Customer Review

The manufacturer commented on the review belowSee comments
73 of 86 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful, powerful, well-priced laptop with too many flaws., October 29, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: ASUS Zenbook UX31 13-Inch Laptop [OLD VERSION] (Personal Computers)
You can add my name to the list of people who was disappointed with this laptop that I ended up returning it. But before I get into what bothered me, I'll start off with what was great:
1) Design- it is beautiful laptop. Compare it the Macbook Air if you want, but I think it is nicer. The aluminum brush, the tapered edges all make for a nice machine.
2) Weight- very light, although with the aluminum it was still a bit heavier than it could have been. I guess it gives a solid feel to it.
3) Battery life- I barely even need to charge this thing. It lasts for 6+ hours, and on standby, i never needed to plug it in.
4) Screen- 1600x900 is certainly the best in its class, and the screen is very bright. I'll get into the problems later on.
5) Adapters- I was pleasantly surprised to learn that asus provided a VGA and ethernet adapter. Just another thing to brag about when you talk to your apple buddies who pay an extra $60 for adapters.
6) Case- also, something Asus didn't have to include, but did anyways. Very nice, professional case, with matching bag for adapters
7) Power adapter- Compact!

The bad:
1) The trackpad- ok, maybe I haven't used enough touchpads in a while, but I never realized that touchpads could be so problematic. I thought they were one of those components that "just worked". I don't need any of the jitteryness or the overshooting with the touchpad. I should just be able to swipe my finger and go where I need to go. This was not the case with the UX31. Yes, I tried to optimize it with software, new drivers and bios, but still it was not perfect.

2) The keyboard- again, I did not think you can screw up a keyboard! But lo and behold, I was missing keys left and right. I guess I wasn't pressing down hard enough, or not pressing in the center. Whatever the case may be, I shouldn't have to think so hard about typing- I should be able to just sit down and type.

3) Wireless/Internet- With the max performance power setting, my signal was still inferior to my four year old laptop. A worse signal, lower speeds, and very fluctuant. And it doesn't have a 5 GHz channel. And it didn't even seem to connect at 300. And it doesn't have any modern features (like WiDi). Not very promising for a computer I plan on keeping for multiple years. While I'm talking about internet, just want to say that while its great they included the ethernet adapter, it won't be able to do gigabit internet. Kind of a step down, when my 4 year old laptop can...

4) Screen- While the screen resolution was impressive, I'm not a big fan of reflections. Also, the vertical viewing angle was disappointing, although I have read that these viewing angles are pretty good compared to other machines in its class. Maybe my expectations were too high. Perhaps its unreasonable, but I don't think its acceptable to actually have to tilt your screen slightly so you can read the white clock in the windows 7 taskbar.

5) Power connector- it was so thin that jiggling it a bit lost the power connection. Not something I expect to last in the long term.

So those were the things that forced me to return the laptop. I really wanted to like it. But when the really basic, everyday interactions (ie, the touchpad, keyboard, internet, and screen) are all subpar, its just not worth it.
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The manufacturer commented on this review(What's this?)
Posted on Nov 4, 2011 6:02:22 PM PDT
Please check your Device Manager and verify if the touchpad is Sentelic or Elantech. If it is Elantech, it will show that it is Elantech. If it is Sentelic, it won't show the name but rather will just say General or something along those lines. The latest drivers fix the issues a lot of you are having and you can download the latest drivers from http://support.asus.com/download.aspx?SLanguage=en&p=3&s=368&m=UX31E&os=&hashedid=GKaPKXPAHSUhQiWZ. When you select the TouchPad download category you will see the latest update for Sentelic and for Elantech.

To fix the wireless issue some of you are experiencing, please download the latest WLAN driver from http://support.asus.com/download.aspx?SLanguage=en&p=3&s=368&m=UX31E&os=&hashedid=GKaPKXPAHSUhQiWZ.

Best Regards,

ASUS Notebook Support
 
 
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Comments

Tracked by 5 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 15 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 29, 2011 6:17:49 PM PDT
Thanks for this unbiased review. Most of the issues you mentioned are dealbreakers for me and I'll probably hold off until Lenovo releases their ultrabook.

