Hi everyone, welcome to the iBall Flip X5a 2-in-1 convertible that can be used both as a laptop, and as a tablet.
It's just 11.
6 inches in screen size, butit has a full HD touchscreen.
The OS installed is Windows 10 32-bit andit's powered with the Intel Atom Z8300 processor which goes up to 1.
It has 2 GB of DD3 RAM.
This laptop was really bought for my Dad,who loves to watch his movies and listen to his music and from time to time he also likesto do a bit of video editing and audio conversion.
Before buying this laptop I did have a lotof concerns.
Will the Intel Atom processor and the 2 GBof RAM be sufficient? I'm actually bringing you this review aftermy Dad and I have been using this laptop for over 2 months now, and we're really goingto be speaking about the performance, and we're going to let the performance speak foritself, because this entire review has been processed, edited, encoded and the audio narrationhas been recorded all on this laptop only.
I've not used any other machine, the onlything I've done is import footage in that I've shot with my camera and phone and therest is all this little laptop's work.
So you can judge for yourself as to the performanceof this laptop.
At the time that I placed the order the iBallFlip X5 was available only on Amazon no where else, either online or offline.
Amazon took a full 8 days to deliver and whenthe package finally arrived, it didn't really inspire much confidence.
Because it was a large box, rather open atone end with just a strip of tape over it.
Inside the box there was no additional safetypacking, just the red iBall box deep inside.
Now as it says on the box, let's 'Open Up'.
And the 1st thing you see right on top isa white sleeve with the silver iBall logo and of course sitting inside it is the laptop.
Under the laptop in the middle of the boxyou find a packet which contains the user manual, the warranty card and also a cleaningcloth.
I excitedly opened up the 1st compartmentbut then I was really disappointed because there was absolutely nothing there.
Much better luck with the next compartmentbecause this one has the power adapter, a micro USB to standard USB or OTG cable.
Now that's really handy.
The iBall Flip X5 is revealed to be a darkchocolate brown in colour.
On top of the lid is the big silver Open Uplogo which looks like a giant K.
But what's more important is that the buildquality is really good and the finish is quite premium.
While this may not be the slimmest or thelightest small laptop it still feels very good in hand and looks very good too.
Now here's something I discovered when I wasworking with this outdoors one morning: the dark chocolate brown actually has a littlegold sparkle and that's revealed when you see this in the sunlight.
It's not overly glittery or flashy, it's verysubtle and this is quite an elegant touch by iBall.
On flipping the laptop over we find on theunderside that there are 4 rubber nubs.
Now these are to prevent the laptop from slidingoff a smooth surface.
Also on the bottom are 2 downward facing stereospeakers.
Interestingly there is no airvent for cooling.
On the left of the laptop we find the powerinput, then the USB 3 port and the mini HDMI port.
On the right of the laptop we find a 3.
5 mmsingle combo jack for headphone and microphone, the USB 2 port, the micro SD slot, the powerbutton and the keyboard On Off switch.
When you 1st open the laptop you get a littleresistance and a little stiffness in the hinges but that's fine because this is a brand newlaptop.
Removing the protective insert we find a reallynice looking keyboard with the keys marked a fresh bright white.
So even though the keyboard itself is notbacklit, this is going to ensure visibility when we are working in a low light environment.
To start the laptop we need to give a longpress on the power button.
The LED lights up indicating that the laptopis on.
The iBall Open Up logo appears while the laptopis booting up and initially we need to go through a set up process to personlise thelaptop and then we are brought to the desktop with iBall's red background theme.
If one fine day you switch on your computerand find that the green LED light is on but that there is no display on your screen welldon't panic like I did.
Just give a long press on the power button,sometimes for 15 or even 20 seconds and you should see the display come back on.
The Flip X5 comes with a full HD IPS displaywith a resolution of 1920 by1080.
Now this is a really good display.
It offers clean, crisp text, the whites arereally white and the colours are quite rich.
All in all it's a very pleasing display.
The viewing angles are very good though perhapsnot quite as bright from the sides as when you are directly in front of the screen butit's still excellent thanks to the HD display.
But what has really surprised me is the rangeof brightness which goes from 0 percent to 25 to 50 to 75 all the way up to 100 percent.
I didn't have much hope for the audio outputfrom a laptop of this size but I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised.
