Notebookcheck

Asus AsusPro B9440UA (Core i5, 8 GB) Laptop Review

Sven Kloevekorn (translated by Martin Jungowski), 05/23/2017

The world's most lightweight 14-inch notebook. That is at least according to Asus, since the company advertises their latest 1.05 kg (2.31 lbs) heavy and 15 mm (0.59 inches) USB-C only office notebook as such. Our extensive review is going to reveal whether or not the restrictions necessary to achieve this feat are worth it, and how the B9400UA fared in its role as a highly mobile office notebook.

For the original German review, see here.

The two ultimate goals Asus was aiming for with the AsusPro B9440UA were low weight and thinness. In order to achieve these, the engineers at Asus put the device on a radical diet, got rid of all ports except for two USB 3.0 Type-C ports, and they shrank the bezels to what is almost pure nothingness. Fortunately, a port replicator is included with the device; unfortunately, the list of things that were sacrificed in the name of all that is thin and lightweight included the SD-card reader and the webcam.

The final result, however, is impressive: both weight and thickness are unrivaled in the 14-inch class. There is one specialty to note regarding the construction of the device: the lid is longer than the base and thus props the B9440UA up when fully opened. This allows for a more ergonomic angle when using the device’s keyboard.

Optionally, the B9440UA is available with faster CPUs, Windows 10 Pro instead of Home, 16 GB instead of 8 GB of RAM, and various SSD sizes. Our review unit (GV0100T), available in Europe for around $1,200, represents the base model equipped with an FHD IPS display, a Core i5-7200U processor, 8 GB of RAM, and a 256 GB SSD. The current base model in the US is equipped with a 512 GB SSD instead and can be purchased for around $1,000. Due to limitations in size and weight the laptop obviously doesn’t include a dedicated graphics card.

Its competitors were chosen from our list of current lightweight and compact 13.3 and 14-inch office notebooks available for roughly the same amount of money:

An additional review of the faster and better-equipped GV0101T model (Core i7-7500U, 16 GB of RAM, 512 GB SSD) is scheduled to follow soon.

Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T (ASUSPRO Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 620, Core: 300 - 1050 MHz, shared memory, 21.20.16.4550
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR3L, 2133 MHz, dual-channel, not upgradeable
Display
14 inch 16:9, 1920x1080 pixel 157 PPI, AU Optronics AUO353D / B140HAN03.5, IPS, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Kaby Lake-U Premium PCH
Storage
Micron SSD 1100 (MTFDDAV256TBN), 256 GB 
Soundcard
Intel Kaby Lake-U/Y PCH - High Definition Audio
Connections
2 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm headphone/microphone combo jack, 1 Fingerprint Reader
Networking
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 15 x 321 x 216 ( = 0.59 x 12.64 x 8.5 in)
Battery
48 Wh Lithium-Polymer, 4 cell
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Additional features
Speakers: stereo, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, 24 Months Warranty
Released
01/06/2017
Weight
1.05 kg ( = 37.04 oz / 2.31 pounds), Power Supply: 216 g ( = 7.62 oz / 0.48 pounds)
Price
1100 EUR

 

Case

According to Asus, the device is made of a particularly robust MIL-STD 810G-graded special magnesium alloy. Considering the laptop’s size and weight the case does indeed feel very rigid, solid, and well made. On the base, flexing even with intense force was not an issue, and we never managed to coax more than a very discreet crackle out of it. The delicate lid with its very thin bezels can be opened one-handed, and while it flexes more than the base it is still minimal. Applying pressure to the backside of the lid has absolutely no effect on the display.

Besides its black bezels the AsusPro B9440UA is coated in light gray through and through. While the laptop’s nonslip surface is generally susceptible to fingerprints, they are barely noticeable. We liked the device’s generic simplicity and the thin bezels – both made for a very noble and classy overall impression. We found no noteworthy irregularities worth mentioning but for those of our readers looking for the fly in the ointment: when closed the gap between the lid and the base is slightly uneven.

Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA
Asus Pro B9440UA

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Despite its thickness of only 9 – 15 mm (0.35 – 0.59 inches), the B9440UA’s footprint is significantly smaller than the 14-inch Lifebook U747’s, which at 19 mm (0.75 inches) also happens to be thicker. Lenovo’s 13-inch IdeaPad has the smallest footprint overall; the 13.3-inch HP Spectre is slightly wider than our review unit but at 10.4 mm (0.41 inches) also slightly thinner. In regards to weight the 1.4 kg (3.1 lbs) U747 is the only one breaking ranks – all other competitors weigh in at around 1.1 kg (2.4 lbs).

Size Comparison

Connectivity

The notebook itself is equipped with no more than two USB 3.1 Gen. 1 Type-C ports (one on each side at the bottom end of the display lid), of which only one supports Power Delivery and external displays. The external USB 3.0 hard drive we used for testing the device’s USB performance is limited to 100 MB/s, and at 96 MB/s we almost maxed it out with the hard drive connected via the included port replicator.

Left side: USB 3.1 Gen.1 Type-C, audio-combo jack (photo: Asus)
Left side: USB 3.1 Gen.1 Type-C, audio-combo jack (photo: Asus)
Right side: USB 3.1 Gen.1 Type-C (photo: Asus)
Right side: USB 3.1 Gen.1 Type-C (photo: Asus)

Communication

While an Ethernet connection is in theory feasible using a USB-C to Ethernet adapter the B9440UA’s focus is clearly on wireless connectivity. Consequently, the device is equipped with Intel’s Dual-Band Wireless-AC 8260 (MIMO 2x2, up to 867 MBit/s), a well-known and fast Wi-Fi chip that works in both the 2.4 GHz and the lesser-used 5 GHz band. Bluetooth 4.2 and specialties unique to Intel’s Wi-Fi chips, e.g. Wireless Display, are included as well.

When connected to our reference router, a Linksys EA8500 and from a distance of 1 m (3 ft), we can only attest somewhat decent data transfer speeds with room for improvement. Sending data in particular was rather slow at only 463 MBit/s – we’ve seen better results from other laptops equipped with the same Wi-Fi chip.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
655 MBit/s ∼100% +13%
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174
608 MBit/s ∼93% +5%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260
578 MBit/s ∼88%
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260
485 MBit/s ∼74% -16%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260
663 MBit/s ∼100% +43%
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174
614 MBit/s ∼93% +33%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
509 MBit/s ∼77% +10%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260
463 MBit/s ∼70%

Security

Designed with ultimate mobility in mind the B9440UA offers no more than a TPM 2.0 chip and a fingerprint reader, which turned out to be quick and reliable in our tests. Oddly enough, the fingerprint reader is positioned right above the power button in the top right corner of the base.

Accessories

In addition to a charger, a cable, a DVD labeled “Lite DVD Ver. 2.0”, and the usual quick-start and warranty guides, Asus also includes a protective case and, more importantly, a USB 3.1 Gen. 1 Type-C to HDMI and USB 3.0 Type-A port replicator. All other available port replicators made by Asus can be found here.

Maintenance

It is no surprise that a laptop as thin and light as this does not come with a user-replaceable battery or any maintenance flaps whatsoever. The bottom cover can be removed after undoing 10 torx screws. We have refrained from doing so due to the fact that our review model was a shop unit. Don't forget that removing the bottom cover may void your warranty.

Warranty

Speaking of which: Asus offers a one-year limited warranty for devices purchased in the United States. Warranty differs by country though, and devices sold in Germany come with a two-year warranty instead.

Input Devices

Keyboard

The standard-sized keyboard (as large as a regular-sized desktop keyboard), with its standard-sized modifier keys (shift, CTRL, or backspace), has excellent ergonomics and it is a pleasure to use. In addition to its size the standard layout also makes getting used to it a breeze.

