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Asus Vivobook 15 Review: Great budget laptop for students & professionals

CNBCTV18 logo CNBCTV18 03-08-2022 Vijay Anand

When I opened the laptop for the first time, I was a bit concerned to see the Intel Core i3 sticker on the palm rest. It didn’t take long for that feeling to disappear as this processor is an absolute champ – it handled everything I threw at it and more and never once protested.

I have been using the Asus Vivobook 15 for about a week now, and I have some thoughts.

The review unit came equipped with the since-redeemed i3 chip, 8 GB of RAM and 512 GB of PCIe solid-state drive storage. It has a 15.6 touch screen and a one-year manufacturer's warranty and is bundled with McAfee protection software and Windows 11. And the laptop comes with free Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint for life.

The device also comes with three USB Type-A ports — one on the left — an HDMI port and a USB Type-C port, all on the right side, alongside a 3.5mm audio jack and the power slot.

Now that the spec sheet is out of the way let’s delve into the experience.

The laptop was quite fun to work on – in the review period, it served as my primary device and never once did it let me down. I’m talking about 15-20 tabs open on Google Chrome, running a myriad of other software alongside, and I can recall only one instance the heat sink activated, and I heard the fan start up.

[caption id="attachment_14338782" align="alignnone" width="1280"] © Provided by CNBCTV18 At one point, these many windows were open on the laptop, and I never heard a groan of protest.[/caption]

Fingerprint sensor

This laptop comes with a fingerprint sensor tucked away in the top right corner of the trackpad, it works like a charm. All I had to do was rest my finger on it – even when the machine was asleep – and it would come awake and unlock instantly. The fingerprint sensor never once let me down.

Talking about the trackpad, I wish it were a little larger and situated centrally. Other than that, no complaints. It does its job more than adequately.

The screen

The Vivobook 15 comes with a 15.6-inch touch-enabled screen, but the novelty of the touch screen wears out quickly, especially if you are not someone who has experience using 2-by-1 laps. The screen is pleasantly bright in indoor situations, but with a peak brightness of 250 nits, it is something of a let-down when used in the bright sun. That said, how many of us use our laptops under the glaring sun?

Keyboard

This, to me, was the biggest surprise. I was initially disappointed that the laptop doesn’t come with a backlit keyboard – many laptops in the same price band do – but again, it ceased to matter once I started typing. The keyboard is absolute please to type on – the leys feel nice and clicky but not too loud. You won’t have an entire café staring at you while you hammer away (trust me, I tried). The keys are responsive and the keyboard, thanks to the large screen, comes with a numeric keypad. The keys are spaced just enough to lower the chances of mistypes.

[caption id="attachment_14339212" align="alignnone" width="1280"] © Provided by CNBCTV18 The insides of the laptop. (Image: Asus)[/caption]

Operating System

I always held that the best books are those that let you focus on the story and not how it is written, and a good device gets the work done without making you realise just how seamlessly its innards work with each other to make it happen.

This is a good device and never gave me trouble though it is running the latest version of Windows OS. As noted earlier, the 12th generation i3 chip is more than capable enough and doesn’t complain even if you run multiple programs simultaneously.

As for the OS, I really didn’t feel the difference. It’s Windows, plain and simple. It’s familiar with a new coat of paint, so I never had to figure out how to get something done. It’s the way Windows has been for decades now.

Battery life

This, if anything, was the most disappointing feature. On a full charge and with the adaptive screen brightness turned on, the battery lasted just under three hours, which is not ideal.

Conclusion

At Rs 49,990, this device is an absolute beast, and I have no qualms in recommending it to anyone who does not have a professional use case. If all you need is a laptop for writing, watching or streaming videos, and web browsing, go for it. But if you want more performance gains from your machine, the Vivobook 15 series also comes with an Intel Core i5 variant that costs Rs 64,990. Both variants come in “Quite Blue” and “Transparent Silver”.

We now live in a world where Rs 50,000 for a laptop is considered a “budget”, so I’ll conclude this by saying the Asus Vivobook 15 is a superb budget device for students and professionals whose workload does not require great computing power.

Also read: Nokia 8210 4G sale to begin in India from today; check price and other details

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