ASUS ZenBook S 13 OLED Laptop Review: A Svelte Beauty


ASUS Zenbook S 13 OLED: Battery Life, Thermals, Acoustics, and Our Verdict

asus zenbook s 13 oled top-down view
Battery Life and Power Tests

Here we're running PCMark's Battery test that loads a 1080p video playback workload in a continuous loop, with the Windows 11 Movies and TV player, until the battery is exhausted. In all tests, Windows Quiet Hours / Focus Assist has been enabled and the displays are calibrated with lux meters on pure white screens to as close to 115 lux as possible. Wi-Fi is left enabled, which we feel is a common use case. However, enabling airplane mode in a travel use case, for example, would provide additional battery life over the results we'll show you here.

pcmark video test

Unsurprisingly, what this laptop lacks in gaming performance, it makes up for in battery life. The ASUS Zenbook S 13 achieved a battery life of an impressive 695 (over 10.5 hours) minutes in the test, which was only beaten by the likes of the XPS 13 8315 and ASUS TUF Gaming A15. It's safe to say, if you’re looking for an ultrabook with a great battery life and a killer display, this may be it.

ASUS Zenbook S 13 OLED Thermal And Acoustic Performance

Our thermal and acoustic tests involved running 3DMark's built-in stress test on the ASUS ZenBook S 13 OLED until its fans fully spun up and its thermal solution was saturated. We also set the machine to both its Optimized and Ultra Performance modes, the latter of which is essentially a worst-case scenario in terms of the system's peak noise output.

When it comes to the acoustic performance, the laptop did not get loud under continuous workload. We measured a sound pressure of 43.9db, which, to be fair, is relatively quiet, but it's not inaudible either. We did find, however, that it didn't take much to get the Zenbook S 13 OLED's fans to spin up. Anecdotally, the fan did produced some high-pitched frequencies that were a little distracting, under heavier workloads.

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In terms of the laptops temperatures, the ZenBook S 13 OLED hit a relatively hot 120.2 degrees near its hinge area. The keyboard remained quite a bit cooler, but the bottom of the laptop got a little warm, such that in warmer weather or rooms it could be a little too toasty on your lap but it's not overly warm.

ASUS Zenbook S 13 OLED: Our Review Verdict

The ASUS ZenBook S 13 OLED is an very compelling premium laptop option in the market today, but it's important to take it for what it is. The thinness and portability of this machine comes with some small trade-offs in performance. Slightly thicker and heavier options, like the Lenovo Yoga 9i (just over 3 lbs versus 2.2 for this machine), can deliver a higher level of performance overall but not earth-shatteringly so.

But for many, that's a worthwhile trade-off, especially when ASUS is able to sweeten the pot with things like a great-looking OLED display and a beautifully-clean design. For this weight-class, the ASUS Zenbook S 13 OLED does indeed deliver enough performance for the majority of productivity tasks in 2023. And while those with demanding graphics needs should looks to something more powerful, anyone who wants a machine that's as thin and light as possible but still highly capable, should consider the ZenBook S 13 OLED. For $1400, as tested here in our 32GB of RAM config, it's a really nice machine.
HotHardware.com Recommended Award - ASUS Zenbook S 13 OLED


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