The new ASUS VivoBook S15 S530U was first announced back in Computex 2018 and just recently, it finally reaches our shores and available for Malaysian consumers. It sports a brand new design with ErgoLift hinge and eye-catching colour combination. Read on to find out what do we think of the new VivoBook S15, the ultrabook where everyone can own.
The Vivobook S530U comes in a rather simple and compact cardboard box with just the VivoBook branding at the front.
The box carries:
- ASUS VivoBook S15 S530U
- 65Wh charger
The new design is the key highlight of this new generation of VivoBook. What we have here is the unique Firmament Green colour option.
Malaysians get to choose from these 4 colours:
- Gun Metal
- Icicle Gold
- Firmament Green
- Star Grey
Only the Firmament Green colour has this special woven texture on it.
The chassis is thin and lightweight, just like the previous VivoBooks. What’s new is this ErgoLift hinge display kickstand where it raises the keyboard for better typing ergonomics as well as improving the airflow under the laptop. But if you always use a laptop on your lap, you might find that the ErgoLift hinge is biting into your knees.
Cold air is taken in from the bottom and then exhausted from the top. Acoustically, it is not the best since the display is reflecting the fan noise back to the user.
While the chassis is mostly made out of plastic, with the exception of the aluminium lid, overall, the laptop still feels robust. Weighing at 1.6KG, this 15.6-inch laptop has pretty impressive weight to size ratio.
Connectivity and ports
On the right side of the laptop, we have 2 USB 3.1 gen1 port, 1 Type-A and 1 Type-C. Unfortunately, the Type-C port we have here does not support Thunderbolt 3 and you cannot charge the laptop using a Type-C charger. There are HDMI and 3.5mm audio combo jack.
On the left side of the laptop, you’ll find 2 more USB Type-A port, just that they’re USB 2.0. The card reader only accepts the microSD card.
That is a pretty good selection of ports but however, we would prefer ASUS to use SD card reader instead.
Opening up the lid for the first time and booting it up. the only thing I saw is how thin those side bezels are for this 15.6-inch 1080p display. This design was first introduced in ASUS’s laptops last year and dubbed as the “NanoEdge display”. Honestly, I liked how thin the side bezels are compared to other laptops. Thinner bezels mean the entire laptop can be shrunken down in its overall footprint too.
The microphones and webcam are situated at the top.
What we’re seeing here is a 1080p Full HD IPS display panel. The panel itself may not be of the highest quality out there, but the wide viewing angle and crisp colours would definitely worth every cent you paid for a laptop of this budget range.
Trackpad and keyboard
The keyboard has a slightly concaved profile and it feels really good to type on. The scissor membrane switch used here is pretty alright and not as mushy as many other laptops out there.
The touchpad has a built-in fingerprint reader that supports Windows Hello. Tracking is excellent with Windows Precision Driver just that the clicking feel is still the subpar mechanical style. Besides, the bottom of the touchpad feels kinda hollow.
In terms of performance, this model we have here comes with 8th Gen Intel Core i5 processor with 4GB RAM. While 4GB is not exactly what I would say sufficient for our kind of multitasking use, but for light web browsing, office work and casual gaming, it should not be a problem. That being said, users can upgrade the RAM since the motherboard has 2 DIMM slots. Still, we really hope that at least 8GB RAM would come with the base model.
Speaking of gaming, the VivoBook S15 S530U now comes with a dedicated GPU, the NVIDIA GeForce MX150. Mind you that the MX150 has great performance, almost as good as a desktop-class NVIDIA GeForce GT 1030. I’m not saying you can max out all the settings on PUBG but at least some of those games are playable at lowered or medium settings. Besides, there are a lot of limitations for a GPU to fully perform in a laptop, for instance, cooling capabilities.
Another impressive addition to the S530U is the 1TB mechanical hard disk alongside with the SATA SSD. This particular model we have here comes with 256GB SSD and 1TB HDD. The base model comes with 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD. That means users now have a fast and responsive system with plenty of internal storage.
The laptop comes with a 42Wh 3-cell battery. Combined with the power-efficient Intel Core i5-8250U processor, I’m getting around 7 hours of battery life on Google Chrome typing articles and Facebooking. When you fire up a game, the MX150 will kick in and start churning out the frames and empty the battery in around 3 hours.
Wrapping up the ASUS VivoBook S530U review
Comparing to the VivoBook S510U, ASUS has breathed a new lift into the VivoBook series with the new design and bold colours. We especially like how the ErgoLift actually improves the overall user experience, audio quality and thermal performance. The NanoEdge display while not being new, still contributes to the shrinkage of the laptop’s footprint and weight.
The price starts at
- RM2899 for Intel Core i5, MX150, 4GB, 128GB+1TB
- RM3299 for Intel Core i5, MX150, 4GB, 256GB+1TB
- RM3899 for Intel Core i7, MX150, 4GB, 256GB+1TB
Some might comment that the laptop is way overpriced with just 4GB RAM, 256GB SSD and MX150 graphics. For a laptop purchase, one has to factor in multiple aspects that make the laptop stand out from the rest. In this case, the ASUS Vivobook family has always put the focus on portability, design and reasonable performance.
Half the price of those XPS and ZenBooks, these are the laptops for those who are looking for a thin and lightweight laptop that has a reasonable performance for everyday computing without breaking the bank.