June 13, 2024

Brighton Journal

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The Asus ROG Ally

The Asus ROG Ally

When Valve introduced the Steam Deck OLED, they called it “everything the original should have been.” Asus is trying to do exactly the same thing with the new ROG Ally

After months of leaks, teasers, and exclusive early details from you, it’s official: the ROG Ally For $799.

When it ships on July 22, it will come with double the battery, double the storage space, double the USB-C ports with four times the USB bandwidth, and 50 percent more (and faster) 7,500MHz memory to boost performance by up to 15 percent. Significantly revised ergonomics, overhauled interior design, and an extensive list of other modifications.

ROG Ally (top) vs. ROG Ally

There are so many changes, in fact, that I spent two hours on the phone with Asus technical marketing director, Sascha Krohn, to hear about them all. I also went to the company’s US headquarters to open up the ROG Ally I took a lot of pictures, because I want you to train with me.

But first, let me remind you what ROG Ally X is not. This is what I wrote last month:

Don’t call it the Ally 2: When it ships in the second half of the year, the Windows-powered Ally It’s not quite the same as the Steam Deck OLED, as Valve asked AMD to revise its chip to improve battery life and stability and add a new, larger, brighter, gorgeous OLED panel with improved response time and thinner bezels.

The ROG Ally It’s still Windows, and I still firmly believe that Windows is dragging portable gaming consoles down. But the Ally does not feel It’s heavy, and it fits my medium-sized hand better than any Windows laptop I’ve tried.

At 1.49 lbs (678 g), the ROG Ally It’s roughly the same weight as the original Steam Deck, about half an inch thinner, but with twice the battery capacity inside.

how? While the larger battery added more than 120 grams of weight, Asus was able to offset half that weight by making other components lighter. Krohn says the stronger, thinner, lighter chassis offered the biggest savings — the weight of the talc-infused ABS/polycarbonate composite had risen from 176 grams to 134 grams by the time the Asus was done with it. (I’ve experienced one side effect of the harder plastic mix: it’s harder to open for repair.)

The Ally more Powerful, because the company’s in-house design team created its custom set of 77 ultra-thin blades that outperform the original’s 47 blades. Krohn says you may see the Ally run a couple of degrees cooler, and the thinner blades help reduce audible noise at around 5,000 Hz, too.

A new series of air vents allow Ally


Let’s take a tour of the Ally X’s internals, starting with the 80Wh battery.

Control levers are another place where both are better And LIGHTER WEIGHT: Completely revised modular pads now use the same high-quality potentiometer-based ALPS sticks that you’ll find in a PS5 or Xbox gamepad, with a much tighter throw than the original Ally, delightfully tacky Steam Deck OLED-style concave surfaces, and wider bases for Better dust resistance, lower friction Plastic pom Stems for smoother action when rubbing against the edge of the joystick ring.

It’s rated for 5 million revolutions, up from 2 million, and if that’s not enough, it’s modular – ready to fight drift. Hall Effect Magnetic Joystick Upgrade Kit Which Jolikit already has in development. (Cron says that not enough players prefer Hall Effect sticks for them to become standard, which… maybe?)

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And Asus seems to have addressed almost all of the major I/O complaints:

You can now get a full-length M.2 2280 PCIe 4 SSD slot, one that supports dual-sided drives as well, opening you up to the highest capacity and most cost-effective storage options on the market.

Asus also ditched its For standard eGPUs. (No Oculink, sorry.)

Both ports are top-mounted, but Krohn says it allows even the weakest port to deliver 100W charging and 10Gbps data.

And yes, Asus says you get new This SD card reader is no The same thing that Asus won’t admit to having a problem with.

ROG Ally 24GB of RAM means the GPU and system essentially no longer need to share.

Here are some small details I learned:

  • Not only is the D-pad now eight-way, but it’s also larger and more comfortable. I much prefer it.
  • The face buttons are 3mm longer, inside a longer tube for added stability. I found that they have a flat press.
  • The speakers have a slightly larger chamber for a slightly greater volume and sound.
  • The haptic actuators have moved to the edges of the device, below the palm, for sharper feedback and weight distribution.
  • The shoulder buttons are mounted differently on the plate so they don’t break easily when dropped.
  • The triggers are wider and made of a smokey semi-transparent plastic that looks great.
  • The rear intake vents are slightly larger.
  • The joystick surfaces are now attached with screws, so you could theoretically 3D print your own surfaces or torso extenders.
  • Likewise, the new back buttons are now fixed to the back cover, so you can theoretically move their position in the 3D printed back cover.
  • There is now a ring around the fingerprint trigger button to make it easier to feel.
  • Turbo mode still runs at 25 watts, but Silent mode has been bumped from 10 watts to 13 watts, and Performance from 15 watts to 17 watts.
  • The battery is now rated to have 80 percent capacity remaining after 3 years of cycling, up from 70 percent
  • The mobile device uses a different IMU now.
  • It still has the magnetic Hall effect drivers, but has been slightly modified to make sure it doesn’t interfere with the speakers or vibration motors.
  • Although it supports 100W charging now, it still comes with the same 65W adapter.
  • It’s not compatible with existing cases and stands, but Asus is in touch with fan favorites JSAUX, Deckmate, and Dbrand to introduce new cases.
  • Existing Ally owners will be able to migrate settings to Ally
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Last but not least, there’s an Easter egg in the new ergonomic grips – just as the PS5 controller is studded with incredibly small PlayStation icons, the ROG Ally

I can’t wait for a review unit for this laptop, because battery is king in the world of gaming laptops, and the Ally X is about to become the king of portable battery packs. Just don’t necessarily expect it to unseat Steam Deck OLED, because there’s only so far Asus can go without a more efficient chip and display — and because I’m still not sure how I feel about Asus. Deterioration of reputation For support.

There’s some little news today too: Asus just announced All ROG Ally devices in North America now have a two-year warranty.

Photography by Sean Hollister/The Verge