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  • avilella - Monday, March 22, 2010 - link

    We are looking for students with basic Linux kernel/graphics notions interested in applying for the X.org Open Source PRIME multi-gpu support Google Summer of Code 2010:
    http://wiki.x.org/wiki/SummerOfCodeIdeas">http://wiki.x.org/wiki/SummerOfCodeIdeas

    We are also looking for Linux users with Nvidia Optimus-enabled laptops willing to provide debugging information for Open Source PRIME multi-gpu support features being worked on. Please join the team by clicking on "Join" on the right, fill in this doodle:
    http://www.doodle.com/63fyczzrxqaquhqx">http://www.doodle.com/63fyczzrxqaquhqx
    and send an email to the mailing list specifying your laptop model with these commands:
    sudo dmidecode -s system-product-name
    sudo dmidecode -s system-version
    lspci -vnnn | perl -lne 'print if /^\d+\:.+(\[\S+\:\S+\])/' | grep VGA
    Reply
  • utkal - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    I do not understand why the hell Asus only hosts 1366x768 resolution lcds in their laptops. They have ONLY ONE laptop of full HD upto 16" screen size with a price of $1440 (approx) ! wtf ! In a 16" laptop what can be worst than this resolution lcd.

    Sorry, but how AT reviewer said, we did not found anything bad about this laptop ? funny ! Do not you know the 1366x768 resolution makes the life hell if you use the laptop for work. Yes, if the laptop is bought ONLY TO GAME then its ok.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Saturday, March 20, 2010 - link

    RTFA. From the conclusion:

    "The worst aspect is the mediocre LCD panel, but when everyone uses lousy LCD panels (at least in sub-$1000 laptops and notebooks), we can only complain so much. The LCD panel and somewhat small battery capacity prevent us from giving the N61Jv our top Gold award...."

    I've looked at dozens of laptops, and I've got a bunch more I'm working on reviewing. The ASUS Eee PC 1001P and the ASUS G73J are the ONLY laptops I have right now that don't have a similarly lousy LCD. Sure, you can get high-end laptops with good LCDs (Dell Precision M6500), but for consumer notebooks it's a lot harder than it should be.
    Reply
  • jackwhitter - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    "Today, we're reviewing our second Optimus notebook, but while the chassis isn't any smaller—in fact, it's slightly larger with a 16.0" LCD"

    it has a larger monitor with the same low resolution as a 11" monitor. why are companies so insistent to use such a low resolution on these larger screens? what happened to 1600x900?
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    One factor is cost and another is gaming performance. The GT325M will run most games at 1366x768 with Medium/High details at good frame rates. If the native LCD moved up to 1600x900, gaming performance would drop 37%. But the bigger issue is cost, I'm sure. Reply
  • utkal - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Dear, At least I do not think that people buys a laptop ONLY TO GAME. The primary purpose of laptop should not be gaming. And If you will work with applications like visual studio, you can hardly see few lines of code with a 1366x768 resolution where the vertical resolution will taken up by application titlebar, menubar, various toolbars, status bar and finally OS's taskbar !!! Now understand how difficult it to work with such low resolution laptop.

    No doubt other components are excellent with this price range, but they MUST have option for higher resolution screen, instead of making laptops for only GAMERS.
    Reply
  • erple2 - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    I'm sure that the only issue is cost. Many people will look at this computer at 900 dollars compared with 1200 for the one with higher resolution LCD and commensurate faster GPU and just buy the 900 dollar one.

    I would be more than happy to spend an additional fee for a better screen and faster discrete GPU (200-300 is about what I'd pay, I think, unless the GPU was _significantly_ faster, and/or the screen was _significantly_ higher quality/resolution).
    Reply
  • jasperjones - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    I refuse to buy products that don't have full Linux support. Linux support is much more important to me than a 10-15% difference in battery life.

    What happens if you try to install a recent Linux distro such as Ubuntu 9.10 on an Optimus laptop? Unfortunately, a quick Google search didn't provide any insights. (Btw, one of the top hits of my search was the launch article on Optimus here on Anandtech. There, Jarred asked virtually the same question.)
    Reply
  • GeorgeH - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    AFAIK an Optimus laptop should be considered a Win7 exclusive device, but confirmation would be nice; hopefully JW comes through.

