Notebookcheck

Asus ROG GU501GM (i7-8750H, GTX 1060) Laptop Review

Sam Medley, 👁 Allen Ngo, 06/13/2018

Whistle while you work. Wrapped in an attractive and slim package, the Asus ROG GU501GM is a competent gaming machine that effectively marries style and power. Unfortunately, CPU stability and fan noise present major problems in an otherwise excellent, if expensive, laptop.

Working For Notebookcheck

Are you a techie who knows how to write? Then join our Team!

Currently wanted: 
News Editor - Details here

"Thin-and-light" is quickly becoming the norm for mid-range and high-end gaming laptops, and Asus is one of the market leaders in this regard. The Zephyrus GX501 and Zephyrus M GM501 are perhaps the epitomai of Asus' new designs, but they come at quite a cost. The Asus ROG GU501GM under review today borrows heavily from both of these devices, but it sacrifices some specs in order to cut the price by a few hundred dollars.

Intel's Coffee Lake Core i7-8750H makes the transition, but the GPU has been dropped to an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060. The whole package retails for about USD $1900, although Best Buy is currently offering the device for $1500 exclusively in the U.S. This is a $900 price drop from the standard Zephyrus M, which may make the device more appealing in spite of the downgrade in graphical power.

As said earlier, the thin-and-light gaming laptop market is replete Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (i7-8750H, GTX 1070, Full-HD) Laptop Reviewwith competent machines. We will compare the ROG GU501GM to similar devices, including Asus' own Zephyrus M GM501, MSI's GS65 Stealth Thin, the Aorus x5 v8, the Predator Triton 700 from Acer, and Gigabyte's Aero 15x. Most of these devices have recently landed on our "Top 10 Slim & Light Gaming Laptops" list. Does the GU501GM deserve a spot amongst these champions? Let's take a look.

Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop) - 6144 MB, Core: 1405 MHz, Memory: 2002 MHz, GDDR5, NVIDIA GeForce Game Ready Driver 397.64, NVIDIA Optimus
Memory
16384 MB 
, DDR4-2666 / PC4-21300 (1333.3 MHz), 1x16 GB
Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 141 PPI, AU Optronics AUO45ED, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel HM370
Storage
Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ, 128 GB 
, 128 GB PCIe NVMe SSD + 1 TB 5400 RPM SSHD (8 GB SSD cache), 1049 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Cannon Lake-H/S - cAVS (Audio, Voice, Speech)
Connections
4 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: combo audio out/in, Brightness Sensor
Networking
Intel Cannon Lake-H/S CNVi: WiFi (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 17.8 x 384 x 262 ( = 0.7 x 15.12 x 10.31 in)
Battery
55 Wh Lithium-Ion, 4-cell
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD
Additional features
Speakers: 2x 2 W, Keyboard: Chiclet, RGB (ROG Aura Core), Keyboard Light: yes, Asus ROG Gaming Center, ROG Aura Core, Asus Sonic Studio, 12 Months Warranty
Weight
2.499 kg ( = 88.15 oz / 5.51 pounds) ( = 0 oz / 0 pounds)
Price
1900 USD
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

The GU501GM is almost a carbon copy of its bigger brother, the Zephyrus M GM501. The same slim chassis is used, wrapped in the same copper-colored trim. The brushed black finish across the case give the device a decidedly premium look and feel, and the surface of the keyboard deck is highly resistant to fingerprints. The only difference lies in the hinge mechanism. While the actual hinge is the same, the GU501GM lacks the Zephyrus' most unique feature; the back panel remains in place when the GU501GM's lid is opened.

The case is otherwise the same as that of the Zephyrus M GM501. Despite its thin profile, the chassis is sturdy and resists deformation. The plastic bottom panel also remains firm when pressed. The lid can be warped (slightly indented) with direct pressure in the center. The lid can also be bent concave without much work, but no deformation is permanent. The hinge mechanism is well-tuned, allowing for one-handed opening and keeping the screen stable while typing. The biggest sore points in the design are the plastic bezels around the display. Both the Aero 15X and MSI GS65 have much smaller bezels holding the screen in place and have a smaller overall footprint as a result. The plastic bezels on the GU501GM look almost comically large in contrast.

The GU501GM's footprint does not meet the 2018 standards for a premium-built gaming device. While the size is not out of the ordinary, competitors like the MSI GS65 have managed to compact their 15-inch gamers into a case close in size to that of a 14-inch laptop. More devices are chiselling away at screen bezels to fit more into less, and the GU501GM feels outdated in this regard. Not only is GU501GM larger than competitors, it is heavier as well. Again, at 2.5 kg, the machine is not unreasonably massive, but competitors have the upper hand here as well.

Connectivity

Just like the case, the port selection is a mirror image of the Zephyrus M GM501. Thus, while it offers the same variety of connections (4x USB 3.1 Gen 2, HDMI 1.4, Thunderbolt 3), the port layout suffers the same poor placement we noted on the Zephyrus. All ports are pushed toward the front of the device to make room for the side ventilation, which may annoy some users. The lack of an SD Card reader is also worth noting; while not a deal breaker, the absence of a card reader will be frustrating to some.

Left: DC in, HDMI, 3x USB 3.1 Gen 2, combo audio jack
Left: DC in, HDMI, 3x USB 3.1 Gen 2, combo audio jack
Right: USB 3.1 Gen 2, Thunderbolt 3, Kensington Lock
Right: USB 3.1 Gen 2, Thunderbolt 3, Kensington Lock

Independent journalism is made possible by advertising. We show the least amount of ads whenever possible but we intentionally show more ads when an adblocker is used. Please, switch off ad blockers and support us!

