I love my Zippo’s. This one however has me a little dkissapointed, the applique artwork is not sealed well enough. Six months and the art work is start to chip away,
JUST got it today and so far it seems great, 8gb DDR3, 3.4ghz i7 3rd gen as advertised, the case is in mint condition as far as i can tell, running very smoothly, booted up no problems and was able to use it almost immediately upon getting it delivered. it DOES have a fairly outdated graphics card but i knew that when i bought it. youll need a (rather hard to come by) Male VGA cable as it doesn’t support HDMI in any capacity, even with a VGA to HDMI adapter. (i tried) or you can just buy an new graphics card and install that. delivery was prompt and im very pleased. 🙂
I want to start off by saying, I did not buy this Acer Chromebook 15 off Amazon or Ebay. I bought this laptop from Bestbuy about 5 days ago. So the time I have spent with this Chromebook has been a great experience. Before I start my review I want to make sure that everybody knows what a Chromebook is, and what purpose it serves. To answer that I will say a Chromebook is a laptop with a web browser (Google Chrome) installed as the operating system. Since Chrome OS does not require too much hardware to run well it can use lower end hardware to run as well as a Windows system with higher end specs while being a much cheaper alternative. So don’t be worried if you come across a Chromebook with a Intel celeron or Pentium processor because that’s really all you need to have a great experience with Chrome OS. Now to answer who is a Chromebook for. A Chromebook is for someone who uses the web browser most of the time, someone who does not need to use many programs offline. Its also great for typing documents, presentation, powerpoints and other type of documents on thanks to Google docs. It’s a great device for students, parents, grandparents, and as a gift to most people. I understand Chromebooks CAN’T run Windows applications or Mac applications but it was not made to, Chrome OS was made to be a very light weight operating system so it can perform well running off the lower end processor and RAM. So below I will start off by listening and describing why I bought this Chromebook over any other Chromebook, then after that I will talk about the things that could be improved. After that I will try to come up with some questions to answer so I can try to help those who may have some questions.
WHY I BOUGHT THIS CHROMEBOOK OVER ANY OTHER CHROMEBOOK
The first reason and one of the biggest reasons why I bought this device was for its screen size and resolution. This laptop comes with a 15.6 inch screen with a FHD (1920 by 1080) IPS (in plane switching) matte screen. I love the 15.6 inch size along with the beautiful FHD resolution because it allows you to just do more on one screen. I can fit 2 Chrome windows side by side and still see all of the website without having all the text all scrunched up and ugly looking. Since it’s a IPS screen it allows me to view my screen from just about any angle. This was a big deal to me because now I am able to tilt the screen however I want without losing out on the color quality. I can also sit back and watch as many YouTube videos or movies comfortably. I am also a huge fan (HUGE FAN) of the matte finish display. The reason why I am such a big fan of matte displays is because you just don’t see them much anymore. Most laptops and desktops have a glossy display which is almost like having a mirror as a display since its reflects so much, so easily. You won’t have that problem with a matte finish display and that’s why I am such a big fan of them.
Let me start off by saying wow! These speakers are just fantastic! They don’t sound tinny or lose out on quality when turned up all the way. These speakers are loud while also packing some bass which is great for songs, music videos and movies. These speakers are not going to sound as good as a 15 inch MacBook but for what they have to offer at this price point is quite mind blowing and I am not complaining.
(3.) Battery life
Battery life in any laptop is essential because if your laptop is only getting about 3 hours or less at max then there’s almost no point in bringing it anywhere because it can’t do what it was made to do well, which is being a portable computer. This laptop has been giving a very decent battery life which is about 5 to 6 hours of YouTube playback and about 8 ½ hours surfing the web and typing documents, this is of course with Bluetooth turned off and about 65% screen brightness. I am sure this laptop will even get longer battery life with wifi disabled. So far I am very pleased with the battery life that this laptop offers.
