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HP Pavilion Aero 13 AMD Powered Ultrabook Review

HP has unveiled the Pavilion Aero 13, a 13.3-inch 16/10 consumer ultrabook that weighs less than a kilogram. Equipped with an AMD Ryzen 5000 processor. The HP Pavilion Aero 13 is designed for maximum mobility, so you can work and play wherever you are. The model has a magnesium-aluminum case with narrow bezels. It will be available in Pale Rose Gold, Warm Gold, Ceramic White, and Natural Silver.

PROSCONS
Neat and classy designClickpad is small and spongy
Exceptional chassis and rigidityWeak battery life
Plenty of ports
Bright 4K UHD display

General Info

HP Pavilion Aero 13
BrandHP
ModelPavilion Aero 13
ProcessorAMD Ryzen 5 5600U up to 4.2 GHz, 16 MB L3 cache, 6 cores, 12 threads
AMD Ryzen 7 5800U up to 4.4 GHz, 16 MB L3 cache, 8 cores, 16 threads
GraphicsAMD Radeon Graphics
OSWindows 10 Home 64
Weight2.2 lb
Display13.3 inch
ColorsNatural Silver, Warm Gold, Ceramic White, Pale Rose Gold
Dimensions11.72 x 8.23 x 0.67 in
TypeLaptop

The HP Pavilion Aero 13 is a new ultraportable with a magnesium-aluminum alloy chassis that comes in colorful Pale Rose Gold (pale pink), Warm Gold (gold), Ceramic White (white), and Natural designs. Silver.

It measures 309.12 x 205 x 17.8 mm, weighs 1 kg, and offers an advertised autonomy of 10:30 under Windows 10 (Pro) with its Li-Polymer 3 cells 43Whr battery.

Display

Display TypeIPS
Display Size13.3 inch
Display Resolution1920 x 1200 pixel
Dimension 11.72 x 8.23 x 0.67 in

This laptop computer entrusts its display to a 13-inch IPS Full HD + (1920×1200) screen in 16 / 10th 100% sRGB 400cd / m² format with thin edges, with optional IPS 2.5K (2560×1600).

Performance

ProcessorAMD Ryzen 5 5600U
AMD Ryzen 7 5800U
GraphicsAMD Radeon Graphics
RAMUp to 16 GB Memory 
StorageUp to 1 TB PCIeNVMe M.2 SSD

The HP Pavilion Aero 13 also boasts excellent technical characteristics. The laptop received AMD Ryzen 5000 series processors, made according to the 7-nanometer process technology. These chips are equipped with reasonably powerful Radeon Vega graphics, the power of which reaches Nvidia’s discrete entry-level solutions. 

This thin and light laptop PC integrates up to 16 GB DDR4 3200MHz of RAM and M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD storage.

Multimedia

Webcam Above the display
Webcam resolution720p HD camera
AudioAudio by B&O; Dual speakers; HP Audio Boost
NetworkWi-Fi IEEE 802.11ac
BluetoothBluetooth 5.0
PortsUSB 3.1 Type-A x 2, USB 3.1 Type-C, HDMI out, Mic / Headphone Combo
Keyboard NumpadNo
Keyboard TypeChiclet

It is equipped with a Wi-Fi ax (Wi-Fi 6), Bluetooth 5, HDMI 2.0, Headphone / Microphone combo audio, 2 USB 3.0 and 1 USB 3.2 Type-C (Gen2), and a card reader microSD.

A 720p HD webcam surmounts the screen with a microphone accompanied by 2 speakers. Also included is a chiclet keyboard with a key backlighting option and a fingerprint reader allowing authentication by biometric recognition via Windows Hello technology.

Battery

Battery Type3 cells Li-ion polymer
Battery capacity43 Wh
AC Adapter65 W Smart AC

The system is built on the AMD hardware platform and includes Ryzen 5000 series mobile processors up to the Ryzen 7 5800U. The battery life can be up to 10.5 hours. The device is available in four body colors: Pale Rose Gold, Warm Gold, Ceramic White and Natural Silver.

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Lenovo ThinkBook 15P Review: Laptop For Creators

The ThinkBook 15P. Lenovo knows that the letter “P” stands for a machine equipped with a mobile CPU with high performance, and it is no different in this case. The configuration has a set of components, including Core i5 10300H, GeForce GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q.

PROSCONS
Bright and colorful 4K displayNo Thunderbolt port
Fingerprint reader, camera shutter
Excellent expansion capabilities
High-end performance

General Info

Lenovo ThinkBook 15P
$CHECK PRICE
ReleasedJanuary 1, 2021
BrandLenovo
Model20V3001XUS
ProcessorIntel Core i5 10300H
GraphicsGeForce GTX 1650 Max-Q,
4 GB Intel UHD 630
OSWindows 10 Pro
Weight1.9 kg
Display15.6 inch
ColorsMineral Gray, dual-tone design
MaterialAluminum
Dimensions359 x 250 x 20 mm
TypeLaptop

ThinkBook 15p is a laptop with a 15.6-inch screen, it is certainly not one of the compact laptops in the world, but for an efficient 15 inch, it still looks quite neat. The notebook is 20 mm thick and weighs less than 2 kg; it has almost the exact dimensions as the second-generation ThinkBook 15 based on a low-voltage CPU.

