Asus K52F-SX060D

Jayesh Shinde 2010-04-27
80 Very Good
Price: Rs 38,450

Full Review

The Asus K52F-SX060D is a 15-inch laptop from Asus, based on the new Intel Core i3 processor aimed at the budget conscious amongst us. Some of its prime highlights include a nice 15-inch screen, face recognition software, and a good feature set at an affordable price.

Design & Usability
The Asus K52F-SX060D has a glossy screen lid which looks pretty, but because of its dark color it attracts fingerprints--unlike our experience on the Dell Inspiron 14-1464, for instance. Prop open the screen to reveal the Asus K52F's nice brown textured palmrest, touchpad, and the area surrounding its keyboard. The laptop's build quality is in sync with similar 15-inch laptops from Acer and Dell -- the Aspire 5740 and Inspiron 15-1564. The Asus K52F weighs 2.6-kg, not too heavy and just about right for a 15-inch laptop.

The audio-visual experience on the Asus K52F-SX060D is definitely very good, as far as budget laptops go.

The K52F-SX060D has a 15.6-inch LED-backlit glossy screen capable of displaying 1366x768 pixel resolution with a 16:9 aspect ratio. The screen is nice and bright and has good horizontal viewing angles. Both reading text and watching movies went well on the Asus K52F-SX060D's 15-inch screen. The K52F-SX060D's keyboard and touchpad are good overall with minor gripes. The keyboard sports isolated, chiclet-styled keys (smaller than the keys on the Acer Aspire 5740) that are well laid-out and there's a dedicated number pad on the right as well. But typing on the Asus K52F was definitely third best, compared to the Aspire 5740 and Dell Inspiron 1564, with the keyboard flexing a bit. We really like the K52F's touchpad -- it's nice and big and has a textured finish and offers great response. But its single-strip mouse button takes time getting used to.

Features and Specs
There's an Intel Core i3-350M 2.27-GHz processor ticking at the heart of the Asus K52F-SX060D--better than the Core i3-330M on the Aspire 5740 and Inspiron 1564 laptops. Complementing the processor, the K52F-SX060D deploys 3GB of DDR3 RAM, 320GB hard drive, and onboard Intel GMA HD graphics -- pretty good set of basic building blocks. The laptop also integrates three USB ports, VGA-out, HDMI, multi-card reader, DVD writer, headphone and mic ports along its chassis' edge. The Asus K52F also deploys Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi 802.11n, and Bluetooth 2.1 connectivity standards. The laptop also comes with a 32-bit Windows 7 Home Premium.

The Asus K52F-SX060D also comes with a face recognition software for quick logon. This works pretty well and without any significant issues. Another feature, an auto fan-speed-adjustment for quiet computing, called 4 Power Gear, works out of the box. And since the laptop didn't really heat unnecessarily, we could only hope the feature worked as expected. The Asus K52F-SX060D comes with a standard six-cell battery, but it has a global 2-year warranty which is pretty cool to bank against.

The Asus K52F offers pretty good performance. Through our slew of synthetic benchmarks, the K52F-SX060D knotched up a WorldBench 6 score of 93 - that's higher than most mainstream laptops based on Intel Core 2 Duos. Similarly, a PC Mark 05, 3D Mark 06, and Cinebench score of 4970, 5923, and 1314, respectively, is all very good for a budget laptop, and among the recent best. You can multitask with all your regular programs (productivity suites, music players, Web browsers, etc.) smoothly without a hitch. For home and entertainment usage, the Asus K52F does pretty much all you ask of it.

The screen is great for watching movies, not so ideal for extended text reading. The audio-visual experience on the Asus K52F-SX060D is definitely very good, as far as budget laptops go. Its screen helps deliver crisp, vivid visuals and the onboard Altec Lansing speakers -- situated beneath the front edge -- are one of the better ones in our Top 5 Budget Laptops. Both 720p and 1080p HD video files played smoothly on the Asus K52F, and it was a nice experience. The fact that the Asus K52F-SX060D doesn't come with a dedicated graphics card should be enough to label it as a laptop that isn't really for gaming, and we stick by that label. Anything else and the Asus K52F should hold you in good stead.

The K52F-SX060D's six-cell battery lasted just under 1 hour 20 minutes in our benchmark test (at high performance preset, full-screen brightness). However, expect to get over 3 hours of battery time, on a conservative battery plan while browsing the Web over Wi-Fi -- that's in line with a 15-inch laptop's battery life.

The Asus K52F-SX060D is valued at Rs. 38,450. Compared to budget offerings from Acer and Dell, the Asus delivers better performance and has some useful extras (like face recognition), not to mention 2 years global warranty -- but understandably all this comes at a relatively higher price. If money isn't a concern, we would actually recommend the Asus K52F over the Dell Inspiron 15-1564. It's a very good value for money laptop. Recommended for home users who want a good value laptop.

Bottom Line

The 15-inch Asus K52F-SX060D is a very good value for money laptop with some unique features. It also offers one of the best performance we've seen on a budget laptop.

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