The ZenBook S Flip UX371 is the premium 2-in-1 convertible offered by ASUS in stores as of late-2020, and their first ultrabook certified as an Intel Evo platform.
Only the highest-tier of portable laptops built on Intel Tiger Lake hardware get the Evo badge, which attests that the products offer certain features and functions that put them above most other non-Evo notebooks in terms of how they feel and perform with everyday use. We’re not getting in-depth here, as we’ll further touch on the Evo platform in a separate article.
For the most part, though, the ZenBook S Flip UX371EA shares plenty with the mid-range ZenBook Flip UX363RA we’ve already tested, such as the overall design language, inputs, IO and hardware, but slightly ups the game in the choice in materials and craftsmanship quality, as well as in the screen options, where it includes a 4K OLED touch panel with 100% DC-P3 color coverage on the higher-end configurations.
We’ll get in-depth in the review down below with all the important details you should know before jumping on one of these ZenBook S Flip UX371s, with the solid traits and the quirks.
Specs as reviewed – ZenBook Flip S Evo UX371EA
||Asus ZenBook Flip S Evo UX371EA
||13.3 inch, 3840 x 2160 px, 16:9 aspect ratio, OLED, glossy, touch, Samsung SDC4147 panel
||Intel Tiger Lake, up to Core i7-1165G7, 4C/8T
||Intel Iris Xe graphics
||16 GB LPDDR4x 4266 MHz (soldered, dual-channel)
||1x M.2 PCIe x4 SSD (1 TB WDC PC SN730 SDBPNTY-1T00)
||Wireless 6 (Intel AX201), Bluetooth 5.0, Ethernet with adapter
||1x USB-A 3.2 gen1, 2x USB-C 3.2 with Thunderbolt 4 (data, video, and power), HDMI, microSD card reader, 3.5 mm jack with USB-C adapter
||67 Wh, 65W USB-C charger with quick-charging
||305 mm or 12.01” (w) x 211 mm or 8.31” (d) x 13.9 mm or 0.55” (h)
||from 2.69 lbs (1.22 kg)+ .45 lbs (.21 kg) charger, US version
||white backlit keyboard with compact layout, glass NumberPad, HD+IR webcam with Hello, stereo bottom speakers
Asus offers the ZenBook Flip 13 UX371EA in a couple of configurations, with various amounts of memory and storage, either Intel i5-1135G7 or Intel i7-1165G7 hardware platforms, and either an IPS or an OLED panel, both convertible touchscreens.
These aside, though, the different variants share their other traits, so most of this article applies to any of the configurations you might be interested in.
Design and construction
On the outside, the ZenBook Flip S UX371 looks and feels very much like the standard ZenBook Flip UX363 we’ve already tested. In fact, this UX371 is only marginally lighter and millimetrically smaller, but at a level where you can hardly tell these differences even when having the two side by side.
Asus does go with a slightly different color scheme on the Flip S, which is available in a darker shade of blue-gray (officially named Jade Black) with some rose-gold accents around the edges and in the ASUS logo on the lid. This darker color shows smudges easily, especially on the lid-cover (the last picture above shows the laptop after a couple of days of use, so you’ll know what to expect).
That aside, this ZenBook Flip S is a convertible with a 360-degree display. That means it can be used as a tablet, albeit a fairly large and wonky one, so I’d expect this will spend most of its life in laptop mode. In this case, the main-body rises on tiny feet placed right near the hinges, with what Asus calls the Ergolift design and implement in various forms on all of their ZenBooks. This aspect allows for increased airflow underneath the laptop and a slightly forward inclined typing position, but just like with the regular Flip, the implementation leaves to be desired here, as those rubber feet at the bottom are minuscule and the laptop ends-up resting on the sharper hinges in some cases, which can scratch up sensitive surfaces.
Furthermore, with those tiny back feet, the laptop isn’t very stable on a flat surface. And while we’re nitpicking, I should also mention the fairly sharp edges and corners around the main chassis, which look great, but are not the most comfortable on the wrists, as well as the thick chin under the screen, which looks rather dated on a late-2020 convertible. It is functional, though, acting as both a handle for the device in tablet mode and preventing the display from heating-up in laptop mode, as you’ll see in a further section.
