The arrival today of the new Tiger Lake H from Intel is followed up to the minute by the launch of new references from the most responsive brands like Asus. Intel’s high-performance mobile chips – suffix “H” – are components of choice for the two ranges of Taiwanese gaming machines, the ROG (Republic of Gamers). Under the ROG banner, two new references are equipped with Tiger Lake H: the Zephyrus M16 and Zephyrus S17.
ROG Zephyrus M16: beefy and less than 2 kilos
As the name suggests, the Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 is a machine equipped with a 16-inch screen in a 15.6-inch chassis. No magic or gravitational vortex, but work on reducing screen edges (bezels) such as the QHD LCD panel (2540 x 1600) occupies 94% of the surface. A machine that seeks the compromise between power – Tiger Lake H and up to a Geforce RTX 3070 all the same – and mobility. At just 20mm thick (19.9mm for the picky) and weighing 1.9kg excluding the AC adapter, it fits easily into a backpack. And offers performance that is equally well suited to gaming than creative applications.
Asus obliges, the device is swarming with very geeky components – 48-blade homemade fan, use of Liquid Metal between the CPU and GPU and the heatsink, the DotMatrix option Zephyrus G14 style, etc. Without putting aside ergonomics and comfort: the hinge opens 180 ° (no risk of breakage), the panel is in 16/10 formate and not in this damn 9/16e too cramped to work, the color coverage is 100% of the DCI P3 (Pantone certified) spectrum, etc.
Component side, Asus had to make a choice to offer such a level of integration: a RAM bar is soldered, which means that the theoretical maximum configuration will offer 48 GB of RAM (16 GB soldered + 32 GB in strip). On the battery side, like smartphones, the Zephyrus supports “fast charge” fast charging, which goes from 0% to 50% in just half an hour.
ROG Zephyrus S17: RTX3080 and mechanical keyboard
Bigger (17 inches) and meaner, the Zephyrus S17 is also equipped with Tiger Lake H, but goes a step higher in GPU with an option in RTX 3080 (RTX 3060/3070/3080). Like the M16, the 17.3-inch panel is a 165 Hz 3 ms QHD to meet the needs of the most nervous games. But RTX 3080 requires, a version with 4K 120 Hz 3 ms panel will also be available. With a screen coverage of 88%, the occupancy is less optimized than for the Zephyrus M16, but the panel being larger, the surface is still much larger.
Details of nerd the keyboard is an optical-mechanical reference and a wheel allows to raise / lower the sound in a “physical” way.
To integrate such powerful components into a machine that is, again, only 2 cm thick, the engineers at Asus have been cunning. Opening the screen cover opens a second mechanism which raises the keyboard. A mechanical trick significantly widens the airflow, allowing the machine to “breathe” better – and, hopefully, not make the sound of death.
The Asus touch
Intel requires, the two machines take advantage of the classic refinements of the American founder, namely Thunderbolt 4, Wi-Fi 6, AI noise reduction (in applications supporting Intel chips), etc.
But Asus has added its paw almost everywhere, from the 48-blade fans already mentioned to the screen controllers developed in-house, which provide the best performance in terms of color and refreshment. Not to mention the onion audio equipment – dual amp on the S17, etc. Or again, a detail of importance for creatives, memory card slots so rare in this segment. Thus, the Zephyrus M16 benefits from a Micro SD port, while the S17 has a full-format SD slot (cameras and cameras). Gamer yes, but a little creative too!
Last detail: the webcam, absent from far too many old Zephyrus references, is making a comeback, which will delight streamers and teleworkers. At the time of writing, Asus had not yet communicated the exact references of available processors, nor configurations and prices in France.