Notebookcheck

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS Netbook Review

Sebastian Jentsch (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 12/05/2014

Netbook, redefined. Asus sells a handy subnotebook based on Windows 8.1 Bing priced at 219 Euros (~$269). Just how much netbook can customers expect at this low price? Asus speaks of elegance, premium-feel, performance, 12 hours of browsing, and vivid colors. A one-year license for Office 365 is also included.

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS: The new netbook costs just as much as a mid-range smartphone.
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS: The new netbook costs just as much as a mid-range smartphone.

For the original German review, see here.

Elegant, yet affordable? Asus has priced its EeeBook X205TA at just 219 Euros (~$269). Admittedly, the technology installed in the 11.6-inch device does not sound like much: A mainstream Bay Trail Atom, a small flash storage including Windows 8.1, a glossy HD screen, and not many interfaces.

Does the EeeBook X205TA have a right to exist against the background of innumerable Window-based convertible tablets? In view of the price: yes. 10 and 11.6 inch tablets start at approximately 300 Euros (~$368), even if we disregard no-name products. In this respect, Asus has not created a competitor for its slightly more expensive Transformer Books T100 and T200. Is the present EeeBook X205TA a good deal for traditionalists who still do not want a Windows tablet? Is it a value-for-money deal that Asus has saved for end-of-year business to boost its 2014 market share by a few units? We hope to answer all these questions in this report.

All low-cost 11.6-inch devices from the past few months are EeeBook X205TA competitorsAcer's Aspire E3-111 is one of the more interesting ones due to its fan-less design, and the ThinkPad Edge E145 because of its first-rate mechanical keyboard and robust build in this price range. However, it comes with a price tag of 299 Euros (~$367) and Windows is not even preloaded. 

·         Lenovo S20-30 (Celeron N2830, 270 Euros; ~$332)

·         Acer Aspire E3-111 (Celeron N2930, 260 Euros; ~$319)

·         ASUS X102BA-DF003H (AMD A4-1200, 250 Euros; ~$307)

·         Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145 (E1-2500, 299 Euros; ~$367, FreeDOS)

·         Toshiba Satellite CL10-B-100 (Celeron N2840, test coming soon, 270 Euros; ~$332)

Asus even has a comparable Chromebook in its lineup: The C200MA-KX003 with a Celeron N2830. However, it costs 80 Euros (~$98) more than the present Windows-X205TA.

Case

Looks thin and elegant
Looks thin and elegant
But it's only plastic.
But it's only plastic.

The base is covered in a matte, white plastic casing. The upper tray is made of one piece, and screws secure the base plate. Opening it seems easy enough, and therefore we could not resist trying. However, the base plate was not released; it is probably held in place by countless plastic hooks. Opening the unit with a putty knife might have worked, but we did not make any further attempts to avoid damaging the review sample.

The stability is acceptable, but not very high. We could twist the base unit to an extent with little force using our hands, but the top and bottom surfaces did not yield. The light casing has a good feel and conveys a sense of quality because its low weight does not require maximum strength. Anyone who twists and tears at the chassis will want to destroy the X205 deliberately. The matte, but still fairly sleek surfaces provide the hands with grip. We expect that over time visible dirt deposits will accumulate on the surface, which will be more difficult to remove than on painted or polished surface. The dirt will show on the white keyboard bezel (grille that is part of the upper tray) in particular. Fingerprints might accumulate on the piano painted lid, but it is easy to clean.

We would have wished for a slightly stronger lid. It is easily warped, and the black frame around the screen creaks in the corners because it (barely noticed) sometimes jumps out of its enclosure.

Connectivity

Two USB 2.0 ports are installed in the slim chassis. This is also the single feature that might be seen as a highlight because only the mini editions of HDMI and the card reader (micro-SD, SDXC, SDHC) follow. Most users will appreciate the broad distribution of micro-SD cards rather than the standard SD cards.

Right: 2x USB 2.0
Right: 2x USB 2.0
Left: multi-pole power socket (7 contacts, 19 V), micro-SD, micro-HDMI, headphone/microphone jack
Left: multi-pole power socket (7 contacts, 19 V), micro-SD, micro-HDMI, headphone/microphone jack
Front: no interfaces
Front: no interfaces
Rear: no interfaces
Rear: no interfaces

Communication

Asus uses an 802.1 b/g/n (1x1) Wi-Fi adapter including Bluetooth 4.0. It is a dual-band compatible adapter that transmits either in the 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz band. We experienced an impressive range in our personal settings. It was possible to quickly open Notebookcheck.com with two signal bars (Windows display) even well beyond our 45-meter (~148 ft) marking. Expensive laptops usually loose the signal considerably earlier or only have an unstable or slow connection.

Accessories

The manufacturer equips the inexpensive X205 with a 33-Watt power supply. In addition, only the warranty information, a brief user's manual, and a one-year license for Office 365 are included. Despite the low price, the packaging is high-quality, and is identical to those of the manufacturer's mid and premium range laptops.

