• Good performance
  • Faster storage
  • Large display
  • Smooth touchpad
  • Fingerprint sensor with Windows Hello support
  • Pretty solid build
  • USB Type-C port
  • No thunderbolt port
  • Poor screen colour gamut
  • Display nits aren't average
  • Keyboard gives inconsistent tactile feedback
  • CPU undervolting is helpful for performance increment and temperature reduction whereas Cooling pad is useless
  • Can do
  • Web/Desktop Programming
  • Graphics editing & poor video editing
  • Web browsing
  • Smooth multitasking
  • Cannot do
  • iOS/Mac Programming
  • Gaming
  • Android development with emulators in parallel
  • Smooth video editing
  • Machine learning
Buy at Amazon

Hello, guys. Today, in this article, I am going to review the Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA-BQ511T laptop in detail. In addition to that, I will also compare it with other laptops that I have reviewed.

Table of Contents

So, let’s get started. But, before I proceed, read out my article on the explanation of laptop specs to get the basic idea on specs. Furthermore, I have received this review unit from New Delhi. And, it has the following specs.

Technical Specs of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA

Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.
  • CPU: 2.1GHz 4 Core AMD Ryzen 5-3500U Processor | 3.7GHz Max speed
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
  • RAM: 2666MHz 8GB Single Channel DDR4 | Not upgradable
  • Storage: 512GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD Storage
  • Display: 15.6-inch FHD display | IPS & Anti-glare Panel | 198.1 nits
  • Battery: 37Wh 2 Cell Li-ion battery | Lasted for 4 hours and 29 minutes on YouTube watching.
  • Weight: 4 lbs (1.8 kg)
  • Laptop dimensions: 36 x 23.5 x 2.3 cms
  • Wireless Connectivity: Bluetooth 5 and 802.11ac/a/g/b/n Wi-Fi

The Build Quality and Material

All plastic body of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

The Asus VivoBook 14 X415JA laptop has all-plastic build. Despite made of plastic, the build quality is pretty solid and sturdy enough. The edges and corners are rounded like Asus VivoBook 14 X415JA, which reflects a bit premium feeling.

Dimensions and Weight

The dimensions of this laptop are 36 cms (14.17-inch) in width, 23.5 cms (9.25-inch) in depth, and 2.3 cms (0.9-inch) in height. The weight of this laptop was measured using a propert weight meter. And, it is for

  • Laptop only: 1.8 kg (4 lbs)
  • Laptop with charging accessories: 2 kg (4.4 lbs)

The purpose of measuring the weight with accessories is to give you an idea about the weight that may need to carry while traveling.

So, this laptop is lighter Lenovo IdeaPad S145 (1.85 kg). But heavier than Mi Notebook 14 Horizon (1.35 kg).

Display Quality and Color Reproduction

Size and Quality

15.6-inch FHD IPS display of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

The 15.6-inch FHD display of this laptop comes with a IPS panel for delivery of good viewing angles and 60Hz refresh rates. It's covered by almost 8.5mm side bezels and offers 83% of screen-to-body ratio. The screen contrast ratio for this one is 903:1, which is less than that of we recommend for any laptop at Thanalysis (1000:1).

When compared other laptops under Rs 50,000 price like Dell 14 3493 (WVA panel), Lenovo IdeaPad S145 (VA panel), and VivoBook M513 (VA panel), I found this one quite better because of IPS panel.

Color Reproduction Efficiency

Screen colour gamut of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

As shown in the above image, Spyder 5 PRO has ended up the testing with 57% of SRGB, 41% of AdobeRGB, and 38% of NTSC color gamut results.

So, the display is falling on average side in terms of color gamut. It’s okay for students, programmers, content writers, office-level jobs but not good for professional photo and video editing.

Is the display enough bright?

Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop's display nits at different levels of brightness.

The display nits at 100% brightness level are just 198, which too low. At Thanalysis, we recommend at least 300 nits for the display to properly see the content of screen during sun light.

