Estimated read time: 9 minutes
Gaming laptops like the Asus Rog Strix 15 and HP Omen 15 are catching up to their desktop counterparts at an extremely fast pace. They have proven to be capable of handling the fastest and most demanding PC games as well as tough creative tasks with ease. They do these while also offering the convenience of portability, something the world is more concern about in this era.
The Asus Rog Strix 15 is not the perfect portable gaming device out there because of its size. Its slightly thick and heavy chassis needs a little bit of work, considering the fact that a few slim yet powerful gaming laptops are hitting the market. The Asus Rog Strix 15 produces loud fan noises when in use and has a dimmer screen than ideal.
However, the Asus Rog Strix 15 is a powerful gaming laptop packing a lot of gaming power with its intel and Nvidia graphics combo. The Unit reviewed sports Intel’s flagship i9-10980HK, and a Nvidia RTX 2070 Super. It comes with 32GB of RAM, making Asus Rog Strix 15 powerful enough to run most AAA games.
Aside the screen being dimmer than ideal, the Asus Rog Strix 15 has a 1080p screen with a refresh rate of 300Hz. It is packed with a few extra features like Keystone II and an extremely attractive and highly customizable lighting. With the availability of hardware settings customization, you have got a powerful piece of tech worth buying.
Price and availability
If you are looking for a budget friendly gaming laptop, look elsewhere because this is the wrong stop for you. The Asus Rog Strix 15 is not wallet friendly.
This review unit packing an Intel i9-10980HK, Nvidia RTX 2070 Super and 32GB RAM will cost you about $2,800/ £2,140/ AU$3,900/ ₹205,956.80/ ₦1,008,000. Pretty high isn’t it? But this is to be expected for a device with such premium spec. Under the hood is a 2TB storage and a super-fast 300Hz/3ms IPS-level panel to make gaming on this laptop a wonderful experience for you.
If you do not have the cash for a higher-end Asus Rog Strix 15, it is advisable you go for a lower-end configuration. The lower-end Asus Rog Strix 15 price starts at about $2,200/ £1,700/ AU$3,000/ ₹161,823.20/ ₦792,000. This will get you an Intel Core i7, Nvidia RTX 2070 Super and 16GB RAM, with a 240Hz display and 1TB SSD. This will help you save your cash and get a powerful gaming laptop with a powerful GPU at the same time.
Asus Strix Scar 15 (2020) review: Design
The Asus ROG Strix 15 is made of sturdy, durable plastic dressed in that same ROG “advanced alien tech” aesthetic as its predecessor and that immersive RGB lighting on the keyboard and fringing three sides of its bottom rim. The keyboard RGB lighting for each individual key are fully customizable with Armoury Crate app, that is if you have the time to do so.
The Asus ROG Strix 15 comes with three USB ports and a 3.5mm audio jack on the left side, the Keystone reader on the right, and the HDMI, USB-C and Ethernet ports at the back just below the display.
Unfortunately, this laptop does not come with a thunderbolt 3 port, and its USB-C port placement at the back seems strange. This may come as a turn off to most people that are picky about their ports and its placement.
The display is the marquee feature. This 1080p panel is standard in terms of resolution, so if you are all about AAA single-player games you may not be wowed by it. However, the 300Hz refresh rate (240Hz for the low-end configuration) and 3ms response time do bring the goods for esports players. Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, Rocket League and Doom: Eternal at the highest settings all look incredible on it, with no signs of screen tearing or stuttering. As do, of course, the not-so-fast games like Red Dead Redemption and Marvel’s Avengers.
Asus Strix Scar 15 Keystone II
Another selling point here is Keystone II, a physical key that you insert in the reader on the right side of the laptop and is designed to set and restore system configurations. If you are not familiar, this allows you to save settings such as light effects, trigger sounds and fan settings. Also, quick launch apps or games of your choosing (at default, it is the Armoury Crate), and access an encrypted virtual drive that you can use as your own private storage. It is certainly a good addition, especially for those who do a lot of personalization and handle sensitive files.
The Asus ROG Strix 15 has a decent and comfortable keyboard, with a decent number of hotkeys. The hotkeys can be used for disabling the trackpad, fan management, and for loading the Armoury Crate app among other functions.
Some of the keys have been moved to the right column, therefore shifting the whole keyboard a bit to the left. Some of these keys include the Home, Page Up and Page Down keys.
