Asus G51J Core i7-720QM GTX 260M Notebook Review

Mobile/Laptops & Netbooks by leeghoofd @ 2010-06-10

Notebooks, we see them everyday. At home, at your work, on the bus,... you name it. These portable PCs are considered common now. Notebooks have gone a long way, not solely being designed anymore for the businessman. Asus is targeting the multimedia/gaming enthusiast with this G51J 3D version. Not being an avid fan of gaming portables, I might be in for a nice surprise. Without spilling any more words, let us have a look at this Asus 3D Notebook creation.

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Conclusive Thoughts

Conclusive Thoughts

So what impression did this ROG laptop leave on this skeptical reviewer ? My overall impression is really good. It has the looks of an exclusive high end laptop. The listed specs are amazing, but don't always perform as such, to extract more performance I would rebalance this laptop. The CPU really needs to loose cores and go higher on clock speed. Beats me, why you would want an 8 core monster CPU in your laptop. Running with only 2/4 cores and a core speed of over 2000mhz would be significantly faster in games. More raw Mhz would support the GTX260M better to pump out more frames per second, rather than an abundance of cores.

So I asked myself : Wouldn't it be better to have a hyperthreading on/off function in the bios ? This could reduce heat output and maybe via some software achieve a gaming OC that could boost this CPU to around 2Ghz or beyond. I didn't find a fully working software tool to OC this laptop. With SetFSB and selecting the appropriate clock generator, moving just one Mhz only made the laptop freeze. MemSet nor CPU Tweaker gave me access to change anything to enhance the performance.

I'm by far a laptop expert and am well aware that I7 is the way to go for these systems. Power draw and heat output is far better than the older quad core generation. Yet I'm missing something vital here to call it a true gaming rig. When enabling the NVIDIA 3D NVISION mode, the game performance get's a (too) big hit. 3D gaming action might be a nice option for the future, but I don't see it yet happen on laptops, at least not at an affordable price level.

Madshrimps (c)

To sum it all up : this is an incredible fast all-round purpose laptop. Yes it will allow you to play new high end games. Bad Company 2 was playable after we tweaked some game detail settings. The choice of the 15.6” monitor might have been a wise decision after all. With a 17 or 19 inch monitor I really don't think this setup would warrant fluid gameplay.

The price for this laptop bundled with the 3D kit is over 1400 euros. At first glance this might seem high, but looking in the price charts it seems justified for the listed specifications. Again kuddos to Asus for daring to bundle all this hardware into a neat looking laptop.

+ Good performing laptop.
+ Blue Ray/DVD writer combo.
+ Crisp and clear sound when watching movies etc...

- 3D gaming performance might be a bit too soon.
- Add one SSD for blistering HD performance iso the 3D kit ?
- Average battery endurance.

Thanks go out to Milan and Rogier from Asus for allowing me to work extensively with this sample.
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Comment from Stefan Mileschin @ 2010/06/11
I have myself an ASUS X55SV, bought two years ago and still going strong. It needs proper cleaning though, once in a while, but it can be done easily on the bottom, because I have full access to the blower.

The problem I have seen with the newer high performance laptops from ASUS at least is that even if they are using two blowers and cooling is much better than before, it is a pain to clean them up, because we have access to them only after removing the keyboard . A good example would be the ASUS G Series G73JH-A1(2,3) :

Here is a bit of the disassembly nightmare:

This reviewed model does not seem to have this problem, which is good.