Archive for Asus

Review: ASUS ZenWiFi AX (XT8)

Posted in Products with tags on July 6, 2020 by itnerd

Before I get to the review, let me tell you a funny story. So I had a Netgear router for the longest while. However their security issues made me switch to another router. Specifically the ASUS ZenWiFi AC (CT8) model which ASUS sent over for me to review. I set it up and locked it down and I declared all to be well with the universe.

Two days after that, ASUS called and wanted their router back. After all, it was a press loaner that they had kind of forgotten about during the pandemic.

Craptastic.

That meant that I had to get a replacement in a hurry. While I could have gone with more of the same, I figured that I would take opportunity to future proof my network. Which meant that after a quick trip to Amazon.ca, and a screw up in terms of delivery by Purolator Courier in terms of delivery, I got this:

This is the ASUS ZenWiFi AX (XT8) mesh WiFi router. You get two nodes in the box which will cover 5500 square feet. It supports a variety of standards including the following:

802.11a: 6,9,12,18,24,36,48,54 Mbps
802.11b: 1, 2, 5.5, 11 Mbps
802.11g: 6,9,12,18,24,36,48,54 Mbps
802.11n: up to 300 Mbps
802.11ac (5GHZ-1): up to 867 Mbps
802.11ac (5GHZ-2): up to 3466 Mbps
802.11ax (2.4GHz): up to 574 Mbps
802.11ax (5GHZ-1): up to 1201 Mbps
802.11ax (5GHZ-2): up to 4804 Mbps

So in short, you get every standard available including WiFi 6/802.11ax. That pretty much future proofs your network by allowing you to use any device including the latest MacBooks, Surface devices, and iPhones with WiFi 6. What also is cool is that you get three bands. A 2.4 GHz band, and two 5 GHz bands. Though when used in a mesh setup, the second 5 GHz band is used for a dedicated backhaul between the nodes. Thus you effectively have 1 2.4 GHz band, and one 5 GHz band,

Here’s a look at one of the nodes:

It looks exactly like the ones that come with the AC version of this mesh router. But the black version looks way better than the white version. For the record, both the AC and the AX versions come in black and white.

On the back you can see that each node comes with three gigabit Ethernet ports for your devices, one 2.5 gigabit port for your Internet connection which is handy as many Internet Service Providers are now offering above gigabit speeds. Which means that you don’t want your router to be the bottleneck. There’s also a USB port for a printer.

The setup process of the ZenWiFi AX is absurdly simple by using the ASUS Router app. The app can automatically detects the mesh WiFi system over a Bluetooth connection. Just connect one unit to the modem from your ISP and turn both units on. Once both units are booted up, you can use the ASUS Router app to setup the system. It’s a wizard driven setup that if you want to just go the easy route, it will have you set up in minutes. But I like to do a lot more in terms of setting up a router, which means that I have to go to the web based interface to do things like disable WPS and UPnP for security reasons.

I configured the ZenWiFi AX (XT8) to be used in my condo with one node in my den and another one in the living room. The result was that I had 100% coverage in terms my 800 ish square foot condo. The other thing that I noticed is that I was able to get roughly get this speed in my condo using my MacBook Pro:

Now this speed is consistent with the AC version of router. If I had any WiFi 6 devices, I suspect that this speed would be faster. I was getting these speeds regardless of where I was in my condo. I also noticed that the experience was seamless. I was able to walk through my condo and the ZenWiFi AX seamlessly switched between nodes. So if it works in my use case, it will work for houses up to 5500 square feet in size.

Now like the ZenWiFi AC, this router is highly configurable and the nodes are accessible via the router app, or via a web page which is really good for nerds like me as the advanced features are available via the latter. You also get a pile of security to keep you safe via AiProtection Pro. And it supports Amazon Alexa and IFTTT.

Gripes? Well the only thing that was an issue was that I had to set up the 2.4 GHz band according to this FAQ on the ASUS website as not setting it up this way was causing my wife’s Joule not to connect to WiFi. This was something that I did not encounter with the AC version of this router which is a side effect of the fact that this is a 802.11ax/WiFi 6 router. This is something that I will keep an eye on.

That brings me to another gripe. It also would be nice to have the Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports to be bondable so that you can get extra speed from a NAS or something like that. But I will have to admit that I am really being nerdy at this point.

The ZenWiFi AX is a great product which you can pick up for roughly $680CDN for two nodes from Amazon. That’s not cheap. But if you need WiFi across your home, and you want something that is future proof, the ZenWiFi AX deserves a good hard look.

Replacing My Netgear Router With The ASUS ZenWiFi (CT8)

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 24, 2020 by itnerd

I’ve been reporting recently that networking gear maker Netgear has had a massive security #fail where 79 of their router models are affected by a security flaw that allows for the complete takeover of the router. If that isn’t bad enough, exploit code and tools to find these routers out on the Internet were already in the wild. Meaning that the bad guys are likely trying to exploit this and that users of Netgear products are not safe.

That’s not good.

Now while Netgear seems to be trying to roll out fixes for this security #fail, I’ve argued that because of their past history when it comes to security issues, and the fact that they sat on these new issues since January of this year and only started doing something about it when the issues were made public, you should pull any Netgear routers from service and replace them with something that is far more secure. Oh year, you should also never spend a penny on their products again. Now I am not saying lightly. The fact is that this specific security issue is not trivial. And even if you take Netgear’s advice and disable remote administration (which for the record, you shouldn’t be using any form of remote administration if you want to be completely secure), it is only a mitigation. Netgear won’t go as far to say that this will make you completely safe until fixes come out for this issue. Thus this router had to go as I take the security of my network very seriously.

For the last few years I’ve been running an R8500 which is also known as the Nighthawk X8. It has been a pretty fast router with features such as aggregate ports that I do appreciate, but it is on the list routers that were affected by this issue. So I shut it down and in it’s place went the ASUS ZenWiFi AC (CT8) mesh WiFi system which I recently reviewed. Now in theory, I am giving up two things by going to the ZenWiFi AC. Specifically:

  • There’s no ability to aggregate ports. Which means that accessing my NAS for media streaming and backup purposes should be a bit slower.
  • The Zen WiFi has a pair of 802.11ac bands. One is for the dedicated backhaul between the nodes that runs at up to 1733 Mbps. The other is for devices which runs at 867 Mbps. That’s a drop from the R8500 which did  2.1 gigabits for each band that it has. Though as it is a classic router, it doesn’t have a backhaul connection.

But in reality, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The speed differences are very slight from my testing. For example, doing a backup of my MacBook Pro over 802.11ac to my NAS was five minutes slower. And surfing the net, playing games, doing Zoom calls, doing remote access doesn’t feel any different. So perhaps my fears were unfounded.

