In this post we’re taking a detailed look at the Asus VivoBook X202E as it is known in the US, or the Vivobook S200 / S200E as it’s called over here in Europe.
This is Asus’s new 11.6 inch affordable mini laptop running Windows 8. Its sells for around $550, and for that kind of money, you do get plenty: a solid and good looking metallic body, snappy hardware, a nice touchscreen and fair battery life for an 11 incher. And these are just some of the reasons why this one could be your next ultraportable.
Anyway, read the review below for more details about the Asus Vivobook X202E and find out if this little one is worth your money or not. And if you have any questions about it, just post them at the end of the review.
Asus Vivobook X202E / S200 video review
The Specs sheet for the Asus Vivobook X202E
Asus Vivobook S400CA-DH31T
Screen 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 px resolution, LED, touchscreen
Processor Intel Ivy Bridge Core i3-3217UM CPU, 1.8 GHz
Chipset Intel HM77
Video integrated Intel 4000 HD
Memory 4 GB DDR3
Hard-disk 500 GB HDD
Connectivity Wireless N, Fast Lan, Bluetooth 4.0
Ports 1x USB 2.0, 2 x USB 2.0, VGA, HDMI, LAN, SD card-reader, webcam
Battery 2 Cell 38Wh
Operating system Windows 8 Home Premium
Size 303 x 200 x 22 mm (11.9 x 7.9 x 0.95 inches)
Weight 1.4 kg (2.9 pounds)
Design and exterior
You should know that the VivoBook S200 is not really an ultrabook, but comes extremely close to one, that’s because its nearly 22 mm thick case is a tiny bit outside Intel’s requirements for an ultrabook (should have been only 21 mm thick for that). Still, this is a compact and good looking portable laptop, that only weighs about 1.4 kilos.
It also feels sturdy and properly built for life on the road. The aluminum dressed lid cover is quite stiff and does not bend easily, while the bottom is covered in this soft plastic that provides proper grip when grabbing the laptop. Down here, there’s only a cooling grill in the middle of the underbelly and the speakers on the sides, as the battery and internals are encased and not very easy to access or remove.
While not as thin as the 11.6 inch Asus Zenbook UX21A, the VivoBook S200 offers enough space on the sides for a complete set of ports, while the Zenbook did not. On the left it packs the PSU, an Ethernet port, a Full-size HDMI and two USB ports, plus a Kensington lock. On the right you’ll find the VGA vide output, another USB, the headphone/microphone jack and a card-reader, that still can’t take an entire card, but don’t forget this is an 11.6 inch laptop.
Lifting the lid cover, you’ll notice a silver aluminum covered interior and a glossy bezel around the display. The screen and the black bezel around it are covered in hardened glass, and if you’re wondering what’s the point of these rather large edges, well, it’s simple, Windows 8 needs them in order to perform most of its bundled gestures.
The display itself is just average, as the S200 packs an LED backlit TN panel, with 1366 x 768 px resolution. But on an 11.6 inch screen, the images and even the texts are fairly sharp. Yes, the viewing angles aren’t impressive and yes, the glossy coating is going to be a pain when using the laptop outside, but as long as you’ll keep the S200 mostly indoors, you’ll be fine with its screen.
Oh, and did I mention this is a touchscreen? Well, it is, as most Windows 8 laptops are going to pack one, but it’s not convertible or swivable
like on ultrabooks hybrids. No, the S200 is just a regular laptop, but with a touchscreen that you can use with your fingers or a capacitive stylus.
A fairly good touchscreen
Keyboard and trackpad
The black chiclet keyboard and the wide trackpad are actually quite good. The keyboard is not backlit, but the keys are firm and offer a proper feedback, thus typing on the S200 is an overall pleasant experience.
The trackpad is accurate and responsive most of the time,plus it works fine with the gestures added by Windows 8. However, it tends to miss fast and gentle taps more often than you’d like, which can get a bit annoying.
All in all, the Asus VivoBook S200 offers the looks and the overall quality you’d expect from ultrabooks, but for almost half the cost, that’s why I’m pretty sure many of you will love it. But let’s dig a little deeper before drawing conclusions.
