Plain jane, but
L7300 (ASUSTek Computer Inc) Notebook computer
System specifications: Intel Pentium II 366MHz
processor, 64MB SDRAM, 4.8GB IDE HDD, built-in 24x CD-ROM
drive, 3.5'' floppy drive, 13.3'' TFT active colour
LCD with 4MB RAM display on board, 256-bit AGP graphics
accelerator, 32-bit PCI stereo sound system, USB port,
FIR and ZV ports (see below), CardBus support, lithium-ion
Review unit courtesy of NTR Newtech Resources Sdn Bhd,
(04) 282-5993, via Fast-Tech Industrial
just about made up my mind to part with my hard-earned ringgit
for a notebook computer when the ASUS L7300 landed on my desk,
waiting to be reviewed.
I thought. This should help in my decision-making process.
I personally prefer desktop PCs to notebooks, it was great
to be able have some measure of mobility.
notebooks made their way to Malaysian shores via Penang sometime
in the middle of last year. While they maintained a relatively
low profile, they're definitely in the same league as some
of the most sought-after notebook computers.
at RM7,999, the L7300 model is aimed at entry-level users.
This regular A4-sized notebook computer, dubbed an all-in-one
notebook, is not your stylish show horse, but it comes complete
with all the necessary parts and peripherals.
include a built-in hard disk drive, modem card slot, 24x CD-ROM
drive, floppy disk drive, USB port, a fast infrared (FIR)
transmission port and two PC card slots.
This is for real
is renowned for its solid and reliable motherboards, and this
reputation extends to its notebook PCs. Don't be put off by
its clone tag. If anything, its Taiwanese origin should be
a plus -- after all, Taiwanese companies are busy churning
out full PCs and peripherals for many of the big names in
it was heartening to note that the L7300 is Y2K compliant.
like I said, is nothing to shout about. A member of the ASUS
L7000 family, the L7300 ain't exactly a slacker when it comes
to hardware specs, as you can see above.
and ease of use get high marks here -- the microphone and
stereo speakers are slotted neatly on the front panel for
easy access, and the screen is ``roomy'' enough for you to
view video CDs without squinting. (If you prefer DVDs, ASUSTek
offers a similar 14-inch model with a DVD drive.)
with the ALPS touchpad was difficult at first for a desktop
alien like me, but it soon became second nature. The keypad
is comfortable and requires only a light touch.
have the chance to test its fast infrared (FIR) feature, but
it was reassuring to know that it's there if I ever needed
(zoom-in video) port allows you to connect the notebook to
a TV set for video-conferences. Again, I didn't get the opportunity
to check this out.
lithium-ion battery boasts of three hours of uninterrupted
computing, and it's true to its word if you're doing mainly
wordprocessing, and not hard number-crunching.
the help of my other half (who made a cameo appearance
in our Nov 23 issue -- ED), I installed
Star Office 5.1, which is available for downloading via the
Internet, courtesy of Sun Microsystems.
all-in-one suite includes wordprocessing, spreadsheet, database,
e-mail, scheduler, calculator and simple graphic applications.
the Net, just plug the phone jack in -- the L7300 comes with
a 56K modem onboard. Alternatively you can plug in a Psion
PCMCIA Gold card, which was what I did.
way, it worked well without any inconveniences. Downloading
pages was a breeze.
counts My only contention with the L7300 is the weight. While
notebook-wielding road warriors may consider it a featherweight,
at just a little over 6lbs for a fully integrated unit, the
weight seems to accumulate around your shoulders when you,
say, walk about 200 metres in the heat of the day.
I've had very little experience with notebooks (caveat here),
I have to say that after a rational study against its likely
contenders, ASUS is one-up with its offer of a three-year
local warranty for the mainboard. In addition, it also promises
a 72-hour turnaround time for problem cases.
and support are a big plus in my book, and should figure prominently
in yours too when it comes to buying a computer, of whatever
Decent value for money.
Cons: A bit heavy.