Asus FX 503 Gaming Laptop Review – Simple On The Outside But Packed With Surprises

Asus is well-known when it comes to making gaming laptops with peak performance ratings and great looking on the outside. When looking at the FX 503 from the outside, you wouldn’t necessarily notice it’s a gaming laptop straight away. It has four slanting streaks from each corner that converge into an ASUS logo in the middle. We’re not going to lie; the overall design of the laptop makes it stand away from other laptops in the room.

What’s great about the outside design of the laptop is that even though it’s great looking, the gaming aspect isn’t emphasized physically on the outside. The design is very subtle, and it would be hard to tell it’s a gaming laptop unless you open it and notice the red outlines of the buttons on the keyboard and the GTX sticker next to the touchpad. We love this, as it makes the laptop very easy to bring into an office meeting when you’re not gaming. Nobody would know that it’s a laptop meant for gaming, so you should feel perfectly comfortable bringing it into an office meeting with a room full of people.

A Surprisingly Handsome Tinder Date

The ASUS FX503 is one of the laptops that looks much better in person than in any picture online. When you see and hold the laptop in your hands, that’s when you can truly appreciate how good and sleek it looks for a gaming laptop.

Furthermore, it’s packed with different ports and connectivity making it great if you have a lot of different peripherals you want to use with it. You can practically connect anything to it, but let’s go over the ports and connectivity options just to grasp how good this laptop is. On the left side, you will find several ports, including the charging point, an HDMI port and several USB ports. Whereas, the right side of the laptop is packed with a Kensington lock which is a really good safety feature, especially if you’re into the habit of leaving your laptop in the car, an SD card reader and another USB port.

A little miss? But they don’t take way the amazingness of  ASUS FX503

The only ports missing are a USB-C port and a Thunderbolt port. We feel that having these ports would have done wonders for the futureproofing of the machine, and it would make it a much better workhorse for people who work daily with these ports. Furthermore, the lack of modern ports means that the user would have to connect other devices through a dongle which is a hassle, but for what the laptop offers it’s so far so good.

ASUS has made ventilation one of the priorities with this laptop which is great because gaming laptops can overheat quite easily which further hinders the performance of the machine. Below the keyboard, you will notice a bunch of lines strewn across the lower body of the laptop, and this is done with the single aim of having better airflow.

As soon as you open the laptop it’s noticeable right away that we’re talking about a gaming laptop. The keyboard buttons are all outlined with the easily recognizable ROG red colour, clearly stating that a gaming beast is hiding beneath the hood. Even though the red colour is almost overused in the gaming world, it’s subtle enough to not bother you if you’re not a fan of it.

ASUS FX 503 Specs

CPU Intel Core i7-7700HQ @ 2.80GHz (6MB cache, TurboBoost up to 3.8GHz)
RAM 4GB DDR4 2400MHz
Storage 128GB M.2 SSD + 1TB 7200RPM HDD
Display 15.6″ LED-backlit FHD (1920×1080) 60Hz Anti-Glare Panel with 45% NTSC
Connectivity and ports Integrated 802.11 AC (2×2) Wi-Fi
3 x USB 3.0 port(s) Type A
1 x RJ45 LAN Jack
1 x HDMI, Support HDMI 2.0
1 x SD Card Reader
Sound and Audio Built-in Stereo 2W Speakers & Array Microphone
ICEpower Technology
1 x Combo Audio Jack (Mic + Headphone)
Battery 4 Cells 64 Whrs Polymer Battery, 180W Adapter

Performance – Can It Handle The Heat?

It doesn’t matter how good a laptop looks unless it brings some serious gaming performance to the table. Looking at the technical specs it’s clear that this laptop is no slouch. But, it’s time to see how those specs translate into real-world usage.

The 128GB M.2 SSD packs some nice performance, and even though it isn’t the best performing SSD on the market, it’s more than enough for an everyday user. You will notice the speed of the SSD especially if you’re transferring from an HDD. It’s a night and day difference. The only downside is the small amount of storage at 128GB, but the 1TB 7200RPM HDD is a good addition. It allows you to store the larger files on it. We advise you to keep only the most important games and apps on the SSD for faster booting and better performance.

It’s powered by an Intel Core i7-7700HQ which packs quite a punch. It scored a 741 in Cinebench which is what we would usually expect from a machine with internals such as the ASUS FX503. In Unigine Heaven it scored a min FPS of 8.5, a max FPS of 96.5 and an average FPS of 50.4. With is with x8 AA, 1600×900 resolution and Ultra Settings with turned of tessellation. The performance is not astounding, it but’s perfectly acceptable and good for the parts it has.


The ASUS FX503 is a decent laptop with great performance for the internals it carries. Physically it’s a stunning machine which can work great in both office and gaming scenarios. It has good connectivity options even though it lacks USB-C and Thunderbolt support. The Storage options are good, it has an SSD for the apps you want to boot right away.  A 1TB 7200RPM HDD for storing movies and media files accentuates it even more.

Sound-wise the speakers perform greatly for a mid-range laptop. It has a good depth of sound, but the bass is a little lacking. This is expected from a laptop, however, especially for a mid-range one. Furthermore, the keyboard buttons are tactile and comfortable to use for a longer period which is always a big plu. Keyboard user friendliness always mean a lot especially when you’re gaming for hours on end. Overall, the ASUS FX 503 is a laptop we can easily recommend if you’re looking for a decent mid-range laptop. The icing about the laptop is that even with its  great features, it does not send buyers  breaking the banks.

