The world’s fourth biggest IT vendor, Asus is a Taiwanese company that emerged after its four initiators left Acer – the company that today is just below Asus regarding revenue. Started in 1989, the company gained recognition after reportedly creating an improved version of a motherboard for Intel’s i486 processor without actually having the processor to work with. After said performance, a partnership with Intel allowed them to get ahead of many larger companies of the time. Currently, Asus assembles and sells every type of computer available on the market, as well as peripherals (monitors, keyboards, etc.pertaining to), parts (motherboards, graphics cards), multimedia storage, and so on. While the company is becoming more well-known for their line of mobile phones, the main products are still the PC’s, particularly the laptops.
Now that you’ve seen what Asus has to offer in general, it’s time that we give you some actual recommendations as well. We’ve compiled a list of all these categories, so you can choose something regardless of what you’re planning to do with it. Take a look at our suggestions and choose wisely.
1. Asus ROG G752VS OC Edition
We’ll be completely honest with you: you have to be a bit power-crazy to buy this one. Then again, we do appreciate dedicated gamers, and this laptop is made to quench the thirst of the most hardcore gamers ever. The G752VS is the first on the list in terms of size, weight, sheer performance, and price tag, at a nice 17.3” and 4.3kg.
This monster’s OC tag means “Overclocked”, and it pretty damn well deserves such a title. There’s an Intel I7-6820HK quad-core inside, clocked at 2.7GHz, overclocked at an amazing 4GHz. This ungodly CPU is paired with an nVidia GTX 1070M with 8GB GDDR5 VRAM, as well as an overclocked 32GB DDR4 RAM. In order to match that level of speed, the storage is also great: a 256GB SSD, plus a 1TB HDD for good measure. The cooling capability is the real deal as well, with the new Asus Vapor Chamber technology. Even the ports are high-speed stuff – USB 3.0 Type A and 3.1 Type C, as well as the new Thunderbolt technology. There’s also a 64GB DDR4 + 512GB SSD.
All in all, you should get this laptop if you want to play 2016’s most demanding releases. All of them. At the same time. While you have 327 Chrome tabs open.
2. Asus ROG Strix GL502VM
While nowhere near the beast above in terms of everything, this laptop is nonetheless a hidden beast in its own respect. Way more lightweight, it’s only 15.6”, 2.3kg, and 30mm thick. However, as you’ll see, it packs a real punch indeed. It also is, in our opinion, the best bang for the buck when it comes to gaming. Well, unless you’re a power-crazy gamer. In that case, your recommendation is above.
The GL52VM is powered by an i7-6700HQ, quad-core, 2.6GHz, TurboBoost up to 3.5GHz. It also features an nVidia GTX 1060 with 6GB GDDR5 VRAM, as well as 16GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB 7200RPM HDD. The connectivity is mostly same as above. The price tag, however, is much lower than the G752VS. All in all, you get amazing performance for a lot less than what you’d pay for a similar Alienware.
3. Asus K501UX
Unlike the ROG series, the rest of the Asus laptops weren’t created for gaming in particular. However, there are still a couple of models that are, at least, gaming-oriented all-rounders. This is the case with the K501UX model. While not being a monster-level powerhouse, it can still perform pretty well for everything you may want to do, including office tasks, photo and video editing, 3D rendering, and so on.
This model is built around an i7-6500U, quad-core, 2.5GHz and up to 3.1GHz. It also has an nVidia GTX 950M with 2GB GDDR5 VRAM, as well as 8GB DDR4 RAM and 256GB SSD storage. All in all, it’s suitable for mid-to-high-end tasks. Its brushed aluminum case is pleasant to touch and the proprietary Asus cooling techniques also contribute to that, in spite of its slimness.
4. Asus F555LA-AB31
The best budget model on this list, this F-series laptop is definitely not a gaming device and not even gaming-oriented. It works, however, extremely well for the price – less than half the price tag of the K501UX. It’s perfect for all everyday tasks, which is exactly why you’d buy a budget laptop in the first place.
The F555LA has an Intel Core i3-5010U, Broadwell, dual-core, 2.1GHz. While it doesn’t have a discrete graphics card, the integrated card is an excellent Intel HD 5500, which powers a 15.6” 1920×1080 FHD screen. The laptop also features 4GB DDR4 RAM, a 500GB HDD, and all the necessary ports, including USB 3.0 Type A and HDMI.
5. Asus VivoBook Flip TP301UA-WB51
Sometimes you just want to take your laptop and flip it. Bad puns aside, this VivoBook model allows for 360o flexibility and will behave just as well as any classic laptop or any classic tablet, depending on what you want from it. While not gaming-oriented, it will perform whatever other task excellently.
This model has at the center an i5-6200U, dual-core, 2.3-2.8GHz, working as an APU together with the high-end integrated video chip Intel HD 520. It also features 6GB RAM and a nice 256GB SSD, enough for all practical purposes. It’s slim, lightweight, and has excellent reviews.
6. Asus ZenBook Pro UX501VW
ZenBooks, just like Chromebooks, are in a class of their own. Far from being a budget notebook, this laptop is the epitome of slimness and the best design Asus could produce. Speaking of which, this really is a designer’s notebook, with the amazing 4K and 3D rendering capabilities and so on.
