New Asus Transformer Book Chi Series: Thin and Fanless 2-in-1

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Asus Transformer Book Chi T90

Asus Transformer Book Chi T90

The Asus Transformer Book series of affordable 2-in-1 notebooks have been extremely popular since 2013 with a variety of updates to these hybrid laptop tablets every few months. Asus revealed the latest iteration of this series, the new Transformer Book Chi, three new 2-in-1 laptops running Windows 8.1 and claiming to be “some of the thinnest hybrid tablets ever made.”

The three newest members of the 2-in-1 family — the Transformer Book Chi T90, Transformer Book Chi T100, and the Transformer Book Chi T300 — are powered by a variety of Intel processors. The smaller T90 and T100 will feature quad-core Intel Atom processors from the Bay Trail family while the larger T300 will be packed with a current-gen Intel Core M 5Y10 or Core M 5Y71  inside.

The 8.9-inch Transformer Book Chi T90 can rightfully claim the title of the thinnest 2-in-1 tablet thanks to a maximum thickness of just 7.5 millimeters. Unfortunately, the diminutive size of the T90 means the 8.9-inch screen is limited to 1280×800 resolution and the rest of the specs are in line with budget Windows 8.1 tablets in the $200-$300 price range. The new 10.1-inch T100 is likewise impressively thin at just 7.2 millimeters and the IPS display has resolution of 1920×1200 pixels.

Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi

Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi

The 12.5-inch T300, which was previewed at Computex in Taipei last year, is still thinner than the 11-inch MacBook Air even when docked with the keyboard. The T300 will also be available with either a standard FHD display or an optional 2560 x 1440 WQHD IPS display … a major step up from the rest of the Transformer Book family. All three keyboard docking stations on the new Transformer Book Chi models come with Type B USB 3.0 ports that are compatible with USB 3.0 via adapter (a necessary evil because a standard USB port is too thick for the new thinner and lighter keyboards).

The TransformerBook Chi series starts at $299 with the T90 tablet, going up to $699 for the Full HD T100, and $799 for the T300. The first models will hit store shelves in the U.S. starting in February with a variety of configurations almost certain to follow in later months.

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