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Asus S5200N: Almost Too Pretty to Use

A Stylish Companion For Business Nomads

For many, a five to six pound notebook is can be described as portable. However, for frequent business travelers, such a weight leaves something to be desired. For the frequent travelers among us, every pound - not to mention every ounce - that must be schlepped around between airports, cars and hotels counts. Indeed, there is a huge difference between six pounds weighing down the carrying strap on your shoulder or four pounds, which are typical of ultra-portable notebooks.

At 1.4kg, the S5200N from Asus is even below the magical 3lb threshold, and that's including the 24Wh battery.

As usual with ultra portables, a certain lack of operational ease is par for the S5200N's course, too. As a "one-spindle" device, this mobile PC has just one hard disk, but no integrated optical drive. To compensate, Asus supplies an external DVD combination-drive that connects to one of the two USB 2.0 ports on the left of the device via a relatively short custom-built cable. The combination-drive is powered via a jack on the left of the case, meaning an additional power adapter is not required. A plus: the drive has a separate on/off switch and so only consumes power when the user turns it on.