zephyrus duo 15

Image via Asus

Review: ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 gaming laptop

The dual-screen on the ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 is everything you’d need from a gaming laptop, but it doesn’t come cheap.

zephyrus duo 15

Image via Asus

The Zephyrus Duo is an impressive machine, and while the dual screen grabs most of the headlines around the notebook, this is not just another gimmick.

Two screens are always better than one screen, and if those two screens are somehow attached to one single laptop, even better. Here’s how the Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 won my heart.

Zephyrus Duo 15 review

Dual-screen magic

The Zephyrus Duo is a very capable machine which is enhanced by the second screen. In short, it will have you re-thinking what’s possible on a portable device.

The 15.6 4k UHD display is stunning though a bit smaller than what we have become used to from top-end gaming notebooks. The second screen is truly useful.

Clocking in at 14.1 inches wide with a 3 840 x 1 100 touchscreen panel which supports stylus-use but doesn’t ship with a stylus. The second screen is a real head-turner as it gives the Zephyrus Duo a very distinctive look.

Expect it to turn heads if you whip this machine out in company. The integration of the second screen has also been very impressive.

zephyrus duo 15

The screen feels intuitive and lends itself to smaller tasks that you wouldn’t necessarily need a full-sized monitor to display. It’s perfect for running Discord or Spotify while you use the main display to slay zombies or identify imposters.

Swapping apps between displays work really smoothly, and Asus is promising that in the future, titles like Dying Light 2 will allow you to move parts of your game UI (such as your co-op chats, inventory, and mission log) to the second screen.

The only warning will be that some games I tried playing got a bit confused and stretched across both screens, though a little bit of fiddling in the game settings usually fixed it quite easily.

The laptop is everything you’d expect from a high-end gaming notebook with a Core i9, 32GB of RAM and Nvidia’s RTX 2080 Super Max-Q graphics card.

It delivers excellent performance when gaming or even when doing photo or video editing. Case in point:

Watch: Stop-motion of the Zephyrus Duo 15

One thing to note this laptop runs quite hot, and though I didn’t try it out on my lap, I probably don’t recommend you try it either. This notebook deserves pride of place on a desk anyway, so I’m not complaining.

The touchpad is there in case you forget your mouse at home, but this is a machine that’s built to be used with a proper mouse. With the touchpad off to the side and the second screen, the keyboard is also a little smaller than normal.

However, if you’re buying a high-end notebook, you are probably planning to use a proper mechanical keyboard with it.

As for pricing, the ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo comes with a hefty price tag of R90 000.

The ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo 15: Verdict

The Good

  • A surprisingly useful dual-screen setup
  • Decent gaming performance
  • Bright, high-contrast 4k display
  • Sturdy metal chassis
  • Light-weight (moderately)
  • Decent battery life

The Bad

  • Very, very, pricey
  • Runs hot at times