The typical issues are usually related to firmware, which myself and other users would be willing to wait for to be fixed, but Razer's default, almost auto-response, solution is to just send you another unit, with the same issues.
In general though, the razer blade stealth is not even in the same league as an x1, mbp, or xps, and it's not supposed to be. It's just priced the same.
Razer. Apple prices, gateway support.
The Razer Blade Stealth (7500u) has broken Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C support. Most popular devices simply won't work at all, even though they work with other Kaby Lake computers, and even though they work with Razer's own previous Stealth laptop (6500u model).
The Razer Core has broken display software (double vsync lag) which makes it not work properly if you use an external GPU and monitor (which is ostensibly the purpose of the device)
Additionally, the Razer Core's USB ports just flat out don't work. There's a power short of some sort in the internal USB hub, so that if you plug in a device that draws any more than the lowest amount of power, it cycles through a connecting/disconnecting state, looping forever.
All of these are fundamental flaws with the product itself, so you can (and will be asked to) RMA units over and over for eternity, but you'll never get the problem fixed.
Razer Support has known about all of these issues for months now. There is zero communication coming from Razer -- they won't discuss their design flaws, they won't support their devices, they won't even acknowledge these issues as happening.
When asked directly, the CEO claimed he "wasn't looking at product reliability because we're actually one of the top few in terms of product quality". - https://www.reddit.com/r/razer/comments/5v8zkh/improving_raz... Since Razer's leadership doesn't care about quality at all, I can't imagine the company will ever care either.
At this point, I'm not spending another dime with Razer ever again, and certainly couldn't recommend any one else do so.
This probably isn't a short; it's more likely a software problem. I can see how they could get into that mess. Remember, with USB, you're only allowed to draw 100mA until you've negotiated with your power source for more, and the power source can say no. USB interface chips enforce this, and cut power and send a fault signal if a device pulls too much power.
The Razer Core is basically a docking station. USB-C power is complicated to begin with, and they've set up one of the most complex situations. The way they're using this, the dock is providing power to the laptop, but the laptop is the data master for the USB ports on the dock, which is also providing power to the peripherals. This is something USB-C allows; a device can be a power slave and a USB master at the same time.
This is even more complex. The dock is a source to both sides for power management purposes, but a pass-through for data purposes. This is unusual. I've skimmed the USB-C spec but don't recall that being mentioned. They probably have to MITM the power handshake to get this to work. The laptop is running Windows 10, so they don't control the USB drivers and their power handshake. It's entirely possible that Windows doesn't support that configuration fully.
* Similar problems reported for Anker.
* And CalDigit.
This may be a generic problem with USB-C middle boxes which power in both directions. Some configurations don't work, and this is tough to troubleshoot. The standards compliance test procedure for USB-C hubs  doesn't seem to contain this case. The test designers were still thinking "tree with computer at root" in 2015.
I'm probably harder on input devices than most people, but I have working Logitech and Microsoft mice that are older than Razer itself.
The Zowie FK1+ mouse is great if you like the Intellimouse Explorer. It's ambidextrous and symmetrical. No software to install, you just click the button on the bottom to switch the DPI setting, or some chords when you plug it in to set things like handedness. Works great, can't recommend enough. The only not-amazing part is the scroll wheel for desktop use; the detents are spaced pretty far to ensure accuracy when switching weapons or whatever in a game and work less well when trying to e.g. Rip through source code, but MW acceleration mostly fixes that for me. I'd totally try a Zowie keyboard after being so impressed with their mouse. Zowie is made by Benq, so they've been around for a while and have made professional products for a while too (I love my BL3201PH 32" IPS 4K screen).
To be honest, even if they only ever lasted a couple of years, I'd still buy Razer mice. All non-gaming mice nowadays seem to be awful, cheap crap, and most gaming mice are over-decorated contraptions. Razer mice seem to be the only one they combine good, simple ergonomics with high precision and a quality feel.
Im literally trying to purchase their product, but they discourage me with this absurd logic and unhelpful support.
The answer that support gives ia that if you want a different keyboard layout, you need to purchase it in a different country.
That's not going to happen
 Apple Macbook Pro is the closest device that has a ISO layout option. ASUS/Acer/HP/Dell/MSI/Gigabyte etc only offer ISO layouts for their "mainstream" devices which are nowhere near the level of performance that a Razer Blade has. All "gaming models" are US keyboard only.