Communication

WiFi speeds are in range for a higher-end gaming device and about on par with competitors. Users should find no cause for complaint with transfer speeds or signal strength. During our testing period, we saw no dropped signals. The GU501GM does not have a built-in Ethernet port, however, so a dongle is required for physical connections.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
683 MBit/s ∼100% +3%
Acer Predator Triton 700
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
682 MBit/s ∼100% +2%
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
682 MBit/s ∼100% +2%
Aorus X5 v8
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
673 MBit/s ∼99% +1%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Cannon Lake-H/S CNVi: WiFi
666 MBit/s ∼98%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
Killer Wireless-AC 1550 Wireless Network Adapter
660 MBit/s ∼97% -1%
Average of class Gaming
  (141 - 702, n=175)
595 MBit/s ∼87% -11%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
Killer Wireless-AC 1550 Wireless Network Adapter
662 MBit/s ∼100% +12%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Cannon Lake-H/S CNVi: WiFi
593 MBit/s ∼90%
Aorus X5 v8
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
587 MBit/s ∼89% -1%
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
585 MBit/s ∼88% -1%
Acer Predator Triton 700
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
551 MBit/s ∼83% -7%
Average of class Gaming
  (213 - 697, n=175)
533 MBit/s ∼81% -10%
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
379 MBit/s ∼57% -36%

Maintenance & Warranty

Unlike the Zephyrus M, the GU501GM's bottom panel is a single, solid piece of plastic. The panel is held in by 13 Torx T5 screws of varying length, so would-be DIYers should make sure to keep them organized. Despite our best efforts, we could not find a suitable pry point to remove the bottom panel. As such, we did not proceed with further disassembly to prevent damaging the outer case.

Asus offers a standard 12-month warranty with the GU501GM.

The bottom panel is difficult to remove.
The bottom panel is difficult to remove.

Input Devices

Keyboard

The keyboard is one of the stronger points of the GU501GM. The arrow keys are a bit too small for our tastes, but the rest of the keys are well-sized and well-spaced. Key feedback is excellent with a smooth downward action and springy response. Key clatter is minimal, and the overall typing experience is one of the better keyboards used in a gaming laptop. The GU501GM's keyboard feels similar to MSI's highly-regarded SteelSeries keyboards, save for a bit of travel distance in the keys. Feedback mirrors that of other ROG G series laptops.

The keyboard, like so many other factors, is a carryover from the more expensive Zephyrus M and deserves the same praises we lauded in that review. That is, the multiple Fn key functions (fan speed, trackpad disabling, etc.) and dedicated volume, microphone, and ROG Center keys are excellent additions. The copious amounts of RGB modes are a nice addition, but other notebooks (like the Aero 15X) offer per-key RGB backlighting.

Touchpad

The touchpad is marred only by its lilliputian footprint (10.4 cm x 6 cm). Glide is smooth across the glass surface, and the clicking mechanism in our unit feels responsive, if a bit hollow. Unfortunately, the small size makes tracking feel cramped and can be very frustrating. Thankfully, the whole surface of the touchpad responds to input (including the lower area with button markings), granting a bit more space to the user.

Full-sized keyboard.
Full-sized keyboard.
The touchpad is a bit too cramped.
The touchpad is a bit too cramped.
Four-zone RGB lighting with multiple modes.
Four-zone RGB lighting with multiple modes.

Display

Subpixel matrix
Subpixel matrix

The matte 1920x1080 display by AU Optronics is about average for most mid-range gaming laptops but feels out of place considering the price of the GU501GM. The standard 60 Hz refresh rate is a downside here; other devices (like the MSI GS65 and Aorus X5 v8) offer 120 or 144 Hz panels, albeit at higher prices. Brightness is fairly even across the screen. Contrast levels are average for an IPS screen at a mere 735:1. The result is that darker colors tend to bleed into each other due to the poor black levels.

The biggest weak point in the display is its sub-optimal brightness. Peaking at an average of 281 nits, the screen gets bright enough for indoor use, but images become hard to discern when outdoors or in direct sunlight. The matte finish across the screen helps with this, cutting reflections well. There is a slight grain on white backgrounds due to the matte coating. Whites are also off-center, shifting slightly blue at max brightness and tinting red at lower levels. It should be noted that the screens of most gaming laptops typically average 300 nits or less.

271.4
cd/m²
278.3
cd/m²
277.2
cd/m²
288.3
cd/m²
286.7
cd/m²
278.3
cd/m²
296.2
cd/m²
278.7
cd/m²
278.2
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 296.2 cd/m² Average: 281.5 cd/m² Minimum: 15.54 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 92 %
Center on Battery: 286.7 cd/m²
Contrast: 735:1 (Black: 0.39 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 4.17 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 2.5 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
87% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 57% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.274
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
AU Optronics AUO45ED, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
AU Optronics B156HAN08.0 (AUO80ED), IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
AUO B156HAN07.1 (AUO71ED), IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
LGD05C0, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Aorus X5 v8
AU Optronics B156HAN07.0 (AUO70ED), IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Acer Predator Triton 700
AUO B156HAN04.2 (AUO42ED), IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Response Times
49%
71%
52%
48%
-26%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
30.8 (13.6, 17.2)
17.6 (9.2, 8.4)
43%
6.6 (3.4, 3.2)
79%
16.8 (8.4, 8.4)
45%
18.8 (10, 8.8)
39%
44.8 (21.2, 23.6)
-45%
Response Time Black / White *
27.6 (16, 11.6)
12.8 (7.6, 5.2)
54%
10.4 (5.2, 5.2)
62%
11.2 (6, 5.2)
59%
12 (7.6, 4.4)
57%
29.6 (15.6, 14)
-7%
PWM Frequency
Screen
21%
-13%
27%
23%
-13%
Brightness middle
286.7
254
-11%
307
7%
313
9%
271
-5%
291
1%
Brightness
281
262
-7%
296
5%
300
7%
259
-8%
277
-1%
Brightness Distribution
92
89
-3%
89
-3%
78
-15%
87
-5%
84
-9%
Black Level *
0.39
0.22
44%
0.25
36%
0.33
15%
0.27
31%
0.22
44%
Contrast
735
1155
57%
1228
67%
948
29%
1004
37%
1323
80%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
4.17
2.37
43%
5.74
-38%
1.29
69%
1.81
57%
5.52
-32%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
7.22
4.71
35%
11.32
-57%
2.04
72%
3.33
54%
10.72
-48%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
2.5
1.58
37%
6.44
-158%
0.69
72%
1.09
56%
6.59
-164%
Gamma
2.274 97%
2.48 89%
2.48 89%
2.43 91%
2.45 90%
2.44 90%
CCT
6885 94%
6785 96%
8395 77%
6550 99%
6435 101%
7816 83%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
57
60
5%
60
5%
60
5%
61
7%
58
2%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
87
92
6%
93
7%
94
8%
93
7%
89
2%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
1.84
1.94
Total Average (Program / Settings)
35% / 25%
29% / 1%
40% / 31%
36% / 27%
-20% / -15%

