“What’s the best computer for me?” – The light-weight professional laptop

November 3rd, 2009 in .You Ask


Gogo Ubari

The ASUS UL30 and UL50 CULV ultra-portables really do mean business

Name: Loise Hoch
Age: 35
Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Job: Financial adviser
Interests: Loise enjoys travelling, classical music and watching the latest movies on her laptop

Loise is a self-employed financial adviser who spends a lot of time on site with her clients. Her current ultra-portable laptop is getting a bit long in the tooth. She’s looking to replace it with something light enough not to wear her out if she carries it around all day and, ideally, with a long battery life — Loise doesn’t always have access to a mains socket when she’s out and about.

I went for the ASUS UL30 – the combination of long battery life, portability and low cost seemed unbeatable.” – Loise

A large screen and keyboard are a must, as Loise does a lot of typing and work with large spreadsheets. Performance is also a concern — Loise runs some demanding financial software and can’t keep clients waiting with a slow computer. Loise would like to keep the budget under £1,000 — her last ultra-portable laptop cost much, much more than that.

Low voltage, low power

The ASUS UL Series is the ideal solution to Loise’s needs — light, affordable laptops with large screens and longlasting batteries. The UL Series is a new range — and a new category — of laptops based around Intel®’s new CULV processors. Two models stand out as being well-suited to Loise’s needs — the Asus UL30 and Asus UL50. CULV stands for ‘Consumer Ultra Low Voltage’, which is a technical way of saying that these new processors use very little power. Low power consumption also means that the chips generate very little heat and so don’t need elaborate cooling systems. As a result, laptops with CULV processors can be much thinner than most laptops — in fact, both the ASUS UL30 and UL50 are less than 1″ thick.

Top Performer

Energy-efficient processors are nothing new, of course, but the advantage of Intel’s new CULV chips is that they don’t sacrifice performance for the sake of power consumption. The ASUS UL30 and ASUS UL50 laptops both use the latest Intel® Core™ 2 Duo SU7300 processor. Unlike other highly energy-efficient processors, the SU7300 is dual-core and this makes it much more capable at running multiple applications at once. So you can run a web browser, email application, word processor and spreadsheet application all at the same time without grinding to a halt. If 3D graphics and video playback are a concern, then the ASUS UL50V will be right up your street. ASUS GraphiX Boost also lets you switch between power saving integrated graphics and high-performance NVIDIA® discrete graphics at will. ASUS Turbo33 technology can inject even more performance to make light work of demanding 3D graphics applications.

Keep on Running

Another important thing to note about CULV laptops like the ASUS UL30 and ASUS UL50 is that although they’re thin and light, they’re not so small as to be uncomfortable to use for long periods. The ASUS UL30 has a 13.3″ screen and a full-size chiclet keyboard with separate numeric keyboard — perfect for lots of number work. The ASUS UL50, on the other hand has a larger 15.6″ screen and adds an internal DVD writer for even greater flexibility, but it is a bit heavier as a result. One thing we haven’t mentioned yet is battery life, but don’t worry — you won’ be disappointed with the UL Series. Those CULV processors, together with energy efficient components like LED-backlit screens and innovations like ASUS’ Power4Gear power-optimisation software, mean that both the UL30 and UL50 can run for up to 12 hours on battery power. That’s true all-day computing away from the mains — a feature that you’ll find in few other 13″ and 15″ laptops, CULV or
otherwise.

Impressive performance and power efficiency aside, what we like most about the ASUS UL30 and ASUS UL50 is their good looks. The slimness afforded by their CULV processors is delivered with plenty of style, from the sturdy, brushed aluminium lid to the sleek, glossy interior. This chic design is certainly something
you’ll appreciate when visiting clients and both the ASUS UL30 and UL50 will show that you mean business.

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