ASUS’ ROG Strix Scar series of laptops have been known for powerful gaming laptops for years. This year, the company takes this series a step further by adding AMD-based machines to the portfolio. We received the new ASUS ROG Strix Scar 17 G733QS for a test drive and we came away impressed.
Let’s start with the design, which has been completely overhauled from the previous iterations. You will see a whole lot of clean cuts across the board. The lid of the laptop is made using metal and features a matte finish. The ROG logo illuminates as soon as you switch the laptop on.
ASUS has also added an asymmetrical slash across the lid on the left side of the lid that shows off a glossy pattern that spells ROG – something ASUS describes as a sleek dot matrix design created with precise electroplating.
The lid also features fingerprint-resistant nano-coating stays that stays clean all day and is easy to wipe clean if it did attract a few specks of dust.
On the edge, at the rear, the ASUS ROG Strix Scar 17 G733QS also features what ASUS calls is the Armoury Cap. Now this removable piece on the edge adds a bit of personalisation to your laptop.
Inside the box, you get two more caps – a Translucent Black and a Spangle Silver, while the Default Rubber Grey is left attached to the device.
ASUS also includes a 3D printing template inside the box, which makes it easier to create your own version of the Armoury Cap.
Last year’s ROG Strix Scar series had the RGB light bars go around the edges of the laptop. This year, the wraparound light bar goes around the front edge and half of the laterals, as well as under the screen, alongside that cut in the chin.
The RGB light bars also have a higher LED density to evenly illuminate the three front edges of the chassis, while additional LEDs beneath the display add a diffused bezel glow on the deck.
All the RGB elements on the laptop can be configured in the AURA Creator app, which is available as part of the Armoury Crate suite. By default, you will find that the RGB light bars and the ROG logo on the lid are tied to the keyboard’s illumination setting. However, this can be customised through the app.
On the screen of the laptop, you will find thinner bezels than its last year counterpart. ASUS offers a couple of different screen options for this 2021 version of the ROG Strix Scar 17. However, all the variations come packed with a 17.3-inch, 16:9, matte and non-touchscreen. The variation we received, came with an IPS Full HD display that offers a refresh rate of 300Hz, a response time of 3ms, 100% SRGB, and a brightness of 300 Nits.
There is no camera on the laptop like last year. However, the display now also supports ActiveSync, a technology that handles tearing in games and seamlessly commutes between the AMD iGPU and Nvidia GPU based on the task at hand.
Specifications and I/O
Under the hood, the ASUS ROG Strix Scar 17 G733QS is powered by an AMD Cezanne-H R9-5900HX processor, coupled with Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 GPU, 16GB of GDDR6 VRAM, 32GB of DDR4 3200mhz SDRAM, and two PCIE SSD Slot M.2 for storage rated at 1TB each. Connectivity options are aplenty on the G733QS.
You get a wide range of ports such as three USB3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, one USB3.2 Gen2 Type-C which supports Display Port and 100W PD Charger, one LAN RJ-45 jack, one HDMI 2.0b, one Audio combo jack, and a Keystone. The laptop also comes with Dolby Atmos technology built-in with four speakers, and AI mic noise cancellation for crystal clear audio/video-conferencing calls.
You also get the Smart Amp technology, which monitors audio output and makes real-time adjustments to keep the speakers within thermal and excursion limits, preventing damage to the cones.
The resulting sound has less noise distortion, higher dynamic range, more bass, and significantly higher potential output. The battery of the laptop is rated at 90Wh, while the power adapter is rated at 240W.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The ASUS ROG Strix Scar 17 G733QS also features a redesigned keyboard and trackpad. The laptop’s keyboard now comes with optical-mechanical switches and a larger clickpad, replacing the immovable touchpad with physical buttons from yesteryears. The layout now includes a full set of main keys, properly sized and spaced, and a NumPad section with full-sized and nicely spaced arrow keys.
In addition, you do not get dedicated keys for Home, End, PgUp, PgDn or Insert. Instead, these are tied in with the arrow keys and some of the NumPad keys. Typing on the optical-mechanical keys will need some time to get used to. The click and bounce response is quite different from the response you get on regular rubber dome keyboards of the past.
The G733QS employs the company’s ROG Intelligent cooling solution to keep the machine cool, even during trying times. The company also uses a liquid metal compound from Thermal Grizzly that increases performance by up to 10% compared to the standard thermal paste.
In addition, the new upgraded Arc Flow fans feature 84 blades shaped to increase airflow by up to 35% on CPU and up to 21% on GPU while reducing noise by up to 3dB below previous-gen designs. Each blade is capped with a tip that helps regulate airflow, the same way that a bird’s feathers are tipped to direct air and keep the bird balanced in flight.
In terms of specs, the ASUS ROG Scar 17 G733QS packs in the absolute latest hardware from AMD and Nvidia. As mentioned earlier, you get an AMD Cezanne-H R9-5900HX processor, coupled with Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 GPU, 16GB of GDDR6 VRAM, 32GB of DDR4 3200mhz SDRAM, and two PCIE SSD Slot M.2 for storage rated at 1TB each.
In order to gauge the real-world performance of the G733QS, we ran a bunch of benchmarks including PCMark and 3DMark. On 3DMark, we got a Time Spy Score of 9087, with 9371 for graphics and 6910 for CPU. On PCMark 10, we were able to clock 6312 points, with 9388 for Essentials, 9065 for Productivity, and 8370 for Digital Content Creation.
Compared to the 2020 version of the ROG Strix Scar, we were able to experience a 15%-20% increase in the overall performance. The gaming experience on titles such as Battlefield V, The Witcher 3, Fary Cry 5 and Tomb Raider felt like slashing butter with a hot knife. In terms of battery life, we were able to eke out around 8 hours of use on a single charge, before the battery gave up the ghost.
The ASUS ROG Strix Scar 17 G733QS is priced at AED 12999, which includes the VAT. For this price, you get top-notch specifications based on the AMD platform. The overall performance is very good with a visible improvement over its predecessor, while the feature sets are good, too.
While the pricing may seem a bit steep to some, if you are absolutely on the hunt for one of the most powerful gaming laptops that money can buy today, then you can’t go wrong with the ASUS ROG Strix Scar 17 G733QS. The gaming laptop thus comes across as highly recommended.
Price: AED 12999