The 2013 Razer Blade (above left, next to its larger 17-inch Razer Blade Pro brother) purports to be an ultra-thin gaming laptop, widely drawing comparisons to Apple’s current MacBook Pro with Retina display design. Those comparisons are spot on and, aside from the black-and-green aesthetic and a few key feature differences, lead us to ask: Which laptop is the way to go
At first, the answer may seem clear: the Blade is a gaming laptop, so if you game in any frequent capacity, get that one. However, upon closer inspection, that seemingly clear answer becomes more complicated.
Now, you may be wondering exactly why a black-and-green laptop made by a gaming company is being compared to a silver-and-black laptop made by a company that is specifically avoided by gaming enthusiasts. Once you get your hands on the new Blade though, it becomes instantly clear — it looks like Razer made its own version of a MacBook Pro with Retina display. From the slim form-factor and curved edges, to the backlit chiclet keyboard and smooth touchpad, the Blade looks like the MacBook Pro’s Windows sibling that started listening to death metal and wearing black nail polish.
Though the Air is Apple’s prized thin laptop, the MacBook Pro remains astonishingly svelte at just 0.71 inches (1.8cm) thick. The Razer Blade tops that, and measures in at 0.66 inches (1.67cm) when closed. The Blade’s 14-inch screen, however, is smaller than the MacBook Pro’s 15.4-inch screen, so that accounts for some of the discrepancy here. Both laptops sport an aluminum body with curved edges, and a similar recess in the middle of the front where you can stick a thumb and lift up the screen. The touchpad is perhaps the most sneakily iconic feature of Apple laptops due to its “soft” nature, but the Blade nearly copies the same soft, smooth feel. Unfortunately, the Blade’s touchpad doesn’t click (though it can perform the now-standard tap-to-click), and it is saddled with two very thin, plastic buttons under the touchpad. They not only feel terrible to click, but due to their size, are quite easy to miss if you aren’t actively looking for them.
Compared to the MacBook Pro, the Blade’s black-and-green backlit keyboard is likely the most similar non-Apple keyboard on the market. The size of and spacing between the keys are nearly identical, and they feel almost exactly the same. The Blade makes a slightly different noise and feels a little more clicky, but that’s usually preferred when gaming.