    Quote from JW Feb 9:
    "Some of you asked about Linux support ... at present, NVIDIA is focusing on Win7 ... we're not even sure what would happen if you try to install Linux ... we're going to quickly check and post the results."
    http://www.anandtech.com/mobile/showdoc.aspx?i=373...">http://www.anandtech.com/mobile/showdoc.aspx?i=373...

    Either we missed the promised update or our definitions of "quickly" are a little different. ;)
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    I did actually try Linux on the UL50Vf, but I neglected updating the article. Here's what I just put in there:

    I did actually test what happens with Optimus laptops and Linux. Even using an older 9.04 installation of Ubuntu, everything works as expected... which is to say, you can run Linux but you won't get the Optimus GPU. Since there's no direct connection of any display to the GPU, Optimus is required to move rendered content from the G210M to the GMA 4500MHD display buffer. As noted above, NVIDIA is currently focusing their efforts on making Optimus work on Windows 7; it's possible they will move to other OSes down the road, but they are not committed to doing so. If you want to run Linux and you want to use a discrete GPU, Optimus Technology won't work. Perhaps some skilled Linux community folks can figure out a way to do Optimus-like technology on their own, but given the level of detail required to interface with the GPU and IGP we see that as unlikely.

    If you're one of the few people that want to run Linux and use a discrete GPU, then Optimus is definitely not going to make you happy. If all you want is to dual-boot Linux and you're okay with running it off the Intel IGP, you'll be fine.
    Reply
  • cknobman - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Why did you not do any battery life comparisons of optimus enabled vs disabled for this laptop? It would have been really nice to see that so we can see the actual direct benefit of optimus on this laptop instead of having to compare it to another laptop from a different vendor using different specs. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Optimus is always enabled, but the GPU is shut off unless needed. The only way to test battery life with the GPU enabled would be to run a test that uses the GPU. That means games, CUDA apps, or certain video decoding scenarios. The problem is that the video decoding is now all done on the IGP without any glitches, so the GPU isn't needed. Reply
  • aguilpa1 - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    so it runs twice as fast around 60fps at ultra low and low resolutions on a low screen resolution..., yuk. Yes it is better than intel graphics and will play WoW like games fine but this is no gaming machine. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Which is why I include results from the same games at Medium and High detail, and as you can see it runs most titles at such settings with more than reasonable frame rates. Obviously it's not faster than GTX 260M, but 260M is able to run most titles at high details and 0xAA at a resolution of 1080p; for a 1366x768 panel there's no need to get much more powerful than the GT325M. You'd be better off upgrading the LCD first to something where the graphics quality difference wouldn't look washed out. Reply
  • Aidic - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Though not specifically this laptop, I bought the N71jv-x1 from newegg a couple of weeks ago. Similar specs (larger screen, switched out core i5 for core i3, runs at 1600x900). I am able to play Left 4 Dead 2 with all graphics options turned high at the resolution of 1600x900. Also, my battery has similar run times.

    2 problems ive noticed though, and I am not sure if I am the only one: After the laptop has been brought back from suspend there is a greater chance for graphical errors when switching between gpus (specifically in WoW, though I have noticed it in Batman Arkham Asylum as well), and ASUS put a lot of bloatware on this thing. Some of it useful, the majority of it isnt.
    Reply
  • nortexoid - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    They need to offer a high resolution version. Reply
  • mikeev - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    I've been spoiled by a fingerprint sensor on my work PC (to hell with passwords), and I noticed on the Asus website that it lists the N61jv-X2 as having an "Optional" fingerprint sensor. Has anyone seen this variant? I'd gladly pay an extra $50/100 for this feature. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Most laptops will charge about $25-$50 extra for a fingerprint scanner. We don't have the i3-330M or i5-520M N61Jv models yet, nor the Blu-ray version, but they're all supposed to be in the works. The reviewed X2 model is for Amazon.com and thus won't have the scanner, but keep an eye out and we'll likely see the other options start to show up. I'm curious as to where they'll position the scanner as well... between the mouse buttons, or somewhere else? It would be good to get it in the touchpad and get a separation between the buttons IMO. Reply
  • mikeev - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    That's a good question. I've seen lighted variants now (LED-pipe around the scanner) for feedback these days. Hopefully it's one of those. I actually prefer it to be in the lower right hand corner myself. Reply
  • Hrel - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    IF it had a 1600x900 screen or better; hell, throw in a higher capacity battery give me a 1600x900 screen and I'll gladly give them an extra 100 bucks! Reply
  • yyrkoon - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    It is about time you people at Anandtech implemented a black list for your comments section don't you think ?

