With a PC, Chromebook and Smartphone at home, I didn’t really think I needed a gaming laptop. I don’t really do a ton of traveling, and even have a Switch for when nature calls! What more could I need in my gaming setup? Well it turns out exactly what I needed was the versatile and surprisingly affordable ASUS TUF Gaming A15.
But what is it that really stands out about the TUF Gaming A15? That’s a tough question really, because there is no singular highlight. It will play all but the most intensive games at 60fps minimum on it’s 15.6 inch 1080p screen, and it will do it all while looking sleek as hell. It’s a dream for podcasts or streaming with all the ports you could ever want, and the battery won’t give up before you’re done.
ASUS TUF Gaming A15: not top end, but powerful
The NVIDIA RTX 2060 might not be the most powerful GPU on the market, but it’s the perfect workhorse for the 1080p display. Coupled with the AMD Ryzen 9 4900H CPU you’ll get great performance across all manner of tasks, be it aiming for that 60fps sweet spot or just multitasking like a mother. While playing my staples of Sea of Thieves and ARK I was really impressed by the consistent framerate, and I always loaded in significantly faster than my partner on his Xbox Series S.
When you aren’t gaming, the ASUS TUF Gaming A15 has everything you could ever need from a high end computer. Thanks to an incredibly thoughtful selection of port adorning each side of the laptop, You’ve got three USB ports to fill, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and even an Ethernet port for if you want that perfect connection for competitive online gaming. I had my full podcast setup plugged in, and still had room to charge my phone.
In terms of day-to-day use, the battery life is perhaps the most impressive aspect of the TUF Gaming A15. In most instances, I found it lasted around 5 hours when used for a mix of browsing the web, gaming and watching Netflix (without using any power saving modes). While engaging in my most intensive battery sapping Halo Infinite sessions it was closer to 2 hours, but according ASUS says you can get over 12 hours of video playback from a single charge.
The built in Armoury Crate software really helps get the most out of this piece of kit. It is essentially a robust and easy to use system tuning app that allows you to set up all sorts of power modes and audio settings for individual programs and games. I found it a really handy way for someone with a little less experience with high-end tech to set up their laptop their way, although I admittedly often ended up just using maximum power draining mode for maximum performance.
How the ASUS TUF Gaming A15 performs is obviously very important, but looks matter too for something you’ll want to take everywhere. The “Fortress Grey” colour just oozes futuristic style, and coupled with the brushed metal effect applied to all the surfaces the TUF A15 is genuinely eye-catching. And of course no gaming laptop would be complete without some classic RGB lighting on the keyboard, which I can’t help but adore.
Not only is the TUF Gaming A15 easy on the eye, but it’s been designed with functionality and durability in mind. The hexagon grip on the underside helps keep it handily in place wherever you place it, and even if you did have an accident ASUS have done some military grade testing to ensure you shouldn’t have to break the bank on a replacement. Everything about the build quality of the laptop just feels robust, and I would happily take it traveling or on a commute without worrying too much about damage.
ASUS TUF Gaming A15 review: brilliant, but not perfect
As much as I love the ASUS TUF Gaming A15, it isn’t perfect. Obviously it isn’t quite top of the line in terms of power (although for the price point that feels a little unfair) and like most laptops it has an awful mouse trackpad for any form of gaming. I also found the speakers to just be too quiet, and when trying to watch trashy reality TV with my partner it’d sometimes be hard to hear what was happening without really leaning in. Heating is also a bit of an issue if you’re going to position the laptop on your lap, with the only alternative of turning the fans up high and adding a jet engine to your living room.
The ASUS TUF Gaming A15 honestly blew me away. It’s a piece of tech I didn’t know I needed, and now I’m not sure how I’ll live without. What it slightly lacks in power, it more than makes up in sheer versatility and thoughtful design. It’s just a stunning and professional looking laptop, with the battery life to keep you entertained for many many hours. If you’re looking to spend less than the most extravagant of budgets on a laptop that can do it all, you really won’t regret investing in TUF Gaming A15.
Great performance for the price
Fantastic battery life
Good looking and durable
Plenty of ports
Speakers are too quiet
Fans can get incredibly loud
Runs hot in some power settings