Illegear Laguna SE Hands-On: A Powerful, Value for Money RTX 2070 Gaming Laptop
November 3, 2019 Andrew Cheng

If you’re a PC gamer, you would’ve probably heard of Illegear, which is quite well-known for offering gaming laptops with a lot of customisation options. One such laptop is this one right here: the Illegear Laguna SE. Sporting a sleek chassis and a powerful RTX 2070 GPU, this is one capable gaming laptop.

After spending a brief time with the Laguna SE, I’m impressed with its feature set. If you want a light, portable gaming machine with fast performance, you really should consider this laptop.

One of the biggest selling points of the Laguna SE is its slim profile and lightweight chassis. Measuring only 21mm thin, this is a reasonably slim gaming laptop, especially for an RTX 2070 machine. On top of that, it weighs only 1.9kg too, so lugging around this laptop in your backpack shouldn’t be too cumbersome.

Build quality of the Laguna SE is great as well. It feels solid, there’s not much keyboard flex, and the mostly metal construction feels great to the touch. However, I’m not too crazy about the bottom chassis of the laptop, which is made out of plastic. It doesn’t quite live up to the premium positioning of the Laguna SE.

That being said, I do like the top lid’s design, especially the gold accent. Did I mention the accent is also illuminated?

Like most gaming laptops in the market now, the Laguna SE has a fast 144Hz 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080 IPS display. According to Illegear, this panel is capable of showing 100% of the sRGB colour space. While I don’t have the tools to verify this, it does look very impressive with a good level of brightness, vibrant colours, as well as great viewing angles.

And thanks to the high 144Hz refresh rate, everything – and I mean everything – looks incredibly smooth on this display. Whether you are just moving the mouse cursor or gaming, you will definitely notice the higher frame rate.

Considering the fact that the Laguna SE can be configured with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 GPU, you will be able to make full use of the 144Hz display. While I wasn’t able to thoroughly test out the gaming performance of this laptop, I’m positive the RTX 2070 can return high and consistent frame rate in many – if not all – AAA titles.

It is also worth mentioning that the Laguna SE comes with an RTX 2070 “Max-Performance” GPU, which is quite a bit faster than an equivalent RTX 2070 with Max-Q design. Compared to the latter, the RTX 2070 Max-P should offer about 20% better performance – that’s a noticeable difference.

Next are the input devices of the Laguna SE, starting with the three-zone RGB keyboard. For the most part, it’s a decent keyboard with just enough travel for a comfortable typing experience. I also love just how “light” the keys are: it doesn’t take too much force to actuate the keys, allowing me to type quite fast on this keyboard.

That being said, I do have one major qualm with the Laguna SE’s keyboard, and it has to do with the layout. Now, the keyboard itself is fine when I’m typing, but it can get really frustrating when I need to access the right side. See, in order to fit a full-size number pad to the right of the keyboard, the backspace and enter keys are shortened.

Whenever I wanted to press the enter key, I ended up hitting the number 4 on the numpad. When you need to type quickly and accurately, this can get frustrating real fast. Can I get used to this odd keyboard layout in the long run? Maybe. But should this have been an issue in the first place? Absolutely not.

As for the Laguna SE’s trackpad, it’s reasonably good. My fingers can glide easily on the smooth surface, and it’s pretty darn accurate too. However, I’m not thrilled with the build quality of the trackpad. It’s not as well-assembled as it should be, with a bit of play when I press down on it slightly.

The Illegear Laguna SE may have some shortcomings (especially the input devices), but as a whole, it’s really quite an attractive gaming laptop. On top of that, it offers relatively good value for money too. Right now, you can get this RTX 2070 model with an Intel Core i7-9750H processor, 16GB of RAM, 512GB of fast PCIe NVMe SSD, and Windows 10 installed for only RM7,047 – RM6,695 if you pay in cash instead.

At that price point, not many of its competition can offer the same value for money as the Laguna SE, let alone a different gaming laptop that is packaged in a slim and light package like it. If you’re keen to get this machine, you can do so on Illegear’s official site.