Archive for Asus

ASUS Exhibits ZenWiFi Networking Solutions with Mesh WiFi at CES 2020

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

ASUS today showcased the ZenWiFi AX (XT8) and ZenWiFi AC (CT8) mesh networking routers alongside the newly announced ZenWiFi Voice, fusing the power of Amazon Alexa and ASUS AiMesh technology, at CES 2020. The latest ZenWiFi AX and ZenWiFi AC routers also come in two color options: White and Graphite Black.

Any users working or living in a larger space with obnoxious WiFi dead spots need mesh networking in their life. In a mesh topology, compatible wireless network devices cooperate to get information where it needs to go. Each of the new ZenWiFi products uses exclusive ASUS AiMesh technology to provide the best network performance possible alongside an easy-to-use interface, as well as exciting new features, including the ability to conveniently use separate WiFi network names for each band when using any ZenWiFi device and an intuitive voice-activated interface with Amazon Alexa on the ZenWiFi Voice.

 

ZenWiFi AX (XT8) delivers unparalleled AiMesh performance

The ZenWiFi AX WiFi System includes two WiFi 6 routers in a mesh WiFi configuration for maximum performance and coverage up to 5500 square feet (510 m2). It achieves unprecedented throughput with WiFi 6 support for both clients and inter-node communications – up to 6,600 Mbps across one 2.4GHz band and two 5GHz bands, yielding up to 2.2x more aggregate speed than a WiFi 5-capable tri-band router. The ZenWiFi AX system pulls aesthetic inspiration from our high-end ZenBook notebook line for classy subtlety.

The two ZenWiFi AX nodes shuttle data over a dedicated 4×4 WiFi 6 backhaul at speeds up to 4,804 Mbps, while connected clients enjoy access to transfer rates with the potential to exceed the gigabit barrier. A full complement of WiFi 6 features, including MU-MIMO and OFDMA, ensures that each WiFi 6-compatible device on the network takes advantage of improved bandwidth thanks to lower communication latency, even in highly congested network environments like apartments, dorms, and dense urban districts. The ZenWiFi AX router multi-pack also automatically applies existing settings from the first router to the second router so users can quickly and easily set-up their mesh WiFi solution.

A special antenna design, isolated internal layout, and AiRadar 2.0 beamforming ensure that the ZenWiFi AX delivers both wide coverage and strong signals to each connected device. Each ZenWiFi AX node has 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet ports, offering blazing-fast connectivity for WAN, while the second ZenWiFi node can use either WAN or LAN connections via an automatic switch.

The ZenWiFi AX system also includes a suite of security features to mitigate the threats common on a ubiquitous Internet connection. AiProtection Pro, powered by Trend Micro and free for the lifetime of the router, stays up to date to filter restricted content categories. An activity dashboard shows users what’s being looked at, and a scheduler helps users restrict online access during certain hours, ideal for parental controls.

 

ZenWiFi AC (CT8) upgrades your network with AiMesh

In aggregate, the two AC3000 routers in our ZenWiFi AC kit can achieve a data rate of up to 3000Mbps. An all-new enclosure wraps enthusiast-grade performance in a classy oblong shell that blends into any decor. Within, the ZenWiFi AC has a special antenna design like the ZenWiFi AX model with four antennas that are positioned vertically, and two pointed diagonally. The result is a clean design, optimal antenna spacing, and the best possible coverage up to 5400 square feet (500 m2) radiating in all directions. And like the ZenWiFi AX system, the ZenWiFi AC router multi-pack automatically applies existing settings from the first router to the second router so users can quickly and easily set-up their mesh WiFi solution.

Each node in the ZenWiFi AC system is equipped with a quad-core CPU to handle heavy traffic loads, ensuring a strong and stable WiFi signal in any part of a home. On the back of each router, there is one Gigabit Ethernet WAN port, three Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, and one USB 3.1 Gen 1 port for nearby PCs, printers, networked storage, and direct-attached hard drives or USB flash drives, so users can benefit from a local network hub no matter how big their home is.

Setting up a wireless network can be a huge hassle, but the ZenWiFi AC is a snap to roll out and manage. Control the network through an updated ASUS web interface, or download the ASUS Router app to an iOS or Android device. These tools allow users to deploy every node of their ZenWiFi network at once through a quick and easy three-step setup process, rather than going through the setup process on each node. Users can also run diagnostics, monitor traffic, and optimize networks directly from a phone or browser.

Like the ZenWiFi AX, everything connected to the ZenWiFi AC system is safeguarded by the AiProtection Pro, powered by a free lifetime subscription to Trend Micro’s database of security signatures. Regular updates keep the intrusion prevention system, malicious site blocker, and infected device detector current. In addition to all of the kit’s built-in intelligence, parents can set up curfews to limit screen time.

There’s a good chance old ASUS gear will work as a node on the network when users upgrade to the new ZenWiFi AX and AC systems, as the list of ASUS routers, bridges, and repeaters armed with AiMesh technology is long and distinguished.

