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ASUS ROG Strix GL12 review: A fuss-free, powerful, and compact gaming desktop

By Kenny Yeo - 27 Aug 2018

Performance & Conclusion

Performance Analysis

To gauge the ROG Strix GL12’s performance, we will be running it through our usual suite of benchmarks and comparing it against our DIY graphics testbed system, which has been outfitted with a variety of graphics cards. Before we take a look at the ROG Strix GL12’s performance, it’s worth comparing its key specifications against that of our DIY system.

ROG Strix GL12 vs. DIY system
System ROG Strix GL12 DIY System
Chipset Intel Z370 Intel X99
Processor Intel Core i7-8700K Intel Core i7-6950X
Memory 64GB DDR4-2666MHz 16GB DDR4-2666MHz
Storage 512GB PCIe SSD 256GB Samsung SSD 840 Pro

The two systems are quite evenly matched so it is no surprise to see that the ROG Strix GL12 performed comparably against our DIY system when outfitted with the same GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card. Performance graphs are below if you wish to scrutinize their performance figures.



Cost vs DIY

There is a long-running assumption that assembled systems by branded manufacturers typically cost more than a self-assembled system made with off-the-shelf components but is that really true? Bearing in mind that the ROG Strix GL12 with our tested configuration costs S$3,998, let’s take a look at how much it would cost to assemble a comparable system with off-the-shelf components. Note that the prices quoted here are accurate at the time of writing and are rough estimates of what one can expect to pay.

Cost breakdown of a DIY system
Core i7-8700K processor $520
mATX Z370 motherboard $343
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 $1000
64GB RAM $1100
512GB PCIe SSD $400
2TB HDD $100
550W Gold PSU $150
Casing $150
Liquid-cooler $150
Total $3,913

In terms of price, it might surprise you to find that the ROG Strix GL12 actually costs about as much as a self-assembled system. The premium is very slight so that takes away one of the long-assumed advantages of DIY systems.

Price parity aside, the ROG Strix GL12 has one key advantage over self-assembled systems and that is with regard to warranties and repairs. Should anything go wrong with the system, it is far easier to simply take the entire system back to ASUS and have them troubleshoot and repair it than to have to do it yourself. Warranty for the ROG Strix GL12 is 3 years onsite, by the way. Troubleshooting a misbehaving PC is awfully tiresome and annoying because most of the time it is not immediately apparent where the fault lies, and that is me speaking from experience.

The ROG Strix GL12 comes with a 3-year long onsite warranty. (Image source: ASUS)

Let me give you an example. If the system doesn’t boot up, there can be a number of likely causes, including, but not limited to, the motherboard, processor, memory, or even the PSU or power cord. To pinpoint the exact cause is not only time consuming, it also requires you to have spare components lying around. You might have extra memory sticks lying around but processor and motherboard? How many people have extra processors in reserves for situations like this (unless you're stocked like our test lab)? You could pay someone to do it but that is going to cost you.


Final Thoughts

The ROG Strix GL12 is an ideal fuss-free desktop system for gamers seeking performance and convenience. (Image source: ASUS)

I won’t say the ROG Strix GL12’s styling is gorgeous but it is fairly generic and inoffensive enough that I think most gamers will have no qualms about it sitting on their desks. It is well put together and fairly compact too and has room for future upgrades. More importantly, performance is what you would expect from a high-end gaming system outfitted with a GeForce GTX 1080 card. Finally, the pricing is reasonable and the warranty period (3 years onsite) is quite generous. To sum up, for readers who don’t want to deal with the hassle of assembling a system, or the potential of having to troubleshoot a faulty self-assembled system, the ROG Strix GL12 is worth checking out.

  • Design 7.5
  • Features 8.5
  • Performance 8.5
  • Value 8.5
The Good
Good performance
Well put together
Well accessorized
Front-facing hot-swap SSD tray
Upgradeable and expandable
Reasonably priced
The Bad
Slightly boring design
No USB-C or Thunderbolt 3 ports
Transparent side panel is unwieldy to install
Unable to accommodate SLI configs