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67 of 70 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent bang per buck value laptop
Do take note of the CPU options though.
The Celeron N2815 which runs at 1.5GHz is quite different to the Core i3 3217U 1.8GHz, not just in terms of clock speed but performance.

The Core i3 being quite a bit faster than the Celeron in real world use (hence the price difference see benchmark below)
The core specification is fairly straightforward with...
Published 14 months ago by Mr Baz

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars NOT reliable
I have only had this for 2 months and have already had 3 problems with it. I would not recommend
Published 13 months ago by sylvia cox


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67 of 70 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent bang per buck value laptop, 29 April 2014
By 
Mr Baz - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
Do take note of the CPU options though.
The Celeron N2815 which runs at 1.5GHz is quite different to the Core i3 3217U 1.8GHz, not just in terms of clock speed but performance.

The Core i3 being quite a bit faster than the Celeron in real world use (hence the price difference see benchmark below)
The core specification is fairly straightforward with enough memory and hard drive space for most users.

A quick fire list of pros and cons

Pros:
+ Great value (esp the Celeron option)
+ 15.6" 1366x768 screen is quite good and contrasty easy to read and sharp (better than you expect for the price)
+ 4GB ram and 500GB hard drive is more than sufficient for most users needs even if you have quite a lot of media files around
+ One USB port is the faster USB 3.0
+ Built in SD Card Reader, as well as Wired Lan port and HDMI out
+ Webcam with Microphone built in (not the best webcam in low light but it's fine for this price with decent resolution)
+ Keyboard and touchpad are satisfactory, good response on the trackpad and the keys are of the enclosed type (harder for small children to rip them off!)
+ DVD/CD Burner 8x and 24x should satisfy any media playback/burning needs

Cons:
- Build is a bit cheap, clearly it has had some cost cutting in terms of quality of plastics (not unexpected) the low price does compensate for this though, it won't fall apart or anything like that, texturing looks ok, I've used worse.
- Could use a few more USB ports (only 2 but that might be enough)
- VGA port is mostly redundant these days (HDMI is used more often) Might be ok if you connect to a pc monitor
- Basic sound quality from the onboard speakers, ok for the intended market (use the headphones much better)
- No easy access to battery (it's inside the case)

Expect around 3.5 hours of battery life which is par for the course on budget laptops, you can extend things a bit by lowering the screen brightness (power management settings are easy to change for this)
Windows is updated to 8.1 which has a number of improvments including boot straight to the desktop (and at least a partial return of the start menu), I won't go in depth on this as it's down to taste. But it's a better experience than the 8.0 version.

Performance is quite decent for the asking price, even the Celeron version is capable enough for doing day to day tasks such as browsing and media playback. If you need the extra processor power you can go for the i3 processor choice, but even there don't expect desktop CPU performance, but it does have over twice the punch of the Celeron (which probably won't matter to most people)

Core i3 3217U scored 2326 in passmark
Celeron N2815 scored 958 in passmark

Passmark is a general CPU benchmark that tries to measure real world performance in a variety of tasks (3d/2d graphics, compression, encryption, text, memory and disk speed) it gives a "general" idea of the CPU and how it deals with tasks, higher scores = better performance
Compared to a desktop budget processor (Intel Celeron G1620 2.70GHz) this would score around 2600 in passmark (a little better than the i3 CPU) Consider the i3 option as comparable performance to a budget desktop offering. The i3 is quite satisfactory for doing desktop work and even some moderate photo editing and video encoding it's fairly good. That's the one to go for if you require more firepower

Wifi locked on well with good coverage no concerns or issues to report

Onboard graphics do take some memory (no matter 4GB is generous with plenty to spare) you can play some lighter less demanding games, or older titles, this isn't aimed at game players though. HD playback will work great with even HD videos playing smoothly with no judder or dropped frames (which is what matters most)

Some quick software suggestions...(you can remove the usual trialware stuff you always get on these devices)
-I use panda cloud anti virus free it's lightweight and doesn't consume many resources and has good detection rates
-Libreoffice is now the main choice for free office suite, you can download that and enjoy compatibility with MS Office
- VLC player is one of the better choices if you have a wide variety of video clips to play back