 

The ZenWiFi Voice fuses the power of Amazon Alexa and AiMesh

The newly unveiled ZenWiFi Voice integrates voice-enabled assistant Amazon Alexa for hands-free functionality into a versatile and stylish mesh wireless router that can serve as a building block in a smart home. It brings an intuitive and familiar user interface with touch-sensitive volume controls on its top surface and a three-color LED light bar encircling the middle of its body to indicate when it’s listening to users and processing voice commands. Because ZenWiFi Voice supports AiMesh technology, device owners can use the ZenWiFi Voice as a standalone router, as part of a larger mesh network with other AiMesh devices, or to boost the signal of any wireless router from any brand in repeater mode.

As a standalone router, the ZenWiFi Voice dual-band AC1300 router delivers a smooth connection to wireless devices, as well as access to Amazon Alexa. The ZenWiFi Voice supports WiFi 5 speeds up to 1300Mbps in aggregate, and it offers support for Multi-User MIMO-compatible clients, allowing it to provide dedicated signals to each connected device for better stability and lower latency.

The ZenWiFi Voice also serves as the hub for a user’s favorite streaming music services. A far-field microphone can recognize voice commands even while music is playing, and a full-range, downward-firing speaker reproduces music with satisfying fidelity and depth. The ZenWiFi Voice supports many popular music and audio streaming services and can play a user’s music playlists simply by using voice commands. Pair existing powered speaker systems to a smart home set-up with ZenWiFi Voice’s stereo 3.5mm jack, allowing music to stream through practically any device with an auxiliary input.

The ZenWiFi Voice really shines when it’s a part of a larger mesh network. By combining with other AiMesh devices, it can expand wireless signal to every corner of a multi-story home. Plus, any room where users place a ZenWiFi Voice will have the power of Alexa. Use the ZenWiFi Voice to extend a current router’s signal by simply placing it in the part of the home that needs a boost. From there, the ZenWiFi Voice can use its 5GHz and 2.4GHz bands to amplify the signal of any wireless router in parts of a home that might otherwise have a slow or spotty connection. When roaming around a house, a user’s wireless devices will automatically switch between the ZenWiFi Voice and a router, depending on which has the strongest signal.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The ZenWiFi AX (XT8) router system will be available starting from Q1 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The ZenWiFi AC (CT8) router system will be available starting from Q1 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The ZenWiFi Voice will be available starting in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ASUS Exhibits AIoT Solutions for AI-Enabled Smart Meeting Rooms

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

ASUS today showcased its AIoT solutions designed for smart meeting room and business applications at CES 2020, powered by the ultra-compact Mini PC PN61V, the PE200U edge computer and enhanced Tinker Board S single board computer. In the ASUS smart meeting room scenario, each device works in coordination to enable check-in via facial recognition, automated lighting, wireless presentation and environment control via Intel® Unite®, and persistent device status monitoring via dashboard.

 

Optimized for AIoT computing

The ASUS Mini PC PN61V is an ultra-compact and lightweight mini PC ideal for a wide range of uses, including AIoT business applications fusing Intel® Unite® and vProTM technology for improved business collaboration and productivity. Mini PC PN61V blends easily into any environment yet delivers great performance with 8th Gen Intel® Core processors. Dual-display support and comprehensive I/O ports — including a front-mounted USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C port with Battery Charging 1.2 support and a configurable port with a Thunderbolt 3 option — provide ultrafast and versatile connectivity for docks, displays and storage devices. For even more flexibility and modularity, a sliding-chassis design enables easy storage and memory upgrades in just two steps.

The ASUS PE200U edge computer is an AI edge-computing solution with a pre-built Windows-based AI engine connected to an 8K IP camera that can be used for counting people as well as detecting other visual details with high accuracy. Designed for high performance and silent operation in harsh environments, the ASUS PE200U edge computer can achieve full CPU utilization, while being cooled by a fanless thermal solution in a sealed enclosure. Enhanced features ensure optimal performance, the flexibility to adapt to various environments, easy configuration with a wide range of power inputs (12~24V) and operating temperatures (-20°~60°) and diverse I/O interface and expansion options, including PoE and GPIO for multiple vertical markets.

ASUS PE200U is built for 24/7 stability and reliability, combined with world-class service and guaranteed long-term availability for the entire product lifecycle. PE200U offers a high-quality, TCO-optimized solution for users’ AIoT computing needs. Available as a package with PE200U, ASUS Intelligent Edge Console is an exclusive software suite that provides services for a variety of ASUS hardware devices. It includes device management, remote monitoring and control, and data visualization, making it ideal for all kinds of AI and machine-learning applications and environments.

