Asus UX32Vd with Nvidia GPU and UX32A ultrabooks to be released soon for $800 and up

The UX32Vd and 32A will most likely not be as light as the UX31, but they will be cheaper and snappier.
By Adrian Diaconescu , last updated on September 9, 2017

It has taken the guys at Asus a while to come up with their second generation ultrabooks, but now that they did it’s practically impossible for anyone else to beat them. And that’s because, aside from the UX31A and 21A, leaked a few hours ago, Asus also plans to release two budget ultrabooks, going by the names of UX32Vd and UX32A.

I personally am very excited about the first of the two, the UX32Vd, which will most likely feature a 1 GB Nvidia GeForce GT620M dedicated graphics card. That’s right, boys and girls, we will finally get what we wanted for so long, a GeForce graphics card on an ultrabook that can support some gaming on the go.

Update: You should also check out this post, for more details on ultrabooks that can handle games.

Both the UX32Vd and UX32A are set to sport 13.3-inch screens with 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution. The displays will be matte, as they will on the UX31A and 21A, but of course that will be for the higher end models priced a little steeper than the entry level ones.

The UX32Vd and 32A will most likely not be as light as the UX31, but they will be cheaper and snappier.

The UX32Vd and 32A will most likely not be as light as the UX31, but they will be cheaper and snappier.

Other than that, the new ultrabook duo will offer the full range of low-voltage Intel Ivy Bridge processors (Core i3-3217U, i5-3317U and i7-3517U), the choice of 2 or 4 GB of RAM, batteries that are supposed to run for around six or seven hours between charges and optional WiDi (Wireless Display) Technology.

Those are some pretty impressive tech specs and you might be a bit shocked to find out that the Zenbook UX32A and UX32Vd will most likely start selling at between 800 and 1,100 dollars.

However, there is a catch or two, as the ultrabook duo will be a bit heavier than the UX31A and will unfortunately not come with our beloved 256 GB solid state drive. The UX32A and UX32Vd will therefore weigh in at about 1.45 kg (3.2 pounds) and will feature up to a 500 GB HDD, as well as a 24 GB SSD.

No release dates have been announced by the guys at The Verge, the ones that are responsible for leaking these spec sheets, but it’s logical to assume that we will be seeing both the UX32A and the UX32Vd sometime in early summer.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I personally have waited for quite some while for a decently priced ultrabook with a dedicated graphics card, so that Asus UX32Vd sounds like a heck of a laptop and a heck of a deal.

Sure, it would have been nice to see the 13-incher packing an SSD, and not HDD/SSD hybrid storage, but then again we should wait and see the ultrabook in action before giving out early verdicts.

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Adrian has a passion for technology and portable computers and he's been writing about mobile devices for many years now. He is in charge with the news here on the site, but sporadically he also contributes with tests and reviews.


  1. simon

    March 21, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    Can they be expanded to 8GB RAM?
    I’m looking something like asus u36sd..

    • Mike

      March 21, 2012 at 11:32 pm

      you won’t be able to expand the memory, it’s gonna be soldered on the motherboard. and i doubt you’ll find configs with 8 GB of rm on the market

      • simon

        March 22, 2012 at 6:29 am

        Hmm. Thats too bad.

        I’m looking for something like asus u36sd :
        1,6 kg
        Long batery life
        8gb ram
        Good graphics

        But with better resolution and i7 cpu.
        Ssd would be nice.

        Any ideas?

      • Mike

        March 23, 2012 at 10:50 am

        Not for now. But give it a couple of months and we shall see new portable laptops with full-load CPUs on the market, successors for the Sony Vaio S or the Asus U36SD

  2. drew

    March 25, 2012 at 3:48 am

    but, what if I have a 256gb SSD sitting here on a shelf all lonely? Is there any reason I couldn’t swap that in the moment the UPS man rings my doorbell?

