CONS: Low battery time, expensive, no Ethernet port
ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701 is so far one of the fastest gaming laptop having a single graphics card. The reason it being the best and fast is besides all other high spec components, it also rocks a Max-Q RTX 2080 GPU which is stunning. ASUS has put a nice effort into making it a combination of both professional and gaming laptop. It gets pretty clear from both its performance and design. You can use it for gaming and professional work as well. Besides, it has a much improved battery timing of 5 hours (on lower settings) compared to its predecessors.
ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701 Review & Specifications
|CPU||Intel Core i7-9750H|
|Display||17 inches FHD IPS (144Hz, 3ms)|
|Storage||1TB PCIe NVMe SSD|
|GPU||RTX 2080 Max-Q|
|Battery||76 Wh (5 hours on low settings)|
|Size||399 x 272 x 18.7 (mm)|
|Numpad||Yes (embedded in trackpad)|
|Ports||3 standard USB 3.1, 2 USB-C 3.1, HDMI, Audio jack|
Design & Chassis
As always, it is a slim and smart gaming laptop from ASUS ROG. It honestly can be one of the most classy 17 inches laptop. Yes you heard that right, unlike its predecessor which was 15 inches, this one has a massive 17 inches display having the thinnest bezels possible. And these thin side and top bezels brings the screen-to-body ratio at 81% which is again classy and stunning. The only thing which you might miss is a webcam, there is no webcam in the laptop but you get an external one with the package, well this is lame.
If you are not seeing a Zephyrus for the first time, you should know where they place the keypad and trackpad. But for first-timers, in a Zephyrus they keyboard is placed where you normally place your palm and wrist. And the trackpad lies on the right of the keyboard. Initially, people thought it was an odd design but with time many realized that it is a much better placement only if you get used to it. Besides, this design is not just to make the laptop look different. The conventional place where a keyboard is placed, holds a logo which is RGB backlit and rest of the areas works actively in cooling the laptop.
Speaking of the chassis, it is black magnesium alloy which gives the laptop a premium look and also makes it a durable one. The laptop weighs around 5.9 pounds which is impressive keeping in mind the beastly performance which it offers. Dimension wise, it is 399 x 272 x 18.7 (mm) which obviously makes it one slim laptop. And to elaborate more, its 18.7mm or 0.7 inches thickness makes it 40% thinner compared to other 17 inches laptops on average.
Well you should raise your expectations from ROG Zephyrus S GX701 when you think of performance. The price you pay for it and the power it packs, totally does justice with providing you the performance which no other laptop can do at the moment. It houses an Intel Core i7-9750H CPU alongside 32GB DDR4 RAM in which 16GB comes on board. This is pretty much the best configuration you can get on any new laptop. For storage you get 1TB PCIe Nvme SSD Hyper Drive which is what you would love to have to put all your games and data safe. For graphical power it packs an RTX 2080 Max-Q which is pretty much the fastest graphics card in a laptop so far. These components combined with the promising cooling system and the vibrant display, makes ASUS ROG Zephyrus S one amazing beast to have in your gaming setup.
Display & Speakers
As mentioned earlier, unlike the predecessors, this one comes with a massive 17 inches display which is vibrant, colorful and the panel has the thinnest bezels you will ever see. It is a 144Hz 1080p IPS panel with G-Sync, having 3ms response time. Now ASUS has kept in mind other class of users as well, it not only displays your gameplay at good fps but also gives you a needed view when doing professional work like using CAD or some video editing software. Which makes us want to say that it can be a good laptop for professionals like engineers as well.
Speakers of Zephyrus GX701 are nicely loud and the sound of it is pretty amazing. You can fire them up in a large room and the sound won’t faint. The sound doesn’t seem to be from internal speakers, it’s as if some external speakers are connected which means you will be loving the audio performance of GX701. And no matter how up you take the volume, the sound does not get rough. Furthermore, ASUS has added an interesting little wheel at the the top left of the keyoard, it’s a volume wheel which you can use directly to adjust the sound volume.