Not much to complain about the keyboard, but the trackpad can get annoying
Hardware and performances
Asus plans to offer the X202E in a bunch of hardware configurations. Our tested unit comes with an Intel Ivy Bridge Core i3-3217U processor, integrated Intel HD graphics, 4 GB of RAM, a 500 GB Hard-drive and Windows 8, which is going to be top configuration.
Overall, the laptop felt snappy while performing daily tasks, either in Metro or in Dekstop mode. In fact, with Windows 8 and the touchscreen, you’re going to spend a lot of time actually scrolling between Metro Apps and swiping and touching things around.
I’m not going to tell you that many things about Windows 8 here in this particular clip, but I will tell you that the basic functions and gestures implemented by the new Microsoft OS are quite cool. Yes, you’ll need some time to get used to these gestures, but in the end I believe you’ll like them. On , and if you fear you’ll have smudges and fingerprints all over your screen, well yes, there’s no way past those, but you can always use the laptop without actually touching the display.
With Windows 8, you get two sets of apps: the regular ones you’re already used from your old Windows computers, that you install and use in desktop modes, but also touch-friendly Metro apps, available from the Windows Store. Right now there aren’t many, but the guys at Microsoft are working on improving their ecosystem.
In the end, the Asus VivoBook X202E we tested here can deal just fine with your daily activities, like browsing, editing documents and presentations, watching movies, listening to music and so on. It can even handle some light games and even more demanding pieces of software, like video or photo editors. However, don’t forget that it’s not really meant for that, so don’t expect too much out of it.
If you’re interested in some benchmarks, check the details and the pictures below:
PCMark 07:2051 pts;
Cinebench 11.5: OpenGL: 7.84 fps, CPU:1 .79 pts;
3DMark 11: P306, E593.
Noise, heat, speakers and other details
While most 11.6 inch laptops tend to get either hot or noisy when pushed, the S200 does not. Yes, you’ll hear the fans spinning and the hard-drive cranking, but that’s normal and the laptop does get warm on its underbelly, but it never gets uncomfortable to hold in your lap.
The speakers are for sure loud, while the sound quality isn’t that shabby either. Still, don’t expect anything spectacular, these are after all just some tiny laptop speakers.
The webcam on top does a decent job as well, but unless there’s sufficient lightning, the images will end up quite grainy.
And as a final detail, the Asus S200 packs a decent Broadcom wireless module, that also adds Bluetooth, so connectivity wise, the VivoBook is alright, although there’s no WiDi like on many of the more expensive ultrabooks out there.
There’s a rather small 2 Cell 38 Wh battery inside the Asus VivoBook S200 and that’s going to be enough for about 3 to 4 hours of everyday use, based on your activities, which isn’t exactly stellar, but it’s not that bad either.
I did like the compact Power-brick though, with a long cable, suitable for a laptop designed for life on the road.
The X202 can go for 3-4 hours on a charge, which is not impressive
Prices and availability
The exact Asus VivoBook we tested here is called the Asus Vivobook X202E-DH31T and starts right now at around $550 in the US and about 500 euros in Europe, but I expect the prices to drop a bit in the next weeks. In fact,
these shops tend to have it discounted.
A slightly cheaper version will also be available, packing an Intel Celeron B930 processor, for about 50 to 100 dollars less, but I wouldn’t go for it unless I’m looking for a really
tight budget laptop, though, as it’s going to be quite slow.
All in all, the Asus VivoBook S200E, or the VivoBook X202E as you might know it in your country, is definitely a laptop you should consider. It packs the looks and the build quality of an ultrabook, alongside a touchscreen, plus offers decent performances and alright battery life. All for around 500 dollars.
And yeah, you can get other good laptops for the same kind of money, but if you want something light and highly portable, that can still deal fine with your everyday requirements, you’re not going to find many other laptops that can stand next to this Asus.
And this pretty much sums up our review for the Asus VivoBook X202E. Thanks for sticking by and if you have any questions about this unit, post them in the comments below and I’ll be there to reply.
