Asus has recently launched the X555 in two variants — one with Intel Core i3 and another with Intel Core i5. While the Core i3 is one of the cheapest laptops with dedicated graphics card (Rs 28,999), the Core i5 also includes dedicated graphics card priced with a price tag of Rs 48,999.
We got our hands-on with one of the Asus X555L notebook. Its a high end notebook with Core i5 processor.
Before we get in deep, let’s have a look at the specs, so you’ll know what we’re dealing with here.
- lntel Core i5 processor
- 8GB RAM
- 1TB HDD
- Nvidia GT920M (4GB dedicated memory)
- 15.6-inch LED backlit display (1366 x 768 pixels)
- 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0
- Ethernet, HDMI, DVD optical drive
- Windows 8.1 (Upgradable to Windows 10)
- Weighted 2.3kg
DESIGN & BUILD QUALITY
The textured lid cover is made out of plastic and a Silver interior visually cut in two distinct halves, also a ample of space for palm-rest. It has matte plastic bezel around the display.
For now, let’s have a look at the IO: Two USB 3.0 ports on the left of the laptop and a third USB 2.0 on the right. HDMI and VGA video outputs make it easy to hook up to a desktop monitor or office projector, and you also get a DVD-RW optical drive in addition to an SD card reader. Finally, a single 3.5mm combined audio in and out jack on the right. You also get a few discrete status LEDs on the front lip and a webcam on top of the displays.
The speakers are also exactly what we would expect from a budget laptop; they might be reasonably loud and there’s a tiny hint of stereo separation from the two down-firing tweeters, but music sounds tinny and speech suffers too, somehow sounding significantly quieter than music at the same volume. You’ll definitely want to use a pair of headphones with the X555L.
Speaking of those, I was definitely not expecting much from these laptops in terms of screen quality, but even so, I was a bit disappointed with Asus’s choice of panels.
They’re not very bright and they also suffer from very poor contrast, on top of the narrow viewing angles. In everyday use, as long as you’re not picky and look at these screens heads-on, you’ll probably find them them well, alright.
TRACKPAD & KEYBOARD
There’s not a lot to complain about the keyboard and the trackpad. It sports a full keyboard layout design, with a Numpad area. There’s no back-lightning system which makes difficult to work in dark environments.
The trackpad feel different. the surface is smoother and is surrounded by a nice beveled edge, but is quite noisy when it comes to registering taps and physical clicks. Trakpads performs well in everyday use though, responding fast and accurate to my swipes, gestures and taps.
PERFORMANCE & BENCHMARKS
The ASUS X555L uses a 5th generation Intel Core i5-5200U processor, a quad-core chip runnng at 2.7GHz. There’s 8GB of RAM on board, is useful for video editors or multitaskers. The battery isn’t removable, meaning almost complete disassembly to replace the battery and 1TB hard disk.
The X555L also put in a reasonable result in our moderate usage battery test for a laptop, lasting 5 hours 18 minutes. However, it means you won’t be able to rely on it for an entire day of working off the grid.
Asus’ X555L is a 15.6-inch, all-round notebook. It is impressive in all common application fields, which also includes rendering computer games. At the same time, it barely heats up and consumes relatively little power. The battery runtimes are also satisfactory. I ended up disappointed with the screens and the battery life. Even so, if you can find them cheap (and I mean significantly cheaper than they are right now, at launch), they might be worth buying.
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