If you’re on a “quest” to find a budget laptop, one thing is for sure: there are many to choose from. So how do you know which one is the best? It’s hard to tell, you just need to pick one bravely. In this review, I’ll tell you if ASUS X540LA-SI30205P, an inexpensive home laptop, is worthy of picking or not…
ASUS X540LA-SI30205P is not the fastest system there is, but considering the low price, the processor is alright. It’s a low-voltage Intel Core i3-5020U, a dual-core unit with 2.2GHz and without any turbo boost. Despite that, it gets a decent ~3200 points in CPU Mark, so you shouldn’t be afraid to use this notebook even for occasional heavier programs (like Adobe family). The 4GB memory also suffices for most uses, although you can double it to 8GB as far as I know if it’s too small amount.
You can’t ask too much for this price, but a solid-state drive would’ve been nice! Now you’re left with one terabyte 5400RPM hard drive, which is naturally good as a huge file storage, but performance falls behind SSDs. The thing is, if you have the skills, you can always remove the installed hard drive and put solid-state drive in place.
Connectivity is pretty basic in ASUS X540LA-SI30205P, yet I think it suffices for most home users. Three USB ports are there, one of those is USB 3.0, the rest are USB 2.0. HDMI-output and VGA are present in case you want to hook up another monitor and use the laptop through that. Ethernet port RJ-45 works at 100Mbps speed and there’s also WiFi N-standard adapter for wireless connections. As far as I know, Bluetooth is not supported.
DVD burner is included, also media card reader can be used for transferring data between the laptop and memory cards.
The non-touch display is nothing fancy, featuring 15.6″ diagonal and 1366×768 resolution. It probably suffices for most people, though. Webcam is embedded in the top screen bezel.
Battery life should be 3-4 hours when the laptop is used for web surfing.
Are you a gamer? ASUS X540LA-SI30205P is far from ideal. There is no fast dedicated graphics card; instead integrated Intel HD 5500 is running the show. So what frame rates can you expect? Around 20FPS if you’re playing GTA 5 on low settings and resolution. Not that good, but I’d call it somewhat playable. You can use more eye candy on games such as World of Warcraft, CS: Go and Minecraft.
Keyboard isn’t backlight, however that is understandable considering the price.
ASUS X540LA-SI30205P is a laptop for basic use: surfing the web all day, processing text or spreadsheets with Excel, watching videos off YouTube. For that kind of stuff, the low-end components of this ASUS work fine. Gaming would be problematic thanks to the integrated engine, also a power user might not find this rig fast enough for his applications. But for home or office use I think this ASUS is all one needs, so check it out if your requirements are not high!