Think about a beast… Which one can you imagine? The Incredible Hulk? Godzilla? Is this word a blast from the past? Because when you say the beast, you can certainly picture Hank McCoy, the blue mutant from the 1990s X-Men.
>>>> fast forward to reality <<<<
Nowadays beasts are made of screws and circuit boards and they can certainly run at high FPS any new game title. Yes, we’re talking about laptop computers today but not ordinary ones. We’re talking about The Beast…
Even though Frankenstein is just an old movie and a great concept to frame horror flicks, you could swear it comes to life when you look at Asus ROG GX700. This is the first water-cooled gaming laptop in the world and, my God, it’s a truly engineering masterpiece. Asus ROG GX700 is the ultimate gaming laptop and today we’re going to find out who needs one, how much it costs and, of course, if it brings great bang for the buck.
The concept behind The Beast – Why did ASUS bring this concept on the market? Why water cooling on laptops?
Water cooling is basically a technology used in the overclocking world. Whoever owns a desktop computer and wants to change the default processor settings in order to gain more juice from that component needs something much better than air cooling. Water is an isolated element and can be recycled via water pumps. So, the cooling is much better and the processor clock can easily ramp up to 30%.
ASUS brought to life the first water-cooled laptop to make portable computers equal to desktop computers. In the past, no matter how much you paid, laptops could not win the war against desktops. It was not possible to achieve the same performance with mobile components, limited in terms of upgrade, with no overclocking capability. With Asus ROG GX700, everything changed. This laptop is water cooled and CAN BE OVERCLOCKED to some extent, being able to equal the raw performance of a genuine desktop. Of course, the full size NVIDIA GTX 980 graphics card is part of the deal. From now on, those who need a portable computer equal to a desktop can buy Asus ROG GX700.
Ultimate performance via overclocking
But how much can this laptop be overclocked? And how about the figures? Well, ASUS states that this NVIDIA GTX 980 can be overclocked just enough to achieve better FPS than a stock GTX 980. Using water, the temperature will be 33% lower than some stock 980. With 20% overclock on the graphics card, 3D Marks 11 (Performance) jumps up to 43%, from 14000 to 20000 points. CPU can be also overclocked from the stock 2.7 GHz, to 4.0 GHz stable. The RAM Memory can be overclocked to 2800MHz even though we all know RAM is not quite influencing FPS in games so much. With 10% more power delivered to the 4 RAM sticks, they can get 31% faster, up to 2800 MHz. All this overclocking magic happens when the laptop is connected to the Hydro Docking Station. The massive performance improvement is possible by switching cooling technology, from air to water. When it is not connected to the Hydro Docking Station, Asus ROG GX700 is water cooled.
Why would somebody need such a beast? Why is overclocking needed? (4K gaming and VR)
Besides achieving the same performance on gaming laptops as on gaming rigs, there are a few others advantages of this extra power delivered via the water cooling – the overclocking mix. First on our list is 4K gaming. To be able to run a game at Ultra HD resolution, you need a lot of horse power. There are so little laptops on the market which can run any game smoothly on 4K resolutions, you almost wonder why manufactures insists on those 4K panels for gaming laptops if they can’t deliver satisfying FPSs in games. Just to look at a 4K desktop with icons or movies?
4K gaming is a perfect experience on an overclocked laptop. Everything is smooth and FPS is great. You can really enjoy the games. G-Sync, NVIDIA’s ultimate technology used to stabilize 4K gaming, is helping this laptop too. It’s also about software, not just great power. G-SYNC™ synchronizes the display’s refresh rate to the GPU to give you visuals with no lag, tearing or stuttering, as ASUS says in the laptop’s description. VR (Virtual Reality) is a dream come true for laptop enthusiasts. We all know you need an epic desktop configuration in order to be able to play some VR games via Oculus Rift or any kind of hungry-power VR headset. Now, with desktop performance on laptop computers, you can enjoy VR games too.
What’s inside the beast’s case?
This laptop comes with its own traveling suitcase. It’s a piece of luggage and it’s kind of a natural approach by ASUS since the laptop itself and the Hydro Docking Station weigh almost 20 pounds. I called it ‘’The Sarcophagus”… A gaming mouse is thrown in the deal by ASUS, the ROG SICA Gaming Mouse. This is all you get for your 5 grand…
ASUS ROG GX700 Specs, Features and In-Game Statistics
We’ll set the specs aside for a while and talk about what makes this laptop special, besides the fact that it is water cooled and a beast by definition. I think Godzilla and King Kong would turn into their graves if they could see the GX700 beast… This machine is incredible…
Processor – Asus ROG GX700 comes with a variety of internal components, different from a region to another, but the most impressive of all processors used on this machine is by far the Intel Core i7-6820HK. What’s so special about this processor? Well, as notebookcheck says, the i7-6820HK is the only Skylake chip with an unlocked multiplier for easy overclocking. No wonder ASUS picked this one for the water-cooled beast. It is a 14-nm Skylake chip, quad core with 8 threads capable of speeds around the 4 GHz barrier. Even though it was launched almost a year ago, this chip is still the king of the hill in terms of easy overclocking capabilities.
