The Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 is the spearhead of the Republic of Gamers line. This version is equipped with an Intel Core i9-12900H processor with Alder Lake architecture, while the GPU is entrusted to the GeForce RTX 3070 Ti from Nvidia.
The Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 is a laptop model designed mainly for gamers looking for the best technology without compromising on performance. Showcase of the Taiwanese manufacturer, this model also gives him the opportunity to prove his know-how with some exclusive features, such as the ROG Keystone, an NFC key that is inserted on the right side of the keyboard and allows to customize the PC, and even to access a hidden partition.
The ROG Strix Scar 17 is far from being a model of sobriety. Right from the hood, its membership to the Republic Of Gamers is well highlighted. Made of plastic, it features the famous ROG backlit eye. The most attentive will also have noticed the selective varnish strip decorated with the ROG logo, which crosses diagonally the hood.
Opening the screen reveals a two-tone piano with an opaque black side and a transparent one. Apart from the "wow" effect of the discovery, its usefulness is nil: no real component is visible, not even a rotating fan. The piano cover suffers from the absence of anti-trace treatment, the slightest pressure on it leaving marks that are difficult to clean. Cleaning is complicated and often leaves traces.
The RGB backlit keyboard provides a pleasant typing experience with good response. It has a full numeric keypad and five macro keys on the top. Of course, you can customize the backlighting with the Armoury Crate software - the possibilities are such that you could spend all afternoon on it.
Like the keyboard, the large touchpad offers a smooth glide and the various Windows gestures are well taken care of. On the right-hand edge, there is a slot for the ROG Keystone (in red with the ROG logo). This is a key with an NFC chip that allows you to link a ROG account to find your customization profiles (ventilation, backlighting, etc.) and to set up a storage space that is only visible when the key is present.
The connectivity of the ROG Strix Scar 17 goes to the essentials with two USB 3.2 ports and a jack on the left side. Behind the screen, between the two vents, are two USB-C ports, an HDMI port and a 2.5G standard RJ45 socket. Access to these ports is quite painful, because there is no indication on the chassis to indicate their presence. We also regret the absence of a memory card reader, a webcam and, to a lesser extent, a fingerprint reader to unlock the session. However, there is no lack of space on this 17-inch chassis.
Wireless connectivity is provided, not by an Intel chip as we might have expected, but a MediaTek version. The MT7922, also used by AMD under the name of RZ616, manages wifi 6E at 2400 Mb/s and Bluetooth 5.2.
As for cooling, Asus has provided the ROG Strix Scar 17 with two fans, four radiators, four heatpipes and liquid metal thermal paste to maximize heat exchange.
Thermal imaging reveals nothing alarming for a laptop dedicated to gaming. On the keyboard, temperatures are actually quite low with the hottest point at just under 41°C. The ZQSD keys hover around 35°C, while the rest of the keyboard stays perfectly cool. The CPU vents are the hottest after our gaming session with almost 58 °C behind the screen and 55.8 °C on the left side. The vents on the right for the GPU are 10°C cooler.
The noise level is 50.5 dB in Turbo mode. This means that the neighbors will be quite annoyed after about 15 minutes of play. Using the Performance mode in Armoury Crate reduces the perceived noise level by two (47.1 dB), while the Silent mode does not exceed 37.1 dB.
The performance level will be impacted by the cooling mode. Thus, we get 82 fps under Assassin's Creed Valhalla in Turbo mode, Performance mode allowing 74 fps, while Silent mode will offer "only" 60 fps.
The access to the Scar 17's entrails is done by removing eight Phillips screws, then gently unclipping the shell. Be careful, two layers connect the RGB lighting of the shell to the motherboard: you have to lift the black latches to release them.
Once opened, we discover an occupied NVMe slot, a second free one, two DDR5 slots and a removable battery. The wifi card is however soldered to the motherboard.
To power its ROG Strix Scar 17, Asus has teamed up with Intel to integrate a Core i9-12900H with Alder Lake hybrid architecture, 32GB of DDR5 RAM and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti graphics card. Let's go back to the processor, which has six high-performance cores (P-Cores), hyperthreaded and clocked at 2.5 GHz with a boost to 5 GHz, and eight low-power cores (E-Cores) at 1.8 GHz with a boost to 3.8 GHz. During an encoding, we found an average frequency of 3.61 GHz for the P-Cores and 2.79 GHz for the E-Cores with maximum frequencies of 4.92 GHz and 3.79 GHz respectively.
