Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 review: A sturdy 15.6-inch convertible Chromebook

http://www.zdnet.com/

Like

  • Sturdy design
  • 360-degree monitor rotation
  • Big monitor for a Chromebook
  • Excellent array of ports

Don’t Like

  • Reduced monitor brightness
  • Disappointing speakers
  • No on-gadget stylus dock

Chromebooks started off out as reasonably priced equipment for dwelling people and learners, but there are now a lot of products accessible with small business-quality specs. Asus a short while ago introduced two this kind of Chromebooks, the CX9 and CX5. The CX5, reviewed in this article, is in a ‘Flip’ gadget, which indicates it has a 360-degree rotating monitor hinge to permit tablet-mode procedure. With a fifteen.six-inch touch monitor, 11th technology Main i3 or i5 processors and the latest Chrome OS features, can it genuinely function as a thoroughly-fledged small business notebook for as minimal as £599.99 (inc. VAT)?  

The Immersive White chassis of the Chromebook Flip CX5 will not shout ‘business’, but it truly is definitely unique. Asus states it has been treated to resemble ceramic, and I can definitely see that in the complete. The white of the lid is punctuated by a massive silver Asus logo, a smaller sized silver Chromebook logo and the shiny silver of the hinges.  

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Asus Chromebook Flip CX5: fifteen.six-inch 360-degree rotating touch monitor, 11th-technology Main i3 or i5 processor, 8GB or 16GB of RAM, 128GB or 256GB of SSD storage. Pounds: 1.95kg (4.3lb).


Visuals: Asus

Supplied its fifteen.six-inch monitor, the Flip CX5’s dimensions of 357.6mm large by 240.8mm deep by 18.5mm thick (14.08in. x 9.48in. x .73in.) are no surprise. However, it truly is 1.95kg (4.3lb) excess weight is distinctly significant, and it may be more than enough to prevent some cellular experts. There is some flex in the aluminium alloy lid, building it recommended not to place weighty items on leading of this Chromebook. In the passions of both equally protecting the complete on the lid and mitigating its flex, a sleeve will be practical for travellers — irrespective of the fact that the Chromebook Flip CX5 satisfies the armed forces-grade MIL-STD-810H ruggedness normal. 

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Asus’s ErgoLift monitor hinge mechanism raises the keyboard section to a snug typing angle in notebook mode.


Image: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

This is a 360-degree convertible, and as the hinges are pushed back over and above ninety degrees the foundation of the lid section protrudes over and above the foundation of the keyboard section, bringing Asus’s ErgoLift program into enjoy this raises the keyboard up to a marginally higher, much more snug, typing angle and also delivers a minimal room beneath the chassis for air flow and audio enhancement. 

The show is a fifteen.six-inch LED-backlit IPS touch monitor with FHD (1920 x 1080) resolution in a sixteen:9 facet ratio. There is certainly a 720p webcam in the higher bezel, though the massive bottom bezel takes out a few of centimetres of opportunity excess viewing region. Now that sixteen:10 facet ratios are common, the variance is recognizable: spreadsheets and files drop a couple of traces, for illustration, and that will make any difference a ton to some people. A greater problem could be the display’s 250 nits brightness: you can find no dilemma working inside in a properly-lit room, but outside viewability could be tough. 

Twin speakers drive audio out through grilles on the underside of the chassis, and aspect of every grille sits on an upward curve so the audio is not impeded way too very seriously by a desk — the ErgoLift mechanism aids in this article, way too. Sound also emanates from the keyboard, so you can find a lot of upward trajectory. This is all favourable, but audio high-quality is unremarkable: treble is a bit way too accentuated, and bass tones go lacking in action. That explained, you can find no distortion, even at leading quantity.  

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The keyboard incorporates a (considerably cramped) range pad. Also shown: the bundled Asus stylus (which has no on-gadget dwelling).


Image: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

The keyboard has springy keys with a light-weight action that would make typing a snug working experience. A separate range pad is squeezed in on the proper: its keys are slender, and building room for them has necessary the Enter crucial to be narrower than standard. Continue to, I had no difficulties touch-typing at my usual speed. The multitouch glass touchpad is massive, large and responsive I had no troubles with Chromebook gestures, and palm rejection labored properly.  

Users who routinely work in tablet mode will value the bundled Asus pen. This supports monitor seize, zoom and laser pointer capabilities, as properly as enter via third-celebration apps. The stylus is powered by a one AAAA battery, but you can find no housing for it on the chassis, so do not forget about to carry it individually — and safely — if it truly is likely to be desired. 

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The Chromebook Flip CX5 in tablet mode.


Image: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

There are two configurations of the Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 accessible in the Uk. My entry-amount overview device was powered by an Intel Core i3-1115G4 processor with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD storage. This is currently on sale for £599.99 (inc. VAT). The other configuration has a Core i5-1135G7 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB of SSD and is accessible for £718.sixty (inc. VAT) at the time of creating. There is certainly only 1 (Main i5/16GB/128GB) model mentioned on Asus’s US web-site, which costs in between $828.99 and $890.99.

SEE: MacBook Professional start: Issues you may perhaps have missed

There is a realistic array of ports on the Chromebook Flip CX5: two USB-C ports, 1 of which is employed for charging, 1 USB-A port, a full-sizing HDMI two. port, a MicroSD card reader and a 3.5mm headset jack. 

Asus quotations up to twelve several hours of battery lifestyle for the Chromebook Flip CX5, but this may be something of a stretch. With a workload blend involving working into world wide web apps, streaming new music and wanting at the odd online video, the battery fell from a full cost to sixty six% all through a 3-hour period. Which is much more like nine several hours, on a linear extrapolation – nonetheless ‘all day’ battery lifestyle, but not twelve several hours. 

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Image: Asus

Conclusions 

The Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 is a strong Chromebook with a massive monitor and a pretty serviceable keyboard. However, the 250-nits monitor will make outside viewing tough, and the speakers are disappointing. The Main i3 model is reasonably priced at £599.99 (inc. VAT), but the Main i5 specification, which costs around £700/$800, will come up in opposition to any range of thoroughly-fledged Home windows laptops, which are arguably much more adaptable and absolutely much more common in the place of work. 

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Rosa G. Rose

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