The U30S is Asus’ new 2011 lineup that comes with Sandy Bridge CPU and Fermi 2 graphics. This 13.3 incher packs a pretty nice punch thanks to the Core i5 CPU running at 2.3GHz (2.9GHz in turbo) and Nvidia Geforce GT 520M graphics.
Although the GT 520M is the slowest offering from the GT 5xxM series, we still managed to play Dirt 2 at 1366x768. We scored higher than 40fps at with less demanding graphics settings. Of course, don’t expect wonders with the GT 520M because it will not be enough for more demanding games at 1366x768, especially if you’re reluctant to turn special effects off.
Asus U30S isn’t overly loud in 3D but the fan can be heard constantly in 2D. The battery will last for about 6 hours, or 4.5 hours of viewing HD video. The laptop comes with DVD-RW optical drive, which is not common with 13 inchers.
We were disappointed to see that U30S has no USB 3.0 connectors. For the €900 configuration we tested, USB 3.0 is certainly a feature users would like to see. On the other hand, if you’re not too keen on USB 3.0, then Asus U30S is a pretty powerful little laptop and definitely one of the better 13.3 inchers we’ve seen.