(4.) Build quality
I am a big fan of the build quality of this laptop. It doesn’t feel cheap, it is not flimsy and overall it feels sturdy for day to day use. This Chromebook comes with 1 USB 3.0 port, 1 USB 2.0 port, a full HDMI displayport, headphone jack, very small charging port (bad Acer, bad!) and a half sized SDXC slot. This laptop has a easy to upgrade M.2 SSD inside. You can get inside this laptop by taking out the 18 screws under the laptop. By doing this it’ll expose the motherboard, allowing you to take out that 16GB M.2 SSD and replace it with a much bigger SSD. This is great because if you are someone who plans on installing any type of Linux operating system, upgrading the SSD will allow to have more space to install more programs, download more movies, videos, music, pictures and just about anything else. Also by taking off the bottom part of the laptop it exposes the battery which is replaceable, so if the battery in this laptop dies 2 or 3 years from now I can simply buy a new battery and install it with ease. The RAM however is NOT I repeat NOT upgradable which is a bummer but when you think about it, Chrome does not require much RAM to run smoothly. Overall I think the build quality of this machine is better than most, inside and out. I can upgrade the SSD, replace the battery and even replace the motherboard with ease if anything ever goes wrong. Please keep in mind that opening up this computer will void any warranty so if you want to keep the warranty do not open this laptop until the warranty is over.
(5.) Keyboard and trackpad
The keyboard and trackpad on this machine are decent. I am happy with the keyboard because the key travel is great which makes typing much easier. I also like how every Chromebook has functions for all the keys on top, replacing the f1 key through f12. Having the function to make my web browser go in full screen mode is great because it gives me more room to view more content. There are also keys to go back, forward or reload the web page. I like this because when I am in full screen mode I can reload the web page without having to exit full screen mode, this is the same for going back or forward. There are also keys to turn up the volume, turn down volume, to mute sound and to adjust screen brightness. All these functions are very helpful and are put here with that in mind. The trackpad on the other hand is pretty good but not perfect. I really like the trackpad because it’s a huge easy to use trackpad, I don’t feel limited thanks to the big size. The trackpad works well most of the time but I have noticed sometimes when I am trying to click something it jumps a little. This has happened to me twice in the past 5 days, so it’s not like it happens often but when it does it is annoying.
(6.) Chrome OS/software
Chrome OS is a very friendly/easy to learn operating system. It’s something that I can give my parents without having to worry about them to much. Its also very easy on the hardware. You only need about 1GB of RAM and a Intel Atom processor to run Chrome OS smoothly. Thankfully every company sells laptops or desktops with at least 2GB of ram, giving the user enough resources to have about 7 to 10 tabs open at once without any slowdowns or hiccups. More and more Chromebooks are now coming with 4GB, 8GB and even 16GB of ram and powerful Intel Celeron, Pentium, Core l3, i5 and even i7 processors. This is all great news because if you are someone who likes having 20 web tabs open or more while typing documents within the Chrome OS or if you plan on installing a Linux operating system you now have the ability to do so without having to worry about your system running slow. In the end my experience with Chrome OS has been a great one, this is my go to computer 90% of the time.
For around $250.00 you are getting something with a 15 inch laptop with a full HD IPS matte display, with great loud speakers, that has all day battery life, with a very decent keyboard and trackpad, and something that has some easily replaceable and upgradeable internal hardware. Sure this laptop does have some flaws but I will talk about that later. If you ask me, that’s a pretty damn good deal while being under $300.00. I must say, great job Acer!
THE CONS OF THIS CHROMEBOOK
(1.) Charging port
Nothing is perfect, everything has flaws. With this Chromebook I have come to find out that it has a very small barrel like charging port. I don’t like this one bit because it’s very easy to break. If I end up breaking it by accident that means I’d have to go online buy a new charger then wait 4 to 7 days for it to arrive and even then not all 3rd party chargers are good. Worse case the internal connector of the charging port could break inside the laptop which means I’d have to buy a new charging connector for this laptop, even then the charging connector may not be replaceable because it might be soldered on the motherboard. This is my biggest gripe of this laptop.
