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Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200SA review

Tablets are great for when you re out and about on the move, but sometimes you just need something a little more versatile to get some work done. Enter the Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200SA, a laptop-tablet hybrid with the option to flip the screen around however you see fit.

The Flip TP200SA is the latest in a long line of Transformer Books, but this one has a particularly lightweight and compact design that puts it firmly at the tablet end of the hybrid device pool. Coming in at just 1.2kg and 18.4mm with the lid closed, this A4-sized slab of brushed plastic can easily be stored in a backpack, and the 360-degree reversible screen hinge means you can easily fold the keyboard around to protect the screen when you’re not using it.

The hinge itself is reasonably robust, and should be able to hold up after multiple twists and turns. However, much like other 360-degree laptops we’ve tested, such as Lenovo’s Yoga 700, the Flip’s screen had a tendency to bounce back and forth quite a lot while I was using it as a laptop, so it may not be ideal for typists who are particularly heavy-handed. You really notice it when you tilt the screen back, too, as the top-heavy screen visibly lifts the edge of the keyboard tray off the table. This is a shame, but I’m willing to let this one slide in the face of its rock-bottom price. 1

Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200SA Review

The screen can’t be detached from the keyboard sadly, but the Flip’s built-in sensors can automatically detect when the screen goes beyond 180 degrees, at which point it will automatically switch to Windows 10’s tablet mode and lock the keyboard so you don’t accidentally bash the keys when they’re underneath your fingers. You don’t necessarily have to fold it flat, either, as you can also position it in a kind of kickstand mode, which is great for films and presentations alike.

Keyboard and touchpad

As the Flip is relatively compact, the keyboard is similarly petite, so it’s definitely best suited for those with smaller hands. Since its keys aren’t full-sized, I often found myself accidentally hitting the wrong keys when typing quickly, but this is something you’ll no doubt get used to over time. At least each key had a decent amount of travel, and they always felt very responsive even after long typing periods. Thankfully, the touchpad is on the large side, providing plenty of space to move my fingers around. Its integrated buttons have a decent amount of click, too, so using it shouldn’t prove too frustrating if you find yourself without a dedicated mouse.

Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200SA Review

Performance and Battery Life

Sadly, the Flip’s overall performance is where the TP200SA falls short. With just a dual-core Intel Celeron N3050 processor and 2GB of RAM at its disposal, this isn’t a machine that’s built for heavy duty PC tasks. As a result, I ran our slightly less demanding 1,080p benchmarks rather than our usual 4K tests, and it recorded an overall score of 31. This is decent considering its price, but I experienced significant slowdown even when I was using it for basic word processing and web browsing. As a result, the Flip definitely isn t intended for multi-tasking, but if your daily PC routine normally only consists of browsing the web and writing the odd word document, then the TP200SA should be more than sufficient.

The other thing to bear in mind is the TP200SA’s limited storage. You only have a 32GB SSD to work with, which fills up pretty quickly if you want to store lots of files locally. This is becoming a pretty common trend at this end of the market, though, as both the Dell Inspiron 11 30002 and Acer Aspire One Cloudbook 143 have exactly the same problem. Thankfully, there’s a microSD slot to expand the TP200SA’s storage, but it’s likely you’ll be storing most files in the cloud.

Of course, with no dedicated graphics, you’ll be relying on the N3050’s integrated Intel HD Graphics chips for playing games. This isn’t powerful enough to run proper 3D games, but simpler titles from the Windows Store like Jetpack Joyride and Crossy Road worked absolutely fine, so you should still be able to get a bit of light gaming done if you feel so inclined.

It might not be a gaming juggernaut, then, but the TP200SA’s battery life is by far its main selling point, as it lasted an excellent 9 hours and 13 minutes during our continuous video playback test with the screen brightness set to our standard measurement of 170cd/m2. This should mean you’ll get a good day’s work out of the TP200SA before you need to return it to the mains. Continues on Page 24

References

  1. ^ Lenovo’s Yoga 700 (www.expertreviews.co.uk)
  2. ^ Dell Inspiron 11 3000 (www.expertreviews.co.uk)
  3. ^ Acer Aspire One Cloudbook 14 (www.expertreviews.co.uk)
  4. ^ Continues on Page 2 (www.expertreviews.co.uk)

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