Speaking of the thermal design, it is once more similar to the one implemented in the standard ZenBook Flip UX363. Those grills on the bottom panel are actually covered-up from the inside, so the air comes into the cooling system through a tiny intake placed in-between the hinges, and expelled through a similar cut right near it, into the display. That chin takes the blunt of that heat, but overall this is not a great thermal design in this class.
On a more positive side, this ZenBook Flip S is sturdily made, with almost no flex in the keyboard deck and a solid screen. The two hinges do a good job keeping the display as set up, while being smooth enough to allow one-handed adjustments. Furthermore, I also appreciate the spacious arm-rest and clickpad, which you don’t normally get on a compact 13-incher such as this one, but there’s a catch: Asus had to go with a cramped keyboard, and we’ll talk about it in a bit.
As for the IO, that’s lined around the sides and standard for 2020 generation ZenBooks: two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4 support, one full-size HDMI slot, one full-size USB-A, one microSD card reader, plus some status LEDs on the left edge. There’s no 3.5 mm jack, but Asus offer a USB-C to 3.5 mm adapter in the pack, as well as a USB-A to LAN adapter and a canvas protective sleeve.
Bottom point, the ZenBook Flips S UX371 looks and feels exquisite and will most likely leave a strong first impression.
However, I feel that once you get to use it you’ll start noticing some of its quirks. My nits are with those unstable rear rubber feet and sharp hinges that might scratch your desk, the fairly aggressive edges around the main-chassis, and even with the smudges-prone dark surfaces that you’ll have to rub clean often. After using this for several weeks, I can’t shake that feeling that this is more of a poster-product that looks fancy behind closed glass, but is not as practical as I’d want from a computer I’d use every day.
Keyboard and trackpad
Asus went with a squashed keyboard layout on this 13-inch laptop, the same they put on their ZenBook 13 and ZenBook Flip.
That means that the main set of keys are 16 x 13 mm and they cramp up the layout a fair bit. As a result, the smaller keycaps take a toll on accuracy and that’s especially something those of you with bigger hands (or perhaps longer fingernails) should be aware of.
If you’re fine with this aspect, you’ll probably find this keyboard fine. It’s about the average you can expect from an ultrabook in terms of feedback and typing experience, but definitely a step back from what Asus offer in their 14-inch ultrabooks these days.
Layout and feedback aside, this keyboard is backlit, with bright white LEDs and a dedicated Caps Lock indicator. The illumination system is fairly bright and uniform, but plenty of light creeps out from underneath the keycaps and you’ll notice it with everyday use. Again, that’s less of an issue with the 14-inch keyboard model.
Down beneath, centered on the chassis, Asus implements the same spacious glass clickpad with Precision drivers and secondary NumberPad functionality that’s also in most of their 2020 ZenBooks. It’s a smooth, reliable, and sturdy surface, with solid gesture support and palm-rejection. I also like that this surface feels solid and doesn’t rattle with taps, and the physical clicks in the corners are fine, just a tad stiffer than I’d like. Overall, this is one of the best clickpads on the market right now, so can’t complain here.
There’s no ScreenPad offered for this series, though. As for biometrics, there’s no finger-sensor, but you do get an IR camera at the top of the screen.
As a convertible, this ZenBook Flip S UX371 gets a touchscreen with a 13.3-inch panel, available as either a FHD IPS with 100% sRGB coverage and 450-nits of brightness or as a 4K OLED with 100% DCI-P3 and 500+ nits of brightness. A pen is also included in the pack with both options.
The latter panel is what we have here and what you’ll most likely get in most regions, but a fairly pricey addition that pushes this ZenBook into a higher price category.
On a first look, though, this OLED panel is breathtaking, with excellent brightness, contrast, viewing angles, and colors.
Here’s what we got in our tests, with an X-Rite i1 Display Pro sensor:
- Panel HardwareID: Samsung SDC4147;
- Coverage: 100.0% sRGB, 98.2% AdobeRGB, 99.3% DCI-P3;
- Measured gamma: 2.17;
- Max brightness in the middle of the screen: 519.09 cd/m2 on power;
- Min brightness in the middle of the screen: 24.68 cd/m2 on power;
- Contrast at max brightness: 1:1;
- White point: 6300 K;
- Black on max brightness: 0.00 cd/m2;
- PWM: Yes, 60 Hz at <= 70% brightness.
But there are a couple of catches when it comes to OLED screens, though. First off, this OLED panel is expensive and takes a toll on battery life with its UHD resolution.
