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With Asus ZenBook 3, who wants the MacBook?

November 29, 2016 11:27 IST

Asus ZenBook 3Given its price, the Asus ZenBook 3 isn't for everyone.
But if you want an ultraportable packed with features, don't mind carrying along adapters and don't want a MacBook, this one's a no-brainer, says Abhik Sen

Asus ZenBook 3

"Is that a Rose Gold MacBook? Like the one we saw at the store? You better not tell me you bought it!" This is how my wife reacted when she came home to see me tinkering on another new notebook.

While I hadn't bought it, thank heavens she didn't know how much the Asus ZenBook 3 cost: A neat Rs 123,990.

Yes, that's far more than a MacBook!

But I just couldn't get enough of it.

Weighing a shade below a kg, this super svelte notebook has a smart Asus logo on the back and its chamfered edges and the colour-coordinated keyboard ooze class.

But all that jazz comes at a price: The ZenBook 3 has just two ports -- a USB Type-C one and a 3.5-mm headphones jack.

The notebook is packed to the gills: The latest Intel Kaby Lake i7 processor; 8GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD running Windows 10.

Asus ZenBook 3

The ZenBook 3 runs cool, though is slightly noisy, thanks to the fan.

And yes, the Full HD Gorilla Glass-protected 12.5-inch display appears a tad underpowered outdoors and reflects bright light.

But when I watched Meet the Patels on Netflix with about 25 tabs open and a torrent client downloading Ubuntu Studio in the background, it didn't break into a sweat.

Asus ZenBook 3

Then there's the backlit keyboard, which isn't mushy and is quite easy to type on once you get the hang of it.

The touchpad works great as well as does the fingerprint scanner in Windows Hello, but it kind of renders the top right of the touchpad useless.

Asus ZenBook 3

The two speakers just above the keypad and the two on the base (by Harman Kardon) were clear enough for me to listen to U2's With or Without You without headphones.

The ZenBook 3 charges up fast. It ran for around six hours when I watched a fair bit of videos. The bundled webcam, though, isn't up to the mark.

Given its price, the Asus ZenBook 3 isn't for everyone. But if you want an ultraportable packed with features, don't mind carrying along adapters and don't want a MacBook, this one's a no-brainer.

Abhik Sen
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