The ThinkBook 15P is another confirmation of this. Generally, gray in its lighter shade rules here. The only exception is the black frame around the screen. Besides – gray over grays and everything gray. Is that a complaint? Not.

Lenovo has succeeded in avoiding boredom. Because here we have a slightly darker keyboard, the manufacturer’s logo on a metal plate glued to the edge. Then, again, a darker strip runs along the flap’s entire length for about 1/3 of its height, slightly contrasting with its remaining surface.

The edge of the lid is decorated a delicate cut, through which a metallic shine emerges into the daylight.

The laptop is made of aluminum, but unfortunately, this is not the case. The laptop’s bottom and lid made of light metal, but the desktop is made of plastic. At first glance, you can get confused, but adding a sense of touch to your eyes dispels all doubts. 

In terms of durability, the entire structure of the ThinkBook 15p is expected to do well, not standing out qualitatively from the rest of the family. The flap only slightly bends due to the applied force, but all within acceptable and safe limits, without fear of damage

In addition, even greater pressure on the lid does not cause the appearance of artifacts on the active matrix to be well secure.

Display

Display TypeIPS, matte
Display Size15.6 inch
TouchscreenNo
Display Resolution1920 x 1080 Pixel
Display Feature4K, IPS, matte, 600 nits, HDR400, 100%
AdobeRGB, Full HD, IPS, matte

This Lenovo laptop tempts so-called ” creative creators ” who are familiar with 2D and 3D graphics or video. The Chinese have prepared two IPS panels for this model. The first one has a 4K resolution, a brightness of 600 nits, and 100% mapped AdobeRGB color palette. The second, installed in the tested model, is a panel with Full HD resolution (1920 x 1080 pixels) and has the specification of 300 nits of brightness, a contrast of 1200: 1, and 100% sRGB mapping. How do these features appear outside the document? 

The matrix was close to the value of 300 nits with its brightness, but practically only in its center. The sides are slightly dimmed, but during work and everyday use of the laptop, it was not visible at all. The contrast was better than what Lenovo promised. Instead of 1200: 1, the colorimeter showed 1402: 1, so as you can guess – black also turned out very well; it is excellent for an IPS matrix. 

In terms of color reproduction, the panel colorimeter showed exactly 97% of the sRGB palette instead of around “streak.” 

  • luminance: 291 cd / m2
  • contrast: 1402: 1
  • black: 0.21cd / m2
  • sRGB palette: 97%
  • DCI-P3 palette: 73%
  • AdobeRGB palette: 70%

Performance

ProcessorIntel Core i5 10300H 4 cores,
8 threads 2.5 – 4.5 GHz TDP – 45 W cache – 8 MB
GraphicsGeForce GTX 1650 Max-Q,
4 GB Intel UHD 630
RAM16 GB DDR4, 2933 MHz
Storage512 GB, SSD M.2 PCIe NVMe
SAMSUNG MZALQ512HALU-000L2

The Intel Core i5 10300H and GeForce GTX 1650 Ti in the Max-Q version did. Except for these two components. 

It turned out that the Lenovo Vantage application for managing the system, computer, and its hardware resources has an option hidden among the settings called ” Intelligent power settings, “and this one has three modes: Extreme performance, Intelligent cooling, which is the default mode, and battery saving. Only switching to the Extreme Performance mode released the components from the imposed loops, and the performance results began to look as they should.

Let’s start with the CPU. The Core i5 10300H is a reasonably efficient processor and, paradoxically, the weakest unit with which you can buy a ThinkBook 15p. An alternative to it is the higher-positioned Core i7 10750H and Core i7 10820H.

The unit from the Comet Lake-H family has a TDP of 45 W, clocked in the fork from 2.5 GHz to a maximum of 4.5 GHz in Turbo Boost mode (100 and 400 MHz more than in the Core i5 9300H, respectively) with a load of one core. Of these, the CPU has four physical and eight logical thanks to the support for Hyper-Threading. To the total, 8 MB of cache should be added.

During the tests, the processor positively surprised me in terms of the results obtained. It’s enough to mention that for an hour-long stability test, the clock fluctuations were only 100 MHz, and the temperature fluctuated around 82-85 ° C. Out of curiosity, I also checked how the processor would behave in the Intelligent Cooling mode. There were no major surprises – the clock rigidly stuck to the base value, and the CPU temperature reached a maximum of 51 ° C.

