Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Review: A Showstopping Display

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Asus ZenBook 14X OLED

MSRP $1,400.00

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

Professionals

  • Spectacular OLED show
  • Rock-solid construct high quality
  • Glorious 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 cost effective laptop computer you can purchase with an OLED show within the Asus ZenBook 13 OLED, which we have now named the perfect laptop computer below $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 provides a greater worth, however the larger decision and improved efficiency of the 14-inch mannequin make it a standout choice, even past its display screen.

Design

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

The ZenBook 14X OLED sports activities an aesthetic that’s not as minimalist as another laptops I’ve just lately reviewed. First, there’s the standard 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 aspect and rear edges of the chassis. Varied different edges are chamfered for some further aptitude. The laptop computer is on the market in two colours, Lilac Mist (lavender) and Pine Grey (charcoal), and mine was the latter.

It’s a smooth 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 effectively.

Asus is understood for making strong laptops, and the ZenBook 14X OLED isn’t any completely 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 well as sturdy as the perfect 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 much 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 comfy 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 virtually precisely the identical width and peak 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 may 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 light-weight sufficient to make it a 14-inch laptop computer that’s straightforward to hold round.

Connectivity is strong. You get a single USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port on the left-hand aspect, subsequent to a row of vents, after which a full-size HDMI 2.Zero port, two USB-C with Thunderbolt four ports (one in every of which is used for energy), a 3.5mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader alongside the right-hand aspect. That’s a very good mixture of legacy and future-proof connections. Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.Zero carry out wi-fi duties.

Efficiency

My evaluate unit is supplied with the 11th-gen quad-core Intel Core i7-1165G7, a productiveness workhorse CPU that’s in style on skinny and light-weight 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 in the present day, 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 superb 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 effectively in our Handbrake take a look at that encodes a 420MB video as H.265, beating the IdeaPad Slim 7i Professional and shedding out to the speedy Ryzen CPU within the Inspiron 14 2-in-1.

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

Put the ZenBook 14X OLED in its “efficiency” mode, and you may squeeze out slightly 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 sooner 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 stage. It’s not which you can’t edit video or giant photos on the ZenBook, it’s simply that you simply’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

Although my evaluate unit options the GeForce MX450 discrete GPU, it didn’t carry out sooner 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 sooner Iris Xe laptops can accomplish.

I used to be shocked by these outcomes, however I ran them a number of occasions to make sure there weren’t any glitches that I might establish. 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 light-weight machine right into a gaming laptop computer, so consumers 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 Traits

The ZenBook 14X OLED enjoys a 14-inch OLED show, and it’s out there in a number of configurations which might 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 screen. 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 cherished 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 shoppers.

Based on my colorimeter, that is objectively nearly as good a show as it’s subjectively. It was shiny at 389 nits, above our 300-nit threshold for shows that may overcome all however shiny daylight. It had huge colours at 97% of AdobeRGB and 100% of sRGB, and people colours have been correct at a DeltaE of 1.2 (lower than 1.Zero is taken into account wonderful). The distinction was otherworldly as typical, coming in at 27,010:1. Examine 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 shade 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 shoppers. 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 possibly can’t go unsuitable 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 screen saver that may be set to robotically launch after 30 minutes of idle time and a pixel shift operate that strikes a static picture on the display screen simply sufficient to keep away from constantly shining particular person pixels. These can each be toggled on and off, though it’s most likely 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 drawback: The audio system don’t get very loud, even when turned all the best way up. There’s zero distortion, which is sweet, however you’ll desire a pair of headphones to essentially get pleasure from motion pictures and music.

Keyboard and touchpad

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

Asus has been channeling HP recently relating to keyboards, utilizing a structure and keycaps which might be eerily just like these on HP’s Spectre line. There is similar key spacing and row of motion keys alongside the right-hand aspect of the keyboard. That’s not a nasty factor as a result of the Spectre keyboards are wonderful. On the identical 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 the perfect, which additionally contains Dell’s XPS keyboards, however that makes the ZenBook 14X OLED’s keyboard superb nonetheless.

The touchpad is a large format that doesn’t use the out there 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 in the present day’s taller shows, however that’s not the case with the ZenBook 14X OLED. It’s not a tiny touchpad, nevertheless it might be bigger. Happily, it has a snug floor that makes for correct swiping, and it’s a Microsoft Precision touchpad, so multitouch gestures work effectively. The buttons are clicky and responsive with out being loud.

After all, you possibly can’t choose the touchpad solely by how simply it means that you can manipulate your cursor. It additionally incorporates Asus’s ScreenPad 2, which offers an LED show embedded within the touchpad that permits a bunch of further performance.

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

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

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

Home windows 10 Hi there password-less login help is offered by a fingerprint reader embedded in an influence button on the keyboard. It labored effectively, 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 Traits

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 received was rather less than that. In our web-browsing take a look at that loops via a sequence of in style web sites, the ZenBook 14X OLED lasted 7.5 hours, lower than common and effectively below the 10 hours we prefer to see from skinny and light-weight 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 virtually 13 hours.

In our video take a look at that repeats a neighborhood 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 further 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 the perfect indication of productiveness longevity, and the ZenBook 14X OLED achieved eight hours, once more a bit decrease than common. Many skinny and light-weight 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 exhausting 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 most likely received’t make it via a complete eight-hour workday without having a little bit of a cost. You’ll need to hold the 100-watt USB-C charger useful.

Our take

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

It’s not excellent. 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 price a spot in your record.

Are there any alternate options?

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 9 might be the perfect clamshell 14-inch different, just because it’s additionally very effectively constructed, performs effectively, 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 slightly more cash relying in your configuration.

If a convertible 2-in-1 is of curiosity, you then’ll need to take into account HP’s Spectre x360 14. It additionally has a superb OLED show, a great-looking and well-built chassis, and naturally, the pliability of a 360-degree convertible. It’s across the identical value, however you received’t get built-in graphics.

Lastly, you possibly can at all times take into account the Dell XPS 13 when you’re keen to go along with a barely smaller OLED show. The XPS 13 is costlier, nevertheless it’s price it, being the perfect laptop computer you should purchase.

How lengthy will it final?

The ZenBook 14X OLED is strong as a rock and seems like it should final for eons. Its elements are updated and can run Home windows 11 with ease, must you resolve to improve (and also you most likely 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 good 14-inch laptop computer that competes strongly towards its competitors.

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