Eluktronics MAX-17 vs MAX-15 Gaming Laptop Comparison
You need to know. About. In this detailed comparison, Ill look at pretty much everything to help you decide which one is right for you.. The major specs of both laptops Im testing here are the same. Both have an Intel: i7 9750H CPU, Nvidia, RTX, 2070 graphics, no Max Q. Here, 16gb of memory in dual channel and a 500gb NVMe M.2 SSD. As per the name, the MAX 15 has a 15 screen, and the MAX 17 has a 17. Both are 1080p 144Hz IPS panels. Theyre, both the same in terms of network connectivity, too theyve got gigabit, ethernet, WiFi, 5 and Bluetooth 5.. You can configure them a bit differently, though. The MAX 15 also has the option of RTX 2060 graphics, while the MAX 17 also has that, but also the option of GTX 1660 Ti.. You can find examples and updated prices linked in the description.. Both laptops are made of a magnesium alloy. The build quality of both was solid.. The MAX 15 is silver, while the MAX 17 is all matte black.. The 15 has the Eluktronics logo on the lid, while the 17s is all clean.. The interior of both is the same colour as the exterior again, all metal. Build. As youd expect, the MAX 17 weighs more than the MAX 15, its around 500g or 1.1lb heavier. Both have a 230 watt power. Brick, the only exception is the MAX 17, with GTX 1660 Ti, which has a lower powered 180 watt brick.
. Likewise, the MAX 17 is of course, larger to accommodate the bigger screen. However, the thickness is almost the same for both. As for screen differences, the MAX 15 was slightly better in terms of colour, gamut and brightness. However, the panel in the MAX 17 had better contrast and neither have G Sync. Backlight bleed was minimal, but about the same in both, but this will vary between laptops and panels.. Both laptops have a 720p camera with IR support for Windows, Hello down the bottom below the screen. Screen flex was similar in both and they both felt fairly sturdy. Due to the magnesium alloy build. Keyboard flex was similar and minimal on both when intentionally pushing down hard again, the metal body of both was quite solid.. The membrane keyboards in both appear to be exactly the same, and I liked typing with either.. The layout looks the same and I even measured them at the same dimensions.. They both have 4 zones of RGB backlighting, which illuminates all keys and secondary key functions.. They both have an extra button next to the power button above the keyboard, which can be used for cycling between the different performance modes. More on those soon. Both have glass, precision, touchpads. Theyre, both fairly sized, but the one in the MAX 17 is larger.. The one in the MAX 15 was noticeably better to use.. I thought the MAX 17 pressed down a bit strange in the far front. Corners. Fingerprints and dirt didnt really show up much on either due to the matte finish.
However, the silver of the MAX 15 did a better job in that regard, but both were easy to clean. Due to the smooth finish. Lets check out IO differences Ive got the MAX 17 on the bottom and MAX 15 on top. On the left. Both have a Kensington, lock air exhaust vent, USB 3.1 Gen2 Type, A port and 3.5mm mic and headphone jacks.. The MAX 15 also has its ethernet port. Here, the only difference. The right is identical. Both have a MicroSD card slot, two USB 3.1 Gen1 Type, A ports and another air exhaust vent.. The rest of the IO is on the back: both have a HDMI, 2.0 output, USB Type C port and power input.. The differences are that the MAX 17 on the bottom has Thunderbolt 3, while the MAX 15 on top does not.. The MAX 17 has its ethernet port here, while the MAX 15 has two mini DisplayPort outputs. The 17 has none.. Both laptops have a RGB light bar on the front, and this can be customized through the software. Underneath is quite similar, with both theyve just got air intake vents towards the back half of the machine.. They both open up extremely easily just take out 11 Phillips head screws, and the bottom panel comes right. Off., The internal layout is pretty much the same with both laptops.. There are two m.2 slots for storage, two memory slots and a WiFi card.. The only real, noteworthy difference is that the larger MAX 17 has a bigger battery.
. The speakers on both laptops are found on the left and right sides towards the front.. Listening to both side by side. The MAX 17 was noticeably better. It had more bass and also got louder with the sound at maximum volume. The MAX 17 also gave better results when it came to latencymon.. As mentioned, the battery in the MAX 17 is larger, its a 6 cell 91 watt hour battery, while the MAX 15 has a smaller 4 cell 62 watt hour, battery. Ive tested both with the screen brightness set to 50 background apps, disabled and all RGB lighting off.. While just watching YouTube videos, the MAX 17 lasted for 7 hours, 9 minutes, while the MAX 15 lasted for 4 hours, 55 minutes. For the specs. The MAX 17 is offering seriously impressive results compared to the other models. Ive tested., The MAX 15, is about average and still better compared to most others with this spec. However, as soon as I unplug it, while gaming, the frame rate wasnt capable of running at 30 FPS, like the other machines tested. Based on my test, if youre looking at gaming on battery power, I cant recommend the MAX 15. However, the 17 was ok. Im, not sure if this is just a one off issue with my machine. Though. Next lets take a look at thermals.. Both laptops were tested in an ambient room temperature of 21 degrees Celsius. Inside the heatpipe design, looks the same with three shared between the processor and graphics.
