Local assembler Ultra has replaced its old range of Clevo-based notebooks for a new OEM supplier — ASUS. The new range certainly improves the look of the things (lets face it, some of the old ones were plain ugly), although they’re still not a patch on some of the stylish offering being produced by the likes of Sony and HP. Build quality seems good, although there was some variation in the quality of the keyboards between models — one was horribly springy, whereas others were rock solid. Still, in terms of specifications these notebooks are very competitive.
You also have a choice of graphics chipsets: either Intel 945 integrated graphics or ATI’s 256MB option. we tested the entire range using WorldBench 5 and found performance to be pretty much even across the board, which was only to be expected when so much of each notebook (CPU, RAM, hard drive) was identical. Scores spread from 81 to 86 which is good, but not great. More RAM and faster CPUs would of course help, and since Ultra can build to order it’s problem solved.
RRP incl GST: $2599 - $2799 for specified configurations