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Asus UL50V early review: Keeps your wrists cool as ice

After a long session on our laptops, our wrists start to overheat -- yeah, we go pretty hard. Thankfully, Asus has our backs. It's just released the UL50V -- a multimedia laptop with an 'ice cool' palm rest

Rory Reid

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We don't know about you guys, but after a long session on our laptops, our wrists start to overheat -- yeah, we go pretty hard. Thankfully, Asus has our backs. It's just released the UL50V -- a thinnish multimedia laptop with an 'ice cool' palm rest. Flippin' finally!

It's designed to give users a more comfortable computing experience during hot and heavy sessions. Inside the laptop, Asus has cleverly positioned heat vents well away from the palm rest, which keeps them below human body temperature even after many hours of use. We've only had ours a day or so, but so far the system works very well. Its palm rest is significantly cooler than almost any laptop we can recall. No, we're not sad, we just have exceptionally good memories.

As fun as the palm rest undoubtedly is, one of the UL50V's biggest selling point is its switchable graphics. It comes with an integrated Intel GMA graphics chip, but at the press of a button (and without having to wait for a reboot), users can activate the Nvidia GeForce G210M graphics processing unit. This allows things like 3D gaming or high-definition video playback, at the cost of battery life.

Unfortunately, the resolution on the UL50's 15.6-inch display is limited to a mere 1,366x768 pixels, which is the sort of resolution we'd expect on displays in the region of 11 inches -- so you may want to output video via the HDMI port.

Its weedy 1.3GHz Intel U7300 CPU doesn't initially impress, either, but the UL50V has Asus' Turbo 33 feature, which automatically overclocks the CPU to provide -- you guessed it -- 33 per cent more performance. Combine this with 4GB of DDR3 memory and you've got a laptop that is a smidgeon faster than other machines with the same spec.

This version of the Asus UL50V is available now for a not particularly pocket-friendly £800, though you can save yourself £100 by opting for the model without the switching Nvidia graphics. Keep your eyes peeled this way for a full in-depth review shortly, and head over to our photo gallery to see more pics of this thing in action.

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The UL50V's lid isn't glossy, but that doesn't stop it attracting fingerprint smudges and grime.
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The left side has a memory-card reader, HDMI, two USB ports, plus headphone and mic jacks.
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Flip 'er round and you'll find another USB port, the DVD rewriter drive, Ethernet and VGA video ports.
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The keyboard has comfortable isolated 'chiclet' keys, which feel great to type on.

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