Asus cuts down the ROG Zephyrus S and makes it stronger than ever

Asus' ROG Zephyrus notebook turned heads last year by putting gamer-grade hardware in an ultrabook-like chassis. The concept apparently wowed enough people that Asus' designers went back and did it again. The ROG Zephyrus S keeps the keyboard-forward design and fold-out cooling system of the original Zephyrus, but it slims down the chassis even more. The Zephyrus S is just 0.62″ (15.75 mm) thick at its thickest point, making it 12% thinner than even the original. It also slims down its display bezels for a clean appearance.

Despite the paring-down, the Zephyrus S doesn't sacrifice on power. The notebook relies on the one-two punch of a Core i7-8750H CPU and a GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q graphics chip to drive a 15.6″, 144-Hz 1920×1080 display with an exceptional claimed 3-ms response time. Asus says the panel covers 100% of the sRGB gamut, so gamers who need color-critical chops in their day jobs might find the Zephyrus S a capable companion. Asus will aslso offer a version with a full-fat mobile GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB, as well. Buyers can also configure NVMe storage devices ranging from 256 GB–1 TB in size, and the machine can swallow up to 24 GB of DDR4-2666 memory.

The Zephyrus S offers USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports in Type-A and Type-C flavors, one USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C port, and two USB 2.0 ports. Gamers can connect the Zephyrus S to external displays using an HDMI 2.0 port. As a gaming product, it's no surprise that the Zephyrus S offers four-zone RGB LED lighting on its keyboard. Another RGB LED zone shines through the “Active Aerodynamic System” vent at the back of the notebook. Asus didn't announce pricing today, but the notebook will be available next month.

Comments closed
    • DPete27
    • 1 year ago

    [quote<]fold-out cooling system[/quote<] ...What?

      • derFunkenstein
      • 1 year ago

      There’s a GIF of it here: [url<]https://edgeup.asus.com/2017/rog-zephyrus-gx501-thin-gaming-laptop-hands/[/url<] Basically the bottom of the system kind of expands to let air in. Some sort of feet roll out of the display hinge inside the laptop and lift it off its bottom cover.

        • Growler
        • 1 year ago

        That article included a section on frametime. It’s a unique way at looking at performance and relative “smoothness” of a game. I wonder if TR will ever do something similar…

          • derFunkenstein
          • 1 year ago

          It seems to just be the same data displayed differently. Instead of having to figure out in my head what a framerate is (roughly) over a given period, it just divides 1000/frame time to show an instantaneous FPS. Definitely more convenient.

        • DPete27
        • 1 year ago

        Ah, I see.
        …..Considering the vent always needs to be open, it just looks like one more thing to break IMO.

        [Add] The [url=https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834269979&ignorebbr=1<]HP Pavilion[/url<] accomplishes the same thing by resting on the screen. I've seen it in person, and the screen doesn't wobble any more than traditional designs. Was a little strange having the chassis lift off the surface when opening the screen though. Not sure if that's something I could get used to or not.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 1 year ago

          Yes, I agree. Looks fragile.

          I don’t think I’d like the HP variant either. My solution isn’t exactly an elegant design, but has nobody heard of feet? Putting feet on the bottom of the notebook would solve this.

            • Voldenuit
            • 1 year ago

            [quote<]Yes, I agree. Looks fragile. [/quote<] I have the GX501. The opening mechanism has solid metal feet that are guided by metal cams. The feet and mechanism feel very solid to me. The backplate itself is a bit wobbly, but I do not foresee any problems with it over the life of the laptop. Some reviewers have claimed that the backplate is plastic, but when I took apart my laptop, it seemed to me to be cast from a single piece of magnesium, with integral stiffeners (magnesium alloy has low thermal conductivity compared to aluminum, so does not feel 'cool' to the touch unlike many other metals). Overall, the laptop itself feels quite solid. The screen is the wobbliest part, it will bend if your torque the edges. There is a small amount of flex in the vent area over the CPU/GPU, but the chassis itself is quite solid. Not Thinkpad or MBP-level rigid, but it definitely feels like a well built product. Whether this is retained in the thinner chassis of the GS531, I can't say.