Secondly, our tests measured some color imbalances between the screen’s quadrants, with significant DeltaE variations in some areas. We’re not the only ones to mention it, Notebookcheck also measured it up in their review and that’s also something we’ve encountered on other OLED panels before. That means that despite the excellent color-coverage, professionals looking at this panel for their color-accurate work might not find it good enough without the required consistency across the entire panel, which can translate in colors looking differently towards the corners.
Now, I expect a fair degree of quality variation between these OLED panels, so if you still want to give this a go, I’d advise buying from a place that allows returns and properly testing your unit once it arrives to make sure that it meets your requirements. Keep it if you end up with a proper panel, or send it back if not.
Finally, there’s the whole discussion on whether OLED panels are what you should get on a laptop, given concerns such as burn-in, image retention, use of PWM, gray banding, or black-crush issues, among others.
Windows interfaces have a lot of static content and burn-in can be a problem long-term, even if OLED panels have gotten better over the years and the manufacturers implement technologies to prevent long-term image retention. I’d be extremely careful not to use my device at high-brightness levels if you decide to go with one, as that can greatly accentuate potential burn-in problems.
This aside, most of you might not even notice the black crush (certain dark-gray elements are displayed as black) and gray banding (certain gray images and textures show an unnatural warping effect) issues characteristic to OLED panels, but if you’re curious about them, there are plenty of clips on Youtube on these topics.
Finally, this OLED panel uses PWM modulation with a 60 Hz frequency at brightness-levels of 70% or less, and while OLED flickering differs from LCD flickering and is not something that bothers me personally, it is something that might affect those more flicker-sensitive among you, based on the multitude of user feedback available online when it comes to other OLED laptops.
As you can tell, most of these quirks apply to every OLED laptop out there and are not particular to the ZenBook Flip S UX371, but you should look into them and acknowledge and accept them if you decide to go with this sort of an OLED screen on your computer. Personally, as someone who likes to keep their screens at low brightness levels (normally around 70-nits) anyway and is not bothered by OLED flickering, I think I’m at a point where I might just give OLED a go with my next laptop, but that doesn’t mean OLED is suitable for everyone.
Now, as mentioned earlier, Asus also offers an IPS screen option for this ZenBook UX371, with a 450-nits panel and 100% sRGB color-coverage. It’s not going to look as beautiful and rich, but it’s going to be a more affordable option without all those potential issues mentioned earlier. We’ll update with more details once we test that panel as well.
For comparison, here’s how the OLED screen looks next to a regular 300-nits IPS screen, the kind offered in the more affordable ZenBook Flip UX363. The OLED UX371 is on the left, and the IPS UX363 on the right.
Hardware and performance
Our test model is a top-specced configuration of the Asus ZenBook Flip S UX371EA, with an Intel Tiger Lake Core i7-1165G7 processor and Intel Iris Xe graphics, 16 GB of LPDDR4x 4266 MHz memory, and a fast 1 TB WDC SN730 SSD.
Before we proceed, keep in mind that our review unit is a pre-production model sent over by Asus and tested with the software available as of early-November 2020 (BIOS 301, MyAsus 18.104.22.168 app).
Spec-wise, this is based on the late-2020 Intel Tiger Lake i7-1165G7 hardware, the same implemented by a multitude of other ultrabooks of this generation. It’s a 4C/8T processor, very snappy in single-core tasks, and averagely competent in multitasking. However, OEMs can implement this hardware in a couple of different power versions, and Asus went with a limited implementation here, capable of 15+W of sustained power in demanding loads in its most aggressive power profile.
Graphics are the major novelty of this Tiger Lake platform, and the i7-1165G7 gets the most capable version of the Iris Xe iGPU, with 96 Execution Units clocked at up to 1300 MHz (on paper).
Our configuration also gets 16 GB of LPDDR4x 4266 MHz of RAM out-of-the-box, in dual-channel, and a WD SN730 PCIe x4 SSD, a top-performance option. due to the laptop’s design, this still heats-up in intensive use, but the performance is not impacted in the same way as experienced on the mid-range Kingston SSD tested on the ZenBook UX363. Nonetheless, you can replace the drive if you remove the back panel, hold in place by a couple of visible Torx screws.
The CPU and memory are soldered on the motherboard and non-upgradable, and inside you’ll notice that most of the internal space is occupied by the battery, leaving for a small motherboard that sent over the SSD very close to the CPU plate.
