ASUS Zenbook UX51VZ: Great Laptop, High Priceby Jarred Walton on April 30, 2013 1:00 AM EST
Let’s See the Benchmarks
Many of our tests should be familiar by now, as we’ve just updated a few items along with switching to an almost completely new gaming suite. All of the benchmarks we use are now the latest versions, which is some cases makes the results slightly different from earlier versions (e.g. PCMark 7 may be up to 5% faster/slower now compared to the original release). Here’s the short list of application and gaming results; the full suite is visible in Mobile Bench, and as we review more laptops with the new test suite we’ll include the UX51VZ in the charts.
|ASUS Zenbook UX51VZ General Performance|
|PCMark 7 (2013) PCMark Overall Score||5327|
|Cinebench R11.5 Single-Threaded (FPS)||1.28|
|Cinebench R11.5 Multi-Threaded (FPS)||5.62|
|x264 HD 5.x Pass One (FPS)||54.89|
|x264 HD 5.x Pass Two (FPS)||10.56|
|3DMark (2013) Fire Strike||1571|
|3DMark (2013) Cloud Gate||9155|
|3DMark (2013) Ice Storm||59686|
|3DMark 11 Performance||2346|
|Battery Life 2013 Light Use (Minutes)||295|
|Battery Life 2013 Moderate Use (Minutes)||259|
|LCD Contrast Ratio||838:1|
|LCD White Level (nits)||302|
|LCD Black Level (nits)||0.36|
|LCD Color Gamut (%AdobeRGB)||64.8%|
Starting with the general performance, there’s really nothing particularly surprising to report. The quad-core i7-3612QM delivers performance that will be plenty fast for all but the most demanding users. Yes, it’s a bit slower than the standard voltage quad-core parts, but the UX51VZ seems to cool well enough that maximum Turbo Boost is usually in effect. As for the graphics scores, the only thing I have to go on right now are iGPU results from Ultrabooks, and the 2x-3x performance gap is about what you’d expect from GT 650M vs. ULV HD 4000. This is one area where Haswell may not make as big of a dent in the lead as I’d like, as the TDP on the ULV parts means even if GT3 is present, it’s likely to run into throttling situations, so dGPUs will be desirable for anyone serious about gaming.
Speaking of which, here are the gaming results—we’ll be adding GRID 2 and Metro: Last Light to our gaming suite when those launch, so for now we have five titles to work with. Skyrim is the sole holdover of our last suite, mostly because we couldn’t find an RPG we felt was a better option (and MMORPGs tend to introduce too many variables to make them good benchmarks). Keep in mind that this list is for laptop only, where gaming performance is merely one of numerous elements we test.
Also of interest is that our current gaming suite has three AMD Gaming Evolved titles (and GRID 2 will make a fourth) while the only NVIDIA The Way It’s Meant to Be Played title will be Metro: Last Light—Skyrim and StarCraft II remain DX9 games that are GPU vendor agnostic. We tried to stick to games that were well received and if possible both demanding on the hardware and easy for us to benchmark. The second aspect is why Crysis 3 and Far Cry 3 didn’t make our list, and we figured at seven titles (with four already being FPS/shooters) we could skip adding two more. If you’d like to see more GPU comparisons with games, please refer to our GPU benchmarks where we have ten titles and at present three overlap our mobile test suite.
|ASUS Zenbook UX51VZ Gaming Performance(FPS)|
|Bioshock Infinite - Value||81.9|
|Bioshock Infinite - Mainstream||34.1|
|Bioshock Infinite - Enthusiast||19.4|
|Elder Scrolls: Skyrim - Value||88.2|
|Elder Scrolls: Skyrim - Mainstream||60.5|
|Elder Scrolls: Skyrim - Enthusiast||37.6|
|Sleeping Dogs - Value||72.4|
|Sleeping Dogs - Mainstream||44.9|
|Sleeping Dogs - Enthusiast||19.1|
|StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Value||55.2|
|StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Mainstream||44.4|
|StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Enthusiast||28.1|
|Tomb Raider - Value||74.8|
|Tomb Raider - Mainstream||40.7|
|Tomb Raider - Enthusiast||11.6|
Gaming performance on the GT 650M is decent but not exceptional. In most instances, High detail settings at 1080p are playable, but typically not with antialiasing. Our Enthusiast settings meanwhile prove too much for the GPU in four of the five games, with Skyrim being the only passing grade. Based on their predecessors (Metro 2033 and DiRT: Showdown), I’m betting our Enthusiast settings will likely prove unplayable on most laptops for the time being.
