Asus W90Vp 18.4" Gaming Notebook
Final Impressions and Conclusion
All in all, Asus' W90Vp is a unique, powerful notebook that serves a certain niche. With two 320GB hard drives, a Core 2 Quad Q9000 CPU, built upon a desktop X38 chipset with a Blu-ray optical drive to boot, you'd never know this thing was a laptop based on specifications alone. As the benchmarks have shown, this machine really knows how to scream through all but the most extreme of tasks. As a desktop replacement, it serves its positioning well. In most situations, it really can act as a direct desktop replacement, and by a small margin, it's more portable than your average tower -- imagine that.
The only thing that would make this notebook more attractive in terms of sheer performance would be an SSD in place of the HDD as the primary drive. Load times on intense gaming titles were a wee bit sluggish at times, but other than that, most everything else was satisfactorily snappy. We've already voiced our dissatisfaction with the keyboard, touch sensitive buttons and trackpad, that said, everything else in this area is average or better. We're particularly fond of the Blu-ray drive, HDMI output, 5.1-channel sound system which sounds remarkable by the way, save for the "subwoofer" that doesn't seem to do much -- and we really liked its absolutely beautiful LCD.
The W90Vp, in our opinion, has more pros than cons, but the cons are definitely ones that you need to take into consideration. We'd really recommend checking this out in person before buying if you're unsure of your readiness to handle such a massive machine. Also, if you're the type who tends to use the built-in trackpad a lot, we'd suggest possibly finding another machine, though a USB mouse will likely be available if you're the type to consider a notebook of this form-factor. If none of these caveats bother you, the W90Vp is certainly a contender. It's powerful, it's fully loaded and it's sure to stay on top of cutting edge titles for some time to come. The $2,499 (as tested) price is actually lower than many rivaling machines, and considering just how pricey BD optical drives are in retail form, its cost structure makes this rig look even more attractive.
Overall, we'd have to recommend the W90Vp if you're in the market for a beast of a desktop replacement. For everyone else, we'd recommend thinking twice before you buy in. There's no re-purposing this thing. It's a brawny gaming rig with practically no real portability factor, so be darn sure that's what you're after before taking the plunge.