We unbox the ROG GX800!
When ASUS unveiled their water-cooled, dual GTX 980-equipped GX700 last year, we never would have imagined that it would be the catalyst for other brands to unveil their own crazy, weird and over-specc’d notebooks. But since then we’ve seen a notebook with a massive 21.5-inch curved screen as well as one with an extendable display, which makes the whole liquid-cooling gimmick of the series a little dated.
Regardless, ASUS is at it again with their newest creation, the ROG GX800. On the outside it looks pretty similar to the behemoth that they released last year, with the only notable upgrades being in the internals of the machine. Despite that the new gaming notebook looks to be as impressive as the GX700 last year, and has impressive refinements that make it THE choice for people looking for the ultimate gaming notebook.
ASUS ROG GX800 Specs
- Intel Core i7 7820HK processor
- Dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080, 16GB of VRAM
- 64GB of RAM
- 18.4-inch UHD LED display with G-Sync Technology, 3840 x 2160 resolution
- 3 x 512GB m.2 SSD drives
- 802.11 AC, Bluetooth
Packaging and contents:
Just like last year, the GX800 comes with its own convenient carrying case for the water-cooling system and its gigantic power brick in addition to the actual notebook itself. Weirdly enough, the carrying case doesn’t have a cut out for the notebook – which means you’ll have to carry the behemoth in a seperate case or bag.
The carrying case for the water-cooling system has its own rollers and has a TSA Lock so you can safely check it in a plane if you plan to travel with it.
In the actual box that holds the ROG GX800, you’ll see the notebook along with another power brick (bring up the total power bricks to two), a WiFi antenna, documentation as well as a spiffy ROG Gladius mouse.
Initial impressions: virtually the same design but with a new set of internals
If you’ve read (or seen) or GX700 review last year, you pretty much know what the GX800 is about. The notebook has two top-of-the-line NVIDIA GTX GeForce graphics cards SLI’d together along with the best notebook processor that Intel has, cooled by a custom water-cooling solution that plugs in the back of the notebook.
In the case of the GX800, the hardware has been bumped up from last year: two NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080’s (the GTX 1080 Ti was not launched yet when the notebook was announced), an Intel Core i7 7820HK processor, 64GB of DDR4 RAM, three(!) 512GB M.2 SSD drives and a 18.4-inch UHD LED display.
That’s crazy specs for a PC rig, let alone a (semi-portable) gaming notebook. It does come with the requisite price tag though – we’ll go into that later.
Like we said earlier the GX800 is almost identical in design to its older brother, the GX700. It has the same aluminum and copper color swatch as its older brother, the same aggressive vent holes in the back for cooling, the same LED strip lighting on the back of the lid. ASUS has increased the screen size of the GX800 compared to last year’s model, with the notebook now sporting an 18.4-inch UHD (4K) display instead of the saner 17.3-inch full HD panel.
Because of the size of the GX800, there’s a gaggle of ports available for you to use – you have two USB Type-C connectors, 3 regular USB ports, HDMI port, mini Display Port, SD card reader, RJ45 for Ethernet and your requisite microphone and headphone jacks.
The keyboard has been reworked by ASUS, and the generous full QWERTY keyboard now uses mechanical switches instead of the old membrane keys that’s typically used in gamging notebooks. The keys are silent despite being mechanical keys, which can be either good or bad depending on where you stand in the mechanical keyboard preference line. The keys are backlit, and you can customize the color pattern yourself if you’re into that kind of thing.
Just like any gaming notebook, the GX800 can easily be overclocked by gamers to push its performance to the next level. How far can you take the machine? ASUS says that the processor can be boosted up to 4.3GHz if you desire, while the GPU can be upped to 2075MHz if need be. The VRAM and DRAM can also be bumped up to 5200MHz and 2800MHz if needed, all through the built-in Gaming Center software that’s in the heart of the GX800.
While we’re going to be holding off benchmarking games with the GX800 until our full review, we’ll just run a few benchmarks with 3D Mark. On the Firestrike Ultra and Time Spy tests, the GX800 managed to achieve scores higher than another gaming behemoth that we reviewed a few weeks earlier. The result is interesting because the GX800 is relatively cheaper than the half a million Acer Predator 21 X that we reviewed a few weeks ago.
Speaking of cheaper, nothing about the GX800 is cheap, though it does have a lower price tag than the crazy Predator 21 X notebook we reviewed a few weeks earlier. The ASUS ROG GX800 is priced at Php 369,995.
That’s it for the GX800. We’ll be playing with the notebook during the Holy Week break, so expect our full review to arrive by next week.