Asus has quietly released the G550JK, a new gaming laptop with a 15.6-inch display.
The Asus G550JK is actually a lower-end gaming notebook if you count graphics performance as the main factor. With its design, 1.1″ thin profile, and specifications, the laptop is rather a gaming version of the multimedia-class N550 series than the smaller sibling of the popular G750. The notebook features the Nvidia GeForce GTX 850M 2GB/4GB “Maxwell” video card instead of the GTX 860 or higher. The latter are commonly used in gaming laptops by other manufacturers and in the G750. The processor is either the Intel Core i7 4710HQ Haswell with four cores and clock speed of up to 3.5GHz or the i5-4200H Haswell dual-core at up to 3.4GHz. The screen offers 1080p resolution and is backed by IPS technology, but that’s one of the option. Another one is the traditional low-end 1366×768 TN panel. RAM size is 8GB, but it’s expandable to 16GB. For storing files, you can have either 750GB or 1-Terabyte HDD at 5,400 or 7,200 rpm speed.
Optical drive is a DVD burner or Blu Ray combo. The built-in sound system consists of either dual or quad speakers, depending on model. As same as with the aforementioned N550, the G550 comes with an external subwoofer included in the package. Video output is provided via HDMI and mini DisplayPort.
Outwardly, the G550JK has a shape which appears to be identical to the aforementioned N550. Asus has repainted it in black instead of silver and added some red accents to give it a gaming look.
The notebook can be found in the US for about $1,100 in the form of the G550JK-DS71 model with the quad-core CPU, Full HD IPS, a 750GB HDD, and 8GB RAM.
Asus has prepared a new laptop or better said a new laptop form factor. It’s the first 15.6-incher with a 360 degree hinge. The Acer R7 and Lenovo Flex 15 with the same screen size are also convertibles, but they can’t be fully folded. The images of the laptop listed with three model names – TP500L J500L, and R515L – have leaked through FCC. They show the big-screen Windows convertible in the classic laptop and tablet modes. It’s not clear if it’s meant to be used also in the “stand” and “tent” modes like the Lenovo Yoga laptops. The hinge certainly allows that. Judging from the images, the TP500L / J500L / R515L appears to be constructed from aluminum. It looks sleek and resembles the shape of the MacBook Pro to some extent. Specifications are unknown at the time of this writing. So far we only know it has three USBs, HDMI, media card reader, Ethernet, Wi-Fi of course, and a dedicated numeric keyboard. The battery is non-removable.
The Asus Republic of Gamers G750 17.3-inch gaming laptops have received a refresh in a form of new video cards and some hardware tweaks. These 2014 models are now available for pre-order, offering the latest Nvidia GeForce GTX 800M series dedicated graphics.
The PC maker’s flagship gaming notebook line now additionally includes the Asus ROG G750JZ-XS72 and G750JZ-DS71 models with the top-of-the-line GTX 880M with 4GB of video memory, G750JS-DS71 with the higher-end GTX 870M 3GB, and the G750JM-DS71 with the GTX 860M 2GB.
Asus says the 2014 refresh is more than just a GPU upgrade from the 700M series to 800M, which has enabled speed boost by up to 15 percent on the 880M and up to 50 percent on the 870M and Maxwell architecture-based 860M. Cooling system has been upgraded, too. The new models have copper infused cooling gear “giving it more heat capacity to overclock via the new ASUS TurboMaster technology”.
The 2014 G750 models retain the Intel Haswell quad-core i7 processors and four RAM slots for up to 32GB of memory, hard drive and solid state drive storage choices, as well as the 1080p screen resolution, built-in subwoofer speaker, and backlit keyboard. Stealth Fighter-inspired chassis design remained the same, with aluminum keyboard deck and rear-facing cooling vents.
Prices start at $1,399 $1,249.99 for the 860M powered model and the estimated shipping date is March 30th.
Update: A new model showed up at Best Buy. It’s the G750JM-BSI7N23 ($1,249.99), which is the most affordable one.
Asus is preparing a new notebook series, the Zenbook NX500, which is a crossover between the Zenbook ultrabook-class thin-and-light laptops and Asus’ N-series multimedia-oriented machines.
As the main stand-out feature, the 15.6-inch Asus NX500 has an ultra-high definition 4K display, presumably with a 3840-by-2160 pixel count. Besides extremely sharp picture, the notebook sports a sound system developed in cooperation with Bang & Olufsen ICEpower.
Design is a premium-class, too. The NX500 sports an aluminum unibody chassis, which appears to be very slim and resembles the MacBook Pro look to some extent.
Details on internal components are unknown, but it will very likely feature some of the Intel “Haswell” Core processors. Since there are Zenbook and N-series Asus laptops with dedicated video cards built-in, we hope the NX500 will have a dedicated GPU option as well in order to manage the 4K display well and provide some gaming potential.
Pricing and availability dates are unknown at the time of this writing.
The Asus Transformer Book Duet TD300(LA) is a just announced 13.3-inch laptop/tablet convertible with detachable keyboard. With its dual-mode OS Windows-Android operation, it’s probably the most innovative among Windows devices on display at the 2014 CES Show in Las Vegas.
The ASUS X200CA-HCL1205O 11.6-inch touch-enabled Windows 8 mini-laptop will start selling soon at Best Buy today. It will retail for only $279.99 and is one of the most affordable touch-enabled laptops on the market at the time of this writing.
Since recently, the 250-dollar Asus X102BA-HA41002F small 10.1-inch touchscreen laptop PC is available in the US. More precisely, it’s sold exclusively through Best Buy, but it has very similar specifications to the X102BA-BH41T which is on sale at Amazon and some other retailers at the same price.