5 Stars By Philip C. Cody on 2017-09-08
Upgaded VivoBook E403 NA better than the great SA original.
This is an upgraded version of the ASUS VivoBook E403SA-US21. I own both (my son inherited my SA). Great notebook for the money! There really is not much to not like about this notebook.
The upgrades I can find on this notebook over the ASUS VivoBook E403SA-US21 are the N4200 processor, upgraded ac wireless card (AC 7265), and fingerprint sensor. The NA uses the Apollo Lake chipset and the SA uses the Braswell chipset. Using AIDA64 I compared components on the newer NA to older SA version and many of the components are the same. They use the same 128 GB eMMC drive (SanDisk DF4128), same screen (INNOLUX N140HGE-EAA), and same ram (Micron). The N4200 processor in the NA does significantly increase performance over the N3700 in the SA version of notebook. The N4200 was introduced about 17 months after N3700. The base speed of the N4200 is 1.1 GHz vs. 1.6 GHz of the N3700. This a good thing because it consumes less energy when running at lowest speed. The Turbo speed of the N4200 is 2.5 GHz while the N3700 is 2.4 GHz. The GPU in the N4200 also varies frequency from 200 - 750 MHz while the N3700 GPU varies frequency from 400 - 700 MHz. The GPU on the N4200 also upgrades execution units to 18 over the 16 on the N3700. When looking at benchmarks of these CPUs at CPUBoss and CPUmonkey the performance is significantly better with the N4200. Geekbench 3 multi-core score with N4200 was 72% higher than N3700. Cinebench R11.5 GPU score was 86% higher on N4200. Real world experience using both side by side is that the newer NA performs significantly better than the SA.
* Very nice design. Stylish.
* Great physical size and weight. Nicely thin and weighs about what some lighter 13" notebooks weigh.
* Very good build quality. Nice aluminum lid and notebook feels solid.
* Fingerprint sensor is a nice addition.
* 1080p screen. Not a fantastic screen but much better than many other budget notebooks.
* Boots significantly faster than older SA version. I'm not sure why this is the case given how similar hardware is but it is true. Optimized bios?
* Decent graphical performance. 1080p h265 movies run great and look very nice. Gaming at native resolution is possible with some older games with middle settings. Games tried include: Company of Heroes, Half-Life 2 Update, Bioshock, and Portal 2. I was averaging about 30 fps with these games at 1920x1080. Gaming performance with newer NA version is better than older SA version.
* Excellent keyboard. This one is huge. This notebook has minimal flex in keyboard and is very nice to type on.
* Great touchpad and buttons. Much nicer than expected with notebook at this price.
* Amazing battery life. This really is an all day notebook. Best battery life of any notebook I have ever owned. Battery time on this new version is better than the older ASUS VivoBook E403SA-US21.
* Very nice performance. Solid multitasking performance with no lag or stuttering. The Pentium N4200, 4 GB of RAM, and 128 GB eMMC drive combine to give notebook solid performance.
* Excellent Wifi and Bluetooth performance. Having dual band wireless with AC is also a plus. This notebook utilizes an Intel Dual Band Wireless AC 7265 which is another component that is impressive on budget notebook. I get very good range and speeds with the notebook. The AC 7265 is an upgrade over the SA's AC 7260. One of the upgrades is bluetooth version 4.2 over the 4.0 in the AC7260.
* Type-C port (with charging).
* SD slot (though not deep enough for regular SD card). I'm using the BASEQI Low Profile Micro SD Adapter for Raspberry Pi with a 128gb micro SD card and it works great. This adapter protrudes about 1 mm out of notebook and can be left in at all times with no issues. I put movies and programs on this card to save space on eMMC drive. Programs/games installed on adapter/micro SD card work well (I do have quality fast micro SD card though).
* The new N4200 CPU and Apollo Lake chipset is capable of faster ram speeds (up to 2400 MHz) and using DDR4 memory but they kept DDR3 ram and speed is still at 1600 MHz.
* Not the best viewing angles on screen.
* .3 megapixel webcam.
I'm not really clear on why the older SA version appears to be selling at a higher price than the newer NA version. Apparently people do not know there is a newer and better version out there :)
3 Stars By beckydono on 2018-05-03
Decent Option as Backup or Non-Multitasking Laptop
This is a very basic computer. It runs extremely slowly once you've got more than 2 Chrome tabs open - I have to keep Outlook and Excel open in the background for work, and as soon as I start opening more tabs it grinds to a halt when opening new pages. I had to buy a cheap Windows 10 laptop for a short term gig; jury's out if I'll be returning this after the gig ends or keeping it just because it's so darn cheap.
I think it would be fine if you never multitasked, like if you used this for streaming videos, or just editing Excel spreadsheets with nothing else open, or showing your grandma some photos. Or, maybe you could upgrade the RAM and Hard Drive with more space - that might speed it up, but if you're spending $150 more on accessorizing just buy a better laptop for $450 to start with!
