Question Choosing between Chromebooks

skaertus

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Mar 20, 2010
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I am thinking of buying my first Chromebook, just to put my toe on the water. It will not be my primary device, and I will use it occasionally, especially for some productivity. I want it to be cheap, but with a decent screen, keyboard, touchpad, and battery life. I do not need a touchscreen. I live in Brazil, so I have limited choices. I searched and I have two final contenders, which are as follows:
  • Acer C733T:
    • 11.6-inch IPS touchscreen with 16:9 aspect ratio and 1366x768 resolution
    • Intel Celeron N4020 processor at 1.1 GHz (up to 2.8 GHz)
    • Intel UHD Graphics 600 video card
    • 4 GB 2400 MHz LPDDR4 RAM
    • 32 GB eMMC
    • 2 USB-C ports, 2 USB 3.1 ports, Micro SD card support
    • 1280x720 webcam
    • Bluetooth 5.0
    • 3829 mAh battery
    • 1.26 kg
    • $360 price point
  • Samsung Chromebook Plus (V2)
    • 12.2-inch IPS touchscreen with 16:10 aspect ratio and 1920x1200 resolution
    • Intel Celeron 3965Y processor at 1.5 GHz
    • Intel HD Graphics 615 video card
    • 4 GB 1866 MHz LPDDR3 RAM
    • 32 GB eMMC
    • 2 USB-C ports, 1 USB 3.0 port, Micro SD card support
    • 1 MP webcam (+ 13 MP webcam on keyboard)
    • Bluetooth 4.0
    • 39 Wh battery
    • 1.33 kg weight
    • $500 price point
So, these are the two main contenders. I know, the price is ridiculously high, but this is how prices are here in Brazil due to heavy taxes. You may say I can get a better model at BestBuy, and I certainly know that. However, I have no current access to any device sold in the U.S., nor I have anyone to bring it for me during these pandemic times. So, it is one of the two models above, unless I can find something else more attractive for sale in Brazil (and not in the U.S. or elsewhere).

The Samsung model looks higher-end, and I like the 16:10 screen at this size and the higher resolution. The Acer model seems simpler, but also cheaper and newer. The processor in the Acer models seems to be significantly faster, at least judging by Geekbench scores:
  • 3965Y (Samsung): around 350 (single-core) and 650-700 (multi-core)
  • N4020 (Acer): around 450 (single-core) and 800-900 (multi-core)
So, the processor in the Acer Chromebook seems to be faster, and the memory is significantly faster as well. Does it make a difference in running ChromeOS?

Another question that I would have is the screen. I tested an Acer, and the screen was OK (not great). The Samsung screen may be much better. However, I read that ChromeOS does not support scaling, and I would have to reduce the screen resolution to make things larger. So perhaps a 1920x1200 resolution is not the way to go with a 12.2-inch Chromebook? I also wonder whether this higher resolution would significantly impact battery life.

As I tested the Acer laptop, I found out that the keyboard is good and that the touchpad is OK and responsive. I did not have the chance to test the Samsung model, though. How is it?

Considering those prices, which would be the better option, given that memory and storage are equal? I was leaning towards the Acer due to the faster speeds and lower prices, but I wonder whether the better screen on the Samsung model or its higher-end feel may be worth it.

Any opinions? Thanks.
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
I like the Samsung Chromebook models, ASUS should be in the list also. Can't say anything about scaling, but the screen is great on it.

I suggest looking for a recent model used if you can, I bought my daughter that Samsung model for half of new cost and got one about a year old in perfect shape.
 

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