I am so happy about that. These continental European keyboards have symbols in wrong places, useless (unused) symbols (like ± in place of a colon in case of the Dutch one) and a short left shift (German QWERTZ, Belgian/French AZERTY and Dutch QWERTY all have that).
I remember doing a PHP web development internship once (like 4-5 years ago) where they had keyboards with a short left shift key. Two weeks into it I gave up trying to get used to it and remapped the < key (that's the one left of Z on those keyboards) to shift with autohotkey.
I also remember buying a mechanical keyboard that had a long left shift on the cover but after unpacking turned out to have a short one. Felt silly to return it over that (by now I would) so I gifted it to my brother instead.
God I hate those non-US keyboards. French/Belgians are the worst, having to hold down shift to type a freaking number and that while having a short left shift key.
I've never heard of a major vendor not shipping ISO layouts before
My experience living in Germany has been that its been pretty hard to get American keyboards. Apple for instance only lets businesses oder laptops with US keyboards in Germany.
Here in Japan, their keyboard options are: Japanese, Korean, US, UK, Arabian, French, Spanish and Danish(!).
Why Danish?! Not German?! And if they have Danish, why not, e.g. Italian, Swedish, all more populous countries? I'm almost tempted to believe the Danish option is due to a dk/de mixup.
In Sweden, at least 3 years ago, Apple was the only company that would sell a laptop with a US keyboard to consumers, and that was one of the main reasons my last laptop was an Apple.
Dustin often has some for sale.
I wouldn't be so quick to call GP a liar. If you haven't encountered it, trying to do things online in another country is an eye opening experience. For example, indeed.com wouldn't even let me go to US job listings when I was in Hong Kong. Products, pricing, everything is different. How can round trips on airfare be so different just by switching departure points? Take a one way to Thailand before you buy airfare to the US from Hong Kong. You'll save a small fortune. Do I believe Apple has silly rules based on geography, just like every other company? Yes, I do.
Right now I'm configuring a MB Pro in Apple.de with US keyboard
See, it's not hard to find examples. Now we can conclude by robertdpi's assessment that Apple is an unreliable company, because they assume all people living in South Korea want the same keyboard.
I ended up getting an MSI when I stopped over in Taipei on a trip, after hearing about the Razer reliability issues last year. Mind you, I am not considering MSI to be any better, given my experience so far.
But in this case, we're on HN, and the person is describing both firmware issues and customer service issues and they're being specific enough that their complaint has credibility. In the same way that people vote with their money on issues that are important to them, like sustainability or social matters, I entirely avoid companies with nonexistent customer service. Dell doesn't have a perfect track record, I've had some infuriating experiences with them, but at least they pay people to answer the phone and with some effort you can usually get an issue resolved.
If I find out ahead of time that a particular company doesn't provide any customer service whatsoever, or the only way to contact them is on Twitter or to write a scathing blog post and submit everywhere, I will try not to do any business with them.
I also have a 1/10 rule, which I tried to adhere to while running my own business: for every one customer complaint you hear about, there are at least 9 other dissatisfied customers that didn't make their complaints known.
Sometimes that's true, but I don't think that's a fair assessment of the issues being presented here. These aren't some one-off bad units, Razer sells a couple products with fundamental design flaws that effect 100% of units shipped.
It's like telling Ford Pinto owners "Ford wouldn't be in business if their cars exploded"
I bought a keyboard. It developed a defect and damaged the motherboard on two laptops. I won't be plugging it into a third. Their mouse software can't even be /configured/ on Windows without a login to their cloud goo.
No more Razer for me.
I was thinking of buying a desktop replacement, with good gaming capabilities and for me it boils down to Razer or Alienware. But I prefer Alienware because it comes with a 15" screen, which is perfect for me (14" is too small, 17" is too big).
The P50 is a bit heftier than the Razer, but it's built like a tank, and it has an awesome copper heatsink + dual cooling fan system that keeps my temperatures on the very low end relatively speaking.
Lenovo laptops are impossible to break as well, and the keyboards are immaculate, great key travel and response -- it feels like you are using a desktop machine instead of a laptop.