The Core i5 10300H let the benchmarks squeeze out sweat and found that the unit did not overestimate its capabilities. The results obtained from the Cinebench R15 and R20 benchmarks look surprisingly well. Converting the 15-minute movie from 4K / 60 frames per second to Full HD / 30 frames per second took 17 and 36 seconds, which is only about 1.5 minutes longer than the Core i7 10750H from the Acer ConceptD 3 Ezel. This is quite a good result. The chip also did not bring shame to Intel and Lenovo in the remaining tests, as evidenced by the graphs below.

The laptop uses both available graphics cards. Intel UHD 630. It is responsible for the image when we do not need the power of an independent GPU to work. However, when a game or other application is launched that eagerly uses the power of dGPU, the action will come, all in green, the GeForce GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q from NVIDIA.

GTX 1650 Ti in the version with reduced energy appetite, hence, heat emission, is a graphic from the middle shelf of efficiency. It can be found in cheaper gaming laptops and notebooks with a more specialized pedigree. It is perfect for working with modeling and various 3D graphics, assisted by NVIDIA Studio drivers. The card is based on the TU117 core and has 4 GB of GDDR6 vRAM based on a 128-bit bus. Since it is GTX and not RTX, we will not find ray tracing or DLSS technology here.

The ThinkBook 15p is a very versatile laptop, so I checked the GPU performance in terms of gaming performance and much more professional applications. GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q allows you to play even the latest titles comfortably, but only if you choose Full HD resolution and medium details. This set of settings is the closest to the desired 60 frames per second. If someone does not need this value for happiness, he can freely increase the quality of the graphics or the resolution, and we will continue to talk about a smooth (but not so much) image.

Multimedia

Webcam 720p with ThinkShutter
Audio2x 2W, Dolby Audio
Audio Jack3.5mm Combo Jack
NetworkLAN – Realtek RTL8168 / 8111 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Adapter
Wi-Fi 6 AX201 160MHz
BluetoothBluetooth 5.1
Ports2x USB 3.2 gen 1
1x USB 3.2 gen 1 type C (data only)
1x HDMI 2.0
1x LAN audio in / out
Keyboard NumpadYes
Keyboard TypeBacklit keyboard

The laptop also looks pretty good in terms of the connectors offered. Most of them went to the left side, which may not be particularly appealing to left-handed people. These are exposed that the plugs may protrude from the USB 3.2 gen 1 type C sockets (unfortunately – supporting only data transfer, without Power Delivery or DisplayPort), USB type A (3.2 gen 1), HDMI, and headphone/speaker sockets.

The LAN socket is at the rear edge, so it is unlikely to be in the mouse field. An additional USB connector in its most popular form and a 4 in 1 memory card reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC, and MMC) on the right side.

Lenovo offers the most usual standard in the world. At least for universal 15-inch laptops with high performance. There is a LAN socket here, and it is supported by the Realtek RTL8168 / 8111-gigabit network adapter. The Intel card that can help the Wi-Fi 6 standard is responsible for wireless connectivity.

 

Keyboard

Since it is a ThinkBook and not a ThinkPad, we will not experience the famous and beloved Precision keyboard here. However, this is not a huge loss because the ThinkBook defends itself quite well. The keys may not have as pleasantly springy click as those from ThinkPads, but in my ranking, laptop keyboards are still at the top.

The keyboard from the ThinkBook 15p has very similar characteristics to the recently tested Yoga C940 14. The stroke is relatively flat, and at first, a bit hard, but the bounce of the plate pressed in is appropriately dynamic, springy, and thus well felt. The “tiles” are pleasing to the touch, the buttons are properly contoured, and the entire area is free from tightness and clutter. Even the slightly smaller number panel did not spoil the ergonomics of the whole thing.

The entire keyboard is illuminated with white LEDs, and accidental spilling of liquid on it should not damage the computer because it is splash-proof.

A plastic plate plays the role of the touchpad finished with an impeccably smooth surface. Working without a mouse is also expected to be convenient due to the sufficiently large surface of the trackpad – Lenovo appropriately used a lot of space on the wrist rest. The touchpad buttons are integrated into the board. They have a bit hard and loud click, but you can not complain about their clarity and springiness. They are used well and fulfill their role to the full.

Lenovo smiled again at Harman for support in equipping their laptops with good audio. All indications are that Harman did not ignore these advances because not only is the casing bearing the logo of this recognized manufacturer of audio equipment, but can hear the speakers themselves that they offer a slightly higher quality than average. The ThinkBook 15P has 2-watt diaphragms, so some incredible sound complexity is not expected here. The sopranos dominate, but they are correctly balanced and tame. It is only at a maximum volume that you can sporadically hear some itchy ears, but apart from that, the audio fares well. 

The equipment is supported by  Dolby Audio software, which allows you to select a scenario appropriate to the activity (Music, Voice, Movies, Games), and also allows you to personalize the settings yourself with the 10-band equalizer.

