Review of the Asus Vivobook Pro 16X OLED

AT THE END OF THE DAY

With a 4K OLED display, a fast Ryzen 9 CPU, excellent battery life, and a unique touch dial tool, Asus’ Vivobook Pro 16X OLED is an appealing product all around.

PROS

  •  A stunning 4K OLED display with a wide color gamut.
  • The AMD Ryzen 9 processor provides adequate performance for content creation.
  • For creative apps, use the LED touchpad dial tool.

CONS

  • Long battery life
  • The GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU is competent, but not up to the task of the most demanding professional applications.
  • The USB-C port is deficient. Support for Thunderbolt

ASUS VIVOBOOK PRO 16X OLED SPECS

Laptop ClassDesktop Replacement
ProcessorAMD Ryzen 9 5900HX
Processor Speed3.3 GHz
RAM (as Tested)32 GB
Boot Drive TypeSSD
Boot Drive Capacity (as Tested)1 TB
Screen Size16 inches
Native Display Resolution3,840 by 2,400
Touch ScreenNo
Panel TechnologyOLED
Variable Refresh SupportNone
Screen Refresh Rate60 Hz
Graphics ProcessorNvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti Laptop GPU
Graphics Memory4 GB
Wireless NetworkingBluetooth, 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6)
Dimensions (HWD)0.74 by 14.19 by 10.19 inches
Weight4.19 lbs
Operating SystemWindows 10
Tested Battery Life (Hours: Minutes)14:33

More content-creator laptops are being released than ever before, aimed at creative professionals who require fast components and specific capabilities. The Asus Vivobook Pro 16X OLED (starts at $1,449.99; $1,649.99 as tested) is the latest sprightly not-quite-workstations. It delivers an enticing combination of AMD Ryzen processing power, a stunning OLED display, and a helpful LED touchpad dial tool for manipulating creative programs. When you combine plenty of storage, long battery life, and affordable pricing, the Vivobook Pro makes a compelling argument for being your go-to notebook.

Are you ready to be creative with your design?

The Vivobook Pro has a similar design to the ProArt Studio book 16 OLED; however, it is more streamlined. It’s a sleek all-black slab that generally looks good, even though it’s unlikely to win any design awards. Although it has the same 16-inch OLED screen as the Studio book, it is slightly smaller and trimmer, measuring 0.74 by 14.2 by 10.2 inches (HWD) against 0.77 by 14.3 by 10.4 inches (HWD). More importantly, the Vivobook Pro is more than a pound lighter than its hefty predecessor, weighing in at 4.19 pounds. Despite the similarities, this system is better suited for general usage and travel, whereas the ProArt Studio book prioritizes professional performance.

The system has a high-quality feel, with an all-metal construction that befits its pricing and target audience. Because the lid has some flex, I’d be cautious about treating it aggressively, but it shouldn’t interfere with regular use.

The exhibit is what stands out. The Vivobook Pro X16’s OLED panel is super-vibrant, with colors that appear to spring off the screen and the most faithful blacks you can create, as we’ve come to expect from OLED panels. If you’ve never seen this technology in person, it’s pretty gorgeous (and even if you have, it’s still enjoyable).

In addition, the monitor has a 4K resolution (3,840 by 2,400 pixels given its 16:10 aspect ratio). Text and graphics are razor-sharp, resulting in a stunning display ideal for creative apps. Our color spectrum and brightness testing results are shown below, but a spoiler alert: the panel provides comprehensive, vivid color coverage with plenty of brightness.

A Digital Dial That’s Not Visible

Moving on to the remainder of the build, the keyboard is very ordinary, providing a good typing experience but little else. There’s a bit of a numeric keypad on the right for those who can’t live without one. The keys aren’t all the same color—most are black, but some of the command keys are gray, and the Escape key is bright red—for a bit of fun. A fingerprint sensor is housed in the power button for Windows Hello logins.

