Asus is expanding its premium ranks with a small 13-inch full of promise, the Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED. The proposal brings together a very small format, an OLED touch screen and a Ryzen 6000 processor, enough to offer the best performance/size/autonomy ratio on the market? Let’s see instead.
Chic and light
With its Zenbook series, Asus has accustomed us to neat designs. Our Zenbook S 13 UM5302 fits perfectly into this vision and is surrounded by a metal case free from any reproach. It’s quite worthy of what you’d expect from a €1,500 ultrabook: solid surfaces, meticulous assembly and neat finishes. In the hand, it gives off such density that it is even difficult to believe that it weighs only 1.1kg. Anyway, its small format (296 x 210 x 14.9 mm), particularly fineis ideal to be forgotten during your travels.
We will notice his dark blue color which has the advantage of not being too messy, a criticism often made of this type of colour. It marks much less fingerprints than the blue MacBook Air for example… Result, the look is sober and chic, while offering something other than aluminum or gray colors, and Asus takes care of the details, in particular the cylindrical hinge which recalls that of the Zenbook 13 Flip.
Connectivity issue, we are not really surprised to find only USB Type-C, three USB 3.2 Gen2 in number, as well as a headphone jack. It is certainly limited, but this versatile connection lends itself exactly to this type of “on the go” ultrabook. All it takes is a small dock to fit all your favorite peripherals. And if you regret the absence of USB-A, tell yourself that it is clearly incompatible with such a thin box.
Another acquisition at Asus, input devices. The Asus Zenbook S 13 UM5302 is very well equipped in this area with its good sized keys (16.1×15.5 mm) spaced 3.2 mm apart and presenting a short stroke as it should (1.1 mm). The typing is very pleasant and responsive and emits a muffled noise that is not at all intrusive. Under the key to turn on the PC is a fingerprint reader Windows Hello compatible, the best integration we think. Our reservation concerns just the Enter key split in two. It is found on the majority of new Asus models and before adaptation, it causes a lot of input errors. Below stretches a large 130mm by 74mm touchpad that does the job. Small bonus, Asus slipped a virtual numeric keypad (NumPad 2.0)very convenient for repeatedly entering numbers.
Let’s move on to the screen which is, let’s say it, one of the centerpieces of this Zenbook S 13 OLED. Moreover, the element that attracts attention is prominently in its name. We are therefore dealing with a OLED panel, whose essential interest lies in its excellent color coverage. All spaces are supported, sRGB, DCI-P3 and AdobeRGB (DeltaE 1.4). Likewise, the contrast is excellent with deep blacks and the white point at the right temperature (6700K). We also appreciate its definition 2.8 K (2880 x 1800 pixels) and his aspect ratio 16:10 which offers a little more display height than 16:9. This retrieves a few lines of text from a web page or document.
We are not on a convertible but the Zenbook S 13 OLED still offers a touchpad that it is possible to open flat (180° angle). This offers a welcome little modularity and it is always practical to be able to touch your screen to scroll through content or validate an order from time to time. On the other hand, its measured luminosity is not that announced with 353 nits, which actually reinforces the reflective side of the glossy panel. In some environments, the mirror effect generated can really interfere with viewing.
Finally, a word about the webcam which holds no surprises. There restitution is of average quality, without contrast and with relative sharpness, just sufficient for an occasional videoconference. Windows Hello facial recognition is conspicuously absent here, especially on a premium ultrabook in 2022.
Small in size, big in possibilities
To propel its Zenbook S 13, Asus once again trusts AMD. It’s the Ryzen 7 6800U (2.7 GHz, 8 cores) which officiates on the model tested, integrating a AMD Radeon 680M for the graphics part and assisted by 16 GB of soldered RAM and a dedicated 1 TB PCIe 4.0 SSD.
The observation is fairly quickly made during our various tests, in particular the synthetic Geekbench benchmark on which the Zenbook is comfortable. This doesn’t really reflect performance in practice, but it does reveal what the CPU/GPU has to offer. Its ease was confirmed over the course of our various tests, in particular those concerning Handbrake video conversion or photo processing under Capture One 12. Without going so far as to stand out from the competition, the Zenbook totals scores and times of execution well placed among our panel.
Even if it heats up quite strongly inside (95°C stable), the Asus Zenbook S 13 is never hot to the touch and the dissipation remains discreet with 46dBA measured in performance mode. No nuisance to deplore therefore and the heating is well controlled to allow good performance of processor frequencies.
Power, we also find in the audio department with a combination of two speakers that provide. The rendering is very good for a 13-inch ultrabook and even for a portable PC, with nuances in the treble as well as in the bass. Like what, when we want we can.
Finally, a word about the autonomy of our Zenbook S 13 UM5302. One thing is certain, it will be able to follow you for a full day without any problem whatever the tasks involved, with 10h15 of autonomy measured on current use. The 65W USB-C charger is compact (220g; 80x65x30mm) for easy transport.
Our opinion on the Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED UM5302: Almost perfect
Definitely premium, the Asus Zenbook S 13 UM5302 keeps all its promises. The look is neat and elegant, the silhouette particularly fine and light and the materials are of high quality. Same observation on the keyboard and touchpad, both very good and the speakers even surprised us with their performance above the rest.
In the window, the OLED touch screen is another strength here with its complete colorimetry, even if we were quite disappointed to note the low maximum brightness of the machine, especially on such a reflective panel. The performance is there thanks to the AMD Ryzen Rembrandt processor (6000 series) which marks a great evolution compared to the previous generation, in particular thanks to an update of the iGPU. Not enough to justify an upgrade if you have last year’s Zenbook 13, however. You wouldn’t gain much from it.
The contract is therefore fulfilled and particularly convincing for the nomadic user who needs a small machine with enough power and enough juice for the whole day. Yes, but here we are, the 720p webcam without facial recognition and the few regrets mentioned above kept us from giving it a better rating. Heard Asus?
The Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED UM5302 scores 4/5
Compare the different available configurations of the Asus Zenbook S 13 UM5302
Features of the Asus Zenbook S13 UM5302TA
|Screen(s)||13.3″ 2.8K OLED 16:10 100% DCI-P3 Pantone Touch (2880×1800, glossy)|
|Processor||AMD Ryzen 7 6800U Rembrandt (2.7 GHz, 8 cores)|
|RAM installed||16GB LPDDR5 6400MHz|
|Graphic card||AMD Radeon 680M|
|Storage||1TB M.2 NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD|
|connectors||3 USB 3.2 Type-C Gen2|
|Network||Wi-Fi ax, Bluetooth 5.2|
|Numeric keypad||NumPad on the touchpad|
|Windows Hello||Yes, via fingerprint reader|
|Audio system||2 Smart Amp speakers|
|Operating system||Windows 11 Home 64 bit|
|Announced autonomy / Battery||12 hours / Li-ion 4 cells 67Wh|
|Weight / Dimensions (mm)||1.1 Kg / 296.7 x 210.5 x 14.9|