 

Maker-friendly, with IoT connectivity

The new and improved ASUS Tinker Board S is a fully embedded solution, offering a business-grade single board computer powered by quad-core ARM-based processor in a compact size with rugged design, high flexibility and easy expansion capabilities. The latest Tinker Board S features onboard 16GB eMMC storage and a microSD slot for enhanced capabilities, stability and flexibility, providing excellent performance combined with low power-consumption that is ideal for AIoT applications.

Designed with a 40-pin GPIO header, an enhanced I2S pin with slave mode and an improved software API for better compatibility, the Tinker Board S allows for interfacing with a range of inputs from buttons, switches, sensors, LEDs, and much more. Tinker Board S is also equipped with one DSI MIPI connection for displays and touchscreens, and a secondary CSI MIPI connection for compatible cameras allows for computer vision and much more.

Tinker Board S also features Gbit LAN for Internet and network connectivity, and a dedicated bus resource designed for the LAN port ensures consistent Ethernet performance. The integrated WiFi and Bluetooth controller on the Tinker Board S is shielded with a metal cover to ensure minimal interference and improved radio performance, while an integrated IPEX antenna header allows for easy antenna replacement or upgrades. Tinker Board S features a full-size HDMI output and four USB 2.0 ports for extensive peripheral and accessory connectivity.

 

Bring AIoT to life in a smart meeting room

ASUS will showcase an AI-enabled smart meeting room using the Mini PC PN61V and Tinker Board S at the ASUS CES 2020 showrooms in Las Vegas, NV from January 6-9, 2020. Learn more about ASUS AIoT solutions and how they can be used to create a smarter meeting room that can support AI-enabled check-in via facial recognition, automated lighting after a successful check-in, wireless presentation and environment control capabilities, and persistent device status monitoring through a singular dashboard screen.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

Mini PC PN61V will be available in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

PE200U Edge Computer is available now from Newegg. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

Tinker Board S is available now from Amazon and B&H Photo Video. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ASUS Debuts Latest VivoBook and ZenBook Series Lineup

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

ASUS has introduced its latest lineup of VivoBook and ZenBook laptops at CES 2020, including the VivoBook S (S333/S433/S533, S513/S413), VivoBook 14 (F413), VivoBook 15 (F513) and the innovative 14-inch dual-screen ZenBook Duo (UX481). Engineered for everyone from digitally-driven professionals to everyday users, this latest lineup pairs sleek and expressive aesthetics with cutting-edge performance powered by the most up-to-date 10th Generation Intel® processors, optional NVIDIA® graphics and next-gen connectivity with WiFi 6. VivoBook and ZenBook-series users can also take productivity one step further with the included MyASUS software, providing seamless integration between mobile devices and ASUS laptops.

 

Premium performance and looks with the VivoBook S-series laptops

The newest ASUS VivoBook S notebooks strike the perfect balance between personality and performance, and the models that debuting at CES 2020 carry on the tradition. Finished in a variety of bold colors, the latest VivoBook S-series laptops feature 10th Gen Intel Core processors that’s perfect for multitasking and high-definition entertainment, Wi-Fi 6 connectivity for significantly improved performance in congested environments, up to 16GB of RAM, a choice between Intel integrated graphics or latest NVIDIA GeForce graphics, and an updated chassis across 13”, 14”, and 15” size classes that offers a slim bezel with a NanoEdge display.

To celebrate a new decade, the VivoBook S lineup (S333/S433/S533) is debuting new colors: Resolute Red is a bold color that will smolder on any desk, while Gaia Green is a softer color inspired by nature. Dreamy White exudes sophistication and sets off the notebook’s accents. Finally, Indie Black makes a powerful statement with the contrast between its shadowy finish and bright display. With the VivoBook 14 (S413) and VivoBook 15 (S513) models, users can express their unique personality with one of three striking finishes: Indie Black, Hearty Gold, or Transparent Silver. Whatever color it’s dressed in, the updated VivoBook S-series precision-crafted all-metal chassis is not only sturdy and light, but a delight to hold with diamond-cut edges. The VivoBook S lineup also includes unique yellow color-blocked Enter key that adds a bit of flair and aesthetic to each model.

With its 15.6-inch display, the VivoBook S15 offers the most screen space in a compact footprint, so it is the most practical choice for those who tend to multitask with two or more active windows on the screen at any given time. The VivoBook S13 is a traveler’s dream, made to keep up users wherever they go with a 14.9mm thin profile and weight of 2.6lbs. The VivoBook S14 is a great all-around size for a wide variety of users with a 14-inch display and weighing in at 3lbs. For frequent numpad users, variants of the S13 and S14 include the optional ASUS NumberPad 2.0, a touchpad that can do double duty as a touch-sensitive numpad for quick data entry. In addition, for a better typing experience on all three models, each VivoBook S offers larger keycaps than average for easy, comfortable, and accurate input.