Those DELLs have terrible keyboards (as a programmer, I spend most of my time typing in vim using i3 WM), and they aren't built to last.
If you have qualms about the pricing of Lenovos, its pretty easy to dig up corporate discount codes on /r/thinkpad or you can use a .edu email address if you still have one to get a student discount long after graduating. Usually that gets you anywhere from 25-40% off depending on the promotions.
I really really want that 1060.
It's a real shame, it fits the bill perfectly but Dell will almost certainly get my money for an XPS 13 instead.
Multiple hardware failures and eventually had to return it. They should probably learn basic quality control techniques before spending any energy on better linux support.
At least in Australia, they're way cheaper than Apple.
Was looking recently and prices went:
Razer Blade Stealth < XPS 13 < Apple
How do you figure they are under-powered and overpriced? Compared to what?
They have some of the fasted SSDs on the market , their battery has been reported to go for 18 hours after they fixed the software issues , and how many laptops do you know that have high-DPI wide color gamut screens? The Touch Bar is also actually a very nice new class of input device with lots of potential, especially once you've tweaked it a little. 
Even without counting the value of macOS, how many competitors offer the same or better overall features, AND good build quality and customer support? (which Razer clearly doesn't as you can see from the comments on this very page.)
It's a side effect of both Apples unibody aluminium cases which are way better at heat dissipation than any plastic based case and Apples extreme level of control - they can optimize every tiny chip as well as the OS to be as power efficient as humanly possible, which avoids creating heat to dissipate.
It's fair game to compare Windows laptops for their noise level but seriously, comparing anything with Apple for noise is unfair.
That's the thing that people don't understand if they've never owned a MacBook. Build quality and noise are not in the specs, so they only compare it on price / power. Also some people just don't care that their fans are running constantly...
A modern MBP still can't have more than 16GB RAM, it has 0 legacy ports, and cannot be upgraded at all.
Yes it might be a perfect laptop for hipsters who just want to show off their MBP and do the occasional Photoshop, but without developers who create programs for OS X or professional users who make their entire company buy MBPs there will be no ecosystem to lure in said hipsters... more sooner than later.
I do mostly web-stack stuff with node, and chrome is probably my biggest offender... But I've also got multiple tabs in firefox open, not to mention VS Code and other desktop-ified apps (spotify, slack, etc). I do okay with 16GB... but I know when I fire up a windows VM with Visual Studio, man does it get tight.
Basically, you can easily use 32+ GB of RAM as soon as anything Java is involved. For what it's worth I usually don't do Java stuff but my Chrome RAM usage alone easily exceeds 8 GB. I could really use more than 16 GB.
But the touchpad is far and above anything else.
Between UK English and US English?
Also, has anyone gotten the Razer Blade to work with the Razer Core thunderbolt 3 expansion chassis? On default Ubuntu 16.04 it picks up the thunderbolt hub, but nothing underneath. This would be an amazing laptop for machine learning if I could supercharge it with a Titan-X.
Also, consider a 32GB build for us developers...
But it required patching BIOS to allow the user to toggle some legacy settings.
FWIW the kernel in 16.04 does support that. But I've tried with newer kernels too.
There's been a few issues, but overall it's been a great machine to transition to after a decade of Mac usage. If you're interested, it will require a bit of configuration (and even then its not 100% perfect just yet). See here for a list of issues/solutions: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jI2jlVi1V0H8SeNm5kspJ1qX...)
Feel free to ask any questions if you're curious about picking one up!
I have been looking at the Razer Blade and the Alienware 13" recently and have been leaning towards the Alienware since I can replace the WiFi card...but if Razer brings 1st class support for Linux systems then I will have a much harder decision to make when I start looking again.
If you have a solution / issue that isn't listen - please add it as a comment on the doc :).
Once you're in offline mode, you don't get cloud sync (nbd, honestly, except for when I get a new machine) and everything else works fine.
So synapse is online by default and has bad error detection (should just fall back to offline on timeout), but doesn't, strictly speaking, require cloud services to work. Not great design choices here, but not as bad as it sounds.
source: I am an owner of a razer mouse, couldn't configure it in windows on S3 day until I changed my config.
So I'd personally be happy if there were synapse drivers for linux, as I do work in linux and I'd love to be able to program macros and whatnot onto those buttons like I do when I'm booted into windows. It is a fairly handy piece of software, and I challenge you to find a better seventeen button mouse.