As far as the software goes, this gets the standard MyAsus app which allows control over the power profiles, battery and screen settings, updates, etc, while the Audio is controlled in AudioWizard.
There are three performance/thermal profiles to choose from:
- Performance – allows the CPU to run at 13+W in sustained loads, with fans ramping up to 38-39 dB;
- Standard – allows the CPU to run at 12+W in sustained loads, with fans ramping up to 35-36 dB;
- Whisper – limits the CPU at 8+W to favor lower fan-noise of sub 30 dB.
The Standard profile is well-balanced and keeps the fan idle with light use, and quiet with heavier loads. The laptop also feels snappy with daily multitasking, video streaming, text-editing, and the likes, as you’ll see down below. However, compared to the standard ZenBook Flip UX363, this UX371 tends to run quieter and slightly warmer with every day chores.
On to more demanding tasks, we start by testing the CPU’s performance by running the Cinebench R15 benchmark for 15+ times in a loop, with 2-3 seconds delay between each run, on the Performance mode.
The Tiger Lake i7 runs at high clocks for a little while, but then quickly stabilizes at around 15W of power and ~2.4 GHz, with temperatures in the 75-77 degrees Celsius. The fan ramps to about 40-41 dB at head-level in this test, and the laptop returns scores of around 580 points. That’s not much, but expected given the power limitation.
Compared to other Asus Tiger Lake laptops we’ve tested so far, this one aggressively limits the processor, and that has a positive impact on the temperatures and a negative impact on the performance. Future BIOS updates might change this behavior, but for now, this is what we got with BIOS 301 from November 2020.
We also retest the laptop on the Standard and Whisper modes. Standard limits the CPU at 12+ W, with a decrease in fan-noise, and Whisper lowers the limit to 8+ W, with even quieter fans. Finally, the laptop performs fine when unplugged, running at ~15W on the Performance mode. Here’s what we got in our tests.
To put these results in perspective, here’s how a couple of other AMD and Intel ultraportable notebooks score in this same test.
First off, the very similar ZenBook UX363 limited at around 13W on our sample ends-up about on par with this UX371, but while running slightly noisier, and so does the 10-th gen Ice Lake i7 in the ZenBook UX425JA. However, faster Tiger Lake implementations out-score this UX371, not to mention the 6Core Ryzen 4000 platforms that are still the kings in this sort of CPU-heavy loads among U-type processors, and by a far margin.
We went ahead and verified our findings by running the longer and more challenging Cinebench R20 and Prime 95 tests. In both cases, the CPU stabilizes at around 15W after a very short initial boost, with temperatures of around 75-78 degrees C.
We also ran our combined CPU+GPU stress tests on this notebook, on the same Performance profile.
3DMark stress runs the same test for 20 times in a loop and looks for performance variation and degradation over time, and this unit actually passed it. That doesn’t mean much, though, instead it shows that the system very quickly limits the power envelope to 13W and maintains consistent performance within that limit. In comparison, the ZenBook UX363 runs at higher clocks for the first runs before eventually dropping to the same 13W power-limit, and that caused it to fail this test. Luxmark 3.1 fully loads both the CPU and GPU at the same time, but it doesn’t properly support the Tiger Lake at this time, so is not relevant here.
Next, here are some benchmark results. We ran the entire suite of tests and benchmarks on the standard Performance profile. Here’s what we got.
- 3DMark 13 – Fire Strike: 4013 (Graphics – 4574, Physics – 9258, Combined – 1450);
- 3DMark 13 – Night Raid: 13163 (Graphics – 17091, CPU – 5718);
- 3DMark 13 – Time Spy: 1466 (Graphics – 1335, CPU – 3307);
- 3DMark 13 – Wild Life: 10621;
- AIDA64 Memory test: -;
- Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Medium: 2767;
- Uniengine Superposition – 1080p Extreme: 881;
- Handbrake 1.3.1 (4K to 1080p encode): 18.97 average fps;
- PassMark 10: Rating: 3805 (CPU mark: 10748, 3D Graphics Mark: 3527, Disk Mark: 17214);
- PCMark 10: 4654 (Essentials – 10041, Productivity – 6529 , Digital Content Creation – 4173);
- GeekBench 4.4.2 64-bit: Single-Core: 6601, Multi-core: 18782;
- GeekBench 5.0.1 64-bit: Single-Core: 1500, Multi-core: 4702;
- CineBench R15 (best run): CPU 804 cb, CPU Single Core 212 cb;
- CineBench R20 (best run): CPU 1596 cb, CPU Single Core 534 cb;
- x264 HD Benchmark 4.0 32-bit: Pass 1 – 185.92 fps, Pass 2 – 40.63 fps;
- x265 HD Benchmark 64-bit: 91.48 s.
