ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 laptop review

An Asus ROG gaming laptop with a good screen is good. But isn’t an Asus ROG gaming laptop with two screens better? Let’s test the ROG Zephyrus Duo 16, a machine that also benefits from a monstrous technical sheet.

Summary

  • Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 features
  • Design and ergonomics: portable rather than portable
  • Screen: resolute gamer
  • Software: as much optimization as possible
  • Performance: only the best
  • Autonomy: surprisingly correct

Asus, and therefore by extension its companion Republic of Gamers (ROG), is one of the rare manufacturers to offer a crazy concept, but not devoid of interest: laptops that integrate dual monitors. For designers and designers, we can quickly see the interest. What about gamers? With the Zephyrus Duo 16, ROG offers the same service, but for the most demanding players… and also the richest, as the model we are testing is billed at € 4,799.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 features

screen size 16 inches
Screen type IPS-LCD
Screen definition 3840 x 2400 pixels
Update speed 120/240 Hz
Processor AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX
Graphics card Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti
ram 32 GB DDR5-4800
Storage 2TB NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD
stik 1 power port, 1 HDMI 2.1, 1 combo connector, 1 USB-C, 2 USB A, 1 Ethernet, 1 microSD
Dimensions 35.5 x 26.6 x 2.05 cm
Weight 2.55 kg

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Design and ergonomics: portable rather than portable

You already suspected it, as it makes sense: you can not integrate two monitors into a laptop without making some sacrifices. The ROG Zephirus Duo 16 must have made them, but not on its overall design. The brand’s familiar lines continue to be adhered to, including its split back, which emulates the dotting of the Zephyrus G14 even though it does not share the light of it. The big baby of 2.55 kg did not need it, it must be said.

It is at the opening that we discover the real specificity of this model: this second screen, which opens at a marked angle at the same time as the hood. Let’s emphasize it right now: this simple fact is nevertheless a technical marvel that is impossible to get tired of. It is also what enables the computer to have an ultra-optimized airflow, as this raised screen also allows air to pass under it to cool the components.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

Below is a small window that can be illuminated in RGB and gives a small display of “gamer” inscriptions on the motherboard. A nice little touch that gives character to the Zephyrus Duo 16, but is useless. Useless therefore important? You must be the judge.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

The real sacrifice of all this space back to another screen is to look naturally at the side of the location of the keyboard and touchpad. If the quality of the first is always excellent, the ROG never disappoints at this point, the fact that it is located in the lower edge of the chassis makes it terribly uncomfortable when used on the knees.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

Zephyrus Duo 16 thus confirms that it is made to be used on a desk; a “laptop” PC therefore. Even with an external mouse, as its extremely narrow touchpad located on the side is far from comfortable. Better to get him to take the function of a numeric keypad using a simple push of a button and connect an external mouse. Laptop, we told you. Above it are buttons that are used to activate or deactivate the other screen at will.

Screen: resolute gamer

Having two monitors is a feat. But it is still necessary that these are really up to the requirements of a gamer. The Zephyrus Duo 16 certainly does not disappoint at this point, with a main panel that can either do 4K at 120 FPS or Full HD at 240 Hz. Having this choice frees up the ability to focus on the finesse of the graphics on a single-player experience and screen response in a competitive game. More choices are always better.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

The main screen of our test configuration is an IPS LCD panel in 3840 x 2400 definition (16:10), which offers 486 nits in normal use but can push up to 1000 nits on HDR content. It covers 154.6% of sRGB space, 106.5% of Adobe RGB space and 109.5% of DCI P3. Its average color temperature is measured at 6256K in native mode, which is already very good, but as always you can enjoy a DCI P3 or sRGB mode at ease by selecting it in the machine configuration. This screen is simply excellent.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

The second screen is more … special. Due to the 3840 x 1100 pixel format, it should be seen as two small classic screens placed side by side. It also remains excellent with a maximum brightness of 378 nits and a color temperature measured at 6466K. It is also tactile, making it easy and fast to interact with it.

Software: as much optimization as possible

On the software side, in addition to the usual Windows 11, we still find Asus’ favorite bloatware (pre-installed software) with especially the basic installation of McAfee … which is still just as squeaky on devices sold as expensive. However, the ROG Armory Crate software is still fun to use to check and change the performance of your machine in an instant. It is also being made increasingly useful thanks to this second screen that behaves like a classic plate. A good addition thought of by Asus is a shortcut bar that constantly appears on its right side, which allows you to quickly control the brightness and quickly launch shortcut applications.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

This screen will be handy for anyone who streams on their gaming PC, does video editing or just wants to keep their chat applications visible at all times. It is something of a niche, but a niche that will be well served with this device if software features are well thought out to accompany it.

Performance: only the best

For 4800 euros per. configuration, the Zephyrus Duo 16 has an interest in offering the best of the best. No disappointment on that side as it includes everything we have a right to expect in our test configuration. The SoC is AMD’s Ryzen 9 6900HX, the best in the series, and it is here paired with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti, the best graphics card available on a gaming laptop. We add 32 GB DDR5-4800 RAM and 2 TB PCIe 4.0 SSD. Again, in the top.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

On the Cinebench R23, its score of 14499 in multi-core and 1558 in single core is exactly what is expected of the CPU. The latter is only seriously surpassed today by Intel’s best in the 12th generation, the Core i9 12900H, which will soon be surpassed by the next Ryzen 7000s: thus the cycle continues.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

The same goes for the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti, which sends a score of 5879 on 3DMark. In fact, thanks to such power, you’ll be able to enjoy the Shadow of the Tomb Raider pressure to the extreme, ray tracing included, in native 4K definition and without DLSS at 30 FPS. The only thing left is to add a little DLSS to reach 60 or even 120 FPS at ease. The same goes for Cyberpunk 2077, which you can again push at top speed to hit 24 FPS without DLSS. The monster is greedy but can be tamed with DLSS.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

How do you manage to touch all of this on a laptop? Thanks to a really efficient cooling system. It must be said that being able to open an entire section of the computer for ventilation has its advantages: The outdoor temperatures do not exceed 48 ° C, although the fans themselves will be very audible in Turbo mode. The more balanced performance mode will be your best ally against noise.

Autonomy: surprisingly correct

The ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 is equipped with a 90Wh battery. It’s a significant size, of course, but which should still drive this monstrous configuration as a bonus on two screens. Therefore, do not expect to use the battery, although the ability to turn off the second monitor and the excellent power management of Ryzen processors means that you can keep 7 to 8 hours on simple office automation. As soon as you really want to use all its abilities, on the other hand … Count 1 to 2 hours instead.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

This is where you will have to rely on its massive 280W power supply, which is necessary to be able to run the Zephyrus Duo 16 at full capacity. We get nothing for nothing, even though the USB C ports are still compatible with Power Delivery in the event of a hard blow.

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Conclusion

Strengths

  • Two excellent screens
  • A power monster
  • Amazing autonomy in office automation
  • Fantastically well designed

Weak points

  • Such a special concept
  • Very special ergonomics for a laptop
  • Acceptable webcam
  • Affordable price

It’s terribly difficult to rate the ROG Zephyrus Duo 16. In terms of performance, the computer is a real monster. On a purely qualitative level, everything is there, especially on these two really powerful screens. But here it is: the victims of ergonomics make it much more of a “Frankenstein PC”, which is portable rather than a “real laptop”. It covers an ultra-accurate niche of users, but the latter will be happy. For others: go your way.

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