ROG Phone is a new exploration of ASUS in the gaming market that they have mastered through the Republic of Gamers line.
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Gaming smartphones lately have once again become a hot topic of conversation since the Razer Phone was first introduced. As a long time player in the gaming segment, ASUS seems to want to help show their expertise.
Then what about this ROG Phone? Is it really appropriate to enter the Republic of Gamers family? The following is a ROG Phone review from me.
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Designs that reflect the Republic of Gamers
ASUS ROG Phone has a very unusual design of smartphones in general even compared to other gaming smartphones such as the Razer Ph1. Bearing the name Republic of Gamers (ROG), this smartphone takes design references from the ROG laptop family.
Not following the 2018 trend that presents a full screen with bangs, ASUS prefers to embed an 18: 9 ratio screen with a thick bezel above and below. To take advantage of these empty areas, ASUS provides a bright orange accented stereo speaker that is located symmetrically. Also on the top bezel there is also a front camera and LED notification.
The screen is protected by Gorilla Glass 6 which is more resistant to scratch with a 2.5D design so fingers can move smoothly while on the back there is a 3D curved glass that feels very slippery, even I have a little trouble placing the ROG Phone on my thigh while sitting because it is continuously degenerate.
DNA from the design of the new ROG device is visible on the back of the smartph1. The backlit RGB eye logo that characterizes ROG is present at its center. The RGB light has several effects that can be used, namely Static, Breathing, Color Cycle, or Strobing.
Behind him also appears the outside of the Vapor Chamber cooling system that ASUS has pinned inside as well as a heat sink. At the same time there is also a finger scan sensor and dual camera configurations in a parallelogram-shaped area. The choice of designs makes ROG Phone has its own character that is not found on other smartphones.
The interesting thing about this ASUS ROG Phone is that there are 2 USB Type-C ports on the left side that can be used to connect smartphones to ROG accessories such as TwinView or Mobile Desktop Dock. It’s just that the orange colored port is prohibited from being used as usual, only for accessories.
The port also supports USB 3.1 Gen 1 so that it is faster than the other port located at the bottom of the smartph1. So the port can be used interchangeably to make it easier for you to play while charging a battery.
In addition, ROG Phone also has three Ultrasonic AirTriggers, 2 of which are located on the right side of the smartphone while the other is on the lower left side. This technology allows users to take advantage of Squeeze features or squeeze Android or as additional input when playing games.
Indeed, this smartphone feels heavy and weighs up to 200 grams, but I like the overall design choices that ASUS offers on this smartphone because it feels comfortable and looks different without too much.
Optimal Screen and Audio for Gaming
The ASUS ROG Phone has a 6-inch wide-screen AMOLED panel with a resolution of 2160 x 1080 pixels. Support refresh rate up to 90hz and 1ms response time is something I welcome both as a gamer because it will make the movement feel smoother and not blurry or blurry when moving fast because images can be displayed as much as 90 times every second.
The refresh rate can be changed to 60 Hz to save battery if desired. Besides that the screen also has a contrast ratio of 100,000: 1 and a color coverage of 108.6% DCI-P3 (sRGB 145%). This makes the screen of the ROG Phone capable of producing sharp images, detailed, and solid black so that it will provide a more satisfying multimedia content experience.
ROG Phone also has an Always On Panel feature for those who want a screen to continue to display information such as time, date, battery or others without having to unlock.
To enhance the multimedia experience, ASUS embeds 2 stereo speakers with dual amplifiers facing the user so they won’t be easily covered when playing games or using a smartphone in landscape mode.
The speakers are also equipped with 24-bit / 192KHz audio engine that supports Hi-Res Audio. The sound sounds very loud and remains clear when using in high volume so you don’t have to worry about breaking sound for you who prefer to use speakers when playing games.
But for those who prefer to use a headset or headphones there are additional surprises. ROG Phone offers DTS: X 1.0 technology that is capable of producing 7.1 surround sound, which is very useful when playing games, especially Virtual Reality games, so users will drift into the atmosphere more.
When playing PUBG Mobile using a headset, I can listen carefully from where the bullet is coming whether it is in front of me or behind me, the sound of the opponent’s footsteps, and the sound of explosions that echo more. Likewise, when watching a movie that has a surround channel, the sound spent feels like being in a movie theater.
In addition, the ROG Phone is also said to support Qualcomm aptX to transmit HD sound via Bluetooth connectivity. But unfortunately I can not try it because it does not have a headset that is able to take advantage of this technology.
As a gaming smartphone in the Republic of Gamers family, ASUS is certainly trying to bring the best performance available at the beginning of its launch.
The ROG Phone itself is managed by Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Octa-core, Adreno 630 GPU, 8GB LPDDR4X RAM, and 128 GB internal storage. The very high specifications will certainly guarantee the maximum gaming experience.
For starters, of course I run a synthetic benchmark application to measure its capabilities. ROG Phone was able to achieve AnTuTu scores of 278,836 and 2,515 for single-core and 9,359 for multi-core on Geekbench. The figure is fairly high, beating the Samsung Galaxy Note 9.
Then what about when playing games for real?