Warranty

Asus includes a manufacturer's warranty of only one year with a pick-up and return service on the device. The buyer should register the laptop after purchase in order to activate technical support. The warranty period can be upgraded by one year with a supplementary warranty (laptop warranty extension from 1 to 2 years: 49 Euros (~$60).

Documentation in the box
Documentation in the box
Office 365 for one year
Office 365 for one year
137 gram power supply
137 gram power supply
Product registration
Product registration
Product registration - what for?
Product registration - what for?
It has to be activated for buying a supplementary warranty.
It has to be activated for buying a supplementary warranty.
Asus Webstorage: 5 GB free of charge
Asus Webstorage: 5 GB free of charge
Single uploads must not exceed 500 MB
Single uploads must not exceed 500 MB

Webcam

The webcam is very disappointing. Firstly, it has the outdated resolution of 640x480 pixels. Then, the poor focus, blurry outlines and pale, unnatural color ruin every picture. These kinds of pictures are not even suitable for the next online auction. Voice recording using the integrated microphone is better. The noise is tolerably low, but the user should not be further than one meter (~3 ft) away from the device. The recording becomes tinny and the interference is more prominent, the weaker the sound pressure gets.

Webcam pictures with 640 x 480
Webcam pictures with 640 x 480
Reference Canon EOS 1100D
Reference Canon EOS 1100D
The pictures are faded, blurry, and useless
The pictures are faded, blurry, and useless
Reference Canon EOS 1100D
Reference Canon EOS 1100D

Input Devices

Keyboard

Asus has put a lot of effort in the keyboard layout, and utilizes the casing's entire width. Masculine hands benefit from the generous spacing because they can type comfortably. The drop is distinct for a slim device, but the keyboard and the base both yield clearly under higher pressure. Users who type gently, will be happy with the firm stroke and clear pressure point. The lettering that is only glued on, might prove to be a drawback; they are not printed. After some use, the lettering will probably be rubbed off.

Touchpad

The ClickPad is compelling with its pronounced pressure point and short, yet sufficient drop. The right and left mouse buttons are integrated in the lower part where the drop is most distinct. The surface is matte, but relatively sleek. It allows the fingers to glide fast and comfortably. Unfortunately, the Asus touchpad does not support any multi-touch gestures - not even two-finger scrolling. The mouse driver does not offer any corresponding settings.

Relatively wide layout and clear drop
Relatively wide layout and clear drop
The arrow keys are small, but separated
The arrow keys are small, but separated
"Asus" branded ClickPad
"Asus" branded ClickPad

Display

No halos, but early contrast shifts on the TN screen
No halos, but early contrast shifts on the TN screen

Asus has installed an 11.6-inch, 16:9 HD screen with 1366x768 pixels. The screen is not AR-coated. The glossy screen has a maximum brightness of 260 cd/m² (center), which is a good but not exceptional rate. The screen distributes the brightness uniformly. Halos are not very visible on a black screen. However, the rather evolving contrast shifts, owing to the limited viewing angles typical for an inferior TN screen, quickly lead to unsightly color deviations and pale contrasts, when looking from the sides.

266
cd/m²
256
cd/m²
261
cd/m²
251
cd/m²
260
cd/m²
256
cd/m²
235
cd/m²
225
cd/m²
239
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 266 cd/m² Average: 249.9 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 85 %
Center on Battery: 260 cd/m²
Contrast: 684:1 (Black: 0.38 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.33 | - Ø
ΔE Greyscale 6.25 | - Ø
36% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll)
Gamma: 2.26
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Z3735F, 32 GB eMMC Flash
Lenovo S20-30
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPCX-24C6HT0
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
Asus C200MA-KX003
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, 32 GB eMMC Flash
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
Radeon HD 8240, E1-2500, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
Screen
-65%
-69%
-12%
-57%
Brightness
250
235
-6%
235
-6%
243
-3%
266
6%
Brightness Distribution
85
86
1%
85
0%
90
6%
86
1%
Black Level *
0.38
1.25
-229%
1.17
-208%
0.31
18%
0.89
-134%
Contrast
684
203
-70%
209
-69%
806
18%
330
-52%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.33
10.77
-70%
12.53
-98%
9.3
-47%
11.14
-76%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
6.25
11.97
-92%
13.25
-112%
10.18
-63%
11.48
-84%
Gamma
2.26 106%
2.13 113%
2.68 90%
2.37 101%
2.1 114%
CCT
7906 82%
14771 44%
18403 35%
12578 52%
12680 51%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
36
40
11%
38.7
8%

* ... smaller is better

sRGB coverage: 52%
sRGB coverage: 52%
AdobeRGB coverage: 36%
AdobeRGB coverage: 36%

We measured a contrast of 684:1, which is a surprisingly good rate for this price range, as can be seen in the chart below. Some competitors just barely achieve 200:1 despite an identical maximum brightness. The color space becomes important when the X205 is used with professional tools, such as Adobe Lightroom, Quark XPress or InDesign. This will very unlikely be the case due to the low computing power, as well as the low resolution. The AdobeRGB coverage is just 36%, and sRGB is only 52%. The competitors do an equally poor job.

