ASUS Zenbook 3 Hands on – A MacBook Killer?

by Nicole on May 30, 2016

ASUS has launched the Zenbook 3 which is a shockingly sexy thin and light Notebook that weighs in at only 910 grams. If you’ve been thinking about picking up one of these portless wonders but wanted Windows 10 you’re going to be drooling over this device (especially when you find out how much it costs!)

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Design wise ASUS has stuck with the “spun metal” which we’re huge fans of and now the ZenFone 3 Deluxe has a Notebook to match. It’s available in “Quartz Grey,” “Royal Blue,” and “Rose Gold.” (which we mistook for silver until we saw the keyboard, that is clearly pink).

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The Zenbook 3 is a 12.5 inch Windows 10 beast that is not only light thanks to a new “aerospace-grade aluminum alloy,” which it says is 40 percent stronger than what you usually find on laptops. Not only has the Zenbook 3 lost 0.6 pounds since pound from the last generation it’s also added in a Core i7 processor which makes it 1.5 times faster than the MacBook.

The specifications for the Zenbook 3 are pretty impressive considering it’s size and the fact that it does have a fan.  ASUS says it’s developed the “world’s thinnest” fan at just 3mm.

At the top end, you’ll be able to configure it with an Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB of RAM and a 1TB PCIe SSD (which should be faster than a typical SATA drive). The display is covered in Gorilla Glass 4, and it looks like Asus was also able to slim down the bezel (now it covers 82 percent of the laptop’s front). The ZenBook 3 packs in a Thunderbolt 3/USB-C port for charging (which it says can juice the laptop’s battery up to 60 percent in 49 minutes), and it should last around 9 hours of typical battery life.

There’s also a built-in fingerprint sensor with Windows Hello support.

The ZenBook 3 will start at $999 with a Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB SSD. Stepping up, you can get it with a 512GB SSD for $1,499, and you can add a Core i7 processor, 1TB SSD and 16GB of RAM for $1,999. ASUS isn’t talking about availability details yet. We’ll definitely be paying attention to this ultraportable.

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