VivoBooks are a good alternative to the company’s premium ZenBook line-up. Most of the time the VivoBooks even leave us more satisfied than the flagship devices and that’s due to the lower expectations. Today we have with us the ASUS VivoBook S15 S530.
In addition to that, we see some premium materials used for the build of this notebook. Its body is mostly made of aluminum, it has a backlit keyboard and a fingerprint reader. Obviously, at a price tag of around $700-800, it is not really a budget product but it is still far away from the cost of one of the big boys. Stay with us to hear our thoughts on the very new VivoBook S15 S530.
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/asus-vivobook-s15-s530/
ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 technical specifications table
What’s in the box?
ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 is pretty minimalistic when it comes to the package ingredients – some documents, a laptop, and a 65W charger. The latter, by the way, is pretty tiny – a little larger than that of an iPad.
Design and construction
In addition to e thin and light design, ASUS has given the option of a few colors for the VivoBook S15 S530. We chose the “Gun Metal” out of the “Icicle Gold”, “Silver Blue”, “Star Grey” and “Firmament Green”. Pretty formidable names for some of the most common colors around us. Nevertheless, we like to have an option. As we mentioned above, the device is pretty slim and lightweight for a 15.6-incher – 18 mm profile and 1.80 kg on the scales.
In addition to that, the premium look is enforced by aluminum on the lid cover and the base of the notebook. On the other hand, the material surrounding the screen is plastic, as is the bottom panel. Besides the colors, one of the main selling points of this laptop is the hinge design, which lifts the device by a fraction of the inch in order to provide a more comfortable typing experience. This actually works, since you don’t need to bend your wrists when typing.
Speaking of the screen, it has very thin bezels which are not obtrusive and are easy on the eye. When you turn your heads down you can see a full-blown keyboard that is a little soft and has average travel. Thankfully, there is a backlight with adjustable brightness to save the day. Further down is the touchpad which is covered with glass and has an optional fingerprint reader. The touchpad itself feels clumsy but not that much.
On the contrary, we have singlehandedly the fastest fingerprint reader on a laptop. As soon as you put your finger on it – BOOM! – unclocked. You can easily compare it with the best smartphone readers.
On the bottom side of the device, you can see some ventilation grills as well as the speaker grills. The exhausted hot air is blown at the lid of the device but due to the angle it is coming out of the machine there shouldn’t be any problems.
|ASUS VivoBook S15 S530||361 mm (14.21″)||243 mm (9.57″)||18 mm (0.71″)||1.80 kg (4 lbs)|
|ASUS VivoBook S15 S510||361 mm (14.21″)||244 mm (9.61″)||17.9 mm (0.70″) (-23%)||1.70 kg (3.7 lbs) (-14%)|
|Acer Swift 3 (SF315-41)||371 mm (14.61″)||255 mm (10.04″)||18.8 mm (0.74″) (-31%)||2.00 kg (4.4 lbs) (-20%)|
On the left side of the VivoBook S15 S530, we have a couple of USB Type-A 2.0 ports and a MicroSD card reader. On the other side, there is the charging jack, accompanied by a USB Type-A 3.1 (Gen. 1) port, an HDMI connector, one more USB 3.1 (Gen.1) this time of Type-C and an audio jack.
Disassembly, upgrade options and maintenance
If you ever need to pop the VivoBook S15 S530 open, you just need a Phillips head screwdriver and a plastic pry tool. First, undo all 10 screws and then, carefully lift up the bottom panel. Welcome, to VivoBook S15 S530’s internals.
First, we have the cooling. A wide, but thin heat pipe goes through both CPU and GPU and ends up at a heat sink in the left side of the device (right on the image). This is not really the best cooling solution since it is never a good idea to combine the heat from the processor to that of the GPU.
On the left side of the heat pipe, there are the RAM DIMMs, one of which is currently occupied by 8 GB of DDR4 memory. Further to the left, you can see the M.2 SATA slot and beneath it a regular SATA connector.
Our unit came with a Seagate FireCuda SSHD with a model number ST1000LX015 and capacity of 1TB.
The remaining space is taken by the weirdly shaped battery. It has a capacity of 42Wh which is not very much. However, both the Intel Coe i5-8250U and the NVIDIA MX150 use low voltage cores, so it shouldn’t be a problem.
ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 comes with a Full HD IPS panel, model number LG LP156WF9-SPK1 (LGD0563) – the same panel used in Lenovo Legion Y530. Its diagonal is 15.6″ (39.62 cm), and the resolution – 1920 х 1080p. Additionally, the screen ratio is 16:9, the pixel density – 142 ppi, their pitch – 0.18 x 0.18 mm. The screen can be considered Retina when viewed from at least 60 cm (from this distance, the average human eye can’t see the individual pixels).
Viewing angles are good. We offer images at different angles to evaluate the quality.
The maximum measured brightness is 265 nits (cd/m2) in the middle of the screen and 255 nits (cd/m2) average across the surface with a maximum deviation of just 7%. The Correlated Color Temperature on a white screen and at maximum brightness is 6940K (average) – a tad colder than the 6500K optimum for sRGB. The average color temperature through the grey scale before profiling is 6690K.
In the illustration below you can see how the display performs from uniformity perspective. The illustration below shows how matters are for operational brightness levels (approximately 140 nits) – in this particular case at 74% Brightness (White level = 144 cd/m2, Black level = 0.126 cd/m2).
Values of dE2000 over 4.0 should not occur, and this parameter is one of the first you should check if you intend to use the laptop for color sensitive work (a maximum tolerance of 2.0 ). The contrast ratio is excellent – 1140:1.
To make sure we are on the same page, we would like to give you a little introduction to the sRGB color gamut and the Adobe RGB. To start, there’s the CIE 1976 Uniform Chromaticity Diagram that represents the visible specter of colors by the human eye, giving you a better perception of the color gamut coverage and the color accuracy.
Inside the black triangle, you will see the standard color gamut (sRGB) that is being used by millions of people in HDTV and on the web. As for the Adobe RGB, this is used in professional cameras, monitors etc for printing. Basically, colors inside the black triangle are used by everyone and this is the essential part of the color quality and color accuracy of a mainstream notebook.
Still, we’ve included other color spaces like the famous DCI-P3 standard used by movie studios, as well as the digital UHD Rec.2020 standard. Rec.2020, however, is still a thing of the future and it’s difficult for today’s displays to cover that well. We’ve also included the so-called Michael Pointer gamut, or Pointer’s gamut, which represents the colors that naturally occur around us every day.
The yellow dotted line shows ASUS VivoBook S15 S530’s color gamut coverage.
Its display covers just 54% of the sRGB/ITU-R BT.709 (web/HDTV standard) in CIE1976.
Our “Design and Gaming” profile delivers optimal color temperature (6500K) at 140 cd/m2 luminance and sRGB gamma mode.
We tested the accuracy of the display with 24 commonly used colors like light and dark human skin, blue sky, green grass, orange etc. You can check out the results at factory condition and also, with the “Design and Gaming” profile.
Below you can compare the scores of ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 with the default settings (left), and with the “Gaming and Web design” profile (right).
The next figure shows how well the display is able to reproduce really dark parts of an image, which is essential when watching movies or playing games in low ambient light.
The left side of the image represents the display with stock settings, while the right one is with the “Gaming and Web Design” profile activated. On the horizontal axis, you will find the grayscale and on the vertical axis – the luminance of the display. On the two graphs below you can easily check for yourself how your display handles the darkest nuances but keep in mind that this also depends on the settings of your current display, the calibration, the viewing angle, and the surrounding light conditions.
Response time (Gaming capabilities)
We test the reaction time of the pixels with the usual “black-to-white” and “white-to-black” method from 10% to 90% and vice versa.
We recorded Fall Time + Rise Time = 25 ms.
Health impact – PWM / Blue Light
PWM (Screen flickering)
Pulse-width modulation (PWM) is an easy way to control monitor brightness. When you lower the brightness, the light intensity of the backlight is not lowered, but instead turned off and on by the electronics with a frequency indistinguishable to the human eye. In these light impulses, the light/no-light time ratio varies, while brightness remains unchanged, which is harmful to your eyes. You can read more about that in our dedicated article on PWM.
ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 doesn’t use PWM to adjust its screen brightness. This makes the display comfortable for use in extended periods of time in this aspect.
Blue light emissions
Installing our Health-Guard profile not only eliminates PWM but also reduces the harmful Blue Light emissions while keeping the colors of the screen perceptually accurate. If you’re not familiar with the Blue light, the TL;DR version is – emissions that negatively affect your eyes, skin and your whole body. You can find more information about that in our dedicated article on Blue Light.
You can see the levels of emitted blue light on the spectral power distribution (SPD) graph.
