Gaming notebooks are usually costly but the Gigabyte Sabre 15 isn’t.
The notebook has the features that you would expect in a gaming notebook such as a fully backlit RGB keyboard, a FullHD IPS level display and there is even room for expansion though we’ll touch on that a bit more later.
The strange thing is that this is all packaged in a sleek black chassis that doesn’t scream I AM A GAMER IN MY FREE TIME, and that’s lovely.
But price is just one consideration when shopping for a new notebook so how does the Sabre 15 cope with the demands of gamers and the age of content creation we have found ourselves in?
The short answer is, rather well, but let’s take a closer look.
What’s in the box?
The box in this instance is the chassis, inside the physical box you get the notebook, a power brick and adapter, and that’s it.
Inside the actual notebook you will find an 8th Generation Intel Core i7- 8750H which boasts six cores and boy does it work hard. In Cinebench our results shifted between 970 and 1010cb which is more than impressive for this thin (relative to other bulky gaming notebooks) notebook.
We never experienced uncomfortable heat coming from the notebook. That is impressive because not only is that beefy i7 in the Sabre 15, but there’s a GPU in there as well.
Specifically the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB. There is an option to go with the non-Ti GTX 1050 2GB version but we recommend going with the 4GB iteration for reasons we’ll get to in a bit.
In terms of storage there is both HDD storage (1TB) and an M.2 SSD (120GB) inside the Sabre 15. We do wish that there was a bit more SSD storage but as we mentioned earlier you can open the bottom of the chassis and swap out RAM and M.2 storage for something a bit more substantial.
As we’ve already mentioned the CPU in this notebook is great. The 16GB of DDR4 RAM is ample for most things and we were streaming from Twitch, playing games and chatting on Discord without breaking a sweat.
Speaking of gaming, how does the Sabre 15 fare?
On medium settings we noted an average frame rate of 45fps – 60fps in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey at the Medium preset.
Using Cinebench’s OpenGL GPU test we noted an average frame rate of 93fps but we didn’t find this to be indicative of real world performance.
Where this GPU really shines however, is in esports titles.
In Dota 2 we noted average frame rates of 60fps on high preset and it was a stable 60fps even when there were too many particle effects to keep count of on screen.
Granted, this is not a high performance gaming machine but so long as you know that and don’t expect to be seeing 4K resolutions you might find yourself impressed with the Sabre 15. We certainly were.
Overall the performance of the Sabre 15 is decent for what you’re paying for.
In our Tropic Thunder test which sees us watching Tropic Thunder over and over again until the battery gives in we were pleasantly surprised when we heard the credits roll for the fourth time.
Why Tropic Thunder? With credits the movie is exactly two hours long which makes counting the number of plays before the battery runs out a bit simpler.
Napkin math will tell you that this means the Sabre 15 will make it through the average work day on battery alone. Your mileage may vary especially if you strain the battery more than we were but with WiFi running and the display at full brightness, we feel it is ample.
The big question we have yet to answer is how much this notebook costs.
Local distributor Rectron tells us that the recommended retail price for this notebook is R18 499 and that is a great for what you get. There are various iterations of the Sabre 15 which sport a better GPU, better storage and the
This is an excellent notebook for an entry level gamer or content creator. The i7 is ample for most tasks and the 1050 Ti can handle gaming without breaking much of a sweat.
Gigabyte has released an incredibly solid and affordable notebook with the Sabre 15 and if you’re looking for an affordable gaming notebook that can double as a work machine then look no further.
Disclaimer: The Gigabyte Sabre 15 was sent to Hypertext for review purposes and will be returned.