2023 Laptops are notoriously expensive as the upgrade cycle hits both the CPU and GPU as Intel launches its 13th Generation Core Processors and Nvidia with its RTX 40 series mobile graphics. Gigabyte is one of the few brands that released its gaming laptops in the typical cycle with the GPU getting a refresh. The Gigabyte G5 KF is the brand’s mainstream gaming laptop with an Intel Core 12th Gen Processor and RTX 40 series graphics. Our specific review unit hosts the Intel Core i5 12500H and RTX 4060. Let’s see if the 12th Gen i5 + RTX 4060 pairing is enough to run the latest game titles.
The Gigabyte G5 KF E3PH333SH featuring an Intel Core i5 12500H, 8GB DDR4 Memory, 512GB Gen4 SSD, and RTX 4060 retails for Php 70,995 SRP. With a discounted price of Php 67,995, the Gigabyte G5 KF competes with older 12th Gen i5 + RTX 3060 devices commonly priced around Php 60,000.
Gigabyte G5 KF – A Closer Look
Being the brand’s entry-level gaming laptop, the GIgabyte G5 KF comes in a simple brown packaging. Both sides sport the same design with the G5 Gaming Laptop printed on the lower right side.
Packaging contents are fairly standard with a warranty card, quick starter guide, extra thermal pad, extra m.2 screw, and a 180W power brick.
The Gigabyte G5 series has one of the cleanest top lids with the Gigabyte logo positioned off-center and a cyber-style outline on the adjacent corner. Underneath is a large cutout showing the WINDFORCE cooling system with four heat pipes, two 59-blade fans, and four exhaust vents.
Despite being a budget or mainstream gaming laptop, the Gigabyte G5 KF has a very competitive and robust port selection with a microSD card slot, USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type C, and Ethernet slot on the right-hand side. The left boasts one USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type A, one USB 2.0 Type A, a microphone jack, and a headphone jack.
The back of the laptop also has ports – USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type C, Mini DisplayPort 1.4, HDMI w/ HDCP, and a DC-in jack.
The Gigabyte G5 KF has a full-sized keyboard crammed into the 15-inch chassis. Unlike other brands, Gigabyte was able to fit full-sized arrow keys in the keyboard but at the cost of overall ergonomics. A part of the lower right section of the modifiers is adjusted to accommodate the full-sized arrow keys. Depending on how often you use the shift and right control, you may have a very hard time adjusting to the keyboard layout. My almost one month time with the laptop isn’t enough for me to get accustomed to this layout.
Keyboard lighting isn’t a strong suit for the GIgabyte G5 as you can barely see its max brightness setting. Moreover, the keyboard isn’t a full RGB keyboard as it only supports one color at a time on the whole keyboard deck which can be customized in the Gigabyte Control Center software.
The trackpad is of decent size and is positioned slightly to the left. Its size certainly feels small considering there are now gaming laptops with much larger trackpads. The trackpad position doesn’t interfere with your left hand placement when gaming.
Gigabyte G5 KF Display and Camera
The Gigabyte G5 KF is equipped with a 15.6″ 1080p 16:9 144Hz display. It’s pretty much the minimum spec requirement for gaming laptops.
Unfortunately, the color accuracy of the G5’s 1080p display is the lowest we’ve tested in a gaming laptop. Its 64% sRGB, 47% AdoboRGB, and 47% DCI P3 coverage mean that you can’t really do any professional photo or video editing with the laptop unless you use a more color-accurate external display. Moreover, a recorded peak brightness of 277 nits clearly doesn’t meet our 300-nit minimum standard for a tolerable display. If anything, its saving grace is its clean matte surface that has very minimal reflections or glare spots.
Gigabyte includes a standard 720p webcam on the Gigabyte G5 KF.
Like the laptop’s display quality, the webcam quality isn’t something to be proud of – it’s just there for the sake of having it.
Gigabyte G5 KF Benchmark Setup and Methodology
We benchmarked the Gigabyte G5 KF together with its different power settings found in the Gigabyte Control Center – Power Saving, Entertainment, and Performance. The main purpose of benchmarking power profiles will show how aggressive or conservative the manufacturer is in terms of thermal management. These profiles will affect the CPU and GPUs’ boosting behavior in terms of duration and max clock speed which will translate to higher scores and stable framerates.
The latest build of Windows 11, WHQL-certified drivers are used for our benchmarks. We use CapFrameX 1.7.1 and RTTS 7.3.5 as our FPS capture and analysis tool for our gaming benchmarks. Readings such as temperatures and power consumption are recorded using HWInfo64. Other relevant software is used for cross-checking and error analysis.
Gigabyte G5 KF SSD Benchmark
Gigabyte uses the PCIE Gen 4 version of its in-house AG4512G-SI B10 512GB NVMe for the Gigabyte G5 KF. No public data sheet is available for the PCIE Gen 4 version but we were able to measure around 4,700MB/s read and 2,200MB/s read speeds. It’s much faster than a max speed PCIE Gen 3 drive but it’s definitely not one of the fastest as far as Gen4 drives are concerned. Overall, all the SSD inside the G5 KF is above average although getting a higher capacity Gen3 drive could’ve been the better choice considering the G5 KF is a mainstream gaming laptop.
