Review: Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED
Image Source: Asus
- Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED Starts at 1,69,990 in India
- The one-of-a-kind jog dial allows you to pick parameters in the software that is supported.
- Battery life is great for a laptop equipped with high-end hardware.
- Although the trackpad can be used as a digitizer, there is no stylus provided
- The power button functions as a fingerprint sensor of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED.
- The red dot on the webcam shutter is simple to ignore, but it can be a nuisance to look at.
- Power users will love the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED's extensive connectivity possibilities.
- On the 16-inch 4K OLED panel, the 16:10 aspect ratio is ideal for working.
- Designed for corporate situations, the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED has a minimalistic design.
In the past several years, manufacturers have realized that many purchasers require powerful processing power for jobs such as picture and video editing, 3D modeling, and animation. The "Creator" laptop category was born out of this realization.
With the exception of the gaming laptop market, laptops have become thinner and lighter over time, but they have also sacrificed a number of functionality and design characteristics that power users may have desired or required in previous generations.
Unfortunately, gaming laptops are also known for being flashy, and as a result, they didn't quite meet our requirements. Hardware manufacturers are increasingly beginning to cater primarily to professional customers that require both power and portability.
You may have come across Asus ProArt displays in the past – calibrated, high-end models designed exclusively for color-sensitive designers and other creative professionals.
The firm has lately expanded the scope of this sub-brand to encompass laptops, desktop computers, and even accessories, all of which have been tailored and optimized for creative work environments.
You won't find any flashing RGB accents or any mention of overclocking in this configuration. The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED (H5600) has been developed exclusively for power users, and it includes capabilities that you won't find on other laptops in the same price range.
Some of these may be superfluous, while others may have a broad appeal that extends beyond the intended target audience's comfort zone. Here's an in-depth look at the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED to help you determine whether it's worth it to spend the money on such a specialized machine.
Image Source: Asus
Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED Review: Price
Asus advertises multiple variants of the ProArt 16 StudioBook OLED with processors from both Intel and AMD on their international website, and, strangely, there's even an Intel Xeon-powered version listed there. Nvidia's mainstream and workstation-oriented GPU products are also available as choices.
So far, only the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED H5600 model has been released by the company, and it is available in four different configurations, all of which are powered by conventional AMD CPUs and Nvidia GPUs.
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED (H5600) is a 16-inch laptop featuring an AMD Ryzen 7 5800H processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU, 16GB of RAM, and a 1TB solid-state drive that starts at Rs. 1,69,990.
It is the top-of-the-line edition that I am testing, which has a Ryzen 9 5900HX processor, GeForce RTX 3070 GPU, 32GB of RAM, and a 1TB solid-state drive. In India, the price of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED is Rs. 2,19,990.
The two middle-of-the-road variants, which are priced at Rs. 1,79,990 and Rs. 1,99,990, respectively, offer varying balances of CPU vs. GPU power, allowing you to select the one that is most fit for your workload and budget.
Image Source: Asus
Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED Review: Design and Features
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED is delivered in a massive box that also includes a backpack and a separate compartment for the hefty 240W charger, among other things. The ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED is a 16-inch laptop that is nevertheless somewhat portable, even when fully loaded.
At up to 21.4mm thick, it isn't significantly thicker than today's conventional models, but it is far deeper, measuring 264mm from front to back. Although the weight of 2.4kg is respectable, it should be noted that the charger is also quite heavy.
The exterior Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED is matte black with an anti-fingerprint coating applied to the front and back. Asus is emphasizing the ProArt sub-brand with a fairly large reflective logo in the center of the lid, which is a nice touch.
There are no other notable features. Overall, the design is functional and understated.
The lid of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED may be opened with one finger, and the hinge is firm and sturdy. The lid has only a little amount of elasticity to it.
When the laptop is open, a cutout at the base of the lid prevents air vents on the back from becoming obstructed, although it is not visible from the front when the laptop is closed.
Asus hasn't gone overboard with making the screen margins extremely tiny, which is nice. There is enough space on the top for a webcam with a very small shutter.
For some reason, Asus has printed a bright red dot next to the camera to let you know when the shutter is closed of the Asus Laptop, but this is rather distracting from the rest of the picture.
It is also necessary to leave the shutter open all of the time if you wish to utilize face recognition to sign in to your Windows computer. However, the heavy chin of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED below the screen is not a terrible feature because the top of the screen is at a comfortable viewing height for most people.
Of course, when the lid is raised, one of the first things you'll notice is the enormous circular jog dial located directly below the keyboard on the right side.
