Review: Asus X102B – Pretty on the outside, sluggish on the inside 

Trying to restart a career in writing means one must always have the tools of the trade at hand. With two laptops dying one after the other, I have no choice but to buy another one specifically for the sole purpose of blogging and writing. 

With a very specific purpose in mind, I embarked on a dedicated research for the best laptop/netbook which my very limited budget can get me. Endless research (read: mostly bugging one of my tech savvy friend) has lead me to the ASUS X102B. 

 

ASUS X102B is a ” full on Monet”


 

I am not a techie – my definition of high-tech is connecting a Bluetooth speaker to my iPhone, but the assurance of my tech-head guy friend is enough to convince me to buy. Now, I am not sure if it’s the laptop that’s a problem or me. 

On the outside: 

This thin netbook is a beauty. The metallic blue finish sets a nice background to the silver ASUS logo. Weighing at just 1.1kg, the thin body makes for a gadget that slips easily inside even the most compact of bags. I usually bring it to meetings with the WeKnow Creatives team and even when it’s stuffed my smallest shoulder bag, I can barely feel it’s weight. Supplementing the laptop is a charger that looks like it was built for a smartphone than a laptop. 

 

updating for eternity


On the inside 

 In my month of using the ASUS X102A, I have come to realize that this laptop is a “full-on Monet”, to quote the great Cher Horowitz (Clueless, 1996).  For those that needs brushing up on pop culture: 

Full-on Monet: Someone attractive from afar, but when you get close you see that said person is not as attractive as they appeared from a distance.

My love-hate relationship with this thing started from the minute I pressed the on/off button and started playing with its features. The track pad and screen is very sensitive which can lead to folders closed easily and emails delegated to the trash bin in one swipe of an errant finger. It can be sluggish and cannot accommodate growing on multiple opened tabs at the same time.  

While the feel of the keyboards is just the right fit for me, I hated that there are instances when keyboard response to typing is slow or way behind. Laptop also has tendency to hang. 

For streaming videos – which I do in the interest of my Korean dramas — streaming usually starts very promising that is, until a loud whirring noise will commence (while I panic). This will go on for 3 minutes before stopping abruptly, in which that danged laptop will again proceed to hang.  Which will lead me to restart the whole thing again. 

The problem is that usually, in 5 times out out ten, the laptop while try to update itself VERY SLOWLY, rendering it unusable. 

  
I have no idea what to do with this thing. I am thinking of luring my clueless techie guy-friend to coffee before asking him for help in making this thing work. Another option is to sell it – but thanks to this glowing review, I don’t think people will be inclined to purchase something that can cause headaches. 

Meanwhile, I am still tinkering with it – one because I really need to watch 2Days, 1Night and two, because I need to catch up on some writing. Ironically, blogging – which is the main reason why I bought “Monet” in the first place – is now done via my iPhone. Yeah, I know — ironic and pathetic at the same time. 
Tech Specs (lifted from Villman website)

AMD® Temash Dual core A4-1200 1.0 GHz Processor

Operating System: Windows 8

Memory: 2GB DDR3

Display: 10.1″ 16:9 HD (1366×768) LED Backlight Glare panel

Graphic: AMD Radeon® HD 8180G

Storage: 500GB 5400 RPM HDD

Card Reader: 2 -in-1 card reader ( SD/ SDHC/ SDXC/ MMC)

Camera: HD Web Camera

Networking: Integrated 802.11 b/g/n or 802.11a/b/g/n

Built-in Bluetooth™ V4.0 

10/100 Base T

Interface

1 x COMBO audio jack 

1 x VGA port/Mini D-sub 15-pin for external monitor

1 x USB 3.0 port(s) 

2 x USB 2.0 port(s)

1 x RJ45 LAN Jack for LAN insert 

1 x HDMI 

1 x SD card reader

1X AC adapter plug

Audio

Built-in Speakers And Microphone


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