    I know I am not the only one getting really *REALLY* bored with all the spam coming your way. Not to mention the ads you guys are seemingly letting in on your pages that peak CPU usage on modern PCs . . .
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    I hear ya, and I'm probably one of the guys that deletes most of the posts. Thankfully we have an option to "delete all posts" by a user, but right now there's no quick way to ban a user as well. I'm hopeful we'll get that with the updated site in the next month or so.

    What I can't understand is the content of the spam we keep getting posted. Stupid fashion/clothing ads written in broken Engrish with no relation whatsoever to our content is a waste. Has *anyone* here actually clicked on any of the links? And yet they've created at least a dozen different accounts over the past few months, and they keep making new accounts.
    Reply
  • Foggg - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    The advantages of the keyboard layout of the Asus over the Acer are:
    1) full size arrow keys, used far more than "0"
    2) rt. Ctl key extends under the rt. Shift -- enabling selection by word or paragraph with just the right hand. Right index finger can hold down both, while other fingers hit the arrow keys. Great for editing.

    IMO, the "0" key is pretty easy to adjust to, simply using the middle finger instead of the thumb.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    Having played with both, I find the Acer keyboard slightly more to my style. The smaller arrow keys don't bother me at all, as they're still big enough. Also, the smaller size helps set them apart from the other keys; notice how they're all in a perfect grid on the ASUS?

    For the CTRL+Shift, I almost always use my left hand for those keys, and I also use two fingers to hold down two keys. If I'm using CTRL and/or Shift + Arrow / End / PgUp / etc., all of the directional keys are on the right side so there's no way to comfortably hold CTRL+Shift+End with your right hand anyway (unless you have Gumby fingers).

    I do understand that keyboards are a highly personal preference, so take my analysis with that in mind. It's not a huge difference, but I give Acer's layout the edge on this comparison.
    Reply
  • fabarati - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    About your Criticism agains 5400 RPM Drives: the 500 GB 7200 RPM Seagate drives weren't all that fast, the first generation at least. The WD 500 GB 5400 RPM was generally as fast. Reply
  • yyrkoon - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    Any current 5400 RPM hard drive is going to be faster because of data density. A 7200 RPM drive with the same platter density will of course be faster. Name brand has little to do with that. Reply
  • teohhanhui - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    1366x768 at 16"? That immediately turned me away. Reply
  • utkal - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    exactly...Its an another crap laptop with 1366x768 resolution Reply
  • utkal - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    EXACTLY !!!

    I do not understand why the hell Asus only hosts 1366x768 resolution lcds in their laptops. They have ONLY ONE laptop of full HD upto 16" screen size with a price of $1440 (approx) ! wtf ! In a 16" laptop what can be worst than this resolution lcd.

    Sorry, but how AT reviewer said, we did not found anything bad about this laptop ? funny ! Do not you know the 1366x768 resolution makes the life hell if you use the laptop for work. Yes, if the laptop is bought ONLY TO GAME then its ok.
    Reply
  • nortexoid - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Same Reply
  • digitalicecream - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    Not just that, but you have to be sitting RIGHT in front of the screen at the correct elevation in order to see the movie well. I have the latest powerDVD 9 Ultra and the movie looks like garbage AT BEST. I'm going to post a video on youtube so you can all see what I'm talking about...

    It's definitely a dealbreaker for some. For me, well I found this out after I bought it but DVD movie playback is not why I got this.

    Does explain the lack of a Bluray drive though.

    Gaming looks great btw.
    Reply
  • digitalicecream - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    I take it back. I turned off AVIVO hardware acceleration in powerDVD and made some fine tuning and it looks great... my bad. Reply
  • bobjones32 - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    With all this optimus tech talk, it's dissuaded me from purchasing an m11x. The m11x has the 335M, compared to the 325M in this laptop, and I'm wondering if anyone knows how much they differ?

    16" mammoths just don't interest me. I really want something portable like the m11x, with it's fantastic battery life, but I want some options to pick between.

