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My experience with the ASUS ROG G16CH Gaming Desktop PC (2023)

My thoughts on the ASUS ROG G16CH: initial setup, gaming performance and the journey of custom upgrades
James Birkenau



November 23, 2023


I recently got my hands on the ASUS ROG G16CH desktop to use both for some gaming and work-from-home. The out-of-the-box setup was great — no bloatware and a ready-to-go Windows 11 environment. The design is sleek and compact, and easily portable. Below I share more experiences.


Out of the Box Experience with the ASUS ROG G16CH

A photo of the asus rog g16ch gaming desktop pc unboxing setup with all accessories displayed

When my ASUS ROG G16CH arrived, I must admit, the unboxing experience was pretty seamless. The packaging was robust, giving me confidence that the components were well protected during transit. Right out of the box, the compact case with its RGB lighting struck a modern look that would fit well with my desk setup. The included carry handle is a handy addition, hinting at the rig’s portability for the occasional LAN event.

Firing it up, I was greeted by Windows 11, already installed and ready to go. It was refreshing not to deal with preinstalled bloatware, apart from the ASUS software, which was fairly unobtrusive. While the setup offered a 16 GB RAM configuration, which is adequate for most of my gaming requirements, it’s worth noting that there are higher-spec versions available. Performance-wise, this rig can handle mid to upper-tier games pretty much silently, which was a pleasant surprise considering some reviews mentioned noise issues.

However, not all is perfect. The cooling, for one, needs attention. The stock CPU cooler runs audibly under load, and the CPU itself can hit a scorching 90°C, which raised my concerns. Longevity wise, I would advise swapping the CPU fan with a more robust one to prevent potential thermal throttling.

The storage came in the form of a 1 TB SSD, offering swift boot times and plenty of space for a hefty game library. Cable management in the unit is tightly done, saving me the hassle I’ve experienced in past builds, but it also made me wonder about future upgradability and whether tinkering would be as tidy.

The I/O options are extensive; however, I had to ensure the monitor was plugged into the graphics card ports instead of the motherboard to avoid confusion, a quick tip worth remembering for those newer to gaming PCs. For an in-depth look at pairing a high-performance setup with the right peripherals, you might be interested in my experience on “Gaming with the Gigabyte B650 Gaming AX Motherboard: my impressions.” The included mouse and keyboard are serviceable starters. Yet it’s clear that at some point, I’ll opt for more responsive peripherals to match the quality of the desktop.

As for the internet setup, not including a cable might seem like a downside for wired connection faithful, but the built-in WiFi worked flawlessly. I anticipate a future RAM upgrade, eyeing increased performance for more intensive tasks.

As part of a gaming and work-from-home setup, I tend to have my machines on for extended periods. I noticed that the power supply is a bit generic, sparking a mental note to perhaps upgrade for better efficiency and peace of mind. Additionally, the lack of a proper ventilation setup means I’ll be considering additional cooling solutions to ensure the machine isn’t overwhelmed during intense use.

Navigating the initial setup was straightforward, sparing me dreaded hours thumbing through manuals or online forums. It’s also worth acknowledging that customer support exists, though I haven’t needed it yet—which, in itself, speaks to the system’s stable out-of-the-box performance.

It’s important to highlight the balance this rig strikes—providing a great foundation with the Intel Core i7-12700F and GeForce RTX 3060, yet leaving room for personalization. It’s a versatile machine that stands a notch above an entry-level pre-built PC without hitting the wallet like a full custom build. For those looking to jump right into gaming with minimal fuss, it’s a commendable choice.

Performance and Gaming: Hitting High Marks

A screenshot of a demanding games graphic settings showcasing the high frame rates achievable on the asus rog g16ch

When it comes to serious gaming, I’m always after a rig that balances power, aesthetics, and price. The ASUS ROG G16CH approached this ideal pretty closely for me. It boasts an Intel Core i7-12700F and a GeForce RTX 3060 which, for most intents and purposes, is a stellar combo that’ll handle AAA titles at high settings without breaking a sweat. I could play Cyberpunk 2077 with high fidelity graphics, and the frame rates stayed consistently smooth.

I appreciate the 16GB of dual-channel RAM and the 1TB NVMe SSD as they contribute significantly to a slick gaming experience, with reduced load times and enough memory for multitasking. It’s clear that Asus has designed this machine with gamers in mind, and I haven’t yet hit its ceiling in terms of performance. That said, if you’re an aspiring streamer or a content creator, this setup also has you covered.

