Laptops are always a compromise. On the desktop, you can have a 28″ display, but with laptop you will have to settle for 15″ inches, usually, which is tiny in comparison. However, moving up to 17″ can make a huge difference to the user experience, which is apparent when we test the Asus Strix Scar 2 GL704GM.
Build: Large but not heavy
Most 17-inch gaming laptops are really large, barely portable, but the Asus GL704GM is actually relatively slim and lightweight. Here, Asus has gone up in size, yet it still keeps the chassis slim and the weight reasonable.
This is mostly thanks to the thin bezels. Despite the big display, the body is not overly wide. On the downside this causes the (low-res) webcam to move below the screen, which dents the perspective. It’s nevertheless a small price to pay for the size advantage.
The chassis is a mix of brushed metal and plastic, with straight angles and sharp edges, and corners that make it unnecessarily difficult to lift and carry around. There are patterns around the keyboard, large exhausts on the sides and at the back, as well as a large glossy logo on the screen cover.
The GL704GM has a keyboard with RGB backlight, with highlighted wasd keys as seems to be the standard in ROG laptops. Since this is a large laptop, the keyboard is also large and comfortable. Similarly, the track pad provides good control and offers physical mouse buttons.
Armoury Crate Software
You can adjust various energy and fan controls in the included Armoury Crate app. Choose between quiet, balanced, windows, turbo, and manual mode. The Windows setting will turn it off and let Windows manage the settings.
On battery operation, you can’t select turbo or manual, which limits performance when unplugged.
Hardware & Performance
Asus has equipped this model with a GTX 1060 graphics card, which is not the fastest available, but beats the many laptops with GTX 1050 (ti). Since you’re only driving a 1080p display (144Hz), it will usually be more than sufficient. The processor is the common Intel Core i7-8750H, a six-core CPU with Hyperthreading.
Storage is a combination of a fast SSD for a speedy OS, complemented by a larger hard drive for storing lots of games.
The GL704GM has no thunderbolt 3 port, but many usb 3 ports, as well as HDMI and Displayport ports for hooking up an external display. It also has a wired network jack.
All of this hardware will require a fair amount of energy, so you won’t get very long battery life however you use the computer. It will run for about five hours on minimum workload and barely half an hour when gaming on battery.
- 3dmark Fire Strike: 10,386
- 3dmark Time Spy (DirectX 12) : 4 012 Points
Gaming is what matters with the GL704GM and buyers with other intentions will likely steer clear. In terms of gaming, this is indeed a capable machine, offering more than enough performance for today’s games.
Asus ROG Strix Scar II GL704GM Specs
CPU : Intel Core i7-8750H, 2.2 GHz hexa core
GPU : Geforce GTX 1060, 6 GB
RAM : 16 GB DDR4
Storage : 256 GB SSD + 1TB HDD, SD card
Display : 17.3″ IPS 144Hz, 1920×1080 pixels