Asus has managed to design a very good keyboard overall. The concave nonslip keys are very easy to read and offer 1.5 mm of travel – quite impressive considering the overall thickness of the device. The actuation point is well-defined and the keystroke is only slightly softened, which suited us very well. What we did not like at all was the keyboard’s soundscape. The larger keys, like the space bar, clatter noticeably and annoyingly loud, rendering the keyboard rather unusable in quiet environments.

The keyboard does not flex even with more than moderate pressure applied to it. The three-stage keyboard backlight was very even. All things considered, we liked the solid and ergonomic keyboard a lot.

Touchpad

The large ClickPad makes the best of the space underneath the keyboard, but we had trouble with input at the very edges, especially when starting out from there. As is often the case with ClickPad surfaces, this particular one was nice and slippery with dry hands but quickly started to develop a certain unpleasant stickiness with moist and sweaty fingertips. Precision and response characteristics were decent, and the ClickPad had no trouble detecting and properly reacting to fast movements. Double-tap drag & drop worked flawlessly.

We liked the two buttons at the bottom with their shallow travel and very distinct acoustic and haptic feedback a lot. Gestures with up to four fingers can be configured using the Asus Smart Gesture software – we’ve seen better tools with more options but we’re not complaining: it’s certainly enough for everyday use.

Display

Subpixel matrix
Subpixel matrix

The matte 14-inch FHD 1920x1080 IPS display has a pixel density of 157 ppi. Overall sharpness is very good, and from a normal viewing distance of around 50 cm (20 inches / 1.6 ft) image quality was crisp and impeccable. Asus does not offer this laptop with any other displays.

Maximum brightness was at a more than acceptable 294 nits and on a par with the Fujitsu and Lenovo laptops we’ve compared it to. Only the HP managed an excellent 382 nits. Our review unit’s brightness distribution of only 87%, however, leaves a lot to be desired. Black levels were deep and homogenous, and we did not detect even the slightest trace of screen-bleeding or clouding.

286
cd/m²
291
cd/m²
277
cd/m²
286
cd/m²
319
cd/m²
281
cd/m²
305
cd/m²
311
cd/m²
289
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 319 cd/m² Average: 293.9 cd/m² Minimum: 18 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 87 %
Center on Battery: 321 cd/m²
Contrast: 1227:1 (Black: 0.26 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 7.1 | - Ø
ΔE Greyscale 9.61 | - Ø
83.02% sRGB (Argyll) 54.01% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll)
Gamma: 2.33
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
AU Optronics AUO353D / B140HAN03.5, , 1920x1080, 14
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
LG LP140WF3, , 1920x1080, 14
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
CMN1374, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
LG Philips LP133WF4-SPB1 (LGD04EF), , 1920x1080, 13.3
Response Times
26%
-1%
7%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
48.8 (18, 30.8)
36 (16.4, 19.6)
26%
46 (26, 20)
6%
45 (12, 33)
8%
Response Time Black / White *
30.8 (8, 22.8)
23.2 (12.4, 10.8)
25%
33 (21, 12)
-7%
29 (6, 23)
6%
PWM Frequency
Screen
6%
8%
9%
Brightness
294
296
1%
382
30%
306
4%
Brightness Distribution
87
84
-3%
91
5%
81
-7%
Black Level *
0.26
0.32
-23%
0.35
-35%
0.3
-15%
Contrast
1227
909
-26%
1154
-6%
1143
-7%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
7.1
4.3
39%
5.37
24%
4.73
33%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
9.61
4.3
55%
6.44
33%
3.29
66%
Gamma
2.33 103%
2.31 104%
2.52 95%
2.36 102%
CCT
6021 108%
6529 100%
6738 96%
6437 101%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
54.01
55.46
3%
58
7%
54
0%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
83.02
84.77
2%
89
7%
83
0%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
16% / 10%
4% / 6%
8% / 9%

* ... smaller is better

Thanks to its decent brightness and a black level of 0.26 nits the contrast ratio on the Asus AsusPro B9440UA is an astonishing 1,227:1. Unfortunately, color accuracy was pretty bad for an IPS panel, with DeltaE deviations of 7 and 10, resulting in a noticeable green tint which we were able to alleviate through calibration. As always, the resulting ICC profile can be downloaded from the box above. Except for the HP Spectre, all of its competitors were significantly closer to the ideal DeltaE deviation of 3 out of the box.

