ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Review: Is it worth buying this expensive laptop?

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED review
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The ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED was unveiled earlier this year, another product that is expected to solidify the technology company’s status as the world’s leading manufacturer of OLED laptops. Here is what we discovered after using the device for a few weeks.

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Design

When closed, the ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED doesn’t make a very eye-catching design statement. On the lid, there is a subtle rendition of the Asus concentric swirl as well as the new, Star Trek-inspired Asus logo, which lights in unison with the rest of the lighting system. Other than that, its black chassis is pretty simple with clean lines.

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Design


It becomes intriguing when you open it up, though. Along with the display, the keyboard raises up to a full seven degrees, resulting in an inclined typing surface and 30% more ventilation. Your eye is drawn to the Asus Dial to the left of the sizable touchpad, which gives the keyboard deck a futuristic appearance. Additionally, side RGB lightbars that highlight the chassis’s borders just beneath the keyboard supplement the keyboard’s built-in lighting. Although the ZenBook Pro 14 Duo has an intricate appearance when open and a similar simple aesthetic when closed, there is no other laptop quite like it.

Asus was able to create a rock-solid laptop despite the complexity of its CNC machined aluminum construction. The chassis bottom, keyboard deck, and lid all withstand bending, twisting, and flexing. The ZenBook Pro 16X is in fantastic company because it feels just as sturdy as a MacBook Pro. Even better laptops like the Dell XPS 15 and XPS 17 are less sturdy than this one. The excellent build quality of the ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED contributes to the high price being justified.

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Price and configurations

The ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED is available in two configurations. An Intel Core i7-12700H processor, 16GB of LPDDR5 RAM, a 1TB PCIe 4 SSD, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU, and a UHD+ (3,840 x 2,400) OLED display were included in my $2,600 review model. The most expensive configuration costs $3,000 and includes the same OLED display, the RTX 3060, a Core i9-12900H processor, 32GB of RAM, and a 1TB SSD. Although expensive, given the components and design, it is not outrageously so.

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Performance

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Performance

One of two 45-watt, 14-core/20-thread Intel 12th-generation CPUs can be chosen to power the ZenBook Pro 16X. The Core i7-12700H can run at a maximum speed of 4.7GHz, and the Core i9-12900H can reach a maximum speed of 5GHz. The former, which has demonstrated to be a reliable performer in our prior reviews, was included in my review unit.

To tweak the thermal system for quieter and slower or louder and quicker performance, Asus includes a tool. The Asus utility had a considerable negative influence on a few of our benchmarks, which is typical among manufacturers today. In the table below, I’ve listed reports for both balanced and performance settings. In performance mode, the ZenBook Pro 16X was aggressively tweaked, reaching 100 degrees Celsius and throttleing. Nevertheless, it managed to perform well throughout the majority of the testing while maintaining high frequencies.

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Display and audio

I adore an enormous, vibrant, and colorful OLED display. Simply said, turning one on is unlike turning on even the greatest IPS panels. In all but one area, the ZenBook Pro 16X is among the best I’ve used.

My colorimeter indicates that every parameter of the display is exceptional, with the exception of brightness, which, while exceeding our 300-nit criterion, isn’t the brightest OLED panel I’ve tested. However, the color gamut is quite wide at 100% of sRGB and 98% of AdobeRGB, and the color accuracy is superb with a Delta-E of 0.84 (anything less than 100% is undetectable by the human eye). As with all OLED screens, the contrast is also quite strong, displaying deep blacks.

To provide professional-level calibration, Asus includes a tool that works in tandem with a colorimeter (now, only the X-Rite i1 Display Pro is supported, with more on the way). The panel is great right out of the box, but if the colors change over time, you can utilize the ProArt Creator Hub tool to correct them.

Creators, as well as productivity users and content consumers, will enjoy the experience that the ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED display offers because it perfectly matches the laptop’s performance. Only the IPS display on the Dell XPS 17 is more colorful, and it lacks the deep blacks of OLED. Just so much to love about this place.

Keyboard and touchpad

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED

The touchpad is yet another peculiar aspect. It has a sizable haptic touchpad that is comparable to the Force Touch model on the MacBook Pro 16. The haptic clicks felt natural, and I found the touchpad to be accurate and sensitive throughout its whole surface. That’s not all, though. Additionally, Asus added its NumberPad 2.0 technology, which integrates a programmable LED numeric keypad. The majority of people definitely won’t find it very helpful, but if you deal with a lot of numbers, you’ll find it valuable. Additionally, by removing a physical numeric keypad, it frees up space on the keyboard.

Additionally, Asus integrated a special controller called the Asus Dial, which allows users to manage customisable software and system functions by rotating a touch-sensitive ring around a physical button. It’s a convenient method to manage applications like Adobe’s Creative Suite as well as carry out straightforward operations like modifying the screen brightness and sound volume. The Asus Dial is a surprisingly helpful device that gives users another practical way to control the ZenBook Pro 16X.

Ports and connections

There is more than enough connectivity. There are two Thunderbolt 4-compatible USB-C ports in addition to a full-size SD card reader, a full-size HDMI 2.1 port, a USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port, and two USB-C ports. I can’t fault the ZenBook Pro 16X’s port selection, but some 16-inch laptops have one or two additional USB-A ports.

Bluetooth 5.2 and Wi-Fi 6E offer modern wireless connectivity.

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED Battery life

The ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED performed poorly in our battery benchmarks, as I had anticipated. The ZenBook only lasted five hours during our web browsing test, which includes a variety of challenging websites. In our video test, which loops a local Full HD Avengers trailer, it only lasted eight hours. In the PCMark 10 Application battery test, which is the best measure of productivity battery life, it only lasted 5.5 hours. The Dell XPS 15 and XPS 17 stand out among the Intel laptops, and those results are consistent with some of the other creator laptops in our comparison group. Of course, the MacBook Pro 16’s multiday battery life embarrassed the rest of the group.

Our Verdict

The ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED is a beautifully made laptop that achieves and surpasses its creator-oriented goals. Given its parts, it runs surprisingly quickly and can be tweaked to run even faster. Its display is amazing, and its keyboard and touchpad are top-notch. It has the practical Asus Dial feature, which is convenient. Overall, Asus produced a unique laptop.

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