Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition: Two-minute review
The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition is made for a very specific group of people and will not only meet their expectations; it obviously blows right past them – and looks fantastic while you do it.
Whether it’s the quality of the bright and vibrant OLED display or the incredible performance of the Intel Alder Lake processor, the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition is the best Ultrabook we’ve had our hands on so far this year. And given the hardware it packs under the hood, it’s almost certainly going to compete for the top spot, even as more of this year’s Ultrabooks roll out from competing laptop makers.
Of course anyone can combine an Alder Lake Core i9 with an OLED display in their Ultrabook and probably get similar performance. But what sets the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition apart from the rest is that last bit in its name. Designed to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Asus sending its laptops into space in 1997, the Space Edition is packed with all sorts of unnecessary but awesome details that won’t mean much to the uninitiated; but if you know the meaning of the latin term Advertisement Astrathen this is your laptop.
Unfortunately, the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition’s attempt at true greatness is cut short far too quickly by its subpar battery life, which burns out faster than even many of the newer gaming laptops we’ve seen in the past year. For an Ultrabook of this price, we really expected the battery to last much longer.
And while it certainly makes writing a review easier, the lack of configuration options is also something that disappoints. Whether the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition needs something as powerful as a Core i9 Alder Lake processor is debatable – a slightly less powerful processor might have been a good trade-off for longer battery life. Alder Lake chips absorb energy like a supermassive black hole, so some moderation might have helped here.
But what exactly is moderation when shooting on the moon? The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition does just that, and despite its shortcomings, it still finds itself among the stars. Just don’t forget to bring a charger.
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition: Price and Availability
- How much is it? Price in $1,999 / £1,599 / about AU$2,799
- When is it out? It’s available now
- Where can you get it? It is available in the US and UK, with Australian availability.
The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition is available now for $1,999/£1,599/around AU$2,799, and is available in the US and UK. We’ve reached out to Asus regarding availability and pricing in Australia and will update this review as soon as we hear from the company.
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition: Design
- Lots of space-y details
- Nice finish
- Good number of ports
As impressive as the performance and features of the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition are, it’s the design that really sells the laptop.
In 1997, Asus sent several units of its first laptop, the P6300, to Russia’s Mir space station, where cosmonauts used the devices for an extended 600-day mission in space. According to Asus, the laptops were a hit with the crew (take that with a grain of salt, of course). The ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition commemorates that original mission to the Mir, with some design cues and Easter eggs for us space geeks.
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition key specs
Here is the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition configuration sent to Ditching for review:
PROCESSOR: Intel Core i9-12900H
Graphic: Intel Iris Xe
RAM: 32GB DDR5-4800
Screen: 14-inch, 16:10 (2880x1800p) @ 90Hz OLED touchscreen, 550-nit peak brightness, 100% DCI-P3 color
Storage: 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD
Ports: 2 x Thunderbolt 4, 1 x USB Type-A 3.2 Gen 2, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x microSD, 1 x 3.5mm combo jack
Connectivity: Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.2
Camera: HD (720p) webcam, software privacy switch
Weight: 3.09lbs | 1,40kg
Dimensions (W x D x H): 12.24 x 8.7 x 0.62 inches † 311 x 221 x 15.9mm
The first of these are the laser etchings on the aluminum lid, which depict the shape and contours of a space station capsule. This motif is only enhanced by the 3.5-inch ZenVision OLED display that feels like it could be a space station window.
There are also subtle hints of Morse code on the lid, with one of these lines typing out the Morse code for: ad astra per asperawhich is an old Latin proverb meaning ‘through hardship to the stars’.
Open the lid and you’ll find more etchings, with two lines framing the trackpad, which should evoke the look of a cockpit. Farther to the edges, you’ll find a wider series of lines representing the Mir’s trajectory, itself represented by a simple stylized drawing of the station to the left of the trackpad.
The space bar is marked with a red-orange accent color (which you’ll also find on the power button), as well as an icon of something orbiting Earth — at least that’s this reviewer’s interpretation, but it could be Saturn. to be . Space is a mystery.
The keyboard’s backlit keys are pleasant enough to type on and the trackpad is responsive, especially thanks to the 0.2ms pixel response of the OLED display. The trackpad can also double as a numeric keypad if you need one.
