ASUS launched its ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 SE dual-screen gaming laptops back in April. The laptop came with latest AMD silicon paired with the best that Nvidia has to offer in mobile GPUs. It featured up to a Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU paired with RTX 3080 mobile graphics running at a maximum TDP of 130W. This spec sheet made the Zephyrus Duo 15 SE a frontrunner for the best (AMD) laptop available in the market.
However, while it did pack the Ryzen 9 5900H—a very mighty processor—that isn’t the flagship processor from AMD’s Cezanne lineup of mobile CPUs. That crown goes to the 5980HX, a direct competitor to Intel’s i9-11980HK, the top dog from Intel’s lineup of mobile CPUs. Both of these SKUs are unlocked which means they’re overclockable. The Ryzen 9 5980HX has so far not been available in any laptop whatsoever, but it’s about to make its introduction very soon.
The 5980HX has been sitting dormant hitherto. Laptop Under Budget was the first to spot a new variant of the Zephyrus Duo 15 SE on Newegg. This unreleased variant, named GX551QM-ES96, features the coveted Ryzen 9 5980HX processor paired with a RTX 3060 mobile GPU and a 300Hz 1080p display. This makes it so that the new Zephyrus Duo is the first laptop in the market to feature AMD’s flagship Cezanne-H processor.
The 5980HX is an 8-core, 16-thread mobile APU from AMD based on the latest Zen 3 microarchitecture. It has a base clock of 3.3Ghz and a maximum boost clock of 4.8Ghz. It also has 16MB of L3 cache and 4MB of L2 cache. While both the 5900HX and 5980HX have the same TDP rated at 45W+, the slight bump of 0.2Ghz in boost clocks on the 5980HX gives it the edge in gaming, where single-threaded performance is imperative to a better overall experience.
Apart from that, there is no difference between the two processors. The 5900HX has been the best-performing mobile gaming solution since its launch, beating Intel’s offerings in the same category. But, now it looks like the 5980HX is ready to dethrone the reigning champion. Once again folks, it’s AMD vs AMD. Yesterday, the 5980HX also made its first appearance on Userbenchmark, scoring 97% in its benchmark, the highest score for any mobile CPU on the site.
Zephyrus Duo 15 SE GX551QM-ES96 Specs
As for the listing itself, the laptop packs a 130W RTX 3060, 16GB of DDR4 3200Mhz memory, and a 1TB PCIe Gen 3 SSD. The RAM and storage are both upgradable up to 64GB and 2TB respectively. The screen is Full HD 1080p panel running at 300Hz. This isn’t the highest-end panel offered in the Zephyrus Duo 15 lineup as the 5900HX version comes kitted with a 4K 120Hz panel. But, for the gamer, this certainly is the most ideal setup as the 300Hz panel offers superior response times, which is likely more important to a gamer than a higher resolution. Similarly, we see an RTX 3060 in the listing whereas the top GPU offered in this lineup is the RTX 3080.
Further Details About The Laptop
Perhaps the most attractive feature of the Zephyrus Duo 15 SE is the secondary display right above the keyboard. The display, called the ROG ScreenPad Plus, is an independent 4K panel that can be used for multi-tasking. For example, if you’re streaming on Twitch, you can use the second set display to monitor your chat while the main 300Hz display is occupied with the game you’re playing. There are various other use cases of the ScreenPad as well, it can become an extension of your main screen allowing you to freely move around windows between the two screens, it can be used as a dedicated toolbar in a photo or video editing app, it can serve as a dedicated note-taking area in classes or meetings, and much more.
The dual screen functionality, paired with a processor as monstrous as the 5980HX will make this laptop a proper beast. Fortunately, ASUS has raised the bar for cooling as well so when the new version eventually goes on sale, you can expect this device to keep up with the cooling demands of the 5980HX comfortably. When opened, the dual screen sits raised from the keyboard deck, in turn, lifting up the laptop’s chassis slightly above ground. This allows for more effective airflow. Furthermore, heat pipes and fans populate the inside of the laptop to dissipate heat as fast as possible. A liquid metal TIM instead of standard non-conductive thermal paste on the silicon dies is used to further add to the cooling chops of this colossal laptop.