Display – ASUS says this is the first laptop with a 17.3-inche UHD display capable of playable smooth games at this kind of detail. Hydro Overclocking System gives it that extra bit of power in order to have a nice gaming experience at a 4K resolution. The panel is anti-glare, as expected. At this level of performance, there is no room for cheap panels. The panel brightness is above average and that’s a really nice surprise. It is around 320cd/m2 according to Netbookcheck.net’s review of the product.
Graphics – We’re talking about an NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 980 with 8GB GDDR5 VRAM which will outperform a lot of desktop 980s with 4 GB RAM. It is clear that a performance boost from those 8 GB DDR5 will be almost magical. Even though this is not the only gaming laptop with an 8 GB DDR5 graphics card installed, it becomes the best because of the overclocking capabilities offered via water cooling.
RAM Memory – This beast takes up to 64 GB of RAM, 2400 MHz modules, which can be overclocked to 2800 MHz. I personally don’t know why a gaming laptop comes with this huge quantity of RAM memory, but maybe that’s what you get for a $5000 laptop: 4 sticks of 16 GB of RAM. You can use it just like a desktop PC, for editing videos or whatever high resource software you may need.
Storage – This is a different story because we’re seeing better numbers, better speeds than usual. This is due to the RAID 0 configuration of 2 x 512 GB SSDs. It seems Sequential reads and writes of 2842.43 MB/s and 2482.23 MB/s can be achieved. As for the 4K read and write (small files transfers), it can go up to 44.29 MB/s and 105.22 MB/s (figures provided via CrystalDiskMark 5.0.2). Speeds up to 30% faster can be reached compared to competitors thanks to the NVM Express™ (NVMe) and PCI Express® technologies used on this ASUS ROG GX700.
Sound – This laptop is not the best of the best in terms of sounds, but it is definitely better than the vast majority of gaming laptops on the market. There are 4 speakers built into the chassis, and with a lot of help from Sonic Studios and Sonic Radar, they can bring sound to life like no other laptop on the market. It is not the best sounding portable machine, but it’s special. It even has an EES Sabre headphone DAC and amplifier in order to provide 8 times better sound quality than an audio CD.
Ports – In terms of connectivity, nothing to criticize. There are 3 USB 3.0 ports and one USB 3.1 Type-C, and also the almighty Thunderbolt 3 port. You can connect the ASUS ROG GX700 to an external monitor via HDMI or mini DisplayPort. As for the card reader, tests reveal it can deliver up to 236 MB/s for sequential reads.
XSPLIT button – If you are a streamer or you own a YouTube gaming channel, you will love this button. If you press it, XPLIT will turn your gaming session into an online streaming session or a recorded one. This is by far one of the best features a gaming laptop can have. XSPLIT is one of the best softwares in the world used for this kind of stuff.
The Sarcophagus – Have you ever seen anything cooler than this enormous sarcophagus? When you buy a laptop or a gaming laptop you might be offered a backpack or something like that, but just look at that case… It’s a full size luggage for Christ’s sake… If you think how much this laptop weighs, it’s kind of natural for it to have some special case. It’s about the water cooling unit too. They both weight almost 19 pounds… You need good protection on the road and this sarcophagus style case is just perfect for protection.
Who should buy an ASUS ROG GX700, aka The Beast? And why?
Well, it all comes down to basic needs, again. ASUS ROG GX700 is expensive. It’s 5 grand. Who would need something like this? I think only a few enthusiasts will buy this beast, those who will desperately want desktop performance on a laptop. We talked in the beginning of the article about the performance of this laptop and we know it is capable to take out a lot of desktop computers with Core i7 processors and GTX 980 graphics, so if you are the kind of technology enthusiast who doesn’t care about nailing his bank account, you will enjoy this beast like no one else. Just be ready to pay the 5 grand and you will be able to travel all around the world with The Beast, powerful enough to play games at 4K resolutions. It’s got VR, very fast storage, great audio, an XSPLIT built-in button and many more…
4 Cool Things
- Cool Water Cooling technology;
- Great design;
- Great performance at 4K and VR;
- Better sound than majority.
4 Bad Things
- The battery is lame, it lasts for only 2 hours maximum;
- The price is ridiculous, almost 5 grand;
- It’s not quite mobile, weighs almost 20 pounds when docked;
- Coolant agent needs replacement after 2 years.
Intel Core i7 6820HK overclocked processor with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 for powerful gaming performance
17.3 inches IPS FHD G-Sync display. 1920 by 1080 resolution. Windows 10 Operating System.
512 GB NVMe SSD + 1TB 7200 RPM HDD Storage, 64GB RAM, BLURY±RW/CD-RW
Ergonomic full-size keyboard rated for 10 million keystrokes durability
1x microphone-in jack, 1x microphone-out jack, 3x USB 3.0, 2x USB 3.1 Type C, 1x HDMI, 1x mini Display Port, 1x LAN port, 1x Thunderbolt port, and 1x Card Reader.