ASUS doesn’t get much credit for pushing the envelope of notebook design. For the most part of the last 2 years, ASUS has come up with some really cool approach in the gaming laptop space including their slim Zephyrus model but when it comes to the larger 17″ models, there’s barely any on the market. ASUS has changed that with the ROG Strix GL704 SCAR II gaming notebook. The design was a welcome change and one that made sense and gave 17″ notebooks more viability as they offered larger display space without the thick bezels that used to consume the screen. Couple that with the weight and the 17″ laptops were pretty much desktop-bound.
The ASUS ROG Strix GL704 SCAR II has been upgraded following NVIDIA’s announcement of GeForce RTX graphics cards making their way to laptops and one of the launch models included in that announcement is the GL704 SCAR II.
The new RTX-powered GL704 will be available in two variants: the ROG Strix SCAR II GL704GW (RTX 2070) and the ROG Strix SCAR II GL704GV (RTX 2060). Both models will feature support for up 32GB of DDR4-2666 memory, 1TB SSD and 1TB SSHD and will be powered by an 8th-Gen Intel Core i7-8750H 6-core, 12-thread processor.
The ROG Strix GL704 SCAR II has a weight of 2.9Kg.
From this angle and without and context, the ROG Strix GL704 looks a lot like the GL504. The top lid features a brushed metal finish and features and RGB light-up ROG logo.
Flipping the unit over, we see the underbelly of the GL704 with nothing noteworthy to mention in terms of aesthetics. There are strategically placed vents and cut outs. Also worth pointing out is that the unit has no access panel and ASUS advises to make upgrades via their authorized service centers. Advanced users can go ahead and pop their hood but at the cost of voiding their warranty.
A better shot of the light up ROG Logo at the lid. The angle of the metal tooling really helps give the asymmetric design a real sense of balance.
Opening up the lid we get a shot of the keyboard and trackpad. To keep up with the SCAR line’s FPS theme, the keyboard features a carbon fiber texture design with the right quarter printed with a subtle desert camo pattern.
A closer shot of the upper right area where we have the power button. Here we can see the printed-on detailing of the camo pattern over the carbon fiber texture treatment.
ASUS implements their own keyboard design called HyperStrike Pro on the GL704. HyperStrike Pro features a desktop-like layout for a natural feel and other ROG technology like Overstroke, NKRO and Anti-Ghosting help provide a more advanced feel to the keyboard.
Besides performance, one of the key highlights of the GL704 is its narrow bezel. As mentioned earlier, this gives the GL704 an 80% screen-to-body ratio giving it more screen space than traditional 17″ laptops.
The screen features 144hz refresh rate with 3ms response time. The screen is also IPS and has good colors and great viewing angles.
While in the subject of colors, ASUS is also bringing back the light bar on the front which gives accent lighting to the ROG Strix GL704. Together with the keyboard and logo at the lid, the GL704 supports ASUS Aura Sync technology which allows the GL704 to sync with other ASUS Aura Sync-compatible devices like keyboards, mice and headsets.
I/O on one side includes the DC power port, LAN port, mini-DisplayPort, HDMI, a couple of USB3.1 ports and a headphone jack.
On the right side, we have an SD card slot, a USB3.1 Gen2 Type-C port and a USB3.1 Type-A port. We also have a Kensington lock notch on the top right edge.
There’s plenty to like about the ASUS ROG Strix SCAR II GL704 from just the looks and feel of the notebook but we need to dive into the data on what the RTX graphics can offer and just how powerful it is compared to its desktop counterpart. Stay tuned to our full review for a detailed breakdown.
For now, the GL704 looks and feels great and if you’re after a new 17″ laptop powered by RTX graphics, this may be something to consider. Great screen, great build quality and good peripheral layout make this an effective work horse as well as a gaming machine for those that need a portable solution for both.
Look forward to our full review where we give you a more detailed breakdown about the performance as well as screen quality and gaming experience.