Asus L210 11.6" Windows Laptop Review – Affordable with great battery life
This is the asus l210m and this is a very affordable, 11 inch windows, 10 laptop and it actually isn’t too bad for what it is here. Provided you keep some expectations in check and we’re going to be taking a closer look at this and what it’s all about in just a second? But i do want to let you know in the interest of full disclosure that this is on loan from asus. So we’re done with this, it goes back to them all the opinions you’re about to hear are my own. No one is paying for this review. Nor has anyone reviewed or approved what you’re about to see before it was uploaded, so let’s get into it now and see what this laptop is all about. Now, the price point on this is about 229 dollars at the moment, it’s one of the most affordable laptops. You can get right now from a major brand, and the use case on this is varied. A lot of people obviously look at these for kids or inexpensive travel devices. It professionals, though, also like these things, because they’re very portable and they get great battery life and, of course, it’s running with an intel processor. So you can run just about anything that runs on an intel pc on this one, with, of course, very degrees of performance. Now inside of this is a low end, processor, an intel, celeron n4020. This is part of the low power gemini lake lineup, but it’s the latest revision of that chip.
It has four gigabytes of ram, but the ram is configured in single channel mode, which means you don’t get the most out of the graphics capabilities of the machine here. So while these are never good for gaming, this one’s really not good for gaming and you’ll, see some examples of that. In a few minutes, it has 64 gigabytes of emmc storage on board and that storage is upgradable through the ssd slot that you see right there. It takes nvme ssds i put in an extra one that i had laying around with 500 gigabytes on board and it was detected automatically right when i put it in so. You do have the option to add some more storage to the mix and that’s really neat to see on something like this and again. Another reason why this might be attractive to an it professional and i was able to get some pretty good performance out of that drive when we ran a speed test on it. Earlier again, this is the nvme drive. I was able to write to it at about 600 megabytes per second give or take, and we were reading at well over a gigabyte per second. The writes are a little bit faster on my gaming laptop with that drive, but still pretty good performance on a very low end computer when you’ve got that extra drive plugged in now. The emmc drive, of course, is a little slower. The writes are all over the place due to how it’s, caching and everything so that speed there quickly will decline.
I think you’ll see pretty much usb level speeds when you’re writing to that disk. The reads on the emmc are a little bit better good enough. I think for most windows, apps, that you would run natively on this, but if you did need faster disk io, obviously plugging in one of those nvmes will make a big difference. Unfortunately, though, although you can get some storage added to the mix, you cannot upgrade the ram which was a bit of a bummer, because that would have increased some of the graphical performance on it, but still having that storage option, i think, is a pretty nice thing. Now this weighs just over two pounds or about a kilogram. It is made out of plastic, of course, but it actually feels pretty nice for the price point, i was expecting something to feel cheaper than what i took out of the box here. It doesn’t flex at all it’s got a nice. Rigid feel it’s got a really nice thick piece of plastic here, protecting the display. So if you got kids, i think it’ll hold up pretty well and maybe a little better than you might expect the display on it. Here, i’ll reactivate, it is an 11.6 inch display running at 1366 by 768. This is a tn display, but it actually looks really good for a tn display. I typically prefer the ips displays that tend to be a bit sharper, but this one again doesn’t look too bad, although you definitely want to look directly at it, because you can very quickly lose your image when you go off center with it.
So you may have to adjust the lid a little bit to get it exactly where you want. The display will go flat to a desk like this, which is great. If you got kids around it’s, not a touch display, though so just be aware of that, but all together a nice little package here for the price now for the ports on this one we’ve got a few to look at here. On the left hand, side we have our power connector, and this is a little 30 watt power supply that it uses not the longest cable, but it goes into that barrel connector. I would have loved for this to have used usb type c power, but it does not. It has an sd card slot here for a micro sd card, so you can augment that storage. If you’re looking for something removable, there is a usb type c port here, but this is just for data devices. It doesn’t do power or video output. So just be aware of that data. Only it does have an hdmi output though, but this is hdmi 1.4. So the max it will do is 4k at 30 frames per second, but 1440p and 1080p should be able to get up to 60 frames per second out of that port. If you want to hook up an external display, you have a usb 3 port here and i would suggest, if you have an external hard drive, that you’re plugging in use this usbc port or this usb a port, because the usb port on the other side here Is just usb 2.
0 and runs slower, so i would put your keyboards and mice over here and your hard drives on the other side and then right here you have a headphone microphone jack for attaching a headset and on the topic of headsets, you can do your Zoom calls on this. These gemini lake chips are great for video processing, believe it or not, but the webcam here is not spectacular, it’s right up there at the top and it’s only a vga webcam, which means it’s, essentially 480p, so it’s passable but you’re not going to win any academy Awards with it and it’s really basic transportation, but of course you could attach a more high quality webcam to it. If you want now the keyboard here actually surprised me by how good it is for the price point. Typically, these low cost asus laptops had these really plasticky feeling lousy, tiny keyboards. This one has been improved. It has really good travel to it. So when you push the keys, they go down a good distance, so that gives you some good tactile feedback. It looks like they’ve made these chiclet keys. They usually put on these computers a little bit larger and they’re spaced in a good way, so i did not have trouble getting used to typing on it, which surprised me so that was good. Now the amazon product listing says the keyboard is backlit. It is not at least on this model. So if you are looking at the lowest cost option, it is not backlit, even though the product listing says it is, although it does have a really cool enter key here now.
