Temperature and Noise
On AC power when idling at 800MHz, the fans are inaudible from your normal sitting position. If you put your ear to the back you can hear a faint whoosing sound. Temperatures under these conditions usually hover in the mid 40 degree Celsius range (45-46C). Under full load at 2.13GHz, temps max out at 63C although the fans do kick in at that point. You can definitely hear the fans at full load although they’re not high pitched or whiny. It’s a low-frequency motor-like noise.
On battery power with the CPU forced to 800MHz, CPU temperatures are 43C idle and range up to 52C under load. Only the chipset/video fan is spinning no matter if it’s idle or under load. In both cases, it’s inaudible from the normal usage position.
The Seagate harddrive maintains a temperature between 37C and 40C depending on usage.
The ASUS Z71V comes with a 8-cell battery. When set to max battery setting with screen brightness around the middle, getting around 4 hours of battery life is not a problem (undervolted). This is all the processing power I need when listening to music, writing, or surfing the internet so I find it very adequate. I’ll play some DVDs and run Battery Eater later on when I have more time.
UPDATE [Sept. 18, 2005]: Unfortunately, it would seem as though I’ve also succumbed to the defective battery problem. Currently I cannot charge my battery over approximately 45% no matter how long I leave it plugged in. The charging LED is constantly on and CHC shows I am in fact still charging. Just at .2W though. I’ve been in contact with ASUS and I’ll be sending my battery in for a replacement shortly. It’s kind of a pain however as I’m using this at university and it’s essentially stuck in my dorm for now.
UPDATE [Jan. 6, 2006]: I received my replacement battery soon after that last update after a very quick turnaround from ASUS (I’m talking I faxed the cross-ship forms on a Saturday and I had the battery by the next Wednesday from California, US to Ontario, Canada). I’ve been using that battery ever since and it hasn’t developed any more problems so I think I can say I have a good battery.
The Z71V came with a few programs on CDs. Included are ASUSDVD, Medi@Show, PowerDirector, Nero, and a Z71 driver and utility disc. Power4 Gear is an ASUS utility that controls power settings and a bunch of other functions of the laptop. I tend to like to keep my OS installs as clean as possible, but the only way I found to use many of the function keys, you had to install this program. I wonder how that’ll pan out when I get Linux setup on this laptop.
UPDATE [Sept. 18, 2005]: Since this review, I’ve discovered that the Power4Gear is actually not needed for the function keys. Instead the power control driver is all that is actually needed for the function keys to work. However I have not yet been able to find out how (or if it’s even possible) to remap the extra buttons to do what I’d like them to do.
The function keys do no work (aside from the brightness adjustment) on linux out of the box. I’ve read a few articles on how to maybe get the other function keys to work but I’ve not yet tried them and I cannot say if they’ll work or not.
UPDATE [Jan. 6, 2006]: I’ve found a replacement HControl that will allow you to control media players such as Winamp and customize some of the quick launch buttons.