Asus ZenBook Pro 15 UX580 First Impressions: Feature-Filled Performer

Zenbook Pro Screenpad

Asus has refreshed their Zenbook Pro 15 range with the latest  UX580, the refresh comes with a whole lot of features and the now customary performance and design edge that the range is known for.  I got a sneak peek at the new notebook and here are my first impressions of this notebook

ASUS’ elite ZenBook range was developed in 2011 as the company’s thinnest and lightest laptops,  created using the latest technologies, and using the best premium materials. During the first  ZenBook’s inception, its creators wanted a minimalist design based on the Zen principles of Kanso (簡素), which means simplicity by eliminating clutter, and Seijaku (静寂), which means tranquility; both of which would evoke a sense of “comfort” and “balance”.

The ZenBook Pro 15 is designed for demanding professionals by including all the latest technologies in a sleek and premium design. It features up to a super-fast 8th generation Intel® Core™ i9-8950HK hexa-core processor, powerful GTX 1050 Ti graphics, 16GB of high-speed 2400MHz memory, and up to a 1TB PCIe-based SSD with up to 3.2GB/s read speeds!

Zenbook Pro

The Intel Core i9, i7 and i5 processor options for by the ZenBook Pro 15 are the most powerful mobile processors available from the latest 8th generation of Intel CPU models. They feature six cores and up to twelve computing threads to offer up to 29% faster performance1 compared to the their 7th generation predecessors which are still considered extremely powerful even by today’s standards.

The ZenBook Pro 15 features a media-powerhouse NVIDIA GeForce  GTX 1050 Ti not only capable of accelerating the heaviest of  workloads but also of smooth 1080p gaming at high setting on many modern titles. With significantly more CUDA processing cores, the “Ti” version offers greater graphics processing power compared to the standard GeForce GTX 1050.

Zenbook Pro

The ZenBook Pro 15 is the first ZenBook to feature 802.11ac Intel Gigabit WiFi that provides the fastest wireless network speeds when paired to compatible routers that are becoming increasingly common.

The ZenBook Pro 15 bears the stunning ZenBook industrial design of its predecessors. The ZenBook Pro 15 had to have its internal systems redesigned in order to accommodate its demanding specifications that now included a 15.6-inch display, an elite graphics engine and a set of top-end performance components like the Intel Core i9. Although the ZenBook Pro 15 has a 15.6-inch monitor, its slim display bezel and lithe chassis give the laptop the rough physical dimensions of a 14-inch ultrabook laptop.

As with all ASUS ZenBook models, the ZenBook Pro 15 embraces the iconic design accents of the ZenBook series first introduced with the ZenBook UX21 that was launched six years ago. These include the signature tapering edges, concentric spun-metal finish concentric circles on its lid and diamond cut chamfered edges around its keyboard. The ZenBook Pro 15 is available in an elegant “Deep Dive Blue” with Rose Gold diamond cut chamfered edges.

Touchpads have long been a staple of laptops since their introduction in 1992 but since then, besides better accuracy and software-based gesture support, there just hasn’t been much innovation.  ASUS has decided to move forward and develop a more responsive and adaptable touchpad that can provide task-specific functionalities to improve users’ everyday interactions with their laptops, whether for work or for play. The ScreenPad is about 2mm thicker than a regular touchpad, making it difficult to implement in a thin laptop such as the ZenBook Pro 15 UX580. To solve this challenge, ASUS redesigned the battery module to be able to fit the ScreenPad without having to compromise on
quality or thinness.

Zenbook Pro With SceenPad

ScreenPad Toolbar – This is the control center for all of your ScreenPad apps. To open it, drag it down from the top edge. To close it, just start using the ScreenPad as a normal touchpad on any part of the screen. It is that simple

ScreenPad Launcher – The launcher is the fastest way to launch your favorite apps. Simply tap an app icon to launch the app. You can also add and personalize it by adding or removing apps from the Launcher by tapping on the edit button next to the X in the upper right-hand corner.

ScreenPad Online Video Player – ASUS has built-in full Google Chrome-YouTube support with a Chrome extension, for video playback including ad skipping, full-screen mode, and volume and timeline adjustment.

ScreenPad Office – Get instant fingertip control of common functions when you’re editing Excel, Word or PowerPoint documents. Using ScreenPad™ for edit functions means you can enjoy a bigger workspace on the main screen, helping to keep your creativity focused.

ScreenPad Music Player – The ScreenPad’s built-in music player allows you to instantly change tracks, browse tracks and playlists, and adjust the volume. Enjoy the music without affecting your on-screen task

ScreenPad NumKey – This turns the ScreenPad into a number keyboard for easy data entry.

ScreenPad Calculator – This is the ScreenPad’s built-in calculator, allowing you to crunch numbers when your screen is already full of other websites, spreadsheets and documents.

ScreenPadTM as a Touchpad – The ScreenPad of the ZenBook Pro 15 is larger than that of an average  notebook’s touchpad, and is extremely smooth to the touch as it has a glass coating. It also supports  Windows 10’s precision touchpad and multi-gesture input with up to 4-finger gestures, making it easy to switch applications or screens. It even supports handwriting recognition for an additional input option or signatures

The ZenBook Pro 15 continues in the tradition of classic ZenBook industrial design with a spun-metal finish that takes over 40 separate steps in production. Accented by 2-phase anodized edges and having an all-metal unibody build, the ZenBook Pro is built for professionals
thanks to a PANTONE® validated 4K multi-touch display with guaranteed colour accuracy and a NanoEdge bezel-free design that provides a completely immersive experience. Despite packing powerful components and extras such as up to an Intel® Core™ i9 processor, NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1050 Ti graphics, ultra-fast PCIe-based storage, and an additional ScreenPad as a touchpad, the ZenBook Pro 15 weighs in at just 1.88kg / 4.1lbs and has a height of just 18.9mm! The ZenBook Pro 15 comes in a “Deep Dive Blue” colour, inspired by the magical moment at dawn when the golden rays of sunshine first illuminate the inky-blue sky

Overall, The New Zenbook Pro 15 is filled with features and packs quite a performance punch. More to come in the full review.

About Shakthi

I am a Tech Blogger, Disability Activist, Keynote Speaker, Startup Mentor and Digital Branding Consultant. Also a McKinsey Executive Panel Member. Also known as @v_shakthi on twitter. Been around Tech for two decades now.

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