The unique thing on this one is the trackpad. So this works like your normal everyday trackpad, but if you hold down the on off thing, there just lightly push your finger against it. It will activate a number pad. So i’ll pull up a word document here that i have set up to go and, as i type out the numbers on the trackpad, it works like a number pad now. I’M, not clicking here i’m, just tapping down on the trackpad to get that to work, and then you can disable that feature just by holding down that on off again. But what’s neat is that the mouse still works when you have the number pad enabled so it’s kind of a neat little feature they added on, although i could see inadvertent touches of the pad delivering numbers to the application you’re using. So you probably want to leave that off unless you really need it now, you can’t really feel anything on it, so it’s hard to just type by feel, but it is a neat little gimmick that you don’t typically see on these little laptops. Now asus claims the battery life on. This is about 12 hours and after using this for a couple of days, i think you can get pretty close to that mark if you keep the display brightness at about 80 or so, and stick to the basics. Like word, processing, email and that sort of thing, if you tax the processor, that battery life will decline quite a bit, but if you’re just sitting in microsoft word or something here, i think you’ll have a really good run with this over extended periods of time, which Was also surprising performance is pretty good on it.
We’Re running microsoft word right here, just moving around a little image here. It does come with a year of office 365 as part of the deal that’s, the personal edition, but that’s a pretty good little add on there and overall doing the word processing stuff here or browsing the web. It feels pretty good for what it is. It is a bit zippier than some of the earlier versions of the gemini lake processor. I have looked at over the last couple of years, not going to rival an i7 or something you’ve got a pretty small screen to work with here, but really it’s pretty good. Again for the price point – and i think you can get a lot of utility out of this – if you keep your expectations in check now, of course, it has wi fi on board. It is ac wi fi and not the new wi fi 6, but it’s good enough for doing web browsing and youtube and other things we did test out. Our 60 frames per second 1080p youtube video here and we did get a couple of drop frames when it first rendered the page, but once everything settled down, it was able to play back the video without any further drop frames. So if you’re watching youtube or netflix or twitch, it should do well at that and typically the intel processors are pretty efficient at video decoding. So you won’t see too much battery degradation when you are watching media on this thing and on the browserbench.
org speedometer benchmark test, we got a score of 54.6. This puts it pretty much within the margin of error of a chromebook. We looked at recently running with the same processor, so all in for the basics. It does everything quite well let’s move on now to gaming. Now simple games like among us here run great. We didn’t see any problems with this one uh shovel knight another game – that’s, pretty simple – to run also ran at a nice 60 frames per second here at the native resolution. So that was good and older games like half life 2, run really nicely here as well. So there’s a lot of games that you can play, provided you keep it simple or keep it old, but newer stuff, like rocket league, does not perform well at all. This is running at the native resolution of the display at the absolute lowest settings and, as you can see, we’re barely cracking 10 frames per second here and the reason why this one is running so poorly is that this laptop does not have dual channel memory. And you really need that to get the most out of the graphics chipset on the device, so it’s just not going to be good for this kind of stuff, but good for the simpler or the older stuff that we just looked at. But one thing that does work very well is game streaming. We loaded this up on geforce now a little while ago off the wi fi and it really looked and played great.
So if you are doing some game streaming within your home or through a service like geforce now here, you should have a great experience with it. Given how well these intel chips, decode, video but running the games natively on the computer – is not going to be a great experience. It will do some emulation. If you stick to the basics, mostly the 8 and 16 bit stuff, you could probably get away with a little playstation 1 or some nintendo 64.. But again, some of the limitations involving that single channel memory will permeate themselves on the emulation side too, but kind of a fun thing to play around with, and i think the game streaming is a good use case for this one and on the 3dmark cloud gate Benchmark test, we got a score of 2603 and that puts this one pretty much on par with a similar low end, asus laptop. We looked at a couple of years back, so this could be doing better if it had that dual channel memory, but unfortunately it’s running single channel and we’re not able to get the potential of the processor out of this particular device. Now this is a fanless laptop and when we ran the 3d mark stress test, we got a failing grade of 83.5 percent. 97 is passing. You can also see what temperature the cpu was running at when that test concluded. Now, what that means is that this system will slow down the hotter it gets so that it doesn’t overheat and because there’s no active cooling on here that’s, the only way it can regulate its temperature.
So if you do stress it out, you’ll see a decline in performance, but i think for most of what people will do with this computer, you shouldn’t encounter that throttling. All too often now we always like to test out ubuntu on these little devices to see what gets detected and how well it runs. It booted up just fine, but, as you can see, it did not detect the wi fi on it. It detected everything else, including the audio, the bluetooth, the display everything worked, fine with the exception of wi fi. It does have an azure wave, aw, cb 304 nf wi fi card inside, and if you can find drivers for that for linux, you should be able to get it working, but you could also swap it out with something that might be more compatible because that wi Fi is removable and replaceable, as you might have seen when we opened up the computer a little bit earlier, so not so great out of the box for linux, you might have to struggle a little bit to get the wi fi working, but you could also attach A usb wi fi dongle that is compatible or an ethernet card, so that’s, my only knock against it, for it use is that you’ll have to do a little bit more work to get it booting up with a linux distribution. But beyond that pretty cool little device. Here great battery life, very lightweight, decent display, not bad for its price point and a very functional little computer running windows.
Now just an aside on the windows installation, it does come in s mode out of the box. That means it will only let you initially install software from the windows store, but s mode is very easily removed. It doesn’t cost anything to do it. We detailed how to do it with this computer when we unboxed it so check out that video for a step by step and altogether, i think it’s, a nice little computer. If you don’t, want to travel with something expensive, this thing will do the basics. For you quite well with good battery life, it’s very lightweight nice display there’s, not much to complain about here beyond that wi fi issue on the linux side, that’s going to do it for now until next time this is lon seidman. Thanks for watching this channel is brought to you by the london tv supporters, including gold level supporters, chris alegretta, tom albrecht, jim calliger, hot sauce and video games and brian parker.