ASUS' ZenBook 3 vs. the updated MacBook: Which packs more punch?

The 12-inch MacBook is attractive and compact, but not without compromises. When the original came out last spring, our reviewer Dana Wollman took issue with its lackluster performance and lack of ports outside of a USB-C connection. Still, the MacBook was good enough to warrant a refresh in 2016 that delivered more battery life and improved performance. Now, ASUS is getting in on the minimalist act with its new ZenBook 3. At a glance, the new MacBook and ZenBook 3 seem quite similar indeed, with small, lightweight designs and, well, not many ports. While we’ll certainly put the Zenbook 3 through its paces in a full review, a quick peek at the specs reveals two machines similar in profile, but with the potential for very different performance.

Price $999 / $1,499 / $1,999 $1,299 / $1,599
Dimensions 296 x 191.2 x 11.9mm (11.65 x 7.53 x 0.47 inches) 280 x 196.5 x 13.1mm (11.04 x 7.74 x 0.52 inches)
Weight 910g (2 pounds) 920g (2.03 pounds)
OS Windows 10 OS X El Capitan
Display 12.5-inch LED-backlit LCD 12-inch LED-backlit LCD with IPS
Resolution 1,920 x 1,080 2,304 x 1,440
Processor Intel Core i5 6200U or Core i7 6500U Intel Core m3 (1.1GHz) or Core m5 (1.2GHz)
Memory 16GB / 64GB 8GB
Graphics Intel HD Graphics 520 Intel HD Graphics 512
Storage 256GB / 512GB / 1TB SSD 256GB / 512GB SSD
Ports USB-C USB-C
WiFi 802.11ac with WIDI 802.11ac
Battery 40 WHr 41.4 WHr