Due to its very limited and subpar color-space coverage the AsusPro is not suitable for serious photo-editing, but neither are any of its competitors. It only managed 83% coverage of the smaller, consumer-oriented sRGB color space.

CalMAN grayscales (uncalibrated)
CalMAN grayscales (uncalibrated)
CalMAN ColorChecker (uncalibrated)
CalMAN ColorChecker (uncalibrated)
CalMAN saturation (uncalibrated)
CalMAN saturation (uncalibrated)
AsusPro B9440UA vs. AdobeRGB
AsusPro B9440UA vs. AdobeRGB
CalMAN grayscales (calibrated)
CalMAN grayscales (calibrated)
CalMAN ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN saturation (calibrated)
AsusPro B9440UA vs. sRGB
AsusPro B9440UA vs. sRGB

Our outdoor tests were conducted on a bright sunlit day, and thus under rather extreme conditions. The photo on the right indicates the worst-case scenario with the sun directly behind the display. Despite its high brightness, its matte display surface, and some shade provided by the photographer the screen was barely readable at all. It is much easier to find a feasible solution in the shade. Unfortunately, our camera failed us the very moment we took the photo with the front door entrance behind us.

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
30.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 8 ms rise
↘ 22.8 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 77 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (26.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
48.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 18 ms rise
↘ 30.8 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 80 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (42.4 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 54 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8499 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Compared to other IPS displays, the AsusPro’s AU-Optronics panel only offers mediocre viewing angles at best. In particular, this means plenty of space to move around in front of the screen but a noticeable decrease in brightness and contrast at around 45 ° without any compromise in color representation. In real-world use we barely noticed this limitation, though.

Performance

The Asus AsusPro B9440UA was designed as a highly mobile office notebook. Its smart dual-core processor with Hyper-Threading, 8 GB of RAM, the SSD, and the lack of a dedicated GPU are fitting for its designated use cases, yet they still allow for the use of more demanding software like Adobe Photoshop. Several differently equipped models are available, see here.

Processor

Intel's Core i5-7200U (2x 2.5 – 3.1 GHz, Hyper-Threading, 15 W TDP) is probably the most sold mobile CPU from Intel's current Kaby Lake lineup. Its 10 – 15% slower predecessor, the i5-6200U (2x 2.3 – 2.8 GHz), can be found in several office and multimedia laptops as well. The combination of ample performance and low power consumption make it the ideal processor for these usage scenarios and it only gets better and better with each generation. Integrated into the processor are the well-known HD Graphics 620 GPU as well as a dual-channel DDR4 memory controller.

Running our Cinebench multi-core loop the score achieved already dropped from 321 to 313 points after the first iteration, and it remained at around 310 to 311 points afterwards. This indicates that the processor is capable of utilizing its full turbo potential for prolonged periods of high load. On battery, however, it consistently scored 321 points throughout the entire test.

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Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit

Compared to other laptops equipped with the exact same processor the AsusPro B9440UA’s performance was at the lower end of what we came to expect from this CPU. That said, the difference between the AsusPro and the fastest i5-7200U-equipped laptop was a mere 3%, and thus it can almost be attributed to measuring tolerance.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel Core i7-7500U
140 Points ∼70% +10%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel Core i5-7200U
130 Points ∼65% +2%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel Core i5-7200U
127 Points ∼64%
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
Intel Core i7-7500U
110 Points ∼55% -13%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel Core i5-7200U
331 Points ∼15% +3%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel Core i5-7200U
321 Points ∼15%
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel Core i7-7500U
314 Points ∼15% -2%
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
Intel Core i7-7500U
293 Points ∼14% -9%
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
127 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
321 Points
Help

System Performance

We use PCMark 8 to determine overall system performance. Except for the slower IdeaPad 710S Plus the results were as expected throughout the entire test group, and the B9440UA was on a par with the similarly equipped Lifebook U747. The HP Spectre, which was not only equipped with Intel’s faster Core i7-7500U processor but a faster SSD to boot, consistently scored between 2 and 9% higher.