As for my mouse, I had to use some Corsair junk to configure the button mappings, sensitivity, and turn down their ridiculous LED, but then it saved the settings to the mouse firmware so I can uninstall it and use it just fine on Linux. No more touching it again. Still not happy about it. Would rather it had been some tiny DIP switches underneath.
I have a Corsair mouse, and their software is spectacularly awful. (Their other software is also terrible; like configuring fan speed profiles for the water cooler.) No account required, but the button configuration is horrendously complex and in the end completely useless. I never figured out how to make a mouse button show up to Windows as an extra mouse button. Switched to a DeathAdder, and while their software is also terrible, at least the extra mouse buttons show up to the OS as mouse buttons. (Razer's software is terrible in a different way; the UI is overdesigned and I don't want to type in a username and secure password to change my fucking mouse settings... but once you're in there, the software does actually work well, letting you configure what you want in a relatively straightforward manner.)
All in all, this stuff is all super gimmicky. I want the marketing people to know I bought their product _in spite_ of the software they spent hundreds of thousands of dollars developing. I would be happier without it. The company would be more profitable without it. The mouse is for pointing at enemies and clicking when their head is under the crosshairs. I don't need a "brand experience". I don't need fancy colors or "game optimization". Just translate my hand motion to input events. I'll do the rest. Thanks.
1) 15.6 inch laptop (14 is too small, especially with those bezels).
2) As thin of a bezel as possible (see XPS)
3) Camera on top! I don't want to show my fingers in conference calls. This may force the bezels to be larger on top, that's fine. (Pop-out camera?)
4) Offer the highest quality display from a color reproduction point of view, not the refresh rate. This is NOT a gaming laptop, or at least not a pro one.
5) The resolution should allow me to use the OS without scaling. If you can squeeze more than 1080p (1440?) the better. We need vertical space for coding! Some folks like 4K, so that should be an option.
6) Connectivity is important; lots of ports. Also, Intel WiFi cards, not Killer.
7) The sound should at least be decent. I don't understand how a phone can have better (ok, lounder) sound than a laptop.
8) Give us an option to optimize for power vs battery life. I want the fastest CPU (within reason) and a good GPU (1060 or 1050, but ideally 1060) at the expense of battery life, but others would like more battery.
9) I'm picky about the SSD that goes into the laptop. Either allow me to replace it or allow me to pick what I want (960 Pro).
10) Good trackpad, ideally with buttons.
11) Good keyboard, super important...
12) Under 6lbs
13) Cooling has to be top notch and the air intake cannot be on the bottom. I actually use the laptop on my lap.
14) Height should be around 1 inch. Making it super thin like MBPs is not worth the tradeoffs.
15) That logo needs to go or at a minimum don't make it glow...
And basically all your points sum up to it being a radically different laptop than what it is. Why not buy something else than ask changes of what Razer fans love?
2. The bezel is there to add space to the main laptops body to fit a proper cooling system for the gtx 1060 and 7700HQ
3. See 2.
4. The stealth and pro offer 100% Adobe rgb models (see razer's website) with the blade having 100% srgb and 75% adobe rgb. Having a 100% adobe rgb version of the screen wouldn't be out of the question.
5. 4k already exists on all blade models
6. The port selection is ok. I wouldn't be surprised if razer follow apple and adopt 100% thunderbolt 3 + power connector (current power brick is at 165W). Connectivity on the pro model is very good.
7. For razer this really isn't an issue they believe that most people would be using headphones.
8. I'm pretty sure windows has a feature like this built into the power menu?? The pro has a 1080 and the 14 has a 1060. Both feature the 6700HQ/7700HQ
9. Already replaceable. Uses Samsung pm951. (note: its a M2 storage drive)
10. Already exists
11. Already exists (note that the pro model has a "low profile mechanical keyboard" which received mixed reviews also rgb is standard)
12. The pro is 7.80 and the 14 is 4.10. Depends if you think the extra power is worth it
13. Not enough space on the body
14. Never gonna happen. Razer has been about thinness and performance since the first blade. If you want a thick laptop clevo and alienware exist.
15. You can turn the backlight off in synapse
My number one mod for a new Oryx Pro model would be to get rid of the numeric keypad, center the keypad and trackpad, and add really good speakers on each side.
