The EP121 product tour (comments archive)

Looking for the EP121 product tour?  It’s located here:

This blog was recently restructured and required re-posting of the existing articles.  Unfortunately “” does not have a mechanism to transfer comments to a new post.  Rather than delete the original comments, they are preserved here for the time being.  For any new comments, please use the EP121 prouct tour link above.  Apologies for the inconvenience.


144 Responses to “The EP121 product tour (comments archive)”

  1. Does this device effectively run MS Office and MS Project?

    • Yes – it runs Office and Project very well. But for Project – you may want to connect an external monitor since 1280×800 might not be suitable.

  2. Tear it open, please! Show the inside! 64gb is too small for me, so I want to buy the cheaper version, find a 128gb ssd and install it instead of the 32. Unfortunately I’m not sure if they exist: shots of the SanDisk P4 version declaired as used in the ep121 show that it is the smallest model that can be 64gb max, but 128gb is larger in size. I’m in doubts:(
    Can you tell anything about RAM? Is it really limited by 4 gb? There definitely will be 8gb sodimm modules soon, so why not to plan some upgrade for heavy apps:)
    Many thanks for the review and even more thanks in advance for the future articles!
    pls excuse my english, it’s not my native

  3. Thanks for a fantastic review on a fantastic products !
    This is really the tablet PC I’ve been waiting for ….
    However, from your review there is no mentioning whether this tablet has a VGA-Out port for external display, or connection with various LCD projectors.
    It does have a hdmi and wifi, but rarely low-end LCD projectors have these features.
    I need this tablet for my lecturing using big screen in a class room.
    Thank you for your effort.

    • It does not have VGA – only mini HDMI. However there are many HDMI to VGA adapters available at many electronics retailers.

  4. If they are going to sell the tablet with a pen with no lateral button, I wonder why the pen with button appears in the promotional photos and also in this and some other video. When I’m working on my desktop I can easily use alt keys and the mouse at the side for right clicking, but when using this kind of slates with no physical keys a pen with buttons is a must. It really slows down the workflow (with Photoshop and any other program) to the point of not feeling comfortable. I need to know if the button version of the pen works with this tablet because these pens are not cheap, once I had to buy a replacement pen for my old Wacom ArtZ II tablet and it cost me more than 20$. Anyhow Asus should sell it with the full featured pen because if not thay make it appear like a toy, for dabbing with Artrage.

  5. Oh, the stand that you have, is this a generic thing or specifically as an asus accessory? would love to know where to get one.

  6. Hi,
    Thank you for putting in the time to give a hands on like this, and for actually reading and responding to all comments and questions.

    I would like to know do you think the HDMI output can be connected to a normal LCD Monitor used for Desktops? there is an HP converter (I know an adapter won’t work) but I am not sure if HDMI->DVI works if the screen has a DVI-Input.

    Do you think we’ll be able to update the O.S once the new windows is released? i can’t think it would be possible with only a USB connection and a special software to load the vendor customized O.S.

    Last but not least :), is there any specific place we can get a hands on this? Frys? …etc you must be well connected to get your so early, but I;d love to get a feel on this before making an order. (living in Atlanta, GA area)

    • HDMI can be converted to VGA and DVI easily. Many adapters on the market. So yes – you can connect this to your desktop LCD monitor.
      The EP121 will automatically boot from a USB Bootable thumbdrive. And you can also connect an external USB DVD drive. So those two options are available to you if you want to install an operating system.
      For product availability – all the info I have is in the Where To Buy post.

  7. Can you comment on the case? Was there an odor? A post by someone over on the Tablet PC REview Forums said their case really stinks. Wonder if it is a common problem or he just got a bad lot.

  8. Thanks ParalaX for you input. I am very glad to hear this! As a student that is very involved in math and science, I will need to take notes with text and diagrams and formula so I hope this tablet PC with a pen will make that much easier. The skepticism that student have is that a tablet may not be sufficient to write research paper and such..what is your take on that. The fact that this tablet has a Bluetooth keyboard probably eliminates that worry. Also, what programs have you used that enable you to organize your class notes and your other work?

    @Anonymous I am sorry for not making my question clearer, I think I am trying to determine if the tablet will get tiring to hold up in one’s hand for a long period of time?

    • I write paper on my x61t, which is 1024*768; so I expect the 1280*800 to be better, thanks to the keybord. Because without the keyboard, it would have been a pain: the virtual keybord is nice to type a url, but not a latex report.

      For the notes, I use onenote, wich is the best on the market for the moment. I tried evernote and other programs, but none of them is even close to onenote. Coupled with dropbox, it’s perfect, and you can’t loose your notes.

