Asus has its sights on Dell’s XPS line, utilizing some pretty smaller bezels to pack a good deal of notebook into unusually smaller chassis. The ZenBook fifteen is the premier in the company’s most recent line, and it outdoes the XPS fifteen with a exhibit that seems to float in the air and will allow for a surprisingly smaller body – whilst nonetheless packing in some effective factors.
Our review device was the only ZenBook fifteen configuration that Asus gives: A Core i7-8565U, an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Max-Q, 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB PCIe stable-state push (SSD) for $1,four hundred. That is an attractive value for these types of a very well-geared up high quality notebook. There aren’t a good deal of configurations out there, but Asus integrated some amazing factors into the ZenBook 15’s svelte chassis. Is that more than enough to just take on the greatest of the greatest?
A fifteen-inch notebook in a fourteen-inch chassis
We could only refer to our ZenBook fourteen review when it comes to describing the ZenBook 15’s establish and aesthetic. They’re in essence identical, only the ZenBook fifteen is a little bit greater thanks to its fifteen.six-inch exhibit. The greater model has the exact Royal Blue with gold trim shade plan, the exact textured gold bar above the keyboard (no, that is not a seem bar a la the Lenovo Yoga C930), and the exact legendary Asus concentric swirl on the lid.
The ZenBook 15’s establish quality is also identical to its smaller sibling’s, in that Asus analyzed the notebook towards the MIL-STD-810G military conventional for robustness. The ZenBook fifteen is similarly as rigid in its lid and chassis bottom, and it has the exact regrettable level of flex in the keyboard deck. That makes the ZenBook fifteen considerably fewer rigid and high quality than the Dell XPS fifteen, its biggest rival.
Like the XPS fifteen, the Asus also has pretty little bezels. They’re 3.0mm together the sides and four.5mm up top, which is a little bit smaller than Dell’s five.7mm variations, and still the ZenBook fifteen has the webcam above the exhibit wherever it belongs. Dell can just take a lesson in this article on how to keep away from unpleasant up-the-nose digicam angles. Those people are also a lot smaller bezels than you are going to come across on other fifteen-inch notebooks like the Apple MacBook Professional fifteen and the HP Spectre x360 fifteen.
It’s a superior keyboard, but it’s quite not as precise as the snappier variation on the XPS fifteen.
Thanks to a course-major monitor-to-human body ratio of ninety two %, the ZenBook fifteen is a pretty smaller notebook. It actions just 13.94 inches wide by eight.66 inches deep, which compares to the XPS fifteen at fourteen.06 inches wide and nine.27 inches deep. The MacBook Professional fifteen has a a little bit smaller fifteen.four-inch exhibit and comes in at 13.75 inches wide and nine.forty eight inches deep, whilst the Lenovo ThinkPad x1 Carbon with its fourteen-inch exhibit is twelve.seventy three inches wide by eight.fifty four inches deep.
The ZenBook fifteen also shares the ZenBook 14’s ErgoLift hinge, which props up the notebook at a 3-diploma angle to make for much better airflow and audio performance. We identified the angle presented relaxed typing as very well. The fifteen-inch model’s hinge is smooth and makes it straightforward to raise the lid open up with a single hand.
The ZenBook fifteen isn’t quite so slim as it is smaller. It’s .70 inches thick, in contrast to the XPS fifteen at .66 inches thick at the rear and the MacBook Professional fifteen at .sixty one inches. The Asus weighs 3.seventy three kilos, making the XPS fifteen drastically heavier at up to four.five kilos and the MacBook Professional fifteen only a little bit heavier at four.02 kilos.
As with the ZenBook fourteen, Asus packed some superior connectivity into the ZenBook fifteen. In truth, the ports are identical, together with a USB-A 3.1 port, a USB-A two. port, and a USB-C 3.1 Gen two port to go together with a full-dimensions HDMI link, a 3.5mm combo audio jack, and a microSD card reader. Once all over again, there is no Thunderbolt 3 guidance, which is a actual disappointment. Wireless connectivity is presented by 2×2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth five..
Superior input, but we wish the exhibit had been touch-enabled
The ZenBook fifteen sports a usual island keyboard with black chiclet keys and 3 ranges of steady backlighting. It has a stable 1.4mm of vacation, and we identified the system just the tiniest bit much too spongy. It’s a superior keyboard, but it’s quite not as precise as the snappier variation on the XPS fifteen. It falls very well behind the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Excessive.
The touchpad is substantial and performs very well, with Microsoft Precision guidance and a light button click that is not much too loud in a peaceful room. It’s very easily the equivalent of the XPS fifteen, but it falls behind the gargantuan and Drive Touch-enabled touchpad on the MacBook Professional fifteen. Asus involved a actual physical numeric keypad, and so the ZenBook fifteen does not incorporate the LED NumberPad choice on the ZenBook fourteen and ZenBook 13.