(2.) Gets dirty easy, hard to clean
Most Acer Chromebooks are white, even though I do like the color it gets dirty very easy and then its hard to clean because of the woven pattern Acer has going on. Sure this can be fixed easily with some type of case but it would be nice if my new product did not get dirty so easily. Nevertheless, it’s still a very nice color, you just gotta make sure to buy a hard case for the Chromebook to eliminate this dirty problem.
(3.) Harder to find accessories
Just like the title says, it’s harder to find accessories and when you do they are a little more expensive. It’s not like a MacBook where you go on Ebay or Amazon and look for a hard case or you find a plethora of all sorts and types of cases for about $10.00.
(4.) Crappy file system
So Chrome OS has been out for about 4 years now and they still don’t have a good file system. Anything and everything I download or copy from my USB has to go into the “downloads” folder. Sure I can create a new folder and name it whatever I want but it still has to stay within the downloads folder. To make things worse I can’t even copy any pictures, movies, music or anything to the desktop. It’s like why even have a desktop if I can’t do anything with it, it’s just wasted space if you ask me. Chrome OS still needs some work done to it, not much but there is some improvement that needs to be made and this is one of those many things.
(5.) Size and weight
The size and weight of this laptop is bigger than most, coming in at 15.6 inches and weighing in at about 4.85 pounds. This isn’t your average 13.3 inch Chromebook. This Chromebook is about 2 pounds heavier than most and the biggest Chromebook of them all. So it may become a hassle if you want to bring this everywhere you go because most backpacks aren’t even big enough to fit this big Chromebook in it. Honestly I am not surprised about the size or weight because it’s the size I wanted and the weight is just a givin due to the laptop being a big laptop.
(6.) Wasted space inside
Some of you may be asking, what is this guy talking about? So I ended up taking off the bottom part of my Acer Chromebook 15 (shhh don’t tell Acer) just to see for myself that the Kingston 16GB M.2 SSD is upgradeable and to my surprise it is! But I have also noticed how freaking small the battery is, coming in at 3220 MAh. You can see this in some of the pictures that I have taken, just how much free space is inside this computer. To put that in perspective the iPhone 6Plus is not only way smaller but it has a 2915 MAh battery pack, so the iPhone 6 pluses battery despite being smaller in physical size it’s almost as big as the battery built into this laptop. Why did Acer decide to cheap out on the battery? Sure I do get pretty good battery life with this small battery but that just means I could get about twice as much battery life (about 16 to 18 hours basic web surfing!!) if they were to just make the battery bigger, taking up ALL of that empty, unused free space inside. I would be much happier having a heavier laptop if this meant I could have a full 2 day battery life, Id also be happy to pay a little more too but oh well I guess not everything about this laptop can be a good thing.
Overall I am very happy with my purchase. I think it’s more than worth the price at $250.00 and do recommend anyone to buy this who is looking for a great all around Chromebook and computer. I understand Chrome isn’t all that perfect but you need to keep in mind Chrome OS has only been out for about 5 years whereas Windows OS and Mac OS has been out for at least 20 something years. I think what Google has right now is a great start, and with every update Chrome OS really does get faster, Google really does try to improve the speed while trying to add some new features. If you do decide to buy a Chromebook I would strongly recommend you buy one with 4GB of ram. Yes Chrome OS does run well with 2GB of ram but for a extra $20.00 or $30.00 I think it’s well worth it for the 4GB ram model because once you buy you can’t upgrade the ram later on. Also having more ram means you can have more tabs open without the laptop slowing down. If you do decide to buy a Chromebook and want to install Windows on it, I would have to say just go with a Windows computer. I have heard of nothing but problems and errors people running into while trying to install Windows on their Chromebooks. I hear that the Chromebook either locks up (becomes UNUSABLE) or that the person can’t find all the drivers for the laptop. So if you want Windows stick with a Windows computer, if you want to give Chrome OS a shot then buy a Chromebook. I use my Chromebook more than my Macbook air, not because the Macbook is a bad or an unusable product it’s just that most things I do are online and the basic things I do I can do offline. Does this mean I’d get rid of my Macbook air for this Acer Chromebook 15? No not at all because the Chromebook is still just a Chromebook it just simply can’t do everything a Mac or Windows product can do. My Mac still has a much better file system, I can connect my iDevices to it to update, restore, and backup. Also there are way more usable programs that are not only better than the Chrome OS’s apps but most of the programs are usable offline like iMovie for example. So when it all comes down to it a Chromebook can’t replace most of people’s Windows computers or Mac computers but the Chromebook makes a fantastic secondary/backup device and for $250.00 Ill take it!