Ultimately, ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 has a good Full HD display. It has all of the treats of an IPS panel, like good contrast and comfortable viewing angles. In addition to that, it doesn’t use PWM for brightness adjustment and has a relatively good maximum brightness. On the contrary, the biggest disappointment from this screen is its low color coverage.
Buy our profiles
Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for ASUS VivoBook S15 S530 configurations with 15.6″ LG LP156WF9-SPK1 (LGD0563) (FHD, 1920 × 1080) IPS.
*Should you have problems with downloading the purchased file, try using a different browser to open the link you’ll receive via e-mail. If the download target is a .php file instead of an archive, change the file extension to .zip or contact us at [email protected]
Read more about the profiles HERE.
In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia's products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.
Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.
Design and Gaming
This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.
Health-Guard eliminates the harmful Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and reduces the negative Blue Light which affects our eyes and body. Since it’s custom tailored for every panel, it manages to keep the colors perceptually accurate. Health-Guard simulates paper so the pressure on the eyes is greatly reduced.
ASUS VivoBook S15 S530’s speakers are a little quiet. Tones are clear in the low and the high frequency region but have some deviations in the mids.
All of the software you are going to need after a fresh install of Windows is here: https://www.asus.com/ca-en/Laptops/ASUS-VivoBook-S15-S530UN/HelpDesk_Download/
Now, we conduct the battery tests with Windows Better performance setting turned on, screen brightness adjusted to 120 nits and all other programs turned off except for the one we are testing the notebook with.
In order to simulate real-life conditions, we used our own script for automatic web browsing through over 70 websites.
For every test like this, we use the same video in HD.
We use F1 2017’s built-in benchmark on loop in order to simulate real-life gaming.
The Core i5-8250U is one of the first (along with the Core i7-8550U from the same generation) ULV (ultra-low voltage) processors from Intel to feature not two but four cores. It’s part of the 8th Generation (Kaby Lake Refresh) and on contrary to the previous generations, the Turbo Boost range is pretty wide now.
The base frequency is 1.6 GHz and can go up to 3.4 GHz for a short period of time before stabilizing somewhere in between during continues loads. This also means that the single-core performance is really good. The rest of the features and specs, however, remain mostly the same with support for dual-channel DDR4-2400/LPDDR3-2133 memory, 14nm FinFET manufacturing process and the same integrated graphics chip, although re-branded now as Intel UHD Graphics 620.
The whole SoC along with the dual-channel memory is rated at 15W TDP but depending on the usage scenario, cooling capabilities and the configured TDP from the OEM, the TDP can vary from 7.5W up to 25W.
Results are from the Cinebench 20 CPU test (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Fritz chess benchmark (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from our Photoshop benchmark test (the lower the score, the better)
The GeForce MX150 is an entry-level mobile card that is part of the latest NVIDIA Pascal lineup of GPUs, based on the GP108 chip paired with 2GB of GDDR5 memory via a 64-bit interface. The GPU is the successor of GeForce 940MX and it was announced in Q2 of 2017.
The GeForce MX150 operates at a relatively high base frequency of 1469 MHz, while the Boost frequencies can go up to 1532 MHz. The GPU incorporates 384 shaders (CUDA) cores while the memory is clocked at 6008MHz (effective). These specs ensure a significant performance boost over the previous generation of Maxwell GPUs. The TDP of the GPU is lower than the last generation GTX 950M and even the GTX 1050 – 25W compared to 40W for the two models above. Performance-wise, the GeForce MX150 should be similar to the desktop GeForce GT 1030.
Along with all the power consumption and performance improvements, the GPU now supports essential features like Multi-Projection, VR Ready, G-SYNC, Vulkan and Multi-Monitor.
Results are from the 3DMark: Fire Strike (Graphics) benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 3.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 4.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Superposition benchmark (higher the score, the better)
GeForce MX150 continues to be one of the best energy efficient chips on the market. You can easily enjoy low demanding games in high resolution and a lot of eye candy. It even enables you to run some demanding titles at a lower resolution. Moreover, the VivoBook S15 S530 happens to provide sufficient cooling and is one of the best performing laptops housing an MX150 on board.
