The ultrabook market is stable and the surprises are not rich. Well, except that another new product will refuse classic USB Type-A to favor fashion Type-C. Our client is one of those, but not interested in it. His ability to turn into a tablet also no surprise: a market rife. However, it was released by ASUS is the pioneer developer of computer — transformers: the first Eee Pad Transformer Android 3.0 was released in late 2011. Much water has flowed since then, but where will understand in the course of testing, the ASUS ZenBook Flip S.
What is important in ultrabot? Of course, that he was compact and lightweight, but sufficient for comfortable operation performance and high autonomy. With the hardware and battery will look later, but how convenient to wear and use in various scenarios — will check it first thing.
The size and weight of the questions asked: a little heavier than a kilogram, slightly larger than A4 in size and only a centimeter in thickness. Wearing the device is possible even in a medium size purse, not to mention briefcases and backpacks.
The cover is flipped open at any angle up to 360 degrees. The loop is quite tight, at any position of the lid is fixed firmly. Unfortunately, for this convenience you have to pay to others: check on opening a device fails. But in notebook mode when you shake cover if and sways slightly, even imperceptibly for eyes. But if the laptop is on a hard surface, opening to 135 degrees and more the keyboard is slightly lifted for ease of work.
If you put the house computer on a horizontal surface, it is not “spreading” and pressure from the top can stand strong. At maximum opening, the lid is slightly magnetized to the hull and not loose. When the deviation of the display more than 180 degrees the keyboard and touchpad are automatically disabled, and the OS switches to the tablet mode.
In the case of all three connectors — two spaced on the opposite face of the Type-C USB 3.1 and one combo Jack for headphones. The location of the 3.5 mm connector, at first glance, quite uncomfortable — almost right under the display on the left side of the face. In laptop mode far away from the display is possible only in the headphones with a long wire. But it is necessary to transform the laptop into a tablet and put it in the same “house” or with the keypad facing downward, the location of “Jack” is just right — a reasonable compromise solution becomes obvious.
Classic flash drive or any USB cable with a standard plug would have to stick an adapter, which included a test instance was not. But there is a nice moment: charging the laptop via either of the two USB Type-C, so twist the device to pull the cable (quite long — 1.5 m) to the socket, no need. Since the S Flip ZenBook transformer, power key, volume control and a fingerprint sensor is also placed on the lateral face and are positioned on the right.
The cardboard box came the laptop, far from the notions of premium. But to be disappointed before: inside, in the arms of the corner dampers is found the other is dark blue, with soft-touch coating, all for the noble ladies and gentlemen. Unfold the cover and immediately see the laptop. At the time put it, to find out what put it in the kit on the official website listed a couple of tasty accessories.
The test instance is completed with a stylus, microfiber cloth and a folder case that all this stuff exactly fit. In a separate box lying charger adapter with non-detachable cable USB Type-C. the Older models of laptop can be equipped with a small dock adapter for connectors Type-C Type-A and HDMI.
The laptop is sold in two colors: dark gray and blue-and-gold, who came for testing. The first looks gloomy and have to taste, rather male audience. The second is quicker due to the glossy ASUS logo on the lid and gold trim around the perimeter of the body. However, this is a premium and it is a universal design solution that is elegant enough for girls and not capable of confusing respectable men.
The housing is made entirely of durable aluminum alloy. The lid is decorated with a small corrugation in the form of concentric circles radiating from the logo signature feature of Zen devices vendor. In the grey variant of the device, these circles do not exist. The bottom of the laptop is removable, secured by 10 screws-asterisks. It is cut four of the lattice stereo speakers.
Framing the display is thin on three sides, but the bottom black frame is pretty thick. Plus it adds the element housing, to which are attached loop. Because of this, the display panel turned out asymmetrical, which is especially noticeable in tablet mode, but it’s hardly critical for ultrabook.
