ROG Zephyrus G15 Review – 240Hz Gaming AMD Laptop
Another month, another AMD laptop. What we have for review this time is the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15, a no holds barred gaming laptop with a thin design. This one packs the powerful AMD Ryzen 7 4800HS partnered with the proven and tested Nvidia RTX 2060. With AMD’s Ryzen being unanimously considered as a great alternative for a mobile processor, it comes to no one’s surprise that ASUS would make one based around them. As the quarantine is slowly easing, we thought it would be a good time to check if this is a laptop to get or not. Let’s find out!
ASUS Zephyrus G15 Review
The ROG Zephyrus G15 is available in 3 variants here in the Philippines. The one in this review is the ASUS ROG GA502IV-AZ023T. This version is the mid-tier one.
Also do note that the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15 and the ASUS ROG Strix G15 are both 2 different gaming laptops. Yes, naming conventions can be a bit unimaginative.
ROG Zephyrus G15 GA502IV-AZ023T Specs
|CPU||AMD Ryzen™ 7 4800HS|
|GPU||NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 2060 Max-Q|
6GB GDDR6 VRAM (Boost Clock: 1285MHz, 65W)
|OS||Windows 10 Home|
|RAM||16GB DDR4 3200MHz SDRAM|
|Display||15.6-inch Non-glare Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS-level panel, 240Hz, 3ms, 100% sRGB, Pantone® Validated, adaptive sync|
|Storage||M.2 NVMe PCIe 3.0 1TB|
|I/O Ports||“1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C with DisplayPort™ 1.4 and Power Delivery, 3 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1 x HDMI 2.0b, 1 x 3.5mm headphone and microphone combo jack, 1 x Kensington lock, 1 x RJ-45 jack|
|Connection||Intel® Wi-Fi 6 with Gig+ performance (802.11ax)|
|Power||180W power adaptor|
Support Type-C PD 3.0 up to 65W
|Audio||2 speakers with Smart AMP technology|
Sonic Studio III
|Dimensions||360(W) x 252(D) x 199(H) mm|
ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15 – Three Variants
Ryzen ProcessorsAs per ASUS Philippines, the laptops that are currently available here in the Philippines are as follows:
- GA502IV-AZ041T – powered by an AMD Ryzen 9 4900HS
- GA502IV-AZ023T – the one for this review and the one with the specs on the table above
- GA502IU-AZ077T – powered by a GTX 1660Ti, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and 512GB PCIe SSD
All models are powered by mobile variants of AMD Ryzen processors.
The GA502IU-AZ077T is way cheaper compared to the upper two versions, having less powerful hardware. You can check the other variant’s prices here.
For the graphics chip, ASUS’ website states that it uses a plain Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060. To prevent confusion, our tests revealed that it actually uses a Max-Q variant of the RTX 2060. This means that the RTX 2060 in the Zephyrus G15 is clocked lower than the normal version to have more manageable temps and power draw.
ASUS ROG G15 Up Close
Looks & Design
ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15’s Rear & Sides
The left side of the Zephyrus G15 is home to the charging port, the RJ-45 port for wired connections, an HDMI 2.0b port, a lone USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C. Beside it is a USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A and a port for the 3.5mm audio jack. Note that you can use the Type-C to output to a different screen using DisplayPort™ 1.4, and you can also use it for charging with Type-C power banks or chargers.
The right side is home to 2 USB 3.2 Type A Gen 1 ports and a Kensington Lock. Note that the exhaust is also located on this side.
Responsive Chiclet Keyboard
With a wider workspace, the ROG Zephyrus G15 has more elbow(finger)room for keys and spacings. It uses chiclet keys that provides good feedback and response. They keys are also well-spaced and you also get special keys (Home, Page Down & Up, End) on the right edge of the keyboard.
Now here’s some bad news for those looking for bling: the Zephyrus G15 does not support RGB lighting. Unlike other ASUS gaming laptops, the Zephyrus G15, like the Zephyrus G14, does not offer any RGB options for its keyboard.
ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15 Performance
|Assassin’s Creed Odyssey||Very High||60||34||28|
|Rainbow Six Siege||Ultra||200||134||121|
|Ghost Recon: Breakpoint||Very High||77||55||39|
|Call of Duty: Modern Warfare / Warzone||Normal||98||66||29|
|Dota 2||Best Looking||104||68||35|
|Far Cry: New Dawn||High||86||60||45|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider||High||86||53||27|
For the gaming benchmarks, we used presets that would allow the user to somewhat experience that sweet 60FPS without tinkering too much. Note that the laptop was run using the “Turbo” configuration to achieve maximum performance.
Go Low Or Med For Competitive Play
Same with the other laptop reviews, we do recommend that users take advantage of the 240Hz panel by setting games to the “Low” or “Medium” preset. This is especially useful if you need the extra edge when playing competitive titles such as Dota 2 and Call of Duty: MW / Warzone. It also justifies your purchase of a high refresh rate laptop.
These benchmarks are meant to measure the device’s performance relative to other people’s machine. We plugged in a mix of CPU & GPU-intensive tests and other ones that measure the performance of both at the same time.
3DMark Firestrike Extreme
3DMark Fire Strike Extreme is designed for multi-GPU systems and future hardware generations. In addition to raising the rendering resolution, additional visual quality improvements increase the rendering load to ensure accurate performance measurements for truly extreme hardware setups.
