ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) G533ZX
$5,299 AUD (model tested)
As expected gaming laptops are becoming more and more powerful each and every year, with most able to deliver high-end gaming performance on a device that can be folded up, put into a backpack, and then taken on the go. Keeping things lightweight, cool, and usable without having something constantly plugged in is the tricky part, though it seems that when it comes to the latter, getting a couple of hours of pure gaming out of a new gaming laptop before you need to charge is the norm.
The new ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) G533ZX, especially with the GeForce RTX 3080 TI model tested here, is one of the most powerful gaming laptops out there. The combination of high-end GeForce RTX GPU and mobile CPU with an impressively bright 300 Hz IPS display delivers incredible results. Stuff that’s backed up by the pretty hefty price-tag that comes from ticking all the ‘best of everything’ boxes. With a similar stylish design aesthetic found across the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR laptop range in previous years, through to the excellent build quality, it’s hard not to be impressed when in-game performance hits triple digits with all detail settings cranked up.
Throw in HDMI 2.1 support for connecting up to a modern 4K TV, Thunderbolt 4, and things like fast DDR5 memory, and this is one laptop that can go toe to toe with most desktop builds.
Look and Feel
Although ASUS hasn’t made any radical changes to the look and feel of the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022), it’s still very much a stylish gamer-friendly design. There are differences of course and the angular design here has a great metallic top that blends nicely with the soft-touch interior. There’s also a translucent top-right corner so you can see some of the innards in a very old-school Nintendo console from the late 1990s sort of way. There’s even a removable cover on one of the edges near the left side under the display that allows for some 3D printing to add a personal touch and flavour to your own SCAR 15. For a top-of-the-line gaming laptop, this is a minor but very cool addition.
The new ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) G533ZX, especially with the GeForce RTX 3080 TI model tested here, is one of the most powerful gaming laptops out there.
Weighing in a 2.3kg and having a maximum height of 2.72 cm, this isn’t an ultralight or super-thin device, but it’s very much compact and small for a laptop that can push 150W through the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Ti Laptop GPU to make full use of the high-end mobile gaming chip. And with idle noise kept in the silent realm, and in-game fan levels being pretty good (thanks in part to liquid metal cooling) for what can very easily become a case of ‘jet engine syndrome’, there’s plenty to like and admire about the design.
Under the Lid
When it comes to what lies beneath, ASUS has spared no expense with the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) G533ZX. Which is good because that means the price of entry results in some impressive bits and pieces. In addition to the aforementioned GeForce RTX 3080 Ti you’ve got the 12th Gen Inte Core i9-12900H CPU, 32GBs of high-speed DDR5 memory, 2TB of fast PCIe Gen 4 storage, and a bright 300Hz full-HD IPS display (with Dolby Vision HDR) with a super low response time for high FPS gaming.
Basically it reads like a best-of list.
Processor: 12th Gen Inte Core i9-12900H Processor 2.5 GHz (24M Cache, up to 5.0 GHz, 14 cores: 6 P-cores and 8 E-cores)
FHD (1920 x 1080) 16:9, sRGB: 100%, Adobe: 75.35%, Refresh Rate: 300Hz, Response Time: 3ms, IPS-level, Adaptive-Sync, Dolby Vision HDR
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Ti Laptop GPU 16GB GDDR6
ROG Boost: 1445MHz at 150W (1395MHz Boost Clock+50MHz OC, 125W+25W Dynamic Boost)
Memory: 32GB (2 x 16GB DDR5-4800 SO-DIMM)
Storage: 2TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 Performance SSD
OS: Windows 11
Interfaces: 1x 3.5mm Combo Audio Jack, 1x HDMI 2.1, 2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C support DisplayPort/power delivery, 1x Thunderbolt 4 support DisplayPort, 1x 2.5G LAN port
Features: Wi-Fi 6E(802.11ax) (Dual band), Bluetooth 5.2
Dimensions (WxDxH): 35.4 x 25.9 x 2.26 ~ 2.72 cm
Weight: 2.30 Kg
There are of course some draw-backs, the lack of an inbuilt webcam does mean that it’s productivity chops are lacking compared to even the most affordable laptop. That said, having a webcam on a gaming laptop might not be a ‘must-have’ for a lot of people. Also, the keyboard and track-pad are both decent but not amazing, and the 300 Hz IPS panel being 1080p only, the image definitely errs on the side of esports and competitive gaming versus the more cinematic stuff. With an RTX 3080 Ti a high-refresh 1440p display (in a premium build like this) might be the preferred option.
For competitive titles, and even a few visually demanding games like Horizon Zero Dawn and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) G533ZX delivers performance well into the triple digits. And with settings tweaked across various games getting close to 300 frames-per-second is not only possible but pretty astounding.
The bright and vibrant display also supports VRR so there’s no screen tearing and it all looks silky smooth when pushing the CPU and GPU to the limit. That said when boosted and under load temperatures for the GPU hover at around 80 degrees Celsius with the CPU hitting the 90 region. For a small device without the sort of space and chunky cooling you normally find in a desktop rig this is not unusual, and more an understandable part of the experience when going for a high-end gaming laptop. The impressive part is that the overall weight and size of the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) is relatively normal, as is the fan noise.
Throw in ray-tracing and HDMI 2.1 support and you can even hook this up to a 4K TV to get 60 frames-per-second performance across a number of titles that support DLSS. As one of the most powerful gaming laptops currently available, the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR 15 (2022) is also up there in terms of price. It’s not astronomical for what’s inside, and the overall build quality has a premium feel, but it certainly means this doesn’t hit any sort of price-performance sweet spot - for those looking at a more affordable option there’s also a GeForce RTX 3070 Ti model. And if you’re looking for a laptop that can give a custom gaming desktop rig a run (and that includes in the RGB department), this is that good.