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Need a laptop that does it all? The Asus ZenBook Pro UX550VE might fit the bill


Thin and light-weight 2-in-1 notebooks generally appear to be they’re taking up the market. However, there are nonetheless loads of individuals in search of bigger, extra highly effective machines, notably ones that can double as high-end productiveness notebooks and entry-level methods for budding players. In our Asus Zenbook Pro UX550VE assessment, we take a look at simply such a machine that packs some severe energy into a conventional pocket book body.

Our assessment unit got here with a seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor (which nonetheless provides extra pure energy than the newest era CPUs), an Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti GPU, 16GB of DDR4-2400MHz RAM, a 512GB PCIe solid-state disk (SSD), and a 15.6-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 or 141 PPI) decision show. This is the solely configuration, and it retails for $1,700. That’s not precisely low cost, and actually it’s $150 greater than a comparably geared up Dell XPS 15.

Asus has put collectively a nicely-configured mainstream pocket book. Does it warrant its worth level in comparison with some stiff competitors?

A strong, elegant, and engaging design that retains the warmth in verify

Asus has adopted a very constant design with its most up-to-date ZenBooks, and the Zenbook Pro UX550VE may be very clearly a member of that household. It has the identical sort of all-aluminum chassis and shares the now-iconic Asus concentric circle swirl adorning the lid, however it’s a modern black in comparison with the navy blue of another ZenBook fashions.

Overall, it’s a chic and engaging look that units the pocket book other than extra conservative alternate options like the Dell XPS 15 and the Lenovo Yoga 720 15. The lighted Asus emblem on the lid provides some further panache that contributes to the ZenBook’s premium aesthetic.

At the identical time, it’s additionally very solidly constructed with tight tolerances. Other than the expansive lid that provides simply a tiny bit below strain (however by no means sufficient that the LCD is affected), the ZenBook Pro UX550VE shares the identical rigidity as its smaller siblings like the ZenBook 3 Deluxe. Close the lid and the ZenBook Pro looks like a big slab of steel — open it and also you received’t discover the slightest little bit of flex in the keyboard deck or wherever else. Speaking of the lid, it’s held firmly in place by a hinge that spans most of the pocket book’s width, however we discovered it a bit too stiff and it required each fingers to swing the show open.

There’s some additional room on all sides of the keyboard for a pair of very efficient audio system.

In phrases of its total dimensions, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE is a little wider and deeper than its competitors. For instance, it is available in at 14.37 x 9.88 x zero.75 inches, which compares to the Dell XPS 15 at 14 x 9.27 x zero.66 inches and the Apple MacBook Pro 15 with Touch Bar at 13.75 x 9.48 x zero.61 inches. The ZenBook Pro’s added width and depth in comparison with the Dell (the MacBook’s show is a barely smaller 15.4-inches) is because of barely thicker show bezels (7.3mm on the sides versus the Dell’s 5.7mm). But, the Asus additionally advantages from having its webcam situated on high of the show the place it belongs, in contrast to the XPS 15, and there’s some additional room on all sides of the keyboard for a pair of very efficient audio system.

Even although it’s a bit thicker, the ZenBook Pro is nonetheless lighter than the XPS 15 at 3.97 kilos (with 73 watt-hours of battery) versus 4.6 kilos (with the Dell’s hefty 97 watt-hour battery put in). That’s additionally barely lighter than the MacBook Pro’s 4.02 kilos.

In a nod to consolation, Asus situated all the ZenBook Pro UX550VE’s venting beneath and inside the show and pointing up. That means that the pocket book can sit comfortably on a lap with out blocking airflow or blowing sizzling air onto the pores and skin, and due to a dual-fan cooling system, we by no means seen the backside to get uncomfortably sizzling. You’ll need to put it on a totally different floor in the event you’re gaming or rendering video, simply to be secure, however in any other case it’s thermally designed fairly effectively to behave as a true laptop.

Solid connectivity that’s in contact with each the previous and the future

You would anticipate a 15.6-inch pocket book that’s not razor-thin to accommodate a respectable meeting of ports, and the ZenBook Pro UX550VE doesn’t disappoint. It comes with a proprietary energy connector, full-size HDMI port, and two USB-C 2 ports with Thunderbolt 3 assist alongside the left-hand aspect. On the right-hand aspect are two USB-A 3.1 ports, a mini-SD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack.

Asus Zenbook Pro UX550VE review
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Wireless connectivity consists of 2×2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2, and there’s a fingerprint reader situated in the upper-right-hand nook of the touchpad that supplies quick and dependable Windows 10 Hello password-less login assist. Overall, connectivity is superb and it bests the XPS 15 by offering twice as many USB-C ports.

