ROG:REDEFINE 2019 | Asus ROG 'Mothership' GZ700GX now available with factory-overclocked Intel Core i9-9980HK and OC NVIDIA RTX 2080 graphics
Asus announced the ROG 'Mothership' GZ700GX at CES 2019 as a desktop replacement laptop in a convertible form factor. By detaching the keyboard away from the main laptop, Asus seems to have addressed concerns about inadequate cooling and cramped keyboards in one go. During the initial launch, Asus showed off a version with the Intel Core i9-8950HK and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 GPU. Now, in the wake of Intel announcing the 9th gen H-series chips, Asus has given the internals of the ROG 'Mothership' a boost and is now equipping the laptop with an 8-core Intel Core i9-9980HK and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 GPU — both factory-overclocked in a much thinner 29.9 mm chassis than the original prototype.
Configuration — Overclocked Core i9-9980HK and RTX 2080, NVMe RAID
The ROG GZ700GX is powered by the just announced 9th gen Intel Core i9-9980HK and is factory-overclocked to hit 4.7 GHz on all eight cores. You also get up to 64 GB DDR4-2666 RAM and a triple NVMe RAID 0 array that Asus refers to as HyperDrive Extreme. In this, two of the NVMe SSDs are connected directly to the CPU while the third is connected to the chipset allowing for a total theoretical throughput up to 8700 MBps.
The RTX 2080 is an ideal choice for the GZ700GX's 17.3-inch 144 Hz 3 ms AHVA G-Sync non-touch panel. Asus has overclocked the RTX 2080 to hit 1800 MHz at 200 W. You can also opt for a 4K 60 Hz display aimed at content creators that covers 100% of the Adobe RGB color gamut. On the audio side of things, we have an ESS SABRE DAC and a headphone amp that offers 24-bit 192 kHz audio. Windows Hello facial recognition is available via the integrated webcam that can capture 1080p 30 fps video.
The USP of the ROG 'Mothership' design is the foldable keyboard that offers flexibility in positioning and use for extended game play. The keyboard can connect to the display unit either wirelessly or via USB Type-C. It is not a mechanical keyboard, but you do get 2.5 mm travel and keys that can survive 20 million strokes. As is the case with several high-end gaming laptops, the right side of the keyboard has a touchpad that also doubles-up as a virtual numeric keypad. Per-key backlighting can be customized via Armoury Crate and synced with other RGB peripherals via Aura Sync.
Other standard connectivity options include a 2.5G Ethernet controller, Wi-Fi 6 with Asus RangeBoost, 3x USB 3.1 Gen2 and 1x Gen 1 Type-A ports, 1x USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C (from the GPU), 1x Thunderbolt 3, and HDMI 2.0-out.
Cooling — Liquid metal with four heatsinks and eight heat pipes
An overclocked CPU and GPU in a relatively thin chassis requires a robust cooling solution and Asus has focused a lot on the same. The cooling aspects of the ROG 'Mothership' consist of a Thermal Grizzly liquid metal safely ensconced within a thermal fence on the heatblock instead of regular thermal paste. A total of eight heat pipes pass over the CPU, GPU, VRAM, and VRM stretching across four heatsinks with 0.1 mm 375 ultra-thin copper fins to provide more surface area for better heat dissipation.
On the software side of things, like other ROG laptops, Asus offers Silent, Balanced, and Turbo profiles to automatically set the performance and fan speeds. Users can also use ROG Armoury Crate software to define cooling profiles and RGB lighting per app, which can then be automatically invoked based on the app being used.
The Asus ROG 'Mothership' GZ700GX will be available in Q2 2019. Pricing, availability, and configurations vary by region.
For a more detailed hands-on look at the ROG 'Mothership' laptop, check out our CES 2019 launch article here.
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