Convertible tablet-style netbooks aren’t exactly new, but I came across an unusual model form Chinese company Acamar today. There are two things that set the Acamar Transformer apart from other convertibles.
For one thing, it has an 8.9 inch display. For another, it has an unusual design which allows you tilt back the screen before closing the lid in order to transform from netbook to tablet mode.
The computer has a 1.6 GHz Intel Atom N450 single core processor, 2GB of DDR3 memory, a 120GB hard drive, and Windows 7 operating system. It has a 1024 x 600 pixel display, WiFi, Bluetooth, 2 USB 2.0 ports and VGA and Ethernet ports.
In tablet mode the computer can take advantage of a g-sensor and multitouch display.
I wouldn’t expect a lot of run time out of the 3000mAh battery. According to the spec sheet, you can expect 2.4 hours of “standby time.” That might just be a poor translation for “run time.”
But at least the Acamar Transformer is reasonably compact. It measures 10.2″ x 5.7″ x 1″ and weighs 2.4 pounds. Unfortunately part of the reason it’s not larger is that there’s no touchpad below the keyboard. Instead you have left and right buttons and a tiny optical sensor.
I haven’t seen any reviews for this convertible mini-laptop and it’s only available in the US and Europe from a handful of stores such as PandaWill and Fly Dolphin. They’re not exactly household names, so order with caution.
In fact, I’d even look at the listed specs with a skeptical eye before ordering — the listed specifications for the tablet suggest it has an HDMI port, but the photographs only show a VGA port. That makes more sense, since the Intel Atom N450 chip with GMA 3150 graphics doesn’t support HD video very well.
The Acamar Transformer sells for about $460, so if you don’t mind the larger display you might be able to find an old Dell Inspiron Duo for less money.
If you know know anyone that’s had any experience with the Acamar Transformer I’d love to hear more about its performance, build quality, and reliability. For a Chinese tablet from a company I’ve never heard of, it has an intriguing design, if nothing else.