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Acer Chromebook 715 review: A big and fast premium laptop marred by an underwhelming display

Article Contents

  • 1 Specs
  • 2 The Good
  • 3 The Not So Good
  • 4 Design, {hardware}, and show
  • 5 Efficiency and battery life
  • 6 Must you purchase it?

    • 6.1 Purchase if:
    • 6.2 Do not buy if:
    • 6.3 The place to purchase

Google launched the thought of a premium Chromebook (and an identical premium price ticket) with the unique Chromebook Pixel. Different corporations have adopted go well with with units just like the Yoga C630 from Lenovo and a few HP X360. On this aggressive panorama, Acer has a compelling resolution of its personal: the Acer Chromebook 715. Acer’s new high-end Chromebook sports activities an all-metal development with MIL-STD 810G compliance, non-compulsory quad-core Intel Core i5 processor with as much as 16GB of RAM, a full-size keyboard with a quantity pad, and an non-compulsory fingerprint reader. At present, there is no such thing as a different giant Chromebook in the marketplace that has these final two options.

The Chromebook 715 I have been utilizing for the previous two weeks (CB715-1WT-527F) is Acer’s top-range mannequin, priced at $779.99. Though it’s costly for a Chromebook, Acer nearly justifies the value with spectacular construct high quality, top-tier efficiency, and the most effective laptop computer keyboards I’ve ever used. As shut because it is available in some methods, Acer has minimize corners in a couple of areas that make the Chromebook 715 robust to advocate.

Specs

Show15.6” IPS LCD (Multi-touch), Full HD (1920 x 1080), 16:9
CPUEighth-gen Intel Pentium; Eighth-gen Core i3, i5 (U-series)
Reminiscence8GB; 16GB (DDR4)
Storage32GB; 64GB (eMMC)
Battery3690 mAh/45W (12 hours promised)
Ports1 x USB-A (3.1 Gen 1), 2 x USB-C (3.1 Gen 1, used for charging and DisplayPort output), 3.5mm headphone jack, MicroSD Card slot, Kensington lock
ConnectivityIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2
Dimensions0.7 x 14.Four x 9.8″ (1.78 x 36.6 x 24.9cm; H x W x D)
Weight4.30 lb (1.95 kg)
As reviewedCore i5-8350U / 8GB DDR4 / 64GB eMMC / $779.99

The Good

EfficiencyThe Core i5 and 8GB of RAM chew by means of Chrome OS and make multi-tasking very snappy.
Construct high qualityIts all-aluminum chassis feels strong and easy. The fit-and-finish is great.
KeyboardThe keys are responsive, tactile, and have good journey. It is the most effective keyboards I’ve used on a laptop computer.
TrackpadThe big Gorilla Glass trackpad is silky easy, responsive, and correct.
TouchscreenHelpful for Android apps.
Fingerprint readerThe sensor is correct and fast to unlock the laptop computer persistently.
Battery lifeI received 9 hours out of it at 75% brightness.
PortsThe presence of each USB-A and USB-C ports eliminates the necessity for dongles.
Google Assistant“Hey, Google” is rapidly picked up and queries are answered promptly.

The Not So Good

ShowColours are uninteresting, the display screen does not get vivid sufficient, and the pixel density is a bit coarse.
Audio systemThough there is no such thing as a distortion at max quantity, audio sounds hole and slim in vary.
TouchpadI am nitpicking right here however I want there was assist for customized touchpad gestures on Chrome OS like Home windows with the Precision Touchpad. Nonetheless hoping.
StorageAt this value degree, 128GB ought to’ve been included.

Design, {hardware}, and show

All of the design options you’d anticipate from a high-end product are right here: an anodized aluminum chassis with no sharp edges that feels easy and dense, a glass touchpad, a backlit keyboard, a number of USB-C ports, and an inexpensive weight that makes this massive laptop computer nonetheless moveable. There is a USB-C, USB-A, and a headphone jack on the left aspect, whereas the best aspect homes one other USB-C port plus a microSD and Kensington lock slots. Both of the USB-C ports can be utilized for charging and information, which could be very handy.

Though the chassis is 100% aluminum, the display screen bezel shouldn’t be. It is matte plastic, nevertheless it does not detract from the general aesthetics. The hinge operates quietly and easily, however you continue to have to make use of two fingers to fold out the show. The speaker placement was a missed alternative — Acer has them on the underside though there may be clearly sufficient room above the keyboard space.