* ... smaller is better

Color accuracy is also average. DeltaE scores are good at 4.17 for color and 2.5 for greys (a DeltaE of 3 or less is considered acceptable for professional work). Color space coverage is adequate at 57% and 87% of the AdobeRGB and sRGB color gamuts, respectively. This is competitive with other gaming laptops, but those that rely on accurate colors for professional work should look elsewhere.

Colorchecker
Colorchecker
Colorchecker (calibrated)
Colorchecker (calibrated)
Grayscale
Grayscale
Grayscale (calibrated)
Grayscale (calibrated)
Saturation Sweeps
Saturation Sweeps
Saturation Sweeps (cailbrated)
Saturation Sweeps (cailbrated)


vs. AdobeRGB: 57%
vs. AdobeRGB: 57%
vs. sRGB: 87%
vs. sRGB: 87%
vs. ROG Zephyrus M GM501: 94%
vs. ROG Zephyrus M GM501: 94%

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
27.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 16 ms rise
↘ 11.6 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 58 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
30.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 13.6 ms rise
↘ 17.2 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 16 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (41 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8781 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Viewing angles are excellent. There is no discernible color shift or image dimming when the screen is viewed off angle. As mentioned, the screen is practically useless outdoors. Even under overcast skies, images and text are difficult to make out.

Outdoors (under overcast sky)
Outdoors (under overcast sky)
Almost no backlight bleed.
Almost no backlight bleed.
Exposure increased to show small bleeding along the middle of the bottom edge.
Exposure increased to show small bleeding along the middle of the bottom edge.

Performance

The combination of Intel's hexacore Core i7-8750H and Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1060 is likely to become the standard configuration for mid-range gaming notebooks this year (at least until Volta hits the market, if at all). While the GTX 1060 has proved its worth in slim gaming notebooks time and again, the 8750H may be more than the GU501GM can handle.

CPU-Z: CPU
CPU-Z: CPU
CPU-Z: Caches
CPU-Z: Caches
CPU-Z: Mainboard
CPU-Z: Mainboard
CPU-Z: Memory
CPU-Z: Memory
CPU-Z: SPD
CPU-Z: SPD
GPU-Z: Intel UHD Graphics 630
GPU-Z: Intel UHD Graphics 630
GPU-Z: GeForce GTX 1060
GPU-Z: GeForce GTX 1060
HWiNFO64
HWiNFO64

Processor

Coffee Lake is making its way into more and more devices by the week, and leading the charge is the Core i7-8750H. The six-core Hyperthreaded CPU boasts a base clock of 2.2 GHz with a single-core boost up to 4.1 GHz (up to 3.9 GHz on all six cores). The 45 W TDP remains the same as older flagship CPUs from Intel, but L3 cache has been bumped to 9 MB (up from 8 MB on the generation i7-7700HQ).

The addition of two cores and four threads should mean that the 8750H tops the older i7-7700HQ by 50%. This is indeed what we see in Cinebench R15's multi-core benchmark; the 8750H in our GU501GM bests the 7700HQ (seen in the Acer Triton 700) by 52%. The 8750H is about on par with AMD's Ryzen 5 1600, a desktop CPU used in Asus' ROG Strix GL702ZC. For those that need more power, there are better processors in the mobile space, like the Core i9-8950HK and the Ryzen 7 1700, although these come at the cost of increased power draw and heat output.

Long-term CPU performance, as measured by our CB15 loop, is a bit disappointing. After an initial strong run, we see a 15% drop in performance over the next two passes. CB15 scores are erratic over subsequent tests but never surpasses about 85% the performance of the first pass. On battery, the GU501GM hit similar numbers, only achieving about 85% of its plugged-in performance.