Andrei Girbea Andrei Girbea, Editor-in-Chief
. I've a Bachelor's in Computer Engineering and I've been covering mobile technology since the 2000s. You'll mostly find reviews and thorough guides written by me here on the site, as well as some occasional first-impression articles.
May 2, 2013 at 6:44 pm
I am confused between buying vivobook x200e i3 and s400ca i7. My main requirement is portability and power as for carrying it seldom to college and powerful enough to easily run VMware. Can you please suggest something.
May 28, 2013 at 10:27 am
Can we run tools like visual studio and matlab on such a laptop?
May 29, 2013 at 11:17 am
barely, if you have small projects. otherwise, it’s going to get quite sluggish fast.
June 13, 2013 at 5:48 am
Very nice review!!! After spending some time reading a lot of reviews about Asus Vivobook X202E, this evaluation of yours convinced me,finally, to buy a new laptop as a replacement to my old one.
June 13, 2013 at 9:20 am
Glad it helped
June 15, 2013 at 7:24 pm
The new UK 15.6 inch version at 279 pounds sterling just came out today – any good? – its a bit heavier and I don’t need the extra screen size or 750GB disk I’d rather have the 11.6 I think
June 16, 2013 at 12:20 pm
that with an i3 or what? tell me the exact model number so i can have a look at it. still, if ou want something portable, easy to carry around, go for a smaller option, 11.6 or 13.3 inches tops
July 17, 2013 at 3:51 pm
sorry for late reply – I got the i3 s400ca – great laptop – runs medium to large apps like dreamweaver no problem – pain in the butt trying to change over to a ssd though it was not necessary as it runs totally cool and quiet with the normal 500GB disk – upgraded with an extra 4GB ram which again in unnecessary as the 4GB did fine job
Windows 8 is new to me and a pain for fist couple days then I loved it – it comes with zero manual so you have to google just to find out how to switch it off :)
July 17, 2013 at 3:58 pm
glad you liked it. and yes, Win 8 is a pain at start. I for one am still using win 7 on all my devices, for the time being
July 8, 2013 at 11:30 pm
I brought one not too long ago and I can easily say that it is like a laptop worth $800 for only $500 ( I got mine for $430 with taxes and that included Microsoft 365 university for free) it is the best laptop I’ve had an it has a sexy sleek design, perfect for college or personal uses. It’s even good with games as well depending on the game, the touch is very fast and responsive,and it has 3 USB ports with am HDMI port. Can it get any better that that?
July 13, 2013 at 1:33 pm
Can it run iTunes?
July 16, 2013 at 10:17 pm
I’m looking at 2 models in the UK and not sure which to go for – Asus VivoBook S200E-CT216H or the slightly more expensive S200E-CT158H which appears to be the older model? I also need to know if they can run iTunes?
July 17, 2013 at 11:47 am
both can run iTunes.
from what i found, the CT-158H is the newer version , with an Intel Core i3-3217U processor. The CT216H comes with an older processor. There’s no big difference between the two in terms of everyday performances, however, the 158H version bundles better graphics. Thus, it will run full hd movies easier and also some games.
Al the other things seem identical.
Not sure what the price difference between the two is, but if it’s not that big, I’d go for the 158H version (if I got you right, you’re saying that this option is actually cheaper, in which case you should definitely go for it). If you found this useful and you’re buying from Amazon in UK, maybe you can use my link? Let me know :P
July 17, 2013 at 3:56 pm
Says everywhere I can over clock the i3 processor in my s400ca but nowhere can I find out how – much appreciate if you can tell us how
Andrei great website you have and good you spend the time helping us!
July 18, 2013 at 10:12 pm
Not sure what to say about overclocking that I3 on your laptop, my expertise on that is rather limited… But I’ll have a look and put an article together if a I find anything worthwhile.
August 6, 2013 at 11:53 pm
Your information on the X202E was great.
You wrote: The exact Asus VivoBook we tested here is called the Asus Vivobook X202E-DH31T
Are the Vivobook X202E-DH31T and CT-158H one and the same as the X202E-CT009H?