An excellent keyboard and wonderful touchpad lead the class

The ZenBook Pro UX550VE provides an expansive keyboard deck upon which to mount a spacious keyboard, and Asus takes good benefit of it. As we talked about earlier, the deck is strong with zero flex, and the key mechanism is nice with 1.5mm of journey (though it felt like barely lower than that in our testing) and a snappy bottoming motion. There’s no 10-key numeric keypad as you’ll discover on some bigger notebooks, however a row of house keys traces the proper aspect.

The keyboard supplies a exact motion that for fast typing.

Overall, we discovered the keyboard to supply a exact motion that allowed us to rise up to hurry rapidly sufficient. It provides considerably extra journey and a snappier really feel than the XPS 15’s keyboard, and it’s in a completely totally different class than the MacBook Pro’s extraordinarily low-travel model. Finally, the ZenBook Pro’s keyboard is properly backlit, with three depth ranges that allowed us to set simply the proper brightness for the environment.

The touchpad is giant and its glass floor is snug for swiping and gesturing. We discovered the buttons to be responsive and clicky with out being too loud, and as a Windows Precision touchpad all the normal Windows 10 multitouch gestures labored completely. The fingerprint reader is in the higher proper quarter of the touchpad, however it didn’t get in our manner. Our solely criticism is that the palm rejection wasn’t excellent and from time to time the cursor would bounce as your hand brushed the touchpad.

The ZenBook Pro UX550VE has a multitouch show that we discovered useful for scrolling and hitting buttons. And, in a style much like Microsoft’s Surface Laptop, it helps the Asus energetic pen for drawing and handwriting. Our assessment unit didn’t include a pen, nonetheless, and so we couldn’t take a look at how effectively it works, however we’ll notice that the show is held stiffly sufficient in place that we may think about writing on it.

An common show is greater than adequate

Asus geared up the ZenBook Pro UX550VE with a Full HD show, which is true on the border of being excessive sufficient decision for a 15.6-inch show. Unfortunately, there’s no 4K UHD (3,840 x 2,160 or 282 PPI) choice, which is unlucky. Pixel peepers shall be dissatisfied.

According to our colorimeter, Asus picked a median show panel for the ZenBook Pro, which suggests it’s really fairly good in comparison with shows of simply a few years in the past. Maximum brightness was simply a little low at 281 nits, lower than the 300 nits we wish to see to make sure the potential to overpower brilliant ambient lighting. Contrast was strong at 820:1, nonetheless, which is in step with all of the competitors besides the Surface Book 2 with it’s ultra-high distinction of 1400:1.

It’s really fairly good in comparison with shows of simply a few years in the past.

Color assist was additionally common at 71 % of AdobeRGB and 95 % of sRGB, which fell behind solely the surprisingly good show on the VivoBook Pro N580 and the 4K UHD professional-quality show on the XPS 15. That one coated 99 % of AdobeRGB and 100 % of sRGB. The ZenBook Pro had a good common colour error at 1.68 (1.zero or much less is superb), which additionally fell behind the XPS 15’s superb 1.23.

In real-life use, we discovered the ZenBook Pro’s show to be very pleasurable to make use of, with sufficient distinction that black textual content on white backgrounds was clear and legible (albeit a little pixelated because of the Full HD decision). Video was a bit darker than we might have favored because of a gamma of 2.4 (2.2 is what’s wanted to indicate photographs and video of their correct lighting), however in any other case colours have been brilliant and comparatively correct.

Superior audio may very well be a little louder however nonetheless sounds nice

Asus made nice use of the ZenBook Pro UX550VE’s substantial body by packing in some severe audio elements. Two audio system flank the keyboard on all sides, and two subwoofers are positioned on the bottom-front of the pocket book. Combined with Asus’ SonicMaster Premium know-how, the 2×2 speaker configuration ends in beautiful sound for a pocket book. Watching a film, we instantly seen actual stereo separation that immersed us in the motion, and music is surprisingly wealthy with wonderful highs and midrange efficiency and an uncommon contact of bass.

Although it’s not terribly loud, you possibly can crank it as much as the max with out distortion. You can use your headphones if you would like, however you might discover that the audio system present greater than a adequate expertise.

The wonderful quad-core efficiency we’ve come to anticipate

The ZenBook Pro UX550VE is provided with the seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ, a 45-watt quad-core CPU that provides extra pure energy than Intel’s mainstream eighth-generation quad-core processors. It’s additionally a highly regarded chip for 15.6-inch notebooks that are supposed to deal with high-end productiveness and artistic duties, in addition to act as devoted gaming machines.   Until Intel releases eighth-generation 45-watt processors for cell gadgets, the Core i7-7700HQ is prone to stay a widespread part for machines supposed to supply pure energy.