The UX501VW features the same powerful i7-6700HQ we can find in many gaming laptops, as well as an equally powerful nVidia GTX 960M graphics card which allows the astonishing UHD 3840 x 2160 touch screen to be used at maximum capacity. It also has 16GB DDR4 RAM and a 512GB SSD, which is as much SSD storage as you’ll get in a laptop this year. All in all, the best laptop you could have if you’re a designer, photo or video editor, or anything that requires high-end visual processing – all for much less than a similar MacBook.
7. Asus Chromebook C202SA-YS01
This laptop is one of the models using Google’s proprietary OS, Chrome OS, which is basically a glorified Linux. It’s not a high-performance model, but it’s not meant to be one. Chromebooks are made to be cheap, light, slim, and perform daily tasks such as writing and internet surfing perfectly. This particular model also has the added advantages of being 180o flexible, water resistant, and shock-resistant (4-foot drop test passed). In short, whatever a student can throw at it, it can take it and survive unscathed.
This simple netbook is powered by an Intel Celeron N3060, 2.48GHz, and it has 2GB DDR4 RAM (also 4GB, for $20 more). It has 16GB flash storage, as you’re supposed to use cloud memory for most of the things, and an 11.6” HD Anti-Glare display. Add to that 10 hours of battery life and you get a device that will be your best friend if you need something to take notes on and then watch a film while you’re on the way home.
Asus laptops are not known for their particularly beautiful design. That is not to say that they’re unaesthetic or something like that; even the devices with a plastic case still look and feel very premium. Asus prefers gently rounded edges to the crisp and sharp lines that other brands offer – with the notable exception of their ROG series, which look like alien industrial androids which are set up to destroy the world. Not a bad thing at all, since they’re gaming devices. What the company is known for, however, is the immensely vast array of products. From the slim, light, extremely portable ZenBooks to the big, bulky, and totally overpowered ROG (Republic of Gamers) series, Asus laptops cover all markets, all types of laptop, and all price ranges. To put it simply, whatever kind of laptop you want, Asus has a suitable model. These products are also renowned for the solidity of their build, which is important for portable devices that often risk being dropped, among other accidents. Another thing worthy of notice here is the cooling capacity of Asus laptops. Slimmer laptops are notorious for their poor cooling, but this seems not to be the case with this particular company.
It’s unquestionable that Asus produces high-quality devices. What reviewers claim is not so high-quality, however, is the tech support on these laptops, or any other products of the company – while phone support is relatively functional, its online counterpart leaves a lot to be desired. Same goes for the warranty: the ROG devices and other similarly high-priced items will come with free return shipping and accidental damage protection, but the same doesn’t hold true for its less expensive models. What’s more, unlike many other similar companies, Asus doesn’t allow RAM or storage upgrading; doing so will void your warranty. In all fairness, there’s usually enough RAM and storage to render an upgrade unnecessary, and the overall quality can make warranty unnecessary as well, but you really never know.
The question arises, then: how to buy an Asus laptop? Well, pretty much like you’d buy any other kind of laptop, really. You need only think of two things: the budget and the purpose you’re using it for. As stated above, Asus products cover all budgets, so we have that out of the way. The purpose thing is a bit more complicated and we’ll have to stop at that for a moment.
Let’s assume you want to buy a gaming laptop. Asus brings the ROG series to the table, with laptops going anywhere between $1000-3500. You’ll have to dish out some serious money indeed, but that holds true for absolutely all gaming laptops. The ROG laptops are serious powerhouses, with desktop-level performance, but be advised: they also come with desktop-level disadvantages, such as the weight. If you’re getting the ROG G800VI, you’ll be undoubtedly enchanted by the ungodly level of performance, but you’ll also have to carry around a beautiful 6kg worth of expensive electronics. The battery life is also an issue – don’t expect it to last very much when you’re playing Deus Ex.
If you’d rather go for a classic all-rounder, Asus offers no fewer than three different series of laptops. The N series covers high-end classic laptops, with UHD display, powerful CPU, equally powerful GPU, and everything else to match these. The K series, while not being exactly as OP, are not far behind in terms of power. They are, however, more on the slim side, with classier looks and lighter weight. The N- and K-laptops are designed for medium-to-high multimedia design and entertainment (including gaming, Photoshop, video editing etc.). The last one is the X series. Most of the models belonging here are even more lightweight than K-series models, both in terms of power and actual weight. Among classic laptops, these are Asus’ most portable models, without losing much in terms of performance. They’re also really good budget laptops, with many models going below the $500 mark. There’s also the VivoBook series, but that’s actually a meta-series, as VivoBooks are actually N, X, and K models.
Finally, if portability and slimness are what you’re going for, Asus doesn’t disappoint in this area either. If you’re interested in a touchscreen ultrabook, there’s the S series which will provide you with what you want. For those who want to settle for a normal lightweight netbook, the E series is great value for the money. Last, but definitely not least, the ZenBook series is for those who want the best out of a convertible laptop. These are the slimmest Asus notebooks and also the slimmest notebooks in the world, with some models reaching an unbelievable 13mm thickness at 1.2kg weight. Don’t let yourselves be fooled by their size, though: the other reason for the rather remarkably high price tag, besides the design, is their amazing performance, with high-end processors and UHD+ screen resolution. Laptops in this category also have the best battery life by far, with some models reaching well beyond the 10-hour milestone.