Asus ZenBook 3 review: This MacBook counterpart is absolute though too true to a original

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If we like to transport light, concede is a approach of life. We’ve seen a annuity of ultraportable laptops this year, and everybody of them has had to give during slightest a tiny on weight, price, hardware, or build quality.

LG’s Gram 15 had that large shade and insanely low weight, nonetheless a keyboard and trackpad were mediocre. The glorious Dell XPS 13 sloping a beam customarily a bit some-more than some identical rivals. A slew of Surface clones charity cheaper or flashier alternatives to Microsoft’s 2-in-1, nonetheless some facilities like a OLED screen on Samsung’s TabPro S came with quirks.

Asus’s ZenBook 3, for a part, goes so minimalist that it flirts with being impractical. Unlike a 13.3-inch and 15.6-inch ZenBook siblings, this compress 12.5-inch laptop has customarily dual ports. And it’s not one for information and one for charging—a singular USB-C pier handles both. The other submit is a combo audio jack.

Yes, a ZenBook 3 is radically a Windows chronicle of a 12-inch MacBook. It’s kind of a shame, too, given a pattern hamstrings a cutting-edge hardware pressed inside.

Above and beyond

Asus has dual configurations of a ZenBook 3, and both fist a lot of high-end tools into a tiny volume of space. (At 11.65 x 7.53 x 0.47 inches and 2.09 pounds, a ZenBook 3 is customarily a bit wider and lighter than a MacBook.)

Our $1,599 examination section is a some-more costly of a two, with a 15-watt 7th-generation Kaby Lake Core i7-7500U processor as a headliner. Announced behind in August, this creatively launched CPU has a bottom time speed of 2.7GHz and a boost time speed of 3.5GHz, and shows some nice gains in performance over 6th-generation Skylake processors.

Alaina Yee

Pictured: Asus ZenBook 3 (top), 2015 MacBook, Dell Skylake XPS 13, HP Spectre 13.3 (bottom).

That newly launched CPU comes interconnected with a zippy 512GB Toshiba PCIe-NVMe Gen 3 x4 M.2 SSD and 16GB of LPDDR3/2133 RAM. You can’t find components many faster than these right now: For example, send rates of a storage expostulate sped along during 1.7GBps for consecutive high-queue reads and 1.4GBps for consecutive high-queue writes in CrystalDiskMark 5.0.2.

The RAM used is also special. Asus told us they worked closely with Intel to capacitate a 2,133MHz speed with Kaby Lake. The new 7th-gen CPU strictly supports customarily adult to 1,866MHz regulating a power-efficient LPDDR3—official support for 2,133MHz is customarily with DDR4.

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