Gartner reported that global PC shipments (that include desktops and laptops) registered a 4.9 percent increase in 2020 from the previous year, marking the highest annual increase in a decade. Laptop sales are clearly on an upswing. We’re also seeing more clearly defined categories and niche segments emerge as laptop makers cater to the specific needs of evolved consumers. Asus has identified content creators as one among the other emerging categories. Many of these creative folks tend to lean towards Apple’s MacBook Pro but that hasn’t stopped Asus from going after them with innovative products like a dual-screen laptop and the all-new ProArt Studiobook with a cleverly imagined jog dial. Does this innovation and host of high-end specs make it the Windows laptop to beat for content creators?

Design and build:

Sober and every inch premium, the clean lines and refined matte finish define the design language of this laptop which gets an anti-fingerprint coating that actually works. You will find the ProArt logo emblazoned on the centre—a clear indication that Asus is betting big on this sub-brand. It is crafted with aluminium alloy for enhanced durability. At 2.4kg, this is certainly no lightweight but it’s not clunky either. The defining design element is the Asus dial that’s conveniently placed on the left and under the keyboard.

If you’re using Office applications or web browsing, pressing down the dial activates a sort of radial menu that offers screen brightness and audio volume controls that are easy to tweak by rotating the dial. The dial is more useful when you put on your creative hat for apps like Adobe Creative suite, allowing you to control brush options and after-effects. The trackpad is roomy and the keyboard is well designed too.

AsusProArtlaptop
The display

ASUS has positioned this as the first OLED display on a 16-inch laptop. Our experience with the display justified the hype. The 16-inch 4K OLED HDR 16:10 display (3840 x 2400 pixels) delivers stunning visuals with a 100 percent DCI-P3 color gamut. The colors are punchy and blacks are deep. I’m no pro video editor but designers and creative professionals will enjoy working with color accuracy and inky blacks. I enjoyed watching the season 3 finale of Succession on the large screen that is backed by the Harmon Kardon certified speakers. Sound is great not exceptional. It’s also an immersive gaming screen; although we believe that ASUS could have opted for a 90Hz refresh rate instead of the 60Hz refresh rate.

Asus proart studiobook screen

Firepower

This notebook leverages powerful AMD Ryzen 5000 series (H5600) and fast NVIDIA GeForce up to RTX 3070 (H5600) graphics. It’s propelled by the AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX processor. There’s an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 GPU with 8GB of GDDR6 RAM if are looking for an extra boost or push over the edge. It’s all the firepower you need whether you’re gaming or working on demanding photo or video-editing apps. Battery life is acceptable — we clocked around 7-8 hours in our tests.

Bottomline

The Asus ProArt Studiobook OLED 16 is easily one of the best Windows laptops for creative professionals. The Asus dial is a great addition and brings in handy functionality for editing apps. It has the firepower and a gorgeous display to be a serious contender in the same league as the MacBook Pro.

 

What we like: Build quality and design, Asus dial, OLED display

What can be better: The display refresh rate

 The ASUS ProArt Studiobook 16 OLED is priced starting at Rs 1,69,990