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back to article Asus NX90Jq 18.4in Core i7 laptop

I first encountered Bang & Olufsen in my teens. A friend’s father had a Beocenter music system, which we fledgling audiophiles were, of course, both in awe of and barred from touching. The sleek lines, matt black controls and aluminium panels of that and other early B&O systems instantly sprang to mind when glancing upon the …

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Centre of home entertainment system

I really can't see this as the centre of a home entertainment system with such a small screen (OK it's big for a laptop but small for an HDTV).

It sounds like a hell of a lot of money to pay for a machine with no clear purpose, it's not really portable but you could buy a hell of a desktop system for the same price which would blow the socks off it. It has good sound, but I bet I could buy a better sound system for that amount of money.

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Less a laptop

and more a functional piece of sculpture.

It looks stunning! Shame I can't afford one...

One question though - I may have missed it, but what is the sound like through earphones?

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Which is what B&O are all about

After all would you spend so much on a stereo system if it was branded Philips ? which is where most of their internal audio/visual components actually come from.

B&O is all about sleek minimal design, looking stunning, and being exclusive

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Stop

@ Dapprman

Congratulations - you've managed to both repeat and remember something that Jeremy Clarkson said. Not a lot of his fans can lay claim to that.

If you honestly believe that B&O kit sounds anything like Philips stuff you are either deaf, or have never bothered to actually try B&O kit and are simply regurgitating something you heard down the pub.

Philips is indeed one of B&O's suppliers, along with quite a few others. It is what they do with these components that counts.

B&O may be overpriced compared to other true hifi companies - but people will clearly pay a bit extra for something that 'looks stunning'.

And regardless of how much it costs or how it looks, its sound is definitely hifi, in the true sense of the word.

"After all would you spend so much on a Mclaren F1 if it was branded BMW ? which is where most of their internal engine components actually come from. "

Surely you don't mean those bits that Mclaren added to BMW's internals actually made a difference?

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WTF?

Benchmarks

I know benchmarking can be a slippery bugger to understand, but can someone explain how the Asus outscored the Macbook in every category (including "memories") but lagged behind on the "overall" rating?

Shurley shome mishtake, no?

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Anonymous Coward

Ugly

Fair enough, this not really a laptop in the convention sense, but it's still ugly. B&O styling? Just looks like they fitted a too-big screen too it, and those sticky-outy speakers contrast completely with the style of the keyboard and base unit.

Each to their own though. If you like it, knock yourself out and go for it.

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Flame

Meh

Media consumption rather than documents.

only 1080 line.

My nearly 9 year old laptop has more useful 15.4" 1600x1200 screen.

Does NO-ONE make a Desk-top PC replacement any more?

If I want to watch films or TVs, then I'll use an HDTV.

What about a laptop with 1600 x 1200 screen that rotates to portrait mode.

Or 1920 x 1440 screen that doesn't rotate. Space to have 1920 x1080 HDTV and epg/subtitles/ widgets under it.

16:9 is OK for a TV. It's a stupid aspect ratio for a laptop.

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not for the likes of us...

This is aimed at people in their 50's with several houses / offices/ mistresses / travel a lot, but only do so in by car / taxi/ plane. They wouldn't care about the money, though in any case it's being offset against company tax as a necessary business expnese. Given it only ever needs to be portable for about 30 paces they don't care about weight or battery life as it'll always have a charger. Security and convenience mean they only want one machine. It's a brand their friends will be impressed by and it doesn't look tacky amongst their exquisitely decorated homes.

They won't make that many of them but those that do buy them will thoroughly enjoy their classical CD's on them while they're answering emails at 11 at night. Asus don't care about that - it's a clever way to get their name on the boss's desk so that when a requisition for a lot more Asus machines falls across his desk he's more likely to agree to it - considering Asus to be well made machines that don't give trouble.

When you consider who it's aimed at, it's a pretty well together put together bit of kit and only the taxman ever needs to worry about the price.

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Anonymous Coward

I can't believe

That for £2500 they still don't give you a proper set of disc's and rely on you making your own recovery set!

It's about time there were regulations against not providing proper install media for software you are "selling" to the customer with a pc. At the very least a proper windows disc should be provided to allow a clean install.

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Gates Horns

but surely...

the aim of Microsoft is to sell you nothing for the highest price possible?

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FAIL

eh?

What does this have to do with microsoft?

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I'd have one.