|CS:GO||Full HD, Low (Check settings)||Full HD, Medium (Check settings)||Full HD, MAX (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||116 fps||93 fps||74 fps|
|DOTA 2||Full HD, Normal (Check settings)||Full HD, High (Check settings)||Full HD, MAX (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||86 fps||56 fps||45 fps|
|TC Rainbow Six Siege||HD 768p, Medium (Check settings)||HD 768p, High (Check settings)||HD 768p, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||78 fps||67 fps||63 fps|
|Far Cry Primal||HD 768p, Normal (Check settings)||HD 768p, High (Check settings)||HD 768p, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||43 fps||38 fps||29 fps|
|Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016)||HD 768p, Lowest (Check settings)||HD 768p, Medium (Check settings)||HD 768p, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||61 fps||42 fps||14 fps|
|Grand Theft Auto V (GTA 5)||HD 768p, Low (Check settings)||HD 768p, Medium (Check settings)||HD 768p, Very High (Check settings)|
|Average FPS||100 fps||55 fps||30 fps|
Temperatures and comfort
Max CPU load
In this test we use 100% on the CPU cores, monitoring their frequencies and chip temperature. The first column shows a computer’s reaction to a short load (2-10 seconds), the second column simulates a serious task (between 15 and 30 seconds), and the third column is a good indicator of how good the laptop is for long loads such as video rendering.
Average core temperature (base frequency + X); CPU temp.
|Intel Core i5-8250U (15W TDP)||0:02 – 0:10 sec||0:15 – 0:30 sec||10:00 – 15:00 min|
|ASUS VivoBook S15 S530||2.99 GHz (B+87%) @ 77°C||2.99 GHz (B+87%) @ 87°C||2.29 GHz (B+62%) @ 71°C|
|Xiaomi Notebook Air 13 (2018)||2.84 GHz (B+78%) @ 80°C||2.16 GHz (B+35%) @ 71°C||2.03 GHz (B+28%) @ 76°C|
Asus VivoBook S15 S530’s cooling solution seems to deal with the Intel Core i5-8250U without any problems. As you can see from the table above, it maintained 2.99 GHz for a sufficient amount of time which ensures a good performance at serious tasks. What captured our eyes the most, though, are the temperatures and the clock speeds at the end of the test. 71°C is pretty cool for a 30-minute stress test, isn’t it?
|NVIDIA GeForce MX150||GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 2 min)||GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 30 min)|
|Xiaomi Notebook Air 13||1264 MHz @ 65°C||1236 MHz @ 73°C|
|ASUS VivoBook S15 S530||1591 MHz (+26%) @ 74°C||1475 MHz (+19%) @ 74°C|
VivoBook S15 S530’s strong performance is busted in this test. It easily achieves 20-25% higher clock speeds than the Notebook Air 13 for example. Also, we noticed that the temperature capped at 74C and then was managed via the clock speeds.
The IR photo below shows that there won’t be any problems for your fingers as the hottest place is way in the middle of nowhere (between the “J” and “K” keys). Moreover – the palmrest area and the “WASD” keys are pretty cool.
ASUS has definitely produced a very good device in the face of VivoBook S15 S530. First of all – it is very well built and looks stylish and super low profile. Its light weight compares even with some smaller devices. We loved how the base is lifted up when you open the lid. It definitely provides some comfort when typing. However, the GeForce MX150 liked it even more than us, since it has more room for breathing this way.
Speaking of the hardware, the VivoBook S15 S530 is one of the fastest MX150-equipped notebooks on the market. It comfortably beats the smaller Xiaomi Notebook Air 13 (2018) in gaming. This was seen in the graphics test where the frequencies were some 250-300 MHz higher than that on the Xiaomi. It happened to beat its direct competitor in the 15-inch market – the Acer Aspire 5 (A515-51G).
However, there are still some areas in which we weren’t completely captivated by the VivoBook S15 S530. One of this areas is the battery life which happened to be average – 6 hours of video playback and web surfing. In addition to that, the keyboard is not what we can call the best and the touchpad is not the most accurate. Obviously, we are nit-picking here – the flaws of this device are easy to swallow.
Screen-wise we have a pretty good panel for the cost with its only downside being the inability to display half of the colors found on the Internet. However, it doesn’t use PWM for brightness adjustment.
The bottom line of this review would be – definitely get this device if you don’t want to spend a ton of money on a laptop that can provide you with light gaming.
- It doesn’t use PWM to adjust screen brightness (LG LP156WF9-SPK1)
- High contrast and comfortable viewing angles (LG LP156WF9-SPK1)
- The fastest MX150 notebook out there
- Low profile and light weight for a 15-inch machine
- Comfortable tilted base design
- Shows only 54% of sRGB colors (LG LP156WF9-SPK1)
You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/asus-vivobook-s15-s530/