ASUS ROG Ally: New firmware update brings 20% performance gains to gaming handheld
Dave Lee has demonstrated some of the performance improvements that ASUS has brought to the ROG Ally, arguably the most anticipated gaming handheld since the Steam Deck. To recap, Dave Lee was one of the first people to preview the ROG Ally, along with Linus Sebastian. Subsequently, countless outlets have published ROG Ally reviews using early firmware builds, ourselves included.
According to Lee, the ROG Ally initially trailed other Ryzen 7040U-derived gaming handhelds, such as the AYA NEO 2S. Incidentally, AYA NEO has just released the 2S on Indiegogo with the Ryzen 7 7840U, as well as the GEEK 1S. As the screenshots below show, the ROG Ally fell a way short of its AYA NEO competitor in 720p triple-A gaming at various wattages.
Also, while ASUS’ gaming handheld triumphed against the Steam Deck in most titles, the gap between the pair was not as great as was expected. Purportedly, ASUS has extracted up to 20% more performance out of the Ryzen Z1 Extreme with its latest firmware update, which should be available by the time retail units start shipping in mid-June. The YouTuber does not expect any further performance improvements at low wattages, though. In short, AMD has not designed the Ryzen Z1 Extreme to run at as low wattages as the Van Gogh APU in the Steam Deck. Thus, the Steam Deck remains the best option for balancing performance and battery life when playing older or simple games.