Battery

Battery TypeLithium-ion
Battery Capacity57 Wh
Battery lifeUp-to 8 hours
AC Adapter135W

The battery with a capacity of 57 Wh for such a configuration is unlikely to work for too long. And yet, the ThinkBook 15p surprised me quite a lot in this respect. The laptop in office mode could work on its power supply for over 6 hours, i.e., almost two hours longer than the Yoga C940 recently. Except we had a 60 Wh battery and a low voltage processor there. However, if we only use the browser, the battery will last for up to 11 hours, which is a phenomenal result with this configuration.

Conclusion!

Without a doubt – Lenovo cares about ThinkBooks, and you can see that the new family is a kind of apple of the Chinese brand’s eye. In my opinion, the Lenovo ThinkBook 15p turned out to be a very successful laptop, and it works great as a universal machine for work and entertainment. There are many arguments to confirm this opinion.

The laptop is nice, well-made, and durable. You can complain a bit that Lenovo has put on a plastic desktop, not aluminum, rather than the cover protecting the screen.

In terms of performance, the combination of Core i5 10300H and GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q makes a lot of sense and is universal.

The work culture is just as good, the battery life phenomenal. The screen is bright and colorful, with excellent speakers and other equipment. All this combined into one efficient device called ThinkBook 15P.

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Acer TravelMate Spin P4 vs P4 Laptop: Which is Better

The newest edition of Acer TravelMate is equipped with Intel units from the Tiger Lake family. This is the 11th version of the “blue” mobile chips, the second one made in the 10 nm process. Intel announced and advertised its new processors for laptops with new integrated graphics cards, designed to offer power similar to the independent cards from NVIDIA or AMD, which can be found in notebook computers. So we will be able to check if Intel’s promises about the Intel Xe chip are not exaggerated.

TravelMate P4 and Spin P4 are the competitors of ThinkPad L and Dell Latitude 3000 and 5000 series. Laptops do not pretend to be something exclusive; they seem to reconcile usability, ergonomics, and equipment adequate for this segment with the performance of new processors and graphics cards Intel. Not only them, because TravelMate P4 has a representative of NVIDIA onboard – GeForce MX350.

Laptops came to us in very rich variants. It is enough to mention that Intel Core i7 1165G7 is installed in both machines, in addition to the mentioned GeForce MX350, 16 GB of TravelMate P4 RAM, 32 GB in its convertible version, and the rest of the configuration is closed by PCIe NVMe disks with a capacity of 512 GB and 1 TB.

General Info

TravelMate Spin P4TravelMate P4
$CHECK PRICECHECK PRICE
BrandAcerAcer
ModelSpin P4 P4 (TMP414-51)
Weight1.4 kg (3.09 lbs)1.41 kg (3.11 lbs)
OSWindows 10 Home Windows 10 Home
Display14 inches14 inches
Dimensions325 x 236 x 17.9 mm325 x 236 x 17.9 mm
TypeLaptopLaptop
FlipYesNo
ColorBlueBlue

TravelMate Spin P4 and TravelMate P4 are practically identical. Well, almost – the only slight difference is the slightly different structure of the hinges in the Spin P4 and the presence of a shiny, tactile matrix covered with a glass pane. But it’s understandable – Spin is a convertible notebook, so the hinges must allow it to transform into a tablet quickly. Besides, in all other respects, both computers look the same.

In terms of design and quality, there is nothing to complain about here. So objectively, because subjectively, that’s probably – someone may not like the color of the housing or the fact that the touchpad is in the same color and blends a bit with the palm rest. The corners of the case are pleasantly rounded, as is the trackpad, so everything is consistent, even when it comes to details. At the same time, the whole thing is uncomplicated, and it is simply good to look at in the world. The laptop will certainly not bring shame to the manufacturer, but somehow, it will not stand out from the competition in terms of design.

In terms of durability, both structures are also almost identical. The desktop is quite well supported, although it could be a bit stiffer with the touchpad. The casing fits very precisely, so nothing sounds and does not spoil the aesthetics with uninvited gaps. Where does this “almost” come from then? The Spin P4 screen features Corning Gorilla Glass, which naturally stiffens the lid, so the convertible Spin fares a bit better. But the classic P4 has no reason to be uncomfortable because the display is well protected. Even stronger pressure on the center of the cover does not cause any disturbances on the active matrix.

One should also mention the hinges of the converted Spin P4. These work with quite a pleasant resistance and allow you to quickly and smoothly transform your notebook into a tablet.

Display

Display TypeFull HD, IPSFull HD, IPS
Display Size14 inches 14 inches
Aspect Ratio16:916:9
Display Resolution1920 x 1080 pixels1920 x 1080 pixels
Touch ScreenYesNo
Refresh Rate60 Hz60 Hz
PPI157 PPI157 PPI

Both laptops are equipped with  IPS panels with Full HD resolution. In the case of TravelMate P4, it is a matte screen, and TravelMate Spin P4 has a touch screen protected by a glass pane. The quality of the screens is adequate to the segment of laptops in which they are installed, but they are not displays for people professionally dealing with graphics or simply in the world – who like rich, juicy colors. Backlight below 300 nits, the average for an IPS matrix, contrast, and color coverage below 60% of the sRGB gamut clearly emphasize this.

