You can usually expect high quality from ASUS, their products tend to last long and come without random hiccups. People often trust that company, especially their laptops are liked by many techies and professionals. But what is the case with their new ASUS X555LA-BHI5N12, a very well-priced notebook with the 5th generation Intel Core i5 processor? We shall see…
The engine room
First and foremost, you must remember that ASUS X555LA-BHI5N12 is not exactly a beast. This is evident in storage drive selection, the drive being a good old mechanical HDD with a spindle speed of 5400RPM and capacity for a full terabyte. Many tech enthusiasts these days prefer a solid-state drive, which you can surely install here too. The catch is, you’ll definitely need to remove the default drive first as there are no free slots available.
The processor side is bit brighter here, it’s a Intel Core i5-5200U that’s running the show. That CPU is a late 2014 release of the 5th generation line of Intel’s mainstream processors. A 2.2GHz clock speed is promised, although also 2.7GHz turbo speed is available. Core amount is two, just like on other low-voltage units. CPU Mark (a popular benchmark) gives this chip ca. 3500 points, placing it well ahead of i3 processors (of ~2000-2500 points).
The memory setup is a bit different from other systems. The laptop has 4GB integrated and 2GB on a stick, so the RAM for now is 6GB. It should be enough, but if it’s not, you can surely upgrade it to 12GB (since just one removable stick is available).
Any reason gamers would like it?
ASUS X555LA-BHI5N12 is not a very gamer-friendly notebook, as it relies entirely on the integrated Intel HD 5500 for graphics. All the low-level games, like League of Legends and Sims 4 run fine even on higher settings, but problems would occur with graphics-heavy titles like GTA 5 or Call of Duty: Black Ops 3. Those fancier games require low to medium settings to run, and the FPS won’t still be all smooth.
What peripherals can be plugged in?
You can connect extra monitors (like HDTV) to this ASUS, it features HDMI-out and VGA for that. Why would you want do that? Well, you might just want to use the notebook through a bigger display because the current screen is too small.
There are also USB ports (two USB 3.0, one USB 2.0) available which means that many peripherals, such as printers and scanners, can be plugged in. You may want to prefer the USB 3.0s since they’re a lot faster than USB 2.0 – luckily, two faster ports are included here, often times just one is found on the side.
You’re able to connect this notebook to networks with the built-in WiFi 802.11b/g/n adapter or Gigabit RJ-45 port. As far as I know, Bluetooth is not supported.
In case you want to use discs you’ll be glad to know there’s a DVD burner installed. If you don’t need it and want extra storage drive, I guess the DVD drive could be removed and SSD put in place.
Other interesting features are media card reader and a front-facing webcam.
ASUS X555LA-BHI5N12 features a standard 15.6″ screen with 1366×768 resolution. Nothing special here, for example touch is not supported.
The battery will last around 4 hours if you use a bit dimmed screen for web surfing. It doesn’t look like an easily replaceable unit, though.
Keyboard does not have backlight.
Operating system is Windows 10 Home (64-bit).
Summing it up
ASUS X555LA-BHI5N12 is rather cheap, but don’t let it fool you thinking it’s a crap model, because it’s not. The included Core i5 processor is a power user friendly one, so running many heavyweight software or multitasking (also the 6GB RAM helps) should be a breeze. Just remember the hard drive can become a performance bottleneck unless you change it to SSD. But when moving to the gaming world, don’t expect much, as there’s only an integrated engine available. But if you want a very affordable laptop for all the non-gaming work, then you should go for this simple ASUS.