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Hrel - Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - linkThe quad-core i6-3612QM
Hm, new cpu come out? ;)
Krafty1 - Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - linkIf they had included a Thunderbolt port...I'd be trying to find ways to come up with the money to buy this thing. As is...hopefully when they re-work it for Haswell, they will include a Thunderbolt port.
just2btecky - Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - linkPictures are missing, anandtech.
damianrobertjones - Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - link"The MBP 15 Retina’s glossy 2880x1800 native resolution is still impressive, but the DPI is such that you can’t actually use it without scaling and other tricks, so it ends up being more like a really nice 1920x1200 LCD, at least in Windows. " - I'm SO GLAD to actually read this written as it basically shows the power of Marketing. Thank you!
MykeM - Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - linkIt still doesn't change the fact that the Retina MBP has more than double the resolution of the Asus and even more staggering since both use a 15" display (another plus for the rMBP is the use of the 16:10 ratio). There's nothing wrong with 1080p but those wanting a denser screen (typeface looks incredible at 220ppi) have a choice.
nerd1 - Thursday, May 2, 2013 - linkYou are not allowed to use the native resolution anyway.
erple2 - Saturday, May 4, 2013 - linkSo I have a rMBP. And it doesn't really look all that good unless you're using it at the "recommended" resolution (1440x900 equivalent) - which looks amazing. It's not terrible, and it does have good colors, but if I run it at "1680x1050" or "1920x1200" "equivalent", I'm not nearly as wowed. I like having the additional resolution that the 1680x1050 equivalent resolutions afford when I'm working, which is why I don't really like the "recommended" resolution.
akdj - Sunday, May 5, 2013 - linkI run both of our rMBPs @ 1920x1200 all the time. Not sure why you're not 'wowed'. Doesn't matter which resolution you're running, it's pixel doubling and still allowing for pin sharp text and detail. At this resolution, it's actually doubling the density to 3840x2400. Every time I turn mine on, I'm 'wowed!' In 27 years of purchasing computers, I can honestly say its been a long time since a computer actually did 'wow' me. They've been basically just tools til these dropped. I'm a fan of HiDPI and am with the Anand crew. Hopefully this year is the year that Windows OEMs will follow suit. After using 'retina' capable devices....regardless these days of the actual manufacturer (as others have now entered the same segment in tablet and phone production)...it's rough going back to a regular, lower resolution TN panel.
Certainly not arguing here that windows isn't best run in a windows machine though;).
HisDivineOrder - Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - link"Yes, you can get similar and even slightly better performance from ASUS' own G55VW for $1156 (don't forget to add an SSD!), but I'm not sure anyone would argue the G55VW looks better than the UX51VZ."
Eh, I dispute this. So you have someone who argues the point. I guess I think the (silver) "metal" laptop is all played out. Macbook's been doing it a while and it was chic like thin used to be, but now it's just getting stupid and costing a lot more than it should to look... like a Macbook from years ago. Yes, even Macbooks look mostly like Macbooks from years ago.
I think we deserve better now. We deserve sleek, black laptops again. Screw silver or gray laptops. Black is the new silver metal.
JarredWalton - Wednesday, May 1, 2013 - linkBut would you rather have a thick, massive wedge instead of a thin chassis? Color could be changed if there was demand, but the black "stealth wedge" is hardly attractive. But, I figured someone would disagree, if only to play devil's advocate. It's the Internet after all.