Features: Super-Multi DVD, SD card reader, HD Web Camera, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth v4.0, 10/100/1000 Base T Ethernet port, COMBO audio jack, VGA port/Mini D-sub 15-pin for external monitor, 1 x USB 3.0 port, 2 x USB 2.0 ports, 1 x HDMI port, built-in speakers and microphone
One thing that quickly stands out is how slick the design is. The brushed aluminum cover gives off a premium feel, as does the one-piece molding. Unfortunately, the cover is very prone to fingerprint smudges, which take some effort to remove. We were also impressed that ASUS managed to fit an optical drive in just a 21mm vertical footprint.
The Chiclet-style keyboard is pleasantly usable, although if you want more feedback to your keys, you may find it ideal. The large Touchpad measures 104 x 76 mm, and supports Smart Gesture input for up to four fingers at once. We found the gestures to work well in Windows 8.
The screen is glossy buy not overly so, and is complimented well by the matte bezel. The 15.6″ diagonal is only of 1366 x 768 pixels resolution, which may be low if you’re a display enthusiast and are used to seeing 1080p everywhere, but should be sufficient for the casual user.
Since this is a budget-range ultrabook, benchmark performance is understandably not the best around. Still, the low-voltage Intel Core i5 3317U dual-core processor can perform most tasks relatively easily, and while the 750GB hybrid SSD/HDD isn’t the same as having a full-fledged SSD, it does improve performance notably.
ASUS S56C 1070
ASUS S56C 1505
SiSoft Sandra 2013
ASUS S56C 1,890k
We even put the S56C through our web browser battery test, to get an idea for how it performs in a real world test. It lasted for 5 hours of non-stop browsing before running out of juice, which is a decent if unspectacular achievement.
Depending on system configuration and market availability, the S56C series is priced between $600-$700. Taking into account the solid build quality and adequate performance, the ASUS S56C is an enticing offering. True, it won’t be breaking any records when it comes to GPU-intensive tasks, but we got some good test results from the low-consumption processor in terms of battery life, which means you can take the S56C on the go without worrying about running out of juice.
Ultimately, the solid build quality and low pricetag of the S56C should entice many users to ASUS’ new S6 series ultrabook camp.