Posted on Nov 1, 2011 3:04:56 PM PDT
I would like to add a couple of points to this very detailed and useful review: when I received Zenbook the wifi signal was horrible. I called customer service, and they walked me through installing an updated driver for the network adapter. It worked like a charm ever since. As for the track pad, it is quite annoying at first and does take some getting used to. Lastly, the keyboard was actually a bit of an upgrade for me because my previous laptop was an 11 inch size with keys too close to each other, but I can't speak for someone coming from the experience of a 13 inch or larger size laptop.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2011 9:37:15 PM PDT
Pedro Rivera says:
Mohamad, Could you please tell me what number you called to get your wifi issue fixed? I received mine on Friday, wireless is really bad, my other laptops have full bars when this one barely gets 2, I can believe this is happening with a computer that cost over a grand, if can't fix it will return it, btw mine already had the latest driver out of the box.

A comment by the manufacturer   (What's this?)
Posted on Nov 4, 2011 6:02:22 PM PDT
ASUS Support says:
(MANUFACTURER)
Please check your Device Manager and verify if the touchpad is Sentelic or Elantech. If it is Elantech, it will show that it is Elantech. If it is Sentelic, it won't show the name but rather will just say General or something along those lines. The latest drivers fix the issues a lot of you are having and you can download the latest drivers from http://support.asus.com/download.aspx?SLanguage=en&p=3&s=368&m=UX31E&os=&hashedid=GKaPKXPAHSUhQiWZ. When you select the TouchPad download category you will see the latest update for Sentelic and for Elantech.

To fix the wireless issue some of you are experiencing, please download the latest WLAN driver from http://support.asus.com/download.aspx?SLanguage=en&p=3&s=368&m=UX31E&os=&hashedid=GKaPKXPAHSUhQiWZ.

Best Regards,

ASUS Notebook Support

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 6, 2011 9:44:54 AM PST
JohnSays says:
Thank you for adding to this review ASUS. I want to like this computer and buy it, but too many reviews complain about the keyboard. Is there a fix coming or extant for this?

Posted on Nov 9, 2011 12:43:02 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 9, 2011 12:47:09 AM PST
ASUS Support: two suggestions about the touchpad driver update:

1) at least put the information you provided here on your download page. I wasted one hour to figure out which one that I suppose to download until I found this page. It is bad enough to put badly behaved touchpad in the market in the first place. It was worse to not provide sufficient information so users can upgrade themselves with confidence. That information could be easily added to your download website if you could think from a user's perspective who has just bought a new product which yet need the fix.

2) For the information you provided here, it is insufficient for users not very familiar with Win7 operating system. It took me (I regard myself as an advanced user) some uneasy five minutes to get the information about it is Sentelic or Elantech: Device Manager ->Mice and other pointing devices->Finger Sensing Pad (double click on it to open up the detail windows). A little bit care for your customer goes long way to help you accumulate goodwill for your company. I haven't used the product yet so I cannot comment on its useability.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 10, 2011 12:48:42 AM PST
Telstar says:
I think not....it was a deal killer for me.....

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2011 7:10:29 AM PST
So what's the conclusion? do the new drivers fix the touchpad? It's a deal breaker if it doesn't work well.

Posted on Nov 16, 2011 2:18:31 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 16, 2011 2:19:13 PM PST
Chicago John says:
I have an ASUS K50IJ and the touchpad on it has never worked right even after multiple sessions with ASUS "Technical Service". I finally just gave up and bought a wireless mouse. While this computer has been good otherwise, I'll never buy another ASUS computer for this reason. I had a Dell Latitude 810 before and the touchpad on that was flawless. It's a pain to have to carry a mouse around and when I don't have it, the touchpad jumps around making use of the computer for anything involving typing very problematic. ASUS's response to my problem was "tough luck."

Posted on Nov 23, 2011 9:29:50 AM PST
I concur with this poster. I also had trouble with the trackpad and the wireless internet. I returned the laptop and got a different Ux31. Again, same exact problems. The wifi just didn't work and would just shut off randomly. The trackpad was buggy as well. The laptop was beautiful and I waited literally months for it and I am very disappointed. =[ I ended up getting the Toshiba Protege ultrabook and so far it is great...
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