The dual speakers at the bottom although theyare downward facing are doing a pretty good job.
Clarity is good and even the volume is decent.
OK, so I am now out in the sunshine.
To be fair I still have the protective coveringon.
I've not removed it so probably without thatthe screen would be a lot clearer.
Using this outdoors in the sunlight we findthat the screen is reflective.
However turning the brightness up to 100%makes it quite workable.
The distinctive red 'I' on the keyboard leavesyou in no doubt that this an iBall.
Despite this being a small laptop, there are81 keys which include a set of multimedia keys which can be accessed by pressing theFunction key.
Although the keys are not deep, using themfeels really good.
They are responsive and that is what counts.
You may have to get used to the fact thatthey are a little smaller than the standard keys, but once you do, this keyboard is greatto work with.
Now here's the surprise: although there isno dedicated number pad, there is a number pad, it's integrated along with the alphabetkeys in the standard layout and you can access it by pressing Function and NumLock.
When you do that the NumLock light indicatorcomes on and the rest of the alphabet keys lock and you can use the number keys justas you would if there was a dedicated numberpad.
The fact that iBall has included this featureis a plus point because you don't see it in a lot of more expensive laptops.
The touchpad has a white vertical line atthe bottom which demarcates the left click and the right click section.
This is a multi touch touchpad, which meansthat tapping once with 2 fingers opens the context menu you can zoom in and zoom outand you can scroll.
However using the touchpad has not been apleasant experience.
The surface appears to have some sort of atexture and the fingers just don't glide as smoothly as they should.
So using it can be really irritating.
In fact I've been very glad that this is atouchscreen laptop because I've been using the touchscreen a lot to compensate for aunresponsive touchpad.
One of the reasons we decided to buy thislaptop was its touchscreen feature and it hasn't disappointed.
The screen is very responsive and feels goodunder the fingers.
So swiping, zooming in, zooming out, flicking,tapping, scrolling it's all a breeze.
And in fact even if I start working in laptopmode, very often I find I'm tapping on the screen because it's easier and quicker toget the job done that way.
The onscreen keyboard works well and handwritingrecognition is pretty accurate.
The iBall Flip X5 weighs 1.
Now this is fine if you need to carry it aroundthough of course lighter is always better.
But you're going to find a bit of an issueif you decide to use it as a tablet and hold it in one hand.
You can, but your arm is going to get tiredvery soon and using it in tablet mode would really require both hands holding it or touse a support under it as in this case I've flipped the keyboard under and am using mylegs as a support.
The Flip X5 comes with 32 GB flash storage.
Out of this the Windows operating system usesabout 7 to 8 GB so that leaves us 19 GB free to use.
We can additionally expand the storage to64 GB by using a micro SD card in the micro SD slot.
So here's a screen shot to show you how I'vefurther expanded memory.
C drive shows you the inbuilt flash storagewhich is 32 GB.
The G drive shows you my Strontium 64 GB microSD card.
Now apart from that I have in one USB portplugged in my 32 GB pen drive and in my USB 2 port I have plugged in an old USB 1 Swordfish7 port hub.
On that hub I have connected a 500 GB harddrive, two 1 TB hard drives one 2 TB hard drive and a 4 TB hard drive and the 7th portof course has my wireless dongle.
So all of this is supported by this laptopwhich is absolutely fantastic.
Booting up is quick and that's probably dueto the fact that this has a flash storage.
Transferring media files has also been prettydecent, whether I'm transferring from my C drive to my SD card or even between 2 externaldrives connected to this laptop.
I have found that the speeds are comparablewith my new HP machine which has an i5 6th gen and 4 GB of RAM.
WiFi connectivity is good, it works on the2.
4 GHz band and bluetooth works just fine for sending and receiving files.
The 2 megapixel front facing camera is probablythe weakest feature of the iBall Flip X5.
The colours are washed out, video does nottrack motion correctly and possibly the only thing you could use this for is if you'resitting directly in front of it for a Skype call.
Battery like is excellent.
The 10,000 mAh battery has lasted me between6 to 8 hours depending on my usage.
To charge the laptop there is a 5 volt poweradapter which really looks more like a mobile charger.
