Asus ZenBook 14X OLED

MSRP $1,400.00

“The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED is a implausible laptop computer with a spectacular show.”

Professionals

  • Spectacular OLED show
  • Rock-solid construct high quality
  • Wonderful keyboard
  • ScreenPad 2 provides some performance
  • Competent productiveness efficiency

Cons

  • Battery life is mediocre
  • A tiny bit costly

Asus has gone all-in on OLED laptops. It launched the most affordable laptop computer you might purchase with an OLED show within the Asus ZenBook 13 OLED, which we have now named one of the best laptop computer beneath $1,000. It put two OLED shows within the ZenBook Professional Duo 15 OLED. And it even launched the primary Home windows removable pill with an OLED show within the Vivobook 13 Slate OLED.

The corporate even contains OLED in a laptop computer’s identify, underlining what it considers to be the important characteristic. That’s the case with the ZenBook 14X OLED, a laptop computer that can arrive in early in 2022 with — you guessed it — a high-resolution OLED panel.

I reviewed the $1,400 high-end model of the ZenBook 14X OLED, with a Core i7-1165G7, 14-inch 16:10 OLED show, and Nvidia MX450 graphics. It’s a superior addition to the ever-growing steady of premium 14-inch laptops, and its OLED show is undoubtedly a pleasant one. The smaller ZenBook 13 OLED nonetheless affords a greater worth, however the increased decision and improved efficiency of the 14-inch mannequin make it a standout choice, even past its display.

Design

Asus ZenBook 14X OLED sitting on a table top.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

The ZenBook 14X OLED sports activities an aesthetic that’s not as minimalist as another laptops I’ve lately reviewed. First, there’s the same old Asus concentric circle swirl on the lid that revolves across the silver Asus icon, which is typical of the ZenBook line.

Second, the ZenBook 14X OLED’s angles are extra aggressive, particularly alongside the decrease fringe of the lid and the facet and rear edges of the chassis. Varied different edges are chamfered for some extra aptitude. The laptop computer is accessible in two colours, Lilac Mist (lavender) and Pine Grey (charcoal), and mine was the latter.

It’s a modern laptop computer that’s extra enticing than, say, the Samsung Galaxy Guide and the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional, each of which sport that minimalist aesthetic I simply talked about. The ZenBook 14X OLED traits extra towards the unique design of the HP Spectre x360 14 than the easier sophistication of the Dell XPS 13, and it really works nicely.

Asus is thought for making strong laptops, and the ZenBook 14X OLED is not any totally different. It’s constructed of machined aluminum, and it reveals zero bending or flexing within the lid, keyboard deck, or chassis backside. It’s constructed so solidly that the navy certification testing that Asus applies appears superfluous — the ZenBook 14X OLED is definitely as strong as one of the best on the market, together with the XPS 13 and the Spectre x360 14.

The ZenBook 14X OLED has small bezels round its show to create a conveyable laptop computer.

It’s way more inflexible than the IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional, which demonstrated some bending within the lid and flexing within the keyboard deck. The ZenBook 14X OLED’s hinge permits for opening the lid with one hand, and but it holds the show in place with simply the tiniest little bit of wobble whereas working. It additionally props up the underside chassis at an angle, permitting for extra snug typing and elevated airflow. The ZenBook 14X OLED is a strong laptop computer that feels nice in hand.

Talking of which, the ZenBook 14X OLED leverages small bezels round its 16:10 14-inch show to create a properly sized laptop computer. It’s nearly precisely the identical width and top because the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional and the identical 0.67 inches thick. The ZenBook is just barely heavier than the IdeaPad at 3.09 kilos versus 3.04 kilos.

Given the Lenovo’s equally small bezels, this appears to be in regards to the measurement you’re going to get when constructing a laptop computer round a 16:10 14-inch show. You will get thinner laptops, such because the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9 that’s 0.59 inches thick, however the ZenBook 14X OLED is skinny and lightweight sufficient to make it a 14-inch laptop computer that’s simple to hold round.

A single USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port on the left-hand side, next to a row of vents, and then a full-size HDMI 2.0 port, two USB-C with Thunderbolt 4 ports (one of which is used for power), a 3.5mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader along the right-hand side.

