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(Image: © Tom’s Hardware)

OUR VERDICT

As a 240 Hz portable monitor, the XG17AHPE is in a class all its own. Besides speed, it also brings a quality IPS panel fit for gaming and work. But it’s more expensive than some of the best (and larger) 240 Hx desktop monitors.

FOR

  • HDMI, USB-C and USB-A connectivity
  • Loud speakers
  • Great viewing angles
  • Easy-to-access OSD with many options

AGAINST

  • More expensive than a good 240 Hz desktop monitor
  • Questionable origami stand
  • Included cover doesn’t provide much protection

Having a portable monitor is a lifesaver. Whether your laptop’s screen just doesn’t give you enough space or you’re looking for something to connect to a smartphone or tablet, having an extra screen can instantly boost your productivity. But what if that lightweight screen wasn’t all business? What if it had a fun side too?

The Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE is just that, bringing a pro-level 240 Hz refresh rate to a portable screen for the first time. The 17.3-inch monitor (DisplayPort Alt Mode over USB Type-C or HDMI) delivered most of what I wanted and needed for both work and gaming and made its mark as a one-of-a-kind product. But that innovation comes at a $500 price tag that leaves us wondering if you’re better off just buying one of the best gaming monitors instead.

Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE Specs

Panel Type / Backlight IPS / WLED
Screen Size / Aspect Ratio 17.3-inches / 16:9
Max Resolution & Refresh Rate 1920 x 1080 @ 240 Hz
Color Depth / Gamut 8-bit / 100% sRGB
Response Time (GTG) 3ms
Max Brightness 300 nits
Contrast 1,000:1
Speakers 2x 1W
Ports 2x USB Type-C; MicroHDMI 2.0; 3.5mm headphone
Power Consumption <10W
Dimensions (WxHxD) 15.7 x 9.9 x 0.4 inches (399 x 250.4 x 9.9mm)
Panel Thickness 0.4 inch (9.9mm)
Weight 2.3 pounds (1,060g)
Extra Power brick, HDMI to MicroHDMI cable, USB-C to USB-C cable, USB-C to USB-A adapter, origami stand / cover

Design of Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE

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With speedy specs, there’s no doubt that the Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE is for gamers, but with portable monitors offering little space to work with, gamer aesthetics are only embodied by a pair of watchful eyes that are the Asus ROG logo. With black the dominating color, the overall look here is pretty mute, but Asus found subtle ways to include premium touches.
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With its subtle placement, smooth feel and silver look, the Asus ROG logo actually looks good in a bottom bezel that also manages to fit in two 1W front-firing speakers without taking up too much room. The back of the Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE is its fanciest looking part. A diagonal line starkly divides two contrasting brushed finishes that makes one half look darker than the other. Here lies another ROG eye that glows when the monitor’s on. I’m not usually a fan of massive branding, but when the logo looks this good and gives out a vibe this creepy, I can’t help but appreciate it.

The 17.3-inch Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE will naturally take up more desk space than the 15.6-inch MSI Optix MAG161V  (15.7 x 9.9 x 0.4 inches for the Asus versus 14.05 x 8.94 x 0.43 inches with the MSI), but it’s still comparably thin and even thinner than the Lenovo ThinkVision M14 (12.7 x 8.2-8.7 x 3.8 inches). However, with its larger size, the Asus is also heavier than those non-gaming portable displays (2.3 pounds versus the MSI’s 2 pounds and the Lenovo’s 1.3 pounds). But if you want larger screen size, which is handy for immersing yourself in the game as much as possible, the extra screen real estate will be worth the extra pound, and pixel density is still fantastic at 127.3 pixels per inch.

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A small way the Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE starts earning its price tag is through versatile connectivity options. If you have a laptop or desktop with a USB-C port that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode, you can connect to the monitor that way. If your computer’s USB-C port can charge other devices, you can even use the ROG Strix XG17AHPE without ever having to worry about it running out of battery. Through USB-C, the monitor can receive up to 12V at 2A (with USB Power Delivery 3.0). With my laptop’s Thunderbolt port, I was able to use the ROG Strix XG17AHPE with a single (included) USB-C to USB-C cable for hours without its battery life ever dropping. USB-C also serves to connect tablets and smartphones, including a Samsung Galaxy S10 I connected to it effortlessly.

Either of the two USB-C ports can power the monitor, so if none of your system’s ports can’t do that, you can use one to connect to your device and the other to supply it power. The Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE comes with a USB-C to USB-A adapter, which plugs into an included power brick. That adapter also means the monitor can connect to your system’s USB-A port and receive power.

In addition to USB-C or USB-A, you also have the option to connect to a device’s HDMI port via a MicroHDMI to HDMI cable. This opens up possibilities in the world of Raspberry Pi, gaming consoles and even cameras. If you use HDMI, it’ll either run on battery (see the Battery Life section) or you could simultaneously give the monitor power through a USB-C cable. There’s also a 3.5mm headphone jack for plugging in your best gaming headset.

The panel’s left side holds all the ports and controls. Controls come in the form of a power button located higher than the rest of the inputs and lights up when on or charging, plus three additional buttons. They’re all pretty shallow but worked on the first try.

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