Two of the biggest announcements from ASUS at Computex were the launches of its two new gaming desktop systems. 

The GR8

The GR8 (greeeeat) is a 1.5 liter book-sized HTPC designed to be on the shelf and provide an access point to the home television for gaming, watching content or streaming via Miracast.  ASUS had the GR8 in the middle of a bookshelf to exhibit how the GR8 might adapt to the home environment.

In terms of height and weight, it easily matches a good hardback book.  Next to a monitor, it fits easily enough on the desk as well.

We were unable to have a look at the internals, however there are large custom elements to this design so I would not doubt that we are more likely to see a laptop type arrangement inside regarding DRAM, storage and cooling.  The GR8 will ship with i7 CPUs (presumably low power, unsure if full desktop parts or mobile parts, 45W max?) and a GTX 750 Ti for display duties.  There is a single SATA drive that comes with the device, and I am under the impression that ASUS will offer both SSD and HDD variants.  Users can also add another 2.5” SATA drive.  I believe the chipset is one of the H85/H87 variants, perhaps even a H97 variant, although if a mobile CPU is used it might be a HM87.

The GR8 is designed to work with SteamOS and the Steam Controller, with ASUS planning to launch a Steam version when the SteamOS schedule is more clear and the controller is finalized.  The system also includes gigabit Ethernet, 2T2R 802.1ac dual-band WiFi and SupremeFX audio.  The initial versions will come pre-installed with Windows 8.1.

The ROG G20

The G20 punches up the volume from 1.5 liters to 12.5 liters but in return delivers a system with a full-fat i7 and a GTX 780 integrated into a whisper quiet (25 dB idle) design.

The model on display was equipped with an i7-4790 Haswell Refresh CPU, which clocks in at 84W.  The GPU draws a lot of power as well, and given the press release working that states ‘takes advantage of natural convection’, I would assume that the cooling for both the CPU and GPU is the case itself.  The device is not fanless – I would assume a low noise directional fan being in the case somewhere, taking advantage of the ‘hidden airflow tunnel’ that draws air in the front and out the rear.  It was not clear to see if this system uses an integrated power supply or a power brick, however given the 180W+ power draw I would assume it is an internal power supply.

Like the GR8, I believe the final touches are being placed on the design.  I would assume that the samples on display were PVT units, suggesting that an initial batch should occur by the end of the year.

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  • lemon1510 - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

    Where did you got the specs from? The official ASUS site says "GTX 750 Ti" as GPU while you refer to a 750M which is in a completely different league in terms of performance =S.
  • Ian Cutress - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

    You are right, the GR8 is a 750 Ti - that's what I wrote in our original news item when it was announced. Corrected.
  • rocktober13 - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

    It would be nice if ASUS initially offered a version of the GR8 without Windows 8 to hit a lower price point. I would rather have a Ubuntu + Steam (with in home streaming) + XMBC combo. More functionality than SteamOS and available now. Also, I hope the included Windows 8 is the Pro version otherwise it's another $100 to add WMC with the basic edition.
  • rocktober13 - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

  • CalaverasGrande - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

    surprised there are not more UHD and 4k models.
    Not everyone wants a 30" monitor on their desk. I'm hoping to see more 24" UHD or 4K displays. Sure there is the Dell, but I kind of hate how Dells current industrial design looks with those awkward stands.
  • TylerGrunter - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

    Wasn´t the MeMO Pad 8 going to be out with the Atom Z3580 and have a FullHD panel?
    From their own press releas:
    I guess there are two models, the ME181C and the ME581CL, but I find terribly confusing that they call them both MeMO Pad 8
  • churchgeek - Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - link

    A 10-but display!
  • pandemonium - Thursday, June 12, 2014 - link

    ASUS really is becoming 'the' brand of choice for all of their vested markets.

    Thanks for the coverage!
  • X3ON - Thursday, June 12, 2014 - link

    The ROG GX500 looks pretty interesting,
    The top and bottom shells are made og brushed aluminium, but what about the area around the keyboard? Is it plastic or matte black aluminium?
  • Nadrik23518 - Thursday, June 12, 2014 - link

    Any idea when and if Asus will offer to market a 24 inch monitor with G-sync? Why is Asus siting on G-sync? Can they give the buying community a firm date of when they will offer a monitor with G-sync? I have held my next purchase of a gaming monitor for over a year now. If all they are going to do is talk about G-sync and show mock-up monitors without ever coming to market with a product, I will purchase my second choice.

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