23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on November 26, 2011
I purchased the ASUS N53SV-DH72 just before Thanksgiving. Needing a desk top replacement as I can no longer sit for long periods of time. My research led me to this model and manufacturer. ASUS has long been a maker of computer components. In any event I was comfortable with ASUS and their products.
K. Gardner's well done review gave the specs for the computer. I'm going to flesh out the things I've noticed and discovered since purchase.
PROS- ( In no particular order)
1-I really like the screen. It has a non glossy matte finish, which can be rare on laptops I've discovered. The screens resolution is also full wide screen HD, great for movies both BluRay and streaming. In the bezel the 2.0mp camera has a sliding cover, to protect lens and you'll be sure its off or on.
2-The keyboard works fine for my needs and the separate numerical keys are great, allowing 10 key entry. It is not back-lit, which would be handy.
3-Track pad. As this is my first laptop I was unsure how I would like using one. My experience has been very positive, the multi gestures provided remind me of using a smart phone. User can scroll, rotate, zoom and even customize the way taps are recognized. If I needed the track pad can be set to ignore different levels of accidental contact while typing, and disabled quickly using keys fn + f9. It has a finish somewhat like nice paper and doesn't show fingerprints. The control button is a seesaw design with one solid button.
4-WiFi and Bluetooth. Was online in minutes with only code entry needed. Bluetooth found my DROID and once paired I could answer calls, send files back and forth and have the laptops excellent speakers play music streaming from phone. Both radios can be turned off if needed by a switch on the right side by the BluRay drive or via the keyboard.
5-BluRay Drive. Once all updates and drivers are installed played BluRay flawlessly. The drive cannot burn BluRay however it can a wide variety of DVD and CD media. ASUS includes some nice software for recording. I've only made recovery DVD's which needed 4 disks and went smoothly. It is a tray design.
6-The Hard drive. The 750gb drive in my unit is a Seagate Momentus 7200 rpm with 16mb in drive cache. It came split into 2 sectors the OS section has 279GB, Data section 394GB. Very fast access low power draw, quiet and stays cool. boot time is very close to my Droid X.
7-The Graphics card(s) The Intel 3000 graphics built in and which shares the system ram. And the add on Invidia card 540m which has it's own 1 GB of VR memory. The Optimus system dynamically shifts between the two graphics systems depending on the need at hand. i.e. low power draw Intel 3000, and the higher ability with higher power draw Invidia 540m. You can choose which card to use manually also. a led display on upper right of keyboard shows the active card, blue for on-board, white for discrete 540m
8-The body is creak free and I really like the design.The brushed metal cover and palm rest keep fingerprints at bay. The battery has a groove that fits my fingertips when carrying. The vent that pulls the cool air in and the hot air out is placed on the upper left hand side, and has not been loud or uncomfortable. The Ram and Hard drive are under the palm-rest and have passive ventilation grates in the removable cover.
9-Comes with a two year manufacturer warranty. Also a one year Accidental Damage warranty. Cool thing is you can double the AD warranty to two years for free just for registering within 60 days of purchase. also the is a zero bright spot warranty for 30 days. 24/7 support and free two way shipping if problems arise.
10-USB ports. The one 3.0 USB port promises much greater speed and higher recharge rate, to the devices that meet the 3.0 spec. It is the future and is backwards compatible with current USB devices. The second USB port is 2.0 and SATA compatible. The third is a standard 2.0 USB port.
1-Included manuals could be better and more detailed.
2-It will be cheaper soon. As Foretold by Prophecy.
I've added some pictures under the 'View and share related images' link on page above.
I'll update as time goes on...
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on December 22, 2011
I have been buying a lot of 15.6 inch HP Laptops with good specs and none seem to last more than 18 months maximum.
HP has a country specific warranty and the service itself is horrible.
I remember HP helpline telling me that he cannot help as Non US credit cards are not accepted and they cannot even advice as they have to charge for any advice.