Now by using the ASUS ZenWiFi (CT8), I was able to clean up a few things:

  • When Rogers installed my cable modem years ago, they dropped it in the living room. I then had to run a long Ethernet cable from the cable modem to the den which is where my NAS and router live so that I could connect it to the router. Because this is a mesh WiFi system, that cable is no longer required as the node in the living room plugs into the cable modem, and then that node connects over the dedicated backhaul to the other node that is in the den.
  • Since I have a TCL 4K TV and a PC that I use for Zwift in the living room, I plugged those into the node in the living room via the gigabit Ethernet ports on the node. That node is also plugged into my Rogers gigabit Internet connection.
  • In my den, I plugged in my NAS which has two Ethernet ports on it into the node that lives in there.

Top tip: For best results with the ASUS ZenWiFi (CT8), make sure that the light that is on the front of each node is white and not yellow. White indicates that the backhaul is operating in an optimal manner. In my case, the original location in my den that the second node was going to placed on made that node light up yellow. Which meant that the backhaul connection was not at its best. Though my testing indicated that it was still plenty fast. Thus because I am OCD about these things, I had to play around with the location of each nodes to get it to light up white.

But what about security you ask? Well this is what I typically do when setting up a new router:

  • I disable UPnP for the reasons I outlined here.
  • I also disable WPS for the reasons outlined here.
  • If the router supports it, I use WPA3 for authentication.
  • I never use any sort of cloud management for the router nor do I expose the admin page to the outside world as those are great ways to get pwned by hackers.
  • I make sure that the firmware is up to date.
  • I use a third party DNS service rather than Rogers DNS service.
  • I disable PING, Telnet, SSH, and HNAP to make sure that the router isn’t accessible or seen from the Internet.

The only thing I haven’t done is done a penetration test on this setup. I’ll do that in the coming days and update this post with the results. I don’t expect anything out of the oBut other than that, everything has been positive so far. All my devices work, everything is fast. I have no complaints and I can sleep better knowing that my network is as safe as possible.

UPDATE: I got around to scanning my network from the outside using a tool called Nmap. It allows you to scan for open TCP or UDP ports and it has predefined profiles that allow you to scan for as little or as much as you want. I spent about 30 minutes scanning for open ports or services across the TCP/IP spectrum and found nothing open. Thus I am confident that my network is properly locked down.

ASUS Has Some Top Shelf Father’s Day Gift Suggestions For You

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 10, 2020 by itnerd

With Father’s Day less than 2 weeks away, ASUS has a few suggestions for dad that will be sure to make an impact.

  1. For dads embracing WFH: A portable monitor is a great addition to any home office set up, giving you the benefits of a second screen without the added clutter. Consider the ASUS ZenScreen MB16AC portable monitor, which features Low Blue Light technologies to ease eyestrain and a hybrid-signal solution – so it only needs a single USB cable to connect to almost any laptop. ($319 @ Bestbuy.ca)
  2. For those looking to get MMOre out of RPGs: Whether you’re getting ready for World of Warcraft: Shadowlands or looking to blow off steam with friends in Rainbow Six Siege, the ASUS TUF Gaming K5 Gaming keyboard delivers uncompromising performance and durability. Key switches are engineered to deliver crisp tactility with every press and housed in a spill-resistant frame. ($69 @ Bestbuy.ca)
  3. Take it even further by pairing it with the ASUS ROG Chakram. ($219 @ Canada Computers)
  4. For the home media connoisseur: Beyond improving a connectivity in your home, a router – likethe ASUS ZenWiFi AC – can double as a media bridge to improve the reception and performance of any home entertainment system, helping you squeeze more out of your smart TV, streaming hardware, gaming consoles and smart speakers. ($449 @ Canada Computers). I reviewed the ZenWiFi AC and you can read the review here.
  5. For dads that just need a new, no-fuss laptop: Combining good looks, solid build quality, performance and battery life, the convertible 2-in-1 ASUS Chromebook Flip C434 takes Chromebook design to the next level. ($699 @ Bestbuy.ca). I reviewed the Chromebook Flip C434 and you can read the review here.

ASUS ROG Announces New Gaming Laptop Lineup

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 2, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced the top-to-bottom refresh of its gaming laptops with new 10th Generation Intel® CoreTM processors. Striking new chassis designs and thoughtful quality-of-life additions raise the bar for gamers and content creators, while the latest Intel CPUs, NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX SUPERTM graphics, and custom Intelligent Cooling solutions set a new performance standard.

The ROG Spring 2020 collection is headlined by the Zephyrus Duo 15 and its unique secondary ROG ScreenPad Plus touchscreen, along with refreshed Zephyrus S, M, and G models that are more portable and powerful than ever. For those seeking esports glory, ROG Strix SCAR laptops are built for top-flight competition with up to RTX 2080 SUPER GPUs and 300 Hz panels, while the bold colors of the ROG Strix G15 Electro Punk laptop and its bundle of matching accessories open new possibilities for personal expression.

The very latest components are on full show, from the liquid metal thermal compound rolling out across ROG’s entire 10th Gen Intel lineup, to high-speed DDR4 RAM and blazingly fast displays.

ROG Zephyrus Duo 15

The new ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 integrates the innovative ROG ScreenPad Plus, a secondary touchscreen for innovative multitasking that brings gaming, streaming, working, and chatting together in one portable device. The 14.1-inch 4K (3840 x 1100) IPS ROG ScreenPad Plus sits above the Duo 15’s forward-set keyboard and below its main panel, making for easy second-monitor style interaction or a dramatic continuation of the primary screen.

As the lid opens, a hinge tilts the secondary display up at a 13-degree angle for viewing comfort while exposing a massive 28.5 mm air intake that draws in cool air from above the laptop. This Active Aerodynamic System (AAS) arrangement means that the Zephyrus Duo can house powerful components in a slender chassis, including Intel’s 10th Gen Core i9 CPU and NVIDIA’s trailblazing RTX 2080 SUPER GPU.

The Zephyrus Duo ships with two high-end display options: a lightning-fast 300 Hz FHD display or a 4K UHD display with 100% Adobe RGB coverage for people who split their time between AAA gaming and content production. NVIDIA G-SYNC® technology keeps gaming visuals smooth and tear-free, while ROG GPU Switch technology enables swapping between G-SYNC and NVIDIA’s battery-saving Optimus mode.

With its one-of-a-kind secondary display, premium components, and sleek design, Zephyrus Duo 15 takes over as the flagship ROG Zephyrus laptop. From its thin all-metal chassis to its powerful ThunderboltTM 3 port, from its RAID 0 storage array to its top-of-the-line displays, this laptop embodies ROG’s ruthless drive for excellence.

ROG Zephyrus S17

The new Zephyrus S17 offers an expansive 17.3- inch display with super-narrow bezels in a svelte 18.7- millimeter-thin chassis. With a 300 Hz refresh rate and 3 ms grey-to-grey response time, the screen is a speed demon that can be paired with up to a RTX 2080 SUPER GPU and 10th Gen Intel Core i7 CPU. It shares GPU Switch benefits with the Zephyrus Duo 15 and S15 models, as well as PANTONE® Validated color accuracy making it ideal for creative work and gaming alike.

