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Asus ROG Strix G15 Review

Compared to its brothers, the Asus ROG Strix G15 does its job well when it comes to delivering at lower prices. For $999, you get the reliable performance and a snappy keyboard wrapped up in a sleek, punk design, but a bleak 15.6-inch display, below-average battery life, and hollow speakers keep this laptop away. While it doesn’t match some of the best cheap gaming laptops around, the Strix G15 is excellent when you need something reliable. This is our Asus ROG Strix G15 Review.

Specifications

Asus ROG Strix G15 Specs
Price:$999
CPU:Intel Core i7-10750H
RAM:8GB
Storage:512GB SSD
Display:15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080, 144Hz
GPU:Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti
VRAM4GB
Battery life:5 hours and 11 minutes
Size: 14.2 x 10.8 x 1-inches
Weight: 5.3-pounds

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Design

Last updated on October 21, 2020 5:48 pm

Asus hits an electro-punk theme on the Strix G15 with a pink ROG logo over a faux-aluminum hood and a pink rim around the lid. There is a thin recess on the lid, making the deck and the LED indicators visible. Beyond the lid is a thick cartridge at the back that provides space for several ports, but makes the laptop a bit bulky. When I opened the lid, the light bar around the lip of the deck flickered out with RGB lighting.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review

The interior also features a one-zone RGB-lit keyboard and pink WASD keys. The touchpad has a pink border around the interior. It goes without saying that if you’re not a fan of pink, you’re going to hate this laptop. The faux-aluminum deck is half painted in a super dull pink, and the other half has a bunch of ROG-marked paint in the same hue. It looks pretty smooth. Meanwhile, the edges on the screen are incredibly thin, but unfortunately, there is no webcam to be seen.

The Strix G15 has quite a few ports but can use a Mini DisplayPort. On the left, there are three USB Type-A ports and a headphone jack. Instead of the other ports on the right side, they are on the back of the laptop and contain a power connector, an HDMI port, and a USB Type-C port.

At 5.3-pounds and 14.2 x 10.8 x 1 inch, the Strix G15 is thicker than most 15-inch laptops. While the Dell G5 15 SE (2020) (5.5-pounds, 14.4 x 10 x 0.9-inches) and HP Omen 15 (2019) (5.4-pounds, 14.2 x 10.2 x 0.8-inches) are slimmer than the ROG Strix G15, the 14-inch, Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (3.5-pounds, 12.8 x 8.7 x 0.7-inches) is the much more portable option.

Keyboard and TouchPad

Typing on the keyboard of the Strix G15 was oh, so, satisfactory. The keys weren’t clicking, but they felt spicy because of the amount of operating force needed to press them, and they provided satisfying, thick feedback. The keys reacted well, and the palm rest was super comfortable, which is surprising because the keyboard didn’t dip into the chassis, but was close to the deck. The keyboard features one-zone RGB illumination controlled via the Aura Creator app, which allows you to choose between effects such as Breathing, Rainbow, or Strobing.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review

You can even adjust the effects to play at several intervals. There’s also a setting that allows you to sync the RGB lighting with music. As for the touchpad, it’s pretty soft, and the two discreet mouse buttons are responsive and have a decent click. Windows 10 gestures, such as two-finger scroll and three-finger tabs, worked well thanks to the Windows Precision drivers installed in the system.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Display

Even for a $999 gaming laptop, the ROG Strix G15’s 15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080 pixel, 144Hz display is bleak and offers very little color coverage over a dim panel. In the trailer for Bill & Ted Face the Music, the blue and pink shirts worn by the titular characters have fallen flat on the Strix G15’s panel. Meanwhile, the lack of clarity left Brigette Lundy-Paine and Samara Weaving to mingle with the dimly lit set around them.

They weren’t necessarily covered in shadows, but their clothes and features would have appeared on a brighter screen. With 251 nits, the Strix G15 falls flat again compared to the average of 264 nits. The G5 15 (301 nits), ROG Zephyrus G14 (323 nits), and the HP Omen 15 (320 nits) all landed more than 300 nits in brightness.

Even surrounded by nothing but green in Red Dead Redemption 2, the scenery failed to pop, as the red flowers were pale orange, and the grass looked like the water was urgently needed. When entering a saloon, half the place was dark because of the general darkness, and it was difficult to see any sharp detail around the bar.

According to our colorimeter, the ROG Strix G15 covered a drizzly 64% of the sRGB color gamut, just below the average of 67% of the budget game-laptop. The G5 15 (108%), ROG Zephyrus G14 (117%), and the HP Omen 15 (102%) now had enough color to land in the triple figures.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Audio

The side-firing speakers of the Strix G15 sounded hollow and didn’t have enough bass to bring music and gaming close to good. In Mother Mother’s “It’s Alright,” the guitar was pleasantly clear, but when the vocals came in, they sounded hollow and noisy. Also, when the drums were introduced, they came off as saturated, not deep. All in all, this mix didn’t bode well for the chorus, where the instruments collided and created an unpleasant sound.

While playing the Red Dead Redemption 2, I noticed that the dialogue was sharp and not very bassy. When I pushed some old guy on the floor, it created a soft thump instead of a thick one. Despite that, the gunshots from the rifle were pleasant; however, with some extra bass, they would have sounded more satisfying.

