Wednesday, 3 December 2014

ASUS C720 Core i3 version

So the ASUS C720 arrived today and I am typing this post with it. It has 4GB RAM with 32GB SSD for storage and a Core i3-4010U CPU.

Out of the box it is considerably smaller than the HP but it is not as light as I thought it would be. I mean it's light but it's not light for its size.

Second thing which is immediately noticeable is that the keyboard is not as good as the HP. Maybe it takes some getting use to. I remember how I hated the HP's keyboard but I got use to it and it is not as terrible now. The ASUS keyboard initial experience is just like the HP keyboard initial experience. Horrible. A lot of mistypes. Hopefully I get use to it like I did the HP.

The trackpad is actually quite decent. Just like the HP. I'm quite surprised by this. A lot of reviews out there condemned the Acer's trackpad and I was expecting the worst. Real life experience shows that it's neither better or worse than the HP.

Finally for the biggest difference. The Core i3 on the Acer. I expected a big difference over the Celeron on the HP but to be totally honest I don't really notice a big jump in speed if any. My advise? Save your money and stick to the good old Intel Haswell Celeron 2955U CPU. It is more than good enough. The 4GB RAM will make a bigger difference. I mean you can definitely feel some speed difference but it's really not worth the extra cash outlay.

The screen. It is brighter and have better viewing angles over the HP but that is not saying much. The HP has a horrible screen. To be perfectly honest the Acer is much better and I can see myself tolerating it faster than the HP. But its definitely no IPS level quality display. But I'll take any improvement I can. There is still a slight haziness but nowhere as bad as the HP. The viewing angles are much better too. It does not ghost out as much as the HP do from left to right. From above, it does not do as well but still better than the HP.

The speakers are just slightly louder over the HP but the HP has err...better tone? To be honest, both could have sounded better.

I will give more impressions as I use it more. It has been only...what? 45mins worth of usage so far? I want to see how long the battery lasts.

I'll have more impressions as I use it more.

UPDATE 1 : OK. My first update. After what? 10 mins after I first posted? I take back what I said about the screen LOL. It is not much better than the HP. Just slightly better. Once I start to move the Acer around, I find that it's not as good as I thought it was. Still better than the HP though. Just not that much better. I find a lot more ghosting at off angles. Both left to right as well as top to bottom. Front on it is still quite decent and better than the HP.

UPDATE 2 : OK. It's confirmed. The keyboard will never be as good as the HP. Not that the HP keyboard is stellar in the first place. You have to press a bit more heavily on the Acer in order for it to register a key press but it shouldn't be this way in the first place.

I rate the track pad lower than the HP too. For navigating and finger gestures, it works fine but registering a mouse button action requires a heavier touch. On the HP I can just do a light touch to register a button press but on the Acer the touch have to be heavier. I ended up clicking most of the time to register a button press. I find this annoying.

The display on the Acer is better. I got use to the screen on the Acer a lot faster than on the HP. Due to its smaller screen it also appears sharper. I never did get use to the HP screen. I simply tolerated it.

When placed on a hard surface, the Acer sounds louder than the HP. This may be due to its front bottom, down firing speakers. In any other position, it sounds equal or at times worst than the HP.

Battery life has been very promising. I use it heavily and I don't notice that big of a hit over the HP. For your info, I use both at maximum brightness so that may account for the more or less similar battery life. Maybe the HP lasts just a bit longer but based on my usage, I am very satisfied with the Acer's battery life.

Overall I love this little Chromebook and it has more or less replaced my tablet. Unlike the HP where I mostly use it in one stationary position due to its weight and size (it can be unwieldy at times), the Acer is very portable and I carry it everywhere with me. It is fulfilling its intended purpose that I had in mind when making the purchase so I consider this money well spent.

So what do I do now with the HP?

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