Just like the ZenBook fourteen, this model also does not have a touch exhibit. Not every person cares about touch on a clamshell notebook, but it’s a usefulness for swiping extensive world-wide-web web pages and tapping the occasional dialog button.
You can log into the ZenBook fifteen through Windows ten Hello and an infrared digicam with facial recognition. It performs as very well as all these types of remedies, and we identified it both of those rapid and accurate.
The bezels are smaller, but the exhibit inside of is just typical
The ZenBook fifteen, as its identify indicates, equips a fifteen.six-inch exhibit. It’s a Entire Hd (1,920 x 1,080 or 141 PPI) IPS exhibit, which means it’s going to exhibit off some pixels whilst saving some battery life. We do wish Asus would supply a 4K exhibit for some greater sharpness, even at the cost of some longevity.
Our colorimeter states this is a exhibit that is just typical for its course. Thoughts you, that means it’s a superior exhibit traditionally, but it does not evaluate up to the greatest shows out there these days. Consider brightness, for example, at 302 nits – that is above our most popular cutoff of three hundred nits, but it’s very well behind the Dell XPS 15’s 397 nits. Distinction is also lower at 710:1, wherever the XPS fifteen comes in at 1050:1. The Lenovo ThinkPad Extreme’s 4K exhibit is also much better at 384 nits and 1150:1.
On the lookout at shade guidance, the ZenBook fifteen enjoys seventy two % of the AdobeRGB shade gamut and 94 % of sRGB. That is typical, while the XPS fifteen 4K exhibit and ThinkPad X1 Excessive both of those appear with noticeably broader colours. And a shade precision of two.03 makes the ZenBook 15’s exhibit superior but not good, which would be a score of below 1..
Subjectively, whilst we see some pixels thanks to the Entire Hd resolution, the exhibit was pleasant for our typical productiveness jobs. Observing Netflix was also a superior encounter thanks to a perfect gamma of two.two – scenes had been neither much too dark nor much too dazzling. Asus is carrying out its U.S. shoppers a disservice, while, by not offering a 4K exhibit choice.
Audio also did not stand out, even while Asus built in a keyboard angle and downward-firing speakers that use that angle to bounce soundwaves around. The ZenBook 15’s “Smart Amplifier” and Harmon Kardon tuning resulted in ample quantity, but there was a good deal of distortion at full quantity. The quality was much better at reduce quantity, but you want to use headphones or a Bluetooth speaker every time doable.
The speediest Intel U-series system still
The ZenBook fifteen joins a expanding group of notebooks to use Intel’s complete most recent Whiskey Lake eightth-era processors. The only choice on this equipment is the quad-main Core i7-8565U, which we anticipate to be a little bit more quickly and a touch additional productive than the previous variation.
According to our benchmarks, Asus squeezed some actual performance out of this chip: The ZenBook fifteen is the speediest equipment we have still analyzed based on Intel’s U-series Core CPUs. In Geekbench four, for example, the notebook scored a strong five,330 in the single-main exam and seventeen,607 in the multi-main exam. The next-speediest is the Dell Inspiron 13 7386 based on the exact processor, which arrived in at five,242 and 16,019. That even beats out the HP Spectre x350 fifteen based on the increased-wattage Core i7-8705G.
Future, we ran our Handbrake exam that encodes a 420MB video clip to H.265. That exam puts additional strain on the CPU and is a much better evaluate of a notebook’s thermal performance. The ZenBook fifteen scored the shortest time we have found for a U-series processor at 195 seconds. All other equally geared up notebooks score more than 200 seconds, and you have to jump to notebooks based on 45-watt CPUs (like the XPS fifteen with its 6-main Core i7-8750H) to get a drastically more quickly end result.
The ZenBook fifteen isn’t intended to be a hardcore gaming notebook, and it does not complete like just one.
The ZenBook fifteen employs the exact Western Electronic PCIe SSD as the ZenBook fourteen, and it achieves a similar score. It’s more quickly in produce speeds than some other high quality notes, like the Inspiron 13 and Spectre x360 fifteen, and slower in study speeds. But don’t fret: The ZenBook fifteen is plenty rapid at both of those looking at and crafting info.
Thermal performance was pretty superior. The chassis never acquired extremely warm, and the admirers spun up but had been never extremely loud. There’s intended to be the exact Silent Fan utility that we appreciated on the ZenBook S, but we couldn’t come across it in our review configuration.
A actual GPU delivers entry-level gaming chops
Asus geared up the ZenBook fifteen with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Max-Q. It’s the to start with notebook we have analyzed with that particular graphics chip, but we completely anticipated it to act like other Max-Q variations.
That was our encounter, for the most component. On the lookout at most of our benchmarks, the ZenBook fifteen performs just beneath the GTX 1050 and around the exact as the AMD Radeon RX560X. 1st, there is the 3DMark Hearth Strike synthetic benchmark, wherever the ZenBook fifteen equalled the Asus VivoBook Professional N580 with its GTX 1050.
