Overview of the hybrid tablet Acer Switch 12 Alpha: the impossible is possible
Acer Switch Alpha 12 was presented in April of this year and a few months later was demonstrated to the Russian public. For a manufacturer this is not the first model from the line of transformers Switch, but now the engineers really did a good job. Its form-factor and novelty as similar to the Microsoft Surface Pro 4, ASUS Transformer 3, HP Elite|Spectre X2 and a little different from the Dell XPS 12, Huawei MateBook and Samsung Galaxy TabPro S due to the different ways of fixing the keyboard blocks.
Acer device provides the same range of functionality as the competitors, but the obvious advantage Alpha Switch 12, by which make big bets the company is the use of processors Intel Core i of the sixth generation (Skylake) in combination with a special passive cooling system called LiquidLoop. Such a mix not previously encountered in devices 2-in-1 (for the most part they use the Core M) and more interesting to know, I was right there in ITC in its decision.
Packing and delivery
Package includes power cable, external power supply, an active stylus (battery and spare tip), setup guide, warranty card and a handout with contact information for the offices of LG. And all anything, if not a major power cable that isn’t really combined with such a sophisticated device. But this is from the NIT-picking.
The main part of the Acer Switch 12 Alpha is a classic tablet case made of aluminum and plastic with a 12-inch touch screen. Beveled edges and softly rounded edges of the device are combined with retractable leg-rest, covered with rubber for better grip with the work surface. The emphasis in the folded state at the expense of their shapes reminiscent of a car spoiler. For convenience of disclosure stand manufacturer made two special notches on its surface.
Two Acer logo found a place on the bottom frame of the screen in the center of the rear metal surface. A large block of lenses of the front camera is located in the upper left corner of the device.
Used stand can provide the angle of the tablet body 160 degrees relative to the working surface — this can not all rivals!
The second part of the keyboard base is a thin plastic panel with a special dense rubber-like coating as a bottom, and a workspace. Thanks to the magnetic hinge keyboard can be set not only parallel to the working surface, but at a slight angle for more convenient printing.
By the way, the magnets are very strong – can easily hold the tablet even with a small vibration.
The tablet part weighs 900 grams with a thickness of 9.5 mm – is not so much, but more than the HP Elite X2. Keyboard supplied adds another 350 grams and is 6.4 mm and the weight and thickness respectively. With such settings Acer Switch 12 Alpha close to many ultrabooks on the market.
The surface of the aluminum body of the tablet is not very practical: fingerprints of the hands and stains appear fairly quickly. With this plastic frame is used to best quality wireless connections and painted in a slightly darker gray color, almost not afraid.
Build quality Switch Alpha does not cause problems — it feels a disciplined approach and consistency of each element. Nothing sags, no crunches and no squeaks. The device looks modern and gives the impression of a monolithic, rigid structure.
On the body of the tablet is quite sufficient set of expansion ports: one USB 3.1 Type-C with support for Thunderbolt, the usual USB 3.0 Type-A, combined 3.5 mm connector for headphones/acoustics or microphone and a separate plug for charging.
Slot for memory cards microSD/SDHC/SDXC memory card is hidden behind the leg of the stand. On the opposite side there are the controls: power button with integrated led, dual volume key and Windows key to call up the corresponding menu.
The speaker system presents two speakers located on the front surface of the tablet top of the screen. Quality — by the standards of this device class, we can estimate the average.
The metal focusing hid two stickers with different information. One of them became known to us a more precise date of production of our instance – July 2016.
Hybrid tablet Acer, as with all devices of this kind, the main element of input is the on-screen keyboard. But since the model is positioned as a device “2 in 1”, she could not do without plug-in keyboard unit with touchpad. In the case of the Acer Switch 12 option one, the one that comes in the package.
Button keypad black color, the surface matte, all letters and symbols are white. In contrast to the working area, the substrate is made of a conventional dark plastic. Provides switchable white key illumination with one level of illumination. In the tablet has a light sensor, regulating in auto mode, not only the brightness of the backlight, but the backlight keys.
The distance between the buttons is about 3.5 mm, a thickness of 1.6 mm, the stated stroke of 1.4 mm, the size of the main key – 15 × 15 mm, the layout is quite conventional. All special functions device management by default, triggered by pressing the Fn modifier (change the brightness, volume and so on). In General, everything is done to ensure that the tablet was comfortable and familiar to work with.
Pressed clear, with an average restoring force. The sound is not loud, deaf. Long print does not cause discomfort. The keypad due to its small thickness and materials used bends, but this is typical of most such decisions.
Used touchpad device large will not name – is a rectangle 95 x 54 mm with rounded corners. Working surface is made of semi-Matt plastic with two hidden buttons with minimal, but clear and resonant way. Left “click” is triggered on virtually the entire surface, and the right only in the lower right corner.
Unlike the keyboard, working touchpad did not work for us. Actions are processed is not always adequate, often there are false positives. In addition, the workspace panel is free running, accompanied by a metallic clink when gently pressed. Perhaps this is by design, but it’s more like a flaw.
As the web camera review hero uses basic 2-megapixel module average quality fixed focus.
The microphone one, it is located in the center of the top face. On the back cover is more serious, a 5-megapixel module with no flash, but with autofocus. The maximum video resolution for both cameras – Full HD (1920 × 1080 pixels).
Stylus (aka digital pen) Acer Active Pen based on Wacom technology, detects 2048 levels of pressure and is equipped with two physical buttons that you can assign almost any action to a variety of applications. To secure it to the keyboard base by default, placed a cloth loop.
