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Shootouts

2-in-1 notebook mega shootout: Acer vs. ASUS vs. HP vs. Lenovo

By Kenny Yeo - 23 Jul 2017

Performance Benchmarking

Performance Benchmarking

The notebooks will be tested using our usual suite of benchmarks. We have also included results of the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 to serve as a point of reference as it is still one of the most popular 2-in-1 notebooks around. This is the list of benchmarks used and the specifications of the notebooks tested:

  • PCMark 8
  • 3DMark 2013
  • Tomb Raider
  • Far Cry 2

Test Notebooks Compared
  Acer Switch Alpha 12 ASUS Transformer 3 Pro HP Spectre x360 (2016) Lenovo Yoga 910 Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (Core i5-6300U, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD)
  Acer Switch Alpha 12 ASUS Transformer 3 Pro HP Spectre x360 (2016) Lenovo Yoga 910 Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (Core i5-6300U, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD)
Launch SRP
  • From S$2098
  • From S$2598
  • From S$2699
  • From S$2699
  • From S$1999
Processor and Chipset
  • Intel Core i7-6500U (2.5GHz, 4MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i7-6500U (2.5GHz, 4MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i7-7500U processor (2.7GHz, 4MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i7-7500U (2.7GHz, 4MB L3 cache)
  • Intel Core i5-6300U (2.4GHz, 3MB L3 cache)
Operating System
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 10 Pro
System Memory
  • 8GB LPDDR3
  • 16GB LPDDR3
  • 16GB RAM
  • 16GB DDR4 RAM
  • 8GB LPDDR3 RAM
Video & Display
  • 12-inch IPS touchscreen display
  • 2160 x 1440 pixels
  • Intel HD Graphics 520
  • 12.6-inch
  • 2880 x 1920 pixels
  • Intel HD Graphics 520
  • 13-inch touchscreen display
  • 1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Intel HD Graphics 620
  • 13.9-inch IPS touchscreen display
  • 1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Intel HD Graphics 620
  • 12.3-inch PixelSense display
  • 2736 x 1824 pixels resolution
Storage
  • 512GB
  • 512GB PCIe 3.0 x4 SSD
  • 512GB SSD
  • 1TB PCIe SSD
  • 256GB SSD
  • MicroSD expansion (Up to 64GB)
Optical Drive
  • None
  • None
  • None
  • None
Connectivity
  • 802.11ac/b/g/n/a
  • Bluetooth 4.1
  • 802.11ac/b/g/n/a
  • Bluetooth 4.1
  • 802.11 ac/b/g/n/a 2x2
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • 802.11ac/b/g/n/a
  • Bluetooth 4.1
  • 802.11 ac/a/b/g/n
  • Bluetooth 4.0
Audio
  • Built-in stereo speakers
  • Built-in 2W stereo speakers
  • ASUS SonicMaster Premium Technology
  • Bang & Olufsen audio
  • HP Audio Boost
  • 2 x JBL stereo speakers with Dolby Audio Premium
  • Stereo speakers with Dolby Audio-enhanced sound
I/O Ports
  • 1 x USB 3.0
  • 1 x USB 3.1 Type-C
  • 1 x USB 3.0 port
  • 1 x USB Type-C Thunderbolt 3
  • 1 x HDMI
  • 1 x 3.5mm audio jack
  • 1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1
  • 2 x USB Type-C Thunderbolt 3
  • 1 x 3.5mm audio jack
  • 1 x USB 3.0
  • 1 x USB Type-C (with video output)
  • 1 x USB Type-C (charging)
  • 1 x 3.5mm audio jack
  • 1 x USB 3.0
  • 1 x MicroSD
  • 1 x Mini-DisplayPort
  • 1 x Headphones jack
Battery Type
  • 37Wh
  • 39Wh
  • 57.8Wh
  • 78Wh
  • Integrated 39wH
Dimensions
  • 291 x 201 x 15.9mm (with keyboard dock)
  • 298 x 208 x 12.5mm (with keyboard dock)
  • 305 x 218 x 13.8mm
  • 323 x 224.5 x 14.3mm
  • 292 x 201 x 8.45mm
Weight
  • 1.25kg (with keyboard dock)
  • 1.15kg (with keyboard dock)
  • 1.29kg
  • 1.38kg
  • 786g
Miscellaneous
  • Includes pen input


PCMark 8

We begin with PCMark 8 and it is immediately apparent that the notebooks with Intel’s newest Kaby Lake processors have the advantage. Overall, the HP Spectre x360 and Lenovo Yoga 910 have about a 10% advantage in scores over the Acer Switch Alpha 12. On the other hand, the Acer Switch Alpha 12 overall scores were about 7% to 10% better than the ASUS Transformer 3 Pro, which was in turn about on a par with the Microsoft Surface Pro 4. It seems then that the Acer’s liquid-cooling does provide some benefit in the performance stakes.

 

3DMark 2013

The Lenovo Yoga 910 recorded the highest scores on 3DMark. Its scores were even significantly higher than the HP Spectre x360, which is surprising because the two sport the same Core i7-7500U processor. The Spectre x360, on the other hand, was posted a 9% advantage over the Acer Switch Alpha 12, but only on the less intensive Cloud Gate scenario. The Switch Alpha 12, however, was significantly quicker than the ASUS Transformer 3. Its scores were over 30% better than the Transformer 3 Pro. The Transformer 3 Pro was clearly the poorest performing notebook here, and it seems like there is some sort of a performance throttling going on.

 

Far Cry 2

Moving on to real world gaming benchmarks, we see that the Lenovo Yoga 910 has the edge on its competitors. It was about 10% faster than its nearest rivals. Following the Yoga 910, the HP Spectre x360, Acer Switch Alpha 12, and Microsoft Surface Pro 4 all recorded very comparable frame rates. Again, the ASUS Transformer 3 Pro was left trailing. It is quite clear now that its aggressive cooling system is a result of some heating issues, which is also affecting its performance.

 

Tomb Raider

The Lenovo Yoga 910 was once again the clear leader, followed by the trio of the Spectre x360, Acer Switch Alpha 12 and Microsoft Surface Pro 4. The ASUS Transformer 3 Pro had the poorest result, and it was over 20% slower than the Yoga 910.

 

Battery Life & Power Consumption

Our battery life test is pretty demanding as it includes a variety of workloads including intensive ones like gaming, photo editing and video conferencing. The Lenovo Yoga 910 managed to last an impressive 300 minutes or 5 hours, which was the longest. The HP Spectre x360 was a close second at 280 minutes. The Acer Switch Alpha 12 and ASUS Transformer 3 Pro couldn’t hope to compete because their batteries are significantly smaller. But even so, the Transformer 3 Pro’s battery life of just 144 minutes, or slightly under two and a half hours, was quite disappointing. The Microsoft Surface Pro 4, which has the same battery capacity, managed 196 minutes or nearly an hour longer. On the other hand, the Acer Switch Alpha 12's battery life was quite impressive, considering it has the smallest battery - this you can reference from our power consumption graph below.

 

Portability Index

Our portability index takes into account battery life, weight, and volume to provide a measure of how easy a notebook is to carry around relative to other compared systems, the higher the figure, the better. Thanks to its slim dimensions and light weight, the HP Spectre x360 was the clear leader in this test. The Yoga 910 was quite close, but its scores suffered because of its larger footprint. The ASUS Transformer 3 Pro’s poor battery life meant that even though it is comparable to the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 in terms of dimensions and weight, its final portability score was poor. The Acer Switch Alpha 12’s battery life was decent, but it was let down by its slightly bulkier dimensions.

 

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