The VivoBook is undoubtedly one of the best laptops under 35K.
The Asus VivoBook is a great mainstream laptop, which proves performance isn't limited to premium powerhouses. Asus sent us the recently released VivoBook X412F notebook, refreshed with an Intel Core i5-8265U processors, 8GB of DDR4 RAM and a 512GB PCIe G3X2 SSD.
Additionally, the new VivoBook sports a 14-inch FHD (1980 x 1080) screen with a 60Hz refresh rate. The VivoBook is an ultra-portable laptop that boasts an impressive spec sheet and affordable price-tag.
So, let's take a look at what the VivoBook X412F has to offer:
Design & Build
The first thing that comes to mind when you look at this notebook is "portability". The X412F features a simplistic design with the ErgoLift hinge design to increase airflow and improve ventilation, the same system found on Asus' Zephyrus models.
The new VivoBook has a brushed-aluminium lid while smooth plastic is used on the underbelly and interior. The model we received came in a flashy matte blue shade Asus is calling "Peacock Blue".
The VivoBook features a sleek and thin chassis. When you toss it in a bag, it's as good as nonexistent; there's less than 2 kgs between charger and laptop. As compared to previous editions, there isn't much flex on the keyboard and wrist-rest area. A metallic plate below the keyboards helps reduce flex and gives the device a more premium feel.
The VivoBook X412F is essentially a 13-inch laptop with a 14-inch screen. This is one of those laptops you can whip out in a bus or car to get some work done or catch up on a show. The notebook's thin and light design makes it incredibly portable. Additionally, the rubber grips on the bottom allow it to sit firmly on a table.
The new VivoBook features a decent assortment of I/O with a USB Type-C, USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A, and USB 2.0 ports, HDMI output, a headphone jack, and a microSD card slot.
Keyboard & Trackpad
The laptop is equipped with a Tenkeyless, backlit keyboard. While the keycaps are relatively small, the keys themselves are fairly accurate and quite firm, requiring a heavier push to register, which is quite nice.
The white LEDs also feature different levels of brightness. The functions keys also feature dedicated shortcuts. We found the entire keyboard experience pretty satisfying; there was absolutely no flex to deal with while typing.
For the mouse, Asus opted for a glass-covered Elan touchpad with Windows Precision drivers. The surface of the trackpad is pretty smooth, which makes scrolling effortless.
The trackpad buttons are quite solid with the clicks, while the sound adds a nice touch. It supports Windows 10 touchpad gestures including multi-gesture input, so it's easy to switch apps or screens.
Asus also integrates a fingerprint sensor on the top right corner of the trackpad, which is quite useful while logging into Windows using Hello.
Audio & Video
The X412F utilises a 14-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS display. Asus uses a NanoEdge display on the new VivoBook with thin bezels on all sides to maximise screen real estate.
The new VivoBook offers an 87-per cent screen-to-body ratio. Despite housing, a webcam, the top bezel on the VivoBook is quite thin. The IPS panel reaches an average brightness of around 250 nits and offers decent viewing angles. The display does tend to struggle in bright outdoor environments.
One thing that's worth mentioning is that this screen is built really well; there was no noticeable light bleeding around the edges. Colour reproduction is down-right average, but at this price point, there's little you can complain about.
For sound, it gets an entry-level SonicMaster sound system with the speakers placed on the underbelly. While Asus claims that SonicMaster technology offers a surround sound effect, we found the speakers to be pretty sub-par.
Performance & Battery
The laptop features Intel's 8th Core processors. Our model featured an Intel Core i5-8265U processor coupled with 8GB of DDR4 2400MHz RAM and a PCIe SSD.
Considering the X412F is a mainstream laptop engineered for everyday use, we found performance to be up to the mark. The notebook offered a seamless multitasking experience, while the PCIe SSD contributes a great deal to overall performance, a welcome upgrade to the SATA SSDs of the past.
The quad-core Intel CPU managed a Cinebench R20 score of 772 points and a Geekbench OpenCL score of 29,340 on the CPU Benchmark test, while Compute Benchmarks received a 30,096 score. We also managed to play Heroes of the Storm and Overwatch on medium graphics settings.
Both games ran pretty well offering decent fps numbers, making the VivoBook a great pick if you're interested in some light gaming. However, it's worth noting that the fans can get pretty loud while gaming, but the laptop does manage to stay cool above the keyboard and wrist-rest.
The new VivoBook runs on a 37 w/hr battery, which contributes to around four hours of normal usage. Intel's Whisky Lake CPU and the FHD IPS panel aren't power hogs by any means. Gaming on the battery should get you around one hour of usage, while multitasking between Chrome and MS Office got us little over four hours of battery life.
The main reason why the VivoBook X412F makes so much sense is the price. The 14-inch model will only set you back Rs 33,990.
The price-to-performance here just makes so much sense. On paper, the new VivoBook would have been an excellent bargain even for Rs 45,000, which makes the current price tag all the more sweeter.
Asus gets the balance of power and price just about right on the new VivoBook. The Intel Core i5 CPU, PCIe SSD, 8GB of RAM, an FHD IPS display and premium design make the X412F one of the best value-for-money mainstream laptops available.While the VivoBook does come with its fair share of issues, at under Rs 35,000, most of those issues are easy to overlook for the performance you're getting. If you're willing to compromise on battery life and sound for portability, power and affordability, the new VivoBook X412F is an excellent pick.Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro and gain access to curated markets data, exclusive trading recommendations, independent equity analysis, actionable investment ideas, nuanced takes on macro, corporate and policy actions, practical insights from market gurus and much more.