            • DPete27
            • 1 year ago

            Feet add thickness. Nobody wants thicker electronics!
            Your common sense is not welcome here.

    • Kretschmer
    • 1 year ago

    Why of why must they paste REPUBLIC OF GAMERS over the front? If you turn the lighting off and squint, this laptop would sort of kind of look professional.

    • pirate_panda
    • 1 year ago

    Are those speakers or vents above the keyboard? Either would be a good use of that unused space with the keyboard-forward design.

      • DPete27
      • 1 year ago

      From website:
      [quote<]Additional airflow comes in from above thanks to a keyboard-forward layout that makes more room for the internal cooling system and additional air intakes[/quote<]

        • pirate_panda
        • 1 year ago

        Thanks, the website isn’t working for me, or at least the links to the press releases.

    • Kretschmer
    • 1 year ago

    Thinner is nice and all, but you won’t know if the thinness compromised functionality until a GPU/CPU stress test of the thermals.

      • Voldenuit
      • 1 year ago

      Thermals on my GX501 (0.7 in) were ~80C/85C CPU/GPU with stock compound and ~65C/70C after liquid metal repaste. No throttling in either case. The cooling system seems to be very well designed, and one thing I noticed when working on it was that there seemed to be some vertical dead space in the chassis that they could trim down, and presumably, did, in later models.

      Having said that, I would have preferred they keep the same thickness but increased the keyboard throw (1.2 mm).

    • Voldenuit
    • 1 year ago

    I have the original Zephyrus GX501 with a 1080 Max Q, and am pretty happy with it. I especially liked the right-mounted trackpad, which is very responsive and positioned similar to how I’d use a mouse with my desktop. Was sad to see Asus move to a traditional trackpad layout witht he Zephyrus M, so glad to see the return of the right-side trackpad with the S.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 1 year ago

      I know that lefties are a minority of users, and that lefties that actually mouse lefty are an even smaller group, but I wonder if they got a lot of pushback from that subset. Apparently not if they’re doing this.

    • Ryhadar
    • 1 year ago

    Super off topic: I wonder how soon it’ll be before build your own laptops are a thing especially with how popular dGPU enclosures are getting. Sure, they wouldn’t be as slim as some Ultrabooks or whatnot but get everyone to agree on some standards and profit. LCD panel would be the hardest to standardized I bet.

      • Voldenuit
      • 1 year ago

      Other than whitebook ODM designs (eg most Clevos), I don’t think you’re going to see DIY laptops for consumers. They would have to convince intel to sell socketed mobile chips, cabling and wiring would be a headache (especially for displays and wifi). As someone who repasted their gaming laptop with liquid metal, I don’t wish working on a laptop chassis onto anyone.

        • Neutronbeam
        • 1 year ago

        Wish I had your courage to do that to one of my systems. Kudos to you!

          • Voldenuit
          • 1 year ago

          I’d worked up to it. First was de-lid and liquid metal on my Haswell, then liquid metal on my GPU (1080Ti), then, what the heck, might as well tear apart this $2k laptop and slather on some gallium.

      • TheRazorsEdge
      • 1 year ago

      Realistically, there is not going to be a homebrew laptop market any time in the foreseeable future.

      Right now, ODMs custom design motherboards and chassis to fit together. There is no standard form factor, and there is no incentive to make one.

      • Kretschmer
      • 1 year ago

      Never. Parts selection and design for a laptop is way, way more important than in a desktop, and building would be a nightmare.

      I mean I’m sure a Chinese SuperClevo would sell you some huge monster chassis that accepts parts and others might sell without storage/RAM, but the market for truly interoperable laptops systems isn’t there.

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