It was nearly six months ago we first got wind of these new laptops and a couple of months ago that we first had a play with them while in Taiwan at the Computex trade show. Finally, though, Asus has made available its seriously stylish N53JN and N73JN laptops that sport Bang & Olufsen designed speakers, Blu-ray drives, and Nvidia's rather spiffing graphics switching technology, Optimus.
The N73JN, is a 17.3in desktop replacement model sporting a resolution of 1.600 x 900 while the N53JN is a rather more modest 15.6in with a 1,366 x 768 panel. Both have largely brushed metal finishes that look great and the all important speakers are mounted in a strip running under the screen. There's no separate sub woofer but the message from Asus is these stereo speakers are good enough on their own not to need one.
Both models are based on Intel Core i3 and Core i5 platforms and will sport Nvidia Geforce 325M or ATI Radeon HD 5730 graphics as well as Intel's integrated HM55 solution. With the help of Nvidia's Optimus technology the laptops can switch between the Nvidia and Intel solutions automagically, giving you either better performance or better battery life depending on what you're doing (this isn't available on the ATI solution). Both will also have options for Blu-ray drives and USB 3.0, as well as all the other usual bells and whistles of a modern day laptop.
Prices for the N53 start at £649 while the N73 kicks off at £999. We've already got the N53 in our offices so expect a review very shortly (first impressions are very positive!) and we hope to get an N73 very soon.
Asus Press Release (PDF Warning)