From www.pcmag.com

We’ve seen plenty of Asus hardware at Computex 2024, and one that gamers will want to keep an eye on is the new AMD-based TUF Gaming A14. The main draw of this system is that it is one of the first we’ve seen that will run on AMD’s newly announced AI-ready Ryzen 300-series chips. Specifically, the A14 is powered by the Ryzen AI 9 HX 370 processor.

Asus TUF Gaming A14

(Credit: John Burek)

This is particularly noteworthy since this laptop is not part of Asus’ ROG (Republic of Gamers) brand but rather the more budget-friendly TUF line. You may associate Asus gaming products with ROG, but it’s generally reserved for more premium devices and enthusiast-level features, while the TUF product prices are more approachable.

Asus TUF Gaming A14

(Credit: John Burek)

We saw the device in person, so continue on for the photos and details.


An Early Look at AMD Ryzen 9 AI 300

Let’s focus first on that main attraction, the new Ryzen chip. In May, Qualcomm led the way announcing its new AI-ready Snapdragon X chips that will power the first wave of Copilot+ PCs, while Intel announced that its own new “Lunar Lake” AI chips will follow later this year.

Asus TUF Gaming A14

(Credit: John Burek)

At Computex this week, AMD unveiled its own Ryzen AI 300-series chips, which is what the TUF A14 will run. What makes a so-called “AI” chip in laptops is the neural processing unit, or NPU, that can handle AI workloads (software features, background tasks, Copilot requests) more quickly than the cloud and without burdening the CPU with them.

The AI 300-series chips are built on AMD’s Zen 5 architecture, and the HX 370 used in the TUF A14 includes 12 cores, 24 threads, and up to 50 trillion operations per second (TOPS, a rough measure of NPU potential). The graphics performance should see a bump, too, built on RDNA 3.5, but a gaming laptop like the A14 will lean on its discrete GPU instead.

On that note, the A14 can run up to an Nvidia RTX 4060 GPU at 100W max TGP, with a MUX Switch and Advanced Optimus support. That’s closer to entry-level graphics than enthusiast-level, but that’s what you’d expect from the TUF line to keep the price down, and it’s proven a capable 1080p gaming GPU by now.

Asus TUF Gaming A14

(Credit: John Burek)

The system can also support up to 32GB of memory (7,500MHz, dual channel) and up to 2TB of SSD storage (two slots available). We’ll have to wait to put this system through our testing, with a special interest in seeing how the HX 370 fares.


Asus Makes it TUF

The internals are the most exciting story here, but what about the laptop itself? It’s a sleek and simple-looking system, as we’ve increasingly seen from budget gaming laptops. Many of them have moved away from overcompensating with busy designs, and now—especially if this is your only system to take with you for all computing needs—made more to blend in.

Asus TUF Gaming A14

(Credit: John Burek)

The plastic chassis and construction feel sturdy enough overall, even if the build quality isn’t as high as that of a premium design like the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14. Living up to its TUF name, the chassis is military-standard 810-rated.

Recommended by Our Editors

As a 14-inch laptop, the TUF A14 is meant to be portable, which is supported by its 3.21-pound weight. It’s only 0.78 inches thick at its thickest point, too, so you should be happy to carry this system around with you or toss it in a bag.

Asus TUF Gaming A14

(Credit: John Burek)

As for that 14-inch display, it’s a 2,560-by-1,440-pixel resolution panel in a 16:10 aspect ratio, with a 165Hz refresh rate and Nvidia G-Sync support. That’s a smart combination for an RTX 4060-powered system (or RTX 4050 if you stick with the base model), as you won’t often get frame rates beyond that. More demanding games may require you to lower the resolution to 1080p if you want to maintain higher visual settings and top frame rates.

The laptop includes two USB Type-C ports, two USB Type-A ports, an HDMI connection, and a microSD card reader. It supports Wi-Fi 6E, and its 73Wh battery should result in decent battery life—another factor that the new Ryzen chips may impact.

Check back in for a full review of this system when units become available.

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The post First Look: Asus TUF Gaming A14 Packs AMD Ryzen 9 AI Processing Power first appeared on www.pcmag.com

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