Gadget news
Google Chrome is getting five big address bar updates
4:51 am | October 19, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Mobile phones news | Tags: | Comments: Off

The most used web browser on Earth is getting some important updates for its address bar. Today Google has announced five of them, and they are all meant to make your use of the address bar more efficient. First, autocompletion has become smarter. Previously, Chrome would only autocomplete URLs in the address bar if you typed the beginning of one correctly. But now, starting on desktop, the address bar will autocomplete URLs based on any word you've previously used to search for a website. So, in Google's example, if in the past you searched for "flights" and ended up on Google Flights,...

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 review: an all-in-one with plenty of style
6:16 pm | June 27, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27: One-minute review

Our previous experiences with Lenovo’s all-in-one desktops from the IdeaCentre AIO 5 to Yoga A940 have all mentioned well-thought out designs with a feature rich package despite some issues. The same can be said for the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27. 

Everything about the all-in-one is aesthetically pleasing from first glance including the slightly sloped base featuring phone charger and silver beams holding up that gorgeous 27-inch touchscreen 1440p display. Then there’s the retractable full-HD webcam coming from the last-gen IdeaCentre AIO 5 at the top alongside JBL certified speakers underneath the display. Doesn’t matter if it’s an office space, library, classroom or home as a family computer, the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 is very easy to look at. 

Beyond that is an all-in-one desktop featuring a 12th gen 12 core Intel i5 with integrated UHD graphics chip, 8GB DDR5 and 512GB SSD. Depending on where potential buyers get the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27, there are options to upgrade RAM alongside SSD storage. Regardless, the base 8GB of RAM did hold back performance during our time with the all-in-one. 

Though the configuration is enough for basic computing tasks such as web browsing and Windows Office Suite of software, that’s about it. Even when using Google Chrome, the 8GB RAM limits the amount of tabs that can be open without slowing down or flat out crashing. That doesn’t even count other issues with the desktop such as having a wanky phone charger in the base. 

Potential buyers who can get past those issues and are looking for a sub-$1,000 computer solely for general tasks may get plenty of mileage out of the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27. Just be ready to manage expectations after hitting that power button. 

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27: Price & availability

A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • Available now in the U.S.
  • U.S. prices are $1,239.99 or $1,319.99 depending on configuration

Though the review configuration we received is valued at $1,239.99, buyers looking to get the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 with a 12th-generation Intel Core i5-12500H with Intel UHD graphics, 8GB DDR5 RAM, and 512GB SSD on the manufacturer’s online store for $899.99. 

Through Lenovo’s online store, there is another option featuring a 13th-gen Intel Core i7-13700H with Iris Xe integrated graphics, 16GB DDR5 RAM, and a 512GB SSD for $1,319.99, though we've seen it marked down to $1,029.99 on Lenovo's website. 

The IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 was available in the UK until recently, with two configurations at the lower £949 price point and a higher £1,249 configuration with both coming with 512GB SSD storage. The cheaper model featured a 12th-gen Intel Core i5-12500H and 8GB DDR5 RAM. Those who want a bit more performance can get the higher-priced configuration featuring a 13th-gen Intel Core i7-13700H and 16GB RAM. 

We've reached out to Lenovo to get clarification on future availability in the UK and will update this review if we hear back from the company. Unfortunately, there currently isn’t a way to get Lenovo's latest all-in-one in Australia.

If the operating system doesn’t necessarily matter much, it’s probably best to look into the iMac or HP Chromebase. Windows loyalists who may have deeper pockets can also look into the HP Envy 34. Regardless of what configuration one goes for though, the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 is a pretty decent bang-for-buck. 

  • Value score: 4 / 5

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27: Specs

The Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 currently comes in two configurations in the United States. 

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27: Design

A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • The dual bar connection between the base and display is aesthetically pleasing
  • There are plenty of ports
  • Often times, it’s difficult to get the wireless phone charger working

The strongest attribute working in the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27’s favor is the design. Out of the box, the all-in-one is ready to go and the only thing that needs to be plugged in is the power. Weighing only 24 lbs, the double bar stand allows it to be easily gripped and placed. Positioning the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 display is pretty easy as well. The included wireless keyboard and mouse come ready to use and includes a small transmitter that easily connects to both. 

