The much anticipated UX31A and UX32VD Ultrabooks from Asus are finally available from Amazon US and . The UX31A, which starts at a very reasonable price, is being marketed by Asus as the ‘Zenbook Prime’ which we’ve been hearing about over the last few months. According to Asus, a Zenbook achieves the ‘Prime’ denotation as long as it has the 1080p IPS display, SSD, and a backlit keyboard. The UX32VD is thus being marketed simply as a Zenbook because it lacks the SSD.
Asus Zenbook Prime UX31A
We’ve got to say that Asus appears to be leading the Ultrabook pack from a value perspective. The Zenbook Prime leverages Asus’ original Zenbook design while equipping premium features and Intel’s new Ivy Bridge platform, all for a surprisingly attractive price.
Starting at $1129 you can get your hands on a the UX31A-DB51 with the following:
- 13.3″ 1920×1080 IPS display
- Ivy Bridge Core i5-3317U @ 1.7GHz
- 128GB SSD
- 4GB of fast 1600MHz RAM
- 2xUSB 3.0
- micro HDMI
- mini VGA
- full SD
- 3.5mm headphone/mic combo
- 50Wh battery
For detailed specifications see the UX31A tracking page in our Ultrabook database.
The biggest complaints about the original Sandy Bridge-based Zenbook UX31E were the keyboard and screen. Both of which have been reworked in this new model. The IPS display is leading the laptop market in contrast ratio, and AnandTech says that the (now backlit) keyboard “is worlds better to type on”.
- US — If you’re interested in the UX31A-DB51 as described above, take a look at it on Amazon’s page here [affiliate link].
- DE – UX31A-R4004V
If you’ve got a bigger budget, Amazon is offering a $1599 option which is currently listed as shipping in 3-6 weeks. This is the UX31A-DB72 [DE: UX31A-R4003V] and includes all of the above except it bumps the processor to the Core i7-3517U and the SSD up to 256GB. There’s also a middle ‘Amazon Exclusive‘ option which gives you the 256GB SSD with Core i5 for $1349 (it’s currently out of stock).
The Zenbook Prime UX31A has shaped up to be a very attractive device thanks to solid pricing. Our only reservation is the port set which uses micro HDMI and mini VGA where we’d prefer to see full-sized ports, and although both USB ports have been updated to USB 3.0 over the original, we still think that a third USB port would be very useful.
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