COUNTER-STRIKE: GLOBAL OFFENSIVE
Counter-Strike Strike: Global Offensive aka CSGO is a 10-year old first-person shooter title that’s still widely popular despite its old Source Engine. CS:GO is a great game to test out CPU performance as the game is heavily CPU-dependent like any other FPS title. Our CS:GO benchmark process uses ULLETICAL’s FPS Benchmark workshop mod to measure the hardware’s performance.
Most gamers play at least one of the following free-to-play titles: League of Legends, CS: GO, Dota 2, and/or Fortnite. Dota 2 is a good representation of the F2P titles as it is the most demanding game in the spectrum. The benchmark will give you an idea of the graphic card’s relative performance on other lesser demanding titles. Our benchmark sequence is based on a replay of OG vs. Liquid in the TI9 grand finals from the team fight that happened from 28:30 to 29:30.
Far Cry 6
Far Cry 6 is the latest installment in the franchise which utilizes DirectX 12 to run the virtual world of Yara.
Cyberpunk 2077 is arguably the most hyped game of 2020. Developed by CD Projekt Red, the dystopian open-world, action-adventure RPG sports is one of the most demanding titles to date. Cyberpunk 2077 also supports three Ray Tracing settings as well as DLSS which makes the game a great tool to measure Ray tracing performance for both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards.
Metro Exodus is the third Metro game trilogy based on Dmitry Glukhovsky’s novels. The game is a first-person shooter with survival horror and stealth elements. The post-apocalyptic game uses 4A Engine by 4A games. Released last 2019, Metro Exodus remains to be one of the most graphically pleasing and demanding games that’s popular to date.
Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is the latest franchise installment from Ubisoft. It uses the AnvilNext 2.0 game engine, an updated version of Rainbow Six Siege’s game engine, and uses the DirectX 12 API.
F1 22 is the thirteenth installment in the franchise and uses the Ego Engine 3.0. F1 22 is a good representation of racing games thanks to its realistic graphics and fairly demanding spec requirements.
HORIZON ZERO DAWN
Horizon Zero Dawn is one of the most popular console-port RPG developed by Guerilla Games and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment. Horizon Zero Dawn is a multi-award-winning action RPG, and its popularity resulted in an exclusive Complete Edition game bundle on Steam.
Gigabyte G5 KF Temps and Battery Life
The Gigabyte G5 KF does a barely “okay” job when it comes to cooling with the highest recorded peak temperature of the Intel Core i5 12500H at 106°C and the RTX 4060 at 82.2°C both under the Performance profile. 106°C is absurdly hot, especially considering that we’re dealing with a Core i5 CPU which should be a relatively easy CPU to cool at 65W TDP. But when we take the RTX 4060 82.2°C temp into consideration as well as our thermal profile benchmarks, it’s clear that the GPU gets the priority in terms of cooling. That said, you could get lower temperatures by ramping up the fan speed via the Control Center software which in turn will also result in higher fan noise.
The 54Wh battery only yields a maximum battery life of 4 hours and 55 minutes and that’s already on the lowest power profile. Switching from power saving to entertainment reduces the battery life to 4 hours and 33 minutes while the performance profile shoves it down further to 4 hours and 7 mins.
Gigabyte has clearly cut corners wherever possible on the Gigabyte G5 KF particularly its display, overall ergonomics, and battery life. Fortunately for the brand, two out of three can be resolved simply by using external peripherals and displays. The battery life issue is simply not an issue if you use the laptop plugged in most of the time. That said, these are things that you should consider if you’re planning to get a gaming laptop and make it do stuff other than “gaming.”
These compromises were made in order to make the Intel Core i5 12500H and RTX 4060 75W power through games and it indeed delivered at the slight cost of toasty thermals – which can be tweaked by increasing the fan speed. The Gigabyte G5 KF gaming laptop manages to play the latest titles over 60 FPS with most titles hovering near the sweet 144FPS mark to fully maximize the 144Hz display. Our benchmark results show that the i5 12500H and RTX 4060 pairing is currently more than enough to run the latest titles at max settings given an ample amount of cooling.
Overall, the Gigabyte G5 KF is not the best gaming laptop we’ve seen, especially in 2023 but it ain’t the worst one either. It simply sits in an awkward position given its Php 65,000 to Php 70,000 pricing. Its price certainly makes it one of the cheapest RTX 4060 laptops in the market but it also competes with outgoing 12th-gen + RTX 30 series laptops that have arguably weaker performance but have an overall better package. It’s not to say that the Gigabyte G5 KF isn’t a better choice compared to the discounted older models as at the end of the day, it’ll depend on the user’s use case and priorities when looking for a gaming laptop. That said if you’re after pure performance and don’t mind the list of compromises mentioned then the Gigabyte G5 KF is a decent option but if you want a better well-rounded gaming laptop at the expense of turning down graphics fidelity, then going for older gen models might be the wiser choice.
Grant is a Financial Management graduate from UST. His passion for gadgets and tech crossed him over in the industry where he could apply his knowledge as an enthusiast and in-depth analytic skills as a Finance Major. His passion allows him to earn at the same time help Gadget Pilipinas' readers in making smart, value-based decisions and purchases with his reviews and guides.