Acer decided to use aluminum painted in a matte gray-blue color (Slate Blue). Most of the housing is made of it. The bottom is made of plastic, although it imitates metal, when it turned out that it was not an aluminum panel. Both laptops are unlikely to become the kings of the “Thinnest and lightest 14-inch laptop” category, as they are up to 18 mm thick and weigh around 1.4 kg. There are thinner and lighter as well as broader and heavier devices on the market. The screen frames can also be found narrower. The side panels look decent, but the upper and lower ones are reminiscent of notebooks from 4-5 years ago.

Performance

Processor NameIntel Core i7 1165G7Intel Core i7 1165G7
Base frequency1.2-2.8 GHz1.2-2.8 GHz
Graphics CardIntel Iris Xe Graphics G7 (96EU)Intel Iris Xe Graphics G7 (96EU)
RAM32 GB16 GB
Storage1 TB, M.2 SSD, PCIe NVMe x4512 GB, M.2 PCIe NVMe x4 SSD

The naming of processors can rightly be associated with the 10th generation chips made in the 10 nm microarchitecture – Ice Lake. In this case, the first two digits indicate the CPU generation, and the next two digits are the unit ID. The designation “G7” means the performance of the integrated GPU.

Intel’s 11th generation mobile CPU takes them entirely into the world of 10nm lithography. It’s about time because the competition in AMD has been based on the 7 nm process for two years and the previous family. However, it was undoubtedly a big step in Intel’s history, was not as popular as the Comet Lake units introduced in the same year – made on based on yet another improved Skylake architecture (14nm). 

Intel Core i7 1165G7 is a 4-core and 8-thread unit. Virtually all diagnostic programs indicate a TDP of 28 W. This is not entirely true, however, because the CPU works in the TDP range from 12 to 28 W. 

The hardware manufacturers ultimately determine what efficiency the processor will work with, which is why many processors of this generation do not have a predetermined TDP in the official Intel specification. 

Intel has adopted the “tiger” processors to work with ultra-mobile devices, where the most extended battery life is essential, even at the expense of performance, and to “combines,” which nevertheless focuses on high performance. The processor’s base clock is, in theory, 2.8 GHz (but again – not in every case!), And the maximum clock speed for all cores is up to 4.1 GHz. Added to this is a 12 MB cache.

Intel announced that the Xe is to bring performance higher than the Radeons Vega integrated with Ryzen, and even the low-bay GPU from NVIDIA can be found in laptops. And it is great that we can verify these promises quite easily. We recently had the opportunity to test the Radeon Vega 7 integrated with the Ryzen 7 4700U with the Acer Swift 3, and the GeForce MX350 is in the TravelMate P4 we’ve just tried.

However, before we move on to the “dry” numbers, let’s take a look at what the graphic layouts of both test heroes offer on paper. Intel Xe is based on the scalable Xe-LP core, which will be found in Intel’s announced independent graphics cards. Integrated with the Core i7 1165G7, the system offers 96 shading units, 8 rendering units, and twice as many texturing units. The system works with a base frequency of 400 MHz to increase the clock speed to 1300 MHz in the Boost mode. Memory is shared.

 Based on the GP107 core, the GeForce MX350 looks much better in terms of specifications. 640 shaders, 16 rendering, and 40 texturing units are supported by 2 GB of own memory (GDDR5) and clocking in the 1354 – 1468 MHz fork. What can I say – if these values ​​directly impacted the results in games and benchmarks, Intel Xe would have to recognize a decisive advantage of dGPU from NVIDIA.

But it’s not like that! It turned out that this time Intel’s assurances about the amazingness of their graphics chip were not completely exaggerated and in some tasks, the representative of the “blue” was doing better or at least similar to the MX350 and Radeon Vega 7. The numbers do not lie.

Multimedia

Web-camAbove the displayAbove the display
Resolution1280 x 7201280 x 720
Speakers2.02.0
Ports2x USB 3.2 gen 1 (3.0)
1x Thunderbolt 3
HDMI
audio in / out
RJ-45
2x USB 3.2 gen 1 (3.0)
1x Thunderbolt 3
HDMI
audio in / out
RJ-45
WIFI6 AX201 160MHz6 AX201 160MHz
HDMI1x HDMI 2.01x HDMI 2.0
Bluetooth5.05.0
EthernetYesYes
Memory SlotsmicroSD card readermicroSD card reader

In both cases, TravelMates P4 offers a complete package for Internet connectivity. Acer has equipped its “business bags” with a wired network card (Realtek RTL8168 / 8111 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Adapter) and a WLAN card supporting Wi-Fi in the AX standard (so-called Wi-Fi 6 ) and Bluetooth 5.1. Added to this is an optional WWAN modem (Quectel EM06-E). To be completely happy, some may lack only NFC.