I'm not too sensitive to weight, I'd buy one of the 17" models in a heartbeat...with a 1070.
Lots of people here complaining about build quality issues, but mine has been completely solid. The only issues I've experienced are some of the keyboard keys are losing their matte black printing, which is surprising but not fatal.
Additionally, at first I had a hard time getting a Blade that did not have a screen with a pink-to-white tint to it. However this appears to be an issue with all IPS panels--my Nexus 6 has the same issue and you can find people on Apple forums complaining about similar problems on Macbooks. Razer support was very helpful, and they hand-checked a unit to send me as a replacement, which is the one I'm using to this day.
In short, I'd continue recommending Blades for development work as Linux machines, and even moreso if they can iron out the usual Linux driver issues that plague all laptops.
Edit: I should also add that my limited experience with Razer support has been good, in that I got personal replies from people who didn't seem to be reading from a script, and who were happy to accommodate my returns and pickiness about screen quality.
I love using it on desktop, but it sucks (sucked) on laptop when I used it.
Linux has consistently gotten 1.5x as much runtime on battery for me as Windows.
But I'd expect if flawless Linux support was actually their goal they'd announce it more prominently, which they did not.
"Well - our objective is to get the Blades to be running Linux flawlessly."
That seems like Razer is setting a clear target for Linux support.
I've heard the argument
* they needed more space on the device so couldn't include the drivers and configuration
* cloud drivers allow portability of configuration
Both of those fall on their face in reality. Lan gaming is mostly dead since most multiplayer games are online and memory space is cheap.
If you're worried about buying a lemon, they sell them at the Microsoft store. In stock. You can buy and return all in the same place.
Mind you, I'm only speaking for the real ThinkPad trackpoints. The one in a Dell laptop I had for work was nowhere near as comfortable, and felt slippery and awkward.
I fell in love with it after building a large bulk of an app on the 17 express bus over the course of a year.
Trackpoints are better when in a cramped situation such as air travel. No readjusting of elbows are required when switching between keyboard and trackpoint.
It works much better for many kinds of games actually than a touchpad. Heck, I'd take two or four of these in a gaming laptop, you'd essentially have a gamepad included with a real keyboard.
Had lockups until I upgraded kernel and flashed now BIOS. Audio had really loud hissing until I opened alsamixer and set controls to exactly the right values (got of a wiki page). To be fair, the audio is noisy on Windows 10 too.
My old Lenovo X200 works nearly flawless on Linux. Again, pretty disappointed with Dell.
It's also probably the number 1 dev environment for a ton of use cases so you get support and network efforts in the ecosystem. Are you a fullstack dev? Then OSX is for you. You have all your IDE, servers, Chrome, etc up and running very quickly.
Both linux and macos have different strengths and weaknesses, and one is not a fully capable replacement of another, not even just for the cli/daemon stuff.
I'm writing this on a rMBP - and there are still reasons to ssh into a centos box.
There is a ton of good software for macOS that isn't available on Linux.
 - /usr/lib/libpq.dylib is especially annoying offender. Most dylibs are at least fat ones, but this one is x86_64 only. That means, when you want to build a fat binary of some libpq client, and it is being linked against system one, the build will fail. That includes building i386/fat version of postgresql itself.
- Functional command line + command line developer tools
I have to say, the build quality seems top shelf. The laptop itself is a sturdy feeling machine. It booted up out of the box just fine, and within a bit I was supporting 2 player rocket league on an external 34" monitor with no problem.
After some fussing about, I finally got Antergos up and running on a smaller partition, and now it's working flawlessly.
I am not a linux guru, so I had to bash my head a little bit, but here I am...
I cannot speak anything about the quality of the customer service, or how long this laptop will perform admirably (obviously), but so far I am extremely happy.
edit: I should say that I received the laptop today (at time of writing) and getting linux up and running only took a few hours of my uneducated self faffing about.
And if someone needs a bandwidth constrained version on desktop (developing countries and people trying to avoid data roaming fees come to mind), then maybe we could come up with a better way for clients to tell this when requesting pages, rather than try to infer it from screen size?
I wonder if they will add compatibility for the Razer Core on the Linux side of things.
Hopefully, that changes in the future.