Screen Flex

When intentionally moved the screen up and down with fingers, I found some flex there. The flex was caused due to the plastic lid, and it was little more than average. But, that wasn’t a problem for me during normal use.

In addition to that, the hinge doesn't run along the base. It's concentrated at the corner. And, that's what failed to lower the screen flex. While trying to open the display with one finger, I failed. You must have to put your second hand on the base to open this machine. So, that demonstrates the unevenly distributed weight across the hinge.

Keyboard – Tactile, Flex, Build, and RGB Backlit?

Keyboard Flex and Build Quality

Keyboard of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

The keyboard of this laptop is made of plastic material and has black keys and white fonts on it. At Thanalysis, we also recommend black keys with white texts for better, easier, and faster visibility. In this specific scenario, this keyboard is quite better than HP 15s-Eq0500AU laptop's one.

While pushing it down hard using fingers with fair pressure, I found little more flex there. But, I faced no issues during normal use. If you want to go for a laptop with almost no keyboard flex, then go for Dell Inspiron 14 3493.

Backlit

It's pretty awkward that the keyboard of this Asus laptop has no backlit. Having a backlit keyboard adds benefits during typing in night or low-light room. On the other side, it also contributes to more battery drain.

Tactile Feedback?

Typing experience consists of many things like tactile feedback, clicky keys, typing noise, shallow feeling for poorly designed keyboard, and many more.

During typing, I found the keys were traveling 1.4mm distance down. The keys are giving inconsistent tactile feedback. In addition to that, I felt the keys a little bit smaller than average when I have typed on it for the first time. But, over time, I got used to it.

The Power button is placed next to the Division button. But, to be frank, it hasn't created any problem me during typing when I have accidentally pressed it. Because, it requires a long-press to execute the function assigned to it.

Small and Messy 4 Arrow Keys

The keyboard has 4 arrow keys, which are smaller in size and very closely place. As a result, you may get it pressed accidentally.

But, they aren’t a problem for office use. And, this isn’t a gaming laptop. Hence, you don’t have to consider it important.

Precision Touchpad

The 3.5-inch plastic touchpad of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

This 3.5-inch wider plastic touchpad is smooth, accurate and responsive. In addition to that, it does click down anywhere. If you're about to use it for gaming, I recommend buying a dedicated mouse.

Fingerprints on the Smooth Surface

Fingerprints on the smooth matte plastic surface of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

Fingerprints do show up on the smooth matte finish of this laptop. But, you can easily clean it using a micro-fiber cloth. However, because of light silver colour, they aren't directly visible. In addition to that, I found no color change in the interior over the use.

I am telling this because while reviewing the Alienware m15 R2 gaming laptop, I found its white interior slightly yellowish at some part. Also, it was hard to clean. But that’s not the case with this machine.

RAM

Asus has equipped an 8GB of Single Channel 2666MHz DDR4 RAM. But, the awkward thing for me is that the RAM is not upgradable. But, whatever you get is a quite big amount of RAM for you to make the multitasking better and smoother compared to a 4GB RAM.

Processor and Graphics

As my review unit was restricted from touching the internals, I was unable to remove the bottom cover. But that didn’t stop me from getting internals’ performance.

AMD Ryzen 5-3500U 4 Core 8 Thread processor and AMD Radeon Vega 8 GPU is powering the performance of this laptop. The CPU has a base speed of 2.1GHz which can be boosted to the maximum of 3.7GHz.

Furthermore, this Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop has 512GB of SSD storage. It allows you to read and write large files at very fast speed.

Now, let’s check some of the CPU benchmarks.

Cinebench R20 Score

I have taken 3 runs of Cinebench to show you an average of it. Furthermore, Cinebench is a tool used to measure CPU performance.