      Warning: with onenote 2010: you MUST apply all the updates, because one of them correct a bug about ink that disapear or move all by its own…

      Just keep in mind that formulas and text will have to stay in “ink” style; at least the formula since the recognition is very bad. For the diagrams, you can draw very easily lines, circles, etc… Very usefull. The only drawback, at least for me, is when you must do something like a sinus or a strange shape: I find it’s a bit harder to do on the tablet than on real paper. But you get used to it very fast…

  9. So I just got mine 😀

    You *can* flick through flip3d to get to other apps. Theres a specific running application for flick settings.

  10. Fantastic review for a fantastic product I’ve been waiting for.
    But there is a single function I really need that you haven’t mentioned :
    For a class presentation, is it possible to connect it to various LCD projectors which most of them, not equipped with HDMI connector?
    Thanks for your effort .

  11. Apparently it’s in stock at fry’s for pickup only. They must have broken the street date. West coast only, but it’s encouraging!

  12. Awesome this completes the emotional roller coaster ride I just had and I am once again 100% excited about this tablet. Thanks for the help researching the other penabled options.

  13. If I may, I can give my opinion as student using a tablet pc for 3 years now:

    Having a tablet PC, or this tablet, allows you to takes any kind of notes, like mathematics and so on. It’s incredibly usefull, as you always have all your class in your computer…

    My x61t is 2kg, and it’s not too heavy: it’s lighter than a 500 pages book; that you can have in pdf on your tablet…

    I’ve converted some friends that use a tablet all days; and they are very happy with it, so i definitly recommand a tablet pc for student use…

  14. The lack of buttons on the pen is really sad news. I too saw that the pen had buttons in an image which for people who do graphic work is an extremely important feature. Too bad it’s not compatible with other Wacom pens.

  15. i pick up my tablet today from frys electronics. they had one left. i like this table alot the viewing angle is amazing. its really fast. going to cancel my pre order with amazon today. im a proud happy owner.

    • Congratulation
      How is it possible that Microsoft and Amazon who were the first to announce it, postpunthe delivery?
      Proud guy. Congratulation.
      give us feedbacks

    • hi, could you please look at the screen model you have on your tablet ? It seems like frys sells a model with a MVA screen, not with a AFFS+… ( )

      If this is true that’s a real bad point for Asus in my book.

    • Don’t be confused by the terms MVA, IPS, AFFS, etc. IPS was developed by Hitachi years ago. It was later licensed by LG who kept the name IPS. BOE Hydis developed the technology further and called it AFFS. Both IPS and AFFS are examples of MVA displays.
      I can assure you that the display in the EP121 is from BOE Hydis and is an AFFS+ display. And I can assure you that it is not possible for Asus to substitute another display in this system. It’s not a simple matter of swapping out panels from different manufacturers.

  16. Anonymous Says:

    @Raghu, from a portability stand point, the specs and weight are published, and “too heavy” is a subjective call. It’s lighter than most laptops I would think. Not sure what you expect as an answer here.

  17. Hey thanks for this great review!

    As a college student, how do you think this device would fare for a student who would like to use the device to take notes with text and pictures in class? Also, how its portability, too heavy to carry around all day as a student? How are the viewing angles for the device. Can people see it even if there are standing to the side or if its on your lap, is there a glare on the screen?

  18. Is that one button on the side of the pen, or a two-button rocker switch like the intuos pens have?

  19. This is an awesome review!! Many thanks!!
    It is for sure the most powerful Slate in the world currently!!!

    You did a fine job on that review!! Well done!!

  20. In this photo the pen has buttons on the side, but in the videos I have seen I can see no buttons, could you confirm this? Thank you.

  21. Yesterday, watching a video review, I just realized that the ep121 digitizer pen lacks one of the most useful features for artists: buttons. I just can’t live without at least a button for color picking or for second click, it just makes working so much easier that I’m considering not buying this tablet if it doesn’t support at least pen models like the duoswitch: I suspect it might work, but I’d like to know if anyone that has this pen can confirm if it works with the ep121. Thank you very much.

  22. i notice there is a cheaper of of the tablet $999.00 but only has 2gb of ram and 32gb ssd. should i pay the extra 100.00 to get the slate with more storage?

    • rjames – the difference in price is now only approximately $70. For 2GB more RAM and an addtional 32GB of SSD, that’s a steal and your machine will thank you for it 🙂

  23. nice review and thanks for your effort.
    I am disappointed with the 256 pressing sensitivity level and the battery life.
    But it is still one of the best slate PC on the market.