Cinebench R10
Cinebench R10
Cinebench R11.5
Cinebench R11.5
Cinebench R15
Cinebench R15
01020304050607080901001101201301401501601701801902002102202302402502602702802903003103203303403503603703803904004104204304404504604704804905005105205305405505605705805906006106206306406506606706806907007107207307407507607707807908008108208308408508608708808909009109209309409509609709809901000101010201030104010501060107010801090110011101120113011401150116011701180Tooltip
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
205 Points ∼96% +22%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
197 Points ∼92% +17%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
185 Points ∼87% +10%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
182 Points ∼85% +8%
Dell Latitude 7390
Intel Core i7-8650U
176 Points ∼83% +5%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
174 Points ∼82% +4%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
Intel Core i5-8300H
173 Points ∼81% +3%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (163 - 177, n=47)
173 Points ∼81% +3%
HP EliteBook 830 G5-3JX74EA
Intel Core i7-8550U
169 Points ∼79% +1%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
168 Points ∼79%
Acer Predator Triton 700
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
156 Points ∼73% -7%
Average of class Gaming
  (79 - 209, n=413)
151 Points ∼71% -10%
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
144 Points ∼68% -14%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
140 Points ∼66% -17%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
1408 Points ∼45% +27%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
1378 Points ∼44% +24%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
1265 Points ∼41% +14%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
1215 Points ∼39% +9%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
1129 Points ∼36% +1%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
1113 Points ∼36%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (863 - 1251, n=50)
1103 Points ∼35% -1%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
932 Points ∼30% -16%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
Intel Core i5-8300H
807 Points ∼26% -27%
Average of class Gaming
  (196 - 1865, n=414)
744 Points ∼24% -33%
Acer Predator Triton 700
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
734 Points ∼24% -34%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
699 Points ∼22% -37%
Dell Latitude 7390
Intel Core i7-8650U
619 Points ∼20% -44%
HP EliteBook 830 G5-3JX74EA
Intel Core i7-8550U
577 Points ∼19% -48%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
2.33 Points ∼95% +21%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
2.09 Points ∼86% +9%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
2.08 Points ∼85% +8%
Dell Latitude 7390
Intel Core i7-8650U
2.02 Points ∼83% +5%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
1.97 Points ∼81% +3%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (1.89 - 2, n=32)
1.966 Points ∼81% +2%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
Intel Core i5-8300H
1.96 Points ∼80% +2%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
1.92 Points ∼79%
Acer Predator Triton 700
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
1.82 Points ∼75% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (0.71 - 2.38, n=406)
1.679 Points ∼69% -13%
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
1.63 Points ∼67% -15%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
1.55 Points ∼64% -19%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
15.76 Points ∼58% +26%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
15.05 Points ∼56% +20%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
13.85 Points ∼51% +10%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
12.55 Points ∼46%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
12.5 Points ∼46% 0%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (9.54 - 13.5, n=33)
12.3 Points ∼45% -2%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
10.33 Points ∼38% -18%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
Intel Core i5-8300H
8.79 Points ∼32% -30%
Acer Predator Triton 700
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
8.13 Points ∼30% -35%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
7.65 Points ∼28% -39%
Average of class Gaming
  (1.13 - 21.2, n=507)
7.26 Points ∼27% -42%
Dell Latitude 7390
Intel Core i7-8650U
6.82 Points ∼25% -46%
Cinebench R10
Rendering Single 32Bit
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
7257 Points ∼67% +13%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
6841 Points ∼63% +6%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (6292 - 6643, n=11)
6480 Points ∼60% +1%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
6438 Points ∼59%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
6436 Points ∼59% 0%
Average of class Gaming
  (8.85 - 8872, n=398)
4715 Points ∼44% -27%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
4330 Points ∼40% -33%
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
4286 Points ∼40% -33%
Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
38543 Points ∼77% +12%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
36819 Points ∼74% +7%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
34488 Points ∼69%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (29952 - 35307, n=11)
33348 Points ∼67% -3%
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
29330 Points ∼59% -15%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
25561 Points ∼51% -26%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
23794 Points ∼48% -31%
Average of class Gaming
  (19.7 - 48808, n=398)
17351 Points ∼35% -50%
wPrime 2.0x - 1024m
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
353.153 s * ∼4% -181%
Average of class Gaming
  (117 - 2331, n=201)
327 s * ∼4% -161%
Dell Latitude 7390
Intel Core i7-8650U
268.279 s * ∼3% -114%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
253.095 s * ∼3% -102%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
197.647 s * ∼2% -58%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (125 - 181, n=6)
158 s * ∼2% -26%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
125.49 s * ∼1%
Super Pi Mod 1.5 XS 32M - ---
Average of class Gaming
  (-1 - 207000, n=2871)
3173 Seconds * ∼14% -506%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H
  (1 - 10645, n=37)
2538 Seconds * ∼11% -385%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
693.994 Seconds * ∼3% -33%
Asus GL702ZC-GC104T
AMD Ryzen 7 1700
677.2 Seconds * ∼3% -29%
Dell Latitude 7390
Intel Core i7-8650U
542 Seconds * ∼2% -4%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Intel Core i7-8750H
523.27 Seconds * ∼2%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i7-8705G
Intel Core i7-8705G
503.967 Seconds * ∼2% +4%
Aorus X5 v8
Intel Core i7-8850H
483 Seconds * ∼2% +8%
Schenker XMG Apex 15
Intel Core i7-8700
460.08 Seconds * ∼2% +12%

* ... smaller is better

Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
6959
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
34488
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
6438
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
69.41 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
12.55 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.92 Points
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
103.72 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
1113 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
168 Points
Help

System Performance

Overall system performance is snappy and in line with expectations. The relatively quick NVMe SSD makes for a widely responsive system; applications open almost immediately, and load times in games are reasonable. Normal tasks will not leave users waiting, and Windows 10 Home runs smoothly across the system.

PCMark 10
PCMark 10
PCMark 8 Creative
PCMark 8 Creative
PCMark 8 Home
PCMark 8 Home
PCMark 8 Work
PCMark 8 Work
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Aorus X5 v8
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
5953 Points ∼91% +16%
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
5676 Points ∼87% +11%
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e
5662 Points ∼87% +11%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5621 Points ∼86% +10%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (5111 - 5731, n=12)
5513 Points ∼85% +8%
Acer Predator Triton 700
GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ, 2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0)
5211 Points ∼80% +2%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
5111 Points ∼78%
Average of class Gaming
  (2484 - 6515, n=310)
4919 Points ∼76% -4%
Creative Score Accelerated v2
Average Intel Core i7-8750H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (5336 - 7765, n=3)
6185 Points ∼65% +13%
Average of class Gaming
  (2303 - 9529, n=223)
5475 Points ∼57% 0%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
5454 Points ∼57%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Aorus X5 v8
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
5773 Points ∼95% +40%
Acer Predator Triton 700
GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ, 2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0)
5160 Points ∼85% +25%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4665 Points ∼77% +13%
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e
4627 Points ∼76% +12%
Average Intel Core i7-8750H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (4119 - 5371, n=12)
4522 Points ∼74% +10%
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
4504 Points ∼74% +9%
Average of class Gaming
  (2554 - 6093, n=328)
4218 Points ∼69% +2%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
4119 Points ∼68%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
4119 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
5454 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
5111 points
Help

Storage Devices

The GU501GM uses a hybrid storage solution, matching a small 128 GB NVMe boot drive with a larger 1 TB SSHD for mass storage. The Kingston NVMe drive is disappointing; read and write speeds are more reminiscent of SATA SSDs than their faster PCIe-based counterparts. This doesn't affect system performance for the most part (4K tests in AS SSD and CDM5 are both similar to other NVMe drives) but can create frustration when loading up large amounts of sequential data, such as when opening a large movie file or launching a game. The 1 TB SSHD has an 8 GB SSD cache for frequently used files stored on the larger drive.