 

Stand out with the latest VivoBook 14 and VivoBook 15

Bursting with personality and the latest hardware, the newest VivoBook 14 (F413) and VivoBook 15 (F513) notebooks are ready-made for a connected, creative lifestyle, coming in Cobalt Blue, Dreamy White, or Bespoke Black. Adding a unique touch to each of these models, the Enter key is highlighted in a bold yellow color. Thanks to a compact, lightweight chassis design, VivoBook 14 and 15 notebooks are easy to use anywhere, with slim NanoEdge display bezels enabling surprisingly small footprints across each model.

Style and power go hand in hand with the new VivoBook 14 and 15 laptops, and each is outfitted with the latest hardware: up to 10th Generation Intel Core i7 processors, up to the latest NVIDIA GeForce GPU for casual gaming or image editing, up to 16 GB of RAM, and optional Wi-Fi 6 for top-notch connectivity. To speed up access to commonly used apps and files, there are also VivoBook models with Intel’s unique Optane memory. Users can enjoy a comfortable backlit keyboard, HDMI and USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C ports, and a microphone array for long-range use (up to four meters away) with voice assistants like Microsoft’s Cortana.

The VivoBook 15 (F513) provides a large 15.6-inch display and full-size keyboard in a compact footprint and a weight of just 3.7lbs. It’s ideal for multitasking, adding a few other key features such as a dual-storage array with a fast PCIe® SSD for quick startup, up to 2 TB of HDD capacity, and a microSD card reader for removable file storage.

The VivoBook 14 (F413) with a 14-inch display is slimmer, narrower, and lighter than the VivoBook 15 model, yet offers the same processor and graphics options. The VivoBook 14 includes the optional ASUS NumberPad 2.0 dual-function touchpad, storage options of up to a 1 TB PCIe SSD, a microSD card reader and a high-speed USB Type-C port to connect external storage to the notebook.

 

ZenBook Duo is the laptop of tomorrow

As well as introducing a new touchscreen main display option, the latest version of the groundbreaking 14-inch ASUS ZenBook Duo (UX481) also features ASUS ScreenPad Plus — a revolutionary 12.6-inch full-width auxiliary touchscreen that expands and enhances the interactive capabilities offered by the original ASUS ScreenPad. The ScreenPad Plus changes the way users can interact with their laptop, allowing productivity-enhancing workflows and easy multitasking. It integrates seamlessly with the primary display, and the built-in ScreenXpert software includes a wide selection of useful apps, tools and utilities that allow users to enjoy the efficiency benefits of ScreenPad Plus.

Extreme performance for effortless creativity is provided by up to a 10th Generation Intel Core i7 processor, combined with up to 16 GB RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce MX250 GPU, with ultrafast storage provided by up to a 1 TB PCIe 3.0 x4 SSD. ZenBook Duo features a stunning PANTONE® Validated FHD touchscreen display for breathtaking color-accurate visuals. With premium styling, ZenBook Duo comes in an elegant Celestial Blue color with a frameless NanoEdge design for immersive visuals, enabling an ultra-compact form factor and a weight of just 3.3lbs. With Amazon Alexa voice support, users can to listen to news and music, control smart-home devices and enjoy all the convenient benefits of the voice service.

 

Seamlessly integrate mobile with MyASUS software

The latest VivoBook S-series, VivoBook and ZenBook Duo laptops include the latest version of the MyASUS software. The software now allows seamless integration with mobile devices, using the Link to MyASUS mobile app that’s scheduled for release in early 2020. New features include fast and easy wireless file and URL transfers for users who need to share files or web links seamlessly between their PC and mobile devices; Remote File Access for accessing data on mobile devices from a laptop, anytime and anywhere; and smooth multitasking using the screen mirroring and screen extender functions that give users an auxiliary display for cross-referencing and other uses.

Adobe Creative Cloud Bundle with NVIDIA and ASUS

The complete lineup of ProArt StudioBook notebooks and ProArt Station mini PCs takes advantage of NVIDIA® Quadro® and GeForce RTX™ GPU capabilities, including realtime ray tracing and AI acceleration, catering to the needs of content creators and meeting the stringent requirements of the NVIDIA RTX Studio program. RTX Studio laptops and desktops are precision crafted to deliver dramatic improvements in productivity and performance across everyday creative apps. The ProArt lineup will be exhibited in the ASUS CES 2020 showrooms, including the flagship ProArt StudioBook One — the first laptop to feature NVIDIA® Quadro RTX™ 6000 graphics  —  and ProArt StudioBook Pro X with the interactive ASUS ScreenPad™ 2.0 that enhances productivity with more possibilities. Additionally, the ProArt StudioBook Pro 17/15, ProArt StudioBook 17/15, and ProArt Station D940MX featuring both NVIDIA Quadro and GeForce GPU options are among the ProArt lineup.