The OLED screen tilts the corner of the keyboard upwards when fully open, making typing a much more ergonomic experience than many other laptops. Given the laptop’s thinness, we’re pleased to see that Asus was able to squeeze in a host of ports, including two USB Type-C Thunderbolt 4 ports and one HDMI 2.0 port to support multiple external monitors. .
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition: Features
- ZenDisplay is a nice feature
- OLED screen as gorgeous as ever
There are several features worth mentioning about the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition. First up, there’s the Asus ZenVision 3.5-inch OLED display on the lid of the laptop. This can display the time, battery life, and other messages, as well as QR codes, custom messages, and various associated animations. We would have liked to see more variety in the animations, but there are enough to make sure everyone finds one they like.
Speaking of OLED displays, the primary panel is bright and vibrant, with up to 550 nits of peak brightness, a contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1 and DisplayHDR 500 True Black with a black brightness of just 0.0005 nits. The resolution of 2800 x 1800p is razor sharp and the color range of the OLED is excellent. It should be: it is Pantone validated and covers 100% of the DCI-P3 color gamut.
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition: Performance
- Phenomenal performance
- No discrete GPU
The performance of the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition is among the best we’ve seen all year, thanks in no small part to its Intel Core i9-12900H processor, 32GB LPDDR5 RAM and 1TB M.2 PCIe SSD.
We’re just starting to get our hands on laptops with the latest 12th Gen Intel Core processors, so there aren’t many laptops we can reasonably compare the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition to right now. Comparing performance to last year’s best laptops feels like an even bigger mismatch than usual. Intel Alder Lake is really that good.
Here’s how the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition performed in our series of benchmark tests:
3DMark: Night Raid: 19.077† Fire Attack: 5.374† Time spy: 2003
Cinebench R23 (Single core): 1,719† Multi core: 11,508
Geek Bench 5: 1,819 (single wire); 11.452 (multicore)
PCMark 10 (Home Test): 5.913 points
Battery Life PCMark 10: 4 hours and 41 minutes
Battery Life (USA Health Reports Movie Test): 4 hours
In our 2021 Asus ZenBook 13 review, we found that model offered some of the best performance of anything we’d seen in the Ultrabook market that year, and it’s held its place in our list of the best laptops ever since.
The ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition absolutely destroys the ZenBook 13’s scores, reaching 11,508 in Cinebench R23’s multicore benchmark compared to the ZenBook 13’s 7,773. Admittedly, the ZenBook 13 had an AMD Ryzen 7 mobile processor, so it wouldn’t really have much against an Alder Lake i9; but that’s still a huge leap.
Looking at the Lenovo ThinkPad Xi Carbon, which had a last-generation i7-1165G7, it also doesn’t score nearly as well, clocking in at 5,389 in Cinebench R23 multi-core. Intel’s Iris Xe graphics have also seen a marked improvement with the new Alder Lake chips, as the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition scored 19,077 points in 3DMark Night Raid compared to the X1 Carbon’s 15,633.
All of this is to be expected, really, as the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition uses an i9-12900H – but all that performance seems to come at quite a cost.
Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition: Battery Life
And now we come to the area where the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition almost broke our hearts. You can expect modern Ultrabooks to easily get through a full eight-hour workday these days, especially with Intel Evo certification requiring a minimum of nine hours of battery life. It will be very interesting to see how Intel Alder Lake shakes up that expectation, as it clearly uses a lot more power than its predecessor – and it looks like it will definitely improve the battery life of the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition. .
In our PCMark 10 battery test, the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition lasted an average of four hours and 41 minutes, while in our FHD movie test it lasted just four hours on average. You could blame the OLED screen, but you’d be wrong – the ZenBook 13 has an OLED screen that’s only slightly smaller than this, and it lasted more than twice as long.
As we see more 12th-gen Intel Core-powered laptops this year, we’ll be better able to determine where this poor battery life is coming from. I don’t think the ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition will be an outlier in this regard; we also saw something similar in our Razer Blade 15 (2022) review. Unfortunately, this is likely to become the new normal for Alder Lake laptops.
Should you buy an Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition?
So, what about then? Should you buy an Asus ZenBook 14X OLED Space Edition? It certainly won’t be for everyone, but for those it’s made for, you’ll definitely want to grab this one.