We examined the 11.6-inch screen with a spectrophotometer (state of delivery with Asus color profile). The DeltaE shifts are lower than we are used to from low-cost TN screens or this price range. Both ColorChecker and Grayscale displayed a DeltaE of 6. Though this is not in the target range (<3), it is 50% better than most of its rivals. The reason for the relatively good color reproduction is that Asus preloads a color profile ex-factory just like those in its mid and premium range laptops. We see that Asus does not calibrate every single X205TA ex-factory, based on the weak yet still existing bluish cast of the TFT (see grayscale screenshot). A real calibration of every single screen would prevent any bluish cast.

CalMAN Grayscale - light bluish cast
CalMAN Grayscale - light bluish cast
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN ColorChecker: low DeltaE
CalMAN ColorChecker: low DeltaE

The glossy screen does not make a particularly good impression outdoors. Direct light causes reflections. At least the brightness can be set to 260 cd/m² (center) even in battery mode, when the screen's energy saving features are disabled.

Minimum brightness, battery mode
Minimum brightness, battery mode
Maximum brightness (260 cd/m² center)
Maximum brightness (260 cd/m² center)
Average brightness 134 cd/m² (dimmed 5 levels)
Average brightness 134 cd/m² (dimmed 5 levels)

Images invert quickly when viewing from the sides. Contrast deviations will not distract the viewer quite as much horizontally; the margin is roughly 90 degrees here.

Viewing angles: AUO B116XTN02 im EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
Viewing angles: AUO B116XTN02 im EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS

Performance

Intel's Atom Z3735F (1.33 GHz) is a member of the Bay Trail T SoCs, and it has been designed for tablets owing to its low power consumption. This platform is used in most low-end convertibles or netbooks today. There is, however, a minor difference between the Atom, Celeron, and Pentium models. The EeeBook X205TA is predestined for undemanding computational tasks, though it can deal very well with (simple) parallel applications.

2 GB of DDR3 RAM is available as on-board memory, which was sometimes overburdened during the gaming tests (error message). It is not possible to upgrade the RAM, nor is there an optional 4 GB model available. Windows 8.1 in the 32 bit BING version is common for current low-cost laptops, tablets and convertibles. Data is stored on a 32 GB eMMC flash storage that only had 14 GB of available storage in state of delivery. The user could soon find the limits of the capacity. The reason for the extremely tight storage capacity is the recovery partition.

System info: CPU-Z CPU
System info: CPU-Z Cache
System info: CPU-Z Mainboard
System info: CPU-Z Memory
System info: GPU-Z Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail)
System information: Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS

Processor

Prime95 CPU @1.6 GHz stable
Prime95 CPU @1.6 GHz stable

Intel's Atom Z3735F (1.33 to 1.83 GHz) differs from the Pentiums, Celerons (N2930 quad-core: 1.8-2.2 GHz; TDP: 7.5 Watts) and AMD APUs (E1-2500) in the competition with a lower base clock and very low TDP of <4 Watts. The Celeron N2830 (TDP: 7.5 Watts), for example, is a dual-core with 2.1 to 2.4 GHz. AMD's E1-2500 (dual-core SoC) does not even feature a Turbo and a high TDP of 15 Watts. Intel's Atom SoC is normally installed in tablets and convertibles; the utilization in a netbook like our review sample is rather an exception.

The 32 bit OS restricts the options of CPU benchmarks to the old Cinebench R10. Here, the Z3735F only outperforms the competition in multi-core load. The Celeron N2930 calculates faster. The Atom comes in last in single-core rendering. The browser benchmarks show mixed results. Sometimes the X205 has the lead (Kraken 1.1), sometimes it is last (Octane V2), and sometimes it pulls even (Sunspider). PCMark 7's Computation Score is 14% lower than that of Acer's Aspire E3-111 (Celeron N2930). Users who place importance on (low-level) performance will thus be happier with a quad-core Celeron. The performance corresponds to that of Acer's Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP with an identical SoC.

Performance geeks will not find satisfaction in the netbook category, especially since Asus cuts the Turbo at 1.6 GHz. More than 1.6 GHz was not possible in any benchmark (single & multi). However, the X205 could keep the clock stable (even in multi-core stress).