Subjective performance is very dependent on the existence of an SSD per se, and all notebooks had one installed. Therefore, the Asus booted up fairly quickly and application launch times were somewhere between fast and instantaneous. Excessive multitasking was limited by the fact that our review unit was equipped with only 8 GB of RAM.

PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
HD Graphics 620, 7500U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
5053 Points ∼78% +9%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung MZYTY256HDHP
4653 Points ∼71% 0%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Micron SSD 1100 (MTFDDAV256TBN)
4630 Points ∼71%
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
GeForce 940MX, 7500U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
4184 Points ∼64% -10%
Home Score Accelerated v2
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
HD Graphics 620, 7500U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
3789 Points ∼63% +2%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Micron SSD 1100 (MTFDDAV256TBN)
3714 Points ∼62%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
HD Graphics 620, 7200U, Samsung MZYTY256HDHP
3506 Points ∼59% -6%
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
GeForce 940MX, 7500U, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
3147 Points ∼53% -15%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3714 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4630 points
Help

Storage Devices

The AS SSD and CrystalDiskMark 3.0 scores were at an expected level for an M.2 SATA 3 SSD. In AS SSD, sequential read speeds almost hit the theoretical upper ceiling of SATA 3.

However, 4k read results, which are an indicator for boot and application launch times, were subpar, and we would have expected at least 30 MB/s. In AS SSD, we would have also expected a score north of 1,000 points, but as we have said before: the fact that the laptop is equipped with an SSD instead of an HDD in the first place is the most important thing. Further improvements can only be achieved by attaching the SSD via PCIe instead of SATA 3, and all of the competitors we compared the AsusPro to were equipped accordingly.

Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Micron SSD 1100 (MTFDDAV256TBN)
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Samsung MZYTY256HDHP
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
15%
112%
149%
Write 4k QD32
232.1
249.7
8%
416
79%
321.4
38%
Read 4k QD32
247.3
399.1
61%
497.1
101%
407.5
65%
Write 4k
87.8
87.8
0%
140.2
60%
121.5
38%
Read 4k
26.81
35.73
33%
57.47
114%
54.75
104%
Write 512
398.8
283.4
-29%
911.3
129%
1244
212%
Read 512
323.2
396.7
23%
753
133%
1165
260%
Write Seq
441.4
497.8
13%
1088
146%
1472
233%
Read Seq
462
504
9%
1090
136%
1577
241%
Micron SSD 1100 (MTFDDAV256TBN)
Sequential Read: 462 MB/s
Sequential Write: 441.4 MB/s
512K Read: 323.2 MB/s
512K Write: 398.8 MB/s
4K Read: 26.81 MB/s
4K Write: 87.8 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 247.3 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 232.1 MB/s

Graphics Card

The well-known Intel HD 620 GPU is an energy-efficient and rather slow shared memory on-chip GPU that is very well-suited for 2D rendering but quickly throws in the towel when confronted with current and/or demanding 3D games. It profits noticeably from fast dual-channel memory and should therefore perform better in the B9440UA than in single-channel memory models.

