Chipmaker AMD has a lot riding on the Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition. As one of the first gaming notebooks designed by AMD together with manufacturers like Asus, the Strix G15 Advantage (or the G513QY) is basically a showcase of AMD tech. For starters, it comes with an AMD Ryzen 9 chip, the just-announced Radeon RX 6800M graphics and a FreeSync Premium display (up to 300Hz refresh rate). The good news: the Strix lives up to expectations, especially in terms of price to performance. Bad news: Asus currently does not plan to bring it to Singapore, but the PC maker sells other 2021 G15 models (powered by Nvidia instead) here.
- 15.6-inch Full-HD display (300Hz)
- AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX with AMD Radeon RX 6800M graphics
- USB-C, 3x USB Type-A, Ethernet, HDMI
The first thing I noticed about the Strix G15 Advantage is its huge power brick (838g). It feels like a relic when put next to today's dainty ones. Apparently, this power brick delivers 280W compared to 240W for the regular G15's power adapter. It certainly adds to the weight of this 15-inch gaming notebook (around 2.4kg). The chassis design itself is typical of the esports-inspired look of this year's ROG gaming notebooks. There's no shortage of LEDs, though the keyboard only has a 4-zone RGB backlight scheme, not per-key. The keyboard has good travel, and feels bouncy. There are handy shortcuts at the top for volume, fan control and the Armoury Crate app. It also has useful media playback keys on the right edge.
I liked that there are no ports on the right side of the Strix — no cables to tangle the mouse for right-handers. Unsurprisingly, there's no Intel Thunderbolt port on this AMD-centric laptop. Asus will also get some flak for removing the Web camera, which allows for slim bezels on three sides of the screen. The display could be brighter. Still, it offers variable refresh rate (up to 300Hz) to eliminate screen tearing and a 3ms response time. But the most impressive feature is the Strix's cooling system. The keyboard was the coolest I have felt on a gaming notebook of this calibre. Even the area above the keys, which is usually too warm to touch for more than a few seconds, is just slightly warm. While audible, the fan noise (around 45 decibels according to the Armoury Crate app) did not seem all that noisy.
So how does this all-AMD gaming notebook perform? The Strix got off to a great start in PCMark 10. Its overall score of 7,398 beat the 7,159 by the Asus ROG Strix Scar 15, which has the same AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX processor, but an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 graphics. However, the Scar turned things round in Metro Exodus and Watch Dogs: Legion. While the Strix produced 77fps at Ultra setting in Metro Exodus at 1080p, the Scar was ahead at 87fps. It was the same story in Watch Dogs, with the Scar managing 73fps on average compared to 65fps for the Strix. Note that both Asus notebooks were tested with the performance set to Turbo. The Strix, however, has incredible battery stamina — thanks to its 90Wh battery — in terms of video playback. It lasted exactly 9 hours in a video-loop battery test with the screen set to maximum brightness.
The Asus ROG Strix G15 Advantage Edition is said to cost between US$1,549 and US$1,699 in the US (the version tested here is exclusive to Best Buy). But even at US$1,699, the G15 Advantage would be excellent value for money. After all, a similar Strix G15 (with a mid-range RTX 3060) is going for US$1,549 from Amazon US. As mentioned earlier, Asus is not selling the G15 Advantage in Singapore. But if you're a fan of the laptop design, you can buy a lower-end G15 (with Ryzen 7, 144Hz screen and GeForce RTX 3050 Ti) for S$2,298 on Shopee and Lazada.
Note: Review unit provided by AMD/Asus.
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