AS SSD
AS SSD
AS SSD Copy
AS SSD Copy
HD Tune
HD Tune
CrystalDiskMark 5 (SSD)
CrystalDiskMark 5 (SSD)
CrystalDiskMark 5 (HDD)
CrystalDiskMark 5 (HDD)
PCMark 8 Storage
PCMark 8 Storage
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
Aorus X5 v8
Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
Acer Predator Triton 700
2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0)
Average Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
 
AS SSD
253%
213%
129%
121%
207%
-13%
Copy Game MB/s
419.25
381 (344 - 419, n=2)
-9%
Copy Program MB/s
269.19
186 (102 - 269, n=2)
-31%
Copy ISO MB/s
772.67
608 (444 - 773, n=2)
-21%
Score Total
900
4122
358%
3649
305%
2536
182%
2515
179%
3282
265%
767 (634 - 900, n=2)
-15%
Score Write
345
2051
494%
1446
319%
939
172%
954
177%
1243
260%
271 (196 - 345, n=2)
-21%
Score Read
377
1346
257%
1471
290%
1092
190%
1061
181%
1350
258%
344 (311 - 377, n=2)
-9%
Access Time Write *
0.058
0.035
40%
0.041
29%
0.046
21%
0.044
24%
0.041
29%
0.064 (0.058 - 0.07, n=2)
-10%
Access Time Read *
0.278
0.073
74%
0.046
83%
0.119
57%
0.166
40%
0.062
78%
0.274 (0.27 - 0.278, n=2)
1%
4K-64 Write
237.04
1760.16
643%
1198.18
405%
742.09
213%
773.05
226%
913.1
285%
177 (116 - 237, n=2)
-25%
4K-64 Read
270.32
1170.26
333%
1218.4
351%
847.34
213%
856.23
217%
1056.86
291%
232 (193 - 270, n=2)
-14%
4K Write
67.1
107.15
60%
90.23
34%
80.44
20%
84.51
26%
92.99
39%
63.1 (59.1 - 67.1, n=2)
-6%
4K Read
22.62
48.94
116%
43.42
92%
23.36
3%
23.21
3%
41.47
83%
20.8 (18.9 - 22.6, n=2)
-8%
Seq Write
404.73
1834.04
353%
1580.23
290%
1163.11
187%
965.76
139%
2371.95
486%
309 (213 - 405, n=2)
-24%
Seq Read
840.77
1266.1
51%
2090.99
149%
2212.97
163%
1813.23
116%
2517.2
199%
917 (841 - 993, n=2)
9%

* ... smaller is better

Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 1498 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 471.5 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 342.2 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 264.8 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 706.7 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 469.5 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 32.8 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 75.55 MB/s

GPU Performance

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q GPU - Benchmarks and SpecsNvidia Geforce GTX 1060 in our GU501GM performs a bit better than the average 1060-equipped device and is about on par with AMD's Radeon RX 580 with the benefit of a lower power draw. For those that need a bit more graphical oomph, Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q offers about 25% more punch, and the full GTX 1070 increases performance by almost half.

The GU501GM is a good showing of Nvidia's now-storied mid-range GPU, putting up a respectable 11733 in Fire Strike. This means the graphics card is adequate for 1080p work and should be more than enough for rendering and video editing, so long as 1080p is the highest resolution needed. The GPU will reach limits under 2K and 4K workloads. On battery, the GU501GM hits about 90-95% of the performance observed when plugged in.

For more about the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060, please visit our dedicated GPU page here.

Fire Strike
Fire Strike
Fire Strike Extreme
Fire Strike Extreme
Fire Strike Ultra
Fire Strike Ultra
Time Spy
Time Spy
Cloud Gate
Cloud Gate
Ice Storm Extreme
Ice Storm Extreme
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Acer Predator Triton 700
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ
18120 Points ∼45% +54%
Aorus X5 v8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H
17257 Points ∼42% +47%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H
14780 Points ∼36% +26%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
11733 Points ∼29%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (10708 - 12298, n=73)
11545 Points ∼28% -2%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600
11512 Points ∼28% -2%
Average of class Gaming
  (385 - 40636, n=441)
10260 Points ∼25% -13%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Notebook), 8300H
7610 Points ∼19% -35%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i5-8305G
AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL / 870, 8305G
7355 Points ∼18% -37%
Asus FX504GD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook), 8300H
6356 Points ∼16% -46%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ
5738 Points ∼14% -51%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Aorus X5 v8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H
118612 Points ∼64% +66%
Acer Predator Triton 700
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ
115579 Points ∼63% +62%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H
98013 Points ∼53% +37%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
71431 Points ∼39%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (26770 - 86193, n=65)
70757 Points ∼38% -1%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600
70020 Points ∼38% -2%
Average of class Gaming
  (5761 - 184578, n=432)
62056 Points ∼34% -13%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Notebook), 8300H
51038 Points ∼28% -29%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i5-8305G
AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL / 870, 8305G
44796 Points ∼24% -37%
Asus FX504GD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook), 8300H
38881 Points ∼21% -46%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ
36528 Points ∼20% -49%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Graphics
Asus FX504GD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook), 8300H
200390 Points ∼27%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i5-8305G
AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL / 870, 8305G
165559 Points ∼23%
Average of class Gaming
  (27912 - 390417, n=153)
163607 Points ∼22%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (33205 - 257260, n=33)
152262 Points ∼21%
3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance Combined
Aorus X5 v8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H
12471 Points ∼69% +34%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H
10663 Points ∼59% +14%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
9333 Points ∼51%
Acer Predator Triton 700
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ
9075 Points ∼50% -3%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Notebook), 8300H
8786 Points ∼48% -6%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (5655 - 12930, n=72)
8364 Points ∼46% -10%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600
7838 Points ∼43% -16%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i5-8305G
AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL / 870, 8305G
7788 Points ∼43% -17%
Asus FX504GD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook), 8300H
7025 Points ∼39% -25%
Average of class Gaming
  (510 - 16949, n=516)
6873 Points ∼38% -26%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ
5933 Points ∼33% -36%
1280x720 Performance GPU
Acer Predator Triton 700
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ
23694 Points ∼46% +58%
Aorus X5 v8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H
21823 Points ∼43% +46%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H
18687 Points ∼37% +25%
Asus ROG Strix GL702ZC-GC204T
AMD Radeon RX 580 (Laptop), 1600
15182 Points ∼30% +1%
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
14975 Points ∼29%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (12731 - 15607, n=73)
14725 Points ∼29% -2%
Average of class Gaming
  (513 - 50983, n=515)
11872 Points ∼23% -21%
Dell XPS 15 9575 i5-8305G
AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL / 870, 8305G
9862 Points ∼19% -34%
Acer Predator Helios 300 PH317-52-51M6
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Notebook), 8300H
9147 Points ∼18% -39%
Lenovo Legion Y520-15IKBA-80WY001VGE
AMD Radeon RX 560 (Laptop), 7300HQ
8345 Points ∼16% -44%
Asus FX504GD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook), 8300H
7133 Points ∼14% -52%
3DMark 06 Standard
33570 points
3DMark 11 Performance
13082 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
30938 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
10370 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Full HD is the name of the game here. The GeForce GTX 1060, which is one of the most popular GPUs currently in use, is well-known to be able to push 60 fps at 1080p for most titles, and that story continues on with the GU501GM. Rise of the Tomb Raider, a 2016 title that is still fairly demanding, flirts with 60 fps with everything turned up. More demanding titles, like The Witcher 3, are playable at Ultra settings, but players will need to turn details down to hit the 60 fps threshold.

