Asus has produced some really innovative notebooks recently, including the 3D Asus G51J and Asus NX90 with speakers outside its body. Powered by a CULV (Consumer Ultra Low Voltage) processor the Asus UL30A is one of the most impressive laptop computers we’ve seen. Not only is it very light, at 1.8kg, it also provides a fantastic battery life of 745 minutes – just under 13 hours. This is a phenomenal achievement by Asus, and means the days of sweating between power points is well and truly over.
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To achieve such longevity Asus has employed a number of components that are very resource light on the laptop’s battery. Probably the most important is the Intel Core 2 Duo SU7300 CULV processor (and 4GB RAM) which isn’t nearly as demanding as some other dual core processors. Unfortunately, it’s not nearly as powerful either and performance wise you’ll be limited to running office applications such as word processors and web browsers. There’s a respectable 320GB hard drive though.
The 13.3-inch display uses LED technology, as well as consuming less power, another benefit being the vibrant colours it produces. The 1366 x 768 pixel resolution panel is very detailed, so creating and editing fiddly applications such as spread sheets will be no problem at all.
An integrated Intel GMA 4500M graphics card is on board, and provides limited 3D performance. Nevertheless, you’ll be able to carry out basic photo editing without too many problems, although you’ll struggle to run large applications such as Adobe PhotoShop because of the low powered processor.
Build quality is great, and the brushed aluminium lid not only looks very stylish, but provides good protection for the screen inside it. A very shiny plastic chassis quickly attracts fingerprints and smears, while the spacious keyboard – employing the isolated key style – is both responsive and comfortable.
As a business tool connectivity is key, and 802.11n Wi-Fi will help you to check your emails and browse the internet with ease. You also get Bluetooth, a webcam and 5-in-1 card reader.
All-in-all the Asus UL30A is a fantastically portable machine. The 745 minute battery life is almost unprecedented, and means you’ll be able to carry out your business without worrying about carrying around the charger with you. Concessions have been made to performance, but for day-to-day tasks it’s fine, ultimately this doesn’t detract from the excellent business usability the machine provides.