Asus Taichi review

A Windows 8 laptop with an extra screen in the lid

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Asus has elevated itself to such a position that we are genuinely excited whenever a new product appears in its lineup. In the case of the Asus Taichi, our excitement is completely justified.

It's a completely different approach that, if not for Windows 8, would likely fall flat, get branded as a gimmick and dismissed just as quickly. Instead, we have a realistic laptop/tablet hybrid that really does manage to independently fill the requirements of these two different devices.

We liked

The highlight of the Asus Taichi is the dual-screen approach. While the matt display of the main laptop screen is perfect for work, the glossy, multi-touch enabled second screen is perfect for enjoying media and games.

The fact that both are capable of 1080p HD resolution is a real positive, and the two displays look crisp and sharp. Audio is first class, as is the general build quality of the chassis.

Asus has put as much effort into the look and feel of the Taichi as it has into its excellent performance and usability. Windows 8 is still a fledgling system, but this type of device really plays to its strengths and showcases what Microsoft's latest creation has to offer.

We disliked

A couple of drawbacks are evident with the Asus Taichi, not least of which is the price and the frailty of the device as a whole. We expect you'll want a sturdy protective case for this machine, since the chances of cracking the lid screen are ever present.

Other issues that could be improved are the battery life and the brightness of the screen - neither was as strong as it could be. Lastly, while the system performed admirably most of the time, it did struggle when we pushed multitasking and both screens simultaneously.

Final verdict

The Asus Taichi stands up as a supremely desirable piece of consumer tech that acts as a sterling showcase for Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system.

Both power and usability are first class, and the design - as we've come to expect from Asus - really is head-turning. The Asus Taichi works better as a laptop than a tablet, but it's one of the best examples we've yet seen of marrying the two form factors together.

A couple of issues mean that it's not the perfect device, and the stonking price tag means it isn't a casual purchase by any means.

However, we couldn't help but enjoy every minute we spent using the Asus Taichi, and can recommend it as a rewarding purchase for anyone looking for the latest must-have device.

Tech Specs

Product TypeUltrabook/Tablet
Green CompliantYes
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ModelHD 4000
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeNo
Graphics Memory AccessibilityShared
Maximum Battery Run Time5 Hour
Solid State Drive Capacity256 GB
Backlight TechnologyLED
Product FamilyTAICHI 21
Keyboard BacklightYes
Front Camera/WebcamYes
Operating System PlatformWindows
Processor Modeli7-3517U
Operating SystemWindows 8
Brand NameAsus
Form FactorConvertible
Processor Speed1.90 GHz
Processor TypeCore i7
Screen Size29.5 cm (11.6")
Screen Resolution1920 x 1080
Standard Memory4 GB
Weight (Approximate)1.25 kg
Cache4 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Display Screen TechnologyIn-plane Switching (IPS) Technology
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 4.0
vPro TechnologyNo
Ethernet TechnologyNo
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Memory StandardDDR3-1600/PC3-12800
Height174 mm
Width339.2 mm
Depth228 mm
Screen ModeFull HD
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
ManufacturerASUS Computer International
Product Model21-CW011H
Product NameTAICHI 21-CW011H Ultrabook/Tablet
Product LineTAICHI 21
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberTAICHI21-CW011H
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

One TAICHI, Two Screens - Endless Flexibility

ASUS TAICHI™ is an incredible fusion of notebook and tablet for unparalleled mobile flexibility. Lid open, TAICHI is a powerful notebook with a crystal-clear Full HD screen, Intel® Core™ processor and backlit keyboard. Lid closed, TAICHI is a lightweight tablet with a slim, tapered profile and a multi-touch Full HD screen for intuitive fingertip control with Windows 8.

Package Contents
  • TAICHI 21-CW011H Ultrabook/Tablet
  • Lithium Polymer Battery
  • AC Adapter
Limited Warranty2 Year