Reviewing the ASUSPRO B8430UA - The classic notebook for business professionals
The ASUSPRO B8430UA or ASUS PRO B8430UA (depending on where you buy it from) is a notebook that is aimed at the business sector. It's a device that has a classic look, it's built to last and it offers plenty of hardware power. We received this notebook for testing a couple of weeks ago and since then we have tested it on a daily basis. Now we are ready to share our findings with you, and tell you whether it's a good notebook or not. If you're on the lookout for a good business notebook and you are interested in what ASUS has to offer, read our review and, by the end of it, you will know whether ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook is worth buying or not:
Unboxing the ASUSPRO B8430UA
The ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook comes in a simple, traditional, cardboard box with not much information printed on it. For instance, on the top of the box, you'll only see the ASUS logo and the "In search of incredible" motto.
The only thing that lets you know what's inside is the notebook's name tag from the bottom of the box.
Inside the package, we found only the ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook and its power adapter. However, you should know that, when we wrote this review, the notebook was not yet available to purchase at retailers, so the one you'll buy will probably include other things in its box. Stuff like the user guide, the warranty, and probably a set of recovery discs for the software on the notebook.
The ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook can be bought in multiple hardware configurations. For starters, the processor it runs on can be an Intel Core i7 Intel vPro at 2.6 GHz (4 MB Cache, up to 3.4 GHz), an Intel Core i5 Intel vPro at 2.4 GHz (3 MB Cache, up to 3 GHz), an Intel Core i7 6500U processor or an Intel Core i5 6200U processor. All the processors belong to the Skylake family, the latest from Intel, which means both increased performances and more efficient energy consumption.
The ASUSPRO B8430UA that we received for testing was running on the best processor of the lot, the Intel Core i7 Intel vPro running at a base frequency of 2.6 GHz, and at a turbo frequency of up to 3.4 GHz.
In terms of RAM memory, this notebook comes with 4GB of DDR4 RAM memory running at 2133 MHz, soldered on the mainboard, to which you can add an additional RAM DIMM of up to 8GB. In total, you can get the ASUSPRO B8430UA with 12GB of RAM memory, which is more than enough for any task. It's worth noting that the model we reviewed had 12 GB of RAM memory.
If you're wondering about the video capabilities of the ASUSPRO B8430UA, you should know that it doesn't have a discrete video card installed. It relies instead on the built-in Intel HD Graphics 520 chip, which offers support for DirectX 12 and 4K resolutions.
The ASUSPRO B8430UA has a 14.0" screen with a Full HD resolution of 1920x1080 pixels at a 16:9 image aspect ratio. It uses a TN panel and a matte coating that should help in preventing sun glare.
When it comes to the storage space, here too you can choose from a multitude of options. You can equip the notebook with:
- 2.5" SATA3 hard disk drives with the following characteristics: 1TB of space and 5400 RPM, 500GB of space and 7200 RPM or a hybrid hard disk drive with 500GB of space and 5400 RPM, and with a 8GB SSD part
- SATA3 SSDs with a capacity of: 512GB, 256GB (M.2 2280) or 128GB (M.2 2280)
And it's important to note that the notebook has 2 bays for storage drives, which means that you can install two drives. For instance, the model that we reviewed came with a 128GB SSD system drive and a 1TB HDD storage drive.
The sound you get from the ASUSPRO B8430UA is delivered via two built-in stereo 1.5 W atts speakers. You also get a microphone and a HD web camera with 1 megapixel, capable of recording videos and photos at a 1280x720 pixels resolution.
As for the networking options, the ASUSPRO B8430UA is ready for everything: it has a built-in 10/100/1000(Gigabit) Ethernet adapter, an integrated wireless card that offers support for the 802.11 a/b/g/n and ac standards, and a 4G LTE module. The latter will surely be useful to business people who travel a lot.
The other connectivity options you get are as follows: 1 COMBO audio jack, 4 USB 3.0 ports, 1 RJ45 LAN Jack for Ethernet networks, 1 mini Display Port, 1 Smart Card port, 1 Fingerprint sensor, 1 SD card reader and 1 Micro SIM card slot. All the ports are easily identifiable on the sides of the notebook, but the Micro SIM card slot is not. If you're going to want to use it, you should know that you will find it under the battery, which you can reach by taking away the plastic cover from the back of the notebook. For those of you that are using high-end smartphones, you should know that it doesn't include a USB Type C port.
The ASUSPRO B8430UA uses a 4110 mAh 48 Whrs polymer battery that ASUS says will give the notebook an autonomy of 9 hours. We'll see if that's true in the benchmarks section of this review. The notebook is 13.34 x 9.29 x 0.77 ~ 0.80 in (339 x 236 x 19.75 ~ 20.48 mm) in width x depth x height and it weighs 3.74 lbs (1.7 kg).
In terms of software, the ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook comes with Windows 10 Pro, but you can downgrade it to Windows 7 Professional if that's what you prefer.
The full list of detailed specifications can be found on the ASUS official website, here: ASUSPRO B8430UA Specifications.
Using the ASUSPRO B8430UA
The ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook is aimed at the business market and, as a consequence, uses a classic design with sharp edges. The case is carbon reinforced and the matte and dark grey surfaces look and feel great.
The top of the notebook is a plain surface that holds only the ASUS logo in the middle.
T he bottom of the notebook is also simple, with just a few screw holes, the four rubber feet that keep it stable on your desk and a pretty small air vent.
When you open the lid, you get to see the screen of the ASUSPRO B8430UA. A nice thing about it is that it's matte. Therefore, it should prevent glare when you work in bright environments. However, what's not great about it, is that it uses a TN panel. That means that the display has some pretty low viewing angles. We were not impressed by it, but hey, maybe business users don't want their notebooks screens to be visible to the guy on the left or to the right. And a thing that compensates the rather low viewing angles on the vertical axis, is the fact that you can open the notebook's screen at 180 degrees.
One feature that we appreciate in the ASUSPRO B8430UA notebook is its keyboard, which is very good. This entire review was written on this notebook, and we must say that the large and well spaced keys are a pleasure to type on. You can work on this notebook for long periods of time without your hands getting tired. Another thing that you will surely appreciate about the ASUSPRO B8430UA is that its keyboard is illuminated. It offers a subtle backlight with three different intensity levels which you can set with just a few keypresses. Great for impression and great for typing in darker environments.
The ASUSPRO B8430UA offers both a touchpad and a trackpoint, so you can use the one you prefer. The touchpad works very well, it's large enough to feel comfortable and its buttons are not too easy to press so that accidental clicks are not very likely. On the top of the touchpad you'll find three other buttons that are easy to click when you use the trackpoint.
As far as the performance levels go, we have nothing but good things to say. The model that we reviewed used a Intel Core i7 Intel vPro processor running at 2.6 GHz and up to 3.4 GHz in turbo mode, which put together with the 12 GB of DDR4 RAM memory and the 128 GB SSD used as system drive, offered more than enough power and speed for all our daily activities. Writing documents in Microsoft Word, Excel, Google Docs, browsing the web, using Skype for video conferencing, spending all the time in the world on Facebook and so on… all these are things that are dead easy to for the ASUSPRO B8430UA.
On a full charge, the battery managed to last us for 6 to 7 hours, which is a really good result. Considering that we've tested the most powerful variant of the ASUSPRO B8430UA, it's likely that you'll get even more autonomy if you buy a variant with a lesser processor.
Read the next page of this review to find out what apps are bundled with the ASUSPRO B8430UA, see what it scored in our benchmarks and check our final verdict.