For the money, the Celeron version has a number of advantages over slightly cheaper Chromebooks. Much larger capacity on the hard drive will suit people who have a good collection of media audio and video files; and you are not reliant on an internet connection for day to day tasks (Chromebooks are fine somewhat limited)

For the asking price the Asus is a bit of a bargain really, you get a straight forward, but quite decent laptop at a very good price. It will be just fine for most people's day to day use.
Recommended purchase for those looking to replace an older/broken laptop with a cost effective newer one. A solid buy

Update 12/05/14
For buyers looking for the Celeron version there is a newer model out (Asus X551MA-SX030H) this is pretty much identical to this model bar a slightly faster CPU and bluetooth 4.0. So I'm recommending that one unless you want the i3 processor option.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'TREMENDOUS PRODUCT AT A BARGAIN PRICE', 5 Sept. 2014
By 
rbmusicman/and/movie-fan' (U.K) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
This is a compact and smart looking item.
Windows '8' has many features not afforded to the earlier Windows '7'
When buying new there are many updates that have to be downloaded initially.
(I've had to download 101 windows updates, most of which are essential)
(Also upgrade to Windows 8.1 which took around 3 hours to complete)
When fully charged you have between 3-4 hours battery time, which is pretty
good, more using the recommended power level.
The item is currently being offered by 'Amazon' for just £219.99 which is great
-value for money for an item of this quality.
(a suitable lap-top case is available for around a tenner currently)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for college work, 15 May 2014
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This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
For hours of typing and multi-tasking this little laptop is perfect for the job. Light weight, great keyboard and easy to operate!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cheap but perfectly formed., 4 May 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
Good laptop. Although a little fatter than today's more modern ones it does make space for a CD slot which a lot of more modern laptops lack. Windows 8 wasn't a bother for me as I have used it before but novices may find it a little difficult to get to grips with.
The level of sound that comes out of this laptop is really high although sometimes isn't of the highest of quality.
The screen for me is bright and clear but against my smartphones oled screen you can see slightly lower quality.
The speed of this laptop is something of a surprise considering its price but it does struggle a little if you have too many programme opened.
For the price it is a great all rounder that is quick and easy to set up. I was ready to surf the net via wifi within 15 minutes. I really don't have any major issues with it at all and am glad I chose this over a more expensive model.
In my opinion this is great for practically any use including playing games and typing up documents, like I do.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars priced to sell, 11 Sept. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
ideal laptop computer for office applications and internet browsing at a price of £220. has a CD/DVD drive for those with CD collections that need converting to itunes.
Power on battery lasts a few hours, but who I bought it for is not travelling with it so it's plugged in most of the time it is used.
Yes it's got windows 8 on it, which is a learning curve.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast and impressive - but GPU doesn't support Windows 7, 6 May 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
That's all really. It's a very capable laptop, but if you're annoyed by Windows 8, I'm afraid you're stuck with it. The GPU does not support Windows 7 - it will crash when you try to install it.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great value for money, 28 April 2014
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This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
Great bright screen, nice and light, very versatile and overall I am very happy with it.

I went for the cheaper Intel Celeron and got it directly from Amazon for £250 and I found it performs as good or better than a AMD-A8 processor I tried recently.

Overall I think it is a very good balance of lightness, performance, portability and build quality-especially for the price.

Decent sound quality from the built in speakers is a bonus compared to your typical laptop.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Buy!, 11 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
I love this! Fits my needs exactly, easy to use and very quick responses, even from sleep mode. Wakes up as quickly as a smart phone. My first time with windows 8 but navigated it in minutes, and there is an onboard manual in case of questions.
Prompt dispatch, great price, and helpful customer service staff. Definite five stars!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quality at a good price, 30 April 2014
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This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
Best price I could find for this spec. Solid construction and a decent enough battery. Good economy pc at a knock-down price.
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5.0 out of 5 stars really happy with this, 10 Sept. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: ASUS X551MA-SX018H 15.6-inch Laptop (Intel Celeron 1.5GHz Processor, 4GB DDR3, 500GB HDD, DVD-RW, Windows 8) (Personal Computers)
This is great, it's big, windows 8, bigger screen which doesn't damage the eye sight, light and not heavy and it doesn't heat up which is great. Im really happy that i bought this product- it arrived quick and the packaging wasn't damaged or anything, it's all great!! I would recommend it for anyone.
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