Asus Business Pro Testers: Workstation Evaluation

Asus Business Pro Testers: Workstation Evaluation

As laboratory tests do not always reflect the real experience you can have with a high-tech product, we have created the Pro Tests. Our goal: to select companies and offer them the opportunity to put innovative equipment or services to the test in their daily lives. An opportunity for ZDNet readers to try new products, influence their peers and provide visibility to their professional activity. After sharing their opinions with us about the design and ergonomics of the ultraportable Asus ExpertBook B9 (reference 90NX02K1-M01760) and its capabilities in a mobile situation, our readers are evaluating the Asus Business solution in their office work environment and home office. This solution consists of a 14-inch ultra-portable computer, a SimPro Dock docking station and an Asus ZenScreen MB16ACM mobile screen.

Olivier Perroquin, President, inWebo Technologies

Olivier's opinion on the Asus ExpertBook B9 ultraportable

As part of my professional activity, I was able to test the ultraportable Asus ExpertBook B9 under real-life conditions. I was therefore led to install our business software, but also the product packages that allow us to work in security today. So in addition to the Office suite and the usual browsers (I use them all), I also installed a VPN, secure video conferencing Tixeo, Slack, etc.

Everything went well, the power of the Asus ExpertBook B9 ensures very fast installation, but also worry-free daily use of the performance. B9 keeps starting up and shutting down quickly. Note the silence of the machine. Could not hear any fans, but maybe not? I doubt it anyway, and it’s not particularly warm.

I really appreciated the very complete SimPro Dock, which in a single socket brings all the available ports (USB Type-A, USB Type-C, mini-jack, HDMI, VGA, etc.) and B9 power supply. My desktop screen stays connected to the dock as well as a mouse.

The ultraportable Asus ExpertBook B9 seen and tested by Olivier

Everything works perfectly except the audio deportation, which is essential for video conferencing during confinement. In fact, it seems that the PC no longer knows where its headphone jack is, and it produces only very faint sound either on the computer or on the docking station. Additionally, it is not clear how to select the sound card on the B9 laptop or docking station. I ended up using a USB headset connected to ExpertBook B9 directly.

No one still regrets this docking station, which is very comfortable to use and which greatly simplifies the arrival or departure of the office. »

Olivier Perroquin CEO of Webo Technologies.
inWebo multi-factor strong authentication ensures access against identity theft, account theft and phishing. inWebo offers a complete SaaS platform for managing strong authentication. Adopted by more than 300 customers and 5 million users worldwide, it combines two key elements: maximum security and a smooth user experience.

Bruno Fossard, Customer Support Director, Naxos

Bruno's review of the Asus ExpertBook B9 ultraportable

The ultra-portable Asus ExpertBook B9 is a standard configuration running on an Intel Core processor i7 and Windows 10, there was no reason why there should be any incompatibility, including with our business applications, and there has not been.

I never needed to bring it to its limits, including our business applications, on the Internet and even less in office automation, but since I’m not a gamer, I was curious to saturate it to see if it gets hot or noisy at full load . So I put it together with two specific tools : in user benchmarkthis gives a score Desktop with 76% with a score of 246% for SSDbut a very low score for the graphics card and I did not feel any overheating or heard the fan kick in. With 3DMarkwhich gave it a score CPU of 2 332 and a graphics score of 353, I was able to get it warm enough to trigger the fan, which you can barely hear in the open space, but will be quite noticeable in quiet surroundings. This test also confirms that this ultraportable is not made for 3D use.

Compared to most of our PCs, overall it is at least as good and it is clearly the lightest of them all. ! It is also so light that one would like to deal with a model and it is its main asset !

Asus ExpertBook B9 ultraportable and the ZenScreen mobile screen from the Asus Business solution seen by Bruno

I used his secondary monitor at the same time as a 24 screen inches and with its SimPro Dock, hub-type, thanks to which it is very easy to turn it into a workstation ; There are actually a host of connectors, with an SD memory card reader, USB Type-A, USB Type-C ports, an HDMI output, two DisplayPort outputs, an analog VGA output, a mini-jack audio connector and a RJ45 network port. In short, it is very complete !

I’ll also return to his screen at 14 inches, and I think it’s a good idea that it’s only Full HD, because this screen definition is more than enough for its screen size, and having more will only be pure marketing and will affect the ‘autonomy’. I’m sure in a situation with blind test no one would see the difference with a concentration of pixels doubled or quadrupled for this type of screen. However, I would like it to be tactile.

The specifics of this ExpertBook B9 is its touchpad because it also acts as a numeric keypad and it is not only very useful but it also gives it a touch of originality. On the other hand, due to its layout, I all too often have to disable it when entering a text, otherwise it is almost impossible to enter a long text. To me, this is unacceptable. Technology has to make our lives easier and disable its touchpad for typing, then reactivate it to format text or anything else, it is simply annoying in the long run. It’s a shame, because besides that, it’s the computer I want on my workstation. »

Bruno Fossard is customer support director at Naxos
IT subsidiary of CENTURY 21, Naxos ensures the design and operation of digital solutions dedicated to the network of real estate agents.

To summarize. The Asus Business mobility solution continues to work flawlessly, but this time in the office or at home in a teleworking situation. The performance is excellent, aided by an Intel Core i7 quad-core processor, 16GB of RAM and a lightning-fast SSD. Only the 3D acceleration is a bit weak, ExpertBook B9 is not equipped with a dedicated graphics card. In terms of networking capabilities, there is nothing to report, although our participants, due to confinement, spent more time evaluating this laptop at home than in the office or busy places. Excellent mention for the computer’s cooling system, which in addition to being efficient is completely silent. So much so that one of our readers even wondered if he was not passive. On the side of the points to be improved, let’s point out the whimsical audio output from the dock and the touchpad, which must be deactivated regularly when entering very long texts, otherwise the cursor will sometimes move on its own screen. However, nothing blocks our readers, who continue to greatly appreciate the company with the ultraportable Expertbook B9 and its peripherals. See you next week to discover the results of this Asus Business Pro Testers device.

An operation in collaboration with Asus

Asus and ZDNet are partners in this “Pro Testers” event. Asus provides its professional mobility solution to participants. This includes an ExpertBook B9 ultraportable (reference 90NX02K1-M01760), a SimPro Dock and a 15.6-inch ZenScreen MB16ACM mobile screen. For its part, the ZDNet team is responsible for selecting participants, defining a “practical” test protocol, gathering their opinions, and publishing several articles that summarize readers’ feedback on these products.

Technical characteristics of the model tested (reference 90NX02K1-M01760):

  • Processor: Intel Core i7-10510U (4 cores, 1.8 GHz clock speed)
  • Screen: 14 inches (35.6 cm diagonal, definition 1,920 points times 1,080), IPS panel
  • Graphics chip: Integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620
  • RAM: 16 GB DDR3
  • Storage: 1TB SSD flash drive
  • Connections: 2x Thunderbolt 3 (USB Type-C format), 1x USB 3.1, 1x HDMI 1.4, 1x RJ45 via micro HDMI adapter and a 3.5 mm headphone / microphone jack
  • Network: WiFi 6 (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.0
  • Autonomy announced: up to 24 hours (depending on built-in battery)
  • Dimensions: 32.1 x 20.2 x 1.49 cm
  • Advertised weight: less than 1 kg (870 or 995 grams depending on the integrated battery)

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