Asus is no stranger to thin and light laptops, but the new Asus ZenBook 3 is the company’s thinnest and lightest to date. It measures 11.9mm (0.46 inches) thick and weighs just 910 grams (2 pounds).
But this little laptop with a 12.5 inch display still packs a lot of power. Asus will offer models with up to an Intel Core i7 Skylake processor, up to 16GB of LPDDR3-2133 MHz RAM, and up to 1 TB of PCIe storage.
A maxed out model will likely set you back close to $2000, but Asus says it will sell an entry-level ZenBook 3 with a Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of M.2 SSD storage for $999.
The laptop has a “spun-metal finish” and will be available in gold, grey, or blue colors.
Since the ZenBook 3 uses 15 watt Intel Skylake-U processors rather than lower-power Core M chips, there’s no getting around the fact that the laptop need an active cooling system. But Asus says it managed to fit a 3mm fan inside the case in order to help dissipate heat without making the laptop thicker.
Other features include a fingerprint reader, a glass-covered precision touchpad, scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass 4 covering the full HD display, and Harmon Kardon audio.
There’s a Thunderbolt 3/USB Type-C port for charging. Asus says the laptop should get up to 9 hours of battery life (a claim I’d take with a grain of salt for now), and that you can charge the battery to 60 percent in 49 minutes.
Unfortunately the ZenBook 3 takes a major design cue from Apple’s MacBook: that USB-C charging port is the only port on the laptop. So if you want to connect peripherals and charge your device at the same time, you’ll probably need an adapter (or wireless accessories).
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