ASUS ZENBOOK UX31 Review - NJTechReviews

Our friends over at ASUS have sent us their Zenbook for us to review. Yes, this is there “Ultrabook” and the battle has begun to see who makes the best one. Lenovo is the other big player in the game, as well as Dell and many other companies. However, ASUS definitely has an advantage thanks to its great design and features. Now, let’s get started with the full review of the ASUS Zenbook.


Design And What’s In The Box

Ultrabooks are all about being thin, and the Zenbook does just that. It’s thickest point at the rear of the computer is .67 inches and the thinnest point at the front comes in at just .11 inches. We have the “rose gold” color which is very nice, however it is more of a light pink. On the lid of the device, right front and center you have a silver ASUS logo. On the bottom of the device you have the cooling vents and serial numbers. On the left hand side you will find the microSD port, headphone jack, and a USB port. The right hand side is home to your mini HDMI port, mini VGA port, charging port, and another USB port. Once you open up the laptop you will see the keyboard, trackpad, webcam, and screen. In and around the keys of the keyboard you will see the “rose gold” color again, while the keys themselves are the alumni color of the rest of the ultrabook. Above the screen you will find the webcam and microphone, under the screen you have the ASUS logo. Under the left hand side of the keyboard, you have “Audio by Bang & Olufsen ICEPower” written. You also have silver Intel CORE i7 and Windows 8 stickers. You speakers are the hinge that connects the display to the rest of the ultrabook. It says “UX31 Series Ultra Slim”, this way you know what device you have and can show it off to your friends. The ASUS Zenbook UX31 is a beautiful device and it is crafted very nicely. ASUS took their time with developing this device and made sure that it looks great. It’s slim profile makes it super easy to travel with, and you can carry it with the included leather carrying case. ASUS really does give you everything right out of the box. You get a VGA and Ethernet adapter, and a leather carrying case for these 2 cords. You get the charging cable for the computer. I also want to say that the carrying cases are made very nice as well, they really make sure everything is perfect. You also get cable ties, a welcome letter, manuals, users guides, and more. The box design it self is very nice and shows off the design of the ASUS Zenbook.


Keyboard And Trackpad

The design of the keyboard and the trackpad is complete integrated into the design of the Zenbook. And it makes for a great design that I wish was in more ultrabooks on the market. The trackpad color differs by a little bit from the color of the entire device, and it is easy to find and easy to use. The trackpad sometimes mixes up the clicks, but for the most part it worked well. You can scroll up and down on the webpage or documents, by swiping up and down on the trackpad. To click on something it is a physical click for the most part, no longer do you need to just lightly tap the pad it self. I hope that ASUS eventually adds more functions you can do with the trackpad. The keyboard is great, it is very easy to type on and the keys have just the right amount of space between the individual keys. Across the top row of the keyboards you have many different functions. To use the functions themselves, hold down both the function key and the key at the top to make the action happen. I wish they included a function key on the both the left and right hand side of the keyboard. At times it is a stretch to reach both the function key and the individual key at the top. The functions do come in handy, and they scattered around all of the keys not just the top row. For instance you can control the webcam with the “C” and “V” keyboard keys. You can go through the different mode via the function key and the space bar. You can be in entertainment mode, quite space, high performance, battery saver and more. They all come in very handy when performing different tasks on the Zenbook.


Operating System And Performance

The ASUS Zenbook is running Windows 7 Home Premium. This is one of the most common operating systems found on computers today. I have a feeling that by the time Windows 8 rolls around there may be a new version of the Zenbook or this version can be upgraded to the newer operating system. It is the 64-Bit version of Windows 7 Home Premium. Now, our review unit has Intel Core i7 Processor and has 4GB of RAM inside. It runs very fast and the boot up time of this Zenbook is very fast and it wakes up from standby mode in a matter of seconds. You can have the Zenbook in stand by for up to (around) 10 Days. It has a Solid State Drive, this way it can keep the slim profile design and if for some reason you drop the Zenbook(which I/ASUS do not recommend), your data has a better chance of staying safe. There are not that many pre-loaded applications on the Zenbook, which is always a good thing. You have a lot of stuff pre-loaded from ASUS which comes in handy a lot. The days of actual paper manuals are ending soon, and ASUS happily provides you with a “eManual”. This will help you figure out how to do a lot of stuff on the Zenbook. The ASUS Tutor application teaches you all about the cool features of the laptop like, multi-touch, face logon, instant on, ASUS smart detect, and Bluetooth logon. This has videos of the actions being done, this way you can learn both visually and via the simple instructions typed on the screen as well. You have a widget right on the screen that lets you know your battery power, stand by time, and the charge time. You can also turn on and turn off “Instant On”. ASUS Vibe Fun Center is your place is your place to find the latest music, radio stations, games, news stories, books, and much more. The best part is that a good amount of them are free, this way you don’t need to put out your hard-earned cash on the different items. Overall, the processor inside of the Zenbook helps to make sure that Windows 7 and the pre-loaded applications work correctly.


Display And Sound

ASUS much have put a ton of work into the display on the UX31 Zenbook. This is because I was amazed with how good everything looks on it. It has a 13.3 inch with a resolution of 1600 x 900! Browsing the web, watching videos, viewing photos, and everything else you do on the screen looks great. And your level of brightness really doesn’t affect the quality too much, for the most part it stays consistently throughout all of the levels. The quality is very impressive and I hope the manufactures learn a lesson from the Zenbook UX31. Now, onto the amazing sound quality of this ultrabook. It has both Bang & Olufsen ICEPower and ASUS SonicMaster, these two technologies together form an amazing sound quality. Now, with the amount of speakers that the Zenbook has, you wouldn’t think it could produce much sound at all. Well in reality it gets very loud, and has the best sound on a Ultrabook that I have seen yet.  If you turn the volume up all the way it gets very loud, a comfortable volume would be found a little before the middle. That is how loud and great the sound quality is on the Zenbook. Overall, I really have to applaud ASUS for using their technology and Bang & Olufsen to produce a great sound system on the Zenbook.


Bottom Line

The ASUS Zenbook UX31 is one amazing ultrabook. It has a gorgeous display, a loud and great sounding speaker system, a fast processor, great pre-loaded apps, and much more! And if the rose gold color isn’t for you they make it in several other colors. Now, here is the important part; the pricing. The ASUS Zenbook UX31 starts off at $999.99, and depending on your customizations it can be more expensive. however, I have to say that the ASUS Zenbook UX31 is currently the best Ultrabook on the market. I personally like the design of it sloping down better than the of the book shape, the speed on this computer is great, the sound is impressive, and many more features make this the best. I can’t wait to see the next generation of Ultrabooks’ from ASUS. For More Info On The ASUS Zenbook Or To Get Your Very Own, Please Click Here. We would like to thank ASUS for providing us with a copy of the “ASUS Zenbook UX31”.


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