Performance & Upgradeability
Let’s talk performance first. Here’s the list of hardware that the ZenBook 3 Deluxe has:
- Intel i7-7500U
- Intel HD Graphics 620
- 16GB LPDDR3 2133MHz RAM (soldered)
- 1TB Gen. 3 PCIe x4 NVMe SSD
From the specs above, we obviously know that the ZenBook 3 Deluxe is not meant for gaming – so let’s just skip that segment entirely.
As you might have seen on the spec list above, the ZenBook 3 Deluxe comes with a 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD. With great speed obviously comes with a heavy price tag – and with that RM8,299 price tag, at least a third of that price tag is for this NVMe SSD alone.
With this form factor, the Intel Core i7-7500U coupled with 16GB of RAM is actually pretty sufficient for some creative work on Adobe’s software suite – but the lack of a dedicated graphics card make it absymal to work on heavier stuff. Take After Effects or Premiere Pro as examples.
It uses T5 Torx screwdrivers and once these screws were removed, the entire backplate pops off easily. Easy to work with, actually.
Once opened, I don’t expect any of the parts to be upgradeable, to be honest. To my surprise, the NVMe SSD is actually connected via an M.2 slot. So I thought to myself – why not remove the NVMe SSD and have a look at it?
The M.2 2280 SSD is wrapped with a piece of aluminium – presumably for better shielding from the surrounding electronics. It’s not going to be a heatsink as the SSD isn’t thermally in contact with the aluminium wrap anyway. It’s just an aluminium sock that’s screwed on the motherboard together with the M.2 SSD, per se.
Removing the sock reveals that the SSD ASUS opted for the ASUS ZenBook 3 Deluxe is actually a Samsung MZVLW1T0HMLH 1TB SSD which is manufactured with MLC NAND flash.
Other parts of the ASUS ZenBook 3 Deluxe is pretty simple to access and clean up too. The processor is where most of the heat will be – and once again, it did burn my lap when the laptop is in direct contact with my skin.