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Asus ZenBook UX305 review

A most affordable and excellent Ultrabook keeps its streak

Asus Zenbook UX305
Editor's Choice
Asus Zenbook UX305

The ZenBook is an impeccably thin machine, measuring just 0.48 inches (12.3cm) thick with a 12.8 x 8.9-inch (32.5 x 22.6cm) footprint. The MacBook is by no means fat, with its 11 x 7.73 x 0.52-inch (28.05 x 19.65 x 1.31cm) dimensions, but Asus packs in more ports and a better keyboard in its tight packaging. While the UX305 wins out in thinness, it's 2.6-pound (1.18kg) frame is heavier than the 2.03-pound (0.92kg) MacBook.

The HP Spectre x2 has different dimensions, being built as a tablet first with a magnetic keyboard cover. As a tablet alone, it is 0.31 inches (0.79cm) thick and weighs 1.87 pounds. With the keyboard attached, the Windows 10 slate's thickness increases to 0.52 inches (1.32cm), while making a heavier, 2.68-pound (1.22kg) device.

Asus Zenbook UX305

Here is the Asus ZenBook UX305 configuration sent to techradar for review:

Spec sheet

  • CPU: 900MHz Intel Core M3-6Y30 (dual-core, 4MB cache, 2.2GHz with Turbo Boost)
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 515
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3L (1,866 MHz SDRAM)
  • Screen: 13.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 IPS display
  • Storage: 256GB SSD (M.2 2280)
  • Ports: 3 x USB 3.0, SD card reader, micro HDMI, headset jack
  • Connectivity: Integrated 802.11ac
  • Camera: 2MP HD webcam
  • Weight: 2.6 pounds (1.18kg)
  • Size: 12.8 x 8.9 x 0.48 inches (32.5 x 22.6 x 1.23cm; W x D x H)

Asus Zenbook UX305

The ZenBook comes well equipped with the configuration listed above, calling for $699 (£649). Everything comes stock, including the laptop's 1,920 x 1,080-pixel screen, generous 256GB solid-state drive (SSD) and 8GB of memory. Unfortunately, Australian folks will feel shorted, as the UX305 is available with only 128GB of SSD storage for AU$1,199.

Asus also has a higher-end model of the UX305 that comes with a 3K screen for $999 (about £696, AU$1,420). With a 3,200 x 1,800 resolution display, this WHD+ version of the UX305 is on par with Ultrabooks like the Lenovo Yoga 900 and Dell XPS 13. Aside from the sharp display, this top-end spec comes outfitted with an Intel Core m5 processor and a larger 512GB SSD.

Asus Zenbook UX305

The MacBook comes at a significantly heftier starting price of $1,299 (£1,049, $1,799). For the additional cost, you'll get a faster – but older – 1.1GHz Intel Core M-5Y70 CPU and a sharper, 2,304 x 1,440 display. Sadly, Apple's 12-inch ultraportable only comes with 256GB of storage.

The HP Spectre x2 presents a tantalizing – but still more expensive – deal, even if you chose the lower-tier $799 (£799) model. Like the UX305, this 12-inch tablet comes equipped with the same m3 processor and 1080p display, but it's limited to 4GB of RAM and a 128GB (256GB in the UK) SSD. The Spectre x2's starting configuration is different in that it comes with a 1.1GHz Intel Core m5-6Y54 Processor with 8GB of RAM and an 128GB SSD for AU$1,699.