The performance index of the Core i9-12900H is 176, far ahead of the Ryzen 9 5900HX and Core i9-11980HK which enjoy an index close to 140 depending on the laptop in which they are integrated. However, we should note that the score of the Core i9-12900H could have been higher if the cooling system managed to keep the temperature of the Core i9 cores below 100°C. Above this temperature, the processor reduces its frequency and therefore the performance. We have seen framerate drops in games when the processor sporadically drops to 399 MHz.
The ROG Strix Scar 17 features the latest GPU announced by Nvidia, the GeForce RTX 3070 Ti. The version selected by Asus claims a maximum TGP of 150W, so it is the most powerful version of this GPU.
Thus equipped, the ROG Strix Scar 17 obtains a performance index of 195, slightly lower than the Lenovo Legion 5 Pro equipped with a GeForce RTX 3070 (140 W). The explanation is to be found in the processor, which lowers its frequency - a phenomenon that can be seen in Call Of Duty and Cyberpunk 2077 -, dragging with it the GPU frequency, even in the highest performance mode (and therefore ventilation) offered by the Asus Armoury Crate software (Turbo mode).
With a Full HD definition and all settings pushed to the maximum, our game panel runs at around 90 fps without raytracing. Activating raytracing drastically reduces the number of frames per second, so you have to activate DLSS to go above 60 fps in compatible games.
In 2560 x 1440 px - the native definition of our ROG Strix Scar 17 - with a rasterized rendering, the number of frames per second displayed is around 60 fps, a good point. Only Cyberpunk 2077 gets an average framerate of 39 fps. Enabling raytracing makes Cyberpunk 2077, Metro EE and The Medium barely playable. Therefore, enabling DLSS will be necessary to enjoy these games.
The ROG Scar 17 is equipped with an IPS panel displaying 2560 x 1440 px and able to reach a refresh rate of 240 Hz. Asus also offers a Full HD version that reaches 360 Hz. If you play competitive online games, we recommend this 360 Hz version. For fans of the latest AAA games, the version we tested seems more appropriate.
The WQHD panel selected by Asus obtains a delta E of 1.8, well below 3 where the colorimetric drifts start to be visible. The color temperature is also close to the theoretical ideal of 6500 K (6574 K measured). The contrast is however a little low with 1104:1 measured with the probe: nothing alarming, but the blacks will pull a little on the gray.
The brightness is 304 cd/m², a sufficient value for indoor use, knowing that the panel has a good anti-reflection treatment (reflectance measured at 17.8%). Finally, a key point for a laptop dedicated to gaming, the responsiveness of the panel was measured at 9 ms, which places the ROG Scar 17 among the most valiant in our database.
Asus has given its ROG Scar 17 four speakers: two under the screen and oriented towards the user - these act as tweeters - and two others placed under the chassis at the front, which act as woofers. When listening, the sound volume is largely sufficient to enjoy movies and series, the stereo being well marked. If we are picky, we can perceive a slight dynamic compression, as well as a very slight box effect due to the plastic chassis.
The headphone output provides a level of output that is powerful enough to handle high impedance headphones. The measurement of distortion and crosstalk does not reveal any anomalies. However, we regret that the dynamic range is a little low, which could be a problem for sound professionals.
The measurements of the Strix Scar 17 are 39 x 28 cm for 2.83 cm at its thickest point. We are far from the gaming laptops we knew a few years ago with thicknesses exceeding 4 cm. Its weight of 2.9 kg also places it in the average range of 17.3-inch gaming laptops. It is therefore quite possible to carry the ROG Strix Scar 17 in a suitable backpack. However, you'll need to make room for the bulky 280W charger, which alone weighs 1.02 kg.
Asus has equipped the Scar 17 with a 90 Wh battery. A consequent capacity, but which does not make it possible to last the day. In video playback with the screen set to 200 cd/m², the Scar 17 allowed us to watch our favorite series for 6 h 40 min (Netflix under Chrome).
The Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 offers a high-flying configuration with its 12th generation Intel Core i9 processor and GeForce RTX 3070 Ti. Its properly calibrated and responsive screen allows you to fully enjoy video games, with or without raytracing enabled. However, the quality of the plastics does not match the performance, nor does the cooling system which, unfortunately, struggles to cool the whole, limiting the capabilities of the whole.