Most HP Laptops and specifically the ones that are refurbished do not last long as the layout,ventilation and build quality is horrible even though they look pretty.
This Laptop is a recommended buy for the following reasons:
-Built Quality & Design are very nice, Strong, Reassuring, Sturdy & Elegant.
-Specs are top of the line with Intel i7 2nd Generation processor & switchable Nvidia graphics chip.
-Screen is 1080p High Def.
-2 Year "Global" warranty
-1 Year Accidental damage Warranty.
-2 Mega Pixel Web Camera with Cover switch.
-Price is reasonable for the specs on offer.
-One USB 3 port for up to 10 times faster data transfers.
-Upto 16GB DDR3 Ram upgradeable.
-Bang & Olufsen Speakers designed brilliantly & Uniquely above the Keyboard Module.
-Front facing Kensington lock slot & VGA & Power sockets.
-Trackpad supports some gestures.
The cons will be:
-Not well thought out Keyboard.
(I upgraded my Keyboard to the new Chicklet-Island style by purchasing the same on Amazon for Approx 25/-US$)
If there is anything more i would desire from this high end Laptop it would be the Keyboard.
The Keyboard is easy to use but is not the "now in fashion" island type Chiclets format.
Instead the Keyboard is a color matched soft button type with a separate numeric keypad built in..
The indicator for the Caps Lock is strangely located on the other end of the Keyboard!!.
The power button is located on the rt side of the Laptop and the "Express Gate Asus Quick Web OS" can be started from the Left side of the Laptop.
The buttons for volume and play/pause are physical instead of the now popular touch type.
These are located above the Keyboard and are a bit difficult to get used to.
When u use these Volume & Play/pause buttons there is no indicator on the machine to identify them.
The keyboard should have been back-lit.
(The motherboard module under the Keyboard has no option to connect a Backlit cable)
There is a separate Wifi on off physical switch to the rt side at about the same place where Dell & HP place their "Power In" sockets.
Next to the Power button is a Indicator to display which of the Graphics cards is currently in action.
A WHITE light means that the "Discrete" Nvidia Graphics Card is switched on and a BLUE Light means that the "OnBoard" Intel HD graphics is in play.
The Laptop has a inbuilt Web Camera with a Cover Switch for Privacy and a small Flash next to it.
The Memory & Hard Disk compartments are nicely designed with access to them hidden under the rubber pads.
There is new refreshing lock in/latch/slide in style/feel to the common HDD & Memory compartments.
Providing 4 slots of max 4gb each in the Memory dock allows you to max the Ram of this Laptop to 16GB with four modules of 4gb each which is affordable.
(The configuration of 16gb with 2 modules of 8GB each is very expensive at approx 500-800US$ and has been thoughtfully avoided on this machine.
A 16GB Ram pack of 4 modules with each of 4 Gb costs 100-150 US$ only)
The screen is 1080 High Def and nice.
It however is not covered with the now popular bezel.
Had there been a bezel on the screen itself like with the MacBook Pro it would have provided additional protection.
(I once damaged the screen of a Toshiba Laptop as the cleaning fluid seeped under LCD screen)
There are 2 Graphics Cards which switch between each other depending on the needs.
The Intel HD Card & a 1GB Nvidia Geforce GT540M card.
A special mention should be made about cooling system of the Laptop as it produces virtually no noise or heat.
There is 1 USB 3 port on the left side which is marked Blue while there are a three USB 2.0 Ports.
The total of 4 USB ports are placed 2 each on either side of the Laptop.
The indicators lights for Power, Hard Disk, Battery & Wifi are located just under the trackpad.
The HeadPhone Jack can also double as SPDIF(Sony Phillips Digital Interface) allowing you to connect this Laptop to high end Audio processing units with cables that can deliver Dolby etc on your Home Theater systems.
