Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Acer C7 Chromebook Quick Review

So I ended up getting an Acer C7 Chromebook. It was $122 refurb so I figured why not.

The Acer C7 Chromebook (C710-2847) is basically a rebadged, re-worked 11.6 netbook running Chrome OS. It is based off the Acer Aspire V5-171. Acer didn't do much to the design except swap out a few keyboard labels.

It is as boring as it gets. 11.6" screen with piss poor viewing angles and an anemic battery life of 3 hours. Did I mention I got it for $122? That is the saving grace. The chassis is made of the cheapest tupperware plastic that can be found yet it manages to pull down 3 pounds in weight. This is a half pound heaver than the Samsung Series 3 Chromebook.

So how does it compare to the Samsung's ARM based Chromebook? See below.

Generally speaking, the Acer is much faster due to the fact it is running an INTEL processor. There are various benchmarks showing the speed advantage of the Acer. It also has three USB ports, a VGA port, HDMI, and an 10/100 ethernet. The Samsung model lacks the ethernet, one less USB and does without the VGA. I can see the advantage to having the onboard ethernet for some scenarios.

Also, because it runs on an X86 platform, it has a much wider selection of INTEL only applications like VNC Viewer which is unavailable on the Samsung.

Another advantage to the Acer is it the fact it has a 320GB storage. That may or may not be important to you but with 320GB, you can probably store quite a few MP4 movies for local playback. Hence, the Acer isn't a total disaster. It is also much more upgrade-able. You can easily up the RAM cheaply and this makes it a decent UBUNTU portable netbook if you are so inclined to go that route. The 3 hour battery life can be fixed with a larger 6, 9 cell battery that you can buy later on.

However, I would still pick the Samsung over the Acer. The Samsung has a better fit-n-finish. The screen, keyboard, and trackpads are much better. The keyboard on the Samsung has better travel and the trackpad operates with less glitches than the Acer. The Acer also heats up under use. The Samsung can be used on a lap while lounging whereas the Acer gets warm after a few minutes. Lastly, out-of-the-box, the Samsung has a better runtime of 6-7 hours.

So there you have it. My short take on the Acer C7 Chromebook. Did I mention I got it for  $122!

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