Rise of the Tomb Raider - 1920x1080 Very High Preset AA:FX AF:16x (sort by value)
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
57 fps ∼35%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (51 - 68.8, n=35)
61.2 fps ∼38% +7%
Average of class Gaming
  (8.9 - 126, n=141)
62.4 fps ∼39% +9%
The Witcher 3 - 1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+) (sort by value)
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
39 fps ∼34%
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
52.7 fps ∼46% +35%
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e
59.4 fps ∼52% +52%
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
52.4 fps ∼46% +34%
Aorus X5 v8
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
60 fps ∼52% +54%
Acer Predator Triton 700
GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ, 2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0)
62.9 fps ∼55% +61%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
  (24 - 42.3, n=57)
38.5 fps ∼33% -1%
Average of class Gaming
  (12.6 - 115, n=217)
44.8 fps ∼39% +15%
low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 19417316299fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 1661206639fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 1631207157fps
Hitman 2016 (2016) 71705946fps

Stress Test

Stress testing shows us one of the ugly sides of the GU501GM. Up until this point, the story has been good to great. Unfortunately, stress testing the CPU completely crippled the system. During our testing period, we attempted to run our hour-long stress test of Prime95, which fully loads all 12 threads of the CPU, six times. Each run resulted in a crash, some merely minutes into the test. We attempted using different power profile configurations (e.g., "Power Saver," "High Performance"), but all resulted in a system crash and reboot.

This result is extremely odd, as the CPU doesn't seem to fall victim to any undue heat stress that typically causes this kind of instability. In all runs, CPU temperatures steadily climbed to about 70° C and plateaued at this level. Clock speeds also stayed steady between 3.8-3.9 GHz, which is the CPU's rated boost. Still, the CPU cannot seem to hold this kind of load for more than about a half hour. System crashes do not happen under any other strain; the system remains stable while gaming and when FurMark is run (with or without Prime95).

GPU stress is a better story to hear. Running FurMark for an hour, the GPU stays rock solid at 67° C with a clock hovering around 1278 MHz. Adding Prime95, the system surprisingly remains fully stable; the CPU runs near its rated boost at 3.6 GHz, and the GPU hovers around 1400 MHz. Under gaming load, the system truly shines; the CPU unwavering stays at 3.9 GHz while the GPU rockets past 1600 MHz. Internal temperatures under gaming load stay below 70° C. While these results are impressive, they come at the cost of annoying fan noise, as we'll examine below.

Prime95 (prior to one of many system crashes)
Prime95 (prior to one of many system crashes)
FurMark
FurMark
Prime95 + FurMark
Prime95 + FurMark
The Witcher 3
The Witcher 3
0123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930313233343536373839404142Tooltip
The Witcher 3 ultra
CPU Clock (GHz) GPU Clock (MHz) Average CPU Temperature (°C) Average GPU Temperature (°C)
Prime95 Stress crash - - -
FurMark Stress 4.0 1280 62 67
Prime95 + FurMark Stress 3.6 1394 78 67
Witcher 3 Stress (if applicable) 3.9 1632 67 69

Emissions

System Noise

Fan noise profile. Note the high noise in upper frequencies.
Fan noise profile. Note the high noise in upper frequencies.

One of the weaker points of the GU501GM is its fan system. Under full load, the fans hit about 51 dB(A). Though this is high, the GU501GM is not the loudest gaming system we've tested. Rather, the problem comes in the fans' high pitch. The fans on similar thin-and-lights, like the Zephyrus M GM501 and MSI GS65, are loud but are more evenly pitched than our review system. The GU501GM's fans are more akin to a whistle than a whir, and under full load, the system will screech.

There is a silver lining; Asus includes three fan profiles available at the push of a button. Under the lower two settings ("Silent" and "Balanced"), the fans are more reasonable. The "Silent" mode sees the fans ramp only under duress, and even then barely so. The "Balanced" profile keeps the fans at bay, but system noise is just as loud when gaming or under strain as the "Overboost" mode. During normal tasks (web browsing, word processing), the fans pulse when using the "Balanced" or "Overboost" modes.

During light tasks when the fans are off, the SSHD can barely be heard, although some gentle clicks will tease users' ears when the drive is accessed. There is some faint coil whine that can be heard at a normal distance from the machine.

