Proving that slim does not mean underpowered, ASUS today took the wraps off the Zenbook U500VZ, a powerful 15-inch notebook that's just 0.77 inches thick, but packs a bevvy of high-end specs such as a quad-core Core i7 CPU, optional Nvidia GT650M graphics and a variety of storage options that includes dual SSDs. With a full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) IPS anti-glare display and a backlit keyboard with number pad, the Zenbook U500VZ should appeal to content creators, gamers and anyone who craves plenty of portable power.
With its aluminum shell and "hairline" finish, the U500VZ is designed for style, not just raw performance. However, ASUS is not calling the Zenbook U500VZ an Ultrabook and did not mention weight in its press materials, so we don't know yet how this notebook will stack up against other ultraportable 15-inchers like the MacBook Pro with Retina display and the Samsung Series 9 15-inch. The company claims that the U500VZ's battery life is "impressive" and that its Super Hybrid II software, which controls system speed, will provide 25 percent longer battery life "when it's needed most." We'll put these claims to the test when we get the notebook in for review.
ASUS hasn't released pricing or availability information on the U500VZ, but we suspect it will be available in time for the holidays. The notebook will come in several different configurations, some of which will have dual SSDs with up to 512GB of storage and others will have a single SSD paired with a hard drive. Some configurations will have Nvidia GT650M graphics while others will not.
We look forward to getting a closer look at the Zenbook U500VZ here at IFA Berlin, so stay tuned.