A single USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port on the left-hand side, next to a row of vents, and then a full-size HDMI 2.0 port, two USB-C with Thunderbolt 4 ports (one of which is used for power), a 3.5mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader along the right-hand side.

Connectivity is strong. You get a single USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port on the left-hand facet, subsequent to a row of vents, after which a full-size HDMI 2.0 port, two USB-C with Thunderbolt 4 ports (one in all which is used for energy), a 3.5mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader alongside the right-hand facet. That’s a superb mixture of legacy and future-proof connections. Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 carry out wi-fi duties.

Efficiency

My evaluate unit was outfitted with the Eleventh-gen quad-core Intel Core i7-1165G7, a productiveness workhorse CPU that’s widespread on skinny and lightweight laptops. That was mated with 16GB of RAM, a quick PCIe 1TB solid-state drive (SSD), and Nvidia’s GeForce MX450. As with all such laptops as we speak, the ZenBook 14X OLED was a speedy performer whereas I used to be testing the laptop computer and penning this evaluate.

Our suite of benchmarks backed up my subjective impressions. The ZenBook 14X OLED was the third-fastest in Geekbench 5 with a wonderful rating for the processor, behind solely the marginally faster-clocked Core i7-11370H within the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional and the AMD Ryzen 7 5700U within the Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1. The ZenBook additionally did nicely in our Handbrake take a look at that encodes a 420MB video as H.265, beating the IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional and dropping out to the speedy Ryzen CPU within the Inspiron 14 2-in-1.

It’s not which you could’t edit video or giant photos on the ZenBook, however you’ll have to attend for demanding duties to finish.

Put the ZenBook 14X OLED in its “efficiency” mode, and you’ll squeeze out a bit extra pace, ending the take a look at in 156 seconds. The identical was true with Cinebench R23, the place the ZenBook 14X OLED took second place to the Dell whereas gaining a little bit of a lift from efficiency mode at a rating of 6,252. In PCMark 10 Full, the ZenBook once more misplaced out solely to the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 in commonplace mode, nevertheless it was quicker when operating in efficiency mode. Its Necessities, Productiveness, and Content material Creation scores have been common, although.

Total, the ZenBook 14X OLED is a quick laptop computer for demanding productiveness workflows however doesn’t fairly rise to a creator’s workstation degree. It’s not which you could’t edit video or giant photos on the ZenBook, it’s simply that you just’ll be ready some time for demanding duties to finish. However for anybody else, the ZenBook 14X OLED will make for a satisfying expertise.

Geekbench (single/multi) Handbrake
(seconds)
Cinebench R23 (single/multi) PCMark 10 3DMark Time Spy
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED (Core i7-1165G7) 1536 / 5780 173 1479 / 5717 5366 1756
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional (Core i7-11370H) 1578 / 5957 202 1514 / 5544 5149 1888
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 (Ryzen 7 5700U) 1184 / 6281 120 1287 / 8013 5411 1247
Samsung Galaxy Guide (Core i5-1135G7) 1401 / 5221 180 1361 / 5391 4735 1584
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9 (Core i7-1165G7) 1327 / 5201 N/A 1469 / 4945 5147 1776

Though my evaluate unit options the GeForce MX450 discrete GPU, it didn’t carry out quicker than the Intel Iris Xe in our comparability group. Its 3DMark Time Spy rating was in the identical vary, and it managed simply 18 frames per second (fps) in Fortnite at 1200p and epic graphics. That’s not far off what quicker Iris Xe laptops can accomplish.

I used to be stunned by these outcomes, however I ran them a number of instances to make sure there weren’t any glitches that I may determine. I additionally tried efficiency mode, and that made no distinction within the laptop computer’s graphical efficiency. The discrete GPU didn’t flip this skinny and lightweight machine right into a gaming laptop computer, so patrons ought to mood their expectations after they see that it has a discrete GPU.

