Asus ROG Strix GL502VT-DS71 Gaming Laptop Review

aAsus takes gaming seriously to an extent that it has dedicated hardware purely meant for gamers. The hardware includes Republic of Gamers (ROG) and the most recent creation Strix. In order to bring the best out of the two hardware, Asus have wed them to create a line of Asus Strix products. A case in point is the Asus ROG Strix GL502VT-DS71 gaming laptop that strikes a balance between performance and portability. The laptop is equipped with top of the range features that many gamers will find appealing and up to the task.  The laptop is powered by the latest 6th generation Intel Quad-Core i7-6700HQ quad-core processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M GPU with 3GB of GDDR5 Video RAM. It comes with 16GB of DDR4-2133 RAM paired with 1 TB 7200 RPM Hard drive for storage.

The 15.6 inch display comes with a full HD display with a resolution of 1920x1080p and a 720p Webcam above the display. The laptop combines decent features to offer decent performance ranging from playing demanding games, loading heavy software such as Photoshop and 3d Studio MAX to handling basic tasks such as web browsing, document editing, watching movies and listening to music.

Design

The ROG Strix GL502VT is designed with portability in mind hence Asus attempt to keep the laptop thinner as compared to other gaming laptops. The laptop is packed in a plastic chassis with a height of 23.5mm and weighs 4.85 pounds therefore easily slides into the backpack easily and light to carry around all day. The laptop shuns ASUS’ standard ROG red accents in favor of a brighter, neon orange. The rear of the laptop has two red-tinged cooling vents that flank the hinges at the ends of the chassis. The laptop fits well into the life of a gamer who is always on the move.

Performance

The Strix GL502VT packs a 2.6-GHz Intel Quad-Core i7-6700HQ processor that can run up to 3.5GHz with Turbo boost Technology. The processor gets a decent score of 8000 points on the CPU Mark test. As such, it can comfortably handle heavy demanding tasks apart from gaming such as, video editing. The system is fixed with 16GB DDR4 memory that is expandable to 32GB. However, most gamers will be comfortable with this memory as it is capable of handling most of the demanding games. The laptop runs cool thanks to Hyper Cool Duo-Copper cooling system. It uses a dual fan system and heat pipes to cool the GPU and CPU autonomously.

eThe Strix GL502VT stumbles when it comes to storage. The inclusion of a 1 TB 7200RPM Hard drive is a big disappointment instead of a fast solid state drive. Perhaps they wanted to keep the laptop affordable for gamers. Interestingly, as if Asus expected a backlash from game enthusiasts, they included an empty M.2 slot to install an SSD. Better still, you have the option of purchasing an upgraded fashion of this model. The Asus ROG Strix GL502VT-DS74 with 1TB plus 128GB M.2 SATA3 SSD and 6GB VRAM with a few more bucks. An SSD offers fast boot times and loading of games compared to the Hard Drive included and gamers are pretty aware of this fact. The speed issue aside, the storage space is big enough to keep all your stuff ranging from games, music, videos, movies, to photos.

Asus does what it knows better by pairing the Nvidia GeForce GTX 970M GPU with 3GB of VRAM. The dedicated GPU ensures that gamers get high frame rates and smooth graphics for playing games. The notebook can run different games smoothly such as the Witcher 3 at high settings with a resolution of 1080p at 40fps. The Fallout 4 rans at high settings with a resolution of 1080p at more than 50fps. Similarly, it handles GTA5 seamlessly with high settings at 60fps and above. Apart from gamers, those who work a lot with heavy graphics software like 3d Studio MAX will also find this laptop being ideal for their work.

Connectivity

In the connectivity department, the Asus packs three USB 3.0 ports for fast transfer of data and an SD card reader. It includes the latest USB 3.1 Type-C port that supports multiple standards and offers hyper-fast data transfer speeds of 10Gbs. There is a Mini DisplayPort and an HDMI port that will allow you to extend your display to larger screens to play your game or watch movies. There is a Gigabit RJ-45 port and 802.11 AC Wi-Fi to enable you to connect to the internet. The notebook also includes Bluetooth 4.1, which you can connect with compatible devices for faster transfer of files and data.

Living up to the latest trend, the notebook does not come with an in-built DVD drive in an attempt of keeping it slim and portable. You might need to purchase an external optical drive separately if you want to read and write CDs/ DVDs using the Laptop. There’s a 720p Webcam above the GL502VT’s display. Its quality is well short of cinematic, but it’s sharp enough for casual HD video chats.

Other Features

The 15.6 inch Full HD matte panel comes with a resolution of 1920 x 1080p that is sharp and offers a rich color and sharp contrast. The display brightness of the Strix averages 273 nits which is above the 247 nits in most laptops in this category. The Strix GL502VT comes preinstalled with the superb utility that offers four profiles and adjusts the panel’s color temperature. The four profiles include Normal, Eye Care, Vivid, and manual, you can choose the vivid setting which delivers better-looking results.

dThe laptop flaunts a scissor-switch red-backlit keyboard that is highly responsive during the heat of multiplayer battles and comfortable to type on. The keyboard offers a 1.6mm of travel distance for tactile keystrokes that is sufficient. To make it easier for you to see the WASD keys even in the dark, Asus have highlighted them. An oddity is the power button, which looks like it is part of the number pad, inconspicuously located between the Pg Dn and hyphen keys. The 4.1 x 2.8-inch touchpad is spacious, with enough room for fingers to comfortably navigate websites and documents. Multi-touch gestures, such as pinch-zoom and two-finger scroll, are quick and responsive.

The battery has never been a strong point for gaming laptops. This is true with the GL502VT-DS71, the Lithium ion battery will give you less than 2 hours under gameplay.  The laptop has in-built speakers strategically positioned to offer an audible gaming experience thanks to

Conclusion

The ASUS ROG STRIX GL502VT-DS71 being the first laptop to bear the ROG Strix branding, packs enough power to offer a premium gaming experience. The laptop has its house in order for game enthusiasts to run games on high settings without slowing down. The notebook wisely combines decent features including a 6th generation Intel Core i7-6700HQ and a dedicated GeForce GTX970M Graphics card with 3GB video RAM. It also packs 16GB of system memory that ensures all games run smoothly and a massive 1TB 7200RPM Hard Drive. The Orange LED cover and Backlit keys makes the device to look neat and attractive. The inclusion of a Full HD resolution is ideal for full-time usage thanks to the strong graphics card.  To make the system faster enough, it is advisable that you remove all the bloatware and you will have a wonderful gaming experience with this Laptop. All said, the ASUS ROG STRIX GL502VT-DS71 is a laptop for gamers who want a high end gaming experience without the weight and bulk that comes from a typical desktop replacement Laptop.

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