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Acer Chromebook 13 review

Acer Chromebook 13 overview

Chrome OS has gained some revolutionary and high-quality additions recently, and most of them have centered on providing 2-in-1 flexibility. That hasn’t stopped Acer from introducing a boring previous clamshell pocket book, although. The brand new Chromebook 13 focuses completely on efficiency and construct high quality and hopes to show that Chrome OS generally is a good conventional clamshell alternative.

We reviewed the Chromebook 13 with an Eighth-gen quad-core Intel Core i5-8250U CPU, 8GB of RAM, 64GB of eMMC storage, and a 13.5-inch 2,256 x 1,504 (201 PPI) IPS show. That configuration is available in at a stiff $800, and it can save you $100 by dropping to a Core i3-8130U and 32GB of storage.

That’s a hefty worth for a Chromebook pocket book, to associate with an unusually highly effective CPU for the platform. Is it sufficient to carve out house for the Chromebook 13 in an more and more crowded market?

Exceedingly conservative, solely pretty well-built

The Chromebook 13 appears loads like a midrange pocket book from a few years in the past. It’s an all-metal construct that’s not fairly at a premium degree – the lid and keyboard deck are a bit flexible, and the show flexes with minimal strain. One distinction from a premium pocket book just like the HP Spectre x360 13 is that it sports activities a unibody building that ups the rigidity, which funds notebooks — the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 is one other instance – typically don’t get pleasure from.

The silver-gray colour scheme could be very conservative, with just some chrome accents on the sting of the keyboard deck and across the touchpad giving some aesthetic aptitude. The Chromebook 13 is a pocket book that’s going to get misplaced in an excellent wanting and fashionable crowd together with the likes of the Google Pixelbook and the HP Chromebook x2.

Additional detracting from a contemporary look are fairly thick bezels surrounding the show (frequent amongst Chromebooks at the moment), and that contributes to a pocket book that’s not almost as small as different 13-inch notebooks just like the Dell XPS 13 with its minimal bezels — although that pattern hasn’t but come to Chromebooks that we’ve seen. The Acer Chromebook 13 can be a comparatively thick zero.67 inches and heavy Three.5 kilos, coming in a lot thicker and heavier than the Pixelbook (zero.40 inches and a pair of.four kilos and Samsung Chromebook Professional (zero.55 inches and a pair of.38 kilos).

Given its worth, we’re dissatisfied that the Chromebook 13 doesn’t have a contact show.

We’ll additionally observe that the Chromebook 13 is uncommon amongst Chrome OS machines in that it has vents alongside the underside and rear edge for transferring air into and out of the chassis to maintain issues cool. We’re used to Chromebooks being fanless and useless silent because of low-power CPUs, and so it was a little bit of a shock to listen to the fan spin up when our benchmarks challenged the Core i5.

The Chromebook 13 has good connectivity that’s each futuristic and legacy-oriented, with a pair of the more and more ubiquitous USB-C Three.1 port and a USB-A Three.1 for legacy units. Some newer Chromebooks, just like the HP Chromebook x2, are that includes solely USB-C connections. There’s additionally a microSD slot for storage enlargement – at all times a plus for Chrome OS – and a Three.5mm audio jack. Wi-fi connectivity is supplied by 2×2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.2 radios.

Getting knowledge into this 2-in-1 is nice and environment friendly

The Chromebook x2 can be old-school in its enter choices. There’s a typical island keyboard with black chiclet keys, and it supplies a handy guide a rough really feel with sufficient journey that the bottoming motion isn’t too abrupt. We’d want that the keys required simply barely extra strain to register, however that’s a quibble. The keyboard is in the usual Chrome OS structure with zero surprises, and the backlighting is uniform with the standard 5 brightness ranges. That sort of high-quality management is frequent to the platform and beats out Home windows notebooks which have solely three ranges.

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Mark Coppock/Digital Traits

The touchpad is a bit of small, and that’s a disgrace as a result of there’s loads of room on the keyboard deck for a bigger model. It’s good and clean although and permits for the exact use of the total vary of Chrome OS multitouch gestures. The separate buttons present a pointy click on and aren’t too loud for a quiet room.

