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Asus W2Vc 17in widescreen notebook

A stylish aluminium clad 17in notebook from Asus...

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Taking a look around the edges of the machine starting on the left-hand side we have a single USB 2.0 port towards the front of the chassis. Just behind that is the optical drive and next to that is a small flap that hides the Gigabit Ethernet port, the 56Kbps modem port, an S-Video out and finally a TV antenna connector, which hooks up to a dongle for analogue or DVB-T – Freeview in the UK – digital television . However, the reception was fairly lousy with the included antenna, so you would have to be quite close to a TV transmitter to use it on the move.

The rear of the W2Vc is home to the battery and there are no ports located here. On the right-hand side, starting at the back end this time, we have a D-sub connector; another USB 2.0 port; an IrDA window; a three-in-one memory card slot which accepts MMC, SD and MemoryStick; a PC Card slot; a four-pin Firewire port; and finally two more USB 2.0 ports. The PC Card slot is also the home to a small remote control that is used in conjunction with the TV tuner.

Finally, around the front, are four 3.5mm jacks, although only three of them are for audio. The left-most jack is for AV input, and Asus supplies a suitable dongle which adds a composite video input as well as a set of RCA connectors for stereo audio input. The first of the three audio jacks triples up as headphone socket, front speaker connection and optical S/PDIF out. The next one doubles up as microphone input as well as centre and bass output. The third and final 3.5mm jack works either as a line in or as the rear surround output. There’s also an infrared receiver here for the remote controllers as well as several blue status lights.

The onboard Realtek HD audio controller supports 7.1-channel sound, although Asus has limited it to 5.1-channel sound due to the three audio outputs. There are several speakers built in to the W2Vc, although they didn’t seem to produce any sound in a 5.1-channel setup on the review sample.

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