Zephyrus S17’s chassis gave ROG engineers room to include a few premium extras, including a full desktop-style keyboard with per-key RGB LED backlighting, NumberPad — a combination touchpad and numeric keypad — and an integrated volume roller complete with backlight brightness. System thermals benefit from a unique AAS cooling solution that opens a large intake vent beneath the system when the lid is raised.

Zephyrus S17 proves that big doesn’t have to mean bulky. In a lean, portable chassis, the laptop exploits the expansive screen space while providing a premium ROG experience.

ROG Zephyrus S15

The new Zephyrus S15 was tailor-made to provide serious gamers the specs they need in a package that won’t weigh them down. The compact, 18.9-millimeter-thin chassis includes top-end S17-level components, with configurations maxing out at a RTX 2080 SUPER GPU paired with a 300 Hz / 3 ms display. The combination of G-SYNC technology, ROG’s pre-applied CPU-cooling liquid metal, and an ultrahigh refresh rate makes for silky-smooth visuals even in the midst of frenetic action.

Honeycomb reinforcements under the palm rest keep the S15 sturdy and resistant to flex, with soft- touch paint adding a smooth, fingerprint-resistant finish. Inside, dual M.2 SSDs can be configured in a blazingly fast RAID 0 array. GPU Switch technology makes an appearance here as well, allowing users to toggle between G-SYNC mode for smooth gaming and Optimus mode for extended battery life.

With its slim chassis, Thunderbolt 3 connectivity, and comfortable 15-inch size, Zephyrus S15 makes the dream of ultraportable gaming a reality. It’s the ultimate Zephyrus laptop for the traveling gamer.

ROG Zephyrus M15

The attractively priced ROG Zephyrus M15 offers a range of configurations that make it an easy choice for a wide audience, beginning with the eight cores and 16 threads of a 10th Gen Intel Core i7 processor. Display options including 240 Hz and 144 Hz FHD panels and a 4K UHD panel let users pick the screen that best fits their needs, while GPU options range from the affordable yet capable GeForce GTX 1660 Ti up to the RTX 2070 GPU.

The Zephyrus M15’s slim, professional chassis is made of structurally reinforced magnesium alloy and finished with a classy, soft-touch skin. An ESS Sabre DAC drives a clear, powerful audio signal, and with two easily accessible M.2 slots, it packs the storage capacity to fit creative work alongside a loaded gaming library. The Zephyrus M15 offers a complete connectivity payload, including Thunderbolt 3, dual display outputs, and enough USB ports to connect a mouse, gamepad, and external storage.

ROG Strix SCAR 15/17

From the aluminum skin on the lid to the raised ridges that accent the ventilated 3D flow zone at the rear, ROG Strix laptops are unabashed gaming machines that shine in the spotlight of esports arenas.

ROG Strix SCAR 17 delivers unbridled gaming power built around a 300 Hz IPS-level panel. Thanks to its dizzyingly high refresh rate, this panel displays fast-paced action with unprecedented clarity, allowing gamers to react to on-screen events faster than they realized was possible. With an Intel processor up to the latest eight-core Core i9-10980-HK, up to 32 GB of 3200 MHz DDR4 RAM, and up to the e RTX 2080 SUPER GPU, the Strix SCAR 17 is prepped for peerless performance.

Those who prefer their competition-dominating hardware to be a bit more portable need look no further than ROG Strix SCAR 15. Its 15.6-inch display offers the same tournament-grade 300 Hz refresh rate with undeniable Strix SCAR look. It is powered by an Intel CPU up to a 10th Gen Core i9-10980-HK and up to the RTX 2070 SUPER GPU.

The SCAR series also boldly proclaims its gaming chops with customizable RGB LED lighting effects, including a wraparound light bar, keyboard backlighting, and illuminated RGB logo on the laptop’s lid, as well as the stand-out ROG Keystone II, an NFC-enabled device that docks into the side of the chassis. It can be customized to launch any game or app when inserted, provide access to a secret, encrypted Shadow Drive (exclusive to Windows 10 Pro), and trigger a stealth mode that mutes audio and minimizes all apps when removed.

ROG Strix G15/17

ROG Strix G15 and G17 are powered by 10th Gen Intel processors up to a Core i7. GPU options run up to the RTX 2070 SUPER GPU and drive high-refresh-rate displays built for today’s most popular esports titles. Strix G17 and Strix G15 have 144 Hz displays as standard, but both are also available with an even faster 240 Hz panel. personal style. In addition, Strix G laptops ship in three different color schemes to emphasize personal style.

Both models will be available in sophisticated Glacier Blue and Original Black. The Strix G15 Electro Punk is the real showstopper of the bunch. The contrast between its dark brushed metal and sizzling pink highlights is so striking that ROG gave it a complementary cast of gaming peripherals.

Each Electro Punk Strix G15 will include a 35 x 17-inch Electro Punk mouse pad large enough to cushion a full complement of gear. Certain regions will feature bundles of coordinating peripherals that includes the laptop and pad plus a ROG Strix Go Core Electro Punk Headset, ROG Impact II gaming mouse, and a ROG Ranger backpack, all of which sport the head-turning Electro Punk color scheme. It’s the complete PC gaming experience in one package.

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The ASUS ROG Spring 2020 collection of gaming laptops and peripherals will be available in North America starting from Q2/Q3 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

Review: ASUS ZenWiFi AC (CT8)

Posted in Products with tags on March 10, 2020 by itnerd

Mesh WiFi continues to be the go to type of WiFi router for consumers as you can ensure that you have complete coverage for your home. ASUS has a new product for those who need mesh WiFi in their home. That’s the ASUS ZenWiFi AC (CT8):

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Now unlike many of these devices, I like how good this node looks. It will fit in with any decor. You get two of these nodes in the box. The other thing that I notice is that it is very functional:

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The ZenWiFi AC comes with 3 Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports and a USB port. And both nodes have them. That allows you to use them in a variety of use cases. The USB port is for file sharing and/or printer sharing on the network.

The setup process of the ZenWiFi AC is very simple by using the ASUS Router app. The app can automatically detects the mesh WiFi system over a Bluetooth connection. Just connect one unit to the modem and turn both units on. Once both units are booted up, you can use the ASUS Router app to setup the system. I configured the ZenWiFi AC (CT8) to be used in my condo with one node in my den and another one in the living room. The result was that I had 100% coverage in terms my 800 ish square foot condo. The other thing that I noticed is that I was able to get roughly 600 Mbps sustained speeds regardless of where I was in my condo. And that speed consistently. I also noticed that the experience was seamless. I was able to walk through my condo and the ZenWiFi AC seamlessly switched between nodes. So if it works in my use case, it will work for houses up to 5400 square feet in size.

