Friday, 12 April 2013 12:36

Asus releases ‘huge’ Transformer desktop, err tablet, err desktablet err tablettop…


Asus has long been regarded as a progressive Taiwanese computer maker willing to take design risks in an increasingly ‘one size fits all’ PC desktop and notebook market. The new Transformer AiO series (all-in-one) are definitely ‘out there”.

I have long been a fan of Asus – generally good quality, reliability and design. For example one of the most innovative convertible tablet/notebooks is its brilliant Taichi (main picture above) that solves the usual problems by using a double sided screen. It should be on anyone’s shopping list who wants a real business Windows 8 tablet.

So I expect such brilliance to flow through to other products and the release of its new AiO (All in One) range comprising an 18.4” convertible dual Windows 8/Android desktop/tablet, a 23” table[top] (folds flat like a table) and 27” Home Entertainment centre do not disappoint.

First the big tablet (P1801)  

The picture shows the screen detaching from the dock making it an 18.4”, 2.4kg, Android tablet powered by an NVIDIA Tegra 3 Quad Core processor with its own RAM and 32GB storage. The battery life is an alleged 5 hours but there is a charging jack so this should not be an issue.

What is really interesting is that the picture shows Windows 8 which is in fact running on the dock and is transmitted wirelessly (Asus call it a Splashtop remote) to the tablet. To be clear Windows is running on the dock, not the tablet in ‘virtualised mode” – this is a good thing as long as you are within typical Wi-Fi range of the dock.

Being Android the tablet can access Google Play to run some of the 700K plus apps. I was impressed with the IPS screen, its 178 degree viewing angle and 10 point touch is responsive.

The dock can have a second screen attached and function as a full Windows 8 PC so you are getting two computers for not much more than the price of one. The dock has either an i5 or i7 processor, 4/8GB ram, 1/2TB drive, DVD and lots of connectivity options.

The price is $1999 for the i5 processor and $2,399 for the i7. This model is exclusive to Harvey Norman at present.

It is going to find good use in apartment style living where space is a premium – for example connect a USB Tuner to the dock and via Media Centre stream TV to the tablet. Or use the tablet for gaming, web browsing, movies or music.

22” Desktop touch ET2220

This has been around for a while so its best just think of it as a 21.5” fully featured, i5, Windows 8 touch PC with HDMI connectivity i.e. you can use it also as a full HD monitor for other devices like PC’s, Blu-ray etc. I really like the clean styling and again it would suit apartment style living or as a PC/TV for the kids etc.

These are sold via the Good Guys and Dick Smith. The i3 is $1,199 and the i5 is $1399.





23” Table[top] ET2330

As the photo shows this fold flat to form a table top for gaming experiences like chess. Being 10 point touch this ability to fold to any angle could be really useful for CAD and other designers that would normally use a digitiser.

Available from the Good Guys at $1799 with an i5 processor




27” Touch desktop ET2701  

If size does matter this IPS HD touch display with DVBT Tuner will and SonicMaster Subwoofer can be placed on a desk or even wall mounted. Price from $2199.

Available from the Good Guys at $2699 





(Note on prices and specifications – ASUS has several models and feature sets – some are sold via major retailers who purchase in bulk and others via smaller computer stores so prices/features are indicative only).

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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