ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A Ultrabook: Review, Specs, Features and Price

ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A is the first ultrabook in the market to offer a full HD. Cute, efficient (Core i7, SSD and 4GB of memory) and very pleasant to use, this 13.3-inch is a serious contender for the title of ultrabook of school. Battery backup up 5 hours of video playback. Asus and several books with his Zenbook accessories, all for 1300 Euros approx.

ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A

With Acer, Asus was among the first manufacturers to build on ultrabooks, these thin and light laptops to Intel fashion. The Asus Zenbook UX31E and UX21E were very nice machine: not free of defects, they had the merit of offering a finish almost identical to the MacBook Air 11 and 13 inches. Asus delivers its second generation of ultrabooks, taking account of the criticisms leveled against earlier versions. The Asus Prime Zenbook UX31A UX21A and rise in line with a full HD display using IPS technology.

Reality

The ASUS Prime Zenbook UX31A ultrabook is a beautiful 13.3-inch ultrabook. Identical to that of the UX31E, the brushed aluminium chassis and designed in one piece ( unibody ) is very successful. The little machine heats (32 ° C on the palm rest and 42 ° C in the machine) and emits little noise (31 dB for the basic office, to 37.1 dB at full speed). The audio is provided by ICEpower technology, a collaboration between Asus and Bang & Olufsen.

Autonomy in progress, thickness and weight fixed

ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A

The ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A is the same sized as the UX31E, also found does one thick (2.1 cm) and weight (1.4 kg) identical. It also keeps the small charger: weighing only 186 grams, it looks like a big socket and is easy to carry. The UX31A-R4004V takes almost 5 hours 20 minutes of video playback, an hour and a half more than the previous version. This is one of the best in the world of autonomies ultrabooks of 13.3 inches, just behind HP and its Folio 13.

Screen Full HD IPS appointment

The full HD 13.3-inch in ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A is non-reflective and display technology uses IPS ( In-Plane Switching ). Brightness is good (as measured at 338 cd/m2), contrast ratio is correct (700:1). In addition, Asus provides five profiles pre colorimetry to adapt the color rendering for various uses (cinema, office, etc..). In addition, the Zenbook embeds a ambient light sensor, switchable at will. When the machine is on battery and the sensor is activated, the keypad backlight and the screen are automatically set by the sensor. Conversely, when the PC is plugged in, only the keyboard lights on or off depending on lighting conditions.
A backlit keyboard can be fickle

Always so pleasant to use, the keys are well placed and fall naturally under the fingers. However, we encountered some minor problems with the keyboard backlight control, which seems to be off from time to time. After a reboot, everything falls into place. At worst, you must reinstall the program KBFilter – available on the Asus download site. Hope that the Taiwanese manufacturer quickly rule this concern that, although minor, is highly inappropriate on a machine of this quality. The touchpad is located at the palm rest. Very large, it offers a good riding comfort, but we are not very fond of the driver that manages orders to multiple fingers (zoom, scroll …).
A good level of performance

The duo formed by the Intel Core i7-3517U (dual core, clocked at 1.9 GHz) and 4GB of DDR3 memory give good results. The tasks traditionally performed on an ultrabook (office, web browsing, photos, films) are pure formalities. The contract is completed. For storage, Asus offers a module of 128 GB SanDisk SSD as powerful as that of the Samsung Series 9 , this SSD can boot the PC in 17 seconds and take it out of standby in the blink of an eye. Faster than a traditional hard drive, it is less efficient than the Dell XPS 13 or HP 13 Folio. Finally, for the graphics, this is the controller of Intel officiating. Do not count on it to play in full HD, it is not at all in the strings (between 8 and 15 frames per second).
Connectors and accessories

The connectivity of ultrabook has two USB 3.0, one on each side of the machine, a memory card reader, an audio stereo combined with a microphone input and output video micro-USB and VGA exploitable with a small adapter (included). Asus also supplies a module USB / Ethernet 10/100 to connect to the wired network when the module Wi-Fi (and Bluetooth 4.0) can not be exploited. And to protect the Zenbook and accessories, two dark-colored covers are provided.
The verdict

The ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A ultrabook is the first to offer a full HD. We would have appreciated that the latter is somewhat more mixed, but the anti-reflective coating and display quality are largely compensate for this. Sharing first place in our comparative ultrabooks the Samsung Series 9, it is a very serious contender for ultrabook of school. Cute, efficient, very pleasant to use, it is more enduring than the previous version and is always delivered with accessories.