When ASUS introduced their ROG series last 2014, one product series that got our attention until now is the G20 series. It’s a desktop with gaming-class performance on a 12.5L case, and it looks really really good.

Fast forward to 2017, the ROG G20 is still present with the G20CB in specific. This Intel Core i7-6700K powered PC is running along with a powerful GTX 1070 graphics for gamers and power users. But does this setup justify a Php99,995 price point? Here is our review of the ROG G20CB.

Here are the specifications of our ROG G20CB review unit 

  • Intel Core i7-6700K 3.9GHz Quad-Core
  • GTX 1070 8GB DDR5
  • 8GB RAM DDR4 at 2133MHz
  • 128GB SSD
  • 1TB 7200rpm HDD
  • Wireless 802.11 b/g/ac
  • DVD-ROM Drive
  • RGB LED Lighting
  • 180W + 230W Power Adapter
  • 6.3kg

Design

What intrigued us with the G20 is the triangular tower shape with Mayan-inspired prints paired with the RGB LED lights for better ambiance.

Small details of the G20 such as a red and black theme for the body is really ideal. In one look, even if you aren’t familiar with ROG you will feel the gaming-inspired design.

Overall weight is around 6.38kg, still a lot lighter than my 14kg mid-tower PC. It’s still light and compact as compared to most assembled PC you can do today.

At the back is a full-red themed IO ports for the device and here is the breakdown

  • 2 x USB 3.1
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN
  • 1 x 7.1 – Channel Audio I/O
  • 2 x USB 3.0
  • 1 x HDMI-Out
  • 2 x USB 2.0
  • 1 x Kensington Lock
  • 2 x DC-in

At the front are quick access ports for two USB 3.0 ports and 3.5mm audio and microphone jack.

Intriguingly a DVD-ROM is still present with this one and it slides out vertically. This is still a thoughtful gesture for ASUS, despite most games, today is just downloadable via steam or other platforms.

 

Performance

When it comes to benchmarks, the G20CB gives decent performance for the Fire Strike Ultra and Extreme. But for Ultra it indicates that the G20CB’s GTX 1070 isn’t ready for high settings of 4K gaming.

One factor that disappoints us is the 128GB SSD using SATA, it’s not the much updated NVME configurations for faster read and writes speeds. Not to mention the lacking of space of 128GB SSD to fill in your games and applications, in our experience it wouldn’t simply suffice if you play around 3-4 games along with applications such as office, adobe and more.

There is a 1TB 7200rpm HDD along with the unit, but it’s not proportion for the performance if you will install there your games. For editing videos, the 7200rpm HDD simply will frustrate you as it will be the bottleneck of access of your videos. Preview of videos, photos and other files loading will simply be slower as loading time can’t catch up with the Intel Core i7 Processor.

We played games such as Overwatch and Diablo 3 for this one, at ultra settings we didn’t see any problem playing at 60fps. It’s also G-Sync capable and should be able to deliver 120-140fps in high settings without any problem

The 8GB RAM is a bit shortcoming as we experience a bit of throttling of load up when rendering videos or even using overwatch while running background applications. We think for gaming a minimum 12GB RAM is required, though memory is relatively cheap…ASUS could have at least showed a standard when it comes to their ROG products.

What’s good is that there isn’t any thermal throttling seen when using the G20GB, this is a nice indication that the cooling system is good.

Noise and temperature

The G20CB uses an air chamber technology where it sucks air from the bottom and releases it upwards to cool down the unit. In average load, we got around 48db of noise which is average for a PC, but in high performance, we got around 65-75db which is a little bit noisy already.

The temperature for the PC on light load gets to around 50 degrees and it goes up to 80 degrees on higher load or playing games such as Overwatch. Overall, we like the setup of the G20 where it doesn’t contribute that much heat to your room while still being audibly quiet.

Bundled Keyboard

The G20 comes with a membrane ASUS keyboard with a dedicated dial knob for the volume, travel distance is a bit shallow and keyboard height isn’t gamer friendly.

Its backlight illuminated with a red/orange hue, using the keyboard is fine at normal work but not really that good when it comes to gaming. Still, this built is better as compared to the Predator G10 bundled keyboard as it sinks and flexes making other buttons pressed accidentally.

What we don’t get is that why ASUS should just bundle their affordable Cerberus Keyboard lineup to make it gamer-centric or even their affordable ROG keyboard to complete the overall package. Perhaps in their next version, ASUS will listen and finally take advantage of their products to become as one package.

Interface

The G20CB has a floating widget interface for the monitors, tweaking and even calibration. It will get some time to get familiar to the setup as the menu is more of icon based and less text, something some non-gamers will not like at all.

What we really love is the more-intuitive RGB controls, this time it’s actually a click and drag method to select a color and even adjust the intensity individually per zone. Plus, it even has effects like sound effect (Follows a music), Pluse effect (On and off breathing) and even sync which can pair with other compatible RBG items.

Power Consumption

The G20CB is powered by an 180W + 230W Power adapter combo for the PC and Graphics. Both adapters must be plugged in order for the unit to work, unplugging one will result in sudden fan boost to compensate heat generation and eventually you will need to restart the unit to bring it back.

We suggest for ASUS to have a more solid power adapter solution for the G20CB as the two power bricks are already around 1kg of weight and troublesome to carry around. At 410W the average consumption for a household with the Php3,000 average monthly bill is around 2 – 3 pesos per hour.

Conclusion

Overall the ROG G20CB will cost you Php99,995, it has a few shortcoming in Storage and RAM but you can always just upgrade it in the future. It’s design, performance and portability are enough to raise eyebrows and give you an above-average gaming and work experience.

Again as what we said about mini-tower PCs, it has a market for users who need something ready and elegant. Not everyone is a fund of assembling their own build as some just need a good looking PC that is reliable. One good advantage for desktop PCs is their 3-year warranty as compared to assembled PCs having an average 1-year warranty.

What we like about the G20

  • Overall great gaming and work performance
  • Excellent thermal solution
  • Quiet and compact package
  • RGB LED lighting interface is good

Where could the G20CB have problem

  • Limiting 128GB SSD SATA primary storage
  • Dual-Adapter is clunky
  • 8GB RAM could have been at least 12GB
  • Bundled keyboard should at least be gaming-centric

 

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