Accordingly, 3DMark 11 scores are higher than average. The largest lead was 14%, although that was a singular spike. On average, our review unit was around 10% faster than other HD 620-equipped laptops.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, Intel Core i7-7500U
2447 Points ∼5% +57%
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
1562 Points ∼3% 0%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7200U
1557 Points ∼3%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7200U
1409 Points ∼3% -10%
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, Intel Core i7-7500U
1940 Points ∼5% +99%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7200U
975 Points ∼2%
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
948 Points ∼2% -3%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7200U
799 Points ∼2% -18%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, Intel Core i7-7500U
13075 Points ∼8% +55%
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7200U
8433 Points ∼5%
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i7-7500U
8104 Points ∼5% -4%
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
Intel HD Graphics 620, Intel Core i5-7200U
6803 Points ∼4% -19%
3DMark 11 Performance
1715 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
6478 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
891 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Gaming on the AsusPro B9440UA is severely limited to a rather short list of games. As is reflected in the table below not even the very modest Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III with its isometric graphics was playable on minimal details and a 1280x720 resolution. Games that are playable with medium details include Farming Simulator 17, Overwatch, and Dota 2. An extensive benchmark list for the Intel HD 620 can be found here.

low med. high ultra
The Witcher 3 (2015) 14.8fps
Ghost Recon Wildlands (2017) 13.7fps
Warhammer 40.000: Dawn of War III (2017) 24.4fps

Emissions

System Noise

When idle, the fan is off most of the time. Occasional spikes during light usage like web-browsing ramp up revs quickly, but the fan remained at its lowest level and was barely audible in a quiet office environment from the usual distance of around 50 cm (20 inches / 1.6 ft) with one other PC running in the office.

With Prime95 and Furmark running simultaneously the fan runs at full speed but its soundscape remained unobtrusive overall. From our point of view, the fan’s annoyance potential is very limited, and the laptop remains almost inaudible during normal office tasks.

Noise Level

Idle
29 / 29 / 29 dB(A)
Load
36.7 / 40.2 dB(A)
 
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 29 dB(A)

Temperature

Clock Prime95 + FurMark
Clock Prime95 + FurMark

Under constant high load, which is rather uncommon in everyday use, temperatures on the bottom only rise by a few degrees. When idle, the B9440UA stays below 28 °C (83 °F). Heat, it seems, is not an issue with this laptop at all.

Taking a closer look at clock speeds and temperatures while running our stress test (Prime95 + Furmark simultaneously) we noticed a core temperature of no more than 67 °C (153 °F) but a maximum clock speed that dropped to and remained at only 1.3 GHz after a few seconds. Given the processor’s base clock speed of 2.5 GHz this massive CPU throttling is quite abnormal even for ULV-CPUs. We do not expect this to be a problem in real-world scenarios, though.

 27.4 °C28 °C26.8 °C 
 25.8 °C26.8 °C25.7 °C 
 26 °C25.4 °C24.8 °C 
Maximum: 28 °C
Average: 26.3 °C
26.1 °C29 °C26.7 °C
25.6 °C25.9 °C25.8 °C
24.8 °C24.8 °C25.4 °C
Maximum: 29 °C
Average: 26 °C
Power Supply (max.)  28.5 °C | Room Temperature 20.4 °C | Fluke 62 Max

Speakers

The general rule for laptop speakers seems to be: the less physical volume the harder it gets to achieve acceptable sound quality. Keeping this in mind, the B9440UA’s Harman Kardon speakers were not bad at all. For example, the Smashing Pumpkins song “1979” at full volume sounded natural, rich, and full, which should suffice for medium-sized rooms and offices. Don’t expect any bass though, and highs bordered on being shrill occasionally.

