• Asus 13.3" UL30A CULV Notebook Review

    Asus is attempting to hit the notebook market with its new UL30. The particular model that we're looking at today is the UL30A-A1. This 13.3" notebook looks to offer more power than a typical netbook, yet provide nearly the same level of portability and battery life.

    The UL30 was introduced along with a few other CULV machines, which stands for Consumer Ultra Low Voltage. This moniker refers to the Intel processor within, which is a more powerful chip than the Atom options found in most netbooks, yet isn't quite as potent as the full-fledged Core 2 Duo CPUs found in most full-size notebooks. Again, this whole machine is about splitting the difference, and we have to admit, it's a fine line to walk. Most folks are either satisfied with having a netbook to surf the Web and handle basic Office tasks or having a full-size notebook to handle desktop-like tasks; so, who exactly is the CULV machine for? On-the-go business travelers, consumers who need just a bit more power than a netbook can offer, and consumers who have realized that those full-size notebooks are just too powerful for their needs.

    Many people will compare the UL30 to Apple's MacBook Air. Asus has settled the design with striking brushed aluminum lid. Measuring in at just an inch thick, this machine is nice and thin. Unlike some of Asus' thinner Eee PCs, the 8-cell battery is removable. This machine is equipped with Windows Vista, as it's too potent and too large to fit the mold required to run Windows XP as a "netbook" (by definition). We'll be putting this machine to the test in the pages to come, but right from the get-go, we'd say Asus has assembled a compelling package for just $799. 
    • Intel Core 2 Duo SU7300 @ 1.30GHz, 533MHz FSB; 512K Cache 
    • 4GB of DDR3 RAM (1066MHz)
    • 13.3 inch LCD (1366x768 resolution); LED backlight
    • Intel GMA 4500MHD integrated graphics
    • 500GB (5400RPM) Seagate Momentus 5400.6 Hard Drive
    • 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi
    • Bluetooth 2.0
    • No optical drive
    • 0.3 megapixel webcam
    • VGA and HDMI Outputs
    • USB 2.0 x 3
    • RJ-45 (Ethernet 10/100/1000)
    • Headphone / Mic Input Jacks
    • 5-in-1 Multimedia Card Reader
    • Twin speakers
    • Gesture-enabled trackpad
    • 3.7 Pounds (with 8-cell battery installed)
    • Removable 8-Cell Li-ion Battery (Up To 12 Claimed Hours of Computing)
    • 12.9 x 9.3 x 1 inches
    • Windows Vista Home Premium
    • Carrying Bag
    • 2 Year Global, 1 Year Accidental Warranty


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