Asus launches ROG Mothership for gamers with 17-inch IPS Display and GeForce RTX 2080

There have been quite a few RTX 20 series laptops announced today, in the wake of Nvidia's keynote, as mentioned in the Razer Blade 15 Advanced article. Asus ROG has a couple of very interesting efforts on show at the CES 2019, with the new ROG Mothershipluggable AiO form factor device, and the sizable-but-slim ROG Zephyrus S GX701.

Asus ROG Mothership
Here is a new form factor for Asus ROG that it hopes will wow the gaming crowd. Asus designers reason that the convenience offered by gaming laptops is great but the clamshell form factor "not only limits cooling, but also and locks you into a fixed position that’s really only required for use on a lap". The new ROG Mothership is claimed to address both those concerns with its standing tall-cooling system, and detachable keyboard. There is one more good thing about the design - room for decent speakers beneath the screen.
ROG Mothership GZ700 specs
  • Processor: Intel Core i9-8950HK (6C/12T at up to 4.3GHz or 4.8GH Turbo)
  • Operating system: Windows 10 Home
  • Windows 10 Pro (ASUS recommends Windows 10 Pro)
  • Display: 17.3-inch FHD (1920x1080) AHVA panel, 144Hz, 3ms, 100% sRGB, Optimus, G-Sync
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 8GB GDDR6 VRAM
  • Memory: DDR4 2666MHz SDRAM up to 64GB
  • Storage: 3 x M.2 NVMe PCIe 3.0 x4 512GB SSD
  • Wireless: Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200, 2x2 802.11ax Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 5.0 (Version may vary as the OS upgrades)
  • Connectivity: 1 x USB3.1 Gen2 (Type-C) / Thunderbolt 3, 1 x USB3.1 Gen2 (TypeC) / VirtualLink, 3 x USB3.1 Gen2 (Type-A), 1 x USB3.1 Gen1 (Type A) / USB charger +, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x 3.5mm headphone and microphone combo jack, 1 x 3.5mm microphone jack, 1 x RJ-45 jack, 1 x SD card reader, 1 x Kensington lock
  • Keyboard: Detachable with wired or wireless modes, Per-key Aura Sync RGB backlighting (Aura Sync wired only), 2.5mm travel distance, N-key rollover
  • Audio: 4 x 4W speakers with Smart Amp technology, Array microphone
  • AC adapter: 2 x 280W power adapter
  • Dimensions: 410 (W) x 320 (D) x 29.9 (H) mm
  • Weight: 4.7kg (estimated)
As you can see above, these are good specs for high-end gaming on the go. Asus provides more info on the cooling system which it sees as a key feature of this design. The performance components are all in the chassis behind the screen and the upright AiO vents top, left and right, with a wide perforated intake on the rear. Asus notes that a "special shield prevents heat from the CPU and GPU from affecting the display," and I hope that works.
Are any HEXUS readers tempted by this 'gaming Surface' AiO design? If you like it you will have to wait until Q2 for availability.
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701 
A more traditional design from Asus ROG is the Zephyrus S GX701. With this design we see the increasingly common keyboard at the front of the opened clamshell design, with the touchpad on the right (change from traditional for cooling considerations). Another oddball choice is the clip-on optional ROG GC21 webcam. It eliminates lower-bezel webcam woes but perhaps you will leave it behind when you need it.
Asus is rather proud to have squeezed this 17.3-inch screen with 6.9mm bezels into a body just 15.7-inches wide. This makes it one of the most compact 17-inch gaming laptops available, and the thinnest at 18.7mm. Asus worked hard to make sure such a large, thin device offered good rigidity with the magnesium-aluminium chassis, and gave it an appealing anodised and diamond-cut finish.
ROG Zephyrus S GX701 specs
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-8750H
  • Operating system: Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Pro (ASUS recommends Windows 10 Pro)
  • Display: 17.3-inch FHD (1920x1080) IPS-level panel, 144Hz, 3ms, 100% sRGB, Optimus, G-Sync, Pantone Validated
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 with Max-Q Design 8GB GDDR6 VRAM, or Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 8GB GDDR6 VRAM, or Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 6GB GDDR6 VRAM
  • Memory: DDR4 2666MHz SDRAM up to 24GB (8GB onboard)
  • Storage: M.2 NVMe PCIe 3.0 x4 1TB SSD, or M.2 NVMe PCIe 3.0 x2 512GB / 1TB SSD
  • Wireless: 802.11ac 2x2 WLAN, Bluetooth 5.0 (Version may vary as the OS upgrades)
  • Connectivity: 1 x USB3.1 Gen2 Type-C with DisplayPort 1.4 and Power Delivery, 1 x USB3.1 Gen1 Type-C, 1 x USB3.1 Gen2 Type-A, 2 x USB3.1 Gen1 Type-A, 1 x HDMI 2.0b, 1 x 3.5mm headphone and microphone combo jack, 1 x Kensington lock
  • Keyboard: Per-key Aura Sync RGB backlighting, 1.4mm travel distance N-key rollover
  • Audio: 2 x 2.5W speakers with Smart Amp technology, Array microphone
  • AC adapter: 230W power adapter, Output: 19.5V DC, 11.8A, 230W, Input: 100~240V AC, 50/60Hz universal
  • Dimensions: 399 (W) x 272 (D) x 187 (H) mm
  • Weight: 2.7kg
Again, Asus hasn't shared any release or pricing details for the ROG Zephyrus S GX701. It will be available later this year but we aren't sure when.
Asus is also updating the ROG Strix SCAR II and ROG Strix Hero II laptops with new Nvidia RTX graphic options, sometime in Q1 2019.

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