ASUS F554LA-WS52 Review

July 1, 2015
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So you want to get a fast laptop, yet not so fast that it would cost you a thousand bucks? In this case, ASUS F554LA-WS52 might be worth your while. It features a powerful Core i5 processor together with 8GB RAM, not bad if you want to run heavy programs on your computer. But would this laptop ultimately be worth its price? Let’s have a closer look at it to find out…


There’s a processor called Core i5-5200U in ASUS F554LA-WS52. It’s a modern dual-core CPU with 2.2GHz base speed and 2.7GHz maximum turbo frequency. Compared to its predecessor, the i5-4200U, this new model is ca. 10 percent faster, receiving ~3500 CPU Mark points. The thermal design power (TDP) is just 15W so the chip can be described as a low power one. There’s enough oomph for the majority of applications, and due to integrated graphics engine also many games work on this rig.

The laptop has only one DIMM socket and it’s taken by a 8GB (1600MHz DDR3L) memory stick. You can’t put more RAM in even if you wanted to. But I wouldn’t worry about it, not many users could benefit from going above eight gigabytes. The storage drive is a bit disappointing 500GB 5400RPM drive, not really something you should see in this era anymore. Changing it yourself for a 2.5″ solid-state drive works, but it will cost you some more.

Display and graphics

There’s a 15.6″ non-touch display in ASUS F554LA-WS52. Aspect ratio is 16:9, resolution 1366×768. It’s not a wonderful number, although the need for Full HD screen is very subjective. I’d personally want one because I need a lot of screen estate, but understandably many are fine with 1366×768 too.

A bunch of games will surely work on this laptop. The graphics are commanded by Intel HD Graphics 5500 unit, offering enough performance for titles such as Sims 4, Battefield 4 and Dota 2. I’ve even seen people playing the heavyweight GTA 5 on this chip, although only on low settings, which would yield an acceptable frame rate of ~25 per second.


There are three USB ports in ASUS F554LA-WS52, just like in most 15-inch notebooks. One is USB 2.0, two are USB 3.0, so favor the latter. The laptop also houses HDMI and VGA outs, you can connect an HDTV or PC display to those.

To get Internet access the computer offers 802.11b/g/n WiFi card and Gigabit Ethernet (RJ-45) port. Bluetooth 4.0 is supported as well.

DVD burner is internal, so there’s no need to get an external optical drive here. A slot for SD cards is featured, too.

The laptop has a webcam, although just a VGA one, so some video chatting is definitely possible.

Something else to keep in mind?

ASUS F554LA-WS52 seems to weigh 4.9 pounds, similar to its 15.6″ competitors. In my opinion, traveling with such a package is not cumbersome. The unit contains a 2-cell 37Whrs battery which is promised to work for up to 5 hours. Chances are you’ll reach around four in real life.

The keys don’t light up, but a dedicated numpad is available on the keyboard’s right hand side.


As other reviewers have stated, ASUS F554LA-WS52 has mainly pros and hardly any cons. It is packed with power, i5 processor practically works with any program you might run on a computer. One disadvantage would be the storage selection, a 5400RPM drive in 2015 feels ancient. But you can always swap that to speed up the computer big time. There’s also another version of this computer with faster processor and more storage which is good idea if you’re a power user and have an extra hundred of bucks or so.

6 thoughts on “ASUS F554LA-WS52 Review

  1. Dave Sass

    Nice review – I think some other negatives on this laptop that you didn’t mention are that you can’t easily replace the battery or the hard drive without some serious dissasembly work. You have to take 9 screws out of the bottom of the machine and then pry the keyboard away from the main chassis while disconnecting three cables. This is not doable for the general public. The hard drive is a crippling component at 5400rpm in such a fast machine and the battery is sure to fail within 2-3 years causing the user to have to send it in to a service center for replacement.

    In my opinion, this is a very bad design on ASUS’s part. I know they are trying to keep prices down and this laptop gives you a lot of bang for the buck, along with a slim design, but I think the two things you didn’t mention will be a deal breaker for many potential buyers.

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Thanks for your opinion Dave, appreciate it.

      Upgrading this machine seems to be a tough task task indeed. A tech-savvy person can do many modifications himself, but as you mentioned, if a person isn’t well versed in this field, chances are he has to send the unit to a computer shop or ASUS service for upgrades. That, of course, will cost some $$$.

  2. Dave Sass

    Thanks for the reply. Since shopping for a laptop I have found almost all of the manufacturers, other than Toshiba no longer have user replaceable batteries or offer easy access get at a HDD anymore. This seems to be the trend with manufacturers of budget laptops. It seems we are in a new age of disposable laptops and that is too bad.

    Being a PC technician, I have the ability to repair thes, but the average individual will not. They will either be forced to pay for battery replacements or will just throw it out after a couple of years and purchase a new one. This seems like a real waste to me and a bad enginnering practice by the manufacturers.

    I’m sure they made the decision to do this to keep costs down in a price competitive market and in hopes that customers willl do just that; throw their machines out and buy new ones every couple of years.

    Maybe I should start a mail order business to reasonably replace batteries?

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Exactly my thoughts. What would be a better customer than one throwing away his broken laptop after two years and buying a new machine, perhaps from the same manufacturer? This is good for business but bad for many things, including frustration among customers and environmental issues.

      The business idea might be worthwhile, as long as notebook batteries die there will be a need to replace them. Sadly, there’s no way to know 100% sure if it’s profitable idea before trying, but the bright side is that it shouldn’t be expensive for you to start. Spread the word locally and make a website. It’s only the domain and hosting that would cost, but they’re cheap.

  3. J0ny

    Hey, thanks for the reivew! What do you think about this laptop for an ubuntu makeover or dual boot?
    I’m really looking for a relatively cheap (hopefully under $600) lightweight laptop that runs a recent i-5 and 8 gigs of ram, and doesn’t suck too much :)… I think I even prefer the i-5 to the i-7 for keeping it cool and the power consumption down, but wondering if going up $100 to $150 mark there’s something that pushes this up? Still looking around, thanks for the review, it’s definitely helpful!

    1. Tech For Pennies Post author

      Glad you liked the post J0ny. All the components in this ASUS are supported by Ubuntu, and as it’s quite a lightweight operating system I don’t see a reason why Ubuntu wouldn’t work here. It just takes some technical knowledge, but from your question I assume you’re tech-savvy so this wouldn’t be a problem.

      There’s indeed i7 + 1000GB HDD version of this laptop as well. It costs around 150 dollars more, but it’s unclear if you should get the beefier one because you didn’t specify what you would use the computer for. But in general, the difference between i5-5200U and i7-5500U isn’t that great, just ~3500 vs. ~3900 CPU Mark points. I bet most users wouldn’t notice the difference.

      What comes to hard drive, it’s double the size in the more expensive model, but you need to think if you need the added storage. In my opinion, for most uses 500GB hard drive will do. Solid-state drive would be even better considering it’s much faster (and has smaller storage space, but you can put many files to cloud services), although neither models come with an SSD.

      So unless you really know you need i7 and bigger hard drive, I think the i5 model is the way to go.


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