Home' LAPTOP Magazine : February 2011 Contents businessnotebooks
the AsUs b43J (A1b) represents the company’s first
serious foray into the business notebook category,
and it offers plenty of perks for professionals, includ-
ing a water-resistant keyboard and your choice of
facial or fingerprint login. Coupled with an AtI GPU
and eyefinity technology that supports up to three
external monitors, this $1,249 system is powerful
enough for hardcore multitaskers.
the 13.8 x 9.6 x 1.4 -inch system weighs 5.6
pounds. the solid metal interior and scratch-resistant
aluminum panels make the notebook feel sturdy.
the simple black paint job works in the b43J’s
favor, but it won’t turn heads.
the b43J’s business DnA is apparent not only
from its aesthetics, but also from such features as
a fingerprint reader, AsUs’ scene switch toggle
for presentations, and a button to disable the
touchpad—very useful for those who accidentally
brush the surface while typing.
the button on the upper left pulls double duty,
switching between power profiles when logged
into Windows, and booting expressGate when off
Featuring a spill-resistant keyboard, the b43J’s
keys offered satisfying feedback. our primary
complaint is a shrunken right shift key. the 3.3 x
2-inch touchpad is large enough, and it’s slick and
friction-free. the mouse buttons are
large and responsive.
the matte 14-inch display offers
wide viewing angles. though
colors were vibrant, blacks weren’t
as deep as we’d like.
the b43J’s speaker is capable of some depth
when it comes to bass-heavy songs, though the upper
range was tinny. Volume was a disappointment.
AsUs bumped up the business cred with pre-
loaded apps such as Wave’s embassy security
Center, facial recognition log in software, and
Invineon security for backups and migration.
bundled AsUs-branded utilities include Copy-
Protect and secure Delete. We also appreciated
Fastboot for choosing which programs to load
first, as well as the boingo hotspot finder.
the b43J’s Core i5 CPU earned the system a
score in PCMark Vantage that’s more than 2,000
points above the average thin-and-light notebook.
the laptop trounced the file transfer and video
conversion test averages.
Using AMD’s eyefinity multi-monitor technol-
ogy, the b42J allows users to connect up to three
monitors simultaneously. Unlike the Lenovo t410s,
this notebook doesn’t require the optional dock to
take advantage of this functionality. However, if you
want to use three external monitors, one of them
must use a DisplayPort connection.
With two monitors hooked up, we easilyplayed
a game on one display while watching video on
the other. And moving between displays didn’t
Made for Multitasking
Asus’ b43J delivers a fast and sturdy business notebook with support for three external monitors.
cause any jumps or skips.
the b43J’s AMD/AtI Mobility Radeon HD 5470
GPU is backed by 512Mb of RAM. When unplugged,
the notebook will fall back to Intel’s integrated
graphics automatically. the 3DMark06 score was
well above average, and we managed decent
frame rates in World of Warcraft and Far Cry 2
AsUs claims that owners will get three years
of “like new” use from the b43J’s boston Power
sonata battery with a five-year overall service life.
Unfortunately, the laptop lasts less than 3 hours
on a charge.
AsUs offers a generous protection package with
this notebook: a three-year parts and labor war-
ranty with one-year accidental damage protection
and a 30-day Zero bright Dot guarantee. support
includes two-way free shipping.
business users looking for a powerhouse of a
notebook will find the $1,249 AsUs b43J appealing.
It feels solid and offers plenty of speed and graph-
ics muscle, along with business features mobile
professionals—and It departments—expect out of
a business machine. the triple monitor support is
especially nice. We just wish this laptop were more
mobile—both in terms of its weight and battery life.
overall, we prefer the thinkPad t410 with nvidia
optimus graphics in this price range ($1,168 with
three -year warranty), but the b43J holds its own
against some pretty fierce competition.
— k .t. bradford
CPu: 2.66 -GHz Intel Core i5-560M Operating
system: Windows 7 Professional (64-bit) RAM/
expandable to: 4Gb/8Gb Hard Drive size/
speed: 320Gb/5,400 rpm Optical Drive: 8X
DVD superMultiDrive Display size/Resolu-
tion: 14.1 inches/1366 x 768 Graphics/
Video Memory: Intel GMA HD/shared, AtI
Mobility Radeon HD 5470/512Mb Wire-
less: 802.11a/b/g/n Ports: Four Usb 2.0,
ethernet, HDMI, VGA, headphone, mic Card
slots: expressCard/34, 5 -in-1 memory card
reader size: 13.8 x 9.6 x 1.4 inches Weight:
5.6 pounds Warranty:three-year limited/24/7
online and phone support
excellent overall and graphics performance
Can connect to three displays simultaneously
Good business-centric software and utilities
Heavy for a 14-inch laptop
short battery life
PCMark Vantage 7,065
LAPtoP battery test
LAPtoP transfer test
boot time (min:sec)*
(auto detect/max) 51/26 fps 110/32 fps
Far Cry 2
(auto detect/max) 50/18 fps 30/14 fps
LAPtoP batter y
* Lower is better
the b43J includes a docking connector, DisplayPort, HDMI, and four Usb ports.
Laptop | February 2011
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