Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 review (2022 GU603ZW model)

42 Comments

  1. js

    March 11, 2022 at 6:20 pm

    Thanks for review. Could you also test what performance hit can be excepted from single channel DDR5 memory? Because it is not clear what we should expect from changes which was made for DDR5.

    Also, would be really nice to test with 8GB stick (which should simulate case when you actually have 8GB on board and add 16GB later).

    • Andrei Girbea

      March 11, 2022 at 7:02 pm

      Hi, this is a good suggestion but at this point, I've already bagged the laptop for a return. Let me see if I can keep it to run more tests. If not, I'll test on a different laptop

  2. Cezary

    March 12, 2022 at 9:57 am

    damn it man, asus yet again have disappointed me, wanna grab myself a nice balance between performance for light gaming and lowish temps/fan noise for graphics design, but I am yet again not convinced on this one…guess i'll wait for G15 review and if that doesnt satisfy me Ill just have to grab the Raider76

    • Andrei Girbea

      March 12, 2022 at 10:35 am

      I'm curious, what doesn't convince you about this one?

      • Pete

        March 12, 2022 at 10:46 pm

        Not OP but;
        The pricing on these things is outrageous. This is especially true for M & G series because the chips don't even perform at their max capability.
        The fact that Alienware have prices that are equal to Asus, MSI, Lenovo etc.. (or even lower actually with a voucher) should be a sign of how off the mark all these companies are. At least with MSI GE you get the top dog performance…

        It sounds funny when you say out loud but Alienware X series are a bargain in Europe this year, wrt/ devices all these companies shit out. I hope you get the review some.

        Anyway I think these prices won't last more than 3 months and we will get very steep discounts in june/july, especially so as we get closer and closer to lovelace and rdna3.

      • Andrei Girbea

        March 14, 2022 at 10:25 am

        yeah, laptop prices have gone up significantly this year. But then again, everything is more expensive, not just computers. Inflation and shortages are affecting this segment as well as everything else

      • Cezary

        March 12, 2022 at 11:06 pm

        This year im mainly looking at playing elden ring on a 4k tv, so this one will struggle and for like 150$ more i can have the ge76 raider with 3070ti,though i just noticed msi removed dci p3s from their screens specs of raider on official website which is a must for me… so im in a pickle now… I mean this one isnt bad but i have No headphones and since im willing to pay as much for a laptop id like it to replace a console at Times the noise, temps and performance might not be adequate to the price tag…

      • Andrei Girbea

        March 14, 2022 at 10:27 am

        The raider is something else, a thicker and heavier computer. Sure, the performance is superior, but then again a comparison is not fair. You can compare it with a Scar 17, but not with this thinner design.

      • Cezary

        March 14, 2022 at 2:48 pm

        For sure Andrei, I mean clearly Raider is superior in terms of raw power and M16 kinda wins in batterylife/portability and probably screen, it's just that literally where I live both M16 and GE76 with i7 and 3070ti cost almost the same price, which is insane and If I had to choose right now, I'd probably go for Raider which will be more futureproof, I just need to confirm if it has 100% DCI P3…

      • Andrei Girbea

        March 14, 2022 at 3:42 pm

        Got it. I haven't got to test the 2022 Raider yet, so idk about that screen. try to get in touch with the stores selling it

  3. Wolfie

    March 12, 2022 at 9:57 am

    Awesome review. Can I ask why is the cpu still running hot even after you reduced the PL1 value on the armory crate to 25W? I also saw that the value on HWInfo did not change (PL1 = 90W, PL2 = 135W).
    Am I missing something? Thank you for reading :)

    • Andrei Girbea

      March 12, 2022 at 10:40 am

      The CPU isn't running hot in any case, how did you get to that conclusion?

      PL readings in HWinfo are not affected by the settings in Manual, you have to look at the CPU's package power in the logs for the CPU allocated power.

      Also, it's important to understand that the CPU already runs at around 20-25W of power on the Turbo mode in most games, due to Dynamic Boost shifting power onto the dGPU. That's why the Manual mode doesn't impact things in any significant way on this laptop. Far Cry 5 is an exception.

      • Sammy

        March 13, 2022 at 8:25 am

        Hi, could you please post the model number for the power adapter?
        I'd like to purchase an extra one while I wait for my M16 to be shipped. Thanks.

      • Andrei Girbea

        March 14, 2022 at 10:29 am

        0A001-00970200 for the 240W main adapter.