There’s the Sonic Studio III audio app aboard the Strix G15, which offered options to adjust the clarity of voice, bass, treble, reverb, and surround sound. Still, when I tampered with all the settings, I noticed little or no difference in sound quality.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Graphics and Gaming

Packaged in the Strix G15 is the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti GPU with 4GB VRAM, which averages a solid 30 frames per second in Red Dead Redemption 2 at Medium settings at 1080p as I walked around shooting fools in a glow of glory. But it would still fall below 30 fps, so I recommend lowering the settings to low.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review

On the Shadow of the Tomb Raider benchmark (Max, 1080p), the ROG Strix G15 averages 40 fps, matching short of the budget gaming laptop category average. The AMD Radeon RX 5600M (45 fps) of the G5 15, the RTX 2060 (49 fps) of the Zephyrus G14, and the GTX 1660 Ti (45 fps) of the Omen 15 all beat the average, as does the Strix.

The Strix G15 beat 44 fps on the Grand Theft Auto V benchmark (Very High, 1080p), which is one frame less than the average of 45 fps. The G5 15 (56 fps) and the HP Omen 15 (60 fps) flew over the average.

On the Metro: Exodus benchmark (Max, 1080p), the Strix G15 scored 30 fps, again one frame below the average of the budget gaming laptop (31 fps). The ROG Zephyrus G14 (41 fps) and the HP Omen 15 (40 fps) were within ten frames of the category average, while the Dell G5 15 achieved a solid 46 fps.

The ROG Strix G15 ran the Far Cry New Dawn benchmark (Ultra, 1080p) at 57 fps, eventually exceeding the category average (51 fps). The G5 15 SE (69 fps), the ROG Zephyrus G14 (73 fps), and the HP Omen 15 (73 fps) all exceeded that score.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Performance

Under the hood of the Strix G15 is an Intel Core i7-10750H processor with 8GB RAM. Despite the cutbacks on RAM, the Strix G15 has juggled 40 Google Chrome tabs and five 1080p YouTube videos without much delay. However, I did notice some severe signs of lag when I tried to change the display color in the built-in ROG GameVisual app.

On the Geekbench 4.3 performance benchmark, the ROG Strix G15 scored 21,182, exceeding the average of the budget game laptop (19,770). It beat the HP Omen 15’s Core i7-9750H CPU (19,956) but was decimated by the Dell G5 15’s AMD Ryzen R7 4800H CPU (29,253) and the ROG Zephyrus G14 with an AMD Ryzen 9 4900HS CPU (30,181).

The ROG Strix G15 transcoded a 4K video to 1080p in 10 minutes and 28 seconds on the HandBrake benchmark, which is almost a minute faster than the 11:21 category average. It beat the HP Omen 15 (12:34), but the G5 15 and the Asus Zephyrus G14 went through this task and finished at 6:43 and 6:59, respectively.

Asus‘ 512GB SSD copied 4.97GB of data in a long 41.81 seconds, which is 130 megabytes per second, far from the average of 343 MBps budget game laptop. The G5 15 (410 MBps), ROG Zephyrus G14 (1,131 MBps), and the HP Omen 15 (728 MBps) destroyed the ROG Strix G15.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Battery Life

Gaming laptops have significantly increased their battery life, but the Strix G15 is slightly behind. After surfing the web continuously over Wi-Fi at 150 nits of brightness, the battery is down by 5 hours and 11 minutes, which is more than an hour shorter than the average 6:29 budget gaming laptop. While the HP Omen 15 (3:05) did worse, the Dell G5 15 (7:14) and ROG Zephyrus G14 (11:32) excelled in battery life.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Heat

The Strix G15 gets a little warm under the hood, but not warm enough to be uncomfortable. After streaming a 15 minute, 1080p YouTube video, the underside measures 105 degrees Fahrenheit, which is above our 95 degrees comfort threshold. The center of the keyboard and touchpad hit 91 degrees and 77 degrees, respectively. The machine got the hottest temperature in the lower right corner of the bottom and hit 117 degrees.

Price and Configuration Options

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review

The Strix G15 I costs $999 and comes with an Intel Core i7-10750H processor, an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti GPU with 4GB VRAM, 8GB RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 1080p, 144Hz display. One step up from the base model costs $1,299 and the RAM to 16GB and the GPU to an RTX 2060. With the $1,499 model, you can buy an RTX 2070 GPU, a 1TB SSD, and a 1080p, 240Hz display.

Asus ROG Strix G15 Review: Conclusion

Overall, the Asus ROG Strix G15 is a reliable gaming laptop. It features strong performance, a comfy keyboard, and beautiful design, but the battery life is subtle, while the speakers and display are awful. If you throw in an extra $200, you can pick up the Dell G5 15 SE (2020), which offers more reliable performance, longer battery life, and a much better display. But if you can’t afford to spend a little extra and are willing to look past a dull screen and average speakers, the Strix G15 will serve you well enough.

7 Total Score
Our Verdict

The Asus ROG Strix G15 has a slim body and a snappy keyboard, but hollow audio and dull display downs it heavily.

PROS
  • Strong performance and graphics
  • Sleek, punk design
  • Punchy keyboard
CONS
  • Dismal display
  • Hollow audio
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