At the CES tradeshow in Las Vegas, the Mothership has landed. That’s Asus’ new monstrous gaming machine, the ROG Mothership GZ700, a sort of portable all-in-one laptop that works as a desktop replacement. It will use Nvidia’s latest GPUs and launch in the first quarter of 2019.
|Asus ROG Mothership GZ700||Asus ROG Zephyrus GX701|
|CPU||Intel Core i9-8950HK at 4.8GHz Turbo||Up to Intel Core i7-8750H|
|GPU||Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 (8GB GDDR6)||Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q (8GB GDDR6X)|
|RAM||Up to 64 GB DDR5 2666 MHz||Up to 24GB DD4 2666MHz|
|Storage||3x 512GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD in RAID0||Up to 2TB SSD|
|Display||17.3-inch, FHD/G-Sync/144Hz||17.3-inch, FHD or 4K, 60Hz |
|Ports||Thunderbolt 3, VirtualLink, 3x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type- A, USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A, HDMI, 3.5 mm microphone jack, 3.5 mm headphone/mic jack, Ethernet port, SD card reader, Kensington lock||USB Type-C Gen 2, USB Type-C Gen 1, 2x USB 3.1 Type-A, HDMI, headphone jack|
|Dimensions||20 x 12.6 x 1.2 inches / 510 x 320 x 29.9 mm||15.7 x 10.7 x 7.4 inches / 399 x 272 x 187 mm|
|Weight||10.4 pounds / 4.7 kg||6 pounds / 2.7 kg|
|Starting Price||To be announced||To be announced|
It’s truly a sight to behold. While it folds shut like a laptop, it opens to appear more like the Microsoft Surface Pro of gaming, with the 17.3-inch FHD display standing tall over the detachable keyboard with 2.5 mm of travel and per-key backlighting. When detached, the keyboard can connect over 2.4GHz wireless or USB Type-C to work more like a traditional desktop computer.
Asus said that the Mothership is over three years in the making, and that it came out of discussions over how to increase airflow. The answer? Apparently, to stand the display upright. It allows for additional air to flow into the dual fan setup, and there’s extra exhaust vents on the machine’s top corners. The factory-overclocked chips are covered by eight heat pipes across four heatsinks.
The visual aesthetic seems a bit overkill, even for a machine with a Core i9 and RTX 2080. It has a bit of the ROG Zephyrus motif with black and gold lines, but the design is all over the place. A representative said in a hands-on that it takes 20 hours to carve the blocks of aluminum.
The machine features top-shelf parts, including a Core i9-8950HK, Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080, 64GB of memory, three 512GB M.2 NVMe PCIE SSDs in RAID0 and a 17.3-inch display, with G-Sync and a 144Hz refresh ratel. Asus claims it has the i9-8950HK turbo up to 4.8GHz. That new RTX 2080 for laptops, of course, allows for ray tracing and AI-enabled anti-aliasing.
Additionally, the Mothership is among the first laptops using 802.11ax Wi-Fi, which we expect to see roll out fairly quickly.
The whole machine is a bit bulky – a representative who showed it to us has it in a carry-on. But this isn’t meant to go too far. The keyboard is a nifty idea and we’ll have to see how the cooling works in our lab. But this innovative idea has piqued our curiosity.
For those with more conventional tastes, Asus is updating its Zephyrus lineup with the new GX701, a 17-incher with Intel Core i7-8750H, Nvidia’s latest graphics cards, up to 24GB of RAM and a 1080p, 144Hz display. It also rocks a ton of new RGB, including in the vents, as well as a new volume wheel above the left side of the keyboard.