Today we’re going to take a look at the Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF, which has a good configuration and a fairly nice price. Of course, within the category of gaming models.
Specifications of Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF
|Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF
|IPS, 15,4”, 1920×1080 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio, 360 Hz refresh rate
|Intel Core i5-12500H
|16 GB DDR5
|1 TB M.2 2280 PCIe 4.0×4
|NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4060 Laptop, Intel Iris Xe Graphics
|HDMI 2.1, Mini DP 1.4, USB-A 3.2 Gen 1, 2×USB-A 3.2 Gen 2, Thunderbolt 4, RJ-45, USB-C 3.2 Gen 2, 3.5 mm combination jack
|Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax) + Bluetooth 5.2
|Built-in stereo speakers and microphone
|Backlit island keys with backlighting
|Battery and charging
|99 W-hour, 65 W power supply
|The cost of the nearest configuration
|50 999 UAH
Scope of delivery
The Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF has a pretty standard package with no surprises. The laptop is packaged in a nice black box. Inside, in addition to the laptop, there is a 240W power supply, power cable, and documentation.
The AORUS 15 9KF is quite compact in size and can easily fit into a standard laptop compartment in almost any modern backpack. And every gamer usually has a favorite mouse.
Design and construction
The manufacturer positions the Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF as a compact and portable gaming model. Indeed, the laptop turned out to be small. Of course, in its category. It is only slightly more than 2 cm thick and weighs 2.39 kg. Yes, it’s not an ultrabook that you can hardly feel in a backpack, but it’s a perfectly portable model.
The laptop is made of metal and high-quality matte black plastic. It looks very nice, but the top lid is a bit of a mark. It collects fingerprints actively. Gigabyte has managed to keep a balance in the design: there are features that are inherent in gaming models. But at the same time, there are few of them and everything is done neatly, so the laptop looks stylish and does not resemble a toy.
The Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF has a fairly common design for gaming models with the display unit mounted not to the back of the laptop, but a little closer to the user. The decorative elements on the top lid include the logo of the AORUS gaming line and a strip with the words Team Up. Fight On. And on the back of the laptop there are embossed diagonal stripes and the AORUS inscription.
The laptop has a three-zone RGB keyboard backlight and an RGB strip under the display. It looks interesting and quite original. Usually, additional backlighting in gaming laptops is placed at the bottom of the main unit.
The display frames are not the thinnest, but this is quite normal for a gaming model. Below is a wide chin with the inscription AORUS, above is a block with a webcam, infrared camera and microphones. There are the usual rubber inserts around the perimeter of the display unit for additional screen protection.
The lower part of the laptop has a quite familiar set of ventilation holes, massive rubber feet for good fixation on the table and stereo speakers, which have holes both downward and at an angle to the surface. The bottom lid is fixed with Torx screws and it will make sense for the potential owner to remove it in the future, because Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF has some upgrade options, which we will talk about later.
Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF is well made and assembled. Nice materials are used, and the lids hardly bend.
As with many gaming models, the laptop’s connectors are located on the sides and on the back. The manufacturer decided to place mostly ports for connecting peripherals on the side. On the left is a USB 3.2 Gen1 (Type-A) and a 3.5 mm audio jack for headphones or a headset.
On the opposite side are two more full-size USB 3.2 Gen2 (Type-A) and USB 3.2 Gen2 (Type-C).
All video outputs are located at the rear. Namely: Thunderbolt 4 (Type-C, with Power delivery), HDMI 2.1, Mini DisplayPort 1.4. There is also an RJ-45 network port and a power supply jack.
The laptop has a good set of modern connectors. The only thing missing is a card reader. It would be very useful for those who plan to use the laptop for video editing or photo processing.
Despite the growing popularity of the new 16 and 18-inch formats with a 16:10 aspect ratio, the classic 15.6 and 17.3-inch models have not gone away. Gigabyte AORUS 15 is equipped with a 15.6-inch IPS screen. In different configurations, it can be QHD 165 Hz, or FullHD at 144 or 360 Hz. We will review the FullHD 360 Hz variant.
It is claimed to have 100% sRGB color coverage. The screen is quite high quality, has a nice picture and good viewing angles. Contrast does not drop at angles, colors are not distorted. The brightness level is sufficient for indoor use. There is an effective anti-reflective coating.
The maximum screen brightness is 250,919 cd/m, the black field brightness is 0.225 cd/m, and the static contrast is 1115:1. These are quite good indicators for a gaming model. The color gamut is really close to sRGB and the color accuracy is quite high.
Platform, performance and software
The Gigabyte AORUS 15 is available in a large number of configurations, with both 12th and 13th generation Intel processors. The Nvidia GeForce 4000-series is used as a discrete graphics accelerator. The configuration we reviewed was not the most powerful, equipped with a 12th-generation Intel Alder Lake H-series processor. This is a very good mid-range Intel Core i5-12500H processor. It has a configuration of 4 productive cores with a frequency of 2.5-4.5 GHz and 8 energy-efficient cores up to 3.3 GHz. There is support for multi-threaded computing: up to 16 threads. The standard TDP level is 45 W with a possible short-term increase to 95 W. The cache size is 18 MB. The amount of RAM is 16 GB DDR5-4800, two 8 GB slots. Both slots are available to the user, up to 64 GB is supported.
