ASUS refreshes the original Transformer Book with Haswell, but it's still heavy (video)

We had two major gripes when we reviewed ASUS' original Transformer Book. One, it cost a lofty $1,500, even with a last-generation Ivy Bridge processor. Two, it was on the heavy side -- though to be fair, a 13-inch dockable tablet is unwieldy by definition. Well, ASUS went back to the drawing board and addressed at least one of our complaints. The refreshed Transformer Book, the T300, ships with a Haswell processor, which promises not just faster performance, but longer battery life (eight hours, to be exact). It also steps up to a max of 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, up from a 128GB SSD and 4GB of memory last time around.

Unfortunately, at 1.1kg (2.43 pounds) for the tablet and 800g (1.76 pounds) for the dock, it still feels weighty in the hand regardless of whether you're using it in tablet mode or as a proper clamshell laptop. Otherwise, the key specs are the same -- namely, a 13.3-inch IPS display with 1080p resolution and a mix of micro- and full-sized ports on the tablet and dock. No word yet on pricing or availability, but for now we've got hands-on photos below.

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ASUS Transformer Book T300

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ASUS Transformer Book T300 Eyes-on

Alexis Santos contributed to this report.

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ASUS Announces Transformer Book T300 with Detachable Tablet Display
Sleek ultraportable laptop with a 4th generation Intel Core processor features a quick-release 13.3-inch Full HD display that works as a Windows 8 tablet

Berlin, Germany (4th September, 2013) - ASUS today announced Transformer Book T300, a 13.3-inch laptop with a detachable Full HD display that can be used as a standalone Windows 8 tablet. Transformer Book is powered by a 4th generation Intel® CoreTM processor for seamless multi- tasking performance and offers outstanding energy efficiency, with up to eight hours battery life.

Sleek and durable design with cutting-edge multi-touch control
ASUS Transformer Book T300 features a sleek metallic design with a soft-touch finish that's both durable and stylish. The 13.3-inch tablet display has a Full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution for an expansive working space with razor-sharp images, while IPS technology ensures wide 178-degree viewing angles with excellent daylight visibility. Transformer Book also features cutting-edge multi- touch digitizer technology that detects a 6mm contact point, rather than the 9mm recommended by Microsoft for Windows 8. The result is a 10-point multi-touch display with high-precision input that's perfect for the kind of fine fingertip control required by everything from spreadsheets to creative applications.

Portable and practical - perfect for work and play
Just 11.5mm thin, ASUS Transformer Book T300's tablet display is extremely portable, but it's also highly practical for use on the move, with built-in USB 3.0, a micro-HDMI ports, plus an LED battery charge indicator. The keyboard dock is equally slim, at just 11mm, and has a compact magnetic dock connector that releases and snaps to the tablet display in an instant. The dock features a full-size keyboard with backlit keys and a large multi-touch touchpad with Windows 8 gesture support. Transformer Book features a front 720p HD camera and a rear 1080p Full HD camera, plus stereo speakers powered by ASUS SonicMaster audio technology for loud, clear sound.

AVAILABILITY & PRICING
Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

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ASUS refreshes the original Transformer Book with Haswell, but it's still heavy