Show

Image of the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED's display.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

The ZenBook 14X OLED enjoys a 14-inch OLED show, and it’s accessible in a number of configurations which can be all within the productivity-friendly 16:10 side ratio. You possibly can select from a 4K+ (3,840 x 2,400) panel, a WQXGA+ (2,880 x 1,800) touchscreen show, and a nontouch WQXGA+ display. My evaluate unit sported the latter, and it was spectacular from the second I turned it on. Blacks have been inky, and colours have been dynamic with out being oversaturated. Whereas engaged on the evaluate, I liked utilizing the show, particularly the sharp black textual content that jumped off the web page.

This show will please anybody, from productiveness customers to creators to media customers.

In accordance with my colorimeter, that is objectively nearly as good a show as it’s subjectively. It was vivid at 389 nits, above our 300-nit threshold for shows that may overcome all however vivid daylight. It had vast colours at 97% of AdobeRGB and 100% of sRGB, and people colours have been correct at a DeltaE of 1.2 (lower than 1.0 is taken into account glorious). The distinction was otherworldly as normal, coming in at 27,010:1. Evaluate that to the 4K IPS show on the Dell XPS 13, which got here in at 420 nits, 79% of AdobeRGB and 100% of sRGB, with coloration accuracy of 1.21 and 1,360:1 distinction. Few IPS panels can carry out in addition to the ZenBook 14X OLED’s show, and also you’ll discover none that may present the identical true blacks.

This show will please anybody, from productiveness customers to creators to media customers. Netflix and Amazon Prime Video excessive dynamic vary (HDR) content material seemed nice on the show because of DisplayHDR 500 help. OLED shows proceed to impress, and whereas different applied sciences are catching up, such because the mini-LED shows on Apple’s MacBooks, you’ll be able to’t go fallacious selecting the expertise.

For these involved about OLED burn-in, Asus contains some utilities and  expertise to offer confidence. First, there’s a guaranty of seven,000 hours at 200 nits, and the show detects growing old pixels and enhances the present passing via them to offer higher efficiency.

Second, two utilities are offered to assist keep away from burn-in. There’s a display saver that may be set to routinely launch after half-hour of idle time and a pixel shift perform that strikes a static picture on the display simply sufficient to keep away from constantly shining particular person pixels. These can each be toggled on and off, though it’s in all probability a good suggestion to maintain them turned on.

The audio is offered by two downward-firing audio system on the underside of the chassis towards the entrance. I discovered it to offer clear mids and highs and a stunning quantity of bass. The one downside: The audio system don’t get very loud, even when turned all the way in which up. There’s zero distortion, which is sweet, however you’ll desire a pair of headphones to actually get pleasure from films and music.

Keyboard and touchpad

The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED's keyboard and trackpad.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

Asus has been channeling HP recently on the subject of keyboards, utilizing a structure and keycaps which can be eerily just like these on HP’s Spectre line. There is identical key spacing and row of motion keys alongside the right-hand facet of the keyboard. That’s not a foul factor as a result of the Spectre keyboards are glorious. On the similar time, whereas the Asus switches have loads of journey and a snug bottoming motion, they’re not as snappy and don’t really feel fairly as exact. They’re a step behind one of the best, which additionally contains Dell’s XPS keyboards, however that makes the ZenBook 14X OLED’s keyboard excellent nonetheless.

The touchpad is a large format that doesn’t use the accessible house on the palm relaxation. Some laptops, just like the Dell XPS 13 and the HP Spectre x360 14, make nice use of the additional house afforded by as we speak’s taller shows, however that’s not the case with the ZenBook 14X OLED. It’s not a tiny touchpad, nevertheless it could possibly be bigger. Thankfully, it has a snug floor that makes for correct swiping, and it’s a Microsoft Precision touchpad, so multitouch gestures work nicely. The buttons are clicky and responsive with out being loud.

In fact, you’ll be able to’t choose the touchpad solely by how simply it means that you can manipulate your cursor. It additionally incorporates Asus’s ScreenPad 2, which supplies an LED show embedded within the touchpad that allows a number of extra performance.

ScreenXpert 2 is a multiscreen organizer that manages the interplay between the ScreenPad and the first and any extra shows. Customers can launch functions from the ScreenPad, and use the touchpad as a secondary show. You possibly can flip the ScreenPad off fully if you happen to like, and the touchpad will perform usually. Total, I discovered the ScreenPad a helpful addition, however not one I couldn’t dwell with out.