, Both laptops, let you select between three different performance modes, which, from lowest to highest, are office mode, game mode and Turbo mode. Office mode lets you select between three fan profiles or customize the curve, while game and turbo modes, let you enable fan boost which sets the fan to max speed.. Both laptops were also undervolted by 0.05v by default out of the box.. These are the CPU temperatures of both machines, while under combined CPU and GPU loads, well check the GPU results after so. For now just keep in mind. These are CPU only results, but for combined loads. The idle temps on the CPU were the same. Stress. Tests were done with the Aida64 CPU stress test and Heaven benchmark at the same time, and gaming was done playing Watch Dogs 2.. Both laptops have the same thermal throttle: caps on the CPU, so theres an 80 degree limit in office mode 85, degree limit in game mode and a 90 degree limit in turbo mode.. Interestingly, with the cooling pad in use on the MAX 17, I found the thermal throttle limit would rise, an additional 5 degrees and while gaming with the cooling pad, I was able to prevent thermal throttling for the first time on the MAX 17.. These are the CPU clock speeds while running these same CPU and GPU heavy tests.. In pretty much all cases, the larger MAX 17 was performing better than the MAX 15., Although both are thermal throttling at the defined limits.
The MAX 17 seems to suffer a bit less due to the larger chassis.. When we look at the GPU temperatures for these same combined, CPU and GPU workloads, the smaller MAX 15 was generally warmer.. This wasnt always the case, but for the most part, the bigger MAX 17 was a little cooler.. These are the GPU clock speeds from these same tests and the RTX 2070 in the larger MAX 17 was hitting higher clock speeds in all instances.. The difference was even larger when actually playing a game in game mode or turbo mode. So it will be interesting to see how gaming performance compares well check that soon. Heres. What were looking at in terms of Cinebench R20 scores from both machines with turbo mode enabled.. Both at stock and with the same undervolt applied, the MAX 15 was slightly ahead, both in single core and multicore performance. However, it was extremely close. As for the areas where youll actually be putting your hands. They were both quite similar when idling., With the stress tests going, the MAX 17 appeared to be just a little warmer, and then this was the same with game mode enabled., With the highest turbo mode enabled the MAX 15 was now a bit warmer, but realistically the Differences would be hard to notice. Heres. How fan noise sounded during these tests. Both were audible at idle. However, the MAX 17 ran a little quieter. With the stress tests. Going office mode was now a little louder on the MAX 17, and then all other modes of operation were about the same in this test with no real noticeable difference.
. Both laptops were already hitting maximum speed in game or turbo mode with the fans set to auto, which is why I didnt bother testing fan boost separately. Lets. Compare some games next., Both laptops were tested in turbo mode, with fan, boost, enabled for best results. Using the same version of Windows and Nvidia drivers. Red Dead Redemption 2 was tested using the games built in benchmark tool., Like the other graphs. Ive got the larger MAX 17 shown by the purple bars and the smaller MAX 15 shown by the red bars and the MAX 17 was performing a little better at all. Setting levels. Battlefield 5 was tested in campaign mode, and the results were a little closer together. Here, at least at the higher setting presets, where there was no major difference between the two laptops. Control was tested by running through the same area of the game on both machines and this time the larger MAX 17 was ahead at all setting levels with almost a 3, higher average frame rate at high settings. Apex Legends was tested with either all settings at maximum or all settings on the lowest possible values as it doesnt have predefined setting presets. The 144 FPS frame cap was being hit at minimum settings, so no difference there, but With everything maxed out, the MAX 17 had a nice 7 performance, boost. Call of Duty, Modern Warfare was tested in campaign mode and Ive also tested it with the settings either maxed out or at minimum.