Now this router is highly configurable and the nodes are accessible via the router app, or via a web page which is really good for nerds like me as the advanced features are available via the latter. You also get a pile of security to keep you safe via AiProtection Pro. And it supports Amazon Alexa and IFTTT

Gripes? It would be nice to have the Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports to be bondable so that you can get extra speed from a NAS or something. But I will have to admit that I am really being nerdy at this point. The ZenWiFi AC is a great product which you can pick up for roughly $450 CDN for two nodes. If you need WiFi across your home, the ZenWiFi AC deserves a good hard look.

ASUS & Qnext Sign Partnership To Integrate FileFlex On ASUS Routers

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 4, 2020 by itnerd

Qnext Corp. today announced that ASUS will now globally integrate FileFlex with its most popular SMB router for the Small Office/Home Office (SOHO) – the RT-AC68U. This integration transforms the router into a 2-way smart hub that enables ultra-secure remote access, sharing and streaming of router-attached USB storage and the storage of the router-networked devices as well as a multi-media hub that automatically backs up and stores photos and videos from smart phones and tablets.

When combined with FileFlex, the ASUS router becomes a powerful, smart remote access gateway into all content that the router connects to.  Now an ASUS router can be used to securely access, share, stream and perform remote multi-device file management functions to any and all content that is on the router’s USB and the router’s network from anywhere the user is located. Every ASUS RT-AC68U router comes with a complimentary pre-paid one-year single user subscription (value $34.95).

The FileFlex integration also turns an ASUS router into a hub for multimedia and digital content. Users can set their tablets and smart phones to automatically back up photos and videos to whatever storage is attached or networked to the router. There is no limit to the number of mobile devices that can be backed up and the backup can be configured to only occur with connected via WiFi so as not to consume a user’s cellular data.

Selected as a Red Herring Top 100 Global winner for disruptive technology and recognition of the technology industry’s most exciting and innovative private companies, Qnext Corp. is an innovator in file sharing and collaboration software based on edge computing technology, including integration with the latest Intel SGX secure enclave technology. FileFlex Enterprise, an on-premise file sharing and collaboration solution, provides a highly secure hybrid point-to-point, software-only service that allows organizations to remotely access, share, stream, manage and collaborate 100% of their data from source locations.   For more information visit https://fileflex.com/.

ASUS ROG Announces New Lineup of Esports-Ready Strix Gaming Desktops

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 6, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced a new lineup of Strix gaming desktops, the GA35, GT35, GA15 and GT15, that offer tournament-ready performance for competitive esports and beyond. Debuting at CES 2020, the ROG Strix GA35 and GT35 as well as the GA15 and GT15 are gaming desktops engineered to sustain smooth gameplay under serious pressure, and offer the flexibility to do everything from producing top-quality streams to developing games.

 

The Strix GA35 and GT35: Boosted by RTX Graphics

Armed with up to a ROG STRIX GeForce RTX 2080 Ti graphics card, the GA35 and GT35 delivers reliably high frame rates for the latest games. The GPU in this top-of-the-line card is based on the NVIDIA Turing™ architecture, which mixes CUDA cores for traditional rasterization with RT cores for ray tracing, and Tensor cores for accelerated AI, including noise removal. When paired with compatible games, this combination enables faster antialiasing and higher-quality lighting, shadows, and reflections.

ROG Strix elevates the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti’s graphics prowess with a huge 2.7-slot heatsink capped by three Axial-tech fans that help the card maintain high clocks in the heat of battle. In internal tests, the Strix GA35 pushed Overwatch up to 188 FPS at 4K with Epic details, while Shadow of the Tomb Raider rendered at a smooth 73 FPS in rich 4K Ultra detail.

 

Serious 16-core power with the Strix GA35

The Strix GA35 offers powerful 3rd Generation AMD Ryzen processors up to the Ryzen 9 3950X CPU, with its cutting-edge 7nm technology doubling the number of cores of the previous generation. With 16 cores and 32 threads, the additional cores make the system more responsive under strenuous loads, and accelerate heavily multithreaded work like video encoding and 3D rendering. The Strix GT35 will feature the latest 10th generation of Intel Core processors for users looking for multitasking mastery when it comes to gaming and streaming.

The CPU sits in a ROG Strix X570-F Gaming motherboard with a fine-tuned VRM that delivers clean and reliable current. Substantial heatsinks keep the VRM cool, while closed-loop liquid cooling channels heat from the CPU to a dual-fan radiator that exhausts out the top of the chassis. The processor is unlocked for overclocking, so gamers can push for even higher performance.

With up to 64GB of high-performance DDR4-3200 memory, the GA35 can simultaneously handle smooth gameplay while live-streaming, recording, and multitasking. A NVMe SSD with up to 1TB of capacity offers plenty of space, and the Strix GA35 further accelerate throughput using the latest PCI Express® 4.0 interface.

For additional upgrades, GA35’s two PCIe x16 slots are connected directly to the CPU and support multi-GPU configurations. External hot-swap bays simplifies storage upgrades and allows for easy SSD removal in tournament settings, while one of the motherboard’s dual M.2 slots is available for a second SSD for more space. The chassis also has room for two 3.5-inch HDDs that can increase total storage capacity.

 

Superb gaming and streaming on the Strix GA15 and GT15

To run the latest titles at high resolutions or faster refresh rates, the Strix GA15 and GT15 are available with powerful graphics cards up to the NVIDIA GeForce RTX™ 2070 SUPER. In internal tests at ROG, these machines pushed 240 FPS with Full HD Epic details in Overwatch, and hit triple-digit frame rates with Ultra details at Full HD resolution in the richly detailed sandbox of Far Cry 5.

This performance is due in part to the NVIDIA Turing™ architecture behind the GeForce RTX series. Its new video encoder also improves the GA15 and GT15’s ability to stream and game simultaneously, delivering higher quality video with minimal performance impact.

The GA15 and GT15 use the latest 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen CPUs and upcoming 10th Gen Intel Core processors. The Strix GA15 is available with up to an AMD® Ryzen™ 7 3800X CPU that has 8 cores and 16 threads to easily handle demanding and varied workloads. Top configurations add up to 32GB of high-performance DDR4-3200MHz RAM, ensuring responsiveness even under heavy loads.

Storage options include a superfast M.2-based NVMe SSD up to 1TB, offering ample room for apps. For larger game libraries, the system is available with 2TB of mechanical storage. Users can download AMD StoreMI Technology to accelerate dual-drive configurations. StoreMI caches the frequently accessed data on the SSD, melding the responsiveness of solid-state storage with the massive capacity of mechanical drives to speed up load times.

 

Next-level cooling carries performance

The newest lineup of ROG Strix gaming desktops combine robust component cooling with a chassis optimized for superior airflow. The Wind Shear design on the GA35 and GT35 features widened air vents that help draw more air through the internal cooling system. Three internal chambers divide the CPU, graphics card, and power supply into separate zones to minimize thermal interference.

The internal storage also has dedicated cooling to facilitate reliable performance. The motherboard’s dual M.2 SSD slots feature heatsinks that can improve sustained throughput and long-term reliability. For even more strenuous storage loads, the Strix X570-F Gaming motherboard has a header for an M.2 fan that enables direct airflow through active cooling.

