ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404)


The Zenbook 14X OLED is a solid laptop for its price, with a fantastic 120Hz OLED display, unique plasma ceramic aluminum lid and powerful performance.

What's Good?
  • Tough, fingerprint resistant ceramic-like finish
  • Fantastic display
  • Facial recognition in place of a fingerprint scanner
  • A subtle performance upgrade
  • All the ports you need, but one…
What's Not?
  • Heftier and thicker than its predecessors
  • Cooling might be sub-optimal?

Sustainable, premium and powerful. These are probably the keywords that were floating around in the minds of the people coming up with the ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404). As the latest addition to the family, this actually combines elements from yesteryear’s Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition and Zenbook 14 OLED, while taking it up a notch at the same time. With a larger, faster display, a powerful 13th Gen Intel Core H-series processor and the option for a discrete GeForce RTX 3050, this is quite an interesting option for those seeking an ultraportable content creation machine.

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED — What’s Good?

Tough, fingerprint resistant ceramic-like finish

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 Review-14

I always loved ceramic-clad devices like the OG Mi MIX series. The heft and unique sheen to them separates them from the usual glass backs. You can also say that I just like unique materials. The Sandstone Beige Zenbook 14X OLED has what’s dubbed plasma ceramic aluminum for its lid, which is quite different from the usual anodized aluminum finishes you get with most premium laptops. ASUS put the aluminum here through a process known as plasma electrolytic oxidation (PEO) to produce this ceramic-like finish that is harder, more wear-resistant, and most importantly, doesn’t collect fingerprints at all.

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As compared to the aforementioned anodization process which can end up being abraded off over time, the PEO process creates a much tougher aluminum oxide layer. The process also has the advantage of using non-toxic compounds, which ties back to its “sustainability” theme. The monogram motif that graced the lid of the Zenbook 14 OLED makes its way here, laser-etched into the smooth, hard ceramic surface of the Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404)’s lid. Pictures really don’t do this any justice, and you have to see and feel it to believe. And you don’t have to wipe it after you get all handsy with it, because it’s really fingerprint resistant.

Fantastic display

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What’s not fingerprint resistant is the display. Unfortunately, the screen is glossy, which can make working in bright, harshly lit areas a struggle. However if you don’t frequently find yourself in those situations, I would say the Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404)’s display is just perfect. Instead of the 2.8K 90Hz OLED panels used by its predecessors, this 14.5-inch 2.8K 120Hz OLED panel comes straight from the Zenbook Pro Duo 14 OLED. The 0.5-inch larger and 30Hz faster screen might not make itself immediately noticeable, but it’s a nice bonus to have. You even get automatic brightness and color temperature adjustments, depending on your surroundings.

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Like the Zenbook 14 OLED, the hinge goes all the way down to 180-degrees, which makes for more convenient sharing if you want to show your screen to the person opposite you. It also lacks touch capabilities, which can be a bummer if you have gotten accustomed to touch input on your laptop. I must say, while Windows 11 isn’t exactly touch-friendly just yet, I am somewhat enjoying the experience of touching the screen to get what I want instantly, instead of bringing my pointer to it with a trackpad or mouse. But I digress. And oh, ASUS has added profile switching in the MyASUS app, so you can switch your gamut to say sRGB or Display P3, to better suit your workflow.

Facial recognition in place of a fingerprint scanner

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Speaking of a lack of touch, you can unlock the Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404) securely with just your face. The seamless IR facial recognition works flawlessly here. All you need to do is plonk your tush on your seat, turn on your laptop and when it’s at the lockscreen, just look at the laptop screen, and it will unlock. While SSO fingerprint scanners exist, this feels way, way more effortless. The webcam is also capable of 1080p, with some fancy AI features available from both Intel and ASUS in their respective software suites.

A subtle performance upgrade

  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 review Cinebench
  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 review Realbench
  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 review PCMark battery life
  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 review 3DMark
  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 review PCMark
  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 review Superposition

My bad, I fudged the name. The ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (2022) should read ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (2023)

As compared to the last-gen Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition and Zenbook 14 OLED, we see a nice uplift in terms of CPU performance, but GPU performance appears to not have gotten much better. The latest drivers do seem pretty interesting, but perhaps the benchmark performance took a hit? We do have sufficient power headroom, more than last year’s models, so I am not exactly sure what’s going on. The good thing is the battery life also seems to have improved, with over 8 hours clocked in PCMark 10’s battery life.

