Dan Ackerman/CNET

It looks like the market for slim gaming laptops is about to explode thanks to Nvidia’ Max-Q design architecture.

Case in point: The new Asus ROG Zephyrus that just made its official debut at Asus ROG Tuesday event here at Computex in Taipei. Interestingly, news of the laptop trickled out earlier in the day, being mentioned briefly at both Nvidia and Intel press conferences ahead of its own reveal.

The Zephyrus — named after the greek god of the west wind — may be a handful to pronounce, but it’s certainly worth the wait. It isn’t the first Max-Q gaming laptop. Acer’s Predator Triton 700, unveiled last month, also used the platform, but didn’t reveal its Max-Q background.


The trackpad also doubles up as the numpad.

Dan Ackerman/CNET

The design of both laptops are somewhat similar. Both remove the trackpad from the bottom of the keyboard, leaving a large patch of empty space below the screen and above the keyboard. The trackpad is now at the side and doubles up as a numpad. It’s weird, to say the least, but it’s likely deliberate and prompted by Nvidia’s Max-Q design architecture requirements.

Besides, removing of the trackpad makes sense for gaming laptops. You don’t really play competitive games like DoTA 2 with your trackpad anyhow. (And if you do, that’s impressive.)

The Zephyrus packs Intel’s latest Core i7-7700HQ processor as well as Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card. It’s just 17.9mm thick, and weighs 2.2kg. If Razer isn’t yet worried about the next generation of Nvidia Max-Q laptops, it should be.

There’s no word on pricing yet, but we’ll keep you posted.

Quick specs

  • Intel Core i7-7700HQ
  • 16GB RAM, SSD onboard storage
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080
  • 15.6-inch Full HD (1,920×1,080-pixel resolution)
  • 17.9mm tall, 2.2kg

Be sure to check out the rest of CNET’s Computex 2017 coverage here.

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