  4. Aurelio

    March 15, 2022 at 3:54 am

    Hello, Andrei,
    wonderful review! Incredibly detailed, as always (makes it so much easier to believe in the results and in your conclusions).

    I also loved the response you gave in the comments:
    "But then again, everything is more expensive, not just computers. Inflation and shortages are affecting this segment as well"

    I too was outraged by the prices on these 12th gen laptops, and this explanation (more of a reminder, really) helped placate a little bit of that. Still… It does not help that much if we (or most of us, I reckon) can't elevate our spending up to this high.

    I would immensely appreciate it if you could also review the "lowest" spec of one of these machines; something like an i7-12700H or i5-12500H with a RTX 3050 ti or RTX 3050.

    Once again, many thanks for all your hard work.

    • Andrei Girbea

      March 15, 2022 at 11:07 am

      thanks. No guarantee I can do that configuration, but I'll try.

  5. Raleigh

    March 20, 2022 at 3:56 pm

    How would you compare the portability between G14 and M16? I'm torn between them. Some say the G14 may feel heavier because it's so compact.

    • Andrei Girbea

      March 21, 2022 at 10:57 am

      The M16 is a larger laptop. Here's a pic of the m16, g15 and g14 (2021 model, but the 2022 is about the same size): https://www.ultrabookreview.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/interiors.jpg . It's also heavier by .7 lbs. The G14 is definitely the more portable design to me. I don't understand how it could "feel heavier" when it is clearly not.

    • Ben

      April 3, 2022 at 7:41 am

      G14 def more portable. I have my corporate Latitude. G14 def is comparable. M16 feels like a 15.6 laptop so if you’re familiar with 15.6, m16 feels like that.

      See pic of mine: https://imgur.com/lnkfCat
      (2021 G14, 2022 M16 3070ti, work latitude)

  6. wished

    March 29, 2022 at 12:14 am

    Thank you for this great review!

    I´m also torn between the M16 and the G14. Do you think the G14 display is big enough for gaming? Or is it only worth gaming with an extern monitor?

    Another Question is: Do you think the G14 you also reviewed is good enough for the next few years of gaming in high quality? (native 2k I mean)

    • Andrei Girbea

      March 29, 2022 at 9:10 am

      I can't answer these for you. Over the years, I've been a fan of smaller-screen portable laptops, but more recently I preffer having a larger screen for work, so for me, an external monitor would be a must on both. The performance of the AMD chips is OK for the money you're paying. The nvidia chips are more capable, but also more expensive.

    • Ben

      April 3, 2022 at 7:43 am

      Depends on game. MMO def feels small compared to M16. See my comparison picture above in other posts.

  7. Matt

    March 29, 2022 at 10:14 am

    What an excellent and thorough review.

  8. Balaur

    March 31, 2022 at 10:39 pm

    Why in Time spy with turbo the CPU score is aprox 10k? I saw scores like 13k on reviews in the same situation

    • Andrei Girbea

      April 1, 2022 at 11:32 am

      Fair question, but that's what I got. It's low for this i9 and not properly correlated with the Fire Strike CPU scores and others, so take it with a lump of salt.

  9. Milad

    April 7, 2022 at 1:53 pm

    Hi,ty so much for suh a great review.
    Im llanning to vuy a gaming laptop,but at same time i care about the material,display quality and alittle about battery. In my country,M16 with i7 12700h with rtx3060 120W and Rog strix G15 r9 6900hx with rtx3060 140W cost same. And at same time M16 with i9 12900h with rtx3070ti 120W and Rog scar 15 with i9 12900h with rtx3070ti 150W cost same!
    Im aware of how powerful the 12th gen is,and i am also aware of almost everything avout laptops and all details. But cuz of my budget,i didnt have a laptop before ,and i dont want risk! I like the M16 and i dont mind the on board ram and just 1 slot upgradable or the 120W GPU,but the screen as u know cuz of the heat it recieves,i am afraid of buying it and it gonna be useless after a time! The chassy and material and touchpad ,r perfect on M16. But cuz of that problem i said,i dont know what to do. In my country all Alienware and MSI laptops cost almost 2x of their ligal price. So,help me pls,cux i rly love the 12th gen,lol,and i write what i value in the laptop. I hooe u help me) Ty for reading.

