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Nomad 17: the first Maingear notebook to get Nvidia’s new super-powerful GPU

maingear adds nvidia gtx 980m to nomad 17 gaming laptop
Image used with permission by copyright holder
If you’re a PC gamer on the go, take notice. The super-powerful laptop graphics hardware menu just got more robust. However, you’ll need some serious cash to order up a big slab of this.

Maingear is equipping its gaming laptops with Nvidia’s new GeForce GTX 980M and 970M GPUs. However, Maingear’s Nomad 17 will be the only member of the company’s lineup to get the 980M, for now at least. The firm’s Pulse 15, Pulse 17, and Nomad 15 systems can be had with the GeForce GTX 970M. If you so choose, you can downgrade to the 970M with the Nomad 17 as well.

Both the GeForce GTX 980M and 970M, like the desktop-based GeForce GTX 980 (which Nvidia launched several weeks ago), are based on the company’s Maxwell architecture.

Nvidia says that the GTX 980M is almost as powerful as its desktop counterpart, and the tests we conducted on the 980M revealed that Nvidia’s latest indeed holds up to this claim. The 980M is powered by 1,536 CUDA Cores, and a base clock of 1,038MHz. The desktop card, by comparison, has 2,048 CUDA Cores, and a base clock of 1,126MHz.

The 980M also uses the same 256-bit memory interface and GDDR5 RAM, though the amount of RAM you get with the 980M may vary from one system to the next. For instance, the 980M in the Maingear Nomad 17 has a whopping 8GB of GDDR5 RAM.

Meanwhile, the 970M offers 1,280 CUDA cores, and a base clock of 924MHz.

We haven’t had a chance to test the 970M yet, but if you’re in the market for a gaming laptop and you’re prioritizing graphics processing power, a system that wields the Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M will more than serve you well.

To get a better idea of what a Maingear Nomad 17 equipped with a GTX 980M GPU can do, check out our GeForce GTX 980M testing and benchmark results here.

The Maingear Nomad 17 wears a 17.3-inch 1080p display, and when equipped with an Intel Core i7-4710HQ CPU running at 2.5GHz, 16GB of RAM, a GeForce GTX 980M GPU, and a 750GB mechanical hard drive, it will run you $2,400. That’s not even the highest-end configuration you can get, so don’t say that we didn’t warn you about the asking price.

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Konrad Krawczyk
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Konrad covers desktops, laptops, tablets, sports tech and subjects in between for Digital Trends. Prior to joining DT, he…
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