The GA15 and GT15 chassis is a more compact variation with a dual-chamber design of the airflow-enhancing Wind Shear design featured in the high-end Strix GA35 and GT35. The cooling is efficient enough that the Strix GA35 and Strix GA15 generated noise levels under 35 dB in an internal gaming test with Metro Exodus.

The full lineup of ROG Strix gaming desktops elegantly integrates a carrying handle into the top of the chassis that’s strong enough to bear sustained force of up to 30kgf, making them easier to carry. The slick hidden headphone hook helps keep tournament setups and battlestations clean; it’s tested to hold headsets up to 3kg, and can survive momentary force up to 10kgf.

 

Personalize to perfection

The Strix GA35 is the first ROG system to feature new Keystone II technology. Introduced with the ROG Strix III and Hero III gaming laptops introduced in Spring 2019, the Keystone is an NFC-enabled key can be docked in compatible devices to quickly access customized settings linked to a user’s ROG ID. Keystone II can also be configured to switch the system to a specific operating mode, launch an individual game or application, or unlock a hidden Shadow Drive for private files.

In terms of personalized lighting, the full lineup of new Strix gaming desktops feature customizable RGB lighting inside and out. Aura Sync lets users coordinate colors and effects across all compatible components, including ROG peripherals and components. The internal lighting showcases the components through the transparent EMI-shielded glass side panel.

ROG Armoury Crate software offers tons of tuning options for lighting, Keystones and other system settings. Users can create Scenario Profiles that automatically load personal preferences when they launch specific games and applications. Scenario Profiles detect the active application and adjust system performance, cooling, lighting, and other settings to ensure an ideal configuration for the task at hand. And for a more personalized audio experience, Sonic Studio III supports manual customization and offers five specially tuned modes for different kinds of games in addition to more immersive audio.

 

Gear up and go

While most peripherals connect around the back, front-panel ports provide convenient access for select devices. The GA35 and GT35’s dual USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C ports provide fast access to speedy external storage, while dual USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports are ready for more conventional devices. Around back, there are 6 additional ports, including one more USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C.

Dual HDMI 2.0b ports on the graphics card allows gamers to run a VR headset alongside a 4K monitor or TV for immersive virtual experiences. On GA35 and GT35 configurations with GeForce graphics cards, DisplayPort 1.4 outputs offer connectivity for NVIDIA G-SYNC™ gaming monitors that make gameplay even smoother. Intel® I211-AT Gigabit Ethernet offers a lower latency connections for multiplayer gaming, while Wi-Fi 5 provides fast wireless access for everyday streaming and web browsing. The Wi-Fi card also integrates Bluetooth 5 for compatible devices.

The GA15 and GT15 also offer fast charging and data transfer via one reversible Type-C™ (USB-C™) port with peak interface bandwidth of 10Gbps via USB 3.2 Gen 2. Five Type-A USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports make space for preferred peripherals and any other devices that benefit from fast data transfers. There’s an HDMI 2.0b port for gaming or streaming 4K video on the big screen at up to 60Hz. DisplayPort 1.4 outputs are also available to drive high-refresh gaming monitors, including those compatible with NVIDIA G-SYNC™ technology.

Gigabit-class networking manifests in two ways on the GA15 and GT15. Gigabit Ethernet offers a lower latency connection for multiplayer gaming, while Wi-Fi 5 provides fast wireless access for everyday streaming and web browsing. The Wi-Fi card also integrates Bluetooth 5 to cut the cord for compatible devices.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The ROG Strix GA35 and GA15will be available starting from Q1 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The ROG Strix GT35 and GT15 launch timing will be announced later in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

 

ASUS ROG Announces the Zephyrus G14 and the Zephyrus G15

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 6, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced the new Zephyrus G14 and Zephyrus G15 gaming notebooks, bringing unprecedented power to an ultra-slim form factor for portable gaming and content creation.

Ultra-slim gaming laptops usually come with a premium price due to how difficult it is to get good performance and cooling in a sub-20mm chassis. ROG has worked hard to make the category more accessible, especially to students, freelancers, and creators who need powerful laptops they can carry everywhere. The latest examples debut at CES 2020 in the new Zephyrus G14 and G15, which wrap powerful processors in a compact chassis portable enough to go anywhere at a price that brings gaming and creation capabilities to an even wider audience.

Despite a chassis only 17.9mm thin, the Zephyrus G14 has carefully customized cooling that brings out the best of its new AMD Ryzen™ 4000 Series Mobile Processors built on the groundbreaking “Zen 2” core architecture combined with industry leading 7nm process technology and up to an NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 2060 GPU with more than 10 hours of battery life charged by compatible Type-C power packs. Users can optimize for gaming or creative pursuits with a choice between high refresh and high resolution displays, both with Pantone® Validated colors and adaptive sync technology. Subtle styling in Moonlight White or Eclipse Gray is clean and professional, while the all-new, optional AniMe Matrix™ LED display deepens personalization, enabling users to show custom graphics, animations, and other effects across over a thousand mini LEDs embedded in the lid.

The powerfully versatile new Zephyrus G15 introduced at CES 2020 refreshes the best features of the previous generation Zephyrus GA502 and make them even better, putting premium features like an ultra-slim form factor at 19.9mm thin and weighing just 2.1kg, a 240Hz IPS-level gaming panel with Pantone Validation and compatibility with adaptive sync technology, Wi-Fi 6 connectivity, and the latest powerful processors in a package more affordable to a wide variety of gamers.

 

Small size with big impact in the Zephyrus G14 and G15

Packed into a much smaller footprint than other gaming laptop alternatives, the Zephyrus G14 is only 17.9mm thin and 1.6kg in models without the custom LED AniMe Matrix. The magnesium-aluminum alloy deck is precisely machined and finished for a professional polish that’s fingerprint-resistant, and its high durability and low weight make aluminum an ideal material for the lid, with a distinctive dot matrix design.

The ROG splash across the lid comes to life with the AniMe Matrix display available on select models. This display uses 1,215 mini LEDs that emit a white glow with 256 levels of brightness control to give gamers a new medium to express their individuality. Users can import animated GIFs and other graphics, build custom animations frame by frame, and type text messages with different fonts. Visualizations react to music and other audio, creating a unique platform for DJs and other artists. ROG engineers were also careful to balance the number of mini LEDs to minimize heat, controller hardware, and power requirements.

With the G14’s support for USB Power Delivery, it can handle lighter work powered by up to a 65W Type-C adapter that’s much smaller than the 180W unit required to unleash the discrete GPU. If the battery runs low, Type-C charging allows users to extend their life to keep users gaming. USB power flows in the reverse direction as well, with fast-charging support capable of supplying up to 3A to compatible smartphones and other devices.

The Zephyrus G15 also maintains its portability at only 19.9mm thin and 2.1kg, and its super-narrow bezels frame the 15-inch display on three sides, squeezing it into a 14-inch footprint. To keep it looking professional, the G15 forgoes RGB lighting for tasteful white backlighting.