Though they won’t be making anyone’s best keyboard and mouse list, they do the job well enough. Also, the battery life for both lasts long enough to go a while before replacing batteries. When it comes to usability, the mouse is smooth and comfortable. The wireless keyboard has some media controls alongside shortcut keys for various apps like the default web browser and calculator. 

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A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
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A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
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A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
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A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
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A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
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A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)

There are plenty of ports available including a handful of USB-A, two USB-C variants, one HDMI-out port, one HDMI-in port, a combo headphone/mic jack, and an ethernet port. The HDMI-in port does allow users to either plug in another desktop, laptop or even gaming console. For added measure, there’s even an input switch button above the power button in the rear.

Putting visual and audio capabilities into consideration, the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 could be considered one of the best in its class. The 1440p touchscreen display with its 99 Hz refresh rate features anti-glare and 350 nits. Image quality blends clarity and crisp colors that make looking at websites, creating documents and watching video a comfortable experience.

Adding to that are the JBL certified speakers that also feature Dolby Audio Premium. Due to the two 3W tweeters and single 5W woofer, audio sounds great alongside having plenty of volume. Similar to the previous generation AIO 5, a retractable HD webcam can be easily lifted from the top rear.

Even though the base features a Qi-certified wireless charger, it was difficult to actually get it working. We tried various mobile devices from iPhones to Android devices and even wireless headphone cases. It took multiple tries to start the charging process on the compatible devices.

  • Design score: 4.5 / 5

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27: Performance

A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • Using simple software like Microsoft Office Suite,Spotify and Google Chrome worked without issue
  • Having the lower 8GB RAM configuration can hit performance peeks if too many web browser tabs are open

Here's how the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

PCMark 10: 5,535
3DMark Night Raid 13,716: ; Fire Strike: 3,632; Time Spy: 1,352
CinebenchR23 (multi-core): 13,233
GeekBench 6: (single-core); 2,125 (multi-core) 8,744
Civilization VI: (1080p Low) 59 fps  (1080p High) 31 fps 

As mentioned above, the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 doesn’t necessarily shine in the performance sector. Having only 8GB RAM in the base configuration limits the type of task and the amount of tasks one can do at a time. 

General computing tasks like web-browsing, checking emails and watching HD video content is about all the all-in-one can do. If things get too hectic performance wise, the internal fans will get loud enough to be audible. On a good note, the high volume never hurt audio too much.

Even then, users may be limited to the amount of web browser tabs that can be opened at one time. It makes sense for these kinds of desktops to be used in libraries, schools, offices and spaces where things like Word or Powerpoint documents need to be done. Users who may be working on a college essay while playing music on Spotify in the background will find the set up sufficient. 

Don’t expect to play any visually complex games on the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 either. During our Civilization VI test, we were able to get around 31 fps on high settings and about 59 fps on lower settings at 1080p. 

Trying to run it at the display’s native resolution will further hurt performance too. At best, the only games that’ll run without much issue on these all-in-ones are titles like Among Us, Roblox, and Minecraft.

  • Performance score: 3 / 5

Should you buy the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27?

A Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 on a desk

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)

Buy it if...

You need an affordable and stylish all-in-one desktop
For a sub $1,000 all-in-one desktop, the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 looks and acts the part in making general computing tasks an easy experience.

You want commendable display and audio
The 27-inch 1440p display with a 99 Hz refresh rate features good image quality, while the JBL certified speakers sound really remarkable.

You require a good wireless mouse and keyboard combo
Besides offering good battery life for both, the keyboard and mouse offer good functionality where it counts the most. 

Don't buy it if...

You require an all-in-one desktop that is more performance oriented
The general performance of the IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 is a bit below average. Users who own this all-in-one desktop are better off keeping things simple. 

You need a quieter cooling set-up
When under serious performance pressure, the desktop can get loud. Thankfully, it’s never loud enough to distract from the awesome speakers but it is noticeable. 

You want features that actually work without issues
The Qi-certified wireless charger should be a standout feature but doesn’t work very well and sometimes at all. 

Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27: Also consider

If my Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 has you considering other options, here are two more all-in-one PCs to consider...

How I tested the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27

I tested the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 5i 27 over a week's time. During that period, most of my time was spent utilizing various websites through Google Chrome. Outside of emails and social media, we tried various video streaming services including YouTube. 