We weren’t shocked to search out that the ZenBook Pro UX550VE was a good performer. In the Geekbench 4 artificial benchmark, the machine was proper in step with different equally geared up methods with its single-core rating of 4308 and its multi-core rating of 14,391. Those numbers are similar to the Dell XPS 15 and the Lenovo Yoga 720 15. The ZenBook Pro can also be aggressive with machines utilizing the eighth-generation Intel Core processors, and it’s sooner than the MacBook Pro 15 with its outdated sixth-generation CPU.

It’s a lot sooner than methods utilizing Intel’s eighth-generation Core processors.

In our extra sturdy Handbrake take a look at the place we encode a 420MB vide to H.265, the ZenBook Pro really fell considerably behind its Core i7-7700HQ competitors at 531 seconds, getting beat handily by the Dell XPS 15 at 418 seconds and the Asus VivoBook Pro N580 at 485 seconds. Nevertheless, it’s a lot sooner than methods utilizing Intel’s eighth-generation Core processors, with the Lenovo Yoga 920 coming closes at 613 seconds.

In real-world use, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE was unsurprisingly sprightly, churning via each process we threw at it and making for a pleasantly easy productiveness powerhouse. Heat was stored in verify as effectively, with the followers hitting their peak noise solely throughout the most intensive periods and by no means getting too loud at that. Simply put, you’d must step as much as a cell workstation to get a better-performing machine for getting work accomplished.

Speedy SSD storage is greater than quick sufficient

Asus picked the fashionable Samsung PM961 PCIe SSD to maintain the ZenBook Pro operating easily. We’ve by no means seen that specific SSD maintain a system again, and so we had excessive hopes that the Asus would sustain.

The ZenBook Pro’s implementation of the drive was simply common, that means it scored effectively on the CrystalDiskMark benchmark at 1,216 megabytes per second (MB/s) on the read take a look at and 1,120 MB/s on the write take a look at. That’s in step with different machines utilizing the identical drive, apart from the Microsoft Surface Book 2 with its stratospheric 2877 MB/s read take a look at outcomes and the Yoga 720 15’s 1,826 MB/s. Of course, the VivoBook Pro N580 confirmed off its price range aspect with considerably decrease scores because of its a lot slower SATA SSD.

While the ZenBook Pro UX550VE wasn’t the quickest performer in our comparability group, it’s nonetheless speedy sufficient at studying and writing knowledge that you’re unlikely to note. The machine can save and entry knowledge as quick as the overwhelming majority of customers will ever want, after which some, and in our testing it by no means slowed down.

A strong 1080p gaming machine in a pinch

Asus packed in an Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti GPU, a extra highly effective graphics chip than you’ll discover in another notebooks that attempt to straddle the line between offering strong productiveness efficiency but in addition capable of deal with fashionable titles at 1080P decision and medium to excessive graphics settings.

Judging by the 3DMark artificial gaming benchmark, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE performs proper the place you’d anticipate. Its rating of 6630 is in step with a true gaming system, the Origin EON-15 that scored 6874. The ZenBook Pro is quicker than the Lenovo Yoga 720 15 with its GTX 1050 and slower than methods with GTX 1060 GPUs.

In precise gaming, the ZenBook Pro principally held its personal. It handle 46 frames per second (FPS) in Civilization VI at 1080p and medium graphics element and 41 FPS in extremely element. That’s in step with our comparability group. In Battlefield 1, once more at 1080p and medium element, the ZenBook Pro may solely hit 60 FPS, which is a very playable rating however lower than the Origin EON15-S may handle with the identical GPU. The Asus redeemed itself in extremely element, hitting 53 FPS. Finally, in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided at 1080p and excessive element, the ZenBook Pro ran at a just-playable 35 FPS, which dropped to 24 FPS in extremely element.

We additionally run For Honor as a real-life gaming take a look at, however the ZenBook Pro merely refused to run the title. We tried reinstalling the sport and made certain all of the related drivers have been updated, however sadly we simply couldn’t get the benchmark to finish.

Nevertheless, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE proved that it’s greater than able to enjoying fashionable titles at 1080p and a minimum of medium graphical element. Pick an older sport and you may in all probability crank the high quality settings as much as the max. That makes this productiveness powerhouse a greater than satisfactory entry-level gaming system for when you really want a break from work.

A full-size pocket book that’s a bit lighter and longer-lasting than normal

Asus packed 70 watt-hours of battery capability into the ZenBook Pro UX550VE. That’s not world-beating, particularly in comparison with the Dell XPS 15’s 97 watt-hour battery. However, it’s sufficient that, mixed with the Full HD show that sucks much less energy than a 4K UHD panel, had us hoping for a minimum of respectable battery life.

Decent battery life is strictly what the machine offered. For instance, in our most demanding take a look at that runs a pocket book via the Basemark net benchmark take a look at till its battery provides out, the ZenBook Pro lasted simply over three and a half hours. That’s a strong rating that’s beat out soundly by the extraordinarily long-lasting Surface Book 2 however handily bests the Yoga 920 with its Core i7-8550U and our two comparability machines with the Core i7-7700HQ.

