ASUS refreshed its entire ROG gaming laptop lineup at CES 2021. Across eight models, we count four major breaks from the previous generation that consumers should be aware of in their purchasing decisions.
AMD Ryzen 5000-series Takes Over
Unlike the 2020 ROG laptops, the 2021 models all feature AMD Ryzen 5000-series processors. The Ryzen 7 and Ryzen 9 mobile processors used in these laptops all have 8 cores and 16 threads, while the Ryzen 5 comes with 6 cores and 12 threads.
The default TDP of the high-powered H-line Ryzen 5000-series CPUs (5600H and 5800H) is 45W, the mid-powered HS-line (5600HS, 5800HS, 5900HS, and 5980HS) has a TDP of 35W, and the flagship HX-line (5900HX and 5980HX) comes with a TDP of 45+W.
While Intel has unveiled its Tiger Lake H-series at CES 2021, their late availability made it impossible to meet ASUS's product schedule. This is nonetheless some good news, as the two Tiger Lake CPUs to be available in the first half of 2021 (i5-11300H and i7-11370H) each sports only 4 cores. We can expect the AMD CPUs to outperform the Intel units, at least until higher-powered Tiger Lake units become available.
NVIDIA RTX 3000-series Is Here
Unveiled in 2020 and became available only towards the end of the year, NVIDIA's RTX 3000-series GPUs promise significant boost not only in framerates but also in features, thanks to their 2nd-gen Ray-Tracing cores and 3rd-gen Tensor cores.
The entire ASUS ROG laptop lineup, save for the Flow X13 that is designed to run with an eGPU when performance is required, have moved to RTX 3000-series. As expected, ASUS is not mising over the the specs, endowing many models RTX 3080 graphics with 16GB memory.
Combined with the prowess of the new Ryzen 5000-series CPU, these gaming laptops should easily outperform their predecessors.
Emphasis on Sound Quality
New in the 2021 ROG laptop lineup is the emphasis in sound quality. All models now come with more powerful speakers, while the Zephyrus models now come with four or six speakers with separate woofers and tweeters.
More Compact + New Form Factor
Starting from last year, many laptop manufacturers are moving back to the 16:10 aspect ratio that dominated the market a short decade ago. This much welcomed change allows a larger display area to be delivered in a chassis that is physically smaller.
For now, however, ASUS is sticking with the 16:9 aspect ratio: still, the new ROG gaming laptops are now thinner and lighter than before.
The only 16:10 model is the new ROG Flow X13, which is both the smallest ROG laptop ever and the first 2-in-1. It offers new-found versatility that does not compromise on performance, especially when combined with the ROG XG Mobile eGPU.
For more details about each model, including specifications, latest offers, and reviews, please check out the Related Products section below. You can also use our Comparison tool to explore more.
Images in this article curtesy of ASUS ROG.