Update to review about performance – I saw at least one person saying poor performance.

*** Update to review about performance – I saw at least one person saying poor performance. The first day I got the laptop, I removed McAfee and a couple of other unneeded programs. I then installed free AVG Anti-Virus and their free trial of PC Tuneup. PC Tuneup will help you remove unneeded start-up programs and disable other programs that can affect performance. After this, we timed the laptop from powered off to windows sign-in page. It took 30 seconds. This is before adding memory and the ssd. One thing that will slow this down is Windows and other programs that are set for auto-update. If they find and download updates automatically, this can really slow down the boot up while they install updates. I turned off auto update for most software. The casual user probably shouldn’t do this since it is important to keep security updates installed. After installing additional 8gb memory and ssd, laptop boots up in less than 5 seconds from power off.

*** Update to battery performance. After about 3-weeks, I have discovered that I am getting 4+ hours even with the screen brightness turned up above the suggested power saving setting. The SSD may be helping some but still, the performance is very good. I am still very satisfied with the purchase. One tip to save battery power is to change what happens when you close the lid. You can find this setting by right clicking on the battery icon in the bottom right of the display. Select power options and then “Choose what closing the lid does”. Changing this to hibernate while on battery power will save your open pages and programs to disk and turn off the computer. This saves a lot of battery instead of leaving the laptop in “sleep” mode.With the SSD, it only takes seconds to come back up. Sleep mode slowly drains the battery since memory has to remain powered up.

*** I keep looking at other models but I have yet to find one this good in this price range. None of the others I have been looking at have the 802.11ac wifi or the 1920 x 1080 screen. I recommend this laptop to my colleagues over all others for school, business, home, video use.

I usually purchase the least expensive new laptop every few years that I use for business and home. This time I decided to do more research and go for the fastest home/business laptop but at a reasonable price. I found this laptop at $349 but ended up getting one that was listed as “new” with box damage for $309. It got here fast and although it looked like it had been handled, it looks and works like new.

A couple of features that this laptop has that others in the price range don’t are:
** – the 802.11ac wifi (newest and fastest). Sometimes called “Gigabit WiFi”, this new standard boasts throughput and data transfer speeds up to three times faster than 802.11n. If you want to have wifi that is the latest and fastest, be sure you get this. This is a feature that will keep this laptop current for the next few years. It is hard to find on others in this price range and even much more expensive.I have not once had the dreaded “buffering” delay in any video since I got this a couple of weeks ago.

** – the HD 1920 x 1080 pixel display. This is considered full HD.Most others only have 1366X768 pixels. This one provides much sharper and clearer text and video. I plan on using this to watch Prime and Netflix videos. This is another feature that none of the other laptops in this price range had. If you plan on watching videos on your laptop, this is a very valuable feature.

These two features sold me on this laptop. I couldn’t find these on others in this range. I wanted to make sure I bought the one that would last and not be outdated in a year or two. This was it and a couple of weeks later, I am really pleased.

I also checked out the Core I3 processor and found that it was reasonably fast. In fact, faster than some older I5s and even I7s. Unless you are playing high-end games, this processor has more than enough power for Windows, Office, Turbo Tax, Quick Books, and other business programs.

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I got this computer on Tuesday, plug in and leave it plugged in for 3 hours

I got this computer on Tuesday, plug in and leave it plugged in for 3 hours (or more) as indicated in the start guide. Then I transfer my photos and word files from my old laptop to this one and everything seems to be working great. I put it in sleep mode and plug back in to leave it to charge overnight. The next morning I unplug it briefly to move the charger from one outlet to another, when I plug it back in the power indicator icon shows that it’s not charging. I restart the computer, it installs a bunch of updates, I plug it back in and now it’s charging again. A couple more days and everything is going fine until tonight. It’s Friday, I go to plug it in and charge, once again get the plugged in, not charging message. Restart. Still not charging. Change wall outlets. Still not charging. Since these are inexplicably designed so that the battery can’t be removed, I can’t even try to take it out. Should have stuck with Dell.
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I purchased this laptop for a very specific purpose which is to run Wireshark

I purchased this laptop for a very specific purpose which is to run Wireshark and Nmap on Fedora 23. The items that were important to me were:

1: 15+inch and 1920×1080 resolution
2: 10/100/1000 network interface
3: 8GB RAM minimum
4: USB3
5: Intel i3+ processor
6: ability to run Fedora 23, Wireshark, Nmap and RealVNC client
7: ability to sleep/wake with lid closing/opening in Fedora 23 without screen freezing

The first thing I did was to go through the default setup to finish the Windows installation. Then I selected to make a USB backup of the system. I chose to include everything so I can restore back to original condition if need be. This required an 8GB+ USB stick. I’ll never use Windows and only created the USB as a fail safe if I need to return the machine.