Cinebench R10
Rendering Single 32Bit (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
813 Points ∼12%
Lenovo S20-30
1202 Points ∼17% +48%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
1141 Points ∼16% +40%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
1052 Points ∼15% +29%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
774 Points ∼11% -5%
Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
2867 Points ∼8%
Lenovo S20-30
2224 Points ∼6% -22%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
4013 Points ∼12% +40%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
2016 Points ∼6% -30%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
2424 Points ∼7% -15%
Sunspider - 1.0 Total Score (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
488 ms * ∼12%
Lenovo S20-30 (Chrome 38.0.2125.111m )
564.1 ms * ∼14% -16%
Lenovo S20-30 (IE 11)
337.3 ms * ∼8% +31%
Asus C200MA-KX003 (ChromeOS 36.0)
522 ms * ∼13% -7%
Asus C200MA-KX003 (ChromeOS 35.0)
491 ms * ∼12% -1%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
604 ms * ∼15% -24%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
9362 ms * ∼16%
Lenovo S20-30 (IE 11)
6995.9 ms * ∼12% +25%
Lenovo S20-30 (Chrome 38.0.2125.111m)
4867 ms * ∼8% +48%
Asus C200MA-KX003 (ChromeOS 35.0)
4482 ms * ∼8% +52%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
3483 Points ∼8%
Lenovo S20-30 (Chrome 38.0.2125.111m)
7261 Points ∼16% +108%
Lenovo S20-30 (IE 11)
4542 Points ∼10% +30%
Asus C200MA-KX003 (ChromeOS 36.0)
7321 Points ∼16% +110%
Asus C200MA-KX003 (ChromeOS 35.0)
7161 Points ∼16% +106%
PCMark 7 - Computation (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
5830 Points ∼21%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
6648 Points ∼23% +14%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
3258 Points ∼11% -44%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
5409 Points ∼19% -7%

Legend

 
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS Intel Atom Z3735F, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Lenovo S20-30 Intel Celeron N2830, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPCX-24C6HT0
 
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG Intel Celeron N2930, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
 
Asus C200MA-KX003 Intel Celeron N2830, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145 AMD E1-2500, AMD Radeon HD 8240, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
 
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP Intel Atom Z3735F, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), 32 GB eMMC Flash

* ... smaller is better

Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
1740
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
813
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
2867
Help

System Performance

PCMark 8 v2 Home
PCMark 8 v2 Home

We experienced an agile and fast system performance, which PCMark 7 also confirmed. The X205 gained an advantage of 30 to 50% here. The scores of the newer PCMark 8 are not as euphemistic, which is probably due to the memory's lower impact. Acer's Aspire E3-111Lenovo's S20-30 and the ThinkPad Edge E145 feature conventional, slow HDDs.

As long as no CPU stress test reduced the performance, we could switch between windows quickly, and run multiple applications simultaneously. The low storage capacity will be somewhat a constraint; only 14 GB is available in state of delivery (gross capacity: 32 GB).

PCMark 8
Storage Score (sort by value)
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
1915 Points ∼38%
Home Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
1142 Points ∼20%
Lenovo S20-30
1130 Points ∼20% -1%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
1104 Points ∼19% -3%
PCMark 7
System Storage (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
3676 Points ∼52%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
1480 Points ∼21% -60%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
417 Points ∼6% -89%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
3730 Points ∼52% +1%
Creativity (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
4513 Points ∼32%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
3670 Points ∼26% -19%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
2865 Points ∼20% -37%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
4422 Points ∼31% -2%
Entertainment (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
1614 Points ∼15%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
1540 Points ∼14% -5%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
1189 Points ∼11% -26%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
1479 Points ∼14% -8%
Productivity (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
1761 Points ∼16%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
839 Points ∼8% -52%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
663 Points ∼6% -62%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
850 Points ∼8% -52%
Lightweight (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
2214 Points ∼31%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
1357 Points ∼19% -39%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
1150 Points ∼16% -48%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
1219 Points ∼17% -45%
Score (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
2388 Points ∼30%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
1648 Points ∼20% -31%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
1254 Points ∼16% -47%
Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
2252 Points ∼28% -6%
PCMark 7 Score
2388 points
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
1142 points
Help

Storage Devices

The 32 GB eMMC flash did not stand out positively in any way. Its throughput rates are lower than, for example, in the Switch 10 (32 GB eMMC). The latter is in total 46% faster in CrystalDiskMark. Consequently, Asus has installed a particularly slow flash storage here. Nevertheless, it easily outperforms the HDDs in the other competitors. The differences to HDD would normally be more pronounced.

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BSLenovo S20-30Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LGLenovo ThinkPad Edge E145Acer Aspire Switch 10 SW5-012-13DP
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
-18%
-16%
-26%
46%
Write 4k
4.225
1.063
-75%
1.054
-75%
0.27
-94%
5.603
33%
Read 4k
12.03
0.396
-97%
0.387
-97%
0.102
-99%
18.31
52%
Write Seq
46.54
101.3
118%
103.3
122%
96.29
107%
72.77
56%
Read Seq
120
100.8
-16%
104.7
-13%
96.9
-19%
169.3
41%
32 GB eMMC Flash
Sequential Read: 120 MB/s
Sequential Write: 46.54 MB/s
512K Read: 81.72 MB/s
512K Write: 45.64 MB/s
4K Read: 12.03 MB/s
4K Write: 4.225 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 32.36 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 5.554 MB/s

Graphics Card

HD Graphics is not the same as HD Graphics, not even within the Bay Trail family. The clock of the unit in the Z3735F (313 - 646 MHz) is sometimes lower than in the Z3745D (313 - 792 MHz) or Z3735F (313 - 854 MHz). The graphic card benchmarks also underline this with a difference of 7 to 25% for the Aspire E3 and Lenovo S20. AMD's iGPUs are unmatched in this division. They have a lead of up to 128% as the chart below illustrates.

