ZenBook Pro Duo Review by Engadget

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ASUS already paved the way for dual-screen laptops with last year’s ScreenPad on the ZenBook Pro, but now it’s taking the concept to another level with the ZenBook Pro Duo. It’s a powerful 15-inch workstation with a huge secondary display that spans the entire width of the machine. ASUS calls this the ScreenPad Plus.

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To fit the ScreenPad Plus, ASUS also had to move the keyboard to the bottom of the laptop, similar to its Zephyrus gaming laptops. The trackpad is down there as well on the right side. It takes some getting used to, but at least it gives you plenty of room for swiping around, unlike HP’s Omen X 2S. The full-sized keyboard feels great to type on, with large key sizes and a generous 1.4mm of travel. It’s not so great ergonomically, since it’s at the very tip of the laptop, but you can always snap on the included wrist rest for a more comfortable typing position.

The only major downside with the ZenBook Pro Duo is that it’s pretty hefty. It weighs 5.5 pounds and measures almost an inch thick. That’s a full pound heavier and almost twice as thick as the XPS 15. Dell’s notebook doesn’t have a second screen, of course, and it’s limited to slower NVIDIA GTX 1650 graphics. But it would certainly be easier to lug around than the ZenBook, and the XPS also has Intel’s 9th-gen CPUs. Apple’s 15-inch MacBook Pro is also significantly lighter and sleeker at 4 pounds — but you’ll be limited to Radeon Pro graphics and don’t have the option of OLED.

The ZenBook Pro Duo starts at $2,499, $100 more than the base model MacBook Pro 15-inch and a similarly equipped XPS 15 with an OLED screen. Our review model is the most powerful configuration from ASUS, which goes for $2,999.

 

Pros

  • Gorgeous OLED screen
  • ScreenPad Plus works well for multitasking
  • Powerful hardware
  • Excellent keyboard 

Cons

  • ScreenPad Plus could be taller
  • Heavier and thicker than the competition
  • So-so battery life with both screens

Summary

The ZenBook Pro Duo makes it clear that secondary screens could be tremendously useful in laptops. It’s not for everyone, but if you’re a productivity hound used to working across multiple displays on desktops, the Pro Duo could be the laptop that satisfies you. And as a bonus, it can even play a few games.

Source: Engadget

 

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