ASUS P-Series P2430UA-XH53 Business Laptop Review
For a small-medium business or sole proprietorship, you need a business laptop that is durable, reliable, and has staying power. The ASUS P-Series P2430UA-XH53 does exactly that, and does so, with a timeless style. This model has all the features you’d need in a small-medium business (SMB) laptop: light weight profile, useful connectivity, durable and a comfortable keyboard. To the design, it adds strong performance and a battery that lasts just over 16 hours. If you’re looking for a business laptop that will remain relevant for a few more here, the Asus P2430UA-XH53 should be at the top of your short list.
Design and Build
The latest Asus notebook is identical to the ASUS P-Series P2440UQ-XS71, an upgraded iteration released this year, with the same plastic body, a 14-inch display, but comes with a better resolution screen. The top lid is made of plastic rather than aluminum, the body is made of plastic too. In the business category, we rarely see an aluminum lid, but Lenovo do have a ThinkPad 13 with an aluminum cover sans a fingerprint reader. If a metallic body is a must-have, Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Pro is worth a look.
It measures 1 by 13.4 by 9.5 inches (HWD) and weighs 4.3 pounds, just an hair thicker than its 15-inch version, to accommodate the included fingerprint reader in a small body. It’s thicker and heavier than the ASUS ZenBook UX330UA-AH54 (0.5 inches, 2.6 pounds), but in the same ballpark with the Lenovo ThinkPad 13 (0.78 inches, 3.13 pounds).
The 14-inch matte display has a 1366-by-768 resolution, which is failrly lower, especially when notebooks that cost almost half boast of Full HD resolutions. Still, large spreadsheets with numbers and text appear crisp clear. It can also show video in 720p, while you’re not working, meaning you can catch a few episodes of your favorite TV show as you relax on a cross-country flight. Screen is bright enough, and comes with an anti-glare coating that subdues reflections. This is a scratch resistant TN (Twisted-Nematic) panel, so we didn’t expect it to be crisp as an IPS panel, but it still puts on a good showing.
Like most business laptops, the P-Series is designed to withstand most work environments, whether its an office, outdoors or cross country flights. As a result, we didn’t expected the cover design to be as smooth as what you’d find on ultraportables, most with metallic bodies that pick scratches easily. The system feels sturdy and can withstand daily commute without picking scratches, and can fit in a backpack easily.
Keyboard and Touchpad
One advantage the P-Series gets over its competitors must be the keyboard. It isn’t back-lit, but is comfortable and well placed. It has a full number pad for the accounting executives, especially when you have a few spreadsheets to finish. With full size, scalloped keys, it is possible to type all day in comfort. In fact, it is one of the best I’ve typed on an SMB laptop, the other one being the Lenovo ThinkPad 13’s full size keyboard. The touchpad is well set, so it won’t be unfamiliar if you’re upgrading from a dated laptop to this millennial-ready system.
On the left side of the keyboard surface, it has a fingerprint scanner. This feature takes protection and data access authorization to another level. It uses sensors, which are less affected by the skin surface conditions such as worn, dry, oily, dirty, or calloused skin. This fingerprint scanner is compatible with Windows Hello that allows you to log into your laptop in a matter of seconds. This is also an important extra layer of protection to ensure your computer and files are secure at all times.
Almost all notebooks released this year have the future-looking USB Type-C port, but thuis being a system from last year, we didn’t expect it here. For connectivity all you get are three USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, one HDMI port and a VGA port. The rest of the I/O ports include a microphone/headphone out jack, an RJ45 port for LAN, an SD card reader and a DVD drive. Wireless connectivity comes by way of dual-band 802.11A/C and Bluetooth 4.1, alongside a VGA Webcam for conference call and video chats.
Being a business laptop, it gets another layer of security via an embedded Trusted Platform Module (TPM) Security Chip that offers protection on the deep hardware level, alongside a fingerprint scanner. Also, it has a service door, which is located at the bottom of the laptop that offers easy access for the repairs and improved productivity, like adding more RAM and storage.
Our review unit has 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD, which is becoming standard among budget business systems. Both amounts are perfectly sufficient for a medium business or office, and you’ll be able to multitask all day. If you need more, the RAM and storage can be upgraded later. Thankfully, the SSD offers plenty of free storage: Windows 7 Professional (upgradable to Windows 10) and a few other utilities are the only pre-installed programs.
Performance: ASUS P-Series P2430UA-XH53
Powering the P2430UA-XH53 is a 2.3GHz Intel Core i5 (6th Gen) 6200U processor and intel HD 520 grapgics card. Advances in CPU technology and SSD’s throughput help the system achieve solid performance. With this configuration, the scores well in benchmark tests, making it good enough business-related multitasking. You can even play games in your down time, although you wont be getting butter-smooth graphics on modern titles. If you’re buying for your company, it stands out as one of those systems that will serve you well over four to eight years before it can depreciate its capital expense.
Battery life is excellent. The new Asus laptop will last just over 16 hours of continuous use, while its 15-inch model lasted 9 hours and 13 minutes on our rundown tests, which is several hours longer than most desktop-replacement laptops that pass off as business laptops. This is much better than pack leaders like the 2017 ThinkPad 13’s 12 hours 9 minutes, while the Apple MacBook Pro lasting 16 hours 38 minutes. With the ASUS XH53 fully charged, you’ll be able to set a trip from JFK to Nicaragua, with more minutes to spare, and can see you through a conference.
An Efficient Business Laptop You Can Buy
The ASUS P-Series P2430UA-XH53 is a prime choice if you want a stylish, yet understated laptop for your business, or home office. It is powerful enough for office tasks (and then some), is durable, you can type ll-day, it has exemplary battery life, and it won’t break the bank. It sits at the top of the Asus P-series, and costs sligthly less tahn most business laptops in the same category, but has a solid feature set including a snappy SSD storage and all day battery life.
In 2017, the system got an upgrade in the ASUS P-Series P2440UQ-XS71, with the same design, but has a dedicated graphics card, a larger 512GB SSD for storgae, 12GB system memory and a seventh-generation processor. That said, the Apple MacBook Pro (2016) remains our Editors’ Choice business laptop with its timeless design, metallic construction, improved battery life and better performance than its Windows competitors. It comes with Mac OS, though. If Windows is a must-have in your checklist, the Asus XH53 (or its newer iteration) are worth a longer look as you shop around.