GIGABYTE AERO 15 OLED YD Laptop Review
GIGABYTE’s AERO range of products has generally been reserved for professionals and content creators who require a powerful workstation for heavy workloads and video editing. While GIGABYTE’s AROUS range focuses on delivering the ultimate gaming experience with powerful hardware and features. Surprisingly, the AERO 15 OLED YD fits somewhere in between by offering the best of both worlds as it perfectly blends workstation capabilities with powerful gaming hardware to produce a laptop that is exactly that, the best of both worlds.
GIGABYTE has ensured that the AERO 15 OLED YD is the ultimate modern-day laptop with a host of impressive hardware such as Intel 11th-gen Tiger Lake-H series CPU, powerful Nvidia RTX 3080 GPU and a gorgeous 4K OLED display that needs to be seen to be appreciated. But does this necessarily mean that the GIGABYTE AERO 15 OLED YD the perfect laptop for professionals and gamers alike? Let’s find out!
Despite its impressive hardware, the AERO 15 OLED YD seamlessly fits in with the AERO range with a sleek, professional design that doesn’t overwhelm you with obnoxious RGB illumination or a flamboyant design that look out of place in the office. Instead, GIGABYTE focuses its efforts on delivering a simple, yet aesthetically pleasing design that I absolutely love. The lid is finished in a matte aluminium finish that features nothing more than the AERO logo and some basic accents that highlight a grill-like material – proving that less than be more.
Moving to the sides of the laptop, GIGABYTE has included a host of I/O with two USB 3.2 ports, UHS-II SD Card Reader, Thunderbolt 4 port, and a charging port along the right-hand side along of the base. Much like the AROUS 17G YT, I would have loved to see the charging port moved towards the rear of the laptop rather than in the middle. I find having the power cable connected to the laptop to be quite ugly, especially when it’s located in the middle of the laptop – so why not move it towards the rear? We find an HDMI 2.1 port, mini DP 1.4, another USB 3.2 port, a 3.5mm jack and a single Ethernet RJ45 port located on the left-hand side of the base to provide plenty of connectivity for users.
I would have loved to see dual NICs included with the AERO 15 OLED but I completely understand that the majority of users wouldn’t take advantage of this, particularly on a laptop. Finally, featured on the base of the laptop’s display is an HD webcam. I am not a fan of this location (base of the screen rather than along the top) as this angle promotes the unflattering nose/multiple chin cam, but as AERO 15 OLED features a thin 3mm bezel around the display, GIGABYTE simply didn’t have the real estate to include it there.
The laptop itself is noticeably slimmer and lighter (20mm and 2kg) than traditional gaming laptops, which is surprising considering the hardware inside and the heat dissipation required. This design fits in with its professional design and in fact, allows the laptop’s display to become the main attraction – and boy, what an attraction! This 15.6-inch, Samsung AMOLED 4K display is truly incredible, you simply need to experience it yourself to truly appreciate just how good this display is – The high contrast, deep colour range and incredible brightness complement each other perfectly to create one of the richest visual experiences I have ever witnessed. The 3840 x 2160 resolution allows for every fine detail to be captured in its image as there is no other way to put it; this is the best panel I have seen included with a laptop!
GIGABYTE states that every AERO panel is colour calibrated by X-Rite calibration technology and is Pantone Validated certification to ensure perfect colour accuracy. This level of certification and calibration is perfect for content creators where colour accuracy can be critical. Combining this with the extra pixels, there is no doubt that there is the perfect panel for professional content creators. Gamers on the other hand will appreciate the extra pixels but will be restricted to 60Hz. Unfortunately, that is the payoff of having such a rich and vivid display @ 4K, but trust me – It is worth it!
Powered by Intel’s 11 Gen i7-11800H processer that is capable of clocking up to 4.6GHz (with i9-11980HK @ 5GHz also available) and handle multi-threaded applications is no issue. This means that even the most resource-hungry applications for video and photo editing such as mspaint.exe can be handled with ease. I would have liked to see a bit more than 8GB DDR4 memory included from the factory to assist with this, but these RAM modules (2x DDR4-3200 slots – Max 64GB) can be replaced to suit your application.