Type-C charging extends the G15’s working time on the go. Support for USB Power Delivery and USB power packs like the ASUS ZenPower Pro PD give users more time to finish up work anywhere. For lighter tasks that don’t engage the discrete GPU, the laptop can also be run off smaller Type-C adapters up to 65W.

Both the G14 and G15 have superfast Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) connectivity. When paired with a compatible router, Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) boosts peak interface bandwidth up to 2.4Gbps and improves efficiency for busy networks. Lower latency leads to less lag for sensitive activities like online gaming, and expanded upstream capacity provides more bandwidth for live-streaming.

 

Immersive gaming visuals with top-notch GeForce RTX graphics

The Zephyrus G14 and G15 comes with up to a GeForce RTX 2060 augmented by ROG Boost up to 1298MHz at 65W. The discrete GPU is based on the latest NVIDIA Turing architecture, which melds dedicated cores for programmable shading, real-time ray tracing, and artificial intelligence. This combination enables improved lighting, shadows, and other in-game effects, and it also offers a diverse array of compute resources for accelerating demanding workloads like content creation, 3D modeling, and deep learning.

Turing’s dedicated video encoder is largely responsible for the G14’s ability to game and stream simultaneously. The specialized hardware allows higher stream quality with minimal performance impact, and it’s compatible with Open Broadcaster Software (OBS), a popular capture tool among burgeoning creators and aspiring Twitch streamers.

 

Nonstop speed with the latest AMD processors

For the Zephyrus G14, ROG and AMD teamed up again to create an exclusive series tuned specifically for the smaller chassis. The Zephyrus G14 uses a special CPU that generates less heat, enabling an unprecedented level of performance for such a compact chassis. The chips retain up to 8 cores and 16 threads to blast through demanding workloads, but are tuned to make thermals more manageable. There’s still ample power for demanding applications like video editing and 3D rendering, and for heavy multitasking like mixing gaming with streaming, recording and chats.

On the Zephyrus G15, an all-new AMD® Ryzen™ 7 4800HS mobile APU doubles the core count of the previous generation. With 8 cores and 16 threads based on the latest Zen 2 architecture alongside 7nm fabrication technology, it muscles through heavy multitasking, content creation, and other demanding work.

Both the G14 and G15 CPUs pair with up to 32GB of fast DDR4-3200 RAM divided between dual channels, enabling gamers to easily switch between tasks with enough headroom for bigger projects. Up to 1TB of superfast NVMe SSD storage offers ample space for a game library, personal portfolio, and media collection.

 

Stunning displays for high refresh, high resolution

The Zephyrus G14 offers a choice between two premium panels tailored for different needs. Users can select a faster Full HD display that goes up to 120Hz (doubling the speed of typical laptop displays for smoother, high-intensity action) or opt for a higher WQHD resolution.

Adaptive sync technology adds another level of smoothness by coordinating frame delivery between the GPU and display to eliminate visual tearing that can ruin immersion, and also minimize stuttering and input lag. Although adaptive sync technology has existed for years, it gains greater functionality with new AMD Ryzen™ 4000 Series Mobile Processors. Their integrated Radeon™ graphics allow adaptive sync variable refresh-rate technology to work with adaptive sync technology-enabled monitors and adaptive sync enabled devices.

Adaptive sync technology support extends to the WQHD display, and it can be even more effective at the lower FPS associated with the higher resolution. Thanks to smaller dimensions, the WQHD panel has a higher pixel density than typical 4K desktop monitors. Even the Full HD panel matches the PPI of a 28-inch Ultra HD display.

The Zephyrus G15 is available with refresh rates up to 240Hz—four times the output of standard screens. The panel’s 3ms gray-to-gray response time makes the picture especially sharp at speed, for lining up targets in a fast-paced shooter or scrolling through web pages, and adaptive sync technology makes the experience even smoother

The displays on the Zephyrus G14 and G15 are both factory calibrated and Pantone Validated for superb color accuracy. The IPS-level panels have wide viewing angles and cover 100% of the sRGB range and are framed by super-narrow bezels that create an expansive 85% screen-to-body ratio on the G14 and 81% screen-to-body ratio on the G15 respectively.

 

One-of-a-kind cooling design

The Zephyrus G14 is the first ROG laptop to feature an ErgoLift hinge that tilts the keyboard at a more comfortable angle – the bottom of the display lifts the back of the machine when the lid is opened, giving the vents in the base more room to breathe.

Self-cleaning cooling on the G14 helps to avoid accumulation of dust and other particles that can compromise performance and stability over time by using anti-dust tunnels to catch particles and direct them out the back of the chassis. Even the n-Blade fans are tweaked to optimize acoustics in the super small chassis.

On the Zephyrus G15, ROG’s Intelligent Cooling philosophy allows the G15 to get more from its silicon with a strategic blend of hardware and software that optimizes and maintains performance and acoustics with a self-cleaning thermal module and anti-dust tunnels. The G15 has the highest-density fan in our arsenal, and it improves airflow by up to 17% over previous generations.

Fan speeds on the Zephyrus G14 and G15 are controlled by an intelligent algorithm that responds automatically to temperature changes. Different tasks require varying levels of performance and cooling, so the G14 and G15 also use operating modes to adapt to those needs. Users can switch between modes on demand with a convenient keyboard shortcut, or let ROG Armoury Crate software change automatically with Scenario Profiles that can be customized to associate games and applications with specific modes and other system settings.

 

Flexible options on the go

For both the Zephyrus G14 and G15, a Type-C port with USB Power Delivery is also capable of driving an external monitor via DisplayPort 1.4. The HDMI 2.0b port makes it easy to game or watch movies on 4K monitors and TVs. There’s plenty of connectivity for external devices through a Type-C port focused on USB functionality, plus two Type-A ports for the G14 and three Type-A USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports for the G15 allow anyone to create the perfect gaming battlestation – no dongles needed.

Key switches with ROG Overstroke technology on the G14 and G15 actuate earlier in the stroke for quicker, more responsive input, while N-key rollover ensures that every press registers, even when entering multiple keys at once. Spaced keys mimic desktop layouts to let users fire off function commands more intuitively, and access essentials like volume and mic mute instantly with dedicated hotkeys.

The Zephyrus G14 is also the first ROG laptop to integrate fingerprint login into the power button.

 

Experience Dolby Atmos Immersive Audio

A leap forward from surround sound, Dolby Atmos brings moving audio that flows above and around you with crisper voice and greater depth to a wide range of audio experiences, and it can even provide a competitive advantage for gamers. In the Zephyrus G14, Dolby Atmos enhances spatial immersion by delivering a breakthrough audio experience with sound that moves all around you in three-dimensional space whether listening via headphones or built-in speakers.

Dolby Atmos also creates breathtaking realism with optimized sound for greater detail and maximized loudness without distortion from the G14’s integrated speakers. A quad-speaker setup delivers perfectly balanced audio across the spectrum. With these technologies, users can pump up the volume on movies, music, and games without losing clarity or detail.