    1) Any chance that Anandtech will be reviewing the m11x? I was surprised it was never covered beyond the CES reveal.

    2) Any word on the 335M extending beyond its apparent m11x exclusivity any time soon, in case it's noticeably faster than the 325M?
    Reply
  • gomakeit - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    I second that as well - I'm putting off on the m11x because of Optimus and the relatively lowsy CPU spec. Hopefully it'll get a refresh sometime during summer. But I'm interested in seeing a review from Anand nonetheless. Reply
  • Fastidious - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    I was originally concerned a bit about that as well but got a M11x anyways. I keep reading reviews just to make sure I didn't make a bad choice. Even this much larger system seems worse in games albeit better in CPU heavy tasks. Optimus is cool and I wish I had it but it really isn't that bad having to manually switch GPUs(just press fn+f2 on the M11x). Unless I'm plugged in I'm rarely gaming heavy stuff and I'm instead in conserve energy mode with the Intel GPU, less bright screen, etc. The CPU in the M11x is the weak point but the battery life in it is great so it depends what kind of balance you want. I don't think there is any laptop with a great CPU and great battery life in a smaller form factor. I get around 6-8 hours with decent screen brightness, wireless and just general browsing/word/light games on the Intel GPU. You can game just about any modern game but you might need to tweak settings(often specifically CPU heavy settings such as shadows) or lowering the resolution a bit but doing that doesn't bug me.

    http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=5...">http://www.notebookreview.com/default.a...are+m11x... is the best review of the M11x I've seen
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    M11x has a faster GPU for sure, but the problem is CULV -- even overclocked -- can start to become the bottleneck. We're still waiting for a review sample; Alienware has said next month due to demand. It's a promising unit, for sure, but the lack of Optimus really makes it like a faster version of the old UL series. Reply
  • hagen81 - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    at notebookcheck you have a list of mobile graphic cards as well as some benchmarks, there's quite a diff between 335M and 325M Reply
  • f4phantom2500 - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    Is this computer able to power down one of the CPU cores? If so what kind of difference does that make to battery life? Seeing as this is an Arrandale CPU with hyperthreading, 1 core should be plenty fast in battery mode. Reply
  • lloyd dd - Thursday, March 18, 2010 - link

    it would be cool if the i5 had a mode in which you could power down 1 core and turn off turbo and underclock the active core.
    that plus optimus should give great battery life, with the performance when needed.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, March 14, 2010 - link

    Arrandale can put one core into a deep sleep state, but just how far that goes is difficult to say. Obviously, the standard Arrandale with the Intel HD graphics draws more power than CULV + GMA 4500MHD, but it also appears to draw quite a bit less power than an older Core 2 + 4500 laptop (see relative battery life chart). Reply
  • Shadowmaster625 - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    Obviously not that far if it only gets 3.5 hrs of facebook time.

    What intel should do is integrate an atom into their i3/i5/i7M series CPUs. That way the main cpu can power down during most web surfing, movie playing, and music playing, and then power up the big guns when more power is needed. What would adding an atom core cost, $20?

    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    The Internet test involves four browser tabs with stored copies of AnandTech, MSN, Yahoo, and Facebook. AnandTech is active, and so there are several Flash ads running. MSN and Yahoo also have at least one Flash ad each. This is quite a bit more demanding than a simple Facebook browser test, and if you're not surfing anything more than text and images you should get closer to the idle battery life.

    Given the difference in size and other components, 3.5 hours is relatively low on the power requirements. That means the entire laptop is using around 13.7W for that task, whereas a 15.6" CULV laptop (UL50Vf) consumes around 9.5W in a similar test. At idle, the UL50Vf looks to consume around 8W while the N61Jv consumes 11.8W. 3.8W more power used at idle for i5-430M vs. SU7300 seems pretty reasonable.
    Reply
  • Shadowmaster625 - Monday, March 15, 2010 - link

    When I say facebook time, I mean about 90% of the time on facebook is spent playing games like Cafe World and farmville (or whatever its called). That's how it seems anyway. I dont play those games but i sure do see them a lot. From what I've witnessed, 90% seems about right. These games are pretty taxing on the cpu. Reply
  • tigercat44 - Saturday, April 24, 2010 - link

    Is it possible to upgrade N61J-X2 to an illuminated keyboard? Suggestions, thanks,

    Harry
    Reply

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