Package and Accessories
The box of the ASUS Z83Db notebook looks unassuming, quite low-end. It is not prettily designed and is rather small, too. There’s a blue band with the name of ASUS on the box and that’s about all. Not much to impress the potential customer with.
The exterior is somewhat misguiding, though. The contents of the box are not scanty at all. The manufacturer didn’t play a miser and included the following, besides the notebook proper: a 4800mAh battery, a power adapter, a phone cable (RJ-45), Quick Installation Guide, documentation (warranty, user manual, list of service centers around the world), a small USB mouse with an ASUS logo in the middle, a bag to carry the notebook around (few manufacturers ever include bags or pouches with their notebooks, by the way), an NTSC/PAL adapter, an antenna for digital TV and FM radio, an adapter for a coaxial connector, a remote control with two batteries, and a set of discs.
The software pack includes:
- Two system recovery discs
- Driver & Utility version 1.0 (Z83 No.1313)
- Nero v.188.8.131.52
- Medi@Show SE 2.0
- PowerDirector DE v.3.0.1208
- ASUS DVD v.6.0
- ASUS Mobile Theater v.3.1
Let me slow down a little and dwell upon the last disc. Like every other multimedia notebook from ASUS, this one comes with ASUS’ exclusive Mobile Theater software (it is an earlier version than the one we described in our ASUS W2J review).
This utility provides an easy-to-use shell to access the notebook’s various multimedia capabilities, so you don’t have to use different programs for each function.
ASUS Mobile Theater 3.1 offers you the following features.
- The Photo submenu helps you manage your photographs.
- The Music submenu is all about listening to music, of course.
- The Burn submenu is for burning optical discs.
- The TV submenu is perhaps the most important feature offered by ASUS Mobile Theater since all the rest of them have a large number of replacements, i.e. other programs that serve the same purpose. The interface doesn’t differ much from version 4 and is convenient, practical and easy-to-use. Note also that the letter “b” in the name of the notebook stands for an analog TV-tuner. The tuner works fine. It found what TV channels were available in our area and produced a good-looking picture.
- The Game submenu offers two games for beginners. The purpose of this function is rather obscure, but the manufacturer thought it necessary to implement it anyway.
- The Video submenu allows playing video files and doing various manipulations over them.
- The DVD/VCD menu is for watching DVD and VideoCD discs and to control playback settings.
- The Digital Video submenu is meant specially for connecting digital cameras.
- ASUS is among the few manufacturers that include this option into their multimedia solutions. The Radio submenu allows to tune to radio channels, so you won’t get bored in case you’ve got no music files on your discs or hard drive. You can also save radio recordings to the computer, just like you do with video clips.
- The last submenu is called Settings and should be used to configure the different operation modes.
Coupled with a widescreen 17.1” matrix and a remote control, this makes the ASUS Z83Db an advanced multimedia tool that is ready to entertain you with video and audio as long as you want to.