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BSLenovo S20-30Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LGLenovo ThinkPad Edge E145HP Stream 14-z050ngHP 15-g005ngAsus F551MA-SX063H
3DMark 11
7%
25%
128%
113%
305%
23%
1280x720 Performance GPU
182
194
7%
225
24%
429
136%
394
116%
759
317%
223
23%
1280x720 Performance
212
226
7%
264
25%
464
119%
444
109%
831
292%
261
23%
3DMark
5%
-70%
47%
39%
136%
28%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
1230
1349
10%
362
-71%
2273
85%
2099
71%
3291
168%
1471
20%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score
1186
1176
-1%
354
-70%
1501
27%
1638
38%
2882
143%
1515
28%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Graphics
16059
17475
9%
5056
-69%
25296
58%
22434
40%
35930
124%
20760
29%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score
15265
15256
0%
4791
-69%
18212
19%
16523
8%
32088
110%
20652
35%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
6% / 5%
-23% / -38%
88% / 74%
76% / 64%
221% / 192%
26% / 26%
3DMark 11 Performance
212 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
15265 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
1186 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Only buyers who want to explicitly push the netbook to its limits with older games need to fear getting hold of an especially weak graphics card. These buyers would be better off with an APU. The computing power is not inevitably worse, as can be seen in AMD's E1-2500 above, but the power consumption is considerably higher. Up-to-date games are taboo from the outset, no matter whether its it an HD Graphics (Bay Trail) or netbook APU.

It is unlikely that users who do not care for games will have problems with the graphics core's performance. The integrated video decoder unloads the CPU and supports all common codecs. The image signal can be transmitted via micro-HDMI (max. 1920x1080 pixels).

We added low-cost, 15-inch devices for comparison. HP's 15-g005ng and Asus's F551MA-SX063H (399 and 369 Euros; ~$490 and $453) are based on current AMD or Intel hardware. An AMD Radeon R5 (Beema) is two to three times faster than the review sample here. Nevertheless, we would not call it "gaming suitable" in our verdict.

The VGA level from 1993 (Beneath a Steel Sky) ...
The VGA level from 1993 (Beneath a Steel Sky) ...
...does not have to be used (Dungeon Keeper).
...does not have to be used (Dungeon Keeper).
Recurrent buffer overflow in Tomb Raider.
Recurrent buffer overflow in Tomb Raider.
Dishonored - 1024x768 Low / Off, FOV: 75 (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Z3735F, 32 GB eMMC Flash
12.5 fps ∼10%
HP Stream 14-z050ng
Radeon R3 (Mullins/Beema), A4 Micro-6400T, 32 GB eMMC Flash
17.6 fps ∼14% +41%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
26.4 fps ∼20% +111%
Asus F551MA-SX063H
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N3520, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
14.3 fps ∼11% +14%
Tomb Raider - 1024x768 Low Preset (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Z3735F, 32 GB eMMC Flash
12.9 fps ∼2%
Lenovo S20-30
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPCX-24C6HT0
14.1 fps ∼2% +9%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
15 fps ∼2% +16%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
Radeon HD 8240, E1-2500, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
21.8 fps ∼3% +69%
HP Stream 14-z050ng
Radeon R3 (Mullins/Beema), A4 Micro-6400T, 32 GB eMMC Flash
20.7 fps ∼3% +60%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
34 fps ∼5% +164%
Asus F551MA-SX063H
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N3520, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
15.5 fps ∼2% +20%
Sleeping Dogs - 1024x768 Low Preset AA:Normal (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Z3735F, 32 GB eMMC Flash
13.2 fps ∼7%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
Radeon HD 8240, E1-2500, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
16.4 fps ∼9% +24%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
28.2 fps ∼15% +114%
low med. high ultra
Sleeping Dogs (2012) 13.27.5fps
Dishonored (2012) 12.59.8fps
Tomb Raider (2013) 12.96.7fps

Emissions

System Noise

Asus uses a fan-less design for its X205. That is also the basic concept of the Bay Trail T platform. Consequently, we did not have to enter any rates for the review sample. The hard drive based competitors at least have a measurable HDD base noise, or a clacking produced by the read and write heads (Aspire E3 fan-less). Lenovo's S20-30 and ThinkPad Edge E145 both have an active fan that speeds up considerably during load. Users who value silence, but do not want to forgo the storage capacity of an HDD will find the best compromise in the Aspire E3-111-C6LG.

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
eMMC
Lenovo S20-30
HDD
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
HDD
Asus C200MA-KX003
eMMC
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
HDD
Noise
Idle Minimum *
33.4
29.8
30
Idle Average *
33.4
29.8
30
Idle Maximum *
33.4
29.8
30
Load Average *
34.7
29.8
32.8
Load Maximum *
35.4
29.8
35.1

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

Does the plastic casing stay acceptably cool despite the fan-less design? The only possible answer has to be "yes" even though some hot spots of 45 degrees Celsius (~113 °F; upper side) and 47 degrees Celsius (~117 °F; underside) are found. The equally fan-less Aspire E3-111 competitor has hot spots of up to 57 degrees Celsius (~135 °F), which might be due to its higher TDP of 7.5 Watts (vs. 4 Watts). Acer's netbook is also the warmest of all named models while idling.