This is certainly a niche product. I consider myself middle aged but I still game a lot. My circle of friends has been having LAN Parties for over 15 years. This suits me down to the ground, Like most modern homes, space it at premium. This will look good in any room, can seriously double as a hi-fi without extra speakers etc. Play FPS, MMORPG or anything else I can throw at it on a reasonable size monitor and when I pick it up for LAN events I don't have all the clutter and setup time I have never really gotten used to. Price? Well you get what you pay for, even after 10 years when it won't play any hyper-emersive 3D life sim games we'll be used to, it will still play music for dinner parties. With looks and sound this good it will always have a use.

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Brilliant.

I. Want. One.

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Ugly stick

Like most B&O stuff, it's a case of form over function without at least Apple-level thought to the "form" bit. Anyone who really cares about their audio isn't going to waste their time/money on this.

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FAIL

Triumph of style over substance

But that's what you'd expect with B&O being involved.

I've used various different B&O hifi products in the past, and have to say that if you close your eyes they're no better than middle of the road kit from any big name like Pioneer or Kenwood.

And it's too small (screenwise) to be a desktop, but too big to be a laptop. What's it good for?

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Excellent, like it, two five zero zero

Big screen, useful for doing me music stuff... no firewire... hmm... less of a problem than it used to be. Plenty of expansion - Audition/Fruity Loops and chums will look fabulous of that big wide screen. Given the size I won't loose it in a hurry either.

2 and a half thousand quid...

SSLSLALPPPLTLTPPLTPLLTTTLLFFFFFFFFFFFF

Asus... you owe me one cup of coffee.

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WTF?

B&O is to HiFi...

...as Amstrad is to server farms.

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Pint

nx90 price

saw this in Micro Anvika at Harrods. It looks even better in the flesh and they have a very aggressive sale price...if the mssus wasn't with me I might have been tempted!

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Anonymous Coward

My eyes! My lovely eyes!

That thing is hideous.

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Welcome

Nice piece of gear

Unfortunately a bit too expensive for my taste.

Pretty much doubt the weight will be an issue for potential buyers, why care if the butler moans?

Main thing the Power Point presentation impresses in video and audio clarity i would guess.

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Silver badge

Decent speakers

Nice to see a laptop manufacture thinking about putting decent speakers in the box. I replaced my circa 2002 Dell with a nice new EliteBook last year and the sound quality really sucks. The Dell wasn't exactly HiFi but at least it was listenable too.

If you spend a lot of time stuck in hotel rooms this is a consideration.

Why the lo-res screen? As the Mage points out, 1920x1200 displays were where decent laptop screens were in 9 years ago, thats 150DPI. This sees a drop in real pixels and a resolution dropping to only 120DPI. Where's the progress?

If they want to charge this sort of money, they're going to have to do better.

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Silver badge

Decent laptop speakers.

I have a battered old HP Pavilion zv5000 that I'm typing on here. It's about six years old, has an AMD64 single-core processor (not even the Turion laptop variant), a whopping 1GB RAM and a 50GB HDD. It also has a big 1280x800 widescreen display and...

Harmon/Kardon speakers. Yep. JBL in a laptop. Plenty loud and plenty nice sounding too, and no need to spend £2,500. Not sure of the exact RMS wattage, but it's more than enough to be loud in a living room and kicks the arse of every laptop-sized computing device I've ever used, in the sound department. It may be an old dog as far as number crunching goes, but it'll pump out the tunes better than an iThingy ever could.

Would look quite sweet too, if it wasn't for the duct tape holding the lid on.

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Black Helicopters

Benchmarks - Not only but also...

The Acer Aspire comfortably beats the Apple in 4 out of 5 tests, coming 2nd to the Apple only in the "Productivity" test, yet that too is shown as being significantly outperformed by the Apple overall.

Definitely something fishy about those benchmark results, or at least in the calculation deriving the "Overall" result from the individual component tests.

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Unhappy

oops

First off, from the article: "only the 17in MacBook Pro had a better overall score" It beat it in some benchmarks, but not enough. Also, MAJOR note, CPU benchmark was not even included!!!!!! its a 1.7GHz processor standing against 2.33s from most and 2.66 from Apple.

it beats the stock 17" i7 MBP. (which is only 2089 in the UK, not 2500...)

1.7GHz vs Apple 2.66 (and 2.8 on offer for $200 more)

6GB vs 4GB (same speed)

1080v vs 1200v resolution ouch, bigger screen and fewer pixels = 25% lower PPI and i can already see the pixels on a MBP.