Noise Level

Idle
31.4 / 31.4 / 34.2 dB(A)
Load
42.8 / 50.9 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   BK Precision (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 28.6 dB(A)
Asus GU501GM
Asus GU501GM
Asus Zephyrus GM501
Asus Zephyrus GM501
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
Aorus X5 v8
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
Acer Predator Triton 700
GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ, 2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0)
Noise
5%
-1%
-3%
-7%
-2%
off / environment *
28.6
30
-5%
29
-1%
29
-1%
30
-5%
31
-8%
Idle Minimum *
31.4
30
4%
30
4%
30
4%
33
-5%
33
-5%
Idle Average *
31.4
31
1%
31
1%
31
1%
35
-11%
34
-8%
Idle Maximum *
34.2
34
1%
33
4%
35
-2%
40
-17%
40
-17%
Load Average *
42.8
43
-0%
49
-14%
49
-14%
45
-5%
41
4%
Witcher 3 ultra *
50.9
42
17%
50
2%
51
-0%
50
2%
43
16%
Load Maximum *
50.9
44
14%
52
-2%
54
-6%
55
-8%
48
6%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

Heat exhaust during The Witcher 3
Heat exhaust during The Witcher 3

The benefit of the overzealous fans is seen in external temperatures, which are good for a thin gaming notebook. Under gaming or synthetic loads, the top side stays at or below 43° C. Even then, these temperatures only occur at the spacious vents situated directly under the display, which is far enough away from the keyboard that users should hardly notice the increase in temperature. Asus has done a good job of engineering the thermal pipes to draw heat away from where a gamer's hands normally rest (the WASD keys and spacebar), which makes for a comfortable gaming experience. Just be sure to game on a desk and not a lap; temperatures along the rear exhaust vents approach 50° C.

Keyboard, idle
Keyboard, idle
Underside, idle
Underside, idle
Keyboard, full load
Keyboard, full load
Underside, full load
Underside, full load
Keyboard, The Witcher 3
Keyboard, The Witcher 3
Underside, The Witcher 3
Underside, The Witcher 3
Max. Load
 36.6 °C
98 F
43 °C
109 F
39.8 °C
104 F
 
 29.6 °C
85 F
40.6 °C
105 F
34 °C
93 F
 
 26 °C
79 F
24.6 °C
76 F
28 °C
82 F
 
Maximum: 43 °C = 109 F
Average: 33.6 °C = 92 F
46.6 °C
116 F
45.2 °C
113 F
41 °C
106 F
35.4 °C
96 F
37.2 °C
99 F
32.4 °C
90 F
27 °C
81 F
28 °C
82 F
28 °C
82 F
Maximum: 46.6 °C = 116 F
Average: 35.6 °C = 96 F
Power Supply (max.)  43.6 °C = 110 F | Room Temperature 21 °C = 70 F | Fluke 62 Mini
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 33.6 °C / 92 F, compared to the average of 32.9 °C / 91 F for the devices in the class Gaming.
(±) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 43 °C / 109 F, compared to the average of 39.2 °C / 103 F, ranging from 21.6 to 68.8 °C for the class Gaming.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 46.6 °C / 116 F, compared to the average of 41.6 °C / 107 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 26.3 °C / 79 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(±) Playing The Witcher 3, the average temperature for the upper side is 34.6 °C / 94 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 30.2 °C / 86.4 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(±) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.7 °C / 83.7 F (-1.5 °C / -2.7 F).
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
Aorus X5 v8
GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 8850H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
Acer Predator Triton 700
GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 7700HQ, 2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0)
Heat
-1%
-6%
-10%
-7%
-21%
Maximum Upper Side *
43
49
-14%
52
-21%
53
-23%
50
-16%
61
-42%
Maximum Bottom *
46.6
63
-35%
49
-5%
65
-39%
62
-33%
69
-48%
Idle Upper Side *
29.2
24
18%
31
-6%
26
11%
27
8%
29
1%
Idle Bottom *
34
25
26%
31
9%
30
12%
29
15%
32
6%

* ... smaller is better

Speakers

Speaker noise profile. Note the focus on middle frequencies, especially in the lower range.
Speaker noise profile. Note the focus on middle frequencies, especially in the lower range.

