Asus VivoBook Pro Offers Solid Value at Higher-Than-Expected Price

Today, Asus made the VivoBook Pro N580 available for sale, but it's not carrying the ultra-affordable $799 starting price that the company touted at May's Computex event. Priced at $1,299 with a quad-core Intel Core i7 CPU, 1080p screen, Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics, a 512GB SSD and 16GB of RAM, it's targeted at creative professionals who don't want a less expensive alternative to systems like the MacBook Pro 15-inch and Dell XPS 15.

Though it offers modest frame rates in demanding games, the Nvidia 1050 graphics will give video editors, photographers and 3D modelers the performance boost they need. The generous amount of solid-state storage and RAM also make it easy to work with large files such as 4K videos. It's unfortunate, however, that the panel is limited to 1920 x 1080 resolution when many creative professionals are working in Ultra HD.

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And while we wish it were launching at the $799 price Asus claimed it would, it's still $300 less than a similarly spec'd Dell XPS 15. The one major difference between those two machines, though, is that the VivoBook Pro packs a non-PCIe SSD, while the XPS 15's is a faster PCIe drive.

Additionally, VivoBook Pro N580 has room for an additional storage drive, speakers certified by the audio geniuses at Harmon Kardon and an integrated fingerprint sensor. Coming in a hue Asus calls Icicle Gold, the notebook measures 0.81 inches thick and weighs 4.85 pounds, so it isn't exactly super-portable.

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