Cinebench R20 scores of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

During a Cinebench R20 test with and without a cooling pad, the CB single and multi core scores were 362 and 1369, respectively. With 0.15v CPU undervolting, the multi core score was raised to 1412 from 1369.

So, it clearly indicates that the cooling pad is useless for this Asus laptop in terms of performance increment.

Now, the question is what these scores tell?

First of all, During the testing, Cinebench R20 puts an excessive load on the CPU to execute the tasks. By doing so, it will check machine’s cooling solution also which other tool doesn’t except for 3DMark. So, when the CPU comes under a heavy load, thermal throttling takes place in the processor and it reduces the performance.

For example, If your CPU has max clock speeds of 4.5GHz, then you will reach 4.1GHz max during gaming or stress tests. The reason for not picking up the limit is thermal throttling. So, If the Cinebench R20 score of the laptop is high means the laptop has high powerful CPU with a better thermal management.

Now, let’s check Geekbench benchmarks.

Geekbench 5 Scores

Geekbench 5 scores of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

When tested this laptop using Geekbench 5, it has scored 984 for single core and 3389 for multi core.

Now, what does this score tell?

It tells the performance of the laptop. The higher the score, the higher the performance. Here, you have to consider the multi core score. Look, Geekbench doesn’t put an excessive load on the CPU like Cinebench R20. And, Geekbench consider mainly productivity tasks like emailing, browsing, multitasking, and etc to evaluate the hardware.

And, such ways cannot give you an idea about the cooling solution. Because tiny tasks doesn’t make much weight on the CPU. Hence, If the laptop has higher Geekbench multi core score means its capability for productivity is much better. But, at the same time, information about thermal throttling and cooling solution will remain unanswered by this tool.

Hence, for gamers and programmers, Geekbench isn’t a tool to evaluate the laptop. It’s better to consider Cinebench here. And, for normal users or office users, this one seems to be getting the job done.

The GeekBench score of this Asus machine reflects average productivity ability.

Average CPU Clock Speed

The CPU clock speed was measured by performing the stress test using AIDA64. The results of an average of 3 runs are in the below image.

Average CPU clock speed of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

During the stress test with and without a cooling pad, the CPU clock speed was 2870MHz. But, with 0.1v CPU undervolting, the CPU clock was raised to 3071MHz.

It again clearly indicates that the cooling pad is useless to buy for this Asus VivoBook.

In addition to that, It’s useless to measure the GPU clock speed. Because it’s integrated on the same silicon board. It’s not for heavy tasks. Hence, it’s better to skip. Furthermore, this Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA machine is neither a gaming machine nor it has even MX series GPU. So, it’s void to conduct the TDP (Thermal power design) test.

As gaming requires more resources, it’s become worthy of measuring the TDP and different ways to reduce it. But that’s not the case with this machine.

Video Editing Performance

The video editing performance of this laptop was tested by two ways.

  • Average of the video export time
  • Multitasking during video export

Average of the video export time

In this test, I have exported the 16 minutes and 13 seconds long video in YouTube 4K H.264 preset using Adobe Premier CC. And I have repeated the same test 4 times further to show you the average result.

Video export benchmarks of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

So, during my video export test using Adobe Premier CC, this HP 15 15s-Eq0500AU laptop has exported the video in an average of 29 minutes and 53 seconds. That’s too much.

Multitasking during video export

The motive to conduct this test wasn’t other than to rate the smoothness of this laptop when the CPU is busy with intense work. I have checked the following during the video export, the touchpad, keyboard, and laptop’s response time.

So, During this test, I found this laptop almost average laggy. As it has no dedicated NVIDIA graphics, not even of the MX series, the expectation of good performance is useless. Overall, I found it below an average for video editing like Asus VivoBook 14 X415JA, Inspiron 3493, IdeaPad S145, and Asus VivoBook Ultra 15 when compared to Mi Notebook 14 Horizon edition.

Lenovo IdeaPad L340 offers better video editing experience and comes under just Rs 50,000 in India.

