ASUS Zephyrus Gaming Notebook Leak Highlights Coffee Lake CPU Upgrade And GTX 1080
It appears ASUS is upgrading its Zephyrus gaming laptop with a six-core Coffee Lake-H processor while maintaining a Max-Q version of NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 1080 GPU. The upgraded model appeared briefly on an online shopping website in the UK. Though it has since been removed, a Google cache of the listing provides a bunch of information, including the laptop's specs and asking price.
To start with, the new Zephyrus GX501 model (GX501GI EI005T is the full model name) boasts a Core i7-8750H processor. That is a significant upgrade over the Core i5-7300HQ and Core i7-7700HQ processor options on the current generation of Zephyrus GX501 laptops. We should note that Intel hasn't actually released the Core i7-8750H yet, though based on previously leaked information, it is a 6-core/12-thread processor with a 2.2GHz base clock, 3.9GHz all-core boost clock, and 4.1GHz single-core boost clock. It also has 9MB of L3 cache and a 45W TDP.
For graphics duties, the Zephyrus GX501 is armed with a GeForce GTX 1080 GPU with NVIDIA's Max-Q design. This means that certain parameters are tuned to NVIDIA's Max-Q specifications, allowing for powerful GPUs to ultimately consume less power and generate less heat, thus making them feasible options for thin and light machines like the Zephyrus. Part of that process entails running games at custom settings to balance performance with heat. Compared to a non Max-Q setup, it might not be quite as fast in some instances, but in real-world use you're getting great gaming performance in an ultraportable design.
The remaining specs call for a 15.6-inch display with a Full HD 1080p (1920x1080) resolution an 144Hz refresh rate, 16GB of DDR4-2400 RAM, and a 512GB solid state drive. Presumably the system will also support NVIDIA's G-Sync technology, as current generation Zephrus laptops do, to virtually eliminate things like screen tearing and stuttering, and reduce lag.
From the press photos in the listing, it appears that ASUS tweaked the chassis a bit, though it depends on which picture you look at. In a couple of them, the keyboard appears to be pushed up closer to the display rather than at the base, with a trackpad sitting below. In another photo, however, the keyboard sits where it does now, at the base of the laptop, with a touchpad to the right of it. We'll have to wait and see what materializes.
The retailer's asking price for this particular model is 3,499 Swiss francs, which works out to around $3,662 in US currency.