In the much less aggressive and extra real-world net shopping take a look at that loops via fashionable web pages, the ZenBook Pro managed six hours and 47 minutes, which is barely behind the Yoga 720 15 however forward of the Dell XPS 15. The VivoBook Pro N580 as soon as once more confirmed its price range nature with a a lot weaker end result.

Decent battery life is strictly what the machine offered.

Finally, the ZenBook Pro managed to run our take a look at Avengers trailer for nine hours and 24 minutes. That’s a good rating that trounces the XPS 15 at simply round seven and a half hours and falls solely 18 minutes in need of the Yoga 720 15.   The smaller and extra budget-oriented Asus ZenBook UX330UA lasted for simply over 11 hours and naturally the Surface Book 2 cranked alongside for over 20 hours.

In quick, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE manages to supply most of a working day’s battery life in the event you’re doing commonplace productiveness duties. It’s below four kilos, and so whereas its dimensions make for a barely tight fit inside the typical backpack, you’ll really feel its weight barely lower than some aggressive full-size machines. We do have to notice that the energy brick is pretty large, and so it’s a little bit of a burden to hold round.

Software

Asus masses up the ZenBook Pro UX550VE with a handful of utilities, together with the Splendid Display Technology app that lets customers regulate the show for colour temperature and gamut, and the AudioWizard utility for adjusting audio for films, music, and gaming. Otherwise, the firm retains the machine freed from extraneous software program. There aren’t any additional trials put in, leaving the ZenBook Pro with the commonplace Windows 10 set up and the normal Microsoft first-party apps.

Warranty data

Asus supplies the typical one yr of normal guarantee assist, which is sadly widespread even fore premium methods. The firm does toss in its normal yr of unintended harm safety to assist recuperate from droppage and water harm, and that’s a actual plus that ought to be factored into the total worth.

Asus Zenbook Pro UX550VE Compared To

Our Take
The Asus ZenBook Pro UX550VE is a nice trying and robustly constructed full-size pocket book that seems good in a espresso store however received’t stand out in a company convention room. It’s fairly moveable with strong battery life, whereas it crushes even demanding productiveness and artistic duties when it’s stationary and plugged in. It may even play some fashionable video games at 1080p and average graphics settings. What’s to not like?

Is there a higher various?

If you’re trying to avoid wasting cash, then you can contemplate Asus’ personal VivoBook Pro 15 N580VD. It provides the identical Core i7-7700HQ CPU, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SATA SSD, and a GTX 1050 GPU with 15.6-inch Full HD show for $1,300. It doesn’t provide the identical sort of battery life, however in the event you’re going to be working from one place as a rule it can save you some money and never hand over an excessive amount of efficiency.

Another sturdy competitor, in the event you’re fascinated with a convertible 2-in-1 that can function a good machine for watching films and even at as a (very chunky) pill from time to time, is the Lenovo Yoga 720 15. It, too, sports activities a Core i7-7700HQ CPU and a GTX 1050 GPU, and so like the XPS 15 it’s a step behind in efficiency. The Lenovo can also be inexpensive, at $1,650 for 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a 4K UHD show.

Next, we will’t omit the present king of all notebooks, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 15-inch, which ups the gaming to a different stage with its Nvidia GTX 1060. It makes use of the eighth-generation Intel Core i7-8650U, which performs nearly in addition to the higher-power processor in the ZenBook UX550VE but in addition supplies considerably higher effectivity. If you need to pop off the show and use it as a surprisingly light-weight pill, and get even higher gaming efficiency, then the Surface Book 2 is a beautiful various. Just know that you’ll pay a hefty $2,900 for the identical 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSD.

Finally, in the event you’re prepared to contemplate MacOS, then the 15-inch Apple MacBook Pro with Touch Display is an alternative choice. Like the Surface Book 2, it’s dear at $2,600 for a comparable configuration, and it’s nonetheless operating sixth-generation Intel CPUs. But it’s a well-built machine that many artistic professionals swear by for operating very particular software program like Apple’s personal Final Cut Pro.

How lengthy will it final?

Although it’s geared up with a seventh-generation CPU, it’s nonetheless quick sufficient to remain related for years. The GPU must also sustain with fashionable titles for a whereas, though finally you’ll want to show down element sufficient that you might need to improve. The inclusion of two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 3 means the ZenBook is well-prepared for future connectivity.

Should you purchase it?

Yes. The Asus ZenBook UX550VE is a very well-built pocket book that provides nice efficiency in a chic chassis. It’ll churn via your high-end productiveness duties with ease, in addition to present for some respectable Full HD gaming whenever you want some downtime. The machine’s solely actual detrimental is the lack of a greater decision 4K show choice.