All in all, it is a protected however a bit generic design, missing the playfulness of the Pixelbook Go or the head-turning coloration end of the Lenovo Yoga C630. It will take a look at house in any workplace or classroom.

The trackpad and the full-size keyboard are distinctive. Coming from a cramped however usable HP Chromebook X2, I actually appreciated the additional area on the 715. Having devoted keys for web page up/web page dn, house/finish, and delete made it faster to get work performed. The quantity pad was vastly higher for number-crunching periods than the quantity row you are caught with on most laptops.

Typing on the Chromebook 715 keyboard was a pleasure due to its responsive, tactile keys—I persistently scored 94 WPM on a typing take a look at. There is a satisfying click on with every press, nevertheless it’s not overly noisy. Keyboard flex is minor, with the realm above the display screen brightness keys being the softest spot. The generously-sized Gorilla Glass touchpad served me effectively, too. It was easy, tracked precisely, and clicks had been agency.

There’s a fingerprint reader under the quantity pad, and it was quick and correct. Only a fast faucet, and also you’re logged in. Including fingerprints is non-compulsory through Settings > Display lock and sign-in. This will likely be acquainted for those who’ve ever arrange the fingerprint reader on a smartphone (who hasn’t?).

Regardless of all of the premium {hardware} on this Chromebook, Acer minimize corners with the show and audio. The 1920 x 1080 decision stretched over a 15.6″ show space resulted in noticeably grainy textual content, particularly towards a predominantly white background. Different premium Chromebooks on this value vary have smaller 1080p screens, a lot increased resolutions, or each. The show does not get very vivid, both, topping out at simply 250 nits. For those who’re the sort to work outdoor, it may be onerous seeing something on the Chromebook 715, even at full brightness. The colours are uninteresting as effectively, making the 715 a lackluster media consumption system.


Even at most brightness, the display screen is just too dim.

The downward-firing audio system had been much more underwhelming than I anticipated, even by laptop computer requirements. There was no distortion at max quantity, however sounds got here out hole and muffled. You really want a superb pair of headphones to get pleasure from media on this Chromebook.

Efficiency and battery life

Chrome OS could also be a comparatively light-weight platform, nevertheless it nonetheless runs higher with extra cores and extra reminiscence. The quad-core Core i5 and 8GB of RAM inside my evaluate unit made Chrome OS exceedingly performant from its preliminary setup to working a number of situations of Chrome with over 40 tabs open. It dealt with all I may throw at it with nary a wrestle.

The Speedometer 2.Zero and Geekbench Four scores bear out the laptop computer’s computing prowess. The Chromebook 715 scored 55.1 (runs per minute) on a take a look at of net app pace, beating out a rating of 51.6 from my HP Spectre x360 Home windows laptop computer (Core i7, 8GB RAM). On Geekbench 4, the Acer carried out admirably as effectively, scoring solely a bit of behind the Spectre’s 4775 for single-core and 12,789 for multi-core. There are lower-priced fashions that include a dual-core Pentium/8GB RAM and a Core i3/4GB RAM configurations, however I recommend staying away from these for those who can. The efficiency distinction between the Core i5/8GB Chromebook 715 and my HP Chromebook X2 with a dual-core Core m3/4GB is like evening and day.

I have been getting a strong 8.5-9 hours persistently at 75% display screen brightness, with endurance falling to six.5 hours at 100% brightness. Contemplating the laptop computer is powering a 15W Intel processor, I am fairly pleased with its constant Eight hours and alter.

Must you purchase it?

Acer Chromebook 715


7/10

Perhaps. The Acer Chromebook 715 could be very quick, and it could possibly deal with regular Chrome OS duties with flying ease. Nevertheless, it compares poorly to equally priced units. Even at max brightness, the show is tough to see outdoor, and pixel density is middling. At this value level, there are a number of different Chromebooks which can be simply as quick with higher shows. However for those who aren’t as choosy as me and should have a full-size keyboard with a quantity pad, then go together with the Chromebook 715.

Purchase if:

  • You want Chromebooks and you want a big show with a effectively spaced-out full-size keyboard.
  • Your routine entails frequent use of the quantity pad.
  • You are a heavy multi-tasker who will profit from the quick CPU and reminiscence.

Do not buy if:

  • You want a brighter and extra color-accurate display screen.
  • You propose to make use of the laptop computer as your main music and film system and do not have good headphones.
  • You need one thing extra compact and lighter to hold round.

The place to purchase

About David Oh

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