. The MAX 17 was ahead here with almost a 3 higher average frame rate at max settings., Rather than talk through the rest of the games, which will take forever Ill just quickly skip through the rest of the results. As I tested 20 games in total at all, setting levels. Feel free to pause the video if you want to take a longer look at any of these graphs. But basically the summary is that the MAX 17 is pretty much always coming out slightly ahead in gaming. Performance., On average over these 20 games tested, the MAX 17 is 3.7 faster in terms of average FPS, when comparing tests done with the highest setting preset.. This makes sense, as both the CPU and GPU were performing a bit better in the MAX 17. During the thermal testing., As you can see, it really varies based on the specific game.. Some saw basically no change, while others had much larger differences. Once we average everything out, though less than 4 isnt too meaningful. Hardly anything youll actually notice, while playing in any case, but technically the MAX 17 was consistently performing. Better. Ive also got the scores for the 3DMark Fire Strike Time Spy and Port Royal benchmarks.. Unlike the games, the MAX 15 was just slightly ahead in all of these tests. Outside of gaming. Ive also tested Adobe Premiere, video exporting. In this test. The MAX 17 was just 5 seconds faster at exporting one of my laptop review videos at 4K.
So no real major difference., The RTX 2070 also didnt seem to matter too much here, given other GTX 1660 Ti based laptops were performing similarly., Ive, tested storage with Crystal disk mark, and the performance in both was about the same, which makes sense, given both of my Laptops have the same model of 500GB M.2 NVMe SSD inside. Results will vary based on the storage you select when ordering though. The MicroSD card slot performed. Similarly, however, there was more of a difference in write. Speed. Now, for the final difference, the price., You can check updated prices using the links in the description. At the time of recording the configuration with RTX 2070 graphics. That Ive tested here goes for 1600 USD for the MAX 15 or 200 more to get the same. Specs in the larger MAX 17. Theyre, both also available with RTX 2060 graphics for 200 less, while the MAX 17 has the option of stepping down further to the GTX 1660 Ti for another 100 less.. Finally, lets summarise the differences and similarities between these two machines to help you decide which you should get.. The obvious difference is the MAX 15 has a smaller 15 inch screen, while the MAX 17 has a larger 17 inch screen.. The screens in both were quite similar, though in terms of colour, gamut and brightness.. Some people really do prefer having a larger screen when they travel, though so the 17 could be worth it there.
This size difference puts the MAX 17, 500g or 1.1lb heavier than the MAX 15. However, when compared against other gaming laptops with this level of hardware inside both are significantly lighter in comparison., The specs in both were otherwise essentially the same in terms of CPU, GPU memory and storage. However, the MAX 17 does differ by having a 1660 Ti option which the MAX 15 is missing.. The layout of the internals was much the same, however, the MAX 17 was able to fit a larger 6 cell 91Wh battery compared to the smaller 4 cell 62Wh battery. In the MAX 15., When comparing both of these to other laptops with the same specs theyre, both doing very well, however, battery life with the MAX 17 was next level.. Unfortunately, my MAX 15 didnt handle games too well on battery power. So if this is something you want to do, you might need to consider the MAX 17, assuming this wasnt just an issue with my unit. As the MAX 17 is larger and heavier. It has more cooling capacity, despite both being about the same thickness.. This was shown by the 17, both performing a little better during the temperature testing and also, and also coming out ahead in games.. The end result was that, when testing out 20 different games at maximum settings, the MAX 17 was 3.7 faster than the MAX 15 on average.. Personally, I dont think this is enough of a difference alone to pay 200 more for the MAX 17, as I doubt youd be able to actually notice the difference in most games, but it does have an edge there.
. The touchpad on the MAX 15 was much better to use than the one on the MAX 17. In my opinion, I found myself getting annoyed with the 17 in some instances.. The IO was similar with both laptops. However, the MAX 15 has two mini DisplayPort outputs, while the MAX 17 has none. However, the MAX 17 has Thunderbolt 3, which the MAX 15 is lacking.. The speakers on the MAX 17 sounded better than the 15. In my opinion, there was a bit more bass and they also got louder too.. Otherwise, the overall metallic build quality of both was similar.. The MAX 15 has a silver finish with the Eluktronics logo on the lid, while the MAX 17 is all matte black with a completely clean finish. Personally Id pick the MAX 15., You can get it with the same specs for a couple of hundred dollars less money.. I dont play games or need amazing performance on battery power, and I prefer a smaller and lighter machine, as I only actually use it when travelling. Not having Thunderbolt isnt an issue for me when travelling. The larger battery from the MAX 17 would be nice to have. But for my use case that benefit doesnt outweigh having a larger and heavier machine.. The MAX 17 is slightly cooler and performs a bit better, but as we saw that difference was fairly small for the most part, I dont think its worth making the decision purely based on that.
. I think it makes more sense to compare the size, weight, price and small feature differences when deciding. So which of these two gaming laptops.