E-sports events continues to gain its ground in the local scene, brands are actively promoting their gaming sub-brands such as ROG, Legion, Alienware, Predator etc. but when you talk about gaming, you talk about desktop PCs, and laptops are somewhere placed between mediocre to casual gaming only. But that kind of thinking changed about 2 years ago when Intel and Nvidia made new chips and GPUs that blurs the gap between mobile and desktop gaming performance.
The problem now is, you can get a gaming laptop but you have to get along with the bulkiness of the whole device and its power brick. Well ASUS changed that with its ROG Zephyrus. This device packs a GTX 1080 MaxQ design, 512GB of PCIe SSD and up to 24GB of LPDDR4 RAM in a small form factor that is almost the same size as the other regular notebooks out there.
It’s design is truly unique with only 1.79cm thick, that is up to 5 coins stacked up on top of each other. I was astonished on how light it is when I carried it with me on on my travels. ASUS made a creative solution on it thermal management by making ramp-like panel that opens when the lid is lifted which enables the unit to have a better air flow.
ASUS made it sure that the Zephyrus is one good looking gaming laptop with all metal chassis for that premium look. Its also the first ROG device that has the new brush aluminum finish that we will also see in the next generation of ROG notebooks.
However I didn’t like its keyboard because it is too shallow that I had to use my mechanical keyboard during gameplay. Using the keys itself while playing is not advisable but at least its RGB illuminated. The trackpad can also be used as a virtual numpad which is pretty cool. Design-wise the ASUS ROG Zephyrus looks great considering the thermal management and overall aesthetics.
With NVIDIA’s MaxQ design ASUS managed to squeezed a GTX1080 GPU inside paired with Intel’s 7th gen core i7 quad core processor. Usually play overwatch and pubg with it and I had no problems with frame skips or lags in it. All settings are in ultra and didn’t hold back in every detail during gameplay. But as the game is being played for about 4 hours and counting I noticed the temperature gradually increases from the usual 71 degrees to 82 degrees Celsius! You might still be needing a laptop cooler to be able to hold the temp levels at bay. Content creators, this is also a device for you since it has a PCIe SSD and up to 24GB of DDR4 RAM for multi-tasking, expect a top-notch performance when opening you apps or projects.
For battery life, that is where the Zephyrus fails to perform, you can only get 2 hours at max with it. Maybe ASUS cannot put in a larger battery with all the components inside. Always remember that this is a gaming laptop and don’t expect it to be as mobile as the other ultrabooks available in the market today.
This is a great start for ASUS on setting the tone for gaming laptops, with the ROG Zephyrus, we can expect more impressive models from them and will finally blur the bridge between mobile and desktop gaming PCs.
ROG Zephyrus GX501
|CPU||Intel Core i7-7700HQ|
|GPU||Nvidia GTX1080 MaxQ design|
|RAM||up to 24GB of LPDDR4 RAM|
|Display||1920×1080, 120hz with G-sync|
|Storage||512GB of PCIe SSD|
|Ports||1 x Thunderbolt 3 (USB Type-C), 4 x USB 3.0, 1 x HDMI 2.0, headset jack|