The ASUS U03Jc came in just a few days prior to Computex 2010 in Taiwan, an opportune time to get some real world experience with this Ultra Portable notebook. Overall, I was extremely impressed with how well this notebook handled the trip. I spent countless hours typing away on our 9 day, 20,000 mile trip. It easily handled editing photos and videos, listening to music, watching movies, Word, Excel, and watching Youtube clips.
Physically the notebook handled the trip without issue. Fingerprints on the screen and glossy sections wiped away easily with a microfiber cloth. Externally I could not find a scratch or fingerprint (unlike an IBM ThinkPad which shows even the most minor touch). As we were wandering around Taiwan we happened to find the ASUS U30Jc for sale in Taiwan at 35,000 NT ($1092.45 US) You might also notice that it has been upgraded with an i5-430M and a 500GB hard drive but only has 2GB of RAM.
I suppose the biggest change that I would recommend is swapping out the Hitachi 320GB hard drive for an SSD such as this Kingston 128GB SSD. The traditional hard drive is fine for most, but a power user will notice a big difference in system response and will have peace of mind knowing a physical drive crash won’t keep you from being productive. Battery life differences with the SSD were a wash so it really comes down to the added cost of an SSD.
What we have here is a notebook that comes in at $961 (we’ve seen it in the low $800’s), 8 hour battery life while web surfing and working in documents, the power to easily to edit videos and photos, the flexibility to game in a pinch thanks to the NVIDIA 310M and NVIDIA Optimus, 4+ hours of DVD playback with the capability of hardware assisted Blu-ray playback, all in a thin and light package. With all of that in mind, I would have no problem recommending the ASUS U30Jc to anyone in the market for a new laptop under $1000.
Legit Bottom Line: The ASUS U30Jc is an excellent Ultraportable Notebook that offers great performance and stellar battery life. It is easily capable of handling anything you can throw at it and at less than $1000 won’t break the bank.