MBA contender

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Lunchb0x8, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 2, 2010
    Location:
    East Maitland, NSW, AU
    #1
    I know, everyone always posts about some laptop that they think is a contender for the title of portable machines etc...

    I think I have found a windows based machine that fits into the category for MBA contender as far as light, small and portable goes.

    http://www.asus.com/Notebooks/Superior_Mobility/ASUS_ZENBOOK_UX21E/

    Just picked up the i5 version for a work PC, is so far a fast, powerful and comfortable to use machine.

    Is also very pretty!

    Is not quite the same as the MBA, but s very close in design and function.
     
  2. macrumors member

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    Sep 17, 2011
  3. entatlrg, Nov 20, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2011

    macrumors 68040

    entatlrg

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    #3
    Screen sucks, trackpad sucks end of story.

    There's reviews out there confirming that too.
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Matthew9559

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #4
    What's your experience with the trackpad? I have read in several reviews that it is not just awful but one of the worst trackpads to ever grace a laptop. Is it really that bad from your experience? Other than that it looks like a great MBA competitor.

    I have been eagerly reading every ultra book review and so far I like the Lenovo u300s the most from the reviews. The design of the laptop is beautiful.

    Only two things are missing from the current line of ultrabooks..
    -backlight keyboards
    -better screens/resolutions

    Plus the price, isn't Windows supposed to be cheaper? ;) Right now all of these ultrabooks are on par with MBA pricing.
     
  5. macrumors 68040

    Apple OC

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2010
    Location:
    Hogtown
    #5
    Asus ... a contender to a Macbook Air? ... seriously? ... maybe an Acer contender :apple:
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Land of eternal Spring
    #6
    they are cheaper, not by much, and in some cases not enough to go with one over the similar MBA, the SSD's on the samsung are SATA3 so 500MB/s and not 200 or so in the MBAs tho.

    part of why they're cheaper is probably the displays, they all kind of suck :S, 3 of the 5 ultrabooks have backlight keyboards.

    screens quality and resolution on most is indeed lacking a bit, i'd add better trackpads to that list.
     
  7. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2011
    #7
    I have also read the keyboard on the other Zenbook isn't very good.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
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    East Maitland, NSW, AU
    #8
    Was $1399 AUD, the trackpad, whilst not quite as good as my MBP, is pretty decent.

    And 1366*768 is terrible resolution for an 11.6" given it is the same as the 11.6 Air, I think you might be a bit wrong there.

    The screen is beautiful IMHO, the keyboard is a little soft, but responsive enough.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    #9
    I haven't been impressed with any of the so called Ultrabooks so far, but they do show a great deal of promise. At the moment, they look like rather poor Air wannabes.
     
  10. johnhurley, Nov 21, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2011

    macrumors 6502a

    johnhurley

    Joined:
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    #10
     
  11. macrumors 6502

    SDColorado

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    Highlands Ranch, CO
    #11
    I have seen negative reviews on the keyboard, as well as poor battery life. Also the fan is reported to be loud and almost constantly on. While it is certainly another entry into the market place, I am not sure it would be considered a legitimate "contender."
     
  12. macrumors regular

    nebrot

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2011
    Location:
    北京 (Beijing)
    #12
    Amazing, how is such a copy possible? Honestly look at it, it's like a direct copy. Keyboard, location of power button, the "F" button sizes, hinge, ports.... Is that possible since Intel was involved in the Air or why? Probably a nice machine with Win 7, but I definitely go with the original...
     
  13. macrumors regular

    ecib

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2011
    #13
    This.

    If you've got a poor screen, and a terrible interface via trackpad, the whole machine is just a total non-starter.

    As a former Windows box user, I can say with absolute certainty that I will never even consider another non-Mac until somebody figures out how to nail the completely effortless multi-touch trackpad interface like Apple has. It's the first laptop I've owned where I don't have to haul around a USB mouse to comfortably interact with it.