The experience is borderline terribad. I got things (mostly) working with Linux Mint, but:
1) Runtime is maybe 2 hours.
2) It won't sleep when you close the lid (I have sleep hotkeyed instead)
3) The USB support is loltastic
4) External HDMI connector worked for a week then quit
5) Takes 3 hours to fully charge the battery
I could go on but it's Friday. I had really high hopes for this laptop and was ultimately let down by Razer. They should stick to making their peripherals work with Linux, then they can put on their bigboy pants and try to make an entire system.
I think their best bet would be to have someone at the company work specifically on Linux issues. Dell did this and made a handsome return on their investment.
I currently use a Dell Developer XPS, but would definitely consider the Blade as a candidate for my next laptop if they were good about Linux compatibility in their next release.
He said it wasn't that bad, but it overheats easily and CPU is almost always forced down clocked because of it. So it didn't achieve the performance he expected from the spec.
Razer Blade Stealth is almost perfect in spec. Built-in 4K display with NO NVIDIA GPU. That's great for the linux.
Unfortunately, it's too thin. Not only it's bad for overheating, it doesn't have many useful ports. Especially the Ethernet.
I can't understand why the computer, advertised as the gaming laptop, doesn't have Ethernet.
I don't use it long enough to evaluate it, but so far, it's good for a portable toy computer.
I have a Black Widow Stealth and it works great... except not in BIOS menus or GRUB menus. In those cases I have to plug in my old keyboard to get a response.
Other than that, some of the advanced devices initialize too slow and firmware is not waiting on them long enough.
Given your praise of the Precision 5520, why would you get something else next time?
I recently bought a new laptop after considering the two above. My final choice was one I wouldn't typically wouldn't have made: MSI Ghost GS63VR. I needed to have the computing and graphics power at a low enough price point that I could afford to bounce back if the laptop goes bad (the first one I bought last week failed within 2 days).
dang, can we get the link changed to this since most phones will redirect to the mobile version, but for some reason, people haven't figured a way to redirect to desktop versions from mobile?
I generally buy Thinkpads because of the keyboard and cost (upgrade myself), and used to use Ubuntu probably 85% of the time. Overtime I have found myself doing more and more in Windows, because of both drivers and battery life.
For sys admin in makes sense, but for general dev work, I tend to find everything works just fine on windows, plus it makes day to day usage easier.
EDIT: misread HN headline; article mostly about Linux support on their laptops so comment is somewhat moot.
Both features are popular in the gaming community. But they are also useful in other ways, I've got a mod which blinks the F11 key when I've got a meeting/appointment coming up (for example)
Huh, that's a clever idea. I should look into that!
I've been collecting a list of features that I'd like if I had a completely hackable keyboard (or built one).
I'm wondering if any of the DIY keyboard controllers are hackable. That'd be a nice future project.
I can't recommend them enough.
I now have a desktop and put Windows back on the lappy to play games, but it was an excellent Linux dev device, although I did have to get Wi-Fi working myself as I was an early adopter.
I never did get Bluetooth working, but after putting Windows back on, Bluetooth still didn't work and I realized it was a faulty adapter. :-/ One day I'll open it and replace it, but for now I just use a USB adapter.
If you use a laptop for Linux dev, you'll most likely struggle with some hardware that's not supported yet (although I've been very lucky with ever Dell being supported by the mainline kernel and latest linux-firmware).
Getting hardware working is the _fun_ part. :)
Look at it this way... what Apple did with NextStep in 1999, Razer, et al., could be doing right now, finally, and catching up. With Linux.
Only 20 years behind the ball, but .. then again .. these are not yet $Billion companies. Yet.
This is a company that makes prototype laptops with three displays :D The dude will sink time and money into this if that's what he wants.
Its interesting we have Game/Business centric notebooks. No Development centric notebooks.
Or you can stick with low power cool hardware but that defeats the point of the gaming laptop.
So, stay on an OS that's two versions out of date, or upgrade to a Windows Spyware Platinum. I hate Macs/OSx so that's out.
OR install linux, run windows apps in a VM, and hope more games come out for linux. Hell, I can even dual-boot win 10 and play games there. Seems like a decent option.
If you want FreeBSD on a laptop, check their wiki/list. There is a small subset with full suspend/resume support right now.