On the lookout at esports title Rocket League, the ZenBook fifteen matched up much better with the GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q in the Dell XPS fifteen, at 220 frames for every next (FPS) at 1080p and performance configurations and 132 FPS at significant quality. The ZenBook fifteen experienced a tough time with Civilization VI, offering scores that had been way out of line for the GPU – we’ll established people benefits aside.
Stepping up to our to start with definitely GPU-intensive title, Battlefield 1, the ZenBook fifteen was around equal with the Acer Nitro five and its Radeon RX560X, at 58 FPS at 1080p and medium configurations and 30 FPS at ultra configurations. The VivoBook Professional, Dell G3 Gaming (GTX 1050 Ti), and Razer Blade fifteen Foundation (GTX 1060 Max-Q) had been each individual incrementally more quickly.
Ultimately, we ran our most demanding benchmark, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, and the benefits had been similar. The ZenBook fifteen was just below the 30 FPS conventional at 1080p and significant configurations, at 29 FPS, and it hit only seventeen FPS at ultra configurations. The Nitro five was around the exact speed, and then the VivoBook Professional, Dell G3 Gaming, and Razer Blade fifteen Foundation ramped up from there.
The ZenBook fifteen isn’t intended to be a hardcore gaming notebook, and it does not complete like just one. But it’s additional than superior more than enough for entry-level avid gamers, and it can take care of fashionable titles at 1080p and reduce configurations and more mature titles with pretty superior performance.
Tiny, light, and moderately extensive-long lasting
Asus packed in seventy three watt-hrs of battery into the ZenBook fifteen. That is a superior amount of juice. Coupled with the Entire Hd fifteen.six-inch exhibit and productive Whiskey Lake eighth-gen Intel CPU, it promises strong battery life. That is just what we knowledgeable.
In our most demanding Basemark world-wide-web benchmark exam, the ZenBook fifteen managed correct at 5 and a fifty percent hrs. That is more robust than all our comparison techniques, together with the Dell XPS fifteen with its whopping 97 watt-hrs of battery capability (and additional effective CPU). The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Excessive lasted just more than fifty percent as extensive.
When managing through a suite of world-wide-web web pages, the ZenBook fifteen took a slight action back again to just below ten hrs. It fell behind both of those the XPS fifteen and the Lenovo Yoga C930, both of those of which exceeded ten hrs, but it beat out the ZenBook fourteen and the ThinkPad X1 Excessive. Ultimately, the ZenBook fifteen lasted more than 13.five hrs when looping our nearby exam video clip. That falls an hour behind the XPS but is more time than the relaxation of our comparison group.
Those people are strong benefits for a fifteen-inch notebook, and they assure all-working day performance absent from a charger.
The ZenBook fifteen is a much better notebook than its next smallest sibling, the ZenBook fourteen. The much better performance, battery life, and gaming chops make for a additional pleasant notebook to use. And, the ZenBook fifteen is smaller more than enough to make the greater exhibit dimensions fewer burdensome to have around – whilst we do wish Asus would supply a 4K variation.
Is there a much better alternative?
The most immediate competitor to the ZenBook fifteen is Dell’s XPS fifteen. At minimum, that is real in phrases of chassis dimensions. The XPS fifteen gives a more quickly 6-main Core i7-8570H CPU, much better Entire Hd and 4K exhibit alternatives, and a a little bit more quickly GPU. But it’s also additional expensive, coming in at $1,710 ($1,530 on sale) for the exact 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSD.
A further fifteen-inch choice is Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Excessive. It isn’t quite so smaller as the ZenBook fifteen, but it much too gives a more quickly CPU and GPU and that legendary ThinkPad appear and establish quality. It’s also additional expensive, at $two,079 ($1,726 on sale) for equal technical specs.
Ultimately, if you’re ok with MacOS, then the MacBook Professional fifteen is an choice. Apple’s high quality notebook is exceedingly very well-built, gives superfast CPU alternatives and up to the AMD Radeon Professional Vega 20 GPU, and it looks good. But concentrate on the word “premium” in this article: The MacBook Professional fifteen commences at $two,four hundred for 16GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD.
How extensive will it past?
The ZenBook fifteen is very well-built and feels like it will past a lifetime. It has the most up-to-day CPU and rapid factors that ought to keep it managing very well for several years. And the 1-12 months warranty and added price of a 12 months of incident and spill security will help the notebook keep going.
Should you obtain it?
Of course. The ZenBook fifteen gives good productiveness performance and pretty superior battery life, in a package deal that is simpler than most fifteen-inch notebooks to have around. It’s not as high quality as the XPS fifteen, but it’s a stable alternative at a noteworthy value price cut.
Asus ZenBook fifteen UX533FN When compared To