- Editor's Rating
- Good design and quality build
- Great performance
- Long battery life
- Lacks touchscreen
Quick TakeThe Asus ZenBook UX51V features an impressive display, performance, and features, however its lack of touchscreen might not make the high price tag worth it.
The Asus ZenBook is a sleek and durable notebook that offers users a lot of portability along with strong performance, but it all comes at a high price. The ZenBook UX51VZ-DH71 is a refresh of Asus’ previous 15.6-inch ZenBook model and features minimal upgrades in most areas, with the exception of the display, which received a major upgrade, now sporting a Retina-like resolution with 2880×1620 pixels. NotebookReview noted the display is similar to that offered by the MacBook Pro, but Apple’s product offers much more than just a fantastic display. The Asus ZenBook is priced at $2,435 at the time of the review.
NBR noted the ZenBook offers a “great look and feel,” with high levels of durability and utility in a thin form factor. The ZenBook is 15 x 10 x 0.8 inches and weighs 4.6 pounds. The notebook has a silver brushed aluminum chassis with gunmetal aluminum lid. NBR said the build quality is great and noted the chassis barely flexed when pressure was applied and the display lid also offers good protection with no ripples appearing when pressure is applied. NBR also noted the ZenBook offers quality speaker sound, a comfortable keyboard that offers good tactile feedback and an easy-to-use touchpad. The ZenBook also has ample connectivity, offering an AC power jack port, Ethernet, HDMI, three USB 3.0 ports, headphone/microphone combo jack, media card reader, mini-DisplayPort and an audio jack for an external speaker.
The display has been upgraded to a 15.6-inch display with 211 dpi resolution and 297 nits of brightness. The ZenBook’s display is one of the highest quality on the market, and NBR said the display provides “a clarity and sharpness seldom seen from most notebooks.” Images are crisp and detailed and text is easy to read. NBR also found the display boasts rich color contrast and detailed saturation, which makes the notebook perfect for playing games and viewing media. NBR did note that the high resolution can make images difficult to read, such as Windows 8 tiles with a large amount of text. The ZenBook features generous viewing angles. NBR did note users should expect a drop in image quality when viewing the display when viewed in direct sunlight. While comparable to the Retina display on the Apple MacBook Pro, NBR found Apple’s display still comes out on top.
The ZenBook runs on a 2.2GHz Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia GeForce GTM650M graphics with 8GB DDR3 and 500GB of SSD storage. NBR found the notebook runs basic word functions with ease, as well as more demanding Office functions such as expansive Microsoft Excel files. When it comes to multitasking, the ZenBook is able to run multiple programs with no noticeable drop in performance. NBR also noted the ZenBook offers much better graphics than a traditional notebook. Users can expect to easily edit 1080p video and play a wide range of games with ease, however many newer and more demanding titles will not perform as well with only 2GB of DDR5 visual memory. In NBR testing, the ZenBook ‘s battery lasted for three hours and 59 minutes, which NBR noted is “impressive.”
Overall, NBR was impressed with the Asus ZenBook, but noted it’s likely too expensive for what it offers users. NBR found the solid design, beautiful display and strong performance are all major selling points for the notebook, but the tendency of the machine to heat up easily and lack of a touch screen and forth generation processor may lead users to look elsewhere for a similar-caliber notebook at a lower price.