Unfortunately, sound quality varied depending on the song we played. For example, “Something from Nothing” by the Foo Fighters annoyed us with constant fluctuations in volume and highs. Generally speaking, we were under the impression that the speakers had trouble with highs. Decreasing volume does help, and all things considered the speakers exceeded our expectations.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs203437.42540.542.53135.435.44039.444.45045.450.9633338.28029.93610035.344.812534.248.516025.951.920028.856.625030.159.131529.559.340025.558.750027.162.863021.26580020.266.3100019.765.9125019.662.8160019.164.6200019.363.925002069.3315021.468400022.467.7500025.668.4630020.866.1800020.657.11000022.256.91250025.355.81600024.451.8SPL34.878N2.442.8median 22.4Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100Tmedian 62.8Delta3.453232.433.433.83031.12831.627.42926.428.725.230.424.731.62332.621.832.522.332.525.436.522.243.319.946.418.748.118.753.1195620.159.616.860.415.258.814.755.314.353.714.448.215.751.714.95015.356.415.259.615.157.314.949.914.848.32968.11.222.3median 16.8Fujitsu LifeBook U747median 503.1731.635.231.633.138.433.144.138.544.136.632.136.629.129.329.129.126.629.127.425.727.425.926.425.92726.12733.923.733.933.322.733.339.321.639.34620.84653.52053.551.319.451.35018.85050.418.350.452.617.652.65817.8586117.56163.117.563.164.817.464.867.317.867.367.717.967.767.118.167.165.118.365.16418.46463.618.463.661.718.361.758.118.358.17630.476331.433median 58HP Spectre 13-v131ngmedian 18.3median 5810.61.910.632.634.232.642.241.242.24443.34435.836.535.83235.63230.828.830.828.727.828.729.726.429.729.225.629.232.323.832.334.523.634.546.122.346.158.121.458.164.720.764.763.820.363.864.71964.775.718.675.769.518.169.562.717.962.765.217.865.265.117.665.162.517.662.559.618.159.657.218.157.25818.35857.918.557.953.418.453.459.718.559.767.218.367.267.618.367.67830.67838.71.538.7median 59.7Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKBmedian 18.5median 59.77.71.97.7hearing rangehide median Pink Noise
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (78 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 9.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (4.4% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.3% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (6.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (13.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 9% of all tested devices in this class were better, 8% similar, 83% worse
» The best had a delta of 11%, average was 21%, worst was 48%
Compared to all devices tested
» 12% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 85% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Fujitsu LifeBook U747 audio analysis

(-) | not very loud speakers (68.14 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 15.2% lower than median
(+) | bass is linear (6.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 6.1% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.4% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 4.4% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (10.4% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (22.6% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 63% of all tested devices in this class were better, 7% similar, 29% worse
» The best had a delta of 11%, average was 21%, worst was 48%
Compared to all devices tested
» 55% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 37% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

HP Spectre 13-v131ng audio analysis

(-) | not very loud speakers (68 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 23.8% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | reduced mids - on average 5.1% lower than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (7.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 7.7% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (3.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (26.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 77% of all tested devices in this class were better, 8% similar, 15% worse
» The best had a delta of 9%, average was 20%, worst was 47%
Compared to all devices tested
» 75% of all tested devices were better, 6% similar, 19% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (73 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 21.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 6.7% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (10.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.2% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (6.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (22.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 67% of all tested devices in this class were better, 4% similar, 29% worse
» The best had a delta of 9%, average was 20%, worst was 47%
Compared to all devices tested
» 54% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 38% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Frequency diagram in comparison (checkboxes above can be checked/unchecked!)

