ASUS has launched their latest ZenBook 14 UX435 that sports an 11th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and an NVIDIA MX450 GPU. It features one of their latest innovation — the ScreenPad 2.0 — along with six different ports despite its very compact size. Here’s a deep dive to find out if this device has everything you need.
Design and build
The latest ZenBook 14 UX435 comes in its smallest and lightest form yet, weighing in at just 1.19kg and measuring only 16.9mm– even lighter than Apple’s MacBook Air (but a bit thicker). Adding to this slim form factor is the remarkable 4-sided NanoEdge display which boasts a 92% screen-to-body ratio for exceptional visual breadth. The laptop itself is crafted of a solid, spun-metal finish and is offered in both Pine Grey and Lilac Mist.
Just like some ASUS laptops, the UX435 features an ErgoLift hinge which I’m personally fond of because of how it adds a slight tilt to the keyboard. This help improves cooling and audio performance. However, its function won’t be put to good use if placed on soft/non-flat surfaces. The speakers found underneath may be certified Harman Kardon, but deliver fair-to-middling performance — the vocals were clear, but the highs are a bit muddy and the lows need a bit more oomph. Overall volume wasn’t as loud as I expected also.
On the top of its screen houses a 3D IR camera for quick login using Windows facial recognition. I had quite a few times when the facial scanner failed to unlock the device when I’m not looking straight at the screen. However, I do prefer this than a thumbprint scanner for a faster login.
As mentioned, despite its small and light form, the device still offers a bunch of ports enough to ditch all those expensive dongles — 2x Thunderbolt 4 USB-C, 1x USB 3.2, 1x HDMI, 1x audio jack and 1x Micro SD slot. It also includes a USB-HDMI connector inside the box.
The star of the show – ScreenPad 2.0
The ZenBook UX435 comes with the ScreenPad 2.0 and this might be the main reason you want to get your hands on this device. Unlike Apple’s TouchBar that replaces the traditional function keys, ASUS offers a more interactive ScreenPad where one can multi-task and have a smartphone experience on the 5.65-inch trackpad. It’s powered by the new and improved ScreenXpert 2.0 and can do a lot of tasks such as switch in between apps, switch from a screen to touchpad real quick, create app shortcuts, make a phone call, do handwritten notes, and make it into a NumberPad.
It might take some getting used to having a multi-purpose touchpad, but it’s worth getting to know once you get the hang of it. One of the few issues you might encounter is losing your cursor from the screen and finding it on the ScreenPad. You might also have some app windows too big and see parts of it on the ScreenPad. I wouldn’t really consider these as disadvantages as these just really need some getting used to.
Under the hood
The ZenBook 14 UX435 boasts the impressive Intel 11th Gen Processor ‘Tiger Lake’. This i7 CPU combines with a spacious 1TB PCIe SSD and 16GB of memory to ensure powerful performance for seamless multitasking between work and entertainment. The NVIDIA MX450 graphics card works in tandem with the i7 CPU to deliver smooth and detail to the visuals. When running the Mark Time Spy Test (which measures the computer’s 3D graphic rendering and CPU workload processing capabilities), the NVIDIA MX450 delivered 1.3x the speed of its predecessor, the NVIDIA MX35. Quite an impressive benchmark jump. The lower variant on the other hand features an Intel i5-1135G7 and a 512GB NVMe SSD which is pretty competent as well.
Check out the benchmarks score tested under CineBench, 3D Mark, CrystalDiskMark and PC Mark 10:
The ZenBook 14 UX435 also came with a few pre-installed applications such as McAfee LiveSafe, MyASUS, and Office Home & Student 2019 lifetime license valued at P6,995. These include Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Project, Visio, Access, Publisher, Teams, and OneNote for your cloud needs. All these apps and more make sure that straight out-of-the-box you are ready to take on whatever your educational or professional life throws at you.
In terms of the laptop’s power, it has a 63WH battery capacity with a battery life of up to 16 hours. Its USB-C Easy Charge support makes sure that the ZenBook 14 UX435 can be used with a variety of standard USB-C chargers (5V-20V). In addition, ultrafast charging capability is made possible with any PD (Power Delivery) certified charger, which includes the ZenBook 14 Ultralight that comes in the box. It took an hour to charge from 0-70% and a total of 1 hour and 40 minutes to fully charge. The cooling system activated as well and was pretty loud when charging on a surface that’s not flat.
One standout feature I found with the ZenBook 14 was its ASUS Noise Cancelling feature. A highlight of this feature was the ClearVoice Mic which is perfect for video conferencing for school or work, as it makes sure your speech is enhanced while background noise is minimized. This noise-reduction tech is AI-trained so it will automatically and optimally adapt to your situation or environment. Meanwhile, the ClearVoice Speaker makes sure to capture your voice clearly while simultaneously filtering ambient noise from remote sources.
The stylish ASUS ZenBook UX435 offers a powerful processor that also comes with the latest ScreenPad 2.0 built together in such a compact and lightweight body. Question is, do we really need this? Priced at P79,995 for i7 variant and P64,995 for the i5 variant, you might find it a bit pricey. If you’re not looking for a double screen device, then the ASUS ZenBook 14 UX425 would be a good option but I’d say the ScreenPad 2.0 would be worth the extra bucks.
You can get the incredible ASUS ZenBook 14 (UX435EG) in select ASUS Concept Stores and ASUS Partner Multibrand stores nationwide. It is also available on ASUS Official E-Store, ASUS Official Shopee Store and ASUS official Lazada Store.