ASUS ROG Zephyrus GX501: VR Performance and Experience
Virtual Reality continues to gain traction due to the immersive gaming experiences it provides, but it does require at least a GeForce GTX 1060, which is typically the high-end graphics option on thin notebooks. The ASUS Zephyrus is marketed as VR Ready and the thinnest and lightest notebook you can buy with a GeForce GTX 1080-class GPU. To test the VR Ready claim, we’re running the Zephyrus through the SteamVR Performance Test and VR games to objectively and subjectively test its VR chops.
The SteamVR Performance Test is a basic tool that determines if your system can deliver a good VR experience or not. The test determines if your system can achieve the 90 FPS necessary to drive an optimal VR experience and provides a detailed report on whether it’s your CPU or GPU that’s holding you back. It gives your system a rating from 1 to 11.
We hooked an Oculus Rift Touch setup with three tracking sensors up to the ASUS Zephyrus without any troubles. It does take up the HDMI output and every available USB 3.0 port, which means you can’t connect the included Xbox One controller. There is the USB-C port that can be converted into USB 3.0 with a dongle, but you don’t need the Xbox One controller with the Oculus Touch controllers anyways.
We spent an hour playing Fruit Ninja VR, Robo Recall, and The Climb. VR gaming on the ASUS Zephyrus went smoothly – we didn’t notice any frame drops or hiccups to hinder our experience. The ASUS Zephyrus AAS ramped up the blower fans during our VR session, but it was still quiet. The fan noise was undetectable once the Oculus headphones covered our ears with the volume level set at 30%, which resulted in a distraction free VR session.