Here we take a look at the Asus Zenbook U500, a non touchscreen 15-inch Ultrabook which features a full HD display and numerical pad.
If you have been eyeing up an Asus Zenbook over the past few months yet dread the thought of giving up the real-estate your current 15-inch laptop offers, then the Asus Zenbook U500 is the answer to your prayers offering up everything that we have come to love about the Zenbook series only in a larger 15-inch frame.
Unveiled at this years’ IFA event in Berlin the Zenbook U500 is Asus’s latest addition to their Zenbook range joining the likes of the 11.6″ and 13.3″ brigade. Of course with the release of the U500 this has also left open a 14″ gap for the near future, however there is no word on whether that will be filled any time soon.
The Zenbook U500 is not as of yet commercially available in the UK however we expect it to be at around October time or early November, just after the official release of Windows 8. Naturally then you as an avid 15-inch laptop lover do not have long to wait for the U500 to become available, so in the meantime lets take a look at what this Ultrabook offers.
ASUS Zenbook U500
Much like its smaller siblings the U500 is built entirely from aluminium with a mixture of textured and matte (however never polished) parts abound. The materials (or material, as noted) creates an extremely well-made, rigid and durable machine which is also fairly light weight for the specifications it carries. Due to being aluminium the back of the screen offers very little in way way of push or shove too adding a sense of robustness other Ultrabooks can only dream of.
Inside the top specification U500 you will find a very powerful Ivy Bridge Intel Core i7 quad-core processor and up to 512GB of SSD storage alongside optional NVIDIA GT650M graphics. There will also be hybrid storage options available for people who do not wish to have / can not afford the maximum amount of SSD storage, however from experience, hybrid storage is just as good as SSD only storage in many respects anyway.
Moving on to the pièce de résistance and key selling point of this machine, it’s display, and the U500 packs a 15″ full HD display with an anti-glare coating and IPS technology. Like all Asus Zenbook offerings this machine can be expected to have one of the best displays in its class, with fantastic viewing angles and rich and vibrant colour reproduction.
The Asus Zenbook U500 does not however feature a touch screen display despite being released at this years’ IFA where touch screen Ultrabooks were released by the bucket load. Whether or not this is a downside depends entirely on what your requirements are when shopping for a laptop however.
The keyboard looks great with a full numerical pad
With thanks to the larger frame this laptop has due to a 15-inch screen, Asus has extended its keyboard to include a numerical pad. This is good news for business users or people who work with numbers more specifically, and what’s more the keyboard is backlit too a feature which we have come to expect from a top of the range laptop.
Accompanying the spacious looking keyboard is a revised trackpad over its smaller siblings which supports multi-touch and as with past Zenbook offerings pinch to zoom on web pages as well as a wealth of other multi touch actions should be fine to use.
ASUS Zenbook U500 features
- Up to Intel Core i7 quad-core processors
- Optional NVIDIA 620M dedicated graphics
- Backlit keyboard with numerical pad
- 15-inch full HD display with IPS and anti-glare technology
- The nicest 15″ form factor of any laptop on the market