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ASUS Zenbook Duo 2024 (UX8406) First Impressions

The ASUS Zenbook Duo model has been around for quite some time. It’s a unique-looking laptop that comes with two screens as the name suggests. But the old model did have an issue, it sacrificed keyboard space and the trackpad position to put a small touchscreen above them.

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For 2024, ASUS decided to give the Zenbook Duo a serious makeover. Now, instead of a monitor and a small screen, you get two 14-inch 3K screens along with a fully detachable keyboard. We got to try it out recently, and there’s a lot to expect.

The new ASUS Zenbook Duo (UX8406) was first launched at CES 2024, and just a little over a month since its debut, the dual-screen laptop is finally in the Philippines. As with most Zenbook models, the new Zenbook Duo continues to be slim and light, making it easy to carry around.

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The laptop itself measures 12.34 x 8.58 x 0.57-0.78 inches, so it can certainly fit in your bag. With the keyboard included, the laptop only weighs 1.65kg, and without it, it only weighs 1.35kg. It’s quite thin too, measuring only 14.6mm if you don’t close it without the keyboard.

You don’t really need to bring the keyboard either since there is a virtual keyboard on the lower screen, but more on that later.

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In terms of design, it looks like the rest of the Zenbook models with the signature line patterns across the lid. In fact, it’s hard to tell it from other Zenbook laptops with the screen closed. It’s only when you open it do you get to see the unique dual-screen design. Despite its design, it’s packed with ports too so you don’t have to worry about charging or plugging your USBs in.

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Given the versatility of the Zenbook Duo, ASUS decided to integrate a stand at the back. As such, you can have it positioned in multiple ways. Use it like a dual-screen laptop, not use the keyboard at all, and set it up sideways like a book; it’s all up to your preference. Like before, it even comes with an ASUS Pen 2.0, making it perfect for artists.

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We only had a short time with the Zenbook Duo, but both of the 14-inch displays looked great and had a bright backlight based on our initial impressions. If you don’t use the Bluetooth keyboard, you can also bring up the virtual keyboard on the lower part of the screen by using gesture controls.

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Tap with six fingers and the lower display automatically turns into a keyboard. Interestingly, you can even bring up a virtual trackpad, but I didn’t feel the need to use it since both displays are touchscreen. It’s also easy to move windows to your preferred screen by simply swiping up or down. It feels very much like a big tablet, to be honest.

Under the hood, the Zenbook Duo runs the newer Intel Core Ultra 7 processor, and depending on the model it can be ordered with up to 32GB of DDR5 RAM and up to 1TB of SSD storage. Interestingly, it also runs an Intel ARC integrated GPU instead of an AMD or NVIDIA unit. We didn’t get to run benchmarks or any tests so we’ll save that for the review. As for the OS, it comes with Windows 11 Home, and the laptop already comes with a suite of AI assistance available.

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At first, the Zenbook Duo might seem complicated to use given the dual-screen function. But after trying it out, it feels just like any Windows laptop. I did need to learn the gesture controls when using it without the keyboard, but if you’re using the Bluetooth keyboard then it feels like you’re working on a laptop with dual-monitor setup.

I can’t wait to try out the Zenbook Duo in detail once we get our hands on it. As for the price, ASUS has yet to reveal it so stay tuned for that. Fortunately, we don’t have to wait long because this dual-screen laptop will be going on sale in the Philippines very soon.

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