Asus ROG Zephyrus G14: Blazing-Fast Gaming Machine
PC Magazine|October 2021
REVIEWS/HARDWARE
MATTHEW BUZZI
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14

PROS AMD Ryzen 9 processor is blazing fast. Solid 60fps-plus gaming across genres. Impressively configured with 32GB of memory, 1TB SSD, and a 1440p screen. Sharp styling in compact 14-inch chassis. 120Hz display refresh for competitive multiplayer games.

CONS Review configuration is a little pricey for an RTX 3060. Loud fans under load.

BOTTOM LINE No longer alone in its class, the 2021 Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 remains an attractive, compact 14-inch gaming machine, now equipped with faster GeForce RTX 30-Series and AMD Ryzen 9 components.

When the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 first launched last year, we praised it for combining a 14-inch display (then rare among gaming laptops) with Nvidia GeForce RTX 20-Series power and AMD Ryzen processing at a sweet price. The updated 2021 G14 uses the same design but pumps things up to RTX 30-Series and newer Ryzen 5000 chips. Our test unit also includes a 1440p display and 32GB of memory, so the boosted price of our model isn’t as strong of a value as the original G14, but the entry-point configuration (which still features an RTX 3060) is an attractive proposition. Also, the market for 14-inch gaming laptops has expanded.

Competing 14-inches are now popping up from most of the usual suspects (the Razer Blade 14 is our top pick), making the G14 less of a unicorn. But this new model is still a great package.

IT’S ALL ABOUT THE INTERNALS

The original Zephyrus G14 was one of the first killer 14-inch gaming laptops for its combination of size and performance, and the former is the same here. The exterior design is unchanged, as this is chiefly a component upgrade, so we won’t spend too much time on that aspect. I should note that we also recently checked out a very different version of this laptop, the G14 Alan Walker Edition (geared toward fans of the European electronic music star) but will concentrate here on this more standard entry for the main review and performance testing.

The fundamentals are still important, though: This laptop measures 0.7 by 12.75 by 8.7 inches and weighs 3.5 pounds, easily more portable than the average gaming laptop. The quality materials and stylish white and-silver look complete an appealing package. This unit also includes the AniMe Matrix lid, which we previously checked out as an optional version of the original G14. The lid is inlaid with a grid of LEDs, which you can customize with effects and images.

The original G14’s size was novel when it launched, but 14-inch gaming machines have become more popular since then. The Razer Blade 14 and the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE roughly match their thinness and footprint, though the G14 is the lightest of the three. Even if the G14 is no longer alone in its space, it’s still one of the best gaming laptops around that emphasizes portability.

COMPONENT CHECK: THE NEWEST HEAT FROM AMD AND NVIDIA

Next, on to the parts and features of our particular review model. There are a few flavors of the GeForce RTX 30-Series G14, but our tester unit is priced at $1,999. For that, you get an AMD Ryzen 9 5900HS processor, 32GB of memory, the GeForce RTX 3060 GPU, and a 1TB SSD. The display also features a 2,560-by-1,440-pixel native resolution and a 120Hz peak refresh rate.

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