Asus’ affordable series of gaming laptops, the TUF Gaming FX505, has been refreshed with AMD’s Ryzen processors and Nvidia’s latest GPUs. As many as five different variants will be offered in Malaysia, and they’re set to be available here on 23 May 2019.
I got my hands on the GTX 1660 Ti model with a Ryzen 7-3750H processor, and after testing it out for a while, I can definitely see the FX505’s appeal. If priced right, it could be a really attractive gaming laptop for budget-conscious gamers.
It may seem odd for Asus to go with an AMD processor for the new FX505, but the company said there are a couple of reasons why it went for an AMD solution. For one, the Ryzen 7-3750H is a 12nm processor, which gives it an edge when it comes to power efficiency. In comparison, Intel’s latest 9th generation mobile CPUs are still built on 14nm process.
But can the Ryzen 7-3750H provide a good level of performance? Well, it’s still too early to tell, but I reckon it will be powerful enough to not bottleneck this gaming laptop. After all, when it comes to gaming, the GPU is the most important factor.
Speaking of which, powering this variant of the FX505 is a GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, and it’s a very promising GPU. Generally, it’s said to be in the same league as the older GTX 1070 Max-Q. Considering the fact that the GTX 1660 Ti is a successor to the GTX 1060, that’s really quite impressive.
In fact, even when compared to the newer and costlier RTX 2060 GPU (the mobile variant, of course), Nvidia says the GTX 1660 Ti is only about 5% slower. While you don’t get RTX-specific features like ray tracing, it may not matter too much to some folks. Ultimately, GTX 1660 Ti gaming laptops are more affordable than RTX 2060 machines.
I managed to play a couple rounds of Apex Legends with the FX505, and the frame rate hovers around 70 to 80fps. Compared to the Acer Predator Triton 500 with an RTX 2060 GPU, I was getting closer to 90fps. That’s not too big of a difference.
Further enhancing the gaming experience of the FX505 is its fast 120Hz 15.6-inch 1080p IPS display. Thanks to the high refresh rate, gaming on the laptop is very enjoyable, especially with games that can push more than 60fps. Compared to conventional 60Hz displays, you can definitely see the difference in motion clarity with this laptop’s 120Hz panel.
That being said, I was told by Asus that for the consumer versions of the FX505, only the RTX 2060 model will come with a 120Hz screen. Other variants of the laptop will be equipped with a standard 60Hz display for the Malaysian market. So if you wanted a GTX 1660 Ti model with a 120Hz panel, you’re out of luck.
Nonetheless, when it comes to screen quality, the FX505 has a reasonably good display. While the dynamic range of the panel isn’t the most impressive, it can get quite bright for comfortable use outdoor. On top of that, viewing angles are good too, and the thin bezels give the laptop a modern-looking design.
If there’s any aspect of the FX505 that leaves much to be desired, it would be the laptop’s build quality. You can really see (and feel) the affordability of the FX505 in its build material. Practically all of the laptop’s exterior is made out of plastic, making it feel cheap. Then again, this is unavoidable: Asus had to sacrifice certain things to bring down the price of the FX505.
In terms of connectivity, the FX505 sports two USB 3.1 and one USB 2.0 Type-A ports, an HDMI 2.0 connection, an RJ45 port, as well as a 3.5mm audio jack. Oddly enough, there’s no Type-C connection available. This variant of the FX505 also comes with 8GB of DDR4 2666MHz RAM and 512GB of fast PCIe NVMe SSD storage.
As for the FX505’s keyboard, I quite like it. It has a decent amount of travel, the keys are tactile, and it has RGB lighting too – fitting for a gaming laptop. Surprisingly enough, even the trackpad is very accurate, thanks to the use of Windows Precision drivers.
Those who are looking to get a capable gaming laptop that won’t put too much of a dent in your wallet should really give the Asus TUF Gaming FX505 a consideration. Even though its build quality isn’t the best, Asus promises good value for money and gaming performance with this gaming laptop.
However, the retail prices of the FX505 have not been revealed yet, so it remains to be seen just how competitive it will be priced at. We’ll find out for ourselves come 23 May 2019, when the FX505 series of gaming laptops are set to arrive in Malaysia. This laptop’s review will also be posted around the same time too, so keep your eyes peeled for that.