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ASUS ROG Flow Z13 (2022) & ASUS ROG XG Mobile RTX 3080 review


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The ASUS ROG Flow Z13 gaming tablet is a unique bit of kit from one of the most innovative gaming laptop brands in the game. This touchscreen portable tablet, complete with detachable keyboard which evokes the design of the Microsoft Surface Pro, can be bought as a standalone device or combined with an external graphics card to give it a huge boost in gaming performance. This eGPU is known as the ASUS ROG XG Mobile, which comes with its own power cable, internal cooling, and I/O ports, and we’ve got the RTX 3080 version of the device here to put through its paces. Neither of these products come cheap though, and combined they retail for an MSRP that’s up there with the most highly-priced laptops (around $3400 for both). Read on to see if they’re worth your hard-earned cash.

ASUS ROG Flow Z13 (2022)

CPU

Intel Core i5-12500H/ i7-12700H/ i9-12900H

Graphics

Intel Xe (iGPU) / RTX 3050 / RTX 3050 Ti

Max Refresh Rate

120Hz / 60Hz

Specifications & upgradability

ASUS ROG Flow Z13 Laptop 40

As is typical for a tablet, compared to a laptop, the Flow Z13 cannot be opened up and upgradability options past the point of purchase are extremely limited. The one exception to this is the covered SSD slot on the rear, which can be exposed by removing the one Philips head screw securing it. This is the smaller sized M.2 2230 PCIe 4.0 x4 slot (as opposed to the larger 2280 size you commonly see in laptops) so will only accept appropriately sized SSDs.

In terms of the CPU and GPU there are three possible loadouts: the most powerful Intel Core i9-12900H paired with Nvidia RTX 3050 Ti (which we have here), the i7-12700H with RTX 3050, or the i5-12500H with Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics (iGPU). The processor options all have liquid metal cooling, which is further assisted by a vapor chamber. 

Display options on the 16:10 screen are a 3840 x 2400 60Hz option, not advisable for gamers, or the 1920 x 1200 version we were given. Memory size for the Z13 caps out at 16GB of LPDDR5-5200MHz RAM (nice and fast), though we’ve seen the AMD-powered X13 come with 32GB of RAM: hopefully something that will become available for the Z13 as well in time. The maximum SSD size you can buy with the laptop is 1TB.

Unsurprisingly, this being a tablet device, you don’t get an Ethernet port, so are entirely reliant on the Wi-Fi 6E AX211 160MHz connection for gaming, unless you use a USB Ethernet adapter. However, the ROG XG Mobile GPU does have one, if you decide to pick one of these up. More on this in the Ports, sockets, and other features section below.

Finally, you of course get touchscreen functionality, and you can order the Z13 with an ASUS Pen SA201H stylus, though it doesn’t come with this as standard.

Intel Core i5-12500H/ i7-12700H/ i9-12900H

Intel Xe (iGPU) / RTX 3050 / RTX 3050 Ti

1920 x 1200 / 3840 x 2400

1080p rear-facing & 720p front-facing

1x USB-A 3.2 (Gen 2), 3.5mm audio combo jack, 1x Thunderbolt 4/USB-C, 1x PCIe 3.0 x8 & USB-C 3.2 combo port

Pros