The NVIDIA RTX Studio program is also offering a limited-time only Adobe Creative Cloud bundle for qualifying users who purchase an RTX Studio-equipped laptop or desktop in 2020. With the Adobe Creative Cloud bundle, creators can enjoy an enhanced experience with Adobe software like Premiere Pro, Lightroom and Dimension combined with RTX Studio’s GPU acceleration technology and exclusive Studio Drivers. See more details and eligibility requirements below:

  • New users may be eligible for a 3-month complimentary Adobe Creative Cloud membership with purchase of a qualifying RTX Studio laptop or desktop from January 13, 2020 to December 31, 2020.
  • Qualifying ASUS products include the ProArt StudioBook series laptops, ZenBook Pro Duo, and ProArt Station D940MX.
  • For more details and instructions on how to redeem the Adobe Creative Cloud bundle, please visit the official NVIDIA and ASUS websites.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The VivoBook S (S333/S433/S533, S413/S513) will be available starting in Q1/Q2 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The VivoBook 14 (F413) will be available starting in Q2 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The VivoBook 15 (F513) will be available starting in Q2 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The ZenBook Duo (UX481) will be available starting in Q1 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ASUS Announces TUF Gaming Laptops for Next-Level Gaming

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

ASUS has announced an all-new family of TUF Gaming laptops with more performance and versatility than ever before. The 15-inch TUF Gaming A15 and F15, along with the 17-inch A17 and F17 laptops, deliver an unprecedented experience for the price. Delivering high performance alongside tested durability, the newest lineup of TUF Gaming laptops combines next-gen hardware with latest AMD Ryzen™ 4000 Series Mobile Processors or 10th Gen Intel® processors, top-notch graphics with NVIDIA® Turing™-based GPUs and display options with up to a 144Hz refresh rate, and a range of portability features for better battery life, solid durability and a compact form factor.

 

AMD Ryzen™ Mobile Processors brings more cores to mobile

Groundbreaking AMD “Zen 2” core architecture is now coming to laptops in a new lineup of AMD Ryzen™ 4000 Series Mobile Processors. The TUF Gaming A15 and A17 offer options that range up to the latest AMD Ryzen™ 4000 Series Mobile Processors with 8 cores and 16 threads. The top-of-the-line chip doubles the power efficiency compared to the previous generation, allowing users to do much more than just play games — its multithreaded muscle is perfect for highly parallel workloads and heavy-duty multitasking, and the combination of architectural enhancements and fabrication on a leading-edge 7nm process node resulted in exceptional power efficiency. The TUF Gaming A15 and A17 pair this performance with especially swift DDR4-3200 RAM that can further improve performance for both productivity and gaming.

Later this year, the TUF Gaming F15 and F17 will be available with upcoming 10th Generation Intel Core processors.

 

NVIDIA GeForce® graphics and adaptive sync technology power high-refresh displays

Regardless of the CPU, graphics firepower comes from discrete NVIDIA GeForce® GPUs based on the latest NVIDIA Turing architecture. The full lineup of TUF Gaming Laptops can be configured with up to a GeForce RTX™ 2060 that uses a combination of CUDA, RT, and Tensor cores to enable hybrid rendering with real-time ray tracing and AI acceleration. Turing also has an updated video encoder capable of capturing high-quality footage with minimal CPU usage, so users can easily game and stream smoothly from the same machine.

Display refresh rates up to 144Hz on 15-inch models and 120Hz on 17-inch versions take full advantage of the higher frame rates possible with the new TUF Gaming laptops. AMD Radeon™ graphics integrated into the new AMD Ryzen™ 4000 Series Mobile processors allow adaptive sync variable refresh-rate technology to work with adaptive sync technology-enabled monitors and adaptive sync-enabled devices. Synchronizing the refresh rate of the display with the frame rate of the system delivers smoother, tear-free gaming even as the FPS varies naturally over time. It’s easy to see how adaptive sync technology and adaptive sync technology is the better way to play than traditional displays with fixed refresh rates.

The IPS-level displays come in 15-inch or 17-inch sizes with wide viewing angles. Ultra-slim NanoEdge bezels surround the screens on three sides, a design that not only increases immersion, but also makes the chassis more portable. The TUF Gaming laptops reduce the overall volume of the 15-inch models by 7% compared to predecessors and shrank the 17-inch versions by 8%.  Each laptop includes a webcam for game streaming or video conferencing positioned at the top edge of the display, as a subtle bump in the bezel creates enough space for the camera inside the slim frame and also provides a convenient lip for lifting the lid.

Despite shrinking the proportions, the TUF Gaming laptops add a bigger 90Wh battery option so users don’t have to worry about longevity when classes, work, or life take them away from a power outlet. The combination of efficient AMD and NVIDIA hardware inside the TUF Gaming A15 and A17 deliver up to 8.7 hours of web browsing and 12.3 hours of video playback, so users can stay productive and entertained for longer.

 

Choose your tough exterior with TUF Gaming

TUF Gaming designers understand that gamers with great power at their disposal don’t always want to broadcast that fact to the world, so the next generation of TUF laptops offer two finishes. Fortress Gray features a metal lid that’s sandblasted to bring out a fine texture in the material before it’s finished in its namesake gray. Exposed concentric screws anchor the four corners and echo the rugged DNA of the TUF Gaming family, and the smooth surface of the laser-engraved TUF logo subtly contrasts with the textured expanse of metal around it.

