Ultrabooks & Mini laptops

Asus EeeBook X205TA / X205 review

Hello everyone, Mike right here and in this video we’re going to talk concerning the Asus EeeBook X205TA / X205, which is a model new compact laptop computer selling for less than $199 (truly, it’s even cheaper now than initially introduced).

There are a couple of different notebooks that go for across the similar sum of money today, just like the 11 inch Acer Chromebooks. However this one comes with Home windows eight.1 and that permits it to run a lot of the software program you’re already conversant in from your other computer systems.

Nicely, no less than to some extent, because the X205 just isn’t a power-horse, not by far. However we’ll get to that in a couple of second.

First though, take a look at the specs sheet, so that you’ll know what to expect from this laptop, and in addition the video review, in the event you don’t really feel like reading the block of text (nevertheless, some details aren’t included within the video).

The Asus EeeBook X205TA is a compact and reasonably priced Windows laptop

The X205TA just isn’t yet available in shops at the time of this submit, however the unit I’ve examined is pretty much similar to what you’ll have the ability to purchase in a couple of weeks.

Asus EeeBook X205TA spec sheet
Display11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 px, TN
HardwareIntel Atom BayTrail-T Z3745D CPU and Intel HD graphics
Reminiscence2 GB RAM
Storage32 GB flash-storage
ConnectivityWi-fi N, Bluetooth
Ports2x USB, micro-HDMI, microSD card reader, proprietary PSU, headphone jack
Battery38 Wh
OSHome windows 8.1
Measurement288 mm or 11.three in (L) x 196 mm or 7.7 in (W) x 18 mm or zero.70 in (H)
Weight954 g (2.10 lbs)
Othersstereo speakers, out there in several colors, webcam

The Video Review

Hardware and every day use

The EeeBook X205TA is primarily meant for mild on a regular basis actions. It may then handle searching between a few totally different tabs, watching video content and listening to music, modifying some texts and perhaps some footage as properly. It will possibly run Microsoft’s Workplace suite (does come with a Trial version of Office that requires activation and the final launch variations will embrace a 12 month Office 365 Personal license) and software program like Adobe Photoshop if you want to, simply be sure to’re not going to ask an excessive amount of out of it, as it can choke simply if pushed.

And that’s as a result of this EeeBook is constructed on an low-power high-efficiency hardware platform, with an Intel Z3745D processor, bundled with 2 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage, which may truly develop into an issue fairly fast. Each the RAM and eMMC storage are soldered and NOT upgradeable.

The factor is you’re not left with loads of spare area after having Home windows put in (roughly 14 GB), so Asus undoubtedly had to minimize a nook here to satisfy the low price ticket. And that leaves you with two options: both use the included cloud area provided free of charge in Asus’s WebStorage surroundings, or increase the space for storing with the assistance of a microSD card.

To be frank, I was a bit disenchanted this laptop doesn’t help normal sized SD playing cards, that may have been helpful for downloading footage from my cameras whereas on the go, however that’s in all probability not such an enormous deal for most potential consumers.

General though, the X205 is a reasonably capable little fellow and it may do a variety of issues for you.

The every day expertise is enhanced by the loud and punchy speakers placed on the stomach, but in the direction of the front of the chassis and by the truth that this runs utterly noiseless, because it homes no fans and no shifting elements inside.

The EeeBook X205TA is the modern netbook: faster, thinner, lighter than before, and at the same time noiseless

The EeeBook X205TA is the fashionable netbook: quicker, thinner, lighter than earlier than, and on the similar time noiseless

The Wi-Fi chip is fairly able to nicely. It could possibly’t match my Web velocity, going to solely about 30 Mbps close to the router, however no less than the velocity and sign power don’t drop away quick as you step a bit additional. I used to be capable of stream 1080p video content with no buffering and download all types of issues of the Internet with out feeling sluggish, and in my ebook that’s ok for a computer that solely sells for $199.

The laptop computer’s stomach has no cooling cuts in it, and none are actually wanted, which results in a easy and delightful design. You’ll be able to take it apart by unscrewing the 12 or so common Philips screws that hold in place and that provides you entry to the internals.

Nevertheless, it gained’t help a lot, as all the things appears to be soldered on the motherboard. Actually, you possibly can see how small the MB is and the way most of this laptop is occupied by the battery, which can also be maintain in place by a couple of screws and might be changed down the line, if wanted (and if Asus or third events will present replacements).

I was hoping to be able to improve the storage, but there seem to be no dedicated storage stick like on a number of the other mini-laptops I’ve examined, so there’s no option to up the 32 GBs by means of a hardware upgrade. A minimum of none that I can inform of, and that’s a bit annoying, because the 32 GB of area is hardly adequate for a Home windows 8.1 laptop computer. You may attempt to go the Linux street. I planed to attempt Ubuntu or Mint on this myself, but my Linux information is nearly null and I did not have the time to do it this time. Hopefully within the subsequent few weeks.

