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Asus Zenbook UX31E vs. Apple MacBook Air 13-inchIt's a Prizefight punchout between the two best-looking laptops on the planet, which look a lot like each other. Will the feature-packed Asus Zenbook have what it takes to take out the MacBook Air, the reigning champ? Let's get it on!
-What's up prize fight fans! I'm Brian Tong, and this is a blockbuster battle between 2 of the top 13-inch laptops that thin it to win it. It's a prize fight punch out between the Asus Zenbook UX31E and Apple's 13-inch MacBook Air. Our judges for this fight are senior editor Dan "The Man" Ackerman, senior associate editor Scott "It's Go Time" Stein, and Brian "Can't Go Wrong" Tong. Well take all 3 judges' blind scores average them out to the nearest 10th round. The final Prize Fight score will be an average of all rounds with the same decimal system. Let's get started. Round 1 is design. They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and the Asus Zenbook has no shame with the design that could be mistaken for the MacBook Air with its sleek lines and teardrop shape that's slightly thicker. Now, our judges felt opening the laptop wasn't always as easy, but it doesn't hurt it. Its all metal interior is impressive with best looking windows laptop on the market. Now, Asus gets close, but there's still nothing on this planet that can truly match the design quality of Apple's unibody MacBook Air. It's blade design is still thinner. It's lighter in weight and it's just sturdy. The Air is a beauty that maintains Apple's iconic look and feel. Both of these laptops are amazing looking, but apple is still a cut above the rest. It gets a perfect 5 and the Zenbook gets a 4.3. Next round is features. Asus makes sure it won't falter when it comes to features. It comes loaded with 2 USB ports with one being USB 3.0, an SD card slot for media, a micro HDMI port, a higher 1600 byte 900 resolution display plus dongles for Ethernet and VGA out. Now, the keyboard has no back light and tends to be a little finicky with its shallow keys that sometimes resulted in keys not registering. Its trackpad gets the job done and Asus includes multitask gestures, but it's not as responsive as MacBook Air at times, and that can be frustrating. It's a deal breaker, but it's the worth mentioning. Now, the MacBook Air brings 2 USB ports and an SD card slot. You can use an Ethernet adaptor that takes up a USB and there's also a mini display port for video out, but you will have to purchase the adaptor to do that. You have a backlit keyboard for those lonely nights in the dark, and it's multi touch track pad is one of the best that's extremely smooth and responsive in comparison to the Zenbook, but if you added all up. It's Asus that brings everything back to kitchen sink. The Zenbook gets a 4.7. The Zenbook gets a 4.7 and the MacBook Air gets a 4. So, after averaging 2 rounds, we're tied. Next round is performance. Both laptops bring 1.7 gigahertz for i5 processors with 4 gigs of RAM. So, we put these 2 laptops through CNET's rigorous test and you can dispute the numbers. The MacBook Air outperformed the Zenbook significantly in our multimedia, multitasking test and performed better in our photo shop processing test, and our iTunes coding test as well. both these laptops are great are great for everyday use, but the MacBook Air is still the performance leader for super slim laptops and it gets a 4.7 while the Zenbook gets a 3.7. Round 4 is battery life. Who has the power to last few hours? In our battery drain test, Apple's MacBook Air went the distance with 6 hours and 46 minutes of dues compared to the Zenbook, which was able to get only 4 hours and 45 minutes. That's a 2-hour difference and it's even more impressive when the Air was the clear winner in both performance and battery life. The air gets a perfect 5, and the Zenbok gets hit hard with the 3. So after averaging 4 rounds, Apple takes a big lead, but it's not over yet. The final that decides it all is value. These are premium laptops with solid state drive and it won't come cheap, but the Asus Zenbook is doing its best with its entry level model that starts at 1099 and in addition to that, they're also including the adaptors for Ethernet and VGA out. You will get a carrying case and most importantly a cleaning cloth. Now, Apple's MacBook Air 13-inch starts at 1299 with pretty much the same specs and that's pretty much all you're going to get. An Ethernet adaptor will run with $29. A video out adaptor is 19 bucks more and there is no cleaning cloth. Apple's premium rears its ugly head here. Asus takes the final round with a 4 and Apple gets a 3. So, let's average out all 5 rounds and in a Prize Fight that was neck to neck, Apple surge ahead in the performance round and it was just too hard to overcome for Asus, the MacBook takes this battle 4.3 to 3.9 and is your Prize Fight winner. I'm Brian Tong, thanks for watching. I will catch you guys next time on another Prize Fight.