We could only prompt the hot spots illustrated in the graph (max. load) during the multi-hour stress test. Practical Internet browsing corresponds rather to the idle graph. The X205TA runs very stably, which we could ascertain in nine hours of stress via FurMark and Prime95. The temperatures on the SoC climbed to just below 70 degrees Celsius (~158 °F); the CPU clocked between 1.3 and 1.5 GHz.

Stress test start CPU @1.6 GHz
Stress test start CPU @1.6 GHz
Stress test 68 °C CPU @1.33 to 1.4 GHz
Stress test 68 °C CPU @1.33 to 1.4 GHz
Stress test 9 hours CPU @1.4 to 1.5 GHz
Stress test 9 hours CPU @1.4 to 1.5 GHz
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
Z3735F
Lenovo S20-30
N2830
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
N2930
Asus C200MA-KX003
N2830
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
E1-2500
Heat
4%
-20%
12%
18%
Maximum Upper Side *
44.5
33.7
24%
48.1
-8%
36.1
19%
28.4
36%
Maximum Bottom *
46.8
42
10%
56.8
-21%
34.3
27%
27.5
41%
Idle Upper Side *
27.2
29
-7%
32.6
-20%
28.1
-3%
27.7
-2%
Idle Bottom *
27.2
30.4
-12%
35.8
-32%
26.2
4%
28
-3%

* ... smaller is better

 27.2 °C25.7 °C23.5 °C 
 26.7 °C25.7 °C23.5 °C 
 23.8 °C24.1 °C23 °C 
Maximum: 27.2 °C
Average: 24.8 °C
23.6 °C26.3 °C27.2 °C
23.2 °C24.7 °C25.3 °C
23.5 °C24 °C24.1 °C
Maximum: 27.2 °C
Average: 24.7 °C
Power Supply (max.)  30.8 °C | Room Temperature 22.2 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Speakers

Weak, tiny speakers
Weak, tiny speakers

The speakers are on the device's front underside. Their sound quality is rather poor and codecs (via tool) cannot improve it either. The two speakers are focused on mids; differentiated trebles and basses (low ranges) are completely ignored. The volume is not especially high.

Energy Management

33 watt power supply
33 watt power supply

Power Consumption

The idle power consumption of 1.6 to 3.2 Watts is exceptionally low, even for Bay Trail. The latter 3.2 Watts is only due to the good brightness. The X205TA only offers the energy profile "balanced".

The compact power supply only consumed 9 Watts during the stress test. Simple load via 3DMark 2006 only required 8.1 Watts. That makes the X205 the most frugal Intel Atom netbook that we have ever tested in every sense. The virtually non-existent standby power consumption or even when it is shut down is very positive. Our Voltcraft VC 960 recorded 0.00 Watts, although no voltage whatsoever should be consumed physically in standby. It is simply too low for the measuring device. The reason for this might be found in the power supply that provides the X205TA with power via seven poles rather than two. Asus uses an angular plug for the first time ever.

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
Z3735F
Lenovo S20-30
N2830
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
N2930
Asus C200MA-KX003
N2830
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
E1-2500
Power Consumption
-103%
-135%
-21%
-114%
Idle Minimum *
1.6
4.9
-206%
5
-213%
2.2
-38%
4.2
-163%
Idle Average *
2.9
6
-107%
7.3
-152%
3.6
-24%
5.9
-103%
Idle Maximum *
3.2
6.2
-94%
7.4
-131%
6.3
-97%
Load Average *
8.1
12.8
-58%
15
-85%
14.9
-84%
Load Maximum *
9
13.4
-49%
17.4
-93%
9
-0%
20.1
-123%

* ... smaller is better

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0 / 0.05 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 1.6 / 2.9 / 3.2 Watt
Load midlight 8.1 / 9 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Voltcraft VC 960

Battery Runtime

WiFi test: 9 hours
WiFi test: 9 hours

The 38 Wh lithium polymer battery accomplishes very good battery runtimes, which is particularly noteworthy in view of the device's low price. The idle test finished after 19:33 hours. However, this rate is too high even for reading e-books because it was performed using minimum brightness, which is unsuitable for work. Asus allows a very dark setting in which almost nothing can be recognized even in darkness.

The Wi-Fi test is performed with a script that opens a new website every 45 seconds, some with videos. The brightness was set to 134 cd/m² (dimmed 5 levels / comes closest to our 150 cd/m² standard) for this test. The X205TA lasted for a good nine hours, which is slightly shorter than in our Big Buck Bunny H.264 test that we use to ascertain the video playback time via a loop, also at 134 cd/m².

Does it leave the competitors breathless? Not quite: The Asus C200MA-KX003 Chromebook (48 Wh) lasts 12% longer in the Wi-Fi test, and the ThinkPad Edge E145 only lags marginally behind, by a good five hours. However, we should keep in mind that the Edge E145 needs a 63 Wh lithium-ion battery for this, which makes the X205 to the clear winner. The long battery life corresponds to the very low load and idle power consumption.

