Various manufacturers have been presenting first new products even before the Computex opened its doors. ASUS not only presented its new ZenBook 3, but also a lot of new Republic of Gamers (ROG) products. Its newest additions to its ROG series ranged from completely new PC systems, a new gaming monitor to an external graphics solution, a new LGA2011-3 motherboard, a notebook and a new headset.
One of the highlights was the new Avalon case that ASUS developed with InWin, and which can be described as absolutely modular. The case features four 2,5" hot-swap bays on the front panel, which can be equipped anyway a user wants. Due to the modular design, it is impossible to use a bog standard mobo, so ASUS had to design a proprietary board. One will be able to replace the I/O panel and adapt it to ones requirements. Three different panels are available, with either an additional LAN port, more USB 3.1 Gen2 ports, or a multitude of USB 3.1-Gen1 ports. All three I/O panels offer threads for WiFi antennas.
The custom motherboard offers socket LGA1151, four DDR4 DIMM memory banks and an M.2 interface. Even a fast graphics card can be accommodated in a side compartment. On the front of the case, we were able to discover a power and reset button, line-in and line-out jacks, and two USB 3.1 Gen2 Type C connectors.
ASUS ROG G31 Edition 10 a PC system with a bang
Not everyone wants assemble a gaming PC, and instead prefers to buy a high-performance system. ASUS designed its new G31 Edition 10 PC system, the housing looks very futuristic. Needless to say, the 20 liter volume case was of course fitted with various RGB LEDs. Inside, one will find two brand new GeForce GTX 1080 graphics cards in a 2-way SLI configuration, which ought to provide more than enough graphics performance.
The space-saving case includes a rather complex ventilation design. In terms of audio, ASUS opted for a dedicated ESS audio DAC. Even the headphone output is amplified. A price wasn't mentioned, but one can expect it will be rather pricey.
ASUS ROG GT51 gaming PC
At this year's CES in Las Vegas the Taiwanese company had already introduced the GT51 gaming PC, with two GeForce GTX Titan X graphics cards installed. However, now two GeForce GTX 1080 graphics accelerators were installed in the unit on display at the Computex 2016, and it will also hit the market in this configuration. Intel's current Core i7-6700K will be used as a CPU, offer a solid basis. ASUS also equipped the system with an ESS audio DAC, again with an amplified headphone output on the front.
The case is again well worth, with its silver-gray contrasts. Needless to say, RGB LEDs will light it up. At the bottom of the front panel a fan with blue lighting was installed, and it made us think of the Transformers. At the top of the panel users are able to access line-out, line-in jacks, three USB 3.1 Gen1 ports and a USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C interface.
ASUS GX800: next generation gaming notebook
Some notebooks can even make a desktop PC look pale. ASUS has now announced its new next-gen GX800 gaming notebook with all-new hardware as a successor to the GX700. ASUS opted to use a Skylake K SKU CPU usedmeaning that the CPU processing speed can be raised over a free multiplier. The GX800 also offers a 2-way SLI configuration to handle graphics. It is suspected that ASUS used two GeForce GTX-1070 (M) GPUs here, whose specs are still lurking in the dark. One thing, however, is certain: the two GPUs are cooled with water.
As the unknown price is likely to be quite high, mechanical buttons including the RGB Aura Lighting feature were installed in the GX800, or what ASUS calls "MechTAG" (Mechanical Tactile Advanced Gaming). The notebook itself can of course be connected with the docking station, which packs two 330 watt power supplies and is called ASUS "Hydro Overclocking System". This not only helps overclock the unspecified Intel K-CPU and two GPUs, but also provides the RAM with more power.
At Computex 2016, the GX800 notebook had a CPU clocked at 4,4 GHz, while the memory had a clock rate of 3,800 MHz. The two graphics chips were clocked at 1,428 MHz, while the video memory was overclocked to 2800 MHz.
ASUS ROG Rampage V Edition 10: A new motherboard for Broadwell-E
We of course expected that ASUS would also show a new ROG motherboard for Intel's upcoming Broadwell-E CPUs. We were all the more pleased that the manufacturer showed a new mainboard in Taipei, and we couldn't resist taking photos. At first glance, the E-ATX board seems to be very similar to the classic ASUS Rampage V Extreme, but we were able to discover some features ASUS provided to distinguish the two high-end motherboards from one another.
Both mobos feature four mechanical PCIe 3.0 x16 slots, but the ROG Rampage V Edition 10 uses a mechanical PCIe 2.0 x4 slot hooked up with four PCIe 2.0 lanes over the X99 chipset. The Rampage V Extreme instead used a mechanical PCIe 2.0 x16 connector with an x4 Gen2 connection. Furthermore, an additional PCIe 2.0 x1 slot can be seen. Otherwise ASUS left everything the same, i.e. eight DDR4 DIMM memory banks, various onboard features for overclocking, and so on.
For storage devices ASUS has slightly revamped the mobo, and offers ten SATA 6Gb/s ports, and a single U.2 and M.2 port. All four mechanical PCIe 3.0 x16 interfaces were also equipped with the new safe-slot feature. Who would have thought: the Rampage V Edition 10 also offers a slew of RGB LEDs, thanks to the Aura Lighting feature they can shine in 16,7 million colors.
The I/O panel is an absolute luxury, offering four USB 3.1 Gen1 ports, a total of four USB 3.1 Gen2 ports (two Type-A and Type-C ports), dual Gigabit LAN and two USB 2.0 ports, five 3.5 mm audio jack connectors, a Toslink and a PS/2 port. A WiFi-Go! ac-WiFi and Bluetooth 4.1 module are also on board, as the three threads show. Of course, a CMOS Clear and a USB BIOS Flashback button are not to be missed.
ASUS ROG XG Station 2 - External Graphics Accelerator
Lots of manufacturers had the idea to offer external graphics solutions for notebooks. ASUS is now again trying its best with the ROG XG Station 2. In a nicely designed case users can place a graphics card, even soon to appear high-end ones. Data is transmitted over the Thunderbolt 3.0 protocol, with a bandwidth of 40 Gb/s. ASUS sates the aim is to make ultrabooks fit for virtual reality applications that require a lot of performance. The XG Station 2 offers four USB 3.1 Gen1 ports and a Gigabit LAN port.
ASUS ROG Centurion gaming headset with 7.1 sound
ASUS also had a new headset on display, designed to provide realistic sound while gaming. The new Centurion features a hifi ESS headphone amplifier, while in-game communication is claimed to be transmitted crystal-clear.
Prices unknown, launch dates vary
ASUS wasn't able to mention a price for any of the products on display. Furthermore, the launch dates vary a lot. The Taiwanese manufacturer is planning to launch its ASUS GX800 notebooks after the summer holidays, in time for the back to school spending marathon. In contrast, the Centurion headset will be sold in July. Anyone interested in the modular Avalon case prototypes can expect it to hit the market later this year. One will, however, have to wait until the third quarter for all of the remaining products to launch.