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Asus ExpertBook B7 Flip Review: All Work and A Little Play

What makes a good notebook in 2021? The tenants of a solid notebook experience has shifted as a result of the pandemic and lines between work and play continue to blur.

Better webcams and higher quality mics have overtaken the need for large batteries for example, as manufacturers aim to give customers more of what they need while working from home or adopting a hybrid model.

Where then does the new Asus ExpertBook B7 Flip fit in? It’s a premium device akin to the company’s ZenBook lineup, but is not necessarily creator focused, while also leveraging innovative hardware to deliver a good portable experience.

So is it suitable for the modern workplace?

That’s a lot of questions to kick off a review, so let’s dive into what the ExpertBook B7 Flip served up over the past couple of weeks that we had it in.

Straight laced

Let’s start with design and here Asus has kept things simple and refined. Sure, it’s not as eye catching as the ZenBook 14X OLED, but a work-focused notebook does not really need to be.

The deep Navy that the notebook is swatched in is subtle, but a nice change up from the Black or Silver options we regularly see populating cubicles, or more accurately Zoom calls these days.

The B7 Flip’s (how we will be referring to it for the remainder of this review) body also features a slightly textured feel which we quite like. Again, it’s a subtle change from the kind of premium work notebooks we usually encounter.

That said, if you are expecting an insanely lightweight ExpertBook like the B9 we reviewed last year, the B7 Flip has a reassuring amount of heft to it at 1.43kg. This weight means the notebook sits stably as you place it in one of two display modes.

Where other brands would position this functionality in terms of enjoying visual content, Asus sees it being put to use on the B7 Flip for videoconferencing.

As for some of the other elements that Asus have added to the mix, the numpad layered underneath the trackpad is present, although if we’re honest, we never really used it other than to see it light up.

The bevy of ports on offer, however, are far more useful, with two Thunderbolt 4 USB Type-C ports, two USB Type-A and a single HDMi, micro HDMI and smart card reader available. As such, it comes well appointed.

Sights and sounds

Shifting to the visual aspects of the B7 Flip and Asus has done a bit of give and take here. The screen on our review model for example is a 14″ FullHD (1920×1200), with an option for QHD+ to be specced.

In general the display was serviceable, but it may be the fact that we recently reviewed an Asus OLED model that it was missing a bit of pop, but for video calls, spreadsheets and general work, the B7 Flip is more than capable.

If you’re looking to do a bit more creative work, the aforementioned QHD+ or OLED Asus notebook might be worth considering.

Areas where the B7 Flip shines is the 720P webcam up front, which has a quick to use shutter to provide some privacy when needed. To support the video, a pair of Harman Kardon tuned speakers are present, along with a pair of multi-array microphones, yielding a crisper videoconferencing experience than we have used in the past.

As for the performance, the B7 Flip is well appointed for the environment is it designed for. To that end, 11th Core Intel processors are available, with our review model running an i7-1195G7 and Intel Xe Graphics, which also happens to be the highest specification available for that component.

In our experience and testing, the B7 Flip was solid, with the only real lags being with Windows 10 itself, proving sluggish at times when you try to run a few too many applications at once. That said, when running the mix of applications you want, it is a handy piece of kit indeed.

On that front it registered an average score of 3 975.8 on Cinebech R23. Compared to some of the ZenBooks we’ve reviewed in the past 12 months, the B7 Flip scores slightly below, but it is still one of the better options in the ExpertBook lineup.

Final verdict

At R29 499 (RRP), the ExpertBook B7 Flip does not come cheap, but neither do most truly premium Windows 10 notebooks. Aimed at the enterprise crowd, it delivers where it needs to in an elegantly subtle package, with the only fault being a slightly subpar battery performance.

If you are deskbound most of the time, that is quite alright, but those wanting portability may need to look elsewhere.

All in all though, it is a more than solid premium business notebook, which Asus has been developing a skill at manufacturing of late.

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