I was one of the early adopters of the ASUS Z71V barebones laptop. I’d been building desktop computers for several years at that point and I thought the level of customization that I could achieve with a barebone laptop would be nice. But being on the bleeding edge does have its disadvantages. The ASUS Z71 series ran into some major battery-related problems. Specifically, the batteries were defective and could not hold a full charge. It happened in varying degrees of severity, but my battery wouldn’t charge past 45% of its full capacity in less than 4 months of use.
I was able to cross-ship my battery with a new one from ASUS. The service was good and shipping was very quick. A check showed that the new battery was working fine and I thought my troubles were over. Unfortunately, the replacement battery started showing symptoms of the problem again late last year and early into 2007. Initially, I was worried that ASUS would leave me in a lurch. After all, it was outside of the 1 year warranty. My other options were to spend $200 on a new battery or have a desk-bound laptop, not terribly useful since I already have a desktop.
So, I was quite relieved when ASUS decided to replace my battery (again). I made it clear that the problem was the result of a manufacturing defect and not normal wear and tear. Even outside the 1 year warranty, something with a widespread defect should be replaced. Once again, shipping was quick and I now have, once more, a laptop that gets 3:30 battery life and not the hour or so it could squeeze out with a shoddy battery.
The whole thing does tarnish the ASUS name somewhat, but then again, almost every laptop manufacturer has had one form or another of a battery problem in the past couple years.