Since the ROG Phone is a gaming smartphone, of course I did a little extra when it came to testing its ability to run game applications. The first is of course I tried playing popular games like PUBG Mobile and Free Fire Battlegrounds.
Not surprisingly, both of these games can run very smoothly in the highest possible settings to choose from. Never once did I feel a decrease in performance like stutter or others. This certainly makes my playing experience more satisfying because FPS online games require the fastest reaction time possible to be superior to the opponent.
Cool again Free Fire Battleground can be run by ROG Phone up to 90 FPS. That way not only without lag, the movement of characters looks much smoother than usual.
Next I switched to the MOBA genre game, namely Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and Arena of Valor. Just like the previous 2 games, I can activate all graphics settings as high as possible including the High Frame Rate mode feature.
After trying to play a game that does not require internet ne2rk when playing and not an online multiplayer game because it usually can further maximize the quality of graphics owned. One such game is Modern Combat 5, Asphalt 9, Implosion and Mobius Final Fantasy.
Modern Combat 5 and Asphalt 9 are games that automatically adjust graphics quality with smartphone capabilities so that users can play optimally. Without the need to do your own settings, the graphics quality is immediately set to the maximum and after I try to play, the game still runs smoothly even when the scenes are fast.
Likewise with Implosion and Mobius Final Fantasy, I can use the highest quality graphics without any obstacles at all. Therefore the ability of ROG Phone to run heavy applications is no doubt.
There are still a few more games that I tried like Cytus to see the knock response, Lineage II Revolution for MMORPG games, and Final Fantasy Exvius for standard mobile games. As a result all the games that I tried can run very smooth like F1 cars and look amazing thanks to the screen which is also of good quality.
But not all games already support a 90 Hz screen. Of the several games that I have tried, only Free Fire can touch 90 FPS while other games are stuck at 60 FPS so that those games can be said to have not been able to utilize the maximum capabilities of the ROG Ph1.
When playing games, users can also activate a feature called Game Genie that can simplify user activity. With this Genie Game, users can see realtime device information that contains temperature, FPS and CPU and GPU performance usage. In addition users can set AirTrigger functions, macros, to record or stream gaming content through Game Genie.
Concerning hot temperatures, ROG Phone can be said to handle it well and not simultaneously. This smartphone is quite cool when used to play games, maybe a little warmer when playing for a long time. There are times when all parts feel very warm when working hard, but fortunately it doesn’t get into the heat category.
Game Center as a Gaming Center
ASUS ROG Phone from the manufacturer directly runs the Android 8.1 Oreo operating system. The initial appearance of this operating system strongly reflects the Republic of Gamers device in red dominating the entire interface.
Not too much bloatware installed directly on it and that is a very good thing considering the gaming device is supposed to focus on all the existing performance to run the game. That way the smartphone feels very responsive and runs smoothly on this operating system.
Very many features provided, but the most important in my opinion is the Game Center. This application allows users to view information about smartphones ranging from Temperature, CPU and GPU usage, total RAM used, to activating X Mode.
In this Game Center, users can create profiles for each game that can set various things starting from X mode, cleaning memory, refresh rate options, or turning off notifications. That way users do not need to turn off or turn on the feature one by one every time you want to play the game.
This application can also adjust the fan speed of the Aero Active Cooler accessories, synchronize the RGB colors with other ASUS devices, to adjust the functions of AirTrigger. Game Center is really a gaming hub on ROG Ph1.
ROG Phone does have a heavy and large body, but who would have thought it only has a battery capacity of 4,000 mAh, not 5,000 mAh like I expected. Even so it needs to be recognized that the endurance of the batteries it has is quite tolerable.
The ASUS stayed out if this smartphone can last for 7.2 hours while playing games on a WiFi connection. After trying the ROG Phone for a few weeks, I think the ASUS claim might be true because I have never run out of battery at all during the day and even several times can last up to 2 days when use is not too intensive.
Since I can not bear to play mobile games such as PUBG Mobile or Mobile Legends for a long time, I prefer to test the ability of ROG Phone batteries with Mobius Final Fantasy games that have auto mode and occasionally watch videos.
After using it for 5 hours, the battery from the ROG Phone still remains around 47%, which means in theory it can touch about 8-9 hours until the battery is completely depleted. These results are somewhat beyond my expectations because often the battery life is actually under the vendor’s claim. Whereas the benchmark results from Geekbench show that the ROG Phone can last for 5 hours 40 minutes so that the battery is below 10%.
But I need to remind you once again that Mobius Final Fantasy does have heavy graphics, but only occasionally requires a WiFi ne2rk when switching levels and I use auto mode during testing. In addition, I also did not activate the X Mode which will certainly drain the battery more.
If your gaming needs exceed me, you don’t need to worry because ROG Phone also has a higher than average battery charging capability. Thanks to Qualcomm Quick Charge 4 technology, I only need to wait for about 30 minutes so that the battery is charged to 61% of the original 13% remaining. Meanwhile, to be fully charged takes about 1 hour 24 minutes.
Interestingly ASUS also embed a technology called HyperCharge when using the default charger. The technology allows more optimal electric current and the temperature of the smartphone is maintained because the IC is in the charger not in the smartph1.
