Asus G51VX-RX05 Gaming Notebook Review

August 21, 2009

Recently, we've seen the meteoric rise of netbooks in the mobile space. Their ultra portability in conjunction with the global economic climate seems to have led consumers to think twice about spending large amounts of cash on mobile devices. This is especially true when netbooks offer the same basic services (word processing, internet surfing, email) for a considerably smaller investment than most other models. But with netbooks, problems surface when users want to do more than just the basic tasks. While no one can argue against their usability, size, and price point, netbooks don't have the processing power to play the latest games or handle significant multimedia workloads, which are key to meeting the demands of gamers and enthusiasts.

With their Eee PC line of products, Asus has been at the forefront of the netbook revolution. However, they've also got an extensive line-up of full-sized notebooks that was recently expanded with a new gaming machine aimed at mainstream consumers, combining strong graphics performance and surprising affordability. The G51VX-RX05 is a member of the Asus Republic of Gamers line targeted at the performance enthusiast market and features a Core 2 Duo processor, 4GB of DDR2 memory, an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260M GPU, a 15.6" LCD display, a spacious 320GB hard drive, and Windows Vista 64-bit operating system. While those specs are appealing, the most attractive feature we can list is the competitive asking price, which currently sits at about $1049. With the new school year just around the corner, we know consumers are in the market for notebooks that provide the best performance for their dollar, so let's take a closer look at what the G51VX has to offer.

Asus G51Vx-RX05
Specifications and Features (as tested)

Model :G51VX-RX05
Display :15.6" (1368x768)
CPU :Intel Core 2 Duo P7350 2.0GHz
Memory :4GB DDR2 800MHz (2x2GB)
Graphics :NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260M 1GB GDDR3
Storage :320GB 7200RPM
Optical :SuperMulti DVD
Operating System:Windows Vista Home Premium x64
Wireless :Intel 802.11 A/G/N
Webcam :1.3 Megapixel
Wired Internet :10/100 Ethernet, 56K Fax/modem
Ports :4 USB, 1 FireWire, HDMI, VGA, ExpressCard, eSATA, 8-in-1 Media
Weight :7.3 lbs with battery
Dimensions :14.6" x 10.3" x 1.6" (WxDxH)
Warranty :1 Year Parts / Labor
Price :$1049

Stepping in at 14.6" x 10.3" with a weight of 7.3 lbs, the G51Vx is not ideal for everyday travel. While more portable than high end desktop replacement notebooks, we would still consider it a full size laptop better fit for just occasional trips, rather than the business traveler on the go.

In reality, we think it would be perfect for a college dorm room, where portability is less important and a full feature set and functionality prerequisite. That said, the G51Vx was designed for maximum gaming performance at an affordable price. It's also one of the first machines we've tested with NVIDIA's new GeForce GTX 260M mobile graphics processor under its hood. So let's take a closer look at this new Asus-built hot rod; then we'll take her for a ride around the test track.