ASUS UL50Vf Notebook Review – NVIDIA Optimus Takes the Stage

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ASUS UL50Vf and NVIDIA Optimus

Today, we are taking a look at one of the first notebooks to incorporate NVIDIA’s Optimus technology to manage seamless switching between the integrated Intel graphics and NVIDIA’s GeForce G210M discrete graphics. NVIDIA’s Optimus technology has made quite a splash in the news lately since it effectively switches the rendering graphics card without any user intervention.  Optimus adds the artificial intelligence to the notebook to only power the discrete graphics when the user needs it order to further conserve battery life.

The ASUS UL50Vf notebook is a refresh of the popular UL50Vt. Nearly the only difference between these two models is the adoption of NVIDIA’s Optimus Technology.  They both feature the same hardware, just the UL50Vt always has some power going to the NVIDIA GeForce G210M and the user has to press a button to decide when the NVIDIA graphics are used.

ASUS UL50Vf Notebook

The UL50Vf appears to meet the ASUS standard as it seems to be yet another quality notebook. While it is not yet available in the US market, we have been told it should be found on Newegg in two weeks for $799. Given the popularity of the UL50Vt and the rave over NVIDIA’s Optimus technology, I’m sure we will see the UL50Vf will be another hit in sales.

NVIDIA Optimus Highlights

Just to reiterate the features behind NVIDIA’s Optimus technology, we wanted to cover some of the key features. From NVIDIA’s Website:

  • Optimus technology is completely automatic, allowing you to experience longer battery life and amazing visuals without having to manually change settings.
  • Behind the scenes and with no interference to what you’re doing, Optimus seamlessly figures out how to best optimize your notebook computing experience.
  • NVIDIA graphics you’ve come to expect, with more than 10x better performance (G210M compared to Intel Integrated GM45) with NVIDIA CUDA technology, allowing you to enjoy your applications and games without interruption or worry.

To get an interesting perspective of how NVIDIA’s Optimus technology works here is one of NVIDIA’s marketing videos on YouTube explaining how the G210M is completely turned off when it is not in use.

ASUS is currently the only notebook partner using NVIDIA Optimus in a variety of product lines. Of the announced models, only the ASUS N61Jv and N71Jv are currently available through retail channels and each can be found for $899 and come with an Intel Core i3 or i5 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GT 325M graphics. The UL50Vf will enter the market for $799 and uses an Intel Core 2 Duo CULV SU7300 processor and NVIDIA GeForce G210M graphics. Various other features are slightly enhanced on the N series ASUS notebooks, so be sure to do your homework if you are contemplating which NVIDIA Optimus notebook to get.

For now, let’s see what the UL50Vf has in store.

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