On your specification it says 1.7 GHz Oother specifications says 1,8 GHz. Which is the right one?
August 9, 2013 at 1:02 pm
looks like all these are the same. and the CPU is clocked at 1.8 Ghz, there as a small error in my specs
August 27, 2013 at 11:19 pm
Between Acer Aspire S3 13.3″ and this laptop Asus Vivobook X202E 11.6″, which one is a better choice?
August 29, 2013 at 8:38 am
you’re comparing a $1400 with a $500 laptop. Is that fair?
August 31, 2013 at 12:31 am
Hello, Can this computer run Minecraft at a decent framerate? (Single-player and online servers) I’m looking for laptops under 600 dollars that can run Minecraft well.
August 31, 2013 at 9:50 am
haven’t tried it myself, but i think it should…
September 16, 2013 at 7:17 pm
is the asus s200e any good for using ms ord, excel and powerpoint? I really need something good, affordable and portable for university. thanks for your revie.
September 25, 2013 at 3:54 am
I love your reviews, keep it up!
I want to know whether it would be worth waiting for a haswell 11.6 touchscreen laptop. I can get the x202 here in Hong Kong with an i5 3317u, which I think is quite a substantial CPU increase from the i3.
Are the benefits mostly battery or CPU/GPU performances?
Also, I read there are some throttling issues with the x202? Have you encountered any?
October 1, 2013 at 3:02 pm
don’t know anything about a Haswell version of this laptop right now. The best part about Haswell is the increased battery life, the performances boosts are marginal
October 1, 2013 at 4:24 pm
Asus S400CA VivoBook 14 inch Touchscreen Laptop Core i3
had it now couple of months – it will do everything you need for a good price university PC – no need for i5 – and I am a website designer!
December 2, 2013 at 2:55 pm
Thanks for the great review. I have actually asked my computer vendor to order one for me but he told to wait a while longer for a newer model. Is it true? If so, do you have the specs and the price ?
December 28, 2013 at 6:30 am
Do you think this laptop is suitable for students? Im starting year 11 next year.
And if possible, do you know any other laptops similar to the vivobook s200e?
January 22, 2014 at 6:36 am
1.Can a replacement battery be put in the
Asus X202E 11.6″(by an experienced tech)so
it will run longer without charging? I’m
not always near an electrical source.
2.Can memory be upgraded?
I have this Asus,and like it very much
except for these 2 flaws. Thnx so much
for the review. Very good.
February 4, 2014 at 4:16 am
I’m having trouble following all the different model numbers and I can’t seem to find much information on them.
Can you please explain the difference between DH/CT? Also the X200/Q200/S200? What is the newest model?
Basically what I’m looking for is the best hardware configuration of the 11.6 inch VivoBook series.
February 4, 2014 at 4:03 pm
The fastest 11 inch Vivobook available right now comes with the Intel Core i5-3317U processor and up to 8 GB of RAM. You’ll most likely buy it with a HDD, but can replace it with an SSD if you really want to boost the performances. Can’t get specific on models, as they differ from country to country.
March 24, 2014 at 1:45 am
I know you have answered part of my question, but you think this computer is capable of running without getting any slow or giving any resolution problem if i instal Visual Studio 2010? Also, can I run the firestorm viewer for Second Life environment?! Thank you, your review is very helpfull! :D
March 24, 2014 at 6:46 pm
If you get the I5 version, it should run VS decently. Not sure about the i3 version though, VS is quite demanding. I can’t comment on SL, I’m not familiar with it and never tried it so I don’t know its requirements
May 10, 2014 at 2:04 pm
What about the performance asus S200E CT331H (PDC/ 4GB/ 500GB/ Win8).. It is bit cheaper but elegant look.. Can it perform well with win 8 wit bit of xcel, ppt, net surfing and video watching??
May 10, 2014 at 9:55 pm
It’s a decent laptop, if your expectations are fairly low. You could also consider upgrading the HDD to an SSD, this will make it much snappier