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Thin and light-weight 2-in-1 notebooks generally appear to be they’re taking up the market. However, there are nonetheless loads of individuals in search of bigger, extra highly effective machines, notably ones that can double as high-end productiveness notebooks and entry-level methods for budding players. In our Asus ZenBook Pro UX550VE assessment, we take a look at simply such a machine that packs some severe energy into a conventional pocket book body.

Our assessment unit got here with a seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor (which nonetheless provides extra pure energy than the newest era CPUs), an Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti GPU, 16GB of DDR4-2400MHz RAM, a 512GB PCIe solid-state disk (SSD), and a 15.6-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 or 141 PPI) decision show. This is the solely configuration, and it retails for $1,700. That’s not precisely low cost, and actually it’s $150 greater than a comparably geared up Dell XPS 15.

Asus has put collectively a nicely-configured mainstream pocket book. Does it warrant its worth level in comparison with some stiff competitors?

A strong, elegant, and engaging design that retains the warmth in verify

Asus has adopted a very constant design with its most up-to-date ZenBooks, and the ZenBook Pro UX550VE may be very clearly a member of that household. It has the identical sort of all-aluminum chassis and shares the now-iconic Asus concentric circle swirl adorning the lid, however it’s a modern black in comparison with the navy blue of another ZenBook fashions.

Overall, it’s a chic and engaging look that units the pocket book other than extra conservative alternate options like the Dell XPS 15 and the Lenovo Yoga 720 15. The lighted Asus emblem on the lid provides some further panache that contributes to the ZenBook’s premium aesthetic.

At the identical time, it’s additionally very solidly constructed with tight tolerances. Other than the expansive lid that provides simply a tiny bit below strain (however by no means sufficient that the LCD is affected), the ZenBook Pro UX550VE shares the identical rigidity as its smaller siblings like the ZenBook 3 Deluxe. Close the lid and the ZenBook Pro looks like a big slab of steel — open it and also you received’t discover the slightest little bit of flex in the keyboard deck or wherever else. Speaking of the lid, it’s held firmly in place by a hinge that spans most of the pocket book’s width, however we discovered it a bit too stiff and it required each fingers to swing the show open.

There’s some additional room on all sides of the keyboard for a pair of very efficient audio system.

In phrases of its total dimensions, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE is a little wider and deeper than its competitors. For instance, it is available in at 14.37 x 9.88 x zero.75 inches, which compares to the Dell XPS 15 at 14 x 9.27 x zero.66 inches and the Apple MacBook Pro 15 with Touch Bar at 13.75 x 9.48 x zero.61 inches. The ZenBook Pro’s added width and depth in comparison with the Dell (the MacBook’s show is a barely smaller 15.4-inches) is because of barely thicker show bezels (7.3mm on the sides versus the Dell’s 5.7mm). But, the Asus additionally advantages from having its webcam situated on high of the show the place it belongs, in contrast to the XPS 15, and there’s some additional room on all sides of the keyboard for a pair of very efficient audio system.

Even although it’s a bit thicker, the ZenBook Pro is nonetheless lighter than the XPS 15 at 3.97 kilos (with 73 watt-hours of battery) versus 4.6 kilos (with the Dell’s hefty 97 watt-hour battery put in). That’s additionally barely lighter than the MacBook Pro’s 4.02 kilos.

In a nod to consolation, Asus situated all the ZenBook Pro UX550VE’s venting beneath and inside the show and pointing up. That means that the pocket book can sit comfortably on a lap with out blocking airflow or blowing sizzling air onto the pores and skin, and due to a dual-fan cooling system, we by no means seen the backside to get uncomfortably sizzling. You’ll need to put it on a totally different floor in the event you’re gaming or rendering video, simply to be secure, however in any other case it’s thermally designed fairly effectively to behave as a true laptop.

Solid connectivity that’s in contact with each the previous and the future

You would anticipate a 15.6-inch pocket book that’s not razor-thin to accommodate a respectable meeting of ports, and the ZenBook Pro UX550VE doesn’t disappoint. It comes with a proprietary energy connector, full-size HDMI port, and two USB-C 2 ports with Thunderbolt 3 assist alongside the left-hand aspect. On the right-hand aspect are two USB-A 3.1 ports, a mini-SD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack.

Asus Zenbook Pro UX550VE review
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Wireless connectivity consists of 2×2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2, and there’s a fingerprint reader situated in the upper-right-hand nook of the touchpad that supplies quick and dependable Windows 10 Hello password-less login assist. Overall, connectivity is superb and it bests the XPS 15 by offering twice as many USB-C ports.