Thunderbolt 4 has arrived with new Intel CPUs. It is true that the maximum speed has not increased compared to the previous generation and is still a maximum of 40 GB / s. Still, it is possible to use longer cables (up to 2 meters) without loss, and the port itself will now be able to handle two external screens with a resolution of 4K or one with 8K resolution.

On the right side, there is a headphone-microphone socket, a microSD card reader, a slot for a SIM card, and in the case of Spin P4 – a socket for an active pen. The classic TravelMate P4 has only a cover here.

Acer has equipped them with everything that they should find in a business device of this class. The fingerprint reader, integrated with the power button in both cases, is located on the right edge. Smart Card? There is, but only in the P4 version. Spin P4 doesn’t have it. A webcam with a mechanical shutter and an IR sensor for facial recognition? Is. On top of that, of course, there is the TPM 2.0 encryption module. 

The speakers are placed above the keyboard, under a fine mesh that decorates the desktop. Such a location ensures that they are not silenced in any way when, for example, someone uses a computer holding it on their lap, as is sometimes the case in laptops with speakers placed underneath.

The TravelMate’s is loud and, unfortunately, the sign of being too loud has not been avoided – above 90% of the volume, the dominant high tones start to pierce the ears unpleasantly, so when watching a movie or listening to music, it is worth not to exceed this threshold. Below that value, it is much better, and the reproduced sound is as audible as possible. But it doesn’t stand out with anything special either.

Keyboard

The keyboards in Acer business laptops are pretty pleasant and comfortable, but it will be much better to use them for people who like a very short essential travel. The keyboard profile in both of the heroes of the review is relatively flat, but fortunately, the mechanisms are springy enough so that you do not feel like tapping your fingers on a plastic board.

The entire keyboard area is orderly, the gaps between the keys are sufficient, and the “tiles” of the buttons are sufficiently large, so everything is conducive to intuitive touch typing. The only slight disadvantage is the crampedness of the directional keys.

The surface of the touchpads in both laptops is sufficient for comfortable work, although the trackpad is neither very wide nor long. It is just right. The plastic plate is also slippery, so moving your finger over its surface is not difficult and is comfortable enough. The touchpad buttons are integrated into the board. Their stroke is a bit plastic, but at the same time, it is properly felt and springy. Nothing to complain about.

Battery

Battery TypeLi-IonLi-Ion
Battery Capacity43 Wh43 Wh
ReplaceableNoNo
Power65 W65 W

Acer opted for batteries with a capacity similar to business notebooks usually offer in this segment – 43 Wh. Both laptops performed exceptionally well in battery life, especially the Spin 4, which can work up to 12 hours without interruption.

The fact that the TravelMate Spin P4 fared better is no surprise. The independent GeForce MX350 in the second tested laptop meant that the working time, depending on the activity, was shorter by half an hour to even four hours. Therefore, it turned out that the Core i7 1165G7 and Intel Xe doublet is not only efficient but can also take care of energy efficiency.

Conclusion!

Both laptops managed very well in terms of performance. They may not be the lightest and smallest among 14-inch business laptops, but they are hard to fault with anything. Although not – you can: about those thick upper and lower bezels of the screen. Plus, everything is there, including the selection and placement of available ports, slots, and readers.

The Tiger Lake generation is satisfying. The “Tiger” in the Core i7 1165G7 with the integrated Intel Xe presented itself very well, although the low-voltage Ryzenes can still fare better. Radeon Vega is different – here it may turn out that Intel has created a more efficient iGPU than the “reds,” and you can see the first symptoms of this state of affairs in this review.

Acer TravelMate P4 and TravelMate Spin P4, however, are not entirely without flaws. And probably the biggest is the average quality matrices that have no alternative.

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ASUS ExpertBook B1 (B1500) vs B1 (B1400): Laptop For Business Professionals

Companies involved in creating business laptops try to ensure that the probability of choosing their machine, and not the competition, is sufficiently high. Easy? Surely not, because you need to make one particular piece of equipment suitable for as many potential customers as possible. Or! To have a wide and varied portfolio that practically every potential customer will find something for themselves in the offer of a given manufacturer.

The “big three” manufacturers of business laptops, namely Dell, Lenovo, and HP, do not mean that it is not worth looking at other manufacturers. Asus presented in this year’s edition of the ExpertBook B1 series.

Two notebooks from the same manufacturer are very similar in configuration and equipment but differ in some details – perfect material for a double review. Not “comparative,” because what’s the point of comparing nearly identical machines from one series?

