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Xidu Tour Pro review: A top-notch budget laptop

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £460
inc VAT

An affordable touchscreen compact ultrabook ideal for day-to-day productivity


  • Good 1440p IPS touchscreen
  • Excellent backlit keyboard
  • Space for a second SSD


  • Battery life only adequate
  • Dual-core Celeron chip a little puny
  • Only one USB-A port

An interesting side effect of so much of the world’s gadgets being manufactured in or near the Chinese city of Shenzhen is that small, local manufacturers can spring up seemingly from nowhere and deliver really rather impressive products. It’s one of the benefits of having a supply chain on your doorstep that’s as deep as it is long as it is wide.

Case in point: This time last month I’d never heard of Xidu (pronounced “zee-do” I think) but here I am now testing its new Tour Pro laptop, a smart machine that is an instant contender for the prize of Best Laptop Under £500.

READ NEXT: Our choice of the best budget laptops to buy

Xidu Tour Pro review: What you need to know

The Xidu Tour Pro is an ultra-compact Windows 10 laptop with a mid-sized 2,560 x 1,440 12.5in IPS touchscreen. Its chassis is built from mostly from metal, weighs 1.24kg and measures a mere 10mm thick.

Inside, it’s powered by an Intel Celeron 3867U and is accompanied by 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD. It isn’t particularly powerful but, then again, you’re not paying premium laptop prices.

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Xidu Tour Pro review: Price & Competition

At the time of writing the Tour Pro is available for £460 from Amazon but Xidu has shared a voucher code (O3RA4CCR) to knock a further £30 off that. Combine that with the £30 Amazon page discount and the price drops to £400. These discounts should be good until January 31st.

If that wasn’t cheap enough, at the time of writing Xidu’s own online store is showing the Tour Pro at an even lower £312, reduced from £433, although at the time of writing there was no stock showing. I’m guessing when stock returns this price will increase and settle at a similar level to Amazon.

Prior to the Xidu’s arrival if you’d said to me that you wanted a compact ultrabook with a 1440p touchscreen for that sort of money I’d have said you’re living in cloud cuckoo land. This is the first I’ve come across and, as such, there’s no direct competition.

The Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air is a nice laptop with the same sized screen but only has a 1,920 x 1,080 resolution and no touchscreen. Its Core m3-8100Y chip makes it more powerful than the Tour Pro on paper but you only get 4GB of RAM rather than 8GB and it is more expensive, giving little change from £500.

Also keep in mind that Xiaomi laptops bought from China often arrive with a Chinese-only version of Windows 10. Reinstalling an English version is not the most straightforward of operations. The Xidu, on the other hand, runs Windows 10 Home in English and updated to build 1909 within half an hour of my first switching it on.

Elsewhere, devices like the Huawei MateBook X Pro, the Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 (13.5in), Dell’s XPS 13 and Apple’s cheapest 13in MacBook Pro occupy a similar consumer space but they’re more powerful than the Xidu and also massively more expensive.

Xidu Tour Pro review: Design & Build Quality

The looks and build quality of the Xidu give little away to the best from the likes of Apple or Huawei. It’s a smart, solid and well-made machine. If I had to pick a hole, then the silver logo on the lid could be a little more restrained. It looks like something you’d find on the boot of a mid-1980s Korean hatchback.

With the exception of the wristrest, the Tour Pro is made entirely from a metal alloy so it feels more expensive than the price tag. The lid is very solid and folds back 180 degrees. Weighing 1.24kg and measuring 290 x 200 x 15mm (WDH) when closed, it’s about as small and light as you can reasonably expect a 12.5in laptop to be.

Poke the Tour Pro hard and you’ll find that the keyboard deck is rock solid. It also has an impressively uniform single-stage backlight. The key action is nigh on perfect and it’s quiet too. The keyboard uses the international layout but Xidu thoughtfully includes a UK-layout silicon keyboard protector in the box.

The smooth, Precision-driven touchpad is similarly hard to criticise. At 98 x 62mm, it’s a good size and demonstrated no annoying quirks.

Above the keyboard on the right-hand side, you’ll find a power button with a built-in – and reliable – fingerprint scanner, which makes logging into Windows that bit faster and the SSD means boot speeds are pretty nippy, too, at less than ten seconds. The rather dark and mediocre 720p webcam doesn’t support Windows Hello so you can’t access anything via facial recognition.

The screen occupies an impressively large portion of the lid’s real estate – 88% according to Xidu – and my measurements agree. The side bezels are certainly impressively slim, although the top bezel is thicker and the bottom thicker still.

Storage comes courtesy of a 128GB SATA3 SSD but there is a hatch on the underside to install another M.2 2280 SSD. That is a very flexible set up, especially if you want to install a second operating system.

Connections include a USB Type-A 3.0 port, a microSD card slot and a 3.5mm audio jack on the right, plus a full-spec Type-C port and a DC jack on the left. The Tour Pro charged just fine using my generic Type-C Power Delivery charger so you can discard the DC charger if you want.

