ASUS ZenBook 14 OLED (2022): A Solid Thin & Light Windows Laptop?
The latest iteration in the Asus ZenBook series of 14-inch gaming ultrabook is smaller, lighter and better polished than ever before, without compromising on the screen, speakers, hardware and performance, as you’ll find from this review.
Is Asus Zenbook A Gaming Laptop?
According to the CTN News : The Asus ZenBook Gaming boasts an 8th Generation Intel Core i7 processor (or you can get an Intel Core i5 processor if you wish), an Intel Iris Xe Graphics GPU, and 16GB of RAM. If you’d prefer an Nvidia GeForce RTX or GeForce GTX, such as those on an Zephyrus G14, consider the Acer Nitro 5 Spin. With the graphics card the ZenBook has it can still play full HD games, but it will have to be on low settings. Still, overall power is pretty impressive.
One of the most powerful features of the Asus ZenBook Gaming, as well as its cousin the Asus ZenBook Pro Duo, is the amazing battery life. Coming in at around eight hours, the Asus ZenBook Gaming may earn a distinction, along with the Microsoft Surface Book Gaming, as one of the longest lasting gaming laptops. Of course, this is probably because of the laptops status as a 2 in 1 and not a dedicated gaming laptop.
On the right of the 13 inch laptop you have a USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A port and the power button. On the left, you’ll find a full HDMI 1.4 port and two Thunderbolt 4 ports. The two thunderbolt 4 ports are a first we’ve seen, so that’s pretty cool, but overall the port situation is lacking.
At just shy of three pounds, the Asus ZenBook Gaming is one of the lightest, and thinnest, 2 in 1 gaming laptops we’ve ever come across. The keyboard is also large and offers a generous amount of spacing for such a skinny laptop. This also extends to the surprisingly good feedback from the keys too. Finally, the bottom-mounted speakers produce excellent sound that doesn’t become muffled if you place the laptop on your lap.
Is Asus Zenbook 14 A Gaming Laptop?
The design of the ZenBook 14 is, in a word, elegant. The mesmerizing radial spun-metal circles inspired by Zen gardens strike you immediately. A Rose gold Asus logo sits at the epicentre and compliments the laptops Royal Blue colour. A gold trim lines the inside of the laptop above the keyboard for a finish that gives the ZenBook 14 an air of sophistication.
Opening the lid also reveals Asus unique ErgoLift hinge which uses part of the lid to prop the back of the Zenbook up; allowing for better airflow and a more comfortable typing position. Besides being legitimately functional, it looks really cool. Although we think that the RGB lit variant you find on the Zephyrus S laptops looks way cooler, this implementation looks much sturdier and reliable.
Asus claims that the ZenBook 14 passes MIL-STD-810G military standard for reliability and durability and it certainly shows. This notebook feels solid and dependable.
The Zenbook has a 14-inch FullHD display with tiny bezels; the sides are 2.3mm thick while the top and bottom 3.5mm thick. Dubbed NanoEdge, these tiny bezels give the Zenbook an impressive 92% screen-to-body ratio.
And despite this impressive slimness, Asus has still managed to fit in a proper webcam and a 3D Infrared camera for Windows Hello functionality. Windows Hello is essentially FaceID for your laptop, allowing you to sign in with just a glance at the screen. It’s a feature I really enjoy that saves me from having to type in passwords or a PIN code.
When it comes to performance, the ZenBook 14 is no slouch. The Intel Core i7-8565U has four physical cores and four more logical ones. Running at 1.8Ghz, you might be tempted into thinking it’s slow or sluggish but you would be wrong. Everything ran smoothly on the ZenBook 14.
Peak performance short lived
In terms of performance, our review model is running the 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7, with i5 and i3 options from the 11th Gen family also available to speak, but the latter option might prove a little underpowered given the display on offer here and the likely use in creative work.
Added to the i7 is an Intel Iris Xe graphics setup, 16GB LPDDR4X RAM and 1TB M.2 NVMe PCIe 4.0 Performance SSD. As such, the 14X OLED is fairly well appointed, with its benchmarking yielding similar results.
In Cinebench (R23) for example, it yielded an average score of 5 286, which is more than this year’s Zenbook Pro Duo and Zenbook Fip 15 mustered, both of which are powerful devices in their own right. From a processing perspective then, the 14X OLED can handle quite a bit being thrown at it.
One area it may struggle though is battery life, which is becoming an increasingly important decision given the current plight of our power utility, coupled with the fact that most are still working from home during the week.
Here the 63WHrs Li-ion battery on offer only yielded a little over five hours of use from a fully charged battery under the optimal settings, which means screen brightness was bumped all the way. You could eke out another 45 minutes to an hour should you go lower, but overall, the 14X OLED is not going to win any awards in terms of how it manages power.
As such, if you plan to use this on the go, a plug point needs to be close at hand or sizeable power bank should be at the ready.
What are the drawbacks of ASUS ZenBook?
So with so much working in its favour, what are some of the things that may dissuade people from buying it? The first noticeable drawback may be its price. Starting at R27 999 on the Asus store, it will be out of the price range of many consumers.
While the ScreenPad can be useful, some users may not get the same value out of it as others. Paired with the premium price, some people would probably prefer a simpler touchpad with an overall lower price for the laptop.
While it comes with two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports, a USB 3.2 Type-A port, an HDMI port, microSD card reader slot and audio jack; for users with a number of peripherals, the single Type-A port may be another drawback.
Buy ASUS ZenBook or no buy?
ASUS has taken a great package and stepped it up even further with the upgrade to Intel’s 11th gen processor and integrated Iris Xe graphics. Already a great machine for working on the go, the ZenBook has been made even better with the capability to sneak in a game or two. Although it won’t be going head to head with gaming laptops any time soon, it’s more than sufficient to keep your inner gamer happy between bouts of work.
There are few downsides for Asus Zenbook, most of which are forgivable or has already been remedied with an alternative solution – the lack of a fingerprint sensor has been made up for with Windows Hello facial recognition, and a USB-C to 3.5mm adapter has been provided in the box (though this means you will have 1 less USB-C slot to play with).
The Zenbook 14 OLED has a 14-inch, 2880×1800 resolution, 90Hz OLED display. The display supports 10-bit color and HDR10 content. As with most OLED panels, the Zenbook 14 OLED display has an incredibly wide color gamut, with full coverage of the sRGB and DCI-P3 color spaces, and 97% Adobe RGB coverage.
The ASUS Zenbook 14X has a fantastic OLED display and good performance. ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED is designed to deliver high performance and true-to-life images on a unique 4K OLED panel.
Weighing only 1.4 kg 9 and measuring a slim 15.9 mm, Zenbook 14 Flip OLED is supremely portable and versatile.
Let your productivity shine with Zenbook 14X OLED! This compact, slim and light laptop features a beautiful 16:10 4K OLED HDR NanoEdge touchscreen that delivers the deepest blacks and the most vivid colors.
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