Heat and Noise
The K53E is cooled by a single fan that exhausts air out the left side of the notebook. In general usage such as surfing the Internet, the fan is for all intents and purposes inaudible. While running the processor at maximum capacity such as while encoding MP3s, the fan turns faster and is audible but not annoying; it mostly sounds like a rush of air. The notebook itself stays cool to the touch top and bottom and is only barely warmer around the fan area.
Battery life is one of the K53E's strengths. Its 6-cell 52Wh battery propelled it to an even five hours of life during our standard battery rundown test (Windows 7 Balanced power profile, 70% screen brightness, wireless active, and refreshing a web page every 60 seconds). 15.6-inch consumer notebooks with 6-cell batteries typically get around four hours of life. Granted, the K53E's battery has a slightly higher capacity than most. The second-generation Intel Core i5 processor is a factor in the better battery life as well; it has improved power efficiency over the last generation of Intel processors.
Battery life test results (higher scores mean better battery life):
The K53E manages to combine good performance and battery life into a well-made 15.6-inch chassis. Our main complaints center around the low screen resolution, loud touchpad buttons, and lack of ports (no USB 3.0 or eSATA). Otherwise there is a lot to like here: very good performance, a decent keyboard and speakers, cool and quiet operation, a solid chassis, five hours of battery life, and a two-year warranty standard. Overall, the ASUS K53E is a reasonable 15.6-inch multimedia notebook and gets our recommendation.
Software & Support
* Ratings averaged to produce final score
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