Although most Ultrabooks have focused on the 11 and 13-inch form factors, today ASUS is announcing its first 15-inch Ultrabook. The Zenbook U500VZ measures 19.7mm at its thickest point. The display is the big attraction, and ASUS doesn't appear to disappoint with its 1080p 15-inch IPS panel. The larger size of the machine allows ASUS to incorporate a separate numeric keypad. The entire keyboard is backlit of course.

Since the design isn't ultra thin it loses the Prime suffix and is simply a Zenbook, despite having the upgraded display and new keyboard from the Zenbook Prime. 

Under the hood ASUS is building in a quad-core Ivy Bridge Core i7 CPU and optional NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M. Storage options are pretty flexible thanks to the system's two 2.5" drive bays. You can get two SSDs for up to 512GB of storage, or ASUS also offers a 128GB SSD + 500GB HDD option if you want speed, capacity and value. 

There are a lot of specs missing from the release but we'll add more as we get them.

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  • Thorburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    If it's got a quad-core i7 then it doesn't meet the Ultrabook requirements surely?
  • Chaitanya - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    even HDD as an option, highly doubt its an ultrabook but it certainly will be the most portable 15incher.
  • p_giguere1 - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    No, it's considerably thicker than the 15-inch Samsung Series 9 (12.7 mm), although I wouldn't consider them to fit the same category.

    Considering it has a quad-core 35W TDP i7 and discrete graphics, it would be more fair to compare it with the MacBook Pro with Retina Display, which is also thinner (18 mm).
  • Flunk - Thursday, August 30, 2012 - link

    That discrete graphics is where a lot of us want to be 650M with GDDR5? Sign me up please.
  • Death666Angel - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Not sure why you care about the naming scheme of Intels marketing department. It is small, powerful and has a potentially great display. Whether or not they can name it Ultrabook as per Intel is rather irrelevant to a purchase decision I would think.
  • Flunk - Thursday, August 30, 2012 - link

    The requirement is actually that it be an Intel processor i3 or greater. Intel doesn't want companies that choose to give them much more money to be left out.
  • Pneumothorax - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Love the 2x2.5" drive bays and IPS screen. This is what many have been clamoring for for a long time! I just hope they use a synaptics pad instead of elantech AND the 650M configurations have Optimus enabled.
  • nerd1 - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    I think the article is wrong. as it is utter silly to have TWO 2.5" bays.
    I bet it has one mSATA and one 2.5" bay.
  • pixelstuff - Thursday, August 30, 2012 - link

    There's nothing silly about having two 2.5" drive bays. It is silly to think otherwise.
  • Roland00Address - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Yes the screen is not 1800p, but 1080p is still pretty nice.

    That or you can compare it to the sony s 15 inch models which also have i7s and ips. Now the sony s 15 inch have optical drives which asus traded for a second drive bay, but the sony s do not have ssd or hybrid drives. That and they are .2 inches thicker.

    Can you please update the article with the starting price when it becomes available.

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