The speakers are surprisingly good. Asus has recently surprised us in this regard. While the absence of a subwoofer results in anemic bass, the speakers are more evenly tuned than previous devices from the company. This creates a more level aural experience. Mids are well-balanced against highs, and the resultant sound is fuller and packs more body. Unfortunately, the whining fans will still necessitate headphones while gaming (or other heavy loads), but music will sound better on these speakers than other gaming devices.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2038.637.5253535.63135.733.94034.434.15032.236.96334.237.18031.844.910030.251.712529.257.416029.665.720028.564.325027.464.831527.563.440026.359.350026.358.963025.162.680025.666.2100025.56612502564.416002564.5200024.267250024.470.9315024.571.6400023.974.3500023.769.4630023.765.8800023.466.61000023.464.31250023.558.71600023.450.3SPL36.880.8N2.850.1median 25median 64.5Delta1.82.640.943.13638.231.531.732.539.126.729.826.13026.228.826.933.226.233.822.94224.250.122.451.520.353.720.153.119.755.619.160.719631964.717.768.617.367.417.465.617.464.117.45717.558.717.663.517.46317.560.517.557.517.461.417.361.330.375.81.435.6median 17.7median 60.52.56hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseAsus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8 audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (74.27 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(+) | good bass - only 3.8% away from median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (10.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.3% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 4.6% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (6.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (10.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 6% of all tested devices in this class were better, 5% similar, 89% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 3% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 95% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (76 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 16.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.9% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.5% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (7.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (16% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 44% of all tested devices in this class were better, 5% similar, 51% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 20% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 76% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Power draw is about average. Under full load, the machine pulls 140 Watts, which is comparable to a 2017 mid-tier device (for example, the Asus FX503VM). Under gaming load, the GU501GM needs about 133 Watts, which is about a 25% bump over last year's mid-range gaming laptops. The included 180 Watt power supply is more than enough to power the machine; peak power draw stays below 80% of what the adapter can supply.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.08 / 0.8 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 12.35 / 19.98 / 25.44 Watt
Load midlight 94.28 / 140.63 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
8750H, GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), Kingston RBUSNS8154P3128GJ, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Asus FX503VM-EH73
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), SanDisk SD8SN8U128G1002, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
8750H, GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
8750H, GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP m.2 PCI-e, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
8750H, GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Aorus X5 v8
8850H, GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7, IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Acer Predator Triton 700
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 2x SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB M.2 (HFS512G39MND) (RAID 0), IPS, 1920x1080, 15.6
Power Consumption
15%
13%
-20%
-3%
-52%
-55%
Idle Minimum *
12.35
12.8
-4%
7
43%
16
-30%
14
-13%
25
-102%
28
-127%
Idle Average *
19.98
15.4
23%
11
45%
19
5%
18
10%
31
-55%
33
-65%
Idle Maximum *
25.44
15.9
37%
20
21%
26
-2%
22
14%
33
-30%
41
-61%
Load Average *
94.28
78
17%
98
-4%
103
-9%
91
3%
102
-8%
94
-0%
Load Maximum *
140.63
143.4
-2%
182
-29%
223
-59%
173
-23%
239
-70%
222
-58%
Witcher 3 ultra *
132.86
107.3
19%
132
1%
164
-23%
142
-7%
194
-46%
160
-20%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Battery life is a weak spot. We would chalk this up to the device being gaming-centric in the past, but recent devices like the Aero 15x and GS65 have shown us that competent thin-and-light gaming laptops can still be marathon runners. The GU501GM lasts only 4 hours in our WiFi v1.3 test, which is a far cry from the GS65's 6 hours and the Aero 15x's 8.5 hours. This is partly due to the smaller battery in the GU501GM, which is only 55 Watt-hours. That said, the GU501GM does beat the Zephyrus M by a healthy 76 minute lead in the same test. Under load, the GU501GM only lasts 45 minutes. All said, you'll need to bring the power brick when working/gaming away from home. The device uses Nvidia's Optimus to disable the GTX 1060 under lighter loads.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
4h 31min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
4h 00min
Load (maximum brightness)
0h 45min
Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8
8750H, GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 55 Wh
MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
8750H, GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 82 Wh
Asus Zephyrus M GM501
8750H, GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 55 Wh
Gigabyte Aero 15X v8
8750H, GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q, 94.24 Wh
Aorus X5 v8
8850H, GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 92.24 Wh
Acer Predator Triton 700
7700HQ, GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q, 54 Wh
Battery Runtime
73%
4%
181%
51%
-10%
Reader / Idle
271
507
87%
237
-13%
762
181%
294
8%
150
-45%
WiFi v1.3
240
362
51%
164
-32%
513
114%
144
-40%
Load
45
81
80%
70
56%
156
247%
87
93%
70
56%

Pros

+ sleek, beautiful chassis
+ stable case
+ anodized aluminum resists smudges and fingerprints
+ plenty of ports, including Thunderbolt 3
+ RGB keyboard is comfortable and quiet
+ speakers are astoundingly good and full-bodied
+ strong CPU performance (except for synthetic stress)
+ stable GPU performance
+ multiple fan modes
+ temperatures are well-managed at areas in contact with fingers and hands

Cons

- CPU becomes unstable under synthetic stress (using Prime95)
- small trackpad
- fan noise is annoyingly shrill under load
- device is on the heavier side
- battery life is mediocre
- port placement is not optimal

Verdict

In review: Asus GU501GM. Review unit courtesy of Asus.
In review: Asus GU501GM. Review unit courtesy of Asus.

The GU501GM aims to bring the best of the Zephyrus M into a lower price bracket. For the most part, it succeeds. The same sleek, premium case (sans the elegant hinge mechanism on the bottom panel) makes the transition, as do the keyboard, speakers, and top-of-the-line Corei7-8750H.

Unfortunately, this CPU proves to be somewhat of a mixed bag. The improved performance is greatly appreciated in most tasks, although the CPU cannot seem to hold steady under computational stress. The fans are another point of annoyance; their high-pitch grates on the ears when gaming. On the plus side, there are mitigations for these issues. Though the system crashes under CPU strain, all other workloads are well handled. The different fan modes help to control fan noise at the cost of higher heat and lower performance.

All said, there is little to dislike about the GU501GM, but considering the price, there's little reason beyond aesthetics to consider a purchase. At its MSRP of $1900, the GU501GM is simply too expensive to be feasible; there are other beautifully crafted devices with similar specifications for less (Asus' own Strix line comes to mind). For the same price or a bit more, users could upgrade to more powerful hardware and a better overall package, like those offered by Gigabyte's Aero 15x or the MSI GS65 Stealth Thin. Even at the current sales price of $1500, it's hard to recommend the GU501GM over other like machines.

The GU501GM is simply a luxury item. While the case is beautiful and the machine is a competent mid-range gaming laptop, it is overpriced. Only those that put design above all other factors should consider purchasing the GU501GM; even then, there are better options out there.

Asus ROG GU501GM-BI7N8 - 07/07/2018 v6
Sam Medley

Chassis
90 / 98 → 92%
Keyboard
86%
Pointing Device
75%
Connectivity
59 / 81 → 73%
Weight
60 / 10-66 → 89%
Battery
75%
Display
88%
Games Performance
93%
Application Performance
95%
Temperature
88 / 95 → 92%
Noise
76 / 90 → 84%
Audio
65%
Camera
30 / 85 → 35%
Average
75%
85%
Gaming - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

Read all 5 comments / answer
static version load dynamic
Loading Comments
Comment on this article
Please share our article, every link counts!
> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Asus ROG GU501GM (i7-8750H, GTX 1060) Laptop Review
Sam Medley, 2018-06-13 (Update: 2018-06-22)
Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Review Editor - @samuel_medley
I've been a "tech-head" my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a Systems Analyst for my local school district. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news articles and notebook reviews. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not hunched over an electronic device or writing code for a new database, I'm either outside with my family, playing a decade-old video game, or sitting behind a drum set.