Benq’s new low power notebooks

Taiwan-headquartered BenQ has brought its latest thin-n-lite notebooks based on Intel’s ultra low voltage chips to India.

The S35 Joybook is a 13.3 inch WXGA (1366x768) wide screen ( 16: 9 aspect ratio) LED backlit machine based on the Intel Pentium Dual Core Su4100 ultra low voltage processor, with 320 GB Hard disk SATA drive, 2GB of DDR3 memory and a 1.3 Megapixel web cam.

The S43 has a larger14 inch screen and while the processor, memory and hard disk are the same, it has additionally an 8x DVD drive and a somewhat superior graphics chipset from ATI/Radeon.

In India both models  which are just 1.7 cms thick,  come with Windows 7 preloaded. The S35 claims 11 hr back up while the S 43 has 5 hours With these batteries the weight goes up to 1.8 and 2 kg respectively which we did not find to be exactly ‘light as air” as the company’s hype claimed. ( what’s the point of quoting weights without batteries? Does any one ever buy a portable PC without batteries?)

While input/output connectivity is fairly standard ( both machines have high definition HDMI output) BenQ’s value addition, seems to be its superior surround sound audio with matching mike and headphones. The ergonomics is worth mentioning: a full keyboard, nice hinge design and a ‘gapless’ touchpad.

At Rs 37199 for the S35 and Rs 40,399 for the S43, there does not seem to be much mileage in going for the cheaper model and losing out on the DVD drive, unless you have completely migrated to external flash storage and want to trim every gram of the weight. We also found it a bit odd that the cheaper machine had double the battery time.

BenQ is slowly but steadily establishing its brand name in India and these two notebooks will only consolidate its reputation.