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Pros: On paper it looks good -- plenty of memory, spacious SSD drive, large auxiliary hard drive, good graphics card, nice display, and it does start up quickly.
Cons: When you spend this much money on a laptop, you shouldn't get something loaded with junk software (ASUS games, McAfee, non-functioning version of MS Office), you should get a manual that describes the product in some detail, and it should work as advertised. I am still trying to figure out how to get into BIOS, and hitting the F2 key as described in the manual simply does not work. Neither do any of the other usual keys. Is there a specific nanosecond during POST in which the F2 key has to be hit? Could that be what I'm missing? Of course, with all the disclaimers that have been written in to the manual, such as stating that specifications are subject to change without notice, there's no telling what ASUS actually sold me.
Never having used Windows 8 to any great extent, I was cautious but optimistic. Now, having used it for a few days, it's a disaster. There are some improvements Microsoft has made -- I like the refinements that have been made to Task Manager, for example -- but on balance, very few of the changes that have been made from Windows 7 to Windows 8 are positive or make things faster or easier to do. Mostly, it seems that Microsoft has sacrificed ease of use with a mouse so that the same operating system will work on phones and tablets.
Other Thoughts: Most users are probably going to be happier with something smaller and lighter than this, unless you don't plan on carrying it around frequently. With its power supply, this thing is quite heavy and bulky.
So if you want a laptop that's basically a desktop, you don't mind paying extra for an operating system that's unnecessarily hard to use, and you're willing to roll the dice with what ASUS actually gives you -- by all means, this is the laptop for you.
Pros: For the drives that work initially, all is good. The specs are excellent, there's low noise, low heat, and they're very fast. But wait! There's more...
Cons: Several months ago I ordered three of these, and all of them worked properly and no errors were detected on any of the disks.
This time, I ordered five of them. Two are good, two had unrecoverable errors and would not pass the Data Lifeguard (Western Digital diagnostic software) extended test, and one was DOA. In all my years building and maintaining computer systems, this is the worst batch of drives I've gotten. Before this experience, I was extremely skeptical of claims of DOA drives since it had never happened to me, although I have had some drives fail in service and begin showing CRC32 errors. But I took every possible precaution with handling and installing the drives, and I still had these problems. I have no idea if this is a shipping and handling problem by UPS or another party or a quality control problem with Western Digital. They claim they test their drives before they leave the factory, but I have to wonder if that's true.
In short, if you do go ahead and buy these drives, do yourself a favor and download the Data Lifeguard Diagnostic software from Western Digital and run an extended test on each drive you buy. Don't just hope or assume your hard drive is OK if it passes a quick format. Word of warning, though: Data Lifeguard seems to be a bit buggy and does not always detect the drive right away. And I have not been able to get it to detect a hard drive connected via a USB to SATA adapter, which is frustrating.
Rating these one star for unexpectedly wasting a great deal of my time.
Other Thoughts: I am a long time Western Digital customer and have vastly preferred their drives to others. Seriously rethinking that now.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: One of the enclosures I ordered works great and recognizes drives up to 3 TB.
Cons: One enclosure recognizes the same 3 TB drives as only ~714 GB. (This is in Windows 7, trying to use the drive as a GPT drive -- this is not a WinXP problem.)
Returning this one for an RMA today.