The Asus L210MA-DB01 is a budget Chromebook alternative that offers a full Windows 10 (S Mode) experience at the same price you’d pay for a basic Chrome OS device. For learners and students, this impressive entry level notebook reinforces why Asus is one of the fastest growing laptop brands across all categories.
It’s a creative combination of features, starting with a lightweight body shell to the decent 10+ hour battery, and the decent 11-inch screen. To that, add a slim profile and a cleverly designed 180° lay-flat hinge, something rarely seen in entry level laptops, and you’ve got a fantastic basic PC for a learner to use at home and at school, or a college student researching and writing assignments.
Asus L210 design & features
All the bodywork on the Asus L210 is plastic, but the lid has a thick layer that looks and feels like an improvement over the Asus VivoBook L203MA, which had thin plastic that wouldn’t withstand classroom shoves and pushes. Even with the thicker layer, it remains pretty portable at only 2.31 pounds and 0.67-inches thick. The fanless CPU and eMMC storage are also weight savers and contribute to the portability of the package.
The 11-inch display, however, isn’t nearly bright enough for our liking. It boasts an HD (1366 x 768), and the matte finish is a good choice for working outdoors, but it makes for a pretty dull screen that looks colorless. This isn’t a deal-breaker if you’re word processing or web browsing, only that it makes photos and video look a bit lifeless.
Port selection is well rounded, including: USB 2.0, USB 3.2, USB Type-C, HDMI, audio jack combo and micro-SD card. Wireless connectivity comes in way of Wi-Fi 5(802.11ac), and an included webcam on the upper bezel. All of these ports will prove useful for docking all your peripherals.
Keyboard & Touchpad
On the Asus laptop L210 keyboard, you don’t have a number pad on the right side of the main keyboard. While this isn’t uncommon on more compact notebooks, including this Asus L210MA-DB01, Asus cleverly worked this onto the trackpad. It sounds unbelievable, but for sure you have a virtual number pad on the touchpad, that you can turn on and off via a button on the touchpad.
Having a number pad may not benefit everyone, but for those studying maths, science and business, it’s a great addition on a budget laptop. Nonetheless, the keyboard is quite basic with very light keys and very little tactile response. The Enter key alone, is colored in luminescent yellow, and it does give the otherwise plain deck some little style accent.
Asus L210MA-DB01 Performance
With Intel Celeron processors, expectations are always low, but with today’s Celerons matching yesterday’s i3 CPUs in performance, we can’t ask for more. The Celeron N4020 is a slight upgrade over the base 4000 model with more cache but, while it’s adequate to run office applications, multimedia editing and gaming will be a bit of a stretch.
This fanless CPU is ranked amongst the mid-range mobile processors, is partnered with 4GB RAM, 64 GB eMMC storage and Intel UHD Graphics 600 chip. This is adequate enough for web browsing and office application, and the very simplest games of course. For budget gaming, you can consider the Asus TUF FX505GT-AB73, with a dedicated Nvidia GTX 1650 graphics card.
Again, the Asus L210MA will do the basics of running two or three apps simultaneously provided you’ll not be opening dozens of windows at the same time. The 64GB storage is a bit lean, but it is double the 32GB storage you find on most Chromebooks and competing Windows 10 notebooks.
The low power fanless CPU and low-res screen all contribute to remarkable power savings. On our review unit, you have a mid-size battery, and if you keep things light, you’re getting 11 hours of battery life. That’s excellent.
For college students and home users, the Asus L210MA packs enough features and performance than most similarly priced laptops. It boasts class-leading battery life, is very portable, timeless design and good connectivity for all your peripherals.
However, the screen’s low resolution and average keyboard hold it from earning our Editors’ choice award for budget college laptops. A few dollars more with get you an Acer Aspire 5 or a Lenovo IdeaPad 3, both offer better performance and have bigger screens.
However, if you’re on a tight budget and strictly need an 11-inch laptop, the Asus L210MA-DB01 offers all the value you need for most college tasks.
THE BOTTOM LINE
The Asus L210MA-DB01 is a budget laptop that's a great choice for learners and students, with excellent battery life, is portable and very affordable
ASUS Laptop L210 Ultra Thin Laptop, 11.6” HD Display, Intel Celeron N4020 Processor, 4GB RAM, 64GB Storage, NumberPad, Windows 10 Home in S Mode with One Year of Microsoft 365 Personal, L210MA-DB01
$156.95 in stock
16 used from $130.00