Speaking of connectivity, this gaming laptops packs anything you will bee needing for either gaming or professional work. The only thing missing is a Gigabit Ethernet port, for which you would need a dongle if you want to connect Ethernet. So for connectivity, the left side of the laptop is home to charging port, a USB 3.1 Type-A, a USB 3.1 Type-C (DisplayPort 1.4 and power delivery) and an audio jack. Whereas on the right side you get another USB-C 3.1 and 2 USB-A 3.1 ports.
So, you may have noticed that you can also charge this laptop using USB-C which means you will have to carry a power bank for it. Truth be told, this gaming laptop is so power hungry that a normal power bank won’t be able to charge it but if you connect one, it will definitely stop the battery from losing power. Which means you can get an extra hour or two depending on what power bank you have.
Keyboard & Touchpad
AS we stated earlier that a Zephyrus will always have its keyboard and trackpad oddly place, well with time it is becoming normal for the users. But initially this was a very odd placement. Anyways, speaking of the keyboard, it is RGB backlit and you really can do a lot with it for setting it up to your choice. The keys are tactile and they pretty much stop you from mistyping, so you will be hitting the targeted keys most of the times.
The trackpad here, which is placed right of the keyboard is a narrow one. You will definitely find it annoying when moving from one end of your screen to another. But it packs a nice feature in it, hitting the top left key above the the trackpad will turn it into a glowing numpad which you can easily use if needed. Everything apart, the trackpad is responsive to all new gestures and is smooth to the touch.
Gaming laptops do not promise a good battery time, this is obvious because of the power they need. Imagine paying at 144Hz on a 1080p display which is powered by an RTX 2080 form the back. It definitely sucks a lot of e-power no? So, battery timing on the previous models was not very good and same is the case here. Although, this time the battery is 76Wh which is better than what previous models had.
Now, for gaming you would always plug-in your charger, but in case you are out for work or traveling, you can get your battery timing to around 5 hours by doing a little something. If you switch to internal Intel GPU by switching OFF RTX 2080, bring your screen refresh rate back to 60Hz and stop using RGB, you will be able to use your laptop for 5 hours which still is not a very good battery timing.
You won’t be seeing any cam on the laptop embedded in it. ASUS simply decided to take it off because they had to design a slim machine having minimal bezels and thickness. But you do get an optional external webcam which is 1080p 60 fps. It’s a nice one from live streaming plus some quick informal pictures.
ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701 is a gaming laptop which means it is supposed to get heated a little. But ASUS has creatively covered that and brought down the heating to a minimum. First and foremost, the area left empty after the keyboard is pulled down, is used by Active Aerodynamic System (AAS) by ASUS. It is a system designed to keep the internals of the laptop cool, it consists of a number of heatsink pipes whose task is to push out hot air and pull in cool air and there are two big fans as well. And yes, the laptop does get noisy when put to higher load but heat, no sir, it stays at optimal temperature most of the time.
Plus there is more to the cooling system in the design, when you open the lid, at the back is a ventilation flap which tilts and opens up the back of the laptop for better airflow and this is an awesome thing to add. Additionally, if you turn OFF the RGB lightning on the logo, it will decrease the temperature by 3 degrees which is a point to ponder.
The point is, why would anyone not love to have a laptop which is an all-in-one package. It is powerful enough for gaming because of a mighty RTX 2080 GPU alongside a fast processor, 32GB of RAM and an FHD display with G-Sync. And is classy enough to use for work purposes because of its stylish and elegant design.
The only thing which one may not like is a high price which is totally OK if you dig deep into what this laptop can offer, but hey, 3000 bucks is a bug sum to pay for many people. But if you are OK which this kind of budget and don’t mind the lack of an Ethernet port and a little lower battery timing then this beast is unbeatable.