Asus 11″ Touch-Screen Laptop

Asus X200M

I just purchased an Asus M200X 11.6″ Touch-Screen Laptop, It is an ultralight portable that comes with an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB Memory and a 500GB Hard Drive. The computer comes with Windows 8.1 installed, which works easily with the Windows Start tiles and the touch-screen interface. This gives you the feeling of an ultralight-tablet combination.

The Asus was definitely a great deal, and I was pretty happy with it out of the box. It was a bit slow installing applications and performing some actions. I decided to speed it up by cloning the internal hard disk to a 512GB Crucial Solid State Drive. Then I opened the Asus case up, removed the hard drive, and replaced it with the SSD clone. This sped up the computer operations appreciably, possibly by tens times or more. I also added an inexpensive LG external portable USB CD/DVD drive, mostly for ripping DVD discs and the occasional CD software installation. I also use it with a Logitech mouse, external keyboard and USB hub.

The cost for the Asus laptop was about $250, and the addition of the SSD was about $300. I installed it myself, so the total was about $550 to create my ultrabook with a decent size SSD for roadtrips. Considering that a MacBook Air would have cost $1000 to $1500 or more, that seemed like an affordable deal. The other choices on the low end were Chrome Books, which only run Google Chrome, and tablets which run iOS or Android. This laptop and SSD upgrade combination gave me an inexpensive second portable computer for trips. It was cheaper and more functional than a tablet.  I had considered the Chrome Book, but then realized that there was no Mail application. The Asus performed better and has more options than a Chrome Book. You can use a web browser to read your mail on Chrome, but I like the capability of a specialized Mail app to manage multiple email accounts and access to other apps and functions on a fully capable computer.

I was able to use email and browse on the laptop screen, while playing movies at the same time on a separate monitor through the HDMI port. I was also able to use AirPlay to stream iTunes and Netflix through an Apple TV, which was attached to a Toshiba LED display through the HDMI port. QuickTime and iTunes are free downloads from http://apple.com

Asus X200M

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