The built-in Intel Iris Xe has 80 executive units and a maximum frequency of 1300 MHz. The discrete graphics card used is the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4060 Laptop with a TGP of up to 140 watts. The amount of video memory is 8 GB, with a maximum frequency of 2370 MHz. The laptop is equipped with a MUX Switch multiplexer that allows you to connect the display directly to a discrete graphics card. This gives a slight performance boost, but increases power consumption.
The laptop is equipped with Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 wireless modules. There is also a wired gigabit Ethernet connection. The proprietary Dragon application is provided for monitoring and adjusting network load.
The Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF is not the most powerful configuration available today. But the laptop demonstrates a very good level of performance in both processor and graphics tests. It is quite enough for comfortable FullHD gaming and graphics work.
Of course, when the power supply is turned off, the laptop switches to a more energy-efficient mode and performance decreases. But it will be quite enough for work. And playing somewhere far from an outlet is a dubious pleasure.
The drive is a Gigabyte AG4512G-SI B10 NVMe PCIe Gen 4.0×4 SSD. This is not the fastest model, but the speed is very good. The laptop has two M.2 PCIe Gen 4.0×4 slots. So you can replace the bundled drive and add another one.
Now let’s move on to the game tests. For testing, we used the maximum settings with ray tracing and DLSS (including Frame Generation where possible). The laptop’s configuration turned out to be quite balanced and almost all the most demanding games run perfectly at FullHD resolution. Only in some games (Cyberpunk 2077 with path tracing, Alan Wake 2 with ray tracing and direct lighting) the frame rate can drop to 50 FPS in some cases.
- Cyberpunk 2077 — 55-65 FPS
- Alan Wake 2 — 55-85 FPS
- Starfield — 70-130 FPS
- Metro Exodus Enhanced Edition — 110-150 FPS
- The Ascent — 80-90 FPS
All the main settings are collected in the proprietary application Gigabyte Control Center. There are laptop and cooling system modes (including custom ones that you can configure yourself), system updates, backlight settings, disk utilities, MUX Switch, and more.
Heating and stability of performance
The laptop uses the WINDFORCE Infinity cooling system with two fans and five heat pipes. The fans have 72 blades with a thickness of 0.2 mm. The cooling system works efficiently. Under long maximum loads, the laptop operates stably, and there is no trotting. Components heat up to 80-85°, which is quite normal for a gaming laptop.
The average processor frequency is close to 4 GHz with a maximum of 4.5 GHz. The laptop’s keyboard stays cool and is comfortable to use even after several hours of gaming. The only thing that can be a little frustrating is the noise level, which is typical for most gaming laptops.
Security and webcam
So far, not all gaming laptops have biometric identification, which is not very convenient. Entering a password every time is a dubious pleasure. So it’s nice that Gigabyte AORUS 15 has an infrared camera for this. It works quickly and accurately.
The built-in webcam was also a pleasant surprise with its FullHD resolution and surprisingly good picture.
Keyboard and touchpad
AORUS 15 is equipped with a full-size laptop keyboard without an additional number pad. The layout is not quite standard. On the right side there is an additional column with the Home, PgUp, PgDn and End keys, so at first you may press them instead of Enter or Backspace. The top row F has a slightly reduced height and ends with the Del key. The power button is remote from the main unit. The arrow block has standard keys, but it is not separated from the main keyboard block, so the right Shift key is slightly shorter.
The buttons have a range of 1.7 mm, they are comfortable and informative. There is RGB backlighting with three zones and support for all kinds of effects.
The touchpad has physical dimensions of 120×76 mm. Of course, no one is going to play games with it, but it’s quite enough for everyday tasks and basic photo editing. It has decorative diagonal stripes and looks interesting.
The Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF stereo speakers have a good volume margin. More than enough to drown out the cooling system at maximum speed. So there will be no critical need to connect headphones while playing games. For movies or YouTube videos, the speakers are also quite enough.
But, of course, you can’t expect very high quality sound. There are not many low frequencies and music does not sound very good on the laptop, so music lovers will have to use headphones. DTS software is provided to customize the sound.
Gigabyte AORUS 15 9KF is equipped with a large 99 Wh battery. You shouldn’t expect a full working day without recharging, no powerful gaming laptop can do that. But in energy-saving mode, when working with documents at low screen brightness, you can get about 6 hours of operation. In gaming mode, the laptop lasts about an hour and a half.
The included power supply unit has a power of 240 W. It is quite heavy and large, as in all gaming models. So a complete set in a backpack will add about 3 kg. The laptop takes a little more than 2 hours to charge.