Can Nvidia and AMD components live harmoniously within the same laptop? Asus sure thinks so.
The newest members of the company's affordable gaming laptop line, the TUF Gaming FX505 and FX705, are armed with AMD Ryzen CPUs and Nvidia GeForce GTX graphics. The laptops will be available in Q2 of 2019 but pricing has not yet been announced.
|Row 0 - Cell 0||Asus TUF Gaming FX505||Asus TUF Gaming FX705|
|Display||15.6-inch, 1080p; up to 120Hz||17.3-inch, 1080p; 60Hz|
|CPU||AMD Ryzen 7 3750H|
|RAM||Up to 32GB|
|Graphics||Up to Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti|
|Storage||Up to 512GB M.2 NVMe SSD/Up to 1TB, 5400-rpm|
|Size||14.2 x 10.3 x 1.1 inches||15.7 x 11 x 1.1 inches|
|Weight||4.9 pounds||6 pounds|
The unlikely combination of a Ryzen 7 CPU and Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti GPU should enable solid gaming performance, though not quite up to that of Nvidia's RTX 20-series GPUs. Gamers can expect performance similar to the GTX 1070 GPU; medium-to-high settings at above 30 frames per second shouldn't be an issue for the FX505 and FX705. And now that GTX cards support ray tracing, you can gawk at photorealistic lighting and reflections in the few games that use the rendering technique.
There's no point in turning up your graphics if you don't have a quality display to enjoy them on. The FX505 has a 15.6-inch, non-glare IPS display with a refresh rate of either 60Hz or 120Hz. If you want the smoothest gameplay, we recommend the 120Hz panel. For those who want a larger canvas to play on, the FX705 comes with a 17.3-inch display at 60Hz. The display looked sharp and vivid during my brief hands-on with them but we'll have to test them in our lab for more quantitative results.
When you're not gaming, the TUF Gaming FX505 and FX705 rely on AMD's latest Ryzen 5 3550H or Ryzen 7 3750H CPUs, both of which sport four cores and eight threads. The processors, when combined with up to 32GB of DDR4-2400 RAM, should give these laptops plenty of power for running demanding workloads and powering modern games.
And with a 35W TDP (thermal design power) rating, these CPUs will hopefully enable long battery life, though Asus didn't provide any estimates.
Few changes were made to the design of the new FX505 and FX705 from the FX705 we reviewed back in March. Available in either Gold Steel with Gunmetal Grey or Stealth Black, the exterior of these laptops feature aggressive lines and angular accents. While they don't look quite as premium as the Zephyrus line, I'm pretty impressed by the sleekness of the FX705 and FX505 given their expected price (around $1,000). I'm also glad Asus scaled back on the gaudy design of the FX504.
These models, unlike the previous versions, are MIL-STD-810G rated, which means their chassis can withstand extreme conditions and accidental knocks. Also new to these AMD/Nvidia models is a trapezoidal cutout on the lid that directs dust and debris out from what Asus calls "anti-dust tunnels," so the heatsinks and fans don't get clogged. This should keep the laptop cool, even when operating under a heavy workload. On the subject of cooling, a shortcut lets users switch between Turbo to Silent with the tap of a key.
These are some nice additions but the standout design element of the FX505 and FX705 remains its thin display bezels, which provide an immersive viewing experience and keeps these notebooks relatively portable. To that end, the FX505 is 14.2 x 10.3 x 1.1 inches and weighs a reasonable 4.8 pounds while the FX705 weighs 6 pounds.
The RGB backlit keyboard, which has a full number pad and highlighted WASD keys, offers a comfortable typing experience. Much like the keys on the TUF Gaming FX705 we previously reviewed, the keys on the new models should have around 1.7 millimeters of travel, well above our 1.5mm preference. While I didn't get to run through our normal typing test, the keys felt nice when I typed a few sentences into Notepad.
Overall, the new TUF Gaming FX505 and FX705 are some impressive machines that offer a premium design, comfortable keyboard and 120Hz display at what should be a reasonable price. The big question is whether the notebook's AMD CPU and Nvidia GPU will play nice with each other.