An excellent keyboard and wonderful touchpad lead the class

The ZenBook Pro UX550VE provides an expansive keyboard deck upon which to mount a spacious keyboard, and Asus takes good benefit of it. As we talked about earlier, the deck is strong with zero flex, and the key mechanism is nice with 1.5mm of journey (though it felt like barely lower than that in our testing) and a snappy bottoming motion. There’s no 10-key numeric keypad as you’ll discover on some bigger notebooks, however a row of house keys traces the proper aspect.

The keyboard supplies a exact motion that for fast typing.

Overall, we discovered the keyboard to supply a exact motion that allowed us to rise up to hurry rapidly sufficient. It provides considerably extra journey and a snappier really feel than the XPS 15’s keyboard, and it’s in a completely totally different class than the MacBook Pro’s extraordinarily low-travel model. Finally, the ZenBook Pro’s keyboard is properly backlit, with three depth ranges that allowed us to set simply the proper brightness for the environment.

The touchpad is giant and its glass floor is snug for swiping and gesturing. We discovered the buttons to be responsive and clicky with out being too loud, and as a Windows Precision touchpad all the normal Windows 10 multitouch gestures labored completely. The fingerprint reader is in the higher proper quarter of the touchpad, however it didn’t get in our manner. Our solely criticism is that the palm rejection wasn’t excellent and from time to time the cursor would bounce as your hand brushed the touchpad.

The ZenBook Pro UX550VE has a multitouch show that we discovered useful for scrolling and hitting buttons. And, in a style much like Microsoft’s Surface Laptop, it helps the Asus energetic pen for drawing and handwriting. Our assessment unit didn’t include a pen, nonetheless, and so we couldn’t take a look at how effectively it works, however we’ll notice that the show is held stiffly sufficient in place that we may think about writing on it.

An common show is greater than adequate

Asus geared up the ZenBook Pro UX550VE with a Full HD show, which is true on the border of being excessive sufficient decision for a 15.6-inch show. Unfortunately, there’s no 4K UHD (3,840 x 2,160 or 282 PPI) choice, which is unlucky. Pixel peepers shall be dissatisfied.

According to our colorimeter, Asus picked a median show panel for the ZenBook Pro, which suggests it’s really fairly good in comparison with shows of simply a few years in the past. Maximum brightness was simply a little low at 281 nits, lower than the 300 nits we wish to see to make sure the potential to overpower brilliant ambient lighting. Contrast was strong at 820:1, nonetheless, which is in step with all of the competitors besides the Surface Book 2 with it’s ultra-high distinction of 1400:1.

It’s really fairly good in comparison with shows of simply a few years in the past.

Color assist was additionally common at 71 % of AdobeRGB and 95 % of sRGB, which fell behind solely the surprisingly good show on the VivoBook Pro N580 and the 4K UHD professional-quality show on the XPS 15. That one coated 99 % of AdobeRGB and 100 % of sRGB. The ZenBook Pro had a good common colour error at 1.68 (1.zero or much less is superb), which additionally fell behind the XPS 15’s superb 1.23.

In real-life use, we discovered the ZenBook Pro’s show to be very pleasurable to make use of, with sufficient distinction that black textual content on white backgrounds was clear and legible (albeit a little pixelated because of the Full HD decision). Video was a bit darker than we might have favored because of a gamma of 2.4 (2.2 is what’s wanted to indicate photographs and video of their correct lighting), however in any other case colours have been brilliant and comparatively correct.

Superior audio may very well be a little louder however nonetheless sounds nice

Asus made nice use of the ZenBook Pro UX550VE’s substantial body by packing in some severe audio elements. Two audio system flank the keyboard on all sides, and two subwoofers are positioned on the bottom-front of the pocket book. Combined with Asus’ SonicMaster Premium know-how, the 2×2 speaker configuration ends in beautiful sound for a pocket book. Watching a film, we instantly seen actual stereo separation that immersed us in the motion, and music is surprisingly wealthy with wonderful highs and midrange efficiency and an uncommon contact of bass.

Although it’s not terribly loud, you possibly can crank it as much as the max with out distortion. You can use your headphones if you would like, however you might discover that the audio system present greater than a adequate expertise.

The wonderful quad-core efficiency we’ve come to anticipate

The ZenBook Pro UX550VE is provided with the seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ, a 45-watt quad-core CPU that provides extra pure energy than Intel’s mainstream eighth-generation quad-core processors. It’s additionally a highly regarded chip for 15.6-inch notebooks that are supposed to deal with high-end productiveness and artistic duties, in addition to act as devoted gaming machines.   Until Intel releases eighth-generation 45-watt processors for cell gadgets, the Core i7-7700HQ is prone to stay a widespread part for machines supposed to supply pure energy.

