The ASUS ROG Ally comes in two versions, equipped with either the AMD Ryzen Z1 Extreme or Ryzen Z1. The Extreme variant provides enhanced CPU and GPU power, perfect for 1080p high-definition gaming, the resolution supported by this system. Despite ASUS setting an official $100 price gap for both models, it may not accurately reflect their performance; the non-Extreme Z1 should be considerably more affordable. Recognition of this price difference has finally emerged.
The Ryzen Z1 Extreme boasts 8 Zen4 cores and 12 RDNA3 Compute Units, whereas the Ryzen Z1 features 6 cores and only 4 Compute Units. Despite this difference, both systems share a 1080p 120Hz screen, 512GB storage, and 16GB of LPDDR6-6400 memory.
The ROG Ally Z1 Extreme entered the market at $699, while the Z1 non-Extreme was priced at $599. However, due to the introduction of the Lenovo Legion Go, a $100 discount was enforced. This propelled the ASUS device to establish a notable lead in the exclusive high-end handheld market. Conversely, the Z1 non-Extreme version, launching later, received a tepid response from the community.
With the introduction of the Steam Deck OLED, the ROG Ally Z1’s price has recently plummeted to $400, marking a $200 reduction in just three months. Strangely, the ASUS US store maintains official prices at $699 and $599 for both systems. Curiously, BestBuy offers significantly lower prices, though the reason for this disparity remains unclear, suggesting the deal may be temporary. Adding to the intrigue, those open to open-box systems can already snag the ROG Ally Z1 for just $299, a remarkable deal considering the specifications.
While the AMD Ryzen Z1 may not currently enjoy widespread popularity, the discounted ROG Ally could shift this trend favorably. Notably, Mini-PC manufacturers are now incorporating the Ryzen Z1 series into their systems, with the non-Extreme Z1 taking the lead. The sluggish sales of the Z1 may have prompted AMD to explore alternative options for a custom APU explicitly tailored for handheld systems.