- Great IPS Display
- 75hz refresh rate
- Solid performance
- Very heavy
- Spongey keyboard
- Inconsistent build quality
- 17.3-inch 1,920×1,080-pixel IPS display with G-Sync
- 3GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 970M GPU
- Skylake i7-6700HQ processor
- 16GB DDR4 RAM
- 128GB SSD and 1TB HDD
- Weight: 4kg
- Manufacturer: Asus
- Review Price: £1,200.00/$1,800.00
WHAT IS THE ASUS G752VT?
Big, bulky and expensive. For better or worse, this is a classic gaming notebook.
Few laptops stand out like the ASUS ROG G752VT, with its striking brushed-aluminium chassis, bezelicious 17.3-inch Full HD display and Stealth Fighter-esque angular design. The chassis is nearly identical to that on the ridiculous liquid-cooled Asus ROG GX700 Trusted reviewed a couple of months ago.
But is the G752VT worth the £1200 asking price? Perhaps, but only if you need a gaming laptop right now.
ASUS G752VT – DESIGN AND FEATURES
Built like a tank, the G752 is a behemoth of a gaming notebook. It tips the scales at 4kg (8.8lbs) – it really is bloody heavy. You’ll get more than a few looks if you whip (read: heave) this out of your backpack at Starbucks.
Compared to a desktop PC, you could call the G752 portable. But it’s almost twice as heavy as the competing Gigabyte P35V5 notebook (2.3kg), and that makes a big difference if you intend to carry it around all day.
It’s long, too – the back of the chassis has been extended to accommodate its cooling system, which means the G752 is bigger than the average 17.3-inch notebook.
In terms of style, I think the exterior looks great. The aggressively sharp exhaust vents contrast well with the premium copper-coloured aluminium body. Opening it up, however, I was left feeling a little underwhelmed. The thick plastic bezels, rubberised palm rest and huge trackpad buttons make the G752 look just a little less premium than I’d like.
As for build quality, the G752’s weight makes it feel reassuringly strong and rigid. However, there’s a noticeable amount of flex if you press firmly toward the back of the keyboard, and the screen is prone to wobbling if you accidentally nudge the desk.
As for connectivity, the G752 has everything you could need. The right side features a 3.5mm headphone and microphone jack, USB 3.1 Type C, two USB 3.0 ports, a mini DisplayPort, an HDMI port, and a gigabit Ethernet connector. On the left is a Kensington lock, two USB 3.0, a Blu-ray drive and an SD card reader.
While the Blu-ray drive and Ethernet port are nice features that many thin and light notebooks have to do without, for me the G752 is simply far too big and bulky.
ASUS G752VT – KEYBOARD AND TRACKPAD
The G752 has plenty of room for a full-size keyboard and numberpad. The chiclet-style keys are well spaced, have a good amount of travel and are generally comfortable to type with. However, the rubbery plastic material used on the keys makes them feel and sound spongey, which makes it harder to touch type.
If you’re using the notebook at night, the red-backlit keyboard will come in handy. Using the pre-installed ROG Gaming Center, you can customise whether just the left-hand portion of the keyboard is lit up, or the whole thing.
The combination of spongey keys and a slightly unnerving amount of flex in the G752’s plastic body makes it feel far less premium than a £1,400 notebook should.
The trackpad, on the other hand, is a joy to use. It’s big and surprisingly responsive for a Windows laptop – particularly a gaming one.
The only problem I have is with the physical left- and right-click buttons beneath it; I’m not a fan of such a soft and long clicks. They feel like business laptops from a few years ago, and I don’t really think they suit a gaming machine.
ASUS G752VT – STORAGE
The G752 comes with various storage options, but all models include a primary solid-state drive and secondary hard-disk drive. The model I had for review included a 128GB SSD and 1TB HDD.
This storage solution works well, with Windows 10 installed on the fast SSD, which means the laptop feels fast to use – quick to boot and nippy at opening files and launching programmes. The larger hard drive can then be used to store bigger files and games.
SSD performance is impressive, scoring 1,861MB/s read and 130MB/s write speeds in the AS SSD benchmark. The high read speeds are higher due to the SSD using the faster NVMe interface.
ASUS G752VT – DISPLAY
The G752’s 17.3-inch display is one of the best I’ve ever used on a laptop, let alone a gaming one. The IPS panel provides good colour reproduction, above-average 306nits brightness and solid viewing angles, as well as sticking to a sensible 1080p resolution. It also supports NVIDIA G-Sync and a high 75Hz refresh rate.