Though gaming isn’t a focus, some of the games played were Roblox and Minecraft. To test out the webcam, I took some photos through the camera app and Google Meet, while charging my phone using the built-in charger in the base.

In addition, I ran TechRadar's standard suite of benchmarks to measure performance.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed June 2023

Dell XPS Desktop (8960) review: a formidable gaming PC disguised as a lowly work computer
6:00 pm | May 29, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: , , , | Comments: Off

Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Two-minute review

Once upon a time, the Dell XPS Desktop line had something to offer everyone, from the budget-minded to those who have the money to splurge. Not to be melodramatic or anything, but those days, just like the Dell XPS 2-in-1 we once knew and loved, are gone. 

That’s what it looks like, at least.

It looks like Dell is making some massive changes to its lineups. The Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 has undergone a massive overhaul last year, abandoning its gorgeous chassis for a flappy keyboard folio. And now, it looks like it’s abandoned the mid-range models of one of the best desktop PCs in existence in favor of the premium and therefore more powerful configurations. 

As I’m writing this review, I’m looking at a hefty $2,809.99 (about £2,230, AU$4,220) starting configuration, which is A LOT for a base model. And, Dell hasn’t mentioned anything about cheaper models to follow later.

I’m not actually sure what Dell’s next move is. It’s possible that it is getting ready to roll out a budget desktop PC line – our Components Editor got excited at the prospect of a desktop version of the purple-and-teal Dell G15. And it’s entirely possible that Dell is simply done making cheap desktop computers. We’ll just have to wait and see, I guess.

Whatever Dell’s intentions are, it’s hard to deny its consistency when it comes to releasing impressive builds. The Dell XPS Desktop (8960) is a powerful piece of kit, one that isn’t just for work but lends itself well to gaming. And not just gaming either but gaming on Ultra with DLSS and ray tracing turned on, making it one of the best gaming PCs in 2023.

It’s an absolute powerhouse. The question though is it worth the splurge especially when the chassis itself looks design was more of an afterthought rather than an important consideration. That’s what I’m here to find out.

Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Price & availability

  • How much does it cost? From $2,809.99 (about £2,230, AU$4,220)
  • When is it available? Available now
  • Where can you get it? Available in the US (UK and Australia have different configurations and prices)

I would love nothing more than to give the Dell XPS Desktop (8960) a five-star rating, but holy guacamole! That price tag will make your eyes water and your bank account implode into nothing. The base configuration alone will set you back a hefty $2,809.99 (about £2,230, AU$4,220), which is a hard and massive pill to swallow for most people, even business.

Go for our review configuration, which is available in both the US and the UK, and babe, you might as well sell your house. That $3,209.99 / £2,859 (about AU$4,925) will make you want to declare bankruptcy.

Bear in mind that the UK and Australia have their own configurations, with the UK offering a much cheaper if less powerful base model and Australia not having any of the RTX 4000-powered options on hand, which means they’re slightly more affordable.

  • Price score: 2.5 / 5

Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Specs

The Dell XPS Desktop (8960) comes in four configurations, our review model being the mid-range option with its Intel Core i7-13700K chip, RTX 4080 GPU, 32GB RAM, and 1TB SSD storage capacity. This configuration is available in the US and the UK.

The strange thing about the Dell XPS Desktop (8960) is Dell seemed to have forgotten to synchronize its configurations across regions and just went with it. So what we’re dealing with is a hodge-podge of models that aren’t available in all regions.

We’ve listed the US configurations below, but if you’re in the UK and Australia, know that you likely have a different base model and top configuration available to you.

In the UK, all of the specs of the base model are the same with the US base model except for graphics: it comes with an Intel UHD Graphics 770, which does make it less powerful but has the advantage of being much more affordable. 

Sadly for Australian customers, the RTX 4000 series cards are not available in any of the Dell XPS Desktop (8960) at the time of writing. And you also only have the budget and mid-range RTX 3000 on hand.

  • Specs score: 3.5 / 5

Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Design

  • Plain chassis
  • Lots of ports on hand
  • Great ventilation

The Dell XPS Desktop (8960) is neither small nor overly large, and it fits nicely just about anywhere – on top of your desk, under it. Use your leg power when lifting it, however, as it is pretty heavy, what with that massive GPU inside. 

