...the Asus ROG GR8 II is able to deliver up-to-date gaming hardware in a form factor comparable to that of a modern games console.
Smaller, more efficient gaming PCs are getting better with each new generation of processor technology. Harnessing the latest CPU and GPU architectures from Intel and Nvidia, the Asus ROG GR8 II is able to deliver up-to-date gaming hardware in a form factor comparable to that of a modern games console.
The end result is a neat-looking box packing a good dollop of performance, yet a few provisos remain. The system may be considerably smaller than a typical PC tower, yet it uses an external power supply, doesn't offer an optical drive, has limited upgrade options and a tendency to get hot and loud under load.
It's only worth considering such compromises if size truly matters, but if you are willing to accept said trade-offs in favour of a form factor that's smaller and better suited to the living room, the GR8 II is worthy of consideration. The Asus machine doesn't offer the refinement of a quieter and more affordable games console, yet as a fully fledged PC it covers a wide range of usage scenarios and can serve as a portable desktop replacement capable of handling your everyday workload as well as high-quality HD gaming.
Bottom line: the GR8 II isn't perfect but it serves as a sign of things to come. Compact systems are getting better with each new generation of hardware, and the time has come for PC gaming to move out of the bedroom and into the mainstream.
Kaby Lake CPU and GTX 1060 GPU
Delivers high-quality full-HD games
Console-like form factor
Energy efficient hardware
Internal fans get noisy under load
UK specification doesn't include an SSD
Limited upgrade path
Asus ROG GR8 II
A variation of the Asus ROG GR8 II is available to purchase from Ebuyer.
At HEXUS, we invite the companies whose products we test to comment on our articles. If any company representatives for the products reviewed choose to respond, we'll publish their commentary here verbatim.
Bill Garner, PR Specialist at Asus UK, issued the following right2reply on Tuesday, May 5:
ASUS UK has secured an agreement to increase the warranty on all GR8 II stock sold in the UK. We strongly believe the GR8 II is of high quality and to show our confidence in the product we have increased the 1YR warranty to 3YRs. This means any potential fault, however unlikely develops will mean that it is totally covered by us under the warranty to protect your investment. We are also planning on selling an SSD model in the UK to benefit users who want a faster experience.