For you who love space! ASUS’s ultra-high performance 14-inch notebook PC “Zenbook 14X Space Edition” review

On August 4, 2022, ASUS JAPAN announced 12 models in 5 series as new models of the notebook computer “Zenbook”. It will be released sequentially from August 4th. This time, I would like to review the 14-inch high-performance model “Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition UX5401ZAS”.
“Space Edition” commemorating the 25th anniversary of the “P6300” going into space
In 1997, ASUS’s first notebook computer “P6300” was released, and in 1998, it was brought to the mission of the Mir space station. The P6300 demonstrated excellent performance and stability in space, and reportedly continued to operate without problems for 600 days. The Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition UX5401ZAS featured this time was born to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the P6300’s departure to space.
The aluminum alloy body with a titanium color finish is sprinkled with Morse code here and there, inspired by the Mir space station. One of the Morse code lines is inscribed with the Latin “ad astra per aspera”, meaning “over tribulation to the stars”. If you can read Morse code, I encourage you to try deciphering other codes. In addition, the top plate and palm rest are drawn with an arc that imitates a space capsule.
The top board is equipped with a 3.5-inch “ZenVision display”. It’s a sub-display inspired by spacecraft data sheets. The time, date, messages, various statuses, etc. can be displayed in monochrome display. You can also view the original text. The display contents can be customized from the management application “MyASUS”.
The package is also space specification. The cosmetic box is printed with metallic glitter, and the leaflets and sticker stickers are also designed with a space motif. The box containing the AC adapter can also be used as a laptop stand.
The display quality is the highest class for a mobile notebook! 2.8K 14-inch organic EL display
The 14-inch display to be installed is an organic EL panel that ASUS is actively adopting for notebook computers, and the resolution is 2880 x 1800 2.8K. It is a high-spec display with a contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1, a maximum brightness of 550 nits, and a response speed of 0.2ms. A mechanism to prevent burn-in of organic EL is also firmly included.

The color gamut covers 100% of DCI-P3 and also supports playback of HDR content. We are particular about VESA DisplayHDR True Black 600 certification, PANTONE certification and color accuracy.

I actually tried to display photos and videos, but depending on the content, the screen is so bright that it feels dazzling, and the contrast is outstanding. The YouTube videos that I always watch are completely different when viewed with this model. It is the highest class display quality for a 14-inch mobile notebook display.

14-inch slim body with “Core i9-12900H”
Next, let’s check the specs. The CPU is equipped with the 12th generation Core i9-12900H. It is a high-end CPU among H processors for laptops that require high processing performance, such as gaming laptops and laptops for creators. The number of cores/threads is as high as 14 cores and 20 threads, and the maximum frequency when using turbo boost reaches 5.0 GHz (Performance-core).

It is also amazing that the 12th generation Core i9-12900H with a TDP (thermal design power) of 45W is housed in a body with a thickness of 17.6mm. A cooling system called “IceCool Thermal Technology” makes it possible to install a high-performance CPU. In addition, the motherboard is equipped with smart sensors that detect the temperature of various components in real time and accurately calculate the required power consumption to ensure the highest power efficiency.

The memory is 32GB of LPDDR5-4800 (onboard memory). The storage is 1TB SSD (PCI Express 4.0 x4 connection).

Its performance also recorded high scores in various benchmarks. As a 14-inch laptop, it boasts top-class performance. Since it does not have an external GPU (dGPU), it is not suitable for video editing that uses the power of PC games or dGPU, but for other purposes,
Easy to use, such as a web camera with a built-in electronic shield
Finally, let’s check the usability aspect.

The keyboard is an isolation type with a pitch of 19.05mm. The keystroke is 1.35mm, which is deeper than it looks and has a moderate keystroke feeling. The center of the key is recessed and the finger fits well. The Home, PgUp, PgDn, and End keys are lined up to the right of the Enter key, but other than that, it’s an easy-to-use keyboard with no peculiarities.
The touchpad incorporates a familiar numeric keypad called “NumberPad” on the company’s laptops. Press the upper right corner of the touchpad to turn it on and off, and press the upper left corner to adjust the brightness. It can be said that it is a nice function for users who often enter numbers. When actually using it, the cursor can be moved even with NumberPad enabled, but since numbers are also entered, for example, the playback part on YouTube will move. Please be aware that some apps may malfunction.

The webcam has a built-in privacy electronic shield. It is a mechanism to protect PCs and users from troubles that abuse web cameras. When you press F10, the webcam turns orange with a small popping sound, and the webcam becomes unusable. A mute key is assigned to the F11 key, which seems to prevent forgetting to turn off the microphone during a video conference.
In terms of sound, in addition to being certified by Harman/Kardon, it is equipped with two speakers that support stereophonic technology “Dolby Atmos”. You can enjoy immersive sound quality with compatible content. The microphone is equipped with an AI noise canceling function, so you can participate in video conferences with clear sound.

External interfaces include Thunderbolt 4 (USB Type-C) x 2, USB 3.2 (Type-A/Gen2), microSD memory card slot, microphone input/headphone output, and HDMI output. Thunderbolt 4 supports data transfer, video output, and power supply, and the AC adapter is also USB Type-C.

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