But it hasn’t been all roses. The cooling system design seems a bit of an afterthought. The CPU cooler and case fans aren’t up to par for the heat this machine can put out, especially under load. And although it hasn’t throttled on me yet, I’ve noticed the temperatures occasionally reaching the 90°C mark, which is concerning. I’m planning to replace the CPU cooler with something more robust and maybe add a couple more fans to ensure longevity.

Another notable downside is the noise. It’s not constant, but when those fans kick into high gear, they’re audible. It’s not a dealbreaker—I usually have my headset on which drowns out the fan noise—but it’s something to be aware of if you’re sensitive to sound.

The bundled peripherals were just okay. The mouse felt flimsy, and although the keyboard was decent, I quickly swapped both out for my own gaming peripherals. On the plus side, the case is sleek and compact with customizable RGB lighting, and the handle on top makes it a breeze to transport. These are small touches, but they show that Asus pays attention to gaming lifestyles.

In terms of upgradability, it seems there’s enough space to tweak and turn this strategic starting point into a true powerhouse. The motherboard allows for decent overclocking, and there are open slots for RAM if you choose to go beyond 16GB.

While I can’t speak to long-term durability yet, the build quality feels solid, and there’s an inherent trust in the ROG branding that lends confidence. Checking the temperature using Asus’ own Armory Crate software has become a routine, ensuring components stay in a healthy range.

This gaming desktop isn’t for everyone. If you’re a hardcore enthusiast looking to push every last FPS out of your rig with significant overclocking or ultra-high-resolution gaming, you might be looking at additional investments. But for those with a more ‘plug-and-play’ mentality who still demand robust performance from their machine, the ASUS ROG G16CH is worthy of consideration—and more importantly, of your hard-earned money. For a look at another powerful setup, check out my thoughts on the Alienware Aurora R16 Gaming Desktop.

Despite some shortcomings in cooling and noise levels, my experience with the ASUS TUF Dash 15 Laptop has been positive. It’s a testament to its raw power that even unsatisfied with aspects of its performance, it’s still very much in use and not on the returns pile. That’s saying something.

Customization and Upgrades: Making It My Own

An image showing the open case of the asus rog g16ch with upgraded components like ram and cooling system

Customizing my ASUS ROG G16CH has been a journey that blends the joys and frustration of PC gaming. I appreciate the ease of initial setup and use, but when it comes to making it truly mine, the experience becomes textured.

Right off the bat, I realized the thermal performance under load was a concern. The included CPU cooler wasn’t cutting it, leading to high temperatures that any enthusiast would eye warily. Addressing this, I swapped in a more robust cooling solution. Sites like PCPartPicker were crucial in ensuring compatibility with my components and case dimensions—a key step I’d advise anyone to take.

I also wanted to tackle the RAM. The pre-installed 16GB is serviceable for average use, but for rendering and more intensive tasks, it felt limited. Upgrading to 32GB was a relatively straightforward process. The motherboard’s additional slots meant this was as simple as purchasing compatible sticks and seating them securely—a task even novice builders can achieve safely with a bit of research.

However, the potential power supply constraints posed a bit more of a challenge. The 500W unit can be a bottleneck for future, more power-hungry upgrades. While currently sufficient, one eye must always be kept on power headroom when considering any further enhancements, be it additional storage drives or a newer class of GPU.

Speaking of GPUs, the RTX 3060 is a sound performer, yet the inherent upgradability itch had me contemplating higher-tier cards. Of course, this is when the previously discussed power supply consideration comes back into play. But thanks to forums like r/buildapc on Reddit, charting a course through PSU and GPU upgrade paths became less daunting.

Cable management in the G16CH is a blessing, neat and tucked away. This makes the actual work of adding or swapping components less of a headache, a plus I didn’t fully appreciate until diving into the chassis.

The machine’s aesthetic customization through RGB lighting added a personal touch that I found gratifying. ASUS’ AURA sync tool allowed for easy customization, giving my setup a distinct feel—a satisfying cap to the physical work.

But it wasn’t all plug-and-play. The single fan setup led me to invest in additional cooling options. Thankfully, the active ROG community provided insights and recommendations aiding in the choice of ample airflow options that fit the existing framework.

In conclusion, turning this ASUS ROG G16CH into my own was akin to nurturing a bonsai tree—precise, considered tweaks leading to personal satisfaction, albeit with potential for more growth. It’s a solid machine out of the box, especially for the mid-tier gamer or creative professional. But for those like me, who see their rig as a canvas, the G16CH offers just enough flexibility to create something personally and performance-wise satisfying while highlighting the reality that every tweak has its ripple effect. From cooling to power supply considerations, each step in personalization brings its own set of challenges and learnings, much like any enthusiast pursuit.