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June 30, 2011

The ASUS VX7 Lamborghini: As fast as it looks

Last week I got my hands on a brand new ASUS VX7 Lamborghini gaming laptop.  It’s a beautiful PC, as I noted in my unboxing photo gallery blog, so I wanted to devote this piece to the PC’s performance, which looks to be seriously impressive. 


What’s inside

My VX7 is loaded with a second-generation Intel Core i7-2630 processor, 8GB of memory, a brand-new NVIDIA GTX 460M graphics card, and 1.5TB of storage spread across 2 drives.  It’s a beast of a PC and on paper, one of the most impressive I’ve seen to date, and is on par power-wise with offerings from Alienware, Maingear and Origin.  One like mine will run you about $2299.  That’s a lot of money for a PC, but like I always say, you get what you pay for.  In the case of the VX7, you’re getting great performance and a very unique look and feel, so I think the price is reasonable.

Using the PC

In many cases PCs trade off aesthetics for usability.  When I got the VX7 I feared that would be the case, but to my surprise ASUS did a very good job of making the PC as beautiful to use as it is to look at.  The leather palmrest feels great on your hands when typing or gaming, and the glass trackpad feels good on your finger, even when mousing for a long time.   Is it as good as the beautiful glass-coated trackpad on the Lenovo U260?  No, it’s not.  But it’s very usable and looks a lot better than the average matte-black polycarbonate trackpads on most PCs.  Typing is a breeze on the backlit keyboard, too, and keystrokes are crisp and responsive.  Gamers will tell you that having a good keyboard is critical; if the keys are too stiff, keystrokes are forced and unresponsive, and if they’re too soft, keystrokes are unintentionally repeated, resulting in wasted ammo and imprecise action.  This one is just right. 


Even more impressive than the PC’s ergonomics is the sound and video.  The full HD 1920×1080 display looks fantastic when gaming or browsing the web, and the speakers on this thing are loud enough to rattle your windows.  Or in my case, invoke the ire of your office mates.   Together they provide a truly immersive gaming experience.  Really good stuff.


As you’d expect from a PC with absolute top-of-the-line specs – and a $2000+ price tag – performance was incredible, especially in core fundamentals:

  • Startup (cold boot to desktop): 32 seconds
  • Shut down (No apps open, button press to power off): 14 seconds
  • Sleep (lid close to power off): 4 seconds
  • Wake (lid open to desktop): 1.5 seconds

Keep in mind that these numbers are with Windows 7 Ultimate installed on a standard 7200rpm spinning drive.  If this PC had an SSD, they’d be even more impressive. (Speaking of, be sure to watch the “Ben and Ryan Explain: HDDs vs. SSDs” video for more info on why SSDs are so dang fast).


With a Core i7 and 8GB of RAM under the hood multitasking was no problem; I was able to load every application in my standard test set – Zune, IE9, Metrotwit, Windows Live Messenger, Mesh and Mail, and all of Office 2010, without any problem whatsoever.   Gaming is where things really got interesting; I tried out both Call of Duty: Black Ops and Crysis 2 and they both ran flawlessly.  At 1920×1080 resolution.  And full frame rate.  With all of the variables maxed out.  It was really, really impressive to see this kind of performance out of a laptop.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for a power gaming PC with style to burn, the ASUS VX7 Lamborghini is for you.  Its smoking fast, drop-dead gorgeous, and for what you’re getting, carries a pretty reasonable price tag. 

Have a question about this or any other PC? Post a comment, hit me on Twitter, or Ask Ben Anything via email!