Asus has been at the forefront of cutting-edge tech in the personal computing space for a while now. They have experimented with multiple designs, displays tech and materials. The brand is now set out to bring cutting edge display tech for the masses.
This starts with the ZenBook 13 OLED, you might get a hint from the naming scheme for this model. This is not your average ZenBook 13 but instead is an upgraded model with an OLED display coming in at a price point that is still out of many customers but certainly brings down the cost compared to legacy models.
This new ZenBook 13 OLED comes in a thin and light form factor, with the latest generation of AMD processors and a gorgeous 13-inch OLED display. We have had the Ryzen 7 5700U with the AMD Radeon graphics card variant with us for over two weeks now and here is what I think about the ZenBook 13 OLED. So, let’s dive into the review.
ASUS ZenBook 13 OLED UM325 Specification
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 5700U
- Graphics adapter: AMD Radeon Graphics
- Memory: 16GB, DDR4X
- Display: 13.3-inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixels, OLED, glossy panel
- Storage: 512GB NVMe M.2 PCIe 3.0 SSD
- Connections: 1 x USB 3.2 gen 1, 2 x USB 3.2 (Type C), HDMI 2.1, Micro SD card reader
- Networking: Wi-Fi 6 (802.11b/g/n/ac) (2×2), Bluetooth 5.0
- Battery: 67Wh Lithium-Polymer (4 cells)
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 64 Bit
- Camera: 720p 30fps, with Windows Hello support
- Additional features: Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard: 6-row chiclet, Keyboard Light: Yes
- Weight: 1.14 kg
A complete list of items you get inside the box:
- Asus ZenBook 13 OLED UM325
- Carry Sleeve
- Power Adapter
- USB-C to 3.5mm jack
- Warranty and User Guide
The Asus ZenBook lineup has been widely known for its thin and light form factor and with the new ZenBook 13 OLED, Asus has taken the approach to a whole new level. The laptop is extremely thin and weighs just 1.14Kgs. This has resulted in the removal of some common connectivity options like the 3.5mm audio jack.
With this model, Asus has ditched their magnesium alloy build in favour of a metal one. The ZenBook 13 feels like a well-built product and screams quality. The display lid is made out of the same alloy which makes it sturdy and light at the same time. As for the colours, the laptop is being sold in two shades.
There is no wobble in the display unit which tends to be a common issue on these ultraportable laptops. The brand has done an excellent job with the weight distribution and the lid can prop up using a single hand. We get the same Ergo-Lift function on the lid which elevates the base by some inches for the cooling to maximize.
In terms of connections, Asus has taken a modern approach which can be attributed to the ultraportable use. We get a full-size HDMI 1.4 slot on the left side, which is joined by two USB Type C 3.2 spec ports that support both Power Delivery and Display Port but is not Thunderbolt 4. While on the right side, we get a Type A 3.2 spec slot, along with a microSD card slot and notification LEDs.
You might’ve noticed that there is no 3.5mm audio jack here, considering the highlight factor is the display tech here which will be heavily utilized for content consumption and creation. The omission of a critical port is something we didn’t like. But on the bright side, you won’t need to invest in a Type-C to 3.5mm jack as a dongle is bundled in the package.
The Asus ZenBook 13 OLED UM325 comes with the Windows 10 Home out of the box. But this could vary based upon the SKU you choose. There are a couple of SKUs that do come with the Pro build of the OS as well.
This model is compatible with the next Windows 11 version and the OS will be upgradable for free. If you have used an Asus product in the past, you might be familiar with the app suite that comes bundled on these products. Particularly useful ones like the ‘Asus Battery Health Charging’ which takes care of the power and battery management, Smart Audio lets you configure the audio input settings, Splendid that takes care of the display profiles and Wi-Fi roaming optimization.