The Zephyrus G15 pumps sound through two front-firing speakers powered by Smart Amp technology that keeps them within thermal and excursion limits, so users can turn the volume up higher without distorting the output or damaging the cones. Hi-Res Audio certification ensures a richer acoustic experience for audiences that appreciate higher fidelity. Headphone experiences are made more immersive with 7.1-channel virtual surround sound powered by Sonic Studio III software.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The Zephyrus G14 will be available starting from Q1/Q2 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The Zephyrus G15 will be available from Q1/Q2 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

 

ASUS ROG Showcases Latest Lineup of Cutting-Edge Gaming Peripherals at CES 2020

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 6, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today showcased its latest lineup of ROG gaming peripherals at CES 2020, including the ROG Strix Scope TKL Deluxe mechanical keyboard, the ROG Strix Impact II Wireless mouse, and the ROG Chakram wireless mouse with a built-in joystick. Joining the ROG gaming gear lineup at CES 2020 is also the ROG Strix Go 2.4 wireless headset with AI-powered noise-cancellation built into the microphone, and the highly configurable ROG Pugio II ambidextrous wireless mouse.

 

The ROG Strix Scope TKL Deluxe: A premium keyboard made for FPS gaming

The ROG Strix Scope TKL Deluxe is a mechanical keyboard that is optimal for FPS gaming, with a tenkeyless design providing all the keys needed while opening up extra space for mouse movement and higher comfort while gaming. This keyboard melds high performance and premium materials in a design that lets users make it their own, with a portable form factor tuned for both stability and portability, and a USB Type-C detachable braided cable that’s perfect for taking the keyboard on the road.

The Scope TKL Deluxe puts the mouse and typing hands closer together while users game thanks to its tenkeyless (aka number pad-less) design, enabling a more ergonomic position that’s better for both long gaming sessions and regular typing. To keep gaming marathons comfortable, a padded wrist rest is included that snaps onto the keyboard via magnets.

Customization is built into every inch of the ROG Strix Scope TKL Deluxe’s design. To begin with, it’s available with a range of German-made Cherry MX RGB Red, Blue, Brown, and Speed Silver flavors to match user preference for actuation force, actuation distance, and tactile feedback. The ROG Strix Scope TKL Deluxe naturally supports n-key rollover, accurately registering as many simultaneous key presses as human hands can make, along with a 1000Hz polling rate for instantaneous input response.

Although the keyboard itself is compact, the Strix Scope TKL Deluxe uses a much larger Ctrl key than average on its left side for comfortable gaming, with a snappy Costar stabilizer under the extra-large Ctrl cap and all other larger keys to ensure low resistance and a consistent feel, especially if users hit the edges of the key during the heat of battle. Conversely, a quick-toggle switch turns the F5 through F12 keys into media controls, circumventing the need for combos in order to adjust the volume or skip tracks on a playlist. In media control mode, hitting the F12 key drops the PC into stealth mode, hiding all open apps and muting the audio.

Lighting is a big part of what makes the Scope TKL Deluxe so distinctive. Each key and the lock indicators have their own RGB LED and the ROG logo is backlit by its own set of LEDs. There’s also a light bar packed with 26 RGB LEDs under the keyboard’s front edge to cast an impressive yet tasteful underglow. Up to 11 different effects (10 default, one customizable effect) and an entire spectrum of color choices allow unique configuration to suit user aesthetics, and users can use ROG Aura Sync to synchronize the Scope TKL Deluxe with other Aura Sync-capable components. There’s enough onboard memory for one default and five custom profiles that can link to specific programs or games, which can be switched between using the Fn key or Armoury II software utility. Macros can be recorded on the fly, and almost every key is programmable.

 

The ROG Strix Impact II returns with wireless connectivity

The combination of high performance, optimized comfort, and attractive aesthetics with Aura Sync RGB make the ROG Strix Impact II Wireless a significant step up for anyone looking to get more competitive in their gaming endeavors while freeing themselves from the constraints of a cord.

The ROG Strix Impact II Wireless only adds to that winning formula of the wired ROG Strix Impact II mouse, with a next-level 16,000 DPI sensor paving the way with 400 inch-per-second accuracy at up to 40g of acceleration. Added wireless connectivity is the other obvious addition, with a 2.4GHz radio frequency link for ultra-low latency, excellent range, and long battery life. To use the mouse while charging, there’s always the option to connect its USB-C cable to an available port.

The Impact II Wireless maintains the same dimensions as its predecessor, and is still equally comfortable for left- and right-handed gamers. Two buttons on the left side can be mapped to common hotkeys, and a dedicated button lets users cycle through four sensitivity settings, each corresponding to a different color that indicates the current configuration.

Up top, the left and right keys are separated for reliable operation, and each main button on the Impact II Wireless features a pivot mechanism with a spring that gently removes any slack between button and switch. The Impact II Wireless’ exclusive push-fit switch socket design also supports Omron D2F and D2FC series replacements for further switch customization.

The Strix Impact II Wireless features two zones of RGB lighting — one under the logo, the other under the scroll wheel — that allow for independent control of colors and effects. Moreover, adding this mouse to a PC with other Aura Sync-compatible components can make it part of a grander lighting scheme using Armoury Crate software. There’s also settings in Armoury Crate for adjusting the performance of the Impact II Wireless, configuring its surface calibration settings, changing button mappings, and creating profiles. This wide array of customization options means no shortage of ways for the Impact II Wireless to boost gaming capabilities.

 

Introducing the ROG Chakram, a 16,000-dpi gaming mouse with a built-in joystick

At a glance, the ROG Chakram’s most obvious innovation is the built-in joystick on its left side. It can operate in an analog mode that’s great for flight simulators, racing games, and open-world titles, while digital mode turns the stick into a four-way controller that offers quick access to powerful commands in first-person shooters and real-time strategy games. Because this stick is meant to be manipulated with a thumb, included are caps in two lengths to accommodate a variety of thumb sizes and a socket cover in the bundle for those who want to game without the joystick installed.

When it comes to style, the ROG Chakram is stunning, with a translucent plastic top shell with a matte finish that feels premium and offers plenty of grip. The main buttons and palm rest are held on by magnets for convenient access to the Chakram’s internals, and each main button uses a spring-loaded pivot mechanism to remove any slack between button and switch for the fastest possible response. Both sides of the mouse are textured, providing an ergonomic surface to grip that’s still smooth enough for easy cleaning. And even with the joystick, the five customizable buttons, and the scroll wheel, the Chakram will keep users comfortable for hours of gameplay with a sleek yet ergonomic shape and added Teflon feet for minimal friction.

A light pipe around the front edge, RGB LEDs in the scroll wheel, and a back-lit logo in the body are configurable through ROG Armoury II software, which also gives users full control over ever changeable parameter on the mouse. The Chakram supports seven different lighting effects and an entire spectrum of color. With the ROG Aura Sync utility, coordinate the Chakram with other Aura Sync capable components in a gaming PC set-up.

