Even though the recent reviews about ASUS products concentrated on desktops the Taiwanese electronics giant is also known here on Tech For Pennies for their quality budget laptops. Oxymoron, you might think about mentioning quality and affordability in the same sentence? Not so much the case for ASUS D550MAV-DB01. User reviews, specs and price all seem good with this notebook. But how would it suit your needs? Let’s take a little closer look at the laptop below.
The Main Things
The core of ASUS D550MAV-DB01 consists of a Celeron processor. Indeed, such CPUs usually have modest performance compared to their Intel Core counterparts. This Intel Celeron N2830 runs on two cores and 2.16GHz clock speed. It does poor job on PassMark tests and would do similar job if you were to use it for heavy gaming or complex programs. Even the Turbo acceleration up to 2.4GHz doesn’t help much here. Granted, the processor is still up for some lightweight tasks including Office applications and Internet browsing.
There’s not much special to say about the hard drive. It’s the common half a terabyte model with 5400RPM speed. It fills up quickly if you hoard huge files but unless you do that, the 500GB space should suffice for everyday use. Also there’s 4GB memory installed which is at the same time the maximum memory supported for this system.
The Graphics and Screen
The monitor of ASUS D550MAV-DB01 is widescreen, non-glossy and non-touch screen 15.6″ one featuring 1366×768 resolution. It’s very typical choice among the manufacturers and should again suffice well for everyday use. The same can be said about the graphics card. It is Intel HD Graphics 4000, an integrated chip inside the Celeron processor. The same old song of it being not suitable for heavy graphics game is also true here. In case you’re a gamer but prefer only older or less demanding games you should however be good to go with this ASUS.
Connectivity is not the strong side of ASUS D550MAV-DB01. It has just one USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0 port. Moving on, there are both Ethernet and WiFi adapters available. The former doesn’t support Gigabit ethernet, just the usual 10/1000Mbps. You can say good bye to very fast local network speeds but that won’t affect your download speeds from Web at all. That is, unless you got faster than 100Mbps Internet connection.
For multimedia, there are VGA and HDMI outs for video and the regular headphone and microphone jack for audio. There’s also SD & MMC supporting card reader and webcam. Bluetooth however is not directly supported. That can be fixed with an inexpensive dongle though.
Anything else to keep in mind?
The operating system is Windows 8.1 64-bit version. The display is not a touch screen. Means what? You’ll be missing out Windows 8’s touch features. That said, I wouldn’t mind non-touchscreen with Win 8 but your mileage may vary.
The life of the installed battery is 4 hours which is typical for such a budget laptop. However the battery on this model can’t be replaced yourself unless you really know how to do it. It’s not as simple as removing the battery with a push of a button. So you have to take the laptop to the shop if you want a new battery for it.
The previous point partially contributing to this, weight of the ASUS isn’t too bad. At 4.7lbs it’s rather easy to carry around.
Microsoft Office is pre-installed but only as a trial. To continue using it after 30 days you should buy it.
There’s a DVD-RW drive installed so burning and reading both CDs and DVDs is possible on this ASUS.
Competition in the budget laptop market is huge and mostly the specifications of such cheap notebooks don’t differ so much from each other. With that in mind, it’s safe to say ASUS D550MAV-DB01 looks like a proper notebook for people who value cheap price over performance. Somebody wanting a low mainentance home or office laptop might want to take a closer look at this Asus. Somebody wanting a gaming rig or workhorse for professional use shouldn’t (but hey, in that case you’re on the wrong site, we’re talking about budget tech here). Seriously, a little neg must be given for the lack of many USB ports but that’s the tradeoff for small and compact size. So if you don’t mind the shortcomings in connections and overall performance giving a try to this Asus is probably good idea.