Questions and answers
(Q.) Do Chromebooks have bluetooth built in?
(A.) Yes MOST Chromebooks have bluetooth built in, including this Acer 15.6 inch Chromebook
(Q.) Can I use my wired mouse and keyboard with a Chromebook?
(A.) Yes you can use just about any mouse and keyboard with any Chromebook as long as it’s a USB mouse or keyboard.
(Q.) Can I print documents off my Chromebook with my printer?
(A.) Yes and no. Yes because some printers are made to work with Chrome OS and no because not all printers are made for Chrome OS. Chrome OS is still a fairly new operating system so not all companies have supported drivers for Chrome OS. Long story short I would look up the type of printer you have to see if it’s compatible with Chrome OS.
(Q.) I am looking for a good hard case for my Acer Chromebook 15, do you know where I can find one?
(A.) Yes I know where you can find a good case. This case is made by a company called iPearl and it’s a hard case that snaps onto the Chromebook, it also comes in many different colors. I haven’t received mine yet but I have ordered from them in the past and had good luck with them. Also other people seem to like this case to. Read the reviews and see what you think. Here is the link to the one I ordered
(Q.) Is the keyboard on the Acer 15 backlit?
(Q.) Is a Chromebook good for photo or video editing?
(A.) For the most part no. From what I have seen there are no good video editing apps for the Chromebook and only decent photo editing apps. The photo editing apps I have found are good for light photo editing and you are able to use them offline. The one I used sometimes is called Boxy SVG, I don’t edit photos to much but when I do I use this app.
(Q.) Is this Chromebook good for school?
(A.) This is a tricky question because it depends. This Acer 15 inch Chromebook is the biggest Chromebook available and also might be the heaviest. Weighing in at 4.85 pounds by no means is it light as a MacBook air. Id say if you want/need a big fantastic screen while having great all day battery life and have fantastic audio Id say go for this if weight isn’t too much of an issue for you. But if don’t want to carry around a 5 pound laptop I’d say go for the smaller 13.3 inch Acer Chromebook or go for the even smaller 10.1 inch Asus Chromebook flip c100p. Both I have heard good things about. As for the usability I think a Chromebook is great for school because it’s fast and Chrome OS allows you to type your documents offline (yes you read that right, you can type documents without having wifi!) and presentations. The app is called Google Docs, it’s free to use (also add free!) and so far it seems to be working well. It’s what I am using right now to type this review on. The best part is that whenever you are online it syncs with your Google account! So if my laptop were to shut off randomly my document would be saved in the cloud. I can also access it with ANY laptop or desktop, with Mac OS or Windows OS, as long as I have a internet connection.
(Q.) Is it safe to install Linux on my Chromebook?
(A.) Yes it is totally safe, I have done it before with no problems, it was simple but time consuming due to the big file download of Linux. Here is the video I would go by if I were to install Linux onto my Chromebook again
Please like this guys video if it helped you out. This video was NOT made by me so don’t give me any of the credit, liking this video will only help this guy make even more helpful videos, tips, and tricks.
(Q.) Can I use Google docs offline, and is it free?
(A.) Yes you can use Google Docs offline, and the best part is that it’s free! No adware, no annoying pop ups every 20 seconds, it’s totally free. Its not as good as MS Office but it can do almost as much as MS Office and it even syncs with your Google drive account. This is a great feature because not only can you access it on your Chromebook, you can access it on a Mac, a Windows machine and even your tablet.