General Info

ExpertBook B1 (B1500)ExpertBook B1 (B1400)
$CHECK PRICECHECK PRICE
BrandASUSASUS
ModelB1 (B1500) B1 (B1400)
Weight1.72 kg (3.79 lbs)1.45 kg (3.2 lbs)
OSWindows 10 Home Windows 10 Home
Display15.6 inches
Dimensions358 x 236.5 x 19.4 mm323.4 x 215.6 x 19.2 mm
TypeBusinessBusiness

In terms of configuration, both motherboards have Core i7 1165G7, inside two media, one of which is a 2.5-inch drive. And a large amount of RAM. How does this translate into performance, and what else can ExpertBooks offer? Let’s check it out!

They are almost identical machines. In terms of design, port equipment, and materials used, the B1400C is one-to-one B1500C. The main difference between them is, of course, due to the size of the screen. The smaller ExpertBook has a matrix with a diagonal length of 14.1 inches, and the larger one – the classic 15.6 inches. Interestingly, the differences are not huge. We are talking about a difference of about 300 grams (1.45 kg B1400C and 1.73 kg B1500C), 3.5 centimeters wide, and 2 centimeters deep for the housing. The computers are 1.9 cm thick in both cases.

Asus designers reached for a style. The housing, touchpad, and keyboard in the color of “starry black” have little ornamentation. As such, I can consider an indentation that makes it easier to open the laptop, rounded corners, or a shiny manufacturer’s logo placed in the middle of the flap. However, it cannot say that the design is simple. We have been dealing here with a solution available in Asus laptops for several years, i.e., the ErgoLift hinge taking place after opening to the rear edge of the notebook and quite clearly exposed ports. 

In terms of durability, the ExpertBooks present an excellent level, the more that we are talking about cheaper business bags. The dashboard is quite stiff, and only in the middle of the 15-inch B1500C can you see the material’s soft work under the pressure of your fingers. Aluminum laptop covers are also very stiff and protect the matrix and the computer itself well. Light metal perfectly protects the screen from warping and pressure, but as it turned out – it is easier to dress it with fingerprints. The whole structure fits perfectly.

Display

Display Type IPS LCD IPS LCD
Display Size15.6 inches14 inches
Aspect Ratio16:916:9
Display Resolution1366 x 768 pixels1366 x 768 pixels
Touch ScreenNoNo
Refresh Rate60 Hz60 Hz
PPI100 PPI112 PPI

Both devices of the ExpertBook B1 series are equipped with  IPS matrices with Full HD resolution and declared brightness of 250 nits. Perfect for office tasks. The case of the B1400C Full HD is displayed on 14 “, and in the B1500C – on the screen with a diagonal of 15.6”.

Both screens are designed for office work, which, taking into account the profiling of the equipment, is by no means a disadvantage. Regarding color reproduction, coverage of the sRGB palette was standard for this segment, 60% for the B1500C and 62% for the B1400C.

However, if you expect the image to be a bit ‘washed out’ or pale. As a result, that’s none of those things. In both cases, the screen brightness is higher than the specification and closer to 300 nits than 250.

The panels are characterized by a deep and pleasant black, and the contrast is around 1500: 1 in both laptops. These are remarkably high values ​​for this price range

Performance

Processor NameIntel Core i7 1165G7
4 cores, 8 threads
Intel Core i7 1165G7
4 cores, 8 threads
Base frequency1.2-2.8 GHz1.2-2.8 GHz
Graphics CardGeForce MX330Intel Iris Xe Graphics G7 (96EU)
RAM4GB4GB
Storage128GB128GB

As already mentioned, computers came in similar configurations: same processor, same graphics, and identical two-disk data storage. The only thing that stood out in the specs table was the RAM capacity. In the case of the 15-inch B1400C, 32 GB of memory was installed, and the B1400C boasted the maximum RAM capacity available for the tested laptops – 48 GB.

Intel Core i7 1165G7 is the most powerful unit with which you can buy both laptops. 11th generation low-voltage laptop processors (Tiger Lake-U) were made in an improved 10 nm microarchitecture named Willow Cove. Interestingly, the Core i7 1165G7 has a configurable TDP between 12-28 W. Asus decided to allow the unit to achieve full performance. But was the quad-core and eight-thread chip able to take advantage of it?

In terms of graphics the NVIDIA GeForce MX330 will never become an object of desire for gamers. Still, office laptops are a practical complement to the configuration, especially if everyday work requires programs that use GPU computing power. 

 

The NVIDIA GeForce MX330 will never become an object of desire for gamers. Still, office laptops are a practical complement to the configuration, especially if everyday work requires programs that use GPU computing power. 

In addition to the GeForce, the laptops have the Intel Iris Xe “integrated” in their most powerful low-voltage version. When introducing the processors with Intel Iris Xe, the new iGPU will boost the performance of independent graphics cards from the lower shelf. So how does the independent MX330 fare against Intel’s graphics?

Intel did not exaggerate this time, and Intel Iris Xe is not only comparable – the results even speak in its favor. However, you have to keep in the back of your head that this is the most efficient version of the “iris” available with a low-voltage processor. The differences can be felt in some applications, and it turned out that the “integrated” fared noticeably worse in the Unigine Superposition test at low settings.