The stylus can be used for everyday work, and to draw or create handwritten notes. In addition, it can replace the mouse, if you drive them at a distance of 1-2 mm from the screen. Here to its claims.
Reference information and specifications
|Acer Switch 12 Alpha|
|Processor||Intel Core i5-6200U Skylake-U (Dual-Core) 2.3 GHz|
|Chipset||Intel Sunrise Point-LP|
|Graphics adapter||Intel HD Graphics 520|
|Display||IPS-type (manufactured by Panasonic), 12-inch, format 3:2, 2160 × 1440 pixels (QHD), 60 Hz, glossy, protective glass, touch control|
|Operational memory||8 GB of LPDDR3-1866 (933 MHz), dual channel mode, on-Board memory|
|Storage system data||1 × SSD Lite-On CV1-8B256, 256 GB, M. 2 2280, SATA3;|
|Connector flash cards||microSD/microSDHC/microSDXC|
|Interfaces||1 × USB 3.0;
1 × USB 3.1 Type-C Gen.1;
1 × 3.5 mm combo (output|input);
|Wi-Fi||802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (Qualcomm Atheros QCA61x4A)|
|Bluetooth||4.0 LE + HS|
|Additionally||Webcam (HD) 2.0 MP + rear 5MP ƒ/2.0|
|Food||The battery is not removable, 2-cell, 37 WHr (4296 mAh, 8,6 In)|
|External power adapter 45 W (2,37 A, 19)|
|Size, mm||292 × 201 × 9.5 mm/15.9 mm with keyboard|
|Weight, kg||0.9 kg + 0.35 kg keyboard unit + 0.32 kg BP|
|Operating system||Windows 10 Pro x64|
|Official manufacturer’s guarantee||12 months|
|Estimated price||76 000-79 000|
Hybrid Alpha Acer Switch 12 is represented in a fairly large number of modifications. It is based on exclusively ULV processors Intel Core i3, i5 and i7 processors with integrated graphics core HD Graphics 520. RAM LPDDR3 in the tablet can be from 4 to 8 GB volume solid state drives ranging from 128 to 512GB (in the Moscow retail meets the younger version with SSD 96 GB, but perhaps this is error description). The screen in all cases, exclusively manufactured by Panasonic the IPS with a diagonal of 12 inches, not the standard aspect ratio of 3:2 and a resolution of 2160 × 1440 pixels, with protective glass and touch input. Complete with any modification comes the keyboard base, but the stylus Acer Active Pen is a separate option that you have to buy additionally.
Among the competitors, the novelty of their dimensions is a middle ground, because in the collection of the thickness of the device is greater than 15 mm, and the weight is 1.25 kg. Add to this 0,32 kg, which add a PSU with the cable, and will be almost 1.6 kg: new Macbook Pro easier. On the other hand, MacBook is more expensive, and laptops for roughly the same price weigh around the same amount.
The cost of the initial version of the device, according to the time of testing in the Moscow retail is 50-55 thousand. One of the older (with SSD on 256 GB) sellers ask 83-85 thousand. The top modification in its appearance in the sale is likely to be close to 100 thousand rubles. In comparison to prices of competitors – a very worthy. And this note, at the start of sales!
Acer Switch 12 Alpha – gallery 1
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To us have tested an average technical characteristics version with Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD cost 76-79 thousand. Nominal frequency dual-core processor Core i5-6200U the hero of the review is 2.3 GHz. Supported by Hyper-Threading and with sed. In the case of the latter, the frequency can be automatically up to 2.8 GHz under load on one core and up to 2.7 GHz under heavy load on two cores with proper cooling.
The processor is made according to the norms of 14 nm and refers to a series of CPU with low voltage — the maximum TDP is 15 watts. With increasing frequency to the possible maximum and high computational load on the system may increase heat dissipation up to 25 W (the so-called Configurable TDP-up). The amount of cache third level is 3 MB. The minimum frequency at which the processor is in idle or when setting economy mode in the region of 600 MHz, which allows to obtain a very decent level of autonomy.
Responsible for the graphics integrated into the processor Intel HD Graphics 520 without its own dedicated memory. It consumes resources total LPDDR3 memory and the maximum frequency of the graphics core is in the range of 1000-1050 MHz — it also depends on the quality of cooling and core temperature. Stars in the sky because only 24 execution units the GPU is not enough, but to run and playable level of FPS in games commercials 2012 with the lowest settings it may be enough.
Acer Switch 12 Alpha – gallery 2
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South bridge in the Switch Alpha 12 is the chipset Intel Sunrise Point LP. The amount of RAM LPDDR3-1866 (933 MHz) in this instance, as we have said, is 8 GB. It works in dual channel mode. Both modules are soldered on the Board so it is possible to increase the amount of RAM there.
Data storage subsystem built on the basis of not the fastest SSD Lite-On CV1-8B256 256 GB. It is made in the format M. 2 2280 and is connected on the SATA3 interface.
Work wireless connections Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth 4.0 LE provides controller Qualcomm Atheros QCA61x4A. The ability to use 3G/4G connection is not available. For sound HDA-codec Realtek ALC255 and two rear speaker.
Acer Switch 12 Alpha features a non-removable lithium-polymer battery with a claimed capacity of 37 W·h the Manufacturer promises up to 8 hours of battery life, which is likely quite possible to achieve at low load on the main components and a low level of backlight brightness of the screen. Will check on the next page.
For charging the device uses a compact external power adapter 45 watt. Off Switch Alpha 12 is charged to its battery capacity is not fast almost three hours. In working condition under load is markedly increased.