ASUS U6S Ultraportable Notebook
Just like their popular motherboards, the ASUS U6 comes in a well protected, well packaged box with a striking design and built-in carrying handle. While ASUS as a notebook manufacturer may be new to many people, it isn't new to ASUS and they know how to put on quite the show when it comes to presentation and packaging. It's clear they have a pretty good idea of how this game is played.
Inside the box, you'll find your brand new notebook, AC power adapter, standard selection of driver and trailware CD/DVDs as well as the requisite reading materials; like the manual and quick-setup guide. You also get a length of modem cable, S-video adapter, a Velcro cable tie and a micro-fiber cleaning cloth to keep your notebook's screen and shiny exterior clear of fingerprints. This is where most notebook packages end. However, like other ASUS notebooks and reminiscent of their premium motherboards, the U6 comes with an impressive package that is over and above what most manufacturers include. In addition to the previously mentioned items, you also get an ASUS branded notebook bag and notebook sleeve of the appropriate size as well as a wireless optical mouse.
Instead of the standard neoprene notebook sleeve included with the W7 though, the U6 comes with an ASUS branded, suede notebook sleeve with leather accents. Although it isn't padded, the material is fairly thick and the sleeve is rigid enough to hold its own shape. Two relatively strong embedded magnets hold the flap closed. While the sleeve is of very high quality and looks great, we found that it is a snug fit on the U6. We were able to slip it inside but not without some tugging and pulling. Luckily there is plenty of room vertically and it was not necessary to remove the extended 6-cell battery. There are two elastic bands attached to the inside of the sleeve which are supposed to slip over each edge of the notebook to hold it in place. However, the sleeve fits so snuggly the bands are unnecessary which is lucky because it is nearly impossible to reach the bands and pull them over the corners when the laptop is inside.
The included wireless mouse is a rebranded Logitech V270. The V270 is a Bluetooth mouse, which compliments the ASUS U6 nicely since a Bluetooth 2.0 module is standard equipment. It has a classic ambidextrous form factor and it is powered by two AA batteries (included) with an estimated battery life of 3 months. The scroll-wheel doubles as a button but does not have side-scroll functionality. A low-power indicator LED is located on the rear of the mouse and a on/off switch can be found on the bottom. The V270 features a 1000 DPI optical sensor and a power-saver feature which automatically puts the mouse in a low-power suspend mode after several minutes of inactivity. The mouse "wakes up" and returns to full-power mode nearly instantly when activity is detected. The Logitech V270 has been in production for several years, is well reviewed and reportedly very reliable; overall a welcome addition to the package.
Rebranded Logitech V270 (Included)
Retail Logitech V270 (Silver version)
Overall, this is a very complete package. With your ASUS notebook purchase, you also get all of the key accessories you will need to take care of and live with your new ASUS notebook. The quality and completeness of the package reminds us of the premium packages included with Dell XPS machines, except nearly all ASUS notebooks have a similar package. Although the U6's suede notebook sleeve and Logitech Bluetooth mouse are decidedly premium, even for ASUS.
All ASUS notebooks purchased in the US and Canada are covered by their extensive ASUS 360 warranty package. Every ASUS notebook receives a two year global warranty which entitles you to free service at any ASUS service center, in person or via shipping. The battery, AC adapter and any ASUS branded accessory included with the notebook also receive one year of warranty coverage. The ASUS 360 package also includes a 30-day zero bright-dot guarantee which means if even a single bright-dot (stuck on pixel) is found within 30 days of purchase, ASUS will replace the entire screen free of charge. All warranty service includes free overnight express shipping, both ways. Additional details and instructions on how to make a RMA claim can be found on the ASUS 360 promotional page.
ASUS recently upgraded their ASUS 360 program on Sept. 10, 2007. Register selected ASUS notebooks (U6 series included) within 60 days of original purchase to receive one year of premium Accidental Damage Warranty (ADW) for free. This is an extremely comprehensive offer. If your registered ASUS notebook becomes damaged due to a power surge, fire, drop or spill, ASUS will take care of it. You can either register online or using the notebook warranty registration card included with all eligible ASUS notebooks.
There are some caveats to ADW coverage, however. It is not transferable. You will be required to pay for shipping to the repair facility although return shipping is free. ADW does not cover scratches and dents, incorrect or inadequate customer installation, it being lost or stolen, intentional damage, recovery or transfer of data stored on the notebook, or damages caused by acts of God or nature. ADW also doesn't apply to the battery or accessories.
Overall, we believe this is possibly the best notebook warranty coverage offered by any manufacturer in the industry. It is hard to argue with two years of standard warranty coverage complete with a year of accidental warranty coverage. Free shipping both ways and the 30-day zero bright-dot policy is just icing on the cake.
WARNING: We have learned that there is an exception to both ASUS 360 and ADW coverage. Notebooks purchased at Bestbuy, Bestbuy Canada and The Source (Canadian branch of Circuit City) are NOT eligible for ASUS 360 or ADW coverage. You'll be forced to rely on in-house coverage provided by the reseller (possibly at additional cost).