Asus' laptop lineup is wide-ranging, with excellent budget picks, premium 2-in-1s and some of the most respected gaming notebooks on the market. Which Asus is best for you? The business-minded AsusPro? The classy and elegant ZenBook? An affordable but shiny VivoBook? Or maybe an aggressive, powerful notebook aimed at the Republic of Gamers? Here, you'll learn the differences in Asus' wide variety of laptops and some of the best notebooks from each line.
Alphabet Soup and Number Stew
Most of Asus' model names include a combination of letters and numbers. It's confusing, but there is some logic to it. For example, Asus' Q series laptops are all 2-in-1s, while the UX series are ZenBooks C series are Chromebooks and the GX, GL and G series are all part of the Republic of Gamers line. The rest — the K, X, E, Q, B, V and F series — tend to be low-cost notebooks and are often (but not always) folded into the VivoBook line. When they aren't, they're sold without any sub-brand.
As for the numbers, they appear to be mostly related to screen size. The first digit represents screen size (a 3 for a 13-incher or the occasional 12.5-incher, a 4 for a 14-inch display, 5 for a 15-inch display, 7 for 17-inch display, etc.). The other numbers vary from model to model as unique identifiers.
ZenBook Series: Best overall
Asus' ZenBook line is the top-notch series for consumers. These notebooks have sleek looks, often in beautiful colors with striking accents. Throw in powerful components, including speedy processors and high-resolution displays, and you get laptops rivaling Apple's MacBook Pro, Dells XPS and other top-notch PCs. Here are some of our favorite Asus ZenBooks:
Asus ZenBook UX501VW (Buy): This laptop offers top-tier performance in an attractive, all-metal chassis. Its Nvidia 960M GPU adds a bit of punch to apps like Photoshop, and its Thunderbolt 3 port is forward-looking for the latest accessories. At $1,499, it's a steal compared to pro-level 15-inch notebooks from competitors.
Asus ZenBook 3 UX390UA (Buy): The ZenBook 3 is a class act. It has a beautiful design that's even thinner than Apple's MacBook, a vibrant display and a strong performance. Its battery life could be longer, and it has just one port, which makes it hard to charge your $1,020 device while using peripherals.
Asus ZenBook UX330UA (Buy): Don't want to spend a premium on a great laptop? The ZenBook UX330UA is just $760, and you still get long battery life, a great display and a USB Type-C port for data. There's a bunch of bloatware to uninstall, but you can't argue with it at that price.
MORE: Best Asus Laptops
VivoBook: Mainstream on a budget
Want a solid laptop without dropping a ton of money? Asus' VivoBook brand encompasses a series of general-purpose laptops for mainstream consumers. These machines might not be as fancy as notebooks from the ZenBook line, but you'll get all of the features you need for everyday use in any size you like. Here's our favorite VivoBook: Asus VivoBook E403SA (Buy): How much can $399 get you? A ton. The E403SA offers a lightweight design, charging over USB Type-C and a 1080p display. Oh, and it has a whopping 9-hour battery life. Talk about a great deal. It can run a little warm on the bottom, but that's the only flaw we could find with it.
Asus ROG: Ready for gaming
Want to play your games on high settings? It's time to join the Republic of Gamers. Asus' ROG laptops might not have all of the flashing RGB lights that you'll find on Razer and Alienware machines, but it makes up for that in raw power. Here are some of our favorite ROG notebooks:
Asus ROG G752VS OC Edition (Buy (opens in new tab)) OC stands for overclocked, and so the G752VS comes with an overpowered Intel Core i7 CPU and Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 GPU out of the box. The $2,499 laptop has a brilliant, futuristic design and manages to stay cool even when pumping out games at high frame rates. It's one of our favorite 17-inch gaming laptops around.
Asus ROG Strix GL753 (Buy) The Strix is Asus' $1,299 intro gaming machine and comes with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti GPU. It also happens to be the first ROG laptop with an RGB backlit keyboard. In addition, this notebook boasts a vivid display and above-average battery life, though the touchpad is a little finicky.
AsusPro: Meant for business
The AsusPro line is meant for business users who need light, ultraportable laptops that also meet military-grade reliability standards. We haven't had the chance to review a ton of these, but we did check out the most recent, which we found made a few too many compromises.
AsusPro B9440 (Buy (opens in new tab)) It's just 0.6 inches thin and has a nearly bezel-less display, but the B9440 has traded the ports that enterprise users need so it can be sleek. It uses two USB Type-C ports, and, in a strange decision, has no webcam.
Chromebooks: For students and those who need the basics
Whether you're a student who just needs a browser or a professional who needs only the basics and some web apps, Asus has a Chromebook with your name on it. Chrome OS may not be the most full-featured OS out there, but many of these machines will soon be able to use Android apps, and they're generally quite affordable.
Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA (Buy) The $470 Flip is expensive for a Chromebook, but you'll get a bright 1080p display, a 2-in-1 design perfect for Android apps and almost 9 hours of battery life.
Asus Chromebook C202SA (Buy) The Chromebook C202 is just short of bulletproof. It'll withstand drops with aplomb, and even if this laptop breaks, it's designed to be repaired. It's heavier than the competition, but you get over 8 hours of battery life and one of the best keyboards we've ever used.
Transformer Book Series: Convertible and detachable 2-in-1s
Asus' Transformer Books comprise both convertible and detachable 2-in-1s, often for affordable prices with entry-level specs. We haven't seen a ton of these in our labs recently, but here's what we liked:
Asus Transformer Mini T102HA (Buy) This 10-inch 2-in-1 has a small keyboard and sluggish performance, but makes up for that with a vivid display and over 12 hours of battery life.
Photos: Jeremy Lips / Tom's Guide