I’d prefer an extra Type-A port and an HDMI connector but a cheap Type-C hub fixes that problem. Using the DC charger the Tour Pro can be charged in just under three hours.

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Xidu Tour Pro review: Display

I’ve nothing but praise for the Xidu Tour Pro’s 12.5in 2,560 x 1,440 IPS display. Its pixel density of 235dpi, maximum brightness of 340cd/m2 and the sRGB colourspace coverage of 99% are all reasons to give it a thumbs up. It’s great to see small Chinese makers using better displays on their budget machines.

As you might expect the fully-laminated screen has a gloss finish so it is rather reflective but I can live with that. And it’s a touch screen, which at this price is a real boon. The ten-point touch sensor was perfectly calibrated out of the box.

Xidu supplies not one or two but three screen protectors – two pre-applied and one spare, which suggests the screen isn’t covered with toughened glass. I removed the pre-applied sheets just because I prefer touching glass to plastic.

The sound quality from the two downwards-firing speakers is not the Achilles heel it usually is with Chinese laptops, either. There is plenty of volume and even a hint of bass. The sound is clear and only gets a little ragged at maximum volume.

Xidu Tour Pro review: Performance

The Pro Tour ‘s Intel Celeron 3867U chip doesn’t exactly pull-the-skin-off-a-rice-pudding when it comes to outright speed but again, it’s usable.

An 8th generation Kaby Lake R processor, it was released in Q1 2019 and supports all the latest video hardware decoding. That’s important because it lacks the chops to make up any deficiencies in this area with raw power. An older chip with this spec would not be able to take full advantage of the 1440p display. As it stands, 2160p 60fps YouTube videos play smoothly and look superb on the Tour Pro.

As a dual-core, twin-thread component with a fixed speed of 1.8GHz, the 3867U’s performance feels somewhere between the Gemini Lake N4100 and the Core m3-8100Y chip when no major demands are made of it. But start asking for more and the absence of the N4100’s extra two cores or the turbo-boost of the Core m3 starts to make itself felt.

The 8GB of single-channel DDR3 memory and integrated HD610 graphics processor helps matters but this is by no means a powerhouse CPU. For general productivity, it’s absolutely fine and it feels surprisingly slick but for serious multitasking or anything more graphically demanding than light gaming, it is a little out of its depth.

READ NEXT: Our choice of the best budget laptops to buy

Xidu Tour Pro review: Benchmarks

Across the board, the benchmark scores were actually rather better than I expected, underlining the fact that this chipset delivers more in the way of everyday performance than the specification suggests.

The overall score in Expert Reviews’ 4K media test was higher than I expected at 42. I actually ran the test half a dozen times to make sure the initial results were not freakish outliers.

For those who like to fiddle with the BIOS(it’s a UEFI BIOS in a rare move for a budget Chinese laptop) in a deep and meaningful way, I have some bad news. It’s thoroughly locked down so you can’t change anything important. I am, however, pleased that not only did my favourite Linux distros – Clear Linux and Ubuntu – work perfectly on the Touch Pro but that the touchscreen worked too. I wasn’t expecting that at all.

Unusually for a laptop of this type, the Tour Pro has a fan. In my review machine it fired up regularly, and for long periods, but it was reasonably quiet even at full chat. Being actively rather than passively cooled gives the Tour Pro a very good thermal profile: It hardly ever gets warm.

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Xidu Tour Pro review: Battery life

The 38WHr battery can deliver a maximum run time of around six and a half hours. That’s the best you’ll get. Push it hard with the screen brightness set to maximum and you’ll drain it in just over four hours.

The standard Expert Reviews video rundown test returned a time of 5hrs 10mins. In my book, that’s acceptable but not a whole lot more – a side effect of the rather power-hungry 15W TDP processor.

Xidu Tour Pro review: Verdict

Provided you don’t want a laptop for serious gaming or jobs like editing 4K video then the Xidu Tour Pro is very hard to fault. The rather weak dual-core processor is a significant drawback but the up-to-date chip architecture, 8GB of RAM, the absence of any thermal throttling and reasonably powerful integrated graphics processor go some way to ameliorate this and makes the Tour Pro feel faster than the numbers suggest.

The 1440p touch display, excellent keyboard and decent Linux support mean that, for the money, the rest of the package can be highly recommended.

Xidu Tour Pro specifications

ProcessorIntel Celeron 3867U
Additional memory slotsNone
Max. memory8GB
Graphics adapterIntel HD610
Graphics memoryshared
Storage128GB SATA3 SSD
Screen size12.5
Screen resolution2560 x 1440
Pixel density235dpi
Screen typeIPS
Pointing devicesTouchpad, touchscreen
Optical driveNo
Memory card slotMicroSD
3.5mm audio jackYes
Graphics outputsType-C
Other portsType-A 3.0
Web Cam1280 x 720
BluetoothYes 4.2
Dimensions (WDH)290 x 200 x 10mm
Battery size38WHr
Operating systemWindows 10 Home
Operating system restore optionNo

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