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Asus Vivotab Note 8


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Just picked one up from the Microsoft Store here in Los Angeles for $329. I'll post some first impressions later this week. I'm not a huge believer in full Windows for smaller tablets; it just makes me wish that Metro apps were better.


The advantage of the Note 8 is that it's the first low-cost 8-inch Windows tablet to include a Wacom digitizer. 

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Very interested in it as a note-taking/sketching device. Looking forward to reading your impressions on the inking experience.

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I'm thinking about doing a more formal writeup on this device (not to the extent that surfaceproartist did, though. That was a great post!), but after having the device less than a week, here are my quick thoughts/impressions on it:


- It feels OK in my hand.  But, I think I like the feel of the Dell Venue 8 Pro a little better.  The Dell is slightly smaller, but it appears that the Asus has larger bezels, which could account for the difference.  The textured feel on the back of the Dell feels a little nicer, too, IMO.


- The buttons on the Asus aren't very comfortable to use, especially when you have to hold in the power button for 5 or so seconds to turn it on (or 10+ seconds to get it to reset after it hard crashing).  The metal buttons on the Dell feel much nicer.


- The Asus has already crashed on me 3 times, once rebooting to the BitLocker recovery screen, and right now it won't start up at all.  It may be going back to Microsoft this week (turns out that the battery had drained completely.  No warning that the battery level was critically low, no warning that Windows was going to shut down, it just completely shut off.  Nice job there, Asus).


- The included stylus is OK.  Handy to have in a pinch, but I missed not having a built-in eraser function or a button to activate it.  I've used my 3rd party pen (Axiotron Studio Pen) more since it has a better feel and eraser tip as well.


- At full brightness, the Dell appears brighter.  Not sure if this has anything to do with the differences in digitizers or not.


I want to like the VivoTab Note 8.  I really do.  But so far, my first impressions are that it is a device that had some promise, but has fallen short on delivering.  I'll update more as I get more use out of it, and see if I can get around some of the quirks I've been running in to.  Honestly, though, if the Dell stylus hadn't been such a fiasco, I would have gotten one for my DVP8, and saved myself a few hundred dollars.  Time will tell, I guess.

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  • 4 weeks later...

OK, here's a follow up on my last post with the AVN8. I've continued to have problems with random shutdowns and failing to wake from sleep.  I've dealt with it, just to get more experience with it and to see if I could figure out what the problem was, but this has been a frustrating device.


In what appears to be the last straw for this particular device, I was using it for notes in a meeting at work the other day (in OneNote using my 3rd party stylus), it just went dark.  No warning.  Just turned itself off and wouldn't turn on.  Previously when this happened, I would plug it in (even though it already had more than 75% battery remaining), do a couple of long press-and-holds of the power button, and it would at least respond.  Now, even when plugged in, there is no indicator on the power button that it is charging, nothing happens when I press the power button or the "Windows" button.  It's just flat out dead.


I reached out to the Microsoft Store, since that is where I bought it, but they referred me to Asus since it's beyond my 30 day return period.  I've reached out to Asus to get this one replaced.


Maybe I got a lemon and the replacement will be a completely different experience, but right now, I'm wishing I had never bought the AVN8.

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