Top positive review
21 people found this helpful
Fast, Quiet, Cool, Good Screen, but Heavy
on July 17, 2012
For me, the best thing about this laptop is that it stays quiet and cool under heavy load, including while playing games.
I can play Skyrim or Diablo3 on ultra settings without burning my lap. The grills on the exhaust vents on the back can get hot, but never dangerously so in my experience. This is in contrast to my previous laptop, where the exhaust vent was hot enough to cause burns.
Rear exhaust vents are also much nicer than side vents; you can sit next to someone without blowing hot air at them the whole time.
Screen quality is good. It's a matte screen (not glossy). The matte coating is not excessive though; pixels are still clearly defined. The screen is also very bright; I usually keep it towards the dimmest settings at night.
I was originally planning to replace the HDD with an SSD, but honestly the laptop is so snappy that I cannot imagine it going any faster. Having a full 750GB is nice too.
Keyboard feel is nice. Having a numpad is extra nice (especially for games). The keyboard backlight supports 4 levels (off, dim, medium, bright).
Overall the build and materials have a high quality feeling to them. The construction is also solid; no flex when you lift it one-handed from one corner (assuming you have the wrist strength).
As many others reviews have mentioned, this laptop is uncharacteristically heavy for a 15" laptop -- so be prepared.
The other problem that I (and many others) experienced is that the sound level is too high! To keep it in a quiet regime, you must set the global sound volume to somewhere between 1-8 (out of 100) on the speaker volume tray icon. On the flip side, the audio level is very good when watching movies with high dynamic range, since you can actually hear the quiet parts.
Another minor annoyance is that I tend to jostle the power cable out of the socket when moving the laptop too far left on my lap.
A final complaint is that unless you are Shaq, you will need two hands to adjust the volume with the keyboard, since you need to press Fn+F11 and Fn+F12 for volume-up and volume-down.