  24. Thank you so much for all the great info on the ep121. It makes the wait a little easier.

    If you watch a 720p YouTube video for a few minutes does it get noisy and does it play smoothly? How about Netflix HD and Hulu HD. Thanks again.

    • John566 – all videos play great. And when a streamed video gets noisy or drops frames, it is an effect of the network connection and not the PC. I’ve watched videos streaming for hours with no issue.

  25. This is a great review. Do you know of an external battery solution that might work for longer flights? I have an old one that I am sure won’t be adaptable.

  26. Can the stock pen be upgraded to a better Wacom pen that would support tilt? I think that has something to do with the pen right? It’s not solely the digitizer.

    Also it has only one mic. Have you tested it? How does it sound? Have you tried configuring and using voice commands and such?

    • John – I’m not sure if tilt is dependant on digitizer or pen but I do know that the Intuos 3+ line and Cintiq line of pens will not work on the Slate. So that only leaves Tablet PC pens or “penabled” pens which as far as I know, don’t support tilt.

  27. Hi,

    I just love this tablet. Hopefully it will be available in Europe soon. 🙂

    Can you tell if sleep/hybernate mode is quick and responsive and without it’s issues?

    I’m looking for a multipurpose tablet that will control my HDRI camera setup (bracketing), and to have a multitude of apps available on the road.
    Quick and cumbersome waking up the tablet is something very needed to save power between takes. And I don’t want to power down/up the tablet all the time.
    I’ve read about some issues around this on some of the W7 tablets already out there too.

    Second one, is there something in the box for attaching the tablet to the network if needed. Or do I have to buy a usb2ethernet adapter? It’s mostly for copying large files from/to the tablet.



    • Rob Wu – I don’t have exact timings but waking from sleep seems very quick to me which I think is what you would want to use while photographing in the field. As far as it being without issues – I haven’t noticed anything myself up to this point but sleep in general can get flaky on any system – at least that’s been my experience.
      As for wired network – you will need a USB/Ethernet adapter (none is supplied in the box).

  28. hello All,

    i’m very interested in this product. i have one question to ask about the screen. How is the screen contrast compare to other tablets out there such as the ipad. you think the eee slate has a better screen contrast compare to the ipad? do the colors pop out!!!!!

  29. Yeah I understand, but i mean, it’s a very simple, and objective measure to do that will help many people if think :=)

    By the way, you said there was 2 fan? Very good news! Are they spinning when you are in idle?

  30. Hey!

    Nice review. If you still have the tablet, could you install batterybar for instance, and give us the powerconsumption when you do nothing, wireless off, screen at min and pen away from the screen? So we can have a number that does not depends on what you are doing 🙂

    Thanks in advance 🙂

    • ParalaX – while I understand everyone’s fascination with battery life – I think I was pretty clear in my tour about what I think about metrics. So I’ll leave it to others to explore the battery topic once they get their systems delivered. There are simply too many other topics I promised to write about which I need to get to – and of course, I have a real job and family that needs my attention 🙂

  31. thanks for answering about palm rejection 🙂 I learned something, as i thought palm rejection was always done at OS level, not at app level.

    another one :
    when you connected to a tv screen via mini hdmi, did the screen tablet switched off ? (i mean the display only, as obviously the touch didn’t, which is good). That would be fine for saving batteries while displaying on a bigger screen.

    • glouglou – Palm rejection starts with the controller which collects touch data. It can throw away some of that data or it can send it to the OS for inspection. The OS can throw away some of that data and pass on the rest to the application. The application can also inspect the data and throw some away. So palm rejection happens at multiple points. OneNote’s palm rejection is great as it goes the extra mile 🙂
      When connecting HDMI to a TV, it acts like any PC when connecting a 2nd display. So you can choose to duplicate, extend or use only 1 display. The EP121’s functions (like touch, pen, etc) always remain functional.

  32. Great blog by the way.. Seems your the only one with this amount of information as well video’s.

  33. 3d performance?

  34. I am drooling over those pictures and specs…hah.

    There’s one part I’m wary about- the internal battery. For a portable device, the battery would be a major component that needs replacement down the road. I’m looking a the pics and there seems to be no screws- does it look like the device would not be easily taken apart?

    • arthur – there are no screws. The back is held in with tabs that need to be popped out. I really don’t recommend doing this as it is very easy to damage it and of course your warranty will be gone. Also – the battery is not a part you will be able to purchase as a consumer. It will need to come from Asus so in the event at some point down the road you need a new battery – best to let Asus service take care of it.

  35. I do not want to bother you. Are you absolutely sure concerning this point:
    it supports stereo headphone or mic (auto-sensing).

  36. That’s disappointing, I was told at CES it was going to have 10 point multitouch