Bonfire Black brings multiple textures to a more aggressive look designed for extroverted gamers. Large trapezoidal cuts in the center of the lid evoke the hexagonal pattern used throughout the chassis, and they draw your eye to the inlaid TUF Gaming logo. This central region gets a brushed finish, while the flanks are embossed with a mesh-like pattern that has more grip. A smoldering red band runs around the edges, offering a bold indication of the power inside.

Both designs are tough enough for everyday life. The TUF Gaming laptops are certified to meet MIL-STD-810H standards for vibration, short drops, and extreme temperatures and humidity.

 

Clean cooling and easy upgrades inside

Gaming laptops need copious airflow to help internal components perform at their best for hours on end, so a new tailored cooling design works hand-in-hand with the new chassis for better cooling of each laptop’s powerful hardware. A honeycomb pattern on the bottom doubles as an expansive array of intake vents for the fans and heatsinks inside, wrapping around the rear exhaust outlets to protect the heatsink fins without obstructing airflow.

A self-cleaning cooling system directs debris into anti-dust tunnels before it can build up on fan blades and heatsink fins and reduce their effectiveness over time. Airflow moving through these channels naturally clears dust from the system, keeping the laptops performing at its best for the long haul.

The latest TUF Gaming laptops are ready to grow with users’ needs. For easy access, the bottom is secured with standard Phillips screws, along with one special pop-open screw that helps separate the panel without a prying tool. Inside, two SO-DIMM slots can accommodate up to 32GB of RAM, which is plenty for heavy multitasking and even content creation. Dual M.2 slots provide an upgrade path for an ever-expanding game library and digital archives. Configurations are available with up to a 1TB NVMe SSD with lightning-fast load times and responsive all-around performance. The second slot stands ready for more solid-state storage tied to the same speedy PCI Express interface.

 

Customize the battle-tested keyboard

The keyboard is an essential part of any gaming laptop’s arsenal, and mushy switches or a crowded layout are the last things gamers want to deal with in the heat of battle. That’s why the latest TUF Gaming laptops use a full-sized desktop design. The function key row is spaced out just as it would be on a desktop keyboard, a full numpad sits at the right edge to accelerate number crunching, and the offset arrow key block uses a comfortable and traditional inverted-T layout. The space bar is also extended slightly to provide a bigger target for thumbs while gaming.

Each key uses Overstroke technology to improve responsiveness and overall feel. The underlying switches trigger higher in the stroke for quicker actuation, which also leaves more travel before rebounding off the base. They’re rated to withstand 20 million presses, ensuring a long life befitting the TUF name.

Translucent WASD keys offer an unmistakable visual cue, while global RGB backlighting makes each key especially easy to spot and also lets users customize colors and effects to match their tastes. Personalization extends to Scenario Profiles, which can automatically change the lighting based on preferences for individual games and applications. Scenario Profiles also include other system settings, like Silent, Performance, and Turbo operating modes that affect both noise levels and performance.

 

Connect anything, anywhere

The new TUF Gaming laptops have ample connectivity for gaming peripherals and more. On the left side of the laptop, users will find two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type A ports and one USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C. The latter supports G-SYNC monitors via its DisplayPort 1.4 alternate mode, and a dedicated HDMI 2.0b port lets users plug in a projector, additional monitor, or big-screen TV. Another USB port provides additional connectivity on the right.

Gigabit Ethernet powers a high-speed LAN port with low latency for serious multiplayer gaming. The TUF Gaming A15 and A17 can also connect wirelessly with a Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) adapter that includes Bluetooth support. The F15 and F17 upgrade to Intel Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+), which pushes peak wireless interface bandwidth up to 2.4Gbps when connected to compatible routers. Otherwise known as 802.11ax, the next-gen standard also improves efficiency for crowded networks, lowers lag for latency-sensitive multiplayer gaming, and increases upstream bandwidth for live-streaming.

The combo audio jack offers virtual surround sound for stereo headsets via DTS:X® Ultra. There are multiple audio presets tuned for different kinds of games and media, plus an equalizer for fine-tuning settings. Upgraded speakers with more breathing room pump out sound with louder volume and deeper bass than previous generations.

 

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The TUF Gaming A15 and A17 will be available starting from Q1 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

The TUF Gaming F15 and F17 launch timing will be announced later in 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

 

ASUS Announces New Chromebook Flip C436

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

ASUS has announced the new ASUS Chromebook Flip C436, the latest in the ASUS Chromebook Flip family to pair a premium productivity experience with uncompromising performance.

ASUS’s newest Chromebook Flip C436 introduces an eye-catching and elegant convertible form factor, featuring a frameless NanoEdge touch display that’s designed to maximize screen size in the smallest form factor possible. The C436 is housed in a durable yet lightweight magnesium alloy chassis, which measures only 13-inches diagonally at a weight of only 2.4 lbs – perfect for on-the-go productivity.

