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The ASUS ZenBook 3 looks just like a slimmer and lighter Apple MacBook

By Koh Wanzi - on 31 May 2016, 1:56am

The ASUS ZenBook 3 looks just like a slimmer and lighter Apple MacBook

ASUS ZenBook 3

ASUS has announced the ZenBook 3, an ultra-slim notebook that it has unabashedly dubbed “the world’s most prestigious laptop”.

It is constructed from aerospace-grade aluminum alloy, which gives it its light weight – only 910g – and allows it to avoid compromising on strength. That aside, it is available in three different colors, Royal Blue, Rose Gold, and Quartz Grey, all of which look quite gorgeous when viewed in the flesh.

ASUS ZenBook 3

One unique feature is the gold-colored trim – subtle, yet still slightly ostentatious – and ASUS logo, and the company says it has employed a special two-phase anodizing process to create these golden highlights.

When it comes to the hardware, the ZenBook 3 is no slouch either, and it can be equipped with an Intel Core i7-6500U processor, 16GB of 2,133MHz RAM, and up to a 1TB PCIe x4 SSD. It also boasts a quad-speaker setup by Harman Kardon, but its Gorilla Glass-covered 12.5-inch display has a modest resolution of just 1,920 x 1,080 pixels.

That’s a design decision likely driven by the fact that higher resolution displays consume more power, and the difficulty of including a large enough battery pack inside a chassis so thin. We saw the same thing on the HP Spectre, so for now at least, ultra-slim designs like these do still come with certain trade-offs. And like the Spectre, the ZenBook 3 is also thinner than the MacBook at just 11.9mm at its thickest.

Having said that, the ZenBook 3’s 40Wh battery is supposedly good for up to 9 hours of use, and it can be charged up to 60 percent in just 49 minutes, courtesy of the built-in fast-charging technology.

The full-size backlit keyboard is actually the part of the notebook that reminds us most of the Apple MacBook. It occupies the entire width of the notebook, and while its 0.8mm key travel distance is quite shallow, it still feels a tad bit better than typing on the MacBook.

Finally, it comes with just one USB-C port for charging and connecting peripherals, so that’s one limitation to take note of if you’re already not a fan of the MacBook’s single USB-C port.

The top configuration with an Intel Core i7 processor and a 1TB SSD will be available for US$1,999, while the 512GB version will go for US$1,499.

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