Few monitors, let alone notebook displays, include NVIDIA’s G-Sync technology, which reduces screen tearing and stuttering in games. It’s great to see ASUS has included it on the G752.
More noticeably, the higher-than-average 75Hz refresh rate makes everything from navigating the desktop, to scrolling through web pages and playing games feel slicker and smoother. The extra 15Hz over a typical 60Hz display doesn’t sound like a lot – and it certainly doesn’t feel as fast as more common 120Hz desktop monitors – but it still offers a noticeable bump in smoothness.
You may be concerned by the G752 only offering a 1080p resolution rather than a 1440p or 4K option. However, the lower res is ideal for a gaming notebook, as it allows the mobile-class GPU (more on that on page 2) to reach higher frame rates in games, and take advantage of that higher refresh rate.
Achieving 86% of the sRGB colour space, the G752 falls in line with most other gaming notebooks. The IPS display is significantly better and more accurate than TN panels, but falls short of being good enough to use by photo and video editors, and the lower-than-average 886:1 contrast ratio means the G752 doesn’t quite achieve those inky blacks and brilliant whites.
Without doubt the display is one of the G752’s standout features, and it puts the screens on comparably priced gaming notebooks to shame.
ASUS G752VT – PERFORMANCE
There are three versions of the ASUS G752. The G752VL, G752VT and G752VY, which feature the Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M, 970M and 980M graphics cards respectively.
The G752VT I reviewed had the latest Intel Skylake-generation Core i7-6700HQ processor, Nvidia GeForce GTX 970M and 16GB of DDR4 RAM, along with a 128GB SSD and a 1TB HDD for storage.
It’s a bit of a shame, considering the size and weight of the G752, that ASUS wasn’t able to squeeze a desktop-class GTX 970 GPU into it. Despite this, the benchmarks prove it’s still incredibly fast.
In the 3DMark Fire Strike test, the G752 achieved an overall score of 6,526. This is a decent score, but compared to the 8,390 scored by the Gigabyte P35V5 with the top-tier GTX 980M graphics card, the G752 isn’t quite in the same class.
Of course, the big question is how well the G752 performs in games – I tested it with Tomb Raider, Dirt Rally and Hitman.
In Rise of the Tomb Raider, the G752 managed an average frame rate of 55fps and a minimum of 36fps with high settings at Full HD. With a few tweaks to the settings, it’s definitely possible to achieve a solid 60fps average in Tomb Raider, which is impressive considering how demanding the game is.
Dirt Rally was more than playable at Full HD with high settings, scoring an average frame rate of 74fps and minimum of 70fps. Conveniently, the average frame rate nearly matches the notebook’s higher 75Hz refresh rate, so you’re definitely making the most of it.
Finally in Hitman, again at Full HD with high settings, the G752 managed an average of 40fps and a minimum of 11fps. This low minimum frame rate is common in Hitman, but an average of 40fps isn’t particularly impressive and will require you to drop a few settings to make it enjoyably playable.
Only Dirt Rally really took advantage of the notebook’s higher refresh rate – but it goes to show how the 1080p display was a sensible choice by ASUS, rather than a more demanding 1440p or 4K resolution.
Overall the G752 performed well. However, the GTX 970M – and, indeed, all of NVIDIA’s top mobile graphics cards – are beginning to show their age and are due to be replaced by next-generation Pascal cards later in 2016.
ASUS G752VT – BATTERY
Battery performance from the G752’s 67Wh battery is disappointing.
Watching Netflix for one hour with brightness sat at 50%, the G752 lost 41% of its battery compared to just 22% for the Gigabyte P35Xv5. This means you could just about finish a two-and-a-half-hour film before the notebook would conk out completely.
With general use, including watching YouTube videos, browsing a variety of websites and using some Office applications, the G752 lasted a little under three hours.
It goes without saying that you should only play games with the charger plugged in, or else you’ll be lucky to get an hour out of the G752.
SHOULD I BUY THE ASUS G752VT
The ASUS G752VT is a remarkable, if impractical gaming notebook. It checks all the boxes in terms of specs and will run most of today’s games at High settings.
Without doubt, the G752’s best feature is its display. Racing through stages in Dirt Rally felt incredibly fast and fluid thanks to the high refresh rate and G-Sync.
If you don’t mind the size and want a good gaming notebook right now, it’s not a bad choice. But if you value portability or are happy to wait a couple of months for the new Nvidia and AMD cards to launch, the G752 will probably get a more powerful and similarly-priced successor.
A decent gaming laptop with an excellent screen, but its ridiculous size and slightly inconsistent build quality keep it from true stardom.