Chuwi SurBook Mini review: a powerful tablet at half the price of Microsoft Surface 3

ByGB Blog Official 2018-01-17 7963

In today's review we take a look at the latest tablet from Chuwi — an already famous Chinese laptop and tablet manufacturer. The company's previous bestsellers like the CHUWI HI10 PLUS series have become very popular with our customers — and we are very much excited to take a closer look at the company's latest model – the Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2-in-1 Tablet PC.

Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC

Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: design

The Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 tablet looks just like your average tablet PC: except for one very nice extra. Chuwi's Surbook comes with a very handy adjustable kickstand, which gives you more options to position the tablet and makes it much easier to find the right viewing angle. The 125-degree stand may seem like too small of a feature to dedicate a review paragraph to, but it does come in very handy in a whole range of situations. You will really appreciate the stand when you want to enjoy your media in comfort or spend long hours working on a project. Just hook up the tablet to a detachable keyboard (not included), prop the tablet up and make full use of the unobstructed view of the tablet's screen.

the 0-125 degree adjustable kickstand of Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC

the unobstructed view of the tablet’s screen

In other aspects, the tablet's design is a standard setup — but more on the high-end side of things with an all-metal body (just like Apple's iPad Pro) and a good selection of ports: one USB Type-C and two USB 3.0 Type-A ports. This gives you plenty of options for connectivity and hooking up other gadgetry: a keyboard and mouse, speakers, etc. — plus you can charge smaller devices.

the USB ports of Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC

Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: display

Tablets are basically portable screens with processing functionality — and with the SurfBook Mini you get a pretty good deal. Here's why.

First, you get the 10-point touch 10.8 inch FHD display, which is fully laminated. This means that the image you get on the screen is more detailed and focused and the colors are brighter — but with that, the screen is actually thinner. The screen's size is also optimal for its functionality: big enough to give you a clear view of your media and work files and compact enough to be comfortable carried around.The resolution is 1920x1280 and you get 450cd per square meter of brightness — both of these factors result in very decent quality. An interesting feature is the pure black color of the display when turned off — the screen color blends with the edges of the tablet resulting in a really cool bezel-less look.

the display of Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC

A nice extra is that the screen is paintable and writable: you can use the Hipen H2 pen to draw directly on the screen and scribble quick notes, which will be instantly converted into print text.

the screen is paintable and writable

Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: CPU performance

First, let's take a look at the processor. With the Chuwi SurBook Mini 2-in-1 Tablet you get the Intel Celeron N3450 Quad Core clocking at up to 2.2GHz. This is a 30% performance improvement compared to the previous Cherry Trail generation and guarantees a smoother run compared to other similarly priced tablet models.

the performance of Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC

Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: operating system

The tablet comes with pre-installed Windows 10 operating system, which brings it closer to a PC in terms of interface and user experience. Thus, if you prefer Windows for working project, the PC tablet could potentially be your go-to solution when your desktop computer is unavailable.

the operating system of Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC

Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: memory

Now, let's look into storage. With the Chuwi SurBook, you get 4GB DDR3 RAM which is a high-bandwidth RAM capable of some pretty heavy multitasking.

Built-in read-only memory is just 64GB, which is not that much when you consider the more advanced functionality the tablet offers. But you can improve your storage capabilities further (up to 128GB) with an SD card.


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Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: camera

The tablet is set up for communication as well. It features two cameras: a 2.0MP rear camera  and a 2.0MP front camera, which let you snap quick photos, make videos and enjoy face-to-face chats with friends.

Chuwi SurBook Mini 2 in 1 Tablet: battery

The Chuwi SurBook packs an 8,000mAh battery and promises to be good for 5 hours of uninterrupted online video playback and over 6 hours of offline HD video streaming. It will take about 3 hours to fully recharge the tablet under 12V/2A.  

the battery performance of Chuwi SurBook Mini CWI540 2 in 1 Tablet PC 

Wrap up

The Chuwi SurBook Mini positions itself as a rival of iPad Pro and Microsoft Surface — and intends to beat the competition with its affordable $249.99 price tag. For us, the tablet looks very similar to the Surface 3: from it built-in kickstand design to full-size USB 3.0 ports. Add to that the 10-point touch FHD screen, the Intel Celeron N3450 Quad Core and 4GB DDR3 RAM — and you get a pretty sweet deal at half the price of what the Surface 3 goes for.

 You may also want to read:
 Lenovo P8 Tablet: the perfect performance-price ratio
 Teclast Master T10 - a cost-effective tablet PC with fingerprint sensor
 Xiaomi Mi Notebook Pro - what new features have been added?


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