Computex is the time when Asus makes a ton of major announcements and reveals refreshes to its existing product lines. The Republic of Gamers series gets a lot of attention this time of the year and Asus just got done announcing two new laptops, the Asus ROG Strix Hero II and the Asus ROG Strix Scar II. The Hero II is designed more for MMORPG gamers while the Scar II is designed specifically for gamers. There are a number of interesting features on this machine that make is stand out from the crowd, and a few upgrades that make it more lucrative than its predecessor. India will only be getting the Scar II, which will be branded as the ASUS ROG Strix GL504, and here are our first impressions.
The Asus ROG Strix GL504 we saw at Computex was powered by Intel’s 8th generation Core i7 processor (8750H) coupled with a whopping 32GB of RAM. You got this in the GL503 as well, but what’s been upgraded are graphics. Instead of the Nvidia GTX 1050Ti, you get a GTX1070 onboard, which is pretty amazing. With a new graphics card in play, Asus has also improved their display game. You get up to a terabyte of solid-state storage, along with a host of standard ports such as USB 3.0, USB-C, HDMI 2.0 and even an ethernet port. The 720p webcam can be found on the bottom side of the display assembly, earning it the moniker “nose cam.”
The Asus ROG Strix GL504 brings significant improvements to the display. Asus says this is the world’s first display with 144Hz refresh rate and a 3ms response time. These numbers will mean a lot to those who are heavily into first-person shooters, but what would add to the appeal is the significant narrowing of the bezels around the display. Asus has been pushing its NanoEdge branding of displays in the Vivobook series of products, and we see a similar design approach here, sans the branding. The IPS display looked incredibly crisp and while we didn’t have enough time to actually play games on the machine, we did watch a bunch of fast-paced demo videos and they looked really good on the panel.
Its all RGB
RGB lighting is synonymous with PC gamers and Asus takes this to the next level with their Aura Sync lighting setup. The keyboard offers a fully customizable RGB lighting setup and if you have an Asus gaming mouse and keyboard, you can program the lighting on them to function as one unified system. Basically, through Aura Synch, you can control the lighting patterns of the ROG logo on the back, the keyboard, the mouse and even the thick LED strip just below the lip of the lid.
India Friendly Cooling Design
One of the key concerns with developing any gaming product is heat dissipation. High-end components produce a lot of heat and the only way to get the most performance out of them is to keep them cool. So typically, you would push (or pull) a lot of air into the system and vent the hot air, resulting in a much cooler inside. However, the problem with this scenario in India is the amount of dust we have. So Asus made the anti-dust cooling system where the 12-volt fan module has a channel through which dust particles get routed out of the laptop using the principles of centrifugal force. Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to see this in action but can't wait to have an Asus machine show up in our test lab for a long-term review to specifically test this feature out.
The Asus ROG GL503 was fairly decently priced for its time and specification in India. The GL504 steps things up noticeable with a much-improved display, a beefier GPU and of course, the usual set of power-features such as fully customizable RGB lighting and of course, Game Center. This is not a very heavy machine and in fact, does not look like a clunky laptop either. The design is very refined and it could just as easy pass for a powerful work-laptop for many people. Infact, people in the creative industry could truly benefit from the hardware in the Asus ROG Strix GL504, without compromising on the aesthetic part of the deal. Currently, we have not been informed of a time frame within which the machine should be available in India, and neither has a price been announced yet.