Asus’ entry-level ROG Zephyrus G14 is the one to buy | Whuff News

Loyal edge readers will remember that I’m not the biggest fan of the latest ROG Zephyrus G14. The model we received has a lot of great things about it — Asus has improved the aspect ratio, added a webcam, enlarged the touchpad, and fixed basically every other complaint I’ve had about the G14 in the past.

But the unit I have for review is the top SKU, and it’s overpriced.

Specifically, the Radeon RX 6800S / Ryzen 9 6900HS model I received costs $2,499.99. That puts it in the same price category as some of the most premium 15-inch gaming rigs on the market, including Razer’s Blade 15 Advanced — and well above the price of the larger, better-performing G15. It’s not a good deal. But I noticed in the comments that Asus intends to sell a cheaper G14 model and that model, if they produce the same frame rate, could be an incredible buy.

Well, I finally got one of those cheaper models. I’m typing this right now on a $1,649.99 Zephyrus G14 model that has the same Ryzen 9 6900HS processor but swapped out that 6800S GPU for a less powerful 6700S. I strongly suspected for months that this configuration would offer nearly the same performance as its $2,499.99 counterpart.

And folks, those suspicions have been proven right. The difference in frame rate, although still there, is not worth paying for. The battery life of the 6700S model is better. It is thinner and lighter. One thing it lacks, which the 6800S has, is a fancy animated light display on the lid. The light display is very cool, and you can go ahead and pay the extra $850 for it if you want, but I’d say most people should get the $1,6499.99 model instead. It’s a better deal.

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 keyboard viewed from above on a blue table surface

This is still one of my favorite keyboards on the market.

For everything related to the G14 chassis, please see the 6800S G14 review I published in February. There, I detail the keyboard, touchpad, webcam, screen, and other design and hardware aspects. That’s all the same on the 6700S model, so I’ll just discuss the performance differences here.

The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is laid flat on a blue table.

You can lay it flat, if for some reason you want to do so.

The cheaper G14 averaged 189fps Counter-Strike: Global Offensive at maximum settings and native resolution (2560 x 1600). The previous model averaged 202fps. This difference won’t be noticeable to anyone using this machine because the highest refresh rate the G14’s 120Hz screen can display is 120fps.

You may see the impact on other titles — but not $850 titles. The 6700S has a bit of a problem with ray tracing, which almost cuts the frame rate in half — but that’s what we saw from the 6800S as well. The cheaper model averaged 63fps with ray tracing turned off and 32fps with ray tracing maxed out, where the older model averaged 70fps and 37fps respectively. Like I said, small potatoes.

And, on Red Dead Redemption 2 with all sliders maxed out manually, the cheaper model averaged 45fps with the more expensive SKU averaging 49fps. I promise four frames will not impact your life in any capacity.

Four frames will not affect your life

Fan noise and heat are similar to what I noticed from the 6800S model, which means it’s fine. The noise is not very annoying during the game and does not hinder the game audio; when I put the device on the Silent profile for general work, it is indeed silent. Even during decent workloads that include an external display, there’s never more than a hint of warmth on the keyboard. Palm rest is hot during the game but not very comfortable.

A closed Asus ROG Zephryus G14 cover seen from above on a blue table surface.

No funky lights here but still a neat hood design.

The underside of the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 seen from above on a blue tabletop.

The vents do their job.

Where I see something different is the battery life. The 6700S model averaged eight hours and 55 minutes of general use at medium brightness, a solid hour compared to the 6800S. These metrics put the G14 back on the map as one of the most durable gaming laptops of recent years. The gaming battery does not show the same improvement. I got 46 minutes Red Dead Redemption 2 played with about 39 minutes of playable time, while I spent 54 and 46 minutes from the more expensive unit, but the battery life of the game is difficult to conclude. Charging time is the same: 60 percent in 41 minutes.

Where I see something different is the battery life

Another difference between this model and the 6800S is the size. It’s slightly lighter (3.64 pounds to the 6800S’s 3.79 pounds) and thinner (0.73 inches to 0.77 inches). It’s obviously not the biggest difference in the world, and it’s a relatively light gaming laptop. But it’s another advantage that cheaper models have. It’s significantly lighter than the Razer Blade 14 and more compact than larger machines that can deliver this frame rate. I took this device on international trips and loved how light it was in a compact backpack.

Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 specs (as reviewed)

  • WQXGA (2560 x 1600) 120Hz, non-touch
  • AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS
  • 16GB DDR5
  • 1TB SSD storage
  • 720p camera
  • Wi-Fi 6E 802.11ax 2×2
  • 75Whr battery
  • 240W adapter

So, the Zephyrus G14 is, once again, one of the better gaming laptops you can buy. You can go ahead and buy this 6700S model unless you really like beautiful animated lights. This model is price competitive with premium spheres in a way that animated light models are not: the closest Razer Blade 14 is $2,599.99 ($950 more, albeit with a higher refresh rate screen) and the comparable Alienware X14 (with a lower-resolution screen ) is $1,949. And, it greatly undercuts its larger competitors: the Blade 15 Advanced with RTX 3070 Ti is now listed at $2,999.99 ($950 more) as is the RTX 3070 Ti Blade 15 Base (with a lower resolution).

And that’s not even taking into account the other advantages the G14 has over most of the competition, including its lightweight chassis, top-of-the-range keyboard, and (most notably) 16:10 screen. The $1,649.99 price point makes it easier (and more justified) to appreciate the true innovation Asus has made, and continues to make, in this space.

Agreed to Continue: Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022)

Every smart device now requires you to agree to a series of terms and conditions before you can use it — a contract that no one actually reads. It is impossible for us to read and analyze each of these agreements. But we started counting exactly how many times you had to hit “agree” to use the device when we reviewed it because this is an agreement that most people don’t read and certainly can’t negotiate.

Like other Windows computers, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 (2022) gives you various things to agree to or decline during setup.

Mandatory policies, for which an agreement is required, are:

  • Request for your keyboard area and layout
  • Microsoft Software License Terms and Asus Notices
  • Sign in to a Microsoft account
  • Create a PIN

In addition, there are a few optional things to agree on:

  • Connect to a Wi-Fi network
  • Name your device
  • Set up Windows Hello
  • Device privacy settings: Find My Device, Claim and Type, Advertising ID, Location, Diagnostic data, Customized experience
  • Customize your device for personalized tips, ads and recommendations (you can choose between entertainment, games, school, creativity, business and family)
  • OneDrive backup
  • Microsoft 365 free trial
  • Xbox Game Pass Ultimate free trial
  • Provide your name, region, email address and phone number to be saved on your device and auto-fill in the Asus member registration form in the MyAsus app

That’s six mandatory agreements and 14 optional agreements.

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