Asus ROG Phone 3 review

published on August 3, 2020

Hey what's up guys will here for gsm arena asus is a pretty popular name in gaming hardware and that extends to phones too this is the rog phone 3 their newest flagship is this the gaming phone to rule them all

Let's find out in our full review the rog phone 3 is a flagship phone made of premium glass and metal as expected you get the gamer style aesthetic here including a glowing led

Logo this year the bold design elements are a bit more toned down and the finish is glossy not matte one special touch is the triangle accent on the back rather than some sort of decal it's

Actually a window through which you can see the phone's huge copper heatsink the looks and form factor of the rog-3 are quite similar to last year's model just a bit thicker and heftier this time around but just like on the rog phone 2

There's no ip rating this fancy hardware is vulnerable to dust and water asus is known for its extensive selection of gaming accessories for its rog phones

Most of which you'd need to buy separately but you do get an aeroactive cooler 3 in the box it's a fan that attaches to help cool down the phone and your hands too plus it doubles as a kickstand you can

Reuse some of the accessories from last year like the kunai gamepad too the case and paddles don't fit on the rog3 so you have to use it as more of a standalone bluetooth controller

However if you really want to make the phone look like a nintendo switch asus has just announced their new kunai gamepad 3 last year's twin view dock 2 is fully compatible here as well

And it gives you a giant nintendo ds sort of vibe although in-game support for a dual screen is pretty scarce at the moment you can find a couple of games that can utilize the second screen

The just announced twin view dock 3 also works much the same way but the second screen has a higher refresh rate another peripheral you can use with the rog 3 is the mobile desktop dock

It allows you to connect the phone to a tv or monitor and play your games on the big screen you can use this with a controller or even plug in a mouse and keyboard which for some games can feel almost like

Cheating the rog 3's display has seen some upgrades over last year despite keeping the same size it's a 659 inch oled panel with a 1080p resolution

But what makes it stand out is its super fast 144 hertz max refresh rate and 270 hertz touch sampling rate this means that moving objects should appear much smoother to the eye you have options for 60 90 120 or 144

Hertz which are enforced across the whole system where possible and there's also an auto mode that will adjust the refresh rate based on the particular app the low 25 millisecond touch latency

Means that the phone is quick and responsive perfect for gaming or even just swiping around the display performed admirably in our tests too you get the excellent contrast you'd

Expect from an oled and max brightness is great up to around 460 nits with the slider and 720 nits in auto mode in bright conditions new support for hdr 10 plus across the

Major streaming platforms and there are several color presets to choose from some of which are quite color accurate like most phones you see these days with oled screens the rog 3 employs an under

Display fingerprint scanner for waking up and unlocking the phone it's quite fast and responsive there's an always-on display as well as a notification led up at the top plus you can program the glowing

Logo on the back of the phone to shine for notifications so when it's time to check your phone you'll know the rog phone 3 has a dedicated front-facing stereo speaker setup

It's powerful each speaker has a 7 magnet design and an independent amplifier plus asus has partnered with the swedish audio company dirac for the phone's cutting edge audio

Software which is specifically tailored towards gaming certain sounds and frequencies like footsteps are amplified plus there's advanced crosstalk cancellation to have better separation

Of the channels for cleaner directionality and one of the coolest features is the bass boost which uses psychoacoustics to trick the air into recognizing louder and deeper bass tones

Up to two octaves deeper than what the speakers of this size are otherwise capable of overall the max loudness of the rog-3 speakers is a little less than what we measured on the rog-2

But it's not by much and the audio quality here is awesome really on a different level compared to most smartphones there is no 35 millimeter jack on the

Rog phone 3 but there is a dongle included to plug in traditional headphones and there's actually an audio jack on the aeroactive cooler fan so if you have that attached you're all

Set the rog phone 3 has plenty of storage on board and is of the super fast ufs 31 variety you can choose from 128 256 or 512 gigabyte options

This isn't expandable via microsd though there is support for plugging in an external hard drive if you wanted to do that the rog 3's user interface is based on android 10 and as you'd

Expect from a device marketed for gamers it brings bold aesthetics with geometric shapes and contrasty colors and a ton of options related to gaming one feature that's back from last year is the high performance mode called x

Mode when you toggle it the ui transforms and the led on the back lights up x mode has different tiers and the highest performance level is only available if you have the fan plugged in

If the gamer style ui isn't quite your taste there is also an option for a squeaky clean more traditional looking interface and themes there's something called powermaster

Which is a centralized place for managing app power consumption and charging options to increase battery longevity and there are in-depth controls dealing with both screen recording and screen

Capture great for anyone serious about recording their gameplay speaking of gaming one handy set of features on the rog3 lies with the game genie

This is an in-game overlay that's easily accessible by swiping on the edge of the screen it provides quick access to a bunch of gaming related options like do not disturb and brightness or

Live streaming it can also enable a floating toolbar that displays performance stats fps and temperature plus you have key mapping options for the air triggers the two touch sensitive areas on the

Corners of the phone that are great for games like shooters in addition to that there are motion control options key mapping for controllers and even macros you can set up for input

Combinations if you thought that was all you're way off there's a whole gaming portal called the armory crate which on the surface is a convenient and cool looking hub for accessing all of

Your games but it's even more than that one cool feature it allows for is creating a custom performance profile for each individual game or app this includes cpu gpu screen refresh