The display is an 80% surface cover. Frustrating lack of oleophobic coating on the protective screen Gorilla Glass: after each touch leaves a trail, and slides the finger across the touch screen pretty hard. However, aluminum design is also going pretty fast “fingers.” In other words, the presence of cloth in the package, and Oh how random.
Keyboard unit is slightly recessed into the body flush with the main surface to key presses when the device is lying on the table in tablet mode. Island-style keyboard with scissor-membrane mechanism and the stroke of one millimeter is characterized by easy and very clear touch — typing a pleasure. The arrow keys are narrow and elongated, they will have some time to get used to when switching from a full-sized keyboard.
The backlight is a three-stage, yellow with a slight greenish. It is clear that this is done to rifmovannyy with gold chamfer on the perimeter of the body, but it looks, frankly, not as good as the laptop in General. Besides from under the keys sometimes breaks light bright white diodes, which is slightly discordant with carefully collected blue-and-gold-tone device image. On the keys Caps Lock and F2 are indicators of the same color that tells about the included upper case and Flight mode respectively. The charge indicator is in turn made to the left side and CPU on the right.
The touchpad has a diagonal of approximately five inches is a quite large, for comfortable work with enough. About taps when typing text, you can not be afraid, even block the touchpad is not necessary (but such a possibility is certainly there) — ASUS features touch of a finger from the palm and does it correctly in the vast majority of cases. The glass surface touchpad, so your finger glides easily. From time to time too — then while pressing the finger lightly slips and moves the cursor.
In test ZenBook Flip’s has matrix IPS LCD with a resolution of 1920×1080, but older models can be mounted display with a 4K resolution. The image quality is high, also thanks to a proprietary manufacturing technology TruVivid display. The main know-how of the manufacturer — a small number of layers of the display substrate, an LCD matrix, a transparent adhesive layer, the touch layer and protective glass. The result is maximum quality viewing angle without distortion of color — 178 degrees. Black color is fulfilled with dignity, and traditional LCD white glare on the perimeter are display really high quality.
Supply of brightness is good in both sides: at a minimum to work comfortably or to watch a movie in the dark, but high enough to make out the image on the outside, in the sun, but since the screen is glossy, easy to operate, under the direct rays still will not work. Sensor display understands up to 10 simultaneous touches.
On the official website for that stated notebook ultrabook Intel Core i5 and i7 latest, eighth generation Kaby Lake Refresh — 8250U and 8550U accordingly, Quad, 6 and 8 MB of cache and overclocked to 3.4 and 3.7 GHz. Obviously, this refers to the new batch of ultrabooks, while in the test sample is installed dual-core CPU of the previous generation Intel Core i5–7200U with a base clock speed of 2.5 GHz, overclocked to 3.1 GHz and cache trichogaster. GPU — UHD 620 Graphics with 1GB of memory.
The amount of RAM is 8 and 16 GB for the younger and older versions respectively, and the SSD depending on the version of the device can be 256, 512 or 1024 GB. And in the top-end version of the laptop terabyte hard drive connected via PCIe 3.0 x4. But even the younger version c SATA3 no complaints: the OS is loaded instantly, programs load extremely fast.
Several times carried out the synthetic tests revealed a slight discrepancy in the figures and some indicators were even slightly above, that is with the throttle the machine copes perfectly.
Accordingly, demanding games will run though, but even on low settings the issue is not so encouraging result: 20-30 fps in DiRT 4 (with slight lag graphics), 7-15 fps in Deus Ex: Mankind Divined.
So for games it is better to choose the more productive, a laptop, or to restrict not too demanding titles. However, ASUS ZenBook Flip S — device is not for gaming, but for work, it is enough, for example, for comfortable editing photos in Photoshop or even installation is not very “heavy” video in Premiere Pro.
Note that the laptop is running the active cooling system. At high loads most strongly heated the left part of the body. It was there and installed a cooler which exhausts the air through the grille on the brink. The maximum temperature of the CPU that managed to achieve — 62° C and the cooler at the same noise as a small, rapidly growing to the height of the helicopter. The rest of the time for rustle totally oblivious.