That’s all you get relating to enter choices, although. There’s no touchscreen, which is more and more frequent even on clamshell notebooks. We’ve turn into accustomed to fast faucets for clicking buttons and utilizing our thumbs to swipe up and down on internet pages, even on many Chromebooks. We’re dissatisfied that Acer didn’t embrace a contact show on the Chromebook 13, notably given its comparatively excessive worth – and that exacts a toll with regards to touch-oriented Android apps.

Acer Chromebook 13 (CB713-1W-56VY) In contrast To

A productivity-friendly show that’s brilliant and colourful

Acer constructed the Chromebook 13 round a 13.5-inch high-resolution (2,256 x 1,504 or 201 PPI) IPS show that’s within the productivity-friendly Three:2 side ratio. Meaning it’s barely taller than the extra frequent 16:9 side ratio and so exhibits extra vertical info on the display screen without delay. That additionally means there’s some letterboxing when watching movies, however it’s a tradeoff that is sensible.

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Mark Coppock/Digital Traits

We will’t check the show utilizing our colorimeter because of driver limitations with Chrome OS, however that doesn’t cease us from offering a subjective analysis. To our eyes, the Chromebook x2 makes use of a superb panel that’s nearly too brilliant – solely the brightest daylight instantly overhead can defeat it – and that gives glorious distinction. Colours popped as effectively they usually appeared correct, and we will’t complain in regards to the show’s gamma.

Regardless of how we used the Chromebook 13, together with watching Netflix and YouTube, working in productiveness apps, and browsing the net, the show supplied a superb expertise. It’s simply the equal of the nice shows on the HP Chromebook x2 and the Google Pixelbook, and it beats out the show on funds Home windows 10 notebooks just like the one on the Asus ZenBook 13 UX331UA.

That is the quickest processor we’ve utilized in a Chromebook 13, and it exhibits.

The audio was much less spectacular, with two bottom-firing audio system offering sound that wasn’t terribly loud. There was little distortion at full quantity, which is a plus, and mids and highs have been passable. However the lack of bass meant you’ll wish to pull out a pair of headphones to completely get pleasure from your tunes and Netflix binges.

Tremendous quick efficiency that tackles any Chrome OS process

We’re restricted in how completely we will benchmark Chrome OS units, however one factor grew to become clear as we carried out this overview. The Chromebook 13 is a super-fast Chrome OS pocket book because of its comparatively high-end eightth-generation quad-core Intel Core i5-8250U CPU.

That is the quickest processor we’ve utilized in a Chromebook 13, and it exhibits. We ran the Android model of Geekbench four and noticed a single-core rating of four,275 and a multi-core rating of eight,792. That’s sooner than every other Chromebook we’ve examined and rivaled Home windows 10 notebooks, such because the Asus ZenBook 13 (four,119), within the single-core check.

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Mark Coppock/Digital Traits

The multi-core check is decrease than the ZenBook’s 13,934, however that’s doubtless all the way down to operating Geekbench as an Android app. The Chromebook 13 trounces the Chromebook x2 (Three,441 and 6,685) and Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 (2,107 and three,646).

Within the Speedometer 2.zero internet benchmark, the Chromebook 13 scored the very best we’ve seen from a Chromebook at 88.6. It beat out the Chromebook x2’s rating of 75.1 and was challenged solely by higher-end Home windows 10 notebooks just like the Dell XPS 13 with a Core i7-8550U CPU (86.6) and the Dell XPS 15 with a six-core Core i7-8570H (94.6).

We’re certain that the 64GB of eMMC storage is slower than solid-state drives (SSDs) in different machines just like the Pixelbook and most Home windows 10 notebooks on this worth vary. However regardless of – the Chromebook 13 suffered from no noticeable delays when opening apps and saving recordsdata.

Chrome OS can be a comparatively light-weight working system, and the Chromebook 13 whips by means of every little thing the platform can throw at it. The interface was lightning-quick, there have been no apps that precipitated an considerable slowdown, and the pocket book multitasked like a champ because of its spacious 8GB of RAM.

You may definitely recreation on the pocket book, as each Android title we tried out was quick and clean. In fact, you’ll be caught with utilizing the keyboard and perhaps a mouse, however there isn’t a recreation that you may run that’s more likely to defeat the Intel UHD 620 graphics constructed into the CPU.

Merely put, you received’t discover a sooner Chrome OS machine than the Chromebook 13. If velocity is what you crave, then that is the one for you.