I then rebooted into the BIOS and set the video ram to 512MB, it’s on 32MB by default. Next I booted from a Fedora 23 USB stick and went through the installation. On first start Fedora 23 prompted me for my Wi-Fi connection and password, then connected with no issues. This surprised me. I hadn’t added any repo’s yet and expected issues with the Wi-Fi setup. I had no such issues. Everything worked out of the box using Fedora-Live-Workstation-x86_64-23-10.iso with GNOME3. No need to compile wireless drivers or add rpmfusion to get up and running. Nice.

As for the quality of the laptop itself, it’s very important to remember the cost of this laptop and that it has a 1920×1080 display resolution. There has to be trade-offs at this price. The trade-off for the FullHD resolution is a very poor viewing angle. For me this is not an issue. The text is crisp, clear and has good contrast. There is quite a bit of light bleed around the edges. Again, for me this is not an issue. It might be for you. This is not a high quality display and it’s not marketed as one. If I had spent another two hundred on it, I wouldn’t find the display acceptable.

As for the hard-drive, it’s no speed demon, but it’s fine. I’ll probably rip the back off (that YouTube video makes me cringe) and throw in an SSD at some point.

At home I use a mechanical keyboard and at work I use an Apple keyboard. This one won’t bother me. It’s acceptable.

I think Asus did a fine job on this three hundred and thirty dollar laptop and I only have 2 things I “wish” they had done differently. I wish they had left the DVD drive back in 2012 where it belongs. I haven’t used a DVD in well over 3 years. DVD is dead and it’s a break point on this machine. Every time I pick it up I feel it, it’s going to break off at some point. I realize with the FullHD display and DVD drive it makes it more preferable to the target market. In fairness I’m not the target market.

My other “wish” would be a back-lit keyboard. I work in a lot of dark area’s and for the most part the light from the display is enough, but it would have been a nice touch. Other than that I can’t complain, I consider this to be a pretty ideal machine for what I need it for.

Like several other reviewers I purchased the extra 8GB of RAM.12GB RAM will be overkill for my needs but RAM is cheap. Installation was simple, less than 60 seconds.

The ease of installation with Fedora 23 tells me I bought the right machine for my needs.

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This laptop is in my opinion, the best laptop for the price range.

This laptop is in my opinion, the best laptop for the price range. It does come with some down sides but that is to be expected for a laptop at this price

PROS:
• Overall feel is good, hardly any flex. fingerprints don’t seem to get attracted that much either
• Performance is fine other than the hard drive (See CONS)
• Battery life is better than expected given what I do day to day
• Screen is one of the best for the price range

CONS
• Even though this is a 1080p panel it is most likely a TN panel. Viewing angles are shallow and color reproduction will seem off for those who have an eye for such things
• Screen could do with being brighter, fine for indoor use but may be a problem in the sun
• Speakers are not that great, most likely due to their position, Recommend earbuds or external speakers
• This laptop would be greatly improved by an SSD. A 5400 rpm hard drive makes for slow boots and longer load times
• Laptop lacks a Caps Lock or Num Lock light. This paired with lack of a keyboard backlight could cause slower typing and more mistakes for some

Overall this laptops has it cons but simply can not be beat for this price. I would recommend this to most people on the hunt for a budget laptop.

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I got this for my sister as a Christmas/college gift.

I got this for my sister as a Christmas/college gift. Tested it out before hand and I must say I quite like this Laptop and I almost want to buy myself one. I’m a heavy user and I built my own computer, 6600k i5, GTX 960, Savage SSD, Define R5 case. So you can trust me because I tend to be very critical when it comes to prebuilds and laptops. I’m also a student myself.

Pros
Looks sleek and clean
Light weight, great for carrying around a campus all day
1080p Resolution which is lovely because it makes the screen seem much bigger than it is. Crisp images
Sound quality is decent, usually you have to use external audio but the audio on this laptop isn’t bad by any means.
i3 has some grunt to it, of course its not as powerful as an i5 or i7 but its noticeably better than all other non i series processors.
Integrated graphics is good enough to do some light gaming. VERY Light
Wrist rest are heat resistant so it stays repetitively cool.
all in all just a great media hub
Windows 10(pro)

Cons
Cap Lock, Num lock, there’s no indicator to that tells you if they are on or not. at-least I didn’t see it.
No scroll built in on the touch pad
Touch pad is all connected there’s no individual left and right click buttons which I personally hate.
No removable battery(that I noticed) could be a problem down the line when the cells start to fail.
Windows 10(also a con)

The cons are pretty trivial. Nobody is buying a laptop with integrated graphics and is expecting to do heavy gaming…so if your expectations are realistic than this is a great laptop, If you’re on the fence and you ARENT looking for something to game on than get this laptop. Its on sale now for 350 and you will not find a better laptop for this price right now

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What I like: 1) SD card slot. These are not as ubiquitous as they once were, and at this price point its a big plus for me.

