Asus Zenbook Pro Duo hands-on: First impressions

AsusTek Computer, a well-known producer of computer motherboards, graphics cards, laptops, networking devices and smartphones, announced a premium entry to their Zenbook lineup this year at Computex - the Pro Duo.

Boasting a powerful 8-core Intel i9-9980HK CPU and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 paired with a high-quality HDR-capable 4K display, the device was promised to be a powerhouse for designers who also like to play games on the off.

Deccan Herald got a week with the machine, and this is our first impressions of it:

In the box:

The laptop comes in a hefty box, which has 2 smaller boxes, one housing the 230-watt charging cable and another housing the laptop with its included accessories: a hand-rest, a stylus and a little foldable pad attached to the machine to raise it a little higher for improved airflow.

Design:

The first things you'll notice when you open up the machine are the fact that it has a completely separate screen just above the keyboard and that the trackpad has been moved to the right - and it acts like a numberpad with the push of a button!

Other than that, the laptop's keyboard has a very impressive and comfortable layout, and the main display, though glossy, is surprisingly not much of a fingerprint magnet that glossy displays have had the infamy of being; this honour seems to go to the secondary display, which Asus calls ScreenPad (or, in this case, ScreenPad X).

Display:

Without beating around the bush, the display is super crisp. The Pro Duo features a 4K Ultra HD panel with 133% sRGB coverage, meaning doing average, daily work like watching movies and playing games look much more colourful than most average screens. It also supports DCP-3, allowing people who have real work to do, such as designing, modelling and such, to create with life-like colours.

The display also supports HDR, and the results are certainly worth beholding - at least for content that supports HDR output. It's a tool I recommend only using when you know you are either watching HDR video, playing HDR games or creating models in HDR, because it does suck up a bit of power to run.

The only gripe I have with the display is the locked 60 Hz regardless of chosen resolution. I would've liked it if the laptop gave an option for 90-120 Hz at Full HD for a smoother, more responsive experience, but overall, the display does not disappoint.

Watch out for the full review on October 17.

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