Razer’s first Linux laptop is here, but it’s not for gamers

It’s been a decade since Razer released its first Blade laptop, and they’ll all come with Windows. It is not quite is changing today – but a company called Lambda is now putting Ubuntu on an aspirated version of last year’s Razer Blade 15 Advanced with Razer’s full blessing, with the aim of selling it to machine learning and artificial intelligence researchers.

It’s called the Razer x Lambda Tensorbook, and the $ 3,500 machine is exactly the same as an advanced version of last year’s laptop in most ways. It features an 11th-generation Intel Core i7 CPU, Nvidia RTX 3080 Max-Q graphics and 64GB of RAM under a 15.6-inch 165Hz 1440p display, all powered by an 80Wh battery inside a 4-speed chassis. 45 pounds in identical size and shape. It also has the same fast I / O, including two Thunderbolt 4 ports, three USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports, a UHS-III SD card reader and both Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2.

But Tensorbook is silver instead of black and comes pre-installed with “the latest drivers and machine learning tools, including PyTorch, Tensorflow, CUDA and cuDNN,” its own warranty and – if you pay $ 4,099 and up – its own premium support team. Lambda says it already supplies hardware to thousands of research teams and sells GPUs, servers and desktop workstations.

You can see the keys and the speaker grid as well as the webcam

A closer look at the Lambda Tensorbook.
Image: Razer x Lambda

While Razer currently offers faster CPU, GPU, and monitors in today’s Blade series, it’s not necessarily a bad deal if you love the design, given how expensive Razer’s laptops can be. But we have generally seen Razer’s thin machines run quite hot in our reviews, and the Blade in question was no exception even with a quarter of the memory and a less powerful RTX 3060 GPU. Lambda’s FAQ page does not deal with heat today.

Lambda is clearly targeting potential MacBook Pro buyers, and I’m not just saying that because of silver tones. The primary hardware comparison that the company highlights is a 4x speedup compared to Apple’s M1 Max in a 16-inch MacBook Pro when running TensorFlow.

Razer has teased better Linux support over the years, but popular Linux computer news site Phoronix wrote in 2019 that these plans had apparently been put to pieces. Perhaps the recent renewed interest in Linux games, powered by Steam Deck, will force Razer to consider Linux for its own core products as well.