Asus N56VM

7/31/2012 4:52:26 PM

The fist “Ivy Bridge” laptop that isn’t disappointing

Price: US$ 1,199

Ratings : 4/5

Description: Asus N56VM has a bright and clear screen, as well as Chiclet-style keyboard, and aluminum lid

Asus N56VM has a bright and clear screen, as well as Chiclet-style keyboard, and aluminum lid

In addition to the appearance of Core “Ivy Bridge”/ CPU (3rd generation – Intel), let wait for price of CPU 2nd generation – Sandy Bridge off. Don’t be tempted. You are going to desire an Ivy Bridge laptop right now. The first laptop is displayed one of the new mobile processors is Asus N56VM, replacing 15.6-inch desktop. The chip is Core i7-3720QM, a 2.6GHz eight-thread, quad-core processor with cache 6MB. Laptop also goes with a full 1080 display (1,920x1,080) and two graphics solutions – the CPU’s new Intel HD Graphics 4000 integrated graphics and Nvidia GeForce GT 630M, a basic discrete GPU. No graphic solutions catch up with the raw speed of Core that makes productivity of N56VM a little disequilibrium, but in general new processor has launched impressively, and the laptop expresses a desirable product.

A dynamic display

With 1.1x15x10-inch size, N56VM is a solid slab, lightly heavy (5.9 pounds) with a beautiful dark grey – almost black aluminum lid with light-up Asus logo. The Chiclet-style keyboard feels soft, and exact that we find quite comfortable to high-speed type. As other 15.6-inch laptops, it provides a numeric keypad with keys (such as dedicated Home, End, PgUp, and PgDn) are smaller than regular keys. A big touchpad (4.5 x 2.75 inches) concludes lower corners that can click instead of real mouse buttons; moving, typing, pinch-to-zoom, and three-finger-flick gestures have worked smoothly in our tests.

1,920x1,080 resolution of screen makes documents and icons a little small but nicely sharp. The screen is bright and clear; with vivid colors and broad viewing angles (the width is larger than the height). Two Bang & Olufsen ICEpower speakers offer above-average audio.

Description: Next to the Blu-ray drive on the right-side of laptop are two USB 3.0 ports, and headphone and microphone jacks

Next to the Blu-ray drive on the right-side of laptop are two USB 3.0 ports, and headphone and microphone jacks

A light software

Besides Bluetooth and 802.11n Wi-Fi, N56VM supports Intel’s Wireless Display (WiDi) for transfering laptop’s audio and video to HDTV equipped Belkin or Netgear adapter. Except for WiDi software and some Intel and Nvidia utilities, the test unit who Intel provides for does not have afloat or free software; nothing is preloaded on Seagate 7200rpm, 750GB hard drive except Windows 7 Professional.

Next to the Blu-ray drive on the right-side of laptop are two USB 3.0 ports, headphone and microphone jacks. On the left-side, you will find an audio jack for a subwoofer; VGA, HDMI, and Ethernet ports; and two more USB 3.0 ports. The SD/MMC memory card slot is in front.

The 56Wh pin of N56VM is removable and can last 5 hours and 21 minutes in our MobileMark 2007 rundown test. That’s in the middle of desktop-replacement segment.

Speed monster

Core i7-3720QM is a seriously fast CPU. We begin our tests and hope it works better than other primary quad-core of Intel’s second-generation. It is not only embarrassed those processors but also catches up with the top Sandy Bridge processors such as Core i7-2960XM, found in expensive game-laptops as Alienware M18x.

Asus N56VM exceeded our Photoshop CS5’s tests with time of 3 minutes 2 seconds and through Handbrake within 1 minute and 11 seconds. 3,644 marks in the PCMark’s test is our expecting mark from a top-of-line laptop with a speedy SSD, not a conventional hard drive.

With such a fire-breathing CPU, the Intel HD Graphics 4000 integrated graphics seem exceeded, but in fact it is designed to elevate the popular games up to the 30fps threshold that can play. When we default on integrated graphics, laptop reaches 32.3fps in Crysis and 32.7fps in Lost Planet 2 at 1024 x 768 resolutions. The GeForce GPU illustrates much faster with 63.9fps and 47.1fps.

We are eager to try out more Ivy Bridge laptop. With its blazing performance and senior screen and keyboard, Asus N56VM has set the high standard.



Blazing Ivy Bridge processor

Full HD display


Neither graphics processors can compare with the burning CPU

Little bulky

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