Keyboard & Touchpad
Since the ZenBook 13 OLED comes in a small form factor, Asus hasn’t skimped on the keyboard experience. Though the keyboard still holds the 6-row layout, some of the rows have been sized a bit differently. The keys are adequately placed with a decent travel distance between them for effective typing. The pressure point and resistance are well adjusted and typing on the keyboard is a breeze, once you get accustomed to this key layout.
The keyboard is backlit and level of brightness can be adjusted as well. The only thing missing here is a full-length num-pad, which has been cleverly implemented in the touchpad.
Moving to the touchpad, Asus has equipped the ZenBook 13 OLED with the num-pad style touchpad which can be found on the ZenBook models as well. Considering the size of the laptop, the touchpad is quite big and does have a premium feel. It supports multi-touch and comes with Windows Precision drivers. Since this is a num-pad style touchpad, the num keys can be activated by pressing a button placed on the top-right corner.
This is the highlighting part of the ZenBook 13 OLED. While Asus has only added an OLED panel on a handful of their laptops in the past. The brand is now in the works of bringing this display tech to lower price points as well. This transition starts with the UM325 model.
We get a 13.3-inch 16:9 Full HD display with a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels. The bezels on the sides are kept to a minimum, while the top one has some girth to it due to the addition of the IR camera for the Windows Hello suite.
OLEDs have a reputation for giving out rich and vibrant colours with inky blacks. This 13.3-inch panel carries the same reputation. The display gets fairly bright and has a peak brightness of 400 nits. This is a Pantone calibrated panel and supports 100% DCI-P3 colour gamut making it ideal for content creators.
Asus’s Splendid Display technology makes a return here, which helps you to tweak colours and other critical display settings. This can be used to fine-tune the colours even further but given the Pantone certification, we don’t really think a tuning would be required by most users.
The ZenBook 13 OLED comes in various SKUs and our unit has the AMD Ryzen 5 5700U, which is one of the latest upper-midrange chips from the brand. This is a new chip that demands less power but the throughput has been upped when compared to the earlier generations.
The model we used for this review contained 16GB LP-DDR4X RAM. Sadly, the RAM can’t be upgraded since it’s an on-chip type memory. So, if you’re one of those demanding users getting the decked-out version with 16GB RAM will be an ideal choice.
There are no options for GPUs here, instead, we get AMD Radeon graphics which comes bundled with the processor. There is no option of getting a dual-storage model here which is of no use anyways on a Pro-grade product. Our unit came with a 512GB NVMe M.2 PCIe SSD by WD. The max you can get is up to 1TB. The performance on the drive is quite good with average reads going all the way to 3,000Mb/s and write speeds in the excess of 1,500Mb/s.
There are a pair of 2W Harman Kardon speakers which are common on the ZenBook series. They get plenty loud but lack a punch and cannot be used for a serious movie session.
This is where the ZenBook 13 OLED excels. The laptop comes with a 67Wh 4-cell battery which is massive on a 13-inch model. In our tests the battery lasted for about 12 hours with all the networking peripherals turned on, with the laptop on Airplane mode, you get up to 16 hours.
There is basic fast charging enabled and using the supplied 65W adapter, you can charge about 50% of the battery in under 50 mins.
- Good Build quality
- Bright display
- Excellent battery life
- Limited connectivity options
- Average speakers
Verdict – Should you go for it?
For a sticker price of INR 1,02,990, the ZenBook 13 OLED UM325 SKU that we have is a bit of a stretch for most users. That being said, this laptop with its 13.3-inch OLED Pantone certified display is ideal for content creators.
The ZenBook 13 OLED UM325 is a decent product equipped with the latest AMD Ryzen 7 processor, excellent battery life, and provides a plethora of connectivity options. The only grip we had was with the average speaker and lack of a 3.5mm audio jack.
It is certainly aimed at a premium buyer and for people looking to get a laptop with good internals and especially a magnificent display could look at the base SKU as well which usually sell for INR 80,000 and carries the Ryzen 5 5500U.