In the Junior version of the device installed Home Windows 10 single language, but the older comes with Professional. Of course, both adapted to tablet mode and touch support. In addition to system software and drivers pre-installed several apps from Asus. The first thing a user meets a GiftBox, which tells of the recommended program.
ASUS Splendid Utility allows you to set a comfortable colour temperature of your display or enable protection mode view.
For users who use a lot of devices on the same Wi-Fi network, it will be interesting ASUS ZenLink, allowing not only to sync files on different devices, but also transfer text and other data. And for fans of Dropbox, a pleasant surprise will be the opportunity to use 25 GB of cloud storage throughout the year.
There is a program for working with a mixed reality, but the built-in webcam clearly not enough for high quality pictures — she’s just there “for show”, that is for video.
Of course, on the spot and 30-day trial version of Microsoft Office 2016. Also in the system pre-installed WinFlash utility to update or did you reflash the BIOS. We did not test how properly it works.
To protect the device from unauthorized access, use solution Windows Hello. In addition to the standard password and PIN the system supports identification via fingerprint. Dactyloscopy is on the right side of the device and works instantly. If the finger was placed not too accurate, the system offers to move him in the right direction.
As already mentioned, the tablet mode is enabled when the lid is opened more than 180 degrees. The standard Windows desktop is not available — only tiles of the Metro UI. But if you want, swipe to the right you can pull the notification center and quick settings and disable tablet mode.
Handwritten notes on the previous screenshot stylus pen with Ink use the Windows Workspace.
It allows not only to make a screenshot with quick markup, but also to sketch hastily handwritten notes or make a drawing in the album is a simple but functional program.
In addition to the on-screen keyboard in tablet mode, you can use handwriting — the definition is written is not always correct, but generally satisfactory.
Draw and write with a pen (and, if desired, a finger) of course, it’s best, pushing the lid of your laptop 360 degrees, or to come up with some focus for other slopes, because a loose lid wobbles noticeably under pressure.
ASUS stylus Pen is designed according to the technology N-trig, which is now owned by Microsoft and is used in the line, the Surface, beginning with the Pro 3. This ensures the most comfortable working with Windows, which was confirmed in practice: the stylus works perfectly. It has 1024 degrees of depression, equivalent to the pressure force from 10 to 300 grams and works correctly at an angle up to 45 degrees. Recognizing and ignoring taps the palm display to cope quite well, but sometimes still wrong. Delayed rendering is not so small as I would like, but acceptable, you get used to it very quickly. Accuracy is also at a decent level with proper skill you can easily draw small details. A stylus works on a single battery size AAAA.
Built-in battery of 39 WH provides full day is not too much work, or half a day active: set the text for an hour of work in photo and video editor, background music, a little video on YouTube. In General, it corresponds to the average on the market of ultrabooks. But under high load conditions the charge slips through my hands: hour racing in DiRT 4 or minus 52%.
A definite plus, besides the ability to charge your device via any USB connector, it supports fast charging. Only half an hour tethered to a wall outlet “lift” the battery from zero to 40%, one hour to 72%, half to 90%, and two — to put 100%. And the battery lasts longer, the ASUS built in utility with different charging modes, and a detailed description of how and why.
During testing the ASUS ZenBook Flip’s, a number of claims, which, however, can easily be attributed to nagging: the fingerprints on the case are (especially the display), and the keypad backlight is of not too good, and the cooler is noisy under heavy load on the CPU… But all this does not detract from the advantages. This is a great ultrabook with a fairly high work capacity, a comfortable eye display and an ergonomic keyboard. And the ability to transform into a tablet, albeit a slightly cumbersome, is seen as nice and sometimes very useful bonus.
The author of the text: Max Dvorak
Picture device: Daria Golubovich