ASUS N61JQ-XV1 16-Inch Intel Core i7 Laptop Review! [Part 1]

Last year I got my new 13.3-inch ASUS UL30Vt-X1, which has served an awfully great purpose of helping me blog while traveling, it weighs almost nothing, battery lasts forever, and has a great processor fast enough to do most things.

This year, I got a new ASUS 16-inch laptop N61JQ-XV1, which comes equipped with an Intel Core i7 740QM 2.93Ghz processor.  The reason why I got this laptop is because although I wanted to stay at 13.3 inches, there’s actually no laptop on the market with that screen size and Intel Core i7.

Specifically, I needed a super, powerful laptop because I will be covering the biggest consumer electronics show next year at CES 2011.  Last year at CES 2010, my ASUS UL30Vt-X1 did well except for rendering my high-resolution 1080P HD videos.

And trust me, rendering 1080P HD videos are the most power-consuming tasks a computer/laptop can do.  I have an Intel Core i7 desktop too, which can render my 1080P HD videos pretty darn fast.

So, that is why I need this laptop, even though it’s heavy as hell, I will be able to pump out like 20-30 videos per day at CES 2011 instead of 3-5 I was doing this year.

If you are looking for the most powerful laptop on the market right now but you don’t want to spend more than a thousand dollars, definitely the ASUS N61Q-XV1 is the best choice (and hence I got one for myself).

Plus, I could spend $3,000 on  a really nice laptop this year but then what laptop would I buy next year?  Exactly my point, since I did only spend around $800 on my ASUS laptop last year, I can buy another laptop this year.  And it still would be cheaper than getting an over-priced laptop.

Anyways, onto the laptop review of the ASUS N61JQ-XV1, it comes loaded with an Intel Core i7 740QM processor that can be overclocked to 2.93Ghz, 4GB DDR3 RAM, ATI Radeon graphics card with 1GB DDR VRAM, 500GB 7200RPM hard drive, DVD (you can get the N61JQ-B2 if you want blu-ray), WiFi B/G/N, HDMI port, 1 USB 3.0 port, ESATA port, bluetooth, 2MP webcam, 1366×768 resolution 16-inch screen, and Windows 7 64-bit Home OS.

This is one helluva laptop for the price of $899.99 if you consider all the features.

Let me go over some of the feel and look of the ASUS N61J series here:

ASUS has done a lot of work with their multi-touch touchpad.  I’ve used it since I first purchased Eee PC 1000HE netbook and I tell ya, the touchpad on the ASUS N61J is really nice.  And it’s not glossy but matte so it’s very easy to scroll while there’s no fingerprint smudges that will get on it.   As for multi-touch, you can do lots of things like 2-finger scroll vertically/horizontally, 3-finger right click, 3-finger magnification, and ability to customize the multi-touch to your liking.

ASUS has really done a helluva job improving this area and this laptop is the result of ASUS listening to their customers.

On the left side of the laptop, you will find a VGA output port, ethernet LAN port, HDMI port, and USB 3.0 port.

If you consider buying any USB 3.0 devices like a USB 3.0 hard drives or want to charge your iPad, you can as the ASUS N61J is one of the first laptops on the market to come with one.  For charging an iPad, the USB 3.0 specs are rated at 1000mAh of current, plenty to power your iPad.

I know this USB 3.0 port is pretty darn cool to have on your laptop, great for charging your smartphones fast too.

On the top left, there are 5 buttons, one sleep button, volume buttons, and play/pause button.   But take a look at the craftmanship of ASUS laptops and attention to detail.  There’s even a cool LED light you can see.

On the right side of the N61J you will find headphone/microphone jack, regular USB 2.0 port, eSATA port (for connecting your eSATA external hard drives), and DVD drive.  Personally, I would have liked ASUS to make a laptop without the DVD drive because it adds so much bulk to a laptop but I guess it’s not bad to have it either.

The keyboard on the ASUS N61J series feel a bit too far up on the laptop and the touchpad is HUGE.  But this could be because I am not used to it yet so we will see.

This ASUS N61J series is certainly not going to be the most portable laptop you will find out there but it does pack a ton of power and there’s no other 16-inch laptop you will find with all these features at the same price.

The top of the ASUS N61JQ-XV1, you will find a very glossy finish.  It can easily get fingerprints but oh well, ASUS ship all their laptops with a microfiber cleaning clothes for cleaning that up.  I wish they put the same matte metal finish they put on their ASUS UL30Vt series.  “That” was the cleanest/sleekest.

Here I loaded up my blog.  As you can see, 1366×768 is probably going to suffice for most applications.

I took more close-up shots of this laptop so you can clearly see what the surface looks like.

Smart-Pad is the program you can customize the multi-touch touchpad to your liking.

And I think ASUS put in more time working on the design of the power button, which lights up very brightly and looks really cool.

Well, I took some videos too of the ASUS N61JQ-XV1 of the form factor:

And also some of the basic functionalities:

Overall. the ASUS N61JQ-XV1 is a good gaming/entertainment laptop.  There’s also 15.6-inch ASUS G53JW-XA1 with same CPU but better graphics card and more memory but I choice this one because it’s much more affordable and not as bulky.

That’s it for now and watch out for review part 2, where I will be doing some performance tests like games and whatnot!

For those of you who can’t wait, get the ASUS N61JQ-XV1 here on Amazon.

One Response to ASUS N61JQ-XV1 16-Inch Intel Core i7 Laptop Review! [Part 1]

  1. Pingback: ASUS N61JQ Review – Best 16-inch Laptop of the Year! | ASUS Laptop Reviews!

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