Gaming

ASUS ROG Zephyrus flies to Southeast Asia with pricing and availability

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The ASUS ROG Zephyrus has one goal, and it pulls it off in spectacular fashion: Become the slimmest gaming laptop with a high-end NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 inside. The Zephyrus, along with its equally astounding price tag, has hit Southeast Asia.

First unveiled during Computex 2017, none of the momentum ASUS built has faded. This is still the super-slim (by gaming laptop standards) and high-powered machine we checked out late last month.

The only difference now is we have pricing — for the Philippines at least. Originally valued at $2,699 internationally, the PhP 179,995 price tag is definitely an added premium.

The good news is ASUS is also offering a more affordable model for PhP 149,995, which comes with a slightly weaker but still solid GeForce GTX 1070.

Both versions come with the very best Intel Core i7 processor in the mobile computing market and an advanced cooling system exclusively designed by ASUS.

If you reached this point, you must be interested. Pre-orders begin in July, while actual availability starts in August.

But all these specifications are just on paper. We’ll be reviewing this beast soon; stay tuned for that.

SEE ALSO: ASUS ROG Zephyrus is super-slim despite GTX 1080 inside

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Pokémon launched Pikachu-themed wedding rings, but there’s something nasty about them

How big is your love?

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As of late, The Pokémon Company has increased its reach to a lot of other industries outside of gaming, including lifestyle apps and wireless earbuds. Now, the ubiquitous brand has expanded to the most precious catch of them all: wedding rings.

Partnered with Japanese jewelry company Ginza Tanaka, The Pokémon Company has officially launched Pikachu-themed engagement rings and wedding bands. The list of products includes simple platinum and gold wedding bands that come in a PokéBall-style box. Couples can also get their rings engraved with their own personal customizations. (However, the company rightly suggests a variation of “I choose you, [insert name here].”)

Meanwhile, the engagement rings are a bit more ostentatious. One design is a simple silhouette of Pikachu’s face, but the face’s center holds a diamond. Another design has two Pikachu tails holding the diamond in place. Like the wedding bands, they can come in either gold or platinum.

Cute as they are, there’s something awfully weird about them, as The Verge points out. In particular, the ears of the Pikachu rings look particularly nasty. Call us skeptical, but we don’t think Pikachu had *those* for ears. And yes, while they are part of the marriage process, we don’t know if you’d want them wrapped around your finger forever.

However, if you’re not bothered by them and think they’re perfectly innocent and fluffy Pikachu ears, they retail for JPY 346,500 (approximately US$ 3,225). Meanwhile, the wedding bands range between JPY 115,550 (approximately US$ 1,076) to JPY 121,000 (approximately US$ 1,126). The collection also has a keepsake photo frame selling for JPY 13,200 (approximately US$ 123).

SEE ALSO: Pokémon Unite is the very first Pokémon MOBA game

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Gaming

Best TVs for the PS5 and Xbox Series X

Be ready for the Next Gen consoles

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With Sony PlayStation finally unveiling what the PS5 looks like, the conversation around the Next Gen consoles has once again gained momentum. For sure, you’re going to buy either the PS5 or the Xbox Series X, but what TV should you get along with it?

One of the key specifications of the next gen consoles is improved graphics quality with support for up to 8K graphics, and 4K graphics at 120Hz refresh rate. It stands to reason that you’ll need a TV that can take advantage of these features.

One key specification to look for in your next-gen console TV companion is HDMI 2.1. HDMI 2.1 enables a host of features that are beneficial for gamers. These include, but are not limited to the following:

  • 4K at 120Hz (vs to [email protected] with HDMI 2.0)
  • Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) — enables FreeSync and G-SYNC like the ones on gaming monitors for reduced screen tearing.
  • Up to 10K Resolution
  • 48 Gbps Bandwidth (vs to 18 Gbps with HDMI 2.0)
  • Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) or ‘Game Mode’

Naturally, every TV that’s listed here has that particular specification. These TVs also have a ‘Game Mode’ that’s supposed to optimize your entire gaming experience.

We haven’t used any of these TVs ourselves, but based on collected opinions from other websites as well friends and colleagues who have tried some of these TVs, these are what we ended up with.

