K50IJ-G1B NoteBook Review

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ASUS K50IJ-G1B NoteBook Review

Is the ASUS K50IJ-G1B Notebook upgradeable?

In February of 2010 while we were on vacation to see our new Grand Daughter in North Carolina everyone had a computer (laptop) except my wife.

At that time I decided when we got a little ahead and had the cash I would buy her a laptop that she could use when we travel.

This is a review of the laptop I bought her for her birthday:

ASUS K50IJ-G1B Notebook

Specifications:

The Laptop comes with:
Operating Systems: Windows 7 Professional 64-bit + XP Pro downgrade CD
CPU Type: Intel™ Core 2 Duo T6570 2.1G
Screen: 15.6"
Memory Size: 3GB DDR2
Hard Disk: 250GB
Optical Drive: DVD Super Multi
Graphics Card: Intel™ GMA 4500M
Video Memory: Shared memory

Physical specifications:
Dimensions: 14.80" x 10.24" x 1.30" - 1.40"
Weight: 6.00 lbs.

After checking newegg.com I went to ASUS's web site and looked to see if they were offering a SSD instead of the SATA II mechanical drive, only the high end ASUS laptops come with the SSD in 64, 128, and 256 GB sizes. That wouldn't preclude you (or me) from upgrading to an SSD, it would however void the warranty unless the hard drive failed and you asked ASUS to replace it with a SSD.

After looking at the computer on four other web sites that sell computer products I decided to go with If you use an external mouse you may want to disable the touch pad...Newegg.com because they had a lower price (on sale) and they have a direct exchange program if the computer fails, no questions asked.

One of the main reasons for picking ASUS over say Leveno or Dell is the down grade to XP offer that comes with the laptop. If my wife doesn't like the Windows 7 then I will down grade the laptop to XP for her.

Two things about the ASUS K50IJ-G1B Notebook I don't like:

The video is landscape mode only, I set the video for portrait and it switched on the side instead of going to a normal screen in portrait. I haven't figured out why it did that yet.

ASUS loads up a bunch of shareware, Office 2010, Trend Micro (Anti virus/firewall) and some games. It took about thirty minutes to uninstall all that junk. (Although $180 for MS Office 2010 license isn't to bad but we already have an office suite that is paid for).

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When the K50IJ-G1B Notebook is started for the first time a pop up advises you to make the 'System recovery disks', that was five DVD's so I opted out and will do a ghost image of the partition once I have the security setup the way I want it.

Unlike other manufactures the hard drive is split in to two partitions, the System and Data. This I like because if I down grade to XP I don't think I will have to worry about the data being wiped, however if I do downgrade I will back it up just in case.

The computer is fast, it has a Core 2 Duo 2.1 GHz processor, but the memory usage is a little high at 830 MB with out any programs running. One of the reason for the high memory usage is the system memory is shared with the video. I will add a 1 GB memory module if it has any problems. If I downgrade the OS to XP then I won't have to add any memory.

Although the hard drive is only 250 GB it is more than enough for the what the computer will be used for.

Over all I think this is a nice low end laptop for someone that doesn't need all the power of say a Quad processor and over 3 gig of non shared memory. It is fairly fast and the video quality is very high. It isn't a game machine but videos display with great quality. The battery life is just over three hours when it is set performance and around four hours when set for maximum battery.

If you use this laptop on a desk note all the ports are on the sides...Now the bad news -

I didn't notice that the USB ports were 2.0/1.1 and not the new 3.0 ports. After looking at ASUS none of the current laptops have USB 3. Although the high end Leveno laptop does have USB 3. I think I will wait and save $900...

As a test I connected up my new USB 3 external drive, the computer sees it and it works so the backward compatibly of the USB 3 interface in the drive is good.

Well, as I thought Windows 7 didn't work out, have to load XP on the computer. As soon as I brought the computer in to our local domain the Computer Management and Advanced Computer Properties were locked out. I can however get to them in Safe Mode (the wife locked her user id out when the caps lock was on - the caps lock led is very small and she didn't notice the led or the pop up that said the caps lock was on...). She says she likes Windows 7, will have to convince her XP is easier to use. :)

So far she likes it although it is a little heavier than my IBM T-30 that she is used to. She quickly found the touch pad easy to use, which is unusual, she usually balks at new hardware. The web cam was a learning experience of a different kind.

Support offerings:

Online support for the ASUS K50IJ-G1B Notebook: manuals, bois upgrades,  and  device drivers. One year warranty for most ASUS laptops. Having dealt with ASUS over the years I would give their support a 9 out 10

However newegg.com does offer a one year no questions asked replacement for a nominal fee, I suggest you take them up on the warranty, this bumps the ASUS normal 1 year guarantee to two years.Six pounds, carred it to the UK in a backpack last year...

This was one of those surprises that could have gone the other way and I would have had a new laptop instead. And I wonder if I would like it as much as the new one I have picked out??

After two years, a trade for the G60, another trade for the 1001pxb Netbook, my Wife now has an iPad. I have the K50j as my travel / backup computer. I am happy with all those trades too... Smile...

Answer to the question: Yes you can upgrade the ASUS K50IJ-G1B Notebook



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