The Windows 7 Home Premium sticker,Model number & Serial number along with the 24 month warranty are all nicely lamination designed such that they do not get damaged during regular use of the Laptop.
There is a separate module at the back of the Laptop for access to service technicians along with mention of help line numbers on a sticker beside it.
The battery is "slide-in style" 6 cell type.
The battery compartment is well planned with 2 latches on either side and a slide in mechanism.
The battery life is a good 3.5 hours approx.
ExpressGate is a 5 second Quick boot ASUS custom OS that allows u to do simple tasks like surfing internet, chat, mail, pictures,Youtube etc without actually logging into the Windows OS.
The access to this is through a separate power button on the top left end of the keyboard panel.
When in the Windows environment pressing this "ExpressGate" button allows you to change modes of battery life, which will allow you to choose --> save battery/high performance/quiet office etc.
The Laptop with the high end specs is available for <1200US$ which is inclusive of the 250US$ worth 1 year accidental warranty & 2 Year Global warranty.
The 3rd year extended local warranty' is available for sale on Amazon for only Six US$ under product id 90R-N00WR2C00T.
The warranty codes & password needs to be activated online within 90 days of your Notebook purchase for it to be valid.
I replaced my HDD with a 256 GB Samsung SSD(Solid State Drive) which cost me an additional 300 US$.
Windows 7 now boots up in under 20 seconds and restarts in under 23 seconds!!.
The best upgrade you can get..
I upgraded from BluRay drive to BluRay Writer and replaced the Laptop Keyboard to Island style.
Added a 9 cell battery with an extra bump to replace the factory OEM 6 Cell battery for added battery power, fits well except that it does not allow the screen to be opened beyond a angle of 120Degees which is perfectly Ok.
15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on November 25, 2011
I wanted to review this for people, like myself, who know virtually nothing about "laptop specs" and just need a machine that does what they need it to do. So don't expect a high-tech analysis here. Right of the top, do not overlook the fact that this comes with a TWO YEAR Warranty. The first year even covers accidental breakage.
My Dell laptop died and I refuse to purchase another Dell or Sony Vaio. I started searching two weeks ago, bought an iPad and a Toshiba Satellite, took them both back for various reasons, then stumbled upon the ASUS the day before Thanksgiving. It was difficult to figure out the exact configuration of this machine, or where it stands in the ASUS N53 Series lineup, but I found a thread here on Amazon where two posters have broken it down perfectly:
Since I travel extensively and for long periods of time, this needed to be my "desktop", also my TV Viewer, my Video Streamer, my Word Processor, BluRay disk viewer, internet and social media connection, etc. I paid $2000 for my last two laptops, both which died within 2 years. So I was willing to pay up to $1000 for a machine I felt I could DEPEND on while away from home.
Ordered this on Wednesday and got it on Friday with Amazon Prime Shipping. Out of the box, the Blu Ray player did not work on BR discs. After a confusing call with ASUS Support, another buyer here on Amazon informed me it would work with all the Windows updates installed, which it did. The laptop itself is beautiful with a brushed silver finish; sturdy yet light enough to easily carry; the screen display is absolutely breathtaking. I've abandoned my 50 inch plasma to watch my newest Blu Ray discs on this. It did not come with tons of "bloatware".
My only concern after hours of researching had been numerous complaints about the keyboard. Thus far I've had no trouble typing, and I do a lot of it; although I'd prefer a 'chicklet' keyboard. I uploaded a couple of pictures above. The screen is matte - no glare whatsoever even under harsh lighting. I've yet to hear the fan come on even after hours of video streaming. Battery life is about 3-4 hours when I'm working the computer at multitasks, i.e., playing DVDs, streaming video and using internet.
