For Creators, Not Gamers


Portrait of Tammy Strobel


My Reading Room

The ASUS ROG Strix GL702ZC is a laptop made for AMD fans. It features a Ryzen 7 1700 desktop chip, which is an 8-core/16-thread part with a base clock of 3.0GHz and maximum turbo core speed of 3.7GHz. The clock speeds aren’t anything to shout about, but an 8-core CPU on a laptop is something you don’t see every day.

Even the overclockable Intel Core i7-7820HK is just a 4-core/8-thread chip, so the Ryzen 7 1700 affords considerable oomph in the multi-tasking department and would be great mobile tool for creatives. It is however, a questionable choice for gamers, as it does trail laptops equipped with the usual Intel and For our configuration of an AMD Radeon RX 580 4GB, the ROG Strix GL702ZC goes up mainly against the pairing of the Intel Core i7-7700HQ (2.8GHz, 6MB L3 cache) and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB. Laptops with the latter configuration already retail for cheaper.

For instance, the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming costs just $2,199 – and have proven to be quite capable at handling modern games up to 1080p, so the GL702ZC is up against some stiff competition in the gaming department.

Furthermore, other than the obvious boost to multithreaded performance you get with an 8-core/16thread CPU, the laptop doesn’t appear to offer any other compelling advantage specifically for gamers. It isn’t particularly thin at 35mm or light at 3.2kg, and our results confirm that it isn’t too great at power efficiency. Overclocking on the GPU also isn’t supported, although you can do that for the CPU.

As you’d expect, a laptop with desktop components get rather noisy, and you can quite clearly hear the fans working hard. Headphones are probably a good idea when using it, unless noise doesn’t bother you at all.

Still, considering that these are desktop parts, the GL702ZC is still quite manageable compared to something like the MSI GT75VR Titan Pro. The Ryzen 7 1700 chip on board is also socketed, so the CPU is upgradeable. Unfortunately, that seems like a token feature, as we’ve been told that upgrading to a higher-end 95W chip might actually cause thermal throttling.

That aside, other components like the RAM and storage devices can be easily upgraded. ASUS has gone with single-channel memory to leave an extra upgrade slot open for you, but it’d have been nice to see dual-channel memory right at the start.

My Reading Room

The keyboard features just a single color red backlight.



17.3-inch IPS FreeSync (1,920 x 1,080 pixels)


AMD Ryzen 7 1700 (3.0GHz, 16MB L3 cache)


16GB DDR4-2400 RAM


AMD Radeon RX 580 4GB



My Reading Room
A flawed notebook for gamers, but content creators will want to take notice of its possibilities.
My Reading Room