All the Chakram’s features are brought to life by a competition-class optical sensor. Its 16,000 DPI maximum sensitivity is easily adjusted with a DPI button on the bottom that toggles between four different settings. For finer control over DPI settings in cases where users are without access to the Armoury II software, the Chakram’s DPI On-The-Scroll feature also lets users use its scroll wheel to fine-tune sensitivity in 100 DPI increments all the way from 100 to 16,000.

The ROG Chakram’s exclusive push-fit sockets are populated by Omron switches rated for 50 million clicks, with a second set of switches in the bundled case for users who want to try a different switch resistance. Gamers who already have a preference in Omron switches can go out and purchase their favorite compatible clickers, as the Chakram works with D2F and D2FC-series models.

Underneath the magnetic palm rest is the ROG Chakram’s USB dongle and customizable badge, which can be set to the ROG logo or users’ own designs using a blank badge in its accessory kit. The USB dongle plugs into any USB port and enables wireless connectivity over a 2.4GHz RF link. Its 1000Hz polling rate is fast enough to take full advantage of the Chakram’s high-end optical sensor, making it the ideal mode for competitive gaming.

Expect up to 48 hours of battery life with the RGB LEDs active or 79 hours if LEDs are off over the 2.4GHz connectivity mode. And when the battery runs out, users can continue using the Chakram with its USB cable or any Qi-compatible wireless charging pad. It’ll charge back up in about 80 minutes when it’s plugged into a USB 3.0 port, or users can take advantage of quick charge for 15 minutes for up to 12 hours of gameplay. When the ability to connect is more important than low latency, the Chakram can use Bluetooth to pair with most any compatible device. With RGB lighting turned on, the Bluetooth radio delivers 53 hours of battery life, or more than 100 hours when lighting is switched off.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

ROG Strix Scope TKL Deluxe mechanical keyboard will be available starting in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ROG Strix II Impact Wireless gaming mouse will be available starting in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ROG Chakram wireless gaming mouse will be available starting in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ASUS ROG Showcases ROG Strix Go 2.4 Gaming Headset and ROG Pugio II Gaming Mouse

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 6, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today showcased the ROG Strix Go 2.4 wireless gaming headset and ROG Pugio II ambidextrous wireless gaming mouse, designed to elevate on-the-go gaming experiences, at CES 2020.

Stay competitive for hours at a time with the ROG Strix Go 2.4 wireless headset, engineered with AI-powered noise cancelling technology and super-low latency over a 2.4GHz connection for the fastest possible auditory feedback in games. And for users’ PC gaming needs, the highly customizable ROG Pugio II ambidextrous wireless mouse lets users game how they want with configurable side buttons, a customizable badge, RGB lighting and main button switches.

 

Perfect wireless audio for gaming anywhere with the ROG Strix Go 2.4

The ROG Strix Go 2.4 wireless headset was built to keep gamers competitive for hours at a time, with up to 25 hours of battery life on a full charge via USB-C. Engineered for super-low latency over a 2.4GHz connection for the quickest possible auditory feedback in games, the Strix Go 2.4 comes with an L-shaped USB-C-compatible dongle that extends compatibility to any USB-C-equipped PCs, laptops, gaming consoles, and phones, while the bundled USB 2.0 and 3.5mm adapters allows users to plug the Strix Go 2.4 into just about any other gaming device. For extra portability, users can fold the ROG Strix Go 2.4 up and slip it into the bundled travel pouch.

Crisp, high-resolution sound travels through the ROG Strix Go 2.4 by way of 40mm ASUS Essence drivers in airtight chambers for maximum immersion and clean, distortion-free audio. Each headset cup is designed for comfort as well as proper sound isolation with an airtight seal. When plugging in the Strix Go 2.4 into a 3.5mm audio jack, the headset can even reproduce Hi-Res audio, stretching frequency response from 10Hz all the way up to 40kHz.

The Strix Go 2.4 includes a detachable, bi-directional boom mic bolstered by AI-powered noise-canceling technology that’s trained on a massive database containing a wide range of environmental noise samples so that the Strix Go 2.4 can identify and counteract environmental noise. A second mic in one of the ear cups also benefits from this AI-powered noise cancellation technology.

Users can access all of the Strix Go 2.4’s hardware controls from the left side of the headset. Integrate the Strix Go 2.4 with Armoury II software for even more functionality, including preset profiles, equalizer, environmental effects, a bass boost feature, and microphone filters.

 

The ROG Pugio II: The go anywhere, do anything wireless mouse

The new ROG Pugio II ambidextrous wireless mouse is a jack-of-all-trades, built around a modern 16,000 DPI sensor that can be fine-tuned thanks to the unique DPI On-The-Scroll feature for on-the-fly customization. Tapping into the sensor’s potential is effortless thanks to a host of customizable features – choose between wireless technologies, configurable side buttons, personalized badges, socketed switches, and RGB light zones.

The Pugio II offers both wireless and wired connection options to fit different playstyles. Plug in an included 2.4GHz RF dongle for the ROG Pugio II’s built-in radio with a 1000Hz polling rate for competition-grade responsiveness, or switch on Bluetooth mode. The Pugio II’s built-in Smart Hop wireless technology identifies and avoids the congestion and interference that surrounds the 2.4GHz band in real time, ensuring strong, stable connections. The Pugio II also comes with a light and flexible two-meter cable if users want to go the wired route or recharge the mouse’s internal batteries – plugging in via USB fully charges the Pugio II in under two hours. The Pugio II offers excellent battery life in wireless mode, with up to 69 hours* of play when connected via 2.4 GHz or a stupendous 100 hours over Bluetooth LE. (*battery-life estimates are based on using Pugio II without RGB lighting).

The Pugio II comes with an ROG badge installed in the palm rest, backlit by RGB lighting. Users can customize their Pugio II with the included blank badge, which can be designed with any icon or logo and be easily applied by removing the outer shell. Explore further customization by firing up Armoury II software to configure the Pugio II’s surface calibration settings, personalize the three available lighting zones, map its buttons, and switch between the three built-in profiles, and launch the Aura Sync utility to integrate the Pugio II’s RGB LEDs with other Aura Sync-capable components.

The ROG Pugio II is truly ambidextrous, with a shape that’s comfortable to hold. The Pugio II sports a pair of magnetic buttons on both the left and right sides, and bundled covers allow users to hide the pair they don’t plan to use, preventing accidental clicks. With ROG’s exclusive push-fit switch socket design, users can also customize the feel of the mouse buttons. By default, the Pugio II includes Omron D2FC-F-K switches rated for 50 million clicks, with an extra pair of Japanese-made Omron D2F-01Fs included in the accessory case. For additional customization, the push-fit switch socket design can fit any Omron D2F- or D2FC-series switch to change the Pugio II’s operating force and feedback.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

ROG Strix Go 2.4 wireless headset will be available starting in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ROG Pugio II wireless mouse will be available starting in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.