Identifying the best performing size-zero laptop of the year is an interesting hunt. Performance matters here as much as in any other laptop category.
When it comes to ultrabooks available in the market, they don’t offer as much performance, say, as mainstream notebooks or gaming laptops would. They’re after all slim, trim, razor thin mobile computers, we mustn’t forget, and therefore we can’t high expectations in terms of performance. Having said that, ultrabook performance has only improved over the past year. Due to hardware improvements and shrinking components, thin and light laptops are able to deliver performance than ever before. Following are the year’s best performing ultrabooks. All of them are highly recommended for a wide variety of consumers who are looking to not only flaunt size zero notebooks but also expect speed.
Zero1 Winner: ASUS Zenbook UX305LA
The 13-inch Zenbook UX305LA weighs just 1.3 kg and it looks too thin to throw any sort of performance punch. However, its combination of Intel Core i7-5500U processor, 8GB RAM and 512GB SSD helps it score very high on our PCMark benchmark – higher than most Mainstream and Hybrid laptops we’ve tested and featured here within Zero1, and obviously all candidates here within ultrabooks. While its graphics capabilities are in line with the second placed Dell XPS 13, the Zenbook offers slightly better battery life in comparison with the Dell, which helps it score marginally higher overall in terms of performance – 64 vs 60 out of 100. All things considered, not only is the ASUS Zenbook is an attractive ultrabook to show off, it’s also a power-packed machine which scores high on processing tasks, multitasking and battery life.
Price: Rs. 97,990
Second: Dell XPS 13
If it weren’t for the Dell XPS 13’s Intel Core i3-5010U processor, which is vastly weaker in terms of the ASUS Zenbook’s Core i7, it would have easily won this year’s Zero1 Award. Sleek, sexy and appealing on the eye, the Dell XPS 13 (9343) actually is the lightest ultrabook we reviewed this year, weighing just 1.18 kg which is very good given its 13-inch form factor.
It also offers extremely minimalistic screen bezel, slightly better screen brightness and contrast ratio than the Zenbook, and an overall well-rounded thin notebook that is well-deserving of its runner’s up spot and easily one of the best ultrabooks to have launched in the Indian market this year. Recommended for anyone who’s looking to buy an ultrabook around the `70k mark. You will love it, it’s so good. No kidding.
Price: Rs. 69,390
Third: HP Elitebook Folio 1020 G1
Although sold as a business machine, the HP Elitebook 1040 is an equally minimalistic ultrabook. Solid, compact and well-crafted, the Elitebook strikes a very good balance of performance and ultraportability. It has an Intel Core M processor supported by 8GB of RAM and fast-paced 256GB M.2 SSD storage. The whole unit weighs just 1.2 kg, offers a better screen experience than both ASUS Zenbook and Dell XPS combined, and a respectable processor and battery performance. If anyone’s considering an ultrabook for business-facing usage (security, maintenance, support, etc) in mind, definitely take a look at the Elitebook Folio 1020 G1.
Price: Rs. 1,25,580
Best Buy: ASUS Zenbook UX305FA
A a slim, trim 13-inch ultraportable that can be easily mistaken for more than what it’s worth. It’s sleek, ultraportable, and has fast-paced internal hardware, covering most bases, if not more. The best part about is its price! It is recommended for everyone who wants a very good ultraportable notebook without having to spend a fortune to acquire it.
Price: Rs. 50,999