    • Mike

      March 26, 2012 at 7:00 am

      Swapping the SSD might be more complicated than you think, since ultrabooks don’t use regular 2.5 inch drives. search for some pictures of the ssd disck inside the UX31 and you’ll understand what i mean

      • bob marley

        April 11, 2012 at 2:36 pm

        Lmao you said dick again first you said “sandick” now you said ssd “dick” rofl

      • Mike

        April 11, 2012 at 3:00 pm

        Stupid Keyboard. or user, aka me :P Sry for that, got it fixed

  3. Potential Customer

    April 1, 2012 at 12:55 am

    The lack of an SSD would be a deal breaker for me. Fragile rotating storage on any mobile device is so 20th Century. I want a laptop that’s up to date and reasonably reliable and rugged. No SSD? No deal.

    • Mike

      April 1, 2012 at 1:43 pm

      There will be SSDs configs for sure, just the cheap ones might only offer a hybrid HDD to save costs.

  4. drew dowdell

    April 1, 2012 at 9:04 pm

    You know of any leaks for an Ultrabook with nVidia (or any good dedicated graphics) and an SSD? Over 4gig of ram preferred, but if that’s the limit, I’d live with it.

    I just want to be able to play Civ V or RailSimulator 2012 with the graphics turned up while on the go.

    • Mike

      April 2, 2012 at 10:08 am

      Hey Drew.

      We’ll definitely see ultrabooks with SSDs and dedicated graphics. They should be launched by early May and should hit the stores in the first part of the summer. There are no exact details on models right now, but take my word on it, they’re coming and there will be at least a handful to choose from

      • Drew Dowdell

        September 2, 2012 at 11:20 pm

        Any updates on this? I’m still not seeing anything that suits my fancy. Now aiming for a possible November purchase.

      • Mike

        September 3, 2012 at 2:07 pm

        The UX32VD is available in stores right now and so is the UX31A, the new zenbook primes

  5. Ji

    April 4, 2012 at 8:56 am

    I LOVE my new Asus UX31 Zenbook except the trackpad!!
    It REALLY is horrible..
    I’m debating whether to just use this or to return this and wait for the 2nd generation ones.
    Any suggestion?

    • Mike

      April 4, 2012 at 9:01 am

      There’s no guarantee the 2nd gen will have a better trackpad, but I do hope so. After all, It’s difficult to have it worst :P

      So, your call. But my advice, if you can live without it for the next couple of months, better return it. The new gen will have a bunch of other improvements: better hardware, better screen, better keyboard – at least that’s what the guys at Asus promise. Worst case scenario, you can buy the current generation then and get it probably way cheaper than you would today.

    • jeff

      April 18, 2012 at 2:42 pm

      there’s some update to the driver, according to a chinese blog post, it could improve your trackpad to MBA quality. just check asus’s website

  6. Pat

    April 7, 2012 at 3:31 am

    I was on the verge of buying a Lenovo T420, I need something a dedicated GPU with a matte screen. But having a light system would be really interesting so I think I’ll hold on and buy one of these instead.

    I’ve had an Asus and the GPU melted so I’m kind of hesitant on that regard. My dad’s Lenovo fell a few times and he’s had it for 7 years now… still running. That’s why I might just ignore the whole ultra-sleek dandy and get something functional for once.

    • Mike

      April 7, 2012 at 3:00 pm

      Pat, as a Lenovo owner myself, they don’t make them as they used to. I mean, I have an X220 and that’s one of their top lines, and still, the case doesn’t feel as solid as I’d want. So, don’t expect any of these nowadays machines to last you that long. You can be lucky and get a good model, but more than 3 years, well, that’s a bit unrealistic in my eyes :P

      • Pat

        April 7, 2012 at 4:16 pm

        Thanks for the input, it’s just that as a software engineer I really need to leverage my laptop, and I’m not looking into investing 1k every three years if all I need is some openGL support and a machine that’s capable of running an IDE without too much slow down. In other words I’m not interested in gaming.

        I’m still excited about these new laptops, my only complaint about my old Asus F8SN was the weight, always felt heavy in my backpack on the way to work.

      • Mike

        April 7, 2012 at 4:31 pm

        I feel you, I’ve spent way more than I should on computers lately. At least I get to test them for a living and make back some of the initial investments, but I really do have to cut those spendings.

        Anyway, jumping from your old F8SN (owned an F7 myself, i know their kind – which btw died after about 3.5 years of use :P) straight to an ultrabook is huge. There are alternatives you know, with better processors (i think you’re gonna need as much power for your programming, right?) and some basic dedicated graphics, usually cheaper. The Asus U36SD is one of them, still not a lot cheaper than these ultrabooks. There’s also a 13.3 inch Toshiba Portege but that one got a bit too hot in my tests. I don’t know, maybe ULV platforms aren’t exactly what you’d need?

