Review of the Asus VivoBook S

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ASUS VivoBook S from front
ASUS VivoBook S from front

As I mentioned previously, I have purchased the Asus VivoBook S510U to replace my ageing ASUS TP300LD.

After about a couple of weeks using the laptop, I believe I’ve already figured out the good and bad of the laptop, and here is me sharing these details with you, just in case you are looking to find a laptop yourself.

Before you go on to read my review, please note that I would tend to compare the ASUS VivoBook S510U with my older ASUS TP300LD, and MSI FX720 laptop.

THE ADVANTAGES OF THE ASUS VIVOBOOK S510U

Laptops nowadays are getting smaller, and this is what ASUS did with this massive 15.6-inch screen ASUS VivoBook S510U. While the laptop spots a massive 15.6-inch screen, the laptop itself is pretty thin and slim, sized almost as big, if not smaller and thinner than my older MSI 14-inch screen laptop.

15.6-inch screen ASUS VivoBook S510U vs 14-inch screen MSI FX720
Size comparison: 15.6-inch screen ASUS VivoBook S510U vs 14-inch screen MSI FX720

The size also translates to lighter weight, and this is very noticeable when I carry the VivoBook S510U in my backpack. At 1.7kg, there’s little that can be felt.

Physically also, the VivoBook S510U is quite a looker, looking almost like the MacBook, in Gold. I personally love the shinny top and simple top which makes the VivoBook rather elegant.

Heat dispersion for the laptop is also good, with the outlet for hot air from the mainboard directed away from the user, placed right under the laptop.

Hot air vent for the ASUS VivoBook S510U
Hot air vent for the ASUS VivoBook S510U

When it comes to internal hardware, the i7 processor on the VivoBook is of course so much better the i5 on either my MSI FX720 or ASUS TP300LD, but then, you must remember I hardly hit RM3K when I bought both older laptops, where as this ASUS VivoBook S510U cost RM4K. There’s cheaper options using the i5 processor, but what’s a change if it’s not an upgrade?

The upgraded 8GB RAM works wonders when multitasking, and the 128GB SSD speed is pretty noticeable. I upgraded to 8GB RAM as I was given a RM200 internal cash coupon, so I spent it immediately.

Also, the addition of a fingerprint scanner meant that unlocking the VivoBook S510 is pretty easy and speedy, literally with a tap of a finger.

ASUS VivoBook S Fingerprint Scanner
ASUS VivoBook S Fingerprint Scanner

Last but not least, ASUS has a service center in Kuching, and with a 24-month warranty, there’s little to complaint about.

PROBLEMS WITH THE ASUS VIVOBOOK S510U

Nothing is perfect, and the same goes to the ASUS VivoBook S510U which to me has quite a few drawbacks, despite the fact these drawbacks are rather small.

The first thing I noticed wasthe plastic body if the VivoBook S510u. Although as mentioned above, the cover is a nice metal finish, the same can’t be said for the body which is made out of plastic.

The plastic body meant that the place we usually rest our palms on when typing can get heated when used for a long period of time, hence making typing slightly uncomfortable despite the VivoBook being promoted as having IcyCool Technology. Maybe it meant the laptop processor would work and stay cool, I don’t know.

ASUS VivoBook S510U specifications
ASUS VivoBook S510U specifications

And then, theres the hissing noise coming from the fans which isn’t too loud, but very much noticeable. I didn’t have such noise with the ASUS TP300LD, so this was quite a surprise for me. Other reviews online also noted the noise.

The keyboard, despite being comfortable to use, does need a bit of getting used to as the final row of the keyboard houses shortcuts which aren’t typically available on normal laptop keyboards. This includes the ‘Power’ button which I tend to tap because I always mistaken it for the ‘Delete’ button. Lucky the laptop boots super fast, so I get my VivoBook back online in seconds.

ASUS VivoBook S510U has an extra row of keys
ASUS VivoBook S510U has an extra row of keys

This isn’t a major issue, but it would be nice if the screen was a touch screen. My older ASUS TP300LD was a touch screen and it made it easier to navigate when a mouse wasn’t available.

Last but not least, I’d personally prefer the ASUS VivoBook S510U in silver, but there was only one colour option available, so that sucked, especially since it cost RM4K.

REVIEW CONCLUSION OF THE VIVOBOOK S510U

The ASUS VivoBook S510U isn’t exactly something I wanted, but it is among the cheapest SSD enabled ultrabooks in the market now.

Granted, it would be so much nicer if it had more colour options and an aluminium body at the same price, but it still is quite a bargain when you do compare the VivoBook S510U to its nearest competitors like I did.

The ASUS logo
The ASUS logo

Nonetheless, the VivoBook S510U is a great buy for RM3,249 on Lazada (Yep, it’s cheaper on Lazada), especially if you can ignore the few minute issues I pointed out, and consider the fact it has a huge 15.6-inch screen, a 128GB SSD + 1TB hardisk, a powerful i7 processor and is really easy to carry around at only 1.7kg.

I’m happy with my buy for now.

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