We also ran some Workstation related loads, on the Performance profile:
- Blender 2.90 – BMW Car scene- CPU Compute: 10m 29s (Auto);
- Blender 2.90 – Classroom scene – CPU Compute: 30m 37s (Auto);
- Luxmark 3.1 – Luxball HDR – OpenCL CPUs + GPUs score: CPU not properly recognized;
These aren’t great results and a fair bit under the i7-1165G7 configurations we’ve tested so far, including the ZenBook UX363. Again, no surprise, the system quickly limits the supplied power in order to keep the noise and temperatures down, and that impacts the scores. We’re looking at a 10-30% drop in scores compared to the ZenBook Flip UX363, and higher compared to higher-power implementations of this Tiger Lake platform.
We also ran a couple of DX11, DX12, and Vulkan titles on the Performance profile and Low/Lowest graphics settings. Here’s what we got:
||Flip S UX371 – Intel 1165G7 13W
||Flip UX363 – Intel 1165G7 13W
||Swift 3 13 – Intel 1165G7 17W
||UX393 – Intel 1165G7 26W
||UX425 – Intel 1065G7
||IdeaPad 7 – AMD R7 + Vega 8
||UM425 – AMD R7 + Vega 7
|Bioshock Infinite (DX 11, Low Preset)
||65 fps (32 fps – 1% low)
||65 fps (38 fps – 1% low)
||76 fps (45 fps – 1% low)
||83 fps (44 fps – 1% low)
||40 fps (22 fps – 1% low)
||81 fps (58 fps – 1% low)
||66 fps (50 fps – 1% low)
|Dota 2 (DX 11, Best Looking Preset)
||47 fps (34 fps – 1% low)
||52 fps (32 fps – 1% low)
||71 fps (46 fps – 1% low)
||63 fps (39 fps – 1% low)
||34 fps (20 fps – 1% low)
||53 fps (40 fps – 1% low)
||39 fps (28 fps – 1% low)
|Far Cry 5 (DX 11, Low Preset, no AA)
||24 fps (14 fps – 1% low)
||23 fps (14 fps – 1% low)
||32 fps (19 fps – 1% low)
||29 fps (19 fps – 1% low)
||12 fps (10 fps – 1% low)
||28 fps (24 fps – 1% low)
||21 fps (17 fps – 1% low)
|Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor (DX 11, Lowest Preset)
||60 fps (42 fps – 1% low)
||59 fps (43 fps – 1% low)
||60 fps (43 fps – 1% low)
||67 fps (53 fps – 1% low)
||32 fps (22 fps – 1% low)
||33 fps (24 fps – 1% low)
||45 fps (36 fps – 1% low)
|NFS: Most Wanted (DX 11, Lowest Preset)
||60 fps (46 fps – 1% low)
||56 fps (36 fps – 1% low)
||60 fps (53 fps – 1% low)
||60 fps (45 fps – 1% low)
||42 fps (25 fps – 1% low)
||60 fps (46 fps – 1% low)
||56 fps (34 fps – 1% low)
|Rise of the Tomb Raider (DX 12, Lowest Preset, no AA)
||36 fps (14 fps – 1% low)
||25 fps (11 fps – 1% low)
||36 fps (5 fps – 1% low)
||46 fps (12 fps – 1% low)
||16 fps (3 fps – 1% low)
||41 fps (22 fps – 1% low)
||28 fps (22 fps – 1% low)
|Shadow of Tomb Raider (Vulkan, Lowest Preset, no AA)
||29 fps (19 fps – 1% low)
||25 fps (14 fps – 1% low)
||37 fps (21 fps – 1% low)
||34 fps (18 fps – 1% low)
||17 fps (12 fps – 1% low)
||38 fps (22 fps – 1% low)
||27 fps (16 fps – 1% low)
|Strange Brigade (Vulkan, Low Preset)
||44 fps (36 fps – 1% low)
||47 fps (41 fps – 1% low)
||50 fps (40 fps – 1% low)
||54 fps (45 fps – 1% low)
||21 fps (7 fps – 1% low)
||41 fps (36 fps – 1% low)
||37 fps (32 fps – 1% low)
- The Witcher 3, Dota 2, NFS – recorded with MSI Afterburner in game mode;
- Bioshock, Far Cry 5, Middle Earth, Strange Brigade, Tomb Raider games – recorded with the included Benchmark utilities.