The ASUS Chromebook Flip C436 is verified by Intel’s Project Athena innovation program and co-engineered for mobile performance. It brings unparalleled power in a convertible and ultra-portable form factor by integrating 10th Gen Intel® Core™ processors with 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and cutting-edge Intel® Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) connectivity.

With users in mind, the C436 adds premium extras like an integrated fingerprint sensor for easy unlock, four omnidirectional speakers for high-quality surround sound in any of its convertible modes, USI stylus support for open pen input, and a wide variety of ports for peripheral options.

 

The Premium Chromebook Experience – Simplistic Elegance

The ASUS Chromebook Flip C436 is elegantly designed with a magnesium alloy chassis that measures only 13.7mm thick and weighs just 2.4 lbs – it’s the thinnest and lightest 14-inch Chromebook available. The C436 is capped off by two unique finishes: an iridescent Aerogel White, which changes color as you view it from different angles, and an understated Transparent Silver.

The Chromebook Flip C436 is fully convertible with an impressive Full HD touch display, and can be used in a clamshell configuration for a more traditional workflow, standing up like a tent for the best viewing angles, or closed over on itself in tablet mode to use with a USI stylus. The C436 also takes advantage of a frameless NanoEdge display to maximize screen real estate in the smallest form factor possible. Thanks to the trimmed-down bezels, the C436’s 14-inch screen enables an 85% screen-to-body ratio that comes in a footprint no larger than the average 13-inch notebook. And because the display boasts a 1920×1080 native resolution and 100% coverage of the sRGB gamut, the C436 is perfectly tailored to both work and entertainment.

 

Unprecedented Performance

Co-engineered with Intel as part of Intel’s Project Athena innovation program, the ASUS Chromebook Flip C436 passed rigorous testing to achieve the program’s experience targets and hardware specifications, ensuring it consistently delivers the responsiveness, instant wake, and real-world battery life that ambitious people need to focus from anywhere. The C436 incorporates some of the fastest hardware available in a Chromebook, and is armed with up to a 10th Gen Intel® Core™ i7 Processor with Intel UHD graphics It also offers up to a 16 GB LPDDR3 memory and up to a 512GB M.2 SSD. A dual-band Wi-Fi 6 radio and Bluetooth 5.0 cover wireless connectivity, while a pair of USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C ports handle add-on peripherals. A microSD card slot can handle memory cards as large as 2TB, and the Chromebook also offers the option to use Google One’s cloud storage plan for even more memory storage.

 

User-Centric Design with All-Day Battery Life

To power top-notch performance specs, the ASUS Chromebook Flip C436’s three-cell, 42Wh all-day battery can deliver up to 12 hours of runtime as you browse the web, write emails, or work in a spreadsheet.

The C436 offers a full-sized backlit keyboard that’s both pleasant and accurate to type on, with an extended 1.2mm of travel on each keystroke. The convertible form factor means you can flip the display into tablet mode and start writing or drawing with any USI-compatible stylus on the C436’s touch display, which supports up to 4,096 levels of pressure to convey your vision on-screen.

A fingerprint sensor built into the keyboard enables a seamless unlock experience and another layer of device security. On top of its automatic updates and built-in resilience against malware and viruses, the C436’s Chrome OS benefits from Google’s diligence about enforcing two-step verification, checking for third-party app access, logging device sessions, and alerting you about security issues.

Audio is delivered via an audio combo jack or the C436’s omnidirectional four-speaker array – the Harman Kardon-certified speaker setup produces crisp audio with plenty of volume, regardless of how the screen is positioned.

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

ASUS Chromebook Flip C436 will be available starting from Q1/Q2 2020. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

ASUS Republic Of Gamers Announces The ROG Swift 360Hz

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

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) has announced the ROG Swift 360Hz, the world’s fastest and first NVIDIA G-SYNC gaming monitor with a 360Hz refresh rate, and the ROG Swift PG32UQX with G-SYNC ULTIMATE technology, a 32-inch gaming display engineered with mini-LED technology to deliver stunning 4K HDR visuals.

Unparalleled speed for an extra edge with the ROG Swift 360Hz G-SYNC Esports monitor

Compared to widely available 240Hz gaming monitors, the ROG Swift 360Hz can put out a whopping 50 percent more frames every second – supplying esports and competitive gamers with the edge they need to win. With a comfortable 24.5-inch display size and Full HD resolution, the ROG Swift 360Hz features the same unmistakable design that graces the lineup of highest-end ROG gaming monitors.

