The audio produced by most laptop speakers is pretty dire, but Asus' latest entertainment laptop, the N53Jn, is looking to change all that. It comes with an audio system that's been designed in partnership with Hi-Fi brand Bang & Olufsen. Priced at around £950, can this laptop really redefine our laptop audio expectations?
Bang on the money
The high asking price is an indicator that this is a flagship laptop for Asus, and you can also tell this from the N53Jn's luxurious styling. The brushed aluminium right across the chassis, plus some signature design elements such as the scooped screen hinges, mean it's a very classy machine. It feels sturdy and well put together, too. Although it's quite heavy at 2.73kg, the laptop's size means it's not likely to be used on the move much anyway.
The N53Jn's keyboard uses traditional tapered-style keys rather than the isolated style that is becoming increasingly common. The keyboard is large and the layout is good -- Asus has even managed to fit a full numerical keypad on the right-hand side. However, there is some flex towards the middle of the keyboard and keys don't have the solid action of some of the better keyboards we've used on other 15.6-inch models. Nevertheless, the laptop's trackpad is excellent. Its smooth surface means your finger glides effortlessly across it and the dark chrome rocker button is very accurate at registering taps. The trackpad also has multi-touch support, so you can use it to zoom in and out of the display on Windows 7 Home Premium by pinching your fingers together or spreading them apart on the surface of the pad.
Display of disaffection
an entertainment-focused laptop, the N53Jn's screen is surprisingly average.
The 15.6-inch display only stretches to a resolution of 1,366x768 pixels, which
is hardly sufficient to show off movies played from the on-board Blu-ray drive.
It's not just the resolution that's disappointing, either. The backlighting is
a little uneven, with the top of the screen looking slightly darker than the
bottom. Although colours are very punchy, the accuracy isn't great as skin
tones in movies tend to have a slightly yellow tinge.