Acer Aspire 7 (A717-71G) Review

Acer’s new entry to the gaming laptop market with their Acer Aspire 7 is worth taking note of. The laptop looks sleek and well designed on the outside, but it lacks some of the trademarks features its competitors in the same, or similar price range and market have had for a while now. Even though its internals gives out a gaming laptop vibe, Acer is trying to position the Acer Aspire 7 as a multimedia all-rounder laptop[. It’s an argument that has a decent amount of truth to it, but with some of the Aspire 7’s limitations, we’ll try to see how far that argument can take the laptop.

Technical Specifications

CPU Core i7-7700HQ 3.8Ghz
GPU GTX  1060 6GB
RAM 8GB DDR4 2400Mhz

How Well Built Is The Laptop?

If we take a look at the bulkiness of the laptop, it measures around 27mm which easily puts it in the bulky category. This is a laptop, so the big screen added with the bit of bulk, makes it a bit harder to carry around and transport. If you like gaming on the move, this might be a little bit of a problem, but overall, it shouldn’t cause you too much trouble.

The material covering the lid of the laptop is brushed aluminium which makes the laptop look a little more premium and gives it a certain sturdiness in the middle, except for the bottom chin due to the distances at which the hinges have been placed. It feels a little flexible and prone to bending, but this won’t cause any problems in an ordinary usage scenario.

Furthermore, the laptop comes equipped with a USB-C port, LAN port, HDMI, USB 3.0, 3.5mm audio jack and 2 USB 2.0 ports. Pretty standard for a laptop, and will suffice for most users. The addition of a Kensington lock and Thunderbolt support would have been nice, but sadly it’s lacking here.

Overall, it’s missing the key marker of a gaming laptop physically speaking, which can either be an advantage, or disadvantage depending on what you want to use the laptop for primarily. The design is clean enough so you can bring it into work without anyone knowing that it’s a gaming laptop which is a plus in some scenarios. However, if you want cool RGB lights and coloured keyboard keys, this laptop isn’t for you.

Is The Screen On Par For a Multimedia or Gaming Laptop?

The first thing you’ll notice when unboxing the laptop is the big 17-inch screen. At one point in time, 17 inches used to be the standard for desktop monitors, and with good reason. When put on a laptop, the 17-inch screen does look huge, and it would be perfect for playing FPS games with a wider FOV or watching movies and TV shows. While the bigger screen is a plus it’s not only the size that matters.

It has a pixel density of 127ppi, with great viewing angles. Furthermore, the Acer Aspire 7’s maximum brightness settings are bright indeed and are perfect for viewing in direct sunlight if your desk happens to be positioned against a window, or in a place where a lot of sunlight comes in. It has a decent sRGB range coverage and colour reproduction. Overall, it’s not the best laptop screen on the market, but do remember that this is a budget gaming laptop. When considering that, the screen is more than decent and will be perfect for multimedia consumption.

Battery Life

The battery life is relatively good considering this is a Windows laptop. Overall web browsing should give you about 6-7 hours of light web browsing without media playback in the background while watching movies or tv shows will make the laptop last about 4 hours on average, which isn’t bad at all.

Gaming on the other hand will give you around 1 hour and 30 minutes which is ok for a quick and light gaming session. However, if you want to play heavier games you have to use the charger because of the lack of power when the laptop is running on the battery which will result in poor fps, and because it will run out fast.

Touchpad and Keyboard

The Keyboard is wide enough to be comfortably used for hours on end, and the placement of the keys is great. On the right side, you will find a num pad which is a bit smaller and can make things a bit difficult if you have large fingers, but overall the experience of using the keyboard is very close to using a full-size desktop PC keyboard which is a big plus.

When it comes to the touchpad it has some positives and some negatives attached to it. It’s placed a little on the left which can impair the default hand placement on the WASD keys, but its responsiveness is decent for both moving the cursor and scrolling up and down. It doesn’t detect movement at the edges which are good for preventing accidental movement of the cursor.

You can also configure hand gestures of up to 3 fingers which is always a good addition.


The Acer Aspire 7 comes with an i7-7700HQ 3.8 GHz processor which is still very capable to this day. Running Office applications or applications such as Photoshop and Illustrator can be done without hassle and the laptop handles them perfectly. Opening more than one application at the same time can be limited by the RAM of 8GB, which is a little low for a gaming/productivity laptop. 16GB RAM is pretty much the standard nowadays and with good reason.

Furthermore, the GTX 1060 6GB is a very decent performing GPU even today, easily matching up to the GTX2060 with a very small percentage in the performance difference. It can handle most modern games at a Medium graphical present which is more than decent if you are a light gamer. If you are planning on playing FPS games for more frames it would be wise to tweak the graphical settings individually to best suit your needs.


Overall, the Acer Aspire 7 is very decent gaming and multimedia laptop. The downsides are the 8GB RAM and the 1TB 5400rpm HDD, but both the RAM and Storage can be upgraded for more performance if needed. The laptop has an SSD expansion slot, which is the first thing you should upgrade if you’re considering buying the laptop. 


A big 17-inch screen will do any games and movies justice and it can be used in direct sunlight without too much trouble due to the high brightness of the screen. For the price point, it’s hard to beat the performance and overall looks of the laptop.