Asus shows a thin notebook with a strong external graphics card

The RoG Flow X13 impresses as a mobile device at first glance: the 1.5 centimeter flat notebook weighs 1.3 kilograms and comes with a 13.4-inch screen in a work-friendly 16:10 format – depending on the version with full -HD + resolution and 120 Hz or a little more than 4K. Both are touch screens; Thanks to the 360-degree hinges, the X13 can be used either as a notebook or tablet.

Despite the high mobility, the performance is not neglected: Asus installs both a Ryzen processor of the recently introduced 5000 generation (up to the Ryzen 9 5980HS) and Nvidia’s mid-range GPU GeForce GTX 1650. Such a combination is good – unlike Many other 13-inch devices with integrated graphics units – for 3D games in full HD resolution, but only a few other compact notebooks such as Razer’s Blade Stealth 13 are intended.

The compact eGPU XG Mobile contains graphics chips up to the mobile GeForce RTX 3080.

(Image: Asus)

But that’s not the end of the RoG Flow X13: Asus has also equipped it with a proprietary eGPU connection. With eight PCIe 3.0 lines, this offers more bandwidth than Thunderbolt, especially since the external GPU does not have to share the bandwidth: All other components in the eGPU housing are connected via separate USB lines. While Thunderbolt docks usually have monstrous dimensions because conventional desktop graphics cards are used in them, Asus takes a different approach: The eGPU, dubbed XG Mobile, is hardly larger than two DVD cases on top of each other. Nevertheless, it houses a 280 watt power supply and, depending on the model, mobile GPUs capable of ray tracing from the new mobile GeForce RTX 3000 series up to the top model GeForce RTX 3080.

How this combination works in practice will have to be seen as soon as the RoG Flow X13 goes on sale – which should be the case from February at prices from 1500 euros (without eGPU). However, conceptual precautions have been taken: When the eGPU is connected, the Nvidia chip in the notebook is deactivated so that the cooling system can concentrate fully on the Ryzen CPU.

For those who do not want to do without an RTX graphics chip on the go, a new edition of the RoG Zephyrus G14 will soon be available – also with Ryzen 5000 and GeForce RTX 3000. In addition, Asus is now offering the 14-inch device the larger 15.6-inch Brother RoG Zephyrus G15 aside – with the same CPUs, but thicker GPUs up to GeForce RTX 3080 in the maximum configuration. The matrix LED display AniMe Matrix on the outside of the lid is still only available in the G14 – and there, as before, not in all models. Asus has not yet announced prices or launch dates of the two Zephyrus notebooks.

The Asus RoG Strix Scar 17 is available with Ryzen 9 5980HK and GeForce RTX 3080.

(Image: Asus)

The combination of Ryzen processors and Nvidia graphics chips can also be found in the Strix series of gaming notebooks. The RoG Strix Scar 17 will start in January at prices from 1800 euros, the little brother RoG Strix Scar 15 shortly afterwards from 1500 euros. Both offer keyboards with mechanical switches and, in selected configurations, Full HD screens with a 300 Hz refresh rate; With the Scar G15, there is also an optional 165 Hz panel with strong colors and WQHD resolution. The interior is both up to Ryzen 9 5900HX, GeForce RTX 3080 and 32 GByte DDR4 memory.

The RoG Strix G15 (from 1000 euros) and G17 (from 1600 euros) laptops have the same HX processor, but at best the GeForce RTX 3070. They, too, should appear in stores during the first quarter.

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