Mini-LED Drives Performance and Visuals in the 32-inch ROG Swift PG32UQX G-SYNC Ultimate monitor

The ROG Swift PG32UQX is the ultimate 4K high-dynamic-range (HDR) gaming monitor. Featuring an advanced G-SYNC ULTIMATE processor with the latest HDR features, the 16:9 display is illuminated by a full-array local dimming backlight with 1152 Mini LED zones that let the PG32UQX display the brightest highlights and darkest blacks of a scene with incredible contrast and minimal haloing. Small highlights in games, like light bulbs or the disc of the sun, can reach peak brightness of up to 1400 nits, offering a more lifelike HDR experience than ever before. The Mini-LED backlight can also turn off as needed when it comes to darker scenes.

The G-SYNC processor drives variable refresh rates up to 144Hz, and support for 10-bit color throughout the refresh rate range ensures that the PG32UQX always shows off games, movies, and desktop applications at their best. With NVIDIA G-SYNC technology, users will enjoy smooth, tear-free gameplay, even when frame rates fall below the PG32UQX’s peak 144Hz refresh rate, and with the incredibly capable panel and backlight inside, the PG32UQX is NVIDIA G-SYNC ULTIMATE-certified. All G-SYNC ULTIMATE-certified displays undergo a rigorous validation process and are subjected to 300 image quality tests to ensure they deliver consistent quality and maximum performance.

The PG32UQX is also designed to be a productive companion outside of games, offering DisplayHDR 1400 compliance for other entertainment needs. For those who want to use all of the screen size available from a 4K resolution, the 32-inch diagonal expanse of the PG32UQX offers a pixel density better suited to running a Windows desktop without scaling.

The ROG Swift PG32UQX doesn’t hold back in style, designed with multiple textures on the back of the display, separated by a subtle diagonal chrome strip. An Aura Sync-enabled RGB LED ROG logo lets users coordinate the PG32UQX with other Aura Sync-enabled components for a fully harmonized battlestation. And a logo projector in the base of the ROG trademark twisted stand lets users show off the Republic of Gamers logo or display a customized logo using the included blank discs.

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

Both the ROG Swift 360Hz G-SYNC and ROG Swift PG32UQX displays will be available later this year, with pricing to be announced closer to availability.

Review: ASUS AiMesh AX6100 Wi-Fi system

Posted in Products with tags on December 12, 2019 by itnerd

Mesh WiFi has been a thing for a while now. And to be frank, ASUS is kind of late to the market. But that’s not a bad thing. That’s a very good thing based on my experience with their AiMesh AX6100 Wi-Fi system which I have been testing over the last few days.

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I got two of these nodes from ASUS which kind of have the vibe of their gaming routers. Except that they don’t look as over the top as those. That’s a good as this opens this WiFi mesh router to more people, and they’ll look good in more places. The AiMesh AX6100 Wi-Fi system has a lot going for it that frankly puts other mesh WiFi products to shame. Let’s start with this:

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It comes with four gigabit ports. Plus a gigabit WAN port for your router.

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You also get a USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 port as well. All of that allows you to connect storage devices, printers, wired computers, etc. That gives you a number of use cases for this mesh WiFi system. And what’s cool is that both nodes are identical so you can connect either unit to the modem supplied by your Internet service provider via an Ethernet cable.

The real star of the show from a specifications perspective is that it is a Wi-Fi 6 mesh WiFi system. And rather than simply offering Wi-Fi 6 for the people who have iPhone 11’s and Galaxy S10’s, Wi-Fi 6 can be used for wireless backhaul functions between the two nodes. And that works incredibly well. I’ll give you details on that in a second. But let me get to the setup process first.

Set-up was insanely easy using the ASUS Router app (available for iOS and Android). The app recommends placing the two units within a few meters of each other during the initial pairing process, after which you can place them farther apart. In my case, I put one in the living room of my roughly sub 1000 sq foot condo and the other in the bedroom. For what it’s worth, ASUS says a pair of these routers provides wireless coverage of up to 5,500 sq feet.

Once I set things up, I went about my testing and found that this setup produces some of the fastest speeds that I have seen from a mesh WiFi setup. I clocked an average download speed of 550 Mbps to 600Mbps on my MacBook Pro running 802.11ac placed in the bedroom in my condo. By comparison, other brands of mesh routers I had previously tested weren’t even in the same star system when it came to speed in the same scenario. I was blown away by this result. And for what it’s worth, it is possible to connect these two nodes by gigabit Ethernet. So in a bigger house it is possible to use that for backhaul functions which may be better in that use case as a wired connection would be more stable than a wireless one. Having said that, I had no issues with the wireless setup that I tested.

The AX6100 comes also bundled with a couple of extras:

  • AiProtection Pro which a suite of home network security tools powered by Trend Micro that defends your connected home devices from cyber threats, and has parental controls to restrict Internet access or block inappropriate content from children.
  • WTFast which promises lower latency and less lag while gaming by funneling gaming traffic through optimized network routes

In terms of price, expect to pay $550 CDN or so for the two pack that I tested. Each additional node is about $270 CDN. If you need a mesh WiFi system, this is the one to get at present.