I hope you all enjoyed my review. I spent all day typing it and thinking of what to say. If I missed something or said something wrong please by all means feel free to let me know(: Also if anyone has a question please ask me in the comments. I type these reviews for you guys, to help you guys out on what to buy. I was not paid to type this review, I spent my OWN hard worked money on this Chromebook and everything I did say I do mean(:
****UPDATE 9/16/2016 ****
So I have had this Chromebook for about 2 weeks and experienced no problems so far, battery seems to be holding a charge pretty well, the screen still looks amazing and everything is working great. I have received my iPearl hard case (I actually got it the day before I posted this review on 9/1/2016) and so far I am very happy with the case. It fits my Chromebook perfectly, it’s easy to install, it feels like a nice hard plastic shell that isn’t too flimsy and for the price I think it’s a great case. I also really like that the hard shell has a matte finish, in other words it keeps fingerprints off and does not show scratches too much and this iPearl hard case has built in feet to lift up the back of the laptop making it nicer to type. If you wanna read my full review and see others follow this link
Anyways I have been enjoying this Chromebook and will keep you guys updated! Feel free to leave any questions!!
So it’s been about 2 ½ months now that I have had this fantastic Chromebook. I am still very happy with because performance has NOT diminished and everything is still working great. I will be honest I have not been using this Chromebook everyday because I am someone who likes to collect computers. Old computers, new computers, windows laptops, desktops, iMacs, Macbooks and the list goes on so what I am trying to say is that it’s hard for me to focus all my attention on just this Chromebook. Everytime I come back to use this Chromebook (I use this chromebook about once a week) I am just shocked at how great the sound quality and display quality is. Its an awesome feeling because I like knowing that I don’t have to go out and spend $1000.00 to get a laptop with a great screen, awesome audio and good performance. Everything feels fluid even with 10 and 15 tabs open in Chrome thanks to the decent processor (Intel celeron 3215U), the 4GB of ram, and the Chrome OS not requiring a ton of resources. I have also found out how to change the function of that search key (normally the caps lock) to caps lock. Just go into settings, two sections down you will see it labeled DEVICE and just under that you will see a button saying keyboard settings, click that and itll give you the option to change the function of the “search key”. I tried to like the normal function of the search key but I just get too confused when using this laptop and my MacBooks. I wanted to keep it at its normal function to get the full chrome experience but I just couldn’t do it so I changed the function of the search key to be caps lock instead. The overall structure of the laptop has held up really well (thanks to the iPearl hard case) I have not experienced any cracking on the housing or any discoloration of any sort. All the keys on my keyboard still works, the speakers still work flawlessly and no dead pixels have showed up on my screen. The charger and charger port has not broke thankfully but keep in mind I have been very careful when charging the laptop because of the very small and fragile charging port and charger. So as a side note don’t charge this laptop with any kids or pets around (because someone could trip or walk on it breaking it) and if you want to be extra safe I’d say only charge it in a safe place like your bedroom or office since you won’t have to worry about pets and kids running around like crazy. I personally keep my Chromebook on my shelf along with my charger when I am not using it to keep it away from any pets or kids and when I am using it I keep it at my desk in my office since I don’t have to worry about anyone tripping over the charger. I am still a little bummed out about the battery not taking up all that empty space though, I just can’t figure out why Acer decided to use a small (about 3200 mah) battery. Don’t get me wrong this battery is still holding up really well getting around 8 hours of use on a full charge but to get anywhere from 16 to 18 hours would even be more awesome. With that type of battery life this machine would be able to compete with Apple’s Macbook air a $1000.00 laptop. It’s not a huge issue though, first of all this is a $250.00 laptop so I don’t expect the world for that price and also most importantly this laptop does what Acer promised it can do, in the end of the day that’s all that really matters. I just hope Acer has learned from this so the next Chromebook they make will be even better. In the end I think Acer has a true winner right here folks, I am still more than happy to recommend this laptop to anybody needing a laptop to do basic things with.
I just want to let you guys know I do want to keep this review updated, I think it is fun to let everybody know how this laptop is holding up and I think this may even be helpful to some. If anyone has any feedback (positive or negative) please let me know in the comments below. Hope you all enjoyed my review and most importantly have a great day! Life is short so enjoy it(:
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good desktops, good quality.