Here are the exact specifications for this N53SV Model, which I believe is top of the line for the N53SV models offered here at Amazon currently:
15.6" LED-backlit display
- Full HD means 1920x1080 desktop,Nvidia GT 540M Graphics
- 1GB DDR3 VRAM
- Nvidia Optimus Technology
Bluetooth (2.0, 2.1, or 3.0)
Gigabit Ethernet RJ-45 port
SonicMaster Internal Speakers
- Bang & Olufsen ICEpower
- Audio output via HDMI
- 1x USB 3.0
- 2x USB 2.0
2.0 Megapixel Webcam
5-in-1 Card Reader
6 Cell Battery
802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi WLAN
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
- 2nd Generation i7-2670QM Quad Core (2.2 GHz)
- 6GB DDR3 memory (expandable to 16GB)
-> 4 memory slots (1333 MHz SDRAM)
- 750GB 7200rpm Hard Drive
- BluRay DVDRW CDRW Drive
I don't know if I got a great deal. This may pop up on BF or Christmas for hundreds less. And of course, these are already being replaced by newer/faster models, etc. But I needed a laptop, needed it now and was sick of searching 24/7. I can't dream of needing anything more for many years because this gorgeous monster is much more than I needed and certainly more than I dreamed of getting. Extremely happy with this purchase. Will add more if I find anything to reduce this to anything but five stars. Of note, the price has increased since I purchased this for $998.00.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 9, 2012
I use this laptop for web surfing, coding, gaming, and watching movies. Does it all. I would recommend this laptop for the performance, but the keyboard is lacking a nice touch for speedy typing. This major interface should be easy to do right but they missed the mark so -1 star.
My favorite things about this laptop:
- 1920x1080 resolution for side-by-side viewing of documents, webpages, code, etc
- The HD resolution also makes it simple when attaching an HDTV via HDMI: since both displays have the same resolution, it's easy to use clone mode. Also you can change the power settings so closing the laptop when it's plugged in will not shut it off or make it go to sleep, it just turns off the laptop LCD. Works well as an HTPC this way.
- Matte finish on the screen, not glossy as some other "Media" laptops can be
- Has several modes to conserve battery when you're not gaming or watching movies (see tweaks)
- Also to save battery, the dedicated GPU turns on selectively for certain high demand programs like games. There is a colored light indicating when it is in use - blue indicates onboard, white is dedicated GPU. The nVidia Control Panel lets you override the default setting for any particular program if you decide to.
- The touchpad supports multitouch so you can easily zoom as well as scroll in any direction using 2 finger gestures. There are other gestures supported but I use scroll the most.
- I use the lightweight, quick-loading ASUS ExpressGate OS if I need to quickly check e-mail, Facebook, Google Maps or the like. It's an alternative operating mode based on Linux that gives some basic netbook type functionality with a quick load time from being turned off. I found this mode accidentally when I pressed the upper left button to turn the laptop on instead of the upper right. This OS can be finicky with the WiFi Settings, see tweaks.
- Some people don't like it but I definitely appreciate the numpad
- The laptop never gets hot or loud. Under heavy gaming load, the side fan exhaust air will be warm but the laptop itself won't be burning anybody's lap.
- Blu-ray drive works just fine with bundled PowerDVD 10
- Somewhat heavy and large for a 15.6". But it has all the hardware you'd want so this might be expected.
- The keyboard is "slippery" for lack of a better word. The hard plastic and super flat keys with little in the way of touch landmarks make it easy to shift finger alignment and slows me down when typing. Takes some getting used to.
- There's some keyboard "flex" as others have noted that make the materials/assembly quality somewhat questionable
- The size and layout of other function keys like volume, mute, play/pause are hard to find by touch, and not as easily accessible as I'd like, positioned in the upper left part of the keyboard (see tweaks)
Tweaks I've found useful:
- When running Netflix movies I would often drop to about 1 fps especially with HD video/higher bitrates (use shift+alt+click to get some interesting menus for Silverlight). I struggled with this issue for a while: first I tried to get Silverlight to always use the dedicated GPU, but even with "Mozilla FireFox - Plugin Container" added to the list of always-GPU programs, I would sometimes get these halting framerates. Then realized I was just running in "Battery Saving" mode that throttled the CPU down. Either adjusting the CPU limit in the Power4Gear Hybrid settings or switching to "High Performance" mode solved this.