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Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)
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Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

To ensure that those powerful internals are staying cool under pressure, by the way, Dell put vents in front, on one of the side panels, and in the back. And I’m pretty sure they help with heat dissipation, which is why not only is this PC cool and quiet even when handling intensive tasks, but it also delivers top-notch untethered performance.

Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

It has inherited that minimalist Dell XPS Desktop design from its predecessors, but I honestly question the design choice here. That design worked in the past few years, especially in the white colorway. But not only is that color option gone, but the look itself is becoming a little dated. 

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: we’re in our maximalist era, and we want fun design and funky colors. And not updating this look – not to mention, making it available in lifeless platinum and murky graphite – was a huge oversight. Hopefully, Dell makes up for it on future models.

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Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)
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Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Luckily, there are a whole lot of ports to keep you (and your peripherals) connected. There are two USB ports, one USB-C, and one 3.5mm jack that are easily accessible in the front, of course. But a nice bonus is the SD card reader right above all of them. Since this desktop PC is ideal for content creation, that reader will definitely come in handy. Meanwhile, the back has a whole lot more: four USBs, one USB-C, an Ethernet, three DisplayPorts, a set of six audio inputs, and an HDMI port. If you’re a multiple display kind of gamer or creator, you won’t run out of ports to connect those monitors.

  • Design score: 4 / 5

Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Performance

  • Breathtaking gaming performance
  • Excellent for content creation
  • Keeps it chill and quiet under pressure
Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Benchmarks

Here's how the Dell XPS Desktop (8960) performed in our suite of benchmark tests:
3DMark: Fire Strike: 48,208; Time Spy: 25,285; Fire Strike Ultra: 17,261
GeekBench 6: 2,676 (single-core); 16,957 (multi-core)
Metro Exodus Enhanced Edition (1080p, Ultra):
147 fps; (1080p, High): 153 fps
Red Dead Redemption 2 (1080p, Ultra): 77 fps; (1080p, Medium): 162 fps
Dirt 5 (1080p): 245.3 fps; (4K): 129.8 fps
25GB File Copy: 2,047 MBps
Handbrake 1.6: 2m 58s
CrossMark: Overall: 2,124 Productivity: 1,942 Creativity: 2,480 Responsiveness: 1,747  

Historically, the higher configurations of the Dell XPS Desktop have always made for great gaming PCs, but the Dell XPS Desktop (8960) is something else entirely. This kept up with the likes of the Lenovo Legion Tower 7i and the Alienware Aurora R15, both of which are made specifically for gaming.

Running it through our suite of benchmarks, it has managed to produce results in DiRT 5, Grand Theft Auto V, and Metro Exodus at 1080p that’s comparable to the more powerful RTX 4090-powered Alienware Aurora R15. Although it is worth noting that the R15 leaves it in the dust in 4K gaming performance. Meanwhile, it comes neck and neck with the Lenovo Legion Tower 7i in both 1080p and 4K gaming.

Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

In the real world, it handles the most demanding games without breaking a sweat. During my testing, it ran Hogwarts Legacy at 4K 60fps on high settings and with ray tracing and DLSS on like butter, without signs of stuttering. Same with Cyberpunk 2077 on ultra also with ray tracing and DLSS on even during heavy combat. What’s even more astounding here is that not once did it get loud or hot.

Editing and batch exporting high-res images in Lightroom on this computer is a breeze. As is opening 20 or more Google Chrome tabs at the same time, a few of which are running streaming services. There were no signs of slowdowns, with each succeeding tab opening a page quickly. What’s more, it even zipped past both gaming PCs in our drive speed test, scoring a whopping 2,047MBps next to the Tower 7i’s 1,152MBps and the R15’s 1,340MBps.

If you are looking for brute strength and sheer power for both gaming and creative work, this one has proven itself to be an absolute ace.

  • Performance score: 5 / 5

Should you buy the Dell XPS Desktop (8960)?

Dell XPS Desktop (8960) on a table

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)

Buy it if...

You need an extra strength PC
If you want brute strength, you’re definitely getting a herculean PC here that can handle demanding games like Hogwarts Legacy and Cyberpunk 2077 on Ultra settings and the heaviest content creation workloads.

You’re not economizing like the rest of us
With sheer power comes an empty bank account, but hey, if you want to blow some of your savings – they’re just sitting there anyway – or you have more money than you can spend, go get it then.