Best Overall — LG B9 OLED Ultra HD 4K TV

While researching this topic, the LG B9 is the specific TV that kept coming up. You have two size options — 55” and 65” and a host of AI features thanks to its A7 processor (Picture, Brightness, Sound, Sound Tuning).

Based on experience (we have an 65” LG TV in the GadgetMatch HQ), WebOS is pretty fluid to use, and LG has taken extra care to make sure cable management is properly handled.

At US$ 1599/ PhP 79,999 it’s actually a pretty sweet deal considering all the high-end features you’re getting.

Best 8K — QLED 8K Q950TS (2020)

If you’re looking towards the future, have some serious cash to burn, and a considerably wide enough space, consider getting this future-ready 8K QLED TV by Samsung.

We’ve talked lengthily about Samsung’s 2019 8K QLED TV. So this is essentially that but with a few improvements, chief of which is the Infinity Screen. This is a bezel-less beauty and one that looks absolutely premium.

This 85” massive TV that should look good as your primary home entertainment hub retails for US$ 12,999.99. Samsung does have other 8K QLED TV options for much less than that which we’ll list later on.

Everything else 

LG

Name Size/s Price
LG GX 65 inch 4K Smart OLED TV 65” TBA
LG CX 4K Smart OLED TV 77”, 65”, 55” TBA
LG NanoCell 8K 75NANO98PNA 75” TBA
LG C9 OLED55C9PPA 55”, 65” US$ 2,499 (Special deal US$ 1,499 at time of writing)

PhP 142,990 (Special deal PhP 99,990 at time of writing)

LG OLED 4K OLED65E9PPA 65” US$ 2,199
LG NanoCell 65SM9000PPA 65” TBA

SAMSUNG

Name Size/s Price
Samsung QLED 8K Q800T 65” N/A
Samsung QLED 8K Q900R 82”, 98” Starts at PhP 4,990,000
Samsung QLED 8K Q900TS 65”, 75”, 85” Starts at US$ 5,499.99

SONY

Name Size/s Price
Sony Z9G 8K 85”, 98” Starts at US$ 7,999.99
Sony Z8H 4K 75”, 85” Starts at US$ 5,999.99
Sony X900H 4K 55”, 65”, 75”, 85” Starts at US$ 999.99

VIZIO also recently had their 2020 Summer Showcase which listed a bunch of TVs with support for HDMI 2.1. In the Philippines, we were told that XTREME’s S-Series of TVs are all equipped with that feature.

It’s worthwhile to note that whatever UHD TV with HDMI input you have should work fine with the next generation consoles. The ones listed here are just the TVs especially equipped to take advantage of all that next gen goodness.

We’ve reached out to other brands to confirm which of their TVs have HDMI 2.1 so look for this list to be updated once we get their confirmation.

H/T: Premium Builds/ Tom’s Guide/ IGN/ Rtings

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Gaming

Zion is NBA 2K21 next gen cover athlete

One more cover athlete will be revealed

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You can’t tell us you didn’t see this coming. Zion Williamson of the New Orleans Pelicans was a highly touted prospect coming into the NBA. He’s a freak of an athlete and was prominently featured in the NBA 2K21 showcase for the PS5.

Zion is the cover athlete for NBA 2K21 made for the next generation consoles — the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X.

“Being on the cover of NBA 2K has been a dream since I was a kid and to be the first NBA 2K21 cover athlete for the next-generation of gaming is really special,” said Zion Williamson.

“Since the day I joined Team 2K, I’ve wanted to make an impact on basketball culture both on and off the court, and being the cover athlete for NBA 2K21 on next-gen consoles lets me do that. I can’t wait to be part of this global phenomenon and hoop with all the ballers out there on NBA 2K21.”

NBA 2K and Zion’s partnership also extends off the court. 2K Foundations, 2K’s program to support underserved communities by revitalizing basketball courts and community centers across the nation, will work directly with Zion to renovate a site in New Orleans for the local community.

Yesterday, it was announced that Damian Lillard is the cover of NBA 2K21 for the current generation consoles. On July 2, 2K will announce the final cover athlete for NBA 2K21, as well as the release date and pricing; pre-orders will go live as well.

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