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ASUS N53Jf review


mobilenvidia

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Specifications as reviewed

Processor

Intel® Core™ i5 Processor 460M : 2.53 GHz

Operating System

Genuine Windows® 7 Home Premium x64

Chipset

Mobile Intel® HM55 Express Chipset

Main Memory

DDR3 1066 MHz SDRAM, 4GB SDRAM

Display

15.6" HD (1366x768)

Video Graphics & Memory

NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 425M with 1GB DDR3 VRAM

Hard Drive

500GB,5400rpm

Optical Drive

DVD Super Multi Double Layer

Card Reader

5 in 1 card reader SD,MMC,MS,MS-Pro,MS-Duo

Video Camera

2.0 Mega Pixel web camera

Integrated 802.11 b/g/n

Built-in Bluetooth™ V2.1+EDR

10/100/1000 Base T

Interface

1 x Microphone-in jack

1 x Headphone-out jack (S/PDIF)

1 x VGA port/Mini D-sub 15-pin for external monitor

1 x USB 3.0 ports

2 x USB 2.0 ports

1 x RJ45 LAN Jack for LAN insert

1 x HDMI

1 x WLAN On/Off Switch

1 x E-SATA (USB2.0 Combo)

Audio

Built-in speaker and microphone

Bang & Olufsen ICEpower®

SonicFocus

Battery Pack & Life

6 cells: 4400 mAh 47 Whrs

AC Adapter

Output: 19 V DC, 4.74 A, 90 W

Input: 100-240 V AC, 50/60 Hz universal

Dimension & Weight

39.1 x 26.6 x 2.9~3.9 cm (W x D x H)

2.71 kg (with 6 cell battery)

My Wife has been using her Dell Latitude D820 for 4 years now and it's beginning to show it's age.

Battery died, and along with that the ability to keep time/date

With her own business a cafe and all the files and applications that are needed the aged 120GB HDD was slow and full.

I wanted something below NZ$1500 to replace the D820 which at the time I got for a bargain at NZ largest online Auction site.

I looked at NVIDIA powered Notebooks foremost but even ATI and Intel GMA based got a look.

But by the ASUS N53Jf got the nod ahead of the all the others, due to it's new features like GT425m for DX11 and a USB3.0 port for future use.

There are 3 models of the N53Jf in New Zealand, this is the cheapest model with the Core i5, the other 2 come with Core i7's, and cost much more.

The notebook is a silver with black affair, metallic brushed aluminium look outside cover/lid that easily gets finger prints.

Once the lid is opened you are greeted with black interior and the striking grey speaker grill between Keyboard and LCD panel

Below this is the Bezel with it's hard to see icons for the power and other buttons, you will get used to it.

The keyboard is very flat with square keys, this will also take a little getting used to, I'm used to the more raised Dell keyboards, but it should not be quite so prone to dirt getting under the keys.

The trackpad is excellent, very nice to use I normally avoid them but this is a trackpad that would not be an issue if you for got your mouse.

Along the front edge but on top are the little LEDs for power and HDD etc, these would have been nice if they wrapped around to the front so you could see them when the lid is closed.

Once the battery was plugged in and the AC adapter (which has a 90deg bend which I hate as this will no doubt in a year or two break the connector on machine) the machine booted and installed the final part of the Operating System (Windows 7 Premium x64)

ASUS at least doesn't install too much bloatware, there is some but manageable.

But all the same, everything got wiped for a clean install of Windows 7 Ultimate.

ASUS website is very good for driver updates and also for the utilities that come with the machine.

So after downloading the bits I needed and the OS install, everything is running great.

The machine is a marked improvement over the D820, it's much snappier in day to day tasks.

The 500GB is considerably quicker than the 120GB, apps open in a flash

At 2.7kg with battery, it's not the lightest, or the heaviest 15.6" Notebook.

It's fairly thick near the hinge to allow for the speakers, but still easily taken on the road in a case or backpack.

The machine runs very cool, there are no hot spots on or underneath it.

The only place you feel any heat is from the CPU vent, hot air blows from here.

But it's a pleasure to have on the lap, as the panels simply do not get hot and burn holes in your legs.

Was very impressed with this.

To make it perfect, the vent should have been at the back, as there is only the VGA connector and power adapter socket, there is plenty of room.

Have just noticed that DirectX 11 based 3D Mark 11 does not detect the GT 425m it only sees the Intel HD GMA and hence thinks there is no DX11 capable GPU.

I could not run this benchmark, tried to run 3D Mark Vantage, but this needs 1280x1024 resolution which this Notebooks lacks.

Speaking of which, what is it these days with resolutions of greater than 1368x768, there are very few notebooks with it.

Only Sony got to 1600x900 in the affordable category but they lacking other areas, like miserable GPU to run the higher resolution.

I would have loved to see a full 1080p screen on this, the GT 425m is quite capable of 1080p movies.

On Notebooks capable of 1080p screens it's normally only a small addition to the price to upgrade.

For me this is an issue, I doubt my wife who never ran her D820 at full 1920x1200 would be too concerned.

I'm not sure what the 'Express Gate Cloud' is about, it looks to boot to a subsystem of applications that are also in Windows.

It would only be of use if you had no Operating System with these features.

The one thing it should have had was a DVD and Music player that worked without turning the Notebook on, not sure why this wasn't included.

Pros

LED LCD display is nice and bright.

Core i5 460m, plenty of zing with not too much power use.

Hybrid graphics, NVIDIA GT425m and Intel GMA

4 hours battery life should be achievable.

Keyboard with numeric keypad.

Touchpad, best I've used

USB3.0 connector for future use

Great sound (for a notebook) from the Bang and Olufsen Icepower system.

Runs very cool, only vent gets hot.

Cons

Power Cable enters Notebook with a 90deg bend, this will put pressure on the connector in the Notebook

LCD cover easily fingerprints

Opening lid needs 2 hands one to hold the base from lifting up, even though there is no latch.

LEDs can't be seen with the lid closed, a small gripe.

Overall, a great machine a, after much research the best bang for my hard earned buck.

The cons above are only my personal tastes and others may not even notice them.

This should do my wife nicely for the next few years.

Not the fastest machine ever build or the lightest.

But over all a very good all round performer.

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It's 15.6 inch and yet it has a numeric keyboard. I am impressed.

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These Asus 15.6 inchers are quite big, my G51 is less than 1 cm smaller in length and width than my 17" Compaq.

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The N53Jf is a good inch wider than the 15.4" screened D820

There is quite a large border around the screen.

Still room to the left and right of the keyboard.

ASUS could have made the Notebook narrower.

Edited the Pros, to include how cool this thing runs externally

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The N53Jf is a good inch wider than the 15.4" screened D820

There is quite a large border around the screen.

Still room to the left and right of the keyboard.

ASUS could have made the Notebook narrower.

Edited the Pros, to include how cool this thing runs externally

This should be the direct competitor of the Dell XPS 15, could you please post some temperatures oand OC capabilities just to make a comparison at 360 degrees? :)

I wrote a small review of the XPS 15 HERE

Thanks in Advance

Simon

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