You like that nondescript aesthetic
That somber Dell XPS Desktop look may look great on a white finish, but Dells now only have a platinum and a graphite finish. If you like that though because you’re not into showy devices, this is perfect for you.

Don't buy it if...

You don’t really need all that power
If you don’t need a premium discrete GPU – heck, I’ve been gaming and editing my photos on a 3060 PC, and I’m getting on just fine – then there are a lot of better value options out there. Shop around first before you decide to commit to this.

Dell XPS Desktop (8960): Also consider

If the Dell XPS Desktop (8960) has you considering other options, here are two more gaming PCs to consider...

How I tested the Dell XPS Desktop (8960)

  • Tested for five days, using it as my work and gaming PC
  • Besides putting it through real-world applications, our benchmarks team also ran it through our suite of benchmarks
  • Used games like Cyberpunk 2077, Hogwarts Legacy, Google Chrome, Lightroom and Photoshop on top of our usual benchmark apps

Whenever I’m testing a PC or a laptop, I typically use it for several days to a few weeks and utilizing it as my main work and gaming computer during that time. That’s exactly what I did with the Dell XPS Desktop (8960), though I only used it for five days this time around.

Besides stress-testing it by putting it through real-world scenarios like playing Cyberpunk 2077 and Hogwarts Legacy on Ultra with DLSS and ray tracing on, I also used it for batch editing high-res images in Lightroom and Photoshop. Of course, our benchmarks team also ran it through our suite of benchmarks.

With years of extensive experience testing and reviewing computers, and as one of the Computing editors at TechRadar, I have all the right tools to determine whether or not a PC like this one is worth your time and money. You can trust me to put them through their paces and make the right recommendations.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed May 2023

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023)
4:03 am | May 16, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: , | Comments: Off

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Two-minute review

The Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 represents a strong contender for best gaming laptop of the year, following up the smaller Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 or dual screen Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16

Using the AMD-CPU-and-NVIDIA-GPU-set-up that’s become standard for the ROG brand, the latest Strix Scar 17 features a 16-core Ryzen 9 7945HX, 32GB RAM, 1TB of SSD and the option of either an RTX 4090 or 4080. In the U.S., there are two versions for both GPU options each, so you at least have some variety. The specs are more than enough to play some of the best PC games like Cyberpunk 2077 to Metro: Exodus at max settings with little effort.

It doesn’t hurt that the visual/audio presentation is fairly strong as well. The Strix Scar 17 features a lovely 17-inch 1440p display that offers a 240 refresh rate which is good enough for competitive gamers. Meanwhile, being Dolby Vision-capable ensures that HDR enhances images even further. 

Audio is even more impressive through being both Dolby Atmos and Hi-Res Audio certified through its dual speakers. Alongside music and films sounding great, the speakers also offer 5.1.2 channel virtual surround sound which is useful for gamers looking for more situational awareness when playing Call of Duty: Warzone or Fortnite. However, the Strix Scar 17 does come with some limitations. 

The very limited battery life means users will usually need to have this plugged up regularly. Attempting to use the laptop on a plane ride and the like for tasks outside of general browsing and video content viewing can drain the Strix Scar 17 fairly quickly. 

Meanwhile, the design does have a lot of ports but lacks biometric security or a card reader for gamers leaning more toward creative software. Gamers who don’t care about creating or video conferencing on the regular, however, should be fine. Of course, the Strix Scar 17 comes at a steep price regardless of what NVIDIA GPU set-up potential purchasers use. 

That said, serious PC gamers with deep pockets who are only looking for the highest visual performance in a laptop form factor should strongly consider the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023). you won't be disappointed.

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Price & availability

An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • How much does it cost? Starting at $2,899.99 / £3,099.99 / AU$5,599.99
  • When is it available? It is available now
  • Where can you get it? You can get it in the US, UK, and Australia
  • $2,899.99 / £3,099.99 / AU$5,599

In the United States alone, there are four configurations available for purchase through Asus’ ROG store. Both RTX 4090 and 4080 configurations come with two different storage and RAM options. 

The Strix Scar 17 is going to cost $3,499.99 at the highest config, with RTX 4090, 32GB RAM, and 2TB SSD, which can even get you solid 4K video output if you want more than the 1440p display can provide. If that’s too much, though, the somewhere in-between $2,899.99 RTX 4080 provides 16GB RAM and 1TB SSD. This is good enough for 1440p with solid frame rates. 

