes
Smartcard readerno
Carry caseno

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use1hr 50min
Battery life, heavy use1hr 34min
Overall application benchmark score1.36
Office application benchmark score1.42
2D graphics application benchmark score1.53
Encoding application benchmark score1.23
Multitasking application benchmark score1.24
3D performance (crysis) low settings35fps
3D performance settingHigh

Operating system and software

Operating systemWindows Vista Home Premium 64-bit
OS familyWindows Vista
Recovery methodRecovery partition

Disclaimer: Some pages on this site may include an affiliate link. This does not effect our editorial in any way.

Todays Highlights
How to See Google Search History
how to download photos from google photos