Asus G73SW Sandy Bridge Gaming Notebook Review

Accessories & First Boot

Let's be real -- nobody uses a trackpad for gaming, and since the G73SW is very much a gaming notebook, you'll want to pack your own mouse for LAN parties. As Asus does with all G73 series notebooks, the G73SW comes with its own rodent, the R.O.G. laser gaming mouse.

We applaud Asus for not insulting G73 notebook buyers with a subpar mouse that's no better than what you'd find at Wally World. Instead, the R.O.G. mouse is a bona fide gaming rodent sporting a rubberized grip, a pair of thumb buttons, and a real-time DPI switch that's adjustable up to 3200 DPI.

If you choose to install the software, you'll gain access to a fair amount of customization, including up to five different profiles, various sensitivity adjustments, button configs, and X+Y axis controls.

In addition to the gaming mouse, Asus throws in rather swank backpack, documentation, LCD cleaning cloth, and of course the AC power adapter. Noticeably missing, however, is a recovery DVD or original Windows disk.

To an extent, Asus avoids the annoying habit of littering the desktop with performance robbing bloatware. It's not that there isn't any, but the few pieces of bloat that do end up on the G73SW are better hidden and don't load in the background. What you do get, however, are lots of Asus brand utilities, most of which you'll probably never end up using. One that you should consider using is the AI Recover Burner, which backs up your system to DVDs. Since a recovery DVD isn't included, you'll want to roll your own, and you'll need about 6 DVDs to get the job done.

Underscoring how important it is to avoid system bloat, we measured the G73SW's startup time at just 48 seconds, and that was after installing the mouse software, which loads at startup. Shutdown was also zippy, taking 21 seconds to turn completely off. The fast startup and shutdown times can be attributed to the combination of Windows 7, high end hardware, and Seagate's Momentus XT Solid State Hybrid drives, the latter of which Seagate claims offer up to 50 percent faster boot-ups.

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