In the UK, there are two versions available with one offering an RTX 4090 and 2TB SSD for £3,799 and 4080/1TB combo at the £3,099.99 price point. Both offer the same AMD Ryzen 9 and RAM set up. Australian buyers are only getting one AU$5,599 version featuring a RTX 4090, 16GB RAM and 1TB SSD. 

  • Price score: 4 / 5

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Specs

An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)

 The Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 currently comes in all configurations in the United States, two in the UK, and one in Australia, with no options to configure the models independently.

  • Specs score: 4.5 / 5

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Design

An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • Despite a plastic chassis, the laptop design is aesthetically bold yet sturdy
  • Keyboard features per-key lighting and feels comfortable to use
  • There are plenty of ports available though it would have been nice to have biometric security and SD Card

The matte-black plastic design of the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 chassis gives off an all-around aggressive look. Be mindful that it also smudges pretty easily as well; especially if hands are adequately moisturized. Like the previous iteration of the gaming laptop, the display hinge is offset to make room for the speakers and rear facing ports it sits near when opened. When closed, there is plenty of customizable lighting everywhere from the light bar that slightly wraps around the bottom to the ROG logo. 

There are also plenty of ports available on the ROG Strix Scar 17 starting with the right side's two USB-A ports and 3.5 audio combo jack. Meanwhile, the rear features a HDMI 2.1 port, two USB-C ports with DisplayPort support, an ethernet jack and charge port that connects through a fairly large power brick. It would have been nice to have an SD slot considering its powerful enough to edit various content on through Adobe Suite (and there's more than enough space in the honking big chassis for it). 

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An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

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An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

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An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

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An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

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An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

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An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)

Considering the 17-inch screen size and components stuffed in the laptop, it’s pretty large and may take some maneuvering to fit inside a backpack. Though some may have an issue with the matte-black plastic, it does help keep the ROG Strix Scar 17 weighting significantly under 10 lbs.

Once opened, the same wonderful RGB keyboard with per-key lighting remains as beautiful to look at as ever. This includes the five customizable macro keys that by default handle volume, mic on/off switch and fan speed among others. It doesn’t matter if it's browsing the web and sending emails or gaming, keystrokes on the mechanical feel pretty good. 

The lack of security features like a fingerprint scanner or webcam shutter feels behind-the-times, though. Gamers will need a separate mouse to play genres including shooters and RTS but general cursor movement on the touchpad is smooth.

  • Design score: 4 / 5

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Performance

An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • General gaming performance is as fantastic as ever
  • Image and audio accentuates gaming performance
  • Weak webcam makes video conferencing a hassle
Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) Benchmarks

Here's how the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

3DMark: Speed Way: 5318; Fire Strike: 41,391; Time Spy: 18,343
GeekBench 6: 2,746 (single-core); 15,730 (multi-core)
Total War: Warhammer III (1080p, Ultra):
150 fps; (1080p, Low): 336 fps
Cyberpunk 2077 (1080p, Ultra): 144 fps; (1080p, Low): 160 fps
Dirt 5 (1080p, Ultra): 181 fps; (1080p, Low): 239 fps
25GB File Copy transfer rate: 1,185.68 MBps
Handbrake 1.6: 2:47
CrossMark: Overall: 2,062 Productivity: 1,905 Creativity: 2,428 Responsiveness: 1,603
Web Surfing (Battery Informant): 4:20:53
PCMark 10 Battery Life: 1:24 

General computing tasks allow the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) to show off its relatively quiet nature and ability to stay cool on your lap. When it's gaming time, the laptop handles 1440p gaming without much problems. The ROG Strix Scar 17 really goes to work on modern titles with the ability to play big AAA games at max settings with respectable frame rates. 

There isn’t a better example than Cyberpunk 2077 which can play at 144 fps at ultra settings. Adding ray-tracing will slow that performance quite a bit, but thanks to the RTX GPU’s ability to perform DLSS upscaling, it can take ray-traced frame rates to respectable numbers. 

Other games from Forza Horizon 5 to Metro:Exodus perform just as well.  When it comes to more competitive leaning games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, motion performance is more than fine and input lag is nearly non-existent. Helps that the display itself provides crisp and clear image quality as well. 