        Oh, and i think you’re going to need an excellent keyboard, right? If so, stay away from the Asus, Acer, Toshiba (and others) existing ultrabooks :P

      • Pat

        April 8, 2012 at 2:50 am

        Well the keyboard isn’t really an issue, I use an external ergonomics one during extended periods. The F8SN was constantly heating up and therefore the fan was loud, that’s probably the two points I want to get away from the most; ie heat and noise.

        I can wait until August before an investment, would you suggest me to wait for something new?

        What’s important is dedicated gpu, low heat and a quiet system. The battery longevity really isn’t a concern, I have this habit of always keeping the laptop plugged somewhere. Weight isn’t a huge factor but definitively a plus.

        Thanks again.

      • Mike

        April 8, 2012 at 12:57 pm

        Yes, if you can wait till August, definitely do so. At least that’s what I’d do in your place :P . We should see new gen Intel Ivy Bridge laptops by then, lots of them, in each segment.

  7. João Almeida

    April 11, 2012 at 10:52 am

    Any rumors if there will be a cheaper version of the UX21 also? I would prefer to buy a 11′ rather than a 13′ ultrabook.

    • Mike

      April 11, 2012 at 3:01 pm

      I’d say there will be cheaper Zenbooks but I can’t confirm it right now.

  8. Matt

    April 16, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    Is there any release date yet?

  9. pierre

    April 21, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    i am interested in asus 36sd xh71 nowadays. i7core 2nd gen., 160gb ssd, and 8gb ram sounds impressive. however i did not totally understand the graphic card details. Is it dedicated or integrated ? because in some reviews they mention like “NVIDIA GeForce GT 520M / Intel HD Graphics 3000 – 1 GB DDR3 SDRAM ” what does that mean ? a geforce on m.board ? thanks

    • Mike

      April 21, 2012 at 2:15 pm

      Pierre, there are two graphic chips inside the u36SD. the integrated Intel HD 3000 and the dedicated Nvidia 520M. The system is smart enough to switch between them automatically based on what you’re running, with this thing called Nvidia Optimus. So, if you’re browsing, the system will go towards the lower power integrated chip, thus saving battery life, but if you plan to run a game, it will switch ON the Nvidia chip.

      However, the Nvidia 520M is a low-power dedicated chip, in fact if their lowest in terms of performances from the 5XX Series. So, the u36SD will run some games, but don’t expect too much. My review of the u36Sd is over here, in case you’re interested in my thorough opinion on this unit. However, take notice that the review is a bit old and ultrabooks were not available in stores back then, as a comparison point:

  10. john dough

    April 23, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    I just can’t wait for the UX31a or a price drop on the UX31.

    I’m a heavy typist so the keyboard should be no issue for me. And I tend to use a mouse anyways so I won’t be on the trackpad all the time.

    Thus, I am ok with the current UX31, but part of me wants to wait and see what info comes soon.

  11. guest

    May 18, 2012 at 2:11 am

    It would be nice to see less crappy matte displays and more gloss gorilla glass LEDS (or AMOLEDs for that matter). If I pay $800+ a decent pane of glass is a must.

  12. Ale

    June 8, 2012 at 12:54 am

    The GPU performance is really important for me – video editing and casual gaming is something that I want to do with my future Ultrabook. Right now the Asus 32UXvd is my favorite one as one of the only ultrabooks having a descrete GPU from NVidia. The price of 1100 Euros is my personal limit.
    The only argument of not having a hybrid instead of a SSD harddrive is for me honestly an advantage. I think SSD is right now way too expansive (almost 1€ per GB!), so the Asus would cost like 200 € more if they would implement one… raising prices to almost 1300-1400 €..
    The guys from notebookcheck mentioned that the harddrive (and other components like ram, battery) will be changeable. So to conclude having in mind to be able to change the harddrive (buying a SSD way cheaper in the next years) it is a great pick to be equiped for the future

    I will buy my Ultrabook in September and I hope there will be some alternatives – but I dont think that there will better ones… Mike do you already now some similar Ultrabooks until 1100 with descrete graphic, nice display and high portability? (weight, battery life)

    • Mike

      June 11, 2012 at 11:19 am

      Ale, I know Acer will have such devices but I haven’t got to play with any of them yet. However, there’s this TimelineX M3 that packs a sandy bridge processor and an Nvidia GT 640M in a 14 inch device. It’s way faster than the Asus U32XD, I’ve seen BattleField 3 played on it on High Details at 1366 x 768 px. However, it does have a bunch of things I did not like about it, like the keyboard, glossy screen, plastic body, etc.