As Asus ProArt laptops are designed to behave similarly to a standalone pen tablet, this feature allows you to quickly switch between tools and parameters with your left hand while your right hand is busy drawing or manipulating objects on the screen. In order to make exact selections, the dial is calibrated.
It is clickable, which means you may rotate it and push once to select a tool, then rotate it to make an adjustment, then press again to go back a step.
According to the Asus ProArt Creator Hub app, the only applications supported are Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom Classic, Adobe Premiere Pro, and After Effects in Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED.
You may customize the layout and shortcuts as well as the scroll speed of the software through the app of Asus Laptop. Outside of these programs, you may use it to alter the brightness and volume in Windows, as well as create extra actions such as toggling between apps and virtual desktops, among others.
You can also design custom routines, with a turn to the right or left triggering a different shortcut or hotkey than the one that was previously defined.
While using the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, the dial is easily positioned (if you're right-handed) and doesn't get in the way at all if you're using a conventional touch-typing posture. It's simple to make decisions, but the click action is squishy and unresponsive.
After making a selection, you can move the software overlay to a different location on the screen, but it can't be dismissed immediately after it has been moved. In the future, it is hoped that Asus would add profiles for other software, eliminating the need for customers to build their own.
Because this is a mechanical dial that moves, I'm also a little concerned about dust accumulation — after all, we've all experienced sticky mouse wheels at one point or another.
To begin, Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED included a full-sized number pad (which also serves as a paging block), an incompressible arrow cluster, and even Fn row keys that are divided into groups of four, all of which are rather generous.
One of the shortcut keys between the right Ctrl and Alt keys can be programmed to perform a variety of duties, and you can also reassign the Windows key – both keys can even be assigned to perform different functions in separate programs.
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED keyboard has arrow keys with a ridged texture, which makes them simple to differentiate from one another, which is a nice touch.
There are a few peculiarities, however: there is no Num Lock status LED, the right Ctrl key is too large and could have easily been separated, and there is no Wi-Fi disable shortcut on the keyboard.
However, the most significant flaw of the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED is that the trackpad is centered on the body rather than on the keyboard, causing your right hand to rest on it while you are typing.
While the trackpad itself is rather large, the fact that it does not have a physical click mechanism will be a source of contention for many people.
There are three discrete buttons on Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED keyboard, which is excellent for control, but many people are accustomed to clicking on a trackpad, and not being able to do so will require a significant amount of adjustment.
You can, of course, continue to tap, drag, and perform multi-finger motions in the meanwhile. This is a nice addition because the center button on a mouse is used by a variety of creative software, such as to drag objects around the screen or rotate them about their axis, among other things.
Another neat feature of the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED trackpad is that it is sensitive to stylus input, with up to 1024 degrees of pressure sensitivity. For some reason, Asus has opted not to include a stylus with such a high-end laptop, despite the fact that it would be quite helpful for illustration.
Unless you already have one, you'll need to purchase one that is compatible with Microsoft's Pen Protocol (MPP) 1.51. The absence of an included stylus (as well as a place to store it within the laptop's body) represents a missed opportunity for Asus.
Image Source: Asus
Three extremely bright status LEDs are located on the front lip of the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, however, the labels are difficult to read because the LEDs are so close together. There's an SSD activity LED that blinks constantly and is unnecessarily distracting, so I turned it off.
As a result, the sound will bounce off the table surface and towards you from the front-firing stereo speakers located immediately below the lip. Above the screen, four far-field microphones have been embedded in the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED.
Aside from the abundance of ports on both sides of theAsus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, another minor design quirk is the presence of large air vents in the middle of each row, which means you must constantly lean over to make sure that you are not inadvertently inserting a USB plug into one of these gaps rather than where it is intended to go.
Image Source: Asus
Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED Review: Software Specifications
The precise unit I'm testing is the highest-specced variant of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, which retails in India for Rs. 2,19,990. This is the unit I'm testing. With an AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX processor, which is an octa-core model based on the Zen 3 architecture, it can handle demanding tasks.
This processor has a base frequency of 3.3GHz and a boost clock of 4.6GHz, and it is rated to operate at a minimal TDP of 45W. It is equipped with a basic Radeon GPU that is incorporated. In order to handle more demanding activities, there is a standalone Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 GPU with 8GB of GDDR6 memory.
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED laptop is equipped with 32GB of DDR4 RAM, which was provided by Asus. The RAM is not soldered, which is a good thing because there are two SO-DIMM slots, which means you can upgrade to 64GB if you want. There's a single 1TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD and a second M.2 slot available on this motherboard.
According to Asus, you can fit up to a 2TB module in each slot of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED and even utilize them in a RAID configuration.
