The Bottom Line
- Fast Processor
- Huge Number of Peripheral Ports
- Solid 3D Graphics Performance
- Below Average Battery Life
- Trackpad Buttons Harder To Use
- Intel Core 2 Duo T9600 Dual Core Mobile Processor
- 4GB PC3-8500 DDR3 Memory
- 320GB 7200rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 8x DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Burner
- 14" WXGA (1366x768) LED Backlit Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
- ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4650 Dedicated Graphics With 1GB Memory
- Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n Wireless, Bluetooth
- Five USB 2.0, eSATA, FireWire, HDMI, ExpressCard/54, 8-in-1 Card Reader, Fingerprint Scanner
- 13.5" x 10.1" x 1.5" @ 5.5 lbs.
- Windows 7 Home Premium, Norton Internet Security
Guide Review - ASUS N81Vp-D2 14-inch Thin and Light Laptop PC
Nov 5 2009 - ASUS has made an amazingly strong performance laptop in a relatively small and compact frame with the N81Vp. The performance primarily comes from a very high end Intel Core 2 Duo T9600 dual core processor. This easily exceeds the performance from the more typical P8000 series processors used by many similarly priced systems but it does draw a bit more power. The 4GB of DDR3 memory help the system run smoothly even when multitasking with a large number of applications.
Adding to this performance is the use of an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4650 graphics processor with 1GB of memory. While this isn't the fastest mobile graphics solution on the market, it provides more than enough performance to allow for PC gaming on the screens 14-inch LED backlit display with 1366x768 resolution. This makes the ASUS N81Vp a very mobile gaming platform that has a much more traditional laptop look and feel.
The storage also provides a good level of performance with a hard drive that spins at a faster 7200rpm rate. The downside is that while many companies are moving their laptops to larger 500GB drives, ASUS is using a more common and smaller 320GB drive. They also were able to keep the dual layer DVD burner in the system. Of course, this isn't so much of an issue as the N81Vp is relatively thick for a 14-inch laptop at 1.5-inches thick.
The biggest problem though is battery life. With all of the performance features included in the ASUS N81Vp and its relatively small battery, the system does not have a very long running time. With DVD playback, expect just under two hours before the system goes into standby mode. Standard laptop usage will probably get around two and a half hours before it goes to standby.
One of the amazing things about the ASUS N81Vp is the sheer number of peripheral ports that have been placed on it. They were able to manage to place on this 14-inch laptop a total of five USB 2.0 ports, eSATA, FireWire, HDMI, VGA, ExpressCard/54 slot and 8-in-1 card reader. That is as many if not more ports than one will typically find in a 17-inch desktop replacement. It was especially nice to see two of the USB ports on the back to keep some cords away from either side of the laptop.
Even with the smaller width, the ASUS N81Vp does include a full sized keyboard without a numeric pad like some 15 and 16-inch based laptops provide. There is the annoying function key on the left side that can make gaming more difficult. The only real issue comes from the trackpad buttons. They are extremely stiff and require more pressure to use. This can be real annoying for some users.
With a price tag below $1200, the ASUS N81Vp-D2 is a very surprising performance system that has a lot to offer. Potential buyers should just be aware of the power issues that will require frequent use of the power adapater.