I’ve added a couple of other configurations for comparison, all of them ultraportable on similar i7-1165G7 platforms, albeit at different powers. I’ve also added an older ZenBook Ice Lake model and some AMD Ryzen powered alternatives, for a broader comparison.
As expected, this ZenBook Flip S UX371 levels the difference from the standard ZenBook Flip with this sort of longer-period loads. It can deliver 40+ framerates in older and simpler games, but AAA titles launched in recent years are a no-go, running at sub 30 fps in this laptop. Furthermore, this ZenBook Flip S UX371 is a fair bit behind the higher-power Tiger Lake models we’ve tested, and even a step-down from the Ryzen 7 with Vega 7 platform implemented in the ZenBook UX425, a power-limited implementation of its own.
Bottom point, if you’re looking for the best performance on a Tiger Lake laptop, this ZenBook Flip S UX371EA is not for you. In fact, on the contrary, this is one of the slowest Tiger Lake builds on the market, but at the same time one that does a fair job balancing thermals and noise-levels, as shown in the HWInfo logs above and our next section.
Noise, Heat, Connectivity, speakers, and others
Asus went with a basic thermal module here, with a single heatpipe and single fan, similar to what we’ve seen implemented on most of their recent ZenBook and ExpertBook lineups.
Furthermore, they also went with a closed-back design, just like on the regular ZenBook Flip UX363. Despite those grills in the D-panel suggesting otherwise, they are actually covered on the inside with thermal tape. That means no air comes in through the bottom, and the admission only happens through the small cut on the back edge in between the hinges, which channels the air over the CPU and heatpipe, into the fan, and out, into the screen.
Now, as I mentioned in the UX363 review, I don’t have the proper expertise to judge this thermal design, but I can say that it’s different from what Asus implement in their clamshell models, which based on our other reviews, are able to perform better with their open-back thermal designs and similar single-fan/single-heatpipe thermal modules.
In all fairness, though, this ZenBook Flip S UX371 also runs slightly quieter than those, perhaps a requirement for that Evo-platform badge. It keeps the internals and fairly comfortable temperatures in the mid-70s C in games and demanding loads, but a fair bit of that heat also spreads onto the external chassis. On the Performance mode, we’ve measured temperatures in the mid-to-high 50s in the middle of the keyboard and on the back panel, around the CPU, as well as high-40s on the screen’s chin, right near the exhaust. The fan spins averagely quiet on the Performance mode, at 40-41 dB at head-level.
Switching over to the Standard mode allows the fans to run even quieter, but with a further impact over the performance.
On the other hand, this ZenBook Flip runs a lot quieter with daily use, as the fan rests idle most of the time, and only kicks in with more intense multitasking. I haven’t noticed any electronic noises and the temperatures are also fairly good for a mostly fanless implementation.
*Daily Use – streaming Netflix in EDGE for 30 minutes, Whisper Mode, fans at 0-33 dB
*Gaming – Performance mode – playing Far Cry 5 for 30 minutes, fans at 40-41 dB
For connectivity, there’s the latest-gen WiFi 6 with an Intel AX201 module on this laptop. It performed well with our setup and the signal and performance remained strong at 30-feet, with obstacles in between, yet not as fast as other WiFi6 models we’ve tested over the years.
Audio is handled by a set of stereo speakers that fire through grills placed on the underside, on the front lip. The angled shape of the D-Panel allows the sound to bounce off the table without significant distortions, but I’ve noticed major vibrations in the arm-rest at higher volumes. Furthermore, due to their placement, these speakers can also be easily muffled when using the laptop on the lap.
As for the audio quality, we measured average maximum volumes of 76-78 dB at head-level in our tests with DTS processing switched on to the Music profile. The audio quality is about the average you should expect from this class, fine for movies and music, but with little at the lower end. However, I must once more warn that the main-chassis vibrates noticeably at volumes above 70%, so you’ll most likely have to adjust the volumes to lower levels with daily use.
As for that HD camera placed at the top of the screen, it’s fine for occasional calls, but not much in terms of quality.