    It doesn't get more fundamental than the user input and screen. If those are poor, then it's just not worth it unless the machine is faaaaaar cheaper, -but then you've probably got a whole other set of issues with it...
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    #14
    Finally we can compare "apples to apples" with these windows ultrabooks.

    Notice how the price is in the same ballpark now? There are cheaper ultra books (check out the toshiba one for $800), but they come with less hardware (core i3, for example).

    Mac's still win though, imho. Why? Because they have a Hardware / Software holistic design to them. They design one with the other in mind... "one team".

    So the cheeky reply/question to these types of threads of: "ya but does it run Mac OS X?" is pretty valid. =)
     
  15. macrumors 68030

    NutsNGum

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #15
    From a design point of view it's also a bit of a calamity.

    The radial gradient of the outer shell and the matte-ish linear finish inside clash horribly. It looks like it was put together by someone who's spent 10 minutes fannying around in Adobe Illustrator.

    "this design also looks totally unique" -- You are fooling no-one, Asus.
     
  16. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #16
    I used it in person at BestBuy, the Screen KILLS the Airs IMO. Better resolution and colors look better. Also the trackpad was fixed in an update. They have a faster SSD also. If most of my software was not already purchased for Mac at this point, and BestBuy didn't have $200 off the 13in Air I'd probably have switched back to Win7.
     
  17. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    #17
    I've purchased exactly one Asus product. It was a 16" notebook about 1.5 years ago. The unit was defective (couldn't charge a battery), and they made me pay to ship it back to them. Whole thing took 6 weeks, several hours on the phone, and shipping out of the country and back.

    Also, the trackpad was awful, and the keypad missed keystrokes if you typed > 40 wpm.

    (Fortunately?) it died after 13 months.

    I know, sample size of one and all that. Still, I'm never giving that company my money again.
     
  18. macrumors 603

    blueroom

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  19. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2011
    #19
    This is exactly what I was going to say.

    I love how they show graphics on that page that look OSX'y and notice they never show windows on the screen at any point in time
     
  20. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #20
    That's common because then the company has to pay royalties back to Windows for the use of their product in advertising.
     
  21. macrumors 6502a

    johnhurley

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2011
    #21
    After doing some double checking yes the Asus was the one I liked at BestBuy.

    The screen is sharp and the higher resolution 1600 x 900 will make it a top pick in the ( admittedly limited ) ultra book marketplace.

    Seriously if you are Acer or HP or Samsung and you knew already Asus was going to do 1600 x 900 why would you put something out below that and also below the macbook air?

    Early reviews on amazon do complain about trackpad and network connection but ( apparently ) windows driver updates have fixed ( many? all? ) problems there.

    Yes some people complaining about the keyboard.

    It looks like some competition is finally entering this area which should be good for all consumers no matter which machine people ultimately decide on!
     
  22. macrumors 68030

    NutsNGum

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #22
    All these threads about "MacBook Air Killer" and "MBA Contender" -- The reality is that they aren't either of these things. OSX is the primary reason that I own it, and it's not available on any of the so-called "competitor" ultrabooks.
     
  23. macrumors 6502a

    johnhurley

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2011
    #23
    No viable hackintosh approach?
     
  24. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2011
    #24
    Naw some parts aren't compatible.

    Having played with the Zenbook and Samsung 9 Series, I prefered the 9 series as its trackpad and keyboard were nicer than the Asus. Neither compare to the Air though, and OS X is the main reason I want the Air.
     
  25. macrumors 68030

    NutsNGum

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #25
    I wouldn't have thought so. It's debatable whether any Hackintosh is ever really feasible in anything other than self-built PC boxes that use compatible components and some older netbooks, and those netbooks can't run anything past early snow leopard builds because Apple canned support for the Atom CPUs to stop people doing precisely that.

    Not an option as far as I'm concerned. Others may disagree, and I'd be happy to be shown a competitor Ultrabook that runs Lion identically to an Air, but I really doubt that I'll see it.
     

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