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Compared to the rest of its competitors equipped with similar hardware the Asus had the lowest power consumption in all reviewed use scenarios except for maximum load (until the CPU started to throttle, that is). The difference to its closest rival, the Fujitsu Lifebook U747, was an astonishing 10 – 33%. Due to its dedicated graphics card the IdeaPad 710S Plus was the least efficient. Overall, our review unit proved to be very energy-efficient and the charger is amply dimensioned.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.48 / 0.5 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 3.1 / 6.1 / 6.8 Watt
Load midlight 27.4 / 43.7 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
7200U, HD Graphics 620, Micron SSD 1100 (MTFDDAV256TBN), IPS, 1920x1080, 14
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
7200U, HD Graphics 620, Samsung MZYTY256HDHP, IPS LED, 1920x1080, 14
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
7500U, HD Graphics 620, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP, IPS UWVA, 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
7500U, GeForce 940MX, Samsung PM961 NVMe MZVLW512HMJP, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Power Consumption
-15%
-12%
-24%
Idle Minimum *
3.1
4.11
-33%
3.6
-16%
3.6
-16%
Idle Average *
6.1
7.87
-29%
6.4
-5%
7.4
-21%
Idle Maximum *
6.8
8.74
-29%
9.2
-35%
8.7
-28%
Load Average *
27.4
30.2
-10%
34
-24%
43
-57%
Load Maximum *
43.7
32.4
26%
34.4
21%
42
4%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Thanks to its lower power consumption, battery life is exceptional. In our idle and real-world Wi-Fi tests at normalized brightness (see: our test criteria), which means the Lenovo’s dedicated GPU is inactive, the Asus makes the most out of its battery. In general, around nine hours of real-world usage should be achievable.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
18h 57min
WiFi Surfing v1.3
8h 51min
Load (maximum brightness)
2h 06min
Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T
7200U, HD Graphics 620, 48 Wh
Fujitsu LifeBook U747
7200U, HD Graphics 620, 50 Wh
HP Spectre 13-v131ng
7500U, HD Graphics 620, 38 Wh
Lenovo IdeaPad 710S Plus-13IKB
7500U, GeForce 940MX, 46 Wh
Battery Runtime
-19%
-34%
-41%
Reader / Idle
1137
782
-31%
718
-37%
468
-59%
WiFi v1.3
531
430
-19%
394
-26%
338
-36%
Load
126
117
-7%
77
-39%
89
-29%
H.264
490
367

Verdict

Pros

+ rigid and good-looking case
+ very compact, thin, and lightweight
+ thin bezels
+ port replicator and protective case included
+ TPM + fingerprint reader
+ very good input devices
+ excellent contrast ratio
+ quiet and cool in all load scenarios
+ economical and power-efficient
+ very long battery life

Cons

- rudimentary port layout
- no webcam
- subpar Wi-Fi performance
- color accuracy rather poor out of the box
- subpar SATA 3 SSD
- massive throttling during our stress test
The Asus AsusPro B9440UA-GV0100T - courtesy of campuspoint.
The Asus AsusPro B9440UA-GV0100T - courtesy of campuspoint.

Asus took a chance by sacrificing all ports that can normally be found on laptops, and quite a few users will be put off by the fact that the device is limited to two USB-C ports. However, it would have been all but impossible to achieve 15 mm thickness and a weight of only 1.05 kg without doing so.

This is as far as it goes in terms of compromises though. The premium quality of its great input devices matched its high price, the included port replicator and protective case are more than welcome, and the security features reflect the device’s desired high level of mobility. In addition, it is one of the quietest laptops we have tested in recent months, and battery life is impressive to boot. Aside from the ports the other items on our contra list are all but insignificant and can be filed under nitpicking.

The AsusPro B9440UA is a highly mobile office notebook with a clear focus on wireless connectivity and no obvious weaknesses. Despite the overall good impression it made, it narrowly missed a “very good” rating.

From our point of view, the European model we tested (GV0100T available for around $1,200) is the most sensible choice (even more so considering the lower price of only $1,000 for the better-equipped entry level model on the other side of the Atlantic), and we can absolutely recommend it.

Asus ASUSPRO B9440UA-GV0100T - 05/21/2017 v6
Sven Kloevekorn

Chassis
90 / 98 → 92%
Keyboard
91%
Pointing Device
86%
Connectivity
41 / 80 → 52%
Weight
74 / 67 → 100%
Battery
91%
Display
84%
Games Performance
58 / 68 → 85%
Application Performance
87 / 92 → 95%
Temperature
93%
Noise
93%
Audio
65%
Average
80%
87%
Office - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Asus AsusPro B9440UA (Core i5, 8 GB) Laptop Review
Sven Kloevekorn, 2017-05-23 (Update: 2017-05-23)