Asus UL80Vt Thin-And-Light Notebook Review

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Battery Performance

Asus rarely publishes actual battery life expectations for its machines. If you've paid attention to some of our previous reviews, you'll notice that Asus typically reports battery life when a machine is expected to perform really well in that department. A select few of the company's Eee PC netbooks have official battery life figures posted, and naturally, all of them are very high. It seems Asus is always eager to share lofty figures, but on machines with paltry battery life (such as the G51J-A1 that we recently reviewed), it won't even tell consumers a range to expect. Due to the CULV chip, integrated GPU option and massive 8-cell battery, Asus is happy to report that this machine could get up to 11.5 hours on a single charge. Of course, Asus' own tests and our tests often result in very different figures, and yet again that's exactly what happened.

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Per usual, we utilized BatteryEater Pro in order to best represent the demands put on a machine during heavy use. This program runs a graphical sequence as it measures the amount of life that drains away, and it keeps the machine taxed during that process. This is a much better indication of worst-case battery life than an idle test, which is generally what is presented by most PC makers who claim wild battery life figures for their machines.

You'll notice two entries in our chart below for the UL80Vt; one is with the 512MB NVIDIA GeForce G210M GPU and Turbo33 (overclocked to 1.73GHz) enabled during the testing, while the other is with only the integrated GMA 4500MHD graphics enabled and Turbo33 disabled. Naturally, the integrated GPU sucks down less power than the discrete NVIDIA GPU (not to mention the savings from a lower clocked CPU), so that explains the delta between the two. We had Wi-Fi on and screen brightness at 90% during the entire test.

The battery life figures listed here are pretty great. We achieved nearly 3 full hours of usage (before Windows 7 forced itself into hibernation, just so we're clear) with the discrete GPU enabled. That's pretty impressive, in our eyes. That means that you could use your UL80Vt as a gaming rig or to watch multimedia for nearly 3 hours without needing a recharge. With the integrated GPU enabled, we saw the figure shoot up to 4 hours and 2 minutes, and remember, this is with Wi-Fi on and the screen on for the entire test. In other words, you could count on four solid hours of life even if you were working for all four of those hours without stopping. Needless to say, you could easily stretch that figure to 5 or even 6 hours by taking a few breaks, nixing Wi-Fi, turning the screen brightness down, disabling the optical drive, etc. But at the end of the day, we see no reasonable way to get 10, 11 or 12 hours from this as Asus claims. You'd have to basically force it to stay awake, yet not use the machine at all, to get that kind of result.

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