By Paisal Chuenprasaeng
The Nation Weekend
Fitted with an Ergolift hinge that tilts the keyboard at a gentle 5.5-degree angle and helping to reduce discomfort during extended typing sessions, the new Asus ZenBook S (UX391) is a sleek and powerful 13-inch Ultrabook computer that weighs next to nothing and has a long battery life.
New to the ZenBook line, the ErgoLift hinge also helps keep the ZenBook S cool to the touch by creating additional space between the laptop and the surface below. The ZenBook S takes in cool air through this extra space and expels warm air via the hinge area.
And the ErgoLift hinge helps to deliver a premium and immersive audio experience with cleaner sound and improved bass response thanks to the angled bottom-firing speakers.
On the design side, the ZenBook S is really attractive with an all-metal unibody construction in Deep Dive Blue or Rose Gold. And the lid is adorned with Asus’ classic concentric circle pattern that apparently requires more than 40 different steps to produce.
The UX391 is just 12.9mm thick and weighs one kilogram making it highly portable. Adding to its portability is its long battery life of 13.5 hours.
Despite its thinness, the UX391 is tough. It’s been designed to pass MIL-STD 810G tests for drops, temperature, humidity, and altitude.
And it’s powerful too, using an 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8550 processor and equipped with fast 8 gigabytes 2133 MHz DDR3 of working memory. It also uses fast 512 gigabytes PCie 3.0 SSD storage and runs on Windows 10 Home edition.
The ZenBook S comes with fast dual-band 2x 802.11ac Wi-Fi connection for Internet browsing and video streaming.
And for maximum sustained performance, the ZenBook S uses an updated cooling system that uses an innovative liquid-crystal-polymer fan impeller with 71 blades — an increase of 40 per cent over previous designs — housed in an advanced 3D-curved aerodynamic shroud that can move 13.4 per cent more air than before. With this cooling system, the ZenBook S runs up to 5 degrees C cooler than previous ZenBook models.
During the test, I found the UX391 ran business applications like Microsoft Office fast. Web pages and video clips were fast and smooth too and the notebook started up and shut down instantly.
Its 13.3-inch LED-backlit display has 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution. The NanoEdge display has a 5.9mm-thin bezel with 85-per cent screen-to-body ratio, which is great for watching videos and viewing photos and also comes with Asus Eye Care technology that reduces blue light by up to 30 per cent, You can choose Eye Care mode, Normal mode or Vivid mode when using the display.
The ZenBook S is good for watching videos because it features an advanced video tuning system called Asus Tru2Life Video Technology that works like those found in high–end TVs. Asus Tru2Life Video enhances clarity, colour, and contrast in video and also intercepts image and video signals being sent to the panel, analysing every single pixel in every frame to optimise its brightness, contrast, colour and sharpness, before sending the frames for display. This results in colourful, vivid, sharper videos with as much as 150-per-cent improvement in contrast.
And the ZenBook S has a good sound system aided by Harmon Kardon’s sophisticated signal-processing that makes adaptive adjustments to improve clarity and filter out noise. The two bottom firing speakers are angled thanks to the ErgoLift hinge design and bounce sound off the surface to fill the room with rich and clear sound.
The ZenBook S offers a total of 3 USB Type-C ports, two of which are Thunderbolt 3 enabled and all of which support fast-charging and display output. Thunderbolt 3 is the fastest data transfer format available to computing devices with maximum speed of 40Gbps. The two Thunderbolt 3 ports allow the UX391 to support video output to two ultra-high resolution 4K displays for a total of three simultaneous displays.
Apart from a long life, the ZenBook S’s battery also supports fast charging, allowing it to recharge 60 per cent of its battery in 49 minutes.
Asus ZenBook S (UX391) has a suggested retail price of Bt49,990.
>> OS: Windows 10 Home
>> CPU: Intel Core i7-8550U processor
>> Memory: 8GB 2133MHz LPDDR3 onboard
>> Storage: 512GB PCIe 3.0 x4 SSD
>> Graphics: Intel UHD 620
>> Display: 13.3-inch LED-backlit Full HD (1920 x 1080) 16:9 anti-glare non-touch display
>> Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.2
>> I/O ports: 2 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C (Thunderbolt 3), 1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C, 1 x Audio combo jack
>> Audio: High-quality stereo speakers (with smart amplifier), Harman Kardon-certified ASUS SonicMaster Premium audio system
>> Battery: 50Wh |lithium-polymer
>> Dimensions: 311 x 213 x 12.9mm
>> Weight: Approx. 1kg