The length of the cord is just about 1 meterwhich means that you have to be pretty close to a power socket if you are keeping it pluggedin and are working.
Charging is slow and takes between 5 to 6hours for a full charge.
Charging is extremely slow if you are workingon the laptop while it is plugged in and charging.
In fact it has taken as much as 12 hours whenI've been doing that.
Now just to give you an idea the laptop shutdown when it hit 5 percent while I was working on it last night so I plugged it in and continuedmy work.
After about one and a half hours when I checkedthe battery it showed just 7% so it was just a 2% increase in one and a half hours becauseI had been working on the laptop simultaneously.
When I shut it down and let it charge it took5 hours to fully charge up.
Now here's a peculiarity.
The headphone input and the power input areboth at the exact opposite ends to each other and they are almost the same size.
So you can get mixed up and put the headphonejack into the power input and the power input into the headphone jack it goes in quite easilyso you have to remember that the power goes in on the left side and the headphones gointo the right side.
A 'light leak' in the lower right corner ofthe screen was immediately noticeable when I first powered on the laptop and it stayedright through the setup process against the blue background.
It's still noticeable whenever I have a bluebackground or a grey screen and disappears of course against white.
Funnily enough it's not visible against ablack screen.
Now this doesn't really bother me much soI ignore it but it is definitely a defect and perhaps it's peculiar to just this piece.
Now here's something peculiar: I purchasedthe wireless iBall keyboard and mouse thinking that iBall to iBall would offer me the bestcompatibility.
However the iBall dongle does not go easilyinto either of the USB ports on the Flip X5 and taking it out is even more of a struggleand a pain, not to mention the pain that you feel in your fingers.
Speaking of compatibility, here's the funnything.
I next tried the Logitech wireless dongleand that did go in with a little bit of a struggle but not as much as with the iBall.
This kind of stiffness is really unnatural.
It's advisable to keep the laptop anchoreddown with your other hand while you attempt to put in a USB device into either of theports or to take it out and that's to prevent the laptop from slipping and getting awayfrom you.
Reviews of other laptops in the Compbook seriesreveal that this is a problem with the Exemplaire and Exelance as well.
So it seems to be an issue with the seriesitself and not just with the Flip X5.
I have occasion to use iBall's service.
Now one day while I was working on my reviewand recording my narration, suddenly the sound went and I could not hear anything.
While googling for a solution to this I foundthat I wasn't the only one facing this problem, it is a problem with Windows 10 regardlessof the kind of computer you have, whether it's a HP or a Sony or a Lenovo or an Acerit doesn't really matter.
So anyway I tried some of the solutions andactually ended up in a bigger mess because I seem to have completely lost the audio driversaltogether.
So I went to the iBall website thinking Icould download the drivers and install them but not so.
There is nothing available on iBall's website.
So then I got in touch with Customer Carethrough Live Chat.
I sent them an email with screenshots of theproblem and they promptly replied outlining a step by step procedure to completely resetthe laptop.
So I did that but unfortunately it did notwork.
The next morning I received a call from iBallto find out if everything had gone fine.
Since it hadn't they recommended that I visitthe service centre so that the drivers could be reinstalled.
Now they explained that the drivers are notavailable online because iBall loads in a customised tablet OS onto the Flip X5 so thiswould have to be done only at the service centre.
Now iBall doesn't have a very wide servicenetwork.
In Bangalore there is just a single servicecentre on SP road and I have to say that I was really surprised, they handled my issueimmediately and within 15 minutes it had been resolved.
So that's really excellent.
I mean you visit service centres of any ofthe big brands and we all know how long it does take.
But iBall hats off to them, excellent.
To give you an idea about its multitaskingcapabilities let's start with browsing the internet.
Now I use 2 browsers, Microsoft Edge and GoogleChrome and usually I have about 6 to 7 tabs open if now a few more and honestly I've notreally faced much of a problem.
Of course it's not blazingly fast as you wouldprobably find on an i7, because this is after all the Atom processor we have to be fair,but working with it has not been an issue at all.
While I'm browsing I also have apps open.
Notepad is open, and also Filmora Video Editorsince I'm working on this review.
Now the screen recording feature is on.
It's recording everything that's happeningso that you can see what's going on.
So now I decide to open up VLC and to runan HD movie.