The Asus Strix Scar 15 trackpad has an attractive feature of moonlighting as a numpad. It is activated when the top right corner of the trackpad is held down. They can also be used as hotkeys in games while using an external mouse.
The trackpad is however unpredictable, to the point of being annoying. It is not very responsive or accurate, and it sometimes moves too freely, making it an unreliable tool for gaming. If you plan on gaming while traveling, make sure to pack that gaming mouse you have at home as well.
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Asus Strix Scar 15 (2020) review: Performance
There is no doubt that the Asus Strix Scar 15 is quite powerful, with its intel Comet Lake CPU and the RTX 2070 Super. After all, the RTX 2070 Super is meant for 1440p gaming with ray tracing, and it is only working at 1080p resolution here.
The high-end configuration of the Asus Strix Scar 15 powerful enough to rival some of the more powerful gaming PCs out there. It can run the most demanding games right now at 300Hz and its response time can be driven down to 3ms via the software.
It can run Horizon Zero Dawn at the highest settings the game looking as immersive as it would on a fairly powerful gaming desktop. As it does with Red Dead Redemption 2 and Shadow of the Tomb Raider, without any signs of ghosting, stuttering or latency.
And, as we mentioned earlier, fast-paced games like Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst and Rocket League, where you are making fast movements and turns, looks exceptionally smooth.
One thing also worth mentioning here is that this configuration boasts two SSDs running in RAID 0, giving you a whopping 2TB of space.
The Asus Strix Scar 15 fan settings can be customized via the Armoury Crate app for better thermal performance. The app gives you the option to set the fan to Windows, Silent, Turbo, Performance or Manual, depending on what you are doing with the laptop. For most demanding games, it is advisable you set the fan to Turbo to keep your laptop fairly cool.
Asus Strix Scar 15 (2020) review: Battery life
The Asus Strix Scar 15 battery has a poor battery life. Its battery last for about 2 hours and 30minutes when watch a movie. This quite discouraging for a laptop at this price range.
However, considering the tech under the hood it is expected. Seeing that the laptop is powering a heavy-duty RTX 2070 super, the battery life is not that bad at all. Although, you will have to move around with a charger if you plan to use the laptop anywhere you go.
Asus ROG Strix Scar 15 Specification
|ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15
|15.6” vIPS-level FHD 300Hz/3ms
|Intel Core i9-10980HK
|NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-P GDDR6 8GB
|Dimensions and Weight
|39.9(W) x 29.3(D) x 2.79 (H) cm; 2.99 Kgs
|2 X 1TB PCIe SSD (Raid 0)
|Backlit chiclet keyboard, Aura Sync, Per key RGB
|2x 3.5W with Smart AMP Technology
|3 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A
1 x Audio combo jack: Mic-in and Headphone
1 X USB3.2 Gen2 Type-C (supports DisplayPort 1.4, no PD charging)
1x LAN RJ-45 jack1 x HDMI (HDMI 2.0b support 4K HDR), HDCP SPEC 2.2
|Windows 10 Home
|66WHrs, 4S1P, 4-cell Li-ion, 15.4V; 280W adapter
Should I Buy The Asus Strix Scar 15?
Buy it if you:
- Want a gaming laptop with a lot of power.
- Need a fast display for esports.
- Are an RGB lighting and customization addict.
- Are not on a budget (if you have the money to spend on an expensive gaming laptop).
- Do not have concerns about the size and weight of the device.
- Are not concerned about the battery life.
The Final Verdict
The Asus Strix Scar 15 is a very powerful gaming laptop with its Intel i9-10980HK, Nvidia RTX 2070 Super and 32GB RAM. It has a nice refresh rate, as well as a good screen display, although dimmer than the ideal gaming laptop screen.
It has a fine finish to it with its incredibly attractive RGB keyboard lighting that are fully customizable. And therefore easy to show you sense of fashion by making you laptop stand out from others with your customized RGB lighting.
The fans can also be tweaked to suit your cooling need while performing any tasks.
The Asus Strix Scar 15 is without doubt a powerful machine. However, its battery life and market price are big turn offs. If you are on a budget, then this laptop is not for you. You may try the lower-end configuration of the Asus Strix Scar 15, or look for a cheaper option like the HP Omen 15. If the 2 hours and 30 minutes battery life does not suit you, then the Razer Book 13 would be of good value to you.