Much like the AROUS 17G YT, the AERO 15 OLED features the same Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 8GB GDDR6 GPU (105W) with a boost clock of 1245w. Although the jump in performance from last-gen GPUs isn’t as impressive as we would have hoped for, the RTX 3080 is still the leader of the pack in regards to mobile performance thanks to its raw power that is complimented by ray tracing and DLSS technology.
There is also room for 2x M.2 SSD with a 1TB M.2 SSD included. Storage can easily be expanded with the addition of another SSD or by replacing the existing 1TB SSD with a bigger capacity. For most users, the included 1TB will be sufficient for uncompressed content and game installations.
GIGABYTE have included both wireless technology (Intel AX200 Wireless (802.11ax, a/b/g/n/ac/ax compatible) adaptor) and Bluetooth 5.1 connectivity. The wireless is a given, but the inclusion of Bluetooth 5.1 is a nice quality of life inclusion and allows for Bluetooth compatible mice, keyboards and headsets to easily connect to the laptop.
I was thoroughly impressed with the AERO 15 OLED as its 11th Gen Intel CPU was able to showcase the raw multi-core power with impressive scores across the board.
Both CPU and GPU temperatures were kept under control thanks to Windforce Infinity cooling technology. CPU temps were kept to around 70c on average, peaking at the low 90s when under load. GPU temps were never an issue for the AERO 15 OLED as they failed to break a sweat under load.
Across the board, we saw an improvement in FPS thanks to Intel’s 11th Gen processor (when compared to the AROUS 17G YT). The minimal loss in frames when jumping from 1080p to 1444p is quite impressive with only 2 to 3 FPS, while the jump from 1440p to 4K is more noticeable but still no issues for this hardware.
Supplying the AERO 15 OLED with electricity is a 99Wh Li-Polymer battery that Gigabyte claim will provide up to 8 hours of usage. This is, of course, with battery optimisation features turned on such as Power Saver plan, sitting idle, low brightness etc. Throughout my everyday use for work and some minor gaming at night, I was able to get around 5-6 hours of battery life out of a full charge, which is close to a full day of work and marginally better when compared to the power-hungry AROUS 17G YT that features the same battery. This isn’t perfect, but as the majority of the time the laptop will be connected to mains power, it shouldn’t be a problem.
To put it simply; GIGABYTE has delivered the ultimate all-in-one solution for professional content creators and mobile gamers alike. The AERO 15 OLED YD offers the best of both worlds by combining the latest hardware such as Intel’s 11th Gen CPU with Nvidia’s RTX 3080 GPU to ensure professionals have all the resources available for their workstation needs, along with the raw grunt required to play the latest games at 4K. As good as the hardware is, it plays second fiddle to its gorgeous OLED display.
Hardcore gamers may be put off by its 60Hz refresh rate, but the colour representation and contrast ratio produce an incredible image that is rich, vivid, and nothing like I have ever experienced on a laptop before. If you’re in the market for an all-in-one solution for your content creating and gaming needs, then the GIGABYTE AERO 15 OLED YD is the perfect laptop for you.
Gigabyte AERO 15 OLED YD Laptop Review
- PERFORMANCE - 99%99%
- QUALITY - 95%95%
- FEATURES - 95%95%
- VALUE - 91%91%
When you combine its gorgeous 4K OLED display with the raw power of Intel’s 11th Gen processor and Nvidia’s RTX 3080 GPU, the GIGABYTE AERO 15 OLED YD is one of the best laptops on the market as it provides a powerful workstation for the office, along with the hardware required to deliver the ultimate gaming experience where ever you are. To put it simply, the GIGABYTE AERO 15 OLED YD is the best of both worlds!
GIGABYTE AERO 15 OLED YD Laptop Review – For more on GIGABYTE, check out our previous coverage.