Weird Problems when (re-)installing W11 on new ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404VC) notebook


Exactly a week ago, my purchased new ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404VC-M9026W, 2023 model, Color: “Inkwell Gray”) notebook arrived. Immediately after unboxing, I started charging it with the provided power supply for over 3 hours until it was fully charged. After charging was complete, I turned it on for the very first time and Windows 11 automatically started to configure itself; occasionally requesting my input in order to define my preferences - it was “Windows 11 Home” pre-installed by default. By that time, touchpad, audio and WiFi connectivity were functioning flawlessly - only for the latter I had to type in my WiFi password first, of course.

After one day of flyby/trying out & familiarization, I decided to cleanly reinstall W11 since I’m using a different edition of W11 and because I generally perform clean installs based on my own preferences & specifics whenever I obtain a new device.

In order to do that, I inserted the W11 installation media (a USB-Stick prepared with Rufus 4.1 a couple of weeks ago using the “business edition” of this W11 .iso image with a local user account specified in Rufus instead of an online MS-Account) into the left-side and only-existing USB-A port of the new device and then entered it’s BIOS/UEFI firmware menu. There, I noticed the first peculiarity: only “Partition 2” of the USB-Stick was shown in the Boot Options - whereas on my desktop PC and on my old ASUS notebook, also “Partition 1” was listed properly in the BO after inserting the same stick!

Anyway, since only the “Partition 2” boot entry of the stick was available, I pressed on it. Then, the second peculiarity and real problem revealed itself: first off, both the initial blue-window symbol of W11 and the setup screen (initially, the langauge & region selection menu) were in low resolution (probably 1024x768 or even 800x600) and even far worse than that, the touchpad didn’t work! I had to navigate through the setup steps using only the keyboard buttons in order to finally get W11 installed!

I was expecting the issues to solve by themselves once W11 installation is completed, but I was wrong: the touchpad still didn’t work and moreover, both the audio controller and the WiFi controller were also inactive - there was a “X” over the speaker symbol in the lower right corner of the taskbar (indicating either no audio driver is installed or no audio device is existing) and there were apparently no wireless connections, because the WiFi controller wasn’t working. Even more appalling, when I launched Device Manager (entirely by using the keyboard), there was NO entry/category for a pointing device AT ALL!

I had to connect an external cable-corded mouse to the device and then install all the ASUS drivers downloaded from ASUS’s product website - only after I installed almost ALL of the provided drivers, there was finally a functioning touchpad, functioning audio (installing “Intel Smart Sound Technology Driver” did the trick) and functioning WiFi connectivity (I had to install ALL provided WiFi and Bluetooth drivers to get it to work!).

Even oddlier, when using the same stick on my OLD notebook, both the W11 setup screen is high resolution (as it is supposed to be for a pure UEFI installation) and more importantly, the touchpad works without any additional drivers! However, as said before, “Partition 1” of the USB-Stick was properly listed in the boot options of the old device (in contrast to the new one) and normally, I always select “Partition 1” when installing W10/11 from a stick - so that may or may not have been the reason, why both the touchpad is working and the setup screen is in high/native display resolution…

(for reference, the native display resolution of my old ASUS notebook is 1920x1080 / 16:9 and the NDR of my new ASUS notebook is 2880x1800 / 16:10)

(for further reference: “TPM” and “Secure Boot” are enabled and “CSM” is disabled in the new device’s BIOS)

This is the very first time I encountered such a problem on a mobile device, when trying to install W10/11 from scratch! I always expect W10 & W11 installation images already come with the necessary basic/generic drivers for out-of-the-box proper functioning of touchpad, audio, network connection and so on. I even contacted ASUS customer support because of this and the employee with whom I talked to and described this weird issue(s) also admitted, that such a behavior/problem is VERY unusual for ASUS laptops! He recommended me to go to my hardware store (where the device was purchased) and ask for a replacement, since I’m still within the 14-day product return timeframe (lasts still August 24, 2023 - almost a week from now on).

However, since all of the available drivers are installed, EVERYTHING works - or seems to work - fine now and I’m unsure, whether such a step (return the device in exchange for a properly functioning sample/replacement device) is not necessary anymore/unjustified…

What’s your opinion on this matter?