Wow, what a laptop! It is simply stunning what modern manufacturing techniques can produce, and at the $1000 price point, this notebook is quite the bargain. The Asus G51vx comes with the following components, and is the first notebook ever to support a GTX 2– series graphics card. It includes:
-Intel Centrino 2 P3570 at 2.0 Ghz
-Nvidia GTX 260M with 1GB of video RAM
-Windows Vista Home Premium 64 Bit OS with a free upgrade to Win7
-A very nice 1366×768 widescreen display
-1.3 megapixel camera
-4 GB RAM
– 6 cell battery
-320GB 7200RPM Hard Drive
+Awesome graphics, aesthetically beautiful outside as well as inside.
+Ability to overclock to 2.15 Ghz instantly
+Great gaming performance
+Fast startup times due to 7200RPM HD.
+HD capable 15.6 inch monitor.
– Chiclet keyboard takes a while to get used to.
– Heavy laptop, not very mobile.
– Battery life is around two hours, more or less depending on usage.
Anyways, lets get started on this article. The G51vx is a quick machine that starts up in under ten seconds and gets you connected to the internet in under five more. This laptop features a fast-startup mode due to a secondary linux OS called “splashtop”. The secondary linux OS features a browser, skype, mail, and a music player. While I do not wish to be trivial, the linux mode is not very necessary, unless one simply requires a quick boot and nothing else. It should be noted that under the quick-boot mode, the pc operates at a slower speed than when everything is fully booted.
Design and Keyboard
Next I would like to talk about the laptop in general. The outside is white and in the upper center of the lid a logo of robotic origin resides. Look at the pictures to get the real feel of this. The inside of the laptop is all black, with chicklet style buttons on the keyboard. The keyboard itself feels sort of different too, since I am used to a full regular key keyboard. The other item is that this keyboard has a full number pad on the right, which I also feel is unnecessary. Asus could have added larger keys, but I am already getting used to the whole layout. The keyboard also features a backlit option, so for those of you who need to look at the keyboard to type (no offense), the light is there for you.
As it is marketed, the Asus G51vx is a gaming machine targeted towards, you guessed it, the gaming audience! As it is, I ran a few benchmarks and the results are as follows. I myself do not have 3dmark06, but according to forums, other owners have posted scores ranging from 8k-9k with stock settings.
On games, performance was always phenomenal, but on CPU-intensive games, performance was a tad lower than usual. For example, whilst playing Mirror’s Edge, I was able to turn up the settings to full, with V-sync on as well. The game played fluently for my two hour long gaming sprees. However, with Team Fortress 2, a more CPU intensive game, my fps decreased so I had to disable AA to get a decent frame rate above the fourties. Older games like Counterstrike Source worked flawlessly, usually racking up 120+ fps on full everything. Half-life 2 and all of its sequels ran at full detail fluently for my long gaming events. I must exclaim that Mirror’s Edge is the best looking game ever! With its vivid colors and beautiful city, the game looks amazing on this laptop. I was blown away by this machine’s output.
Crysis, the gamer’s current benchmark, plays at full detail at 20-40 fps on stock drivers. However, according to forums, the laptop can overheat while playing this game on full detail, so a laptop cooler is a must for a notebook with a GTX 260M inside.
In the future, I forecast that this laptop will be able to play most of the games on full detail until the middle of 2011, when some crazy new GPU architecture will force this beast down. Currently I am waiting for Assassin’s Creed 2, Left for Dead 2, Splinter Cell Conviction, and the Star Wars Online RPG.
Is it Worth it?
YES! This laptop has what every gamer needs to play games for the next two and a half years! You will not find many other laptops with this graphics card and this price point. Other systems to look at would be the Gateway P-7805u or the Asus G71GX, if you are into larger screens. Personally, being a college student, I bought this so I could do my work and relax when I had nothing to do. This laptop will last me the next five or so years.
I took these photos with my Canon Powershot camera, reviewed below.
Comments, questions, and requests are welcome. Please post under this topic and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
Update: I just tested the laptop temperatures with a TARGUS laptop cooler and without. It seems the cooler doesn’t really help the laptop temps, except for the hard drive.