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED display is a 16:10 16-inch 4K (3840x2400) 60Hz OLED panel with a 16:10 aspect ratio. In addition, it has been certified as DisplayHDR 500 True Black, which indicates that it supports HDR with blacks that are scarcely perceptible in terms of light output.
With a Delta E of 2, Asus promises to cover 100 percent of the DCI-P3 color gamut, with validations from Pantone and Calman for color accuracy. Color discrepancies should only be perceptible with careful inspection, according to the company's claims.
The Asus ProArt Creator Hub allows you to execute a color calibration routine, albeit its capabilities are limited due to the lack of an external colorimeter that can truly measure the screen's output.
Image Source: Asus
You'll find a security lock slot on the left side of the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED as well as a USB 3.2 Gen2 Type-A port, a DC charger inlet, an HDMI 2.1 video output, and two USB 3.2 Gen2 Type-C ports.
On the right side of this Asus Laptop, you'll find a power button. Gigabit Ethernet is located on the right side of the device, along with two more Type-A USB 3.2 Gen2 ports as well as an SD Express card slot.
On the left side of the device there is a 3.5mm combination audio socket and an SD Express card slot. The Type-C connectors are capable of delivering DisplayPort visual output as well as 100W of power for charging.
On the Intel-based devices, one of them serves as a Thunderbolt 4 port, but that feature is conspicuously absent here in Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED. Overall, this is an extremely high level of connectedness and adaptability by today's standards.
You'll also get dual-band Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2, among other things.
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED power button contains an embedded fingerprint sensor, which is easy to overlook due to the fact that it seems to be a regular button on the device.
This Asus Laptop webcam has a maximum resolution of 720p and is equipped with an infrared sensor for use with Windows Hello facial recognition.
The Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED battery has a capacity of 90Wh and Asus promises that it will last for 8.5 hours. An electrical outlet capable of handling 16A is required to handle the charger that comes with the device.
Windows 10 Home is mentioned as the operating system for the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, but my machine arrived with Windows 11 already loaded and operational. Either the Pro or the Enterprise edition would have been preferable in a corporate setting.
With the package of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, you'll receive a full license for Microsoft Office Home & Student 2021, a three-month trial of Adobe Creative Cloud, and a 12-month membership to McAfee LiveSafe.
In addition, Asus offers its MyAsus device management tool, as well as the Asus ProArt Creator Hub, which provides more device-specific configuration options.
It would have been preferable if these two apps had been integrated into a single package with the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED — the OLED burn-in prevention tools and screen color profile adjustment options are found in the first, while the color calibration tool is found in the second.
A companion app for Android or iOS will allow you to transfer files, sync clipboards, mirror or extend your screen, copy files and even take phone calls. Download the companion app for Android or iOS to get started.
Asus also claims to have integrated artificial intelligence-enhanced noise cancellation as well as infrared-assisted webcam image enhancement.
Image Source: Asus
Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED Review: Performance
Although it was simple to set up Windows 11 in Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, you are obliged to check in with a Microsoft account because there is no hotkey to turn off Wi-Fi on the operating system.
According to my observations, the keyboard layout and trackpad buttons on the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED required some getting used to, however, typing was really comfortable.
Even though there are hotkeys to control the volume and brightness in Windows, I found myself utilizing the jog dial to do so because it was more convenient than using the hotkeys.
Fingerprint and face recognition were not always intuitive to operate, and I found myself having to reposition myself or fall back on a PIN on occasion.
After a few minutes, the trackpad mistook my finger for a stylus, and the cursor began to change shape and jump around the screen as I attempted to move it - however, this problem was resolved and did not recur thereafter in Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED.
Asus has made minor adjustments to the default Windows settings in order to help avoid OLED burn-in.
There's a colorful screensaver in Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED (which can only be turned off through the MyAsus panel, not the usual Windows screensaver dialogue), but it's possible that you'll never see it because the display timeout has been set to an extremely harsh default.
The dark theme has already been selected, and you can even choose to have the Windows taskbar, which is normally static on the screen, automatically hidden.
Asus claims that the ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED has integrated pixel shifting and current adjustment to assist mitigate the possibility of burn-in, but you should be aware that this may occur with prolonged use.
However, this is not a negative point; the display is superb of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED. When viewing HDR video, the contrast is amazing, as can be seen in the screenshot above.
Everything is sharp and clear, though you may wish to reduce the default screen scaling by 250 percent to improve readability.
When it comes to getting work done, the 16:10 aspect ratio is a welcome improvement over the 16:9 ratio. The only significant disadvantage of this screen is that it is extremely reflective.