      I don’t know what else you could pick right now. To be Frank, I was expecting more options after Computex and well, there aren’t that many. I’ll keep an eye for updates though and add a post on powerful ultrabooks you can use for gaming in the near future.

  13. Jon

    July 5, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    Is this the best option as far as graphics – portability for an ultrabook? I program for school, write papers, watch HD videos (youtube and movies), and will do some gaming on decent settings (games like Diablo 3, Starcraft 2, Skyrim). I need the fastest ultrabook I can get while not sacrificing battery life and not paying over $1500.

    HDD seems like a deal-breaker for me because its slower and decreases battery life. However, maybe I should buy the UX32VD and upgrade later on to SSD and more ram. This laptop has the option of upgrading both which would make it last a lot longer.

    What would you recommend I buy if not the UX32VD?

    • Mike

      July 6, 2012 at 7:38 am

      You won’t be able to upgrade RAM in the UX32VD from what I’m aware of.

      Also, if you want some decent graphics, there aren’t any other good 13.3 inch ultrabooks right now. But if you can get higher in the 14 Inch class, there awaits the HP Envy 6 or the Dell XPS 14 or the Acer Ultra M3 with Nvidia 630M or 640M chips.

      I haven’t yet tested the U32VD so I don’t know how well will those games run on it, but hopefully I’ll get my hands on it in the near future.

      • Yu

        July 6, 2012 at 9:10 am

        Though it's not officially an ultrabook, there's also the Thinkpad Edge S430, which is 14", but only 1.8kg and has bottom and display frame as magnesium alloy for all I know. Like the Asus UX32VD it has a Cache SSD and the HDD is 7200 rpm, so decent performance should be achieved. While according to a support technician training video [1] replacing the battery is a HUGE pain and certainly not doable without losing warranty (which is "ultrabook-like"), at least RAM and HDD are simply accessible. It has a normal Core i5 and GT 630M and a HD+ (1600×900) 14" matte display. Compared to the alternatives it's also cheap-like-hell. With 1year standard warranty its 750€ in Germany, a three year next-business-day warranty should be available (unconfirmed) around 150€.Unlike the Asus UX32VD it has a dedicated LAN port, but only mini-HDMI and mini-Displayport (though generic adaptors are pretty cheap). Also it has thunderbolt, which MIGHT allow using a VGA-Adapter too, though I'm not sure of it. Also it might be possible to replace the optical drive by an extra HDD or battery (no confirmation here though).

        Alternatives tend to be either heavier, much more expensive or pack a low resolution or glossy display. As for HDD vs SSD, the power savings should be relatively irrelevant and the caching solution should give a decent enough performance.

        I'm waiting for a test though… Even Lenovo's traditional Thinkpad models had reports of rather bad displays recently and the S430 has a relatively small-capacity battery (6cell, but the 48Wh version for all I know), specified for "6 hours" (meaning realistic 4 hours probably).

        As for the Asus UX32VD, according to notebookcheck [2] you can access pretty much everything by removing the bottom of the chassis (which seems to be rather easy) and can replace RAM and HDD without loss of warranty. This way even replacing the battery should be possible, assuming you can get the needed model somewhere. Also I did some benchmark lookup on notebookcheck. Basically the Asus UX32VD is pretty close up to many GT630M benchmarks, even beating the weakest test results, but the GT630M has quite a high range of reported Diablo 3 performance figures (like 45-72 fps at medium settings depending on notebook model), so a model-specific test would be needed for a fair comparison. Also, sadly, "GT630M" is more like a range of graphics cards than like a single model, as it can be based on at least 3 different chips, with relevant differences in both performance and power consumption.

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