Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 Unboxing and Review

Updated: Jun 24, 2021

Editor’s Note: This review was first published on Rhyn Review’s YouTube channel on 8th October, 2020. This is re-uploaded for readability.

Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 (2020) next to an included pair of RGB headphones.

So Asus sent over the most expensive laptop my hands, and this channel, has ever seen. Take a look at my ROG Zephyrus S15 Unboxing video!


Imagine this: you’re living in a small home or condo, and you really want to maximise your room space. You’re someone that wants the power for work and play, but you also need to carry it around. So maybe you think, it might be worth it to build your own desktop and buy a laptop. Or you can consider this, the Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 GX502. The model that I have here houses an RTX 2080 Max Q graphic card, one of the highest end mobile graphic cards that is cooled within this laptop that I would consider lightweight at 1.9kg.


In this ROG Zephyrus S15 review, we’ll go over the full specifications, performance, and whether it’s worth buying, even in 2021!


Contents

  • Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 RTX 2080: Full Specs

  • My Experience Gaming on the Zephyrus S15

  • Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 Price and Conclusion


Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 RTX 2080: Full Specs


Specifications of the Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 gaming laptop
Specs of the Zephyrus S15 that Asus sent for review.

First of, the Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 is a gaming laptop, no doubt about it. The specs itself is so balls to the walls that my desktop is outperformed by this monster. Of course, the price tag is a monster in and of itself but once I started to look at the price range of building your own PC, this laptop is actually fairly priced! Moreover, the accessories inside made me reconsider how Asus is pitching this laptop, and the key theme about this machine is versatility. Not just portability, where you can bring it everywhere you go. Versatility is what this machine is capable of achieving.


Using price lists from the infamous Sim Lim Square, not to be clickbaity about this, but what I found was quite shocking. If you were to build a similarly-specced desktop, the price of the ROG Zephyrus S15 is just roughly around $200. That was kind of what blew my mind, and changed my opinion that five thousand dollars might be overpriced. In reality, it’s not. Granted, you can pick and choose certain parts according to your requirements, like an overclockable processor or a high end motherboard, but the majority of the cost for each product falls within an acceptable range.


Price comparison between the specs of the Asus ROG Zephyrus S15, and a fully built gaming desktop in a table form.
Spec for spec, the Zephyrus S15 price matches that of a custom gaming desktop.

On top of that, when you build a desktop, you have to invest in a monitor, keyboard, mouse, headphones, maybe even desktop speakers and a webcam. The Zephyrus? Everything is provided right out of the box! Asus included a really stylish looking headphone with amazingly done RGB, and an external 1080p webcam that sounds and looks decent enough for work meetings.

Accessories that comes with the Asus ROG Zephyrus S15.
RGB Headphones, 1080p 60 webcam, a wired mouse, and 60W USB C Power Delivery Charger on the go!

My Experience Gaming on the Zephyrus S15

I spent slightly over 2 weeks with this laptop, where I practically gamed and did my work on only this laptop. Which means that I shot and edited all the footage of this review into this laptop. In my free time, I play a lot of Overwatch, GTA, and I’ve got some indie games lying around to try it out on.


So the specs. I think that this laptop is amazing; you can stream and game on it without a hitch. Any modern games would look so good on this 1080p 300Hz G-Sync display, and my eyes are literally spoiled by the details that I’m just sad about my desktop. Yeah, this laptop outperforms my desktop. Unbelievable.



Close up of the WASD keys on the laptop.
The RGB lights don’t feel as consistent, with whites looking more cool than pure white.

While the plentiful thirty 32GB RAM is not upgradeable, the internal storage is. On top of that, this laptop lets you easily clean out the fans. Just remove these screws to access the fans where you can brush off the dust once in a while.

During my gaming and recording sessions, the fans will ramp up and it’s definitely audible. It doesn’t sound that bad, and when you do start something intensive, you can wear the included headphones and it’ll muffle out the noise.


This is quite definitely a no-compromises laptop. Even the ultra-thin bezels make content consumption on it feel immersive. When it comes to gaming, I always think that the keyboard plays a big part of how I perform. While yes, it does look very gamer-y focused, I think some of the design choices here do make sense. For example, look at this space bar. This protrusion actually provides more surface area for my thumb to press down on, which makes a lot of difference because by extending the bottom part just a bit more, the stability of the key press feels much better.



Close up of the function and media keys on the Zephyrus S15 laptop.
300Hz on a laptop. Dayum.

However, I do not like how mushy and kinda tough these keys feel. The RGB keyboard is very well lit, and the function keys are what I felt was in the correct configuration. By default, the function keys are F1 to F12, and holding the function key allows you to trigger the secondary commands. However, I didn’t really like the gap at the top of the 1 key, and I tend to use my fourth or middle finger to click on the F1 key. But otherwise, I felt that the inclusion of the additional and useful buttons here for volume control, mic mute and a configuration tool are a nice touch.


I suspect that the engineers at Asus designed this to last longer. Sure, they could try and include a low profile mechanical keyboard, but even the thinnest mechanical keyboard may not fit into this frame.


At the start of this video, I mentioned that this is an incredibly versatile machine. You can just plop this on your table, connect the power adapter, a mouse, your headphones and get started. But you can also turn this into a semi-desktop replacement by adding an additional monitor with a keyboard and mouse. And if you need to move for work, unplug everything, bring along the additional sixty watt USB C adapter that Asus included when you buy this gaming beast, and it becomes a portable work machine.


And when it comes to work, this laptop is no slouch. My work involves furiously typing out this script, testing the performance of this laptop through some benchmarks and gaming, and considering my own behaviours when I interact with this device. This data gives me an idea on how best to review it that contains useful information.


What I can guarantee to you is that any modern games that you run on this is going to look amazing on it. Even when I’m editing this video on the laptop, it feels amazing to just speed through my tasks with all the horsepower contained within this compact frame.


Asus ROG Zephyrus S15 Price and Conclusions


So. A powerful and versatile laptop. $5000 for the ROG Zephyrus S15. Accessories that enhance your experience, and you can game right out of the box. Would you buy something like this? Or is it still too much for you?


As of this video, Asus is listing this laptop for about S$3800 on Shopee, so grab one if you’re interested!

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