The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED's keyboard and display.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

Contact shows can be found for the ZenBook 14X OLED, however sadly, mine didn’t embrace one. I missed it, as I at all times do.

Home windows 10 Hey password-less login help is offered by a fingerprint reader embedded in an influence button on the keyboard. It labored nicely, letting me energy up and log in with one stroke rapidly and reliably.

Battery life

Asus ZenBook 14X OLED sitting on a table top.Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

The ZenBook 14X OLED packs in 63 watt-hours of battery life, a good quantity for a 14-inch laptop computer. The OLED show is high-resolution and power-hungry, although, and the CPU isn’t a low-power model, so I used to be anticipating common battery life at greatest.

What I acquired was rather less than that. In our web-browsing take a look at that loops via a sequence of widespread web sites, the ZenBook 14X OLED lasted 7.5 hours, lower than common and nicely beneath the ten hours we prefer to see from skinny and lightweight laptops. The Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional lasted 10 minutes longer with its higher-power CPU and high-resolution show, whereas the Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 was a lot stronger on this take a look at, lasting nearly 13 hours.

In our video take a look at that repeats an area 1080p film trailer, the ZenBook 14X OLED hit 10.75 hours, once more lower than common and a bit decrease than we prefer to see. The IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional lasted two extra hours, whereas the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 went for a a lot stronger 16 hours.

I ran the PCMark 10 Purposes battery take a look at that’s one of the best indication of productiveness longevity, and the ZenBook 14X OLED achieved eight hours, once more a bit decrease than common. Many skinny and lightweight laptops make it to 10 hours. The IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional hit 9 hours, and the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 wouldn’t full the take a look at. Within the PCMark 10 Gaming battery take a look at, which reveals how onerous a laptop computer works whereas unplugged, the ZenBook 14X OLED lasted for simply 81 minutes, the bottom rating we’ve seen however near the 90 minutes or in order that the IdeaPad achieved.

Total, the ZenBook 14X OLED in all probability gained’t make it via a complete eight-hour workday without having a little bit of a cost. You’ll need to maintain the 100-watt USB-C charger helpful.

Our take

Boiled right down to its essence, the ZenBook 14X OLED is a well-built 14-inch laptop computer with strong efficiency and a spectacular OLED show. It’s simple to advocate on that foundation alone, nevertheless it has some good extras just like the ScreenPad 2 touchpad that turns out to be useful if you happen to’re keen to take a while to be taught its numerous makes use of.

It’s not good. Battery life is mediocre, maybe not crossing our all-day threshold, and it’s a tiny bit costly. However taken as a complete, it’s a strong addition to the rising herd of 14-inch laptops and is value a spot in your checklist.

Are there any options?

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9 might be one of the best clamshell 14-inch different, just because it’s additionally very nicely constructed, performs nicely, and will get higher battery life. You don’t get an OLED show, however that’s not but so widespread in 14-inch machines, and also you’ll spend a bit more cash relying in your configuration.

If a convertible 2-in-1 is of curiosity, then you definately’ll need to think about HP’s Spectre x360 14. It additionally has a wonderful OLED show, a great-looking and well-built chassis, and naturally, the pliability of a 360-degree convertible. It’s across the similar value, however you gained’t get built-in graphics.

Lastly, you’ll be able to at all times think about the Dell XPS 13 if you happen to’re keen to go together with a barely smaller OLED show. The XPS 13 is dearer, nevertheless it’s value it, being one of the best laptop computer you should purchase.

How lengthy will it final?

The ZenBook 14X OLED is strong as a rock and appears like it’s going to final for eons. Its elements are updated and can run Home windows 11 with ease, do you have to determine to improve (and also you in all probability will eventually). As at all times, the one-year industry-standard guarantee is disappointing, however Asus does add in accident safety for a 12 months.

Do you have to purchase it?

Sure. The ZenBook 14X OLED is a superb 14-inch laptop computer that competes strongly in opposition to its competitors.

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