Multimedia

Web-camAbove the displayAbove the display
Resolution1280 x 7201280 x 720
Speakers2.02.0
Audio22
Ports1x Thunderbolt 4
1x VGA
1x HDMI
2x USB 3.2 gen 2 type A
1x USB 2.0
1x RJ-45
1x Thunderbolt 4
1x VGA
1x HDMI
2x USB 3.2 gen 2 type A
1x USB 2.0
1x RJ-45
Wireless LanWi-Fi 6 AX201 160MHzWi-Fi 6 AX201 160MHz
HDMI1x HDMI 2.01x HDMI 2.0
Bluetooth5.2 5.2
EthernetIntel (13) I219-V Intel (13) I219-V
Memory SlotsmicroSD card readermicroSD card reader

And here we come to the ports. In both laptops, the set of available connectors and their arrangement are identical. We have not seen such a variety of open sockets in laptops for a long time.

Left-handed mouse users may be discouraged as most of the connectors have just hit the left side of the computers. We have Thunderbolt 4 there placed right next to VGA. The question of the legitimacy of equipping a modern ultrabook with this socket presses on the lips. On the other hand, many companies still have monitors or projectors equipped with cables with a plug that fits the socket. Next to it, we have HDMI 1.4 and two USB 3.2 gen 2. On the right side, Asus engineers have placed a universal 3.5 mm jack and USB 2.0. 

The new ExpertBooks are equipped with stereo speakers located at the front of the side edges and directed downwards. However, this did not affect their overall audibility. The audio is loud enough, the scale has not been exaggerated here, and even at maximum, the sound retains high transparency.

Asus has equipped the new ExpertBooks not only with decent membranes but also with DTS software. Of course, it is mainly responsible for such a pleasantly complex and deep sound – for laptop speakers. In addition to ready-made scenarios of the sound played (classic division: music, movie, games), DTS Audio Processing allows you to create your configuration based on settings that will enable you to boost bass, treble, and vocals, as well as a five-band equalizer.

Keyboard

The keyboards in both cases look the same, have the same key layout, the keys are enlarged, even the setup is identical. But! Asus surprised me that in the 15-inch B1500C, it “pushed” the numeric panel into the Enter key and arrows. It looks a bit distorted because it has been significantly slimmer than the rest of the keys, but it is. 

The keyboard itself can boast pleasant operating characteristics. It is not too flat, so the jump of the keys is adequately felt. The response from the keys could indeed be more precise, but this is my standard cliche. The smooth material used as the building material for the “tiles” of the keys is pleasant to the touch. The tiles are the right size (well, maybe apart from the aforementioned numeric panel, where the buttons are half a centimeter narrower). The keyboard is also backlit with white light and is splash-proof.

The ExpertBook B1400C has a touch numeric panel activated by a touch icon located in the upper left corner of the plate. However, this is not the only difference – the trackpad from the B1500C is one centimeter higher, which again shows that the manufacturer tried to make the most of the housing space. Worthy of praise.

In both cases, we are dealing with trackpads of an appropriate size, sufficient for the comfortable navigation of the cursor and the use of Windows gestures. The keys integrated with the plates also do their job well – their click is balanced correctly: not too hard and not too soft.

Battery

Battery TypeLi-IonLi-Ion
Battery Capacity42 Wh42 Wh
ReplaceableNoNo
Power65 / 90 W65 / 90 W

Asus equipped with the same battery42 Wh used in a 13- or a 14-inch ultrabook, but in a 15.6-inch laptop, it looks a bit miserable. Battery life on both laptops looked very similar when playing a movie, watching a movie, and running at full capacity. However, the Internet browsing test was surprising. In this case, the 15-inch B1500C could run for almost 1.5 hours longer than its more little brother.

However, it cannot be denied that such results are pretty average, and the new ExpertBooks of the B1 series are unlikely to be the first choice for anyone, especially when the priority is to work with a laptop for a long time away from the socket.

Conclusion!

Asus created a pretty successful competition for such recognized business machines as ThinkPad E from Lenovo, Dell Latitude 3000 series, or ProBooks from HP. At the same time,The  ExperBooks B1 is not a more or less successful carbon copy of those mentioned above.

Entry-business from Asus has its personality and tries to stand out somehow, which is not easy compared to the great competition. Asus has a narrow portfolio of machines strictly targeted at business, the brand decided to try to create laptops that will suit as many recipients as possible. It turned out pretty well.

The symbolic placement of Thunderbolt 4 next to the VGA socket is the best example of this.

Laptops should be commended for their performance. Yes, these are not particularly beautiful and slender machines, but you can see that there was an idea here that was implemented. In addition, the strength of both structures turned out to be at a high level.  Only configurations with the GeForce MX330 can raise doubts. But if someone will need independent graphics with their memory, then go ahead.

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