What I like: 1) SD card slot. These are not as ubiquitous as they once were, and at this price point its a big plus for me. 2) One easily upgradable RAM slot. I mean, having one at all is a plus, but one that is easy to get into is a big plus. 3) 1920x1080p resolution. At this price point and well above, most screens are not Full-HD. This one displays crisp text and decent color. 4) VGA port.The VGA port gives this machine a much wider range of backwards compatibility with older external displays and projectors. 5) HDMI port. Current and future compatibility with external displays and projectors. 6) Ethernet port. Very happy this port is there, and for my uses of this machine it is very important. Connecting to secure networks is possible. (WiFi is NEVER secure, period.) AND if you were to use it for some light gaming its a plus too. 7) Its bloody light to carry it is.

What I don’t like: 1) No indicator lights for capslock OR numlock. AWE COME ON MAN! This one omission almost, ALMOST, made me send it back; only the absolute basic human interface on this machine. 2) Keyboard is spongy and springy. It must be the least expensive way to build a keyboard, which is what this machine is all about anyway. 3) Very flimsy feeling CD/DVD tray. Again, “just functional” is what this machine is about. 4) Screen has a very narrow angle of view. Again, not surprising and not a deal breaker at this price point but, I don’t like it. 5) No physical buttons for WiFi/Bluetooth/Volume, or anything else. 6)Battery life isn’t long enough for two Netflix movies over WiFi. From full battery I watched “A Christmas Carol,” and the very beginning of “The Ridiculous 6,” BUT we shouldn’t expect more than that at this price point. A person may not get a full day of college classes of typing out notes in Microsoft Office (especially the Cloud-based version). Extend your battery life by taking notes with Wordpad, Notepad, LibreOffice, or OpenOffice, and possibly Microsoft Office installed locally — with the screen brightness turned down as low as you can stand it, and make them pretty with whatever you like later. If you really want longer battery life expect to pay much more for the machine. Machines in this price range and many above it just don’t have fantastic battery life. If long duration “off the mains” operation is of high importance to you, this machine is not it.

Note: To extend your battery life of any “connected” device, turn off (disable in Windows) wireless technologies such as WiFi, Bluetooth, and cellular network connections when you don’t need them or aren’t using them. Also, be cautious of the power drain on USB connected devices if you are trying for longer battery life.

In closing: I Started my career designing and testing network hardware back in the 80’s. I currently specialize in computer hardware and operating systems. — Laptops below the $1500 point as of this writing compromise many things to be in the low price niche. There are just a few laptops that can claim all day work off the mains. With that in mind this particular machine does a great job for what it is. It is not a heavy graphics workhorse, it is not a gaming powerhouse, it is not a 12-hours-off-the-mains toiler. With the above notations, it is a light to medium duty beauty at $350. Even then, I would be willing to pay $50 more for a back lighted keyboard and capslock/numlock indicators.

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This computer is everything I expected it to be and more for being in the sub-$400 laptop zone

This computer is everything I expected it to be and more for being in the sub-$400 laptop zone. I received the laptop in less than appropriate packing from the seller (Amazon) which allowed it to be jostled about in transit. The delivery box, however, was not damaged so I wasn’t overly concerned. When I got to the actual manufacturer’s packaging for the laptop itself, I was very pleased to find it quite robust and sturdy.

Laptop was came out of box gleaming and has a nice style for the price range. I plugged the laptop in before its first initial boot (per Asus’s recommendation in user manual) and it started up immediately after turning power button. Once I got through the initial setup, I took it for a spin.

Obviously for this price range, the laptop did not come with all the goodies a $1000 laptop would such as Microsoft Office or an upgraded graphics card (really, you’re going to ask if you can play CSGO on a sub $400 laptop?). I had no problem with any of this since I researched what I bought before I bought it, and knew exactly what I was getting for less than $400.

What this laptop can do very right out of the box is giving you a fast internet browser, an HD screen, and the option to add applications like Office later which is nice. I like and appreciate expandability. Inter

Give this laptop a try if you are in the market for a budget laptop with good features and quality from a reputable company.

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