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Asus ROG Strix GL504 Scar II review: The Scar II has a great screen, but an ugly paint job

In anecdotal gaming, running recent games from Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire to Vampyr, the system ran smoothly at full 1080p resolution and high-to-ultra detail settings. Still, the system fans did kick in during gaming, and they get pretty loud. Asus says the cooling system includes "antidust tunnels" which blow dust away using faster fans.

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Does anyone really leave their gaming laptop unplugged for too long? I know I usually don't. In this case, that's a good thing, as the Scar II ran for only 3 hours, 7 minutes in our streaming-video battery-drain test. A handful of gaming laptops can top 5 or 6 hours on this test (see the chart below), but doing any kind of unplugged gaming will drop battery life significantly.

Plenty to unpack

There's a lot going on with the Scar II. It has an excellent CPU-GPU combo and strong performance. The slim screen bezels and 144Hz refresh rate make for superb display specs. A handful of design touches, like the transparent WASD keys, add some visual interest. But the rest of the design is boxy and generic, with the needle tipping too far into "gamer" territory, especially its silly camo paint job.

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For $2,000, it's fair to expect more zing. If you're specifically looking for an Nvidia 1070 gaming laptop, those can found for a few hundred dollars less. Or you might like something especially sharp-looking, like the new 15-inch Razer Blade, which can be had for a little less (for the Nvidia 1060 version) or a bit more (for the 1070 version). Keep in mind, however, those include just a 256GB SSD, not the 256GB SSD-1TB hybrid HDD combo included here.   

Cinebench R15 CPU (Multicore)

Origin PC Eon17X
1,439
Asus ROG Strix Scar II
1,237
Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (2018)
1,135
Razer Blade (2018)
926
Alienware 15 R3 (2017)
746
Dell Inspiron 15 7577 Gaming (late 2017)
510

Note:

Longer bars indicate better performance

Geekbench 4 (Multicore)

Origin PC Eon17X
25,576
Asus ROG Strix Scar II
21,588
Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (2018)
20,442
Razer Blade (2018)
18,015
Alienware 15 R3 (2017)
14,060
Dell Inspiron 15 7577 Gaming (late 2017)
10,611

Note:

Longer bars indicate better performance

Streaming video-playback battery-drain test

Razer Blade (2018)
473
Dell Inspiron 15 7577 Gaming (late 2017)
362
Alienware 15 R3 (2017)
236
Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (2018)
225
Asus ROG Strix Scar II
187
Origin PC Eon17X
147

Note:

Longer bars indicate better performance (in minutes)

3DMark Fire Strike Ultra

Origin PC Eon17X
5,330
Alienware 15 R3 (2017)
4,054
Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (2018)
3,954
Asus ROG Strix Scar II
3,938
Razer Blade (2018)
3,431
Dell Inspiron 15 7577 Gaming (late 2017)
1,871

Note:

Longer bars indicate better performance

Deus Ex gaming test

Origin PC Eon17X
103.6
Alienware 15 R3 (2017)
82.1
Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (2018)
79.2
Asus ROG Strix Scar II
76.7
Razer Blade (2018)
72.2
Dell Inspiron 15 7577 Gaming (late 2017)
50.2

Note:

Longer bars indicate better performance (FPS)

System configurations

Asus ROG Strix Scar II Microsoft Windows 10 Pro (64-bit); 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-8750H; 32GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,660MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070; 512GB SSD
Razer Blade (2018) Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-8750H; 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,660MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 with Max-Q Design; 512GB SSD
Asus ROG Zephyrus M GM501 (2018) Microsoft Windows 10 Pro (64-bit); 2.2GHz Intel Core i7-8750H; 32GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,660MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070; 512GB SSD
Alienware 15 R3 (2017) Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.8GHz Intel Core i7-7700HQ; 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,666MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070; 512GB SSD + 1TB HDD
Dell Inspiron 15 7577 Gaming (late 2017) Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.5GHz Intel Core i5-7300HQ; 8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz; 6GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 with Max-Q Design; 256GB SSD
Origin PC Eon17X Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); (OC) 4.7GHz Intel Core i7-8700K; 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2800MHz; 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080; (2) 250GB SSD RAID 0

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