    • Andrei Girbea

      April 7, 2022 at 2:26 pm

      Hi. Yes, the bottom of the screen runs hotter than I'd preffer, but it's within reasonable limits that should not affect long-term reliability. Are you living in a hot country by any chance? If yes, that could be a reason not to go with the M16

  10. Daniel

    April 20, 2022 at 2:54 am

    Hi Andrei,
    As always, you wrote an excellent review, thank you.
    Are you aware of any other great laptop with a high end CPU ( like 12700h or 6800h) without a fancy dGPU for software development with an upgradable 32GB+ RAM?
    I am not sure if it is worth paying extra for a gaming laptop like this or the new lenovo legion 5 when the dGPU will almost never be used at its highest potential.

    • Andrei Girbea

      April 20, 2022 at 8:40 am

      You can find CPU-only configurations without a dGPU in some 14-inch devices, but not with upgradable RAM. Your best bet is to go with one of these options with a dGPU, but aim for the lower-tier 3050/3050Ti so you don't pay too much extra for the graphics. The RAM is partially soldered on the M16, so not ideal.

  11. Brian

    April 25, 2022 at 5:00 pm

    Hi Andrea, thank you for the very thorough review. There is one little detail that I cannot find in your review: if we close the the lid of the laptop does the cooling still function optimally?

  12. Andrew C.

    April 30, 2022 at 1:56 am

    Hi Andrei ,

    Wow the most thorough review yet. I've been comparing all of the 3080 ti laptops as a desktop replacement for my 3D workflow. The razer 17 seems to be the only one readily available right now as well as the Rog Strix SCAR 15 3080ti. Do you have thoughts on those and do you know when the M16 may be coming out for release?

    • Andrei Girbea

      April 30, 2022 at 9:45 am

      We haven't tested this gen of the Razer 17 yet, so idk about that. If you can, I'd wait a little bit, Intel H55 is coming out in a few weeks and it could make a difference for full-size 17-inch desktop replacements

  13. Thomas

    May 4, 2022 at 9:14 pm

    May I ask about the M16 RTX 3080 ti version? It's the only one available here in Denmark and right now its discounted and costs 2987 Euros. I'm considering buying it. Will it be a good purchase and worth the money? I'm going to use it as my desktop replacement and play games such as Elden Ring, Elder Scrolls Online, Starfield, Mass Effect Andromeda, Sekiro. I plan to keep it for 3 years.
    Take care and thanks for all the awesome and detailed reviews.

    • Andrei Girbea

      May 5, 2022 at 9:51 am

      I haven't tested the 3080Ti. I expect around 5-15% better performance in GPU loads, and potentially more in RT activities and certain workloads that would benefit from the extra amount of vRAM. Not worth it for gaming IMO.. perhaps yu can contact Asus and ask about the 3070Ti availability, maybe they'll have that as well in the near future.

  14. Daniel

    May 18, 2022 at 7:22 am

    Hi Andrei. If you still have the laptop in your possession,could you please post some screenshots of the stock fan profiles(graphs) from Armory Crate.If not,at least consider doing it in feature reviews.

    Reason: Some of us who reinstall Windows and not using Armory Crate at all,relying on third-party tools,like ATROFAC(https://github.com/cronosun/atrofac) to manage the fans.One can set or alter the stock profiles,even create manual one but so far no one(even the developer) can answer what is the setup of any of the stock profiles. It will help alot to many of us. I don't even have the M16(Zephyrus M15 here) but at this point i'll take whatever. Thanks in advance.

    • Andrei Girbea

      May 18, 2022 at 10:33 am

      I don't have the laptop around anymore. I'll consider it, but can't promise it for every review. I already have a lot of things on my plate for each review, and we're a very small team here so have to manage our resources as efficiently as possible if the project is to survive long-term

  15. Jae

    June 9, 2022 at 7:48 pm

    Performance seems worse than a 6700S on Silent mode?
    How is the M16 in USB-C 100w mode?

  16. AlexS

    June 24, 2022 at 9:41 pm

    Interesting that 120w 3070ti is at level of my 3060 at 130w in Blender Optix render : 12 seconds.

    So what is the point besides the memory?

  17. Fran

    September 13, 2022 at 9:00 am

    On Reddit there are some users with problems on the screen due to the heat expelled. It is a design error.

  18. Daniel

    September 17, 2022 at 9:09 pm

    Yes. It seems that the risk of screen damage caused by the fan exhaust makes Asus to recall the M16. People are reporting this here:
    https://www.reddit.com/r/ASUSROG/comments/voucck/2021_asus_m16_exhaust_fans_heat_damaging_screen/?utm_medium=android_app&utm_source=share

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