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Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 assessment

I’ve a good concept on what’s going on in your thoughts after studying the headline. It’s not clickbait, because the Asus’ ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 does price as a lot as the bottom worth of a Maruti Alto 800 in India. Sure, it’s a legitimate query to ask why this laptop computer is priced at Rs 3,91,900. The attention-popping worth of the ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 could make anybody cease and take discover, but when I like to recommend this laptop computer to hardcore builders or skilled video editors, I’d get a competently totally different response. In any case, it’s a professional-grade workstation packing desktop-level efficiency in a laptop computer kind issue. However then, this top-billed machine additionally has a 14-inch secondary show which turns it right into a dual-screen laptop computer. Regardless of being a one-of-a-kind pocket book with probably the most distinctive design I’ve seen on a laptop computer, Asus appears decided to make this machine a ‘factor’ amongst skilled customers. So after utilizing Zephyrus Duo 16 for a number of days, right here is my assessment.

Why dual-screen laptops and what do they do otherwise?

For years, builders and animators have been utilizing two screens to enhance multitasking, giving them the distinctive skill to run two programmes and simply navigate a number of home windows on the similar time. This type of setup works however will not be transportable and thus restricted to house workplace use. A dual-screen laptop computer mimics what a twin monitor setup can do however the benefit right here is that you could truly carry the pocket book and work anyplace, opening infinite prospects as a inventive skilled.

I first used a dual-screen pocket book made by Asus (the corporate is a flag bearer of offbeat laptops within the business) years in the past. Though it was heavy and costly, I believed it was a real try to make dual-screen laptops helpful amongst a small set of customers whose focus is on productiveness. Regardless of the business not following Asus’ footsteps (Lenovo is one other producer making an attempt to transcend the normal laptop computer design) in making dual-screen notebooks mainstream, the Taiwanese firm hasn’t misplaced religion within the kind issue. The truth is, Asus goes aggressive with dual-screen notebooks. After a number of days with the ROG-branded Zephyrus Duo 16 (the machine was loaned by Asus India for assessment), it’s clear that Asus has corrected errors and listened to suggestions with this dual-screen laptop computer.

The Zephyrus Duo 16 has an understated design. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)
Heavier than your common laptop computer however nonetheless cell

I by no means anticipated the Zephyrus Duo 16 to be as modern and slim as my M1 MacBook Air. The explanation: skilled notebooks have an additional added weight (even the 16-inch MacBook Professional is on the heavier facet) because of the {hardware} parts that energy these units. All the things in regards to the Zephyrus Duo 16, from the way in which it appears to be like and feels, to the way it performs, is an admission that Asus by no means wished this pocket book to be the lightest computing machine on the planet. And I get that message loud and clear.

The Zephyrus Duo 16 nonetheless has an all-aluminum case, with the strong construct high quality. It’s heavy at 2.55 kg however simply slips into my trusty Samsonite backpack with none fuss. Decide up the Zephyrus Duo 16 and you’ll discover its all-black exterior with a dot matrix design and the ROG emblem. The branding is delicate and as soon as shut, it appears to be like like an everyday laptop computer. If you open it, it blows your thoughts in additional methods than one.

Simply take a look at the Zephyrus Duo 16 in motion. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)

On the right-hand facet, you’ll discover a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-C port, whereas on the left you’ll discover a 3.5mm combo mic/headphone socket, SD card reader, one other USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-C port, USB Gen 2 Sort-A port and first energy socket. Across the again, you’ll discover three ports: a second USB Gen 2 Sort-A port, HDMI 2.1 out and a gigabit-capable Ethernet port.

My assessment unit got here in a giant field that additionally included a backpack, a mouse and a gaming headset. Thoughts you, the facility brick together with the wire provides an additional lump to an already heavy laptop computer.

The secondary display screen

The explanation I used to be so excited in regards to the Zephyrus Duo 16 was its secondary display screen. It’s not a gimmick as many thought it will be. On earlier variations of Asus’ dual-screen notebooks, I felt the secondary show was dim and the software program implementation left so much to be desired. On the Zephyrus Duo 16, nevertheless, Asus has made a lot of adjustments. First up, the “ScreenPad+” show measures at 14-inches with a 3840×1110 pixel decision (4K). That additional touch-capable show appears to be like sharp and vivid, which is a outstanding enchancment.

With the Duo 16, I did precisely the identical issues I’d usually do with an exterior monitor setup. Having a dual-screen laptop computer means I might open Zoom on the secondary show and nonetheless have the ability to edit a duplicate on the primary display screen. I additionally really feel that the secondary display screen is healthier for duties, for example accessing apps like Spotify, chatting with a colleague on WhatsApp or looking at Twitter.

You may simply drag something you need down there as if in case you have the second monitor hooked up to your laptop. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)

Really, the secondary display screen turns into an extension of the primary show (extra on that later) when used for sure graphic programmes or suitable video games that reap the benefits of the ScreenPad+. By the way in which, the secondary display screen will also be used to jot down notes or signal a doc with the lively pen. I may also see a barely improved Management Panel app with a customisable dial, a slider and button decks for Adobe Create Cloud.