- I put a piece of clear tape across both the volume buttons so I can find them by touch (cludgey but works for me, esp watching a movie in the dark)
- In the ExpressGate OS, sometimes the WiFi profiles get messed up: I saw network SSIDs in the profiles list that were truncated so auto-connect would not work. To fix this I went into "Manage wireless networks" in Win7 and highlighted the problem SSID names as if I were to modify/rename them, but just pressed enter making no changes. This fixed the truncated names when I went back to ExpressGate mode and auto-connect works now.
I bought a wireless mouse (Logitech M305) and laptop backpack (Case Logic VNB-217) that I also really enjoy. The highly hyped speakers on this system are OK but not amazing. I haven't used the USB 3.0 or SD card reader but they are there so that's nice to have.
Thanks for reading!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 23, 2012
I've been using the laptop for about a month now, and this baby is FAST. Have never seen it lag despite running Spotify, PC game, iTunes music, downloading large files, and multiple browsers all at one time. It's almost a challenge to see when it will finally beg for mercy.
I just maxed out the memory specs to an insane 16GB (and it only cost me a couple of Andrew Jacksons). There are 4 slots for memory/RAM that each max out at 4GB, so I bought a 2 pack of 4GB RAM and another single pack of 4GB RAM because the config that comes from the factory had 4GB of RAM in one slot and 2GB of RAM in another slot (total of 6GB). So I filled up the 2 remaining empty slots with new 4GB memory, and then swapped out the 2GB factory RAM with the new 4GB RAM. 4 memory slots each with 4GB of RAM = 16GB of sexy. Probably unnecessary, but I'm a dude who likes being over the top.
The HD screen is clear and sharp, with no glossy reflection/glare to worry about. The brushed aluminum shell makes it look more expensive and feels solid to the touch. Only bad thing is that the material probably makes it a little heavier to lug around.
There's no denying the specs of this computer for what you pay makes it an incredibly good deal and value. 2nd Gen 2.2 Ghz i7 processor, 6GB RAM, HD Screen, 750GB hard drive @ 7200 RPM, built-in webcam, and a good 1GB NVidia Graphics card. All for around $1K. Holy cow. It will make your Apply fanboy friends blush since they probably paid almost double for these same specs. The 3.0 USB slot is also super fast when I backed up files to my external hard drive. What took 2 hours on USB 2.0 only took 20 minutes on USB 3.0. It also has an HDMI slot which is clutch, so you can play Blu-Ray movies from your laptop to your flat screen TV if you want. Or just stream stuff from your computer browser in HD (hulu, youtube, pictures, etc.). The world is your oyster. Even the monster speaker that runs the width of the laptop sounds pretty good, just wished it had a mini subwoofer underneath for the bass notes. Not a huge deal since I plug-in my latop to external speakers anyway when I'm at home.
Only real complaints are the weight of the laptop (macbook pros are about 1 lb lighter), the size of the battery (6 cell--only about 3+ hours of battery life on low settings), and the keyboard. I may be accustomed to Dell laptop keyboards because my old computer and my work computer are both Dell, but the ASUS keyboard keys seem overly spaced out and a full number keypad on the right side of the keyboard is a bit silly. They probably could have shortened the widths of the frame on the left and right side, and got rid of the number keypad, and it would have made for a less wide computer (maybe making it a little lighter, too). A backlit keyboard also would have been a nice touch, but alas, it's missing on this laptop config. Other than the battery life (macbook pros brag of twice the battery power as this ASUS), these are pretty minor complaints which is why I still rated this fine piece of machinery a 5 out of 5 stars.