3DMark Time Spy
3DMark Time Spy is a DirectX 12 benchmark test for Windows 10 gaming PCs. Time Spy is one of the first DirectX 12 apps to be built the right way from the ground up to fully realize the performance gains that the new API offers.
Cinebench (Release 20)
Cinebench R20 BenchmarkBenchmark Score: 3921
Cinebench leverages the same powerful 3D engine found in the award-winning animation software Cinema 4D Release 20 to accurately evaluate CPU rendering performance capabilities across various systems and platforms.
Novabench is a free benchmark tool that allows you to see your computer’s overall performance. Its tests CPU, GPU, RAM, and Storage speeds, and gives you an aggregate score that you can use for comparison with other similar setups.
PassMark measures CPU, 2D & 3D GPU, Memory, and Disk speeds. Similar to Novabench, it gives you an aggregate score, giving you an idea on how your PC performs and how it ranks when compared to other computers around the world.
Extreme performance and stability test for PC hardware: video card, power supply, cooling system.
The Pantone-Validated 240Hz Screen
Probably one of the reasons why you’re looking at this laptop is its Pantone-validated 240Hz screen. We talked about this one before in the review of the Zephyrus M GU502. To those uninitiated Pantone-validated means that the display accurately depicts certain colors with remarkable accuracy. This is pretty important if you’re a designer as color means a lot to a brand. Combine this with a 240Hz screen that has a response time of 3ms and you have a display that offers above-average fidelity with matching smoothness and fluidity in video games. Truly a work and play device.
Now about the difference between 120Hz, 144Hz, and 240Hz, it honestly is subjective. For us, the difference blurs between the 3. One thing that is certain is that having any of them helps greatly when gaming. Even with just using your mouse on the desktop, refresh rates of 120Hz and above provide vanilla smoothness that’s hard not to notice.
The ROG Armoury Crate
The ROG Armoury Crate is an all-in-one program where you can view and edit all the ROG Zephyrus G15’s stats. Here, you can see its current temperature, fan speeds, and games installed in your PC. You can also edit and macro your keys here. Basically, this is the only program that you need to run and check this gaming laptop.
ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15 – Verdict & Final Thoughts
The Good – Simple & Functional
Performance-wise, the ROG Zephyrus G15 is one of the best mid-tier laptops that we’ve ever had. While there are thin ones like the Zephyrus G14 and more standard ROG Scar 15, the ROG Zephyrus G15 can be seen as a hybrid of both. It has a blazing-fast processor in the Ryzen 7 4800HS, a mobile processor made for performance; and an Nvidia RTX 2060 Max-Q for good graphics fidelity when gaming. You also get it in a very mobile and very thin package.
If you love plain but thin gaming laptops, ones that don’t scream “I’M A GAMER!” when you use it in coffee shops, this one fits the bill. It doesn’t have that “Gamer-y” aesthetic and has a plainer but still arguably sleek and clean appearance. But this can be seen as a good point as it does give off what it appears to be: a lean mean gaming machine.
The Bad – Heat It Up!
Similar to the Zephyrus G14, the G15 suffers from excessive heat dissipating on its center-top part. This can be pretty noticeable when playing hardware-intensive games. Sad thing is that the heat creeps to the buttons near that area, making it noticeably warm when pushing them.
Bad exhaust port locationAnother problem is the location of its exhaust port. Similar to the ROG Scar 15’s design, the ROG Zephyrus G15 blows out hot air to its right side. If you’re a right-handed person, this is bad news. Most people may likely get their hands scalded or baked when playing as the exhaust is located where you’d often place your mouse. A workaround to this is by elevating or angling the laptop while playing games like Call of Duty Warzone or other similar demanding titles or programs.
ROG Zephyrus G15 Or G14?
Now, we come to the question: G15 or G14? Both have their respective strengths and the G15 looks to be the better choice when it comes to performance and numbers. Sure, the G14 uses a “higher” processor and a more flashy design, and is a bit more compact than the G15. However, it sacrifices space that can be used for better cooling and efficiency, giving it less oomph during tests and benchmarks, making the G15 with a “lesser” processor a better choice for performance.
In a nutshell, if you want something light, go for the G14. If you want more speed and a simpler design, go for the G15. Both are, without a doubt, very good laptops so you won’t go wrong with either.
You can check out our review of the Zephyrus G14 here.
All in all, the Zephyrus G15 is one of ASUS’ offerings that provide incredibly decent gaming and work performance. The AMD Ryzen 7 and the RTX 2060 work well together, giving you enough processing power to produce fast and game without worries. The 240Hz screen provides great clarity and superb visuals while being mobile at it. The heat and its exhaust system can be a problem but it can easily be remedied with simple solutions. Definitely consider having an ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15 if you plan on buying a laptop for both work and leisure.
Zephyrus G15 Models & Pricing In The Philippines
In the Philippines, the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G15 come with an ROG Impact Gaming Mouse (check out our Impact II review here) and an ROG Laptop Bag. The ROG Zephyrus G15 GA502IV-AZ023T is priced at PhP 94,995. All of the G15’s different versions are officially available for purchase in the Philippines.
For more information about the Zephyrus G15, check out ASUS’ official page here.
For the prices of the other models:
- GA502IV-AZ041T – powered by an AMD Ryzen 9 4900HS (PhP 99,995)
- GA502IU-AZ077T – uses an AMD Ryzen 7 4800HS. Powered by a GTX 1660Ti, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and 512GB PCIe SSD (PhP 79,995)