We weren’t shocked to search out that the ZenBook Pro UX550VE was a good performer. In the Geekbench 4 artificial benchmark, the machine was proper in step with different equally geared up methods with its single-core rating of 4308 and its multi-core rating of 14,391. Those numbers are similar to the Dell XPS 15 and the Lenovo Yoga 720 15. The ZenBook Pro can also be aggressive with machines utilizing the eighth-generation Intel Core processors, and it’s sooner than the MacBook Pro 15 with its outdated sixth-generation CPU.

It’s a lot sooner than methods utilizing Intel’s eighth-generation Core processors.

In our extra sturdy Handbrake take a look at the place we encode a 420MB vide to H.265, the ZenBook Pro really fell considerably behind its Core i7-7700HQ competitors at 531 seconds, getting beat handily by the Dell XPS 15 at 418 seconds and the Asus VivoBook Pro N580 at 485 seconds. Nevertheless, it’s a lot sooner than methods utilizing Intel’s eighth-generation Core processors, with the Lenovo Yoga 920 coming closes at 613 seconds.

In real-world use, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE was unsurprisingly sprightly, churning via each process we threw at it and making for a pleasantly easy productiveness powerhouse. Heat was stored in verify as effectively, with the followers hitting their peak noise solely throughout the most intensive periods and by no means getting too loud at that. Simply put, you’d must step as much as a cell workstation to get a better-performing machine for getting work accomplished.

Speedy SSD storage is greater than quick sufficient

Asus picked the fashionable Samsung PM961 PCIe SSD to maintain the ZenBook Pro operating easily. We’ve by no means seen that specific SSD maintain a system again, and so we had excessive hopes that the Asus would sustain.

The ZenBook Pro’s implementation of the drive was simply common, that means it scored effectively on the CrystalDiskMark benchmark at 1,216 megabytes per second (MB/s) on the read take a look at and 1,120 MB/s on the write take a look at. That’s in step with different machines utilizing the identical drive, apart from the Microsoft Surface Book 2 with its stratospheric 2877 MB/s read take a look at outcomes and the Yoga 720 15’s 1,826 MB/s. Of course, the VivoBook Pro N580 confirmed off its price range aspect with considerably decrease scores because of its a lot slower SATA SSD.

While the ZenBook Pro UX550VE wasn’t the quickest performer in our comparability group, it’s nonetheless speedy sufficient at studying and writing knowledge that you’re unlikely to note. The machine can save and entry knowledge as quick as the overwhelming majority of customers will ever want, after which some, and in our testing it by no means slowed down.

A strong 1080p gaming machine in a pinch

Asus packed in an Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti GPU, a extra highly effective graphics chip than you’ll discover in another notebooks that attempt to straddle the line between offering strong productiveness efficiency but in addition capable of deal with fashionable titles at 1080P decision and medium to excessive graphics settings.

Judging by the 3DMark artificial gaming benchmark, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE performs proper the place you’d anticipate. Its rating of 6630 is in step with a true gaming system, the Origin EON-15 that scored 6874. The ZenBook Pro is quicker than the Lenovo Yoga 720 15 with its GTX 1050 and slower than methods with GTX 1060 GPUs.

In precise gaming, the ZenBook Pro principally held its personal. It handle 46 frames per second (FPS) in Civilization VI at 1080p and medium graphics element and 41 FPS in extremely element. That’s in step with our comparability group. In Battlefield 1, once more at 1080p and medium element, the ZenBook Pro may solely hit 60 FPS, which is a very playable rating however lower than the Origin EON15-S may handle with the identical GPU. The Asus redeemed itself in extremely element, hitting 53 FPS. Finally, in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided at 1080p and excessive element, the ZenBook Pro ran at a just-playable 35 FPS, which dropped to 24 FPS in extremely element.

We additionally run For Honor as a real-life gaming take a look at, however the ZenBook Pro merely refused to run the title. We tried reinstalling the sport and made certain all of the related drivers have been updated, however sadly we simply couldn’t get the benchmark to finish.

Nevertheless, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE proved that it’s greater than able to enjoying fashionable titles at 1080p and a minimum of medium graphical element. Pick an older sport and you may in all probability crank the high quality settings as much as the max. That makes this productiveness powerhouse a greater than satisfactory entry-level gaming system for when you really want a break from work.

A full-size pocket book that’s a bit lighter and longer-lasting than normal

Asus packed 70 watt-hours of battery capability into the ZenBook Pro UX550VE. That’s not world-beating, particularly in comparison with the Dell XPS 15’s 97 watt-hour battery. However, it’s sufficient that, mixed with the Full HD show that sucks much less energy than a 4K UHD panel, had us hoping for a minimum of respectable battery life.

Decent battery life is strictly what the machine offered. For instance, in our most demanding take a look at that runs a pocket book via the Basemark net benchmark take a look at till its battery provides out, the ZenBook Pro lasted simply over three and a half hours. That’s a strong rating that’s beat out soundly by the extraordinarily long-lasting Surface Book 2 however handily bests the Yoga 920 with its Core i7-8550U and our two comparability machines with the Core i7-7700HQ.