As much as I am a tech junkie, I tend to hang on to my computers for a few years before getting a new one. These laptop specs allow me to not fear the future of software and applications coming on the horizon because it comfortably dominates everything I throw at it for the time being, and probably will continue to do so for years to come. The 1 year coverage for accidental damage and 2 years warranty is also incredibly awesome. Get it while it's hot.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 15, 2012
I have been using computers since the 80's. This computer handles everything I can throw at it: complex images, large pictures, sophisticated image editing, numerous programs working at the same time, and business needs.
The i7-2670QM processor, the Nvidia GT 540 graphic card, the 7200 rpm Hard Drive, and 6 GB ram memory provide an extremely powerful combination. This computer gives you the freedom to explore new ideas, experiment with images, and try software you would not think of trying on other machines. That is the added bonus of this computer over others I have had or tried.
No computer is perfect, but this one is so much better than other computers I have owned. (Apple, Toshiba, Sony, Fujitsu) The price I paid for this ($1000) is half what I paid for my first desktop computer: Apple Plus with 64k memory and green screen, so I have no complaint about the price. The computer is well designed and organized well. After removing included software that I would never want to use, updating Windows 7 64 via the internet, and configuring the software to my liking, I was up and running within the first hour.
The keyboard is very easy to use. The keys respond rapidly and accurately. There is no movement of the keyboard that I have noticed. This keyboard is built for speed. The screen resolution makes the text very small, but that can be adjusted to the user's liking. The 1920 x 1080 resolution is fantastic. It is clear and well lit. The screen surface is a matte finish which allows me to keep my desk lamp in any position without a distracting reflection on my screen. This is a big plus especially when I am in a sunlit room with backlight. The touch pad is very convenient and easy to use. It is not too sensitive, nor does it interfere with my typing. My last computer's touch pad was so sensitive that I could not type without the cursor jumping around as I typed. It was necessary to turn off the touch pad so I could do my work. Finally, this computer is very, very quiet. It is almost impossible to hear any sound from the fans. I have used the computer for long periods without any fan noise. On other machines I have used, I have heard the fan kick in during long sessions or in times of complex calculations or while the computer was doing large graphic image manipulation. There is none of that on this machine. It is whisper quiet.
There is so much more that this computer can do. I am not writing to explain all. I am just trying to give an impression of how nice this computer really has been for me.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 8, 2012
I've had it for about a month, its a pretty solid laptop. I'm able to play my games at the default 1920x1080 resolution, the sound is great, its very responsive, etc. Hard to come up with any complaints about this, sat here for 5 minutes trying to think of something as I write this and I got nothing. Really like this laptop.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 28, 2011
We got this machine for my dad because he is starting his own company. The only bad thing i have to say about the computer is that the OOD won't read blu-ray's despite the fact that it's a blu-ray player. This is a minor thing that asus will no doubt take care of. Everything else about the computer is great.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on December 22, 2011
Overall: Almost a perfect laptop at this price.
1. Everything is lightening fast;
2. Standard HD 16:9 screen and GeForce card are perfect for movie and video fans;
3. Not very heavy for a laptop in this size;
4. Decent price for the specs;
5. Many small good things such as webcam with switch, USB 3.0 port and wonderful speakers etc.
1. It takes time to get used to the keyboard;
2. Not sure why when my "Jurassic Park: Trilogy" Blu-Ray plays on this laptop, it seems not in high resolution. Maybe it's because of the settings in PowerDVD. Will update this when I figure it out.
If your budget is within $1000, and you love watching DVDs, playing games, using big software like Photoshop, Premiere and 3DS MAX, then don't hesitate. This laptop almost meets all your needs.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on July 6, 2012
Purchased December 2011.
Reviewed July 2012
This is a nice speedy computer, but there is an issue with the power connector on the PC. Something went wrong and it fried the power adapter. Bought a new power adapter and it fried that one too. Now Asus has had it for over a week and no ETA for repairs to be complete.