Thermal Performance

This test was performed to tell you whether the cooling pad is efficient in temperature reduction with stable or increased performance. For the stress test, I have used the AIDA64 tool. So, the results are in the below image.

Average CPU temperature of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop during various modes of stress tests.

At idle, the CPU was 48 degrees C hot. In a stress test at an auto fan without a cooling pad, the CPU temperature was found at 82 degrees Celsius. With a cooling pad, its temperature was reduced by 1 degree Celsius. And, with 0.15v CPU UV, the temperature was further decreased to 78.1 degrees Celsius. So, that’s the result of an average of 3 runs.

So, the cooling pad has shown no noticeable change in temperature reduction. It's better not to buy it.

Laptop’s Exterior Temperature

At idle at an auto fan, both the palm rest and a keyboard were found pretty cool.

During the stress test, the keyboard was found at mid 41 C. The top of the base was near 46 C. At the same time, Both touchpad and a palm rest found cool. And nearly same results obtained when used the cooling pad.

Here again, the cooling pad is found unworthy for this laptop.

Fans Noise Level

Fan noise levels of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop during idle state and stress test at auto fan.

This Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop has only one fan, like, in other laptops in ₹50,000 price range.

At idle, the fan’s noise was 34.3dB – very near to silent. During the stress test, it was 47.4dB louder. So, In the conference room, this laptop won’t distract you and the guy sitting next to you.

In addition to that, the gaming laptops have the most noisy fans. If you read my review articles of Dell Alienware m15 R2, Lenovo Legion 7i, MSI GS65 Stealth-004, and Razer Blade Pro 17 gaming laptops, you will find the noise emitted by their fans was reaching 60dB. And, that’s become equal to the noise emitted by washing machine, hair dryer, and electric toothbrush. But, this one isn’t a gaming laptop. Such scenario is not the case with this laptop.

Camera and Microphone

The 720p camera and microphone are located at the top bezel of screen. When tested outdoor, I found both a little bit below-average in quality. I have rated camera 3/10 and microphone 5/10. In addition to that, the camera has no support for Windows Hello unlock.

Fingerprint Sensor

The fingerprint sensor is integrated on the top-right corner of the touchpad. It's pretty fast and supports Windows Hello unlock. However, At Thanalysis, we never like such placement. It create a bit kind of disturbance during gesture activities on the touchpad.

Speakers

The 2 down-firing speakers are located on the sides underneath the laptop near to the front-corner. At Thanalysis, we've reviewed many laptops and based on our analysis, we found that top-firing speakers are pretty good compared to bottom or side firing ones.

I have used the Digitech sound level meter. It has measured the 79dB of the sound level while watching the YouTube video at maximum volume. For more detailed information about speakers’ quality, I have done the LatencyMon test. And, the LatencyMon results were just an average.

The speakers' quality is good but not impressive.

Ports

Ports on the left and right sides of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop.

On the backside, there's nothing.

Air exhausts are placed on the left side of the laptop. In addition, the air intake vents are placed directly above the fan, but, I think they are not useful. Thermal tests revealed that even the cooling pad is unable to make any noticeable change in CPU’s temperature.

Battery

battery life of Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA laptop during stress test and youtube watching.

The 37Wh 2-Cell battery lasted for 58 minutes during the continuous stress test. And, during YouTube watching at 50% of screen brightness and background apps disabled, it has lasted for 4 hours and 29 minutes.

Storage

Let me tell you that this Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA has a 512GB of PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD storage. I have measured its speed and performance using CrystalDiskMark. CrystalDiskMark is a tool most popular for the measurement of storage's performance.

Asus VivoBook 15 M515DA storage speed test using CrystalDiskMark.

You can see that it's too fast at reading and writing. The reading speed is almost 1631MB/sec and writing speed is almost 714MB/sec.

Furthermore, as this Asus laptop has no dedicated graphics card, I have not tested the gaming benchmarks.

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