Why Asus GL552JX is a sweet deal at this price

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The Windows 10 variant of the GL552JX is the latest offering from Asus’s Republic of Gamers and was launched in India in December. The laptop is meant for gamers making the shift from gaming-capable general-purpose laptops to gaming laptops while staying affordable.
Design
The laptop has great build quality and the attention to detail is visible from the moment you first see the laptop. The Full HD screen looks gorgeous and thanks to it’s matte-black finish it is virtually glare-free. The display also supports a wide range of viewing angles and no matter how I kept the laptop or where I was viewing the screen from, I was able to get crystal-clear visuals.

The keyboard is ergonomically designed and is definitely something to love about this laptop. It’s backlit keys look great and perform even better. I type a lot and I haven’t experienced any discomfort even when typing for hours at a stretch.
The trackpad is not as well-designed as the keyboard despite being placed in a way that it does not come in the way of typing and is one place this laptop takes a beating. While the button response is good and requires minimal effort, the trackpad response is terrible while using it normally or with gestures for Windows 10. This is something that wasn’t as much of a problem for me because I use an external mouse like most gamers do. It’s simply not practical to play shooters and MOBAs using a trackpad even if it is a great trackpad.
Audio
The audio is another thing that is not upto the mark. While using the laptop to watch movies or listen to music, I feel the need to switch to external speakers to improve the clarity of the audio which otherwise feels muffled.
Hardware
The G552JX comes with a quad-core Intel Core i7-4750HQ with a base frequency of 2GHz and a Max Turbo Frequency of 3.2GHz and Intel’s Hyper-Threading Technology. It may not be as power-efficient as the latest Skylake processors, but the Haswell processor gets the job done.
The GL552JX is powered by a single stick of 8GB DDR3 RAM running at 1600MHz. This isn’t the soldered-on kind that the company uses for some of it’s other laptops and includes an extra slot so that you can expand the memory by another 8 GB. This is great because if you would get the same 8GB as two 4GB sticks, you would have to get rid of them both to upgrade to 16 GB. The best part is that on the back of the laptop is a panel which gives you access to the RAM and hard drive. This significantly reduces the amount of effort required to upgrade and makes the entire process a lot more accessible to enthusiasts.
When it comes to storage, The GL552JX comes equipped with a 1TB 2.5-inch hard disk running at 7200rpm from Western Digital, which is 33% faster than the usual 5400rpm hard drives that you get with many laptops. The storage itself is great, but you can get a large performance boost by adding a SSD in the privded M.2 solid-state disk slot that supports up to 256GB. When equipped with an SSD, your boot and load times are significantly reduced. The laptop also comes with a HD webcam, Wi-fi and Bluetooth 4.1.
In terms of ports, you get three USB ports out of which two are USB 3.0, one HDMI out, a LAN port, a VGA out, a headphone jack, a microphone port and a Kensington lock. You also get a DVD writer and an SD card slot. The laptop cools itself via exhaust vent is placed on the left, which also has red accents to go with the gaming theme of the laptop.
Specifications
Asus GL552JX Laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 4720HQ Processor
Operating System Windows 10
Memory 8GB DDR3L 1600 MHz
Display 15.6″ 16:9 IPS FHD (1920×1080) anti-glare
Graphic card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M with 4GB DDR3 VRAM
Storage 1TB HDD 7200 RPM
Security Kensington lock, BIOS Booting User Password Protection, HDD User Password Protection and Security and Pre-OS Authentication by programmable key code
Optical drive DVD writer
Software
The GL552JX comes with Windows 10 Home 64-bit and some of Asus’s built-in software. Asus also bundles some of its own software with the laptop such as AudioWizard for tweaking sound settings and GameFirst III which is an ROG standard that is used to prioritise gaming internet traffic to reduce lag during online gameplay. You also get the standard one month trial of Microsoft Office 365, 25GB of Dropbox cloud storage for six months, and a year’s subscription to McAfee security software.
Portability
The laptop weighs 2.6kg and isn’t what I would call lightweight, but you wouldn’t be able to do much on the laptop on the move, thanks to its battery life that will last you about two hours on average. This kind of weight and battery life is common when it comes to gaming laptops and should not come as much of a surprise to anybody that has owned a gaming laptop before.
Graphics
This laptop is available in the market in two variants, the newer Windows 10 variant and the older Windows 8.1 variant. The Windows 10 variant comes with 4GB of graphics memory while the Windows 8.1 variant comes with 2GB of graphics memory. I am reviewing the newer variant and it is the variant you should go for. The 950M with 4GB is the best you are going to get at this price range, at the time of writing this article.
The graphic card can the latest graphically-intensive games at anything between 35 and 60 frames per second at medium settings, with some games like Rainbow Six Seige giving you an average of over 70 frames per second. Games like Fifa 16 that aren’t as graphically intensive can go upto 79 frames per second on ultra settings.
Verdict
The Asus GL552JX is priced at Rs 75,000 and comes with a charger, cable tie, microfibre cloth and a backpack. The laptop is one of the best options if your budget is around Rs 80,000 and would have extraordinary if it wasn’t for it’s poor trackpad performance and audio quality. However, these are not too much of a problem to deal with. I would recommend this laptop to gamers and designers as they would benifit greatly from the machine’s GPU and also to college students that like to play some games on the side.