Indeed, when charging as usual the smartphone feels cool, but if used for activities such as streaming video, the overall smartphone body will become warm. One thing to note, ROG Phone charger plugs use 3 feet like on a laptop.
The camera is sufficient
Photography is not the focus of the ASUS ROG Phone as a gaming smartphone, but what’s wrong with a little peek at the ability of the camera. Actually, overall the ROG Phone’s rear camera has a decent quality, but it is less satisfying when compared to other smartphones that have prices above Rp. 10 million.
I personally as a gamer feel that what is offered by this ROG Phone camera is sufficient to be able to take important moments clearly although not fantastic. For those who want to see for themselves how the results are, here are some examples of photos taken using ROG Ph1.
(click image to see original)
Accessories from ROG Phone
Advantages main ASUS ROG Phone from gaming smartphone the other that already released when this is a Support accessories that enough Lots. Lined up accessories this Definitely will Upgrade experience played the user or maybe for activity the other. There is What just the accessories?
Aero Active Cooler
Aero Active Cooler is a very minimalist accessory. The goal is only one, namely to cool the smartphone so that performance can remain optimal. It should be recognized that when using these accessories, the body of the smartphone feels cooler.
Interestingly the air will be released to the left and right so that it indirectly “fanned” your hand. The fan speed can also be adjusted via the Game Center application.
Gamevice for ROG Phone
Gamevice for ROG Phone is a gamepad accessory to maximize your playing experience. It is undeniable that the touchpad input method is still not perfect for some games, so it is advisable to use a physical gamepad.
By using these accessories you can map at will of each button with action in the game and this is one of the main advantages because it can be used in all games, although still Beta. If the title of the game is already enter the list Gamevice libraries are supported, so you don’t need to do the mapping yourself because everything is automatic and feels very optimal.
The back of the smartphone will be covered by a link between the 2 gamepad so it cannot be combined with ActiveCooler. The power source will also take from the smartphone because it must be connected to USB-C under the smartph1.
This Gamevice accessory feels comfortable enough to use, but it is still not a console controller class. It’s a shame there is no case or storage when you want to store it in a bag.
TwinView Dock in my opinion is one of the accessories that is more attractive than a portable gamepad. As the name implies, these accessories like presenting an additional ROG Phone screen have only been embedded in the gamepad.
By using the TwinView Dock, users can enjoy 2 screens at once, 4 speakers, and an additional 6,000 mAh battery that can charge the ROG Ph1. There is also a cooling system and 2 trigger buttons. You could say TwinView Dock is a package of very complete gaming accessories.
There are games already directly utilizing the second screen like the Asphalt 9 game that uses it as a map. But more importantly, the screen can be used to open anything like streaming applications, chat, or even other games if you want.
The body of the TwinView Dock, in my opinion, feels more comfortable to hold than a Gamevice gamepad and has the right weight to feel like a portable console. Additional speakers are also certainly very well received.
WiGig Display Dock
ASUS WiGig Display Dock allows you to mirror from ROG Phones to TVs that support HDMI input. All you have to do is activate WiGi on your ROG Phone and connect it to the WiGig Display Dock like any other wireless device, then it’s ready to use. Easy, fast, and hassle-free.
With the emergence of all content on a bigger TV screen, you can combine it with Gamevice gamepad to make the gaming experience more cool. WiGig Display Dock also provides a USB 3.0 port if you want to move files from flash drive to smartphone or vice versa.
Mobile Desktop Dock
I think this one accessory is quite “overkill”, why? This Mobile Desktop Dock allows ROG Phone to be used as a desktop computer complete with mouse and keyboard support. Its use is quite easy, just connect the ROG Phone to the dock via the side port.
This Mobile Desktop Dock from ASUS reminds me of Samsung DEX it’s just more complete because ASUS provides a lot of connectivity support ranging from four USB 3.0, DisplayPort, to SD Card. So it doesn’t matter if you want to be used for office needs as long as the application is available on Android.
This Professional Dock can be regarded as a mini and portable version of the Mobile Desktop Dock. The function is very similar, but the number of ports provided is far less with only 2 USB 3.0 and HDMI ports. But thanks to its small shape makes this one accessory easy to put into a bag if you want to carry it around.
Without a doubt the ASUS ROG Phone is the best gaming smartph1. Not only does it have a very powerful performance to run games with high quality graphics smoothly but also has many features to maximize the gaming experience.
And that does not include a variety of accessories that are very interesting to use in a variety of scenarios that do not only cover the matter of gaming but general needs such as entertainment or even light office work.
ROG Phone really shows ASUS expertise in designing a gaming device. Years of presenting the Republic of Gamers line have made ASUS know what gamers want, which often doesn’t want to compromise on game quality.
As a smartphone as a whole there is still something that can be improved again as the ability of the camera, but as a gamer, I find it difficult to find shortcomings of the ROG Phone in addition to its weight which is slightly heavier than the others.
Finally, the ROG Phone is in my opinion a perfect gaming smartphone if your primary goal is to have it for portable gaming devices.