Battery life doesn’t reside as much as the Chrome OS promise

There’s an affordable 54 watt-hours of battery capability packed into the Chromebook 13’s chassis, and that coupled with the final effectivity of Chrome OS ought to promise stable battery life. The show is larger decision, although, and the CPU is extra highly effective than common, and so we have been wanting ahead to seeing how battery life would maintain out.

Because it seems, we have been a bit stunned by the Chromebook 13’s longevity. To start with, the pocket book lasted for simply over three hours in our most aggressive Basemark internet benchmark check. The Chromebook x2 lasted for nearly 4 and a half hours, and the Samsung Chromebook Professional lasted for simply over 4 hours – they usually have considerably smaller batteries. The Asus ZenBook 13 lasted for slightly below three hours, and the Dell XPS 13 lasted for nearly 4 and three-quarter hours.

When looking the net, the Chromebook 13 lasted for eight and a half hours in comparison with the Chromebook x2 at a full hour longer, whereas the Acer Chromebook Spin 15 lasted for 11 hours. Merely put, Acer’s speedy Chromebook couldn’t handle almost the identical sort of longevity that we’re used to seeing with Chrome OS. Even Home windows 10 machines with comparable processors and comparable battery capacities lasted longer, together with the ZenBook 13 and XPS 13 that every lasted for over 10 and a half hours.

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Mark Coppock/Digital Traits

Lastly, in our video looping check that performs an Avengers trailer till a machine shuts down, the Chromebook 13 lasted for simply over 9 hours. As soon as once more, that’s low in comparison with the Chromebook x2 and the Pixelbook with smaller batteries, and the ZenBook 13 crushed the Chromebook 13 at 13 and a half hours.

General, it’s possible you’ll be hard-pressed to get by means of a full workday with the Chromebook 13, at the least in comparison with different Chrome OS units we’ve examined. You’ll get every little thing carried out a lot sooner, after all, however you’ll pay the value in longevity.

Our Take

The Chromebook 13 gives one very compelling characteristic: It’s among the many quickest Chromebooks you’re more likely to discover in the marketplace at the moment. And if you happen to’re searching for a standard clamshell and don’t care about flipping the show round or detaching the keyboard – or utilizing your finger to faucet and swipe on one thing aside from the touchpad – then the Chromebook 13 offers you the speediest efficiency. However that’s just about it, which isn’t loads for the $800 Acer is asking.

Is there a greater various?

For those who’re searching for a premium Chromebook at the moment, then which means you’re going to be wanting primarily at 2-in-1s. The Chromebook 13, in truth, is the one conventional clamshell Chrome OS pocket book we will consider that’s not a budget-oriented providing.

And with regards to Chrome OS 2-in-1s, the Chromebook 13 faces some stiff competitors. First to thoughts is the HP Chromebook x2, a removable pill with a really sturdy keyboard base that works effectively as a clamshell. It’s slower than the Chromebook 13 and isn’t fairly as robustly configured, with an Intel Core m3-7Y30 CPU, 4GB of RAM, and 32GB of eMMC storage. But it surely’s additionally cheaper at $600, and it’s higher wanting and higher constructed.

You could possibly additionally flip to Home windows 10 and contemplate the Asus ZenBook 13 UX331UA. It’s a 13.Three-inch clamshell with equal or perhaps slighter higher construct high quality to the Chromebook 13 – it’s maybe only a bit much less flexible – and it’s constructed across the similar Core i5 CPU with 8GB of RAM. The ZenBook 13 performs equally to the Chromebook 13 operating the extra demanding Home windows 10, and it gives considerably higher battery life, all for a similar $800.

How lengthy will it final?

The Chromebook 13 is stable sufficient to evoke confidence in its capacity to final by means of the standard workplace productiveness or pupil workload and abuse. And it has comparatively quick and up-to-date parts, that means it’s going to sustain with Chrome OS for a while to come back. The one-year guarantee is commonplace and, as common, lower than we’d prefer to see.

Do you have to purchase it?

No. It’s a really quick Chromebook, that’s for certain. However its battery life doesn’t sustain with Chrome OS’s promise, and it doesn’t supply the pliability of the 2-in-1s which might be typically obtainable for much less cash.

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