The touchpad appears to be ordinary at first glance. Still, it’s a digital version of the ProArt Studiobook’s physical dial, which you can use to adjust brightness and volume, swiftly navigate around Adobe Creative Suite and other apps, select brush sizes, and more.

A tiny circular icon resides in the upper right corner of the Vivobook Pro’s touchpad. An LED circle appears on the pad’s left side when you swipe down from it. This functions similarly to the Studiobook’s dial, allowing you to scroll through and pick options by swiping and pressing. It provides different contextual options depending on the application you’re running, and it warns you if you go too far away from the touchpad’s digital circle.

It’s a little more fiddly than a physical dial, but that’s to be expected with any touch device. It was constant in tracking my swipes and taps while flipping between tools in Photoshop, though a little was less exact than the dial—perhaps a little less pleasurable to use than the dial, it gives the same functionality.

Finally, and maybe most vital for creative professionals, is the ability to connect. Video and photo editors and designers require more external displays and peripherals than the usual person and additional media storage. Two USB 2.0 ports and a headphone jack are located on the left edge of the Asus, while USB 3.2 Type-A and Type-C connectors, an HDMI video output, and a microSD card reader are located on the right side. Because the Vivobook Pro is an AMD-based system rather than an Intel-based one, the USB-C port does not support Thunderbolt, which is a major flaw for a content creation machine.

A 720p webcam on top provides the standard, low-resolution image; it would be wonderful if all laptop webcams were upgraded to full HD resolution, but at least the Asus’ has an absolute privacy shutter. Other features include Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth, background noise cancellation for the microphone (through the MyAsus app’s ClearVoice feature), and Harman Kardon speakers. The latter may get rather loud at total volume and are positioned near the front to make themselves more audible, albeit their sound loses some depth and bass.

Ryzen 9 Delivers on Components and Performance Testing

The Vivobook Pro 16X comes standard with an AMD Ryzen 7 5800H processor, 16GB of memory, a 1TB solid-state drive, and Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU $1,449.99. While that is more expensive than other entry-level laptops, it is a reasonable price for what you get. For modest workloads, the eight-core Ryzen 7 should be enough, and the introduction of a powerful discrete GPU will make a significant difference for graphical applications.

Of course, we can only speak to the performance of the M7600QE-XB99 model, which costs $1,649.99. It has an eight-core Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU with 32GB of memory and a 3.3GHz (4.6GHz peak) clock speed, and the same 1TB SSD and Nvidia RTX 3050 Ti graphics. The increase in CPU and memory capacity will be evident, but let’s check how our model did in our benchmark tests.

We compared the Vivobook Pro to its ProArt Studio book sibling and the Acer, Dell, and Microsoft content creator laptops listed below for our benchmark charts. The quintet comes with various components, but they all focus on creative programs and contain a discrete GPU in the mid-tier.

Configurations of the System for Testing

 PROCESSORGRAPHICSRAMSTORAGE
Asus Vivobook Pro 16X OLED (M7600QE-XB99)AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX (3.3GHz)Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti (4GB)32GB RAM1TB SSD
Acer ConceptD 5 (2021, CN516-72G-787Y)Intel Core i7-11800H (2.3GHz)Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 (6GB)16GB RAM1TB SSD
Asus ProArt Studiobook 16 OLED (H5600)AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX (3.3GHz)Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 (8GB)32GB RAM2TB SSD
Dell XPS 15 OLED (9510)Intel Core i7-11800H (2.3GHz)Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti (4GB)16GB RAM512GB SSD
Microsoft Surface Laptop StudioIntel Core i7-11370H (3.3GHz)Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti (4GB)32GB RAM1TB SSD

Tests of Productivity

UL’s PCMark 10’s core benchmark simulates several real-world productivity and content-creation processes to assess overall performance for office-centric operations like word processing, spreadsheeting, web browsing, and videoconferencing. We also use PCMark 10’s Full System Drive test to evaluate a laptop’s boot drive’s load time and throughput.

