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  • veri745 - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    Now it's about time that they give the LCDs on these a resolution upgrade. I'd like to see atleast 1600x900 Reply
  • jrocks84 - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    I totally agree on higher resolution LCDs being needed! I haven't searched that hard, but the only two 13" laptops that I know of with a decent res are the Macbook Air and the Sony Vaio Z. Reply
  • lexluthermiester - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    I have a Asus EEE 1201N with 1366x768 res. It beats out my old VIAO which was 1280x800. Now granted, the 1201n is only a dual-core Atom , but at a 12" screen and the fact it will some moderate gaming, it packs punch for it's size. Battery life is far better as well.

    Of course we are talking about a $400 price point with the 1201n. But I guess the point I'm trying to make is that if you look into what it is you want good things can be found. And honestly, the system in this review would tempt me greatly if the 1201n didn't already meet my needs.... but oh so tempting....
  • ImSpartacus - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    I agree. I know many laptops will have to move to 16:9 for cost reasons, but why can't they just use 1600x900 as a baseline resolution?

    768 vertical pixels are unacceptable on anything but 11.6" displays.
  • blue_falcon - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    The industry is trending towards industry standard resolutions (HD at the moment for most systems). I doubt you'll see a 1600x900 13.3 screen. Reply
  • Penti - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    Sony still has some, 13.1" 1600x900 laptops that is. Let's see if they get updated to Sandy Bridge too. If you want it you can have it, even though most use standard displays. Reply
  • DLimmer - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    As usual, excellent laptop review. I relied on a couple years ago when I bought my wife's laptop, and it still does all she asks of it *and* lasts all day on one charge (with intermittent use).
    I also grabbed a Gateway P-6831 based on

    Minor typos (first page third to last paragraph):
    "One the flipside, ASUS’ Super Hybrid Engine (SHE)" -> *On* the flipside

    (page 5, second paragraph from the bottom):
    "and it doesn’t need 960 Steam" -> *Stream*

    Thank you for providing objective and in-depth reviews we can use when selecting items to purchase.
  • ImSpartacus - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    I almost bought a 14z instead of my MBP13'09. It was on the thicker side, but had a massive battery and a full voltage processor.

    Eventually, I had to have that big trackpad and disk drive.

    In retrospect the decision was pretty murky.
  • DLimmer - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    My wife misses the DVD drive occasionally, but we have an external. It's most annoying when you install some software that requires the disc be in the computer to run. Only other time is when she wants to rip a new CD she's bought.

    All-in-all, giving up the drive for more battery life and less weight was a decent trade-off... however, she wants a drive in her next laptop.
  • Beenthere - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    How could you get it more wrong: Asus and Intel. It don't get any worse than that. Reply
  • lexluthermiester - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    As opposed to HP and AMD? Or was that sarcasm? Reply
  • ajp_anton - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    Have you ever considered flipping that graph and make a simple "Watts (lower is better)" instead? Reply
  • sleepeeg3 - Monday, March 28, 2011 - link

    Appreciate your comments on the LCD. I had an different Acer, which probably was not much different from the one in your graphs and tried to switch to the ASUS - horrible. While the Acer was no gem, the ASUS was almost intolerable. I ended up returning it, because of trackpad skipping and partly for the horrible LCD.

    That said, would I be willing to pay for an IPS panel in a cheap laptop that I am going to use and abuse? Especially one in an Acer with a chafing, integrated LCD power cable that is causing some of the LED backlights to fail, requiring replacement of the panel. Maybe $100 more if I knew it was an IPS, but it's not critical for something I do work on, when I can go home and type on the fantastic 26" IPS I am typing on now. It is amazing to sit behind someone with an Apple laptop and see their gorgeous screen, but on the other hand I know they paid $2000-3000 for that battery sucking, incompatible brick so it's alot easier to tolerate.

    Bottom line though, it would be nice to have more choices and for there to be a clear standard for LCD display technology.
  • mschira - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    save another 100g by ditching the DVD drive,
    give us a better (highres screen) - you have a buy.
    So. Yea well.
  • duploxxx - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    While this is a nice update / upgrade if you want it is nothing more then stretching the life cycle of an EOL platform.