There’s a 67 Wh battery inside the ZenBook Flip S UX371, larger than what you’d normally get in a 13-inch ultrabook.
Here’s what we got in terms of battery life, with the screen’s brightness set at around 120 nits (~50 brightness).
- 11 W (~6+ h of use) – text editing in Google Drive, Standard+ Better Battery Mode, screen at 50%, Wi-Fi ON;
- 7.8 W (~8+ h of use) – 1080p fullscreen video on Youtube in Edge, Whisper + Better Battery Mode, screen at 50%, Wi-Fi ON;
- 6.8 W (~10- h of use) – Netflix fullscreen in Edge, Whisper + Better Battery Mode, screen at 50%, Wi-Fi ON;
- 14.3 W (~4-6 h of use) – browsing in Edge, Standard + Better Performance Mode, screen at 50%, Wi-Fi ON.
Don’t forget that this configuration gets the UHD OLED panel which takes its toll on the runtimes. With that in mind, this ZenBook Flip S lasts for quite a while thanks to its beefy battery, and I’d expect even longer runtimes with casual use with the IPS FHD panel option.
Asus pairs the laptop with a compact 65W charger that plugs-in via USB-C. It’s a single-piece design with a compact brick and a long and thick cable, and a full charge takes about 2 hours, but quick-charging allows to fill-up to 60% of the battery in less than an hour.
Price and availability
The ZenBook Flip S Evo UX371EA is listed in only some parts of the world at the time of this article.
I could only find the top-tier configuration as of right now, with the i7-1165G7 processor, 16 GB of RAM, 1 TB of SSD storage, and the 4K OLED touchscreen, with an MSRP of 1549 USD in the US and a whopping 2500 EUR in Germany and other European countries.
That’s competitive in the US for that kind of money, considering the specs and that OLED screen, but the European pricing puts this in an exclusive price-bracket. In comparison, you can get the standard ZenBook Flip UX363 for a lot less, starting at $949 in the US and around 1100 EUR in Europe for the base-level Core i5 configuration with an IPS screen.
We’ll update when we know more, and in the meantime, follow this link for updated prices and configurations in your region.
Having used this ZenBook Flip S UX371 for the last weeks, I feel that there a couple of important aspects that you need to consider in order to decide if this could be the right buy for you or not.
First off, you need to ask yourself if you’re OK with an OLED laptop, understand its particularities, and are willing to use the computer the way you need to in order to minimize any long-term burn-in issues. You should also accept quirks such as PWM flickering and black crush, characteristic of OLED panel in general.
With that out of the way, you should also understand that those of you with larger hands might have a hard time typing on the cramped keyboard that Asus puts on this laptop, and that this system is primarily optimized for a quiet everyday experience and won’t match the overall performance of other modern ultraportables, no matter if built on Intel or AMD hardware. In fact, this is one of the slower Tiger Lake laptops we’ve tested so far, with the hardware being power-limited in order to keep the thermals and noise-levels at bay.
At the same time, though, this is still very snappy with daily use, where it also runs silently and coolly, and it lasts for a fair while on each charge, but it just can’t handle more demanding loads (such as video editing – which might otherwise benefit from that color-rich display) or games the same way other Tiger Lake laptops can. So if you’re after a powerful ultrabook, this is not for you, but if you’re after a well balanced all-day 2-in-1 ultraportable, it could be.
But there are also a couple of other tiny aspects that bothered me during my time with the laptop, such as the smudges-prone black materials or the sharp edges around the interior, which look great, but are not as practical as I’d want. And speaking of practicality, those tiny rubber feet under the screen are annoying when using the laptop on a desk, and Asus didn’t include a 3.5 mm jack on this computer.
Finally, this is an expensive notebook over here in Europe. At $1549 in the US, though, it might catch a fair bit of attention, just make sure you’re OK with everything mentioned above.
As far as the competition goes, there are quite a few other premium 2-in-1s out there, such as the HP Spectres, the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, or a couple of Lenovo Yogas models. This ZenBook has the large battery, the excellent construction, and the OLED panel on its side, which most competitors don’t offer in this size-segment, but everything considered, those are just not enough to put it at the top of my list. How about yours?
Anyway, that wraps up our review of the Asus ZenBook Flip S Evo UX371EA, but I’d love to hear your thoughts and impressions in the comments section down below, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.
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