ASUS has some of the best manufactured laptops in the market. Especially its mid and high range of ultrabook laptops and convertibles made of aluminium. Laptops in which Asus integrates engineering, design, autonomy, sound and of course image quality.
14mm thickness. This is what this convertible laptop with touchscreen has, and is an aspect that adds to the screen thickness. Completely made in aluminum with that pretty anodized “purple” color of ASUS. Anodized and brushed with a circular treatment around the ASUS logo in the screen cover.
It’s a slim and light laptop, 1.2Kg with battery, where you can enjoy the latest in technology with an autonomy up to 12 hours thanks to its built-in 52Wh battery. It has a 360-degree screen rotation. It can switch into a 13 inch Tablet or use any position in between. The only bad thing I can notice is that ASUS didn’t properly protect the edges for the tent mode, the one you see in the picture.
One of the most striking elements, that confers that complete openness functionality, can be found in its hinges. With a bronze colored metal cover that stands out over the rest of the laptop’s finish. They are particularly small and with its round shape, it seems impossible that ASUS was able to do the cabling needed between the main body and the screen.
The screen is not especially adjusted in its horizontal and vertical margins, other ASUS models are stricter in this sense, as the UX39OUA that we tested a few days ago, but its Gorilla Glass 3 cover gives it a high quality finish. We also must have in mind that this is a multi-touch screen.
The keyboard and touchpad zones are excellent. The keyboard has great touch sensitivity, with a wide key travel of 1.5mm, it’s also lighted with a brightness level which can be adjusted. The multi-touch touchpad will give us an extra input and the classic ultrabook look that many are looking for their convertible laptops.
This whole zone is clear, no buttons or speaker grilles, which are place under the laptop. There isn’t any air vents either and this time, due to its design, ASUS opted for a lateral heat extraction from its right side instead of going through the hinge socket as usual.
As for ports and adapters almost all of them can be found in the right side of the laptop. There is located the charging port, an USB type A port, an HDMI port, an USB type C port, a SD card reader and an audio/microphone jack.
In the right side of the UX360UA we will find a USB type A port, the air vent and the power and volume controls when using it as a tablet. ASUS also includes extra features in its operative system to disconnect the keyboard and touchpad when used in modes where an involuntary keystroke may happen.
Processor and graphics Skylake and Kaby lake and other specifications
Currently we can find this model with different processors from the sixth generation to the seventh generation of Intel Core processors. All of them have low voltage with a maximum consumption of 17w and a 2 cores with 4 processing threads configuration.
Our test unit has sixth generation processors, but is easy to find alternatives with Kaby Lake processors in the market, which should offer more autonomy and better graphic performance, for similar prices. For less than 1100 dollars we can find the version with Core i7 and 265GB of hard drive space or the version with Core i5 and 512GB hard drive space. Both with 8GB of RAM. Thus making it a really price competitive convertible laptop that incorporates the best Intel processors for this product segment.
Whatever version you choose, in this laptop you will find a sharp machine able to perform any type of task, except perhaps, playing games. We could play games at low quality, but for me personally that’s not playing. Is not really for this type of tasks, but we can adapt to perform it.
The wireless connectivity includes Wifi-AC and Bluetooth 4.2. the wifi reaches speeds up to 867mbps with a 2×2 MIMO. The Ethernet connectivity, of needed will have to be through an USB 3.0 which can’t be found in this model’s series.
We also miss that the type C port doesn’t have PD (Power Delivery) which would have allowed us to charge the laptop through compatible chargers. That would save us a charger when traveling with it.
The only elements that can be change or expand in this model are the wireless card, which is an Intel 8260 of great quality, and the storage unit an M.2 SATA of 80mm. Usually this model admits PCIe units with NVMe support. The RAM is welded to the motherboard so if we want more than 8GB we will have to opt for another model in the series.
Screen and speakers
ASUS pays close attention in their key models to these two factors, and on this occasion they have maintained the standard quite well. This model can be found with different screen configurations, although in Spain it is more common that we only see screen configurations of 13.3” with a resolution of 1920×1080 dots. In the ASUS specifications we can also find models with a QHD+ screen configuration which also guarantees a color coverage of 72% of the NTSC spectrum.
The models with 1920×1080 dot display can have panels that range between 45% and 72% of NTSC coverage. The latter are of much better quality. All are IPS panels, with perfect angles, but the more color coverage they have, the better the image quality we will get. The test unit with which this analysis has been made has the most advanced screen, 3200×1800 dots, and the truth is that it is spectacular. Vivid colors, high level of contrast and a dramatic definition.
ASUS incorporates SonicMaster technology into this model. It has a stereo speaker system, that pumps out under the chassis, with a large expansion chamber which gives a good contrast between high and low frequencies. They also have a surprisingly high volume for a notebook of this thickness and the reproduction quality is remarkably good.
The multimedia system is completed with a high definition webcam and an “array” of two omni-directional microphones at the top edge of the screen. Nothing that any other laptop sold in recent years doesn’t have.
Performance and autonomy
Although our sample model is not the most modern one to be currently found on the market it is an interesting benchmark to observe the capabilities of this ASUS model. In our habitual test battery we can conclude that this is a medium performance notebook, well balanced, that should be more than capable of running all kinds of applications. Its 8GB of RAM guarantees intensive multi-tasking, although programmers and systems technicians will find this somewhat insufficient to be their main work device.
The almost 3000 performance points in PcMark 8 are a guarantee of multi-purpose performance. If our use of the notebook is normal, with professional applications included, we will not have the slightest problem with the balance of performance of the UX360UA from ASUS.
The autonomy is surprising. One of the best to have passed through our laboratory. We easily exceeded the 10 hours of combined use with this notebook’s battery and in the Kaby Lake this figure should increase by half an hour.
The SATA storage drive is perhaps what most drags down the performance, though it is certainly more than capable of a very agile performance in Windows 10. Applications and system will start immediately. A PCI Express unit would be more agile and powerful but functionally it will not offer big differences.
Analysis and conclusion
This kind of machines are the ones saving the computer world from stagnation. The offer versatile solutions for any circumstance and combine proper power with outstanding autonomy. This not an easy to solve equation and ASUS makes it with good specification for a little more than 1000 dollars and excellent quality.
This is a beautiful machine, which offers outstanding autonomy and enough power to enjoy a versatile daily use. The only thing it lacks is not going for the new USB-C interface. Provide graphics and charge through this adapter is something that we are expecting for every computer and this kind of models, of this range, they should firmly bet for this new interface.
However it may be for me this is one of the best convertible laptops we can find for this price. A beautiful machine with great potential and an attractive price.