The Joybook R55VV09 from BenQ is a nice business notebook and perfomed well in our basic desktop benchmarks. However it also offered some unexpectedly good results in other areas too, making it a solid choice for those after an all purpose unit.
- Windows Media Encoder 9.0 test results
- Soft speakers, limited screen movement and viewing angle
While this notebook hasn't excelled in anything particular, it shows enough aptitude in the key area's of business usage to do the job well.
Price$ 1,999.00 (AUD)
Built on an Intel T5500 Core 2 Duo 1.66GHz CPU, 1GB of RAM and a GeForce Go 7400 graphics card it's not a power-notebook, but still scored reasonably well in our tests. It's one of the first notebooks to get benchmarked using WorldBench 6, the latest edition of our benchmarking software. WorldBench 6 runs a batch of applications to test the performance capabilities of the system under Windows Vista, in this case Windows Vista Business edition. The BenQ scored 71 overall; a good result based on its specifications.
In the individual application tests it showed the most notable performance during the multitasking test and, oddly, it outperformed all notebooks we've tested to date, either with similar or better CPUs, in the Windows Media Encoder 9.0 test. Although this notebook is not designed for any heavy encoding, there's no harm in having the added performance.
We also used CDEX, a free encoding application, to test the ability of this notebook to encode WAV files to 192Kbps MP3 files. Using 53 minutes of music it took two minutes and 47 seconds, which is indicative of the processor and falls within two or so seconds of other systems with the same Intel T5500 1.66GHz CPU.
The BenQ Joybook R55VV09 has already proved it's not afraid to put a foot outside the box, so we put it to the test with 3DMark to see how well it held up in a gaming environment. We first tested with 3DMark 06, but the result of 775 clearly indicates this system is not up for any of the latest 3D gaming titles. However, the score of 8813 in 3DMark 2001 shows it will at least handle some older titles.
We looped a DVD while running the notebook off its battery to see how long it would run in this worst-case battery life scenario. We consider this a worst case as the DVD requires the use of both the optical drive and the speakers, while also using all the normal core components of the notebook. The BenQ Joybook R55VV09 was able to play the DVD for one hour and 30 minutes before the battery died, which is slightly shorter than the average feature film. The speakers were running at maximum volume, but still weren't very loud. This time isn't abnormal for similar notebooks, but could still be improved upon.
The 15.4in screen runs at a resolution of 1280 x 800 and is fairly bright with good contrast. However the viewing angle isn't anything special. Viewing the screen from anywhere other than straight and level produces a colour shift and it becomes more difficult to read. This isn't unusual for notebook screens, but is compounded by the limited movement of the LCD panel, due to the way in which the screen is mounted.
The R55VV09 offers up a 100GB SATA hard drive (5400rpm) along with a DVD re-writer and also has a 4-in-1 media card reader supporting MS, MS-Pro, SD and MMC cards. Four USB ports and a FireWire port are available, as well as a port for a port replicator. A VGA out and an S-Video port are also available, which makes it quite easy to output presentations onto any larger screens or projectors. For wired connectivity a 56k modem is available as well as a gigabit Ethernet port. Meanwhile WiFi 802.11 a/b/g provides the option for wireless networking, and Bluetooth 2.0+EDR is available too. The keyboard is evenly spaced and comfortable to use and the touchpad is responsive.
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