All the ports you need, but one…

  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 Review-3
  • ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 Review-2

One thing that I absolutely love about all the ASUS laptops that has come across my desk — bar the Zenbook S13 OLED — is that they all come with a full set of ports. A regular ol’ USB-A port, two Thunderbolt 4 ports, a full-sized HDMI 2.1 port and a headphone jack. The only thing that I wish was available on the Zenbook 14X OLED was a full-sized SD card reader. Given that there’s a variant packing a Core i9-13900H and GeForce RTX 3050, a full-sized card reader would be perfect to realize the dream of an ultraportable content creation system.

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED — What’s Not?

Heftier and thicker than its predecessors

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED UX3404 Review-10

On that topic of an ultraportable content creation machine, the ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED is surely one of the most powerful Zenbooks to date, but it is also one of the chonkier ones. Coming in at 1.56kg and 16.9mm, this is not one of those svelte ultraportables that you are used to seeing from the Zenbook family. The Zenbook Pros don’t count, as those pack much beefier performance to live up to their “Pro” moniker. I would like to believe that this is to accommodate the GeForce RTX 3050 in its highest configuration, but given that there’s just a single fan — versus two in the Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition — I am not sure why is it both thicker and heavier than the last-gen offering.

Cooling might be sub-optimal?

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Speaking of which, the cooling system seems to already have its hands full with the Intel Core i7-13700H, so I shudder to think what would happen when the Core i9-13900H and GeForce RTX 3050 is thrown into the equation. On average in Realbench’s stress test, we saw temperatures of 81°C, while drawing an average of 45.98W. Last year’s Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition saw average temperatures of 75°C with an average power draw of 35.9W. So we have a higher power draw but higher temperatures as well, which hints at adequate cooling, but once again, what happens when having to cool a dedicated GPU?

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404) Specifications

ProcessorIntel Core i7-13700H, 14C/20T (6P+8E) @ up to 5.0GHz
24MB L3 cache
Intel 7
Memory16GB LPDDR5-4800 on-board, quad-channel
GraphicsIntel Iris Xe Graphics, 96EU @ up to 1.5GHz
Storage1TB Micron 2450 SSD (M.2 PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe SSD, NVMe 1.4)
Display14.5″ 2.8K 16:10 (2880 x 1800) 120Hz OLED Samsung ATNA45AF01 display
600 nits peak brightness, 100% DCI-P3 gamut, PANTONE Validated
89% screen-to-body ratio
ConnectivityWiFi 6E + Bluetooth 5.3 (Intel Wi-Fi 6E AX211)
2 x Thunderbolt 4 with display-out, USB-PD
1 x USB-A (USB 3.2 Gen 2, 10Gbps)
1 x HDMI 2.1
1 x 3.5mm combo jack
AudioStereo speakers with Smart Amp Technology
harman/kardon (Premium)
Array microphone
Power70WHr, 3-cell Li-ion battery
90W power adapter
Dimensions321.8 x 225.6 x 16.9 mm
Included AccessoriesLaptop sleeve
USB-A to Gigabit LAN dongle
ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404) Specs

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED — should you buy this?

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Yeah. The ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404) is a very solid choice for RM5,999. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not perfect: it should probably be lighter, thinner, cooler and also come with a touchscreen as well as a full-sized SD card slot. Upgradeability would have been nice to have too. But we don’t live in a utopia, and the Zenbook 14X OLED does serve up a superb 14.5-inch 120Hz OLED display, powerful Core i7-13700H, decent battery life, the tough and unique plasma ceramic aluminum lid, along with the world’s most strictly tested military-grade laptop durability. Overall, the value proposition is good, and the pre-installed Office Home & Student is like the icing on top, adding RM529 of value to the whole package.

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Compared to yesteryear’s offerings, you would have to pay RM500 more to get the Zenbook 14X OLED Space Edition with the Core i7-12700H. RM400 less, and you would have the lesser Zenbook 14 OLED (UX3402) with the Core i7-1260P. This strikes a nice middle ground between the two. If you like most of the features you are seeing on the Zenbook 14X OLED, but want to save a few bucks, you can get the Core i5-13500H option for RM4,999, with half the storage. Want more performance? Add RM1,000 for the range-topping variant with the Core i9-13900H, 32GB and GeForce RTX 3050 at RM6,999, but you can’t get it with the sweet ceramic finish. Why? I have no idea. Would have loved the maxed out variant with the special ceramic look and feel, but alas, that’s not an option.

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  1. Proposed or guesstimated Price???

    1. The price of RM5,999 is the official price in Malaysia.

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