Razer's Blade gaming laptop

Gaming peripheral maker Razer is finally ready to enter the hardware market with the announcement of its new $2,800 Blade gaming laptop, which recently began shipping pre-ordered units in time for the holiday season.

Razer first unveiled the Blade in August as “the world’s first true gaming laptop.” The company emphasized its 17-inch LED screen, high-end graphics hardware and six-hour battery life — all packed into a sleek, combat-knife-inspired case that’s less than an inch thick. The Blade also sports a unique “switchblade” user interface, which includes 10 adaptive tactile hotkeys and a LCD multi-touch panel displaying in-game information along the keyboard.

Interest about the new laptop from both consumers and the press has been strong enough that the company is now able to negotiate better costs for the system’s internal components, Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan told Kotaku. One of those components includes a solid state hard drive that will replace the originally promised standard hard disk.

Razer faces competition from a number of existing gaming PC specialists like Alienware, which offers a range of gaming laptops starting at $899. The Blade will also compete against smartphones and tablets, which are increasingly becoming the go-to devices for many consumers’ mobile gaming habits.

But Razer is aiming squarely at a more hardcore audience that’s willing to pay a premium for a no-compromise laptop that’s on par with a desktop PC gaming experience. Whether or not the Blade will become as successful as Razer’s other high-end gaming products (including mice, keyboards and headsets) remains to be seen.

Check out the gallery of images embedded below for a closer look at Razer’s Blade laptop.

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