Over the course of the holidays, I had a chance to take Asus’ Vivobook x405 for a spin and boy did it impress! So much so that my folks wanted to take it home with them XD
The Vivobook x405, as its code suggests, is the 14-inch mainstream laptop offering that Asus puts out. Do not be deceived by this being mainstream as it comes packing a punch with each and every configuration you might find out there. What was loaned to me had inside it an Intel Core i5-7200U with 12 Gigs of RAM (crazy right!) running Windows 10 Pro, it’s quite the powerhouse even managing to run gaming benchmarks well enough despite not having a discrete GPU. There are plenty of SKUs that have discrete options so if you might be looking for it, keep this information in mind.
Asus put Nano-bezels in this generation of Vivobook models and it makes for a fantastic viewing experience while using the device – having only 7.7mm on both sides of the display. The x405 has a 1080p FHD matte screen that is perfect for any type of lighting situation at the expense of otherwise punchy and contrasty colors from alternative screens. Going with FullHD is a very smart move for this mainstream line as many users are still having a difficult time utilizing displays with resolutions above it having to deal with really small buttons if configured incorrectly. Web pages, movies, and any other type of multimedia would not encounter problems running on the x405.
I had the pleasure of testing out a unit with the Metallic Star Gray finish which is an aluminum alloy with a brushed hairline texture which elevated the entire experience to premium heights. It is not scuff free however so keeping a cleaning cloth close at hand is a good idea to keep it looking fancy. This model also had a biometric fingerprint reader integrated into the trackpad and while I felt at first that it was a weird placement, there was not a time that it had come up as a bother while I was testing the device.
In terms of battery, specification aside, it felt like it could run for an extremely long time. I had watched a couple of movies on it off power starting at around 64% and the x405 yielded just a little over 20% loss which is really good considering the size of the screen and the power that’s being driven behind it. It’s very good power management at work and I can just imagine taking it out pre-flight or whenever a chance presents itself while waiting and not having to worry about trying to find a spot close to a power outlet where I’d hook up to.
I did have some issue with the keyboard because of the way the “enter” key was shaped… I kept mistyping because of it but its something that you’ll eventually get used to. There is also a slight curve towards the center of the device but it had no effect on the overall look, feel, and performance of the unit – especially when closed.
Despite being on the larger side of laptops – having a 14-inch screen, (hardly portable nowadays wouldn’t you agree?) the x405 was very light clocking in at 1.3kilos only. It wouldn’t break one’s back carrying it around and with so much power, productivity is almost a given (social media notwithstanding XD).
The x405 is a very good computing device faced with very little compromise; it has the build quality we’ve come to expect of Asus, all the ports you might need at an instance, a no-frills design in terms of ergonomics, and the stamina and power to keep up with day-to-day computing tasks and then some. Make sure to check one out if you’re in the market for a daily driver. There is certainly a Vivobook configuration out there to fit your needs to a T. I’d give it a solid 4 in my scale, and comes in highly recommended.