Battery Runtime
Reader / Idle (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
1173 min ∼43%
Lenovo S20-30
min ∼0%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
436 min ∼16%
Asus C200MA-KX003
1200 min ∼44%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
1183 min ∼44%
Load (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
305 min ∼11%
Lenovo S20-30
min ∼0%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
108 min ∼4%
Asus C200MA-KX003
323 min ∼12%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
241 min ∼9%
WiFi (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
545 min ∼20%
Lenovo S20-30
328 min ∼12%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
257 min ∼10%
Asus C200MA-KX003
612 min ∼23%
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145
499 min ∼18%
H.264 (sort by value)
Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
585 min ∼22%
Acer Aspire E3-111-C6LG
271 min ∼10%
Asus C200MA-KX003
640 min ∼24%
Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
19h 33min
WiFi Surfing
9h 05min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
9h 45min
Load (maximum brightness)
5h 05min

Verdict

EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS: Browsing and office machine with a good screen
EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS: Browsing and office machine with a good screen

Asus reduces the core properties of a netbook to a common denominator without forgoing a certain degree of quality and looks. The EeePC revival is handy, long lasting, and is equipped with reasonable input devices. The Bay Trail platform contributes to a decent office performance, which is slightly lower than in identically built netbooks. The reason for this is that Asus has installed an especially slow eMMC and limited the Turbo speed slightly. Highlights are the good contrast and exceptionally low power consumption.

Although Asus opts for a glossy, TN screen, the contrast and color reproduction are better than those of the low-cost competition. The completely noiseless operation makes the tight storage capacity a little more tolerable; netbooks with an HDD clearly have an advantage here.

The X205 also has solid drawbacksMaintenance, even simple battery replacement, is not possibleLenovo's ThinkPad Edge E145 and the Aspire E3-111-C6LG are more user-friendly with easy-to-access innards. The webcam shoots pictures, that are not even suitable for EBay auctions even in daylight, but the microphone is acceptable.

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In Review: Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS
In Review: Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS

Specifications

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS (EeeBook Series)
Processor
Intel Atom Z3735F 1.33 GHz
Memory
2048 MB 
, DDR3L 1333 MHz SDRAM, on-board
Display
11.6 inch 16:9, 1366x768 pixel, TN, glossy: yes
Storage
32 GB eMMC Flash, 32 GB 
, 14 GB free
Soundcard
HD Audio
Connections
2 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI, Audio Connections: microphone-in/headphone-out jack, Card Reader: Micro SD, Micro SDXC, Micro SDHC
Networking
Bluetooth 4.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 17.5 x 286 x 193.3 ( = 0.69 x 11.26 x 7.61 in)
Battery
38 Wh Lithium-Polymer, Battery runtime (according to manufacturer): 12 h
Operating System
Windows 8.1 (32 Bit) + Bing
Camera
Webcam: VGA 640x480
Additional features
Speakers: stereo + microphone, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, 33 Watt power supply, one-year Office 365 license, 12 Months Warranty
Weight
980 g ( = 34.57 oz / 2.16 pounds), Power Supply: 200 g ( = 7.05 oz / 0.44 pounds)
Price
230 Euro

 

