As there are few reviews for this product I was a little wary, but I'm very satisfied with my first laptop. As a university student getting into upper division courses, the ability to take projects with me became a necessity, and since I recently built a powerful gaming computer, I needed something that I would *want* to travel with. After removing a bit of ASUS bloatware that comes with it, it runs pretty smooth. Some of the bloatware is actually nice like the power profiles switcher. All in all it runs faster than I expected with a low-power processor and 5400 rpm hard drive.
First week review: Battery life is legitimately 7+ hours in battery save mode (which you can tweak). 24 hours in Sleep Mode only cost the battery ~7% charge, and Instant On works as advertised. Computer is capable of light gaming in performance mode (it runs Dungeon Defenders on low settings). Hard drive is divided into two even partitions, OS and Data. Usable RAM is 3.6 GB as 400 MB seems to be dedicated to video memory, which is good. 8-cell Battery keeps laptop slightly lifted, which helps keep it cool, but adds a little size. It is slim and light enough to compete with an ultrabook at half the price. Hinge construction feels more solid than it looks. Overall the entire machine feels sturdy. No optical drive. Helps keep it light and isn't an issue for tech-savvy users, but could be an issue for some.
Yes, there is some keyboard flex, but I have to pay attention to notice it. It would be nice if the keys were backlit, but since the screen gives off light, that isn't really important. The keyboard feels like the cheapest component, but there are zero problems actually using it. Something to note is the USB ports are an extremely tight fit. It shaved some plastic off of my flash drive getting it into the ports the first couple of times. I've muscled in a couple other USB devices, but it doesn't seem to damage anything.
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