Rate and temperature control you can import and export these profiles and share them online too within these profiles if you want to go even further you can enter advanced hardcore tuning

This lets you tinker with specific values for the phone's internals we've never seen this level of hardware control before without rooting the phone there are also plenty of general system wide settings as well as controls for

The cooling fan lights and accessories plus you have access to the game genie from here and all that entails finally finding games that make the best use of the rog-3's various features can be tricky

But in the armory crate there is a menu that lists games organized by supported features complete with links to the play store take these with a grain of salt though particularly with high refresh rate

Support that's up to the individual developers to make possible now let's move on to the phone's actual performance the rog phone 3 is powered by the newly

Announced snapdragon 865 plus chipset this is the first time we've seen this ship and it's the fastest you can get on android it provides support for 5g network speeds and compared to the regular 865

Offers a 10 bump in clock speed of its prime cpu core as well as an increased gpu clock speed as far as benchmarks go the rog phone 3 does an excellent job as you would expect it sits at the top

Of the charts as far as cpu performance goes and as far as graphics tests go it beats the rest of the android competition only falling short of apple's hardware all in all

It's not a night and day improvement over the regular snapdragon 865 but it is quite noticeable one interesting observation we had was that the x performance mode didn't seem to boost the maximum

Performance scores or fps rates very much instead asus seems to be aiming more towards high sustained performance over time which is useful when you're actually

Sitting down and playing games the phone is already great at combating thermal throttling thanks to its heatsink and fan attachment but the x mode tweaks performance parameters and thermal tolerances

To help make sure that an hour or two into gaming you don't run into some heat related slowdown at 6 000 milliamp hours the rog phone 3's battery is among the largest ones you can get on a flagship today

With it the rog 3 scored an impressive endurance rating of 120 hours in our battery life tests with its screen at the highest refresh rate and bumping the refresh rate down to a

Standard 60 hertz led to an even better score of 133 hours charging speed is decent especially for such a big battery with the 30 watt power delivery charger we were able to charge from zero to 43

In 30 minutes it's not all about the gaming you might want to take the occasional picture too the rog3 is equipped with a triple camera setup on the back there's a 64 megapixel quad bayer main

Cam a 13 megapixel ultra wide cam and a 5 megapixel macro camera the main camera's photos come out in 16 megapixels and these are perfectly decent there's plenty of detail and colors look

Natural we did have some trouble with the hdr though which is quite inconsistent even when forced on so dynamic range is sort of hit or miss you can capture photos at the full 64

Megapixel resolution though this doesn't offer as much benefit as you might imagine there isn't much more detail and the file size is huge zooming is available and is advertised as lossless

Though it is a digital zoom taken from the main cam at two times this looks decent with a surprising amount of detail though they're a bit too soft to be called lossless

Portrait shots also come from the main cam they're very clean looking with nice subject detection and separation and convincing defocus backgrounds the 13 megapixel shots from the fixed

Focus ultrawide cam are perfectly decent but a bit on the soft side close-up shots taken with the 5 megapixel macro cam are okay the results are usable but the resolution is nothing impressive

And since focus is fixed you need to use some trial and error to get a sharp photo in low light shots from the main camera were pretty good they're surprisingly low noise good

Enough detail and decent dynamic range there isn't night mode supported here which you can set to be enabled automatically if the conditions are dark enough

Depending on the particular scene night mode can be surprisingly effective often managing to bring back a lot of detail from the dark shadows the ultra wide cam's performance is pretty poor in low light as expected

Because of its dim lens if you turn on night mode you may end up with a usable result these take a long time to shoot and don't expect anything mind blowing selfies are taken with the 24 megapixel

Quad bayer front facing cam these six megapixel shots are good focus is fixed but these tend to come out sharp with nice detail colors and dynamic range 4k videos from

The main cam can be taken in up to 60 fps and quality is quite decent you get a good amount of detail with vibrant colors the sharpening might be a bit overdone

Though there is even an option to capture video with this camera and 8k a trendy feature these days and on top of that this mode has electronic stabilization which we haven't seen before

The quality here is great you can shoot in up to 4k at 30fps with the ultrawide camera these are pretty good though the dynamic range is noticeably more narrow than the videos from the main camera

Even though there is no optical stabilization to be found on these cameras in fact all of the footage looks quite smooth if you turn on the electronic stabilization

It does a splendid job there's an extra stable eis called hypersteady which only works in 1080p resolution it is very impressive though effectively smoothing out things like running so that's the asus rog phone 3 from top

To bottom the upgrades it brings are pretty much geared toward improving the gaming experience you get a large and responsive high refresh rate oled display a cool

Looking gamer style design awesome stereo speakers tuned toward the audio you'd hear in games excellent battery life and a cutting edge chipset that can give high class performance

Over long gaming sessions there are a couple of nitpicks to be had here though first is the camera quality which isn't flagship level but for the gamer crowd i don't think it's such a high priority and it gets

The job done the other thing i want to mention here is the focus on a super high refresh rate the high fps is awesome for gaming but since it's up to game developers to

Enable it on their end you're never sure whether a game would support 144 fps or not the play store doesn't make it easy to find the right game titles either

So you have to rely on info posted on forums online and things change all the time overall though i think this phone offers an awesome premium gaming experience that pushes the boundaries of what's

Possible on an android device it's not for everyone but for the hardcore mobile gamers out there the rog phone 3 deserves a recommendation thanks for watching guys stay safe and

See you on the next one you

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