Asus launces a new netbook just before Xmas 2014:
Asus launces a new netbook just before Xmas 2014:
the EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS is a non-touchscreen, 11.6-inch device.
the EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS is a non-touchscreen, 11.6-inch device.
Incredible? Just as incredible is the price of 219 Euros including Windows 8.1 and Office 365 for one year.
Incredible? Just as incredible is the price of 219 Euros including Windows 8.1 and Office 365 for one year.
It also features a Bay Trail Atom that does not need active cooling.
It also features a Bay Trail Atom that does not need active cooling.
The HD screen is not AR coated.
The HD screen is not AR coated.
The white casing kicks things off in Germany, ...
The white casing kicks things off in Germany, ...
... and more colors are to follow.
... and more colors are to follow.
Though the screen is glossy, it is nice and bright.
Though the screen is glossy, it is nice and bright.
The classic EeePC almost always had a non-glare screen.
The classic EeePC almost always had a non-glare screen.
Asus opts for a low-cost TN, ...
Asus opts for a low-cost TN, ...
... but with relatively good colors and contrast.
... but with relatively good colors and contrast.
The slim X205TA is completely made of plastic. A shiny lid, ...
The slim X205TA is completely made of plastic. A shiny lid, ...
... but matte work surfaces and underside.
... but matte work surfaces and underside.
The roughened surface will soon attract dirt and fingerprints.
The roughened surface will soon attract dirt and fingerprints.
The ClickPad is sleek and nice to use.
The ClickPad is sleek and nice to use.
The manufacturer deliver its self made pad without multi-touch.
The manufacturer deliver its self made pad without multi-touch.
Will a driver update perhaps remedy that?
Will a driver update perhaps remedy that?
The webcam only has a VGA resolution (640 x 480), ...
The webcam only has a VGA resolution (640 x 480), ...
... and the image quality is less than perfect.
... and the image quality is less than perfect.
Pleasing: The Wi-Fi signal was stable even 45 meters outside of the building.
Pleasing: The Wi-Fi signal was stable even 45 meters outside of the building.
The chassis is relatively stiff, ...
The chassis is relatively stiff, ...
... and sports two USB type A ports.
... and sports two USB type A ports.
The power supply fits in this angular socket.
The power supply fits in this angular socket.
Only a micro-HDMI is available for image output.
Only a micro-HDMI is available for image output.
The status LEDs on the front are the only "blink" elements.
The status LEDs on the front are the only "blink" elements.
White stopper? They'll be the first to smudge.
White stopper? They'll be the first to smudge.
Open the device? We could remove all screws, ...
Open the device? We could remove all screws, ...
... but the plate did not budge.
... but the plate did not budge.
Consequently, the battery in the Eeebook X205TA has to be considered non-removable.
Consequently, the battery in the Eeebook X205TA has to be considered non-removable.
The speakers are on the underside and throw the sound at the tabletop.
The speakers are on the underside and throw the sound at the tabletop.
The compact power supply only weighs 137 grams
The compact power supply only weighs 137 grams
New: Asus uses an angular, multi-pole plug. Could that be the reason for the inmeasureably low standby power consumption?
New: Asus uses an angular, multi-pole plug. Could that be the reason for the inmeasureably low standby power consumption?
Asus EeeBook X205TA: Poor viewing angles, but good contrast and decent brightness.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: Poor viewing angles, but good contrast and decent brightness.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: with micro-SD card reader
Asus EeeBook X205TA: with micro-SD card reader
Asus EeeBook X205TA: USB 2.0 only
Asus EeeBook X205TA: USB 2.0 only
Asus EeeBook X205TA: thin yet sufficiently rigid casing
Asus EeeBook X205TA: thin yet sufficiently rigid casing
Asus EeeBook X205TA: The matte, white surfaces are sensitive for dirt and not easy to clean.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: The matte, white surfaces are sensitive for dirt and not easy to clean.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: Respect. The Wi-Fi range exceeds many premium range laptops.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: Respect. The Wi-Fi range exceeds many premium range laptops.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: decent and clean build for the price range.
Asus EeeBook X205TA: decent and clean build for the price range.

Similar Laptops

Devices with the same GPU and/or Screen Size

Lenovo Ideapad 100S Notebook Review
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Atom Z3735F, 0.998 kg
Asus X200MA Netbook Review
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Celeron N2830, 1.24 kg
Dell Chromebook 11 (3120) Review
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Celeron N2840, 1.245 kg
Lenovo N20 Chromebook Review Update
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Celeron N2830, 1.2 kg
Acer TravelMate B115-MP-C2TQ Netbook Review Update
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Celeron N2930, 1.4 kg
Acer Aspire ES1-111-C56A Netbook Review
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Celeron N2840, 1.29 kg
Acer Chromebook 11 CB3-111 Review
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Celeron N2840, 1.25 kg

Links

  • Manufacturer's information

Compare Prices

Pro

+Low weight
+Long battery life
+Acceptable system performance
+Brightness and contrast
+Silent and relatively cool
 

Cons

-Poor web cam
-ClickPad without multi-touch
-USB 3.0 only
-Glare-type screen

Shortcut

What we like

Noiseless, frugal, and very low priced.

What we'd like to see

A matte screen

What surprises us

The even lower power consumption of a Bay Trail Atom system during load and when idling. The battery life is as <gs id="94dbffa4-f9cd-4aa0-b034-3b1d4d66b985" ginger_software_uiphraseguid="bae39cde-bd0e-4b67-931d-5667d5b59197" class="GINGER_SOFTWARE_mark">good</gs> as otherwise only in Chromebooks or convertibles with a second battery in the keyboard dock.

The competition

Lenovo S20-30 (Celeron N2830, 270 Euros)

Acer Aspire E3-111 (Celeron N2930, 260 Euros)

Asus X102BA-DF003H (AMD A4-1200, 250 Euros)

Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E145 (E1-2500, 299 Euros)

Toshiba Satellite CL10-B-100 (Celeron N2840, 270 Euros)

Asus Chromebook

Asus C200MA-KX003 (Celeron N2830)

Rating

Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS - 12/01/2014 v4(old)
Sebastian Jentsch

Chassis
64 / 98 → 65%
Keyboard
65%
Pointing Device
64%
Connectivity
39 / 81 → 48%
Weight
75 / 78 → 93%
Battery
93%
Display
75%
Games Performance
23 / 68 → 34%
Application Performance
42 / 87 → 48%
Temperature
90 / 91 → 99%
Noise
100%
Audio
50 / 91 → 55%
Camera
29 / 85 → 34%
Average
62%
75%
Netbook - Weighted Average
> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Asus EeeBook X205TA-FD005BS Netbook Review
Sebastian Jentsch, 2014-12- 5 (Update: 2014-12-10)