Three benchmarks evaluate a PC’s suitability for processor-intensive workloads by focusing on the CPU and utilizing all available cores and threads. Primate Labs’ Geekbench 5.4 Pro mimics popular apps ranging from PDF rendering to speech recognition to machine learning, while Maxon’s Cinebench R23 uses the company’s Cinema 4D engine to produce a complicated scenario. Finally, we convert a 12-minute video clip from 4K to 1080p quality using the open-source video transcoder HandBrake 1.4. (lower times are better).

PugetSystems’ PugetBench for Photoshop, which employs Adobe’s famed image editor’s Creative Cloud version 22 to score a PC’s performance for content creation and multimedia applications, is our last productivity test. It’s a Photoshop add-on that does a variety of general and GPU-accelerated functions, such as opening, rotating, resizing, and saving images, as well as adding masks, gradient fills, and filters.

The Vivobook Pro scored well in these productivity and media tests, which is no surprise for a Ryzen 9 machine. There was no obvious winner in every benchmark, but the Vivobook came out on top of or near every score in this well-equipped field, which included some much more expensive laptops. This Asus is a terrific choice if you want the most performance for your money, especially processing.

Gaming and Graphics Tests

We put two DirectX 12 gaming simulations from UL’s 3DMark to the test: Night Raid (which is more modest and suitable for laptops with integrated graphics) and Time Spy (more demanding, ideal for gaming rigs with discrete GPUs).

Except for the more powerful GeForce RTX 3070 in the ProArt Studio book, the GPUs in these laptops are all in the same category. The others use RTX 3050 Ti and RTX 3060 GPUs, and you can see that their performance is relatively similar. In Night Raid, the Vivobook Pro took the lead, displaying impressive raw power, while the RTX 3060 and RTX 3070 systems showed their muscles in the more rigorous Time Spy subtest.

If you have a 3D-intensive workload or intend to play serious gaming after hours, you’ll want a laptop with a GPU that’s more powerful than the GeForce RTX 3050 Ti, preferably an RTX 3070 or better. The graphics capabilities of the Vivobook Pro should be sufficient for most people who require some GPU acceleration or are only moderate gamers.

Tests on the battery and display

We put laptop batteries to the test by playing a locally saved 720p video file (the open-source Blender movie Tears of Steel) at 50% brightness and 100% loudness until the device shuts down. Before the test, we ensure sure the battery is fully charged and that Wi-Fi and keyboard backlighting is turned off.

We also use a Datacolor SpyderX Elite monitor calibration sensor and software to measure a laptop screen’s color saturation—how much of the sRGB, Adobe RGB, and DCI-P3 color gamuts or palettes it can show—and brightness in nits (candelas per square meter) at Windows’ 50 percent and peak screen settings.

The Vivobook Pro 16X OLED has a significantly longer battery life than its competitors. It’s also better than average for a general-purpose laptop, giving it a viable option for off-the-grid use.

The findings of the display test are very encouraging. Creative professionals want a display that can be used for editing and color matching, and the laptop came close to covering all three color gamuts completely. The OLED screen is not only beautiful to look at, but it also produces brilliant color, with a peak brightness of little under 400 nits.

Features of Professional Quality at a Reasonable Price

Creative-oriented systems are far more prevalent than they formerly were, and the Vivobook Pro 16X OLED is an excellent addition to the top selections. Its pricing is relatively affordable for its feature set and performance level, with the dazzling display and powerful processor accounting for most of the cost.

The Asus has a solid build, and the touchpad dial is a unique feature that comes close to the ProArt Studiobook’s actual dial in terms of utility. A few creative laptops have more GPU power or peripheral connectivity. Mobile workstations have ISV certifications for CAD and other specialist software, but Asus has left a few significant flaws here; the Vivobook Pro 16X OLED is a fantastic laptop at an affordable price.

Review of the Asus Vivobook Pro 16X OLED

Asus Vivobook Pro 16X OLED


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