The 60Hz refresh rate reveals that the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED is not intended for gamers, and at this price, a refresh rate of at least 90Hz would have been preferable, if not higher.
The speakers that are mounted on the front of the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED are quite loud. The bass is noticeably low, and the treble can get harsh at times, but voices in music and videos come through extremely well, despite the absence of bass.
When this Asus laptop is stressed, the fans will most likely not be heard spinning up in normal use, but there will be a faint hum when it is stressed.
As a result, some areas of the body become pretty hot - for example, I noted that the upper right of the QWERTY block on the keyboard became almost unbearably hot to type on, and some of the corners of the chassis near the exhaust vents grew quite hot as well.
Image Source: Asus
In terms of performance, the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED performed admirably, earning scores of 6,460 and 8,231 in PCMark 10's standard and extended runs, respectively.
The single- and multi-core render tests in Cinebench R20 yielded scores of 575 and 4,879, respectively, while the ray tracing benchmark in POV-Ray took only 58 seconds to complete, according to the results of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED.
When used in conjunction with heavy applications, the new UL Procyon benchmark suite of Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED automates a sequence of real-world processes. 5 552 points were earned on the Photo Editing benchmark, which was completed using Photoshop and Lightroom Classic.
6,222 points were earned in the Office Productivity test, which was based on Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. The Video Editing benchmark was not able to be completed due to technical difficulties.
CrystalDiskMark was used to measure the overall performance of the SSD, which yielded results of 2,871.2MBps sequential reads and 3,091.6Mbps sequential writes.
The random read and write speeds were 1792.9MBps and 1168.3MBps, respectively, which are quite respectable for a laptop's performance.
Because of the high number of CPU cores, compressing a 3.24GB folder containing miscellaneous files with 7Zip took 1 minute and 23 seconds in this Asus Laptop, whereas transcoding a 1.3GB AVI file to H.265 with Handbrake took only 15 seconds.
However, Asus has picked Nvidia's Studio driver branch, which is optimized for stability rather than maximizing performance in games, despite the fact that the GPU in question is a normal GeForce RTX 3070 model.
The Unigine Superposition benchmark achieved an average frame rate of 49.97 frames per second at the 4K Optimised level.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider only managed to run at an average frame rate of 34 frames per second when playing at the game's original 4K resolution (3840x2400) and utilizing the game's Highest quality preset on Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED.
With Nvidia's RTX DLSS feature activated and the quality setting set to Balanced, the average frame rate increased to 47 frames per second.
Far Cry 5's built-in benchmark achieved an average frame rate of 38 frames per second at 4K and 63 frames per second at 1440p using the Ultra preset. Middle Earth: Shadow of War was able to maintain 40 frames per second at 4K using the Very High preset on this Asus Laptop.
I would have expected higher scores from a GeForce RTX 3070 GPU on a gaming laptop with a similar configuration, but these results are disappointing.
Asus advertises 8.5 hours of battery life of ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED, and I was able to achieve a bit less than that with regular everyday use, which is still quite good.
The resource-intensive Battery Eater Pro benchmark was able to run for 3 hours and 53 minutes, which is an extraordinarily long time in this category. Of course, if you're intending on doing any heavy lifting, you'll want to be plugged in to get the most out of your device, thus battery life is only relevant when considering typical day-to-day tasks.
Examples include the fact that CineBench R20's single-core and multi-core results on battery power were 237 and 3,296 respectively, in a contrast to the statistics mentioned above.
When turned off, the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED recharged to 55 percent of its original capacity in 30 minutes.
Image Source: Asus
Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED: Verdict
When it comes to hardware, drivers, and design, it's evident that there's an opportunity for specialization in the "creative" laptop market. Asus, on the other hand, stands out because it is experimenting with novel ideas that are not commonly found in other categories of laptops, most notably the jog dial.
It appears in the Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED that a large number of focus groups have been conducted in order to uncover minor features and tweaks that developers could find useful – such as the port choices, the keyboard layout, the trackpad buttons, and so on.
A great deal of consideration in this Asus Laptop has also been given to the software side of things, as evidenced by the long list of procedures designed to prevent or lessen the impact of OLED burn-in.
The heat distribution, for example, could be better, and there were a couple of very minor design flaws that came up in Asus ProArt StudioBook 16 OLED during the testing process as well.
Additionally, it is hoped that with future software updates, the company would incorporate even more application profiles for the dial.
This Asus Laptop hardware is of the highest quality, and its display is, for the most part, a delight to operate on. Performance is excellent, and even the battery life is impressively long for such a small device.
Asus is clearly aiming for the MacBook Pro, and its maximalist approach combined with competitive pricing may just persuade some buyers to switch sides.