1 Reply Latest reply on Nov 29, 2015 11:16 AM by black_zion

    The MSI W20 3M: A not bad AMD Temash tablet

    black_zion
      I was in the market for a tablet. It had to run the full Windows, and offer great specs for the cost. I didn't want a Surface because in my opinion the price Microsoft wants for it is a bit to high. I ended up narrowing down my choices to two, the Vizio Tablet PC, and this MSI W20, and after several weeks of thinking, I went with this W20.

      Now, why did I go with this tablet? It has some very useful specs rarely found on, shall we say, inexpensive Windows tablets. First off it is the real deal, Windows 8 x64. It also comes equipped with a 128GB SSD. Also it comes with a MicroSD slot for extra storage and a SIM card slot. MSI was also clever in that they used a multipurpose connector. Via the supplied adapters, it acts as a charging port, DVI and VGA ports, and most importantly, a full sized USB port. A fingerprint scanner is also included, and while a little tricky to learn how to use, works great for being able to sign into Windows. It has a user facing webcam and microphone, which allows for video chat and sound recording. It is also completely silent as the 1GHz dual core AMD Temash APU does not require active cooling. The screen is an IPS display, meaning 180° viewing angles, and is 10 point capacitive for multi-touch gestures. Battery life is also pretty good. From a full charge, on power saving mode, it shows a bit over 9 hours when internet browsing or word processing. It also ships with a carrying case. While it is not top of the line quality, it will protect it from scratches. The included USB charging cable keeps a great trickle charge while you are near a desktop or other USB charging source. Bloatware is also kept to a minimum, with only Norton, Office 365 trial, and WinZip, and a few apps, being present.

      Now, there are some downsides as well. The resolution is not the greatest, only 1366x768, which is not stellar but the advantage is increased battery life. No stylus is included, but there are many capacitive compatible stylus out there for very little money. The webcam is not the greatest, only .9MP, but for the intended task it is adequate. While it does feature a full size USB port, it only features one, although you can use a port multiplier available at many retailers, and according to the manual, does not support an external hard drive or optical drive, only a keyboard, mouse, and USB drive. It has a docking connector, but at this time there is no docking station. The fingerprint scanner is also on the back of the unit instead of on the front, which means it cannot be used with any third party covers, though for some this may not be a con. The wireless capabilities, while being excellent in terms of signal strength, are limited to 802.11n. It also ships with Windows 8.0 (though later editions may come with 8.1) so it's lacking about 4GB worth of updates.




        • Re: The MSI W20 3M: A not bad AMD Temash tablet
          black_zion

          I'm going to update this post to say I HATE MSI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

           

          Let me explain. Something had always seemed wrong about that tablet since I first got it, that it was slower than it should be. I had chalked it up to a horrid drive, the 1.4GB usable RAM, or that the A4-1200 processor wasn't that great. But, nearly two years later, I finally decided enough was enough and I was going to track down the problem. Well after using AS SSD and seeing the drive was 250MB/s writes 450MB/s reads along with decent random reads and writes (surprising from a Kingston) I ruled that out. Then I put Speccy on it and it showed that the CPU never clocked up, even using the High Performance preset and being plugged in. One firmware update later and that problem is solved, and it's noticeably faster (since it's running at 1ghz instead of 600mhz).

           

          Now the problem: Those people at MSI apparently programmed in the voltage and speed settings wrong, and one of the steps between 600mhz and 1ghz causes a hard lock. Updated to the latest BIOS from a year ago, firmware is for a year ago. I'm the only one who ever bought this tablet apparently, and it's out of warranty...I knew better than to buy an MSI, and it bit me in the behind.