One remaining factor I was trying to point out listed here are temperatures and efficiency underneath load. The X205’s case stays cool beneath mild use and the temperatures gained’t attain for the celebs when operating the Prime95+Furmark stress-test both. You’ll be able to see the numbers in the footage under.

idle-temperatures load-temperatures

It might be value mentioning that the internals get to about 80 C underneath stress and each the CPU and the GPU run and sub-default frequencies (around 900 Mhz for the CPU and 300 Mhz for the GPU), but these shouldn’t matter a lot for the typical purchaser Asus targets with this laptop computer, who should understand from starters the the X205 is meant for mild casual activities, and never critical chores or multitasking.

Keyboard and trackpad

The typing experience isn’t dangerous on the X205 and is helped by a fairly good keyboard and a pleasant typing position, because of the roomy palm-rest and the laptop’s low profile.

The keys are agency and supply respectable journey and feedback, for this measurement range in fact, but they do feel a bit low cost to touch, plasticky. And apart from these, the format is vertically cramped, as Asus opted for shorter rectangular keys and not the square keys I was anticipating, and the arrow keys are small, identical to on the older Asus EeeBooks launched a couple of years ago.

The shorter keys do depart room for the spacious palm-rest mentioned before and an oversized trackpad, which I do respect. In on a regular basis use although, the latter proved sometimes erratic and moody, although it worked alright most of the time. But typically ti double clicks all by itself or sends the cursor flying to the sides, and these principally occur whenever you put the pc underneath a heavier loud than it may possibly handle.

Even so, this is among the few elements the place the X205 wants additional tweaking. Luckily, the jumpy cursor is often a software drawback and could, a minimum of in concept, be addressed by future drivers updates. We should always maintain our judgement for further critiques, just hold the potential points in mind.

Design and construct high quality

Now, let’s take a number of steps again and have a wider take a look at this thing. The EeeBook weighs slightly below 1 kilo, which is about 2.1 pounds. It’s additionally thin and has a compact footprint, so it’s going to simply slot in a backpack or perhaps a bag. And in addition to these, it’s fairly robust and undoubtedly doesn’t look dangerous either. In the event you’ll seize it firmly and squeeze it, you’ll heard the creaks associated with low cost plastic machines, but judging by how a lot this thing value, I’d say it’s more than adequately built and completed.

Your complete case is made out of sentimental matte plastic that spreads throughout the lid, the interior and the stomach, with the display’s bezel being the only black aspect on this laptop, and Asus will supply the X205 in a couple of totally different colors. The materials feel good to the contact and there’s little to complain concerning the ending quality.

Nevertheless, If we’re to get picky, I do have two nits to mention: to start with, the case catches smudges and finger oil simply, that are particularly seen on this dark blue version, and second, the lid-cover does flex a bit bit, but that doesn’t seem to have an effect on the display’s integrity in any approach, though pressing the lid exhausting does translate in ripples on the display, so that you may need to get a sleeve for this thing when carrying it in your backpack and be careful not to have many heavy objects sitting on it.

And there’s one other thing that I’ve observed: the laptop’s rubber ft appear poorly made and I worry they’re going to put on off simply. Time will tell, but again, a minor facet.

Display

There’s an 11.6 inch display on this laptop, with 1366 x 768 px decision, a glossy finishing and a TN panel. The latter interprets in quite poor vertical viewing angles, with the Costner and colors shortly fading away, which is characteristic for low priced screens, but even so, so long as you get to take a look at it heads-on, this facet shouldn’t hassle you much.

The display leans again to about 130-140 levels, which isn’t good, but will do, and truly lifts itself up on two small plastic ft, which leaves more room beneath the laptop computer (higher cooling) and barely raises the keyboard (higher typing position). I simply hope these ft gained’t break in time, but they appear strong, so there’s no cause to fret a lot.

The screen lifts up on two small plastic feet

The display lifts up on two small plastic ft

The truth is, I for one was fairly proud of the display. In case you’ll take a look at the numbers under you may say in any other case. The measured contrast is appalling, the display having hassle displaying correct blacks at high brightness. The colors may sound terrible as properly and the laptop does have a really cool (as in blueish) glow, which might be addressed with the included Splendid app for those who take pleasure in warmer photographs. However the fact is, once you’re truly utilizing this factor in apply, it’s not going to be that dangerous because the numbers are suggesting.