The best features are that it's lightweight and I do like the keyboard layout of Asus.
One slightly annoying thing is that even though it has a USB C port - you cannot use it to charge!!!! HUH?!?!! They send a proprietary charger instead. This would be far more annoying if this was my primary device.
Otherwise, I strongly prefer my 1st Gen Acer Chromebook which has a much better screen, touchscreen, hinges that can go fully flat, and a zippy processor that keeps hundreds of tabs and apps open all at once. That cost me $500 which was out of budget for this particular gig. BUT I would absolutely buy that one again and skip this laptop, if I didn't HAVE to use Windows.
5 Stars By Conrad Price on 2018-03-30
Small, light, simple and well priced laptop
Small, light, simple and well priced laptop. I have a range of computers around the house and just wanted a cheap, light, simple PC to run some windows applications for car maintenance and garage tools. This is perfect, it's cheap, fast enough, the Wi-Fi is good and so far it seems to be a predictable and convenient machine.
It's no space rocket, but it does the job efficiently and a very good price point.
4 Stars By mike on 2018-06-22
The sd card only inserts only 1/2 way in so it cant be permanently inserted for extra storage.
Its a great laptop at 215.00$ the best thing about the laptop is the battery life I usually get 7- 11 hours and the stand by power is good for almost 24 hours while never going to sleep. The worst thing about this laptop is the trackpad its terrible and the SD Card reader wont allow the SD card to be fully inserted it will only go 1/2 way in so if you were planning on using a SD card for extra storage the SD card will always be sticking out a good 1 inch and will probably get damaged if you arent careful while moving it around. I immediately switched to windows LTSB before even turning it on so I cant offer info on stock OEM win 10S it comes with but I assume its awful, I would highly recommend switching to WIN LTSB or WIN Server 2016 as soon as you buy this laptop. I have the 64GB version and I also use a external HD with it and I have gone through 5 major windows cummulative updates and have had zero issues with storage, I keep no media stored on this PC & only have office installed and have 40 GB available of the claimed 64 it ships with. I have owned this laptop for 4 months and had zero problems so far I would buy this laptop again at the 215$ it sold for.
4 Stars By Bruno Leony on 2018-03-27
Great! Windows is it's only problem...
Great notebook, but need some works. Out of the box I had a lot of freezing and lag issues. I did not want to reinstall the whole Windows in order to achieve a better performance, so I was able to improve by desabling some Windows features and services manualy.
The only problem that still bothering me is the low disk space avaiable on the 64Gb version, only about 50% is user accessible.
5 Stars By KRVM1952 on 2018-05-23
I'm very happy with it
I have only had this a few days. I'm very happy with it. Keyboard is nice, it runs very fast after making a few changes. I cleanup all the old window files and got close to 30g of space. Added a extra mem and I have windows downloading all new files and programs there. For the price of this computer I'm very impressed. I have had more expensive ones that does not preform as well as this one. having wireless AC does make this a wonder.
update: i have added office 2016 and runs it great. Hooking up to the internet I'm impress with the speed. This unit runs smooth as a top.
I would buy this computer again with no problem. this company makes great computers.
2 Stars By JOHN on 2018-05-27
very nice construction, looks and feel, but slow and hot. hardware is 4.5 stars, internals is 2 stars.
Has nightmare wifi disconnection problems on battery. Almost missed my midterm assignment because this kept dropping wifi connection about 7 times in 5 minutes. was in a good wifi area too. And the bottom of the laptop gets very very hot almost burn your leg. Browsing chrome on 2 tabs for about 20 minutes got this thing cooking really good, the heat can be felt on the keyboard too. The good thing about this is that there is no better looking metal computer at this price range, if you want looks and style but dont plan on using this much then get it. Keyboard is nice. the ac adapter is really small and light. touchpad is very very nice feeling. screen is 1920 by 1080 resolution which is amazing. get premium feel for a budget price. the battery does last almost 10 hours.
5 Stars By Ingeborg Coffman on 2018-04-13
Great little computer
For the price it is just what I needed, I take it with me for playing a game and watch movies. Great for a student.
3 Stars By Scott J Konowal on 2018-05-08
Powerful enough for browsing, Quicken and Office 365. ...
Powerful enough for browsing, Quicken and Office 365. You get what you pay for. My only complaint is the lid has plastic pads, that swing down when the lid is opened, that act as the back feet. This is hard plastic and may be prone to scratching desktops. I'll avoid this design in the future.
5 Stars By GizmoDoc on 2018-04-30
Great little device. Best specs for the price range. Love the fingerprint unlock, range of ports and battery life. It would have been nice to have a USB-C charger rather than a dedicated charging port, but hey, that’s a pretty minor issue. Excellent resolution screen, keyboard key return and trackpad. Highly recommended