    By adding the GT425M, sure the performance is a better then the UM but the playback already shows what will happen with battery in real life not to mention any gaming on battery.

    SB will clearly have the lead in poweroptimization for the CPU while still the need is there for a dGPU, the HD series are just not strong enough gaming wise.

    Liano on the other hand will provide the gaming performance in the same 35W package.
    Watch the P520+5650 real close that is the performance it will have but with a more optimised CPU, when AMD is able to get the idle power under controll of the whole package (mainly needed for idle and surfing), the platform will be a much more balanced solution, the right one for this kind of notebook offers.
  • Chris Peredun - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    "DVD-RAM (Matshita UJ892AS)"

    Really? A DVD-RAM drive? Haven't seen one of those in years. ;)

    Methinks you meant "DVDRW" instead.
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    DVD-RAM is another standard, and that's the way the drive chose to identify itself. Technically, every DVD-RAM capable drive is also able to support DVD+/-RW as well, but I suppose just keeping the model number in there is sufficient. Reply
  • Chris Peredun - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    DVD-RAM isn't used very often these days, that's why I suggested the change to the more common "DVDRW" - but mea culpa, apparently this drive can in fact read *and* write to DVD-RAMs. Reply
  • geniekid - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    I'm still using my UL80VT from 1.5 years ago. When I'm away from home, I still use it to play semi-old-school games like TF2 and Torchlight. The battery life is amazing if you mode down to integrated graphics and watch movies or surf the internet. If the U41JF is two refreshes away from the UL80VT and still offers the same battery life for about the same price (I bought my UL80VT for $850) with the ability to run modern games, I have no problem recommending it to anyone who's on the fence. Reply
  • Alexo - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    Are there any (current or upcoming) laptops that combine a good screen with long battery life?

    I understand that the Tnikpad X220 is available with an IPS panel (although it has a rather small screen and no discrete graphics).

    Are there other options?
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - link

    Besides the MacBook Pro? I'm not aware of any right now; most of the high-end displays tend to come in business laptops, and unfortunately business laptops often fail on the graphics side of the equation. Dell's XPS 15 update is still good, but aesthetically lacking and battery life isn't as high as I'd like (review forthcoming). There are still some decent 1080p 15.6" panels around, but if you're looking for something in the 13-14" range I'm currently at a loss. :-( Reply
  • Hrel - Wednesday, March 30, 2011 - link

    I'd actually consider buying this if it had a decent 1080p screen:( Something around as good as the one Compal used in their 15.6" laptop with the GT425m.

    Jarred: I do think you'll be interested to hear that there IS a laptop with a 1080p screen in a 15.6" chassis for as low as 526 dollars on right now. I don't know the specs or contrast or anything like that, but it's a laptop with Sandy Bridge and no dedicated GPU that does however offer a 1080p screen for 526 bucks. Start upgrading things and the price goes up but you could still get one hell of a laptop for 700 bucks really easily.

    I would LOVE to see how that screen stacks up against the bog standard we're bombarded with. Please do everything you can to get one of those in house configured however you want, preferably with a 2nd Gen i3 or i5 (we've already seen i7 performance plenty) in it.
  • JarredWalton - Wednesday, March 30, 2011 - link

    The inexpensive Xplorer-9200 probably uses a display much like the 1080p model in the ASUS N53 we looked at a couple months ago; the Xplorer-9300 (Clevo P151HM) on the other hand is probably a decent panel, but it costs a lot more. Anyway, I sent them an email so we'll see if they want to send us some review hardware. Reply
  • fokka - Saturday, April 02, 2011 - link

    "If ASUS is like other manufacturers, they have some smarts in their batteries so that they don’t overcharge some cells (and cause them to wear out faster), which would explain the drop in power draw as maximum capacity approached."

    afaik all lion and lipo batteries consisting of more than 1 cell have to be balanced. thats why batteries not only come with two poles, positive and negative, but also with a few extra poles, depending on the cell-count. so every cell can be charged and discharged to the exact same voltage (only differences up to ~0.02v are acceptable).

    i know this because i recently upgraded my rc-car to lipo-batteries and needed a new charger with balancer for that matter.

    so now you know ;)

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