In the much less aggressive and extra real-world net shopping take a look at that loops via fashionable web pages, the ZenBook Pro managed six hours and 47 minutes, which is barely behind the Yoga 720 15 however forward of the Dell XPS 15. The VivoBook Pro N580 as soon as once more confirmed its price range nature with a a lot weaker end result.

Decent battery life is strictly what the machine offered.

Finally, the ZenBook Pro managed to run our take a look at Avengers trailer for nine hours and 24 minutes. That’s a good rating that trounces the XPS 15 at simply round seven and a half hours and falls solely 18 minutes in need of the Yoga 720 15.   The smaller and extra budget-oriented Asus ZenBook UX330UA lasted for simply over 11 hours and naturally the Surface Book 2 cranked alongside for over 20 hours.

In quick, the ZenBook Pro UX550VE manages to supply most of a working day’s battery life in the event you’re doing commonplace productiveness duties. It’s below four kilos, and so whereas its dimensions make for a barely tight fit inside the typical backpack, you’ll really feel its weight barely lower than some aggressive full-size machines. We do have to notice that the energy brick is pretty large, and so it’s a little bit of a burden to hold round.

Software

Asus masses up the ZenBook Pro UX550VE with a handful of utilities, together with the Splendid Display Technology app that lets customers regulate the show for colour temperature and gamut, and the AudioWizard utility for adjusting audio for films, music, and gaming. Otherwise, the firm retains the machine freed from extraneous software program. There aren’t any additional trials put in, leaving the ZenBook Pro with the commonplace Windows 10 set up and the normal Microsoft first-party apps.

Warranty data

Asus supplies the typical one yr of normal guarantee assist, which is sadly widespread even fore premium methods. The firm does toss in its normal yr of unintended harm safety to assist recuperate from droppage and water harm, and that’s a actual plus that ought to be factored into the total worth.

Asus Zenbook Pro UX550VE Compared To

Our Take
The Asus ZenBook Pro UX550VE is a nice trying and robustly constructed full-size pocket book that seems good in a espresso store however received’t stand out in a company convention room. It’s fairly moveable with strong battery life, whereas it crushes even demanding productiveness and artistic duties when it’s stationary and plugged in. It may even play some fashionable video games at 1080p and average graphics settings. What’s to not like?

Is there a higher various?

If you’re trying to avoid wasting cash, then you can contemplate Asus’ personal VivoBook Pro 15 N580VD. It provides the identical Core i7-7700HQ CPU, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SATA SSD, and a GTX 1050 GPU with 15.6-inch Full HD show for $1,300. It doesn’t provide the identical sort of battery life, however in the event you’re going to be working from one place as a rule it can save you some money and never hand over an excessive amount of efficiency.

Another sturdy competitor, in the event you’re fascinated with a convertible 2-in-1 that can function a good machine for watching films and even at as a (very chunky) pill from time to time, is the Lenovo Yoga 720 15. It, too, sports activities a Core i7-7700HQ CPU and a GTX 1050 GPU, and so like the XPS 15 it’s a step behind in efficiency. The Lenovo can also be inexpensive, at $1,650 for 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a 4K UHD show.

Next, we will’t omit the present king of all notebooks, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 15-inch, which ups the gaming to a different stage with its Nvidia GTX 1060. It makes use of the eighth-generation Intel Core i7-8650U, which performs nearly in addition to the higher-power processor in the ZenBook UX550VE but in addition supplies considerably higher effectivity. If you need to pop off the show and use it as a surprisingly light-weight pill, and get even higher gaming efficiency, then the Surface Book 2 is a beautiful various. Just know that you’ll pay a hefty $2,900 for the identical 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSD.

Finally, in the event you’re prepared to contemplate MacOS, then the 15-inch Apple MacBook Pro with Touch Display is an alternative choice. Like the Surface Book 2, it’s dear at $2,600 for a comparable configuration, and it’s nonetheless operating sixth-generation Intel CPUs. But it’s a well-built machine that many artistic professionals swear by for operating very particular software program like Apple’s personal Final Cut Pro.

How lengthy will it final?

Although it’s geared up with a seventh-generation CPU, it’s nonetheless quick sufficient to remain related for years. The GPU must also sustain with fashionable titles for a whereas, though finally you’ll want to show down element sufficient that you might need to improve. The inclusion of two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 3 means the ZenBook is well-prepared for future connectivity.

Should you purchase it?

Yes. The Asus ZenBook UX550VE is a very well-built pocket book that provides nice efficiency in a chic chassis. It’ll churn via your high-end productiveness duties with ease, in addition to present for some respectable Full HD gaming whenever you want some downtime. The machine’s solely actual detrimental is the lack of a greater decision 4K show choice.


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