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Acer's new Predator gaming systems are powerful beasts that will also run your VR headset

Acer's new Predator gaming systems are powerful beasts that will also run your VR headset

The Predator 17X laptop and Predator G1 desktop look great, too

Acer is firing on all cylinders with its powerful new Predator gaming PCs, which will also provide the compute muscle for your virtual reality headset.

The Predator 17X is a 17.3-inch laptop with an Intel i7-6820HK Core processor that can be overclocked to 4.0GHz. The GeForce GTX 980 GPU can be overclocked as well, to 1310MHz, which is a whole load of graphics performance.

For a big laptop it's fairly portable, especially considering its "custom triple-fan cooling system," akin to what you might find on a desktop. The laptop sucks in air at the sides and pushes it out the back. But watch your electricity bill if the system is running at full speed for long periods of time.

The 17X can be configured with a 1920x1080 pixel display, or a 4K display with 3840x2160 resolution. It has superfast NVMe storage and supports Thunderbolt 3 via a USB-C port.

It will go on sale in North America in June starting at $2,799, with other countries to follow.

Acer also announced the Predator G1 gaming desktop. The company claims this is portable too, though you'll need two hands to lug around the 16-liter chassis. Acer going after the "LAN party" crowd (is that still a thing?), where enthusiasts gather in groups to do their gaming together.

The G1 has some features found in bigger gaming rigs. It can be configured with Nvidia's fastest GPU, the Titan X, for the best gaming experience available. To back that up, the system can be loaded with Intel's latest Skylake chips and 64GB of DDR4 RAM. Storage options are up to a 512GB solid-state drive or a 4TB hard drive.

The desktop will be available in China in May and North America in June, with other countries to follow. U.S. pricing starts at $2,299.

Both systems have the muscle to run virtual reality headsets, said Jason Chen, CEO of Acer, at a launch event in New York Thursday. He didn't say which headsets can be plugged into it, but presumably they include the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.

He said Acer's Predator systems going forward will support all the major virtual reality platforms.

Acer also announced the Predator Z1 27-inch monitor, a curved display that supports Nvidia's G-Sync technology for improved game play. G-Sync aims to reduce stutter and lag time by synchronizing display panels to the refresh rate of games. GPUs are connected directly to displays.

The monitor has full HD resolution and a refresh rate of 144Hz. It has DisplayPort and HDMI ports, and five USB 3.0 ports. The monitor will be priced at $599 in the U.S. when it ships in June.


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