This also makes the ROG Strix Scar 17 a great option for creatives. During our test of Handbrake 1.6, it encoded a roughly 12 minute 4K video to 1080p in about two minutes and 47 seconds. This means that users of Photoshop and Premiere Pro can get some quick export times. Add Dolby Vision into the mix and compatible video content looks phenomenal too. 

Speaker quality is great as well with punchy volume, solid bass and overall clarity. They also feature virtual surround sound and Dolby Atmos for compatible games alongside video content. Some gamers may feel more comfortable gaming on headphones but the internal speakers are good enough. 

One of the weaker elements in the ROG Strix Scar 17 is the 720p webcam. Beyond being really terrible in low light conditions, it’s fairly no frills. Individuals who are looking to stream, it’ll probably be best to invest in one of the best webcams for external use.

  • Performance score: 4.5 / 5

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Battery

An Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) on a desk with a pink desk mat

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • General computing task usage is around four hours.
  • Battery takes a little under two hours to charge.

Like many gaming laptops using the latest and most powerful CPU and GPU combinations, the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) features a fairly lackluster battery life. 

Thankfully, it’s good enough for four solid hours of general computing usage, according to my testing, so the battery should last long enough for a bi-coastal trip if watching video content or web browsing. 

Doing anything beyond that like attempting to play any game with heft to it like Forza Horizon 5 without being plugged in is going to wear down the battery life fairly quickly, unfortunately, but you knew that coming in. Gaming on a gaming laptop just isn't something you can effectively do on battery power. 

The Strix Scar 17 does make the most out of its 90WHr battery, however, with a full recharge via its large power brick taking just a couple of hours.  

  • Battery score: 2.5 / 5

Should you buy the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023)?

Buy it if...

You want a 1440p leaning gaming laptop with real performance
The AMD Ryzen 9 and NVIDIA RTX 4090 combo allows many modern games to play at max settings with high frame rates.

You require a respectable audio/visual set up
Having a 17-inch 1440p display with a 240Hz refresh rate and Dolby Vision makes viewing anything on the gaming laptop a pleasure. 

Don't buy it if...

You want above average battery life
Gaming without the large power pack is going to be fairly difficult on the Strix Scar 17. On its own, users will get under four or so hours of usage out of the laptop.

Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023): Also consider

If the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023) has you considering other options, here are two more gaming laptops to consider...

How I tested the Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 (2023)

  • I tested the gaming laptop for a little over a week
  • I played various games including Cyberpunk 2077, Forza Horizon 5, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II and Bright Memory: Infinite
  • I used other apps used included Google Chrome alongside Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro

The Asus ROG Strix Scar 17 was tested for a little over a week, split between general computing, creative suites, and plenty of games. Games played including Cyberpunk 2077 and Forza Horizon 5 among others. 

Those titles were played at full 1440p resolution at max settings, while several photos for this review were edited on Photoshop and a sample 1080p video file was exported through Premiere Pro. Between those times, I browsed the web through Google Chrome and opened several dozen tabs.

I've been testing and reviewing gaming laptops for several years now, and as a professional photographer, among other creative pursuits, I know my way around Adobe Creative Cloud apps and what kind of performance to expect from a high quality laptop with hardware this powerful.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed May 2023

Google Chrome review
6:00 pm | July 26, 2017

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

Google Chrome needs no introduction. For many of us, Google Chrome was our first browser. Credit to its simplicity and exceptionally high uptime, Chrome remains the #1 browser in searches, user base, integrations, and more.

As per its last report, Google's average uptime is 99.9%, which is around 8.77 hours of downtime per year. Ask yourself: how often have you seen Chrome down?

If you’re looking for an all-in-one browser that’s fast, secure, and easy to use, Chrome could be the best web browser for you. Read on for more details.

Google Chrome: Features

Google Chrome offers a built-in password manager that automatically asks if you want to save your passwords and then later offers to autofill when you log back in. While you might need to pay a third party for this service with other browsers, Google does it for free.

Its dark mode is perfect for night owls. If you don't want the pertinent blue light to hurt your eyes, this feature is for you. Google also lets you experiment with many other artistic themes along with the default and dark themes.

The Chrome browser is automatically integrated with other Google products such as Google Drive, Google Sheets, and Google Docs. If you look up something on the browser, all your files containing that keyword will pop up in the suggestions.