GT335 vs GT330, not a huge difference directly, but driving fewer pixels it had a bigger advantage

The only real things the Asus trounced apple in were its disk configuration (2X640GB in RAID, but the mac was not tested with an SSD for comparrison on disk performance, and could have been for less than $100 more). The Mac trounced it in screen resolution, battery life, and weight. Note: CPU synthetics were completely omitted from this comparison... probably because its near 1GHz slower! They also noted the Asus had a horrible trackpad.

It does include USB3, but no person has yet given me a use case for a device compatible with USB that can use speeds above 3GHz. not a single device. USB doesn't support RAID, even SSDs don't read that fast, and aidio and video equipment requires FW for latency and CPU reasons (speed is not the issue there, stability and response time is). I see no reason at all for USB3 on a laptop, and little for it on desktops. No one has even presented a use case, let alone tried to argue it.

Other noted misses:

- 802.11n, but no 5GHz support, and N isn't even included in the base 2500 model...

- blue-tooth is optional

- no fiber audio port

- ASUS support...

- for a $2500 unit, it doesn't even compare to gaming laptops using desktop cards, not even close.

This machine is about form over function, and that function falls short of lower priced better configured, lighter, and longer life, mass market units with better support and local repair options. This is a Do Not Buy in my book.

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FAIL

here's your fish

CPU benchmark was not included.

of the 4 benchmarks it won in:

- HDD: 2x640/5400 in RAID vs 1x500/5400. The Mac can (for still a lower price) have included an SSD and trounced it

- GPU, only a 5% win, less than 1-2FPS in most games, and FAR lower than a gaming notebook could do

- memory, 4GB vs 6GB in the same speed class. Mac could have 8GB (for still less money) and would have won.

- productivity/movies: HDD performance limited applications. Put in SSD and and competitor beats it.

3 of 4 benchmarks, one a near tie and the other 3 the easiest and cheapest thing to upgrade.

Excluded was a CPU benchmark... the only one that really matters in a desktop replacement.

The $2000 UK priced (MSRP) i5 17" MBP has a faster benchmarking CPU, a 1200v line screen, wireless N and blue-tooth (options in excess of the $2500 configured model on the ASUS), longer life, half the weight, and more. Configured with 8GB and an SSD, it beats this acer in every single benchmark and still costs less. The competition can equally be configured with the same of better specs than the Acer for less money too. The Acer only has design, speakers, and inches in its favor. Many gaming notebooks under $2K would slaughter it.

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Magic Trackpad

I was gonna say this to replace the lack of a proper trackpad until you said 'blue-tooth is optional'.

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Silver badge
Coat

It makes sense for a niche..

At the size, its a transportable not an ultra light PC laptop.

The size of the screen and the CPU horsepower make it a desktop replacement and when you consider that there are a series of applications where this could make sense...

You're in advertising and or sales and you need to do demos at a customer site.

You're in to photography (photojournalism) and you can't wait till you get home before you work on your prints.

Oh and yeah. You're rich and you want it as a status symbol, or you'd rather have a luggable/transportable on your desktop instead of a mini tower sitting next to your desk.

And for those wankers who want a status symbol, you can have it on your office desk and when you walk in to a meeting, you have the largest most stylish laptop...

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FAIL

double check the benchmarks....

the CPU is only 1.7GHz in this thing, every system compared has a 2.33 or better, and CPU BENCHMARKS WERE NOT PROVIDED NOT PROVIDED, and still the $400 cheaper i5 MBP, or $100 cheaper i7 2.66 (with better screen at 1200v lines, better battery, 802.11n wireless, bluetooth, better trackpad, and much more) has a significantly higher benchmark in performance. The Toshiba beat the MBP on productivity and video because it was equipped with 2X640GB HDDs. Change the Mac's 5400rpm drive for an SDD (in the i5 still cheaper than the ASUS), and it would have won every benchmark on the list aside from GPU (and it only lost GPU by 5%, less than 1-2FPS).

This is about form over function. it is NOT a 2500 gaming notebook (those would destroy this thing in both GPU and CPU performance) it is an overprices everyday desktop hooked to an 18" low gresolution screen.

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Anonymous Coward

Anyone else misread the title ...

... and go to the article to found what the B&Q styling looked like!

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E 2

B&O Design

B&O generally makes very good and very good looking stuff, but the big black wings hanging off the monitor in this case are a bad idea. Get rid of them and this thing would get a "10" from me.

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