So I've opened up X-Men and even scrubbingthrough it or fast forwarding through it seems to be working fine, no hitch.
So now let's open up Word.
Word opens, my document is showing up justfine and then suddenly, bam! There it is.
I've got a low memory alert and the adviceis that I restart apps so that I can resume working.
So there you have it.
That's obviously the limitation of the 2 GBRAM.
Now here I'm putting it through another stresstest.
I've got 3 movies open, and all of them areplaying absolutely fine even when I switch between them.
So as you can see the problem that we sawearlier was probably because I had the screen recorder running at that time and that requiresa lot more processing power than the Atom can offer.
(OK this is going to sound crazy because all3 movies are playing) So I've been working with this laptop forabout 2 months now and it has been a really decent experience.
I have Office 365 installed and Word, Exceland Powerpoint have worked absolutely fine.
For audio editing I have Audacity and justto give you an idea, a 13 MB file of about 5 minutes 43 seconds with 320 kbps bitratehas taken me 40 seconds to render.
Use a mouse.
I find that the 11.
6 inch screen is greatbut sometimes it's a little too small when I'm working with programmes like Excel orwhen I'm doing my video editing and in that case the mouse really is a big help.
To sum up, this laptop is great if you likebrowsing the internet, or you like watching your movies, for general office work, andI think I've really pushed that processor and RAM by actually doing this entire videoreview on the Flip X5 and you can see for yourself how it's turned out.
Now it hasn't been exactly easy doing thevideo editing on it, because I did encounter a tremendous amount of audio stutter and thatobviously is because of the lower end processor and the RAM.
But the fact remains, it did the job.
So if you're looking at using it for videoediting and audio recording and rendering for smaller projects like for YouTube thisshould suffice.
We've reached the end of the review and hereare a few things that I found could have been better:a smoother trackpad, quicker charging, a longer power cable, receptive USB ports that aren'tso stiff, a much better camera is much needed, and overall a lighter laptop.
After using this laptop for about 2 months,here's what I found really great about the Flip X5:1st is the super touchscreen experience.
In fact it's going to be very difficult forme to go back to using a regular laptop after this because it just makes working so muchsimpler, quicker, easier to have the option of using the touchscreen or if I wish to usethe keyboard and trackpad.
If you're a media freak and love to watchyour movies then this could be the laptop for you because what's the one thing thatyou're looking at all of the time? The display.
And it's a very decent high definition displayon the Flip X5, with some great viewing angles and an amazing range of brightness.
Plus you also have the HDMI connectivity,so you can connect to a large screen TV and all in all it's great if movie watching isa big thing for you.
Now that in itself is not sufficient.
You would also need decent audio.
And the Flip X5 has a set of speakers theyoffer decent volume and also decent clarity.
The microphones do a pretty good job.
You're listening to the output of them rightnow as I've recorded this entire narration only using the Flip X5's microphones and I'vedone that by holding the laptop up to me as I speak.
So perhaps from time to time it may have soundeda little muffled and that's probably because I'm not very consistent with how I'm holdingit, but overall a pretty decent job.
Another big feature in this laptop is thelong battery life which can last you as much as 8 hours on a single charge, and above itall, it runs cool.
How cool is that! The only little heating that I have foundis probably when it is charging, if I put my hand under the laptop close to where thecharging point is there is a little bit of warmth.
but really not enough to worry me.
It's much less that even my mobile phone.
Good looks are important and the Flip X5 hasthat with a premium build and a very very decent finish.
In fact it does look quite premium, as muchas some of the more expensive laptops out there.
So for the next variant of the iBall FlipX5 what would I wish for? Well, the Atom 8550 with 4 GB of RAM, nowthat would be nice! I would also love to have a regular card readerso that it could read my camera cards.
And my Dad would really like an additionalUSB 3 port.
Now the white sleeve that ships in the boxis fine as a dustcover but not something that you'll really want to be seen out with.
Now if iBall would ship something trendy,well, this is a portable laptop, you would be moving around and even when the laptopis not in use, it would be making a statement.
It's time to sign off now, I'd like to statethat I have not been endorsed by iBall in any way, this is an independent review outof my own personal experience of using this laptop the iBall Flip X5, and I hope thatyou have 'Liked' it, and more importantly, find it useful.
So that's it from me, all the best!.