Tab management is a cakewalk with Google Chrome. To increase your productivity, Google lets you open and manage multiple tabs at once. You can also group tabs with similar topics so that you keep track of all of them in the crowd. 

The best feature of Google’s tab management is that it lets you pin tabs that you use frequently. This way, the pinned tab or website will open automatically, saving you the hassle of starting the process from the beginning.

Managing your other Google accounts is also quite easy. All you have to do is click on your profile picture in the top-right corner, and it’ll roll down a list of your other Google accounts. Having separate accounts is a great way to keep your professional and personal life apart.

Google analyzes your searches to see what exactly you’re interested in. This data is then used to create a personalized news feed for you on your mobile. 

For example, you might have noticed that if you research a new college course, all details regarding the best colleges and upcoming exam dates will pop up in your news feed — that’s Google Chrome’s doing.

Adding extensions like Google Translate or Google Keep (a tool that lets you save things in a click) further adds to its functionality.

Google Chrome: Privacy

Google Chrome has a built-in security system that protects you from malware and viruses even before they reach your device. It also uses high-level encryption to keep your data safe, especially during transit through emails.

However, despite all these claims of security and privacy, Chrome has often been accused of selling personal user data. Sure, almost every other browser does it, but Chrome does it more than anyone else. In fact, Google had many long-running consumer privacy lawsuits filed against it. One was settled just last year for a whopping $85 million.

So if you’re looking for a truly secure and private browser, you're much better off with Tor, Firefox, or Bravo.

Google Chrome: Ease of use

Google Chrome is undoubtedly an easy-to-use browser, at least on a basic level. Your first and most basic interaction with Chrome would be to look up things on the internet. Just open the app and type in your query in the search box located right in the center — it's impossible to miss it.

Next, you can access other Google apps via Chrome. Pretty straightforward again, Click on the dotted square next to your profile picture. All Google apps, such as YouTube, Drive, Contacts, Photos, Google Meet, etc., will pop right up. It won't take you long to learn your way around the app.

Google Chrome: Competitors

Google Chrome remains the number one choice of many users due to its wide availability. Unlike Opera or Firefox, a majority of devices and operating systems have Chrome as their default browser. 

Google’s number one competitor these days is Microsoft Edge. Sure, Edge's market share is far below Chrome, but it has a few points over Chrome with its tab management feature that lets you stack them vertically. Chrome, on the other hand, has only one option, and that’s to line them up horizontally.

Another benefit of using Edge is its unique feature for readers called “Immersive Reader.” Here, Edge transforms the page you’re reading into an ebook format for a better experience. Unfortunately, Chrome has no similar feature.

However, on the flip side, Chrome is faster at pushing out updates and fixing vulnerabilities with security patches. Edge does it, too, but it's certainly not as fast as Chrome.

Also, Chrome’s extension store is much better than Edge, or any other browser. You have 150,000+ options that are easy to add and will drastically improve your experience.

Google Chrome: Final verdict

Google Chrome is the most popular browser in the world. Of the billion online searches happening every month, Google Chrome claims more than 93% of it. So it's needless to say that Chrome is certainly a reliable and worthy browser that should surely win you over. 

Also, you won't have to go through too much trouble to get started with Chrome. The interface is quite simple, and while it offers enough options to maximize your experience, it doesn’t demand technical adeptness.

Once you settle in, have all your documents saved in the drive, upload your passwords to the password manager, and get your Gmail account — Chrome will offer an integrated experience and ecosystem that you’ll never want to leave.

Try secure private browsing with the best VPN service.

Review: Updated: Motorola Droid Razr M
3:00 am | March 17, 2013

Author: admin | Category: Cameras | Tags: , , , | Comments: None

Review: Updated: Motorola Droid Razr M

Introduction and Design

Update: The Droid Razr M has received an update to Android 4.1: Jelly Bean, bringing with it Google Now and host of other impro[……]

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Hands-on review: Vertu Ti
3:07 am | February 13, 2013

Author: admin | Category: Cameras | Tags: , , , | Comments: None

Hands-on review: Vertu Ti

The Vertu Ti is the first Android smartphone from the luxury smartphone maker, although it’s certainly not for everyone.

But is it for me, you ask. Hon[……]

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