Asus has used a brand new hinge design on this mannequin that tilts the secondary show as much as 13 levels if you raise the lid. This not solely provides you a greater viewing angle but additionally will increase the airflow. However its secondary show takes up lots of keyboard house.

Keyboard and touchpad

The keyboard is massive and responsive however is positioned off-center on the left fringe of the machine. I discovered the keyboard snug for typing however might not use it for writing lengthy critiques and have articles. To its proper is a touchpad, which is a tad smaller than average-sized touchpads on laptops although it does the job. It has illuminated numerals and turns into a numeric keypad which is beneficial. I can’t think about an individual shopping for this pocket book would additionally desire a high-quality mouse.

The just like the styling of this pocket book. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)
The principle display screen

The Zephyrus Duo 16 contains a 16-inch touchscreen show with a decision of 2560 x 1600 and a 16:10 facet ratio. The show makes use of a mini-LED (the identical show tech that Apple makes use of in its high-end MacBook Execs and iPad Professional) backlighting. Mini LED allows native dimming of hundreds of dimming zones, and whereas it’s nonetheless an LCD display screen, you get deeper blacks and higher distinction than what you may see in an OLED display screen however with higher brightness and no burn-in. And sure, it hits a peak brightness of 1,100 nits and covers 100 per cent P3 color house. It’s additionally DisplayHDR 1000 licensed.

The colors within the pictures and movies I seen appeared vibrant. Watching Valentino’s fall 2022 assortment on YouTube was particularly spectacular, as the whole lot pops. The high-resolution display screen on this machine appears to be like pretty when enjoying video games and the 165Hz panel delivers nice visuals when enjoying Fortnite.

The mini-LED show is sharp and presents deeper blacks. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)

The 16-inch show appears to be like larger, thanks partially to its tremendous skinny left and proper bezels. Alongside the highest of the show is a 720p infrared digital camera that works with Home windows Good day to make use of facial recognition for duties reminiscent of signing in to your Home windows account or logging into apps. Nevertheless it’s a median webcam.

One other characteristic that impressed me in regards to the Zephyrus Duo 16 was its audio system. The sound from the six-speaker setup sounds wonderful for laptop computer audio system, with some enhancements to the bass.

Efficiency is suitable however the machine will get heat

A brand new Duo 16 can price otherwise (it begins from Rs 249,990)- all of it relies on the configuration. My assessment unit got here with AMD’s Ryzen 9 6900HX Cell processor with 8-cores and 16-threads, an Nvidia GeForce RT3070 Ti laptop computer GPU with 16GB of GDDR6 of reminiscence, a 2TB NVMe SSD for storage and 32GB of DDR5 reminiscence.  If you’re a inventive skilled who pushes your laptop to the boundaries, the extent of efficiency you’ll get from this machine is unmatched.

Leaping between screens is fluid. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)

The reality is, being a median person I barely taped into the pc’s potential. My common workload largely consists of writing and importing copies in CMS, modifying copies, speaking over WhatsApp and electronic mail, modifying photos and movies, searching the net, and working a number of Chrome tabs on the similar time. I by no means skilled a second of a lag on the Duo 16. The machine ought to have the ability to deal with duties like modifying 4K movies, enjoying AAA titles, streaming of movies, and the encoding, compression and decompression of enormous recordsdata that are one thing frequent for avid gamers and content material creators. Sure, the machine will get sizzling after in depth use however I used to be anticipating this from a machine like this which has a outstanding powerhouse GPU and processor.

The battery life is poor

Maybe what disillusioned me probably the most is the battery life on this machine. With a creator-focused laptop computer like this, you anticipate the battery life to be underneath 5 hours, and that’s with each pocket book I’ve examined through the years. However with the Duo 16 (and this one has an AMD processor over an Intel one), I used to be anticipating the battery life to vastly enhance. After decreasing each screens’ brightness to 50 per cent, the Duo 16 managed to get the final 2 hours 53 minutes earlier than it ran out of energy. For individuals who need an prolonged battery life from a professional-grade pocket book, weaker battery life is the worst factor in regards to the laptop computer.

The hinge helps pull sizzling air out of the laptop computer. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Categorical)
The twin-screen laptop computer remains to be removed from getting mainstream standing, and the Zephyrus Duo 16 proves why

I’m not disillusioned by the Duo 16 or what Asus is attempting to do with the idea of dual-screen laptops. The adjustments that the Duo 16 comes with reminiscent of a brighter ScreenPad Plus, mini-LED fundamental show and power-packed efficiency are welcome. However the pocket book falls brief if you add the context of the Rs 4 lakh price ticket, not-so-impressive battery life, and the cumbersome kind issue. As a reviewer and somebody who enjoys know-how, I’m nonetheless excited by the prospects of a dual-screen pocket book. Simply make it a bit lighter in each sense.

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