  • Panel HardwareID: AU Optronics AUO235C;
  • Coverage: sRGB 58% , NTSC 41%,  SdobeRGB 43%;
  • measured gamma: 2.three ;
  • max brightness in the midst of the display: 247 cd/m2 on energy;
  • contrast at max brightness: 90:1 (?);
  • white point: 7900 Okay;
  • black on max brightness: 2.78 cd/m2;
  • common DeltaE: eight.48 uncalibrated, 4.37 calibrated .

screen-brightness

Asus might have gone with a matte ending, since this is not a touchscreen anyway, however they decided as an alternative, which is going to have an effect on bright-light legibility. They’re using the identical strategy on the C200 Chromebook, with whom the x205 may truly share the display.

The screen is a notch better than what's you're getting on another $200 computer, the Acer C720

The display is a notch better than what’s you’re getting on one other $200 pc, the Acer C720

Battery Life

I did point out earlier that the EeeBook X205 does final for an extended while on a charge, and that was no underestimation.

There’s a 38 Wh battery inside this laptop and paired with the environment friendly hardware, this translated for me in about 10 hours of day by day use, that features shopping by way of a couple of totally different tabs, writing several thousand words, watching a couple of Youtube clips on occasion and infrequently listening to some music, with Wi-Fi ON, display at about 60% and the default Power profile (you don’t have Energy Modes on this platform). I was additionally capable of loop a 720p .mkv file for about 9 hours in WMP-HC and stream the Huge Bunny HD 1080p clip from Youtube for almost eight hours.

On prime of that, the laptop computer can last in stand-by for weeks and Intel’s All the time Related capability will ensure that all of your updates and emails are ready for you the moment you determine to deliver this one out of sleep.

It comes with a really compact 10Wh brick and an extended cable. Charging the battery from 5 to 99% takes about 2 hours and 15 minutes, providing you’re not doing anything on it throughout this time.

Big battery, compact charger with a long cable - a winning combo

Huge battery, compact charger with an extended cable – a profitable combo

Pricing and availability

Update: The X205TA is now obtainable within the US and it’s truly cheaper than initially predicted. See this hyperlink for particulars.

$199 in the US/CA , 199 euro throughout the pond and £169.99 in the UK. That’s how a lot you’ll need to pay for the EeeBook X205TA , beginning October 14th, when this little fellow will begin delivery. That that was bogus. I can’t say for positive when this thing will truly hit the stores. My Asus contact stated (within the first half oc October) that “it’s not coming anytime soon”, but couldn’t present even a rough estimate.  Nevertheless, it’d reach different nations sooner.

Wrap-up

At the end of the day, Asus truly did an ideal job with the EeeBook X205TA, which checks a lot of the right bins.

After using it for the last week, there’s a single factor that basically irritated me, albeit solely sometimes: the trackpad. I was also not proud of the microSD and microHDMI slots (would have most popular full-size variations) or the fingerprint magnet case, but these are undoubtedly not deal-breakers. The restricted space for storing might be though, you’ll actually need to correctly manage your content material and depart the included partition for Home windows, for those who don’t need to should reinstall it recent once each couple of months.

However that’s about it, there’s only that little to complain about on a 200 bucks laptop computer. That’s why I consider this factor is usually a strong journey companion, particularly because it’s mild, sturdy and lasts for an extended while on each charge. It should also do good as a laptop computer for teenagers and faculty, as a result of it’s so reasonably priced that you simply gained’t mind as a lot if it will get dropped or it breaks. And final however not least, it might be an choice for anybody in search of a small cheap pc that runs Windows and all the suitable software program.

There's not much to complain about the X205TA, that's why this could be a great Windows-running mini-laptop if you're on a very tight budget

There’s not much to complain concerning the X205TA, that’s why this might be a terrific Windows-running mini-laptop in the event you’re on a really tight price range

Simply be sure to perceive what the Atom platform inside this X205 can do and what it might’t and regulate your expectations accordingly. Otherwise, it’d show too sluggish, however for those who do plan on utilizing it for mild every day duties, there’s imh no other extra capable mini-laptop you should purchase brand-new for $200 today. Not even a Chromebook. However I’m assured Asus gained’t be operating free in this phase for long. HP already announced their Stream notebooks for the top of the yr, and the opposite producers will quickly comply with, which is great for us, the typical shoppers.

Low cost home windows laptops are coming back. Netbooks are coming again, solely higher than earlier than. Are they something many shall be inquisitive about? Perhaps, maybe not… We’ll see.

Anyway, there you’ve gotten it, these have been my impressions on the Asus EeeBook X205TA. Let me know what you consider it in the comments part under and publish your questions as nicely, if any, I’ll be around to reply. And in the event you’re out there for an reasonably priced and compact laptop computer, it is best to undoubtedly take a look at this publish as properly.